Monday, December 19, 2005


Road to Anti-Americanism

In my early writings on this blog, I was careful to distinguish between the American people and the American administration when I criticized US policies in Iraq. Attack after attack came from American super-patriots. I started calling them American Saddamists because they could not distinguish between country and ‘leader’. However, more recently I started using the word America, just like them… and just like many other millions across the world to refer to the whole of the USA.

I wrote this post with a heavy heart, fully aware of the existence of millions of Americans who do not fit the gloomy picture the post portrays… but sometimes it may be more useful in the long run to face ugly conclusions.

I know that decent people, due to their very nature, will understand.


Fifth Americans are vocal again! They kept a relatively low profile during the recent ‘scandal’ episodes of Libby, white phosphorous and torture… These days, with the ‘successful’ elections in Iraq, they are up again - hailing the administration’s wisdom, foresight and steadfastness. They are full of praise, not only for themselves but also for the Iraqi people. They are also on the attack. Super-patriotic Americans are quite fond of labeling their adversaries “anti-American”. They simply cannot understand why anybody could be anti-American.

I have attempted to answer this question, from an Iraqi perspective. In other words: Is it possible for a rational Iraqi to view America as an enemy state?

How dare I do that even before the election results are out? The answer to that can be found in my previous post. I have deliberately chosen to do so in these days where pro-administration Americans are euphoric, in order to remind those Americans who suffer from the short-memory syndrome that seems to be prevalent in America that world history is somewhat longer than that their attention span.

However, the essay is too long for this blog. I have therefore posted it elsewhere. This post is merely a pointer to that essay.

I expressed the view from a relatively mild, secular, generally pro-western point of view in the hope that some Americans may see some of the reasons for the birth of a new wave of “Anti-Americanism” in the making.

The sad conclusion is that America can be justifiably seen as an enemy of Iraq. I say America, meaning the United States of America, because this includes the three American components that can be seen responsible for the devastation of Iraq:

1. The successive American administrations, in charge of the American government. They have a decades-long history of policies and acts of aggression against the people of Iraq.

2. The American army that has been the tool through which the American administrations have implemented their policies in Iraq.

3. The American public who, through ignorance, indifference, acquiescence or active support, was ultimately responsible for it all.

Americans are invited to reflect honestly on the idea that if a mild outlook can lead to such a dim view of America, then what conclusions would a fierce nationalist, a deeply religious Muslim or a person with violent inclinations may reach?


Hello Abu Khaleel,
Americans, by and large, are an isolationist people, uninterested in other nations and peoples. They are interested in threats against them, real or imagined that their leaders focus on. We live in a comfortable cocoon of media and advertising which further insulates us and supports our ignorant 'worldview' which now can be seen by you as well.

You should know that all is not well in America and the deep decay revealed by Katrina, criminal corruption in the government, economic decline and financial bankruptcy (all of which is being denied by Bush&Co.)is being anxiously felt by my shallow, short-sighted people.

I wish America could apologize for the horrendous mess that we have left the Iraqi people--a mess our leader Bush is incapable of fixing in any way. I hope that your new representatives will courageously tell the American Administration to leave Iraq and begin the social and physical reconstruction of Iraqi society and that in the future, we may meet again as equals.

I agree with what you say. I saw a hilarious clip the other day where an Australian TV network interviewed people on the streets of America, asking them where they should invade or bomb next. Ordinary Americans were filmed saying things like "N. Korea, Korea, Iran, France, Italy (maybe they confused Italy with Iran) etc." But the crowning gesture was the Australian commentator showing the interviewees who said "Korea" a doctored map of the world labelling Australia as "Korea," and asking if they could place a little sticker flag on that country. As you can imagine, many proceeded to place the sticker on the Australian continent, right there at the bottom of the world, merely because it was labelled "Korea"! They didn't seem to know how the world is configured at all. I used to be surprised by international surveys which showed that 80 per cent of American high-school students couldn't find the Pacific Ocean on an unmarked world map, but now I know why. The fact that a dim-wit like Bush can be elected president says everything about their country. I'm from Singapore. I'm sad that Iraq has suffered from American imperialism, and I would like to express my sympathy. I hope one day they stop coveting your oil in contravention of their so-called holy text, the bible, and that one day their warmongers will learn to live in peace with the rest of the world.

Thank you, Abu Khaleel, for that very true essay. It is time people called a spade a spade...If the Iraqi Government had invaded and occupied America, would the American people hold only the Iraqi Government responsible? Or would they have blamed Iraqis collectively? It is bad enough that Iraqis are being treated like criminals for a crime that America has, please, let us remove the rose-coloured spectacles and face reality - the American people are just as guilty as their government.

I could see this (not the post, but the growing anti-Americanism) coming like a ten-ton truck barrelling down a hill. I'm surprised at the members of the current American administration who entirely missed it. From the beginning of this administration, far more than in the past, my nation seems to be ruled by the ideas that Might makes Right, and that the Ends justify the Means.

My apologies to you, Abu Khaleel and to your family, and to all the Iraqi readers of your blog, for what my nation (even against my will) has been doing.

My apologies as well and most specifically to those Chaldeans and Assyrians who believe that their votes have been stolen from them, and that the Americans are refusing to hear their complaints.

My country, through the actions of this administration and those who support it, has sown, not the wind, but the whirlwind. I dread the crop we shall, with justification, reap.

Be Well,
Ilu yashallimukum wayaghurukum
May God give you (all) peace and guard you (all)

I am an 70 year old caucasian native born american.
I am so terribly sad for what my government has done to the Iraqi people. I apologize for the stupidity of the 25/30 percent of te American people that still believe the LIES of the BUSH and his cronies.
Iraq is just anoter country that the US government has decimated. The US would not be so hatred if it had not exploited the world.
I said 10 years ago that if the US government did not get on the moral right side of the of the Middle East situation, instead of financing & propping the dictatorships & overbearing Israeli Zionists, the US would experience terrorist activity within the US. I also said that if te far right fundamentalist religion people got a grip on the US government, the US would be some what like the Taliban.
Well it as come to pass.


I agree with ALL te above posts. I wish you and all the people in The Middle East the best & hope the US will get out and let you people settle your own destiny, I hope that one day, some ow the Zionists will be forced to admit their Illegal actions of genocide against the Palestinian people and at lest pulls back to the pre 1967 borders.
I apologize for my government's complict approval of the Zionists Illegal aggression in the middle east.
I am humiliated by my government, I am ashamed of my government, I am terrified of my government, Because of the blatant corruption of the Bush administration, I live in fear of my county's future.

I am incredulous that this horror has continued for so long. I have repeatedly written to my "representatives" asking them to initiate impeachment, hold a referrendum whereby a vote of no confidence could be registered (ha, like our free elections)or even initiate a citicizens arrest of the criminals who now run our counrty into the ground along with yours. So helpless am I to remove the pestulance. Bush spoke last night and all I could think of was the song LIAR, LIAR. Mabey 30,000 innocents have died. More like 100,000 per Lancet article but who is counting? They are just collateral damage. My Christmas cards this year included a few photographs of the faces of our victims and I would encourage all to do the same. Will it finally be shame that moves our myopic brethren to outrage for what is being done in our name?
Forgive us our trespass

Look, I'm sorry, there's no good way to state this if you take the example of Vietnam and Cambodia. After they decided that enough of their soldiers had died, they basically bombed those two countries back into the stone age. Enough now thirty years later some Cambodian kid gets his limb blown off every few minutes because of the leftover bombs. I'm sorry, I'm hope what I said earlier didn't come across as flippant. I don't follow any organised religion but I hope God blesses your family and your people.

Thank you for your article. I live as an American abroad, born a San Franciscan, and have both British and USA citizenship. I am ashamed of both!
For standing up for freedom, human rights, natural law and being a Paineitte, I have been accused of being a traitor and of hating the USA. Like the victims of the Soviets in the U.S.S.R. I know what they and the jews/gays/handicapped/gypsies knew under the National Socialists. The Bush family supported Nazi Germany for a long time!

I fear that the new Dark Ages will end with another bloody revolution. Perhaps not in my life-time, but eventually it may happen. If not, then the future will be as Geo Orwell predicted in 1984. As an artist and musician, I have always been an outsider looking in. I am appalled by the cowardly nature of the American people. I have been warned by my oldest friends of 40 years and more to "keep quiet". Why? Because I have a family to protect and look out for and to survive for. America is lazy. Greed and fear still motivates everyone. Money and materialism causes the fear, cowardice and laziness.

No sane individual believes the lies Bush and Rice and Powell and Cheyney and Rumsfeld and Wolfovitz and all the other crazy neocons say. Noam Chomsky gave a very simple and clear interview in the Netherlands radio a couple of days ago.

Nothing new in his content, the facts are plain for everyone to see. The American people are in denial.

Assassinating the President etc. would be like the assassination of Hitler's man Heindrik during WW2. It would be counter-productive. Bush is merely a stooge, a puppet controlled by the corporations and the Bin Laden family.

I'm afraid, terribly afraid that the only solution will be a bloody violent one! And no help from the outside either!!!!!

yours sincerely,

What I don't hear anyone in the media talking about, or see on any Blogs that I've seen is Hitler’s duly elected puppet government in occupied France during WWII, and what the world thought of that regime. Nor do I see any mention of well settled international law to the effect that any government installed while the subjugated people are occupied by a foreign invader is ipso facto illegitimate. How come none of the “blue thumb” champions and their collaborators in the media ignore these facts?

I hope your realize how deadly to the soul this insanity is, from the belly of the beast.

If I could change the course of this country by selling everything I have, or giving it away, I would.

I really don't know how to change the evolved behavior of humans. I think every day on what meme I might dream up to disrupt this propaganda machine, but from my studies of science, I am forced to draw the hypothesis that this is the way the world ends, with insanity and fear.

The world is red in tooth and claw, and those who can actually follow the prophets of wisdom are few indeed. I think the answer will the be the sword, not the prayerbook.

Good luck.

This is my first visit to your blog. I usually check into Riverbend or Faiza and her sons, in Jordan now, to try and find out what is going on in Iraq since the media here leave something to be desired.

I just wanted to let you know that some of us here are extraordinarily angry and frustrated with the administration and with many of our fellow-citizens. We are trying to make our voices heard for your sake and the sake of our country. We seem finally to be having some success in waking up more Americans if the polls on the administration are any indication.

It gets discouraging sometimes although I'm sure not nearly as discouraged as you get. Just know that you do have friends in America and the number is growing.


















I have been ashamed of my country since I was 13 and the Kennedy Assassination took place, The country was never the same. The bigot Bush stole the last election and was put in office my the supreme court the first time after losing the recount in Fla. The people of the country are ignorant of there government, and of the people in Iraq who are being killed for being nothing but citizens of the country. This country is run by Wall St. and the rich who enjoy the tax cuts while the poor and old are left to rot in places like New Orleans. Bush is run by the Neo-Cons who care nothing about people or rule of law, they just care about POWER. J.F.K and his brother and Martin Luther King were all killed because they cared about the people not the Military Industral Complex that Esenhower warned us about when leaving office. This country is totally screwed without new leadership to take us and the world to the deminsion that only Revolution can bring about. I have always been an outsider in my own country, I lived in Canada for 10 years and they were very afraid of the Yankees and there Nuclear Weapons and what they would do with them. Bush and his regime would probably kill the next Christ if he came to earth. I have no power but to write editorials to newspapers that won't publish them. The senant and congress are also in the pockets of the fat cats. I wish and hope we will leave your country soon and consintrate on our demestic problems and forget the oil. Because the greedy Neo-Cons want to rule the oil and through oil they rule the world, bottom line its all about power with these criminals, they continue to keep us divided. A house divided can't fix its own problems how can we fix Iraqs. I see the poor children being maimed and killed by us and the people being violated in prison and tortured and I think this is a bad dream and can we ever wake up and see the killing we are associated with - KARMA for future generations... I know that most americans are deep down good people but they are being screwed by this regime with fear. This is not the country that my father and grandfather came to during the early part of last century or is it the greatest country anylonger people think of war as a sports game intill they see the blood flowing and freeze up. I most be just rambling on cause I am so furstrated with this government and the right wing idiots who believe Bush and the Neo-con-artists who run this country. I watch c-span and can't beleive what my fellow americans are saying when Bushs popularity rating is down to 40% they continue to call and support the killing of innocents. I hope we come to our collective senses and get out of your country.

How utterly depressing. You know where this all leads of course, a person of your foresight must. If all Americans are considered awful then all Americans who disagree with their Administration will end up throwing in the towel, they'll give up trying to explain that patriotic No War Americans exist and will retire to their homes in unutterable silence. All those voices that might have made a difference, quashed. Just like that.

I urge you to abstain from decisions that may swell the American Administration's ego by leading the American Adminstration to believe the American Adminstration's current course of action represents all Americans. Think of the American people, poor frightened things, teetering on the verge of becoming casualties to the largest failed social experiment in history yet. I believe that we must reach out to them, if but from behind the safety of bullet proof glass, reach out and... and... and help them or something.

Boy, you’ve certainly hit a nerve here, Abu.
And to change metaphors, you’re inviting us to swim in pretty murky waters. What does being "Anti-American" mean?
Anti the people of the USA? Half of them oppose what has been done in Iraq - not strongly enough to take up arms or riot in the streets, maybe, but that wouldn’t really be the right solution anyway.
Anti the State, USA? That is, after all, the legal entity which conquered and currently controls Iraq. But the state is meant to embody the will of the people above. Gets you no further.
Anti the current government of the USA? When you come right down to it, "democracy" is in a sense just serial dictatorship anyway - in most countries the party in power does pretty much what it likes for its elected term. And would a change of ruling party actually make that much difference to the realities of global real-politiks?
Anti the Red State voters who put and have kept this administration in power? Isn’t that the same as being anti-Iraqi because one dislikes Shiite religious fundamentalists?
And there’s a point - who started this whole sorry mess anyway? Who invaded Kuwait in the first place? The people of Iraq? The State, Iraq? The ruling cabal in Iraq? The dictator, Saddam?
Gets me very confused. Could I suggest another perspective - are you really just saying that you’ve come to the conclusion that the bad things about America now outweigh the good?
In the past you’ve extolled the ideals on which it was founded. A lot of the world, a lot of the time, bought into the "home of freedom and democracy" thing and managed to ignore, or excuse, for example, the way blacks were actually treated for most of US history.
Is this foolish Iraq enterprise really just revealing to the world, for the first time, the true extent of the scabs and pustules that are hidden under that Uncle Sam suit?
(Hey, meditate for a while on the question of why no-one, far as I’m aware, is strongly Anti-Kiwi? Except for a few US Admirals because we wouldn’t let them bring their nuclear toys into our ports.)

I agree with your essay. As a former Marine, I learned how to try to view things from another persons point of view. This did not come easy as I was once like those super-patriot Americans. I thought everything I was doing while in the Marines was for other person(s) good because the Government said so. My problem, it was only my point of view I was considering and not others. One day, while in Italy, myself and a couple of other guys walked past a lady in an Italian town and she spit on us and said, "America no bono!" Then kids came out and threw rocks. I pondered and pondered why they did that. Then, it hit me, it wasn't us per say that they objected to it was American troops in general. Later, I learned from other Italians that it was our presence, foreign troops in their town that they hated.
I can appreciate your feelings. Unfortunately, those super-patriots never will. They are convinced 100% of the rightousness and actions of their so called "cause" like I used to be. Never, and I mean never will they question those that ordered it. Never will they consider that any violent or negative reactions by those they are trying to "help" is a direct reaction to their "cause" or presence in the first place. Still, the super-patriots wonder why they hate us. There is one last portion the super patriots will never consider in regards to their "cause" and that is revenge. Revenge for what has been done to those people over the years and what is going on currently. You reep what you sow as they say.

Yesterday the congress passed a "budget reconciliation" bill that cut funding for programs for poor people while giving tax breaks to the very richest Americans. So, I remain astounded at our citizen's indifference not just concerning foreign policy, but even our domestic policies. I attribute this in part to the corporatization of the media that fails to infom people of what is really happening. But, beyond that, I have no explanation. I feel so sad and powerless. And I wonder what will become of us.

I am a born American. I am terribly saddened and angry by what BushCo. is doing internationally and domestically. What you cannot forget is that the Americans did not vote Bush back into office. BushCo and their Republican supporters stole the election. Everyday, we are losing our civil liberties and freedoms that America was founded on. People that are against Bush administration's policies, and that vocalize it, are now being put under surveilance and being labeled a domestic terrorist... and are being watched... being falsely arrested, being silenced etc.
Yes, there are many American's that are sitting idly by.. believing the false propoganda coming from the BushCo. administration,and yes, Shame on them!!!! but I believe Americans are starting to wake-up. Slowly, too slow... but better late than never. I understand all the anti-American feelings, but we must direct anger at the people responsible for this mess and realize that not every American is a greedy, hostile, self-centered, hateful, person.

i am of indian origin but currently residing in US. i read alot of comments from americans and non-americans that the civilian population should be held responsible. while i completely disagree with that, we should all understand that at this moment of peril, wisdom is what should guide emotions and not impulse. 9/11 is an apt example of punishing those not responsible. though new york never supported Bush, it suffered. so does that mean if there was an attack in Ohio it would justified?
in the same manner we all agree Saddam needed to punished and not the people, along with those western elites who brought him to power and kept him there, we should also understand to win the support of the masses, to make people more aware of the world around them, you need to urge them to unearth the truth and not push them furhter into those holes they are now crawling out of at a snail's pace. If all white house officials were to be imprisoned, i doubt it would ever bring back peace of mind to those who were tortured by these murderers, Iraqis who lost their family members, not to mention half a million children whom died of santions alone. America can never be forgiven for its crimes across the globe, from Latin America to East Asia. An appleal to all americans - request more americans to read such sites, works of authors and intellectuals like Noam Chomsky, Robert Fisketc, only then may be America(the people) will ever wake up

Folks, Jeffrey is a troll. He probably enjoys reading "Little Green Footballs." His intent is to portray the realists' position vis-a-vis the Iraq war as one of homicidal mania bent on harming America, when in fact critics of the war waged against Iraq are opposing the homicidal mania of people like Jeffrey, who hate Arabs on a fundamental level. May their re-education be swift and beneficial.

All true Americans should on behalf of their nation make every possible movement to impeach President (43) G.W.Bush. Otherwise they are, as part of the silent majority, willing consenters to the behaviour of the current US administration.

However, just like in the Nixon days, you must get read of the even worse shit first! Make sure that the VP (that means Cheney, that is the terrorist Cheney of the terrorist Cheney administration) is unavailable for office first (preferrably by submitting him to an international court for war crimes and insane behavior).

A lot of critics, in criticising Jeffey's criticism, tend to fall back on the non-arguement that "Jeffrey hates Arabs".

This I feel, is not true. Jeffrey can behave hatefully, but in all fairness he directs that hate at anyone who challenges his ideas, or worse, deliberately provokes him for fun. And who would not, in Jeffrey's place? If Americans are considered horrid, Jeffrey might be justified in his hatred at being portrayed horridly seeing as it is clear that ordinary Americans are not horrid - just oppressed.

In any case, some of Jeffrey's ancient ancestors are probably from the middle east - his last name is apparently middle european. Middle easterners and middle europeans have been exchanging political, social and cultural ideas for thousands of years. Jeffrey is doing the same thing, in his own way. I wish he wouldn't vote for Bush though.

Many of us knew the shit would start rolling faster and faster downhill when the little dictator in the Whitehouse stopped asking about Osama and started screaming Saddam, Saddam, Saddam. Apparently it worked, as this asshole has built up such an armor of teflon that nothing can touch him. Now it comes out that he is even spying on his own people. Do we even care? Probably not. We don't give a shit about Iraq or any other place with "brown skinned" people. Hell, we don't even care about our own brown skinned people, unless they're rich and Christian. 12 years of sanctions that destroyed Iraq, making it an easy target for "shock and awe" doesn't bother us. We just pick up our flags, condem the homosexuals, and care whether or not Michael Jackson really molested those kids. The complete idiocy and blind sheep nature of a great number of Americans certainly leaves me with a fuming sense of "shock and awe". Sad.

I am getting old and tired and I will not apologize for the actions of people who today call themselves Americans or citizens of the United States as they are not and never will be. there is nothing I can do to avoid being part of the collateral damaged by their enemies or by their administrations either. I do not worry about it for myself nor for them, though I do admit to awaiting more of their destructions and loss of freedoms within us in punishment for what they are doing to world but especally what they did to aid in death of old United States. I always felt I was part of a much greater cause, Liberty and Freedom as expressed by old US Constitutional Founders Documents and still do but I see much more chance of them being fullfilled outside us territorial borders than within. Maybe I will live to see that spark again in some foreign country but even if I don't I will never stop reminding those I trust about the old dreams of being a Free American. Most old farts are so complacent and fear ridden they cower in fear of losing medical and social security: or those who caught the greatest time to acquire wealth in us history bragging as if they made it on own forgetting what country they came from: they made theirs and to hell with the rest, the great generation? B.S.! to hell with them! NO sixty and damn few seventy year olds today served in wwII or Korea. At least some tho should remember fathers uncles and grandfathers who did and in rememberence of them should not be worried about consequences. What have they to lose but a few years of living within a lie. Better to die a free man than act like a cowering dog, self serving old fart or a flaming facist that call themselves americans.

"Do we even care?"

Clearly Dan, you do. And if you do, perhaps others do. Perhaps there are not so many blind sheep, only mute sheep. Shock and awe does that, the goal after all, is stunned silence. Is nothing more musical then sheep, bleating softly to one another? Listen carefully for sheep and pray do not hurl more explosives in their midst - the trauma may have them slicing off their own tongues for fear someone else does first. Even children learn, all by themselves, that it's easier to pull your own loose teeth then bear the madman's belt.

More is going on in America than the Arab world is hearing about.

This has been true since before the bombs began to fall on Iraq and will continue until those responsible are held accountable, to the fullest extent of American and International law.

The vast majority of Americans were genuinely deceived by their own fear and the fear-mongering, deception by the Bush administration and their enablers in Congress and the mainstream media.

That is changing very fast now, but it is a continuous struggle, day and night.

Yes, there are people in this country that who are the epitome of evil, but there are many more who are not anything like them.

Don't give up on us yet, Abu Khaleel.

We are weary, disgusted, ashamed, outraged and pofoundly sorry for what has happened to the people of Iraq.

Many of us are refusing to pay taxes and could be jailed or have everything taken from us. Some of us have been arrested and spied on.

We will not stop until there is justice or we die.


America-bashing has become quite popular these past few years and rightly so. However, I have come to realize that to live in a state that has opposed military action against Iraq does not absolve from anything. The problem, although crassly exemplified by the US, is not really exclusively American. It is not some dim-wit racists in the American outbacks that set the standards but a corporist culture utterly detached from any ethical or even human considerations. And this culture holds pretty much every country with any economic clout in the world in its grip. America, as megalomaniac as it is, could never go it without the silent consent of the 'elites' in Europe and Asia. But where is the outcry in Germany, for instance, at the government selling submarines to Israel that will no doubt soon patrol the Persian golf equipped with nuclear warheads? Only when tackled on a global scale can this moral decline which has become an imminent threat to mankind's very survival be halted. We all, where ever we are, have to stop feeding the corporate beast, make ourselves immune to propaganda that only tastes like truth because we never got to taste anything else our whole lives, and just leave the treadmill. The problem is, who is independent enough in thought, time, and resources to do that? With each wage cut and tax rise it will be ever fewer I fear ...

America bashing has always been popular among the liberal elite and the 'helpless', victimised, great unwashed. Wouldn't it be interesting to see blog posts from the '80's? I was just becoming politcally aware at the time and the papers and newscasts and PBS had me convinced Ronald Reagan was a more amiable Hitler about to doom Western Europeans to a nuclear holocaust with his fear mongering and corporate military industrial complex backers bent on world domintation. Sound familiar? I remember the 100's of thousands of literally unwashed demonstrators marching through the European capitols, burning US flags and efigies of a blood soaked Gipper. Deja vue? 'Better Red than dead'. I have since grown up, though many of us obviously did not. You people cannot be so naive ( I hope) as to think this is anything new or that in two decades it will still be going on with just as much effect over some other conflict in the growing 'American Imperialism'. Collectivism, Socialism, Communism, Marxism, Anti-Globalism--all are doomed to even greater failure---Islamofascism will just be one more shovelful on that ash heap of history through which the 'oh so smart' leftist psuedointellectuals will sift to prove to one another they are still on the right side of history and will be proven out this time. It's amusing when you think about it in a rational way. At least my son Reagan and I think it is funny. I'll bet some of you young wild-eyed soap-phobic bushhaters will name a son GW. Yes you will!

Abu Khaleel thank you for your post.

When it comes to international military and political interventions the U.S public is very lazy to care what they are really doing in their name, the atrocities are done far away from them and their ordinary life take first priority over some people over there who are getting bombed by U.S military.

I mean just look what happened after Vietnam, you would think their memory of that would rub of to more actions to stop U.S interventions in South America?!! NO WAY, their own government they elected to represent their own interests attacked democratically elected leaders and set up dictators and they just continued with their daily lives and wondering WHY DO THEY HATE US?

The fact is they all have blood on their hands and it pisses me off that some say they can’t do anything. OF COURSE YOU CAN go out on the streets day and night and demand a stop to all this madness of your foreign policy. Iraqis did it in for decades and many of us ended up either tortured, killed or fled the other countries because we lived in a dictatorship what is your excuse? NONE.

Moron99 wrote “Western people are just as capable of barbarism as the baathi and the mongol.”

Of course they are.

Moron99 continued with “They just need the correct set of stimuli. Along the current course of events that stimuli has an exceptionally high risk of being triggered by terrorists acting in the name of Islam.”

You see here is where I disagree somehow with you. When Western colonisation in Africa and Asia started it was NEVER trigged by people from Africa or Asia. The western colonials acted barbaric and it was pure white terror trigged by their own values that they had the right to control others countries resources and lives.

My grandfather’s father was working peacefully in south of Iraq many years ago and what happened? The British came and attacked Iraq. Did he trigger that? NO. Did he provide the stimuli for that? NO. YET they came and took over Iraq

He fought for his country against the British and they treated him like a criminal sent him to a prison in India. So if there is anyone setting up stimuli for war and back attacks it is the west own history of terrorism that it seems so willing to have amnesia about.

Good to see Moron99 appearing on your Blog, Abu. He has the distinction of being the most aptly-named poster on the Internet.
But sad to see Nadia reacting by transforming "Anti-Americanism" into "Anti-Westernism" in general. It seems to be moving the discussion from current events to historical events, which can be misleading. Despite Blair, despite Italy in Iraq, despite NATO’s present role in Afghanistan, the era of Europe meddling in and trying to control the affairs of other countries, where it has no business to be, is very definitely over.
Only the USA is doing that now on a large scale. And not very successfully - it has clearly failed in Iraq and the Middle East in general, whatever the final outcome there it is not going to be something that furthers US interests. The USA seems powerless to do anything about the wave of "centre-leftism" sweeping South America, its other main "sphere of influence." Its military might is totally irrelevant to the challenge of the surging economies of China, India, South East Asia. (and the EU, as a global rival.)
If Bush had not reacted to 9/11 with this foolish Iraq adventure, the bluff of the "hyperpower" could probably have been kept up for quite a while. But Bush has laid his cards on the table, and they’re a busted flush. Nothing. The ultimate result of the Iraq enterprise will be to turn a newly isolationist USA into just another nation among others, rather than the biggest meanest bully in the playground. Not a bad thing for the world, probably.
Anti-Americanism? Perhaps just an impatience with all the agony we have to witness while this dishonest mongrel nation comes to terms with its real place in the world?
Please forgive any asperity. I will shortly have to endure another NZ Christmas of exquisite food consumed in idyllic beach surroundings, completely cut off from the world. Oh, the tedium!
(I won’t be a "literally unwashed leftist psuedointellectual wild-eyed soap-phobic Bushhater," either. I’ll be bathed by the Pacific Ocean, several times a day.)

Moron99 worte “Western people are just as capable of barbarism as the baathi and the mongol.They just need the correct set of stimuli. Along the current course of events that stimuli has an exceptionally high risk of being triggered by terrorists acting in the name of Islam.”

Dear Circular if you read Moron99’s comment you would see that he used the word “western people” so I was mainly replying to him that western people seemed to have no need to stimuli for barbarism when they started their colonial barbarism.

As for moving from current events to historic events I think these two can not be separated if you want to understand why we have so many people talking about double morality, wars, unfairness and terrorism today. With your analogy no criminal should be charged for his crime, I mean after all it most likely happened in the past; meaning its history already.

Dear Moron99

You wrote “I hope that someday you and other people in the mideast have systems of governance that can peacefully remove such leaders before they can bring ruin upon your countries.”

One huge step towards this would be by stopping western countries selling weapons to these unelected governments. This is the double morality of the west for example Blair’s government, why do they sell weapons to Saudi Arabia?

Dear Moron99,

Well in my dictionary the U.S army and the U.S administration and their supporters are terrorist and supporters of terrorism. They U.S military and their allies attacked Iraqis that had done them nothing. That is terrorism. But still I would never call for the destruction of the U.S society.

As for arguing that the reason Britain sells weapons to Saudi Arabia that it has to do with the cold war that is an excuse that does not work. They are selling them weapons NOW.

Off topic something I have always wondered about who the hell sells bullet proof cars to all these unelected governments? I mean I don’t think these cars are done in a bunker in Afghanistan or a garage in Iran or a basement in Mugabe’s house. Who is this or are these people?

Dear Moron99,
I am not sure when and were but a few years ago I learned that there is one country that have indeed been charged and convicted with terrorism and it was the U.S..I wish I could remember more to give you extra information and myself too. Does anyone on this comment section know
more about this, how about you Abu Khaleel?

For me terrorism includes targeting innocent people that have done you nothing.

That is exactly what the U.S army and its allies did and do in Iraq.

They of course may disagree, but then again many criminals usually do not admit to their crimes right away do they? Many rapists see what they did as just having violent sex, but then it’s the victim who experienced it as a brutal rape. So it depends on which side you are on in these conflicts are you the one committing the violence or are you the one being targeted by it.

I see U.S army and it’s allies actions in Iraq as terror done by armies.

Moron99 is this a joke? I am sorry but right now I can not take your comment seriously.

Its like that U.S democrat don’t know his name but he said the other day something about we have done our part in Iraq, now it’s up to the Iraqis. Taking about amnesia, U.S devastating a whole nation for over a decade and then acting as if it is never done. What a bunch of cowards.

“It is not a war that can be won with bombs or bullets.” You should have given that advice to the U.S administration and their supporters of military attacks on innocent people a couple of years ago. It could have saved thousands of Iraqi lives. You should give it to them now, you do know they are still using bombs and bullets against Iraqis.

Dear Diogenes Of Pumkintown you wrote "Should they have tried to assasinate Bush, or risen up in armed conflict against the gov't?"

If that is what they have wanted to do so let them do it. However that is not how I see one resolving this issue.

I think it would be better with going out on the streets demonstrating day and night, demanding media to report the truth right away, demanding their representatives to do the same until this madness of their foreign policy is stopped. Abu Khaleel put it very good in his post too what he wants U.S people to do.


One big difference for Iraqis would be for U.S and its allies occupation troops giving a set date for their departure. And compensating Iraq and Iraqis for all the devastation they have done. Paying in other words for what they have destroyed the last decade. And then we need to set up a new law which forbids any U.S international military and politically intervention outside the UN forever or there will be serious consequences for that nation.

As for your “People who claim to be fighting for Iraq need to do so in the places where it will make a difference.” We are already doing that, I am surprised you have missed it ;)

Abu Khaleel keep up the good work! I am off now. Take care!


Re terrorists and terrorist nations:
I’m reading at present a book commemorating the lives and deaths of some of the thousands of New Zealanders who served with RAF Bomber Command in World War Two.
Isn’t a terrorist sometimes defined as someone who deliberately targets "innocent" civilians, especially women and children?
According to that definition, those heroic airmen were terrorists - and the Germans used to call them "terror-fliers." And the fliers, missileers and submariners who would have launched the bombs if the Cold War had gone hot would have been terrorists too?
Moron99 suggests that in the event of a successful atomic attack by Al Qaeda or similar on a western city, " ... even the majority of those who post here but live in the west would be calling for the destruction of all societies that breed terrorists."
Speak for yourself, mate. The scale of loss of life on 9/11 was nearly equivalent to that of a small "dirty" bomb. The footsoldiers in that attack all came from Saudi Arabia. So according to your reasoning, Saudi Arabia, which very definitely "bred" them, deserved to be "destroyed," whatever that means. I hold no particular brief for Saudi Arabian women and children, to the best of my knowledge I’ve never met one, but I’m damned if I can agree that they should all be killed just like that.
I suspect most in the West, and in many other countries too, have moved on a bit from the mass slaughter of civilians that occurred in WW2, and would have occurred on an unthinkable scale in a hot cold war. It’s called being civilised, I think.
I really can’t see the difference between those Saudi lunatics and a US pilot who drops a 2000 pounder on a "suspected" insurgent hideout, knowing full well that it is going to flatten the entire neighbourhood and everyone in it.
Does that make me "anti-American?" I don’t think so. Just anti people who are quite casual about killing. Like the terrorists in Iraq. And like Moron99.
Unfortunately, Diogenes, your country’s policies seems at present to reflect his attitude more than yours?

To put that another way:
From the 1960’s to the 1990’s, the UK fought its own little "war on terror" against the IRA.
The IRA terrorists were definitely "bred" by the Catholic women of Northern Ireland.
If I read Moron99 correctly, his view is that the British government should not have pussy-footed around fighting with intelligence and restraint.
It should have just "destroyed" those Catholic women and their children, right?
Oh no, I forgot.
They were white.

So many contradictions in the post above---New Zealnd bombers=heoric---US soldiers=terrorists? Where have I seen this before?

Anonymous 10.22 above.
Seems simple enough to me. In the context of the time, of "total war" between nations, the NZ airmen felt that their actions were necessary. And they were heroic in the way they carried them out. So were the US fliers who bombed the cities of Japan, come to that. At the time.
George Bush’s imaginary "War on Terror" is not, by any definition, a total war between nations. Any more than the UK was involved in a total war against the IRA.
Where’s your problem?

Oh come on, Moron99. By advocating a particular course of action you are necessarily taking responsibility for that action.

I hereby declare (with bonsoir) the stimuli in making this comment: To Nadia and circular.

"We need to set up a new law which forbids any U.S international military and politically intervention outside the UN forever or there will be serious consequences for that nation."

The sticking point is how to make sure everyone would stand by such a law. Afterall, we had one very like it.

It is tempting, seeing as money motivates war, to believe that war might be held in check if there were a price to pay. Not those tangible prices paid every day in blood and loss of limb or sanity, which we as a global community already pay, but a real incorporeal price. An astronomical price. A motivational price.

The price of war, must be more then a war declaring party can afford, and the price must be paid to those who are certain to demand it. This way, a war can only ever be just, because a party declaring war will be sacrificing more then it ever can afford and so would only ever choose to fight wars for purely unselfish reasons.

It is tempting to believe these things.

Still, it is not enough the price be paid to someone we can be sure will demand it (and send in debt collectors if need be) we must also be certain the price is not paid to parties who may through bribery or corruption return the takings to the payee or fix the price at an affordable rate. We must be certain that any bribery or corruption would be just as costly as war, in deterrence.

In logical progression it might seem reasonable to agree the price for war be paid to the party/ies on whom war is declared, in reparation.

Yet what kind of dreadful world would the world become where populations pimp themselves? In a world where the victim only stands to gain, at least in a material sense, would populations then begin to pressure other nations, perhaps provoke even, chillingly propose battle-pacts in apparent mutual consent, encourage other nations to buy carnage?

Frightening, and very close to the situation we already have.

War does not meet any law, never has and never will. Even money cannot control war, although money can forestall war and at times deter war, the only things that really can halt war are people.

Only when all people refuse to take up arms, for any reason at all, any reason at all, can we truly say there will be no more war.

Americans and people elsewhere don't realize that the United States has been taken over in a coup d'etat. That happened in 2000 when a loaded supreme court stepped in without authority and handed the election to George W Bush and his band of Neocon fascists.

Clinton had been moving the American economy to an actual market condition with some tweaking by the government but the fascists know that war is a good way to enrich a select group of elite friends while many others suffer.

In addition, America gives lip service to freedom and democracy but if you review the sordid past of U.S. interventions since the end of WWII you can see that there is hardly an instance where we have not supported some right wing dictator over over democratic or popular governments almost every time. Americans are too lazy and too stupid to maintain a democracy and that also makes them (us) especially dangerous. Bush says that he spied on American citizens in direct violation of Federal Law and that he will continue doing it. What does the congress do? Nada.

No one group of men suddenly pulled a coup against the U.S. government, Bush"N"Corp are merely the successors to years of hard work and planning that found the right opportunity, Sept. 11, 2001, to come out in the open with programs they hitherto had to keep on the qt from american public. From Mc Cartyhys' days they retreated a little, then came Kennedy, Nixon Cuba and Viet Nam and they again had to retreat until Bosnian theater opened up with their much improved methodology beginning with Regans terms of Limited Intensity Conflict: Iran Contra of which no one was punished,Showed them the necessity of using the media first to manipulate the public long before the actual takeover began. It was not a democrat vs republican agenda as far as the goal, advancing us hegonomy worldwide, but in the tactics and personalitys that caused political infighting. The sucess of the wear on Drugs, Regans idea to use press to instill popular support for it, nationalizing of National guard, Clintons slaughter of Camp Davidians the no fly zones, and especially the easy manipulation of us and eu public opinion as to the need to destroy old Yugoslavian Republic for humanity and democracys that further emboldened them. The first invasion of Iraq was eye opening on how easy it would be to destroy Saddam, if he had no wmd's it would of been done then, and the next twelve years of bombing, takeover by spec ops of Kurd areas from Saddams control, and the unlimited access we had to Iraqs land and generals to bribe them not to resist, made military victory a surety: but it was on the media side that allowed war to begin and still continue. That largest arms manufacurers and energy corporations while not actually doing any dirty work are neutral , all they do is state the facts to fit the State Departments policys is the true coup upon american society. Corporatism came in like a snake, quietly, and now it has raised its head and everyone is afraid of the dangers if they attack it. Short stack, without any syrup on it! Al the media had to convince is the people who never understood the hows and whys of the true power within United States, 95% of its populace. Providence

This is all nonsense. It's like reading Daily Kos. America and Americans are most accurately understood through the lens of Thomas Jefferson, the founder of the Democrat Party. Unfortunately Democrats, liberals and nearly all the parties to this looney discussion owe more to Herbert Marcuse than to Thomas Jefferson.

Mr. Chattick's post is a perfect example. Jefferson believed in the collective wisdom of the common man Mr. Chattick and "liberals" "see 95% of the populace" as a pack of fools. You arrogant jerks frame all your arguments around you being Super Smart and anyone who disagrees being dumb as a post or evil.
Sorry, boys but Mr. Jefferson nails the American virtue. You dolts don't understand squat about Americans any more than you can grasp the dynamics of capitalism.

Reading your opinions is like listening to teenagers discuss politics. Pointless but amusing.


Abu Khaleel:

In your longer linked post, after a lengthy explanation of why one should blame the American people for its adminstration's bungling, you conclude with the following statement:
"This is why we can safely say that America is, and has been for a while, an enemy of Iraq and Iraqis. There is no longer much doubt about that."

Using the same broad brush logic, the Iraqi people, as a whole, must be responsible to some significant extent for the sins of the Saddam Hussein regime. This conclusion is inescapable, if you are committed to using your extremely broad brush of public culpability. After all, it took hundreds of thousands of Iraqis to enforce Saddam's will as well as the passivity of tens of millions of other Iraqis to allow a small minority to dominate and oppress them. Of course, the relative weight of Iraqi public guilt would be more on par with that of the U.S. public for its government's actions under Bush (using your logic) if Iraq had been ruled by a government more representative of popular will. But, under your theory, wouldn't the Iraqi people under Saddam (and the American electorate under Bush) have the duty to continually revolt against the regime in power until they were victorious?

To my way of thinking, such broad brush rules of public culpability are perverse since they will often result in vicitims of a totalitarian regime being blamed for the crimes of an oppressive elite, e.g., all Cambodians guilty (including relative of the dead victims) for not putting an end to Pol Pot's killing fields. While there may be some merit to some level of general public guilt based on political or military inaction in the face of bad government policy, it wouldn't seem to rise to the level of labeling all of another country's citizens as enemies. I suspect that you don't really buy into such views. The counter examples that I have cited should suffice to illustrate the great danger in over-reliance on broad brush approaches to public culpability. Perhaps, as you have been known to utilize fairly indirect means to illustrate your points, this is one of the messages that you meant to convey.

I hope that this is so, otherwise, as I am not about to advocate otherthrow of the current American government (even if I disagree with much of its handling of matters in Iraq), I am, by your definition one of your enemies. I find this to be a quite depressing conclusion.


It is the "Common Man" that is missing from American politics and as for liberals the current administration, Republican and Democrat are "Liberals" and yes they do discount American opinions because they are so easily manipulated. There are no Conservative Programs, social or economic, being put forth by administration that are not integral to formation of National Socialism which is a Liberal concept upon americans. American capitalism has in fact driven value gain from american shores into foreign finacial controls and led to a devaluation of American capital overseas. A nations currency within homelands does not reflect its true value, due to artificial price controls emplaced on National Industry while at same time it invites foreign capital takeover and increases flight of wealth from homeland. the stock market value has only maintained its number level due to the devaluation of dollar and the ones with most overseas diversity, and federal contracts and tax benefits being strongest.One may call Howard Zinn a liberal but in his works on american History it has not been the speeches of generals politicos and industrial leaders who have had most influence upon society but changes that came from the common man. It is the common mans fight, from labor to civil rights, against a central power structure under the control of corporate and finacial interest that kept unbridled power in check and the powers of corporatism warned about by Jeffferson, Only then they called it Capitalism: use of public treasury to advance one or group of mens' personal fortune and not for the good of nation it was accumulated for. Today the common man is convinced corporatism is the national good, a tribute to the marketing genius's that has transformed Free Market capitalization into National Socialism and Caeser Economics. That is todays Liberalism and its loudest proponents are ones who call themselves conservatives.

The media, the media, the media. You just have to wonder how many Americans still believe 9-11 was planned and executed by Iraqis.

I would like to just suggest something. You said America is seen as the enemy of Iraq.

I beg to differ. America is seen as the enemy of the Iraqi people.

As a whole.

During the sanctions, it was the Shia we here so much about now (as a liberated people) that suffered the most because of sanctions.

And the DU crimes?

Even today, as I mentioned on my blog, the Washington Post is trying to pass off how the US military has now recruited bloggers to the frontlines.

Keep the faith, bro ... and the pressure.

I had wondered where everyone went when Raed closed his comments. I wonder no more.

This article reminds me of a special report I saw on MTV. . . Bear with me a moment and please believe I do not normally get my news from that media icon. It was in the months following the 9/11 attack and Kurt Loder (not that it matters) was in Iraq interviewing young teenage boys of wealthy Iraqi families, I believe in an attempt to show America that the Iraqi people were not composed completely of ignorant sheepherders in wattle and daub houses burning goat fat to light their homes at night. A view I believe was generally held by the normal MTV going audience at the time.

It followed one boy in particular, about fifteen years old, and a few of his friends, all of whom spoke impecible English. It showed his large, opulant home, his parents' american cars, their living room complete with japanese electronics, american movies and satellite television that got all the american channels. They went to his room which was plastered with posters of Britney Spears and the multitude of "Boy Bands" that ruled the era.

Then it showed video of the Iraqi people's reaction to 9/11. Multitudes of Iraqi people filling the streets shouting with joy as thousands of americans burned. It cut back to the boy and his friends and they confessed they were among the mob cheering the symbolistic downfall of american capitalism.

Yet, they didn't pull down a single poster.

I also read an article about the first McDonalds to open in Baghdad and the three mile line of cars at the drive through.

I do not argue that our current administration has lied to the American people and that some among them choose to believe the war being fought is just and right despite proof after proof offered against it. Many of those who support this war, however, are not in favor of the war in itself, rather they support the men and women who are over seas risking life and limb to make America a safer place.

Has this war made America a safer place? Only time will tell. It has drawn the battlefield to the land of the aggressor for the time being, and I believe that was the point. That and to help the Iraqi people create a government that could police itself and perhaps become an ally of the American people in the fight against radicals who would butcher innocent people and saw the heads off foriegn construction contractors (civilians) who have come to rebiuld Iraq on the American dollar.

Your confusion about american super-patriots is justifiable. But please remember that americans are just as confused, if not more so, by Iraqi religious fanatics whose ultimate goal we cannot fathom or even have an inkling of what it might be. Armegeddon? The complete death and destruction of all things American? All things "Infidel"?

That is one article I would dearly love to read.

" It has drawn the battlefield to the land of the aggressor for the time being,"

We Iraqis NEVER attacked the U.S it was YOU U.S people who attacked Iraq, you are the aggressor and the whole world knows that. So you patriot if you love your country so dearly should start to wake up to the criminal terrorists acts your people are doing which you so fully support. Why not read what Abu Khaleed has written again becouse I find it difficult to understand that an honest could write such a reply to his comment.

Are we so uneducated, so stunted in growth of intellect and putting moral convictions aside that we cannot see the material destruction and disruption of orderly flow of materials that the War upon Iraq has caused? Has there been no growth in human understanding of what makes wars to excuse those who explain away the atrocitys Iraq has undergone; the who and the why of this Iraq? One can fogive older generations who have never served in a war, and there are multiple billions of them living today, for still living in past fantasy's of nobility of warrior kings, knights, Samarai, pilots captains of ships sabre drawn horseman, or coolees laden down marching across chinas ranges on the long march as the epitome to human developement, but why do so many educated in todays trech youth with the new found freedoms of finacial growth and expanded abilitys feel that way. Despite the propaganda, outright lies and ignorance of many in U.S none of the M.E. and central asian countrys are peopled by primatives or still living in 1500 A.D mentalitys. That their economic status may not be as high as western nations cannot be denied, but even among and within western nations there are peoples of poor economics; or is it that they have not changd as fast as we want them too? Has Education turned from personal growth to being a product for investment in corporate profits with its leaders training instead of protecting intellectual growth? To say that the U.S. soldier must be supported but not support the war, when he is supposedly educated enough to distinguish right or wrong but then is thrust into a position to not question right or wrong is an oxymoron. American soldiers are Volunteers for a military duty that has in the past commited crimes against humanity, is part of protection and projection of us Finacial interest and they were and are being commited and well documented today. Maybe the idea of primatives, wether it be called religious fanaticism or patriotism are one and the same, deferral of reasoning over and into the depravity of inhumanity or animal instinct. Hide it behind Democracy, Captialism, or any of numerous isms' the end results are animalistic in their effects. Was Darwin wrong and developement of homo sapiens never risen from our cousins the Chimps, who like those trained by their masters riding electric go carts in a circle of never ending processes, mimicing uneducated but well trained humans?

"We Iraqis NEVER attacked the U.S it was YOU U.S people who attacked Iraq,"

"Since the end of Operation Desert Fox in December, Iraqi provocations in both the northern and southern no-fly zones have escalated into a flurry of radar illuminations, aircraft intrusions and missile launches against coalition aircraft.

"This poses a threat to our aircraft, both in the north and the south," Zinni said. "We view this threat as centralized and deliberate, and we view the entire air defense system that's being set against us as the objective in any response that we take. And we will defend our pilots and our aircraft against these attacks." "

Why does this not count? It's a clear act of war.

"(and the EU, as a global rival.)"

LoL, wet dreams.... sorry I just had too. The EU can't even agree on a single constitution, much less rival anyone. As a matter of fact Europe is dieing of old age, this generation will not replace itself, it's going extinct right before our eyes. In the next couple of years they will be totally reliant on the US. Global rivals...sure.

With a few Iraqi Bloggers, like Raed Jarrar and Truthteller, having closed their Comments sections in disgust, you seem to be drawing some of the more persistent right-wing war apologists (or nutcases) here, Abu. Charles redux. Still, their thought processes can be illuminating.
Nadia picks up on MadTom’s lunatic justification: because Saddam’s forces may have slightly resisted US overflights in 1999 (eight years after Gulf War One) the invasion in 2001 was essential. It seems to be the attitude of the complete bully: "if you dare to raise your eyebrows at me, I will have to smash your face in." Actually its rather worse than that - "I will also and incidentally smash in the faces of your wife and daughter."
Diogenes goes to the heart of An American Patriot’s mindset: "Has this war made America a safer place? Only time will tell. It has drawn the battlefield to the land of the aggressor for the time being, and I believe that was the point..." In other words, fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here. Since Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, or indeed with any other terrorist attack on US citizens or forces outside Iraq, the "aggressor" is apparently the Arab world in general (a bit like the manic Moron99 who earlier wanted the "destruction of all societies that breed terrorists.") But the key phrase is "has this war made America a safer place?" Nothing about making a better, fairer, more peaceful world - just putting America and Americans first. Basically so that five percent of the world’s people can go on consuming twenty-five percent of its resources.
And unfortunately even Mark joins in the madness with his argument against your "broad brush rules of public culpability" - as far as I can make out he seems to argue that Americans, in general, are no more responsible for any crimes or errors committed by the Bush regime than Iraqis or Cambodians were responsible for any excesses committed by Saddam or Pol Pot. Apparently it is completely irrelevant that America is not a dictatorship but supposedly THE democracy, whose government embodies the will of its people.
What, a self-centred bully who lashes out blindly against any real or imagined insult, but is not responsible for his actions?
Is Anti-Americanism defined ultimately not by what the USA theoretically stands for, but by what it actually does? (Or in the case of Iraq, eventually achieves. Which will probably be zilch.)
You are perhaps correct in identifying the American military as one key component in what has gone wrong in Iraq - my sense of what has happened, probably in Afghanistan as well, is that this military machine’s complete indifference to the collateral casualties it inflicts in pursuit of its country’s goals has become a crucial factor in Anti-Americanism in those nations, in the Arab world, and in the world in general. (And the machine has become increasingly perfunctory in its expressions of regret and its promises of "investigations.")
Is this casual brutality (there’s no other word for it) a symptom of what America has become? If so, I don’t mind being anti-American. I’ve just been on holiday, driving around a lot, and I’m very anti-careless, reckless, incompetent and selfish drivers. Even the ones whose wives in the passenger seats are nagging them to slow down and keep a better lookout. After all, the immediate visible danger is the huge uncontrollable speeding SUV straying into your lane: but the cause of the crash is the nutcase at the wheel. And presumably, following Moron99’s reasoning, the ultimate cause is the appalling family that bred him.

Incidentally, while on holiday I was able to borrow from time to time a copy of Robert Fisk’s "Great War for Civilisation."
It’s a very hefty read, and his "Anti-Americanism" shines out like a beacon in a darkened world. He’s got all the facts very well assembled, too.
But my impression was that his "Anti-Arabism" or "Anti-Islamism" shines out almost equally strongly. For example, he was very scathing about both sides in the Iran-Iraq war. He devoted an entire chapter to modern Turkey’s attempts to bury and deny the Armenian genocide of the early 20th century. He didn’t have a single good word for Saudi Arabia. And so on, at great length.
Basically his reporting experiences seem to have left him pissed off at pretty much everybody.
I can go along with that.


You miss my point entirely. Please try applying the broad brush approach to any of New Zealand's mistaken policies. Is each New Zealander personally and publicly responsible for all of the clear errors made by its government? Does that make them and every other New Zealander an enemy of those that are disadvantaged by the mistaken policy? Is the answer the same even if they oppose the government's mistaken policy?

If opposition absolves a person, or portions of "the public," from guilt for a mistaken government policy, how much opposition is required? Must they sacrifice their own lives in revolt, work through political channels to attempt to affect change, organize mass protests, publicly speak out, or merely vote against the current government? At what level of opposition is moral grace received? In my view, these thorny moral dilemmas are obliterated by the broad brush approach to public accountability that you and Abu Khaleel appear to have adopted.

Further, even as applied to a country with a democratically elected government, labeling all the people of that state, with few minor exceptions, as enemies and prejudging all of their motives and actions strikes me as bigotry, rather reasoned analysis. Again, Abu Khaleel has been known to use indirect methods to illustrate his views. I continue to hope this is one of those occasions.


As you probably guessed from its excessive length and pendantic tone, the last entry was mine.


Mark. Don’t worry, I think I would have recognised your tone anyway.
Short answer is, that’s why I said "Is Anti-Americanism defined ultimately not by what the USA theoretically stands for, but by what it actually does?"
Or to put it another way, in a proper democracy policy development tends to be cumulative. For example, look at NZ’s anti-nuclear policy (which I personally am fairly lukewarm about.)
It was introduced in the 1980’s by a Labour government, but successive conservative administrations, keen to restore relations with the US, have been unable to change it because they have sensed that the public reaction would be too damaging.
I understand you are a proponent of the "necessary American might as the defence of world freedom" school of thought. But the general consensus among pundits and historians now seems to be that, because of the Cold War, American might since WW2 has been mostly used to install and prop up right-wing repressive regimes.
(I seem to recall asking someone here to list all the countries, since WW2, where America has brought freedom, democracy and prosperity by invading and conquering them. I don’t think he came up with any. Watch what we do, not what we say.)
In other words, if the actions of successive democratically elected governments, over time, appear undesirable, then ultimately the entire people bear responsibility for those actions?
I dunno. But the alternative seems to be that no people can be held responsible for anything their nation does?
I mean, if you can say "America won WW2, or saved South Korea, or won the Cold War," can’t I say "America has stuffed up royally in Iraq, just like it did in Vietnam?"
(p.s. I'll be out working all day, sorry, so no debate.)

It seems broad brush-stroke condemnations are characteristic of humanity.
How many innocent Sikhs and Copts were harrassed or even murdered because of the actions of AlQaeda? How many innocent Sikhs were murdered because of the slaughter of Indira Gandhi? Kristalnacht was a response to the actions of one Jewish adolescent. And so on and so forth...

Be Well,
Bob Griffin


Now you see my point, "no people," in the broad sense, should be blamed for their government's actions. It is those in power that make policy that bear primary responsibility. Those of "the people" that support odious policies also bear, to a lesser extent, moral culpability for the consequences of such policies. This to me is perfectly logical.

How does one logically blame the roughly 60% of the American people that oppose Bush's handling of Iraq for his insistence on continuing his policies?

Circ: You also wrote, "But the general consensus among pundits and historians now seems to be that, because of the Cold War, American might since WW2 has been mostly used to install and prop up right-wing repressive regimes." This certainly is the consensus amongst certain segments of historians and pundits with left of center world views. It is, however, far from a general consensus if one includes centrist and right of center viewpoints.

I think it would be fair to say that there is a consensus among the left and center that U.S. cold war driven actions included numerous incidences of overreacting to perceived "Communist threats." For example, I am not familiar with any reputable scholar with a left, centrist, or center right viewpoint that will defend American meddling in Chile during the 70s.

On the other hand, the U.S. and the rest of the world under reacted to reports that the Pol Pot's Communist regime was systematically slaughtered its own people. Similar global under reactions to atrocities, with similar tragic consequences, have occurred in Rwanda, Somalia, Bosnia, and Kosovo. The same game is now playing out in Darfur.

As you and others here have now permanently disqualified the U.S. from acting as global policeman, I nominate the Kiwis to intervene in Darfur. However, the nearly assured Chinese veto (due to its commercial ties to the oppressive Sudanese government) of any security council resolution authorizing entry of NZ troops to make or keep the peace in Darfur will be a bit of a problem. But, I am sure that they will yield to never ending onslaught of Kiwi diplomacy in the end. If you Kiwis fail to execute my brilliant strategy to prevent further genocide, I will, of course, in keeping with your theories of collective culpability, be forced to rest the full weight of my moral opprobrium on each and every Kiwi.


Back for lunch.
Come on now, be fair. The US under-reacted to Pol Pot because (a) it was a bit tired of SE Asia after Vietnam, and (b) it saw Pol Pot as Anti-Vietnamese, which he was. Just playing politics.
It is unlike you to descend to ad hominem argument - all that sneering nonsense about NZ taking over the role of global policeman. You know perfectly well that the population of NZ is less than that of a small US city. Don’t cheapen the tone of Abu’s Blog.
(See, I can be stern and censorious too.)
"How does one logically blame the roughly 60% of the American people that oppose Bush's handling of Iraq for his insistence on continuing his policies?"
Easily. No-one is talking rioting in the street, or armed insurrection, but they’re simply not making their presence felt sufficiently in the media and in communication with their representatives. Too busy eating to excess and charging around in their SUVs.
The reason no right-wing government here in NZ has been able to rescind the anti-nuclear policy is because any suggestion of doing so is met with howls of outrage from the majority in letters to newspapers, voices on talk-back shows, opinion sampling, and so on.
This is called democracy in action. You guys should try it sometime.


If Bush is the despot that so many on the left have claimed, no amount of media howling could possibly make him change his course. Frankly, I think Bush has changed policy on Iraq on a number of occasions with the policies turning more toward political, rather than military solutions. In my view, those changes were too little, too late, but it would be intellectually dishonest to assert that there have been no changes. Whether those changes are the result of U.S. domestic pressure, military necessity, or some combination of the two is a subject worthy of a separate consideration.

My Kiwi as global policeman comments, as I hoped you would understand, were not meant to be ad hominem attacks, but instead, to point out the absurdity, under the current conditions, of other countries taking on large-scale, hostile environment peace keeping operation, like Darfur, without at least U.S. logistical support.

The Pol Pot example is another reason it can be dangerous to go overboard with the Anti-Americanism as the reaction thereto in this country may be isolationism (the opposite reaction of hostility leading to more aggressive behavior is also possible and even more undesirable). When the next international crisis occurs and the world community needs U.S. muscle to help resolve it, a more isolationist administration elected in response to the Iraq fiasco may be quite unwilling to become involved.


P.S. As impressed as I am by your stern and censorious side, I suggest that we should try to retain our more natural roles since the over-serious role comes more naturally to me and since I have a stone mason's touch with the lighter side.

As Plutarch said : "Greece to herself doth a barbarian grow,
Others could not, she doth herself overthrow", to explain its fall from a golden age into decay so too can one point to U.S. following in the same pathway. The M. E. gave us civilization and government and the Greeks invented politics to destroy them. Democracy is credited as coming from greece but in reality the form of democratic governing of villiage and tribal afilliations bear more respect from Germanic immigration onto British Isles whose Kings who fought its institutions continually. Among the many complexitys that destroyed the Roman Republic and turned it into an oligarchy and eventually a theocracy was its rise to supremacy of its military leadership that grew strong enough to defy, the constitution , assembly and the senate, "upon the glory of sword, did their life reside, too late they fell, upon in suicide". It took around 100 years of military expansion, about the same as we in U.S. have experienced for this to happen in Rome.
Today within US the military industrial complex, of which we were warned of by President Eisenhower 60 years ago, has come to fruition. Also included within this heirarchy is the intelligence departments used to implement the many "needs" for this expansion.
That the us is winning in Iraq is true, as our original objective was to cause chaos and make the country dependent upon our intervention and we will be there interveneing from now on, Iraq as a countrty is no more than three vassel states to us hegonomy.
What began with the conquest of Yugoslavia, so called Balkan wars, by instigating a civil war within, a program called Greater Albania, in which Islamic forces of volunteerwes, including some of Bin Ladens and Taliban, from many nations all funded by U.S. Euro Intels thru many NGO's, thru Afghanistan and whole Caspoian sea area and eventually the invasion of Iraq. Now on to the conquest of yemen, Syria Sudan and Iran. All counties that helped them in initial phases of takeover of balkan nations, including arms from N. Korea, china, Iran: especially 107 andf 122 rocket launchers inspected and shipped by an NGO called "Third World Relief Agency", thru Pakistan.
the U.S, nation is as the Romans but with more subtlty except in case of Iraq where plans hit a snag: the Iraqui people.
No bakward savages and far more nationalistic than Balkans or C.Asian political systems, except for a clergy each wanting their own form of power, the Iraquis continue to exist despite US attempts of Genocide against them.
While the problem is local for original corespondent it is world wide in scope and until Americans can learn what politicly astute Euros' already know it will not change.
I agree first with Tacitus, Agricola: they create a desert and call it peace.
Secondlyt I agree with Solon:
"If now you suffer, do not blame the Powers'
For they are good, and all the fault was ours,
All the strongholds you put into his hands'
And now his slaves must do as he commands".
They took US to wars of war and we have no choice now but to do as they say! Providence!

Be left behind? Every attempt by a ME country to advance itself in first 2/3rds of last century was destroyed and delayed by military and political forces in protection of Euro and us Corporate Interest. Even the injecton of a Free Israel was a political and military decision done by western powers without consultation of M.E. powers.
What was the status of Iraq prior to first us invasion as far as National infrastructure: per capita income, education, medical, religious orgainzations, and many other fields compared to say even Israel never mind other M.E. nations? In all those fields it was higher and not using a borrower status such as Israel to maintain its identity, a socialist economy and one that was far more diverse culturally except for its neighbor, Irans.
Wahhabism is an off shoot of M.E. Countrys not being able to politcly take their place in world society, but Iraq was not part of that movement. It was Pan Arab but not Pan Islam.
Left Behind? What country has highest literacy rate and most foreign educated grouping within its leadership? Saudi Arabia, Q'Tar Brunei, Sudan turkey, and leaders now put in place by useuro concerns. the ME educated were primarily of family or Royalty but in their actions they now are major investors within almost all energy endeavors in C.Asian and ME along with Persian and African enterprises. As holders of us Loans they rank only behind Britian and Japan and soon China. the US could not carry on its foreign conquest without their fiancial backing and interconnections in that area.
As for Iran: Iran is now where Iraq was before first us invasion and does pose a threat of being too influential upon local finacial dealings. European and Asian investment returns in Iran are growing at around 13% a year and where else can any finacial investment frims get such a rate? Within US our so called entreapenurial expertice relys upon military takover, borrowing, and constantly rising of percentage towards military franchisemnt with a lowering of domestic populaces economic growth within its GDP figures. Countries such as china, Iran and old Iraq had a higher percentage: per cap: of Private Enterprises than does us.
American enterprise is a socialistic enterprise, money borrowed goes to college research in medical, transportation, military hardware, and even social engineering all geared towards Corporate growth within industrys that day by day are being bought up and or merged with foreign finacial interest.
Call it innovation if you want, but the only realy innovative approach of american enterprise is with money marketing not industrial growth through innovative technologys. More and more of our innovative technology needs to be applied outside of us because we no longer have an infrastructure to support its usage.
As for what and the heck this has to do with Originators blog: maybe it is time for US populace to realy take time to reflect upon what is an American Society and why do so many depend upon a central government to exist at the level of comfort they do and is the price to rest of world and individual liberty worth it.

Sorry if I read and learn from people smarter than myself, you should try it sometime within a non technical sence and maybe the little trace of racial bigotry would not prevail so much in your writings.According to your reasoning the problems of limited freedom and economics of black population within U.S. are only products of their lack of innovation.Did not miss the boon in economy of 90's built upon speculation with very little materials to back them up but I did miss the bust of them thankfully. the innovative Mexican Steel industry surpasses U.S. Steel. American auto industry had to import Japanese and European techniques in order to reamin competive but still firms preedominatley led by US citizens such as GM are still failing while their counterparts under influence of outside flourish. US telecommunications lags behind what is available From Scandinavian countries and France. US does not have means to launch its own permanent satelites and depends upon France, China and Russia to do so. Our innovative space shuttle program was used to put military satelites into non permanent orbit and Boeing new contract for permanent has seen vast influx of Indian, Eurpopean, chinese and Asian engineers who are very innovative, unlike those majority who presently graduate from from us schools who cannot pass: less than 30% do, a basic college educational level test put forth by the very educators who run us instituions. the so called innovations of IBM now are used by and instituted by a foreign work force three times domestic in number.
Same goes for Intell, financial centers of us corps located here but innovative and productive forces are outside of country.
Educational bill gave over 68 billion to universitys, one alone recived over 1 billion, UW recived almost 600 million and all for pharmaceutical,military,Agricultural and chemical industry research that will in all probability be manufacured in overseas and sold same. this does not count the "black" grants given to chicago, Univ of Penn, cal state,Harvard univ of Wash, Brigham Young and a few others, and no it does not go to student unless they work post graduate slary while at same time us gov guts student loans and tutitions rise.
the largest oil company in world Exxon Mobil has less than 5% shares of ownershiop in private hands and is about same ratio of all of Americas top 500 Corps.
Sorry but these figures come from people and groups smarter than I.
I may be uneducated but am not dumb as to think I know all answers. I guess I am just not innovative enough.
All I was responding to was the plight of a fellow human being from an unjust destruction because someone thinks that warfare is an innovative answer to our energy needs and are dumb enough to be lead by an imbecile who is relying on lies of 1950 ideas of morality and the american way to lead them.
I am not here to debate a racial profiling which comes from someone who through no work of own but lives upon wealth built up by hardworking freedom loving people to be abused for selfish egotism who thinks having a walkman or x-box is a sign of their racial and national superiority!

M. Chattick Sr you wrote “Be left behind? Every attempt by a ME country to advance itself in first 2/3rds of last century was destroyed and delayed by military and political forces in protection of Euro and us Corporate Interest.”

You are absolutely right and ad to that the protection of Israel and easy access to cheep oil. Even Rice admitted this year in Cairo that the U.S policy the last 60 years have been to keep the masses in the ME under control, and I have not heard other western countries admit this but they sure have had the same overall policy too. So how did they do that? They did it and still do it by supporting unelected governments left and right for decades. They have had no problems doing business with them and still don’t, no problem selling them weapons that they use to terrorise their own people. For 60 years have brutal governments that use terror on its own people in the ME been supported by the west and then some have the nerve to say it’s the ME people own fault. Why is Britain selling billions of dollars worth weapons to the religious dictatorship Saudi Arabia? Why is Sweden selling weapons to the military dictatorship in Pakistan? In what way are these deals that bring millions into the societies of the west helping people in Saudi Arabia or Pakistan getting a better free open society with same opportunities as the west? NONE. In what way are these military deals helping promoting human rights? NONE.

It’s a web of were we living in the western having the best time of our lives the last century on and the ones paying the price are people living outside our western countries. Less then 5 years ago it started to come up on the surface all the funds people are saving their money in have millions in the military industry. Money you and I in the west that we save in funds to have to our pension or trip or a house are invested by the banks in weapons. Even the Swedish church had this. So sure we go to the church pray for peace but at the exact time we are investing in weapons we then sell to dictators who use it to either threaten or kill their won people or others. It’s a sick society we have built on giving a blind eye to the fact that democracies are fully supporting dictators that suppress their people as long as it is in the west interests. And we have amnesia about what we have done and do and blame it on others. It’s the damn Pakistanis that they have a dictator, why should it be the Swedish peoples fault?

There are many good stuff in the west, but those who have read my comments before understand what I am against it is this double morality that exist in the west as if we have NEVER been part of keeping people in other nations under terrible life conditions just because our national security and way of life depends on having things they might not agree to give us if they were free as we are in the west.

You can go to any shop in Sweden buy water from Sweden and it cost you more then you pay for fuel that comes from Saudi Arabia. Why? Imagine if the last 60 years after WWII people in the ME would have been free I find it very difficult they would have agreed to sell all this fuel to the west at these cheep prices. They would have demanded more money and instead of investing it in the west they would have demanded it to be invested in research, universities etc in their own countries. Now were would that have left the west? Not were it is today I can a sure you.

So let us remember Rice’s words that the U.S have the last 60 years wanted security by supporting dictators in the ME instead of free people. And this is something millions of Arabs have said for decades and what have we got in return that it’s all a conspiracy theory. Well guess what it was not, it was the truth.

Makes you wonder what is it the west have been so afraid of that it have taken them 60 years to brake and get rid of. Is the arab world and other countries people now ignorant and weak enough to be safe and not a threat any more is that it?

What ever the answer is we will never be able to hide the fact as M. Chattick Sr wrote that there have been so many people in the ME who have wanted to advance their societies for decades but they have been destroyed and controlled by dictators supported by the west both military, politically and even thru business.

Arab Human Development Report 2004
An Instrument for Measuring Human Progress and Triggering Action for Change Promoting regional partnerships for influencing change, and addressing region-specific human development approaches to human rights, poverty, education, economic reform, HIV/AIDS, and globalization.

This is an excellent report that I suggest people to read. Sure one can read about what others say about it but I suggest that it’s better if one reads the report and get the facts from the source directly. And remember it’s the 2004 report you should buy or borrow.

For those who are waiting for it to come in the mail or downloading it can read this if you want:

"Why, among all the regions of the world, do Arabs enjoy the least freedom?" the authors ask. "What has led Arab democratic institutions—where they exist—to become stripped of their original purpose to uphold freedom?"

The answers are not cultural—as some foreign analysts allege—but political, the authors argue, citing the decades-long imposition of "emergency powers" by authorities across the region, the systematic suppression of independent courts and parliaments, and the "double standard" of foreign powers which they say have accepted or even encouraged authoritarian rule in exchange for political stability and access to energy supplies.

Moron99 you wrote “why are they still in power?” referring to the religious dictatorship in Saudi Arabia.

One of the things that stuck in my memory this year was this:

Moron99 you wrote "have these western weapons ever been used by the saudi's against their own citizens?"

Dear Moron99, Weapons sold to dictators can be used in different ways.

-One is to use it against their own people,
-and/or as a reminder who is in charge and you better not try to change it,
-and/or shift funds from what should have be used to build a healthy free and peaceful society,
-and/or the fact that the million military deal is done without the agreement of the people of that nation, the dictator is putting his nation in millions of dollars debt for things they have NEVER have had a chance to have a say about.

When the terrible earthquake hit Pakistan you had the Pakistani government pleading for help, blankets water, money etc ect from all over the world they needed it all. And at the same time days after the earthquake they signed a deal with Sweden to buy military weapons worth millions of dollars. These military airplanes have not dropped one single bomb on the Pakistanis but they sure shifted national funds that should have been used to save lives and help devastated areas.

And as a Pakistani woman living in Sweden wrote in one of the national newspapers: this is a shame on Sweden as a democracy, promoting human rights and freedoms. When it comes to weapon deals these values don’t apply. And what was the Swedish governments reply, it was a military deal decided long time ago, sadly the deal were signed just after the earthquake. Forgetting all along “amnesia once again” that WEAPONS SHOULD NOT BE SOLD TO DICTATORSHIPS AND UNELECTED GOVERNMENTS.

Dear Abu Khaleel and all of you who visit this site I wish us all that 2006 will be the year that the implementation of the Millennium Goals is put on the top of all agendas as priority number one! And that U.S political and military intervention outside the UN in the world are stopped for ever.

The other day I heard on TV that 35000 people die everyday because of poverty.

Those are the steps to make our world a better place!

"You've got to be kidding.

American planes violating Iraqi airspace constantly, and you think it is an act of war on the Iraqis' part when they try to do something about it?
What if Mexicans or Canadians unilaterally declared sections of the US to be off limits

Well for your example to be relevant first the US would have to invade Mexico or Canada and then the defeated by those countries of a coalition of their allies. Then after the "Mexican/Canada coalition for a free world" finally put an end to the US aggression, and the US illegitimate annexation of Mexico and Canada, then yes, they would be perfectly within their right to curtail any further aggressions from the US regime. But you have to be on drugs to make this type of hypothetical.

Stick to the facts.

Happy new year to Abu Khaleel and all his readers.

I do have an almost complete transcript of this important paper, I say almost because areas of finace who published translations are out there and no U.N. document is ever fully published, for political reasons, or gets lost in bureaucratic squablings. I do agree with its finding that culture plays a very important part in the relative delay in Islamic nations acceptance of modern technology but at the same time the paper does not look at reasons for this cultural resistance to modernism. It does not lay any blame or acceptance that Western influence and yes its abuses, religious and secular as having any "criminality" and a background of those who prepared report definately shows a western bias in learnings. Still it is a defining document and yes well worth the read.
I suggest that what largely helped define the culture of me in its resistance to western science was one idea as expressed by reformers came from abuses by what were percived as Christian communities from invasion of Palestine, Crusades, to the sucess of Muslims invasions on central asia africa and Europe, which is when the halt in Arabic and ME science reached its zenith, and into the awakinging period of mid 1800's when the new Christian onslaught, using advanced western technological expertise against their coutries began.
A clash of Ideals, Muslim Scholars thaought "Values" not only to be transmitted through education but must be reflected in "actuality of works done: Whereas the work being done by "Christian" empires denied any equality to the arab, Pershan or for that matter any "lesser" racial group except as menial labor.
There were many modenism Muslim teachers and tho they never succeded to this day their effects upon Muslims and IC's worldwide are just becoming.
As the UN report puts blame upon IC thought, and yes religion. If one were to use the same guidelines but frame question as to why US declared war was it cultural I susspect one would find that yes the cultural makeup of US is on the whole a warlike society.
Complicated but many such as Jamal al Din al-Aghani Hasan al Banna did try to modernize islamic thought and even the Egyptian Brotherhood, old and today, still tries to combine two cultureal disparitys.
To deny the influence of Western culture and the influence Christianity has upon it cannot be done and yet even today we see Fundamentalist Christians world wide trying to deny science with new theological excuses of creation and their base countries destroy and support people who deny the humanity of being an IC or an Arab by slaughtering them. A vlues orientation that goes directly against the Modernist Islamicv thought that values expressed throuh education must be whon by works. "Not by their words, shall you know them, but by their works.

Sorry for long windedness but as an aside, could I suggest readings of ancient Greek Herodotus; "History", in which he describes Greeks thougth that ME peoples especially Pershians as peoples who liked being slaves because they did not accept Democracy. I contend that it is the defining document as to how western thougth from its time until today defines M.E. peoples.
Many study Greece as the beginning of civlization but know little of M.E., Urukagina, Hammarabi Cyrus the great Darius etc. Darius : if you take the three forms of government, democracy, oligarchy and monarchy-maintains that monarchy far surpasses the others for what government can possibly be better than that of the very best man in the whole state.
As stated by many in M.E., "since ancient times we have not appointed our own leaders so we have a different feeling about leadership. In the M.E. there is an instictive love for the leader if he is realy a leader.
It is strange how that feeling transmutes into many within U.S. of today who support Bush"N"Corps form of divine leadership.

While this may reinforce part of your argument on nnovation in warfare as being one factor of Euro centric supremacy here goes.
The Invasion of Europe by M.E. cultures with their advanced sciences liberated it from the restrictions of the western religious instituion, Roman Catholicism!
This is what realy began the Reformation period within Western Society, and split the Roman church into Western and Eastern Orthodoxys'.
New ideas of science along with the Muslim educational methods of keeping intact all the ancient writings, no matter the religion or sectarin natures and study of them. The most important innovation in world, the printing press, made available the writings and ideas of that which the Roman heirarchy of church had forbidden, and in fact had once condemned reading among anyone other than the clergy, individual learning and scientific approaches over theological thought.
Even to this day we find a two book theology among the major religious groupings be they islamic divisions or Christianity in its many denominations as First: Holy writings, and Secondly, the explanation trying to justify or deny Scientific conflicts in the first.
The western secular reformist thoughts and Islamic Reformist are actually quite similar:
" Truth cannot contradict truth, therfore there cannot be a discrepency between the truth of God, and of science. the Word of God and the works of God are one and the same".
I cannot remember off hand complete translation but this is my attempt to interpret. I would respect any IC or western secular more learned than I to corect or verify what was an Islamic thought from reformers.
Why the Islamic or muslim advancemtn seemed to end here at beginning of Reformation timeline which is when the real capital formation of empires began is of many varied reasons, and one can also ask why did Eastern Catholicism change and remain in nations not as technologicly advanced as what Euros became.
Much more reasons and no black, white quicky answers as we in west are so prone to demand.

Interesting debate.

May I wish you all a very Happy New Year.

May your efforts (if honorable :) be fruitful and may your days be joyful!

Happy New Year Abu Khaleel,
Peace and self-determination for Iraq!

It is not quite new years here and to be polite I will offer the obligatory Happy and properous New Year wishes to everyone. Whle I personally have much to be happy about, Providence has been more than generous despite my many failings,I grow pensive for the fates of many millions who live in despair and fear of what a new year will bring.
I can read many books on Philosophy, politics, morality, theologys and scientific thoughts but they are mere words on paper, and words can be twisted and paper set alight to burn and destroy, or studied and enlighten humanity. As a crayon can draw crude pictures for lust or destruction so can they be used to form patterns that shine forth to create beauty.
The choices are up to each individual on this earth.
Not being learned and wise I read words but cannot express by them what is in my heart. We live in a world where it seems words no longer have pillars of truth to them so that love, charity, peace have become so corrupted that no one can fully believe the honesty of the speaker who expressed them.
Happy new Year? Do we pass a man on side of road freezing in March rains and wait until Christmas to give him a coat and warm meal out of charity and then wish him a happy new year?
Each day is a beginning of a new year and today is when we can help others to begin tomorrow.
As the Dr. said "if your intentions are honorable", Peace and Prosperity.

The whole Iraq must be annexed to the USA, and Iraqis must be americanized,learn English and became christians or atheists. It's the only way to keep Iraq united and make it prosperous.

Moron99 wrote “all Iraq or any mid-east country needs in order to secure a prosperous future is to quit terrorizing people who do not agree.”

Well I think that ANY COUNTRY needs in order to secure a prosperous future is to quit terrorizing people who do not agree. And any country that sells weapons and/or offers any other sort of support to an unelected government is aiding these people in their crimes against their people and must stop this sort of “hidden” terror.

And since this comment of Abu Khaleel is still about Iraq and the U.S actions towards it, I would suggest that the U.S in order to secure a prosperous future is to quit terrorizing Iraqis living thousands of miles away from their borders. And to stop with their support to unelected governments and dictators in the world. Clean up in you own garden fist.

Moron99 wrote “Whether it be with politics, dress, morals, religion, or anything else it is all the same thing. Terrorizing people for being different is the basis of oppression. As long as the people are willing to do it on a small scale then the government will be willing to do it on a big scale. Go to Basra without your hijab and yell that Sadr is fat and stupid. The reason you can't do that is the same reason that the mideast languishes in political misery.

Now you Moron99 either seem to be an honest slow learner or simply do not want to face the fact that the political miseries you complain about have been supported by the west for 60 years.

As for your concerns about not wearing a hijab in Basra, I did not wear a hijab when I lived in Amara in the 80:s or when I visited relatives in Basra. So this is a new phenomenon that came with the U.S invasion of Iraq. And those politicians you do not like well those are the one the U.S said will bring us Iraqis freedom and democracy. These are the people Iraqis are called terrorist or aiding terrorist by the U.S for not agreeing with them.

Moron99 wonders “Is there a country where you may speak freely and openly?”
There are lots of countries you can speak freely and openly in the world but the thing that one should look at is; do you have any power to make actual changes?

And from the looks of it in the U.S the answer seem to be no power to make changes. Now it seems that the U.S administration and their supporters are not so keen on people speaking freely and openly any more. They use the “if you are not with us you are with the terrorists” all the time to end debates and add to that they spy on their own people. And the majority of U.S people seem to be more engaged in who wins the American idol then these grave actions taken against them.

Moron99 wonders about the ME “For how long has that been? How is their economy doing?”
Moron99, I am surprised that you seem to forget so quickly and know so little about world history?

According the Rice herself the U.S supported this for 60 years, before that you had the British, French and Turks. As for your question about how is their economy doing well once again if the west wasn’t so keen on selling these unelected governments weapons for trillions of dollars as I wrote before, if western banks did not so happily open hidden bank accounts for these unelected leaders, if western companies were not so happy selling enormous expensive things to these unelected governments, if it weren’t for support like the above and more I can assure you we would have had a different world.

Controlling the ME and other areas have been essential for the west to build its societies and way of life it has today. For example having control over continuing flow of cheep oil from the ME have and still goes hand in had with national security and survival of the west’s way of life since the benefits of oil became known.

Access to cheep oil for example in Sweden have made it possible for the price the consumer pay includes more tax then actual payment for fuel that goes to the seller in the ME. So income from fuel is more for the Swedish governments then it is for the actual country that produced it. Now some will say that makes Sweden almost as an oil country; it sure does.

Now let say this is how things have been going on since the end of WWII; enormous amounts of money have been coming in to the Swedish society thru these taxes on oil/fuel. Taxes that then have been used to make the Swedish society a better, richer and more comfortable one.

Now Sweden is on the top of almost all lists were people have a good life in all aspects you can think of. I find it almost impossible to see this to be the picture if people in the ME have had the chance to control their own recourses price tags. I think it would indeed be a different Sweden and a different ME. It most likely would have been a more fair way of life.

Its like the other day they had a show on Swedish TV asking people living in the capital Stockholm about their views about northern Sweden. The image you read in the everyday national media (mostly controlled from middle Sweden) is almost always negative news about the north, no recourses, poor land, unemployment, lazy people and on social help. Now we people living in the north as myself know differently but some have been brainwashed by this too. So then they showed a map over Sweden to show that it was the water recourses in the north that provided electricity all over Sweden. So if it wasn’t for the north and people working in these places many parts of Sweden would be without electricity as we know it today. Now with this enormous important resource you would think the north would be the riches part in Sweden now, well it’s not, because the corporations managing this are mostly based in the capital or outside Sweden and they do not pay back as much as they should to the north. Complicated reasons but still its wrong I think.

We also enormous amount of minerals in the north and more mines are on their way so now finally we have local politicians demanding that some corporations/institutes and government agenises linked to this industry move up north which is at the moment a none acceptable action in Stockholm.

So we don’t have to go between west and east to see how unfairly recourses income is managed. In our own backyard the benefits goes to were the political power is the strongest. And that is exactly what has happened in the ME with the west controlling flow of cheep oil resources thru corrupted unelected governments.

The huge difference is that here in Sweden I can openly and freely speak about this, making a change is however a bit harder but it can be made and it is my responsibility too if I am not agreeing to what is happening. Because the good part of a democratic country that still works sees to it that I will not get murdered, I will not get thrown in prison without charges, I will not get followed, threatened or tortured for not agreeing with the polices of recourses in Sweden.

On the other hand under dictatorships unelected brutal governments you do not have this freedom as many with narrow views seem to forget.

Many in these countries even though do far more brave things then people in a democratic country do, sadly most of the time they get killed, tortured, put in prison, threatened with family or they escape to another country to save their lives.. All this have been going on for over a century in many parts of the world, and it would not be so if it wasn’t for the support these dictators and unelected governments get from the west and each other, and it all sums up in the west’s way of life must be protected by all possible means.

It was a U.S president who said a couple of decades ago when referring to an oil crises in the ME “we will not allow them to change our way of life".

Moron99 wrote “I believe that the leaders reflect the people.”
In a democracy they sure do.

Moron99 also wrote “you believe that government controls the economy and people”
In a dictatorship they sure do.

Moron99 believes “I believe that the people and economy control the government.”
In a democracy they sure do.

Moron99, there IS difference between a dictatorship and democracy. You on the other had from your comments seem to lump them together as if there was no difference, and you are the first person that I have ever met to do this. Hopefully the last one too.

By "land of the agressor" I meant the middle east and moreover the muslim majority that occupies those lands. Not the Iraqi people. I would have thought that was apparent.

Just clarifying.

Fact: the Iraqis sack their own cities after the fall of Saddam regime.
Nadia's thought: I blame the US Army, I blame Bush.

Fact: the heroic Iraqi resistance blown up pipelines, causing great economic damage to the new Iraqi govt.
Nadia's thought: I blame the Americans and their administration.

Fact: the heroic Iraqi resistance kidnap and kill many contractors that go in Iraq for rebuild the infrastructures. Many contractors abandon Iraq without finishing their work.
Nadia's thought: I blame the American administration for the disaster of Iraqi infrastructures.

Fact: A martyr detonates his car bomb near an American vehicles surrounded by Iraqi children, killing tens of them.
Nadia's thought: I blame the stupid American soldiers, they must point their guns to the children so the children stay away from them.

Fact: In a wave of martyrdom actions, in asingle day tens of Iraqis are killed and hundreds wounded. All of them are civilians.
Nadia's thought: CIA behind this! The glorious Iraqi resistance can't do such actions... Yes, CIA and Mossad behind this.

Fact: The Iraqis, due for their bigotry, in free elections elected a fundamentalist govt.

US Imperialist, do you feel better now?

Correct the sentences if they are wrong.

However yes, I feel better now. Now I can leave this blog in peace.

Oh. Well. I'm with all of you - in part.

Take leaders following the people. This sounds good. Except that now that our leaders are all following the people our leaders are more like sheep. Or small birth damaged lambs. Taking up the peoples calls willy nilly if it's going to win a vote or some respite in the polls.

Oh sure, this is a lot of fun for bloggers - you can have your leaders saying all sorts of silly things and tying themselves in knots, flip-flopping all over the joint trying to get a grip on public opinion and looking suitably more inept each day. But the real trouble is when leaders pretend to be following the people but are really just massaging public opinion till it produces what leaders need... highly sinister but we all know it happens.

The whole thing will just break down in the end - all of our leaderships will collapse under ridicule OR will eek out a few extra years by becoming more authoritarian, even less democratic and more and more like little hitlerhem - you know what I mean, before finally there is nowhere to go but the woolsheds.

No need for wars, civil or otherwise, sheep-leaders always turn daggy and then it's time for the dip - whup, dags sawn off, head down under the dip tongs and yoke. They don't like it - but it has to be down.


“just massaging public opinion till it produces what leaders need.”
Never read or heard it put in this way before, very interesting!

There is a saying that a diplomat is a person who when telling you go to hell you look forward to the journey. It reminds me of what you just wrote.

Hmm, I never heard the enjoying the road to hell analogy before - that's very interesting. Mostly, I just deal with sheep.

I know we shouldn't mix our metaphors like this, but I smell lamb chops burning (and I'm a vegetarian!).

Oop, that was supposed to be "they don't like it but it has to be done" (instead of "down". You can tell I've spent too much time with the ovines, my subtext is suffering).

[nadia] “am not sure when and were but a few years ago I learned that there is one country that have indeed been charged and convicted with terrorism and it was the U.S..I wish I could remember more to give you extra information and myself too.”

Nicaragua, Nadia. In 1986 the World Court found the US guilty of aiding the Contra terrorist group which was trying to overthrow the elected Nicaraguan government by force. The Court dished out some hefty fines against the US and ordered it to pay up to the Nicaraguans. These fines had serious repercussions for the health of senior US officials, some of whom died of laughter at the thought that anybody could impose a punishment on the US. In other words, the US didn’t pay a dime.

[diogenes] “You tried to claim that "all" americans have "blood on their hands." Do you, or do you not, really believe that?”

I’ll admit that it’s very easy to fall into the trap of thinking “all Americans are accountable”. It’s even easy to justify through saying the democratic system necessarily represents the will of the people.

Of course this view is incorrect, since it is true that there are millions of Americans who do not support the current actions but do not have the power to influence events in any way. I think apathy is the reason that allows the US administration to get away with whatever it likes.

[diogenes] “I can assure you that it is damned hard to convince other americans that the whole thing was a bad idea, when many Iraqis appear to SUPPORT what the US is doing.”

Apathy and misinformation. Quite apart from the ‘planted and paid for’ stories that the US govt. (Lincoln Group?) has introduced into the Iraqi media, there is the aspect of the ‘divide and rule’ tactic, which ensures that a pro-US minority of Iraqis exists to get their views blown out of proportion of their real numbers. The Polls (zogby etc), however, paint a truer picture of Iraqi sentiment, and are a good source of solidity in the murk.

[madtom] “… Iraqi provocations in both the northern and southern NO-FLY ZONES have escalated into [yadda yadda] …. Why does this not count? It's a clear act of war.”

Given that you have consistently been around when I demonstrated point for point WHY the ‘no fly zones’ were not only un-mandated by the UN, hence illegal and also a breach of the 1991 Ceasefire … and technically an act of war by THE US AND THE UK … I can only conclude that your natural state of confusion has coalesced into impermeable, blinkered stubbornness.

[moron99] “Wheras you believe that the people reflect the leader, I believe that the leaders reflect the people.”

So Bush is a reflection of Americans? God help us all!

Hello, I am an Ohioan. And it is hard to combat the ignorance in this country(us). In toledo ohio, I have taken the opportunity to stand on a street corner with many americans to protest what our government is doing in Iraq, many times. It will not surprise you to know that obscenities are more often shouted at us versus shouts of support. It is also sad for me to admit that the re-election of the horrible war monger bush was won in my state. Beleive me we worked hard to make that not happen. you are also right in that it probably wouldnt have made a difference with Kerry. Americans are ignorant sheep as a whole. The shocking thing to me is how many educated semi-sane people just dont get it. I have protested, written letters to government officials, donated money and time to organizations trying to defend the world against our own administration to little or no avail. I cant get members of my own family to participate in protests. I apologize that I cant make a difference, I wont stop trying, however.

Thanks Bruno for the update!

"Nicaragua, Nadia. In 1986 the World Court found the US guilty of aiding the Contra terrorist group which was trying to overthrow the elected Nicaraguan government by force. The Court dished out some hefty fines against the US and ordered it to pay up to the Nicaraguans."

"The Court dished out some hefty fines against the US and ordered it to pay up to the Nicaraguans. These fines had serious repercussions for the health of senior US officials, some of whom died of laughter at the thought that anybody could impose a punishment on the US. In other words, the US didn’t pay a dime."

Worse still, it was the 80's. Nobody back then believed the US would pay a dime, so nobody really bothered to press the point. A great shame, as this point pressed is one of the US administration's acupuncture points - hit them in the wallet with steady pressure and the rest of the organism reacts.

So why didn't Reagan's world wide opposition seize on that moment to cripple the US? Why didn't radicals press the point and demand fine payment? Maybe because if the US were deterred from funding Nicaraguan terrorists by hefty fines, with unrelenting demand for fine payment including continued scrutiny of who the fine is paid too and what the fine is used for, maybe then the US would have stopped funding other extremist organisations too. Farmers don't care where subsidies come from, farmers only care there is cashflow to carry the farm through a bad lambing season.

"either that or reveal that all the talk about promoting Iraqi democracy has just been one big lie (which, btw, I believe it is..."

Ditto. But with continued outside pressure reinforcing the inside desire for a proper fully functioning democracy (will probably be the only one in the world) maybe US administrators can be tied to their promises until they fulfill them. For once. Unlike the Nicaragua fines deal.

Bushes budget is tight, the insurgency while a darned nuisance has been a drain on things financial more then anything. Apply more pressure to other parts of the bank from a few strategic angles and "floop" the whole thing will fall apart.

For all of you that continue to blame America for all that is wrong, I hope god gives you peace of mind soon and that the readers that read your site realize that like in America people have diffrent veiws and not all Iraqis feel the way this site portrays. God bless you all, as I turn the other cheek.

I think everyone who reads this site realises that. Are you an American Iraqi, anonymous?

[diogenes] “I am aware of the polls. Unfortunately, they also tend to give mixed signals.”

The reason for the mixed signals is to my mind, quite simple. It is a symptom of the division of Iraqi society which causes Iraqis to fear each other as much as the invader. The “shia” fear a “sunni” backlash if there is nobody to keep them in check. The “sunni” fear Iranian invasion and interference if there is no US army to keep Iran at bay. Both parties, given a stable situation, would doubtless tell the US to scarper in a minute if they did not feel so threatened. The US military is quite aware of the advantage of a divided Iraqi society, and the disadvantages of a united one. The first attack on Fallujah met with howls of protest on all sides and a revolution by the Shiite Mahdi army. The second time round the “Shiites” were quietly rubbing their hands at seeing their ‘rivals’ get pasted. Why? Sectarian division, that’s why.

[diogenes] “Nothing would please me more than for the new Iraqi gov't to tell the US to get the hell out”

March – April is going to be very interesting. (Read: bad) In Iraq we have a Shiite, Iranian aligned government that is taking power with the blessing of the US. Simultaneously we have the US propaganda machine grinding into gear against the Iranians. It is an open secret that military strikes are being readied against Iran very soon. When that happens, the Iraqi-ranian government will tell the US to take a hike. I want to see what happens then. Either the US will have ‘realigned’ itself with the (formerly evil, Ba’athist, terrorist) resistance and will try to unleash the one against the other – or it will try to use some sort of veto mechanism to torpedo the marching orders – or it will deem Iraq to be dysfunctional as a single entity and declare that the elected govt.’s authority is confined to the south of Iraq.

HOpe all is well Abu Khaleel!

Here is something to read, if you haven't already seen it : )

I hope the link will work and not be cut of. Can someone please tell me how to insert a tag with a link, then it will not be cut of. Atleast I think so.

Crude Designs:
The Rip-Off of Iraq’s Oil Wealth
By Greg Muttitt

I put the link this way, cut and past is all that's needed. I tried with HREF but got the message that it is not allowed.

/ Nadia

WOW ! Must say I've thoroughly enjoyed reading all the posts here and commend Abu for his good work in trying to keep us updated with events.
However, I am NOT impressed by the anti Iraq comments being made by considerble Americans on here.
Simarly the whining and whinging emanating from the same mouths, how the good folks of America can not be held accountable, how America is the shining light of the FREE World ect, ect, ect.
Spare me your rhetoric, unlike many of the writers here, I am a Veteran, have shed blood on behalf of the wonderfull gift to humanity America that the World should be grateful for and get down on it's knees and kiss it's feet. (NOT)
I sat up night after night waiting for some poor Vietnamese to come along so I could help in blowing them to little pieces simply because they OBJECTED to someone other then themselves running their country and their affairs.
I went to Vietnam on a mission, to find the truth, whether what we were being told in the media and by our leaders was in fact true, within the first 6 weeks, I discovered EVERYTHING WE HAD EVER BEEN TOLD REGARDS Vietnam WAS A LIE.
The same goes for Iraq, Afghanistan,Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, and most of all Iran.
American cannot survive without obtaining access to new markets and access to raw resopurces to feed the demand for those markets, never mind that most of the stuff they produce is JUNK and a total waste of resources, but the investors in their Corporate entities demand profits at an ever increasing pace, thus new markets must continuall be found, and when those markets are targeted, they MUST CONFORM TO THE U.S.'s demand, if not, watchout ask Chavez in Venezuela, who is a Nationalist and places HIS COUNTRY above the Coprorate greed emanating from the U.S.who jealously stare at his countries riches with envy greed and lust, it's only a matter of time, before the dogs of war are set amongst these poor people once again, so the might EVIL empire can once again subjugate their people and steal their resources.

Don't regale me with cries of innocence of Americans, if you have ever supported the Corporate robber barons of the U.S.A. if you receive returns on your investments, if you're livelihood is from the defence (MERCENARY) industry, if you obtain benefit in any way from these murderous overseas criminal acts, YOU ARE COMPLICTE OF THE CRIMES AND SHOULD EXPECT RETRIBUTION.

It's rather funny, to read the pathetic words here, how innocent some Americans claim to be, I say funny, because I remember when there was a period in MY LIFE, when my country of birth's citizens were saying exactly the same thing.
Remember Germany,, and the alledged crimes supposedly perpetrated by them during WW 2?
The citizenry claimed they were innocent and had no idea of what was going on, (Hmmmm, does that sound familiar to our readers) "it was not us they said, we had no idea of what went on, so you can't blame us."
Question I have, Did that cut any ice with the Allies ?????
Like hell it did, the whole nation was collectively punished for it's alledged crimes.
Now I say, why if it was good enough to collectively punish ALL Germans why is it not fair, in the case of America, to hold ALL AMERICANS RESPONSABILE FOR IT'S CRIMES ?????????????????????

Some have also requested here info on the U.S.'s involment with it's crimes in other countries, well for starters folks, it wasn't so long ago, the World Court found the U.S. GUILTY of fomenting unrest and supporting TERRORISTS in Guatemala and imposed a hefty fine on them. Has the fine been paid to date ? Your kiddin right ?

Here are your previous involments;


China 1945-46
Korea and China 1950-53 (Korean War)
Guatemala 1954
Indonesia 1958
Cuba 1959-1961
Guatemala 1960
Congo 1964
Peru 1965
Laos 1964-73
Vietnam 1961-73 (Vietnam War)
Cambodia 1969-70
Guatemala 1967-69
Grenada 1983
Lebanon 1983, 1984 (both Lebanese and Syrian targets)
Libya 1986
El Salvador 1980s
Nicaragua 1980s
Iran 1987
Panama 1989
Kuwait 1991 (Iraqi Targets)
Iraq 1991-
Somalia 1993
Bosnia 1994, 1995 (Bosnian Serb Targets)
Sudan 1998
Yugoslavia 1999
Afghanistan 1998,

I have another post on this page but after that, I was busy reading the on going debate. Not only am I shocked but in complete dismay how some of the people even after reading what Abu Khaleel has to say, still support US imperialism. Nadia, I suggest you don’t argue, these people are blind, they sound like neocons and one of the person has actually posted something (about Europe aging and dying) from the well reputed neoconservative, Robert Kagan's book - Of Paradise and Power.

Ironical isn't it, Americans talk about freedom and liberties but they just don’t seem to acknowledge the fact that the government has gone around toppling democracies around the world. They talk about making the world a safer place but don’t question them selves that when did the terrorist attacks on America actually start. They want liberties and democracy everywhere, but no one questions where these values were when JFK was assassinated or when Martin Luther was killed. America ranks 39, the last among the freest nations according to the, an American organization. Yet, they are complacently smug in believing that they are attacked for their freedom. No wonder Sweden, Finland and the other countries ranked far above US when it comes to freedom and are safe from terrorism. Your media barks day and night about terrorist threats but did it tell you about the letter Osama Bin-Laden wrote to you, practically enlisting the reasons for the attack? Murder of civilians cannot be justified for any cause whatsoever, but it might actually put some sense into your heads why you are abhorred and detested. Some Moron actually spoke about leaders representing their people; you make me pity you to be honest. While 95% of America’s wealth remains concentrated with 5% of the population and the wedge further widening, American masses are made to believe their economy is actually improving. Sure your leaders care, as long as you care and remain concerned about whether Michael Jackson was a pedophile or not and whether Angelina Jolie was responsible for the break up of Brad-Aniston, indeed your leaders are concerned. As long as the gas prices aren’t high enough that you can drive around the city and go to theatres & shopping, you remain happy, who cares if Iraqis have to pay 2-3 times the price they were initially paying for their own gas. You don’t care whose dying where and why, only when your soldiers begin to die, you wake up from your vegetative dormancy. You don’t care whether half a million Iraqi children were dead before, thanks to your sanctions or whether over 200,000 civilians are now dead and rising. And please, do me a favor any pro-Bush right-wingers, don’t tell me they were to stop Iraq from building weapons. Medicines for curing yellow fever, malaria and not to mention, treat cancer (thanks again to your uranium) cannot be used to build WMDs.

While I am certainly not against those Americans who do not support war and BUSH, the Big Murderer, I indeed cannot stand those neoconservatives that seem to infest the nation. You don’t know what the country; your country has done in Far-East Asia and Latin America, because people of these ill-fated countries have suffered silently. But middle-east is not the same and you will see that. Do me a favor and your self as well, listen to people like Robert Fisk, a British journalist who has risked his life a 100 times over to get the truth to the people. This man is the only western journalist to have met Osama Bin-Laden, he is a Christian, but knows Arabic, read his articles; it will help free your cluttered and demented thoughts. He understands terrorist, read his views and you will know why America is hated and is under constant threat, instead of watching your Jew controlled, manipulated, tampered news from CNN and Fox News where journalist are nicely seated in tanks, saying what the government has instructed them to say, like parrots repeat the propaganda and not to mention report news from hotel rooms – “mouse journalism”, if you know what I am talking about. Web page dedicated to him is given at the end of this exhortation.

People like Noam Chomsky, Tom Feeley, John Pilger and many-many more are simply just fanatics right? They for some reason just hate America, even though most of these peace-activists are Americans. I fail to understand why. There is evidence of US torture, malpractices, and dual-intentions and still we foolishly discuss whether the war is right or wrong. The other day, a blessed ignorant dotard was speaking about how America has successfully brought democracy to Afghanistan. I was silent, what can I say? Karzai, a Unocal foreign advisor is made president, opposition election party members are butchered, drug production in Afghanistan has doubled, thugs and war-lords are allowed to rule, but still – an American will tell you with an air of defiance – “we gave them democracy”. Forget discussing with such people the plan to lay pipelines across Afghanistan, you can’t really argue with a kindergarten child whether pneumonia starts with a “P” or a “N”. Gods of wisdom have perished and so will humanity as long as ignorance prevails. Please see some of the links I am posting, might help you fulfill the responsibility of gaining freedom; freedom from ignorance.

What type of site is this. Many 'enlightened people' resorting to 4th grade name calling, that is intellect? I am an American and believe mistakes have been made but I would not consider such vile to be anymore the truth than what they speak out against. Some of these posts are outright laughable, like Jeff, and the one who doesn't seem to know much about a certain N.C. What a shame, I thought maybe I had reached a reality-based dissent. Maybe some was but with all the nonsense how can one tell, shamefully, really.

Dear Abu Khaleel,

it is two months since your last post.

Please, do tell your readers that you are safe and well...

Dear Italian,

I am safe. Thank you for your concern.

Thanks be to God!

Abu Khaleel!!!!! So nice to hear from you :)

Are you active on other sites?
Why are you off from here?
Stay alive.

Abu Khaleel,
You, your family, and your friends (and your nation) are in my prayers.
May God be gracious and merciful towards you (towards y'all).

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

I so hoped we could avert this latest calamity. May the Iraqi resiliance hold and bind the nation together. You, your family and your countrymen are in my prayers.

"I am safe."
What a ridiculous thing for an Iraqi to say.
You didn't deserve this, Abu. Your country didn't deserve this.
Hang in there, mate.

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

i am with circular in this. take care abu, and please keep us updated, if possible. maybe you can do a 'reposting' of the posts you mentioned yourself for a re-reading of various backgrounds? thanks for all anyway, (and don't do anything i wouldn't do... ;)

Abu Khaleel keep safe.

Cile here is the link you asked for:

As an American, I am sworn to uphold the Constitution and the principles of the American Revolution. I have been saddened that since the entry of the U.S. into the U.N. that successive Administrations have failed to do just that. In regards to Iraq, I feel that the current President, George W. Bush did the right thing in toppling the Saddam regime, and would like to personally apologize for allowing former President George H.W. Bush to be defeated by Bill Clinton. It is my sincere belief, that had Clinton not been elected President, the situation with Iraq would have been resolved in the early 90s and the 1990-2003 Iraq War would not have escalated into the 21st Century.

As an American, I am sworn to uphold the Constitution and the principles of the American Revolution..blah..blah..blah..

Anon above,
Your craven cowardice and the repeated personal failures of your holy oath cannot be allowed to go unpunished. You need to end your pathetic existence before you do further harm to the sacred American Homeland-so stay out of politics and pray that Jesus comes back soon to rapture you to heaven.
Enjoy the kool-aid.
PS, there's a loaded gun out back if you don't like kool-aid.
Heil Bush!

Abu Khaleel, let us know if you are alright, please. The last few days have had very worrying news coming from your country. If you are not too depressed to do an analysis of current events, well, now is the time to do it!

(Oh, and - As a citizen of the world, I feel I should personally apologise for being unable to stop the anonymous yank from coming here and spouting his nonsense.)


I’m ok, thank you. I had actually posted a comment but deleted it two days later. It gave away too much!! At the moment, I am in a much better mood! In addition to the gratifying conduct of those ragheads, two other items lifted my spirits:

1. Re recent developments: Iraq wins again! As you know, I have been saying for along time that there are powerful forces bent on inciting sectarian strife in Iraq. These villains are numerous, powerful, resourceful and determined. But decent, ordinary people have taught them another lesson. That blowing of the shrine was a truly severe one; it was the most powerful ‘sectarian assault’ yet. Several forces of darkness moved swiftly to initiate sectarian conflict – but were dismayed to learn that ordinary people were not interested! It has passed. It was a close call indeed. I was quite depressed and apprehensive. I had to go back and read my own writings on the subject to regain a more balanced perspective! No doubt there will be other ‘assaults’. But I still believe that we will pull through.

2. Here is a link that may be of interest. Words from one of more moderate of my dearly beloved neocons, the villains who engineered the devastation of our country – Francis Fukuyama: “Neoconservatism has evolved into something I can no longer support”. I find the article most gratifying. Remember, this is from one of their architects. It is as clear an admission of defeat as any (albeit for the wrong reasons and with a wrong prescription for the way ahead;). A formal declaration of defeat of a bankrupt philosophy!

3. A few days ago, a large-scale opinion poll conducted by Maryland University showed that 87% of Iraqis (including 64% of Kurds, please note) endorsed a demand for a timetabled withdrawal of the occupiers. The findings were mostly ignored by the media. Need I say anything?

Oh, how I love this country!!

As to what has and is taking place on the ground in Iraq, I will try to oblige – perhaps later, when I have more time and/or motivation!

Hello Abu Khaleel,
Here's the link you gave, without the prefix which blogger apparently adds:,,1715179,00.html
Hopefully it will work.

Be Well and take care,
Bob Griffin

Oops! Here is the link again:,,1715179,00.html

To Mr. Khaleel,

It sounds like you were happier being a slave to Saddam than you are as a free man. You do not deserve to be free at the cost of American blood. You deserve to be a slave.

To all you Americans that bash your country to foreigners on blogs like this, I hope you realize that you are frittering away whatever goodwill America still has in the world. Do you think this goodwill will suddenly reappear when your party gets back in the White House? Grow up and think about the long term consequences of your actions. Stop your whiny pandering to people like this twisted Baathist.

Annonymous poster of 2nd March, 7:41AM Greenwich Mean Time,

First, Abu Khaleel is clearly NOT a Ba'athist. If you had read his various posts and blogs, you would see that he has gone to great lengths to promote representative democracy in post-invasion Iraq, and has no affection for Saddam Hussein at all.

Second, I respectfully request that you wash your mouth with some strong soap. Your verbal behavior towards our host is despicable.

Third, I request that you read up on what the US has ALLOWED to occur in Iraq with and after the invasion, and compare it with how we treated Germany and Japan in World War II.

Fourth, it is not the critics of US policy which make the US unpopular in much of the world, it is the policies themselves. Those who don't respect America BECAUSE of the critics of American policy are like those who believed China did the right thing at Tienanmin Plaza.

Unfortunately I have little hope that you will understand this.

May God be merciful to you,
Bob Griffin

Dear Bob Griffin,

Wash my mouth out with soap? Did I swear? No, I did not. You just don't like what I have to say.

Of course, from your profile, I see you live in California, and your favorite films include, gee whiz golly, lord of the rings and star wars! Wow.

You clearly enjoy alternate reality. Get a grip.

Freedom requires sacrifice. Unfortunately, this sacrifice almost always requires bloodshed.

Of course, I don't expect you or Aragorn to understand this. Oh wait. I think Aragorn did understand this. Please watch Lord of the Rings again and get back to me.

Abu Khaleel –

Thank you very much for the link. I have archived it. It was very interesting to read Fukuyama’s mea culpa on the subject, although I think it’s a bit easy for him to advocate the virtual destruction of a country on ideological grounds and then get off with an “oops, I was wrong”. Anyhow, I suppose these days we ought to be grateful that at least the man had the courage to admit he was wrong.

[a k] “A few days ago, a large-scale opinion poll conducted by Maryland University showed that 87% of Iraqis (including 64% of Kurds, please note) endorsed a demand for a timetabled withdrawal of the occupiers.”

That was the PIPA poll.

It said the same as all the other polls from Iraq – and there are quite a few of them – almost two per year. The numbers change only minimally between the various polls. Yet, it seems that they have ALL been ignored, except for those results which can be spun into a positive light. It seems as if the US/UK don’t want to hear what Iraqis have to say, unless it is what they want to hear.

It seems as if the road of knowledge through pain is the road they want to take.

Speaking of which, here is one of these numbskulls:

[anonymous] “It sounds like you were happier being a slave to Saddam than you are as a free man. You do not deserve to be free at the cost of American blood. You deserve to be a slave. To all you Americans that bash your country to foreigners on blogs like this, I hope you realize that you are frittering away whatever goodwill America still has in the world.”

No, brave ‘anonymous’, being under the American boot is being no freer than under Saddam’s. You may THINK this is so, but yet every day you pay in American blood to learn the opposite.

The Americans who have the courage to speak out on the atrocities you have inflicted on Iraq and elsewhere are not frittering away goodwill towards America – on the contrary, they are salvaging whatever is left of your tattered reputation in the world. The day will come when people will debate whether Americans are totally evil, whether you deserve to be wiped out or not – these brave individuals are what will redeem you.

Lets just hope there are enough of them.

(If you really want to take the Lord of the Rings as an analogy, the Iraqis are being given the choice between Sauron (Saddam) and Saruman (USA). Neither is freedom. I think Aragorn understood this too.)

Abu Khaleel:

Here is a link to a critique of the Fukyama essay by Christopher Hitchens: . Hopefully, the level of sectarian violence in your area will decrease enough that you have both the luxury of time and the interest to give it a look.


Thanks for the reference to Hitchen's response to Fukuyama's essay. It is an interesting read, though I wonder how it will sound to non-Westerners.

Reading Hitchens' article reminds me of all of the 2002/2003 arguments against invading Iraq and all of the socio-cultural psychologizing that was being done to justify the then-upcoming invasion.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Dear Bruno,

You are far braver than me. I checked your profile, it is completely empty. All we know about you is that you've chosen the name "Bruno." Wow. You are brave indeed.

I laugh at your designation of me as a "numbskull." I graduated at the top of my class from a top ten undergraduate school and a top ten law school. I'm sure I'm really not as smart as you and Bob Griffin.

May your lives at home with your parents be fulfilling!

Peace. And more imporantly, freedom.


Dear Bruno,

When you and your weak kneed friends decide that all Americans are "evil" and should be be "wiped out" (you sound a lot like the current president of Iran), please note that we are very well armed and ready to die to protect our freedom, unlike the coward Khaleel.

Lets just hope, for your sake, that there are enough of YOU.

[anonymous] “You are far braver than me. I checked your profile, it is completely empty. All we know about you is that you've chosen the name "Bruno." Wow. You are brave indeed.”

So then PICK A NAME.

I have used the same handle ever since I started posting to the Iraqi blogs, and all my posts can be associated with me, for better or for worse. Unlike you, I don’t have the luxury of denying any half-arsed posts I may make, or stupid things I have said.

[anonymous] “I laugh at your designation of me as a "numbskull." I graduated at the top of my class from a top ten undergraduate school and a top ten law school.”

Ah, yes, and I was sent for repeated IQ tests for determining ‘genius level’ individuals when I was within the educational system.

Trouble is, though, that over THE INTERNET you have no way of verifying my claims, isn’t it?

I could actually be lying through my teeth, isn’t it?

Which is why I confine my analysis of YOU to what can be verified about you: your post. And yes, according to your post, you may well be a numbskull, claims of exceptionalism notwithstanding.

[anonymous] “When you and your weak kneed friends decide that all Americans are "evil" and should be be "wiped out"”

If you read my post properly, Mr Intelligence, you will see that this is not what I said at all.

[anonymous] “ please note that we are very well armed and ready to die to protect our freedom, unlike the coward Khaleel ”

Yeah, we have here an ANONYMOUS armchair hero living in complete safety, proclaiming his toughness while deriding as a coward a man who has the guts to tough it out in a country that YOUR country has turned into hell on earth; a man who risks his life every day merely by trying to prevent out and out civil war in his area.

Do you have ANY idea how pathetic you sound?

I believe that Abu Khaleel started this blog partly in order to find out why Americans could possibly have supported a war on his country, and to try to convince them that they were mistaken in their beliefs. He has pretty much given up in disgust and hopelessness, thanks largely to people like yourself.

Another huzzah for the Fifth Americans!

[anon] “Lets just hope, for your sake, that there are enough of YOU.”

Thanks to people like YOU, pal, your country loses more and more friends in The Real World ™ every day. There are over five billion non-Americans on this globe.

If things carry on as they are … well, you do the maths … if you are able to.

Mark, thanks for the relevant link, as per usual.

Am I imagining things or do you have an alter ego on Strategy Page?



You don't have permission to access / on this server.

that is what i get when i try to get to abu's 'Glimpse of Iraq'.
am i the only one having this problem? or did something happen with that blog?

anyway, bests to all of you, and specially to abu, of course. take care.

Abu Khaleel, just wanted you to know you are in my thougts.

Take Care.

Peace/ Nadia

I was just able to access the Glimpse of Iraq blog with no problems, using the link on the left side of the main page of this blog.

Be Well

Many times I asks myself what makes you not to pick up the riffle.
I mean, my blood boil when I see what they do to all of you, and you still remains cool and keeps out of the crossfire.
Must say Iam impressed.

Anonymous Law School grad:

Well, it is clear that you learned the art of ad hominem argument. I live on the opposite coast from my mother, and my father's coffin is not available for sub-lease.

It is not your raw intelligence which is an issue. The intellect is merely a tool, which can be used either in the pursuit of the truth or in opposition to the truth. It was intellectuals (certainly of higher than average intelligence) who made the argument in 2002 that since Iraq is an honor/shame society, a rapid defeat of the Iraqi army would quickly lead to a peaceful pro-American Iraq. On a mostly-conservative-Christian board, one member has (or had) the tagline 'Though it always comes as a surprise to intellectuals, there are some forms of stupidity that one must be highly intelligent and educated to commit.' (As a member of Mensa I am quite aware of this, and also of the fact that it can describe my own positions as well as those of others.)

I question not your intelligence but rather your willingness to re-evaluate evidence. It seems to me that you use your intellect as a tool to bludgeon those who disagree with you rather than as a tool to increase your understanding. I invite you to change your perspective.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Anonymous Law grad,

I'll submit a few books for your consideration, some fiction and some non-fiction. These deal with SOME of the issues involved in and around Iraq.

'Jihad vs McWorld'

'The Crimson Field' by Rosie Malek-Younan, about the Assyrian Genocide

'Mount Semele' by Ivan Kakovitch, also about the Assyrian genocide, concluding with the massacres of Assyrians in 1933 by the Iraqi army

You might also visit for a view of anti-jihadist Islam, and the responses from the more intransigent. Check out Riverbend's blog, our host's 'Glimpses of Iraq' and 'Rapid Democracy in Iraq'. Check out the archives of, an Assyrian on-line magazine, for pictures both of Iraq under Saddam (oppressive, if not deadly) and since (both oppressive and deadly in much of Iraq).

Be Well

[bobgriffin] “I question not your intelligence but rather your willingness to re-evaluate evidence.”

That is the hardest part of intelligence. It is very difficult to accept that one’s cherished views may actually be wrong if they are wrong … and then modify those views accordingly. But honesty to oneself and thus honesty to the truth dictates that one should do so.

What is very tempting for clever people to do is to demolish a true but badly argued statement by a lesser light, in order to preserve their world-view. I suspect that this is what ‘Mr Intelligence’ is used to doing.

Let’s see him try that here.

Well, well, a Mensa member and a guy who had a few IQ tests. Wow, color me impressed. You guys sound very accomplished. ;)

What you libs will never understand is that free societies must eventually confront fascism and totalitarianism in all its forms to preserve freedom, not only for themselves, but also for others.

Don't worry boys, us conservatives will keep doing the dirty work of freedom while you guys run down the U.S., which for the last 100 years has been the best hope for mankind.

Now you can get back to patting each other on the back and sharing book lists in this lovely intellectual vacuum created by a man who pines for the "good ole days" under the heel of Saddam.

My work here is done.


The Aptly Named, Mr. Intelligence

[Mr I] “Well, well, a Mensa member and a guy who had a few IQ tests.”

Well, that’s what we SAY. Of course, we could be lying - as could you - which is the entire point of my paragraph. I guess you were just too intelligent to understand it.

[Mr I] “What you libs will never understand is that free societies must eventually confront fascism and totalitarianism in all its forms to preserve freedom, not only for themselves, but also for others.”

Oh, granted that that is a noble ideal. But what you ‘gops’ fail to understand is that the means which you employ to achieve these ends are equivalent to what you are fighting against. Not only this, but the “fight against [fill in enemy of choice]” is actually a smokescreen for other reasons which are a heck of a lot more materialistic and self interested than sheer magnanimity and brotherly love for your fellow man.

This perversion of genuinely good ideals coupled with the hypocrisy of both your means and ends renders your kind far more dangerous and subversive than the dumb ol’ USSR.

Let me rephrase that: You don’t fail to understand this at all. You know exactly what you are doing.

Some of your more gullible support base in Hicksville, Texas might truly believe that they are in the right. That’s just because they don’t understand the enormity of the crap that they’re in. They’ll sing your praises even while the rich GOP’s are selling them and us down the river to perdition.

It’s like a paedophile telling his daughter that he molests her for her own good … so that other dirty – minded boys will not. And she believes it.

That’s how sick the system has become.

Well, I don’t believe it.

Mr. Inteligence=Jeffrey

Jeffrey? Who is Jeffrey?

In any event, please try to spell "Intelligence" correctly.

[anon] “Mr. Inteligence=Jeffrey”
[Mr I] “Jeffrey? Who is Jeffrey? In any event, please try to spell "Intelligence" correctly.”

Mh. Could be. But I think it’s the same team, different player.

Jeffrey is too busy sneering and ranting about how dumb Islam and Arabs are to bother making any political point. Besides, he hasn’t mentioned faeces *once*.

I like the way Mr I’s main concern is the quality of your spelling, though.

No attempt to post anything of substance.

Yep, another drive-by trolling.

Bruno and you other people trying to confront these offshoots of neo-conservatism, sincerely, please halt. Mr.Bob already gave some links to these ranting imbeciles and so did i, so that they could learn something useful and increase their ever diminishing worldly knowledge, and with it, the superficial wisdom they think they possess. any practical American, who calls him or herself an intellectual and a true believer of freedom and democracy, would first ask, why is the US attacked and disliked the most, why us? Why is the US involved in almost all the wars around the globe? how come the US has either direct and indirect relations to almost all the worst, hannibal like dictators around the world? and if the US was really as sincere as it says it is, how come there is indispensable and undeniable colossal evidence of the contrary? No American hates America, nor do people around the world who know what they need to; they only hate what is become of it and those that are helping it become this impossible curse. If you are really that interested in spreading freedom, why don’t you look at the contrary evidence of what your country has done and then ask yourself what is real and what is a lie? Why don’t you go and speak to those veterans who have seen the ground realities (not those sadistic psychos torturing and mutilating people in the gallows of Guantanamo and Abu Gharib), who know what really the agenda behind war is. I have posted some other links in a previous post, have a look at them as well if you are really interested in knowing more, essentially the truth, and the reason I say truth is because these individuals are there to see what is happening, not like most Americans listening to CNN and FOX propaganda day and night. To be honest, if there was even a grain of truth of what the American government was doing, like I said, there would never be so much pain, suffering and killing going on. Sadly, educated people (some who have studied law yet do not know of what comprises of violations of law) still believe in the propaganda and will continue to believe, till they don’t resort to some serious introspection and search for truth beyond the realm of their immediate sources.

"Sadly, educated people (some who have studied law yet do not know of what comprises of violations of law) still believe in the propaganda and will continue to believe, till they don’t resort to some serious introspection and search for truth beyond the realm of their immediate sources."

Sadly, some people can't write a comprehensible sentence, but want to be taken seriously.

When you believe and support hideous lies, even letters of the alphabet will be incomprehensible. Sine you have so little left to say, apart from helplessly picking out grammatical or spelling mistakes from other posts, one thing that indeed is comprehensible, is that you were the law student I was referring to.

One thing the Bush administration has said after the miltary went into Iraq was that Saddam used chemical weapons "against his OWN people". when that was actually happening, the USA ignored it as best they could.

Today, the dictator of Pakistan, Musharef, is bombing and killing "his OWN people".

So, someday, the war mongerers will claim we have to do something about Pakistan (like bomb it or invade) and that the evil dictator of Pakistan killed "his OWN people".

This will change if Musharef gets kicked out of there.

US foreign policy is full of bullshit like this.

[Anonymous : 12/3/06 6:23 AM] “Sadly, educated people (some who have studied law yet do not know of what comprises of violations of law) still believe in the propaganda …”

Your words are so, so true.

I believe that the root cause of the problem lies in the phenomenon of American exceptionalism, which cannot admit that Americans are simply people like others on this planet. If one believes in American Exceptionalism, then one automatically transcends the debate over means and ends, because the ends of US foreign policy are never in question, hence all means are justified. This phenomenon is insidious and very powerful, because it is not addressed in debates and yet is the driving force behind the yahoos on the net.

Even some people whom I think are very intelligent and informed, like Mark-in-chi-town are affected by it. Note his outrage when Abu Khaleel dared suggest that Americans are manipulated by their media.

Oh, by the way, I don’t believe that out Mr Intelligence is a law graduate.

I think a genuine law graduate would have put up a far more effective and vigorous defence of his beliefs than the “you can’t spell” drivel that he has posted here.

hope you're all right, and to hear something soon...
iraqi blogosphere is different without your writings.
and take care

yes bruno, every word you say is so true. what concerns me most is the relentless propaganda that the government is now resorting to, to invade Iran. once again, all of America is trembling, wondering when the next nuke will hit them. incase anyone is unaware, the theory of another 9/11 has already been proposed. to draw the american people into another malicious war, the government might just go in for another manufactured 9/11 and then call it a surprise, unprecendented attack. curse these fiends. i can only breathe with ease thinking about the state of these murderers in hell.
i wonder sometimes how intellectuals like Chomsky are born in between people who call Bush a "good christian" (Jesus must be wondering what is wrong with people to call Bush even human, forget christian). Some of his works on how people of America are manipulated are simply fantastic. after reading some of the stuff he writes, you really understand how gullible, yet shallow most of the people of america are. god knows what will happen to them, they are getting killed from all sides. the outside world hates them for who they are, thanks to the rascals who govern them, and on the inside their government is choking them to death. i really pity americans who remain blissfully ignorant of the hellish vortex they are trapped in. honestly speaking - god 'needs to' bless america.

Cile and other friends,

Thank you. I am still alive.

In several respects, it was indeed a pleasure and an honor to discuss, listen to and write to some truly decent people whom I have come to know through these pages and who come from more than four continents, including America. Yet, now I feel that most of those people already know. In many cases, they know a lot more than I do about the rest of the world and about America… so what good will any writing do?

As to those other people, they still say they are right and they are on the right track. Just last week, Saddam – after nearly 40 years of devastating the country – was still arguing that he is right!!! It will be the same with these people and their parrots. From my experience on this blog, I now believe it is degrading to debate things with parrots.

It was personally shocking for me to realize that so many people of the most powerful and ‘advanced’ country in the world are driven primarily by the primeval demon of Fear. Many of those driving and manipulating them are themselves driven by demons of arrogance, lust for power and greed. America’s Founding Fathers must be turning in their graves.

May America itself one day be liberated by her own sons and daughters and saved from those demons. At the moment this seems highly unlikely. Meanwhile, may no other country suffer the misfortune of being ‘liberated’ by present-day demon-possessed America.

And tonight, on the eve of the anniversary, I naturally have mixed feelings - but mostly feelings of anger and bitterness!

There have been three phases in Iraq over the past 4 decades: Saddam Rule, US rule and Sectarian Iraqi rule. There have been mixed transition phases between them. We are now embarking on the third phase, engineered by the US administration. Each was worse than the one before.

My own position has also gone through three different phases (also with mixed transition periods): Advocating democracy and reaching out; Doing what I can to avert local conflict; Taking the offensive and doing something about it. The first phase was a total failure. The second was a success. At the moment I spend much of my free time thinking about the next phase.

I no longer believe that the solution of the problems of Iraq lies in America or anywhere else. It lies here in Iraq and always has.

Why do you think so many more people in America are now against this war? Is it because it was wrong or that horrible things have been done in this country by the American administration and the American Army? It is now certain that most of those people have had a change of heart because America lost. Had the administration won, a lot more people would still be supporting this adventure (regardless of wrongdoings and atrocities).

And how has America lost?

It was because of things taking place here on the ground – mostly by Iraqis.

I am not bitter against the rest of the world; most people of the world have been against this thing right from the start. It is just that I think that they are ineffective, and almost useless to us as Iraqis. They could not force change over 12 years of criminal sanctions and they could not force change during 3 years of occupation, bombing, killing, devastation and atrocities. They are also running out of steam!!

It is our battle - particularly now that the Americans are laying the grounds for the next phase where they can take their boys out of harm’s way and leave various Iraqi factions to fight it out with more Iraqi blood. They are already starting to play the ‘good guy’ role acting as mediators between evil parties and entities that they empowered in the first place. They are ‘doing their best’ to induce those people (even force them) to forge a government of ‘national unity’!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Only something extremely wicked can unleash so many evil forces.

Hello Abu Khaleel,
Thank God you are alive and kicking!(Like Iraq!)
It is so good to here from you!
Especially with 'Operation Swammer' going on- another US offensive to nowhere.
Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld are still on TV trying to drum up support but few here in the US are listening. Those three have failed miserably. They won't try to 'teach' Iraqis how to rebuild their country anymore. Bush is now (mildly) threatened by the Democrats with censure and impeachment for lying, but where will it end? The neocon dreams have been discredited and lie upon the 'ashbin of history'.
Unfortunately, Iraq is almost dead from the fever.
Iraq will revive without US military assistance(or bases)!
Rest,care and let nature take its course.
I'm afraid you're right that most people in America would not have cared about Bush's crimes if he had succeeded.
But most of his schemes seem to be failing.
Not by accident I think!

Abu Khaleel: You wrote, "It is our battle." This is the absolute truth, although I hope that, between Iraqis, it is a political, rather than military battle you are describing.

The American military presence has continued to become steadily more unpopular here at home as I had predicted in these pages long ago. With mid-term Congressional elections approaching, Bush will be desperate to make some progress on drawing down U.S. troop levels. This means he will be steadily dumping Iraq's security problems into the lap of Iraqi's security forces well before they are truly ready (or to have gained enough of the confidence of the Iraqi people to be effective). As a U.S. withdrawal is what you have long been seeking in these pages, you should be happy, but this does not seem to be the case. I suspect that the specter of continued sectarian violence or civil war is the reason for the anxiety.

It will be up to Iraqis to find a formula for a political accommodation which avoids such a conflict. Focusing any of your efforts on placing blame for the rise of Iraqi sectarianism is, in my view, an utter waste of time. To my mind, your efforts would be more fruitfully employed in organizing a mass movement to place pressure on Iraq's factional leaders to make the political compromises necessary to yield a stable and just government. To help ensure that the factions are more amenable to compromise, it will be advisable to stress the need for Iraq's constitution to contain a workable mechanism for amendments in order to have the ability to refine the system in later years. In this way, each faction can feel confident that the others will agree to make changes as the fullness of time proves them correct about one issue or another. As always, I wish you the best of luck in your efforts in the political battle.


“My own position has also gone through three different phases ....Advocating democracy and reaching out; Doing what I can to avert local conflict; Taking the offensive and doing something about it. The first phase was a total failure. The second was a success. At the moment I spend much of my free time thinking about the next phase.”

Good grief, Abu, I hope I'm reading you wrong, but that seems to imply joining the Resistance. If so, keep just thinking about it! Remember, the Pen is mightier than the Sword!
And aren't you a bit old for that sort of thing?

“I am not bitter against the rest of the world; most people of the world have been against this thing right from the start. It is just that I think that they are ineffective, and almost useless to us as Iraqis.”

True, and I'm sorry about being ineffective. I am a bit old for protest marching myself, and find it rather undignified anyway. But I hope I've done a little bit by opposing the Charles's who infest the Internet and Blogosphere. (And the Marks-in-Chi-Town who persist in seeking rational solutions to irrational situations.)

I suspect that Iraq will form a Government of National Unity at about the same time as George Bush will sit down with a US Cabinet made up equally of Republicans, Democrats and independents. “Do as I say, not as I do.” This madness has many years to run yet.

But Cile above is right - “the iraqi blogosphere is different without your writings.” It has been a privilege to know you, mate. Keep your head down, and remember Auto on the AK47 is UP.


Parting word, I promise.

"Only something extremely wicked can unleash so many evil forces."

"By the pricking of my thumbs
Something wicked this way comes."

I hope you're not getting religion, Abu.


Unless one of the sectarian factions can completely and utterly impose its will by force on all others, which in Iraq's case seems doubtful in the short run, the rationial people, like Abu Khaleel, have no other choice but to use politics to try to solve Iraq's problems. Militant sectarians are not going to magically disppear. They will need to be talked into compromises as their heads cool and the violence recedes into the past. All military conflicts come to end in one way or another. More often than not, it is when the factions realize they can't win by force of arms alone and that endless cycles of retribution are self-defeating. I hope that day come soon to Iraq.


Abu Khaleel, thank you ever so much for the update.

Your attempt to communicate with, understand and convince our cro-magnon friends was truly a heroic undertaking which was pursued with more determination than I thought possible. Kudos for your enormous effort. Unfortunately you have realised the ugly truth:

[ak] “It will be the same with these people and their parrots. From my experience on this blog, I now believe it is degrading to debate things with parrots.”

And while it pains me to admit it, you are right that we in the wider world are powerless to help you, as you said here:

[ak] “most people of the world have been against this thing right from the start. It is just that I think that they are ineffective, and almost useless to us as Iraqis.”

Wallah, what can I, in South Africa, really do to help an Iraqi in Iraq, other than through puny words? Sure, we can boycott US goods for as long as their policy stinks like this, but realistically, most people here don’t even care about South African politics, never mind the fate of Iraqis. So, me not drinking Coke anymore is more of an ironic joke on the uselessness of my ‘effort’ than anything serious.

But as far as ‘ejecting’ the Americans out of Iraq, the armed struggle is definitely working. Many of our Fifth American friends are heartily sick of the steady procession of dead and wounded, and they are starting to believe that this whole venture was a mistake. Not much of the “let’s help the Iraqis” attitude left now amongst the wingnut ranks.

[ak] “It is our battle - particularly now that the Americans are laying the grounds for the next phase where they can take their boys out of harm’s way and leave various Iraqi factions to fight it out with more Iraqi blood.”

That’s the way their little foreign policy adventures usually run. But take heart. Iraqis have shown an amazing resistance to their usual machinations thus far, and I do believe that there is a real possibility of your country emerging untainted and victorious from the struggle.

I personally believe that this US re-alignment away from the ‘shias’ and towards the ‘sunnis’ is a symptom of a coming struggle even more dangerous than the invasion of Iraq. I believe that the US will take on Iran, and will try to use the ‘sunnis’ and ‘kurds’ against the ‘shias’ internally in Iraq when the SCIRI / Dawa backlash comes in response to this. I hope that Iraqis don’t fall for this gambit and let SCIRI and the Americans kill each other for a change.

[ak] “Doing what I can to avert local conflict”

Congratulations on the success of this effort. This is already a very big achievement, given the magnitude of the forces that are trying to rip Iraq apart.

Penultimate point: I (very briefly) met Saleh al Mutlaq when he was here in SA. He struck me as a brave and honest man. Is this impression correct, or am I mistaken? What do you know of him?

Finally, the best of luck with whatever your plans are for the future. Iraq desperately needs intelligent patriots like yourself, and I hope that you are successful in whatever you do. But take care as to what statements you make that could be misconstrued as meaning something else on the internet. IP addresses can be traced, and there are people around that listen much and say little, if you know what I mean.


But this is what Khalilzad is trying to do! I’m afraid it’s a dead end.

We all live in circles of belonging. The idea is to have these circles open to other circles all the way up to and including the whole of humanity. That is the only chance for people on a global scale. Closed circles can only lead to alienation of others... and strife.

No nation can be built around war-lords and sectarian lines. Look at the India-Pakistan-Bangladesh saga. Look at Northern Island. Look at Yugoslavia. Look at Lebanon. Democracy there did not prevent a civil war.

No Mark, there are other solutions.


You get me wrong. One cannot act against one’s nature and do well. [By the way, you obviously know nothing about the AK47. Stick to you boomerang or whatever kiwis use!].

Also, like you say, I am too old for armed conflict. Perhaps I should clarify the point I made… to put your mind, Bruno’s and Cecile’s (who wrote me an anxious note) to rest.

I am sure that people who do not restrict themselves to one channel of information are aware that there is a bewildering spectrum of armed forces in Iraq. I place the covert, non-official, non-governmental people involved in armed conflict in Iraq into four rough categories: Common criminals; Religious fundamentalists; National resistance;
‘Representatives’ of regional countries (all countries in the region have covert operations and ‘representative in Iraq at the moment – all undeclared).

The borderlines between these are rather hazy. Everybody has infiltrated everybody else and people are usually not what they pretend to be.

It is also now also evident that the coalition forces, the ministry of interior and the ministry of defense also have their own fearsome ‘black operations’ and death squads. One has to be rather naïve (and, frankly, blind) not to have known by now. I am talking about the other side.

Hence, my first tentative step of affirmative action really meant taking on some of these who have been causing havoc in the country. I thought I would start with the first group… in the countryside. I can’t do much about the ‘urban’ component!

I had had enough with villains in the area. I had numerous complaints and suspicion regarding some of the unsavory characters who took the opportunity of the breakdown of law and order and, acting under the pretext of national resistance, played havoc in the area. I investigated a number of incidents of kidnapping, hijacking and abduction without getting anywhere. Then one day recently, I had proof and positive identification.

Two young boys, 11 and 12, were kidnapped on their way to school for ransom. They were held in a peasant’s hut for a few days, chained to the floor… but managed to escape. They ran to a nearby house. The villains were quick on their trail. They demanded the man who had received them hand them over. It was resistance business, they said. The man said he knew a number of people involved in the resistance. He called one of their seniors and inquired about the two boys. The man told him that the resistance had nothing to do with that. So the man threatened the pursuers and swore that he would kill them if they did not leave the two kids alone.

He gave those boys a bath, a change of clothes and a meal. Later, he drove them to their family which was less than 10 kilometers away.

Four people were involved.

I got word of the incident after it was over. As was the norm, it would be the offenders’ tribe’s duty to appease the offended tribe. There would have to be a tribal arbitration council. The norm was also to accept financial compensation for the wrong deed.

I said no.

My argument was that accepting financial compensation from criminals would only encourage them to commit more criminal acts. They would simply pay using some of their criminal returns. That would in effect encourage them to commit more crimes. That would not do.

The solution I proposed had two components: The offenders’ tribe had to ‘disown’ them so that in future, they would not be avenged if someone killed them. The second part was for them to be banished from the area for up to 7 years. That would help the area get rid of them and they would not be able to act freely in their new residence. There would not be a tribe to shelter them. These measures are not foreign to Iraqi tribal codes. They are seldom used however and are reserved for what are considered particularly nasty crimes such as rape, multiple murders or murder of close kin.

I wrote a letter addressed to the two tribes concerned to this effect and asked the elders of the offending tribe to sign it. I sent the other to the other tribe to let them know the position I have taken on this issue. I received encouraging signals from both sides.

Less than two weeks later, my farm was raided by the US army. And what a raid!

More than a dozen helicopters deposited more than a hundred soldiers, three colonels and one general. They were looking for explosives… and for me. I was sought as a major ‘terrorist leader’.

They spent 18 hours searching the farm, doing considerable damage in the process. They came at 10 pm on Monday and left at 4pm the following day. For 18 hours they searched and searched and interrogated people living nearby. Soldiers using metal detectors searched and dug holes following alarming beeps only to find old scrap metal, bolts and metallic junk as in most farms.

They surrounded several villages around my farm and questioned people for hours. They had lists with names on them.

I had only one family left at the farm – all others had left. The man of the house and three of his sons, 20, 17 (newly married) and 15 were taken away almost immediately by helicopter to a detention center at the Baghdad airport. He was released the following morning. He was not questioned beyond name, place of birth, tribe and sect! He was hooded throughout. He was released in a suburb of Baghdad close to the airport and made it home before the US soldiers had left the farm. The youngest was released several days later in a similar manner, unquestioned and not ill-treated. The other two are still in detention more than 40 days later!

On the following day, at 6pm, I received a telephone call from someone who said he was an officer in the US base in the area. He informed me that they had received some dangerous information concerning me and that they had searched the farm and asked if I could go and see him to clarify a few points. He declined to give any details saying that the thing was not appropriate for the phone and, no, they had not found anything at the farm. We made an appointment.

To cut a long story short, I met the officer, a captain, a pleasant young man from Vermont. After a few introductory pleasantries, he told me that he knew all he wanted to know about me. He had conducted a thorough investigation with people in the area surrounding my farm and was surprised at what residents, Sunni and Shiite had to say about my secularism and non-partisan stance… to the extent that 3 hours later, he went to his superior, a colonel of his unit and told him that he thought their errand seemed to be “ridiculous”. But he was intrigued. During this meeting he wanted to focus our meeting on discussing possible reasons for the tip that they had received.

Following about an hour of discussion we both reached the conclusion that my move again the criminals was the most likely cause for the tip. What was worrying was that those people must be extremely well connected. Had it been the police of the ING, it may have been understandable… but the US army, from the airport, and with such massive force and within 10 days… well, that was something!

I am now convinced that the good captain was acting on his own initiative in pursuing that investigation and in having that discussion with me. He was evidently powerless in controlling events. Control was exercised higher up. The force was initiated from the base at the Baghdad airport. The poor captain was only involved because his base was in charge of the area.

I was discussing the incident with a friend a few days later. He remarked that whoever started those actions against me and my farm only wanted to send me a stern warning and had no intention to do me harm. I believe he was right.

So, you can see where my first tentative steps towards affirmative action are leading!!! But I cannot be deterred!!


You have been barred from this blog and you still owe me an apology. I have deleted (no, obliterated) your comment as well as Circular’s response (sorry Circular). I am not interested in talking to you or in what you have to say.


Thank you. It took me so long to make Circular stop asking questions. Is it your turn now? Anyway, here goes:

Saleh al Mutlaq

I never met the man during Saddam’s years or even heard of him.

My first indirect contact with him came in 2003 after the invasion. A friend of mine was shot after dark close to his home. The man asked his younger brother to take the unconscious injured man in his own car to hospital. By shear coincidence they met someone who knew the injured man. And that’s how we came to know. That was before he was into public politics.I felt that was a brave and decent thing to do.

He was an agriculturalist who taught at the university. A time came when Saddam, in an effort to trim the administration’s swelling numbers and budget, gave people working in the academic or government side of agriculture the option of long-term leasing of government-owned farmland. Mutlaq was one of those who took that option. Apparently he made a big success of it and became extremely rich.

However, many people accuse him of having been employed as a sort of “agent” by Saddam’s wife where he ran some of her agricultural ventures. I am not sure if that was or wasn’t correct.

A friend of mine knew him during his college years at the College of Agriculture of Baghdad University in the 1970’s and he tells me that at that time he was an active Baath party member, a students’ union activist and someone who was known as an yes-man for those in power.

I am sure you must have followed his political position. I must say that I find most of his ‘declared’ positions – particularly those against sectarianism, the new constitution and the fragmentation of Iraq – rather agreeable.

Resistance people seem to look favorably on him, although the more religiously inclined take it against him that he drinks! The Americans, most noticeably Khalilzad, do not seem to have difficulty dealing with him. The SCIRI people simply hate his guts (and you may remember that they vetoed his participation in the Cairo reconciliation conference). In this respect, he may well play a role in the new venture that you expect the US administration to embark on.

I am convinced that there was a concerted and a successful effort to deprive him of votes in the south through fraud. Like Allawi, he was short of ‘foot soldiers’, which made that possible. He was similarly defrauded of quite a number of votes in the western areas by the Sunni Islamic Party and their allies (one of their components was his own National Dialogue Council, before he broke away from them). Nevertheless, his slate managed 11 seats in the present Parliament.

Incidentally, the second name on his slate during those elections was that of a brilliant and active lady who was for some years in charge of the Center of Palestinian Studies at the University of Baghdad; A first-class politician. She was barred from Parliament because, I presume, she was a Baathist!

ALL the political entities in the arena under the spotlight in Iraq are at present funded by outside forces and powers. No exceptions. I don’t know who is funding him.

Hey, this more laborious than blogging!!!

Ahlen Abu Khaleel! I will not ask you any questions :) today...

It almost sounds as if someone wants to send the messages that don’t you dare find a solution to Iraq’s problems. I find it very worrisome that your good intensions for your area could trigger such a huge US military raid.

Thank you for this update Abu Khaleel and take care!


Boy oh boy, it's feast or famine time again!
What a fascinating post, so much to think about! Thank you, Abu.
I don't know where you get this delusion that you've stopped me asking questions.
It's really bugging me: did the "good Captain" discover that he was dealing with the author of the notorious "Iraqi Letters" Blog?
The poor guy would go cross-eyed if he tried to read it all. Plus he'd have to send a hit squad to South Africa to "get" Bruno.
OK, if you insist, another question.
Are you sort of saying that whatever dark days may lie ahead, the basic tribal structure of Iraqi society will endure, and form a basis for rebuilding?
Robert Fisk still insists that "it's not a civil war, Iraq is a tribal society."
The Maori in NZ know a thing or two about the survival of tribal ties through 150 years of oppression and dispossession.


Hello Abu Khaleel,
Some advice.
Don't irritate the bad guys!
You were taking too great a chance!

I am thinking of our own domestic terrorists, the Ku Klux Klan during the Civil Rights struggle who were somewhat neutralized by the pacifism of Martin Luther King and others. The pacifist approach seemed more effective than confrontation. You will attract good people in your mission.

"He who corrects a scoffer gets shame for himself, and he who rebukes a wicked man only harms himself. Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you; rebuke a wise man and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man and he will be still wiser; teach a just man and he will increase in learning."-Proverbs 9:7-9

Dear Abu Khaleel,

I do wish you all success in your effort to rescue Iraq in its very existence, as far as you can, and I do believe that such an effort is by now a hundredfold more important than showing what truly happens in Iraq to an international audience.

That was very useful on your part; but, thanks to you efforts as well, by now all those around the world who are truly interested in knowing what is happening in Iraq are able to find the proper sources, and to interpret the news.

You wrote: “most people of the world have been against this thing right from the start. It is just that I think that they are ineffective, and almost useless to us as Iraqis. […] They are also running out of steam!!”; and, “From my experience on this blog, I now believe it is degrading to debate things with parrots” (or with apes and monkeys, as I’d rather call them: our ‘Fifth-Americans’ – and possibly ‘Fourth-Americans’ and ‘Third-Americans’ as well).
By now, three years from the US invasion, I do feel that you are, overall, right.
Like Bruno, I cannot hide that at this stage, two years and a half after Iraqi blogs started popping up, I myself do feel a certain weariness.

Commenting on Iraqi blogs on the part of those who opposed from the start the criminal and demented US invasion and occupation of Iraq (and US foreign policy, and its grimly comical ‘War On Terror’) has been, anyway, important (correct me if I’m wrong):
1) to show to Iraqi bloggers, and to all Iraqis having English and Internet access, that most of the world didn’t agree with the Government of the US, with their Neo-Cons, and with their Orwellian ‘WOT’;
2) to show to all American readers the same: that is, that all the blathering on the part of the warmongers about ‘the Coalition’ and the ludicrously named ‘MNF’ or ‘Multi-National Forces’ was utter baloney; and that the supposed will of the US Govt. to establish in Iraq ‘Fweedom’n’Democwacy’ was no better;
3) to punctually counter, day by day, the lies and grotesque fabrications spread by American propaganda, and by those all-too-enthusiastic “parrots”.

But, yes, at this stage, it seems to me that it’s almost useless to keep discussing with all those Americans (I do hope that they are all ‘Fifth-Americans’, and no more that 20 % of the US population, even if over-represented in the Iraqi blogosphere in English) who still keep repeating, with the same blind faith, the same inanities and the same lies. Similar to enthusiastic SS members in, say, 1942, both reality on the ground and reason cannot dent in the least their obtuse fanaticism.

And what you write about some of the ‘Fourth-Americans’ and most of the ‘Third-Americans’, “It is now certain that most of those people have had a change of heart because America lost”, is, sadly and lamentably, very true.

As for our being, now, “almost useless to us as Iraqis”, it is true. But, on my part, I’ll do my best to support the most consistently anti-American party in the coalition that is going, God willing, to oust the Berlusconi Government in the 9th of April Italian general elections.
Would I ever vote for that party if only internal Italian issues were concerned?
Not on my life!
But I feel that Italian issues are irrelevant in the present state of international politics (for economy and the like we have the EU as a safety net, anyway). And the shape of things to come makes it imperative that all Italian troops get withdrawn from Iraq immediately and completely, by the 30th of June next at the latest, with no fumbling and no supposed ‘accord with the Iraqi authorities’ on the part of the new Italian Government. That is going to cause a ‘domino effect’, I believe, forcing the Brits to follow suit, and making the propaganda ghost of the ‘Coalition’, that is very thin already, vanish completely.

You wrote: “now that the Americans are laying the grounds for the next phase where they can take their boys out of harm’s way and leave various Iraqi factions to fight it out with more Iraqi blood”. You know, dear Abu Khaleel, that I don’t agree with you about this.
The dangerous sect of fanatics running the US Govt. at present, the Neo-Cons, have no intention whatsoever of leaving Iraq, which is anyway only a ‘first step’ in their plans. As per their published blueprints, their project “for a New American Century” envisages the strengthening of US hegemony and its extension to the whole world. Yes, “Only something extremely wicked can unleash so many evil forces”…
From here to the US mid-term elections of November next their Administration will need to do what they can to reduce American losses in Iraq; but, after those elections, Iran is on the cards.

And by now everybody is able to imagine the way things could go, if they decide to ‘double’ and attack Iran: a supposedly ‘Islamic’ nuclear device blowing up in some small US town; all the Fifth and Fourth and Third Americans hysterically baying for blood and invoking revenge; the ‘eeeevil Eyranians’ being pointed out by the US Administration as the culprits, like the ‘eeeevil Eyrakians’ were after 9/11… a slippery slope that could bring to WW3 much faster than most can believe.

As you wrote, “May America itself one day be liberated by her own sons and daughters and saved from those demons”; but, unfortunately, there isn’t much time left. One can only hope that those Americans who are still human (and they do still exist, like Bob Griffin and others have shown in your comments pages) do manage to make a stand; compelling, for instance, all anti-Bush candidates to take a pledge to immediately start the impeachment procedure for Cheney and Bush, and to stop the Iraqi occupation and all further adventures.

I do hope that a stronger Iraqi National resistance will manage to emerge out of this ordeal, leaving no space to the pollution of those other three categories you mention, eventually rescuing Iraq. And that it leaves no space to the further ‘divide and conquer’ attempts by the US occupiers: as Bruno says, “I hope that Iraqis don’t fall for this gambit”.

Dear Abu Khaleel, my best wishes for your political work (but try to stay safe!). But, even if you officially close down the blog, will you be still reachable by e-mail?

Abu Khaleel –

Thank you very much for these last few posts and the one answering my question in particular. I appreciate the depth of detail you went into, thank you. You did not need to make such an effort!

The events you described with the US raid and the criminal connection are indeed alarming. It seems as if one does not know who to trust these days. Nevertheless, it is a good thing that the local US commanders are aware of who you are and that you pose no threat. I believe that it might facilitate your dealings with them in future. What is the news on those two chaps who are still incarcerated? Is it the usual slow process, or have they been accused of something serious? Can you talk about it?

One day, when all this is a bad memory – and I truly believe that that day will come – you MUST use your excellent English skills to set this all to paper. I will be the first in line to read that book, if Circular doesn’t beat me to it.

Keep safe.

[circular] “It's really bugging me: did the "good Captain" discover that he was dealing with the author of the notorious "Iraqi Letters" Blog? The poor guy would go cross-eyed if he tried to read it all.”

Iraqi Letters notorious? Hardly. I think it is the most reasoned and rational blog in the Iraqi blogosphere. But that’s just me … and the 5th Americans don’t think I’m reasonable at all. (I’m even starting to develop my own personal entourage of nitwits.)

[circular] “Plus he'd have to send a hit squad to South Africa to "get" Bruno.”

LOL! He’d better make sure that they are on their toes, or our criminals will mug / steal / scam them dry before they reach the highway …

[Italian] “From here to the US mid-term elections of November next their Administration will need to do what they can to reduce American losses in Iraq; but, after those elections, Iran is on the cards.”

I sincerely hope not. While such a move could tip the teetering edifice of American imperialism into the dustbin, it will come at a very great cost, and it will be paid mostly by people like Abu Khaleel and the rest of the Iraqi bloggers. That thought is not a happy one at all.

What scares me is that this US ‘re-alignment’ with the ‘sunnis’ is a precursor to a switch of sides in the case of an attack on Iran. If this happens, the ‘shiites’ will go nuts and the US mission in Iraq would be at peril. At peril, that is, unless they can get another group of Iraqis to quell ‘shiite’ violence with some of their own. What better outcome for the US to see SCIRI and the Resistance bleed each other to death, and ‘resetting’ the board for their own plans, in effect? I mean, if the chess pieces get out of hand, get rid of them, right?

The Resistance must at all costs avoid getting suckered into such a scenario. If the US fights SCIRI, it must do so alone. I agree with you that the Americans have no intention whatsoever of leaving Iraq.

I was worried after such a long absence, I'm glade to find out that your OK. Be safe.


Judging by the polls and my sense of the public mood here, the American people are in no mood for further foreign military adventures and probably will remain that way for the foreseeable future. After all, the American anti-military political hang-over from Vietnam lasted roughly ten years.

However, another 9/11 terrorist attack of 9/11 proportions in the U.S. homeland could radically change that political calculus. The only way I can foresee the U.S. military invading Iran would be if such event occurred and there was a strong linkage to Iran. This seems to be, at least to me, a fairly remote possibility. Depending upon your views concerning the intentions and stability of the current Iranian political leadership, you may find my opinion on this either comforting or frightening.


@ Mark-In-Chi-Town, 5/4/06 9:38 PM.

You wrote: "The only way I can foresee the U.S. military invading Iran would be if such event occurred and there was a strong linkage to Iran. This seems to be, at least to me, a fairly remote possibility. Depending upon your views concerning the intentions and stability of the current Iranian political leadership, you may find my opinion on this either comforting or frightening".

I don't know about Bruno, but when I wrote in my post "And by now everybody is able to imagine the way things could go, if they decide to ‘double’ and attack Iran: a supposedly ‘Islamic’ nuclear device blowing up in some small US town", etc., and Iran being identified by the US Administration as the culprit, I didn't mean that the Iranian political leadership WOULD BE the culprit.

I was hinting, not too subtly, that the real perpetrators of the outrage would be the usual ones of this kind of false-flag operations, i.e. the US Administration itself.

Keep that in mind, when that happens. And know that, differently from the US public, this time very few from the rest of the world would be taken in...

"We all live in circles of belonging."

No. I don't. The more you care about people, and the more you despise war, the less you belong anywhere. It is impossible to live with other people when everyone is hell-bent on their own agenda. I keep mine to myself, share in the ones that really matter and live an existence in hermitage the rest of the time.

I am a zionist against war. There is no home for me. I live a life that some people may consider paradox but to me there is no paradox in wishing that EVERYONE would stop fighting. Everyday I am disappointed by the lack of insight so many people who have access to technology display.

Every day I am dismayed.

This war will end, but will all others.

[mark] “Judging by the polls and my sense of the public mood here, the American people are in no mood for further foreign military adventures and probably will remain that way for the foreseeable future.”

That’s the best news I heard all day. I sincerely hope that your skill in judging the public mood is accurate. Furthermore, I also hope that the public mood in the US has enough influence over the Neoconservatives / far rightists so as to stall any coming war on Iran in its tracks. Simply, such a course would be total disaster as far as the people of the region (and probably the US as well) are concerned.

[mark] “The only way I can foresee the U.S. military invading Iran would be if such event occurred and there was a strong linkage to Iran. This seems to be, at least to me, a fairly remote possibility.”

Extremely remote. The Iranians have already won big time by simply doing nothing. An attack on the US would be the dumbest, most stupid thing that they could ever do. And if there is one thing the Iranians are not, it is stupid. Why on earth would they want to stiff the sweet deal they have in Iraq?

[mark] “Depending upon your views concerning the intentions and stability of the current Iranian political leadership, you may find my opinion on this either comforting or frightening.”

Ha-ha! I understand exactly what you are getting at.

Well, to be honest, I’m not really a great fan of the Iranian theocracy. On the other hand, putting pressure on the Iranian people clearly caused them to reject the (so-so) moderates and put even harder men into power. As far as I’m concerned, if the Iranians are just left to their own devices, they will chill and mellow out in good time. Great strides have already been taken since the Revolution.

As far as their nuclear ambitions or lack thereof are concerned … well, I’m not even sure that they have a program for nukes underway. (Although if I were in their position I would certainly have run one) And, even if they end up with the bomb, I still don’t see the big deal. Sure, the Muslims have the Bomb! Pakistan has had the Bomb for some time, now. I believe that the Iranians understand full well that even if they had it, they could not use it without risking complete annihilation. The Israelis, for example, would for sure turn Iran into the world’s biggest glass sculpture if the Iranians would be dumb enough to try something like that. And Iran has too much to lose right now to go off half-cocked.

So: if one believes that the Iranians are mad nutters bent on global destruction, the current trends would be alarming. If, like me, one does not believe this, then trends are good for all. Well, except for the Iraqis, who have the problem of Iranian influence to deal with in Iraq, to which I see no easy solution. (Perhaps Abu Khaleel might have ideas on how to deal with this problem, other than simply shooting all the SCIRI types.)

An Italian –

I sincerely hope that your dark prognostications will not come to pass. A US war with Iran will be the worst possible outcome. I hope that even the nuttiest neocons can see that Iran is a different proposition entirely to taking on Iraq.

[Zionist] “I am a zionist against war. There is no home for me.”

Heh, that is for sure an awkward position to be in.


I ran across an Opinioin piece that voices one person's opinion on Iranian medium term intentions.
According to Amir Taheri, the Iranian leadership (in accordance with a strategy advocated publicly by Hassan Abbasi) has decided to wait out Bush and hope that his predecessor will pursue a "cut and run" policy in Iraq and the rest of the middle east. The link is .

Taheri also believes that the Iranians may be disappointed that the next U.S. administration will not do so. I am not so sure that I completely agree with Mr. Taheri on this last point. In my view, the Iranian leadership is probably correct that American tolerance for a prolonged war in Iraq is quite limited. However, regardless of whether there is a U.S. military presence in Iraq, I don't see American bases in Bahrain and Qatar being abandoned any time soon. I think a more likely short to medium term outcome would be a continued draw down in U.S forces in Iraq which would be offset, in military terms, by increased off-shore power projection (more carrier groups presence in and around the Persian Gulf) as well as increased regional basing in the those Sunni countries feeling the most threatened by Iran. For these reasons, Mr. Abbasi's dream of Iran having a free hand to meddle in its neighbors affairs is probably illusory in the short to medium term.



Thank you. I was delighted to find out that you started your own blog. I wish you all the best. Keep the torch burning :)


You should have seen the look on that poor captain’s face when I started listing those categories of armed groups!!! He asked me to repeat that. I said he could write it down and he replied that he wanted to memorize it!! It was all new to him. It made me sad that America would not even let her own boys (who were putting their lives on the line) know what they were fighting!

“Are you sort of saying that whatever dark days may lie ahead, the basic tribal structure of Iraqi society will endure, and form a basis for rebuilding?”

I only agree with the first part of your question / statement: the tribal structure will definitely endure. It withstood worse assaults over the past several thousand years! There is a very simple reason: It is beneficial to individual members in times of chaos: a tribe is more like a voluntary co-op! It can only be weakened by the rule of law and civil life!

On the other hand, I’m afraid tribalism is a double-edged sword. It can easily be one of those closed circles. It cannot be used to build nations! This dual-nature was a cornerstone in my ill-fated proposal for building democracy.

However, due to the very nature of Iraqi tribes and the make-up of the country, it is a very powerful tool for self-preservation at the moment ;) I’m not sure if this makes sense to you.

Aside: Last week an Iraqi friend who has been living in NZ (in Auckland) for a while came over for a very short visit. He had some good things to say about Kiwis. One of the things he said was that the best description would be ‘Britain in the ‘50’s’. Is that good or bad? (He also tells me that there is a thriving Iraqi community there. Any improvement in IQ? :)


Yes, but please have mercy!

When I wrote “now that the Americans are laying the grounds for the next phase where they can take their boys out of harm’s way and leave various Iraqi factions to fight it out with more Iraqi blood”… it did not necessarily mean taking them out of the country!!!

It breaks my heart that you and other people who were not responsible in any way for the present disaster and who did everything they can to fight it are apologetic while some of those who supported this atrocity all along (and still do) and were in effect responsible… still blame the Iraqis and everybody else in the world, except themselves or their leadership.


Thank you. The two young men are now in Abu Ghraib. Their father will have a chance to visit them in a few weeks. As far as I know, they haven’t been charged yet. They have joined thousands of other ‘detained’ innocents. Now that Abu Ghraib is going to close down, I don’t know what will happen to them.

By the way, that contact is by no means a guarantee for better “dealings with them in future”! My farm was ‘visited’ more than half a dozen times by the American army. Two of those times I was there. Each time it was a fresh bunch that had no prior info! I am convinced that these people do not keep records; and if they do, they don’t keep track of them.

Once, my home in Baghdad was searched on a Thursday. On Saturday, another group showed up for another search. When I told them that the area was already searched only two days ago, they had no clue and, following a phone call, withdrew hurriedly and apologetically!!! It is almost unbelievable, but it happened to me!

I guess I was right after all a while back in my thinking that there is a change of policy by the administration and that Sectarian Assault III is over. Now I am convinced that we are in for a new ball game. I fear that your (depressing) prediction is becoming a reality! Many of the “Sunni” characters also seem eager to play along.

Just yesterday, the commander of one of the nastiest new ‘security’ formations – a rather nasty character himself – has met with representatives of one of the fiercest areas in the country and assured them that there will be no more ‘raids’ by his units or any other!!! He went out of his way to be nice to them, promised to free their boys that his unit held… and (believe it or not) blamed pro-Iranians for past excesses (This is such a mild word for some of the atrocities they committed)!!!

They could at least have replaced the man if they wanted a fresh start, but to do it with the same ugly character says much about their competence, or rather lack of!!

A major, undeclared component of Assault III was a push from Hilla towards Southern Baghdad and from Kut towards Diala (both northward) – primarily by Badr (SCIRI) people to enlarge the ‘southern Autonomous Region much advocated by Hakeem. It was meant to (a) reach Baghdad and (b) secure the zone between Baghdad and the Iranian border. This was coupled with a push by the Kurdish militias towards Diala from the north… I believe are now formally dead. It was such a fierce, undeclared battle that ended in total failure to those pursuing it. This is good news to me. I am sure you never read about that anywhere!!

Re SCIRI, there is absolutely no need to shoot all those SCIRI people. Just cut off the funding!!

Mad Tom,

Thank you.


We all live in circles of belonging. Even the whole of the human race is a circle of belonging. Zionists, by definition are more so than most!

It is a characteristic feature of living inside closed circles that people inside become genuinely unaware that they are inside closed circles!!

Oh, people know their circles alright. The more closed, the more aware of the edges they are. You won't find a pro-war republican dare put a toe outside of the perimeter, for the moment he does he becomes something other.

People within circles are reknowned for describing their boundary by virtue of anyone outside of bounds. Take your diplomatic self for example, did I sign my name "Zionist"? No, I chose "Anonymous". And yet two commenters, including among them yourself, have seized on one of my beliefs and decided to define me by that alone in their reply. And I am left thinking their definition of Zion is very different from mine. Imagine if you will someone calling you by your construct - imagine if you will that I addressed all my replies to you "Iraqi". Ugh, it would make you shudder, wouldn't it.

Good to see you back more like your cheerful self of old, Abu.
I've worked for a few Iraqi families in Auckland: for some reason they tend to live in a suburb called St Johns, which is nice enough but a bit characterless: don't know what this is telling us. One of them told me there are about 25 families there. No perceptible adverse effect on the average IQ of the area as yet.
NZ like 1950's Britain is an old complaint from Pommy tourists, none of whom can have even been embryos in the 1950s. Ignore. (For one thing, most Kiwis shower once a day at least, rather than taking a "bath" in two inches of tepid water once a week.)
You must have been very pleased to see Condi Rice admit that "the US has made thousands of tactical errors in Iraq." She has obviously been reading the Blog "US Mistakes in Iraq," by we-know-who.
I guess the question is, how many tactical mistakes are you allowed before you invalidate your whole strategy. Whatever that was. That stuff of yours about the US Army left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing, as far as searches are concerned, sounds very typical.
Reading between the lines, I gather that you were not actually at your farm during the big search, is that right? Otherwise you would have been hauled off like your tenants?
Shame in a way. Your first-hand report from inside Abu Ghraib would have been very interesting.


[mark] “According to Amir Taheri, the Iranian leadership (in accordance with a strategy advocated publicly by Hassan Abbasi) has decided to wait out Bush and hope that his predecessor will pursue a "cut and run" policy in Iraq and the rest of the middle east.”

Amir Taheri? That name rings a few bells, and I’m not sure that they are good ones. I seem to have stored negative feelings with that name, for some reason.

Anyway, what he says sounds probably correct. If I was an Iranian I would pursue the same strategy – ie – hope that the US public gets so fed up that they leave Iraq. It is the smart thing to do. Even if the US decides to ‘stick it out’ in Iraq, it is not as if Iran is losing by this … no they are winning on two counts – Americans are killing Iraqis and Iraqis are killing Americans. From their view, that’s sweet. (Sort of Kissenger’s “let them bleed each other to death” remark vis a vis the Persian Gulf War in the 1980’s.)

[mark] “However, regardless of whether there is a U.S. military presence in Iraq, I don't see American bases in Bahrain and Qatar being abandoned any time soon.”

Oh yes, I agree 100%. There’s no way that just because the US leaves Iraq, it will leave Qatar et al as well. The ability of Iran to project power in those countries is also much more limited than in Iraq. Let the US keep bases where they are welcomed, is what I say.

The paradox is, that while I feel the US presence in Iraq is unacceptable, having a power vacuum filled by Iran is equally bad. At the moment there are no good options available in Iraq. I suspect many Iraqis feel the same.

Abu Khaleel –

[ak] “You should have seen the look on that poor captain’s face when I started listing those categories of armed groups!!! He asked me to repeat that. I said he could write it down and he replied that he wanted to memorize it!! It was all new to him. It made me sad that America would not even let her own boys (who were putting their lives on the line) know what they were fighting!”

This is simply shocking. Shocking. And now we all wonder why the US soldiers are reduced to stumbling around looking for ‘bad guys’. Couple this with your comments to me, and it is obvious that the famed US Army incompetence at fighting asymmetrical warfare is not exaggerated. It’s all very well to ‘close with and destroy’ your enemy, but if you don’t even know who you are looking for, if the very criminal elements that are making Iraq a hell are YOUR INFORMANTS … well, enough said, right?

The ‘new security formations’ are NOT reassuring at all. I’m thinking the Abu Waleed’s Wolf Brigade or Adnan Thabit’s lot here. US-supported formations such as this have a terrible, terrible history in other parts of the world. I have probably linked to this already, but here is the link detailing the US involvement in the Iraqi ‘security formations’ of which we speak:

Again, given this onslaught on your people, I don’t understand how they can endure … but they do.

I seriously hope that the groups ‘re-aligning’ themselves with the US are doing so in name and not deed. It would be tragic to see ‘sunni’ and ‘shia’ bleed themselves to death for the sake of the US. Many of the ‘shiites’ in the ING etc I believe are in it for the pay. It would be a sad day to see Iraqis kill each other over essentially a loaf of bread. If Bush wants to attack Iran, let him subdue SCIRI with his people’s blood, not yours.

[ak] “It was such a fierce, undeclared battle that ended in total failure to those pursuing it. This is good news to me. I am sure you never read about that anywhere!!”

Not a word. Which makes it even more worrying. Was this supported or opposed in any way by the Americans, or was it primarily Iraqi on Iraqi? Were Iranians involved personally? This is important news, because as far as I could tell there were tensions between the Kurds and Shia brewing, since the ‘Shiite’ visit to Turkey. Are the cooperating? Mind you, Iran did always have ties with some Kurdish groups, so maybe it is not that surprising.

[ak] “Re SCIRI, there is absolutely no need to shoot all those SCIRI people. Just cut off the funding!!”

Are you saying that the support for SCIRI is more a need for money than a manifestation of genuine ideological commitment? That would be heartening news.

[Anonymous Zionist] “Take your diplomatic self for example, did I sign my name "Zionist"? No, I chose "Anonymous". And yet two commenters, including among them yourself, have seized on one of my beliefs and decided to define me by that alone in their reply. And I am left thinking their definition of Zion is very different from mine.”

A penetrating post. It may be quite true that your definition of Zionism is different from mine. But, without an explanation, it becomes difficult to see exactly how. Secondly, ‘anonymous’ posters get on my nerves. Thirdly, you said yourself “I am a Zionist” … so I used that as a useful handle to identify you with. Please, be my guest and pick a name … :)

Excuse me Bruno but having somewhat a knowledge of your commenting history the invitation rings a little empty, less then half a glass. I do believe you chose your name at the behest of some other entity who found anonymous commenting irksome. I do believe, you may even have professed to concentrate on the ideas and not the names!

I appreciate your willingness to find out how our ideas differ though, as I already mentioned, I keep some ideas to myself. I am against war and that is what matters most.

But I suppose I owe a partial explanation for my silence in respects to zion. This is mostly in aid of my being against war. I believe there are a number of zionists like me out there who are opposed to the war in Iraq and have actively made our anti-warness known while keeping our zionism silent. This is primarily because the very mention (of zionism) seems to raise ire and warfare - and war is something we are trying to prohibit. Unfortunately, it also means some major misunderstandings about zionism persist, simply because we cannot talk about them without incurring wrath. And, unfortunately, misunderstanding is often the root of war. Is my paradox becoming more clear? Consider also this, the ghoulish delight with which my people's bodily parts have in our recent history been extracted and converted into jewellery and home furnishings. And here I am replying to a commenter who wants to extract the only parts I have left - my wisdom! How freely do you think an oyster with limbs would sacrifice it's pearls, if it could walk away at speed. I invite you to think about this though, in your own time, if that is what you want to do.

I should give you one other thing to think about, Bruno. Being that you have excused and condoned anonymous Iraqi commenters on grounds of safety. Although it seems, your shelter does not extend to the jews. Nevermind this jew has sheltered anonymous Iraqis. Oh you never knew? No, not surprising, sometimes the Jude know it's better not to tell even people we assist.

Prejudice disgusts me in all it's forms, but more so when I find it on the left.

Ben-Zion Mi Shmo,
or 'Zionist What's his name',

Unfortunately we are faced with prejudice in nearly all contexts from at least some from nearly all groups or groupings. I, as a progressive Democrat, have been trying to interest the local progressive Democrats in the issues involving the Assyrians (or Chaldo/Assyrian/Syriacs), and have been faced with an intense lack of interest.

Part of the problem with anonymous posting is a confusion in continuity. There are thousands (millions?) of annonymous posters, and tieing an on-line conversation together when one or more of the conversants are 'Anonymous' is confusing. I would suggest therefore a nickname/handle such as 'Ohev bnei haAdam' (Hebrew for philanthropist?) or 'Mi Shmo' ("What's his name"). My own blog id is a statement of how I feel about the world, though I use my name in 'signing off'.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

'Mi Shmo',
Ah, I need to clarify. I see that when I post, my display name is drawn from my actual name. That was a configuration choice on my Blogger account.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

"There are thousands of anonymous posters". Precisely.

In any case, there aren't many of us frequenting this thread. I would rather my words then my name make the impact. And I think they have.


By now, I am sure you have heard of the Sy Hersh article in the New Yorker regarding U.S. military contingency planning for bombing Iranian Nuclear sites. The link is . This Times of London Times article (,,2089-2125207,00.html ) includes speculation along similar lines.

Above, I mentioned that the risk of a U.S. invasion of Iraq seemed remote. However, the type of bombing campaigns referenced in the two articles seems considerably more likely as no "boots on the ground" are required (although Hersh's alleged nuclear option seems far fetched, especially with more advanced conventional bunker busters coming on line soon). The nearly simultaneous appearance of the two referenced articles makes me suspicious that this information has been deliberately leaked in an attempt to pressure the Iranian leadership to make concessions. You will note that the "Bush is committed to deal with Iran prior to leaving office" theme expressed in the articles conveniently undercuts the published reports of an alleged "Iranian" strategy of waiting out the Bush administration. This further "coincidence" leads me to believe that both the Iranian and the U.S. governments are using the world media in their respective efforts to improve their bargaining power.


[anonymous sort-of zionist] “Excuse me Bruno but having somewhat a knowledge of your commenting history the invitation rings a little empty, less then half a glass.”

Ah, a fan!

[anonymous sort-of zionist] “I do believe you chose your name at the behest of some other entity who found anonymous commenting irksome.”

I really hope that the person standing in the light at the end of the tunnel is not Anonymous 007. Because this particular line rings some bells. As does the writing style. (If this IS the case, let’s keep Abu Khaleel’s blog clean, alright? Just this small favour I ask.)

Feel free to elaborate on this sentence. It is cryptic and unclear.

[anonymous sort-of zionist] “I do believe, you may even have professed to concentrate on the ideas and not the names!”

I try too. Not always successfully. Feel free to point out where I am going wrong, though.

[anonymous sort-of zionist] “But I suppose I owe a partial explanation for my silence in respects to zion. This is mostly in aid of my being against war. I believe there are a number of zionists like me out there who are opposed to the war in Iraq and have actively made our anti-warness known while keeping our zionism silent.”

The problem you have is not the basis of Zionism, which is a Jewish state for Jews. I can appreciate that you feel the need for a homeland of your own after the hassles (to understate the issue more than a bit) that Jews have had even before Hitler went on the rampage. So: a state for Jews is 100% OK with me.

The problem is that most people associate Zionism with the violent dispossession of the Palestinians of their lands by Jews. This is the same problem as the Ba’athists have, where the ideals of Michael Aflaq are forever tainted by the excesses and association of Ba’athism with Saddam Hussein. Your paradox is very clear.

[anonymous sort-of zionist] “And here I am replying to a commenter who wants to extract the only parts I have left - my wisdom!”

I believe it is easier to reach wisdom and understanding through contact with others, coupled with solitary reflection. Yes, I will certainly extract your wisdom if you give me half a chance! Part of the reason that I comment and engage in debate on these boards is because I want to use the challenges and ideas of others to grow myself.

[anonymous sort-of zionist] “Being that you have excused and condoned anonymous Iraqi commenters on grounds of safety. Although it seems, your shelter does not extend to the jews.”

Quite right. I believe that Riverbend, for example, would be in great danger were her true identity revealed. I don’t get where the second part of your comment comes from. I have no problem with anonymous Jews. I never asked you to reveal your real name. I only asked you to pick A name.

(For all you know, “Bruno” might be an invented name … yet I am associated with this tag wherever I comment – through design. It forces me to be consistent.)

Bob Griffin – Thank you. You encapsulated the problem of anonymity neatly. If I had read your comment first, I could have saved a bit of typing. :)

[mark] “By now, I am sure you have heard of the Sy Hersh article […] ”

Heard of, and read! :)

At the MOMENT, I think that you may be onto the truth. Both sides are trying to out-macho the other. On the other hand, I regard both the Iranians and the Bush types as hard-asses who would rather see their respective countries swirl down the plughole before blinking. Hopefully I am wrong. Otherwise it is the calm before the storm.

The options facing Bush are limited. Assuming that Iran DOES have an active nuclear weapons program, (which does not necessarily seem to be the case) some of the bunkers / facilities are extremely hardened and buried. The RNEP (Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator) program that Bush ordered into motion is tailor-made for knocking out these facilities. I’m not so sure that he won’t use it, either.

I think that even the hopelessly idealistic neocons realize that a “boots on the ground” campaign against Iran will be much harder than against Iraq. Furthermore, there are not any handy ‘fault lines’ like the “Shia-Sunni-Kurd” divisions to exploit in a possible occupation. There were proposals to use the MEK as a proxy force against Iran. I don’t seriously think that the MEK will make any more military impact against Iran than Chalabi’s goons made in Iraq. That is to say, near-zero. The power balance is way out.

So: that leaves us with a heavy bombing campaign supported possibly with Specops and MEK involvement. The question is, what can Iran do to retaliate? The obvious thing is to send hordes of Iraqi Shiites out against the US. Which is why I believe that the current ‘realignment’ is to put Iraqi Sunnis between US troops and Iraqi Shiites.

Furthermore, I believe that if the US uses nukes against Iran, it may face the prospect of dissemination of NBC materials to every guerrilla / terrorist group with an axe to grind with the US. That’s what I’d do, in the Iranian’s place if I got nuked. Getting rid of Iranian nuclear facilities is one thing. But the consequences of doing so without getting rid of the Iranian government means YEARS – perhaps decades – of covert warfare against the US in the ME. Getting rid of the Iranian government means boots on the ground, and the attendant guerrilla struggle a la Iraq. Many times over, of course – not a prospect to relish.

Concluding, though, I believe that there will be a war.

Strategically the US cannot allow the current situation in Iraq (where Iran has gained immeasurably) to continue. Any anti-Iranian Iraqi government would not be able to function with Iran still intact next door. Iranian plans for a Euro based oil bourse and Euro based sales of oil cannot in the long run be allowed. Iranian ‘victory’ in the stand off will be seen as a major incentive to radical groups that the US is waning (at least by the Neocons). Speaking of which, the Neocons have planned an attack on Iran for a long time. Iraq was supposed to be but a brief pit-stop en route to Syria and Iran.

Quite honestly, Mark, I hope that your intuition is more penetrating than mine on this matter – such a war won’t be pretty. Especially not for the Iraqis, who will have even more helpings of suffering heaped upon their already full plates.

Here is another useful link to a knowledgeable man who seems to be more of your opinion:

Mi Shmo,
Unless you only want to engage in the discussion one time (already exceeded) then complete anonymity (as opposed to pseudonymity) is somewhat disruptive to the ongoing discussion. Imagine if you will a group of people talking in a conference call. At least five of these people are using artificial voices, sounding exactly like Steven Hawking. Unless these people each identify themselves at some point in each of their remarks, any interchange or discussion becomes quite difficult.
Something like this:
A:blah blah blah...
b234:Well, A, when you said blah blah you forgot bleh
A:I didn't say blah blah. I actually hold to bleh bleh blah
A:Not at all, bleh is totally irrelevent

and so on.

On the other hand, you can choose between millions of names and handles to create a pseudonomyous identity, and may well choose to have several (preferably only one per forum). I refer to you as 'Mi Shmo' because it expresses your anonymity in a way specific to you, as you have posted here. Captain Nemo, in 'Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea' uses a Latin word to express pseudonymous anonymity, while Ulyses, in dealing with the Cyclops, calls himself 'No one' (oudeis?).

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Does anyone know anything about General Sada? He is claiming to be an Assyrian Christian Iraqi who served in the Iraqi Air Force, and is apparently claiming that Saddam did indeed have weapons of mass destruction prior to the US invasion. Does anyone know anything more about this?

Thanks and Be Well,

"The nearly simultaneous appearance of the two referenced articles makes me suspicious that this information has been deliberately leaked in an attempt to pressure the Iranian leadership to make concessions."

Exactly. I've been saying the same thing for days but no-one seems to have noticed. And Iran is manipulating the media in the same way (trying). All bluff. I don't feel a threat here. If Bush is going to do in Iran's sites from the air, Iran will have had enough warning to clear them out by now (if they even have anything worth keeping). It's a complete masquerade by both parties.

My concern is the rash of "Chernobyl was not that bad and it's blossoming back into a paradise now" articles that have been appearing in synchronicity with the "Bush might nuke" material. I can't believe journalists are falling for this. Nuclear waste is a threat to every living being, and while my own holocaust was tragic I am also mindful that the Americans have been trying to divert attention from other holocaust memories (Hiroshima and Nagasaki) by using mine as distracting bait. Which I don't like.

Bruno - how dare you suggest I am dirtying this thread. Is that more anti-jewish hate speech disguised as false concern for others who aren't "dirty"?

You have no idea how silent I have remained for so long on this issue in trying to "keep things clean". I cannot let the irony go that you come down on me like a ton of bricks but completely turned a blind eye for months on end to comments ten and eleven on this thread inciting anti-jewish sentiment.
That you equate Zionism with Baathism is despicable. That is like suggesting the Democrats are all tainted by National Socialism. It is a false representation and all the more so because people like yourself are complacently content to allow anti-Zionist sentiment to prevail and even encourage it with unsubstantiated evidence.

I think you know quite well I am the anonymous of late. I see no need to chose any other name then the choice I have made already. There are probably over a million Mohammeds and Jo Smiths in the real world, Anonymous is simply the online equivalent and it is the name I have chosen here.

Now, important as this has been I would prefer you drop the hang-up with my ordinary name and focus on the more important wordly issues at hand.

And I also must point out, Bruno, that I am not a "part" Zionist as you seem to have decided or be hoping, I am a Zionist 100 percent. If you can't accept that I can be a Zionist 100 percent and also against war (100 percent) then you had better ask yourself if you are willing to question a Palestinian against war in the same way. You would not, would you.

Now enough.

[anonymous] “That you equate Zionism with Baathism is despicable.”

And you see no parallels between the idea of pan – Arabism and a Jewish state? I’m not an apologist for Ba’athism. But I can recognise some good in some of the ideas and the parallels between two similar concepts. For example (and this is the primary thing that I agree with in the Ba’athist ideology) the Ba’athists identified their chief problem as Arab disunity created by the Western powers in a bid to weaken them. This is parallel to the Jewish Zionist thought that the divisions of the Diaspora was dangerous to the continued survival of the Jewish nation, and that they needed a place of their own.

Now, what is despicable about that?

‘comments 10 and 11’ are not my concern right now. Besides, you might not like what I have to say about your typical Zionist re the IMPLEMENTATION of the ideas of a Jewish homeland, a homeland which is not per se objectionable.

If you are not, as you say, a ‘typical Zionist’ then you need to define what it is that makes you different.

[anonymous] “I think you know quite well I am the anonymous of late.”

That’s what I thought.

[anonymous] “ Bruno - how dare you suggest I am dirtying this thread. Is that more anti-jewish hate speech disguised as false concern for others who aren't "dirty"? ”

Yeah, well, and here we go again. You are inventing things. I never suggested that you were dirtying this thread. I merely asked you not to go off on a rant, as you are currently doing. If you are able to read ‘anti-Jewish hate speech’ into my words, then it is quite obvious that you are NOT interested in rational debate.

Please, prove me wrong.

BobGriffin –

This General Sada story seems to be, IMHO, part of a move by certain parties to drum up support for the idea that Iraqi WMD were sent to Syria. There was a series of interviews with a certain Tierney, an ex-weapons inspector who said the same thing, except for in his case, God told him that the weapons had been sent there through the dream of a woman he knew. (Yeah, do we nee more proof than that?)

This article excerpt mentions the Sada story, and another similar statement by Sharon:

Iraq's WMD Secreted in Syria, Sada Says
By IRA STOLL - Staff Reporter of the Sun - January 26, 2006
“He [sada] thanked the American troops. "They liberated the country and the nation. It is a liberation force. They did a great job," he said. "We have been freed."He said he had not shared his story until now with any American officials. "I kept everything secret in my heart," he said. But he is scheduled to meet next week in Washington with Senators Sessions and Inhofe, Republicans of, respectively, Alabama and Oklahoma. Both are members of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The book also says that on the eve of the first Gulf War, Saddam was planning to use his air force to launch a chemical weapons attack on Israel.”
An article in the Fall 2005 Middle East Quarterly reports that in an appearance on Israel's Channel 2 on December 23, 2002, Israel's prime minister, Ariel Sharon, stated, "Chemical and biological weapons which Saddam is endeavoring to conceal have been moved from Iraq to Syria."
In March 2004, the director of Central Intelligence, George Tenet, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee, saying, "Damascus has an active CW development and testing program that relies on foreign suppliers for key controlled chemicals suitable for producing CW. The CIA's Iraq Survey Group acknowledged in its September 30, 2004, "Comprehensive Report," "we cannot express a firm view on the possibility that WMD elements were relocated out of Iraq prior to the war. Reports of such actions exist, but we have not yet been able to investigate this possibility thoroughly."
// end excerpt

Quite frankly I am sceptical of the “WMD sent to Syria” story, if only for the fact that if I were in Hussein’s shoes, and I realised that I was going to be taken down, I would have distributed the materials to any terrorist group within reach, just to spite the US. Additionally, after two years of searching for the WMD at highest priority, all the CIA can say is ‘we cannot express a firm view’ on the Syrian connection, after having in custody most of the people involved in the NBC program? Uh, right.
Furthermore, as stated above, it is well known that Syria has a CW program of its own. After any putative invasion, what would stop the US from holding up some of the Syrian NBC weapons as the ‘missing’ Iraqi stock? Given the honesty of the Bushistas, I’m amazed that they didn’t try to plant the evidence already.

I’ll try dig up more on the Sada story, though.

"And you see no parallels between the idea of pan – Arabism and a Jewish state?" etc - Bruno

Clearly you do, and are only to willing to try and force words between other peoples' teeth that you may discuss your views about such things and Baathism. The following commentary (yours) revealed a lot about how you probably have a fairly skimpy knowledge of Pan-Arabism and Zionism (probably based on google searches and other received wisdoms which have a habit of morphing in the mouth of the teller).

"let’s keep Abu Khaleel’s blog clean" - Bruno

Your own words Bruno, as though you expect my presence will somehow make you grubby.

All you can do is latch onto my Zionism, and completely ignore every other contribution I make to the real subject - namely two important observations. Being, the US-Iran nuclear threat right now is all puff. One doesn't have the capacity and the other wouldn't dare. And, a worrying trend to the effect that articles are appearing in mainstream news outlets saying that nuclear damage is not so bad as it is. Hear me. I want to make a pun about Iranium but it's too serious. The US has a huge problem with nuclear waste right now. Where is it going? No not suggesting western nuclear waste has all ended up in an Iranian enrichment program, yes am suggesting nuclear waste is a mounting problem and the stuff exists in such quantities, where ever it is, that another accident is long overdue. While the world armschair general is content to chase imaginary warheads all over the middle-east, from Iran to Israel to Syria, the larger problem is sitting in a waste dump waiting to leak. The only thing that keeps it there is public opinion, which we can be certain is being monitored (especially while the latest nuclear news breaks). What a great solution the war and anti-semitism (in all it's forms) is for keeping peoples' minds of the mundanities of poor infrastructure and planning. I don't even want to think about what poor countries are prostituting themselves to store the stuff in return for food and oil that they don't have.

"‘comments 10 and 11’ are not my concern right now." - Bruno

Of course not, admitting they existed would be to admit prejudice and discrimination. Just as a slew of anonymous commenting that did not challenge Bob Griffin's preformed ideas passed completely without concern to him last year while he demands I sign my comments with a name other then Anonymous and addresses me with made-up taunts because he cannot bring himself to address me by the name of my own choosing - 'Anonymous'.

"If you are not, as you say, a ‘typical Zionist’ then you need to define what it is that makes you different. " - Bruno

Again, you invent 'quotations' and attribute them to me - even in my anonymity. Did I say I was not a typical Zionist? No, I said I was a Zionist against war. That this does not fit into your preconceived and prejudicial notions of what Zionism should be is no fault of mine.

Anonymous (whom I've been calling 'Mi Shmo'),
Are you the law school graduate anonymous who was so certain that I still lived with my parents?

You refer to my 'preformed ideas'. Please clarify your reference.

The following are the pre-formed ideas to which I will lay claim:
People are infinitely valuable.

Might DOES NOT make Right, nor does Right necessarily lead to Might.

Injustice breeds injustice, and hatred breeds hatred.

No group of people has a monopoly on suffering or righteousness/justice.

What one observes of humanity in one place can usually be observed as well in another place.

We can only know the truth by accident if we are not willing to be wrong (to find out that we are/have been wrong).

That's about it. This is I believe the first time I've expressed these all in print, so I'm fairly certain that the above list does not include the 'preformed ideas' to which you referred.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Anonymous whom I've been calling 'Mi Shmo',

I realize that I have been assuming you were male. If that is not so, my apologies.
For other readers:the handles I've suggested or used are all grammatically masculine.

It is somewhat unfortunate that the Hebrew for 'who' looks so much like the word for I/me in a number of languages. However, in the interest of gender neutrality as well as promotion of pseudonymity, I will refer to you as 'Anonymous Mi' when I am able to recognize that YOU are the anonymous person to whom I am responding.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Anonymous Mi,

'made-up taunts'??? None of the handles I've used are taunts. I prefer to use some sort of naming convention to distinguish you from the Anonymous Mr Intelligent, who was busy insulting several of us earlier, and the various other anonymous posters who have passed through over the year. I hope I've been clear as to why I've prefered to refer to you in this way. Another method I've used, though not yet with you, is 'Anonymous of 6/4/06 9:57 AM'. Would you prefer that? If so, let me know, and I will address you thusly.

back onto topic:
I haven't seen or heard before now of any articles claiming Chernobyl was not that bad, or that it is becoming a garden paradise. The last article I read, which was posted a couple years ago, states that most of the area is completely off limits, and travel through the 'safe' area is still considered risky. If indeed you ARE seeing articles denying this, that is evidence that some very unhealthy programs are being planned.

On Hiroshima and Nagasaki:they weren't intended as holocausts, any more than the bombing of Dresden, the bombing of London, or the bombing of Tokyo were intended as holocausts. On the other hand, the 19th century Russian actions in the Caucasus, the Australian actions in Tasmania, the Turkish actions against the Greeks, Armenians and Assyrians/Syriacs, the radical Islamic actions against the Indonesian Christian communities, the actions of the Janjawid (spelling?) in Darfur, the anti-Tutsi violence (and anti-Hutu violence) etc. were/are all intended as holocausts or genocides. So also many of the 19th century policies of the American government towards the American Indians. So also the intentions of Palestinian Islamic Jihad on the one hand, and Kahani Chay on the other.

From my blog readings, anti-Kafir Jihadism seems to be an idea gaining popularity in much (not all) of the Islamic world. 'Bridge-building', especially between Jewish and Muslim communities (and between Christian and Muslim communities in the Middle East and Malaysia/Indonesia), is apparently becoming more difficult.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Mr Griffin

Addressing me by Anonymity date and time is fine although I must ask myself why it is speaking with a Zionist sends you into these soul-searching and agonising decisions when speaking with the earlier Anonymous who was not me (and not as nice) did not have that effect. You may not have liked that other Anonymous - but you did not ridicule that Anonymous in quite the same way or with the same intent you did this one. And you didn't associate the other Anonymous commenter with ones before either, or seem confused about them. Bridge building is becoming more difficult? Then think about all the bridges you burned and all the rooms you could never pass between if Zionist tenacity had not built doors into the walls. All you have to do is open one instead of trying to kick it down. Although, you may need to do some convincing to prove to the lied to and betrayed inhabitants behind it that you do not intend to murder them all as you have before when you were let in ("you" meaning those who were anti-me). I don't agree with violent solutions but I do understand why some Iraqis are driven to the limits that they barricade their streets, as a Zionist, I understand this.

The "Chernobyl is a paradise now" articles appeared last week in a publication which circular would probably be familiar with. The US threatens to nuke Iran's "enrichment" plants articles appeared on their heels, in the same publication. The articles read like spoon food. They were titled "Chernobyl was not that bad after all" "Chernobyl shows nature will stroll in..." "Scientists are divided over Chernobyl ecosystem" and dated 08, 06 and 05 April 2006. A further article appeared on April 09 titled "The Ressurection" by an Andrew Osborn who also wrote the April 06 "nature strolls in" one.

Luckily, some other news watchers and writers have got onto it and if you now google Chernobyl news you will find headlines that are beginning to read "Chernobyl effect 'underplayed'" scattered in among the spoon food that reads "Over 1.3mln live in Chernobyl zone in Belarus".

The danger is that it benefits both "former" cold war partners to play down the disaster that was Chernobyl. For obvious reasons, Russia can't afford to look like all it's hair and teeth have fallen out on top of their socialism all tumbling down, and the US cannot afford to have everyone freaking out about nuclear accidents when they have more of the stuff then anyone else in the world and therefore a far higher chance then anyone else in the world of interior domestic melt-down. US arms are no threat to anyone much now, as in theory their government can't use them and if they did use them the winds of public opinion would be almost as damaging as the fallout, meanwhile US domestic nuclear use has become a greater threat then anything Iran has not built yet. US nuclear domestic use is probably not as well kept as everyone would like to think it is and natural wear and tear are likely to be taking their toll, as they did in Chernobyl. Meanwhile the UK cannot afford to have a population soured not only by Blair and the Iraq war but also by their sheep which they can't export and which are above radioactive safety limits. So the current UK government is probably quite keen to paint Chernobyl in a more positive and less threatening light too.

What do you get when three major world powers all share the same desire to hide something? You get extraordinary rendition and false nuclear optimism.

The world isn't coal powered anymore, oil isn't working out, and new wind and solar powered technologies are still waiting for investors. Meanwhile, all the quick and ugly fix needs is a bit of pro-nuke sentiment and goodbye global warming hello inferno.

Why Zionism worries you in the face of all this beats me.

Happy Chernobyl week.

Anonymous schmo zionist --

(1) You have a nasty little habit of inserting snide comments or bringing up a subject, then, when everyone is discussing it, whether this be speculation that I am a proxy poster for somebody else, or the subject of Zionism - you turn around and say we are obsessed with that subject. Stop playing games. None of us here are interested in discussing Zionism.

(2) Your contributions on the Chernobyl issue are indeed interesting and relevant. Thank you.

(3) You also said: "The US has a huge problem with nuclear waste right now. Where is it going?"
That is a very relevant question. Given the extreme density of uranium, it is a natural anti ballistic element. A lot of depleted Uranium (u238) is used in the manufacture of armour plating for US armoured vehicles, specifically tanks. Also, the density gives it enormous kinetic penetration potential, and it’s other property is just as valuable – Uranium is pyrophoric, and acts as a natural incendiary agent when under high stress. So, not only do you have the penetration potential, but get to incinerate the target as well. Sweet, from a weapon designers point of view.
Which begs your question: where is it all going?
A nice photo I saw a while back featured a destroyed M1 back from Iraq encased in a protective screen labelled "radioactive". Clearly the Iraqi resistance possesses no radioactive weaponry so one can only conclude that either the DU plates have ruptured or the APDSFS ammunition of the M1 cooked off. (So much for the innocuous nature of DU.)
It’s going to Iraq, that’s where. Tons and tons of this stuff get fired off into Iraq every day, the same stuff that the US feels is dangerous enough to completely encase a destroyed tank with protective skirting in case of contamination. From the US point of view, this is a two-fer. Not only are they getting rid of their enemies, but their radioactive waste as well. And people wonder why US foreign policy gives me the shits.

BobGriffin --

Clearly she is doing this anonymous thing to annoy us. Just ignore this, pls. If she gets mixed up with some troll, its her problem, not ours. Let’s just address the interesting and relevant points she has to make.

I very much like your ‘pre-formed ideas’, btw. I think I’ll try and steal some of your wisdom ... :)

See you all on Tuesday ...

Anonymous of 6/4/06 9:57 AM,

Zionism has plusses and minuses. I am split on the issue, and find the subsidiary issues pro and con deeply disturbing. I have no problem with you as a Zionist, and I am sorry that it appeared to you that I did have a problem. By the way, what do you think of Daniel Berenboem (spelling?)? What do you think of Peace Now?

You are right that the re-evaluation of Chernobyl is worrisome. I am afraid that both the 'opinion-makers' and those influenced by them may make some extremely unwise choices within the next two to three years.

Be Well, yhyh shlwm bbytk
Bob Griffin

Anonymous of 13/4/06 9:22 PM

Thanks for the link and the information. So, what's YOUR position regarding the Chaldo-Assyrians of northern Iraq?

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

You (and anyone else) are welcome to my pre-formed ideas.

I don't intend (never intended) to bait Anonymous Mi, so I agree, it's indeed probably time to let the issue drop. I hope Anonymous of 13/4/06 9:22 PM is not Anonymous Mi.

Hope you will have had a great weekend.

Be Well,
Bob Griffin

Oh, a belated Happy 1st of Nissan to Abu Khaleel (Akitu, the first recorded New Year's festival)
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