[EDITOR’S NOTE - PLEASE SEE UPDATE AT BOTTOM 2PM PST]
So when I woke up this morning I had two emails of considerable note.
One email came from a friend of a friend, Qasem Aldulaimy(Al’Dulaimi), who is Iraqi. He is apparently from Ramadi and has family there.
The other email came from a friend, who is apparently on John Kerry’s mailing list.
Let’s start with the words from John Kerry:
>Two weeks ago, President Bush said that the timing of complete withdrawal
>from Iraq “…will be decided by future presidents….”1 But this is our
>responsibility now, not the responsibility of future presidents or a future
>I believe that American combat troops should come home from Iraq in 2006 -
>not the distant future as President Bush does. Furthermore, I believe we
>must set a May 15th deadline for the Iraqis to form an effective unity
>government. And, if the Iraqi politicians choose to ignore that deadline,
>then I believe things will only get worse and we will have no choice but to
Apparently the email came last week, when Kerry introduced a resolution to the Senate calling for withdrawal. Demonstrating his own ignorance of the situation and tendency toward Orientalism, later Kerry says,
>President Bush is willing to let American soldiers and their families wait
>endlessly, while risking life and limb, as some Iraqi politicians incite
>sectarianism to grow their personal power and private militias.
>We want democracy in Iraq, but it’s now the job of Iraqis to build it. Our
>troops have performed gallantly and heroically. The best way to keep faith
>with them is to set deadlines for bringing our troops home and getting Iraq
>on its own two feet. That’s the only way to give their sacrifice its best
>chance of resulting in success.
Kerry apparently doesn’t realize what’s happening in Ramadi, or the role of the United States’ in destabilizing Iraq, indirectly aiding and abetting militias, and devastating Iraqi infrastructure and lives.
The individual members of the military, although many of them desperately want to believe they are helping the Iraqi people and have made a long-lasting difference, are part of a larger machine. The military, when it acts cohesively, as an organization, sublimates individual will and has led to repeated atrocities inside Iraq. Some of the latest are detailed in these recent reports:
Report finds U.S. shooting of Reuters soundman unlawful
And those are just some of the latest reports. Here are two reports from last year, detailing some of the long term issues that have faced the occupation:
Although the shoot first, questions later doctrine has been repeatedly supported as a “necessary evil” in combatting a “faceless insurgency” the report by TRAG regarding a Reuters cameraman is one of many stories suggesting that this doctrine disguises a more accurate accounting of events in Iraq.
An even better source for an accurate accounting of events in Iraq comes in the words and messages of the Iraqis themselves. Here is Qasem’s email, in its entirety, minus the target email addresses of the dozen or so recipients. His English is broken, so please bear with it:
Date: Apr 11, 2006 3:37 AM
Subject: Help Ramadi people now……peace getting worse
hi all peace friends
I am Qasem from Iraq
at 10/ April 2006 during being in Amman …I got news about my people in Ramadi….I got news that there is big fighting when US troops start military operation ( as usaul ) .
I became sure later that fighting was closed to my house ( almost infront of my family house)…but…. I couldnot contact them at all to make sure if they are ok or not …all telphone lines and mobile had been already destroyed few monthes ago.
I am scared and thinking to go back Iraq to my house now even I cant reaching them I will try strongly…..
what happened to my family ??? what can be happened ??? killed ??? US bombing destroyed and killed my family my nephews ????
I need to see them now I realy need to be with them.
now my mind full with images of destroyed house that could be my house ,killed family could be my family and dead bodies could be my father,mother brothers ,sisters ,nephews ………it is almost middnight now and I can imagine what kind of night terroble darkness they living in with fighting and explosions sounds and house shaking .
I am checking the news that can I knew from the Taxi drivers who arriving to Amman at mid night …..every body came from there saying it is very big fighting and many Hamvees burned and many civilians killed……not clear yet if my family are hurted or not……on tv there is news that 3 US soldiers killed there but as usaul no news about how many Iraqis killed by US troops!!!!
3 soldiers killed it means hard fighting is there…….and alot of civilians killed……..so the hard image about my family is getting bigger.
I cant sleep …………now its 3 oclock after midnight………..I wish that I am sharing my family what they facing now …..living with or dying with them.
I have to ask my peace freinds to notice this hard day of my family & my people that happened many times for them along the last 3 years.
please my friends tell every body you can contact that civilians dying now in iraq and they need your notice for their life and death
thanks for all care that you can make
Iraq / Anbaar / Ramadi
And apparently this story may actually be what Qasem is referring to, regarding the deaths of three US Soldiers, who may actually be Iraqis:
In other developments, three Iraqi soldiers died Tuesday during a firefight with insurgents in Ramadi that ended when US troops stepped in and imposed a curfew on the western Iraqi city.
There are different fronts in Iraq right now. Much of the violence in Ramadi is likely directed at the United States military and other occupation forces. Inside Baghdad however, sectarian militias have fostered under the watchful eyes of the Bush administration and the State dept. The politicians in Iraq have little connection with the Iraqi people being, by and large, made up of ex-patriates who have spent decades living outside the country.
It is President Bush, and the rest of Capitol Hill’s desire to foment a Western, and not Iraqi-minded government that has led to the sectarian violence which currently precludes the formation of a new government.
Failing to recognize this, Kerry and Bush’s policies both push Iraq towards civil war and continued rebellion, whether it be a full-scale civil war between factions vying for power in a government etablished under occupation-in direct violation of the Geneva IV and Hague 1907 conventions on civilian rights in wartime-or between a puppet government beholden to the United States and what will likely be an expanding resistance movement upon US departure.
Please keep in mind however, I am not advocating that US forces remain indefinitely inside Iraq, but that, rather than supporting an orientalist, isolationist policy such as the one Kerry puts forward, or a neo-liberal agenda for global hegemony such as that of the Bush administration, we call for an immediate handover of governance to an international committee able to demonstrate its dedication to soveriegnty by and for the Iraqi people.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: Apparently there were three US soldiers killed in Ramadi in the last few days]