Friday, December 26, 2008

Five of Ten

So, how ARE things going in Iraq these days? Here's one-half of an article. I hope it spurs you to read the story in its entirety.
Published on Friday, December 26, 2008 by Informed Comment
Top Ten Myths about Iraq, 2008
by Juan Cole

1. Iraqis are safer because of Bush's War. In fact, conditions of insecurity have helped created both an internal and external refugee problem:

'"At least 4.2 million Iraqis were displaced. These included 2.2 million who were displaced within Iraq and some 2 million refugees, mostly in Syria (around 1.4 million) and Jordan (around half a million). In the last months of the year both these neighbouring states, struggling to meet the health, education and other needs of the Iraqi refugees already present, introduced visa requirements that impeded the entry of Iraqis seeking refuge. Within Iraq, most governorates barred entry to Iraqis fleeing sectarian violence elsewhere."

2. Large numbers of Iraqis in exile abroad have returned. In fact, no great number have returned, and more Iraqis may still be leaving to Syria than returning.

3. Iraqis are materially better off because of Bush's war. In fact, A million Iraqis are "food insecure" and another 6 million need UN food rations to survive. Oxfam estimated in summer, 2007, that 28% of Iraqi children are malnourished.

4. The Bush administration scored a major victory with its Status of Forces Agreement. In fact, The Iraqis forced on Bush an agreement that the US would withdraw combat troops from Iraqi cities by July, 2009,and would completely withdraw from the Country by the end of 2011. The Bush administration had wanted 58 long-term bases, and the authority to arrest Iraqis at will and to launch military operations unilaterally.

5. Minorities in Iraq are safer since Bush's invasion. In fact, there have in 2008 been significant attacks on and displacement of Iraqi Christians from Mosul. In early January of 2008, guerrillas bombed churches in Mosul, wounding a number of persons. More recently, some 13,000 Christians have had to flee Mosul because of violence.


  1. I have been pondering about this Iraq situation as well.
    It seems very unlikely that 2011 will bring a complete withdrawal of troops. Five major bases in Iraq are like fortified cities with complete infrastructure, including shopping malls and McDonalds. They were build to be permanent. I doubt very much that those military places will be given back to Iraqis.
    The other "sore spot" is the US embassy in Baghdad, the so called green zone. Fivethousand (5000)personnel work in that place on a daily basis. It is the largest embassy ever...
    The irony is, that the compound was once one of Saddam Hussein palaces. Then you have also all these mercenaries who are beyond the law, a substantial army that operates in the middle east purely for profit.
    The only way the US will withdraw completely, is if we go broke; and as it is for right now, we are on our merry way...


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