April 19, 2004

I guess we’re done/cause every win on this record’s hard won

* From Harper's Magazine:

Minimum number of misleading statements on Iraq made by the Bush Administration's top officials since March 2002 -- 237

Percentage of these that contradicted, made selective use of, or mischaracterized existing government intelligence -- 100

Percentage of the 958 same-sex unions granted to Vermont residents since July 2000 that have since been dissolved -- 3

Percentage of U.S. heterosexual marriages that are dissolved within five years -- 20

Amount that Tom DeLay's political action committee spent at the Washington, D.C. Hooters last November -- $117.19

* More from Falluja. excerpt:

"There is this terrible sadness in Falluja but also a strong community feeling. People are making every effort to help evacuate others, to distribute food, to negotiate for a ceasefire. There is a huge number of unqualified volunteers at the clinic.

"There is much outrage too, at what the Americans have done. One of the doctors said to us he was happy when Saddam was got rid of, but then everything that had gone on since was worse.

"Both sides have been firing, despite the ceasefire. On Wednesday night some mojahedin were trying to shoot down a drone plane. There are young children involved in the fighting. I saw boys, about 11 years old, masked up and holding AK-47s.

"There is nowhere in Falluja that is safe. The only place people can go is Baghdad. At the checkpoint leaving Falluja towards Baghdad, women and children have been trying to leave, but in cars driven by men (women don't drive here) so they weren't allowed out. They are not letting men aged 14 to 45 - of 'fighting age' - leave the city.

"We negotiated so that one male driver was allowed per car through the checkpoint. But people fear that once a large proportion of women and children leave, the Americans will destroy the city."

* Bob Herbert: The Wrong War. excerpt:

"President Bush may truly believe, as he suggested at his press conference last week, that he is carrying out a mission that has been sanctioned by the divine. But he has in fact made the world less safe with his catastrophic decision to wage war in Iraq. At least 700 G.I.'s and thousands of innocent Iraqis, including many women and children, are dead. Untold numbers have been maimed and there is no end to the carnage in sight.

"Meanwhile, instead of destroying the terrorists, our real enemies, we've energized them. The invasion and occupation of Iraq has become a rallying cry for Islamic militants. Qaeda-type terror is spreading, not receding. And Osama bin Laden is still at large.

"Even as I write this, reporters from The Times and other news outlets are filing stories about marines dying in ambush and other acts of mayhem and anarchy across Iraq. This was not part of the plan. The administration and its apologists spread fantasies of a fresh dawn of freedom emerging in Iraq and spreading across the Arab world. Instead we are spilling the blood of innocents in a nightmare from which many thousands will never awaken."


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