Saturday, August 30, 2003

War News for August 30, 2003 Bring ‘em on: Attempted assassination of US-appointed police chief near Tikrit. Another pipeline in flames near Tikrit. Army investigation reveals helicopter crew deliberately knocked down Sadr City Islamic flag in August 13 incident. Occupation costs skyrocketing. “Contrary to what Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told a Senate committee at the start of the war, the reconstruction of Iraq won't be financed almost completely by Iraqi oil revenue” More on costs and administration bungling. “’We have a George C. Marshall plan with a Grover Norquist budget,’ says a Senate Republican.” That’s a nice quote, but the real significance of this article are the observations of a former ambassador: “The main mission of American troops now is self-protection. They aren’t handing out candy to children or joining in impromptu soccer games. They are hunkered down hoping only to survive. ‘You can walk around the streets in central Baghdad and not see a single serviceman,’ says the former ambassador. ‘We don’t look like we’re occupying anything.’” Bush seizes assets of Iraqi former government officials to pay for his war. Bush seizes your assets to pay for his war. Large protests in Najaf and Basra over car bombing at Najaf mosque. American forces blamed for lack of security. Assassination of al-Hakim leaves vacuum in volatile area. CPA appears blissfully unaware of potential dangers. “L. Paul Bremer, the chief U.S. administrator, was on vacation. Nobody seemed to know when exactly he would return…’I think someone is writing up a statement, somebody, I'm not sure,’ said Mahmoud Othman, a member of the 25-member Iraqi Governing Council, one of the few who could be found Friday afternoon.” Four arrested in Najaf bombing. Two Saudis, two Iraqis, with reported links to AQ. AQ operative captured in Ramadi with eleven surface-to-air missiles. Kurdish police chief assassinated by Ansar al-Islam. UN reduces staff in Iraq due to deteriorating security. Indiscriminate de-Baathification policy produces resentment. I wonder how much angrier these people would be if they knew that the exception to this policy is applied to former Baathist intelligence and internal security personnel. German foreign minister calls for leading UN role in Iraq. Russia prepares UN resolution calling for new political leadership in Iraq. Bush rules out military command role for UN in Iraq. Rant of the Day I can’t say it any better: "Who says George W. Bush failed to make any post-Iraq war plans? Of course he did. You think he's dumb or something? From the very beginning, our president knew exactly what he'd do once the war was over -- he'd launch an all-courts, cross-country fund-raising campaign to fuel his re-election effort. And he's been as good as his word." -- John Farmer, The Star-Ledger, Newark, N.J.


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