Saturday, March 06, 2004

War News for March 5 and 6, 2004 Bring 'em on: Four British soldiers wounded in ambush near Amarah. Bring 'em on: US troops in firefight near Mosul. Bring 'em on: Three Iraqis killed in rocket attack near US base in Baghdad. Bring 'em on: Baghdad airport mortared. Bring 'em on: Two roadside bombs explode in Baghdad. Bring 'em on: Three Iraqi policemen killed in rocket attack in Mosul. Bring 'em on: One US soldier wounded in roadside bomb ambush near Baquba. Bring 'em on: Bomb discovered near Palestine Hotel in Baghdad. US troops kills four civilians near Kirkuk. Interim constitution agreement collapses. Chalabi blames CIA for not realizing he was feeding them bullshit. "Chalabi, who heads the Iraqi National Congress exile group and has close ties to the Bush administration, says the CIA should have done a better job analyzing information received from defectors he steered their way." Pentagon officially cancels Chalabi's $327 million sweetheart contract. Bush concealed evidence that Iraq had no WMD. "The reports, which ran contrary to the conclusions of the intelligence agencies and the Bush administration, were not acknowledged publicly by top government officials before the invasion last March. In public statements, the agencies and the administration cited only reports from informants who supported the view that Iraq possessed so-called weapons of mass destruction, which the administration cited as a main justification for going to war." Two wounded soldiers. Bush's War at home. "Across the country, there are similar stories of support and encouragement, but there is plentiful evidence as well that the painful burden of separation falls on some and not on others. It sharply divides those Americans who are personally bound up in the wars and those for whom the battle is a distant distraction." Maine National Guard recruitment down by 20 per cent. "The percentage of part-time soldiers in Iraq will increase from 22 percent now to nearly 40 percent in May, and the Pentagon expects that to increase next year. The Bush administration plans to decrease overall U.S. troop levels from 130,000 to 105,000 while increasing the use of Guardsmen and reservists." 3ID alerted for redeployment to Iraq. "The announcement Thursday comes just six months after most members of the 3rd Infantry Division returned to Fort Stewart from the war. The new deployment is expected between November and February 2005." Traffic report from Baghdad. "Baghdad is a vortex of chaos. In the poorer neighbourhoods, rotting garbage lines the road and stinking sewage runs down the middle of the street. The rat-a-tat-tat of gunfire and the dull thud of mortars intermittently pierce the air, but this has become common background music and nobody turns a hair. But nothing captures the essence of Iraq today - no rules and no-one in control - as succinctly as the lawlessness of the highway. None of the traffic lights work so each teeming intersection is negotiated according to the whims of the drivers, many piloting vehicles so old and beaten up that they look like they’ve been through a metal crusher." Commentary Analysis: "Invariably, al-Qaeda is blamed for atrocities around the world, especially since the September 11 strikes in the US for which they were clearly responsible. The US takes the line that al-Qaeda has chosen Iraq as its new 'battleground' to take on US interests. However, such accusations might be misguided." Analysis: " The new troops will, for the most part, lack the tactical experience of their departing comrades and the next few weeks will be particularly treacherous for them. And the veterans, who can’t wait to kiss Iraq goodbye and perhaps let their guard drop, are probably only marginally less vulnerable as their departure dates near. For the insurgents not to exploit these vulnerabilities would be unbelievable. The US military death toll has been particularly high for reservists, National Guard personnel and support units, few of whom have been trained for a guerrilla war." Casualty Reports Local story: Florida soldier killed in Iraq. Local story: Michigan Guardsman wounded in Iraq. 86-43-04. Pass it on.


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