Tuesday, February 15, 2005
The Human Cost
Curtis Greene: Curtis Greene was angry about the war and frustrated with Lisset for not understanding what it had been like there. They argued, so fiercely that twice the police had to break it up.
One night he disappeared from their home outside
"Over my dead body are they going to make me go back."
"I knew he was having dreams, nightmares," Lisset said. "He would wake up at night really sweaty."
On Dec. 6, he showed up for work, his uniform pressed, his boots polished. He sang cadence.
That night, he was found hanging in his barracks. Sgt. Curtis Greene, 331st Signal Company, was 25.
Abu Shaiba: The account of the death and life of Abu Shaiba is based in part on a lengthy interview with his brother, who had remained in Fallujah and was present when his brother was killed. Written answers to questions delivered by an intermediary were provided by his wife, who has since moved to the city of
The recollections of Abu Shaiba's last days paint a portrait far more complicated than the usual black-and-white renderings of the insurgency that has beset the
American Moral Leadership
Don’t expect any big changes: The head of the International Committee of the Red Cross is meeting with President Bush and senior members of the
No big deal, just ignore the law: Military lawyers at the Guantanamo Bay terrorist prison tried to stop inhumane interrogations, but were ignored by senior Pentagon officials, The New York Daily News has learned.
Judge advocates - uniformed legal advisers known as JAGs who were assigned to a secret war crimes task force - repeatedly objected to aggressive interrogations by a separate intelligence unit at Camp Delta, where Taliban and al-Qaida suspects have been jailed since January 2002.
But Pentagon officials "didn't think this was a big deal, so they just ignored the JAGs," a senior military source said.
The military lawyers' actions had never been disclosed and are the first known cases of lower-level officers resisting interrogations at the Cuban camp that might constitute torture. Some officials called them "unsung heroes" for risking their careers by crossing senior officials who approved the techniques.
Your tax dollars at work, redux: By even the most charitable standard, the effort to rebuild
Read this and try to guess who wrote it: Here is Rumsfeld excusing himself for his dismal failures in
You see, the facts that the US invaded Iraq on false pretenses, killed and maimed tens of thousands of Iraqis, shot down women and children in the streets, blew up Iraqis' homes, hospitals and mosques, cut Iraqis off from vital services such as water and electricity, destroyed the institutions of civil society, left half the population without means of livelihood, filled up prisons with people picked up off the streets and then tortured and humiliated them for fun and games are not facts that explain why there is an insurgency. These facts are just descriptions of collateral damage associated with
In short, it has no rational
The Bush administration seems to be under the impression that the Iranians are pursuing the development of a nuclear weapon. Sound familiar? The Iranians deny it. The administration says, in effect, that they are lying. If the administration has any proof, let's see it. It was so all-fired certain that
A parent’s view: Someone recently informed me that they didn't know that my son was being deployed to
That is when I began to be annoyed by those ever-present, good-intentioned but mindless ribbons stuck on the back of cars and SUVs exhorting, "Support Our Troops."
I find those magnetic messages to be offensive when I think of parents and friends of National Guard soldiers who purchased expensive Kevlar armor for their soldiers while Donald Rumsfeld said they didn't have any in stock.
Those marketing messages seem so empty when soldiers are told to "up-armor" their Humvees because the Department of Defense had not asked the manufacturers if more could be done.
I am saddened when veterans wait over a year for appointments at veterans' hospitals and soldiers in
The Poor Man Nails Doughboy
Keyboard Commandos: “It’s like this,” said Goldberg said, grabbing a fistful of Cheetos from his pack. “I believed in this fight, and my country needed me. They needed able-bodied men – doughy, able to handle the rigors of sitting in a swivel chair for seven, eight hours at a time, and not afraid to put on a little TV make-up when the shit gets heavy. So I signed up.” He spit Cheetos-orange on the carpet. “Any man who won’t opinionate for his country and what he believes … well, I don’t call that a man at all.” At that he pulled up the sleeve on his regulation-issue Tommy Hilfiger powder-blue dress shirt to show me the tattoo on his meaty, girlish bicep. 'Born to Bloviate', it read, emblazoned on the bulging tummy of the Pillsbury Doughboy - the symbol of the feared 101st Fighting Keyboarders. The enemy had brought in a few independent studies to fortify their position. Goldberg called for reinforcements, and emails supporting his stand began pouring in. As quickly as they arrived, Goldberg posted them to his weblog on the front. The action was getting furious, and, without looking, Goldberg opened an email from an unknown address. On the monitor was the image of a single white feather. Goldberg fell back in his office chair, and hit the ground and began moaning, softly and piteously. “Medic!” shouted Derbyshire. K-Lo rushed over and crouched over him. “It’s bad,” she muttered. “Oh, man, it’s bad.” “What is it?” yelled Derbyshire, panicked. “Where’d they get him?” “Oh, it’s bad. Those bastards. Those fucking heartless bastards. They got him in the feelings. Oh God, oh God, no. Those motherfuckers hurt his feelings! God I hate this damned war!”
Local story: Choctaw, OK, soldier dies of non-combat-related injuries in