JWN posts on Moqtada Sadr, Sistani, the Iraqi Sunnis, (Palestinian elections), and investigations of abuse by the US military (only two posts in all)
I put two posts up on JWN on Sept. 29 dealing with Iraq. This one
highlighted some of the perceptive analyses that the French-Lebanese specialist Gilbert Achcar has been making of the situation inside Iraq. His bottom lines:
- Shiite firebrand Moqtada Sadr is still trying to call for a coalition with the Iraqi Sunnis despite all the attacks Sunni extremists have made against Shiite civilians
- Ayatollah Sistani is still calling for the Shias to refrain from undertaking revenge attacks. (Both of these are good news, but...)
- It looks as though the US military is continuing to maintain a hostile, very confrontational attitude to most Iraqi Sunni communities in the lead-up to the October 15 referendum, and this may lead to low Sunni participation in that poll and a prolongation of sectarian tensions in the country (bad news).
(In that post I also note a strikingly parallel situation existing in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.)
In this second post
, I note further developments in the NTFU porn-site story (with some refernces to my role in it) and also the success at this stage of the ACLU lawsuit
requesting the public release of some 70 reportedly horrific photos (and three videos) that show previously unpublished aspects of the abuse at Abu Ghraib. These images and videos have been seen by members of Comgress but not so far by the taxpaying public.
I also note the importance-- in both the ACLU suit and the efforts being undertaken by Human Rights Watch and other groups-- of the campaign to push responsibility for the abuses committed by US military people as far up the chain of command as they need to go
, rather than keeping them focused on the lower-ranking people.