August 06, 2005

Flypaper Saturday

Dahr Jamail reports from the Veterans for Peace National Convention in Dallas, TX:

"We were firing into small see people just running, cars going, guys falling off was just sad. You just sit there and look through your binos and see things blowing up, and you think, man they have no water, living in the third world, and we're just bombing them to hell. Blowing up buildings, shrapnel tearing people to shreds."

An investigation into a California National Guard unit has found that at least one officer was participating in illegally charging rent to Iraqis in the Green Zone.

The US government is negotiating the release of almost 70% of Guantanamo's prisoners to their home countries to be detained there. The 346 prisoners will be returning to Afghanistan, Saudia Arabia and Yemen, and a similar number will soon be released from the Bagram holding facility to the government of Afghanistan.

Robin Cook is dead at 59 of a likely heart attack suffered on a mountain walk. The former British foreign secretary resigned in protest over Tony Blair's decision to enter the Iraq war.

A Baghdad group held a mass marriage ceremony for 600 Shia couples, giving them each $600 and a Quran, in what they said was a response to the inability of many families to afford a wedding. Judging from the following quote, I imagine there are conservatives in the US taking notes, emphasis mine:

... The [Martyrs' Association for Humanitarian Services]' leader, Hussein al-Shami, said the aim was to rebuild the family after Saddam Hussein's regime had tried to break it apart.

"The former unjust regime tried to break apart society and the family by killing the men, scattering the boys and allowing women to leave the house," he said. ...

According to the Coalition Casualty Count (today's Reuters report), 32 US soldiers died during the week starting Sunday, July 31. Sixteen of the soldiers who've died in the last ten days were from Ohio. American journalist Steven Vincent was also killed in what is believed to be a revenge killing by area insurgents for an unfavorable op-ed he wrote about Shi'ite extremism's rise in Basra.

According to Reuters daily security incident reports, at least 71 Iraqis died over the same week. Among the dead were civilian bystanders killed in suicide bombings, a chief of police, the wife and two children of an Iraqi soldier killed when insurgents stormed his house, a government minister and several government security guards, as well as several Iraqis known to have been working with the occupation.

As Atrios points out, the president's weekly radio address mentioned none of this, but he did remember to close with a very special shout out:

... We need to make the tax relief permanent, end the death tax forever ... We will continue to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of America, so more of our citizens can realize the American Dream.

People are dying on his orders half a world away, and the only death this smirking frat boy can think of is the end of a tax that was meant to ensure that those who benefit from society more than others help out more when they shuffle off peacefully in their mansions. That, they call a death tax, not the tax we're all paying to slaughter Iraqis and put our troops in harms' way.

Hey Mr. President, did you spend any time this week thinking about the 32 American soldiers whose chance at living any dream at all ended in explosions far from their homes and families? Did you think about any of the Iraqis who died trying to build that better Iraq you keep saying is just around the corner? Yeah, I thought so.

Posted by natasha at August 6, 2005 02:48 PM | Iraq | Technorati links |

Don't forget the $700,000 or so that Bush will pass down to his kids if he passes his estate tax garbage. Cheney will save some 12 million dollars.

Posted by: badger3k at August 6, 2005 05:15 PM


The story of Cindy Sheehan should answer your question. He simply doesn't care, and everyone who has lost a loved one in Iraq yet still thinks that W cares about their loss should really get a chance to meet the man and find it out for sure.

Posted by: thehim at August 6, 2005 06:06 PM