Sunday, September 03, 2006

NYT: "Army Officer Calls for Death in Slaying Case" (Paul von Zielbauer)

Today's New York Times devotes a whopping twenty paragraphs to Iraq. But then, if you took the space required to seriously address Iraq, how would you find the time for twenty-one paragraphs, front page (so you know it's earth shattering) "news" story that Las Vegas will no longer issue wedding license's around the clock. Friday, they switched hours and now close at midnight. That pretty much sums up the news in the story. Fortunately, the Times carves out far more space because it's really important that the hard news section of the paper name check Clara Bow, Demi Moore, Bruce Willis, Britney Spears, et al.

Buried in the paper, A12, are the two Iraq stories. Paul von Zielbauer contributes "Army Officer Calls for Death In Slaying Case." With severely limited space, von Zielbauer doesn't even have room to note where the alleged murders took place or when. The article's unimpressive but I don't think any article on this topic that's given so little space in the paper could be. (That criticism is aimed above the reporter.) There's not even space to note, as Ann Scott Tyson does for the Washington Post: "The last execution of a soldier was in 1961 at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., Army spokesman Lt. Col. Carl S. Ey said." Here's the basics, Lt. Col. James P. Daniel recommends that William B. Hunsaker, Corey R. Clagett, Raymond L. Girouard and Juston R. Graber "face the death penalty".

Edward Wong contributes "14 South Asian Shiite Pilgrims Shot to Death in Iraqi Desert" which notes that the fourteen led to the "officials" declaring "at least 28 civilians around Iraq [had died] in 24 hours."

In other news, the ceremonial photo-op that was supposedly postponed due to confusion and poor planning is now off. Apparently someone forgot to heat the spinach dip? No, it turns out that Nouri al-Maliki, puppet of the occupation, isn't a happy puppet when all his strings are pulled. There is no handover today. The US officials and al-Maliki cannot agree on what the constitutes responsiblity the AP reports. Meanwhile, AFP reports that al-Maliki has announced he is axing four of his current ministers. This morning, AP reports, a roadside bomb resulted in three deaths (two police officers, one civilian) and wounded. This took place where? 'Crackdown' city. Baghdad. Where, the AP reports, two US soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb today -- also noted is that the military announced two other soldiers had died, both from wounds received earlier -- one died Friday, the other today.

On injuries, Jordan Robertson's "Iraq war vets battle war's signature wound: Brain injuries" (AP):

Medical experts say traumatic brain injuries are the signature wound of the Iraq war, a byproduct of improved armor that allows troops to survive once-deadly attacks but does not fully protect against roadside explosives and suicide bombers.
They have become so common that special brain injury centers are being set up at Veterans Affairs hospitals to deal with it. So far, about 1,000 people have been treated for the symptoms, which include slowed thinking, severe memory loss and coordination and impulse control problems. Some doctors fear there may be thousands more active duty and discharged troops who are suffering undiagnosed.

AFP has announced that one of their reporters, Bilal Abdelrahman al-Obeidi, was kidnapped August 14.

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