Monday, September 18, 2006

Other Items

Lloyd noted the following AP article with the comment that "Guantanamo becomes less a location and more a floating concept." This is from "U.S. Jails Journalist in Iraq:"

The U.S. military in Iraq has imprisoned an Associated Press photographer for five months, accusing him of being a security threat but never filing charges or permitting a public hearing.
Bilal Hussein, 35, an Iraqi citizen, was being held for "imperative reasons of security" under United Nations resolutions, according to military officials. Hussein, 35, was detained April 12.

Martha and Brad both noted Sudarsan Raghavan "Violence Changes Fortunes Of Storied Baghdad Street" (Washington Post):

A silence has fallen upon Mutanabi Street.
In the buttery sunlight, faded billboards hang from old buildings. Iron gates seal entrances to bookstores and stationery shops. On this Friday, like the past 13 Fridays, the violence has taken its toll. There is not a customer around, only ghosts.

A silence has fallen upon Mutanabi Street.
Perched on a red chair outside a closet-sized bookshop, the only one open, Naim al-Shatri is nearly in tears. Short, with thin gray hair and dark, brooding eyes, his voice is grim. This is normally his busiest day, but he hasn't had a single sale. A curfew is approaching.
Soon, his sobs break the stillness. "Is this Iraq?" he asked no one in particular, pointing at the gritty, trash-covered street as the scent of rotting paper and sewage mingled in the air.

You may remember a protest a protest on a Saturday last month when what the press dubbed "intellectuals" gathered in opposition of the so-called 'crackdown' to note how it was destroying the way of life in the city. (With the curfews and the bans on traffic, etc.) These are the effects they were talking about and this was before the plans for the waterless moat around Baghdad.

And that's it for this morning. Richard A. Oppel has an article in the New York Times. It should be readable at the very least. But when I read (or started to read) the other article (noted in the first entry), I ended up spending over an hour on the phone. That's all the time I feel like putting into the Times on a day when they run something that (forget the Post's refuting of) should have raised enough red flags as it worked its way through the process that it didn't make it into the paper as is. That it didn't is really sad and makes you question the knowledge base at the Times or the proces or both. It was too heavy on "Something Wonderful" and short on reality and should have raised suspicions. ("Something Wonderful" written by Rogers & Hart.)

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