Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The fatalities pile up, the Times plays dumb

The US military continued making announcements yesterday as the day wore on. They announced: "Two 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Soldiers were killed and two were wounded in an improvised explosive device attack against their M-1114 vehicle in Fallujah at 2:20 a.m. April 14." And they announced: "An explosively formed projectile targeting an MND-B patrol killedone Soldier and wounded two others in a southern section of Baghdad April 16.The unit was conducting a combat security patrol at the time of the attack.
An Iraqi interpreter was also wounded in the attack." Those are in addition to the two deaths announced in yesterday's snapshot. ICCC's count for the month of April is 61 US service members killed. (A Washington Post article on just the increase in deaths, resulting from Bully Boy's escalation, in Baghdad can be found here.)

Though little (try no?) attention has been given by the New York Times to the number of fatalities of late (3,300 mark was passed Sunday), David S. Cloud's "Gates Will Try to Build Support for Iraqi Premier on Mideast Trip" does tell us that the puppet needs even more propping up:

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, visiting the Middle East, will urge leaders to back Iraq's government and to put aside their doubts about Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki's ability to curtail sectarian violence, a senior Defense Department official traveling with Mr. Gates said on the plane trip here.

Well, when all that was ever created was the illusion of democracy, you probably have to work overtime to keep everyone onboard. Gates won't be traveling empty-handed as Ann Scott Tyson's "In Mideast, Gates Pushes Support for Iraq: Defense Chief Also to Pursue Military Aid Issues, Regional Strategy Against Iran" (Washington Post, noted by Martha) informs:

Gates, who will stop in Egypt and Israel, also will focus on using potential U.S. arms sales and other military assistance to shape the forces of key American allies against "emerging threats" such as Iran and regional militant groups, said the official, who was not authorized to speak on the record.
[. . .]
In Jordan, Egypt and elsewhere, Gates will encourage continued support for the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Gates hopes that backing by predominantly Sunni countries such as Jordan and Egypt will shore up the legitimacy of Iraq's majority Shiite government and help tamp down sectarian violence in the country.

Four years after and counting and it's time to spread the money around in an attempt to buy support for the illegal war and puppet government. Julian E. Barnes' "Gates' trip to focus on Iran, Iraq" (Los Angeles Times) explains the situation and provides the joke of the day:

Defense Department officials acknowledge that the support for Maliki in Sunni-dominated nations is not as firm as they would like.
"There is skepticism that the Maliki government is a strong government," said the official who requested anonymity. "But I think the secretary and [President Bush] have been firm in that Maliki has shown a tremendous amount of fortitude . . . in making tough decisions and carrying them out."

al-Maliki "has shown a tremendous amonunt of fortitude . . . in making tough decisions and carrying them out." Oh, that is hilarious just based on reality. It's made even more so by the anonymice prefacing the laughable claim with Gates and Bully Boy's alleged firmness having brought about al-Maliki's tough-ness. If the puppet had any real strength (or power), he wouldn't need 'firmness' from those who pull his strings.

As Rebecca noted, Gonzales' testimony has been moved to Thursday so the special, live coverage on KPFA will take place then.

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