Sunday, January 13, 2008


Sunday's New York Times featured one article from Iraq, one article Iraq related. Both made the front page.

Richard A. Oppel Jr. and Steven Myers offer up "Iraq Easing Curb for Ex-Officials Of Hussein Party" about the Iraqi parliament passing legislation (that still must be signed into law) which "would allow some former officials from Saddam Hussein's party to fill government positions but would impose a strict ban on others." The reporters note:

However, it was unclear on Saturday how far the legislation would go toward soothing Sunni Arabs, because serious disagreements merged in the hours after the vote about how much the law would actually do.

In other words -- we know this much, we don't know all.

Deborah Sontag and Lizzette Alvarez' "Across America, Deadly Echoes of Foreign Battles" finally makes it to print. As the article notes, there was a wait for the government to issue a response. There was actually a long wait. From the article:

The New York Times found 121 cases in which veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan committed a killing in this country, or were charged with one, after their return from war. In many of those cases, combat trauma and the stress deployment -- along with alcohol abuse, family discord and other attendant problems -- appear to have set the stage for a tragedy that was part destruction, part self-destruction.

Again, there was a long wait on this article. It should also be noted that Maureen Orth focused on specific crimes in a groundbreaking piece in Vanity Fair. The reaction to that piece was attack Orth and dispute the realities. Even years later, it's doubtful that same reaction won't be the response to Sontag and Alvarez. (That's not disputing the article. It's well written and appears to be heavily researched. That is noting that there are things this country doesn't want to face and, in terms of the press today, by refusing to face them except in rare instances, it makes it all the harder to address reality when it only pops up sporadically.)

New content at The Third Estate Sunday Review:

Truest statement of the week
Truest statement of the week II
Editorial: And then there were three
TV: The Surreal Life stages comeback!
Revolutionary broadcast
Independent media: Then & Now
Graceful exit

And IVAW is organizing a March 2008 DC event:

In 1971, over one hundred members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War gathered in Detroit to share their stories with America. Atrocities like the My Lai massacre had ignited popular opposition to the war, but political and military leaders insisted that such crimes were isolated exceptions. The members of VVAW knew differently.
Over three days in January, these soldiers testified on the systematic brutality they had seen visited upon the people of Vietnam. They called it the Winter Soldier investigation, after Thomas Paine's famous admonishing of the "summer soldier" who shirks his duty during difficult times. In a time of war and lies, the veterans who gathered in Detroit knew it was their duty to tell the truth.
Over thirty years later, we find ourselves faced with a new war. But the lies are the same. Once again, American troops are sinking into increasingly bloody occupations. Once again, war crimes in places like Haditha, Fallujah, and Abu Ghraib have turned the public against the war. Once again, politicians and generals are blaming "a few bad apples" instead of examining the military policies that have destroyed Iraq and Afghanistan.
Once again, our country needs Winter Soldiers.
In March of 2008, Iraq Veterans Against the War will gather in our nation's capital to break the silence and hold our leaders accountable for these wars. We hope you'll join us, because yours is a story that every American needs to hear.
Click here to sign a statement of support for Winter Soldier: Iraq & Afghanistan

March 13th through 16th are the dates for the Winter Soldier Iraq & Afghanistan Investigation.

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