Sunday, May 21, 2006

Editorial: Here it comes, here it comes again

Have you ever felt the sound of disappointment?
It pounds in your head like hammer blows.
Comes on gentle and smiling
And it likes to leave a scar.
-- "Here Comes That Sinking Feeling," written by Dave Stewart and Annie Lennox, on Eurythmics' Be Yourself Tonight

What's it mean when even the usually compliant press can't outright pimp another wave of Operation Happy Talk for the Bully Boy? Maybe that the whole farce has been exposed?

We've been told that a change was coming, a corner about to be turned (or turned!) so many times that even the press has grown immune to the minute cosmetic changes made an attempt to hide the realities on the ground of the illegal occupation.

Having missed his own self-imposed deadline, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki couldn't miss the constitutionally imposed deadline (tomorrow) to get his cabinet together. So he got it together.
Kind of, sort of. If getting the cabinet together means leaving posts vacant.

From "Iraq Gets New Government as Bombs Kill 24" (Reuters via Truth Out):

Iraq's parliament finally approved a new national unity government on Saturday, ending months of deadlock as bomb attacks that killed 24 people served a grim reminder of the security challenges it will face.
Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's cabinet was approved by a show of hands, minister by minister, after a turbulent start to the parliamentary session, when some minority Sunni leaders spoke out against the last-minute deal and several walked out.
Eleventh-hour battles over the key posts of interior and defense left those jobs vacant for now, filled respectively by Maliki, a tough-talking Shi'ite Islamist, and his Sunni deputy premier, Salam al-Zobaie.

Or take this news of Sunday in Baghdad "Bomber Kills 12 in Baghdad Restaurant" (Associated Press):

A suicide bomber killed at least 12 people and injured 14 after detonating his explosive vest inside a downtown Baghdad restaurant popular with police officers, police said.

B-b-but, they just formalized their cabinet!

And it doesn't mean a damn thing's changed.

A lack of cabinet was as unimportant to reality as people waving blue fingers at the cameras. The occupation is the problem. An illegal war led to an illegal occupation where oil fields can garner protection but the people are on their own. Actually, the occupation has alternated leaving them alone with attacking them. Attempting to decimate the unions, attempts to destroy the food subsidies programs, no urgency to address the very real problems of a lack of potable water . . .

But there was time for the occupying powers to court corporations, to hold trade conventions, to install exiles into powerful positions as though anyone who lived in Iraq and stayed in Iraq lacked the competency for leadership.

As one exile after another came to power, it's no surprise that the occupying power's puppet government had little legitamcy (or does now). Just as Iraqis weren't judged comptent enough to rebuild their country (contracts went to foreign companies), they weren't judged competent enough to lead.

But Bully Boy & co. want to wonder why the Iraqis haven't gotten on board with their plan -- "their plan" meaning the American administration's plan.

As Iraqis continue to flee their own country, we're left with reports (applauded by some) stating the known and the obvious -- such as the fact that Bully Boy's 'plans' didn't include the needed training for police officers. Applauding that crap (which runs in this morning's New York Times) is like applauding the nonsense as anything coming out of the Bully Boy's mouth.

The corpses turning up didn't just pop up. They were part of the "Salvadorian option" the adminstration began speaking of in 2004. This nonsense about front paging that Bully Boy didn't plan for the security 'after the war' ignores the reality that the war was built on lies and ignores the realities of who is killing whom.

The mainstream press may be too smart to once again spin the wave of Operation Happy Talk in terms of turned corner -- but what they offer is dickering attempting to pass for real critiques and real explorations.

It's not. If you got a $750 utility bill, wondering if you should switch to a soft light bulb isn't addressing the problem. It's a smoke screen that pushes the spotlight elsewhere.

Which is what the mainstream press does today. Still refusing to acknowledge the illegal nature of the war, still refusing to acknowledge the illegal nature of the occupation and still refusing to acknowledge the lies that got us into war (and acknowledge them as lies).

What they dole out today is small portions of reality, just enough to make readers think the press has woken up. They haven't. Consider it Operation Semi-Happy Talk -- we now know (in the fourth year of the invasion) what we did wrong! We can fix it!

Considering that every "fix" (including the original one -- the invasion) has only made things worse, the current press coverage doesn't strike us as reality. An approximation perhaps, but not reality.

"UNICEF: 25% of Iraqi Children Suffer Malnutrition" (Democracy Now!):
Meanwhile, a survey carried out by the Iraqi government and UNICEF has concluded a quarter of all Iraqi children suffer from malnutrition.
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