The fourth year has arrived. And counting. My biggest fear is that I will be sitting on a chair every year, posting about the fifth year, seventh year, 20th year of occupation and it's harvest of blood, pain and disappointment.
The policy and decision makers of the United States of American has turned into the most arrogant idiots, drunk with power to the point that they can't drive their way home from Iraq anymore.Slate over the past week against intervention, arguments made, I have noticed, by people with limited experience in the Middle East (Their lack of experience causes them to reach the naive conclusion that an invasion of Iraq will cause America to be loathed in the Middle East, rather than respected).-- JEFFREY GOLDBERG (10/3/02)
Yesterday I received an email from the [Iraqi] Prime Minister's office presenting his condolences for losing [a friend's] sister, as she had passed away; the cause of the death was natural causes. That reminded me of what I did a few weeks ago when my father-in-law told me that someone I knew had passed away by natural causes; I spontaneously responded and said "Oh thank God."
Then I realized that that was a stupid thing to say; and I started to think why I said that; I said it because it's been a long time since I heard anyone die of natural causes; no car bomb? No IED? No kidnapping nor arrest by security forces then found dead on a street corner?
The difference between then and now is that then, Bush was strong and he had a loyal Republican Congress, and now he’s not and he doesn’t, and these two things are not unrelated. Fifteen months ago that nauseating little bitch Lindsey Graham was primarily concerned with making sure that Leader had the right to revoke habeus corpus whenever he felt like it; now, he’s troubled that the President didn’t follow the usual protocol in replacing some civil servants. Furrow your brow, Lindsey! Furrow it with sincere concern for everyone to see! Because you can read the polls as well as anyone, and you know that anyone who sticks by Bush these days is fucked.-- ATRIOS
Not to put too fine a point on it, the officers and generals lied. They lied to the Tillman family about how Pat Tillman died. They lied to the American public about how Pat Tillman died. They lied in official recommendations that Pat Tillman be awarded a Silver Star. They lied in order to cynically and shamelessly exploit his death for propaganda purposes.
That used to be called conduct unbecoming an officer. That used to be a serious source of shame before your peers. Now it’s an error. And — for propaganda purposes, no doubt — they have gone ahead and labelled it a critical error. But does anyone who is not on the buyer’s side of the market for bridges and steel towers seriously expect the punishment to fit this PR label?
We have such a strange, conflicted attitude toward death in this country. And when someone is stricken with something like cancer, we (the societal we) rush to the barricades and insist on an all-out fight -- well, to the death, which seems to me is only a form of denial. How dare we have room in our lives for anything else?
We are a generation of control freaks, convinced we can master anything with enough effort. We can fix it, or we can wish it away. And when you get cancer, people seem to expect that it should become a full-time job.
We forget this is not a binary choice. We are not living or dying; we are living and dying. . . . The only difference with a terminal illness is, we now have the advantage of seeing land on the horizon.)
So why is it so unthinkable that Elizabeth Edwards has decided to live while she is dying?
-- SUSAN MADRAK
I’ve read every transcript of every briefing [White House press secretary Tony] Snow has led, and as regular readers know, I’m not shy about taking him to task when I disagree with his remarks.
But people obviously come before politics. I’m pulling for him, I applaud his courage and tenacity, and I extend my best wishes to him and his family.
Tony, if you see this, I have a good-natured message for you: Get back to work — so I can go back to telling everyone how wrong I think you are.
-- STEVE BENEN
The news that Monica Goodling, counsel to the attorney general and liaison to the White House, is invoking her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination takes the United States attorney scandal to a new level. Ms. Goodling’s decision comes just days after the Justice Department released documents strongly suggesting that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has not been honest about his own role in the firing of eight federal prosecutors.
By the way, Goodling, 33, is a 1995 graduate Messiah College in Grantham, Pa., an institution that describes itself as "committed to embracing an evangelical spirit."
She received her law degree at Regent University in Virginia Beach, Va. Regent, founded by Christian broadcaster Pat Robertson, says its mission is "to produce Christian leaders who will make a difference, who will change the world." Christians are not supposed to lie, are they??
-- MARIA MARIAChristians are not supposed to lie. But just like Bush says, "After 9/11 everything has changed."
Bush administration officials throughout the government have engaged in White House-directed efforts to stifle, delay or dampen the release of climate change research that casts the White House or its policies in a bad light, says a new report that purports to be the most comprehensive assessment to date of the subject.
-- JUSTIN ROOD
Quantum mechanics is the girl you meet at the poetry reading. Everyone thinks she's really interesting and people you don't know are obsessed about her. You go out. It turns out that she's pretty complicated and has some issues. Later, after you've broken up, you wonder if her aura of mystery is actually just confusion.
Cartoon by Tony Auth/Philadelphia Inquirer