Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Iraqi Fighters "We Will Send Them Back The Bodies"

Iraqi Fighters: "We will send them back the bodies of their soldiers"

By Firas Al-Atraqchi

Somewhere in America, someone is itching to say "told you so". Elsewhere in the world, millions of people laugh, scoff, mock, and launch vitriol and hyperbole when discussing America's role in the world. All of a sudden, the so-called victory in Iraq, which was neither a military nor a popular victory, is beginning to look like a public relations disaster.

Consider the facts:

Iraqis today fare far worse than they did under Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Yes, worse - you only have to ask the Iraqis themselves, not the Friedmans and Krauthammers of the world, who speak from a bastion of cultural ignorance. Iraqis no longer feel safe in their own country, in their own houses. Some have pooled their financial resources and bought weapons to defend themselves. Others, who can afford it, have hired bodyguards. The weapons trading and protection businesses are thriving in lawless Iraq.

There is no electricity; with the traditional summer temperatures of 135 Fahrenheit looming in the distance, Iraqis will be unable to operate their desert coolers. There is no running water. Eight million Iraqis are jobless, mulling about at home, murmuring curses under their breath every time a U.S. military patrol or convoy passes. Food is scarce, medicines are scarce, hospitals are barely functioning. Rape and murder rule the night. An Iraqi family of four who lost their men during the Iraq-Iran war were stopped by armed men one evening and asked to leave their car behind. They were not hurt, but the loss of their car broke their resolve. They called from an ICRC-run (International Commission for the Red Cross) refugee camp on Iraq's Jordan border. "We have had enough," they said. They were applying for asylum in Jordan, a temporary stop on their way to Italy, they hoped.

While Iraqis rummage about their lawless 'freedom', certain forces move hastily to assert control. Islamic law in Iraq seems a reality, as Shiite and Sunni religious leaders begin to issue decrees. They are the de facto rule of law in the land - everything must be approved by them. Ironically, and thanks in large part to U.S. bungling, mismanagement and indifference, Saddam's popularity is soaring in many places. "At least under Saddam, we could sleep safely in our beds, and not worry about people barging in with their guns," has become a popular sentiment. Or "At least we had jobs under Saddam and could feed our children," goes another.

Rumours of Saddam's betrayal at the hands of his kin folk abound. One says the Republican Guard sold him out at the last minute. Another says Saddam is in the U.S., hidden in Crawford, Texas. The most popular rumours are those pertaining to jobs. "We hear the U.N. is hiring volunteers, can you tell me how I can apply?" said one disgruntled emailer from Mosul who paid 10 dollars for 5 minutes of Internet time.

Adding insult to injury, is the new phenomenon of Iraqi businessmen who have infilitrated post-Saddam Iraq looking to make a quick buck. They parade around with bodyguards armed to the teeth in newly polished Benzs and BMWs. They are buying up everything in a very volatile environment. Add to that the Kuwaitis who seem to have expansionist dreams of their own, buying up large tracts of land in the Basra area. This will not bode well as rumours have almost become fact that it was the Kuwaitis who orchestrated the torching of government ministries and hired armed brigands to loot everything.

Iraqis in Baghdad now speak of the Kuwaiti invasion - the partitioning of the southern port town of Oum Qasr, once fully Iraqi, now sectioned off to the Kuwaitis. Iraqis in Baghdad are also infuriated that their local companies are not allowed to fix southern oil pipers; Kuwaiti firms have been handed the contract - and they in turn have hired Filipino and South Asian workers. Iraqis are strangers in their own land.

The sidelining of Iraqis, both in creating a government and in running economic affairs, is pushing hatred of everything American to new heights. This weekend, a new Iraqi resistance group, Iraqi National Front of Fedayeen, said they had nothing to do with Saddam or his cronies, and everything to do with killing Americans. They promised to send at least one U.S. body bag a day back home. A country that had no ill will to Americans now despises the very word.

No wonder the U.S. is seeking an international police force.

At press time, 193 U.S. military personnel had been killed. The British military casualty toll came in at 37.


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Commercial Scoop User? Help Scoop Survive (and Thrive!)

The ScoopPro licensing terms require that commercial users of pay a reasonable fee in order to access the Scoop site so that this same information remains free and accessible to the wider public regardless of their disposable income. More>>

Joseph Cederwall: Building a Community Newsroom

A combination of new technology, ideas, institutions and business models and a renewed energy and commitment by the Scoop team, means Scoop aims to be at the forefront of the development of this renaissance that we term ‘News 3.0’. More>>


Scoop 3.0: Saving The News

Scoop Co-Founder Alastair Thompson - One of the saddest aspects of the decline of the news industry, not just here in NZ - but everywhere, is that it often seems invisible, in large part because news is a confidence business... More>>


UK Cabinet Backs Deal: Gordon Campbell On The Latest Roll Of The Brexit Dice

Brexit has left the British public looking like a nation of Wellington bus commuters. In both cases, the unholy mess bears no resemblance to what people were promised or the spin being used to justify it. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Democratic Leadership And Trump

On the big picture, the poll predictions were dead right. In the end, the Democratic Party won a clear victory in the House, and lost as expected in the Senate, where it had been defending at least 10 seats in regions that had voted heavily for Trump in 2016. More>>