Friday, June 17, 2005
Any idea how long a 'last throe' lasts for?
(Please finish all food before continuing)
Insurgents have taken over much of the Iraqi city of Ramadi and used it to launch attacks against US forces while terrorising the population with public beheadings.Or have they just figured out how to use the explosives from al-Qaqaa. You do remember the lose of 350 tonnes of RDX and HMX during the rush to Baghdad?
A huge bomb killed five American marines yesterday and showered body parts on to rooftops, fuelling suspicion that armour-piercing technology is being developed and tested in Ramadi.
US troops recovered the remains and withdrew to their base outside the Arab Sunni stronghold, leaving masked gunmen to erect checkpoints and carry out what residents said was the latest of many executions.
A man described as an Egyptian spy was beheaded and his body dumped on a busy shopping street. Warned by the killers to leave it for five days, shoppers pretended not to notice the figure in the brown robe, its head resting on its back.
Four days ago two suspected Shia militiamen were beheaded in the marketplace in full view of traders, said a senior police officer who asked not to be identified. Two boys played football with one of the heads, he added.
Residents said they were frightened of the insurgents but most dreaded a US-led offensive similar to that which flattened Falluja. They said the rebels were Iraqi Sunnis, not foreign Islamist radicals.
Ok, this really sucks, but that is not my point. What is truly troubling about this madness is how all those in charge can think to do is hide their head in the sand. From The Whitehouse,via E&P, Terry Moran vs. Scott McClellan on 'Last Throes' of Insurgency in Iraq:
Q Scott, is the insurgency in Iraq in its 'last throes'?
McCLELLAN: Terry, you have a desperate group of terrorists in Iraq that are doing everything they can to try to derail the transition to democracy. The Iraqi people have made it clear that they want a free and democratic and peaceful future. And that's why we're doing everything we can, along with other countries, to support the Iraqi people as they move forward….
Q But the insurgency is in its last throes?
McCLELLAN: The Vice President talked about that the other day -- you have a desperate group of terrorists who recognize how high the stakes are in Iraq. A free Iraq will be a significant blow to their ambitions.
Q But they're killing more Americans, they're killing more Iraqis. That's the last throes?
McCLELLAN: Innocent -- I say innocent civilians. And it doesn't take a lot of people to cause mass damage when you're willing to strap a bomb onto yourself, get in a car and go and attack innocent civilians. That's the kind of people that we're dealing with. That's what I say when we're talking about a determined enemy.
Q Right. What is the evidence that the insurgency is in its last throes?
McCLELLAN: I think I just explained to you the desperation of terrorists and their tactics.
Q What's the evidence on the ground that it's being extinguished?
McCLELLAN: Terry, we're making great progress to defeat the terrorist and regime elements. You're seeing Iraqis now playing more of a role in addressing the security threats that they face. They're working side by side with our coalition forces. They're working on their own. There are a lot of special forces in Iraq that are taking the battle to the enemy in Iraq. And so this is a period when they are in a desperate mode.
Q Well, I'm just wondering what the metric is for measuring the defeat of the insurgency.
McCLELLAN: Well, you can go back and look at the Vice President's remarks. I think he talked about it.
Q Yes. Is there any idea how long a 'last throe' lasts for?
McCLELLAN: Go ahead, Steve....
Video here at Crooks & Liars.
Looking to the top, all we can see the President deciding needs to be done is convince the home audience that all is fine.
From CNN, Bush shifts focus to Iraq
Facing growing pressure to bring troops home from Iraq, President Bush is launching a public relations campaign to try to calm anxieties about the war.
The president also plans a series of radio addresses and appearances outside Washington.
He has his work cut out for him
An Associated Press-Ipsos poll this month found just 41 percent of adults supported his handling of the Iraq war -- an all-time low.
Gallup poll released Monday found that six in 10 Americans say they think the United States should withdraw some or all of its troops from Iraq.