Thursday, January 31, 2008

Republicans Need To Admit It .....

.... the Iraq war has caused genocide, with the Americans playing a pivotal role. Juan Cole:

A new professional poll carried out by a British firm in Iraq concludes that excess deaths from violence since March 19, 2003 through summer 2007 came to just over 1 million. Note that excess deaths from violence do not necessarily imply that they are directly war-related. Thus, murders of a criminal sort, tribal feuding, and so forth would be included. Since Bush interfered with the establishment of a strong new government after his invasion, he promoted the sort of insecurity that permitted high rates of violence, whether political, criminal or war-related. This poll tracks with the findings of the studies of Gilbert Burnham and Les Roberts, published in the Lancet and disputes lower numbers found by a recent WHO study (which, however, only ran through June 2006 and was limited solely to civilians--this British study goes to 2007 and seems to include everyone.)

The British findings are also consistent with estimates of between 1 million and 2 million widows in Iraq. These widows, many of them young, face extreme poverty without a breadwinner. As the Iraqi street has been captured by religious parties and militias, gender segregation and female seclusion have increased, which prevents single young women from going out to work in mixed-gender settings like stores and workshops. In short, Iraq is being Talibanized by Bush's war.
I watched a PBS Frontline last night on the war in Afghanistan/Pakistan. If you can catch it on rerun, it's a good catch (or you can go to the above link and watch it online). The short version of the report is that Musharraf is corrupt by necessity, the U.S. is routinely getting punked in the area by everyone, the Taliban and al Qaeda are growing in influence/power, and there's really not a damned thing the U.S. can do about it short of getting involved in a Soviet type war in the Khyber Pass region.

Unless and until the U.S. can win the hearts and minds of the Arab/Persian/Muslim world, the war on terror is lost.

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