Monday, May 30, 2005

Another old picture of Mosul

I found this picture in the Encyclopedia of the Orient.
It show a side of the city facing the Tigris river. I like this picture because the house in the lower right of the image, the one with two floors, looks like the house where I was born. May be it is the very same house.
At the seasons of flood, the lower floor get filled of water. But at summer, it feels nice and cool.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Suicide bombs

There are increasing incidents of explosion every where in Iraq. We usually heard that it was a suicide bomb by a terrorist aiming to kill innocent Iraqis!!!
At the start we used to believe that story. But when think about it logically, we find it unbelievable. Why a person who have a goal to kick the occupiers out of his own country, did hurt his own citizens leaving the occupiers safe.
One of the Iraqi bloggers write some thing worth reading:
"One of the larger blasts was in an area called Ma'moun, which is a middle class area located in west Baghdad. It’s a relatively calm residential area with shops that provide the basics and a bit more. It happened in the morning, as the shops were opening up for their daily business and it occurred right in front of a butchers shop. Immediately after, we heard that a man living in a house in front of the blast site was hauled off by the Americans because it was said that after the bomb went off, he sniped an Iraqi National Guardsman.

I didn’t think much about the story- nothing about it stood out: an explosion and a sniper- hardly an anomaly. The interesting news started circulating a couple of days later. People from the area claim that the man was taken away not because he shot anyone, but because he knew too much about the bomb. Rumor has it that he saw an American patrol passing through the area and pausing at the bomb site minutes before the explosion. Soon after they drove away, the bomb went off and chaos ensued. He ran out of his house screaming to the neighbors and bystanders that the Americans had either planted the bomb or seen the bomb and done nothing about it. He was promptly taken away.

The bombs are mysterious. Some of them explode in the midst of National Guard and near American troops or Iraqi Police and others explode near mosques, churches, and shops or in the middle of sougs. One thing that surprises us about the news reports of these bombs is that they are inevitably linked to suicide bombers. The reality is that some of these bombs are not suicide bombs- they are car bombs that are either being remotely detonated or maybe time bombs. All we know is that the techniques differ and apparently so do the intentions. Some will tell you they are resistance. Some say Chalabi and his thugs are responsible for a number of them. Others blame Iran and the SCIRI militia Badir.

In any case, they are terrifying. If you're close enough, the first sound is a that of an earsplitting blast and the sounds that follow are of a rain of glass, shrapnel and other sharp things. Then the wails begin- the shrill mechanical wails of an occasional ambulance combined with the wail of car alarms from neighboring vehicles… and finally the wail of people trying to sort out their dead and dying from the debris."

This with similar accidents of explosions in areas where it is almost impossible for the resistance to reach and plant their roadside bombs, make one believe in the assumption that there are other hands which did those terrorism for other purposes than to resist the occupation.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

A micro version of Falluja

There is a fight now in another city in Iraq, Al-Qaim situated near the Iraqi-Syrian border. it seems to me that the story of Falluja being repeated again.
"There is a humanitarian crisis in Qaim from the fighting. There are 1,300 displaced families (approximately 80,000 people) from Qaim and the hospital there was destroyed amidst fighting on 8 May between resistance fighters and locals. On the 9th there was no electricity or water in Qaim and the surrounding areas and schools were closed. On the 11th US warplanes continued to bomb Obeidy and other nearby locations."

The complete story can be found here at this URL:

Friday, May 13, 2005

Giant Spider

I found this picture in an Arabic site, for a giant spiders in the Iraqi desert.
I really don't know is it real..? or not.
I have heared a rumer about giant spiders attacking American soldier, but I thought it was just a propaganda. If this picture is real, that means the rumer was correct.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The old city of Mosul

This a picture of the old city of Mosul.
There are two famous structure appeared here, the bowed minaret of the great Mosque in Mosul and the clock's church, together with multiple smallmosques and churches.

This picture has been taken many years ago. The city has been changed alot since then.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Letting in the Draft?

I found this article by chance, I want you read it, and your opinion about it.

by Tom Engelhardt April 27, 2005

"An overstretched military? You bet. Things going terribly in Iraq? No kidding. Why only yesterday, Jill Carroll and Dan Murphy of the Christian Science Monitor reminded us that, with 140,000 troops (and untold numbers of mercenaries) in Iraq, the Americans can't defend a crucial six-mile stretch of highway between the two lodestars of the American occupation -- Baghdad International Airport, a vast, fortified military encampment, and the Green Zone in the heart of the capital, another vast, fortified encampment. Carroll and Murphy write:

"The danger of the airport road also speaks to the wider problem of securing a country in the face of a dispersed and committed insurgency blended within the civilian population. Millions of cars traverse Baghdad's roads every day, and just a handful of them are carrying suicide bombers. For the Iraqi government and US forces, it's a needle-in-the-haystack problem with few practical solutions. There is limited US military manpower for adding checkpoints, but even if it was logistically possible, stopping every car on Baghdad's roads would bring the city to a grinding halt and make the airport journey even longer than it is now... The airport road is a direct link to the US headquarters in the secured Green Zone. But rather than risk the road, US diplomats fly by helicopter from the airport to the Green Zone."

As Patrick Cockburn of the British Independent commented last week, the inability to stop attacks along this stretch of highway has "become a symbol of the failure of the US in Iraq. Heavily armoured US patrols, prone to open fire unpredictably, are regarded as being as dangerous as the insurgents." On this highway, in the last week, five foreign "contractors" and the young aid worker Marla Ruzicka all died and others were wounded. The Americans undoubtedly dream of bringing in Iraqi troops, sooner rather than later, to help with the security task. Unfortunately, these highly touted, newly trained troops have evidently been deserting their posts in significant numbers in embattled parts of the country. "On the Syrian border, US troops in the Sunni city of Husaybah report mass desertions," writes Oliver Poole of the British Telegraph.

"An Iraqi unit that had once grown to 400 troops now numbers a few dozen who are 'holed up' inside a local phosphate plant. Major John Reed, of the 2nd Marine Regiment, said: 'They will claim that they are ready to come back and fight but there are no more than 30 of them on duty on any given day and they are completely ineffective.'"

In the last months, the Americans (as happened in the latter part of the Vietnam War) have also hunkered down in their bases, attempting to reduce casualties, among other things. In response, the insurgents have recently been launching more sophisticated operations, including, for the first time, serious attacks on isolated bases.

In the meantime, Baghdad continues to be an occupied city -- even at the level of symbolism. A report, translated from the Arabic and appearing at Watching America, an interesting new site featuring pieces about the U.S. from around the world, states:

"Iraq's new president has said he will not reside in the Presidential Palace, which for many Iraqis is a symbol of the country's sovereignty. Jalal Talabani said that the interim government has agreed to rent the palace to the Americans for two years. The presidential complex on the banks of the Tigris River is a maze of palaces, green lawns and orchards... President Talabani said that the Americans 'might' evacuate the palace when the lease expires."

Sovereignty anyone? In order to gain legitimacy, the Iraqis who were elected on January 30th would need to put some real distance between themselves and the American occupiers. However, as Middle Eastern expert Robert Dreyfuss comments in a canny piece at, "doing so... is impossible, since the newly elected regime wouldn't last a week without the protection of U.S. forces." In any case, the new government, such as it is, will be a familiar one. "[V]irtually all of its leading actors," Dreyfuss comments, "are retreads from the IGC, which was appointed by L. Paul Bremer, and from Ahmed Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress, the exile-dominated coalition that included Chalabi, Talabani, Abdel Aziz Hakim of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, and other officials and members of the just-elected National Assembly."

To the frustration of the Bush administration, the Iraqis have proved incapable for almost two months of forming a government, in part because of the nature of Article 38 of the "interim constitution" that Bush officials so cleverly imposed upon them, as Justin Raimondo, columnist for pointed out recently. And, of course, they too must meet inside the Green Zone where, Rory Carroll of the Guardian observes, "the 10,000 Iraqis who also live in the zone need passes to enter and must negotiate several checkpoints, as if they are in quarantine." Even the legislators are not immune from the indignities of occupation. As Carroll reports:

"Last week an assembly member named Fattah al-Sheikh said he was roughed up and humiliated by US troops on his way in. One allegedly grabbed him by the throat, another handcuffed him, and a third kicked his car. 'I was dragged to the ground,' he told parliament, weeping. 'What happened to me represents an insult to the whole national assembly that was elected by the Iraqi people. This shows that the democracy we are enjoying is fake.'"

Juan Cole offered the following on this incident: "[It] will seem minor to most Americans and few will see this Reuters photograph [of the legislator wiping away his tears] reprinted from al-Hayat... But such an incident is a serious affront to national honor, and Iraqi male politicians don't often weep." Naturally, Brigadier General Karl Horst of the 3rd infantry division "expressed regret" and promised "a thorough investigation"; but we've just seen, in the case of kidnapped Italian journalist Guiliana Sgrena and Nicola Calipari, the agent who died on the Baghdad Airport road after rescuing her, how such investigations generally turn out -- even when those who have suffered at American hands are citizens of the administration's second closest ally, Italy, with its government in desperate shape and its deployment in Iraq at stake.

This seems to be more or less the state of things -- impunity and quiet desperation -- as the Bush administration tries to keep the world it dreamed of dominating under some kind of control; and yet, as Michael Schwartz has made clear, it faces a daunting task simply keeping boots on the ground in Iraq. By the way, General Eric Shinseki's prewar comments -- which more or less got him laughed out of Washington by the neocons -- that we would need "several hundred thousand troops" to succeed in a post-war, occupied Iraq have often been quoted by critics, who invariably point out how right he was. I've never, however, seen anyone explain where exactly those 200,000-300,000 extra troops were going to come from. What we can now see is that, before the invasion of Iraq ever began, the Pentagon had already traded in those boots-on-the-ground for its high-tech army. (This is why, as the Boston Globe reported recently, ill-prepared Air Force and Navy personnel find themselves assigned to duties like "protecting supply convoys traveling along Iraq's violent roadways" -- and dying.)

It wasn't simply that Rumsfeld was wrong in his decision. After all, to do otherwise than he did, he would have had to strip the empire of troops. I suspect, given the numbers, that he had little choice -- of course, he and his cronies also believed in those strewn flowers and that "cakewalk" -- and that Shinseki's "several hundred thousand" statement was his way of saying exactly what they didn't want to hear: Don't do it, guys! So much for retrospect. As for the future, the Bush administration, backed into a military corner, may turn its thoughts to a future draft."

This is one of many articles about the war in iraq I found in this site.
The name of the site is Iraq Watch
Iraq Watch is a ZNet subsite providing alternative news and analysis of past, present and ongoing events, conflicts and crises in Iraq.

You can find it at ""