Saturday, February 04, 2006

This happened to me.

The New York Time web journal Published the story of the American soldier who shot to kill me.
It is a real story happened to me at the first day following the holiday of the Eid, as I was in my way home.

"A cowboy on his steel horse shot at me.

This Happened to Me


The four days of the Eid al-Adha holiday were calm and peaceful – no explosions, no roadside bombs, no clashes in the streets. But all that changed on Saturday, January 14th, the first day after the holiday.
I was driving home from my clinic around 5:15 p.m., the time I usually return home, because it's not safe to be out past sunset. I was 50 meters away from my house – which is located on a service road parallel to a main street. The street and the service road are separated by a curb two meters wide.
While I was driving slowly on the service road, an American patrol, which consisted of three armored-car Strykers, passed by on the main street, moving in the same direction as I was. When the first Stryker passed me, a soldier riding on top fired two shots in my direction. One bullet came in through the half-opened driver's window and hit the window of the opposite door, smashing it to pieces. Thank God, somehow it missed me.
I stopped the car and got out, thinking that the soldiers might stop and explain why they had shot at me. But they didn't. They kept on driving. There were no other people in the vicinity, except a neighbor at a shop nearby, who saw the whole thing. The next morning I went to replace the broken window. Nearly every person I met in the repair shop had a similar tale to tell.
I wonder now, if the shot had had killed me, how would the troops have explained it? Would I have become a terrorist killed while trying to explode himself near an American patrol? Or perhaps I would only be collateral damage, killed while soldiers chased a terrorist? Or maybe a terrorist had killed me, and the Americans chased him, though he managed to escape.
I will leave you to decide. In the chaos of this occupation, innocents are killed by all sides. But don’t we have the right to hate the people who are now occupying our country. Shall we celebrate the freedom and democracy brought to us by the occupation in spite of the perils our citizens face?
Questions need answers. Who will answer them?

79 comments:

Albatroz said...

I never thought that one day I woiuld see Americans as the most despicable people on Earth. I lived in the US as an exchange student and worked many years for American companies. I would absolutely refuse now to set foot on that cursed land. Sooner or later we will have to put a stop to their criminal actions which put all of us at risk. I hope Iraqi insurgents are the first step towards that goal.

Indigo said...

If I were an Iraqi who had had this experience, I would hate the Americans (if I did not already do so). The US military will be despised forever for behaving as if they were in a "shooting gallery" at a local fair back home. I can only assume that the American soldiers receive such poor quality training that they are not made aware of the obligations towards ordinary people (under international law, eg the Geneva Convention) of an occupier.

The Americans are behaving illegally in Iraq - stealing millions of dollars of reconstruction money and killing people randomly. Adding to the 32,000 ordinary Iraqis killed since the invasion. I am very, very angry about the invasion of Iraq and the consequences; and very, very with the Americans who wring their hands in affected concern but won't do anything to hold their leaders to account. America cannot teach any of us about "freedom" and "democracy".

Indigo said...

To albatroz: I never thought that one day I would see Americans as the most despicable people on Earth. ... I would absolutely refuse now to set foot on that cursed land.

You have put into words exactly what I feel, too.

B Will Derd said...

BTW did you read my post in the NYT web journal, about the soldier who shot me? it is a real story, happened to me.
If you did told me your opinion please.


TT, thanks for posting this, I have been searching to find it on a non-pay basis or even some discussion of it.

My opinion? Thankfully, you were not injured. But to be more accurate, he shot in your direction, so 'cowboy...who shot me', and 'American soldier who shot to kill me' are overstatements, to say the least. From the range you described, and he most likely was using a 50 caliber machine gun, had he been shooting to kill you you would not be telling the story. Sounds like he fired--carelessly- as a warning for you to turn off the road or to disable your car. Was he justified in shooting in your direction and coming so close? I don't know, but from your point of view, obviously not.

I'm sure you have seen Arab 'news' reports and jihadi sites which feature videos of cars just like yours driving into or alongside US convoys and exploding in glory. So did the soldier who fired view you as a possible threat from where he stood and fired warning shots (possibly carelessly)? A lone car who may have been viewed as driving slowly so that the convoy would come alongside--that is a tough situation for all involved. Did they blow horns or signal to you in anyway prior to firing? Did you have an opportunity to turn off the road and choose not to? That they did not stop is hardly surprising if they thought you were possibly part of a threat.

Did you contact the command and report the incident or request restitution for the broken window? If this was truly as you viewed it, you should bring it to their attention and demand answers from them. Maybe you could contribute to a lessening of such incidents by talking with them. Such things do not contribute to their goal of completeing the mission and coming home, they might appreciate your viewpoint. But if you choose to set yourself up as their enemy, well.....there are consequences when you have people in your city doing violence to Iraqi and American armed forces--things like this incident you reported. Incidents like this are rare in the regions to your north becasue the residnts do not allow the insurgency to operate among them.

So far as the rest of it, No, you don't have to celebrate anything you don't want to celebrate and hate whom you want--that is the point. You also get to chose to oppose the Coalition and Iraqi forces that are the target of your 'Resistance', but your 'heroes' activities are what leads to an atmosphere where a man like yourself in a car alongside a convoy is viewed as a possible deadly threat. I continue to be bewildered at the line of reasoning which seems to lead you to think that support for those who do violence against coalition forces and Iraqis alike is going to lead to anything you want for your family or country. I could understand it if after an Iraqi governemnt is elected and formed, American forces remain after your democratic government demands they leave-I would even be able to respect it on some level-but until then, why not work to put Iraq into some semblance of order?

Here is a link to a recent Washington Post article on the current situation in Mosul--if you have the time, please look it over and tell us if it in any way resembles the situation you see in Mosul.
Mosul Makes Gains

Indigo said...

b will derd said: Did you contact the command and report the incident or request restitution for the broken window? ... you should bring it to their attention and demand answers from them.

A lot of Americans seem to think that Iraq is America-with-camels. It doesn't seem to matter how many reports of infiltrated police, corrupt soldiers, people taken away by US soldiers and held without access to lawyers or families, etc etc, some Americans just don't believe how insecure life is for ordinary Iraqis under American occupation.

And b will derd's attempt to justify wild shooting of civilians by American troops is just disgusting. Really disgusting.

B Will Derd said...

Well, we just differ. Personally, I find disgusting those who support and defend the insurgency, most of whom kill/destroy indiscriminately and create the atmosphere that leads to such incidents. To each his own.

I would like to hear the point of view of the soldier who fired the two rounds and see what he thought at the time. I'd like to know what preceded it and if TT may have missed or misinterpreted some signals to stop or turn or do something other than what he did-- not to blame him, but to understand why it happened. Is it true that all of the vehicles have signs instructing all drivers to maintain distance or risk being fired upon? Did TT make an effort to maintain that distance so he would not be viewed as a possible threat? Would he do things differently if in that same situation again, or does he honestly believe that he was fired upon as a form of entertainment and the circumstances are irrelevant?

It is pretty likely the soldier had a completely different interpretation of the circumstances and his experiences in similar situations might have had something to do with that. Similar circumstances that might have lead to deaths of comrades and civiians alike. Maybe he thought he had to make a split second decision and made a mistake. Maybe he was acting on standard orders--if a lone car drives alongside a convoy and does to make an effort to turn away, assume it is a threat.

Or, we can just assume the worst and label him a mindless bloodthirsty demon along with all the rest, if that level of thought is more suited to your agenda.

Anonymous said...

I would imagine the soldier was shooting warning shots. I find it difficult to believe that you do not put yourselves in the shoes of the Americans who risk their lives everyday in Iraq. Do you think they can tell terrorists and regular Iraqis apart? Americans want to go home in one piece too you know. When I hear comments such as these, the word ungrateful keeps coming to mind. It's too bad Iraq is full of nutjobs wanting to blow themselves up; otherwise, this war would have had a happy ending a long time ago.

sur said...

while I am shocked and upset greatly that you were shot at, I do hve to agree with Derd...I dont know if a commplaint to the Army would do anything. I find it hard to believe that you would loose anything but time if you were to make such a complaint. And again, men, particularly young men, when frightened, will do things quickly and without much thought.
I thank god that you were unharmed.

Anonymous said...

"...not to blame him, but to understand why it happened."

Yeah, I see your point. Pretty cool. And I would like to ask Hitler why he put Poles and Jews and Insurgents into the ovens. Maybe he mixed-up his bread factory and his hospital. Maybe his cattle wagons were supposed to have ingredients for bread and his people misunderstood his real intentions. I would like to know Hitler's view.

"...not to blame him, but to understand why it happened."

madtom said...

Well Will beet me to it, as I was going to say just about the same thing about the atmosphere that the "insurgents" create with their terrorist tactics. Like using civilian cars as military weapons.
Then all civilian cars become military targets by default.

Funny how just to the north you don't see this sort of thing, or the exudes of the intelligencia, but in fact the opposite phenomena. Maybe it has something to do with the mountain air just to the north, or maybe not.

Claude Dorsel said...

I found this, which seems to hit the nail in the head regarding the basic misperceptions between the US and the rest of the world:

The basic idea that the US has a historic duty to bring progress, democracy and enlightenment at the barrel of a gun seems about as firmly ingrained in the American mindset as its record of doing the opposite in Central and South America and south-east Asia is in American history. Nothing that has happened in Iraq seems to have shifted that perception in the US.

http://www.teambio.org/2006/02/an-open-letter-to-bubba/

Indigo said...

A graphical representation of the 800 deaths in Iraq in January 2006. I feel pretty certain that the civilian deaths are understated.

Graphic from NYTimes

Truth teller said...

madtom

"Then all civilian cars become military targets by default."

I believe you are right! that is what we feel just now.

Jack Bennett said...

Dr. TT, I am glad you are alright.

You said: "In the chaos of this occupation, innocents are killed by all sides."

This is perhaps the ultimate truth. Iraq has become a battleground between American/Coalition forces and terrorists organized largelt from outside of Iraq. Innocent Iraqis are the ones suffering are caught in the middle and suffer most.

The questions you ask are impossible to answer but you are right they should be asked. I would wager that the soldier who shot at you is some young, barely trained kid who is so afraid for his own life he was just shooting anywhere he saw movement - even though there were no enemy combatants around. Thankfully you are ok but you are right to have bitterness and hatred even (though I think hatred never accomplishes anything). If a foreign army came into my country and acted like that, I would feel anger and resentment too.

But I don't know the answer - on one hand, over we have thousands of American casualities over in Iraq and will probably lose more. I wish they could all come home. But on the other hand, as an American, I feel that having made a mess in Iraq we have to fix it - at least until the present Iraqi Govt. feels the ING is capable of defending myself. I think we can both hope that the day when that comes is soon. I'm sure you know that many Americans (and not just the ones against the war) are tired of the war and just want to get our troops home.

Thankfully, at least what happened to you is recorded as part of the public record. Even if complaints to the US Army didn't work (and I would complain anyway, there are many good soldiers who are embarrassed at things like this) then people know what happened.

Take care of yourself and my best wishes to your family.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I hope the insurgents "win", so the Americans can come home and we can stop wasting our money and resources on a people destined to squander this opportunity...Iraq will be SOOO much better when there are no more Americans "occupying" the country. Anyone willing to put money on there not being a civil war if the Americans pull out? And you know who's gonna win that thing? Starts with an S and ends with a DR. Not good for truthteller, I'm afraid. Still, people tend to deserve the government that they get.

Bint Alshamsa said...

I suppose that since I am an American, I might not be the sort of person you want posting here but I just wanted to say a few things.

I will not sit here and play blame-the-victim simply because I also feel sympathy for those who are stuck fighting this rich man's war in your country. I am sorry that you experienced this. Just as those soldiers want to get home safely, I'm sure that you also have a family that wants you to be able to make it home without getting killed.

You asked the question about whether you have the right to hate those who are occupying your country. Well, I can not answer that for you. However, I do believe that love is a much superior emotion to and having hatred for others has never made me feel good nor is it anything that I think God approves of. I don't mean that you should be able to love someone who just tried to kill you. I just hope that you can find some way to concentrate on doing your very best to stay alive through all of this misery for the sake of all those you love. If you let hatred overwhelm you, it may only make it easier to get caught up in a situation that could be even worse than this one that you made it through.

I wish that the only people who were harmed by wars were the people who choose to start them. However, that has never been the way things work out. I am truly sorry that you had this happen to you and I hope that you don't have to experience it again. I am praying for everyone in your country right now.

Sincerely,
An American pacifist

Nader said...

Once upon a time in Iraq:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article11799.htm

Viva Iraq as victorious as ever, and long live the Iraqi resistance.

Albatroz said...

Some Americans are definitely nut cases! Trying to justify some idiot's actions on the basis of him wanting to go back home in one piece, forgetting that idiot - and all the other 150,000 idiots - came uninvited to Iraq, have killed and maimed thousands of innocent people, and will be responsible for Iraq turning into a teocracy as disgusting as Iran, could only come from other mindless Americans. Personnaly I hope the number of Americans killed in Iraq will reach a sufficiently high number for the American Imperial Army to go back home and remain in US soil for the next 50 years...

Anonymous said...

Tens of such stories have been taken place in Baghdad. Truly, I heard about them but didn´t watch them.
Allah preserved you.
I still remember a story my late father once told me when the british forces entered Mosul. Once the poor Mosullis walking along the street, which of course it wasn´t paved that time, and happened to see a british soldier, they used to go to the other side of the street. Once that pig finds a citizen walking before him he used to kick him out.
This story gives me an alert how to deal with the new pigs.

Jamikhozam2000@yahoo.com

Indigo said...

Iraqi voices are drowned out in a blizzard of occupiers' spin, by Sami Ramadani (a political exile from Saddam's regime and now a senior lecturer at London Metropolitan University), Wed 8 Feb 2006. Published in the Guardian, a left-leaning and influential UK newspaper.

Three years after invading Iraq, George Bush and Tony Blair are still dipping into the trough of deception and disinformation that launched the war: hailing non-existent progress, declaring sanctimonious satisfaction with sectarian elections and holding out the mirage of early withdrawal. In reality, the occupation and divide-and-rule tactics have spawned death squads, torture, kidnappings, chemical attacks, polluted water, depleted uranium, bombardment of civilians, probably more than 100,000 people dead and a relentless deterioration in Iraqis' daily lives. ... A few days ago, a large-scale opinion poll conducted by Maryland University showed that 87% of Iraqis (including 64% of Kurds) endorsed a demand for a timetabled withdrawal of the occupiers. The findings were mostly ignored by the British media.

Occam said...

You Americans want to fix what you have done?

Try this simple step-by-step solution:
1. Apologise
2. Leave
3. Compensate
4. Bring War Criminals To Justice (Clue: Start with Bush and Clinton and work down)

Simple really.

While you are doing that you could try educating yourselves into the way the world works outside of holywood films and the victor's versions of history.

An Italian. said...

Thanks God you are alive and able to tell what happened, Truth Teller!

I agree completely with Albatroz's last post.

Lynnette in Minnesota said...

I wasn't going to come back here. A wise man once said that some arguments are pointless. However, I think that someone needs to give a voice to our soldiers thoughts on incidents like this. This is pertaining to an incident similar to TT's only from a different point of view.

"Before I start this entry, a brief correction and a thought. In one of my last entries I noted that my gunner came within seconds of opening fire on a truck full of Iraqi Police. I discovered yesterday that it wasn’t a truck full of IPs. It was actually a car with a family of three inside. I attribute my misinformation to the never ending Army rumor mill and our chronic communication issues.

My gunner and I had a conversation over dinner about the how that situation could have unfolded. It would have been one thing to shoot up a truck of Iraqi Police; they’ve at least volunteered to put themselves in harm’s way. Getting shot is a risk they take. Don’t get me wrong, the last thing I want to do is shoot up the wrong people, even if some of them are corrupt. But a family? Imagine being responsible for the deaths of a mother, father, and a child. I don’t know how I’d be able to live with myself. I’m slowly finding that my gunner possesses a lot of the same humanitarian convictions that I do. It’s good to know there’s someone else out there who doesn’t trivialize an already played down term: “collateral damage.”

Like I noted in a previous entry, the whole experience has deprived me many hours of sleep. Every night the situation changes a little. What if my gunner had pulled the trigger? Earlier that day we had talked about switching gunning and driving duties for a few missions; what if I had been gunning that night? I don’t think I would have been as hesitant as he was. I probably would have pulled the trigger. God was definitely watching out for that family that night. He was looking out for us too.

Despite getting only three or four hours of sleep the night before in addition to being at the gym working out for almost three hours a day, I can’t sleep. I’m starting to think I need sleeping pills. And I think it’s totally ridiculous because I haven’t been shot at or blown up yet. My problems are nothing compared to some soldiers. The worst of my worries has been the constant state of fear I live in while driving, wondering if the next car to pass me is going to explode. Wondering if someone strapped with a bomb will blow himself up next to our truck while driving in the city. The latter of the two recently happened to another unit in our area."

Bruno said...

[willbderd] “Was he justified in shooting in your direction and coming so close? I don't know, but from your point of view, obviously not. […] But if you choose to set yourself up as their [US Army] enemy, well.....there are consequences when you have people in your city doing violence to Iraqi and American armed forces--things like this incident you reported.”

What Will is actually saying is that it’s OK for the US Army to randomly shoot civilians, because they might be ‘bad guys’. Fair enough … but why don’t you go chase down the ‘bad guys’ IN YOUR OWN DAMN COUNTRY, huh? Funny that the concept of killing civilians is acceptable as ‘consequences’ to Will when it is Americans killing Iraqis … but that he does not seem to get his tiny brain around the idea that invading and destroying a country also tends to have ‘consequences’.

In effect, what Will is saying is that he feels that the United States has the full right to invade and occupy any country it wishes – and that this does NOT constitute the US “setting itself up” as somebody’s enemy. If the nation that has been invaded resists – then THEY are the aggressors, and not the US Army!

How sick and twisted is that?

The truth is, Will, that by occupying Iraq, YOU have “set yourself up” a whole bunch of new enemies who otherwise would never have had any reason to fight you. Yet somehow you manage to make it sound like YOU are the poor, hard-done-by victim!

(Yeah, well, I’m sure that some members of the Einsatzgruppen may also have been really nice guys, and that they were actually acting only in self defence … )



[anonymous] “I find it difficult to believe that you do not put yourselves in the shoes of the Americans who risk their lives everyday in Iraq. […] When I hear comments such as these, the word ungrateful keeps coming to mind.”

This is yet another classic variation of the Will Derd argument. Oh, boo-hoo, the innocent US soldiers that nobody understands. Why, oh why, can’t the bloodthirsty, ungrateful Iraqis just have a little empathy and understand these paragons of virtue?

The real question is, to my mind, why can Americans not PUT THEMSELVES in Iraqi shoes, and understand the reasons why Iraqis fight? Then perhaps you would understand why 85% + of Iraqis want you OUT, and why about half think that killing US soldiers is a good idea. (Latest poll data)


[claude dorsal] “The basic idea that the US has a historic duty to bring progress, democracy and enlightenment at the barrel of a gun seems about as firmly ingrained in the American mindset as its record of doing the opposite in Central and South America and south-east Asia is in American history.”

Hear, hear! That needs repeating. Sometimes I wonder what the Americans think of all these anti-war and anti-US types scurrying about the web. So many of them! Do they ever wonder WHY? Or do they tell themselves – ah, it’s just jealousy – and keep marching on?


On the Kurds: Yes, “things up North” are a lot more peaceful. That’s because the Kurds think that through the US they are going to get an independent state. Of course, when the US sells them down the river in favour of the Turks, there will be hell to pay. You’ll see just why the Kurds have earned themselves a reputation for being hard cases, heh-heh.


An Italian, Albatroz, hello! It’s always good to see the supposed ‘other two halves’ of my alter ego. Italian, your email is coming, it’s a little slow, because my Italian is a lot more laboured than my English.

Bruno said...

Lynette, fair enough. I concede that US soldiers are under enormous stress. The point is though, WHO IS RESPONSIBLE for putting them in that position? The Resistance? No. Ultimately it is the government of the USA that has put them there and which bears responsibility for their condition, and for the consequences of their actions.

(Simply, the US ARmy is being used in a role that was never intended for it.)

Lynnette in Minnesota said...

There is one thing I forgot to say yesterday.

Albatroz,

"I would absolutely refuse now to set foot on that cursed land."

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Looking for anyone's perspective but especially interested in that of the Iraqi members of this blog:

1) Why is the focus only on the Americans, why is it that nobody in Iraq seems to be mad at the insurgents/terrorists/resistance (depending on your perspective) for killing thousands of innocent Iraqi men, women, and children?

2) Regardless of how you feel about the fact that the Americans invaded, they are there now, so what do you honestly think would happen if the Americans just up and left Iraq tomorrow, wouldn't Iraq implode into a Civil War, resulting in 10x the number of innocent deaths and casualties?

I'm looking for some sincere thoughts please, not ideological rants. Thank you...

Anonymous said...

Haven't visited this Blog for a while. Your story is very disturbing, Truthteller - presumably that bullet missed you by inches.
All very confusing. I thought a terrorist was someone who deliberately targetted innocent civilians. Isn't that exactly what this US soldier did? What is the difference between him shooting at a respectable doctor who is driving along breaking no law, and a mad fanatic shooting into a civilian crowd?
Oh, I see, he thought he might just possibly be under threat, even though the doctor wasn't even on the same road! So, BLAM!
Not a cowboy on a steel horse, Truthteller.
A coward on a steel horse.

Albatroz said...

Lynnette in Minnesota,

You are welcome. And don't call if and when you are caught by the Patriot Act for something you didn't do...

B Will Derd said...

Bruno---I guess I should be honored that one of such intellect and grasp or all things would dedicate so much effort into interpreting my words--yet, for some reason, that caravan just keeps on rolling, doesn't it? Keep howling, at least you will be doing something to distinguish yourself from a common turd.

I still find it a little ironic that on the one hand TT sees the resistance as honorable and the killing of US soldiers as a good thing, yet he whines when his car window gets blown out as a consequence of the insurgent tactic of driving bomb laden cars into US convoys. If you chose to stand around and cheer on the fight, expect to get a little on you--don't complain about it.

I remain curious about the details of TT's incident---did he see the signs on the convoy instructing all to stay away or be shot? Did he make any effort to turn off, or stop? Had he had a trunk load of explosives, could he have potentially done damge to the convoy from where he was driving (he says there was a 6-7 ft wide curb separating them)? Did he think it was OK to just keep going because he was so close to his home? Did he see any warnings before the shots were fired? Did the shots come from a mounted 50 caliber machine gun and does TT honestly think that he would be alive if the true intent of that soldier was to kill him? And if he really thought they shot to kill him as he says, why did he stop and get out expecting them to come back and have a conversation on the topic? Seems just a little contradictory, doesn't it? Questions need answers--who will answer them?

I have had some correspondence with two soldiers, one currently in Mosul the other recently returned, and I asked them about this scenario. Here is what they tell me: there are very large signs on all convoys saying in English and Arabic to keep distance from convoys or be shot--for very obvious reasons. Even without the signs, it is assumed that by now, everyone knows how things work when convoys are moving through. Those who do not stay away are viewed as a possible threat. Sirens, horns, lights, and gestures are the first warnings. If drivers ignore those, shots are fired (usually at windows). If that fails, they try to take out the engine of the car--then the driver if he hasn't taken those hints or if there isn't time for incremental steps because of what is judged to be clear aggression. They no longer shoot into the air because they are ignored, and bullets come down somewhere.-- a lot Iraqis fire shots into the air to commemorate things as common as successful bowel movements, a Bruno, if you will, and they are not given any more respect than that. But you shoot out a window, folks take notice and back off or stop. If they don't, then you figure you have a very likely problem. I recently read that a large number of hand held 'green' lasers are being sent to the country to be used as warning devices-apparently when they are directed on glas the light is defracted and is impossible not to notice-maybe those will help solve the problem.

Indigo said...

Lynnette in Minnesota and the other Bush-supporters here have to realise that in Iraq America is the enemy, the interlopers, the occupiers, the oppressors, the ones who are in breach of the international laws of human rights. It is the presence of the US that gives the suicide bombers a reason to operate in Iraq. Under Saddam, car bombs were unknown; as I understand it, most people - so long as they told Saddam what he wanted to hear about himself - led safe happy lives, able to meet friends in restaurants, attend college, go out in the evenings, worship at the mosque, tend the sick, teach children at school. Under Saddam, the streets were not full of sewerage, the water supply was predictable; and in Baghdad anyway, the electricity supply was 24/7.

The so-called American "liberators" have robbed Iraqis of all this, flattened cities, destroyed ancient ruins, shot entire families at check-points, stolen millions and millions of dollars of reconstruction money, and much, much more. America is hated and accursed, all over the world, and not just by Muslims.

Yet many more American soldiers will have to die before even their own countrymen and women realise how futile is the US presence in Iraq. I don't wish it but I can see that, as the US media is not telling the US people the rate at which their own young men and women are dying (or being sent home disabled, disfigured, irreparably damaged psychologically), the US people only believe what Bush tells them - which is all lies, all lies.

Anonymous said...

Well, I dunno.
Truthteller says, "I was driving along, minding my own business, and a US soldier nearly killed me for no good reason."
B will de Nerd says, "He had a good reason:
1)We are losing in Iraq.
2)We are losing so badly that after three years, our terrified cowardly troops can do no better than drive around shooting at innocent Iraqi motorists, more or less at random.
3)The rest of the world despises our brutal ineffective Army, and regards our nation as a greedy dishonest international bully.
4)Therefore Truthteller deserved to be shot at. It's all his fault."
Yup. Makes sense to me.

Albatroz said...

B Will Derd is particularly stupid and offensive, even for a common Bush supporter. But let's suppose that, in the good old days, Russians had invaded the US with the purpose of bringing the US into the more enlightened soviet system. How would B Will Derd have reacted? Realizing it was all for the good of the American people, would he have welcomed the invaders? Being as stupid as he is, would he have decided to resist?...

Truth teller said...

b will derd

"I remain curious about the details of TT's incident."

I am not surprised from your curiosity. Your questions indicate some thing to me!!.

"did he see the signs on the convoy instructing all to stay away or be shot?"

Those signs are usually at the rear of the last vehicle in convoy!! The one who shot at me was on the first vehicle, he was behind me!! shot at me while passing me. I think this is clear enough to answer this question.

"Did he make any effort to turn off, or stop?"

I was in a separate road, the street where they were is two lane, 60 meters wide, seperated from mine by a 6-7 ft wide curb, if I did stop, I didn't affect or threaten them in any way. Any way I was driving very slowly.

Had he had a trunk load of explosives, could he have potentially done damge to the convoy from where he was driving (he says there was a 6-7 ft wide curb separating them)?"

very genius question. the 6-7 ft curb separate the two roads, the distance between my car and thier, if they want to avoid me could be as far as 30 meters.

"Did he think it was OK to just keep going because he was so close to his home?"

You are talking about a man who faced American convoys more than five times a day in his way to/from the hospital/clinic. We know how rude they are and we do our best to avoid contact with them.

"Did he see any warnings before the shots were fired? Did the shots come from a mounted 50 caliber machine gun and does TT honestly think that he would be alive if the true intent of that soldier was to kill him?"

No warning signs or at least I didn't see any. The shots came from small caliber weapon I guess as the sign of the round on the opposite wall is small. I honestly think thet he was not willing to kill me, based on the fact he didn't shoot again when I stopped and get out of the car. but this is not an excuse to fire a bullets few cm away from me just for warning!!

"Questions need answers--who will answer them?"

I would. and I did answer them honestly. Although I think if you read the post in unbiased way you will find the answers to most of them.

strykerdad said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lynnette in Minnesota said...

Bruno,

"WHO IS RESPONSIBLE for putting them in that position?"

Those who plant roadside bombs, drive suicide vehicles into convoys and in general believe that the only way to get us to leave is to kill us.

Indigo,

"It is the presence of the US that gives the suicide bombers a reason to operate in Iraq."

So that is why they also blow up Iraqi police and civilians?

Anonymous,

"our terrified cowardly troops can do no better than drive around shooting at innocent Iraqi motorists,"

A man who knows no fear is either crazy or a fool. I would rather ride with that soldier any day of the week before getting into a vehicle with someone like you.

Indigo said...

TruthTeller, I admire your dignity and restraint.

Right-wing Americans appear to be in major denial. It is perhaps not too much to say that today America is a dictatorship: the President has absolute power to sacrifice generations of his own people (and those of the nations the US invades) to an unending war "on terror", anywhere in the world, a "war" so ill-defined that no one is allowed to know what "victory" looks like. (Except those fanatics who think that it is the eradication of Islam, which is actually impossible given that a quarter of the world's population are Moslims.)

Bruno said...

[will b derd] “I guess I should be honored that one of such intellect and grasp or all things would dedicate so much effort into interpreting my words […] ”

Gee, I dunno if I’d put it quite like that. Of course, compared to you (a true example of faeces vulgaris) most people are intellectual giants … thus your comments may be understandable, I suppose.

[will b derd] “ If you chose to stand around and cheer on the fight, expect to get a little on you--don't complain about it. ”

I see. Sort of the way Americans cheered on the Mujahideen in Afghanistan against the Soviets, and then acted all upset when the blowback came home on 9-11?

[will b derd] “[…] yet he [TT] whines when his car window gets blown out as a consequence of the insurgent tactic of driving bomb laden cars into US convoys.”

To state it more accurately: he complains about being a victim of the fighting initiated by the US when it decided to invade Iraq on false pretexts. But hey, thanks for the empathy, Will. Nothing like blaming the victim to make yourself feel better, is there?

[will b derd] “[…] a lot Iraqis fire shots into the air to commemorate things as common as successful bowel movements […] ”

Ah, more respect and cultural sensitivity from the “liberators”. Is it any wonder that events like Abu Ghraib happened?



[Albatroz] “But let's suppose that, in the good old days, Russians had invaded the US with the purpose of bringing the US into the more enlightened soviet system. How would B Will Derd have reacted?”

I’m guessing that the odds are he would have fought them.

And … surprise … I would have cheered HIM on, nauseating though he be.

B Will Derd said...

TT--I accidentally used my old screename on my last comment here--the autofill utility got me somehow. As I explained, I no longer use that screename because another uses it elswhere and a few have confused me with him and contacted me inquiring about his injured soldier son-- one has contacted him to criticize him for my 'stupidity'. To avoid confusion and misunderstnadings, I am going to delete the SD commnent and copy it here for you to post if you want, or not. Thanks.


alby--old dependable. If you think that an invasion of America by the former Communist Russia would be comparable to the American invasion of Saddam's Iraq---well, what's the point in arguing with you about that or taking offense at your evaluation of me? I could never match your insight or intellect. Thank you and your alter-ego Bruno for pointing that out so clearly.

TT--thank you for the further details and admitting that your statements that: first, you were shot (probably just a language thing)--and second, that the soldier shot to kill--were not accurate reflections of what happened. But, I still appreciate your account that I do not doubt you have told as honestly as you can. So we are back to the original observation that this most likely was a careless act on the part of the soldier if all the rest of your account is taken at face value without consideration of how the circumstances may have looked to the soldier involved. Did you report it at the time so someone more responsible could have looked into it or do you think that such actions are acceptable to the US command in Mosul and reporting it would be pointless? Would you do anything differently if the situation occurs again or were you helpless to do anything to have avoided it? I think that is important since it might give some insight into how it appeared from the hatch of the Styker---The fact you were driving slowly allowing the convoy to come alongside, alone on a empty street, and didn't speed up or turn off despite signals you may not have seen might help explain what happened?

Through this post you are painting the US forces as randomly shooting and wantonly killing---motivated by what in your opinion? Are they just entertaining themselves or are they acting on orders to accomplish some hidden mission? Of course in your last comment you say you deal with convoys 5 times a day, is this the first time you have been fired upon or witnessed others being fired upon? Just how common are these events in your experience? I am sceptical in part because I do not see the motivation--please help me out if you can with your opinion.

You seem to place a lot of emphasis on my biases. Clearly I have them and don't apologize for siding with US troops when there is any reason to do so. But I ask you: When reading this story so critical of US actions, should the reader not take into account your stated opinion that the killers of US soldiers are mujahadeen who you support (on an ideological level at least)? Isn't that a pretty clear indication of bias on your part and relevant to the story you tell and the way you tell it--In the NYT no less?

Albatroz said...

B Will Derd,

I know I was rude to you, but your patronizing attitude towards TT is so infuriating that I had to question your intellectual capacity. So poor old TT is so dumb that he doesn't know whether his actions might have been provocative! American soldiers are so pure that it is impossible to believe that any of them might have shot at TT just because he didn't like rag-heads! The documented cases of torture against Iraqis were certainly not the action of good old American soldiers! Do you really believe in all that crap that you write?... My God! I am beginning to understand how supposedly civilized and intelligent Germans could be followers of Adolf Hitler...

Anonymous said...

I am of a like mind that the US should never have invaded Iraq in the first place. Saddam was just a good excuse for Bush, Cheney, and Rummy to go for a land grab with its implications for oil and 'free' Iraq.

I am frustrated and angry that so many Americans think their government had the right to invade a sovereign country and think we'd be welcomed as heroes and not occupiers.

B Will Derd said...

Alby, thanks for the clarification. Did you just credit me with 'supposed intelligence and civilized nature'? I like to think that when the more rabid anti-Americans begin to 'say what I really mean and think', it is because I am making far too much sense for my words to be allowed to speak for themselves. So no offense taken.

I only sought more information, and I got it. We find it was not exactly as it was portrayed originally through that, didn't we? Any fair minded person could see how what happened could be explained as other than a bloodthirsty soldier hunting 'ragheads'. We all have our biases, don't we? We also learned that Iraqis must have the widest two lane roads in the 'civilized' world--two lane 60 meters wide? They must pack lunches before crossing the street.

I acknowledge that there are some bad soldiers--I'm not a complete idiot. But I think they are a tiny minority so that the most likely explanation for this incident is not that it involved a wanton killer (TT admitted as much), but someone who may have overreacted to the circumstances. On the other hand, I think it is also likely that same soldier could find himself in the exact same circumstances and die or see his comrades die at the hands of one of TT's 'mujahadeen' because he did not act. No matter what you may think to the rightness of their being there, if you are fair you have to acknowldege that. TT has provided a link to a site celebrating such things along with educational materials like this click here ... with reference materials like this, how could one dare to question the purity of his motives?
I suppose it does come across as patronizing if you choose to read it that way. It could be worse. Actually, far from my thinking he is dumb, I think TT knows exactly what he is doing and has from the beginning. If you choose to believe everything the Truthteller tells without any question or acknowledgement of contradictions, or consider what he writes through his stated point of view, that is your perogative. I find it to be condescending to think he isn't capable of writing to further an agenda or that he is incapable of trying to defend it.

Anonymous said...

" ... someone who may have overreacted to the circumstances."
I think that's the point to Truthteller's story.
It seems to me that every incident like the one that happened to him - every drive-by, patrol, convoy, checkpoint shooting of innocents - is actually a small victory for the Resistance.
Did the car-bombers realise, I wonder, that the American response to their tactics would be this "force protection" policy, which seems to be "shoot on suspicion, if in doubt take 'em out, better safe than sorry ...?"
Or has it just come as an unexpected bonus to the insurgents?
Brecause there seems to be no doubt that every innocent Iraq killed or harmed by such actions leaves a few hundred more filled with hatred for US troops.
If I was one of them (the US troops) I'd want to know why my country's leaders had put me in this impossible situation, for three years now, in inadequate numbers, with inadequate armour, with no end in sight, while they went off hunting quail and fellow Republicans.

Anonymous said...

Americans are brainwashed to kill...They grow up in an environment of violent video-games and movies. If you doubt me, just look at Michael Moore's movie when the soldier tank boy describes killing people as a video-game, while playing a song ("Burn, mutherfucker burn!"). Warmongers.
They're the richest nation on earth, but they have povery and violence in their cities. They're children don't grow up humble, simple, and joyfull because their families are torn apart. The only ones who cherish the family life are the religious fanatics that support Bush, the evangelicals; they don't care about the world (Christians that don't care about peace?) Their kids turn to drugs. The grow up in isolated areas, they have no town life, no city life.
The USA is an evil country. I don't care about Iran, Iraq, or any Arab World country. To me, the only thing that is really evil is the United States. I think it's the resposibility of the peoples to hurt the American economy, avoid mixing with them, boycott their products. I'm rooting for China. I hope Iran gets the A-bomb. They don't care about anyone, they're so obese...they polute too much, consume too much. Americans are a cancer on the face of the earth.
No suprise that they they shot you, my friend: they torture, they arrest people without due process.
The only ones truly hurting the Western values are the Americans.

Bruno said...

[b will derd] “We find it was not exactly as it was portrayed originally through that, didn't we?”

Actually, the incident was exactly as he portrayed it. I don’t see any particular difference between TT’s first account and the details he added in response to your question. Let’s be clear about this – we don’t know the soldier’s intentions when he fired that shot, but we do know that in a civil court that action would be the basis for a case of attempted murder. So TT is not exaggerating with his initial statement.

The “self defence” angle is crap if one considers that TT was IN A SEPARATE ROAD altogether. Basically you are justifying the killing of ANY Iraqis on their own streets because of the VBIED threat. The same old “pre-emptive” attack-in-self-defence story as the USA has been using on a more global scale for some time now.

This is more than a bit discredited, don’t you think?

Don Cox said...

I am glad you were not hurt. Life in a war zone is dangerous. Take care.

Truth teller said...

B Will Derd

Regarding your comment on Tal-Afar.

It need no intelligence to realise that this post has been written entirely by an american writer. and this is enough for us to realise the fakes in it.
All what was written is either lies or descriptions of imaginary situation by an euphoric writer.

"Terrorists occupied and controlled the only hospital in the city. Their savagery reached such a level that they stuffed the corpses of children with explosives and tossed them into the streets in order to kill grieving parents attempting to retrieve the bodies of their young."

This statement crossed the red line of acceptable lies.

"The mission they have accomplished, by means of a unique military operation, stands among the finest military feats to date in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and truly deserves to be studied in military science. This military operation was clean, with little collateral damage, despite the ferocity of the enemy. With the skill and precision of surgeons they dealt with the terrorist cancers in the city without causing unnecessary damage."

Another bunch of lies mixed with cheep American propaganda.

No matter what you write or say, no body will beleive these lies any more, all the people know the truth and how the American propaganda try to twist it.
Putting the signature of Mayer of Tal-Affar at the end, will change nothing. The crimes commited in Tal-Affar and Falluja by the US troops and their allies gainst the innocent civilian will be a signe of shame on the face of all the American for ever.

BTW why you deleted this comment if you are so convinced by it?

BUCK SARGENT said...

"But don’t we have the right to hate the people who are now occupying our country?"

"Shall we celebrate the freedom and democracy brought to us by the occupation in spite of the perils our citizens face?"

I shall answer both of your rhetorical questions the same way, TT... YES. You do have the right to hate us. But you should also celebrate that right and invoke it in the proper way and for the proper reasons. As they say in my country, 'vote your interests.' Take control of your destiny and make your voice heard. But beware what side you are throwing in with. You may feel you both are in agreement now, but when the U.S. leaves you may wake up to find that the "resistance" no longer wishes to hear your input or accept your support.

Do not listen to these chowderheads who claim to know what is in the heart of the American soldier. If you wish to know, ask one. We will tell it to you straight. The soldier has nothing to gain and everything to lose by being here. Yet we will not run from our duty. We will make mistakes in matters of life and death. But we will always side with life when given the option. We want the same thing as you: a free, prosperous, independent Iraq. An Iraq who befriends and trades with its neighbors, not one who threatens and plunders from them.

We do this not free of self-interest, no more than was the case with Germany and Japan. Though is there any doubt that all parties ultimately benefitted? Iraq can also one day become a nation among nations, and produce a standard of living for its people that is the envy of the Arab world. But it will not come without sacrifice. And you must know by now that it will never come while under tyranny.

To paraphrase a famous American patriot: "If there must be trouble, let it come in my day so that my children may know peace."

Respectfully,
Buck

Check out my recent interview with TT here:

http://americancitizensoldier.blogspot.com/

B Will Derd said...

Deleted the comment? I posted it and see it is still there, so I'm unsure of what you are referring to. The 3rd ACR is rotating out of Tall Afar and this letter was passed around to them. You may not find it on uruk.net, but I choose not to use that as any indication of its lack of authenticity. There is a long article on the Washington Post website that gives a good account of what is happening in Tal Afar today--have you read it?

Tal Afar

another related story from Knight Ridderclick here Many others for those who care to read and judge for themselves.

Could this be a fake? It was handed out at a briefing by General Lynch himself-here about midway through--and I doubt seriously he would put himself in a position to be so easily proven a liar, as it is so obvious could be done and would be done. I also think they would be much more subtle and sophisticated with the propaganda than this. It was published in a few papers and referred to in others, but we certainly know that just because a newspaper publishes something doesn't make it true. It is being widely disseminated through email, which means nothing other than it is pretty well known--Snoopes ( a rumor checking site) is working on it.

Maybe the good mayor of Tall' Afar is just a 'bad Iraqi'? He has written to the President begging him to leave the 3rd Armored Cavalry in Tal Afar, so he must be, huh? Were are your sources to back up your words so we know that we are being lied to? Maybe you could call the mayor and get an interview-if not him, maybe someone else in the city government-it might make an interesting post. You could make some real news here if you prove this to be a fake and do more for your part of the 'resistance'. You do that and I will post a link to your blog on every site I can find that discusses the letter. Fair enough?

Moron99 said...

It looks like the day is drawing close when the deals for power are finalized. I have my fingers crossed (an expression that means hoping for good luck) that your next government will be balanced. I am specifically hoping that UIA finds their power to be much less than they think. They are going to have to give amnesty to baathi who will accept democracy. They need to realize that they are only one of three parts. Until they do, I fear that your country will find no peace. I pray for your safe passage through these times. I hope that if you hear any news about government that you will share it with us.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting discussion.
1)Truthteller complains because a US soldier shot at him.
2)B Will Derd (who turns out to be Strykerdad in disguise) explains all the reasons why the soldier was justified in shooting.
3)Truthteller patiently and politely refutes all those reasons.
4)Strykerderd finally and grumpily admits that the soldier "may have over-reacted."
I would score it Truthteller 3, Strykerderd NIL.
All very funny, until you realise that what it is really all about is a respectable and dedicated Iraqi doctor nearly being killed by an ignorant American lout. Nearly leaving Najma and Hnk without their father.
I think anyone who can raise a girl as brave, as intelligent, as well-informed and as delightful as Najma must be an OK guy.
(Although maybe MRS Truthteller should get some of the credit?)
I'm not so sure that a guest on his Blog who is so keen to see him killed, just because he maybe sympathises a bit with the insurgency, is an OK guy.
Summary of why America is losing in Iraq, really.

Albatroz said...

I fully aggree with "anonymous". The world would be a lot safer if Americans were restricted to their own country. Less terrorism - which is mainly the poor people's weapon against American imperialism -, fewer countries seeking nuclear weapons (unnecessary if Americans weren't on the loose), more democracy (people's will would be more often respected if Americans were not always trying to change people's choices they don't like), fewer people killed and maimed by fake "liberators", fewer concentration camps like Guantanamo, less torture, etc. Don't Americans realize they are present day's nazis? They completely fill up the place left vaccant by Hitler's boys. Will the world someday have to deal with them in the same way we dealt with nazi Germany? I hope decent Americans will make that unnecessary...

Claude Dorsel said...

b will derd is very scary. Not a bad guy, but thoroughly brain-washed in American exceptionalism. No wonder Iraqis who had first welcomed their "liberation" turned sour pretty quickly.

Those WWII references were pretty offensive to us non-yanks citizens of Allied countries. The US joined the fray, after having being begged to do so by the allies for over two years, only when Germany declared war against it, and in a great part because they were scared sick of the URSS becoming the great victor. Nothing even remotely similar to the situation in Iraq.

Perhaps watching this movie would help our "liberator" friends understand why the world is watching, aghast, the destruction of Iraq, rather than cheer at the great US army ? It was shown on television in most Western European countries.

http://www.sonyclassics.com/whywefight/

B Will Derd said...

B Will Derd (who turns out to be S--d in disguise

Anonymous-speaking of disguisesNZ--I made TT (and anyone else that cared enough to read) aware of this--twice-- and gave the reasons why.

From my first response to TT I made the same observation (likely overreacted) that you claim I 'grumpily' came to. And TT refuted NONE of my points because they are all valid. The basic facts have been established by now and in those same exact conditions TT in a car loaded with explosives could have likely killed the soldier that fired at him. VBIED has a potential kill radius of as much as 100 meters, so if you accept every fact exactly as TT presented it, with no allowance for exagerration or contradiction (which are obvious), he could have killed that soldier and those with him. But you seem to have little use for facts. That is the only way you could come up with your statement saying I would likely wish to see TT killed--I have never said it, never implied it, I have only expressed my very best wishes for him and his family. We obviously differ greatly on how those wishes can become reality, however.

B Will Derd said...

TT--enjoyed the interview you did with AMERICAN CITIZEN SOLDIER, thanks for taking the time.
No further comment on the letter? I think I know why you thought I deleted it. I offered it under the comments of your Tall'afar post of Sept--it is still there. I will post it here, if you will allow me, and hope you can shed some light on its authenticity---it is now all over the net and emails here in the states. I know you find me incredibly stupid for believing it is possibly true, you made that pretty plain, but you could help me out by contacting the Tall'Afar city government and getting some facts. And you could expose what is being taken as a sign of good news by many here as a hoax

LETTER purported to be from the mayor of Tall'Afar to the troops and families of the 3rd ACR:
In the Name of God the Compassionate and Merciful

To the Courageous Men and Women of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, who have changed the city of Tall’ Afar from a ghost town, in which terrorists spread death and destruction, to a secure city flourishing with life.

To the lion-hearts who liberated our city from the grasp of terrorists who were beheading men, women and children in the streets for many months.

To those who spread smiles on the faces of our children, and gave us restored hope, through their personal sacrifice and brave fighting, and gave new life to the city after hopelessness darkened our days, and stole our confidence in our ability to reestablish our city.

Our city was the main base of operations for Abu Mousab Al Zarqawi. The city was completely held hostage in the hands of his henchmen. Our schools, governmental services, businesses and offices were closed. Our streets were silent, and no one dared to walk them. Our people were barricaded in their homes out of fear; death awaited them around every corner. Terrorists occupied and controlled the only hospital in the city. Their savagery reached such a level that they stuffed the corpses of children with explosives and tossed them into the streets in order to kill grieving parents attempting to retrieve the bodies of their young. This was the situation of our city until God prepared and delivered unto them the courageous soldiers of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, who liberated this city, ridding it of Zarqawi’s followers after harsh fighting, killing many terrorists, and forcing the remaining butchers to flee the city like rats to the surrounding areas, where the bravery of other 3d ACR soldiers in Sinjar, Rabiah, Zumar and Avgani finally destroyed them.

I have met many soldiers of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment; they are not only courageous men and women, but avenging angels sent by The God Himself to fight the evil of terrorism.

The leaders of this Regiment; COL McMaster, COL Armstrong, LTC Hickey, LTC Gibson, and LTC Reilly embody courage, strength, vision and wisdom. Officers and soldiers alike bristle with the confidence and character of knights in a bygone era. The mission they have accomplished, by means of a unique military operation, stands among the finest military feats to date in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and truly deserves to be studied in military science. This military operation was clean, with little collateral damage, despite the ferocity of the enemy. With the skill and precision of surgeons they dealt with the terrorist cancers in the city without causing unnecessary damage.

God bless this brave Regiment; God bless the families who dedicated these brave men and women. From the bottom of our hearts we thank the families. They have given us something we will never forget. To the families of those who have given their holy blood for our land, we all bow to you in reverence and to the souls of your loved ones. Their sacrifice was not in vain. They are not dead, but alive, and their souls hovering around us every second of every minute. They will never be forgotten for giving their precious lives. They have sacrificed that which is most valuable. We see them in the smile of every child, and in every flower growing in this land. Let America, their families, and the world be proud of their sacrifice for humanity and life.

Finally, no matter how much I write or speak about this brave Regiment, I haven’t the words to describe the courage of its officers and soldiers. I pray to God to grant happiness and health to these legendary heroes and their brave families.

NAJIM ABDULLAH ABID AL-JIBOURI
Mayor of Tall ‘Afar, Ninewa, Iraq

Truth teller said...

B will derd

"Deleted the comment? I posted it and see it is still there, so I'm unsure of what you are referring to."

I apologize, I put my comment in a wrong place. It should be in "Now Tal afar who is next" I was so busy and looked for your comment again in a wrong place.

Bruno said...

[b will derd] "It was handed out at a briefing by General Lynch himself-here about midway through--and I doubt seriously he would put himself in a position to be so easily proven a liar [...] "

Bigger American fish than that have lied about bigger issues than that. I'm thinking of Powell's perjury to the UN and the world here.

It's gotten to the point where anything told to us by a high ranking American has to be taken with a pinch of salt.

B Will Derd said...

Today's NYP

There is increasing attention being given this letter

TT. In addition to the letter, there are quotes from the commander of the 3rd ACR that some people in Tall'Afar have named their children after some of the soldiers who patrolled their neighborhoods. 'Besides proclaiming it 'Another bunch of lies mixed with che(a)p American propaganda.', have you managed to come up with anything proving it did not originate with the Mayor and does not reflect the situation in Tall'Afar? I would think that would be fairly simple for you and the 'resistance' to do. Seems as though this letter would be problematic for the 'US troops losing in Iraq while wantonly killing and destroying' crowd. The situation in Mosul has changed considerably over the last year as well, hasn't it TT? Is the Coalition losing there, too?

As THE Truth Teller, seems you would want to reveal this letter to be the hoax you said it was, to quote" This statement crossed the red line of acceptable lies."---either that, or someone who claims to be THE Truth Teller, would retract those statements and acknowledge that the letter is genuine. Or change his name....

Another letter, this one from the commander of the Iraqi division responsible for Tall'Afar:

To the Troopers and families of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment:
Bravery, strength, determination, good intentions, flexibility, knowledge, and impartiality: these were the characteristics that you displayed through partnership with the 3d Iraqi Army Division during combat operations in Western Ninewa Province. Each and every day your wise operational and successful leadership was the decisive factor in us achieving victory. Again, we recognize clearly the main reason for victory was your leadership. These necessary qualities are the same for any person, army, or nation that is looking for victory, and they were the reason why the Brave Rifles and faith in their goal along with their principles, high morals, and focus on their mission, coupled with perfect logistics support, impartiality, and sincere leadership made them the right unit for this mission. The Regiment’s ability to plan, conduct excellent coordination, supervise and choose the right decisive actions along with their great leadership helped us to develop individual Soldier skills and increase the capability of the division. It is said that piles of construction materials alone cannot build a house and a group of people cannot be considered an army. The Regiment’s leadership and devotion to duty helped us form an army. Its actions have resulted in strong friendships that will last a lifetime. The Troopers’ behavior is an example of wise leadership, which is the tree and the reputation they will leave behind is the shadow of this tree. So I offer my heartfelt thanks, appreciation, and respect to you for your sacrifices. The troopers of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment will disappear from our eyes but remain in our hearts. We send our greetings to you and wish you a well deserved reunion with your families.

God Bless

MAJOR GEN. KHORSHEED SALEEM AL-DOSEKEY
3RD IA INFANTRY DIVISION COMMAND


What is really going on in Tall'Afar? Who is Telling the Truth?

Moron99 said...

It's gotten to the point where anything told to us by a high ranking American has to be taken with a pinch of salt."

it has always been at that point. Same with any other leader of politics, money, or religion from any other nation. Anyone who blindly accepts what their leader says is a fool. Doen't matter if your american, egyptian, iraqi, japanese, brazillian, iranian, french, chinese, russian, aborigine, christian, moslem, or jew. If you blindly follow then you are a fool.

Anonymous said...

I ask again...

Looking for anyone's perspective but especially interested in that of the Iraqi members of this blog:

1) Why is the focus only on the Americans, why is it that nobody in Iraq seems to be mad at the insurgents/terrorists/resistance (depending on your perspective) for killing thousands of innocent Iraqi men, women, and children?

2) Regardless of how you feel about the fact that the Americans invaded, they are there now, so what do you honestly think would happen if the Americans just up and left Iraq tomorrow, wouldn't Iraq implode into a Civil War, resulting in 10x the number of innocent deaths and casualties?

Thank you...

Albatroz said...

"...so what do you honestly think would happen if the Americans just up and left Iraq tomorrow..."

I suggest we find out. Please go and we will know for sure...

Digital Spy said...

anon@8:35pm

I can answer one question. Who in their right mind in Iraq would support the US occupation. If we go back to the sanctions regime (blaming it on the UN when the US vetoed lifting of sanctions is disingenious) and count just the deaths of Iraqis under 5 we can see that the Iraqis under sanctions where experiencing the equivalent of a twin towers attack/collapse every 3 weeks for ten years with the major difference being the towers had 3000 under 5 year olds in them.
Blaming Saddaam for these deaths is also disingenious as apparently one of the things that the Iraqis lost after the invasion was their government supplied ration packs. But, we all know that they will be able to grow better food soon because those smart guys at the CPA banned farmers from growing their own seeds (or saving them) and has made it law that seeds must be purchased from companies like Monsanto.
They have every reason to hate coalition soldiers (and kill them) and quite frankly I can't blame them a bit.

Anonymous said...

Moron 99

Somewhat off topic, but I find your bleak assessment of world leadership a bit excessive. It doesn't have to be that way.
Don't want to do the NZ thing like a cracked record, maybe we're just weird, but looking back over my adult lifetime I'm not aware of a single instance in this country where any politician has been accused of benefiting personally in any substantial way from their political actions. Sure they lie a bit for political purposes, they push the boundaries at election time, and try to spin government scandals, but by and large we trust them to be basically honest, and they haven't let us down much. Hell, there was a big fuss last year because one guy was given a free meal at a seafood restaurant while he was sitting on a Parliamentary inquiry into the fishing industry. I can't think of any Prime Minister last century who had conspicuous personal wealth.
Three years ago a Cabinet Minister, a very talented rising star and a favorite of the Prime Minister, lied to a reporter – said yes to a question when the reporter could prove the answer was no. Not even totally her fault, she was covering for incompetent officials in her Ministry. She was gone from Cabinet within 24 hours, exiled to the back benches for the rest of the Parliamentary term.
There's probably other places not too different – Ireland, the Scandinavian countries? I think you go to far.

More or less what Sistani has just been saying in Iraq with his call for “a government that is competent, spotless and transparent.” What hope is there of them getting anything even remotely like that? In answer to Anonymous below you, I don't think it will depend in the long run on the presence of absence of large numbers of foreign troops. And every country has to work out its own problems eventually. Bruno could tell you that 20 years ago, the situation in South Africa looked a lot more hopeless than that in Iraq. It's far from perfect now, but they've come a hell of a long way without the bloodshed that many anticipated at the time – there was a reservoir of goodwill waiting to be tapped. Maybe Iraq has a similar reservoir - but we'll never know if they're not allowed to try it. Truthteller might like to comment on what he thinks would happen if the USA just up and left?

Johninnz

Anonymous said...

"What do you honestly think would happen if the Americans just up and left Iraq tomorrow?"
1)The Iraqis could get on with sorting out their own problems?
2)The rest of the world would collapse in helpless laughter at the failure of the stupid American "liberators?"

Anonymous said...

Even under sanctions, Saddam had more than enough resources and revenue to feed and care for his people. He chose instead to fill his own pockets, build lavish monuments and palaces for himself and his cronies, and feed the greedy pockets of corrupt UN officials and members of his own government. Blame Saddam for the thousands of innocent deaths over the years sanctions were in place, not the US. When Tito died in Yugoslavia, it left a great void in the central leadership of the country. The result was genocide on a massive scale at the hands of the Serbs, Croats, and Bosniacs. Saddam, although much worse of a dictator unless you happened to be in his favor, was much like Tito in that he managed to control the various different political and religious groups within the country. With his absence and the proposed absence of the US, there will be a huge power struggle between the Shia, Sunni, Kurds, etc. Throw in the Iranians, the Syrians, and every other neighboring influence and you have the makings of a blood bath on an epic scale.

B Will Derd said...

"Terrorists occupied and controlled the only hospital in the city. Their savagery reached such a level that they stuffed the corpses of children with explosives and tossed them into the streets in order to kill grieving parents attempting to retrieve the bodies of their young."

This statement crossed the red line of acceptable lies.

TT, with this I will leave the subject alone, but last night I watched a PBS FRONTLINE
(very credible mainstream source, generally antiwar if anything) segment on the insurgency, and it included interviews with some Tall'Afar citizens. One of them was an older woman who told of her son being taken from the hospital after having been shot twice in the stomach by the insurgency for working at the airport. He was taken from the hospital, cut open and a bomb placed in his stomach and left on a central street. His father went to retieve him and he was beheaded, his head placed on his chest with a note saying that anyone who came to get him would suffer the same fate. The mother and her remaining son seemed very credible to me. The interview will be available online in another week so that others who want may judge for themselves. The rest of the Tall'Afar footage pretty much backed up everything in the letter. You might want to reserve some of your hate for American soldiers and direct it towards those who are committing these acts. These same animals were atempting to take over Mosul just last year, weren't they? What happened to them, and do you think they might return if given a chance?

Anonymous said...

Why is there no outrage directed at the insurgents? They are killing and maiming far more innocent Iraqi men, women, and children than all of the coalition forces combined. They are specifically targeting them (mosques, markets, schools, etc.).

Indigo said...

TruthTeller, may I say how sad, sad, sad I am about the appalling and sacrilegious attack on the al-Askari shrine in Samarra. I pray that God grant that it will be restored to all its former glory, in our lifetime, again to lift the hearts of all who behold it.

Moron99 said...

johninnz

living in the countryside is different from living in the city. in the countryside there is no one for the criminal to steal from except those who already know him. New Zealand is fortunate in this regard. It is a relatively small and isolated place where it is easy to find a person and his history. If we could reduce the world's population by 80-90% then I guess the rest of us could enjoy such liberties.

Asia, Europe, mid-east, north america, and South america do not have this inherent advantage. In these places those who lust for power can easily hide their true intentions. Unfortunately, those who lust for power are also the most skilled at hiding their true intent.

Anonymous said...

Moron99
Bit late to reply now as Truthteller has moved on.
However I think there's a bit more to it than just population density. After all, NZ which is largely bush and mountains has the same population density as Somalia, which is presumably largely desert.
Iraq has the same population density as Ireland.

Johninnz

Layth said...

Anonymous, this is for you..i hope you are able to understand it.

Soldier’s testimony: 'We just drove off looking for more people to kill’
Many of the new documents include testimonies by soldiers and civilians describing abuse they have witnessed in Iraq.
Among the documents is a statement by an army private describing how his platoon attacked a village after soldiers joked that their sergeant was a coward.
The sergeant decided to prove himself by setting an ambush for an Iraqi civilian.
"Right before a mission one night [the sergeant] went up to his gunner and asked him if he wanted to test the MK-19 [multiple grenade launcher] on someone tonight.
"We usually just drive around and look for people with AKs [rifles] and confiscate them. We have always been able to drive up to them and take the weapon from them with no shots fired.
"That night on a mission we saw an Iraqi civilian walking towards us on the other side of the canal. So we decided to set up an ambush and kill him.
"We waited until he was next to us on the other side of the canal and opened fire on him. He never took his rifle off his shoulder.
"He just ran away from us into a field for cover. In the countryside in Iraq all people have guns for protection.
"After the man ran into the field we waited close to a minute and there was never any fire returned. That’s when my platoon sergeant told his gunner to spray the field with MK-19 [grenade] rounds.
"The gunner put about four to five rounds into the field. Still there was no return fire. But next door to the field was a house.

Screaming

"[The climate] is so hot that everybody sleeps outside. After the MK-19 explosions all you heard was women and children screaming.
"My platoon sergeant told my gunner to get his eyes [night vision equipment] on the house. There were two men, four to six women and about ten children. My platoon sergeant asked my gunner if there were any weapons and he said 'no’, that the two men were just trying to get [the women and children] all inside.
Then a single shot came off in the distance well over 500 meters away. My platoon sergeant said 'fuck it’ and 'light them up’.
His gunner shot about three to four MK-19 rounds into the front yard and everyone else shot M16 [assault rifles]. It lasted about ten seconds.
"Then we just stopped and saw that the two men were injured. One of them had his arm blown off.
"All the people at the house were panicking. Some ran into the woods, some into the house, and a couple next door into another house. We just sat there and watched them.
"Finally an [Iraqi civilian vehicle] drove by and loaded a bunch of injured people and drove off. And so did we, looking for more people to kill."
The soldier recounts how captured Iraqis would be "hog tied" to the front of their Humvee military vehicles.

Captive

"We would put the [captive] on top of the Humvees with the gunner until one tried to throw up. After that we would hog tie them and stuff them in between the hood and the brush guard.
"I asked, 'At least tie his leg to the brush guard so he doesn’t fall off’ and my [superior] would say, 'Who cares? If he falls off we just run him over and it’s one less to worry about’."
The private describes in his statement how his platoon was involved in looting the homes of Iraqis.
The platoon would follow expensive cars to their homes. Soldiers would then search the home and "steal stuff from the houses or POWs [prisoners], such as bricks of money, Iraqi army medals, uniforms, pictures of Saddam... all the way down to cigarette lighters".
Despite the private’s seven page testimony, none of the other soldiers in his platoon were prepared to back him up. The rest of the report is composed of denials.

The report concludes that no action would be taken and all charges were dismissed.

You can read summaries of the latest documents at http://action.aclu.org/torturefoia/released/011206/

BUCK SARGENT said...

Layth,

Sorry, but wholesale slander of the American military has been tried before. The public fell for it once, they're not about to do it again. Hundreds of "veterans" (most later proved to never even have served) made similar statements to these about the Vietnam War, and demagogues like a young John Kerry ate it up in order to further their own personal agendas.

The only sick part about those tales you just spun is that someone would take the time to invent them. Truly dispicable on their part, and monumentally ignorant on yours to repeat them.

Seriously TT, why moderate your comments at all if you're going to allow this utter nonsense to appear on your site? I hate to think of what you DO censor.

Honestly, it's time to grow up and be a man who accepts some measure of responsibility for your family's future and the fate of your country. We're doing the best we can to assist you, but you've got to at least meet us half way.

You're an intelligent man, you've got to know that repeating these falsehoods is not helpful for Iraq's future. Do you want your country to succeed and prosper, or don't you?

Peter Attwood said...

Believing in Jesus, I find it's quite simple. Jesus said, "Whatever you want men to do to you, do so to them," alluding to Hillel, who put it, "Whatever you hate, do not to others."

No American would appreciate being invaded and occupied by the army of a nation that had by its own admission killed hundreds of thousands of little kids through its genocidal sanctions. No American would accept such an occupier reordering the American economy so as to be plundered by corporations the occupiers want to pay off (Paul Bremer's Order 39). No American would want foreign soldiers breaking into people's homes, robbing and trashing, terrorizing wives and little kids at all hours, and dragging away thousands to be disappeared and often tortured in concentration camps and prisons.

The defenders of American soldiers and their actions here would heartily agree with any American resistance to such an occupation. Therefore, if concerned to do to others what they want done to themselves, they would heartily support resistance to the same criminality in Iraq.

Americans like them think the United States and its people are better than all others, and this is logically equivalent to thinking all others are worse - just as the Nazis, Japanese militarists, and Stalinists thought. This is why Americans feel so justified and noble in mass murder and robbery, just as those fanatics did before them. As a man thinks in his heart, so he is, says the proverb, and the American invaders act as these did - thanking God like the Pharisee in the parable that they are not like other men (Luke 18:9-14) - because they indeed think and are like them, who also congratulated themselves on being superior to others. All the great genocides of such as Hitler have been done by those convinced of their superiority to others and their mission to save the world, and that is why Americans - filled with the same spirit of antichrist - are doing likewise.

We clearly live in a situation much like the 1930s, and imperial America and its people are taking very much the same path as imperial Japan and the other "bandit nations" of that day. No more than those should have been, the same fanaticism in its American form must not be condoned or appeased.

Truth teller said...

buck sargent

"Seriously TT, why moderate your comments at all if you're going to allow this utter nonsense to appear on your site? I hate to think of what you DO censor."

I am sure you regard this tales as nonsense because they described crimed commited by US soldiers.
What you will you say if some body write similar tales blaming the resistance of doing the crimes? You will keep silent I guess!!

b will derd give a similar thing in his comment "Today's NYP" early in this section. And I didn't censor it although I think it is full of lies.

I just sencored what I think is written for joke, or just to spend time, and any thing which contains offensive words or insulting others.

"We're doing the best we can to assist you"

I really want you to convince me that this is true, I promise you I will not write any thing anti American if you do that.

Anonymous said...

iam an american i feel that we should be here in the us helping where is needed.we are american we help everyone.i have friends there.we all should be treated the same.we should treat people the way we want to be treated.i cant say much more because im not there.
i dont know what goes on.just what i see on television.i love all people.color of your skin or faith
is not a factor to me.or if you live in another country.

Karen said...

"We're doing the best we can to assist you"

I really want you to convince me that this is true, I promise you I will not write any thing anti American if you do that.

Hello TT,

My cousin was assisting the Iraqi police during a recruiting event in January. He was killed there by a suicide bomber. He was 44 years old, college educated, and had a wife and two girls. He was a well loved, honorable man and his passing has left his family and friends heartbroken.

My brother is currently stationed in Baghdad. Please know that both men have worked tirelessly to bring about peace and stability to your country, under difficult circumstances and at great sacrifice.

I am sorry for the nightmare in which you find yourself. Life for you and your family is indeed very difficult. While we are stung by our loss, we are saddened that so many more brave Iraqis have given their lives. Speaking for myself and my family, our hearts and those we treasure are with you. We are not perfect, but we are doing the best we can.

May your daughters soon enjoy the peace and freedom you long for.

Albatroz said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Albatroz said...

"We are not perfect, but we are doing the best we can."

No, Karen. You are indeed not perfect but you are not doing the best you can. Nobody asked you to go to Iraq and fix something which, in the locals' opinion, was not broken. You have been unacceptably arrogant and you have no right to ask Iraqis to put up with your arrogance. I am sorry for your personal loss, but that loss would not have occurred if your cousin had remained in the US. If you want indeed to do everything you can to solve this situation, then ask your brother to leave Iraq and join those in the US who are trying to have the troops called back. Engage in civil disobedience if you want people to believe that you are doing the best you can. You no longer have a legitimate government in Washington, so you must fight them with all your strength. Until you do that you are guilty by association of war crimes against the Iraqi people.

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