Wednesday, February 18, 2009

S.D. - come in, the water is fine ....

Whodathunk - another link to the HufPo. S.D. Liddick seems to be making progress, smacking down on one of the poseurs that we have been railing against since '03.

He also sounds like he might be making a turn I made in the '80s as a young'un.
The fact is, men like Shaffir and the sheik you lampooned stood up at a parlous time (for whatever motivations, honorable or venal) and went toe to toe with a baleful brood of characters (foreigners, fanatics, decapitators and the virulently uneducated)--and the people haven't forgotten all that they've given.

Are they criminals? Yes, they are. Should they be scrutinized? Of course. But they're also heroes to many, and widely viewed as the saviors of their small towns and neighborhoods. And, perhaps more importantly, they continue to kill terrorists--men Iraq has listed as Al Quaeda operatives. The fact you, a sniveling coward and ankle-biter hiding preconceived intentions behind putative journalism, are taking pot shots at them appalls me.

Due in part to them, mothers are no longer worried their daughters will be unwillingly pimped out to the unsightly foreign reprobates that came here with criminal networks, in the name of Islam, toting guns and all the vagaries of death. People are building houses (tons of them), sharing chai in neighbor's diwans, and getting down to the brass tacks of figuring out how the hell to rebuild infrastructure that was already neglected and miserably dilapidated before it was bombed to pieces. In a way, Anbar is exactly where it should be upon waking from the nightmare of civil war--fucked up.

The crucial fact is the state of fucked-up is moving in a positive direction and doing it rapidly. Just two years ago, the country's top politicians were worried about making it to work alive. Today, they're setting up anti-corruption networks and guilty politicos are nervously looking over their shoulders, realizing that as the violence drops off, so too does their cover. The people of Anbar are leaving their houses again and the markets are full. I've shopped in them.

The heart of the problem in all of this isn't only with the people of Iraq, it's also with Americans in this age of rapid and uncensored hydra-headed media--and the fact anybody can print anything. The threat there lies in the fact that 80-percent of people in society are grazers (and you can check Chomsky on this, Colonel Malay, or anybody who's served time); non-thinkers that only want to be herded and told what to do. It's those people who read your half-truths online and don't realize you're "independent" for a reason.

I'm phobically allergic to the conservative Republican types the military is rife with, but I've only been in country four months and already I hate liberals. There's plenty of ugliness to report in Iraq (as there are thousands of stories of hope and headway)--and the U.S. military certainly isn't beyond reproach. Nobody's telling you to report on one side or the other. But manipulating the truth because of your own personal biases is wretched and works in the face of progress. The other end of the political spectrum disregards you, Dahr, and now I know why. I thought it was because you're a liar--but you aren't. You don't have enough backbone to be a liar. You're a craven obfuscationist, intent on promoting your agenda at the cost of a menagerie of much braver men and women.
He gets it methinks on Iraq - I wish some, ahem, were as passionate.

Hat tip Chap.

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