Thursday, May 3, 2007

Fantasy and reality

Our Leader celebrating National Prayer Day with Shirley Dobson, wife of James Dobson who is generally considered the most influential Christian Right leader in the US

The exceptionally talented Australian singer-songwriter Paul Kelly has a song called, "The Pretty Place". The narrator in the song talks about how when he gets fed up with the frustrations of life, he goes to "the pretty place"; it's never clear in the song whether it's an actual location or some sort of fantasy relaxation.

It seems that the image of Iraq in Bush's head is his own "pretty place", definitely of the fantasy variety. Bush,
President Bush Discusses War on Terror, Economy with Associated General Contractors of America 05/02/07:

Al Qaeda has pursued their objective with a ruthless campaign of violence. ... And not long ago, it looked like they might prevail in Anbar - looked pretty grim, it really did. Then something began to change, because we were steadfast, because our troops and our diplomats are courageous people. Tribal sheikhs finally said, enough is enough. The local leaders said, we're tired of it. And they joined the fight against al Qaeda.

The sheikhs and their followers knew exactly who the terrorists were, and they began to provide highly specific intelligence to American and Iraqi forces. ... And so they began to provide intelligence, all aiming to secure their part of Iraq so they could live in peace.

They began to encourage their young men to volunteer for the security forces. The number of Iraqi army and police recruits in Anbar has skyrocketed. It's an interesting measurement, isn't it? There's a threat to the security of their people, the local leader said, why don't you join up to help defend us, and the number of recruits is significant.
Patrick Cockburn, reporting on the still-unconfirmed death on an Al Qaida leader in Iraq, Insurgents reported to have killed al-Qa'ida commander Independent 05/02/07:

The US and the Iraqi government have been trying to encourage a breach between al-Qa'ida and other insurgents for almost as long as the four-year-old war has lasted. So far, there has been little sign of success. There is the additional problem that anti al-Qa'ida Sunni groups are often equally anti-American. (my emphasis)
Otherwise, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?


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