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J Thomas

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Posts posted by J Thomas

  1. No ..... I don't agree with you .... I think what is missing is the number if Iraqis killed in those attacks compared to coallition forces.


    By looking at the reports, one can easily conclude that these actions are targeting Iraqis before americans ... or american bases and routes.


    It becomes clear that the aim of the insurgents is not the americans but the new Iraq. ....

    You could be right. However, it says "all attacks" and it's from a western security outfit. Could they mean "all attacks against americans"? Or possibly "all attacks against this security company"?


    I see the statistic that there are about 90 attacks a day on coalition troops now. That would be about 2700 attacks in a month, conservatively call it 2200 to account for the reduced number last month. The map claims to have one dot per attack and there aren't nearly 2000 dots there, are there?

  2. Kerry and Bush are both american politicians. They try to say things that will look good to american voters, and they try to make each other look bad.


    I am not clear about the place of the american military in iraq. I get the strong impression that they don't do much to protect iraqis from violent criminals, or from terrorists or insurgents. What they can do is to keep insurgents from declaring that they are the local government. If insurgents take over an iraqi city and kill the politicians who oppose them and say that they're running the city, the US military can go in and kill them unless they run away, and then appoint a new local government. And we can kill iraqis who shoot at us, perhaps killing innocent civilians also.


    I get the strong impression that the US army doesn't really understand iraqis, and mostly doesn't speak the language, and it's hard for us to do a lot of good because of that. So what Bush and Kerry both want to do is to train iraqi soldiers and police to maintain security, and then pull the US soldiers out -- either out of iraq completely or into isolated bases where they don't have much interaction with iraqis.


    Also, if iraq could be policed by iraqis then the US military would be free to invade iraq. I'm not sure whether the Bush administration still intends to do that or not.


    Americans look at iraq mainly in terms of the US military. We look at US casualties (we usually only hear about the deaths, not about the badly wounded). We look at iraqi casualties. (The military said they wouldn't do "body counts" but when US soldiers get killed americans don't feel so bad if 10 times as many iraqis also are reported killed, and we can assume they were all insurgents.) From what I hear the US military is not doing particularly well in iraq just now. We are getting around 90 attacks a day when not so long ago it was only 20 attacks a day. The military announced that there were no-go zones where they didn't go except in large numbers looking for a fight. They quoted Fallujah, Samara, Baquba and Sadr City, and implied that there were many more. Recently they went into Samara in large numbers looking for a fight, and the insurgents ran away, and now we're saying Samara is pacified but I'm not clear what it will take to pull out the thousands of US troops and still be able to do small US patrols there.


    US tactics for taking cities from insurgents are modeled on israeli tactics which are themselves modeled on nazi tactics. We don't hesitate to destroy a large building to kill one sniper. US/israeli tactics do minimise casualties to the attackers. To my way of thinking this would be a good reason for an insurgency to stay hidden and not announce that they have taken over cities. What good does it to them to announce it and get their city blown up?


    When you look at it from an iraqi perspective it doesn't look so bad. But from an american military view it looks very bad. We can only hope that the insurgents are killing themselves in large numbers trying to interfere with the american elections, and after the elections they will be mostly killed off. But then, we have made that claim repeatedly. We thought they were killing themselves off for Saddam, but we caught Saddam and it got worse. We thought they were killing themselves to disrupt the handover to Allawi and afterward it got worse. Now we say it's the american elections, and after that we could say it's the iraqi elections. Our military can keep killing insurgents for a long time as long as the supplies keep flowing, but does it really help iraq?


    I think maybe both candidates hope that an elected iraqi government will ask for US troops to leave. Then we could pull the troops out without dishonor. But they can't say that because it wouldn't sound good to american voters. So they come up with peculiar claims about what they would do, hoping that they won't have to keep their word or break it.


    I would like to ask iraqis -- do US troops do more good than harm in iraq?


    Would an elected government be likely to ask that US troops leave? How much training would an iraqi army/police need before the government would do that? (There's reason to hope that iraqi military units would be more spirited and competent fighting for a real iraqi government than fighting for the US military. So their abilities might be better than they look now.)


    There is a strong chance that a US government would stop sending reconstruction funds if the US military left iraq. It depends a lot on how it's done. If it looked like a mutual decision -- iraq is doing well now, US troops are no longer needed, our good friends thank us and say we can go now, then if iraq had difficulties later americans would have bitter disputes about whose fault it was. Say iraq got a government where religious figures were not irrelevant, we would fight about whether the US president made the iraqi government invite us out because he wanted out too early. If the iraqi government was a bit ruder about insisting we leave then it wouldn't be the President's fault that he had to keep his word and go. But we would likely be angry at the iraqi government and want to cut off aid. There might be some way to do it that avoids both issues, but I don't know what it would be.


    Would it be worth losing US reconstruction aid to get rid of the US army? Or -- to repeat -- is the US military doing more good than harm in iraq? Another question -- is there a way the US military could do more good and less harm than it's doing now, that the US military might be competent to perform?

  3. http://money.cnn.com/2004/09/03/news/econo...dex.htm?cnn=yes


    Employment rate is beating expectations!

    Well, no. What has happened is that -- according to the polls -- a lot of people who used to be looking for work have given up looking. They only count as unemployed if the government worker calls them on the phone and asks them if they have a job and they say no, and then they get asked if they are actively looking for work and they say yes.


    If they say they aren't trying to find a job, they aren't unemployed. The percentage of people who *do* have jobs has not gone up. And it's still down from when Bush became president. There were about a million more jobs then than there are now.

  4. An Arab scholar thinks that going for Bush might be better from Arab prospectives.. The problem with such calls is that it is comming from a basic understanding that Arab should vote according to the Israeli-Palistine conflict.. While this might be an issue, there are so many other factors to be considered as being Americans from Arabic origin..

    If palestine is your main concern, both candidates look so bad that it hardly matters which you pick.


    We have seen what Bush did in the last 4 years, so it's completely reasonable to expect more of the same.


    If I was voting based on palestine, I migbt vote for Kerry on the hope that he's lying about what he'd do.


    Or I might vote for Nader knowing that he couldn't win, and hope that in a later election someone might try to get the votes that went to Nader this time.


    For myself, as an american, I will vote against Bush. Jesus said to forgive him because he doesn't know what he's doing. I forgive him but I don't want him to keep doing it.

  5. JThomas's

    This looks plausible. What does it mean to you?


    For me, It was not .. For an Arab that is fed by Aljezera like propaganda, it was kind of fully unexpected..

    The Arab media keep telling us that the Jews are the one who brought Bush to power and that Bush is no more than a puppet in the hand of the Jews.. They are relying on this to say that all what Bush is doing in Iraq is no more than a a Jew agenda to destroy the Muslim world.

    Now from this very credible poll and reports, seems to me that this is not true.. That Republicans , who might be willing to do their best to get the jews blessings, are not the Jews favorite.. On the contrary, Jews are publicly working so hard to move them away, that was the case in the last ellection and it is in this next one.. Seems it is historically always the case..


    This would flag a lot of questions about the reasons.. While such questions might be important in America, for Arab what should be important is, why our Arab "Jezera like" are telling the other way..

    I don't want to go into deep analysis and conspiracy theories, but I would like any fellow Arab to think about it.

    That is why I did asked for comments. It is not the elections side , it is our side.. Are we so penetrated ? Are we foolish to this extent that we don't know what seems to be a very basic fact in American politics?

    I used to ask some fellow Arab friends who lived in US for long time about such thing, I never got any such understanding.. They always though that the Jews are supporting both and would go for the winner.. This seems , according to the above as nonsense..

    I see!


    This is hard for americans to discuss. People think it is rude to discuss anything jewish if you are not jewish yourself.


    The way I understand it, which might not be completely right, is that american jews tend to vote for democrats. American jews who are zionists will vote for whichever candidate gives more support to israel. And if you are running for office and your opponent does not support israel enough, you will get plenty of money to spend to get elected.


    Most american politicians believe that if they don't give enough support to israel they will get TV stories saying they are bad for other reasons, and they will lose. Almost all republican and democrat politicians give total support to israel. So american zionists can usually vote for whichever they want for other reasons.


    People say that about 2% of the american population is jewish. I think there are no good statistics about that. It is hard to measure. My sister married a jewish man and she goes to a Reform synagogue which is organised a lot like the christian Methodist church she attended as a child. Many jews would say she is not jewish though she says she is and her children are. Many people who say they are jewish are not religious. It is all confused. Peopls say that the jewish vote is particularly important for presidential elections because so many jews are in important states like New York and Florida. Maybe jewish voters are not as important as campaign money and what the media says. But anyone who says that there is much jewish influence on the media gets called antisemitic. When someone important says that, the media spends a lot of time calling them antisemitic, the media explains that no civilised person would say such a thing.


    People say that there are a lot of christian voters who are zionists. The claim is that these people want the israelis to restore the temple because the christian book of Revelation says that the temple will be rebuilt in jerusalem before christ will return. Since they want christ to return and bring the end of the world as soon as possible, they want a strong israel to rebuild the temple. I have never met anyone in person who told me they believed this, though I have met a few on the internet. Probably people like that would refuse to talk to me. If they exist, they will vote republican as consistently as jews vote democrat.


    I don't know how important zionists were in getting Bush elected. It is plausible they may have been important. Clinton had tried to make the israelis agree to a deal with the palestinians. He failed at that, but some zionists were angry that he tried. They might have worked against Gore because of that. Gore also took a strong zionist position, though.


    I think if the zionists put Bush in they did not do so very effectively. He almost lost. A few votes from american citizens living in israel who mailed their votes to florida may have been important, but it could just as easily have been something else.


    I would not be surprised if Al Jazeera reports american politics just as simply and wrongly as the american media report iraqi politics.


    We hear that there is a strong movement in iraq to get a religious government like iran, but hardly any iraqis want that. I wonder, if so few iraqis want it why is it such a danger? Our media says that Al Sadr cannot be allowed into the government because he wants the US troops to leave and he wants a religious government like iran, and he is very unpopular. And I wonder, if he is unpopular why not let him run for office and lose?


    We only hear about a few parties -- al Dawa, SCIRI, Allawi's party -- and we hear very little about what they want. Mostly we hear whether they're sunni/shia/kurd. Anybody who's Shia that we don't like gets accused of being controlled by the iranians. Maybe that is our equivalent of Al Jazeera saying who's controlled by the zionists.

  6. For pro AlJazeera TV channel from Arabs and Muslims .... can you comment on this.


    This is a new article on the same issue.


    Jews overwhelmingly support Kerry

    This looks plausible. What does it mean to you?


    To me, it implies that republicans might someday reduce their support for zionism.


    Traditionally voters who were most likely to oppose zionism tended strongly to be liberals, and democrats. They voted for Dem politicians who took a strong zionist stand because they preferred them on all other issues and typically the republican politicians did the same. Small numbers of antisemites voted republican for the same reasons.


    If republicans can't get the jewish vote even when they bend over backwards with their heads between their thighs, perhaps someday they will court the moslem vote. They tend to need campaign money less then democrats, which would give them more freedom to do that.


    So in 4 years or 6 years moslems may have better choices than Nader.


    In the short run I hope Kerry wins. We know what to expect from Bush, we've seen him in action. There's reason to hope that Kerry is lying about what he will do, so we can't be sure about him. I'd rather vote for a small hope than for no hope.

  7. Iran's radical Shia kakistocracy has been funding, supplying — and in Sadr's case operating — the insurgency in Shia Iraq ever since Coalition forces began massing to attack Iraq in 2002. According to one estimate, there are at least 30,000 Iranian-funded insurgents in Iraq.

    Are you sure that iran is significantly backing Sadr? It's generally looked like iran was backing SCIRI far more than Sadr. Are they backing both?


    Of course, given a US attack on the shrines it would make sense for iran to support whoever was against us.


    It is tempting, and wrong, to believe this fight is not worth the risk. Young Americans will die there in as important as any other fight has been for Iraqi freedom.


    It's hard for me to imagine it's worth the risk. Maybe I'm overestimating the risk? If a Shia consensus develops that american forces are unwelcome in iraq, we're going to feel *very unwelcome*. This could create that consensus. Wasn't it Badr brigades that were defending the shrines before? Why did they give them to Mahdi to defend instead of defend them from Mahdi army? Whatever the reason, they won't like it that we stage a foxhunt there.


    Suppose Sadr survives, and in january his party wins 10% of the seats in the assembly. What then? Would it be a giant setback for democracy? I don't see that it would. The people who vote for his party would be voting for somebody if he wasn't there -- probably somebody just as anti-american and pro-religion. 10% is a powerful voting block but it isn't enough to run a theocracy or block elections. Say it was 20%, would that be a disaster? 30%? If Sadr's party got 51% that would give him a great big say in government. But that's around 85% of the shia. Aren't Dawa and SCIRI going to get a lot of shia votes?


    What'st he big deal here? Do you think no other fight for iraq freedom has been more important than this?


    If we had somehow negotiated the cooperation of Ali al-Sistani in the year and a half since the Saddam regime fell, the fight wouldn't even be necessary.


    Sistani has nothing to gain by collaborating with an occupying army. He demanded early elections and we sped up our schedule from snail-pace to tortoise-pace. Is this fight necessary? I don't see that it is, except maybe for the November elections.


    If we had been able to bring other Islamic forces in to join the Coalition forces, this fight could have been theirs if it had to be fought at all.


    Which islamic forces are you thinking of? They'd need to be shia, wouldn't they? I mean, if a bunch of fanatical catholics were holed up in Saint Peter's cathedral while the vatican was occupied by, say, the chinese, and the chinese were determined to root through the entire cathedral and kill every fanatic there, would it really help if they got a bunch of german lutherans to do the killing for them?


    So, we'd want iranian forces in the coalition? It just wasn't in the cards.


    This whole thing looks stupid. We built Sadr up by opposing him. If we'd just let Sadr say whatever he wanted, and mostly ignored him, he'd only be another unpopular thug.

  8. I am an outsider and perhaps shouldn't be giving advice, but I want to.


    If you are not unified you have a serious problem, and I do not see a solution. You must pick an issue you can agree on. But the zionists will oppose you and at first they will win. It takes a lot of effort and money, and you will have to make the effort and spend the money and lose. Say you campaign every 2 years, and it takes 12 years to have your first success. You will have five campaigns and ten years where you work very hard and get nothing. It will be hard to keep going.


    It would be better if you could find some small issue that the zionists do not oppose. Then you could get an earlier success. But you would have to be unified enough to agree on the issue.


    There are many americans who want a fair arrangement for palestine, but for most of them it is one issue among many. Zionists give a lot of money to the opponents of candidates who are least biased in their favor. It is dangerous to oppose them. For example, after the 1973 war Senator Fulbright of arkansas took a balanced stand. He faced a vote in 1974. Hardly any of his voters were jewish, but suddenly the arkansas governor was running against him and had a lot of money. The governor was popular, and there were national news programs that explained that Fulbright was old and tired, he was out of touch with his people, and he was going to lose. The national news explained that Fulbright would not get many of his usual votes, and so he was reaching out to the black community hoping to get black votes. In that time blacks and whites did not get along well in arkansas, and when the news announced that Fulbright was trying to get black votes that was enough to reduce his white votes a lot. Fulbright had been a senator for a long time and had been winning easily, but he lost that election, and probably most of the reason was the money and the TV news. Politicians believe that if they do something zionists don't like -- and all the other politicians aren't doing it at the same time -- then they will have a very hard time at their next election.


    I guess you must work toward balance for israel/palestine, and try not to get discouraged. Maybe the zionists will make a horrible mistake that will give you a chance to win. It cannot happen unless you are ready, but it may still not happen. So look for things that seem like small victories. Look for things you can think of as progress. Hang in there and wait for your chance.

  9. As Arab or Muslim, we might have different views among us about most of issues but one main , the Israeli-Palestine one.. Both candidates are fighting to propose their best to satisfy the Zionist lobby with no regard to the Muslim /Arab community..




    In going for Nader, we are building our strength , as most votes for Nader will be considered as coming from Muslims and that would show, and for the first time in American history, how much we can count for.. Something that I am sure would make both parties consider seriously.

    I'm afraid that makes perfect sense to me.


    For myself, Bush is so bad that I would not want any chance that he'd win again. But you get more of a possibility that someone will pay attention to american-arab interests if you show you vote only for those who offer you something.


    It is an uphill fight because the zionists in the USA are so well organised, and you directly oppose them. I think if it was me, I would look for some small issue that clearly does not hurt the zionists in any way. Perhaps medical care for syrian children, who are just starting to face sanctions. Present it to US politicians as a way to get arab-american votes. Watch them refuse because the zionists oppose it. And then keep fighting it and publicising it. Zionists opposing an obviously good issue could be news that makes them look bad, and the politicians going along with them makes the politicians look bad. They would of course say that any medical care for syrian children would get diverted to the military, and that any money sent to the syrians' own health care would get diverted to palestinian terrorists, and too many people would believe them. But maybe within 6 years you could get the obviously-good bill passed and american politicians would see that you were important, and everyone would see that the zionists don't win every single time.

  10. Kerry is a politician who is trying to get elected. If he says the same thing as Bush then people will have to choose on other issues. If he says something different then people will blame him for it.


    In both cases , he is done bad to Arabs .. If he really mean it, then no better than Bush..If not then we got a liar ..

    Yes, he is basicly a liar. He had some ideas about opposing the israelis until he found out what AIPAC would do to him, and then he tried to outBush Bush about that.


    If you want short-term results, I'd say vote for Kerry. You know what you'll get with Bush. With Kerry there's a reasonable chance that he'll do something different.


    Two reasons, often overlooked in our community during elections, why we should lend our support to Nader:


    1. Free publicity for our issues;

    No one has ever been able to give Palestinian Rights as much visibility in the US as Ralph has. If we were going to buy the same amount of air time to advertise to millions of Americans the cause for peace in Israel / Palestine! - we would have to spend hundreds of millions of dollars. And even if we were willing to do that we cannot guarantee that the mainstream media would agree to our ads. On Iraq both Bush and Kerry are gun-ho for a continued occupation to be followed by a new "Pro-US dictatorship." We know that. But, does the average American know that? NO. Ralph is the only one who is making the Iraq war an issue in this campaign.


    That makes good sense. Nader likely won't get a lot of publicity but he'll get some. And he might help you more than you'll hurt him.


    2. Real political leverage for our community;

    The Democratic leadership is telling us it is nice that you support our "non-Bush" candidate but on your issues we offer an agenda that is the same and in the case of the Middle East it is even worse than  the Bush agenda.  In short their message to Arab and Muslim America is that we are irrelevant. We cannot provide them with more funds than the pro-Israel fundamentalists or the military industrial complex. And we are also not a threat to them so long as we keep saying "anyone but Bush." But, ! if we say we are with Nader / Camejo then we suddenly matter and they will try to woo us.


    I doubt they will this year. But if the zionists all go for Bush, and give the strong impression they'll go Republican next time around too, then the Democrats will woo you next time. Showing that you'll only vote for them if they're good to you is worth something.


    Do not forget the Kerry "neo-cons" who would like to divide Iraq into three states and dramatically increase aid to Israel at the expense of aid to Arab countries. Kerry may suddenly change his tune. Even for those who believe that Kerry is slightly better than Bush the risk of going with Ralph is worth taking. Because "slightly" is just not good enough. If the Democrats can win with the agenda they now have - in the 2008 election they could be worse even than the Republicans. And we would be left with no party to stand for even a single one of our issues.


    I think there's a reasonable chance that Kerry will try to do right. Give him an idea that might work and there's a reasonable chance he'll take it. This isn't his war yet, and if he can find a way to change things around he might change them. He can even admit that it's all wrong and needs to be changed -- after the election. Bush can't admit that ever.


    So if you'd rather vote for a chance than no chance, and you are in a swing state, vote for Kerry. But if you'd rather have a chance the Democrats will woo you in 2008, vote for Nader.

  11. The Democrat looks like the one with the long-term imperial agenda.


    To read the article, please click Kerry would keep US troops in Iraq far longer than Bush

    Kerry is a politician who is trying to get elected. If he says the same thing as Bush then people will have to choose on other issues. If he says something different then people will blame him for it.


    For example, if he said he would take the troops out on some particular timetable, for the next 5 months the american troops would be unclear what their mission was. And the people who like Bush would say he was endangering the troops. He would certainly be endangering their mission. If the various militias and insurgents etc thought he would win, they would have an incentive to build up their forces while they wait for the US army to leave. But every bit of fighting that did happen would blamed on him by his enemies. "The insurgents are attacking as hard as they can because they want Kerry to win!"


    So Kerry does better by saying he'll do the same things Bush is doing but do them better. In five months the situation will have changed so much that he can do whatever he thinks best at that time. If it's all settled down and the elections work right, he can take the credit. If it's such a mess that his only choice is to pull out he can blame Bush. If it looks like more trouble but winnable, he can ask for foreign help and hang in until the help arrives, maybe even give up control and do it under a UN banner.


    You can't tell about politicians from what they say before the election. Before the 2000 election Bush said he wasn't going to do nation-building.

  12. Another wrong step that Muqtada is commiting, putting in mind that the latest poll in Iraq had showed a support of 81% of Iraqis to the measures by Allawee governemnt ..By the way same poll showed only 1% support to "Resistance"..

    Tajer, who did that poll and who paid for it?


    In the USA, polls paid for by republicans tend to show 5% to 10% more support for Biush than polls paid for by democrats, and independent polls tend to be somewhere inbetween. There are so many polls that we don't worry too much about them being faked.


    But if there are not so many polls there, one poll might be faked a lot. And under the circumstances pollsters may start to be afraid of Allawi even if they don't particularly support him, so they could be pressured to fake their results.


    I tended to trust CPA polls that said the CPA had 10% support. If the number was really 5% or 0% it didn't matter much.

  13. To all American: There are no Weapons of Mass Destruction as you call them and there was no al Qaeda here until you brought them here.  Your reasoning for going to war was clearly an excuse.

    In the USA it matters what the people think. Our government sometimes attacks small nearby countries, and the american people don't pay much attention provided it is all over before they notice much. If it takes two days, preferably a weekend, and the fighting is over before many people notice, then they shrug and accept it.


    But to attack a country that takes two weeks to defeat, that we have not been attacked by, the government needs a good excuse. This time they used a bad excuse and there's a strong chance that they will be voted out of office in November. I do not know what the next government will do.


    You cannot use million dollar missles to kill innocent wedding parties-for no reason.


    Our military does not have enough men in iraq. It would have been better to bring in large numbers of troops and surround the wedding party, get them to surrender, see that they were actually a wedding party and not a group of foreign fighters, and then apologise and go away. But the troops were not available and so they used a method that did not need so many troops. They shot first and asked questions later. I would apologise for my military if apologies could be accepted. The last I heard they were still denying it. They promised to "investigate" and I haven't heard that there was any report.


    When american voters get upset about what our military does, we are likely to insist that they not do things that they think are necessary and that they do other things they think are useless. So they have reason to lie to us to keep us from getting upset. That leads us to distrust them, and we tend to want them to come home where we can watch them.


    You cannot have your CIA and call it the CPA.  And you cannot put a puppet CIA regeme and call a pro-Iraqi goverment. 


    It would have been better if our CPA had been run by the CIA. It was corrupt, it was run by friends of american politicians. We usually try to avoid that sort of corruption because it costs a lot of money and doesn't get good results. We will probably make new rules to make it less likely that this will happen again elsewhere. Again I would want to apologise for my government. I did not vote for them.


    Do you honestly expect the Iraqi people to believe 6 people shamed thousands.  How many is that a day?  Consider the fact the shaming took place with all detainees in all the camps not just one.  Consider the fact everyone knows the shaming was taking place even before the 6 americans entered our country.


    Very few reports about that got to the USA before the pictures. Americans naturally tended to believe that iraqis who did something to get the military to detain them, would lie about abuse. We want to believe that our army never does anything wrong. The army hid evidence both because they needed american voters to approve of them and because the war would be harder for them if more iraqis were upset. Part of the problem was that the american soldiers were not completely clear whether iraq was a conquered country or a liberated country. They were supposed to think of iraq as liberated, but it was easiest for them to treat iraqis as conquered.


    The government now says that the shaming was intended only for important terrorists, and it was wrongly extended to a few others. They say that prisoners had to remove their clothing and suffer sexually only in a few places and for limited times. But things like keeping prisoners awake was common. They ignore things like guards *talking* about raping prisoners etc, they do not take that seriously. The american public got very upset about the pictures. They will get even more upset if the tapes get out showing the rape of women and particularly children. Americans mostly ignored that when it was two lines in a long written report, but they wuld be outraged to see it. We still want desperately to believe it was only a few people in one prison doing that. And americans are tending to ignore the nonsexual torture.


    This happens in prisons in america also. It is unofficially the policy to let male prisoners rape each other. Male prisoners are not allowed any access to female prisoners, but female prisoners have some male guards and some of them get pregnant each year. I don't know how much of that is rape and how often the women agree in exchange for better food etc. American police sometimes shame prisoners. I remember one example where a newspaper reporter was stopped for driving drunk. She was not polite to the police who arrested her, so in the jail they put her alone in a cold cell and took all her clothing except her panties, and they had a TV camera that watched her for fourteen hours until her lawyer could get her out. She was very upset about it and wrote about it in the newspaper. Americans do not like it when this sort of thing happens to us, but I think it is not as serious for us as it is for you.


    Who are you kidding.  The pipelines you are repairing are NOT to help the Iraqi people, it is only to help America steal our oil.


    Since we have such a large government is it hard for americans to be sure what it is doing. We agreed to repair your oil equpment to help you. We would like to buy your oil for a fair price. But our government may be lying to us and to you too. It looks like for the last year the CPA sold the oil and spent the money buying things from american companies at very high prices. This was not what the american people agreed to, and most of them have still not heard about it. Was it done on purpose? Was it because the corrupt understaffed CPA did not know how to do better? I don't know yet.


    We need more of your help as much as we enjoy being rapped, beaten, tortured and ripped apart by animals with sharp teeth. 


    The majority of americans would be glad to bring our army home. Get Allawi to tell us to go home, in front of TV cameras, with no warning ahead of time in case someone would kill him to stop it, and we will take them home. What would it take to get him to do that? He is willing to announce that he approves of airstrikes on Fallujah. But if he would send the americans home he might get very popular and people would not think he was an american puppet. It may not be safe for him to do that now, but if Bush loses the american election maybe Allawi will do it later in November or December. Bush would not care very much and Kerry would not be ready yet to punish Allawi even if he wanted to. Do you think Allawi would feel safe from iraqis if he did that?


    As long as you attack Islam, Non-believers will be attacked. 


    If you leave all will be well.  I don't see what more there is to understand.  It is something you can never win.  There are millions of Islam and only100 , 000of your Christians here?


    I hope this is a big misunderstanding. Some americans believe that there are many millions of fanatical islamics who want to die so they can either kill us or convert us to islam. Many americans are not christians, but they still feel afraid of fanatical islamists. It would be good if the fanatical islamists would agree on a list of demands for the USA. We might fight before we agree to all of your demands, but you and we would both be better off if we did not think your demands were that we must die or become islamic. Much of the current problem comes from americans who insist that there is no possible compromise, that we must either stop you from being islamic or we must kill you all or you will kill all of us. This belief can do tremendous harm.


    I saw a report from a CIA agent who said that fanatical moslems had only six demands. I remember three of them.


    1. A fair settlement for the israel/palestine conflict.

    2. US military out of the arabian peninsula. (Or the whole middle east?)

    3. Middle east oil controlled by the middle east nations, not by the USA.


    It would be very good for americans to understand that we are fighting for an unfair settlement for israel, and for military bases, and for oil, and maybe three other things. And that you are not threatening to kill us all for not being islamic. The american public could someday agree to do what is right. Although we say we will not do anything that terrorists tell us to.


    The question now is not if you will be shammed, but which humiliation is less before you are pushed out.


    I cannot speak for what my government secretly intends. But they have promised the world that they will leave iraq whenever either the interim government or the transitional government tells them to. The american army has the best weapons in the world and even in iraqi cities I expect they kill on average ten terrorists or innocent civilians for each american death. And we tend to believe we are doing the right thing. We believe that we are helping a legitimate government that is about to have fair elections -- not a puppet. It might be true. It would be better for everybody if your government publicly tells us to leave, than to go through the years of death and destruction it might take for us to believe that we cannot fulfill our promises to your democratic government, and retreat.


    Here is another thing. It will take years for you to develop an army that can defend against your neighbors. Do you worry about another invasion, or are you confident that no one else will invade? If a neighbor might attack, perhaps your government might offer the US government a contract for external defense. We would keep strong forces in bases and mostly not go off those bases, the bases would receive supplies transported by iraqis. You could pay, say, a dollar a year for our aid in case you get invaded, and the contract would be renewable yearly. Maybe you could get our help preventing invasion while you rebuild your own defenses. Maybe you could get that help without having to promise anything like bases we could keep for a long time. And you could build your economy faster if you started out slow buying tanks and planes. First rebuild the things that help you rebuild faster, and only later spend resources on tanks and planes that do nothing to help you buy more tanks and planes.


    Your US newspapers are embedded with the ignorance of your President and completely bias against the Nation of Islam.  Why don't you leave Arab states alone?  All our problems are a product of your meddling in our region.  We don't need you.


    Some americans desperately need a fanatical enemy. They have chosen you to be their fanatical enemy, that they can constantly create new weapons to fight. Also our six million jewish citizens are very influential, while our four million islamic citizens are not. The militarists and the zionists both try to keep us ignorant about islam. I think this is bad for us and bad for you. I do not know what to do about it. If the USA must choose an enemy I would profer it be an enemy with a much stronger economy and a much smaller population than the entire islamic world. We would do far better with the EU as a friendly enemy than to invent a fanatical implacable genocidal islam to fight. Or I personally think we would do better without an enemy at all.


    I saw an english-language website that claimed to be al qaeda. It described the violence but it said nothing about what they fought for. And I saw one that claimed to be from an iraqi resistance group. It had many pictures of burning tanks and humVs with people dancing beside them, but it also said nothing about demands. Maybe your enemies made those sites to tell americans that you are fanatics who only want to kill and die. But if you know anybody who puts up sites like that, please ask them to write about what they are fighting for. And if you happen to meet a western journalist, please tell him your own list of demands. And so on.


    Tell us a simple set of demands that americans could meet, and after that we could live in peace and after a hundred years the bad feelings would tend to go away. Give us a way out.


    There are americans -- zionists and others -- who repeat often that there can be no compromise with islam. I think most americans don't believe that, they prefer to believe that it is only a small minority of islamic people who must be killed so that americans can survive. Many of us would be happy to find that all we need is to meet a set of demands that we agree are fair. We don't like this kill-or-be-killed story. We would rather it not be true. But people keep telling us that it is true.

  14. So elction will be for the parties.. If my understanding is correct, then there will be votes for each party, the question is how this will be mapped to the no. of seats.. Asumme party A gets 100 thousand vote out of total of 1 million voters, while party B gets 10 thousand.. What will be no. of seats to each? is this be different when the total no. of candidate s is different than the no. of real voters?

    I can say only what I understood from the interim agreement. The permanent constitution might be different.


    I believe there will be 270 seats in the assembly. Say that the voting population of iraq is 27 million. Then each seat is worth a hundred thousand votes.


    So a party that gets 1 million votes will have its top ten representatives in the assembly. A party that gets a hundred thousand votes will get its top guy in the assembly. A party that gets ten thousand votes will not get into the assembly.


    Say that ten different parties get 10,000 votes each. Then the other parties are likely to have 269 representatives and one of the seats is not filled. I don't know what is supposed to happen in that case.

  15. An american journalist in Fallujah has reported that many resistance groups say they're loyal to al Zarqawi now, though they have little contact with him. What is Zarqawi's appeal? I had thought he might be a project designed by someone who wanted the resistance to look bad. But it sounds like he doesn't look bad to resistance members.


    Why you expect him to look bad for a bunch of terrorists.. The important thing is how he looks to majority of Iraqis ..

    I had read that there are a variety of insurgents. There are those who want a Saddam-style sunni-ruled government, with or without Saddam. Then there are those who want a Salafi-run government with strict religion. And there are the nationalists who want to drive out foreign troops. And the ones who want arabs everywhere to unite against the USA. Clearly one man could belong to three of these. But Zarqawi appears to be only the last kind, and I'm surprised many others would support him when he's known for killing innocents etc.

  16. http://www.aljeeran.net/viewarticle.php?id...pg=index&art=mp


    In Arabic..

    Unknown group anoounce that they will kill any of the Arab who might come to Baghdad to support Sadam .. The the group is a new one.. But seems that there are many groups in Iraq that are trying to revenge for the killing by Zarqawee and other terrorists ..

    There's no confirmation possible, is there?


    Anybody can cover their faces and stage a press conference. Anybody who's scared to cover their faces and have a press conference can get a video camera and make a quick video of them covering their faces and making their claims, and deliver copies of the video to the press.


    So all these reports show that somebody wants to influence public opinion, and they don't show much more.


    An american journalist in Fallujah has reported that many resistance groups say they're loyal to al Zarqawi now, though they have little contact with him. What is Zarqawi's appeal? I had thought he might be a project designed by someone who wanted the resistance to look bad. But it sounds like he doesn't look bad to resistance members.

  17. A lot of Salafees in Iraq and Jordan are talking this as a serious development.. One of my friends told me when asked him about it, that rumers in Baghdad spread that this group is mostly composed of those Iraqis who lost relatives in the Alzarqawee's terror acts, and they might do some revenges on the Salafees mosques and persons who support him..

    The Fallujah mayor etc says al Zarqawi is not there, and their foreign fighters aren't his. A foreign journalist who spent all of May in Fallujah claims there are perhaps 3 dozen foreign fighters in Fallujah. But Allawi and the americans say Zarqawi has a strong presence in Fallujah and their airstrikes have killed at least (I haven't kept track, 22 the first strike, 20 the second, 12 the fifth) 54 of his men there.


    Have Salafees been supporting Alzarqawi? Do they have that reputation?


    I have read that many iraqis think it is OK to attack american soldiers who they think of as foreign invaders. And some think it is OK to kill people who work for the americans, or people who work for the IG. But all agree it is wrong to kill the innocent. Alzarqawi has been killing innocents. Why would anyone support him? In the USA we had a man named Charles Manson who got about 12 followers. He chose to be evil and have his people kill a pregnant woman. Nobody helped him later except his followers who were already committed. The police caught them and put them all in jail, Manson is still there. Alzarqawi seems like Manson to me. He tries to be evil. Who would like him?


    If this is a real group, then our government should take a serious actions before such thing might happen, we don't want people take revenge on personal and suspect bases because they were getting despirate of having the goverment capture Al zarqawee and his band..


    My first thought was that it was a group of resistance fighters who wanted to make it plain that there is a big difference between people who patriotically fight americans and people who help al Zarqawi. If everybody hates al Zarqawi they don't want everybody to hate them too. But I am far from the events.

  18. Part 2


    The next priority should be to shake off U.S. tutelage and show Iraqis they have a government that really is in charge of the country, Chalabi declared. Even if the departure of U.S. troops is not a practical possibility, he said, the Iraqi government should display as much authority as it can under the circumstances.


    "This is a quandary," he acknowledged. "The Iraqi government needs to assert itself as an Iraqi government, independent of the Americans, but it has to rely on the Americans to assert itself."


    As he and many Iraqis acknowledge, Iraq's army and security services have not acquired the numbers or ability to confront violent resistance to U.S. occupation. As a result, the 141,000 U.S. troops and about 25,000 other foreign forces in Iraq will be in charge of security for the foreseeable future.


    Allawi has few tools to back up his repeated pledges to crack down on the anti-occupation underground, Chalabi said, but he should move swiftly to give Iraqi security forces visibility on the streets. "At this time, the government doesn't have the power, but it has to show that it is doing it."


    A good place to start, Chalabi suggested, would be with the new Iraqi National Intelligence Service set up by the CIA to replace Hussein's much-feared services. The new intelligence apparatus, hundreds strong, was organized in secret without a known budget or statute, he said.


    The director, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Abdullah Shahwani, was recruited by the CIA station in the Jordanian capital Amman after he fled Iraq in 1991, Chalabi said, and has been a favorite ever since. A member of Iraq's Turkmen minority, Shahwani reports directly to the prime minister but is closely supervised by CIA officers, Chalabi added. Under their guidance, the service has turned much of its focus toward neighboring Iran, he said.


    According to a report prepared in April by knowledgeable officials for members of the now-disbanded Governing Council, the service roster is two-thirds Sunni Muslim and one-fourth Shiite in a country that is about 60 percent Shiite, giving rise to fears that the new service has incorporated many former members of Hussein's Sunni-dominated services.


    "This won't fly here," Chalabi said.


    Next, Chalabi said, the new government should grab control of the country's finances. Specifically, he said, it should demand a full accounting of how Bremer, who had check-signing authority, spent funds from the Development Fund for Iraq, a pool of cash from Iraqi oil sales designated to pay for reconstruction.


    KPMG, the firm contracted to do an audit, issued an interim report recently complaining that lack of cooperation from Bremer's Coalition Provisional Authority was preventing it from meeting a June 30 deadline.


    In addition, Chalabi said, the U.S. Embassy, which replaced the occupation authority on Monday, has sought power to disburse some of the funds even though political authority has been returned to the Iraqi government. Allawi's government should insist that the money flow exclusively through the Iraqi Finance Ministry, Chalabi said.


    Another step the government should take to show Iraqis that it is in charge is to shed the American and other foreign advisers who remain in some ministries, he said. These advisers have largely left such ministries as education and housing, but remain in others, such as defense and interior.


    Finally, Chalabi suggested, Allawi and Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari should make sure that they, not the United States, determine Iraqi foreign policy.


    Iraq has a long history of Arab nationalism and support for Palestinians against Israel, dating from before Hussein's Baath Party took over in 1968. As a result, its foreign policy, if tradition and popular sentiment are followed, could end up being adversarial with that of the Bush administration.

  19. Part 1


    Chalabi, Shunted to Sidelines, Shares His Playbook for Iraq

    Party Leader Emphasizes Elections, Shaking Off U.S. Tutelage


    By Edward Cody

    Washington Post Foreign Service

    Wednesday, June 30, 2004; Page A12


    BAGHDAD, June 29 -- Ahmed Chalabi smiled contentedly at the thought. L. Paul Bremer, the U.S. administrator who ran Iraq like a viceroy for more than a year, was reduced to a hasty exit with a stealthy helicopter ride to the airport, seen off without fanfare by no one higher-ranking than a deputy prime minister.


    "Bremer put his hand in his pocket and went to the airport ignominiously," Chalabi chortled Tuesday, the day after Bremer's departure. "And Dan Senor with him," he added, referring to Bremer's spokesman, who had denigrated Chalabi on television.


    In essence, Chalabi was saying, Bremer is now gone, Senor is now gone and Ahmed Chalabi is not.


    True, Chalabi has been disowned by the Pentagon and his other sponsors in Washington, the ones who not long ago were paying him for intelligence on weapons of mass destruction that seems to have been groundless. Thanks in part to Bremer, he also was excluded from the new government headed by his longtime rival from exile days, Ayad Allawi. And warrants or subpoenas have been issued for about 15 of his aides, including his intelligence chief, while sources in the United States, speaking anonymously, suggest he may have passed U.S. secrets to Iran. Chalabi, who was not charged, has denied any wrongdoing by himself or his associates.


    Now, as the Bush administration's efforts in Iraq enter a new phase and many key Americans have departed, Chalabi remains.


    The cunning and determination that served him during more than a decade of encouraging the United States into war against Saddam Hussein have not deserted him. From headquarters in Mansour, Baghdad's toniest neighborhood, the former exile leader, the former Washington protégé, the former Iraqi Governing Council member has taken to watching, waiting and laying closely held plans.


    Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress, which once drew funds from the CIA and the Pentagon, has not gained a high profile as a political force in Iraq, but neither have the other exile groups. The INC will participate as a political party in next January's elections, Chalabi said. But in a shirt-sleeves conversation at his expansive residence, the portly campaigner, 59, danced and jabbed relentlessly when asked about what is left of his own political ambitions.


    When pressed, he cited a bit of wisdom attributed to Imam Ali, a 7th-century warrior who married a daughter of the prophet Muhammad and became a central figure of Shiite Islam: "He who seeks authority should not be given authority." In more modern terms, he said he was lying low because "people immediately ascribe to me aims and ambitions of achieving power."


    Chalabi, a secular Shiite, has kept only a modest hand in public affairs since the Governing Council on which he served disbanded a month ago. He has helped organize the grand assembly convening next month to pick a quasi-legislature, and he meets regularly with the Shiite Caucus of Iraq's Shiite political leaders. But he is the only senior figure in the U.S.-backed exile movement whose group was frozen out of the new government by the Bush administration's political process.


    Yet even from the sidelines, Chalabi said, he has clear ideas about what the Iraqi government should do -- ideas formed in years of maneuvering through the many agencies of the U.S. government. His ideas, forcefully expressed, have gotten him into trouble before, he acknowledged, generating hostility at the CIA, enraging Bremer and irritating even fellow members of the Governing Council.


    The CIA had a long grudge against him, he said, because he warned that Iraqi intelligence had penetrated a 1996 coup plot supported by George J. Tenet, then deputy director of intelligence. Bremer turned against him because of his repeated insistence that Iraqis be given authority more swiftly to run their own country, Chalabi said.


    It was Bremer, he said, who was behind the raid May 20 in which his office was searched for compromising documents on the strength of a warrant issued by an Iraqi judge. However, Senor, Bremer's spokesman, said at the time that Bremer's only connection with the case was administrative. "Ambassador Bremer doesn't intervene in these respective cases," Senor said then, "he just handles the procedural matter of referring it."


    Now things have changed. Bremer has gone home and the Bush administration has cut its ties, leaving Chalabi in Baghdad with a future just as uncertain as that of the rest of his 25 million countrymen. As the new government takes its first steps with restored political authority, there was no longer any reason not to lay out his ideas.


    The first imperative, Chalabi said, is to make sure the elections scheduled for January are carried out as promised. Allawi suggested over the weekend that the voting might have to be postponed until February or March if the security situation did not improve. But he swiftly disavowed the idea of delay the next day, recognizing the issue's sensitivity in a country repeatedly told that democracy had arrived.

  20. I can't log to the engilish version of  the interveiew.. Would you please posted down..

    Here is a different one.



    Meet the Press (NBC News) - Sunday, May 23, 2004


    MR. TIM RUSSERT:  Our issues this Sunday:  yet more pictures and new videos of prisoner abuse in Iraq.  Former Bush administration ally, Ahmad Chalabi, now denounces the U.S. occupation.




    MR. AHMAD CHALABI:  Let my people be free.


    (End videotape)


    But first, joining us from Baghdad is the man in the center of the storm, Ahmad Chalabi.  Mr. Chalabi, these were pictures in January.  There you are seated in the Congress right behind the first lady of the United States, and on Thanksgiving when George Bush went to Baghdad, there you are greeting him. And now this.  These are scenes Thursday when your compound in Baghdad was raided on allegations of sharing top secret information with the Iranian government which led to this headline in The Washington Post:  "U.S. Aids Raid on Home of Chalabi."  And now today, this Newsweek cover:  "Our Con Man In Iraq."  What has happened for you to fall in such a way?


    MR. CHALABI:  First of all, the charges about giving classified information to Iran by me or by any INC officer are false, non-existent.  They are charges put out by George Tenet and his CIA to discredit us, and I want to go to Congress.  I'm prepared to go to Congress and testify under oath and expose all the information and the documents in our possession and let George Tenet come himself to Congress to testify and let Congress resolve this issue.


    MR. RUSSERT:  It seems to be beyond George Tenet.  The Wall Street Journal put it this way:  "Recent intelligence, including communications intercepts, suggest Mr. Chalabi ... provided contacts in Tehran with details of U.S. security operations and political plans."


    And this from Newsday:  "The Defense Intelligence Agency"--that's not the CIA, that's the DIA--"has concluded that U.S.-funded arm of Ahmad Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress has been used for years by Iranian intelligence to pass disinformation to the United States and to collect highly sensitive American secrets, according to intelligence sources.  Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the United States through Chalabi by furnishing through his Information Collection Program information to provoke the United States into getting rid of Saddam Hussein."


    There are intercepts...


    MR. CHALABI:  Anyone who has intercepts who has any information, any documents, I am prepared to go and face all this in the United States Congress.  It is no good quoting unnamed sources to say that they have a case. These are allegations that are put forward and directed by the CIA.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Mr. Chalabi, have you not had extensive meetings and contacts with the Iranian government?


    MR. CHALABI:  Indeed, we have had many meetings with the Iranian government, but we have passed no secret information, no classified documents to them from the United States because principally, we are allies of the United States and we do nothing to harm the United States.  Furthermore, we have not had any classified information given to us by the United States, nor have we had any classified briefings, nor have I seen any classified document from the United States.  And I believe none in the INC have done that either.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Let me show you how some of the papers here have reported this latest incident.  The New York Times:  "Mr. Chalabi, regarded by many Iraqis as an American stooge, seemed to relish his new role as a martyr ... moving away from the Americans as he has moved closer to the country's Shiite majority."


    The Christian Science Monitor said there is rumors all over Baghdad that said this was all part of a constructed charade by you and American officials in order for you to position yourself as independent of America so that you can seek to obtain power in Iraq.


    MR. CHALABI:  Well, you can see the quality of the information then.  Iraq is not Latin America.  It's not Honduras.  And I would say a piece of advice for Ambassador Negroponte.  If he thinks he comes here and provides diplomatic cover for the control of Iraq through covert operations, I think he would be sadly mistaken.  Iraq seeks to be a democratic country, and the majority of the people of Iraq will express their views in an election.  The process that is going on now in Iraq to select a government, the Brahimi, Bremer, Blackwell process will lead to a failure of the government after June 30.  I call on President Bush, who is still the most popular politician in Iraq, to convene a meeting of Iraqi leaders in Camp David to iron out this process and put in place a government for Iraq that is effective, representative, and can lead Iraq to elections next January.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Won't that be perceived as a puppet government of the United States?


    MR. CHALABI:  Not at all.  Abdel Aziz al-Hakim, Massoud Barzani, Jalal Talabani, Mohammed Bahr Al-Uloum and others are not perceived by anyone as puppets of the United States.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Let me turn the U.S. taxpayers.  This was a report from Reuters.  "The United States paid Ahmad Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress at least $33 million since March 2000, according to a congressional report made public on Thursday. ... U.S. officials this week said the Pentagon stopped funding the INC - it had been giving roughly $340,000 a month - with the final payment in May."


    What did the U.S. taxpayers get for $33 million?


    MR. CHALABI:  I refer you to the testimony of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Congress a few days ago.  General Myers said that the information provided by the INC saved American lives.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Then why--excuse me.


    MR. CHALABI:  They saved American lives.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Then why did the Pentagon take you off the payroll?


    MR. CHALABI:  We were never on the payroll of the Pentagon.  We had a cooperative program with the Pentagon and we contributed to it more than they did.  It was a prewartime program designed to fight Saddam Hussein.  With the movement toward sovereignty on June 30, it is inappropriate for a political party in Iraq to have relations of this nature with a foreign military organization.  This program should move to the Iraqi Ministry of Defense.  It was terminated by mutual agreement to end on June 30, 2004, with the advent of sovereignty.


    MR. RUSSERT:  We all remember when Secretary of State Colin Powell went to the United Nations and made the case against Saddam Hussein.  He was on this program last week and expressed grave concern about the quality of some of that information.  Here's an article from the Los Angeles Times.  "The Bush administration's prewar claims that Saddam Hussein had built a fleet of trucks and railroad cars to produce anthrax and other deadly germs were based chiefly on information from a now-discredited Iraqi defector code-named `Curveball'...


    "U.S. officials never had direct access to the defector and didn't even know his real name until after the war.  ... U.N. weapons inspectors hypothesized that such trucks might exist.  ... They then asked former exile leader Ahmad Chalabi...to help search for intelligence supporting their theory.  Soon after, a young chemical engineer emerged in a German refugee camp and claimed that he had been hired out of Baghdad University to design and build biological warfare trucks for the Iraqi army. ...


    "Only later...did the the CIA learn the defector was the brother of one of Chalabi's top aides, and begin to suspect that he might been coached to provide false information."


    MR. CHALABI:  We don't know who "Curveball" is.  That is part of the charges. Let them bring their files.  I'm prepared to go to Congress.  I'm prepared to answer all these charges.  We are mystified by this information.  We are mystified by who this person is and who is he the brother of.  We've been looking very actively to find out, but we still have not found out.  Let them tell us who it is, and let them put those charges, and I'm prepared to go and answer them in Congress.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Mr. Chalabi, it's beyond the CIA and just George Tenet, as you suggest.  This is Whitley Bruner, who was the CIA agent who first contacted you:  "[Chalabi's] primary focus was to drag us into a war...He couldn't be trusted."


    David Kay, the former U.N. chief weapons inspector:  "[Chalabi's] history is one, as a con man, quite frankly. ... It was a conscious campaign designed to get the U.S. militarily involved in the removal of Saddam.  ...Through fabricated information that indicated a weapons program that they did not have."


    And this from Pat Lang, who headed up counterterrorism in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for eight years at the Defense Intelligence Agency:  "He's a fake, one of the greatest frauds ever perpetrated on the American people."


    How can all these people be so wrong?


    MR. CHALABI:  They are all wrong.  They are--this is part of the common wisdom that has grown in Washington, but it is baseless.  We provided--our focus was not weapons of mass destruction.  Our focus was the suffering of the Iraqi people and the liberation of Iraq.  It is no secret the Congress passed the Iraq Liberation Act in 1998 under the Clinton administration, and Clinton signed it.  It was the object of United States national policy to have regime change in Iraq.  And President Bush came.  Through his leadership and courage, he implemented this law, and the Iraq Liberation Act was passed long before any of these allegations came out.  So they should go and criticize the United States Congress.  We did not drive the United States to war in Iraq.  We were seeking the liberation of our country, and the United States decided for its own security and strategic purposes to help the Iraqi people liberate themselves, and that is what happened.


    MR. RUSSERT:  But, Mr. Chalabi, you did say in--and the public documents are very clear, that the United States would only need 30,000 troops in Iraq, that we would be greeted as liberators.  Some fellow exiles said we'd be given sweets and flowers on the streets and that you could take U.S. troops to where the weapons of mass destruction actually existed.  And when asked about that in February, this is what you told The London Daily Telegraph.  "We are heroes in error.  ...As far as we're concerned we've been entirely successful.  That tyrant Saddam is gone and the Americans are in Baghdad.  What was said before is not important."


    What was said before is important because it was information you provided to U.S. officials and to the American people.


    MR. CHALABI:  What was said before is very important.  This interview is false.  The reporter did not ask these questions and I did not say "heroes in error."  I never gave him an interview.  I was sitting in a room chatting. The issue here is this.  We believe that the United States came to liberate the Iraqi people, and I think the liberation was successful.  Very few American troops were needed to defeat Saddam and the Iraqi people greeted them.  If the Iraqi people had fought them, just think what would have happened in Baghdad considering what happened in Fallujah.  The resistance was non-existent.  They were greeted as liberators.  The liberation was successful.  The occupation has been a failure.


    MR. RUSSERT:  You said the other day, "Let my people go free."  We here in the United States have paid a very big price for the liberation of Iraq.  Seven hundred and ninety-three brave men and women dead, 4,524 injured or wounded. And now you're saying, "Let my people go free, get out."  Is that gratitude?


    MR. CHALABI:  I never said get out.  The Iraqi people are absolutely grateful to the U.S. soldiers, the brave young men and women, and we are sorry for every single casualty that happened in Iraq.  We are very sorry about that. We are grateful and we will continue to so, but what we mean by let my people go is that we want sovereignty as agreed with President Bush.  President Bush agreed to give Iraq sovereignty.  We are struggling every day to implement this promise in Iraq and we want arrangements to give Iraq control over its armed forces, over its finances.  We want advisers appointed by the CPA to go when the CPA is dissolved on June 30.  And we want to make it possible for the U.S. troops to go out of Iraq with the thanks of the Iraqi people after having liberated our country, and we also want to have a strategic relationship with the United States, favoring United States' interests in Iraq because we believe that this is also in the interest of Iraq.


    MR. RUSSERT:  If the U.S. troops left Iraq, what would they leave behind?


    MR. CHALABI:  I hope they would be leaving a democratically elected government in Iraq that is friendly to the United States and that will be a model for future governments in the Arab and Muslim world.


    MR. RUSSERT:  What if the Iraqi people chose a theocracy, a fundamentalist Islamic extremist country?


    MR. CHALABI:  I believe the Iraqi people have enough sense to choose a democratically elected government.  This is a hypothetical question that is not pertinent here.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Well, look what's next door in Iran.  Do you think that's a democracy?


    MR. CHALABI:  Iran was not liberated by the U.S. troops.  The Iranians overthrew a regime, an oppressive regime that was friendly to the United States and the Iraqi people have learned from the experience of their neighbors very well.  They are very careful in what they want.  The Islamic parties in Iraq who are in the Governing Council also approved the transitional administrative law which gives freedom of faith to individuals in Iraq.  It gives a bill of rights which is far more advanced than any in the Middle East.  And that law was approved by the Islamic parties.  It is possible under that law for a Muslim to change his religion without being punished.  That is not the case in Egypt nor is it in Jordan.  It also gives freedom for Iraqis to recover their citizenship regardless of their religion or national origin, and that's a great step forward.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Finally, will you seek elective office?


    MR. CHALABI:  No, I'm not a candidate for any government office.


    MR. RUSSERT:  Ahmad Chalabi, we thank you very much for your views.

  21. Ask the people of iraq how they think about chalabee



    Indeed it would be very interesting to have such a poll.. However, in some early one , more than six months ago, Dr. Chalabe came in the fourth place as the most accepted leader.


    I think the comming election will tell more about it .. Anyhow, Chalabi is the one who strongly asent with Ayatoula Systani and keep pushing for the election, while his opponents, are keep calling for delaying it!

    The elections committee may not let him run. No one can run for office who is connected to an illegal militia. And the only militia that are legal are those connected to IG members. Will they decide that Chalabi's militia is still legal?

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