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July 03, 2004

More Iraq News

Terrorist attacks reach "record lows" during transfer of power, but have returned to previous levels:

Daily attacks on U.S. troops dropped to between 20 to 25 per day between June 28 and 30, defying intelligence reports that predicted a major rebel offensive timed to coincide with the announced June 30 handover date.

Just the opposite happened. In a surprise move aimed at sidestepping the expected attacks, U.S. occupation chief L. Paul Bremer handed power to an Iraqi government on June 28 - two days early. Instead of a rebel offensive, Iraq won a few days of rare calm.

Army Lt. Col. Daniel Baggio said he believed the insurgents' "decision cycle" had been upended by Bremer's unexpected handoff.

The military is still exploring the reasons for the two-day lull. Since then, attacks have returned to their recent levels of 35 to 45 per day, the military said.

Allawi drawing up possible amnesty plan for insurgets, even for those involved in killing US troops.

This is neither unexpected nor particularly objectionable. As has been said before, when you endeavor to make peace, you compromise with those you had been at war with. You don't make "peace" with friends.

This isn't the first time the interests of justice have conflicted with the interests of peace-- it happens every time we negotiate a safe-exit for a vicious tyrant in exchange for a peaceful transfer of power to those opposing him.

If this results in fewer US troops dying in the future, it's a good deal. Yes, it would be better to kill every one of these sonsabitches. But at what point does our interest in justice become outweighed by our interest in seeing as many as possible of our boys come home alive, and as soon as possible as well?

The New York Times, shockingly, continues with its "Objective, Balanced News Coverage" experiment, this time reporting on the "wary pride" of Iraqis in their new indiginous government.

Our captured Marine has been beheaded.

Horrible, of course. But there is a silver lining: this behavior is not shocking nor terrorizing us anymore. We have become resigned to the fact that when one of our people is captured by these butchers, he's already a dead man walking. These murders, while vicious and painful, are really little different in terms of pain than a soldier killed by a roadside bomb. And yet the nation doesn't fly into panic over a single roadside-bomb murder, and they shouldn't cover these murders, either.

I hope no one reads that as indifference about these murders. I'm just stating that the terrorists are experiencing declining returns on their newest barbarities.

Mookie al-Sadr is again urging violence against the "occupiers" of Iraq. Three strikes and you're out, pal.

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posted by Ace at 06:30 PM

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