Jul 2006

Same song different country.

Mr. President,
I feel sorry for Maliki as he pleads for unity in his country.
I heard a plea very similar to his back on April 29, 1992 after thousands of people rioted in Los Angeles after a mostly white jury found the police who beat Rodney King, not guilty even after the whole incident was recorded on video. The city went nuts. Fires were set, people were beaten up in broad daylight while TV cameras rolled and stores were looted. A total of 50 to 60 people were killed. Afterwards Rodney King was on TV and made his famous plea to everyone rioting, “Why can’t we all just get along?”
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It was a desperate plea to calm down the violence, and it sounds similar to the plea Maliki made today.

Maliki, Iraq's prime minister pleaded for Iraqis to "unite as brothers," as civil war seems to have taken a turn for the worse in Baghdad, after 60 mostly-Sunni Iraqis were killed this weekend by Shiite Arabs.

The Shiites, long oppressed by Saddam Heussein feel politically empowered after you removed Saddam from power and a large number of Shiites apparently still have many scores to clear up with the once powerful Sunni Arabs.

Maliki has been given the impossible job of promoting national reconciliation. He has even considered forgiving many crimes as long as they did not commit violence against American troops.

Somehow the U.S. troops are trying to stay out of the middle but how do they know who to back on any particular fight?

In this last case of violence, bands of Shiite gunmen set up roadblocks in a mainly Sunni Jihad district of west Baghdad and hauled people with Sunni-sounding names from the streets, cars, and nearby homes to shoot them.

There is a saying in that part of the world where tribal memories are long and violence is quick: My countryman, my brother, and I against the occupiers; if the occupiers are not around, it’s my brother and me against my countryman.

You were warned before you decided to occupy Iraq that removing Saddam would most likely creat a dangerous vacuum of leadership, and a civil war among the various sects within the country was highly probable, but you chose to ignore this possibility.

Saddam might have been a bastard, but Iraq seemed to need a bastard to keep the warring parties apart. Somehow he made things work, the schools were the best in the Mid East; women had many positions of power throughout the government. He also outlawed the extremist religious factions.

Saddam sucked up a lot of oil-for-food money for his personal use, and the infrastructure was crap but it was a hell of a lot better than what you have done to the place. Saddam was a cruel tyrant, but he didn't pose ANY problems for Americas, and you knew it.

You couldn't have screwed up Iraq more if you tried while you made America an even bigger target for religious nut jobs, unless that was your plan to begin with.

Meanwhile poor Maliki is left pleading, "Can't we just get along?"
From: comments@whitehouse.gov
Date: July 11, 2006 1:41:50 AM CDT
To: guzmatom@mac.com

On behalf of President Bush, thank you for your correspondence.
We appreciate hearing your views and welcome your suggestions.
Due to the large volume of e-mail received, the White House is
unable to respond to every message, and therefore this response
is an autoreply.

Thank you again for taking the time to write.