betty, iraq, independent media

took my chances on a big jet plane
never let them tell you that they're all the same
the sea was red and the sky was gray
wondered how tomorrow could ever follow today
the mountains and the canyons started to tremble and shake
as the children of the sun began to wake
- led zeppelin's 'going to california'

so we're in california, all together for the summer. we'll be grouping up again in september for the protests but this is the last time we've all been together since may. betty's not here yet, but her plane lands soon (kat, fly boy and i are going to pick her and her kids up). it's going to be fun and busy so i'm excited but i'm not that ... california's nice to visit but it's not home for me. elaine and i were talking about this flying out here with ruth, tracey, jayson, mike and wally (fly boy flew us) and we're more visitors. we can enjoy it but we need our leaves that change colors with each season and our chilly winters. great if california is the place for you, but for us it's more of a nice place to visit.

mike swears at some point during our time here, jess, jim, ty, ava and dona are going to tell us they're bailing on the east coast. that would be so weird and i can't imagine that happening, but you never know. i want to say thank you to betty for the wonderful job she did filling in for me while i was vacationing and honeymooning. i know kat caught some days too so thank you to kat.

if you felt like you got something extra with betty, i'd be the 1st to agree with you. she did a wonderful job. is there a topic she didn't cover in the four weeks plus? and, from the e-mails i've seen since i got back, every 1 enjoyed hearing about her life. i think those details were my favorite as well. at her site (thomas friedman is a great man) she doesn't get to write what she wants really because she's doing an online novel with various characters and working from an outline. by the way, she did another chapter and it's called '"Nobody pushes Thomas Friedman around!"' so check that out.

she is very down on it. she was trying to drum up the vote for cynthia mckinney in the run off election and that didn't end happily (mckinney lost). she felt she needed to get something up before she came out here. she'd written a few lines, out of order, and wasn't sure she was going to be able to add to them because she was really depressed about the results of the run off. at her request (she doesn't think it will be noted elsewhere), i will note her thanks to kat and c.i. who helped her out on thursday by listening and by finding things she'd cut from earlier chapters. the struggle over davy brooks between gail collins and thomas friedman was actually written a few months back and betty cut it out. c.i. and kat went back through their e-mailed copies of her drafts and found that and a few lines they though she could use now. from that, she was able to 'force' (her word) a chapter.

for those who are thinking, 'i enjoyed betty' - i did too. and she knows she can blog here any time she wants. that's if i'm gone, if i'm blogging. i change my password regularly but i'll be passing that on to her and any time she has time and wants to, she's free to blog here. if she had the time to do it even once a week, i'd make a point to add her to the profile. i won't do that right now because i don't want to add any pressure to her ('she put my name up there, now i have to blog.') but i'm pretty sure she'll be blogging here from time to time.

in the gina & kirsta round-robin and at the third estate sunday review (especially in roundtables), you get a sense of who betty is but her site is really written through the eyes of her novel's main character (betinna). so i think she enjoyed sharing her and i know all my readers who matter (the regulars) loved her writings.

so let's talk democracy now and amy goodman. ricky clousing was interviewed (mike barber broke the story of ricky clousing turning himself in). c.i. delayed the snapshot for a number of reasons, including airport pick ups. but the main reason for the delay was we were all saying, 'oh don't hand out a gold star for that.' so c.i. ended up rewriting a section to note that there has been silence on iraq from indymedia. is amy goodman going to do anything?

1 day? i won't applaud that. and i think the point c.i. makes is an important 1. ricky is 1 of many and, of course, ehren watada needs/requires coverage right now. next week he faces that article 32 hearing.

so was this a shift back to providing coverage on iraq or was it an effort by the program to grab a 'new.' if this was 1 day, if we're supposed to think, 'wow it was covered today and they covered it on july 26th too!' that's not cutting it.

it's not just democracy now dropping the ball. fair's counterspin didn't cover the press coverage of abeer (or what passed for it) today. they were off on the mexico elections and lebanon. iraq's not an issue to them either. fair's scope is media criticism so i'm not expecting 'today in iraq' but i am expecting that they will critique iraq. fair can send out action alerts on any number of topics. that they didn't bother to send 1 out when a 14 year old girl (who is dead) was rendered invisble in the coverage is really sad.

oh god, someone on kpfa praising mad maddie. mad maddie said that the bully boy plans for international relations aren't bad per se, but it wasn't about smacking some 1 in their face with it.

no, the problem is the bully boy doctrine. how desperate is kpfa to cover the issue of israel's actions that they're presenting an 'expet' who would endorse mad maddie and the bully boy doctrine on paper?

i've heard it most of the day (c.i.'s radios are all on it and that's usually not a problem because in the past when i've visited, there's never been such a one-note quality to their broadcast - and i've visted for years and years, decades). it's now the all israel, all the time network.

iraq's not important in this coverage. i know from kat's closest friends (dak ho, sumner, maggie and toni) that they're sick of the non-stop coverage of what israel's done today. i can't imagine that most listeners aren't.

i've listened to flashpoints this week and enjoyed it but i'm not going to cover it because i think there's too much online about israel as it is. i think iraq's equally important and there's so much silence on iraq. when the snapshot started, the hope was it would be a brief thing in every way. brief note and briefly done because iraq would become a main focus again. that hasn't happened.

it's so 1 note and it's so awful and it's not what independent media is supposed to be.

c.i. is very supportive of indymedia (in words and donations). i'm not. and this is why.

i don't have any faith that indymedia's going to provide meaningful coverage. i heard a guy today trying to defend the coverage (which he thought was overdone) by saying that indymedia has to be a counter weight to big media. that argument goes like this, big media sides with israel and has so much bias (i agree so far) that it's important for indymedia to respond.

i can accept that to a degree. i can accept that it's important to respond to a degree. i don't think indymedia should let big media set the agenda. that's why they did. big media said israel was the only story and indymedia followed.

i don't think they trusted their audience. i don't think they grasped that the audience wouldn't get the points unless they were hit over the head with them over and over.

it's important for indymedia to go where the silence is. when the silence greeted iraq (by silence, i'm noting big media pulling correspondents out of iraq and sending them to lebanon and israel - not gaza, gaza's always the forgotten region).

kpfa, with a lot of nerve, just quoted ricky clausing and noted 'high profile' crimes such as '14 year old girl' - well i know from kat that kpfa hasn't done any real coverage of abeer and that they didn't even mention her name tonight.

'high profile' - quit fucking kidding.

it should have been high profile, it wasn't.

there are other reasons to rip apart the report but i'm not a kpfa listener. (c.i. has no problem with kat's critiques of kpfa because kat is a regular listener. i'm not. if kat's critizing, regardless of how, it comes from the fact that she likes kpfa and she is bothered by what it's done.)

back to my point i was making. this is why i don't grab the checkbook for indymedia. there's always this big talk and big promises and they never follow through.

at some point, they usually become schill's for the democratic party. maybe they suddenly sit down with bill richardson and treat him with soft questions?

if indymedia (i'm not referring to the websites 'indymedia') was serious about what they say they are, i'd be happy to support them but i've seen all this 'we are independent' talk before. print or broadcast, they all start schilling. (exceptions to the rule would include dennis bernstein, nora barrows friedman and bonnie faulkner.) but take ruth conniff of the progressive. what the hell is progressive about her senate kisses? what the hell is progressive about her coverage?

i don't see it. i see some 1 who wants so bad to be an insider that she avoids the tough questions and the tough issues. like when she blew off iraq on kris welch's program and claimed (wrongly according to polls at the time) that iraq wasn't making it home.

if indymedia was really independent, they wouldn't need me or any 1 else to point out that they'd dropped iraq. they wouldn't have dropped it. and they wouldn't be presenting centrists and center-left as left. (mike will be writing about one such person tonight.)

but what in ruth conniff's superficial writing is progressive? she's chopped off abortion rights with her nonsense about what is and isn't allowed. (her stance on abortion wasn't that different from the democrat's new stance - are we surprised?) when you wade through her nonsense, you're left to ask yourself, 'am i reading the progressive or the moderate?'

i like ellen goodman. her writing is usually funny and always insightful. but she's writing in the mainstream (she's a syndicated columnist) and she's got more fire and more passion than ruth conniff. that should raise an eyebrow.

c.i.'s asked for at least 2 months now (repeatedly) in entries, do the war hakws & cheerleaders want the war to drag on more than the left wants to end it? by actions, the answer is 'yes.' the left is quite happy to drop coverage of iraq anytime, for any reason. this time it was israel.

they have no focus. they don't do follow up. they grab something 'hot' (just like big media) and run with it at the expense of everything else. that's why i don't support independent media financially. i did think, due to iraq, that would change. i saw a lot of passionate statements, i didn't see a lot of follow up.

there was an interview recently, in print, with a wonderful war critic and critic of the system that passes for democracy in america, a historian. i read that 'interview' and thought it was the dumbest thing i'd ever read. the answers in the q.a. were obviously heavily edited because the person being interviewed speaks in detail and offers examples. but not in that 'interview.'

with iraq, i thought something was changing and was glad about that. but there's been too many times where the ball has been dropped. too many times where iraq was dropped completely.

i give to a number of charities and to a number of feminist organizations. i stopped giving to ___ after they carried water for hillary in januray of 2005. but the majority of the organizations i give to have a proven track record of not playing partisan in terms of a party. they're left ogranizations and they're not going to slobber all over a weak-ass democrat. we did give to independent media last go round, fly boy and i, last pledge drive. we won't be doing that again.

with charities, i focus on the children's charities. i've never felt they've let down their stated goals.

but independent media doesn't do it for my check book. it starts out with all these promises and pretty soon, it's middle of the road. we end up with the bill clinton triangulators because we buy into the lie that we have to water down to be practical.

i'd love an independent media that's not afraid to demand more and insist on more. that would change the whole dynamic. but instead we get the 'lefties' telling us, 'well we have to do this because ...' and we don't have to do anything. fdr didn't have to water down.

we have no big ideas in the democratic party because we've settled for settling. jimmy carter was a settler, bill clinton even more so. the damage bill clinton did to welfare is so huge. and we were told it had to be done. no, it didn't have to be done. it could have been fought. we didn't have to give everything to corporations and take everything from the people.

but when you hear over and over that we have to be 'practical' then you don't get fighters and you don't get dreamers. you get pencil pushing ceos who worry only what can be done easiest.

i loathe jane alexander. when she became the head of the nea, she immediately started caving in. that was 'practical.' we had to be 'practical.' no, it should have been fought, bravey should have been shown. and if that means congress wants to threaten to pull funding, let them threaten, confront them with it. instead, the nea is the same as pbs today. that's jane alexander's fault.

she 'saved' it. you know what, let's be willing to lose. let's be willing to fight our hardest and risk losing. let's stop letting things be watered down and then claiming 'well we "saved" it.' no, it's not saved. it's not what it was. you didn't compromise, you took their offer. you were scared and frightened and you took their offer instead of fighting.

we don't have a public broadcasting system in this country because of that cowardice. every cave has further weakened npr and pbs. now those aren't staples. no 1 will die because they can't watch pbs or listen to npr. so we should be willing to risk it. let them attack and respond to those attacks. take it to the people. argue for pbs and npr to be what they're supposed to be.
if you can't make the case for it, then maybe you don't need funding?

the right wing echo chamber didn't push the country's conversations to the right alone. selling out helped. the lee hamiltons and their nonsense helped destroy the left. it's past time for those who identify as left to accept that we have to settle.

joe lieberman's trying to build his 'new' campaign on that. he's saying we have to settle for some 1 who will get along as opposed to some 1 who stands for something (ned lamont).

now ned lamont is not a radical. in earlier times, he'd probably be seen as a rather weak lefty. that's because our notions have been so screwed up by people selling out their beliefs (and ours) while telling us that it was necessary to 'save' something.

we've got to the get to the airport so let me put in the snapshot. c.i. did a wonderful job. and don't miss the molly ivins quote!

"Iraq snapshot"
Chaos and violence continue in Iraq today, Friday, August 11, 2006 with
two police officers dead from a roadside bomb in Kirkuk, another police officer shot dead in Mosul and a man on his way to work in Baiji shot dead. In the United States Ricky Clousing says no to war; in a sotto voice US military flacks give statements about the two US soliders who died in Tuesday helicopter crash and while recruiters struggle to meet their lowered targets, some applicants remain unwelcome.
Starting with the last item, the
AP reports on Haven Herrin who would like to serve in the military but she is a lesbian and wink-wink-nudge-nudge no gays or lesbians have ever served in the US military. Reading the report which begins and ends with the Clinton era "Don't Ask Don't Tell," news consumers are probably left unaware that an openly gay man has served in the US military.
While some can't get in, others refuse to serve in an illegal war based on lies.
Writing for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Mike Barber broke the news today that Ricky Clousing would turn himself in. Ricky Clousing, 24-years-old, checked himself out of the military after serving in Iraq. Speaking to the AP, Clousing stated, "My experience in Iraq really made me second-guess my ability to perform as a soldier and also forced me to question my beliefs in associating myself". Clousing's announcement comes on day two of the Veterans for Peace convention in Seattle (which concludes Sunday the 13th). Clousing questions the legality of the illegal war and "I came to the conlusion that I could not train or be trained under a false pretense of fighting for freedom." Barber notes that Clousing went AWOL from "Fort Bragg in 2005 after returning from Iraq with the 82nd Airborne Division."
Barber broke the news, the AP is all over it. And gold stars for others? They'll have to demonstrate that they're going to cover it. Not, "Look how much I care, today I'll make time for this issue and then next week . . . Back to Israel non-stop!" (or whatever the topic is). Too much isn't being covered.
Clousing is one of many war resisters. This week,
Meredith May (San Francisco Chronicle) took a look at some who had decided to do a self-check out and go to Candada -- mentioned were Ryan Johnson, Patrick Hart, Christian Kjar, Brandon Hughey, Darryl Anderson. Brandon Hughey and Jeremy Hinzman will learn shortly whether they're appeal will allow them to remain in Canada or not. Other war resisters include Camilo Mejia, Pablo Paredes, Aidan Delgado, Kevin Benderman. Katherine Jashinski. Camilo Mejia is generally considered to the the "first Iraqi War Resister." Benderman is attempting to appeal the Court-Martial and has been designated a "Prisoner of Conscience" by Amnesty International. Benderman's case hasn't vanished, just any coverage of it. That's true of Hinzman and Hughey as well. Let's be really honest, that's true of the independent media attention on all things having to do with Iraq. (And remember it was Mike Barber who broke the story.)
Two names more recently in the news are
Suzanne Swift and Ehren Watada. Their cases haven't vanished just because, for example, an announced and filmed interview with Swift's grandfather never aired as Iraq fell off the radar. Watada faces an article 32 hearing on August 17th which is next Thursday. Courage to Resist and ThankYouLt.org are organizing and trying to get the word out for "a National Day of Education" on August 16th. Writing of Watada, Cedric (Cedric's Big Mix) noted Watada's refusal to deploy to Iraq was a "no" and that: "When we say 'no' the war ends.Ehren is saying 'no.' He can make a difference. He is making a difference but it will be a huge difference with quick impact if we show our support." Noting the work of his parents, Courage to Resist and ThankYouLt.org, Cedric wondered where the coverage was?
Attending the conference in Seattle was Cindy Sheehan who is offering
Camp Casey III "as a refuge for U.S. troops who desert to resist the war in Iraq." As The State News notes on Bully Boy's low approval numbers, "Clearly, Sheehan is not alone in her position. But while a large population within the United States disapproves of Bush and the war in Iraq, it seems only a small population is doing something about it." Sheehan does her part and then some but it "seems" others aren't because of the lack of media attention. Watada and Swift are 'doing something.' Across the country, across the world, people are engaged in attempting to end this war, day in and day out. It's the media that can make it appear nothing is happening or report what's actually going on. Credit to Barber, AP, May and others in big media who've been covering these issues (especially the press in Hawaii) while others had other things to emphasize (non-stop). Or, as Molly Ivins points out: "The more surprising development is how completely one story drives out another. At other times, the collapse of Iraq would have been news." A collapse that has included, as Riverbend (Baghdad Burning) wrote, "There are no laws that say we have to wear a hijab (yet), but there are men in head-to-toe black and the turbans, the extremists and fanatics who were libearted by the occupation, and at some point, you tire of the defiance. You no longer want to be seen. I feel like the black or white scarf I fling haphazardly on my head as I walk out the door makes me invisible to a certain degree -- it's easier to blend in with the masses shrouded in black. If you're a femal, you don't want the attention -- you don't want it from Iraqi police, you don't want it from the black clad militia man, you don't want it from the American soldier. You don't want to be noticed or seen."
Reuters notes six corpses were discovered in Baghdad ("bound and blindfolded") Of the six, AP notes that they had all ben shot execution style. This was the week that, as the BBC noted, the body count at Baghdad's central morgue for July only had been 1,855. AP noted Dr. Sabah al-Husseini's declaration that "two-thirds of the deaths reported in Baghdad since January were due to violence."
This was the week of the Article 32 hearing to determine whether or not to file rape, murder and arson charges against US soldiers James Baker, Jesse V. Spielman, Bryan L. Howard and Paul Cortez. (Steven D. Green, who is also accused in the incident will stand trial in US federal court because he was discharged before the incident was uncovered. Anthony W. Yribe is accused of dereliction of duty for not reporting the incident.) The incident?
Abeer Qasim Hamza. Presenting his closing argument in the hearing, Captain Alex Pickands stated, "They gathered over cards and booze to come up with a plan to rape and murder that little girl. She was young and attractive. They knew where she was because they had seen her on a previous patrol. She was close. She was vulnerable." The defense (and the New York Times) offered stress of combat and fatigue. Pickands response? "Murder, not war. Rape, not war. That's what we're here talking about today. Not all that business about cold food, checkpoints, personnel assignments. Cold food didn't kill that family. Personnel assignments didn't rape and murder that 14-year-old little girl."
It was the story that should have gotten intense coverage.
Rebecca (Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude) has argued Abeer's story is the story of the illegal occupation boiled down to one person. Instead, as Mike (Mikey Likes It!) has pointed out, you had the New York Times offering the defense's argument and Abeer? Silence. She wasn't even named.
This was also the week of yet another poll finding where respondents echoed earlier polls by standing strongly against the illegal war.
CNN found that 60% of Americans responding in their poll were against the war -- the highest opposition since the war began in March 2003.
Those were among the Iraq related stories that should have received coverage, discussion and exploration.
Another, in Australia, would be the military inquiry into the April 21st death of Jake Kovco in Baghdad.
Belinda Tasker (Herald Sun) reports on Solider 1's testimony which resulted in tears for Shelley Kovco (widow of Jake Kovco) and Judy Kovco (mother of Jake Kovco). While the family of Kovco has every reason to well up when their lost one is spoken, the press has no excuse to go soft and mushy but, apparently, despite repeated testimony to the contrary, the nonsense of the 'buddy system' is back. Soldier 1 tossed off a few words (via video-link) and then used Jake Kovco to argue that they'd reworked the "buddy system" since his death. The press runs with it, failing to note that there witnesses' testimony (as opposed to the statements the military wrote and submitted in their name) that there was no "buddy system" in place. Ian McPhedran (Courier-Mail) offers a less sentimental view as he weighs in on Jake Kovco's death and Australia's involvement with Iraq: "We're being kept in the dark."


abeer's story was the story of the illegal occupation

yesterday's post? ('amy goodman and democracy now forget that a war rages in iraq ') lot of e-mails on it. one person disagrees and thinks i should note something. hole on for that.

1st, here were today's topics addressed by goodman:

Report Rules FBI Justified in Fatal Shooting of Puerto Rican Independence Leader Filiberto Ojeda Rios; Did BP Purposefully Allow its Alaska Pipeline to Corrode in Order to Shut it Down and Boost Oil Prices?; Lebanon Facing its Worst Environmental Disaster Ever: Oil Spill From Israeli Strike Still Untreated After One Month; Israeli Ambassador Grilled on Targeting of Civilians, Use of Cluster Bombs and Other War Crimes in Lebanon

see iraq in there?


now kenny feels i should note that on july 26th medea benjamin was on discussing iraq. i was covering the month of august (which has still had no segment covering life on the ground in iraq or abeer), but i'll note that iraq was a scheduled and covered topic on democracy now back on july 26th. that's what? 15 days ago?

so every 15 days, maybe we can expect more iraq coverage?

kenny seems to think that's fine.

i don't.

how long has israel been the topic, the only topic, for indymedia, of which democracy now is but 1 example?

too long. you cover it and you make time to cover other things.

democracy now has saturated viewers with israel but it has made time every now and then for other topics. we just haven't been treated to the realities on the ground in iraq or noting abeer.
the month's a third of the way over and they've offered 1 story.

did you read the 'iraq snapshot' today? since june 15th, 97 u.s. soldiers have died. where's the coverage? the un estimates that a 100 iraqis die day. where's the coverage?

(kenny also wanted to note that i miss a letter or 2 while typing. kenny-boy, we've gone over that here. i have very long finger nails. not cutting them to do this website.)

kenny, who says he's never misses an episode of democracy now, writes that there hasn't been any news from iraq because nothing's happened there in some time.

after i stopped laughing at his e-mail, i realized that some 1 who really thinks democracy now has covered iraq lately would probably believe that nothing is going on in iraq.

you can read c.i.'s thing in a moment.

what i want you to read right now, kenny, is this:

it wouldn't take much to spark a national backlash against war. just look at what happened in vietnam. a mere 76 out of 2,3000 vietnam tv reports - that's 3.3 percent - showed actual violence. that was enough to help galvanize many americans.

who wrote that, kenny? amy & david goodman in exception to the rulers.

kenny doesn't grasp abeer's importance (which makes you wonder about goodman's following). abeer puts a face on the issue.

now last year, cindy sheehan did. she did that via media coverage.

in case kenny missed it, camp casey reopened and goodman's done not 1 report on it or from it.
abeer should have been this summer's face. she was 'allegedly' raped and murdered by u.s. troops who took turns holding her down and raping her. she was 14 years old.

why was she at their mercy? because of the ongoing war and occupation. if the troops were home, this wouldn't have happened to abeer.

if every american knew her story, knew her name, the next time bully boy claimed we were winning or that liberation was coming, people would remember abeer.

she is dead because of the illegal war. there's no other way to say it.

if the nation hadn't been lied into an illegal war, abeer would probably still be alive. instead, she's dead. and the accused are u.s. soldiers.

as all the reports of abuse and violence come in, some of the hold outs refusing to call for an end to the war might grasp the damage done to u.s. soldiers.

the five accused of killing and raping abeer (and killing 3 of her family members) are the perfect example of why the war needs to be ended.

at 14, she's not old enough to face the nonsense of 'you wanted it, slut!' or 'why'd you go up to his room, huh? huh?' at 14, it's obvious that we're dealing with an issue where a rape can't be dismissed.

let's say steven d. green tried to lie tomorrow and say abeer was interested in him and a willing partner. that lie, even if believed, wouldn't change the fact that he was an adult male and she was a 14 year old girl.

there are moments where you can built a case for your point. abeer's trial was a moment and it was ignored.

now i think she should have been covered moment or not.

her rape and her death require the press to cover her since she can't defend herself. the new york times has given you the defense's argument day after day. who's covering abeer. who's presenting her case?

if they'd covered it, they would have an audience taking the story of abeer and discussing it in their circles. instead, few people know about her.

the press never gave her life. she was the '14 year old girl' and she quickly became nameless as well as faceless.

why is she faceless?

a passport was used to establish her age.

did the passport not have a photo?

if you've forgotten, the military claimed (and many in the press ran with it) that her age was over 20. that was the age bandied about when the coverage began. she wasn't over 20. the military had to be pulled kicking and screaming every step of the way. when they finally lowered her age to 16, it was a major struggle.

but 20 or 16 sound much better than 14. a 20 year old woman, if there was some form of interaction, could give consent in this country. a 16 year old? the line's so blurry in most people's minds that the answer is still yes. but a 14 year-old?

there are photos of abeer.

why don't we see them?

because seeing a 14 year old girl wouldn't help the defense.

america seeing a 14 year old girl and grasping that the young girl in the photo was murdered and raped isn't sympathetic to the defense.

abeer's life was probably many things - none of which the press wants to investigate - but her death was the occupation.

those acting thought there would be no consquences to their actions (like the bully boy and his lies), they thought they were entitled to rape a 14 year old girl just because they wanted to didn't matter that it was wrong and illegal, they wanted it, they were going to have it. (again, like the bully boy.) the 1s in question spotted her from a checkpoint. that checkpoint supposedly exists to protect iraqis. that checkpoint didn't save abeer.

no security was brought to abeer, no democracy, no liberation.

she was instead on the receiving end of violence.

that's the occupation. in 1 life (and death) that's the story of the illegal occupation.

here's c.i.'s 'iraq snapshot:'

Chaos and violence continue in Iraq today, Thursday, August 10, 2006. At least 35 die in a bombing, Ehren Watada supporters try to raise awareness of his upcoming Article 32 hearing, no one appears to be watching the American fatality count and a witness in the death of Jake Kovco tells the military inquiry, of his statement, "That's the words that were already on the computer" -- not what he actually told investigators.
As all things media big and small go breathless and stupid over the fact that 4 captors or "captors" of Jill Carroll may or may not have been arrested (three of which would have been arrested back in May) reality's out there and two families in America probably won't be joining the blather.
Yesterday the American military announced that on Tuesday a "60 Blackhawk helicopter from 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing" crashed. The crew numbered six. Four were found (injured). Two were missing.
As some blather on over (at best) a three month old bust, the US military sneaks out the whisper that the two missing are dead. As well as those two dead,
KUNA reports US army publicist Barry Johnson announced "three soldiers died in attacks in Al-Anabar." Of the three, Reuters reports they "were assigned to the 1st Brigade, 1st Armoured Division". We're going to drop back to June 15, 2006 for a moment when the Pentagon announced that 2500 American troops had died in Iraq.
For over six weeks, as big media and indy media have provided their wall-to-wall, non-stop coverage of Israel's armed aggression, would you guess that the body count is up to
Let's repeat that. On June 15, 2006 the Pentagon announced 2500.
97 American troops have died since then -- and where is the coverage?
Big media, little media, do American news consumers grasp that since June 15, the number of US troops killed has risen by 97?
Starting with peace news, though many in the media continues to ignore
Camp Casey III, the Green Party has announced that "Greens Join Cindy Sheehan at Camp Casey." Bill Holloway states: "We stand by Cindy Sheehan and the Gold Star Families for Peace in calling for an immediate end to the U.S. occupation of Iraq. The Green Party has opposed the war from the beginning, before the invasion was launched."
In other peace news,
Karen Button (uruknet.info) interviews war resister Kyle Snyder who went on self-leave from the US army a year ago and is now in Canada. Snyder addresses his time in the military (including being prescribed Lorazipam and Paxyl for grief -- grandfather passed away, fiancee miscarried) and the 'reconstruction' he saw: "I was in Mosul. I was in Baghdad. I was in Stryker. I was in Scania. I was in Tikrit. . . Iraq is the size of Texas, it's a small country. People need to realise that. There were reconstructions of forward operating bases and military bases, but no city work being done. I mean, none of that. So, why are engineers there."
Ehren Watada is the first known commissioned officer to refuse to deploy to Iraq. In exactly six days
Courage to Resist and ThankYouLt.org are calling for a "National Day of Education" on August 16th, the day before Ehren Watada would be due to "face a pre-trial hearing for refusing to deploy to Iraq." ThankYouLt.Org notes: "On August 16, the day prior to the hearing, The Friends and Family of Lt. Ehren Watada are calling for a 'National Day of Education' to pose the question, 'Is the war illegal?' This day can also serve to anchor a 'week of outreach' leading up to the pre-trial hearing."
Rod Ohira (Honolulu Advertiser) reports on the upcoming rallies and speaks with Michael McPhearson who speaks of the issue of consciousness being raised by Ehren Watada's actions: "That's the most dangerous to the pro-war people." Lester Chang (Kauai Garden Island News) reports that Watada's mother, Carolyn Ho, will visit Kauai September 10th (5:30 pm, United Church of Christ in Hanapepe) to talk "to Kaua'i folks about my son's stand and issues that surround that particular stand, and why he thinks the way he does." On this visit and the actions taking place to support Ehren Watada, his attorney tells Chang: "It is important that public opinion supports Lt. Watada. I think it will have impact on how the case proceeds."
Turning to the violence and chaos in Iraq, we'll start with news of bombings.
Of the reported violence today, the one most covered is the one that
Elsa McLaren (Times of London) describes this way: "A suicide bomber has killed at least 35 people and wounded 90 near a sacred Shia shrine in the city of Najaf in southern Iraq today."
The explosion occurred,
BBC's Mike Wooldridge reports, as "the streets leading to the shrine were packed with pilgrims and shoppers in the middle of the morning". CBS and the AP quote a man injured during the explosion: "Before I reached the checkpoint, only a few (feet) from the shrine, I heard a huge explosion. Something hit me on the head and I fell. I couldn't hear for a while but I saw bodies and human flesh everywhere." Elsa McLaren (Times of London) reports: "Television footage of the devastation showed the body of a child being laid besides other bloodied corpses on a patch of ground beside a hospital. The dead were marked and numbered with white labels on their foreheads for identification." AFP notes: "The attacker detonated an explosives-packed vest at a police checkpoint in the historic city of Najaf, a short distance from the mausoleum of Imam Ali, one of the most revered figures of the Shiite faith, police said Thursday." Reuters reports: " Ambulances drove through the streets of Najaf appealing for blood donations as the scale of the carnage became clear."
Reuters notes that a roadside bomb in Hawija killed two police officers and left two more wounded. Reuters reports: "Six people were killed by a bomb in a restaurant in southern Baghdad". In Baghdad, three people died and at least five were wounded when mortar bomb landed on a restaurant (this is not the same incident as the bomb that killed six in southern Baghdad).
Reuters reports a police officer shot to death in Falluja, a civilian killed in Mosul and "Maad al-Saadoun, a brother of Sunni legislator Mudhhir al-Saadoun, was shot dead by gunmen in his car in the town of Muqdadiya". CBS and AP report four police officers were shot dead in Baghdad, AFP puts the number at seven (citing "security and medical sources")..
AP notes that five corpses were found today. From AFP: "Baghdad's main morgue last month handled the corpses of 1,850 people from its immediate region alone, most of them gunshot victims, Iraqi health ministry spokesman Qasim Yahia told AFP." Reuters notes: "The July morgue toll of 1,815 marked a big jump over the 1,595 in June and is the largest since the aftermath of the February bombing of the Shiite Golden Mosque of Samarra, which triggered an explosion of sectarian violence.:
On April 21st, Jake Kovco died in Baghdad. How he died is the main issue of an inquiry currently going in Australia. Other issues include why the death scene was cleaned up before investigators arrived, how a Bosnian carpenter was confused with Kovco and shipped to his grieving family in Australia (Shelley Kovco, widow and mother of their three children; parents Judy and Martin Kovco). Soldiers serving in Iraq have been brought before the hearing in person and via "video-link" testimony. Soldiers are identified not by name but given a number.
Yesterday, "Soldier 14" dropped a bombshell.
Peter Charlton (Courier-Mail) reports that the soldier "told the inquiry that a statement he made to military investigators was not accurate." The so-called buddy system policy (where they were paired up and responsible for checking each other's weapons to be sure they were unloaded at the end of their shift) doesn't appear to exist. Which is strange considering how much the hearing had previously heard of it. Tom Allard (Sydney Morning Herald) notes that Soldier 14 "is the second soldier in Iraq to say their statements were strongly guided by military police." Allard reports of Soldier 14's statements: "His testimony came as more irregularities about the investigation emerged, with the military failing to pass on to police in NSW a second weapon in the room when Private Kovco died from a gunshot wound to the head."
Dan Box (The Australian) reminds that "Military police investigators also failed to conduct any forensic tests, while the army's decision to clean the room in which Kovco died and the clothes his roommates were wearing meant potentially vital forensic evidence was lost." The AAP reports that Soldier 30 has spoken (via video-link) to the hearing ("Jake Kovco's commanding officer") and he is claiming that the orders not to preserve the death/crime scene came from him because he saw it as a way "to help boost the morale of his soldiers." Which is either the biggest lie or the most frightening thing about the hearing this week.
In America, the legal news is over Nathan Phan will face charges. As
reported by Josh White and Sonya Geis (Washington Post), Lt. Phan is rumored to soon be facing charges for an April 26th incident in Hamdaniyah where US Marines alleged "grabbed an Iraqi man from his home, bound his arms and legs and shot him in the face." Daniel Strumpf (voiceofsandiego.org) traces the other allegations against Kilo Company (Phan is "the commanding officer of the Camp Pendleton based 2nd Platoon of Kil Company in the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment") noting "seven Marines and a Navy corpsman . . . were charged with murder, kidnapping and conspiracy, in connection with the April 26 death of Hashim Ibrahim Awad . . . in Hamdaniya"; and that "six Marines from Kilo Company, three of whom were already charged in Awad's death . . . were accused of assaulting three Iraqi men on April 10".
Finally, in election news,
Derrick DePledge (Honolulu Advertiser) reports that Dennis Kucinich (who came in second in ""Hawai'i presedential cacus two years ago") is in Hawaii to campaign for US senator Daniel Akaka. Next month, Akaka faces Ed Case in a primary race. Case doesn't support a withdrawal of troops from Iraq and though Case would no doubt call it a 'tremendous oversimplification,' he's a War Hawk. His motto "The Time is Now!" apparently refers to dragging the illegal war on: "The Time is Now to Continue The Illegal War!" Like a Little Joe Lieberman, Case flounders while Akaka makes Iraq a central campaign issue. Ad DePledge notes, Daniel Akak was one of thirteen senators on June 22nd willing to call for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq by July 2007.


amy goodman and democracy now forget that a war rages in iraq

so it's another day and who covered abeer?

amy goodman didn't. the host of democracy now didn't feel it was news apparently.

she was all over the lamont election. but democracy now doesn't seem to care about abeer.

from c.i.'s 'iraq snapshot' (which i'll post in full at the end):

As the search goes on, an Article 32 hearing concludes into the murders of Abeer Qasim Hamza and three of her family members with military prosecutor Captain Alex Pickands arguing of the four US troops accused of rape, murder and arson, "They gathered over cards and booze to come up with a plan to rape and murder that little girl. She was young and attractive. They knew where she was because they had seen her on a previous patrol. She was close. She was vulnerable."
In the case of Abeer Qasim Hamza? From CNN: "Iraqi authorities have identified the girl who was raped and shot to death as Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi. Her father, mother and 5-year-old sister were also killed, and the 14-year-old's body was set on fire after she was killed." The Article 32 hearing has concluded. CNN reports Alex Pickands (military prosecutor) making his closing argument with the following: "Murder, not war. Rape, not war. That's what we're here talking about today. Not all that business about cold food, checkpoints, personnel assignments. Cold food didn't kill that family. Personnel assignments didn't rape and murder that 14-year-old little girl." As the BBC notes, the Article 32 hearing was to determine whether or not should be charged with rape, murder and arson. CNN notes that the deterimination will be made by "investigating officer, Col. Dwight Warren" and that' "Warren's report will likely be at least a few days in coming".

courtney e-mailed that the closing argument read like c.i. had written it. it did. it was powerful and it went to the heart of the case. a case that amy goodman and democracy now aren't interested in covering.

i listened to kpfa's the morning show and thought, 'what a crock.'

how come?

it's 2006. if you're covering iraq, try covering something going on right now. i believe c.i.'s making that point in the snapshot but saying it more nicely.

i won't mince words.

i was talking to kat and we were both wondering what the hell was all that time given to the call from psychologist dee about 'mass hypnosis' about?

can we deal with some serious issues?

can we address abeer. or is that too much to expect from the supposedly brave liberal media?

it apparently is.

let's go through what the supposedly brave democracy now has dealt with since august 1st because they've let iraq fall off the radar. not the wimpy little headlines but what they devote time to seriously covering in other segments. while you read through it, notice where iraq is (or isn't).

august 1st: robert fisk on lebanon; survivors of the 1996 qana massacre sue israel for war crimes; moazzam begg about guantanamo

see abeer in there? no.

augsut 2nd: fidel's surgery; ricardo alarcon on bully boy's plans for cuba; the cuban 5 still in prison in the u.s.; israel's invasion of lebanon

see abeer? see iraq? no.

august 3rd: human rights watch says israel is committing war crimes; a documentary about the u.s. media coverage of israel; 'is america watching a different war?' - not not iraq, still lebanon

see abeer? see iraq? hell no

august 4th: hundreds of thousands (their wording) in iraq rally - no, it's not an iraq story, it's about them rallying for lebanon; newsday mid east chief discusses ... lebanaon; cynthia mckinney's runoff race for the u.s. congress.

maybe if iraqis will rally for the mexican election or for the congo they can get another segment? iraq itself? don't give a damn. no segment devoted to abeer. or cindy sheehan or ehran watada.

august 5th & 6th were saturday & sunday, democracy now doesn't air new episodes on the weekend.

august 7th: hizbollah's rocket attacks on israel; lebanon death toll; war devastated congo

camp casey iii opened over the weekend but amy goodman didn't have time for that. didn't have time for abeer, didn't have time for watada.

august 8th: bill curry discusses the lamont/lieberman race; richard debs on why the u.s. shouldn't be backing israel (there were only 2 segments other than headlines on the 8th)

care about iraq? forget it. u.s. congressional race can be covered. but that's it. no abeer STILL.

today, august 9th: ralph nader on lamont's win; time warner's ny1 won't let hillary clinton's challenger debate her; israeli air force; anniversary of the u.s. nuking of nagasaki

more congressional discussion of congressional races. iraq? forget it. abeer? forget it.

in amy and david goodman's exception to the rulers (page 138), they write of the white house propaganda blitz on iraq that began september 2nd. does amy goodman believe that blitz (what c.i.'s rightly termed 'operation happy talk') has stopped? it hasn't. on page 149, the goodmans take the new york times to task for not reporting the number of protestors at a rally correctly and note that the paper refused to run a correction claiming that they hadn't made a 'mistake.' the times felt it was '[a] matter of emphasis.'

well amy goodman and democracy now, what about the matter of your emphasis?

aren't you the supposed 'war & peace report'? shouldn't you be covering iraq when no 1 else will? do you really think congressional races qualify as coverage of iraq?

get real. quit jerking off and wasting every 1's time.

the last 7 shows (counting today) have failed to address iraq. i don't think covering iraq protests of lebanon is addressing iraq. i can't imagine any 1 who would unless they were a complete fool.
i don't think u.s. election coverage is addressing iraq.

here's what i know. there's an event that can transform and you grab it or you ignore it.

the event right now? abeer. 14 year old abeer. murdered and raped. and where the hell is the coverag, democracy now?

do you think you're nonstop coverage of lebanon is about going to where the silences are because it's not. i listened to kpfa today (and am still listening). it's all over. against the grain, the morning show, your show which airs twice on kpfa, and right now on flashpoints. later, after the kpfa evening news (which will cover israel's attacks), there will be an hour of coverage on israel's attacks.

so is this going to where the silence is or covering what every 1 else does?

abeer apparently doesn't matter.

now i get polly's brew in my inbox. i read mike's columns (the 1st 1 and war as an after thought) and i know who was contacted about nancy a. youssef's story that the u.s. was keeping a body count of iraqis despite the original claims that they weren't. (it's been going on for a little over a year now.) i know that the u.s. military and government won't make the tally public. (even though we pay for the tally with our tax dollars and there's no way any 1 can argue 'national security!' for keeping the list private.) i know eddie contacted democracy now requesting that they cover this story and i know democracy now didn't.

iraq hasn't been important to this show for some time.

as i noted yesterday, there are people (like c.i.) who are working every contact/friend they have in the big media to get traction on stories having to do with iraq. while they're busting their asses, indymedia can't even cover it. get real, this is nonsense.

you are hurting the peace movement.

if you don't get that, if you need to some 1 to point it out, i'm back from my vacation & honeymoon and i'm not afraid to name names. i'll go over every program and note what a poor job they've done of covering iraq.

before i went on my break on july 4th, iraq had already fallen between the cracks with indymedia. that didn't change while i was gone obviously.

indymedia continues to ignore iraq.

there are protests in september. 60% of americans in the latest poll say that the war was a mistake. indymedia should be providing the coverage that america needs to end this war. it's a war that the u.s. started - not by proxy, but directly.

did people miss jimmy breslin's "In Case We All Forgot, Americans Are Still Dying in Iraq"? if so, go read it right now. and indymedia better start asking themselves where the hell their own coverage of iraq is? it's nowhere to be found.

i spent the day working abeer's story with my friends i have in the press. that's the mainstream press. as bad as it can be, it's at least covering iraq. what the hell is indymedia doing?

this is crap.

it's crap that camp casey iii opened and that indymedia isn't reporting from it. cindy sheehan's not going to be there every day. the plan is to be there while the bully boy is and he's not staying the full month.

so camp casey iii will probably have a lower turnout because indymedia can't stop jerking off over israel.

israel's actions are criminal. that's not in dispute in my mind. i was addressing what was going on before i left. i had no idea it would become the 1 story that indymedia would cover over and over, day after day.

where's the special programming on iraq? now that americans have turned against the war, where's the coverage? now that ehren watada has an article 32 hearing coming up, where's the coverage? with camp casey reopened, where's the coverage? where's the coverage required to fuel the september protests?

where's the coverage of abeer that will outrage america? this is the equivalent of the photo of the vietnam girl running down the street naked after being napalmed. but indymedia is too stupid to grasp that. they're too busy providing nonstop coverage of israel.

right now, you've got blood on your hands indymedia. it's your own damn fault. democracy now isn't the only 1. i'll be noting others now that i'm back from vacation. i'm calling every 1 out because this is nonsense and it allows the war to drag on. it allows more people to die.

but for people to care about abeer, they'd have to know her story and indymedia hasn't covered the article 32 hearing. they haven't criticized the mainstream coverage (specificially the new york times) for rendering the victim invisble.

if indymedia wants to kid that they've done a great job covering anything, they need to get over themselves. before i left, they had little to say about iraq. they then went in to what elaine called (on the money) 'wall to wall coverage' of israel's actions.

kat also had a good call noting the democracy now had become look what israel's done now. if you dispute her call, look at what they covered so far in august and think about what they didn't cover. ask yourself where iraq is in the coverage, ask yourself where cindy sheehan is, where suzanne swift is, where ehran watada is?

this isn't cutting it.

they have dropped the ball. they have refused to cover iraq. that's shameful, it's embarrassing and it's disgusting.

indymedia wants money, it always wants money.

here's my question, why should i support any of them?

they're not doing their job.

c.i. covers iraq. fasting for over 30 days, c.i. still covered iraq. hollering & pleading to friends in the press, c.i. still covers iraq. organizing and working on several issues, c.i. still coveres iraq.

why? because the communtiy was pissed off with indymedia months ago for not doing the job required to cover iraq. c.i., and the others (and there are others) who badger and plead and beg and scream with and at big media to cover iraq and to cover it better are busting their butss and indymedia is jerking off. (and exactly who joined the fast - fly boy and i are grabbing fridays next week - we can't star this week due to a dinner with some of his family this friday. yes, we could make a point but we could also piss of family members who have planned this as their celebration of our marriage and, frankly, these are people who have committed to voting for lamont in the november election and have already voted for him in yesterday's primary. we eloped with a small number of people. it would be seen as rude if we attended the dinner fasting. it would be seen as 'not only did you not invite us, now you're here at the dinner we've had catered and you're not going to eat anything?')

i don't think indymedia deserves a damn dime these days. there's not a dimes worth of difference between them and big media. a new crisis comes along (and some aren't really a crisis - members will know 3 stories that trumped iraq before i went on vacation and none of them could be called a crisis) and they think they're the fucking red cross. they rush in with saturation coverage letting important issues and stories fall through the cracks as they provide their wall to wall coverage.

that's no different than big media.

and it's nothing that will make me open my checkbook.

they've made themselves a joke all summer long. it's been 1 thing after another that's shoved iraq out of the coverage. 1 story after another.

i thought we wanted the troops home? i thought we wanted to end the war on iraq? to do that, we have to cover iraq. and indymedia's had many topics to cover but it hasn't done a damn thing to cover iraq. they've ignored nancy youssef's story (aaron glantz wrote about it and some 1 at ips did, that's all i'm aware of - i can provide a long list, thanks to mike, of indymedia that was contacted about the story in a mistaken belief that they must not have heard about it or they would cover it only to discover that even when they're asked to cover it, they have something else to cover).

don't scream at the peace movement. it's there. it's always there. it's indymedia that can't get its act together.

you can and should cover other things in the world. but when the u.s. is at war with another country, you grab that story 1st. you cover that and then you can cover anything else you think deserves it. that hasn't been the case. instead iraq's been ignored and everything but iraq has been covered.

if you think you're doing a wonderful job you're either an idiot or you don't care about iraq. indymedia may be willing to play start-and-stop with their coverage of iraq but the peace movement has to work every damn day. they do it in silence without indymedia's help and it's past time that indymedia grasped how much their silence is hurting the peace movement and prolonging the illegal war.

here's c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'

Today, Wednesday, August 9, 2006, violence and chaos continue in Iraq with Allister Bull (Reuters) noting that the central morgue in Baghdad received nearly 2,000 bodies in July while Centcom's announced that a US helicopter crashed Tuesday in the Anbar province ("60 Blackhawk helicopter from 3rd Marine Aircrwaft Wing") which had six crew members of which two are still missing.
Elsa McLaren (Times of London) reports: "A desperate hunt is under way in Iraq today for two American servicemen whose helicopter crashed inside the 'triangle of death' west of Baghdad." As the search goes on, an Article 32 hearing concludes into the murders of Abeer Qasim Hamza and three of her family members with military prosecutor Captain Alex Pickands arguing of the four US troops accused of rape, murder and arson, "They gathered over cards and booze to come up with a plan to rape and murder that little girl. She was young and attractive. They knew where she was because they had seen her on a previous patrol. She was close. She was vulnerable."
Speaking with Andrea Lewis today on
KPFA's The Morning Show, John Stauber discussed the results of a recent Harris Poll which found 50% of all respondents wrongly believed that Iraq had WMD which is "an increase from 36 prercent in February 2005." Stauber noted the pre-war coverage (unquestioning) and pre-war propaganda (which never panned out.) "If voices of authority repeat a huge lie [. . .] that gets people supporting a war [ . . .] then that lie sticks. And this war was sold to the American public on two huge lies: that Saddam Hussein had WMDs and that he was behing 9-11."
"What is going on here?" wondered Andrea Lewis. Which is a good question. Stauber pointed to Rick Santorum falsely claiming that WMDs were found and Fox "News" and the right-wing echo chamber running with the lie. Because, not stated, the right-wing will continue to sell this war and peddle lies. While the coverage of Iraq vanishes from the media (in all its forms) it doesn't vanish from the right-wing echo chamber..
Note this finding from the poll: "
Seventy-two percent believe that the Iraqis are better off now than they were under Saddam Hussein (slightly down from February 2004 when 76 percent said this was true)." Why would poll respondents think that when the UN estimates 100 Iraqis die each day from violent attacks? Don't they know the reality and status of the 'reconstruction' projects? No. They generally don't and when the media decides they need to ALL pick up and go after another story, when the coverage of Iraq is a one-story-a-day thing (New York Times) or one topic a week (radio, magazines, etc -- once a week when we're lucky -- we're supposed to be grateful for the once a week treatment of an illegal war launched by the US administration) then the problem really isn't the people -- the problem's the media. One quite proud to pat themselves on the back in every venue and forum but not too interested in focusing on Iraq.
People care about this topic (now more than ever as
a CNN poll demonstrates most recently), it's the media that either is bored or just doesn't give a damn. Elaine (Like Maria Said Paz) reported yesterday on the surprise of a returning Iraqi vet who spoke to a group of young adults -- his surprise that they were interested in the topic and interested in his injuries and all the injuries that the press doesn't have time to cover.
Al Jazeera reports on a mortar attack in Baghdad which "collapsed a three-storey building" and left some worried that "some people were still trapped in the rubble." Five people are known to have died. Reuters reports three Iraqi police officers dead in Habaniya from a roadside bomb; the death of a civilian in Kirkuk from a roadside bomb; the death of a civilian by a roadside bomb in Baghdad; three civilians wounded by a roadside bomb in Ramadi; and, in Kirkuk, a roadside bomb wounded three Iraqi soldiers. Also CBS and AP note that, in Samarra, a police officer died on Tuesday while attempting "to defuse a roadside bomb" and another police officer was injured in the blast. Associated Press reports that a US solider was wounded by a roadside bomb in eastern Baghdad
Pay attention here because you know
the New York Times doesn't bother to include shooting fatalities in their 'rounded' daily undercount these days. Reuters reports the death of "Army Colonel Qasim Abdul Qadir" in Basra ("on his way to work"). CBS and AP report that Abedl-Qadir was attacked by "gunmen on two motorcycles". Reuters notes that, in western Baghdad, five civilians were shot dead.
Reuters reports that, in Baghdad, nine corpses were discovered ("killed by gunshots"), two corpses ("shot in the head and chest") were found in Dour. and, in al-Zab, a behaded corpse was discovered.
In the case of
Abeer Qasim Hamza? From CNN: "Iraqi authorities have identified the girl who was raped and shot to death as Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi. Her father, mother and 5-year-old sister were also killed, and the 14-year-old's body was set on fire after she was killed." The Article 32 hearing has concluded. CNN reports Alex Pickands (military prosecutor) making his closing argument with the following: "Murder, not war. Rape, not war. That's what we're here talking about today. Not all that business about cold food, checkpoints, personnel assignments. Cold food didn't kill that family. Personnel assignments didn't rape and murder that 14-year-old little girl." As the BBC notes, the Article 32 hearing was to determine whether or not should be charged with rape, murder and arson. CNN notes that the deterimination will be made by "investigating officer, Col. Dwight Warren" and that' "Warren's report will likely be at least a few days in coming".
Ehren Watada is the first known commissioned officer serving in the US military to have refused to deploy to Iraq.
Gregg K. Kakesako (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) reports: "The army has rejected 1st Lt. Ehren Watada's offer to resign instead of facing a possible court-martial for refusing to deploy to Iraq." The HawaiiChannel.com concludes: "[i]t's looking more likely that Honolulu Army Lt. Ehren Watada will be court martialed for refusing to serve in Iraq." Hoyt Zia (publisher of Hawaii Business Magazine) addresses the case of Ehren Watada with "Having the Courage of Your Convictions."
akesako notes: "Army 1st Lt. Ehren Watada is scheduled to face an Article 32 pretrial hearing at Fort Lewis, Wash., on Aug. 17. That hearing is equivalent to a preliminary hearing in a civilian criminal court, and is expected to last a few days."
The 17th is when the hearing is scheduled to begin. Remember
Courage to Resist and ThankYouLt.org are calling for a "National Day of Education" on August 16th, the day before Ehren Watada would be due to "face a pre-trial hearing for refusing to deploy to Iraq." ThankYouLt.Org notes: "On August 16, the day prior to the hearing, The Friends and Family of Lt. Ehren Watada are calling for a 'National Day of Education' to pose the question, 'Is the war illegal?' This day can also serve to anchor a 'week of outreach' leading up to the pre-trial hearing."
Cindy Sheehan is in Crawford, TX with Camp Casey. Why? As
Missy Comley Beattie (OpEdNews) writes: "Thousands of Iraqis are dying each month. Coalition troops are perceived not as liberators of grateful Iraqis free at last from the grip of a tyrant. Instead, we are occupiers and our incursion has unleashed sectarian violence that shows no sign of abating. Life is so bad in Iraq that its citizens long for the days when Saddam Hussein was in power." For those reasons and many more, Camp Casey III matters. Alison Sterling Nichols tells Chris Durant (The Times-Standard) that, "There are more people here than there were in the first few days last year."
Today is day 37 of the
Troops Home Fast action which will continue until September 21st. Today, 4, 549 people are taking part from across the world. Remember you can do a one-day fast, a one-day-a-week fast or longer. More information is available at Troops Home Fast.
CNN reporting the results of their latest poll -- "Sixty percent of Americans oppose the U.S. war in Iraq, the highest number since polling on the subject began with the commencement of the war in March 2003" -- the sea of change on the Iraq war is obvious to all but the Bully Boys and Joe Liebermans.


raped and murdered, 14 year old abeer can't defend herself, who's going to step up to the plate?

this is the part in the book not returned
where i'm going to come and save the day
did you miss me?
did you miss me?

i had to open with courtney love's 'hero.' i did last year when i returned from my vacation as well. last year i took more weeks off and this year i had a vacation & a honeymoon, so cut me some slack. (plus you had betty doing a brilliant job.)

let's dive in. i'm going to post the snapshot of iraq by c.i. and then we're rolling up our sleeves because any who worried marriage would make me go 'soft' worried in vain. i'll toss in some brief comments between paragraphs and then let loose at the end of it.

'Iraq snapshot'
Chaos and violence continue in Iraq today, Tuesday, August 8, 2006. Bombings, a bank robery . . . all part of what the
AFP term "Bloody Day in Baghdad." And while people continue to dicker in the United States with games of "Is it or isn't it a civil war," Mohammed A. Salih (IPS) reports on Iraqi politicians who "way that the country is in civil war already." This as the so-called 'crackdown' (in beefed up form) appears to . . . crack apart.

a bloody day in baghdad? now i've been out of the country on both my vacation and my honeymoon but i'm sure that the media covered iraq nonstop, right? this is a u.s. war so i just know no jack offs decided they could pull their crap just because i wasn't around to scream. iraq's been on the front burner day after day, right? wrong. i encountered people reading their new york times and their wall st. journals (no washington post, which surprised me) and they'd ask if i wanted to see it? like they were doing me a favor? i'd ask 'well do they cover' and start reeling off the info from c.i.'s 'iraq snapshot' the day before. they'd be a little stunned. i had truged down to breakfast or the pool or the beach and maybe brought a book with me and maybe not so there they all were feeling superious as they went through their blessed dailies, so much smarter than the blonde beside them. thing was, they weren't. they got far less information in their blessed daily papers.

Strongest dose of reality comes from Patrick Cockburn (CounterPunch): "The vast city of seven million people, almost the size of London, is breaking up into a dozen cities, each one of which is becoming a heavily armed Shia or Sunni stronghold. Every morning brings its terrible harvest of bodies. Many lie in the streets for hours, bloating in the 120F heat, while others are found floating in the Tigris river."

read patrick cockburn's article. use that link. realize how awful things have gotten in baghdad as patrick cockburn describes his life as an un-embedded reporter in iraq. and realize how much crap the new york times and others have offered you, day after day, while iraq's reached a new low.

In the captial,
ITV notes "three near-simulaneous bomb explosins near the Interior Ministry building." Police officer Bilal Ali Majid tells the AP that at least 10 are dead and at least 8 wounded from the three bombs. Al Jazeera puts the toll at nine and notes "[t]wo roadside bombs exploded in the main Shurja market in central Bagdad within minutes of each other, killing 10 civilians and injuring 50". CBS and AP place the death toll at 10 for each bombing (20 total). AFP notes that ths market blast "set fire to several shops."
This is the AP in case anyone's confused (some early reports lumped the two attacks together): "Three bombs exploded simultaneously near the Interior Ministry buildings in central Baghdad, killing 10 people and wounding eight, police Lt. Bilal Ali Majid said. A couple of hours later, two roadside bombs ripped through the main Shurja market, also in central Baghdad, killing 10 civilians and wounding 50, police Lt. Mohammed Kheyoun said."
Reuters notes a police officer was wounded by a roadside bomb "in the eastern Zayouna district of Baghdad"; in Iskandariya, two people were wounded by a roadside bomb; and, in Tikrit, a police officer was killed by a roadside bomb (eight people wounded "including a child").

i watched on my vacation & honeymoon as suddenly a kidnapping needed to have more than 40 to be seriously reported (as opposed to 'shout outs') and saw that a single bombing needed to kill at least 21 to get reported on and not just tossed out in the dailys.

what the hell is that? i saw remarks like 'relatively calm' used on days when 20 or more people died. what is that crap?

Reuters notes two civilians were shot to death in Rashad, "a police lieutenant colonel" was shot dead in Falluja (his brother was wounded), and two were shot dead in Mosul.
CNN reports that, in Muqdadiya, three people were shot dead (including a teacher) and that drive-by shootings claimed two lives in Baquba. AP notes "two Sunni brothers . . . slain in their car repair shop in southwestern Baghdad:.
In addition to the above, the
BBC notes the death of "three security guards and two bank officials" during a bank robbery in Baghdad today. AFP notes that the robbery of the al-Rasheed Bank utilized three cars and that the interior ministry is saying it only netted "seven million dinars (less than $5,000)". The AP states it was two cars.

shootings get less and less press attention because, by their nature, they usually involve 1, 2 or 3. so they're completely off the radar. the press needs a massive blood letting in 1 incident to bother to cover it.

CBS and AP note the discovery of nine "bullet-riddled" corpses in Kut. AFP notes that at least seven were "Iraqi border guards." Reuters notes that seven corpses were found "south of Baghdad" and that they were "wearing military uniforms". And the AP notes two corpses found in Baghdad ("shot in the head").

i hope everyone gets that the 19 corpses were people who were killed 1 day and their deaths didn't get calculated that day because no 1 knew they were dead until the corpses were found.
so since it's now know they're dead, you might add them to the 30-plus death toll today and get 50-plus. you might do that but the press won't.

In addition, the BBC reports: "Also on Tuesday, a US soldier died of wounds sustained in fighting, the US military said"; while CBS and AP report: "Two Iraqi journalists were killed in separate incidents in Baghdad, police said Tuesday. Mohammed Abbas Hamad, 28, a journalist for the Shiite-owned newspaper Al-Bayinnah Al-Jadida, was shot by gunmen at he left his home Monday in western Baghdad, police Lt. Mohammed Khayoun said. Late Monday, police found the bullet-riddled body of freelance journalist Ismail Amin Ali, 30, about a half mile from where he was abducted two weeks ago in northeast Baghdad, Lt. Ahmed Mohammed Ali said. The body showed sign of torture, he added." The AP reminds that the two are "among more than 100 Iraqi and foreign media workers slain here since the U.S.-led invasion of 2003."

reporters die and your embedded reporters don't seem to give a damn. the new york times, remember, made a huge deal out of the death of their stringer but they don't care to cover the deaths of other reporters.

Mohammed A. Salih (IPS) notes that Nouri al-Maliki (prime minister and puppet of the occupation) no longer pushes the "reconcilation project" and that Abdullah Aliawayi (Iraqi parliamentary member) describes it as "failed." Nouri al-Maliki's criticism of the "U.S.-Iraqi attack on Mahdi Army's stronghold in Baghdad's Sadr City" continues. Jeffrey Fleishman (Los Angeles Times) writes of the attack: "Families sleeping on rooftops to escape the summer heat were startled early Monday by helicoprters and gunfire" and that the action "killed three people, destroyed three homes and sent families scurrying for cover." (For those who wonder about the heat, a friend says it is 110 degrees in Baghdad right now). As AFP noted yesterday: "An AFP journalist in Sadr City reported that the raid on the area, a stronghold of the firebrand cleric, was accompanied by air strikes." Today AFP notes: "Coalition aircraft were called into action after the Iraqi army snatch squad came under fire, and at least three civilians were killed." Coalition aircraft would most likely mean US military aircraft. Elsa McLaren (Times of London) notes Times' colleague James Hider's observation that "This security plan is basically the last chance to save the country from civil war. It seems like he [al-Maliki] is trying to distance himself. There is a very fine line between sending your troops out to attack militia that are linked to a government party." Hider himself writes that "a clear rift" has opened between puppet al-Maliki "and the American military" which leads to "doubts about whether the security forces would have the political backing required to tackle powerful militias beholden to parties in the governing coalition."

these attacks happen all the time. the u.s. claims any 1 on a roof is an 'insurgent.' and people in this country buy that nonsense. i ended up going over that repeatedly on vacation. yes, i was talking iraq. see, i didn't put it on the backburner just because i was vacationing and honeymooning. you can't afford to. there's no excuse for doing so. i was shocked by the figures on how many americans believe iraq had wmds! it's like it's going backwards.

why is that? i blame the media. i blame their nonsense of all running after israel and just covering that 1 story (corporate and indy) and ignoring iraq.

In Baghdad, the trial into the murder of Abeer Qasim Hamza and three of her family members continue (as well as into the alleged rape of Abeer). This is the case that yesterday, as Reuters notes: "A US military court heard graphic testimony about how US soldiers took turns to hold down and rape a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and murderer her and her family." Ryan Lenz (AP) reports that the attornies for the four troops currently serving (James Barker, Paul E. Cortez, Jesse V. Spielman and Bryan L. Howard; Steven D. Green is no longer in the military) accused of rape, murder and arson are calling for "a new hearing, accusing Yrbie's counsel of deliberately asking incriminating questions. A ruling was expected later in the day." Anthony Yribe is accused of dereliction of duty for alleged failure to report the incident, he is not accused of rape, murder or arson. Also, CNN reports that a witness testified of "colleagues who drank whiskey and cough syrup and swallowed painkillers to cope with their jobs." The witness, Justin Cross, was asked if Steven D. Green could have done the crimes by himself and Cross responded, "Green does nothing by himself."

i'll deal with abeer after i'm done commenting on other events.

In the United States, peace activist Cindy Sheehan and others continue their protests in Crawford, TX. Sheehan is quoted as saying of the Bully Boy, "He can shorten his vacations or not show up at all, but he's not hiding from the truth." Camp Casey III is up and going again this summer. Writing of Sheehan and the first Camp Casey last year, Tom Hayden noted: "Cindy Sheehan inhabits an alternative world of meaning that more Americans need to experience before this war can end. She represents the survivors' need to define a meaning in her son's death -- and her life -- that is counter to the meaning offered by President Bush. That is why she refuses any condolences, and why she continues to ask the President what was the 'noble purpose' for which Casey Sheehan died."

this was probably the biggest shock to me because we saw coverage out of the country. we came back so flyboy could vote for ned lamont. (he's always maintained legal residency in conn. that's where his family's home is. no 1 in his family is voting for joe lieberman and that was his request for a wedding present if they were registered as democrats. i'm serious on that. we don't need anything. i have more money than i could ever spend - and you know i won't be giving it to indymedia after the last few months - and fly boy's got more than i have. this is a remarriage for us. we're doing dinners this week with family members but he said 'if you want to give a gift, rebecca and i would appreciate that you vote for ned lamont.' when they agreed, he would ask them to give their word.) so we get back and where is the media with cindy? i see ap. i don't see a great deal more.

In an interview with Dan Bacher (Toward Freedom), Sheehan spoke of the Troops Home Fast action and noted, "We hope the fast will galvanize public attention, invigorate the peace movement, build pressure on elected officials, and get our troops back home." Troops Home Fast continues with at least 4,549 people taking part today from around the world.

i don't know toward freedom but obviously they grasp that camp casey is news so good for them. on the fast. i saw c.i. for the 1st time since july 4th at my wedding and was shocked. there was no weight to lose before the fast. (c.i. religiously works out and did during the fast.) i admire the committment. i know it must have been a pain in the ass. and i know c.i. wasn't sitting on the ass during that. so i marvel (always) at my friend's strength. but please, never again. c.i.'s doing a one day a week fast now until september 21st. i need to pick a day and start doing that. fly boy took 1 look at c.i. and said, 'we need to do at least 1 day when we get back.' (let me clear, c.i. didn't look haggered. c.i. looked great, the skin was amazing and i was envious as hell, to be honest. but i'd guess 15 pounds were lost, maybe more, and they weren't there to lose. c.i. wrapped a piece of my wedding cake and hopefully will eat that soon. when we spoke on the phone today it was still easing back into solid foods, which began on sunday. bananas have been a big thing and tomatoes, c.i. loves tomatoes.)

In other peace news, Edwin Tanji (The Maui News) reports that Bob Watada, father of Ehren Watada, is getting the word out on his son (first known commissioned officer to refuse to deploy to Iraq) and will appear at Maui Bookseller (Wailuku) today at four p.m. as well as on the TV program Crossroads tonight at 7:00 p.m. Maui Democratic Party leader Lance Holter says of Ehren Watada: "I'm awe-struck by this man's bravery. He has taken on the entire American military machine and standing up for principles of honor and justice and American patriotism. There is no more patriotic man than this person."
Courage to Resist and ThankYouLt.org are calling for a "National Day of Education" on August 16th, the day before Ehren Watada would be due to "face a pre-trial hearing for refusing to deploy to Iraq." ThankYouLt.Org notes: "On August 16, the day prior to the hearing, The Friends and Family of Lt. Ehren Watada are calling for a 'National Day of Education' to pose the question, 'Is the war illegal?' This day can also serve to anchor a 'week of outreach' leading up to the pre-trial hearing."

i know the answer to this but let's pretend i don't. so while i was gone, indymedia just piled on this story, right? august 17th isn't that far away and they've just been getting the word out like crazy, right? nope. i'm really glad c.i.'s been able to locate stuff from hawaii because otherwise there would pretty much be no news for the last few weeks. i'm back, i'll be back to working my own contacts asking friends (in big media), why aren't you covering this? when will you be covering this? on watada and a host of others. but i want to be really clear that independent media has blown it. i was at c.i.'s for a long period before i left on my vacation. i heard the calls on speaker phone if we were working out, i heard c.i.'s end of the calls otherwise. i saw people come by and c.i. corner them and pretty much demand that they cover it. that's big media.
the 1st question on any iraq story would be 'is any 1 covering it' or a statement of no 1's covering it. if c.i. was able to list off a series of indymedia programs or publications covering it, the person was interested in right away. if not, c.i. had to start from scratch walking them through it, explaining why it was 'news' because, in many cases, these aren't political people. they're not writing columns, they're reporting news of the day and there questions are how is this news, how is this more important than another story, blah, blah, blah. if c.i. could say '___ wrote about it in ___, and ___ spoke about it on ____' the next moment was always, 'okay, tell me about it' it wasn't 'well tell me why i should think it is news?'

this should be a time when all media is covering iraq but indymedia has laid down, rolled over and played dead. i heard c.i. call in markers from friends to get coverage of iraq-related stories (in 1 instance, 'you owe me from 1997 and i'm calling in the favor'). now, when we're getting some coverage from the mainstream, indymedia wants to pull the rug out from underneath?

that's disgraceful and shameful. when they all went running after israel in indymedia, they didn't just leave the topic, they made it that much harder for every 1 like c.i. who is willing to use every and any connection to get coverage on iraq. c.i. has called in favors, has traded favors and this would really have impact if indymedia was doing a damn thing on iraq right now. but they're not. they're lazy ass idiots who fail to realize that this is the moment. take it from some 1 who made a bundle in public relations, if you don't get press, you may as well forget about changing anything in most instances.

In Australia, AAP reports "Soldier 14" will be the next to testify into the April 21st death of Jake Kovco in Baghdad. In addition to Soldier 14 testifying in person, AAP reports: "The inquiry is also this week expected to hear more evidence about the bungled repatriation of Pte Kovco's body from witnesses appearing on a video link from the Middle East." Last week, one of Kovco's former roommates testified that the repatriation was contracted out and done on the cheap, tying that into the mix up that led to the body of Bosnian capenter Juso Sinanovic being sent to Australia instead of Jake Kovco. Those remembering how the scene of Jake Kovco's death was cleaned up before the investigation into what happened began won't be surprised by Ian McPhedran (Australia's Courier-Mail) report that it's happened again -- in this instance David Nary ("father-of-five SAS Warrant Officer") died in Kuwait last November and the military board's finding include "criticism for the lack of procedures to preserve an incident site."

jake kovco has never been a story i've seen covered by indymedia. everything i know about him, i've learned via the common ills. if you don't know about him, he is the 1st on the ground fatality australia had in the current war on iraq. he died of gunshot wounds. at one point, the country's defense minister was telling the press it was a suicide. was it? the testimony in the hearing doesn't indicate it was. i'm really bothered by the hearing, by the way, and how it's 'truth' if some 1 heard of something 3rd or 4th hand. they testify to things they never saw or heard. the hearing has to be winding down because it's been going on for some time. i think it's been established that it wasn't a suicide. i think other questions were never addressed.

In election news in the United States, as Ned Lamont challenges Joe Lieberman (polls close at 8:00 pm EST) for the Senate seat currently occupied by Lieberman, commentators sees the race as a sign post. Stephen Schlesinger (Huffington Post) draws comparison to Eugene McCarthy and LBJ in 1968 and offers that: "A Lamont triumph or near success will make (and is already making) Democrats like Senators Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden shift progressively more in favor of withdrawal from Iraq and is certainly going to alter the entire spectrum of political views over the issue of Iraq, not only for Democrats, but for Republicans, too. In short, this is likely to be the turning point". Arianna Huffington (Huffington Post) takes a look at Lieberman's "strategy" noting: "Anxious to move Iraq to the backburner, Lieberma dug deep into his long history in the Senate to find a reason why Connecticut voters shouldn't send him packing tomorrow. The biggest selling point he came up with? 'I don't hate Republicans,' he said while arguing that he wasn't President Bush's 'best friend and enabler.' Talking points for the ages."

as i said, we came back so fly boy cold vote for lamont.

now let's talk about abeer. abeer qasim hamza. 14 years old. dead. raped. i won't say allegedly raped. the article 32 proceeding has heard from 1 witness who heard about it and a military investigator who says 1 of the alleged murders and rapists admitted the rape and murder to him.

there's also the descriptions of how she was found.

indymedia, where the hell are you?

where the hell are you?

i don't know an american adult male who doesn't know the concept of the age of consent and grasp that they'll go to jail for sex with a minor that's consensual. add in that we're talking about rape.

an underage girl was raped.

the mainstream press covers this trial and can't even mention her damn name. good god, most of us have seen silence of the lambs, we know how important it is that the victim have a name.
it puts a face on it, it gives it's weight.

so where the hell is independent media to call this b.s. out?

'oh we can't go to iraq.' don't give me that whining nonsense. you bring up some 1 to talk about rape or about pedophiles. you bring on some 1 to talk about the changes in a combat zone that allow soldiers to dehumanize the civilians around them.

abeer is dead. witness testimony (including by the military's own investigator) indicates that she was raped. the way her body was when she was found (and the remains of her clothes) indicate it was rape.

so where the hell is the coverage?

a 14 year old girl.

good god, how sick do you have to be to not get that this is an important story that you need to be covering?

how full of shit and yourself do you have to be to ignore abeer?

it's as though you've just been handed the photo of the girl in vietnam burning from napalm and you're saying, 'oh wait, um, i've got to cover the 6 day war instead. this isn't that important.'

this is damn important.

this is the story of the occupation. this is the story of a 14 year old girl who was raped and murdered and they also killed her parents and her sister and then attempted to burn them to hide their tracks.

this is a story that is repulsive. outrageous.

it demonstrates why the troops need to come home.

those soldiers were supposed to be protecting them. but the occupation has so degraded that soldiers can leer at a 14 year old girl to the point that she and her family are worried for her safety (with good reason). they were going to move her to another area to protect her.

why is it that her family noticed what was going on but no 1 in the military who could stop it (who should have stopped it) did?

don't give me that one of the higher ups had a mini-crack up. so what.

there's a chain of command it doesn't end with him, it doesn't being with him.

the fact that u.s. soldiers could leer at a 14 year old girl without any 1 stepping in is frightening enough. the fact that she and her family could be killed and she could be raped and soldiers though they'd get away with it? this is the occupation.

there's been no accountability.

there's not any now as you hear (from the defense and their co-horts at the new york times) that the soldiers were just really stressed.

hey, i was stressed when i recently miscarried. i didn't go cruising the junior high looking for tail.
they're responsible for their actions and the fact that they thought they could get away with it indicates that a lot has been gotten away with it.

over here, in this country, would they have thought they could get away with raping a 14 year old girl, killing her and her family?

no. but that they thought they could in iraq tells you how out of control the occupation is.

abeer has a name. fair needs to address this coverage. whether they will or not, they need to address it. (they should also credit c.i. and the common ills because they have been loud and clear on this subject while every 1 else took a damn pass.)

as usual, in the face of silence, the common ills has waded in where no 1 else wants to go. and not with a weak ass 'on the 1 hand, on the other.' c.i. has called the press out on the way they've covered abeer. repeatedly.

where has independent media been?

they've all been off in on israel.

that's an important story and i've covered it here. its importance doesn't mean everyone drop iraq. and it certainly allows no excuse not to note the way a 14 year old girl who was raped and murdered is now being shoved under the carpet day after day by big media.

since the article 32 started, the new york times won't even print her name. they've printed it before. but now that there's a hearing with american soldiers charged, the paper won't even print her name. they are rendering her invisble. they are presenting and making the defense's case.

apparently no 1 knew abeer. that must be why the same reporters that can chase down stories from other soldiers serving with the accused can never find out anything about abeer.

but when there was talk of exhuming her body, her remaining family said no. they didn't want her distrubed. she still has family living. she still has friends living. she still has neighbors living. but the new york times doesn't want to interview them.

why is c.i. the 1 pointing this out? why isn't this a huge story? it should be. it damn well should be.

and if another week goes by with indymedia silent on abeer, i'll start noting them by name.

i don't take rape lightly. i don't any women who do. (but i'm sure, law of averages, there has to be some who will - or who will make excuses for the rapist.)

is this the equivalent, u.s. soldiers accuses of rape, of accusing a nba star? is that why the victim's being trashed in death by repeated efforts to render her invisible?

every 1 should be outraged by this coverage, but women should be especially outraged by this coverage. this is a return to the dark days where the rapists got all the press sympathy (provided they were white) and the victims were ignored.

abeer is dead. apparently a group of u.s. soldiers thought they could do whatever dirty, criminal thing they wanted to 14 year old abeer and, guess what, the press thinks that's okay. they don't think her story matters, they don't think she's even worthy of being given a name.

feminists my age and older should be outraged. we should be able to remember very well when the way abeer's being treated is the way all rape victims were treated.

abeer's dead. she can't defend herself. at 14, she shouldn't have had to. so who's going to step up to the plate and defend her from those who would render her invisible?

again, thank you to betty for filling in for me. i'll write more about that next time. tonight i want to concentrate on abeer. if you're new to the topic of abeer, c.i.'s most recent coverage includes:

'NYT: Rendering Abeer Qasim Hamza invisible again'
'NYT: Continuing render Abeer Qasim Hamza invisible'
'NYT: Paper of record files one report from Iraq'