“Things are looking very bad for Fallujah. The various mujaheddin factions, who may have agreed to a truce just so that the siege of Fallujah would be partially lifted and the road to the hospital opened, obviously had no intention of handing over all their weapons (or even just the ‘heavy’ ones). That demand by the Americans was basically the demand to win the battle without fighting it.
Since Fallujah will not capitulate, apparently, Bush and his advisers decide this weekend whether to bombard the hell out of it. Here’s a fascinating quote from the Times article:
‘It’s clear you can’t leave a few thousand insurgents there to terrorize the city and shoot at us,’ one senior official involved in the discussions said in an interview on Saturday. ‘The question now is whether there is a way to go in with the most minimal casualties possible.’
It should be clear to anyone with basic knowledge of the situation and with no ideological axe to grind who the few thousand people terrorizing the city are. They’re the ones that have assaulted it with tanks, AC-130 gunships, F-16’s, and snipers, not the ones who have been defending it from assault.
Based on everything that’s happened so far, the mindless desire for revenge and for showing military supremacy will triumph and the attack will be launched. As Bush said, ‘America will never be run out of Iraq by a bunch of thugs and killers.’ This is the kind of nonsense every colonial army has put out against its opponents — as Henry Liu points out in the Asia Times, the British general at the battle of Bunker Hill, Thomas Cage, called the American rebels thugs and tax evaders.
Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Ghafur Samarra’i, during Friday prayers at a prominent Baghdad mosque, said, ‘We will not allow the shedding of Iraqi blood. If you strike again, the whole of Iraq, from north to south, from east to west, will become Fallujah,’ a sentiment virtually every Iraqi I’ve spoken with would agree with.
A bad moon is rising. Since Bush is so fond of the Bible (it was apparently his favorite book as a child), he should read that part about sowing the wind.
It would be nice if this time there were protests before the assault instead of after.” — Rahul Mahajan, Empire Notes (Amsterdam)