This secret letter from a Marine in Iraq, now doing the rounds, is interesting and at times even amusing, but mostly it’s just depressing. The author is a talented and somewhat snarky writer, and it’s well worth a read. This bit, though, just boggles the mind:
Most Surreal Moment â€” Watching Marines arrive at my detention facility and unload a truck load of flex-cuffed midgets. 26 to be exact. We had put the word out earlier in the day to the Marines in Fallujah that we were looking for Bad Guy X, who was described as a midget. Little did I know that Fallujah was home to a small community of midgets, who banded together for support since they were considered as social outcasts. The Marines were anxious to get back to the midget colony to bring in the rest of the midget suspects, but I called off the search, figuring Bad Guy X was long gone on his short legs after seeing his companions rounded up by the giant infidels.
This is how we win hearts and minds? By rounding up everyone who even looks like a bad guy? My great fear is that similar things will start happening here, soon. And with the dumping of habeus corpus, this is something we all have to fear for, now. You could be the next midget with plastic handcuffs and no recourse to call a lawyer.
An aside on that note, something that really pissed me off this weekend. On Meet the Press, the Missouri senate candidates, Talent (R) and McCaskill (D) were debating, and Talent was snidely accusing McCaskill of “supporting habeus corpus rights for terrorists, so they can sue us”. Astoundingly, this put McCaskill on the defensive. Why oh why didn’t she come back with: “I support habeus corpus rights for innocent people”?! That’s why we’ve had habeus corpus in civilized society for nearly a millenium!
End of aside, back to that letter. This bit was also very revealing:
Biggest Hassle â€” High-ranking visitors. More disruptive to work than a rocket attack. VIPs demand briefs and “battlefield” tours (we take them to quiet sections of Fallujah, which is plenty scary for them). Our briefs and commentary seem to have no effect on their preconceived notions of what’s going on in Iraq. Their trips allow them to say that they’ve been to Fallujah, which gives them an unfortunate degree of credibility in perpetuating their fantasies about the insurgency here.
So I guess George Bush was right — the media is getting it wrong about Iraq. Unfortunately, it’s getting it wrong in a different direction than he thinks.