Do these names mean anything to anyone? Well, currently Blogworld is buzzing with commentary about Haditha. But the same questions appeared when Isahaqi hit the headlines - is this Iraq's My Lai?
On March 26, 2006 TIME first reported the massacre at Haditha, which occurred on November 19 2005, .
I first read about the massacre at Abu Sifa (Isahaqi) in Empire Burlesque a month or so ago. There I found that it had occurred around March 14, 2006, and reported in Knight Ridder Washington March 19, The Guardian UK March 21, and The Times UK on March 26. (The images are NOT for the sensitive or for children!)
Why does Haditha merit an investigation and prosecution by the US government, but I haven' t been able to trace any reference to an investigation of Isahaqi? Like Abu Ghraib, it certainly makes one wonder what else we haven't heard of. So, as the TIME article observes, the revelations of another My Lai will damage US and British credibility even further, just as Bush-Blair admit to mistakes in their conduct of the war (Oops! We just trashed another country, caused maybe upto 250,000 innocent people to be killed - and that's only since March 19, 2003! My bad!! But it was all for God, Democracy and Israel, so like Madeleine Albright earlier, we too think "the price was worth it"...).
Perhaps we should be grateful to TIME for being the first to report this crime. But the language of the reporting seems to contain some clues that even they find it difficult to digest the enormity of the events.
TIME writes: "The possibility [emphasis added] of a U.S. massacre of Iraqi civilians could have major ramifications." As if a US massacre of civilians is an aberrant exception. How about the possibility that the US army has functioned this way in Iraq because the grunts got the message loud and clear from those civilian higher-up that it's all OK to treat Iraqis like untermensch? In fact, the much advertized efforts of US troops to "win hearts and minds" by organizing soccer games with the local children, opening up hospitals and schools, and performing other acts of charity and mercy HAVE been the aberrant exceptions.
Again, in the article: "In recent days, Marine Corps Commandant Michael Hagee, has flown to Iraq to deliver speeches to troops re-emphasizing that they must adhere to international law." But how can anyone in the US government RE-emphasize adherence to international law, when what has been emphasized over and over again - in word AND deed - is the irrelevance of international law to deal with what is regarded in the administration as an "unprecedented" threat?
The subtext of incredulity in the TIME article can only spring from an implicit and unquestionable assumption that the US army only went into Iraq to do good - massacres and tortures of civilians weren't on the cards, they just happened in fits of absent-mindedness! To hold on to and re-affirm this assumption in the face of such overwhelming evidence to the contrary - as Bush, Blair and their minions and supporters do everytime they open their mouths about Iraq - must reveal a major psychological sickness, for which words like "cognitive dissonance" seem like euphemisms. Is there any possibility that the people in Washington who ordered up this war in pursuit of their blood-dimmed plans, and paid for it with the lives of American and Iraqi citizens, will ever face justice?