Thursday, October 20, 2005


This was in our local paper, The Eugene Register Guard, today. Thomas Friedman is an excellent columnist. The tag as the end is this is (Yes, all of this is a fake news story. I just wish that it weren’t so true.) Thomas Friedman.

It’s sad that our right hand literally doesn’t know what the left hand is doing. Or it does and just doesn’t give a damn. (me) It’s really sad that I thought it was true until I got to the end because I recognized all the events. (me)

Thomas Friedman

WASHINGTON (Iraq News Agency)

---A delegation of Iraqi judges and journalists abruptly left the U.S; today, cutting short its visit to study the working of American democracy. A delegation spokesman said the Iraqis were” bewildered” by some of the behavior of the Bush administration and felt was best to limit their exposure to the U.S. system at this time, when Iraq is taking its first steps toward democracy.

The lead Iraqi delegate, Muhammad Mithaqi a noted secular Sunni judge who had recently survived an assassination attempt by Islamist radicals, said that he was stunned when he heard President Bush telling Republicans that one reason the should support Harriet Miers for the U.S. Supreme court was because of “her religion.” She is described as a devout evangelical Christian.

Mithaqi said that after two years of being lectured to by U.S. diplomats in Baghdad about the need to separate “mosque from state” in the new Iraq he was also floored to read that the former Whitewater prosecutor Kenneth Starr, now a law school dean, said on the radio show of the conservative James Dobson that Miers deserved support because she was “a very, very strong Christian (who) should be a source of great comfort and assistance to people in the households of faith around the country.”

“How would you feel if you picked up your newspapers next week and read that the president of Iraq justified the appointment of an Iraqi Supreme Court justice by telling Iraqis ‘Don’t pay attention to his lack of legal expertise. Pay attention to the fact that he is a Muslim fundamentalist and prays at a Saudi funded Wahabi mosque.’ Is that the Iraq you sent your sons to build and to die for? I don’t think so. We don’t have our people exposed to such talk.”

A fellow delegation member, Abdul Wahab al-Unfi, a Shiite lawyer who walks with a limp today as a result of torture in a Saddam prison, said he did not want to spend another day in Washington after listening to the bush team defend its right to use torture in Iraq and Afghanistan. Unfi said he was heartened by the fact that the Senate voted 90-9 to ban U.S. torture of military prisoners. But he said he was depressed by reports that the White House might veto the bill because of that amendment, which would ban “cruel, inhuman or degrading” treatment of POWs.

Finally, the delegation member Sahaf al-Sahafi, editor or one of Iraq’s new newspapers said he wanted to go home after watching a televised videoconference last Thursday between soldiers in Iraq and bush. The soldiers, 10 Americans and an Iraqi, were coached by a Pentagon aide on how to respond to Bush.

“I had nightmares watching this,” Sahafi said. “It was right from the Saddam playbook. I was particularly upset to hear the Iraqi sergeant major, Akeel Shakir Nasser, tell Mr. Bush: ‘Thank you very much for everything, I like you.’ It was exactly the kind of staged encounter that Saddam used to have with his troops.”

Sahafi said he was also floored to se the A.S. Government Accountability Office declare that a Bush administration contract that paid Armstrong Williams, a supposedly independent commentator, to promote Bush’s No Child Left Behind policy constituted illegal propaganda.

By coincidence, the Iraqi delegated departed Washington just as the bush aide Karen Hughes returned from the Middle East. Her trip was aimed at improving America’s image among Muslims by giving them a more accurate view of America and Bush. She said, “The more they know about us, the more they will like us.”

Thomas Friedman is a columnist for The New York Times.

I think this is an interesting way to contrast what we’re telling others, including the Iraqis, to do while we do the exact opposite. What do you think? Oh, and I wonder if these are real Iraqi’s.


lisaram1955 said...

As I mentioned in one of my entries a while back the US is the champion of "Do as I say, not as I do" foreign policy.  Lisa  :-[

hestiahomeschool said...

oh, this is so apt, and shows eloquently the ethnocentrism that blinds most Americans