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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Rumsfeld in Iraq

US Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld visited Iraq yesterday. Iraq-based Christopher Allbritton, blogger and journalist-for-hire, says the real reason behind the visit, unreported in the Western media, is American concerns that deposed Ba'ath party members will be completely purged from vital governmental positions, when they are, in fact, essential for the "rebuilding" of the country. Ironic, to say the least.

"Despite American proconsul L. Paul Bremer’s orders in May 2003 to dissolve the Ba’ath Party and sweep them into the dustbin of history", Allbritton writes, "America now finds itself in need of many of those guys it threw out in the street two years ago. Former Ba’athists fill top leadership spots in the new Iraqi Army and in the Interior Ministry, among other positions. Education and Health ministries are full of ex-Ba’athists."

"In other words, the United States, which spent billions of dollars and lost more than 1,500 soldiers to topple Saddam’s Ba’athist regime, is now warning the new regime headed by religious Shi’ite Ibrahim al-Jafari not to get rid of all of the Ba’athists."

What kind of democracy is the "Coalition of the Unwilling" truly building?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you have any knowledge whatsoever? Of how this situation parallels that after the occupation of Germany post-WW2? (Was that occupation a bad thing? Is Germany still 'occupied' because American troops are there?)

Loewenstein, I'm very interested in what your qualifications are, especially as I understand you are writing a BOOK?

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 12:49:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

I know nothing. I have no qualifications. I, unlike you, actually reveal who I am, my work, my background etc. You, on the other hand, prefer to sling mud and remain anonymous.
Wake me up when you're gone....
Let me guess. Bush's plan for the world makes up all excited inside. Praising Bush, Blair and Howard gives you a thrill and questioning anybody who may disagree is your civic duty as an honest blogger.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 2:44:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who said I was a blogger?

Listen, mate, I was just trying to engage you on the parallels with de-Nazification. But every time I post something here, my question or points are not engaged, and you tell me that I should stick to holidaying with white people (?) because it would be less "confronting".

Funnily enough, I've spent years in the Middle East and the Third World. I guess I just didn't come to the same conclusions as you.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 3:17:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

I'm aware of the de-Nazification post WWII. Was moderately successful, unless, of course, you consider the Americans and Russian taking many Nazi doctors, scientists etc and utilising their skills!
In Iraq, my point is simply to make people aware of the hypocrises of the arguments put forward for the invasion and occupation. It's been a general disaster. Of course there have been successes, to be sure, but, for example, the recent report mentioning very high levels of child malnutrition. It's as if supporterrs of the war can't see this fact and dismiss it as UN propaganda. Ho hum.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 3:31:00 pm  
Anonymous Doylie said...

Is this the same anonymous again? Very constructive and engaging. Let me guess - criticise when an individual does not have qualifacations, then ridicule them as an elitist if they do.

Now I'm yawning, too.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 8:47:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Couldn't have said it better myself, Doylie.
If I'd studied at Harvard under Bernard Lewis, I'd be more appropriate to these people.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 10:45:00 pm  
Blogger J F said...

It sounds like the US wants Iraq to have a democracy in which everone, even Ba'athists, can participate. Maybe you'd prefer all Ba'athists be permanently unemployable.

Thursday, April 14, 2005 7:06:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Far from it. Point is, many of these individuals have very suspect pasts, to say the least. The so-called de Ba'athing process isn't exactly very effective...

Thursday, April 14, 2005 7:28:00 pm  
Blogger J F said...

How many?

Thursday, April 14, 2005 8:53:00 pm  

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