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Friday, September 23, 2005

Agents provocateurs?

While the Australian media rarely challenges Howard government spin on Iraq - indeed, Iraq is rarely in the news anymore - the city of Basra is experiencing strong dissent against the presence of British forces after the occupiers forcibly raided a prison and freed two SAS soldiers. Who exactly were these two soldiers and what were they doing there?

Journalist William Bowles investigates and finds it hard to get past the British and BBC spin:

"When viewed in the context of all the stories that have been circulating about the mythical 'al-Zarqawi' and the alleged role of al-Qaeda, the events in Basra are the first real evidence that we have of the role of occupation forces in destabilising Iraq through the use of agents provocateurs masquerading as 'insurgents'."

As for American, British and Australian ambitions in Iraq, this gives us a clue:

"A Foreign Office source said the goal of the US Administration to turn Iraq into a beacon of democracy in the Middle East had long ago been shelved. "We will settle for leaving behind an Iraqi democracy that is creaking along," the source said."

For some Australian armchair warmongers, however, blind propaganda for the Iraq cause will always smell sweet, no matter the facts.


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