GOT THAT RIGHT: TROOPS HOME NOW
Police remove Medea Benjamin from the House
gallery after she disrupted a speech by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki
July 26, to a joint meeting of Congress. “Iraqis want the
troops to leave; bring them home now,” she shouted repeatedly. “Listen to the Iraqis.” (AP Photo/Dennis Cook) & Anne Plummer
Command Incompetence Killed Marines
July 24, 2006 By Christian Lowe, Army Times
Staff writer [Excerpts]
The Marine Corps lost valuable
time when it moved to reinforce its logistics trucks against the deadly effects
of roadside bombs, settling on inferior solutions and falling behind on its
armoring schedule, according to a June report from the Government
The report said the Corps should have
coordinated more closely with Army efforts to bolster its vehicle fleets,
suggesting Pentagonwide coordination of urgent wartime needs and clearer rules
on when those wartime needs should be satisfied.
“A more unified and coordinated
approach between the Marine Corps and the Army might have allowed the Marine
Corps to field a better interim armor solution that provided sufficient
protection against” improvised explosive devices, GAO investigators said
in their June 22 report titled “Defense Logistics: Lack of Synchronized
Approach Between the Marine Corps and Army Affected the Timely Production and
Installation of Marine Corps Truck Armor.”
The GAO said the Corps waited
too long before asking steel suppliers for material thick enough to resist
roadside bombs, learning that worldwide steel inventories were low two months
after the Army had placed its orders.
That led to a months-long delay in fielding
truck armor sporting three-eighth-inch steel panels. The Corps instead fielded a mix of
three-sixteenth-inch steel plates and Kevlar or ceramic panels to bolster its
truck fleet, a solution GAO investigators said fell short of well-known
IRAQ WAR REPORTS
MNC I SAILOR DIES
7/26/2006 HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES CENTRAL
COMMAND NEWS RELEASE Number: 06-07-02C
BAGHDAD, Iraq: A Sailor assigned to Multinational Corps Iraq
died at approximately 2:15 p.m. today in Baghdad.
The incident does not appear to be the result
of enemy action and is under investigation.
Two American Servicemen Killed In Baghdad
26 July 2006 AFP
Two American servicemen were killed in
Baghdad on Wednesday, AFP reported, without reporting details regarding the
death of the U.S. citizens.
Oceana County Native
July 26, 2006 HESPERIA (AP)
A native of west Michigan has died while
fighting in Iraq. Army Specialist Dennis Samson, of Hesperia in Oceana County,
was killed Monday by enemy gunfire.
Survivors include Samson's mother, Dawn
Ackley of Hesperia, and his father, Dennis Samson Senior of Seattle.
Samson graduated in 2000 from Hesperia High
Lewis Soldier Injured
July 26, 2006 WPTZ
A Lewis soldier was wounded in Iraq after a
rocket-propelled grenade hit his Humvee in Bayji, which is north of Baghdad. Glenn Gentles, 22, was flown to Germany,
where he had surgery before being flown back to the United States. He is now at a military hospital at his base
Gentles' wife, Erika, said that they are
grateful to be alive because the soldier who was driving the Humvee was killed
in the attack.
"Glenn was the gunner on top of the
Humvee, but what was really weird about it was Glenn was supposed to be driving
the Humvee," she said.
Erika Gentles said she was shocked by the
phone call from the U.S. military.
"I couldn't breathe ... it was like the
room was shrinking," she said.
Gentles' father, Joe, said he knew a call was
coming because for days he had a strange feeling that something was wrong.
"He went around the corner on a regular,
routine patrol, and he said, 'Dad, I saw the triggerman and the next thing I
knew, it was a boom and a flash,'" Joe Gentles said.
Gentles suffered shrapnel injuries to his
face and eyes, and a flash burn on his face.
He also suffered leg and arm injuries.
Erika Gentles said their son Gabriel, 2, is
helping her deal with what's happened. "He's
a pretty funny, playful kid, so when I am feeling sad, it helps to have him
around because he's making funny faces," she said.
Family members said they hope Gentles will be
home in time for his birthday on Aug. 7.
PLACE TO BE:
BRING THEM ALL HOME NOW
military at area of a car bomb attack July 5, 2006, in Mosul. (AP Photo/Mohammed Ibrahim)
Can The Occupation Hold Baghdad?
[The Question Is The Answer]
7.26.06 USA Today
The battle for Iraq's future
has come down to this: Can the country's U.S.-backed government control
escalating violence in the streets of Baghdad? [It’s come to this. Not a new question: Can Cornwallis hold Yorktown? Can Lee hold Richmond? Can Westmoreland hold Saigon? Same old same old.]
AFGHANISTAN WAR REPORTS
Lewisburg Soldier Killed In Pesch
7/26/2006 ABC 24:
The Defense Department says a Tennessee
soldier has been killed in Afghanistan.
Sergeant David Hierholzer died Monday from
injuries sustained from small arms fire when enemy forces attacked his platoon.
The 27-year-old soldier died during the
attack in Pesch, Afghanistan.
Hierholzer was assigned to the First
Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, Third Brigade Combat Team, Tenth Mountain
Division at Fort Drum, New York.
Texas Soldier Killed
Army Pfc. Andrew Velez of Lubbock,
Texas. According to Velez' father,
military officials informed the family July 25, 2006, that Velez was killed in
Afghanistan. Velez' brother, Spc. Jose A. Velez, was killed in Fallujah in
November 2004. (AP Photo/family handout
via The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal)
U.S. Soldier Killed By Kabul Bomb
Jul 26, 2006 AP
A bomb exploded near a taxi on a busy Kabul
road Tuesday, killing two Afghans, and a U.S. soldier
Australian Command Finally Admits 6 Australian
Special Forces Wounded In Southern Afghanistan
July 26, 2006 By Fisnik Abrashi, ASSOCIATED PRESS
on Wednesday that six of its special forces soldiers were wounded in southern
Afghanistan earlier this month.
Australian special forces soldiers were wounded during heavy fighting in
mid-July in southern Afghanistan, said Brig. Gus Gilmore, spokesman for the
Australian Defense Force.
He would not say when
or where the incident happened.
Australia has 300 troops in a special forces task group operating in
Assorted Resistance Action
26/07/2006 Evening Echo & By Fisnik Abrashi, ASSOCIATED PRESS & By
Mirwais Afghan in Kandahar, Reuters
Afghan guerrillas today killed
an Afghan worker and wounded three others building a road to a US-led coalition
base in the south of the country.
The shooting happened in southern Zabul
province when the gunmen ambushed a car taking the men to work on a road
linking the town of Qalat with a new US air base just outside town, said Noor
Mohammed Paktin, provincial police chief.
Militants in southern Afghanistan attacked a
coalition patrol with rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns Tuesday.
A defence ministry statement said an Afghani
soldier was killed by an explosion in Helmand province.
Young Vets Joining
“It’s Incredibly Discouraging, And
Frankly, It’s A Betrayal”
reality is there’s no jobs there at all,” he said. “With all
the factory cutbacks, everyone’s scrambling to get what they can.”
July 26, 2006 By Katherine Hutt Scott,
Gannett News Service [Excerpts]
Young veterans returning from Iraq and
Afghanistan are having a harder time finding a job than their peers who
didn’t serve in the military.
Last year, about one in six veterans between
20 and 24 was jobless, nearly double the rate for nonveterans their age. It was
brighter in the second quarter of this year, when young vets had an 11.2
percent jobless rate, but that was still higher than the 8 percent for nonvets
their age and more than twice the overall unemployment rate.
Labor and veterans officials are surveying
young vets to try to find out why. But experts have some theories:
Some who saw combat in Iraq or Afghanistan
suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, which makes it difficult for them
to work and makes employers leery of hiring them.
Permanent jobs that offer middle-class wages
and benefits are scarcer these days in some regions.
“With the prestige of a combat veteran,
I thought I’d hold a little more weight than the average high school or
college graduate,” said Jason Seidel of Battle Creek, Mich., 25, who
served one year in Iraq during his four-year Army stint. He has spent two
fruitless months searching for a decent-paying job that doesn’t require a
“The reality is there’s no jobs
there at all,” he said. “With all the factory cutbacks,
everyone’s scrambling to get what they can.”
Historically, veterans have had a lower
unemployment rate than the population as a whole.
“It’s incredibly discouraging,
and frankly, it’s a betrayal,” said labor professor Bob Bruno of
the University of Illinois at Chicago. “There’s a strong consensus
that if you put your life on the line with some kind of service for your
country, you should be rewarded with the opportunity to earn the American
NEED SOME TRUTH? CHECK OUT
Telling the truth - about the occupation or
the criminals running the government in Washington - is the first reason for
Traveling Soldier. But we want to do
more than tell the truth; we want to report on the resistance - whether it's in
the streets of Baghdad, New York, or inside the armed forces. Our goal is for Traveling Soldier to become
the thread that ties working-class people inside the armed services together. We
want this newsletter to be a weapon to help you organize resistance within the
armed forces. If you like what you've
read, we hope that you'll join with us in building a network of active duty
organizers. http://www.traveling-soldier.org/ And join with
Iraq War vets in the call to end the occupation and bring our troops home now!
HOW BUSH BRINGS THE TROOPS HOME:
BRING THEM ALL HOME NOW, ALIVE
The casket of Marine Lance Cpl. Geofrey R.
Cayer, 20, at St. Joseph's Church for his funeral service in Fitchburg, Mass.,
July 26, 2006. Cayer, assigned to 3rd
Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary
Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif. died July 18 while on duty in Iraq. (AP
Did “Inadequate Training For Castner's
Wisconsin National Guard Unit Kill Him”
July 26, 2006 CEDARBURG, Wis.
The U.S. Army said Wednesday it will look
into circumstances surrounding the death of a Wisconsin soldier killed this
week on his first mission escorting supplies in Iraq.
Army spokesman Paul Boyce at the Pentagon
said Wednesday that military officials will look into the circumstances and any
factors that would have to be examined in the future, such as lessons learned
from the death of Spc. Stephen Castner, 27, of Cedarburg.
U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner
called on the Pentagon on Tuesday to investigate allegations of inadequate
training for Castner's Wisconsin National Guard unit.
He sent Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld a
letter detailing the matter and said he was trying to reach Rumsfeld by
telephone to push the issue.
The Department of Defense said Castner was
killed Monday when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee
vehicle during combat operations in Tallil, Iraq.
Castner's father, Stephen
Castner, told The Associated Press he had earlier contacted Sensenbrenner,
expressing concern about the training his son had at Camp Shelby in
IRAQ RESISTANCE ROUNDUP
Assorted Resistance Action
26 Jul 2006 Reuters & (AP) & (KUNA)
British forces escaped injury during an
attack on an armoured vehicle in Iraq Wednesday, the Ministry of Defence (MoD)
in London said.
An MoD spokesman said the vehicle came under
rocket-propelled grenade fire in an exchange in Maysan Province but the device
did not detonate and the UK forces returned fire.
Guerrillas shot at a police convoy in
Nahrawan, 15 km south of Baghdad, killing local police chief Lieutenant Colonel
Khadum Bressam and his brother, and wounding four officers.
Guerrillas captured police brigadier Abdullah
Hmood, the director of the residency office in Baghdad, as he rode in an
unmarked car, police sources said.
A policeman was wounded when a roadside bomb
went off targeting his patrol in the city of Mosul 390 km north of Baghdad,
police sources said.
Two brothers serving in Iraq's police forces
were killed Wednesday when a roadside bomb struck their vehicle as they
returned to their home in southeastern Baghdad, police said.
Guerrillas attacked a police patrol, killing
a policeman and wounding another, and also killed a civilian, in the city of
Baquba 65 km north of Baghdad. Police
said they had detained three suspects.
General Abdullah Shadah, a director in the
interior ministry’s immigration department, was seized by unidentified
gunmen in the Al-Shaad district of Baghdad at around 10:30 am, a police
DON’T LIKE THE RESISTANCE
From: Dennis Serdel
To: GI Special
Sent: July 26, 2006
Written by Dennis Serdel:
Vietnam 1967-68 (one tour) Light Infantry, Americal Div, 11th Brigade, purple
heart; Veterans For Peace; Vietnam Veterans Against The War; United Auto
Workers GM retiree. Perry, Michigan
the unknown soldier is pot
bellied now, swinging an atrophied leg
like a grandfather clock
although he never had a wife or children.
young teenagers would make fun
from time to time, calling him
a freak, you can get work in a circus
you don't need a Halloween
mask, he chains smokes three packs of
a day, his doctor gave up on
his smoking, smokers are hated now-a-days,
thought to be ignorant, are you
trying to kill yourself they ask, you
yourself, just don't kill me
with that second hand smoke.
you have no willpower, no
balls, you're weak, disgusting.
why do you get all the
marlboros, the grunts would ask him,
when you have been here as long
as I have,
then you will get all the
the unknown soldier would
when he was hit, he ran like a
deer to lower ground behind a stump,
his 16 aimed at the enemy ready
to return fire.
his adrenalin was so high he
the burning in his body and the
blood pouring out.
the others came slowly to him
loudly telling him
it's alright, sarge stepped on
a mine, you alright ?
he peered down at his arm and
leg, blood soaking both, he was
still at the ready position.
look, don't shoot, they told
the unknown soldier
as they approached, he's hit
a medic came running over, made
him lean back and started treating
his neck, the unknown soldier
he had been hit in the neck
they tried to take his 16 away
but he clung to it as if it was life.
he asked for a cigarette,
you'll get plenty where
you're going, they replied. all
I have is a few of these
stale old ww2 pall malls, give
me a cigarette,
they gave the unknown soldier a
he didn't care about life as much
as he did back then.
now he was old, a tragedy,
a geek that now thought that
people were ugly, not enough evolution
at best or this is just their
nature, love it or leave it.
he had to go downtown again,
he hated going downtown, the
closest he could get
was on the other side of the
after walking like a tightrope
his bad leg started twisting
and electric spasms
ran up and down his leg like a
yoyo. the closest park bench
had a bum on it covered with a
grey coat. he sat down
next to his feet and bent up
his face twisted like a
frowning upward through the
some kids came slowly rolling
by on their bicycles,
one said, why don't you bums
nobody wants you around, the
other kid said,
maybe we should just kill you,
nobody would care.
he moaned, pounding on his leg
for the pain to stop
and mumbled, I wish I had my
16, I'd waste you little motherfuckers.
the bum rustled the grey coat
off his face and shoulders,
you in 'Nam man ? yeah, me too!
can I bum a cigarette, man
the I-R-A-Q (I Remember
Another Quagmire) portfolio of
Mike Hastie, US Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71.
(For more of his outstanding work, contact at: (firstname.lastname@example.org) T)
Do you have a friend or relative in the
service? Forward this E-MAIL along, or
send us the address if you wish and we’ll send it regularly. Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the
USA, this is extra important for your service friend, too often cut off from
access to encouraging news of growing resistance to the war, at home and inside
the armed services. Send requests to address up
U.S. OCCUPATION RECRUITING DRIVE IN HIGH GEAR;
RECRUITING FOR THE ARMED RESISTANCE THAT IS
Iraqi citizens stop to view a home that was burned
during a raid by U.S., July 23, 2006, in Sadr City, Baghdad. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)
[Fair is fair. Let’s bring 150,000 Iraqis over here to
the USA. They can kill people at
checkpoints, bust into their houses with force and violence, butcher their
families, overthrow the government, put a new one in office they like better
and call it “sovereign,” and “detain” anybody who
doesn’t like it in some prison without any charges being filed against
them, or any trial.]
[Those Iraqis are sure a bunch
of backward primitives. They actually
resent this help, have the absurd notion that it’s bad their country is
occupied by a foreign military dictatorship, and consider it their patriotic
duty to fight and kill the soldiers sent to grab their country.
[What a bunch of silly
people. How fortunate they are to live
under a military dictatorship run by George Bush. Why, how could anybody not love that? You’d want that in your home town,
the States, if police burst into your house, kicking down doors and swearing at
you, you would call your lawyer and file a lawsuit,” said Wood, 42, from
Iowa, who did not accompany Halladay’s Charlie Company, from his
battalion, on Thursday’s raid.
“Here, there are no lawyers.
Their resources are limited, so they plant IEDs (improvised explosive
OCCUPATION ISN’T LIBERATION
BRING ALL THE TROOPS HOME NOW!
Major General Caldwell Just Doing His Job:
Ass-Kissing Rumsfeld & Bush;
As Collaborator Troops Hide, He Says
“Iraqi Security Forces Again Took The
Jul 26 by Paul Schemm, AFP News
Somewhere around the fourth car bomb attack
against their checkpoint, the Iraqi army soldiers pulled out of their position
on a once busy commercial thoroughfare in the Amiriyah neighborhood of Baghdad.
Now they "guard" the
debris-littered street, complete with the burned-out carcasses of three car
bombs, from the safety of nearby buildings.
On Monday, coalition spokesman
Major General William Caldwell said that "Iraqi security forces again took
the lead in the neighborhoods... to make their capital safe."
In reality, however, the
beefing up of the US presence and the continuing spiral of violence is an
indication that Iraqi security forces have not been able to handle the
"In the beginning we saw many Iraqi
patrols, even with tanks, moving through the neighborhood," said a
resident of a Amiriyah, a formerly prosperous area that is a main focus of
"But then, after a few days, the number
of patrols dropped," he said on condition of anonymity, adding that the
violence and shooting has been much worse in the past weeks.
Iraqi forces should be better at maintaining
security in these neighborhoods having more familiarity with the people and the
ability to speak the language, but according to US officers, they have not been
getting out onto the streets.
"There are some
checkpoints on the main streets, sometimes they are manned, sometimes they
aren't," said Sergeant Coy Greer, of the 8th Squadron's Apache Troop,
during a patrol through the barricade-filled streets of Amiriyah.
At an Iraqi army base near the airport, a
patrol formed up to go out with the Americans and soldiers piled into flat bed
pickup trucks with some crude metal sheets welded on the sides.
Nearby a row of a brand new armored humvees
-- the general-purpose all terrain transports used by US forces -- stood
"The humvees are for emergency
cases," said Master Sergeant Osama Abed Ali, a patrol leader from 2nd Battalion,
1st Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army division, responsible for Amiriyah. "The operations officer doesn't allow us
to take them out." It was something
he and his man were not happy about.
Two days later, over in the nearby Khadra
district, the 8th Squadron's Charlie Troop got ready to patrol with an Iraqi
national police unit responsible for the area.
The US sergeant commanding the joint patrol
carefully placed the police SUVs and their makeshift armor plated SUVs in the
center of the convoy.
"They are a softer target vehicle than
us, they need all the protection they can get," said Staff Sergeant
Michael Emery. "Also they don't scan for IEDs that well."
“Heavy Fighting Slows Israel’s Ground
“Israeli News Outlets Ask Why So Difficult
To Push One Militia Off Israel’s Border”
[Thanks to D, who sent this in.]
days, Israeli news outlets, which had largely lined up behind the army's
conduct of the war, have begun to ask why an army that once defeated the armies
of several Arab neighbors in six days was finding it so difficult to push one
militia off Israel's border.
July 26, 2006 By Jonathan Finer and Anthony
Shadid, Washington Post Foreign Service [Excerpts]
AVIVIM, Israel, July 25
Israeli tanks and infantrymen fought house to
house Tuesday against Hezbollah fighters whose hit-and-run tactics and
punishing attacks have frustrated Israeli troops and slowed their onslaught.
Several days of intense clashes gave way by
late afternoon Tuesday to sporadic firefights.
Exchanges of Israeli artillery and airstrikes and Hezbollah mortars and
rockets, which shook the surrounding hills, turned dry patches of ground into
Some Israeli soldiers involved
in the fight, their faces drawn with fatigue, expressed frustration at
Hezbollah's tactics while grudgingly acknowledging their effectiveness.
"They don't come right at us because
they know we'll shoot them. So they just
shoot and run away, shoot and run away.
They do what they can do, and we do what we can do," 1st Sgt. Erez
Kremer, 21, a tank commander, said in an interview after returning from a
72-hour mission in Lebanon. A Hezbollah missile had narrowly missed his vehicle
Tuesday morning, he said, exploding on the side of a nearby building.
"If they face us, they don't have a
chance," he said. "I think
they fight like cowards, but it can be effective." [Gee, that’s what
the Redcoats said about the Minutemen at Lexington and Concord. Whine whine whine.]
Dozens of people who fled Bint Jbeil arrived
in the morning in Tibnin, where they joined at least 1,350 people huddled in a
hospital that has become a camp for the displaced. Many were angry, frustrated
"This isn't our
land?" asked Hoda Fawwaz, 50, carrying a blue radio tuned to broadcasts of
Hezbollah's radio station, al-Nur.
"They're the ones aggressing against us. We're not the ones aggressing against
Others shouted condemnations of Israel, the
United States and other Arab states for failing to defend them. "God destroy
Israel," said Hassan Hamza, 19.
battle-weary Bokim Battalion, which lost two soldiers in Hezbollah ambushes
Monday, returned from the fighting exhausted Tuesday afternoon, lounging in the
shade of a kiwi grove and hanging their sweat-soaked uniforms out to dry.
They described a complex attack
in which one of their tanks, sent to evacuate wounded ground fighters, was
pounded by three Hezbollah missiles. A
second tank struck a mine or other explosive as it rushed to provide aid, they
"My radio only lets me hear people
inside the vehicle, so I didn't realize right away that they had died. Then I just started to cry. I couldn't
stop," said Avi Chai, 19, a tank driver whose hands and arms were still
black with smoke and grease. Beside him,
soldiers stripped to their T-shirts sung along to Hebrew pop songs as another
soldier played guitar.
"It's easier not to talk about it,"
Chai said. "You just feel heavy."
An army major, speaking on condition that
only his first name, Eli, be used, said he took over the battalion when its
commander was badly wounded in the attack Monday.
In an evening briefing for reporters, Brig.
Gen. Gal Hirsch, commander of the Israeli army's Galilee Division, which is
responsible for the Israel-Lebanon border, said Israeli forces had fought
"alley to alley and house to house" for Bint Jbeil.
In recent days, Israeli news
outlets, which had largely lined up behind the army's conduct of the war, have
begun to ask why an army that once defeated the armies of several Arab
neighbors in six days was finding it so difficult to push one militia off
Joins Family in Death;
Zionist Filth Slaughter Family Collecting Figs
The corpse of the donkey that was carrying a
family when it was subject to an Israeli attack, 25 June 2006 (Sami Abu
[Thanks to JM, who sent this in.]
25 July 2006 Sami Abu Salem writing from Beit
Lahia, occupied Gaza; Live from Palestine
The paramedics and witnesses
could not differentiate between the pieces of flesh of the eleven-year-old Nadi
al-Attar, and those of his grandmother, 57-year-old Khairiyya, or the donkey's,
scattered on the branches of lemon and boxthorn trees on both sides of the
dusty road in Beit Lahia, north Gaza.
Yesterday, the old woman and her three
grandsons Nadi, Shadi (14), and Ahmed (17) were riding a donkey cart, heading
to their field to collect ripe figs that fetch a good price in Gaza's markets
when Israeli rocket hit their cart and blasted two of them into small pieces.
The smell of burned flesh
filled the area where several people were still collecting pieces stuck to the
trees and fences of the nearby orchards.
The corpse of the donkey lay near the broken cart, where a teenager phoned
emergency services to inform them of the remains.
Ahmed, 17, had arranged empty boxes on the
cart and left room for his grandmother and cousins. The old woman and Ahmed sat on the front of
the cart while Shadi and Nadi in the back.
Shadi, who was wounded in the attack, said
that his grandmother "vanished" after the attack, and said that he
does not know whether the rocket was fired from a tank, helicopter or a drone.
"The rocket hit my grandmother - I flew
in the air and did not see anything," said Shadi, who is still laying in Kamal
Udwan Hospital, north Gaza.
"The dust filled the area. I heard Ahmed
screaming and asking for help. I did not
see my grandmother or Nadi. They killed
our donkey and destroyed the carriage," he said.
Nadi al-Attar, 55, the grandfather of the
deceased boy, was ashamed when he admitted that he refused to share his salad
with his wife before she left to the orchard.
"She made salad and asked me to share
(it with) her, but I said no and left the house to work; it was the last salad
in her life," he said while sighing deeply.
Nadi, who works as a driver, said that he was
working when a radio station reported that Israeli artillery hit a donkey cart
carrying an old woman and children.
"I drove so fast that I (almost drove)
over several people returning home, where I realised I lost my wife and
grandson," he said.
He wondered, "Why did they
kill an old woman and a child? Were they
fighting or carrying weapons? They just
were going to pick up figs."
Ahlam al-Attar, 37, who lost her mother
Khariyya and her son Nadi, said she knew about her mother and son from the
She and her family members were to go to the
hospital when some people relayed the bad news.
"I do not understand why they killed my mother and son; I never
imagined that I would lose any of them."
[He doesn’t get it. It’s the duty of the strong and
racially pure to exterminate the sub-humans before they breed even more
sub-humans that can pollute the master race.
We knocked on the doors of several houses
among the trees not far from the scene of the crime, but one of the neighbours
said that others had left because of the continued Israeli shelling.
In a different home, an old woman named Um
Hassona said that she could not see anything when the Israelis hit the cart.
"We were astonished when we heard a very
strong explosion; our house was shaken strongly, and dust filled the
place. I ordered my children not to peep
from the window; thus, we did not see any thing," she said.
Um Hassona asserted that it was too difficult
to find an eyewitness, as the area is mostly unpopulated after most residents
left because of the Israeli bombardment.
The paramedics collected the
rest of the pieces of flesh, which they took with the corpses, and the donkey
was still lying under the boxthorn tree, waiting to be removed by municipality
al-Attar, 14, who was wounded in the attack, in Kamal Udwan Hospital. (Sami Abu
“They Are Innocent People. They Are Carrying White Flags, And They're
Trying To Escape”
“It’s Nothing More Than Revenge,
Revenge On Civilians,” Zabit Said From His Bed
July 24, 2006 By Anthony Shadid, Washington
Post Foreign Service [Excerpts]
TYRE, Lebanon, July 23
The day ended in Tyre as it
began, with a desperate cry of grief.
"Where's my father?
Where's my father?" asked Mahmoud Srour, an 8-year-old whose face was
burned beyond recognition after an Israeli missile struck the family's car
His mother, Nouhad, lurched
toward his hospital bed, her eyes welling with tears.
"Is he coming?" he
"Don't worry about your
father," she said, her words broken by sobs.
Barely conscious, bewildered,
he lay with his eyes almost swollen shut. His head lolled toward her. A whisper
"Don't cry, mother,"
he told her.
Mahmoud's father, Mohammed, was
An Israeli missile had struck
their green Mercedes as they fled the southern town of Mansuri, where the
family had been vacationing. The boy's
uncle, Darwish Mudaihli, was dead, too.
The bodies were left in the
Mahmoud's sister Mariam, 8 months old, lay
next to him, staring at the ceiling with a Donald Duck pacifier in her
mouth. Her eyes were open but lifeless,
a stare that suggested having seen too much.
Her hair was singed, her face slightly burned. Blisters swelled the tiny
fingers on her left hand to twice their size. In other beds of Najm Hospital
were their other brothers, 13-year-old Ali and 15-year-old Ahmed.
"What happened?" Ahmed shouted to
no one in particular.
It was a question asked often Sunday in Tyre
and its hinterland, a bloody day for civilians, even by the standards of this
Israeli forces repeatedly
struck cars on southern Lebanon's already perilous roads in attacks that
victims said were indiscriminate.
Seven people were killed, three
of them when an Israeli helicopter fired a missile at a white minibus carrying
19 people fleeing the village of Tairi, which Israeli forces had ordered
residents to evacuate.
The missile tore through the roof of the
vehicle as it sped around a bend in the road. Layal Najib, a 23-year-old
photographer for the Lebanese magazine al-Jaras, was killed when Israeli forces
struck near her taxi outside the town of Qana to the northwest. She was the first journalist killed in the
"Are there any armed men
here? Is there any resistance
here?" asked Ali Najm, a physician helping to treat the injured in Tyre.
He surveyed the wounded, struggling to
maintain the detachment of a medical professional and suppress the anger of a
neighbor watching a war that he said he did not understand.
"There is no aim to
this," he said. "They are
innocent people. They are carrying white
flags, and they're trying to escape."
The day's events began at 10:30 a.m. when the
Mercedes of Mahmoud's family was struck as it barreled down a coastal road
dotted by palm trees and banana plantations.
As it burned, Zein al-Abdin Zabit passed in
his white Nissan with his wife and four sons. His drive was already frantic:
Along the road from Naqoura, he had picked up someone wounded in Qlaile, trying
to take him to the hospital. A few more
miles, then he reached Maaliye, where he picked up two men wounded as they rode
Near the hospital, a missile struck behind
his car, and it caught fire. He floored
it for 200 yards more, feeding the flames as he tried to make it to the
hospital. Near its entrance, he crashed
into a curb, and his ribs were broken.
He and the others clambered out, and the gasoline tank exploded. Hours later, the car was a charred carcass. Its
tires still smoldered along a row of seared palm trees.
"It's nothing more than
revenge, revenge on civilians," Zabit said from his bed.
The hospital was in chaos. Someone with a fire extinguisher tried to put
out the flames incinerating Zabit's car as other cars barreled past, fleeing
the south. Mahmoud was carried in,
cradled in someone's arms. Knots of
Then the victims of the minibus arrived from
near the town of Kafra. Gurney after gurney entered.
One boy's left hand was shredded by shrapnel.
A woman sat in a chair, dazed, as others
tried to ask her questions. A stretcher
smashed into a row of chairs.
"We didn't feel anything. We didn't see anything coming down,"
said Ali Shaita, a stocky 14-year-old, whose uncle, Mohammed, and grandmother,
Nazira, were killed in the attack on the minibus. "It just hit us," said his
12-year-old brother, Abbas.
Ali sat in a bed at Najm Hospital, holding
his IV. He was wounded in his chest and left leg. Blood, his and that of his
relatives, drenched his red shorts. His brother was hurt in his right leg, head
and right arm. His jeans were splotched
with more blood. In another room, their mother, Muntaha, sobbed. Her head was wounded, as was her left
arm. Her femur was broken in the attack.
"The bandages are too tight on my
head," she pleaded to a nurse.
The Shaitas said the car was
speeding out of the village at midmorning.
The boys' uncle was carrying a white flag with his hand, as was another
passenger. Soon after they were hit, a
Red Cross ambulance arrived, the crew worried about roads they deemed too
Abbas Bahr, an orthopedic surgeon, had just
come out of six hours of surgery, and his face was drawn.
"This is so hard," he said. "I
don't know." He repeated the words again.
"And still I don't know what will happen
The day before in Bint Jbeil,
two cars carrying seven people were following a Red Cross ambulance when one
was wrecked in an Israeli attack, he said.
Two wounded women were put in the trunk of the other car. They had died
when they arrived at the hospital in Tyre.
The story of pain and fear was the same
across the region, whose inhabitants have abandoned it or are in hiding. The
Srours were one of the last families left in the village of Mansuri. The Lebanese
family had come from Germany on vacation and had been too afraid to leave. As
elsewhere in the south, rumors flew among the huddled: that a ship would take
them away, that they had safe passage, that they might be evacuated.
At Jabal Amel Hospital, director Ahmed Mroueh
opened the ledger of the wounded.
"This is today," he said. "It
begins at No. 267 and ends at 300. This is today, until now."
The physician pointed out the children:
8-year-old Diana Said, 4-year-old Hatem Naame, 7-year-old Mariam Hamadeh.
He shook his head. "This is the worst
day we've seen."
A relief worker arrived in an ambulance
carrying two corpses from an attack on Srifa, where bodies remain buried in
"Take them to the government
hospital," Mroueh told him. "Our morgue is full."
The hospital director turned away. "Ten
days," he said -- that was how long he thought the staff could cope with
"It has to stop," he said
matter-of-factly. "It has to stop."
Upstairs was Diana Said, hurt in the attack
on the minibus. A white bandage covered her left eye. She sat at the foot of
the bed of her father, 34-year-old Said Finjan. He asked a doctor about the
car's Syrian driver, Mohammed Abed Sheikh, who was killed.
"Where did they put him?" he
Across the hall was his wife, 25-year-old
Fawziya Finjan, her face swollen and her head bandaged.
"Thank the Lord," she said softly.
"God saved my daughter. That's the most important thing."
“They Know Everything. They Shoot Us Wherever They Like. It's Their
Zionist Soldier Has The Answer:
Kill Every Lebanese Man, Woman And Child Now;
[He Can Help Build The Gas Ovens Next Week]
[Thanks to D, who sent this in.]
7.26.06 By JIM SCIUTTO, ABC News
For Israeli troops deployed inside Lebanon,
the fight is difficult and dangerous.
We spoke with a group of soldiers returning
from 48 hours of intense fighting, including the rescue of soldiers from a tank
destroyed in the fighting.
"They are attacking us in
a very organized position," one soldier said. "They know where we are coming from. They know everything. They shoot us wherever they like. It's their
He added they are "very well
Now more Israeli soldiers are on the way,
including an armored unit being transferred from Gaza to Lebanon. They have
been told civilians have left the region where they will fight.
"Over here, everybody is
the army," one soldier said. "Everybody
is Hezbollah. There's no kids, women, nothing."
Another soldier put it plainly:
"We're going to shoot anything we see."
“Israel Suffered Its Worst Casualties In
Southern Lebanon Today”
[Thanks to D and PB, who sent
this in. PB writes: MAYBE THIS WILL BE
26 July 2006 By Craig S. Smith, The New York
Times & By SAM F. GHATTAS, Associated Press Writer
Israel suffered its worst
casualties in southern Lebanon today since the current conflict with Hezbollah
started, as thousands of Israeli troops there fought house to house, and
village to village, in an attempt to create a buffer zone that Israel hoped
would be filled by a multinational peacekeeping force.
At least eight Israeli soldiers were killed
and many were wounded in the ground battles, according to unofficial reports
from military officers, who were not yet authorized to speak publicly about
casualties and had not yet received a full account of the day's toll.
The Israeli military has not yet officially
confirmed the figures, but some news service reports indicated that the death
toll could be as high as 14.
On the so-called Avivim line, a road that
runs parallel to the Lebanese border, an Israeli army major, who said his first
name was Sahar, said he sent his forces over the border to extricate a tank
this morning in which a battalion commander was wounded.
The fighting was "very, very heavy, and
it took a long time," said the major, who is in charge of some armored
bulldozers that he said were preparing to go back in again soon.
As they munched watermelon yesterday,
sweating Israeli soldiers were visibly shocked by the stiff opposition they had
encountered, describing their Hezbollah opponents as a “guerrilla
army” with landmines and anti-tank missiles capable of crippling a
Merkavah battle tank.
“It was really scary. Most of our armoured personnel carriers have
holes,” a paramedic told The Times after recovering three wounded tank
“It’s a very hard situation. We were in Lebanon before but it wasn’t
like this for a long time.” A tank
commander said: “It’s a real war.”
In the Galilee town of Safed, Brigadier-General
Shuki Shachar, deputy commander of the northern forces, conceded that the foe
was not an easy one.
His forces had never intended
to “conquer every square inch” of Bint Jbeil but had now achieved
their objectives of taking the high ground.
Israeli troops had thought they
secured the area around the town, but the guerrillas ambushed a patrol before
dawn, said Capt. Jacob Dallal, an Israeli army spokesman. A rescue force went in, and fighting
Hezbollah said its guerrillas
ambushed an Israeli unit from three sides as it tried to advance from a ridge
on the outskirts of the town.
Eight soldiers were killed and
22 wounded in the fighting, the army said.
It later reported a ninth soldier killed and
several other casualties in the nearby village of Maroun al-Ras.
The area features dense growth of underbrush
and trees, with hills and narrow, winding roads — ideal for guerrilla
emplacements and ambushes.
Israeli media reported that
some of the casualties resulted from direct hits by anti-tank rockets and
others from roadside bombs.
The Israeli bombardment has
failed to stop guerrilla rocket fire, even while killing hundreds, driving up
to 750,000 people from their homes and causing billion of dollars in damage.
Hezbollah fired another large
barrage into northern Israel on Wednesday — 151 rockets that wounded at
least 31 people and damaged property from the suburbs of the port on Haifa on
the Mediterranean Sea to the Hula Valley above the Sea of Galilee.
The Government Of The Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud
Olmert, Is Facing A Barrage Of Criticism;
“The Original Objective Of ‘Breaking Hizbullah’
Has Been Quietly Watered Down To ‘Weakening Hizbullah’
[Thanks to JM, who sent this in.]
7.26.06 The Guardian (UK)
The government of the Israeli
prime minister, Ehud Olmert, is facing a barrage of criticism over its handling
of the war in Lebanon, with questions being raised about the decision to attack
Hizbullah, mounting military losses, continuing missile strikes on northern
Israel, and disquiet about Lebanese civilian casualties.
Israel has yet to confirm reports of 12
soldiers killed in heavy fighting around the south Lebanese town of Bint Jbeil,
but analysts in Jerusalem said fatalities on that scale are likely to bring
pressure from the army and the public for a significant change of tack.
Two weeks into the fighting, growing unease
about a wide range of war-related issues has burst into the open with a series
of anxious comments by politicians, former officers and leading experts and
Experts say Israel's much-vaunted
intelligence services have underestimated Hizbullah capabilities, especially in
not knowing it had an Iranian-made missile capable of hitting an Israeli naval
vessel off Beirut.
The air force has also come under scrutiny
after the loss of three US-built Apache helicopters and an F16 jet, with one
helicopter reportedly downed by friendly fire. Five Israeli soldiers have also
been killed by friendly fire.
Wall-to-wall TV and radio talk shows have
wheeled out reserve or former officers highlighting the shortcomings of those
running the show, bringing defensive responses from the IDF general staff and
even charges of disloyalty in wartime.
The main worry is that Hizbullah can still
launch 80-100 rockets a day despite thousands of Israeli sorties over Lebanon.
Haifa, Carmiel and other northern areas were hit again on today.
Israeli ground operations have
inflicted losses on the guerrillas in Maroun al-Ras and Bint Jbeil, but none
have been mounted in the Tyre area further west from where missiles are being
launched at Haifa. Hizbullah has been damaged but is far from crippled.
Commentators are also questioning whether key
government decisions were thought through in the context of an overall strategy.
They say the government's response has been
to shift its goals and lower public expectations.
The original objective of
"breaking Hizbullah" has been quietly watered down to "weakening
Hizbullah". Mr Olmert's sudden
agreement to the deployment of a multinational force on the border reflects
reluctant recognition that Israel cannot itself disarm the Lebanese militia and
needs a foreign buffer.
before we know who will win this campaign we can state with certainty that
Israel has suffered a terrible propaganda defeat in Lebanon and the Arab
world," wrote the Ma'ariv columnist Jacky Hugi.
country cannot destroy another without explaining to the neighbour the logic
behind its actions. From being our silent allies the Lebanese have become the
victims of our blind pounding."
On top of all that there are bitter
complaints about poor conditions in air raid shelters in the north, the failure
to compensate those whose property has been damaged by enemy action and the
confusion caused by a plethora of officials giving out conflicting messages.
Nahum Barnea, the country's leading political
commentator, warned earlier this week that the Israeli public had exaggerated
expectations of what might emerge from this crisis.
"Israel is like the guy who
promised to jump off the big top at the circus but freezes the moment he gets
up there. 'Why isn't he jumping,' the
spectators ask. 'No question of jumping,' the guy replies. 'The only question is how I can get
DANGER: POLITICIANS AT WORK
Bush Getting Rid Of IRS Auditors Who Go After Rich
“This Is Not A Game The Poor Will Win, But
The Rich Will”
July 23, 2006 David Cay Johnston, New York
The federal government is moving to eliminate
the jobs of nearly half of the lawyers at the Internal Revenue Service who
audit tax returns of some of the wealthiest Americans, specifically those who
are subject to gift and estate taxes when they transfer parts of their fortunes
to their children and others.
The administration plans to cut the jobs of
157 of the agency's 345 estate tax lawyers, plus 17 support personnel, in less
than 70 days. Kevin Brown, an IRS deputy commissioner, confirmed the cuts after
the New York Times was given internal documents by people inside the IRS who oppose
The Bush administration has
successfully lobbied Congress to enact measures that reduce the number of
Americans who are subject to the estate tax -- which opponents refer to as the
"death tax" -- but has failed in its efforts to eliminate the tax
But six IRS estate tax lawyers
whose jobs are likely to be eliminated said in interviews that the cuts were
just the latest moves behind the scenes at the IRS to shield people with
political connections and complex tax-avoidance devices from thorough audits.
Sharyn Phillips, a veteran IRS
estate tax lawyer in Manhattan, called the cuts a "back-door way for the
Bush administration to achieve what it cannot get from Congress, which is
repeal of the estate tax."
Over the past five years, officials
at both the IRS and the Treasury have told Congress that cheating among the
highest-income Americans is a major and growing problem.
The six IRS tax lawyers, some of whom were
willing to be named, all said that clear evidence of fraud was pursued vigorously
by the agency, but that when audits showed the use of complicated schemes to
understate the value of assets, the IRS had become increasingly reluctant to
The lawyers said the risk
analysis system the IRS used to evaluate whether to pursue such cases gave
higher-level officials cover to not pursue tax cheats and, in the process,
emboldened the most aggressive tax advisers to prepare gift and estate tax
returns that shortchanged the government.
"This is not a game the poor will win,
but the rich will," said John Hruska, another IRS estate tax lawyer in New
York who, like Phillips, is active in the National Treasury Employees Union,
which represents IRS workers.
The War Lovers
To: GI Special
Sent: July 26, 2006
Subject: The War Lovers
Dear GI Special,
The War Lovers
By John Pilger, March 23, 2006, Antiwar.com/orig/pilger.php?articleid=8744
'The war lovers I have known in real wars
have usually been harmless, except to themselves. They were attracted to Vietnam and Cambodia,
where drugs were plentiful. Bosnia, with its roulette of death, was another
favorite. A few would say they were
there "to tell the world"; the honest ones would say they loved it. "War is fun!" one of them had
scratched on his arm. He stood on a land mine.
'I sometimes remember these almost endearing
fools when I find myself faced with another kind of war lover – the kind
that has not seen war and has often done everything possible not to see it.
'The passion of these war lovers is a
phenomenon; it never dims, regardless of the distance from the object of their
desire. Pick up the Sunday papers and
there they are, egocentrics of little harsh experience... Turn on the television and there they are
again, night after night, intoning not so much their love of war as their sales
pitch for it on behalf of the court to which they are assigned.
'For me, one of the more odious
characteristics of Blair, and Bush, and Clinton, and their eager or gulled
journalistic court, is the enthusiasm of sedentary, effete men (and women) for
bloodshed they never see, bits of body they never have to retch over, stacked
morgues they will never have to visit, searching for a loved one. Their role is to enforce parallel worlds of
unspoken truth and public lies...'
What do you
think? Comments from service men and
women, and veterans, are especially welcome.
Send to email@example.com.
Name, I.D., withheld on request.
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