February 12, 2008

MICHAEL TOTTEN POSTS another report from Fallujah, and as always it’s a must-read. “Post-Saddam Iraq is not a police state. Even so, while it’s orders of magnitude more moderate and humane than the genocidal and fascistic regime it replaced, many individuals in the government and police departments have rough authoritarian habits that are rooted in Arab culture itself as much as they are legacies from the previous era. . . . The regions of Iraq that suffered most from the insurgency are, perhaps not surprisingly, more strongly anti-terrorist than other parts of the country. Likewise, Iraqis from these regions who suffered the most tend to be more committed to responsible moderate politics. . . . According to planet-wide conventional wisdom, United States soldiers and Marines are on an abusive rampage in Iraq. Relentless media coverage of prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib – which really did occur, but which the United States didn’t sanction or tolerate – seriously distorted what actually goes on in Iraq most of the time. The United States military is far from perfect and is hardly guilt-free, but it’s the most law-abiding and humane institution in Iraq at this time.”

Read the whole thing. And if you like his work, consider hitting the tipjar. (I have.) That’s how he gets paid.

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