What happens when Iraqi “insurgents” take on Zarqawi’s thugs?

By Christopher Hitchens

The best news from Iraq this year would certainly be the long New York Times report of Jan. 12 on the murderous strife between local “insurgents” and al-Qaida infiltrators. This was also among the best news from last year. For months, coalition soldiers in Iraq had been telling anyone who would care to listen that they had noticed a new phenomenon: heavy fire that they didn’t have to duck. On analysis, this turned out to be shooting or shelling apparently “incoming” from one “insurgent position” but actually directed at another one.

That would be bad enough news for the video-butchers and the bombers of mosques, but there was worse to come. On Aug. 14 last year, the Washington Post published the following lead paragraph on its front page:

Rising up against insurgent leader Abu Musab Zarqawi, Iraqi Sunni Muslims in Ramadi fought with grenade launchers and automatic weapons Saturday to defend their Shiite neighbors against a bid to drive them from the western city. … Dozens of Sunni members of the Dulaimi tribe established cordons around Shiite homes, and Sunni men battled followers of Zarqawi, a Jordanian, for an hour Saturday morning. The clashes killed five of Zarqawi’s guerrillas and two tribal fighters, residents and hospital workers said. Zarqawi loyalists pulled out of two contested neighborhoods in pickup trucks stripped of license plates, witnesses said.

The use of “rising up” and “insurgent” in that first phrase is perhaps unintentionally amusing. To be an insurgent is to rise up by definition; I’ve never read of it being done against an insurgent before, but then I did not pick this stupid term for the Iraqi thugs and fundamentalists in the first place. (Incidentally, on Jan. 5, the Times ran a story under the headline, “Rebel Attacks in Iraq Kill 50, 30 at a Funeral.” The first paragraph of Richard A. Oppel Jr.’s article then began with the words “Insurgents unleashed car bombs,” and the second paragraph said, “In the most lethal attack, terrorists hit …” My italics.)

See full story here: Slate Magazine
Once again, the only way to find out about what is really going on in Iraq via the MSM is to look in between the lines.

Your better bet is to check out the many Milblogs that lead you directly to in-theater info.

But, here we have Christopher Hitchens, once again, going against the MSM grain and letting us know that we aren’t “losing” the battle in Iraq. And that all Iraqis aren’t against the USA and/or FOR the terrorists.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001