This is billed as a news story, not as commentary or opinion. It makes James Carville sound like Rush Limbaugh, and makes Tom Harkin sound like a moderate. It is quite possibly the most biased "news article" I have ever encountered. Its source? The Independent, one of the pillars of Britain's Loony Left.
I was stunned speechless just reading it. I'm not going to rebut its claims, but I do want to pull some quotes out of it; the writers must be swathed from head to toe with tinfoil, because they obviously fear the orbital mind-control lasers the US government has in the skies...
Iraq was in effect put up for sale yesterday when the American-appointed administration announced it was opening up all sectors of the economy to foreign investors in a desperate attempt to deliver much-needed reconstruction against a daily backdrop of kidnappings, looting and violent death.
Sounds like they are talking about any of a number of western cities.
Wholesale privatisation is a dramatic departure from Saddam Hussein's centralised management of the Iraqi economy, which was reasonably successful in capitalising on the country's oil wealth to build modern hospitals, schools and other infrastructure, at least until the upheavals of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, the 1991 Gulf War and the imposition of United Nations sanctions after that conflict.
All of which were the result of Hussein's actions. Iraq started the Iran-Iraq war, started the Gulf War, and refused to comply with UNSC resolutions which would have ended the sanctions. In any case, the claim that centralized management worked is debatable, as much of Iraq's infrastructure was a Potemkin village; it looked pretty on the surface, but there was nothing to support it underneath. The difficulties faced by the new government and the military forces from the US, Britain, Poland and other nations is proof.
Five months after the overthrow of Saddam, there are no visible signs of reconstruction. Clean water and electricity are still not available to most people and entire neighbourhoods are still without phone lines.
And how many of these neighborhoods had phone lines, clean water, and electricity before the war? Anyone? Bueller?
Yes, that's what I thought.
There's a mindset at work here, the "America must fail at any cost" mindset that cannot conceive any good coming from the overthrow of one of the most corrupt and evil men of the last 50 years. As James Lileks noted last week, the same people who decry American support of dictators are frothing at the mouth because we forcibly removed one. There is a place fro this mindset, but it is not the news section of a paper (yes, the title for the page is simply "News"). Shame on the Independent for pushing such tripe without a disclaimer.
posted on September 23, 2003 04:57 AM
Gumbel is known for this sort of thing, and as for the Independent, well, perhaps comment isn't really required.
There are areas in Iraq without power or phone service, eh? Do tell! "Every policy is a success by sufficiently low standards and a failure by sufficiently high standards." (Thomas Sowell, The Vision Of The Anointed)