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Friday, October 20, 2006


Bush admits failure in Iraq

George Bush, yesterday: "I define success or failure as whether or not the Iraqis will be able to defend themselves."

News, today:

The Shiite militia run by the anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr seized control of a southern Iraqi city on Friday in one of the boldest acts of defiance yet by the country's powerful, unofficial armies, witnesses and police said.

Mahdi Army fighters stormed three main police stations Friday morning, residents said, planting explosives that flattened the buildings in Amarah, a city just 30 miles from the Iranian border that was under British command until August, when it was returned to Iraqi government control.
Bush, yesterday: "I define success or failure as whether schools are being built or hospitals are being opened."

Reality, as revealed by the Times (U.K.):

Since the invasion not a single Iraqi hospital has been built, according to Amar al-Saffar, in charge of construction at the Health Ministry.

In fact, no hospital had been built since the Qaddumiya hospital opened in 1986 in Baghdad.
As far as those "rebuilt" schools, I explored that question in depth back in November 2003, and I have no reason to believe anything has changed since:
I have yet to find evidence that a single school has been "rebuilt." Refurbished, yes, no doubt. [By refurbished, I meant new windows, new desks, etc., no doubt to replace ones that had been destroyed by American bombs]

The truth is that "rebuilt" schools in Iraq seem as elusive as weapons of mass destruction. They exist in the pages and reports of the American media in order to condition the minds of the American public, but in reality they're as scarce as hen's teeth.
(Hat tip to WIIIAI for the link to the Times article)

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