Meanwhile, in Iraq:
In the next few images he is encased in plastic: His face is frozen in a ghoulish grimace. Blackened lesions blemish his neck.
"Drill holes," says Col. Khaled Rasheed, an Iraqi commander who is showing me the set of photographs.
He preserves the snapshots in a drawer, the image of the young man brimming with expectations always on top. There is no name, no identification, just a series of photos that documents the transformation of some mother's son into a slab of meat on a bloody table in a morgue.
A year ago, car bombs, ambushes, daily gun battles and chronic lack of electricity and gasoline were sapping the city. But not this: the wanton execution of individuals because of sect — a phenomenon so commonplace it has earned a military shorthand: EJK, for extrajudicial killing.
Every day the corpses pile up in the capital like discarded furniture — at curbside, in lots, in waterways and sewer lines; every day the executioners return. A city in which it was long taboo to ask, "Are you Sunni or Shiite?" has abruptly become defined by these very characteristics.
Once-harmonious neighborhoods with mixed populations have become communal killing grounds. Residents of one sect or the other must clear out or face the whim of fanatics with power drills.
Gunmen showed up one day on an avenue where fishmongers have long hawked barbecued fillets. They mowed the vendors down. Maybe it was because of the merchants' beliefs — the fish salesmen were Shiites in a mostly Sunni district, Dawoodi. Maybe it was revenge. No one knows with certainty. No one asks. All that remains are the remnants of charcoal fires.
This disaster brought to you by George W. Bush, Richard Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and a Republican-controlled Congress.
I'd say it's time for a change, wouldn't you?Posted by Linkmeister at October 24, 2006 02:09 PM | TrackBack