Sunday, December 07, 2003
** Iraq

This NYTimes article discusses how the US is now fully using Israeli tactics to suppress the insurgency. There are several choice quotes in this article. For example, one town has been encased in razor wire, and the US is monitoring everyone who tries to enter or leave.
"This fence is here for your protection," reads the sign posted in front of the barbed-wire fence. "Do not approach or try to cross, or you will be shot."
Apparently this is not a joke -- the military really believes it:
"With a heavy dose of fear and violence, and a lot of money for projects, I think we can convince these people that we are here to help them," Colonel Sassaman said.
So surely we're winning over the hearts and minds, right?
But mostly, it is a loss of dignity that the villagers talk about. For each identification card, every Iraqi man is assigned a number, which he must hold up when he poses for his mug shot. The card identifies his age and type of car. It is all in English.

"This is absolutely humiliating," said Yasin Mustafa, a 39-year-old primary school teacher. "We are like birds in a cage."
English? No, really? English?
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