Eliot Weinberger puts together the soundbites, the facts, the statistics that show how the War on Terror is being ‘won’ in Iraq:
I heard that the US was planning an embassy in Baghdad that would cost $1.5 billion, as expensive as the Freedom Tower at Ground Zero, the proposed tallest building in the world.
I saw a headline in the Los Angeles Times that read: ‘After Levelling City, US Tries to Build Trust.’
I heard that military personnel were now carrying ‘talking point’ cards with phrases such as: ‘We are a values-based, people-focused team that strives to uphold the dignity and respect of all.’
I heard that 47 per cent of Americans believed that Saddam Hussein helped plan 9/11 and 44 per cent believed that the hijackers were Iraqi; 61 per cent thought that Saddam had been a serious threat to the US and 76 per cent said the Iraqis were now better off.
And here is the very latest:
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced a modest reduction of U.S. troop numbers in Iraq on Friday, as American officials said Iraqi forces are enjoying newfound success blocking insurgents trying to enter the country from Syria.
A leading aide to the former secretary of state Colin Powell has accused Vice-President Dick Cheney of creating the climate in which prisoner abuse could flourish, and implied that he might have committed war crimes.