NYT features posts from Iraqi bloggers

In a brilliant move, the Sunday New York Times Opinion pages feature posts from four Iraqi bloggers in a piece titled: “Blogging the Iraqi Vote.”

If there was any consensus from the bloggers (A Star From Mosul, Baghdad Burning, Eject, and An Average Iraqi) it seemed to be that the 70 percent figure of eligible voters who made it to the poll is a consequence of an increasingly intolerable occupation.

I wonder if 70 percent of American voters would ever show up in a display of dissatisfaction with teh current regime at home?

Iran: Top Ministers Implicated in Serious Abuses

While the world’s attention remains on the pathetic, yet not surprising remarks by Iranian President Ahmadinejad denouncing the Holocaust, Human Rights Watch has just released:

The briefing paper, Ministers of Murder: Iran?s New Security Cabinet, details credible allegations that Minister of Interior Mustafa Pour-Mohammadi and Minister of Information Gholamhussein Mohseni Ezhei were involved in extremely serious and systematic human rights violations over the past two decades.

The debunking-the-Holocaust thing is nothing new, and does not even deserve press. Perhaps Ahmadinejad keeps repeating this to overshadow today’s HRW release – just as all of the apparently bogus reports of Iran tampering with Iraqi elections could be fluff for Iran’s far nastier undertakings. Pundit Guy has documented ths history of Holocaust-doubters.

Ahmadinejad may be that bad but it looks like the real problems run much deeper in his cabinet.

The Human Rights Watch report, to be officially released tomorrow, calls for the immediate removal of Mustafa Pour-Mohammadi and Gholamhussein Mohseni Ezhei from the president’s cabinet:

Iran?s cabinet is now dominated by former security and intelligence officials, Human Rights Watch said, raising fears that President Ahmadinejad?s government will readily resort to violence to suppress dissidents and punish critics.

Bastardized Bush Bombs

Nearly all news news outlets of record repeated Bush’s claim of 30,000 Iraqi’s killed as if it is no big deal.

“He was citing what he has read in media reports,” said spokesman Scott McClellan.

Another Iraqi Civilian Death The 30,000 figure isn’t inaccurate by any count — but isn’t it downright shocking? The media should elaborate instead of chuckling along with cute Georgie, perhaps providing figures from the Oxford Research Group’s thorough “A Dossier on Civilian Casualties in Iraq, 2003-2005.” (.pdf here). Among other things, the report clarifies that:

Post-invasion, the number of civilians killed was almost twice as high in year two (11,351) as in year one (6,215).

David Sirota delivers a poignant post this morning, admonishing the shamefully distant reactions of the media and the public to Bush’s speech in Philadelphia yesterday.

Sirota writes:

His comments, the media’s reflexive complicity, and the audience’s laughter, is an incredible, if silent, commentary on just how callous our society has become to the real consequences of our government’s behavior.

Sirota is referring to this grotesquely absurd exchange during Bush’s Q & A yesterday:

QUESTION: Since the inception of the Iraqi war, I’d like to know the approximate total of Iraqis who have been killed. And by Iraqis I include civilians, military, police, insurgents, translators.

THE PRESIDENT: How many Iraqi citizens have died in this war? I would say 30,000, more or less, have died as a result of the initial incursion and the ongoing violence against Iraqis. We’ve lost about 2,140 of our own troops in Iraq. Yes.

QUESTION: Mr. President, thank you —

THE PRESIDENT: I’ll repeat the question. If I don’t like it, I’ll make it up. (Laughter and applause.)

Laughter??? Applause?!?!?

Well, chuckle on – no worries, because as an AFP wire story has it today, the White House is distancing itself from the 30,000-killed figure, “blaming terrorists for ‘a significant number’ of the dead and saying the figure is not official.”

If the terrorists are to blame for most of these deaths, how then did they increase during the so-called “last throes” of the insurgency?

And if the MSM can’t pick it up from here… perhaps Howard Fineman’s fingernails-to-the-blackboard portrayal of the real Bob Woodward last night (via Atrios) can serve as inspiration:

“He’s a great reporter, but he’s become a great reporter of official history.” Fineman, Newsweek’s chief political correspondent, concluded his uplifting lecture with this: “The news about news is really bad.” AP Photo

The Heretik spots, and outlines a new four-point narrative being revealed in Bush’s speeches leading up to Thursday’s elections in Iraq…. check it out.

After the jump, a word from our bold leaders, followed by a little story outrage regarding our fallen soldiers’ wooden box homecoming…
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