Eyewitness Account of U.S. Airstrike Killing Innocent Iraqi Family

The results of “counter-insurgency” are rarely reported in detail from the ground. But buried on page A12 of Wedneday’s Washington Post was this chilling first-hand account from a Post correspondent.

BAGHDAD, Jan. 3 — U.S. pilots targeting a house where they believed insurgents had taken shelter killed a family of 12, Iraqi officials said Tuesday. The dead included women and children whose bodies were recovered in the nightclothes and blankets in which they had apparently been sleeping.

A Washington Post special correspondent watched as the corpses of three women and three boys who appeared to be younger than 10 were removed Tuesday from the house outside the town of Baiji, 150 miles north of Baghdad.

While the Department of Defense does report the number of daily air sorties (aka close-air-support missions… supporting coalition troops, infrastructure protection, reconstruction activities and operations to deter and disrupt terrorist activities…), the last time the word “airstrike” was even printed in a DoD press release was one year ago. Yes, before Rummy out-ed the “i” word (even before he claimed to resign twice), he axed “airstrike.” See the January 9, 2005 American Forces Press Release: “Airstrike Hits Wrong Target, Insurgent Crackdown Continues.”

Aftermath of a U.S. airstrike in Baiji. A dozen civilians, including women and children were killed.

Sharon Suffers “Massive Stroke,” Brain Hemorraghing

Ariel Sharon - AFP - Uriel SinaiDramatic news reported this afternoon by AP:

JERUSALEM – Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon suffered a massive stroke Wednesday and was on a respirator after falling ill at his ranch. Doctors operated to drain excess blood from his brain.

Powers were transferred to his deputy, Vice Premier Ehud Olmert.

Dr. Shlomo Mor-Yosef, director of Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, said Sharon suffered “a significant stroke,” adding that he was “under anesthetic and receiving breathing assistance.” A few minutes later, Mor-Yosef emerged to say that initial tests showed Sharon had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, or bleeding in his brain.

“It’s among the most dangerous of all types of strokes,” with half of victims dying within a month, said Dr. Robert A. Felberg, a neurologist at Ochsner Clinic in New Orleans. “Any time they give blood thinners to prevent clots there is a risk” that too much can cause a hemorrhage, he said.

Update: 0154am PST… via AFP:

“It’s very risky and he could die from the operation,” US neurologist Matthews Gwynn told CNN. “If he survives the operation he will have a number of days when he is in a coma, or stuporous, not really with it.

“We would be looking at weeks if not months before he would functioning close to normally.”

The response from the West, George, and most hopefully Condi, will be crucial in the coming days.

Best of 2005

Since there were no “best of” highlights politically or in the news last year, the saving graces of 2005 were those activities and experiences that presented a pleasant departure from reality. Therefore…. Everything Between’s Best of 2005 is all about the music.

No, it was not as good as past years, however, a positive trend continued, and rock n’ roll again proved its enduring vivacity.

Most of the selections below are featured on Everything Between’s flagship radio station, WOOZradio. Please listen, we appreciate the support.

Top 20 Albums/”Singles” of 2005 (in no order):
1. Surfjan Stevens – Illinois: 2nd of planned 50 records-by-state. Better than Michigan, and shit, IL is my home state.

2. Stephen Malkmus – Face the Truth: Westerberg had the best band of the 80s, perhaps Malkmus’ Pavement was best of the ’90s. The cuts on this record are among the best of ’05, sin duda.
3. LCD Soundsystem – s/t: So what if its a sort of compilation. James Murphy’s shit makes me wanna Get down!

4. Of Montreal – Sunlandic Twins: Freshest, most fun Beatlesque, Pet Sounds inspired record of ’05.

5. Broken Social Scene – “7/4 (Shoreline)“: I fell in love with the live version of this. Its the best cut on these Canadians’ new record and I still can’t get enough.

6. The Decemberists – Picaresque: Once again, a band that increases their merit LIVE. “Sixteen Military Wives” and others kicked my ass… but live at the Fonda… Forget about it!

7. Fiona Apple – Extraordinary Machine: Jon Brion’s mix, or the official mix, this still blew me away. And Warner shelved it Yankee Foxtrot style – unbelievable.

8. Spoon – Gimme Fiction: I love this band. And while this is simply a status quo follow-up to 2004’s Kill the Moonlight, I remain hooked on many of these tracks.

9. Iron & Wine – Woman King Ep: Don’t waste another year without experiencing Sam Beam and Co. live or at least on record. I probably listened to this 6-song EP more than any long-player this year.

10. M83 – “Save us From the Flames”: Blown away by each and every remix I heard of this, not to mention the originial.

11. Antony & the Johnsons – “Hope There’s Someone”: OK, so I was underwhelmed, despite being fortunate enough to see Antony at Schubas in Chicago, perhaps the most perfect venue for music of this type. Still, I can listen to this song over and over and fall off amazed.

12. The Bees – “Chicken Payback”: Hippest song of the year – I lost my shit every time I’d hear anybody else play this in a DJ set.

13. Franz Ferdinand – You Could Have it So Much Better: First band of the Strokes generation to out-do itself on sophomore release. They kicked ass at the Greek Theatre, and the first two singles on this record are priceless.

14. Kanye West – “Gold Digger”: This is one hot song. It brings back the sampled soul of the Moby:Play era.

15. End – “Good Riddance (Good Time Remix)”: Most fun, danceable track that I just could not tire of.

16. Public Enemy – New Whirl Odor: P.E. is back and this record is a classic and simultaneously as grown up as can be. Power to the people.

17. My Morning Jacket – “Off the Record”: I keep wanting to fall in love with this band, but get bored too soon. “Off the Record” is the one cut off this year’s Z that I keep playing over and over.

18. The Kills – “Love in a Trashcan”: Any recipient of my autumn 2005 “Extraordinary Renditions” mix CD knows why this is in the top 20.

19. Devendra Banhart – “Heard Somebody Say”: His latest record, as with his previous work, is phenomenal – but this track stands out above all.

20. Architecture in Helsinki – “Do the Whirlwind”: just because this track has predominated my consciousness over the latter third of 2005.

This list was hastily created and is by no means complete. To hear the best of 2005, check out WOOZradio – where EvBet’s faves stream on.

P.S. Purchasing any of these recordings via the links on this page helps support Everything Between. Thanks.