July 2, 2004
"Everyone Lives in Fear" Now That Hussein's Gone
"Even though the last years of Saddam Hussein's rule had brought new restrictions on women's freedoms, the simultaneous collapse of the police state that had kept public order and the new leeway for religious clerics to demand stricter compliance with Islamic law have increasingly narrowed girls' lives.For months, Mariam said, her parents have kept her under strict lock-down at home. She has read all the teen magazines she can stand, seen movie after movie. She has grown bored and glum. She has lost weight. Once she would stay out with her parents until midnight. She would hang out with her cousins every week. Now hardly anyone goes out. Everyone lives in fear.Fear eats at everyone here, but in a conservative society where daughters are already governed by stricter rules than sons, adolescent girls find themselves particularly vulnerable." - Somini Sengupta from Baghdad, June 27.
Cheney or Ashcroft: Who's More Polarizing?
"Some Republicans say Mr. Ashcroft has become so polarizing a figure that he can no longer be an effective advocate for administration initiatives, like the drive to renew the expiring provisions of the USA Patriot Act." - David Johnston and Richard Stevenson, June 30.
"Now more than ever, his opponents call Mr. Cheney among the most polarizing figures in politics." - Richard Stevenson on Dick Cheney, June 26.
Overthrowing Hussein, Liberating Iraq-Yawn
"If Mr. Bush's accomplishments in Iraq are judged on the events of the past 14 months, he has clearly succeeded in only one of his tasks: dismantling a tyrannical government. The so-far fruitless search for unconventional weapons-the primary justification for invading Iraq-undermined his credibility, making what Mr. Bush described as a war of necessity appear to have been one of choice." - David Sanger, June 29.
Iraq Handover May Become Bush's Tet
"Now Mr. Bush is staking his presidency, and history's judgment, on the American experiment in Iraq, on the bet that Iraqis will feel as if the occupation has really ended, and that together he and the new government can avoid their own Tet." - David Sanger, June 29.
Working in Those Fatality Figures No Matter What Goes Right
"With more than 800 American servicemen and women dead 15 months after he ordered the invasion, Mr. Bush said the transfer of formal sovereignty would undercut the insurgents' hopes of rallying the Iraqi people." - Dexter Filkins, June 29.
Avoiding Bush Sr.'s "Conservative" Convention Mistakes
"with the decision to give high-profile roles to the moderate Republicans Mr. Schwarzenegger and Mr. McCain, the White House appears to be working to avoid the mistakes of Mr. Bush's father in 1992. At that year's convention, in Houston, more conservative speakers were given high-profile spots, setting a tone for the convention that haunted former President George Bush throughout the campaign." - Adam Nagourney, June 27.
Iraqi "Resistance" vs. U.S. Soldiers and "Collaborators"
"This was Sunni-dominated Baquba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad, where the resistance burns as fiercely as anywhere in Iraq.It has extended well beyond Saddam Hussein supporters and foreign fighters, spreading to ordinary Iraqis seething at the occupation and its failures. They act at the grass-roots level, often with little training or direction, but with a zealousness born of anti-colonial ambitions.much of the insurgency reflects street-level anger at the lack of progress in Iraq.The April uprisings woke commanders up to the fact that the nature of the resistance had morphed into a more widespread movement than they had previously thought.Interpreters for the military regularly receive threatening letters at their homes, and insurgents hand out fliers in the crowded bazaars threatening collaborators." - Edward Wong, June 28.
Of Course Michael Moore's Working-Class- He Wears a Cap!
"Sure, he's made a ton of money from his best sellers and award-winning documentaries. But no one can miss the fact that he's a genuine son of the U.S. working class-of a Flint autoworker, in fact-because it's built right into his 'branding,' along with flannel shirts and baseball caps.liberals can take comfort from the fact that our most visible spokesman is, despite his considerable girth, an invulnerable target for the customary assault weapon of the right." - Left-wing columnist Barbara Ehrenreich on left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore, July 1.
Bush Costing "Less Fortunate Americans " Their Lives
"[Michael] Moore's greatest strength is a real empathy with working-class Americans that most journalists lack. Having stripped away Mr. Bush's common-man mask, he uses his film to make the case, in a way statistics never could, that Mr. Bush's policies favor a narrow elite at the expense of less fortunate Americans-sometimes, indeed, at the cost of their lives." - Columnist Paul Krugman, July 2.
Iraqi Ambivalence Over "Former President" Hussein
"While some Iraqis cheered Mr. Hussein's public humiliation, others seemed uncomfortable watching their former president being treated like a common criminal....While Mr. Muhammad rhapsodized about Mr. Hussein's death, however, two Iraqis on the sidewalk only steps away lionized the former dictator.For all the hardship Mr. Hussein caused here, some Iraqis said they were unable to summon any bitter feelings. In that way, they said, Mr. Hussein looms like a father over an abused son. He may be a brutal man, the Iraqis said, but he is a father still." - Dexter Filkins, July 2.