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11/08/2004 Archived Entry: "The invasion of Fallujah is on..."
Well...the invasion of Fallujah is now underway with the first brave target being the city's main hospital. ABC Action News reports,
"The invaders used special tools, powered by .22 caliber blanks, to break open door locks. A rifle-like crackle echoed through the facility. Many patients were herded into hallways and handcuffed until troops determined whether they were insurgents hiding in the hospital.
"Dr. Salih al-Issawi, head of the hospital, said he had asked U.S. officers to allow doctors and ambulances go inside the main part of the city to help the wounded but they refused. There was no confirmation from the Americans.
"'The American troops' attempt to take over the hospital was not right because they thought that they would halt medical assistance to the resistance,' he said by telephone to a reporter inside the city. `But they did not realize that the hospital does not belong to anybody, especially the resistance.'
"During the siege of Fallujah last April, doctors at the hospital were a main source of reports about civilian casualties, which U.S. officials insisted were overblown. Those reports generated strong public outage in Iraq and elsewhere in the Arab world, prompting the Bush administration to call off the offensive."
Congratulations to the courageous invaders. Applause for the new Crusaders against Islam who wield high-tech machine-guns rather than swords, who ride atop tanks rather than horses. With only 10,000+ troops the brave Crusaders have managed to break down the doors of a neutral hospital, to prevent doctors from treating those in need, and to handcuff patients for interrogation. Admittedly, they fall one step short of the old tried-and-true method of medieval Crusaders who killed the innocent indiscriminately and then "let God sort them out" from the guilty. But the invasion is still young; give them time. After all, the first hospital they encountered, they razed to the ground.
More than anything else, however, the American assault on the main hospital aggressively shut down an embarrassing source of information on the human costs of their invasion. Now the only "facts" to emerge on matters such as civilian casualties will be the ones sanitized by American military filters. Or, at least, that's what they hope for. Military "truth", military "music", military "justice"...none of them bear any relationship to the real concepts.
What bravery will be next? Is there an old folks home the Crusaders will occupy? How about an orphanage? The mosques, of course, go without saying.