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I thought I woke up this morning, but was it on the other side of the looking glass, or perhaps I am still only dreaming. Is the first story here a report of actual madness, or simply a return volley in the war of propaganda? In a world where the reality that motivates people is the subjective reality of the mind, does it matter? As to the second report, will Col. Russell shoot those who fail to laugh because they mourn the death of a child, or have a headache? This Col. Russell who defended the murder by sniper of the men selling Kalashnikovs from the trunk of their car? A side note on this: in the current Progressive (Sept 2003) magazine, I see in the article ~Baghda Out of Order~, by Nir Rosen, "The U.S. occupation force has banned heavy weapons. Kalashnikovs are considered light weapons." It seems from this that carrying them is not even the justification for summary execution which Russell gives. Ahhh... what to believe? Are the reports *about* satire, controlling information and propaganda, or are they satire and propaganda themselves? Does it matter? Have we, courtesy of the Pentagagon, left reality and sanity left so far behind that truth has become as irrelevant (so they say) as the UN? --------- Begin forwarded message ---------- From: portsideMod@netscape.net Subject: Murder and Madness: Two Articles on Iraq Date: Fri, 22 Aug 2003 00:39:54 -0400 Reuters Cameraman Killed For Filming U.S. Graves, Brother Says ================ Mazen found U.S. troops covered in plastic bags in remote desert areas and he filmed them for a TV program IslamOnline.net 8-19-2003 By Awad al-Ragoub, IOL Correspondent AL-KHALIL, West Bank, August 19 - The brother of Reuters cameraman Mazen Dana said he was deliberately murdered for discovering mass graves of U.S. troops killed in Iraqi resistance attacks. "The U.S. troops killed my brother in cold blood," Nazmi Dana told IslamOnline.net in exclusive statements. "The U.S. occupation troops shot dead my brother on purpose, although he was wearing his press badge, which was also emblazoned on the car he was driving," he said. He also recalled that his brother had obtained a prior permit from the U.S. occupation authorities in Iraq to film in the site. On Sunday, August 17, U.S. troops shot dead the award- winning Reuters cameraman while he was filming near the U.S.-run Abu Gharib prison in Baghdad. His last pictures show a U.S. tank driving toward him outside the prison walls, several shots ring out from the tank and the camera falls to the ground. Mass Grave "Mazen told me by phone few days before his death that he discovered a mass grave dug by U.S. troops to conceal the bodies of their fellow comrades killed in Iraqi resistance attacks," Nazmi said. "He also told me that he found U.S. troops covered in plastic bags in remote desert areas and he filmed them for a TV program. We are pretty sure that the American forces had killed Mazen knowingly to prevent him from airing his finding." Nazmi said that the U.S. occupation troops were slowing down the transfer of his brother’s body to his hometown city of Al-Khalil (Hebron) in the West Bank. "At the very beginning, the Americans refused to transfer his body outside Iraq. After Reuters intervened they offered to allow us to take the body to Jordan by road but we refused because of the state of insecurity in Iraq," he said. "Thanks to Reuters international and diplomatic contacts, the U.S. troops reluctantly agreed to transfer the body on an army plane to Kuwait. From there, the body will be flown to Jordan and finally Palestine to be laid to rest," added the grieved brother. Last Mission Mazen's wife, Umm Hamza, did not rule out that the U.S. troops targeted her husband personally, noting they had agreed to give him a permit to film Abu Gharib prison and then he was directly shot dead by two U.S. tanks. Resolved as she was, Umm Hamza said the death of her husband came as a bombshell, especially that she expected him to be killed while covering the developments in Palestine for his bravery and rare heroism. "Filming Abu Gharib was his last mission; he was scheduled to leave Baghdad after getting the job done. "I lost the dearest man to my heart, he was caring and was loved by all his friends and relatives," she lamented. Settlers' Enemy Palestinian journalists hold a mock funeral for Mazen Mazen’s camera was the Israeli settlers' archenemy, given that he exposed to the entire world their terrorism against the Palestinians and their wildcat outposts sprawling in four Al-Khalil posts. His death cast a pall of sadness over the Palestinian territories and reporters, who mourned him as "a matchless colleague." All international and local news agencies sent cables of condolences to his family, lauding his patriotism and determination to uncover the truth wherever it was. The Palestinian information ministry and press syndicate issued two separate statements, condemning the attack on Mazen and the continued targeting of journalists. The two statements demanded the U.S. to show some respect for human beings, particularly reporters, pointing out that Mazen was a distinguished journalist who did his best to serve his country and cause. The ministry further urged all Arab and international press unions "to open a probe into this crime and expose to the entire world the murderers who have blood on their hands and put them on trial." Colleagues Mourn Furthermore, dozens of Palestinian journalists protested on Tuesday morning in Al-Khalil at the killing of Mazen. The marchers put on a peaceful demonstration from the House of the Palestinian Press established by the deceased and other journalists. In Bethlehem, journalists also held a mock funeral for Mazen, denouncing the U.S. occupation of Iraq and displaying placards condemning his "assassination." A U.S. military inquiry has recently exonerated an American tank crew for firing on a Baghdad hotel housing journalists, killing two foreign reporters and wounded three others. http://www.islamonline.org/English/News/2003-08/19/article08.shtml ********************************************* 222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222 U.S. HOPES TO FLUSH OUT BAATHISTS WITH SATIRE ============================================== Zsa Zsa Saddam and an Elvis Hussein make Tikrit debuts in poster campaign By Luke Baker, Tikrit, Iraq, >From The Globe and Mail (Toronto) Monday, August 18, 2003 The familiar-looking Iraqi strongman has his head tossed back, tipped cigarette dangling coquettishly between his delicate fingers. Meet Zsa Zsa Saddam, the U.S. military's latest ploy in the four-month hunt for Iraq's fugitive ex-president. In a campaign set to begin today, the U.S. forces will be putting up posters around Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit showing the dictator's face superimposed on Hollywood heroines and other stars in an attempt to enrage his followers and draw them out into the open. As well as the slinky Zsa Zsa Gabor,there is Mr. Hussein as a busty Rita Hayworth, as a grooving Elvis Presley and as British-born rocker Billy Idol. "We're going to do something devious with these," said a chuckling Lieutenant-Colonel Steve Russell, checking out a range of the spoofs which first appeared on the Web site www.worth1000.com . "Most of the locals will love 'em and they'll be laughing. But the bad guys are going to get upset, which will make it easier to know who they are," he said. Col. Russell hopes to have the posters slapped up on walls around Tikrit today, part of a game of cat-and- mouse his unit is playing with the ex-dictator's loyalists in the Tikrit area. Apparently intimidated by the heavy U.S. military presence around town, more and more guerillas are stashing their weapons and keeping a low profile, U.S. commanders say. U.S. forces are trying to flush them out and hunt them while they can. One tactic that Col. Russell and his unit employ is offering themselves up as bait. Humvees packed with soldiers will drive up and down what has been dubbed RPG Alley to try to attract fire from insurgents armed with rocket-propelled grenades and rifles. While that has had some success, Col. Russell is now turning to the poster campaign to see whether he can taunt Hussein loyalists into showing their colours. Sergeant David Cade, a specialist in army psychological operations, said the campaign will probably be "mostly good for troop morale, but if we can put these posters up in Tikrit and the enemy can't take them down, then at least it shows who owns the streets." The posters, however, make stoke fury among Iraqis who don't like the idea of Mr. Hussein's head on a dancing Elvis body, a gold crucifix hanging around his hairy chest. "Maybe it's funny for the soldiers, but I think most locals will find it very insulting," said Uday, a 22- year-old working as a translator at the U.S. military base in Tikrit. Reuters News Agency http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/TPStory/LAC/20030818/USADDXO//?query=zsa+zsa+saddam __________________________________________________________________ McAfee VirusScan Online from the Netscape Network. Comprehensive protection for your entire computer. Get your free trial today! http://channels.netscape.com/ns/computing/mcafee/index.jsp?promo=393397 Get AOL Instant Messenger 5.1 free of charge. 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