Monday, May 07, 2007

Gabby, Gabby, Gabby. . .

As everyone reading this site knows, I am not a Giffords supporter. I have questioned her sincerity as a moderate and her overall vision for America. I have never yet questioned her intelligence, until now.

In an interview with the Douglas Dispatch Gabby drops the following bit of wisdom:

While there are terrorists in Iraq, Giffords, D-Ariz., said Wednesday that they are less of a problem than places where threats are located or growing. "There is not a huge terrorist presence in Iraq," Giffords said during a telephone interview with Wick News Service.

She made her comments while waiting for the roll call vote in the House on the U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans' Health and Iraq Accountability Act - the bill commonly referred to as the Iraq supplemental. She voted for the act, which also provides funds to support the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan.She also emphasized that the supplemental calls for a goal to start leaving Iraq later this year, with a deployment of combat troops by early next year.
Not a huge terrorist problem in Iraq? Lets just go to the tape:

In 2007 (from Wickipedia)

  • January 17: A suicide bomber and a car bomb killed 70 and wounded 170 at the entrances of Mustansiriya University, the university is located just inside the Shia millitia stronghold of Sadr city. [64]
  • January 22: 88 people were killed and 170 wounded in a suicide car bombing in a crowded market place in cental Baghdad, the attack took place in the Shiite district of al-Shaqi. [65]
  • January 24: 4 police officers were killed and 3 civilians were wounded when a suicide bomber target a police patrol west of Baghdad. [66]
  • January 27: A suicide bomber followed up with a car explosion killed at least 13 people and wounded 42 in a busy market place south of Baghdad. The area was a mainly Shiite area.[67]
  • February 1: Two suicide bombers blow themselves up in a crowded Shiite market in the city of Hillah killing 73 and wounding 150. [68]
  • February 3: A suicide bomber driving a truck attacked a food market in a Shiite district of Baghdad killing 135 and wounding 339. The attack was the single deadliest insurgent attack to have been carried out since the US led invasion in 2003. [69]
  • February 7: Al-Qaeda linked millitants shoot down a US helicopter with an anti-aircraft missile killing all 7 onboard northwest of Baghdad. [70]
  • February 12: 2 car bombs explode within a minute of each other killing 71, the bombings took place in the busy market district of Baghdad. [71]
  • February 18: 63 people are killed and 127 wounded when 2 car bombs explode in an outdoor market in Baghdad. The bombs struck the mainly Shia area of New Baghdad. [72]
  • February 19: A coordinated attack including a suicide car bomber on an American combat post in Baghdad leaves 2 US soldiers killed and 17 wounded. [73]
  • February 21: 13 People are killed in the holy Shiite city of Najaf when a suicide car bomber attacks a police checkpoint in the city. [74]
  • February 24 A suicide truck bomber explodes near a Sunni mosque in in Anbar killing 40. The mosque was apprently targeted due to criticism against insurgent groups including Al-qaeda in Iraq by the imam, the imam criticised insurgent groups for attacks on US forces. Additionally many in the attacked area work for Iraqi military and police forces. [75]
  • February 25 A suicide bomber strikes a college in eastern Baghdad killing 42 and injuring 55. The college is part of al-Mustansiriyah university and is owned by the Shiite Mahdi millitia. It is the second time the college has been attacked. [76]
  • Februay 26: 13 people are killed and 10 wounded when a suicide bomber strikes a police checkpoint in Ramadi. [77]
  • February 27: A suicide car bombing in Mosul kills 6 policemen and wounds 38 civilians. In another separate suicide bombing in central Baghdad, 5 people are killed and 13 wounded when the bomber strikes an area filled with restaurants and ice-cream parlors. [78]
  • March 2: 14 bodies of policemen were found north east of Baghdad after an Al-Qaeda-affiliated group claimed responsibility for the kidnappings of 18 interior ministry employees many of them being police officers. The group claimed the kidnappings was in response to the reported rape of a sunni lady at the hands of the police forces. [79]
  • March 5: A suicide car bomber struck Baghdads oldest book market leaving 38 dead and 105 wounded. [80]
  • March 6: 2 suicide bombers blow themselves up among a large crowd of Shiite pilgrims in the town of Hillah killing 120 and wounding over 150. [81]
  • March 7: 30 people are killed when a suicide bomber blows up in a cafe northeast of Baghdad. [82]
  • March 10: 20 people are killed in the Shia millitia stronghold of Sadr city in Baghdad when a suicide bomber attacks a police checkpoint. [83]
  • March 11: A suicide car bomber rammed a truck carrying Shiite pilgrims from Karabala killing 32 and wounding 24. The attack occurred in the capital Baghdad. [84]
  • March 15: 8 Iraqi policemen are killed in Baghdad when a suicide bomber targeted a joint Iraqi army-police checkpoint. [85]
  • March 17: Three separate suicide truck bombings in anbar province leave 2 Iraqi policemen dead. The bombers used trucks containing large amounts of chlorine which left around 350 people feeling sick including US servicemen. [86]
  • March 19: A series of car bombs in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk leave 12 dead and dozens wounded. [87]
  • March 23: Iraq's deputy prime minister is wounded when a suicide bomber wearing an explosive device detonates killing 9 people and wounding 14 others, among the dead includes the deputies advisor and five of his bodyguards. The attack took place in a mosque near the green zone in Baghdad. [88]
  • March 24: Five separate suicide bombings around Iraq kill 44 and wound 82. The deadliest of the attacks was a suicide truck bombing against a police station in a Sunni area of Baghdad killing 20 thirteen of them being police officers. A second suicide truck bombing struck a Shiite mosque in a town south of Baghdad killing 8. A third suicide bomber wearing an explosives device detonated in a pastry shop killing 10 in the town of Tal Afar north of Baghdad. And 2 suicide car bombers struck a police station in the town of Qaim located near the Syrian border killing 6 people 5 of whom were police officers. [89][90]
  • March 27: Two truck bombs targeting markets kill 154 and wound dozens in the mostly Shiite city of Tal Afar, one of the truck bombings killed 153 people alone making it the single deadliest attack since the war began Elsewhere a suicide bomber attacks a restaurant in the Sunni city of Ramadi which is frequented by police officers killing 10 people. And also the leader of the major Sunni insurgent group 1920 Revolution Brigades Harith al-Dari is assassinated in Abu Ghraib west of Baghdad, the assassination shows the widening escalating rift between Al-Qaeda and other Sunni insurgent groups, the 1920 Revolution Brigades has been in talks with the Iraqi government to rout out Al-qaeda millitans. Also a suicide bombing in Baghdad kills one and wounds three in a police checkpoint. [91] [92] [93]
  • March 29: 122 people are killed when 5 suicide bombers hit several Shiite markets North east of Baghdad and a town North of the capital. The attacks are one of the deadliest attacks during the US led invasion of the country. [94]
  • April 1: A suicide car bomber followed up with a suicide truck bombing hit Iraqi army headquarters in the city of Mosul leaving 2 soldiers dead and 22 others wounded, 15 of the wounded were soldiers. [95]
  • April 2: A suicide truck bombing hits a police station in the northern oil rich city of Kirkuk killing 15 and wounding dozens including a US soldiers. 4 other US soldiers were among the wounded and one American humvee was badly damaged. [96]
  • April 6 A suicide truck bomber containing chlorine attacked a police checkpoint in the city of Ramadi located in the insurgent stronghold of Anbar province. The attack left 27 dead and dozens wounded. [97]
  • April 10: A female suicide bomber blew herself up among 200 police recruits killing 16 in the Sunni city of Muqdadiyah. [98]
  • April 12: A suicide bomber blew himself up in the Iraqi parliaments cafeteria killing 8 including 3 lawmakers. The attack shows the insurgents capabilities to literally strike any target within the country. In another major attack, a suicide truck bomber detonanted on al-Sarafiya bridge killing 10 and destroying the bridge. The bridge connected eastern and western Baghdad and is considered as one the cities famous monuments. [99]
  • April 14: A suicide car bomber killed 40 and wounded dozens at a bus station in the holy Shiite city Kerbala. The bombing took place just 200 meters away from the Imam Hussein shrine. A second suicide car bombing took place in Baghdad killing 10, the bomber struck near a police checkpoint. [100]
  • April 15: 2 car bombs exploded within minutes of each other in a shopping area southwest of Baghdad killing 18. A suicide bomber also blew himself up on a minibus killing 6 and wounding 11. In central Baghdad a minibus rigged with explosives was parked and detonanted killing 11 and wounding 15. [101]
  • April 18: a parked car bomb blew up at Sadriyah market located in central Baghdad killing 127 and wounding 148, it is the single deadliest car bombing in Iraq since the US-led invasion in 2003. Elsewhere a suicide car bomber slammed into a police checkpoint just at the entrance of Sadr city killing 41 and wounding 76. The attacks are a major blow the latest US-Iraqi surge plan to secure Baghdad as Al-Qaeda millitans have shown that they are still capable of carrying several deadly attacks. [102]
  • April 19: The Islamic state of Iraq announced that Abu Ayyub al-Masri the head of Al-Qaeda in Iraq is the minister of war for the insurgent coalition. Also posted on the video is the execution of 20 captured Iraqi security forces. In further violence a suicide bomber blew himself up in a Shiite district of Baghdad killing 12. [103]
  • April 21: A roadside bomb killed the mayor of Musayyib 40 miles south of Baghdad, one of his bodyguards was also killed in the attack and 4 others were wounded. [104]
  • April 22: Two suicide car bombers attacked a police station in Baghdad leaving 13 dead and dozens wounded. [105]
  • April 23: A suicide bomber struck a group of police officers in Baquba killing 6 including a police general. In Ramadi a suicide car bomber struck a restaurant killing 20 and wounding 35, the restaurant was often frequented by Iraqi secutiry forces. In another suicide car bombing in Ramadi, a suicide car bomber struck a police checkpoint killing 4. In further violence a suicide bomber wearing an explosive belt detonated in a restaurant in Baghdad that is often frequented with Iraqi security forces killing 6. And in Northern Iraq near Mosul a suicide car bomber struck Kurdish Democratic Party office in Tal Uskuf, killing at least 10 people and wounding 20. [106]
  • April 24: 2 suicide truck bombers struck an American patrol post killing 9 marines and wounding 20 northeast of Baghdad. The Islamic state of Iraq which is headed by Al-Qaeda in Iraq soon claimed responsibility for the attack. [107] [108]
  • April 25: A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a police station northeast of Baghdad killing 4 police officers and wounding 16 people. [109]
  • April 26: A suicide car bomber struck a secutiry check point killing 10 soldiers, the attack took place 50 miles north of Baghdad. In another separate attack two suicide bombers attacked an office of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Massoud Barzani killing three guards, the attack took place in Zumar, 45 miles west of Mosul. [110]
  • April 27: A suicide truck bomber struck the home of a police chief in Anbar province killing 15 includin 9 Iraqi soldiers who were protecting the house, the police chief escaped with his familly. [111] [112]
  • April 28: A parked car exploded near one of Shiite Islam's most holiest shrine killing 68 and wounding dozens. [113] [114]
  • April 30: A suicide car bomber targeting an interior ministry convoy struck an Iraqi checkpoint killing 4 including 2 Iraqi commandos, the attack took place in western Baghdad.In a separate attack a suicide bomber wearing an explosive belt detonated in Shiite funeral killing 32, the attack occurred in a province just north of Baghdad. [115][116]
  • May 2: A suicide car bomber struck near a police station in the Shiite Mahdi millitia stronghold of Sadr city leaving 9 dead and 34 wounded. [117]
  • May 5: A suicide bomber detonated his explosive belt among a group of Iraqi recruits killing 15, 5 of the dead were Iraqi soldiers, and the other 10 were would be recruits for Iraqi security forces. The attack took place in the town of Abu Ghraib which is located west of Baghdad. [118]
  • May 6: A car bomb hit a market in Baghdad killing 30. Elsewhere in the city of Samara, a car bomb and shooting attack hit a police headquarters killing 12 police officers which included the police chief. [119]
So either Giffords is that intellectually vacuous, or she is trying to deliberately mislead. Remember that she has recently been to Iraq and serves on the Armed Services Committee. You make the call.

20 comments:

thinkright said...

She ain't the sharpest tool in the shed. I spoke with her in Oro Valley this weekend and was not impressed. I knew more than she did on the issues and I'm just a part-time political activist. Keep up the good work buddy.

roger said...

I think you all are doing a marvelous job of stretching what she said into a bunch of BS. I think if you had a conversation with her, and you probably wont, you'd quickly learn that what you call terrorism, she calls a massive civil war. The violence primarily is Iraqi on Iraqi and we are caught in the middle wondering just who the enemy really is.

I recently asked a group of Army War College Officers (as impressive as they come by the way) who we were fighting and who the enemy was. These very intelligent heroes replied rather quickly that my question was the question of the year.

The fact is that we are now policing Iraq like we were in Bosnia/Kosovo. I remember a lot of you not really loving that including our President when he came to power.

Get off the soundbites and talk about this a little more. The only argument I can see from this administration now about Iraq is that we are in situation where if we leave, Iraq will quickly destabilize...but it has already occurred and on our watch.

Liza said...

roger,
I'm glad you responded to this post.

For what it's worth, I would encourage those of you who are truly interested in learning a little more about what is going on in Iraq to start reading Asia Times Online (www.atimes.com). They are based in Hong Kong, they haven't got a dog in the fight, and perhaps for that reason they have a broader perspective. They report the events as well as some analysis and, from what I've seen, they allow multiple viewpoints.

For those who do not choose to dig deeper than Fox News Infotainment, I would just caution you about the dangers of oversimplification.

This post is a very unfair attack on Ms. Giffords. It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

AZAce said...

So, Liza and Roger, defend it.

Framer said...

Roger and Liz,

So you are going for the "truthiness" arguement. "She really meant to say. . ." Unless she was misquoted, she DID say "There is not a huge terrorist presence in Iraq." That is just idiocy.

For what it is worth, I would bet that she does actually think that everything is a "civil war." But I believe that her situational awareness is lacking to nonexistant. Follow the footnotes to the events, look at the events. How many of them are Shiite reprisals? Almost none. The "civil war" has mostly been headed off. You have to have two sides for a civil war, otherwise you have a cooridinated campaign of terror. Also look closer, notice that even the Sunnis are beginning to turn on Al Queda, and are moving into the Iraqi government column. Still a ways to go, but it is important.

Here is another clue, suicide attacks= Al Queada. Roadside bombs = Sunni insurgents, in some part aided by Iran tech.

Pointing out Gabby's flub is definately not unfair. If Gabby stands by "There is not a huge terrorist presence in Iraq." she deserves derision.

Liza said...

azace,
Defend what?

"So either Giffords is that intellectually vacuous, or she is trying to deliberately mislead."

It's an attack. How can I defend it? I guess I could attack Framer and say that he is getting an early start trying to take down Giffords in preparation for the next election. What would be the point? There's nothing to be gained.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm

Suicide bombers in Israel are called...what is the word..."terrorists".

Suicide bombers in Lebanon are called "terrorists".

Suicide bombers in London are called "terrorists".

Suicide hijackers in the United States are called "terrorists".

So how is it that suicide bombers in Iraq are not "terrorists"? They are not civil war combatants, they are terrorists.

Liza said...

Framer,
I read about Iraq every day and I have been doing this since before the US invasion in 2003. One thing I can say with absolute certainty is that there are major differences in how the news from Iraq is reported. In the US, there is the corporate media vs. the independent media. There are thousands of websites, some more credible than others. There are journalists, scholars, witnesses, war veterans, and whistleblowers writing books. The list goes on.
The point is, we all have different sources of information and those of us with political leanings tend to gravitate toward those sources that lean the same way. I would never deny that.

However, I have made the effort to get as close to the truth as I can, given the resources that I have. I recommended Asia Times Online in a previous comment on this thread because I think they have a broader perspective on Iraq than US, British, or Mideastern web based publications.

Despite my efforts, I would be unable to write anything about Iraq with the same degree of confidence that you seem to have in what you know from your sources. I'm very skeptical of anyone who thinks they have it all figured out.

In short, if Ms. Giffords was referring to "Al-Qaeda in Iraq", then their numbers are relatively small according to what I've read, and they have very few Iraqi recruits and allies.

Pepe Escobar (of Asia Times) has been in Iraq for the last three weeks and has written a series of articles that are very interesting. He's an excellent writer but don't be looking for the Fox News angle. The articles (on www.atimes.com) are:
-Baghdad up close and personal
-Masri: Dead or Alive, the terror continues
-What Muqtada wants
-The man who might save Iraq
-Back to 'Saddam without a moustache'

Highly recommended.

Framer said...

Liza,

If I haven't told you for a while, thank you for posting here. Everyone is welcome, no matter if they agree with me or not. In fact, NOT agreeing with me is good for myself and healthy for the readership.

Anonymous said...

Hey Framer

I read that they caught some Muslim suicide bombers plotting to attack Fort Dix. Perhaps Rep. Giffords will have a comment about a "foiled civil war attepmt at Fort Dix".

AZAce said...

Here's the Fort Dix link.

Anonymous said...

I have read repeated comments and quotes from Giffords after her trip to Iraq. It is clear to me that she can't see past the end of Pelosi's nose. Pure partisan poo. JN

roger said...

So is it worth $500 Billion dollars and this President's deficit to fight the war in Iraq?

I can't wait for some of you to change your tunes. This is what I am waiting for...maybe I won't see it from some of you, but your Congress is about to "bail" on this war and President. Every candidate you have knows that this is killing your party dead. And they are prepared to give some crap about supporting the troops and trying the surge and that the Democrats didn't give it a chance, but its not working and we have to pull out.

This is Why?

a) You probably don't agree with spending $500 Billion dollars and the deaths and injuries of thousand of Americans to free those muslims that you hate so damned much. If you don't hate em, you sure spread it, and call them the enemy over and over again. Remember...our military doesn't even know who the enemy is.

b) Some of you believe in habeas corpus and freedom. You can't say it loudly because you know your President has used fancy lawyering to strip rights from the Constitution and to even allow torture...something that has always been reprehensible to the thought and ideals of Americans.

c) You know you can't win on Iraq. Most Fox watchers have been trained by your President to call them the enemy and to hate hate our dependence on the Arab world. Its US versus them. These Americans will support troops but will not support building a "free Iraq."

shadow_light5 said...

One man’s terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.

In truth we can't know whom Ms. Giffords was referring to as "terrorists" when said quote left her thoughts. A terrorist seems to be a broad word in Iraq these days: Sunni vs Al-Qaeda makes it seem like a war between the two, Sunni vs Shia makes it seem like a factionalist civil war, cross national insurgents, Iranian and Syrian rebels, takes the battleground to the US military vs them. All of this sounds like chaos, I don’t know what else to name it.

I have to laugh at the post because it gives a list of the chaos that has eclipsed the region that is Iraq. Okay you just proved the Democratic point that Bush’s plan is not working, even in the midst of the surge beginnings. I don’t know if you realized that, but yea….

Ms. Giffords said what she said, obviously not the brightest thing to say and sure-fire proof that she’s out of touch with the situation in Iraq, if I could draw a summation of her from that one quote. I think the problem with Iraq is the stance we take on it. We accomplished our initial mission in 2003 with the removal of Saddam and possible threats of WMD we won the war then. However in winning the war we created a vacuum that caused factions which Saddam had been keeping together by force to splinter and break, thus creating a even greater threat. Today is not the war we went in to fight 4 years ago, today is the civil war, nay the chaos that Bush has imposed upon our military.

I don’t advocate a complete withdrawal of Iraq, that’s pushing ever-greater parallelism to Vietnam. I would have to maintain the belief though that because Bush created this vacuum, a residual force must stay in the region such as that of Japan and Germany in WWII. Democratic reasonableness.

Liza said...

Shadow,
I don't think that you have to worry about a complete withdrawal from Iraq anytime soon. Probably not for the next three decades. Indeed, Iraq is not Vietnam. Vietnam didn't have any oil. Follow the oil, my friend, it's the most underreported story in this debacle but it is most assuredly a major factor in what is going to happen.

shadow_light5 said...

Ahhhh, yessss, the oil... I have my own thoughts and rants on that but need I get into it? Our need for oil makes us look like Imperial Britian. I'm a big fan of comparison so perhaps Lenin had the right idea, Imperialism is the last stage of capitalism.

x4mr said...

Well, isn't this interesting?

I seem to recall making a very similar list of events in March.

Whatever Giffords said, your observations Framer are well taken, in that the place is a disaster.

We are failing miserably and continue to fail. Just curious, is anyone willing to place a date on when we call the failure a failure?

January 2008? June 2008?

Perhaps our perspective is completely wrong. We are thinking about politics and democracy and world stability and saving lives.

We forget that the whole thing is just a cash cow for Cheney's friends. That aspect of the project is a STELLAR success.

My God, do these people know how to make money or what?

Anonymous said...

The US military claims there are approximately 1500 foreign fighters in Iraq, compared to an insurgency of around 500,000 and a potential to grow to 25 million.

There are over 100,000 private contracting mercenaries in Iraq, some from foreign countries like South Africa, Mexico and Honduras.

Given the long list of suicide bombers cited, we probably have a few less than 1500 terrorists today.

Our terrorist magnet must be working. On to Iran and our preordained victory once more.

At least in Afghanistan they greeted us with flowers and candy...made of poppies and opium.

Onward into the fog.

Liza said...

25,000,000 insurgents?

Well, let's crunch the numbers for a moment, just for the hell of it. When Bush/Cheney launched their illegal invasion of Iraq back in 2003, the population of Iraq was close to 26 million. I'm not a Fox Infotainment person, so the sources I read estimate that approximately 1 million Iraqis have been killed and somewhere around 4 million displaced. I am going to assume that women and children comprise some significant percentage of the population as they do in all other populations. So, exactly where are these 25 million insurgents going to come from?

Where do people come up with such absurd statements? Fox Fake News? Rush "Jim Crow" Limbaugh?

Anonymous said...

Men, women, and children can all be insurgents.

Minus the killings, 25 million must be an exaggeration.

Lets cap it at merely 23 million people potentially willing to kill Americans as occupiers of their homeland.

Who are our friends and allies? No real numbers there anymore.

At least one third of the colonialists supported the British against the American rebels.

I doubt one third of Iraq would come to aid the US.