U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad must not venture outside the fortified Green Zone in Baghdad to listen to Iraqis stating that their lives are worse now than before the invasion. (Which is a sad statement considering that that life was under the dictatorship of Saddam)
The Ambassador said that Iraqis are better off now than before the invasion because they now have cell phones and satellite dishes. Oh my God!
He are excerpts from the AP article:
Envoy says not all is bad in Iraq
By HAMZA HENDAWI, Associated Press Writer
BAGHDAD, Iraq - U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad insisted Tuesday that things are not all bad in Iraq, citing the growing number of satellite dishes on rooftops and consumers with cell phones as signs of economic progress.
"Economically, I see an Iraq every day that I do not think the American people know about — where cell phones and satellite dishes, once forbidden, are now common, where economic reform takes place on a regular basis, where agricultural production is rising dramatically, and where the overall economy and the consumer sector is growing," the American envoy told a Baghdad news conference.
Some Iraqis saw things differently.
"We'd prefer he take those back and return just 10 percent of our prewar life," said Mohammed Ibrahim, a 50-year-old government employee from Baghdad. "Saying things like that shows the Americans' contempt for us Iraqis."
Analogies between conditions in Iraq now and life before the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq are common among Iraqis, angered over what they see as the failure of successive Iraqi governments and their American backers to provide security, services or jobs.
Khalilzad spoke at one of the lowest points in America's involvement in Iraq.
An average of more than 40 Iraqis are being killed every day in October, according to an Associated Press count that is based on AP reporting and considered a minimum. The violence has forced nearly 1 million Iraqis to flee abroad since 2003 and as many as 300,000 more have become refugees in their own country because of sectarian killings...
Amrah al-Badawi, a Shiite lawmaker and a member of parliament's economic committee, chuckled when told of Khalilzad's comments.
"Iraqis longed for mobile phones and satellite television, but their availability now are of little relevance to the economy," she said. "What we need is economic ventures, and these are not going to happen with security the way it is."...
For Alaa Makki of the Iraqi Islamic Party, the country's largest Sunni party: "We ended up with a worse-than-before dictatorship. We now have slaughter, kidnapping and disenfranchisement."
- Hussam Ayloush
- Hussam has been a lifelong human rights activist who is passionate about promoting democratic societies, in the US and worldwide, in which all people, including immigrants, workers, minorities, and the poor enjoy freedom, justice, economic justice, respect, and equality. Mr. Ayloush frequently lectures on Islam, media relations, civil rights, hate crimes and international affairs. He has consistently appeared in local, national, and international media. Full biography at: http://hussamayloush.blogspot.com/2006/08/biography-of-hussam-ayloush.html