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Iraqi Anniversary

In Leicester, and presumably other parts of the Midland counties of old Englandshire ‘mardy’ means miserable, sulky, ill-natured – ‘sad’ in recent playground language. The eruption of a ‘Mahdi Army’ in Iraq just after the recolonisation of the West Indies by the Barmy Army might smack of copy-cattery (or imitation feline hotelry [hostelry?] perhaps) it also coincided too coincidentally with the near-end of the conclusion of the period in the Christian calender which began with the famous Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday as she is known, an occasion of much feasting and dancing in glittery thongs and samba drumming and other activities and pastimes which will have to be set aside in the forthcoming time of deprivational sacrifice celebrated, (or perhaps regretted would be a better term in view of the nature of the activity, it being one of voluntary self-refusal of particular and general forms of sensory gratification, such as fornication for example, or whatever else is considered to be reprehensible here and whenabouts in memory and praise and honour of the great Avatar of random fates, whatever is his name, on and on, in the endless only becoming because of the is so of why. [eh? Ed.]

But where was I? The Mahdi Army erupts in Iraq, what seems a general uprising in a number of different cities, among different ethnic and religious groups. This is described as ‘insurgency’ and those who perform it as ‘insurgents’, ‘militants’, ‘terrorists’ or ‘extremists’. The solution applied so far by the U.S.A. seems to be based on Israeli policy towards the Palestinians, the humane and thoughtful policy which has done so much to promote goodwill and fruitful negotiations in the Middle East. Continued attacks on densely populated areas by U.S. troops is certain to result in increased civilian, non-combatant, Iraqi casualties, an outcome which can only turn public opinion further against the Alliance as an alien, invading, occupying force. How then can the arguments be sustained that we are doing this with the approval of and for the benefit of ‘the vast majority of the Iraqi people’, when it is the Iraqi people that we are shooting, both Sunni and Shi-ite? This is of course highly democratic and ecumenical of us, and may in fact be forging the basic bonds of a true Iraqi Nationalism, and therefore be construed as being part of a subtle and plan to generate the basis of co-operation necessary to a civil society within a grateful Iraq. However, as history tends to demonstrate that any two warring siblings will turn on an interloper before returning happily to fratricide we shall allow our biased interpretation of history to prejudge the outcome for us. It is for this reason that we have a true moral problem: having fucked up Iraqi government structures so comprehensively (not that they were any great shakes to begin with) we cannot now piss off whistling Dixie to the accompaniment of a fusillade of rocket-propelled grenades.

Something has to replace a bankrupt despotism..... surely we can manage that? Might we not even achieve something better than a bankrupt despotism? A dull bureaucracy, perhaps? A solvent despotism, as in Saudi Arabia? Who knows? But I feel it unlikely that we will achieve any of that if we continue shooting more and more Iraqis. Eventually we will have killed most Iraqis, and we will have to change our formulations to something like ‘we are doing this for the benefit of the vast majority of the Iraqi people who remain alive’. And when we have shot, bombed or starved the last remaining Kalashnikov-waving Grandmother, and the last infant suicide bomber has vaporised we will not be able to fabricate formulations involving the Iraqi people any more, but we will have made Iraq safe for democracy and Santa Claus, and we will be left with a lot of ruins and a lot of sand and a lot of oil. Oh yes, and a lot of bones, a long history of the sun-bleached bones of the unburied dead.

© The Doktor. April 2004

Read old page 94s here.


© Winamop 2004