Sunday, April 16, 2006

Journalistic Standards At Arab Newspapers

(All emphases by Always On Watch)

Recently Fawaz Turki, formerly the senior op-ed columnist for Arab News, an English-language newspaper in Saudi Arabia, was fired from his job because he had criticized various Islamic rulers. His commentary, "How to Lose Your Job at a Saudi Newspaper," appeared in the April 15, 2006 edition of the Washington Post. Fawaz Turki explains why he lost his job:
“…I had committed one of the three cardinal sins an Arab journalist must avoid when working for the Arab press: I criticized the government.

“The other two? Bringing up Islam as an issue and criticizing, by name, political leaders in the Arab or Islamic world for their brazen excesses, dismal failures and blatant abuses.”
As one might expect, much of Fawaz Turki’s commentary chronicles the sequence of stories which led to his dismissal But he also goes a bit deeper to share the underlying causes and the implications of his dismissal:
“...[T]his is not just the story of an Arab journalist losing his job. It is a story with implications for the current American administration's efforts to ‘introduce’ the Arab countries to democracy, of which independent, free media are a major building block….

Democracy may be a political system, but it is also a social ethos. How responsive can a country be to such an ethos when its people have, for generations, existed with an ethic of fear—fear of originality, fear of innovation, fear of spontaneity, fear of life itself—and have had instilled in them the need to accept orthodoxy, dependence and submission?"
Fawaz Turki’s article concludes with the following two paragraphs:
“In this atmosphere, it is regarded as an example of reportorial acumen to write on the op-ed pages of prominent Arab journals about how the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks were the work of Israeli agents, how the death of Princess Diana was the result of some diabolical plot by British intelligence to end her life rather than see her married to an Arab Muslim, how Monica Lewinsky was an agent-in-place, put in the White House by the 'Jewish lobby'—and so on with other infantile whimsies.

For Arabs, there is still a great divide between word and world. You can embrace conspiracy theories with impressive ease, and be accorded by your editors the right to pontificate about any foolish thing you want, but don't dare write about the malfeasance of political leaders in Egypt and Palestine, or the atrocities of a fellow-Muslim government in East Timor.”
The Arab concept of journalism is far removed from what we Westerners take for granted—logical conclusions based on facts. Under the conditions which Fawaz Turki describes, the proposed propaganda war with the aim of convincing Muslim nations of joining the Twenty-first Century might be a foregone failure—at least in the short term. Even modern Arab newspapers such as Arab News operate on a different journalistic level.

58 Comments:

At 4/16/2006 9:25 PM, Blogger Elmer's Brother said...

Incredible!

 
At 4/16/2006 9:28 PM, Blogger Cubed © said...

What an amazing man! How extremely perceptive! If there is any hope for Islam, it lies with people like this!

I hope they hired him on as a permanent staff member at the Post...

 
At 4/16/2006 9:43 PM, Blogger George Mason said...

In the Islamic world, there are people of objective values, reality-orientation, and high moral principle (this latter measured by our standards, not those of the ragheads). Here is a man among men. I wish so much that there was some way we could all network, us freedom-loving bloggers and those better people who live in Islamia.

 
At 4/16/2006 10:20 PM, Blogger City Troll said...

Even in the Muslim world Truth shall find its way. The festering soul of an oppressed people no matter how strongly chained by control will eventually break free. The evolving country of Iraq and the coming destruction of Iran will go a long way in freeing the voice of decent from those that are not brainwashed by midirectors of religous hate. There are those amongst the people that know that the true oppression and pain comes from those that lead them NOT from ANY outside source.

 
At 4/16/2006 11:11 PM, Blogger nanc said...

more importantly, did he get his daily fatwa?

 
At 4/17/2006 8:48 AM, Blogger nanc said...

aow - you have GOT to see this:

http://freedomnowonline.blogspot.com/

first article - that fern is something else. a constant source of entertainment.

 
At 4/17/2006 10:34 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Nanc,
I saw FN's post a minute ago, on my daily rounds. Nice!

 
At 4/17/2006 11:44 AM, Blogger nanc said...

aow - all your links are missing - what's up with that? how am i to navigate in my hoveround?

 
At 4/17/2006 12:04 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Nanc,
My links slid way down the right sidebar. Such is the price of having long links in comments, I think. Or maybe my Easter picture is too large.

Ask Warren why, if you get the time. I'm getting ready to go to work in a bit.

 
At 4/17/2006 12:16 PM, Blogger Freedomnow said...

AOW,

There has to be something in the Templates section that is causing a break. Did you change anything in there? I have seen this happen to many other blogs.

Turki has discovered something that the Left has yet to find, the Truth.

The Muslim world has mobilized its base around anti-Semitic and anti-American propaganda and their Leftist allies have done the same.

They both color reality with broad strokes that basically amount to half-truths and outright lies. All of their blusterous noise will fade with time. Time favors the truth, not propaganda. Communist Russia learned the hard way. China has learned and is creatively scheming to delay the inevitable.

 
At 4/17/2006 12:23 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Freedom Now,
The links do not appear side-by-side with individual articles but yet appear if one goes to the homepage. Do you follow?

I often fiddle with the template, but haven't done anything recently. This sliding-down has been ongoing for a long time.

The Muslim world has mobilized its base around anti-Semitic and anti-American propaganda and their Leftist allies have done the same.

They both color reality with broad strokes that basically amount to half-truths and outright lies. All of their blusterous noise will fade with time.


I'm not sure about the "fade" unless a push makes the fade happen.

 
At 4/17/2006 12:43 PM, Blogger nanc said...

gravity?

 
At 4/17/2006 12:56 PM, Blogger Cubed © said...

City Troll,

"The festering soul of an oppressed people no matter how strongly chained by control will eventually break free."

Given human nature, I think you're right. Islam is the greatest barrier to "breaking free" ever to be visited upon the heads of our kind, and despite all our differences, for the sake of all of us, I wish them well.

Certainly, this man is - I hope - the harbinger of the future.

 
At 4/17/2006 12:58 PM, Blogger Cubed © said...

Nanc,

"more importantly, did he get his daily fatwa?"

What he did was worth at LEAST five fatwas!

 
At 4/17/2006 1:04 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

From Yahoo News:

The new Palestinian government, led by Hamas, called the attack a legitimate response to Israeli "aggression."

Just like I heard on last night's 60 Minutes from the various imprisoned terrorists in Israel.

 
At 4/17/2006 1:10 PM, Blogger Cubed © said...

Freedomnow,

"The Muslim world has mobilized its base around anti-Semitic and anti-American propaganda..."

Oh, you are so right! Have you seen a book written by Daniel Pipes about ten years ago called "The Hidden Hand: Middle East Fears of Conspiracy" ('96) and "Conspiracy: How the Paranoid Style Flourishes and Where It Comes From" (about '98)?

Boy, do they explain a lot! HIGHLY recommended!

 
At 4/17/2006 1:21 PM, Anonymous Debbie said...

You can share any of my posts with anyone you like. You and I think along the same lines.

Debbie

 
At 4/17/2006 1:37 PM, Blogger Anum Mahktar said...

This is what you deserve for allowing Zionist and American puppets to direct your journalistic truth. They should have printed how Israel targeted innocent Palestinians on Easter Sunday

 
At 4/17/2006 3:15 PM, Blogger Conan said...

Say Anum, you really believe that bullshit? How quickly you forget the FACT there was a suicide bomber hitting innocents in Israel again this last weekend. Does it make you dizzy keeping your lies straight along with your paranoid hate? Pal, we all laugh at such statements here.
Speaking of newspapers I as a librarian am about to order Al Ahram newspaper for my library but the hidiously slanted anti West and Israel reporting makes my skin crawl. Sigh.

 
At 4/17/2006 3:22 PM, Blogger WomanHonorThyself said...

Excellent research AOW.. sickening.

 
At 4/17/2006 3:26 PM, Blogger nanc said...

anum - what does easter sunday mean to you?

 
At 4/17/2006 4:05 PM, Blogger Freedomnow said...

AOW said,

"I'm not sure about the "fade" unless a push makes the fade happen."

That is the point AOW. Because we are on the right path, these zealots want to side-track us.

It took over 70 years for Communism in the Soviet Union to collapse so it may take a while.

These people criticize the US so harshly not only because they oppose our foreign policy, but also because they are afraid that we will succeed.

Believe me they are more desperate than any of us...

 
At 4/17/2006 5:44 PM, Blogger American Crusader said...

Anus...how about the homicide bombing in Tel Aviv killing 23 people and wounding scores of others? Israel has the right to protect itself.

 
At 4/17/2006 6:09 PM, Blogger nanc said...

anum is a hypocrite - why on earth would a muslim give a hoot about anything that happens on an easter or halloween for that matter. its ignorant slip is starting to show.

 
At 4/17/2006 6:32 PM, Blogger Iran Watch said...

anum believes: first the Saturday people, then the Sunday.
It's pretty clear that she isn't fitting in well with the "great American experiment".

 
At 4/17/2006 7:21 PM, Blogger kevin said...

A Numb Mocktar

Actually you guys are the puppets , because the Jews control the world right?

 
At 4/17/2006 7:25 PM, Blogger nanc said...

and as i've said before, i control the jews. oh, and i also killed Christ.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:33 PM, Anonymous the merry widow said...

Some people don't take to freedom very well. Too many choices, with a cult based on fear making the wrong decision can be fatal! It's safer to let a long dead person make them for you. It takes courage to live free, because you can't blame nobody but yourself. Accountability is something most people avoid, takes time and effort better used(in certain minds) doing something mindless. Thinking is hard work! I respect those who take the time and energy to do so, who also put themselves on the line because they have to be true to thier efforts!

tmw

 
At 4/17/2006 7:35 PM, Anonymous the merry widow said...

nanc- We all did!
"The hand that held the hammer, was the hand of G*D." From the Easter Choral we sang 3 yrs. ago.

tmw

 
At 4/17/2006 7:37 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

According to various Muslim teachings, Muslim lives are the lives that matter. Anum's comment puts me in mind of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

From Wikipedia:

The Protocols of the (Learned) Elders of Zion, also The Protocols of the Sages of Zion or The Protocols of Zion (Russian: "Протоколы Сионских мудрецов" or "Сионские Протоколы"), come from a text which purports to expose a global domination conspiracy, most notably characterized by its accusations of exclusive Jewish complicity....It is frequently quoted and reprinted by anti-Semites, and is sometimes used as evidence of a Jewish conspiracy, especially in the Middle East....

[W]hile continued usage of the Protocols as a propaganda tool substantially diminished with the defeat of the Nazis in World War II, it still has currency in the arsenal of contemporary anti-Semitism....

Hamas

The Charter of Hamas explicitly refers to the Protocols accepting them as factual and makes several references to Freemasons as one of the "secret societies" controlled by "Zionists". The Article 32 of the Hamas Charter states:

The Zionist plan is limitless. After Palestine, the Zionists aspire to expand from the Nile to the Euphrates. When they will have digested the region they overtook, they will aspire to further expansion, and so on. Their plan is embodied in the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", and their present conduct is the best proof of what we are saying.[39]

Palestinian National Authority
The PNA frequently used the Protocols in the media and education under their control and some Palestinian academics presented the forgery as a plot upon which Zionism is based. For example, on January 25, 2001, the official PNA daily Al-Hayat al-Jadida cited the Protocols on its Political National Education page to explain Israel's policies:

Disinformation has been one of the bases of morale and psychological manipulation among the Israelis ... The Protocols of the Elders of Zion did not ignore the importance of using propaganda to promote the Zionist goals. The second protocol reads: 'Through the newspapers we will have the means to propel and to influence'. In the twelfth protocol: 'Our governments will hold the reins of most of the newspapers, and through this plan we will possess the primary power to turn to public opinion.'

Later that year the same newspaper wrote: "The purpose of the military policy is to impose this situation on the residents and force them to leave their homes, and this is done in the framework of the Protocols of Zion..."

The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Sheikh Ekrima Sa'id Sabri appeared on the Saudi satellite channel Al-Majd on February 20, 2005, commenting on the assassination of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. "Anyone who studies The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and specifically the Talmud," he said, "will discover that one of the goals of these Protocols is to cause confusion in the world and to undermine security throughout the world."

In 2005, it was reported that the Palestinian Authority was teaching the Protocols in schools. After media exposure, the PA promised to stop....

Other contemporary appearances
...Idi Amin, the President of Uganda from 1971 to 1979, cited the book as evidence of a Jewish conspiracy to take over the world, and as justification for his self-proclaimed plans to destroy Israel. He reveals this in an interview during the 1974 documentary Idi Amin Dada, during which he also invited Palestinian rebels to his country, partially causing the Entebbe affair....


Islam is inherently prone to discuss "the Jewish conspiracy." The WaPo commentary touched indirectly on this matter of fantasies:

“In this atmosphere, it is regarded as an example of reportorial acumen to write on the op-ed pages of prominent Arab journals about how the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks were the work of Israeli agents, how the death of Princess Diana was the result of some diabolical plot by British intelligence to end her life rather than see her married to an Arab Muslim, how Monica Lewinsky was an agent-in-place, put in the White House by the 'Jewish lobby'—and so on with other infantile whimsies.

Best of luck trying to get a Muslim to disabuse himself of hate-filled fantasies. The Koran and the Hadith are filled with blatant anti-Semitism. And that anti-Semitism is a common thread in all branches of Islam, even in Sufism.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:41 PM, Blogger nanc said...

anum isn't going to like it when the King of Kings comes to take over and it finds out He's a jew!

aow - warren's working on your problem. i did a test for him.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:50 PM, Blogger MissingLink said...

I actually find Arab newspapers very informative in a special way.
The worst media ever:
Sweedish and Indian.
You can read volumes and learn ABSOLUTELY nothing from them.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:51 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Nanc,
anum isn't going to like it when the King of Kings comes to take over and it finds out He's a jew!

Bwahahahaha! It will be sweet, won't it?

 
At 4/17/2006 7:54 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Nanc,
I haven't checked in with Warren. Busy afternoon. Classes resume tomorrow, and I'll be a slave to classes until June 1.

Warren is my guru-of-gurus. I can't believe that I've been so blest as to find such a friend. My students are impressed that he designed for me the perfect avatar.

We hear so much about dangers in cyberspace. But there are many like Warren (and you, as well) here. God's providence?

 
At 4/17/2006 7:56 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Missing Link,
You can read volumes and learn ABSOLUTELY nothing from them.

I don't allow my students to do that! LOL. Either communicate or quit writing--that's how I see it.

You're right about Arab newspapers. I read some of the English editions from time to time. One can learn a lot about the Arab mindset in that way, IMO.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:57 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Merry Widow,
Some people don't take to freedom very well....It's safer to let a long dead person make them for you. It takes courage to live free, because you can't blame nobody but yourself.

Mindless, isn't it? And accountability goes right out the window.

 
At 4/17/2006 7:59 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Freedom Now,
These people criticize the US so harshly not only because they oppose our foreign policy, but also because they are afraid that we will succeed.

The idea of losing power is driving them to the greatest of extremes now. But the msm keeps trying to whitewash the root cause.

 
At 4/17/2006 8:01 PM, Blogger nanc said...

yes - i call warren the "cassini" of the avatar set. the only thing i need to know about the muslim mindset is that they want to kill or convert me - unfortunately i've found out more along the way than i cared to know. it is difficult to unremember something.

linkster is a boot in the hiney!

 
At 4/17/2006 8:03 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Cubed,
The desire for freedom can overcome, but it's a hard road. Casting aside the tyrannical ideology of much in the Koran and the Hadith requires repudiating a tradition of some 1400 years.

What alarms me is that many of those Muslims educated in the West are among the strongest of the West-haters. The West is not perfect, but we have freedom; that freedom goes a long way to feed the human heart.

 
At 4/17/2006 9:18 PM, Blogger Mike's America said...

Fawaz should come on over to this country and become a General in the US Army.

Then, when he even breathes a word of criticism for the Administration it will be telegraphed instantly around the world and treated as gospel.

 
At 4/18/2006 5:57 AM, Blogger LASunsett said...

They have about as much journalistic integrity as Pravda in the 50s, 60s, and 70s.

 
At 4/18/2006 8:33 AM, Blogger Brooke said...

Great reading, AOW!

 
At 4/18/2006 1:05 PM, Anonymous Mustang said...

“The Arab concept of journalism is far removed from what we Westerners take for granted — logical conclusions based on facts.”

Logical conclusion or statements supported through “fact” and “Logic” is called a syllogism. We think that Aristotle applied syllogistic argument; an example of such premises might be, “All men are mortal, I am a man, therefore I am mortal.” There are two sides of any argument however, so that in developing a proposition such as “Napoleon was a great leader,” there are plenty of facts and elaboration to show that he may have exhibited traits of good leadership, along with as many opposite qualities.

But I don’t see any of this kind of logical writing in modern journalism. I suspect it has never existed in journalism because it is in the nature of all men to write to the level of their prejudices. Men writing passionately are seldom objective in their conclusions. It is exceedingly difficult to separate how we think from who we are.

In any case, the logic of any statement depends entirely upon the truth of the statement. Who can argue effectively against the statement “all men are mortal?” But this isn’t so within journalism, be it the Middle Eastern or Western press. The press lacks the integrity to state unvarnished truth; rather, it addresses truth, as the writer perceives it. The modern equivalent of the above syllogism might be “All persons are morally equivalent, I am a person, therefore I’m okay, and you’re okay.” We would then have to debate the statement that all persons are morally equivalent, because, for example, I believe that such a statement is factually inaccurate.

Men are not all morally equivalent; indeed, very few people saw off the heads of innocent westerners simply to make a point about their own barbarity. And then of course, we have to ask why the “western press” (as an institution) chooses to ignore such incidents, while writing volumes about the events at Abu Grahib. In reality then, the modern press, western or Arabic, thinks that “You’re okay, and we aren’t.” So then what are we really talking about here? Could it be selective morality rather than logic and truth?

No matter who is doing the writing – each of us should be thinking beyond what is written in order to determine where we stand on any particular issue. There cannot be an immoral press if there is a moral readership. Where am I wrong in this?

 
At 4/18/2006 7:04 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

I don’t see any of this kind of logical writing in modern journalism....The press lacks the integrity to state unvarnished truth; rather, it addresses truth, as the writer perceives it.

But has the press always lacked the integrity? To a certain extent, yes. One problem I see is that the Middle Eastern press is more into Islamic censorship. That kind of censorship will, of necessity, put the brakes on democracy--in the name of religion and of following the will of Allah. Turki points out in his commentary that the Western goal of bringing democracy to the Middle East assumes a free press--of sorts, anyway. But does that free press truly exist. I don't think so because all has to be measured against the strictures of Islam.

Another problem I perceive in today's press (worldwide) is that the readers bring to whatever they're reading few facts or little reliable information of their own. By limiting the facts and the input, one can limit the conclusions reached and promote a specific agenda.

Western essay-writing assumes a provable thesis statement. Other cultures don't write in that manner. I contend that the Western technique of essay-writing is directly related to achieving the ideal of freedom--both politically and personally.

No matter who is doing the writing – each of us should be thinking beyond what is written in order to determine where we stand on any particular issue.

Western culture has encouraged thinking beyond the printed word. Or perhaps I should say "used to encourage."

Could it be selective morality rather than logic and truth?

Isn't selective morality the same as moral relevancy? At the very least, selective morality is kissing cousins with double standard.

Now, down to brass tacks....If Islam or any aspect thereof cannot be criticized in the press, no "reform" is possible. Catch-22!

 
At 4/18/2006 8:43 PM, Anonymous Mustang said...

AOW, you are absolutely correct. Reform is not possible. We will simply have to break it and start over, won't we?

 
At 4/18/2006 8:43 PM, Blogger City Troll said...

what cracks me up is Anums profile says he lives in the US He should either go back to the ME since he despises the country that is now providing his lifes sucor Or homeland Security should be monitoring him as a sleeper agent

 
At 4/18/2006 8:46 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

City Troll,
American Crusader seems to have caught Anum in a lie. Go to Crusdaer's site, and scroll to "Anum's Lie." Makes for interesting reading.

 
At 4/18/2006 8:47 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Mustang,
Reform is not possible. Can't straighten out a pretzel!

 
At 4/18/2006 8:56 PM, Anonymous Mustang said...

But isn't lying "okay" in the Koran?

 
At 4/18/2006 9:03 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Mustang,
Yes, in order to further the cause of Allah. And so much "furthers" the cause.

 
At 4/19/2006 4:12 PM, Blogger Mr. Ducky said...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4916308.stm
Was it warren or "freedom now" who proclaimed that Basra is a afe city.

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

It is unfortunate that our military has to pay for our sins, but they will pay dearly.

 
At 4/19/2006 4:57 PM, Blogger Freedomnow said...

Ducky,

While you guys deal in gray areas, sensationalism, "exceptions to the rule" and "What if" situations all day long, why dont you try to convince us with facts?

How many daily insurgent attacks are there in Basra?

Was Basra safe for Shiites before the liberation?

Putting things in context is very hard for you.

 
At 4/20/2006 10:15 AM, Blogger Mr. Ducky said...

freedomnow.....you stated in one of your emotional right wing flights of fancy that Basra was a "safe city". I posted the article so that you might gain some facts and live the life of the reasoning mind, as leftists do.

Was Basra safe before our occupation? What the hell does that have to do with anything? You're the clown who talks about our nobility in "liberating" Iraq.

Fact is that it's still unsafe and the infrastructure is even more decrepit. Yet, you and the rest of the militaristic clowns feel no shame.

 
At 4/20/2006 11:34 AM, Blogger Freedomnow said...

The infrastructure of Iraq is better than it was before the liberation, please do some non-Leftist fact checking.

I'm not saying that it is on par with the West, but during the sanctions your buddy Saddam was busy building palaces and bribing his supporters, so he didnt do any maintenance or make any improvements to civilian infrastructure (except to reward his Sunni backers).

You are still wearing your clown wig. I dont see what facts and reason have to do with Leftists, you are quite allergic to both...

 
At 4/20/2006 1:06 PM, Blogger Mr. Ducky said...

Freedomnow, don't go straw man on me or I'll assume that you aren't capable of maintaining an argument.

Electricity generation is lower than pre-invasion. Oil production is lower than pre-invasion. Potable water is less availalble and sewage treatment is failing more often.

Medical supplies are scarce and child mortality is a third higher than pre-invasion.

This has been done in the name of the right wing in America and you really should be proud. Damn, you people are stupid. Just use the word "freedom" and you guys start drooling like Pavlov's dogs.

 
At 4/20/2006 7:05 PM, Blogger Freedomnow said...

Ducky I would ask that you evaluate what I write based on the facts I present. Not about who I am or why I am writing them.

Iraq's power grid is at a higher output than before the war. The difference is that the coalition has set up the grid to be distributed evenly, so many poor neighborhoods have power and other utilities for the first time! Saddam's utilities were focused on rewarding his supporters and punishing those he felt were disloyal. He hasn’t made any substantial improvements to the power grid in 20 years.

Before the liberation Iraq's power generation capacity was at 4,200MW. Now it is between 7,361-8,700MW. A substantial gain. This is a common misconception and I do not blame you Ducky.

http://www.rebuilding-iraq.net/pls/portal/docs/PAGE/PCO_CONTENT/HOME/DOWNLOADS/THE_IRAQ_CHALLENGE.PDF

------------------ Iraq owns and manages its own oil resources, but the US has spent about 2 billion dollars to help them refurbish their oil industry.

In the aftermath of the liberation Iraq’s oil fields have been seriously damaged by looting and sabotage. Almost 300 insurgent attacks on Iraq’s energy infrastructure have occurred during that time, it is no small wonder that US troops were stationed at oil facilities, much to the derision of US critics. This effort showed foresight and was especially prudent in light of Saddam’s massive sabotage of Kuwaiti oil fields after the first Gulf War.

Saddam didn’t have such problems to worry about when he was pumping oil. Although Iraqi oil production is higher than it was in the early 80s and early 90s, you are correct that oil production is slightly lower than before the liberation. They are currently at 2.5 million barrels a day, while before the liberation they were between 2.6 – 2.8. At this rate Iraq will surpass pre-war production levels by the end of the year. This is a major achievement because Saddam was running the industry into the ground in order to pump as much oil as possible. A U.N. report in June 2001 said that Iraqi oil production capacity would fall sharply unless technical and infrastructure problems were addressed.

U.N. oil experts have estimated that some reservoirs in southern Iraq have been so badly managed that their ultimate recovery rates might be only 15 percent-25 percent, well below the 35 percent-60 percent usually seen in the oil industry.

(this link is over a year old and the total numbers are old, but it is quite informative)
http://www.eia.doe.gov/cabs/Iraq/Oil.html

This is exactly where I would expect to be during a reconstruction, especially considering the neglect the infrastructure suffered under Saddam’s rule and with an insurgency that targets civilian infrastructure and particularly oil.

------------------ Your information on infant mortality rates in Iraq must be old. The current rate is between 48 – 53 deaths per 1,000. Before the war they were at 102 per 1,000. So the infant mortality rate has actually been cut in half.

http://www.childinfo.org/cmr/revis/db1.htm

http://www.mnf-iraq.com/countryfacts.htm

http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/iz.html

You say that we are stupid and drool at the sound of the words freedom, but I should point out that in the weeks following the liberation of Iraq the biggest celebrations were by Iraqi Communists. They still enjoy political freedom even though they are hostile to the US. They havent been persecuted because they havent taken up arms against the US or the Iraqi government. It is noble that we would give them the freedom that they would deny us.

 
At 4/22/2006 12:06 AM, Blogger Mike's America said...

There is just so much unreported good news from Iraq.

I did a brief writeup using the Brookings Institute Iraq Index:

http://mikesamerica.blogspot.com/#114529088073515690

Even Ducky wucky will have heard of the left of center Brookings Institute.

 
At 4/22/2006 1:07 AM, Blogger Mr. Beamish the Instablepundit said...

and live the life of the reasoning mind, as leftists do.

Leftists live the life of reasoning minds?

Since when? Since Szaszian psychoanlysis declared insanity is "just another point of view?"

You crack me up Ducky. A regular Foghorn Leghorn.

 

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