May 7, 2004

By Doug Newman

My response to an e-mail I had received about our supposed success in Iraq.


I have gotten versions of that e-mail on at least 2 occasions. To be blunt, there is a lot of nonsense here. To be sure, there are some folks in Iraq who are glad we are there. However, consider a few of the claims the author makes.

 > > * Girls are allowed to attend school.

Girls were allowed to attend school, and women were allowed to drive cars and pursue careers under Saddam. His was not an officially Islamic regime like that of the Taliban or "our allies" the Saudis.

> > * Over 400,000 kids have up-to-date immunizations.

Not a real cause for rejoicing. More and more evidence is surfacing stateside about connections between vaccinations and things like autism and SIDS. Many American parents are refusing to have their kids immunized now because of this. For more go to

> > * Elections are taking place in every major city, and city councils are in place.

Elections took place to great fanfare in places like Zimbabwe and South Africa. And dictatorship followed. No Islamic country has ever had a sustained democratic system. Iraq will not be the first one. Oh yeah, there may be an election or two, but let one bunch of Islamofascists get elected, and it will be all over. Adolf Hitler ascended to power through the democratic process.

 > > * Over 80,000 Iraqi soldiers are patrolling the streets side by side with US soldiers.

I thought this whole thing was about freedom for the Iraqi people. In free countries, troops -- not even indigenous ones -- do not patrol the streets. Only in military dictatorships do soldiers patrol the streets.

> > * An interim constitution has been signed.

But will the Iraqi people respect it? Constitutions are not self-enforcing documents. What really matters is the constitution of the people in a given nation. Here in the States, we stopped respecting ours in 1861, 1913 or 1933 -- take your pick. There is no constitutional basis whatsoever for our invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Concerning the bullet points about economic issues -- i.e. oil -- the United States as much as anyone is responsible for the devastation in Iraq since 1990. Saying we need to bomb Iraq in order to buy its oil is like saying you need to torch Safeway before you buy groceries. The United States is the biggest potential customer for Iraqi oil. However we participated in the United Nations' embargo of Iraqi oil. The UN is the biggest collection of dictators, thugs and other political pond scum ever to stink up this planet. We need to get out of the UN and all its subsidiary organizations and get the UN out of the US.

Had we simply bought Iraqi oil from 1990 until now, there would have been far more economic prosperity there. But no-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o. We just ha-a-a-a-a-ad to wage war.

GWB pronounced the mission accomplished a year ago. Since then, hundreds of Americans have been killed in  Iraq and no weapons of mass destruction have been found. If Al Gore had been 1/100 as incompetent as Bush has been, Drug Limbaugh and the Cherry Hills gang would be calling for him not to run for a second term. However, these same folks revere W as a "great wartime president."

One other thing: someone pointed out on radio this morning, concerning the Abu Ghraib prison tortures, that this is the first time that people in a Western nation have publicly rejoiced over people being tortured. Drug Limbaugh likened the tortures to a college fraternity hazing.

I pray that you use discernment here. I pray fervently that American Christians stop their virtual deification of W. His administration and his policies are pagan to the core. Don't be blinded by party labels. Just because W says he is a Christian and just because he has not been caught ho-ing with any interns doesn't make him one iota godlier than Klinton. The fruit on W's tree is more tyrannical, more socialist and more bellicose than Klinton's ever was. Yet evangelicals are fond of saying that Bush is merely "an imperfect man whom God has lifted up to fulfill His Purposes", while they denounced Klinton as the scum of the earth right from the start.

Neither has any special anointing. They are both elected politicians. Nothing more, nothing less. Most Christians are more loyal to partisan political labels than they are to the Bible.

God has very harsh words for those who are so arrogant in their power. (Psalm 2:9-10)

Again, I pray that you use discernment here. Most Christians do not.

No King But Jesus,

Doug Newman
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. -- Hosea 4:6
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On Wed, 5 May 2004 16:44:51 GMT ----  writes:

  Dear Friends
I received this from a missionary working here at the US Center for World Mission. It confirms what I have heard from missionaries I know who are on the ground in Iraq. They all say that the news media is not reporting accurately what is happening in Iraq.  It sounds to me like a lot has been accomplished in just one year. Please feel free to pass this on to others and counter the negative bias of the media.
  God bless
  Rick Wood

This is a letter from Ray Reynolds, a medic in the Iowa Army National Guard, serving in Iraq:
As I head off to Baghdad for the final weeks of my stay in Iraq, I wanted to say thanks to all of you who did not believe the media. They have done a very poor job of covering everything that has happened.  I am sorry that I have not been able to visit all of you during my two week leave back home.  And just so you can rest at night knowing something is happening in Iraq that is noteworthy, I thought I would pass this on to you.  This is the list of things that have happened in Iraq recently: (Please share it with your friends and compare it to the version that your paper is producing.)
  * Over 400,000 kids have up-to-date immunizations.
  * School attendance is up 80% from levels before the war.
  * Over 1,500 schools have been renovated and rid of the weapons stored there so education can occur.
  * The port of Uhm Qasar was renovated so grain can be off-loaded from ships faster.
  * The country had its first 2 billion barrel export of oil in August.
  * Over 4.5 million people have clean drinking water for the first time ever in Iraq.
  * The country now receives 2 times the electrical power it did before the war.
  * 100% of the hospitals are open and fully staffed, compared to 35% before the war.
  * Elections are taking place in every major city, and city councils are in place.
  * Sewer and water lines are installed in every major city.
  * Over 60,000 police are patrolling the streets.
  * Over 100,000 Iraqi civil defense police are securing the country.
  * Over 80,000 Iraqi soldiers are patrolling the streets side by side with US soldiers.
  * Over 400,000 people have telephones for the first time ever.
  * Students are taught field sanitation and hand washing techniques to prevent the spread of germs.
  * An interim constitution has been signed.
  * Girls are allowed to attend school.
  * Textbooks that don't mention Saddam are in the schools for the first time in 30 years.
Don't believe for one second that these people do not want us there. I have met many, many people from Iraq that want us there, and in a bad way. They say they will never see the freedoms we talk about but they hope their children will.  We are doing a good job in Iraq and I challenge anyone, anywhere to dispute me on these facts.  So if you happen to run into John Kerry, be sure to give him my email address and send him to Denison, Iowa. This soldier will set him straight. If you are like me and very disgusted with how this period of rebuilding has been portrayed, email this to a friend and let them know there are good things happening.
  Ray Reynolds, SFC
  Iowa Army National Guard
  234th Signal Battalion

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Freely Speaking: Essays by Doug Newman