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Meanwhile, in Iraq Today...

More Sheets of the Birdcage Liner that Is the *Washington Post*

The Bartender at the Whiskey Bar provides more servings of the Orwellian prose of the Washington Post's Tom Ricks:

Whiskey Bar: Gullible's Travels: Gullible's Travels: Here's Tom Ricks writing about the 4th Infantry Division in July 2006:

In the late summer of 2003, as senior U.S. commanders tried to counter the growing insurgency with indiscriminate cordon-and-sweep operations, the 4th Infantry was known for aggressive tactics that may have appeared to pacify the northern Sunni Triangle in the short term but that, according to numerous Army internal reports and interviews with military commanders, alienated large parts of the population.The unit . . . was known for "grabbing whole villages, because combat soldiers [were] unable to figure out who was of value and who was not," according to a subsequent investigation of the 4th Infantry Division's detainee operations by the Army inspector general's office. Its indiscriminate detention of Iraqis filled Abu Ghraib prison, swamped the U.S. interrogation system and overwhelmed the U.S. soldiers guarding the prison. Washington Post 'It Looked Weird and Felt Wrong' July 24, 2006

And here's Tom Ricks writing about the 4th Infantry Division in July 2003:

"The people are now coming to us with information," Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno, commander of the 4th Infantry Division, told Abizaid in a briefing this week at Odierno's headquarters in Tikrit, Hussein's home town. "Every time we do an operation, more people come in."The 4th Infantry, operating in a region dominated by Iraq's Sunni Muslim minority, which was a major base of Hussein's support, conducted an average of 18 raids a day in recent weeks, he added.The number and breadth of those follow-up raids also encouraged Iraqis who had been fearful of Baathist retaliation to speak up, officials here said. Washington Post Low-ranking Baathists leading U.S. to top fugitives July 23, 2003

Special bonus quote. Tom Ricks writing about the 4th Infantry Division in January 2004:

"The enemy doesn't have much left," a battalion commander in Tikrit said this week in assessing the current situation. "They are desperate and flailing."Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon by a video connection from Tikrit on Thursday, Army Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno, commander of the 4th Infantry Division, echoed those views . . . He said that insurgents had been "brought to their knees" and reduced to a "fractured, sporadic threat." Washington Post A Measure of Success in Iraq January 23, 2004

Keep up the good work, Tom.

Why oh why can't we have a better press corps?

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