President Obama announced today that the role of US troops in Iraq would be, as of the end of the month, entirely non-combative, and that, contrary to the authorities in Baghdad’s claim that upwards of 500 people had been killed this month, marking a return to a level of violence not seen for two years. This despite evidence from the independent Iraq Body Count, showing over 100 in the past week.
This window dressing applied to the brutalised, shell-shocked existence of everyday life in Iraq, for the consumption of the American public and news media is an affront to reality as much as it is to decency.
The attempt to “bring down the curtain” on Iraq and to end one of the many shameful, bloody and tragic chapters in recent American history, just as another, far longer episode continues to unfold further East, will probably come just in time for a fresh round of self-justificatory, hallucinatory texts from the political architects of the War and their intellectual, morally bankrupt, supporters, looking to carry out an instantaneous, real-time rewrite of an ongoing disaster, to change it into the happy ending without which the narratives of America cannot survive.
After all, the Iraqis must, by now, be grateful for the “freedom” we have bestowed on them?