Baghdad year zero:
Pillaging Iraq in pursuit of a neocon utopia
by Naomi Klein
It was only after I had been in Baghdad for a month that I found what I was looking for. I had traveled to Iraq a year after the war began, at the height of what should have been a construction boom, but after weeks of searching I had not seen a single piece of heavy machinery apart from tanks and humvees. Then I saw it: a construction crane. It was big and yellow and impressive, and when I caught a glimpse of it around a corner in a busy shopping district I thought that I was finally about to witness some of the reconstruction I had heard so much about. But as I got closer I noticed that the crane was not actually rebuilding anything—not one of the bombed-out government buildings that still lay in rubble all over the city, nor one of the many power lines that remained in twisted heaps even as the heat of summer was starting to bear down. No, the crane was hoisting a giant billboard to the top of a three-story building. SUNBULAH: HONEY 100% NATURAL, made in Saudi Arabia. (Read the rest…)
a poem by thepoetryman
To the immense, retiring radiance
that drapes her fair-haired domes,
I do offer a sorrowful observation;
Small pieces of a jagged existence,
displaced flesh and bones of camels,
slumping across the humus and clay.
Some say it is an alluvial landscape
that spans the ground, but the crimson
rasping this day is more human than soil.
More someone than beast, feet than hooves,
and soiled in the foul strides of battle.
I say onward into obscurity,
or make known your pledge in the redness.
It isn’t clay, or the rose-hued earth, it is loss.
Iraqis are made of the same flesh as we,
feet and toes and a breathing rhythmic spirit.
The same bone, snapping when trampled.
The same ideals and lovelorn heartache.
The same glimmer and smile and glee.
The same child and mother and father.
To the vast and vanishing gleam
that enfolds her lovely peoples,
I do offer this mournful confession.
© 2008 mrp/tpm
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