Saturday, February 24, 2007

Arroz Con Pollo in the Kitchen

Maria simplified several different recipes and we tried out three different ones in our kitchens, Maria, Wally's mother and myself. We felt this was both the easiest and the tastiest.

Arroz Con Pollo
2 cups long grain rice
2 14.5 ounce cans of diced tomatoes

8 ounces of salsa
2 1/2 cups of water
1/2 chicken (parts or drumstricks, breasts, etc.)

Put chicken and rice in pan and add water. Turn the burner to high and allow the water to come to a boil. Once the water comes to a boil, carefully add in the salsa and the dice tomatoes. Do nut dump them in or the water will splash onto you. Let them slide in at an angle. Once you've added both, change the heat on the burner to low, cover the pan and allow it to cook for 25 minutes.

The salsa? You're buying it to cook with. Maria said "Go generic" and I would agree with that because I couldn't taste the difference when I made it with name-brand salsa and with generic.
Your salsa will give you more tomatoes as well as onions and cilantro so using the salsa was the "lightbulb" for Maria. She said her oldest suggested it because he thought the recipe was kind of bland. Chicken is whatever pieces you like or whatever you found on sale. This is a simple version of the recipe and we all kept Coy in mind while trying out different versions. Maria says that if people like this and get used to it, next fall, she'll share her authentic recipe which calls for more ingredients and more prep.

Last week, in The Third Estate Sunday Review's "Origins," we all explained our sites. Everyone did a wonderful job and we were all supposed to share our own comments at our site for "an easy post." I think the week got so busy that everyone forgot.

Trina (Trina's Kitchen): Like Cedric, I was aware that most community sites don't post on Saturday and with The Third Estate Sunday Review's all night sessions, C.I. wasn't able to do more than one entry on Saturdays. So I thought I could do something on Saturdays. It was thought of and considered by me but, when I finally did it, I just leaped right in and e-mailed C.I. about how I created a site because I didn't know anything about templates or links or anything. I knew how to e-mail and I could search on Yahoo. That's about it for my computer skills. I'm covering cooking at my site. I'm aware that the economy is in the toilet and has been there. Even with seeing me cook all their lives, when my kids move out, they frequently have emergency calls asking, "What do I do?" One of my sons has huge student loans and right before I started, he'd asked me to show him some basic recipes so he could save some money and I keep that in mind when I'm coming up with recipes. Is it easy to cook, will it taste good and can you make it without going broke? I usually add some commentary in there as well and I repost the snapshot as well. I'm surprised that anyone reads it but happy that they do. I am most pleased about an e-mail from a family member of a war resister. I think the print magazines, the high circulation ones, of the left have completely failed war resisters and I felt that way before I heard from the family member. I wrote her back and whenever I think, "Oh, I've got nothing to say," I do remember that e-mail and how it did mean a lot to her that war resisters weren't being ignored. And they aren't being ignored. When someone e-mails to share a recipe or to request one, they always mention war resisters. I think that's one of the issues that this community, as a whole, really stepped up to the plate on. I have community members who read the site and I also have readers who don't really surf. They look forward to the Saturday recipe and they usually note a thank you for the snapshot. Sometimes, they misunderstand and think I wrote it so I have to clear that up. But I do think that's Rebecca's right about how The Common Ills is the flag ship of the community but the rest of us, if we do our part, can bring the issues to others who may not be aware of them otherwise.

So that was me offering my own reasons and what I'm pleased about. My husband pointed out to me that I'd passed the year mark last month and I honestly hadn't noticed. I usually get online Saturday mornings and try to rush to pull something together. The recipe is usually the easiest part because it's already figured out and tested during the week. But then I try to figure out what I can say. That's where I usually get tripped up because, some mornings, I'm rushing out the door to do some errands before I blog. I'm also usually rushing because C.I. tries to note all the community sites in Saturday's entry and I don't want to delay that.

I know I have a little more time this morning because C.I. was in Florida this week and going around speaking on campuses with Wally. Then they went out to have some fun (I believe Wally's grandfather went with) Friday night so C.I.'s still in Florida this morning and Wally and Cedric are going to post before C.I. does (Wally and Cedric do joint-posts). So, with Wally's mother promising to call me when Wally gets up this morning, I have a little more time before the warning bell goes off.

So I want to touch on two topics this morning: war resisters being one and rape being the other. If you follow The Common Ills, you're informed about war resisters but if you're just getting C.I.'s Friday Iraq snapshots here, you may miss some details. Kyle Snyder and Mark Wilkerson are two that you may have missed some details on.

This is from Soldier Say No!:

Kyle Thanks You for Your Continuing Support
Kyle Snyder is extremely thankful for all the wonderful support he received from so many people as he traveled from late October through early January to Louisville, Chicago, Fort Benning, Georgia, New Orleans, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco, Seattle and Bellingham.
"There are lots of great people in the U.S. and I will never forget them, especially the Vietnam veterans and the Iraq veterans who showed me so much love and support," he says.
"People in the U.S. were very generous," says Kyle. "It was their donations of money at our various public meetings that allowed me to keep moving in the U.S., to avoid arrest, and, finally, to return to Canada," says Snyder. "I will never forget that."
"Even though I am back in Canada, I still need your support. I am trying to make a new start here, but I have almost no funds at all. So I am asking all my wonderful supporters in the U.S. to consider makingone more donation to help me get on my feet."
Aside from pulling together funds for first and last month's rent, Kyle needs to raise $2,000 for upcoming legal fees and marriage-related fees.
Interested donors can make out checks to Kyle Snyder and mail them to him at:
Kyle Snyder, 310-A Victoria St., Nelson, BC, V1L 4K4, CANADA.
Tax-deductible donations for Kyle Snyder can also be made online through Courage To Resist,, an excellent resource for action alerts in support of GI resisters."Thank you all so much," says Kyle. "It means a lot to me to know that I am not alone."
Ask the Canadian Government to Welcome War Resisters
Kyle Snyder is also calling on people in both the U.S. and Canada to press the Canadian government to create a sanctuary policy for U.S. war resisters, one that will ease their immigration to Canada. "It's the right and necessary thing to do," he said.
Canada's Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
You may send comments to the Honourable Diane Finley at
Or write to:
The Honourable Diane Finley, P.C., M.P.Citizenship and Immigration CanadaOttawa, Ontario K1A 1L1 CANADA
Canada’s Prime Minister
You can send your comments to Prime Minister Stephen Harper by e-mail to or write or fax the Prime Minister's office at:
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A2 CANADA
Fax: 613-941-6900

Kyle Snyder's story briefly is that he was hard-sold on the military by a recruiter while he was in high school. He was living in foster care at the time and I'm sure that this man coming by and saying he believes in you and even attending your graduation meant a lot to him. As did the promises that were empty promises but a high school kid probably doesn't think someone wearing a uniform is going to lie. Kyle believes all the promises and sees it as a way for him to get his life started and provide for his himself and his girlfriend (I'm not sure if they were engaged when Kyle signed up or not, but I believe they were by the time he joined). Right away, the lies become evident. At its worst, the military does nothing to help his girlfriend who is going through a very difficult pregnancy and ends up miscarrying due to the fact that she didn't have adequate health care. His grandfather passes away and he's not able to attend to the funeral. Those are among the personal betrayals. Professionally, he's in Iraq and realizing that he's been lied to about just about everything. There's not even any honor higher up as his group gets abandoned by their leader who decides to grab another assignment. He sees a lot of brutality over there and what I would call war crimes though I'm not sure if he's ever used that term. He went there believing they were there to reconstruct and make things better for Iraqis who weren't supposed to be the enemies (remember, this was 'liberation' and 'democracy'). I love all the war resisters but Kyle's story reminded me of our youngest son Mike because he was getting pressured and was going to sign up. He was buying into the nonsense that the Bully Boy was selling and that the recruiter was pushing. My husband was able to have a long talk with him, this was right before the war started and that's when I really started noticing how they were recruiting the high school kids.

So with Kyle and the others, like Mark Wilkerson who was only 17 when he signed up, it kills me that there wasn't someone there to set them straight, to counter the lies that these kids, and they were kids, were being told by the Bully Boy, by the press and by the recruiters.

While he was home on a pass, Kyle self-checked out and went to Canada. Then, at the end of October, he became one of the ones who were returning to turn themselves in. His attorney had been in contact with the military and an arrangment had been worked out. He was lied to again. As soon as he turned himself, the military began screwing around with him, breaking their promises immediately, telling him he was rejoining his unit and going back to Iraq. So Kyle self-checked out and good for him. He then went around speaking out and helping out until the police started showing up at his public appearances. I think of him as the Road Runner and always just managing to escape from the authorities.

Now I know some people have this attitude that the second you turn 18, you're old enough to sign a contract and too bad for you. I think any contract loses its validity when its built on lies. I'm not even talking about the Bully Boy here, but just the fact that a recruiter has to lie to get someone to sign up. They are never held accountable for their lies. It's amazing that Ehren Watada can be charged with conduct unbecoming when I'd argue every recruiter is at risk of those charges.

I'm very happy that Kyle made it back to Canada. He's going to be married soon and they're sharing an apartment with war resister Ryan Johnson and his wife Jenna. Mark Wilkerson is another who tears me up. At his own site, he's written some really moving pieces. In the snapshot for Friday (which I'll put at the end of the post), it deals with his court-martial Thursday. One of the things that stood out to me was his home life. His mother testified at the hearing. His adopted father killed himself, after beating a friend of her's and attempting to beat her. Mark was a little kid and ran for help. The family had therapy sessions after but he never really discussed things and ended up being the 'man' of the family at a very early age. He signed up when he was 17. I can't believe that anyone would assume a kid was able to make such a decision to begin with but with what he'd been through especially. He entered into a plea agreement so the judge could have sentenced him to a maxiumum of ten months in jail. The fact that the judge only went with seven (I would have gone with no jail time) makes me hope that even the judge questioned what we were doing to our children.

Mark and Kyle are no longer children today. But I'm old enough that I do see them as children when they signed up and I think the government betrayed America and betrayed our children.
I'm amazed, all this time later, that some still live in denial and are for sending more Americans into the destruction. I'm appalled at how silent the left has been. Wally's mother just called to say Wally was up and about to start working on the phone with Cedric so I need to start wrapping up. But this really is a big deal to me, how little support there has been for war resisters from the left. The Nation didn't do a damn thing for them in print. Katrina vanden Heuvel, the ever useless Katrina vanden Heuvel, has never written one damn word about any of them at her ever useless blog, Editor's Cut. Supporting war resisters wasn't 'safe' and when you're a spoiled little princess who basically bought your way into the magazine and all you have to offer is the most idiotic, girlish and juvenile statements, safety's all you can go with. Probably that results from never having accomplished anything on your own? Your grandfather's money got you in the door? Sleeping with (and later marrying) your professor got you an easy pass in college?

There was a time when I read The Nation and when I actually thought Katrina vanden Heuvel stood something. I was a fool. As war resisters began going public in the summer of 2006 and as that woman refused to address the subject in her blog and refused to allow her magazine to address it, it was obvious that she was more spoiled princess who couldn't make a move towards leadership because she was, frankly, full of crap.

We saw that this week with the issue of rape. Two women in Iraq came forward to say they were raped by Iraqi security forces. In one instance, three of the woman's rapists ended up confessing. The Nation offered you nothing on that. Though Katrina wants to prove how spiritual she is by blogging about Amazing Grace. Amazing Grace, Stunted Katrina. The magazine never bothered to cover Abeer who was gang raped. My husband and I followed the rape coverage at The Common Ills this week and we both agreed, the world would be a better place if the silly school girl Katrina vanden Heuvel left The Nation and a strong voice ran it. But strong voices really don't seem to be the point of a useless magazine which, in November 2005, says they won't support any candidate who doesn't call for an end to the war and then goes on to support those candidates throughout 2006. Katha Pollitt, the supposedly brave, supposedly feminist voice, can slam CODEPINK for holding Hillary Clinton accountable and can even hector in her final column for 2006 that the peace movement needs to "Be Honest."

Well, Pollitt, why don't you be honest? Why don't you explain why you have repeatedly failed to address what happened to Abeer? Maybe it's because you're a big gas bag who stopped being about feminism a long time ago. I really don't think a feminist dismisses media portrayals (as she did when she slammed the NAACP for being concerned with the absence of African-Americans on television). I really don't think a feminist bores us with her too-cute book reviews or her dopey laundry lists columns. And how about that end of the year one where she did her boring list of things to contribute to and didn't list anything to do with Iraq? Nothing for war resisters, nothing for women's organizations like Madre attempting to help Iraqi women. Who needs to "Be Honest"?

I suspect it's the dithering fool who bored us all with what her recent marriage gave her in terms of benefits. Yes, Pollitt, we really needed you to tell us what you're entitled to now from the British government to grasp how unfair life is for same-sex couples in this country. Of course someone really concerned about same-sex couples might have decided, "I'm not going to get married while that right is denied others." But can't blame an old gal for rushing to the alter, I guess. Especially when her feminism's been slipping for years.

And that's reality. There is no reason in the world that C.I.'s should be the only feminist addressing the rapes this week. Addressing them, not giving a shout out to Think Progress' scattered one-day, one-post jotting. As an older feminist, I'm really getting disgusted with some of the so-called feminists who day after day take a pass on Iraq, who look the other way as one rape after another hits the news and never can offer a comment. When rape goes undiscussed, but there's always time for pith and book reviews (of books by men), don't think you can hide behind "I used to be a feminist and now I still play one." I think your betrayal goes far beyond betraying yourself and now expands to betraying feminism.

I meant to link to "Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix and Wally of The Daily Jot" (stolen from the Third Estate) but I'm rushing to get this up now. I'll also note "Mike of Mikey Likes It!" is my son Mike I was referring to and that "Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz" wrote a wonderful post yesterday about the psuedo-feminists. Finally, "Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man," will be posting her latest chapter today. Ehren Watada and Mark Wilkerson have links in the snapshot.

Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" from Friday:

Friday, February 23, 2007. Chaos and violence continue in Iraq, the military demonstrates that "justice" is still a joke to them despite one sex scandal after another, the press is all over the crying rapist, Turkey voices its opposition to partitioning Iraq, and Antonia Juhasz and Kris Welch address the topic of the push to privatize Iraq's oil.

Starting with war resisters.
Yesterday, Mark Wilkerson was court-martialed at Fort Lewis in Texas and sentenced to seven months in a military prison and given a bad conduct discharge. Jim Bergamo (KVUE) reports that Wilkerson's mother, wife and brother were sitting behind him during the hearing and that "it was his good behavior in that first tour of duty and after he returned to his unit in August of last year that helped sway the judge to sentence him to only seven months in jail and give him a bad conduct discharge" while his attorney Michael Duncan told Bergamo that "in a general court-martial, no confinement is very rare". Angela K. Brown (AP) reports that Rebecca Barker, his mother, testified about the home life: "Barker said that in 1996 her estranged husband -- who had adopted Mark as a child -- broke into their house, fatally beat her friend with a baseball bat and then beat her before Mark, then 12, intervened and ran for help. Her husband committed suicide before his murder trial."

In other war resister news,
El Universal reports that Agustin Aguayo's mother, Susana Aguayo, appeal to the Mexican government has been heard -- "The Foreign Relations Secretariat said it would seek information on the health and legal situation of Agustin Aguayo, who faces charges of desertion and missing troop movement. . . . given Aguayo's 'nationality of origin and the fact that his relatives are Mexican, the department has ordered the Mexican Embassy in Germany to offer consular assistance, which consists of using its good offices to gather information on the health and legal situation' of Aguayo." Agustin Aguayo is scheduled to be court-martialed March 6th in Germany.

Ehren Watada, we're going to repeat two points because they are important ones.
Friday's snapshot, while noting Ehren Watada, the following appeared: "John Catalinotto (Socialist Worker) observes: 'Watada's military defense lawyer -- appointed by the Army -- Capt. Mark Kim, said that he agreed with Seitz's interpretation of military law'." That was incorrect. John Catalinotto's article appeared in Workers' World, not Socialist Worker, my apologies. This was noted Tuesday, but it is important to again stress that the military attorney, Mark Kim, is in agreement with Seitz re: double-jeopardy. Let's also repeat from yesterday: " Gregg K. Kakesako (Honolulu Star-Bulletin) reports that Eric Seitz, Watada's civilian attorney, doesn't expect a court-martial to even be possible before summer due to scheduling issues and that the military hasn't even refiled the charges for the March 19th date that Judge Toilet (John Head) was tossing around when he declared a mistrial."

Wilkerson, Aguayo and Watada are a part of a movement of resistance with the military that includes others such as
Kyle Snyder, Patrick Hart, Ivan Brobeck, Darrell Anderson, Ricky Clousing, Aidan Delgado, Joshua Key, Camilo Meija, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Jeremy Hinzman, Stephen Funk, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Corey Glass, Clifford Cornell, Joshua Despain, Katherine Jashinski, Chris Teske, Matt Lowell, Jimmy Massey, Tim Richard and Kevin Benderman. In total, thirty-eight US war resisters in Canada have applied for asylum.Information on war resistance within the military can be found at Center on Conscience & War, The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline, and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters.

Remember how
Mark Wilkerson was sentenced to seven months in military prison? Let's turn to the reality of the joke that is military justice. Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Edwards Franklin is now a "private" and somehow that's "justice" in the snicker-snicker, dirty joke world of the US military. In a press release, the US military tells you he was busted down to private as punishment determined in his court-martial today. Punishment for? "[I]ndecent acts upon a female Private 2nd Class in the junior Soldier's room and then lying about his involvment to CID personnel. On 20 Ocotber 2006 Sgt. 1st Class Franklin followed a female Private 2nd Class into her room on LSA Anaconda. He attempted to force intimate contact upon the solider." Let's be clear because the US military tends to gloss over rape -- as does the press. What Franklin was trying to do, "force intimate contact," is what's known as attempted rape. Back to the press release: "During a CID interview and on the witness stand at trial" denied touching the woman or being in her room for more than five minutes.
And here's where the US military proves what a sad joke is: "A panel of officers and enlisted personnel, sentenced Sgt. 1st Class Franklin to reduction in grade to E-1." Wow. Aren't we all just blown away. Wilkerson's spending seven-months in a military prison and Franklin gets no jail time for attempted rape. As noted in The Third Estate Sunday Review's "
Women and the military" one in every seven US service members serving in Iraq is a woman but there's no real safety guarantees for women. Crimes aren't punished and for any who doubt it, a superior attempts to rape a woman and his "punishment" doesn't include jail time. It's all a joke or a game to the military but not even a game that includes the instruction "Go immediately to jail, do not collect 200 dollars." From The Third Estate Sunday Review feature:

Do you know the name Michael Sydney? As Cheryl Seelhoff reported in Off Our Backs (vol 35, no 2, p. 22), Sgt. Sydney was found guilty, July 2006, "of pandering, mistreating, subordinates, and obstruction of justice, smong other things, for what amounts to his having pimped women under his command. Sydney threatened to extend the tour of duty of female erservists called to active duty if they did not have sex with his superior officers." The brave US military 'justice' system did not court-martial him but they did give him a slap on the wrist: "sentence to six months in jail." Where does someone like Syndey get the idea that women in the military can be used as whores? The same attitude that Antonia expressed which renders service members as males (with wives to kiss) and women invisible.In the same edition of Off Our Backs, Allison Tobey (p. 16) noted Col Janis Karpinski's testimony that General Ricardo Sanchez issued an order barring "dehydration" being noted as cause of death on the death certificates of female service members. Why? Because, according to Karpinski, women were dying from that "because they did not drink liquids in the afternoons in an effort to avoid going to the latrines at night, where they were afrid male soldiers would rape them." Sanchez' 'solution' didn't address the problem, it hid it -- as too many 'solutions' to the abuse and mistreatment of women in the military repeatedly does.In the January 2007 edition of The Progressive,
Traci Hukill examined sexual harassment and sexual assualt in the military and cited a VA report from 2003 (lead to Congress in 2005) which found "60 percent of women and 27 percent of men had experience Military Sexual Trauma" and that it "found the prevalence of actual sexual assualt -- 'unwanted sexual conduct of a physical nature' -- to be 23 percent among female reservists."

Much is being made about Paul Cortez crying at his hearing yesterday and being sentenced to 100 years of prison time for his part in the gang rape and murder of
Abeer Qassim Hamza al-Janabi as well as the murder of her parents and her five-year-old sister. Reality check -- BBC points out he "will be eligible to seek parole in 10 years." AFP has Cortez as his most tearful when he says: "I'm sorry I let you guys down; you guys treat me better than this." How about a few tears for the 14-year-old girl who was gang raped and murdered? The one Cortez tesified "kept screaming and tried to keep her legs closed. At no point did I think that I had consent to have sex with Abeer." CBS News notes that Cortez couldn't explain to the court "why he did it" -- well, how about he repeat the jokes and ha-has he and the others shared over beer and grilled chicken after the gang rapes and murders?

Rose French (AP) reports that Jesse Speilman's attorneys are saying that he didn't take part in the planning of the rapes and murders. They're also saying that he was under stress. More laughs should ensue April 2nd when his court-martial begins. Steven D. Green is the only one who will be tried in a civilian court. (Green has maintained his innocence. James Barker and Cortez both confessed to their own actions and named Green as the ringleader who planned it all and the one who shot all four family members dead.)

Turning to news of Bully Boy's eye on the prize,
Antonia Juhasz spoke with Kris Welch on KPFA's Living Room today about the oil law that would privatize Iraq's oil and that had Condi storming through Baghdad last weekend to apply pressure.

Welch started the discussion by citing
Juan Gonzalez (New York Daily News) article on the oil law: "Under the proposed law, Iraq's immense oil reserves would not simply be opened to foreign oil exploration, as many had expected. Amazingly, executives from those companies would actually be given seats on a new Federal Oil and Gas Council that would control all of Iraq's reserves. In other words, Chevron, ExxonMobil, British Petroleum and the other Western oil giants could end up on the board of directors of the Iraqi Federal Oil and Gas Council, while Iraq's own national oil company would become just another competitor."

"Basically it says that executives of oil companies can be on the council and it doesn't say whether or not that is foreign and/or domestic. What I find most depressing about this law is frankly the speed with which it is moving now through the Iraqi government. We, those of us who have been working globally against this push for this essentially privatization of Iraq's oil thought that we had more time and it's really been fast-tracked in Iraq and what is so depressing is that the way this law is written in my mind if it is completed and if it implemented, which we can talk about more later, US oil companies will have at least on paper won the war in Iraq

Kris Welch pointed out that the Iraq oil law is sold as being "very key to settling the increasing violence and chaos in Iraq, that who is in control of the oil is vital and it's in everyone's interest".

Juhasz: It's really American, and let me clarify that as Bush administration, propaganda that this law is the path towards stability in Iraq. It is absolutely propaganda. This law is being sold as the mechanism for helping the Iraqis determine how they will distribute their oil revenue. That is not what this law is about. That is the bottom end of an enormous hammer that is this oil law. This oil law is about foreign access to Iraq's oil and the terms by which that access will be determined. It is also about the distribution of decision making power between the central government and the region as to who has ultimate decision making power and the types of contracts that will be signed. There are powers that be within Iraq that would very much like to see that power divvied up into the regions, between the Kurds and the Shia in particular, and then there are powers that would like to see Iraq retained as a central authority. The Bush administration would like the central government of Iraq to have ultimate control over contracting decisions because it believes it has more allies in the central government than it would if it was split up into regions. The Bush administration is most concerned with getting an oil law passed now and passed quickly to take advantage of the weakness of the Iraqi government. The Iraqi government couldn't be in a weaker negotiating position and the law locks the government in to twenty to thirty-five year committments to granting the most extreme versions of exploration and production contracts to US companies or foreign companies. Meaning that foreign companies would have access to the vast majorities of Iraq's oil fields and they would own the oil under the ground --
they would control the production and they would in contracts yet to be determined get a percentage of that profit but they'd be negotiating essentially when Iraq is at its weakest when Iraq is hardly a country. And that's what this oil law is all about. What Iraqis are saying very clearly and have said to
Raed [Jarrar] and, in particular, to the loudest voices being the Iraqi oil unions is that the only people who want to see this law passed now are the Americans. There's no other reason to push that law through."

Welch and Juhasz then discussed how the government's creation (and election) influences the chances that the law could be passed which put the US administration in the position to call shots. Juhasz: "Now that influence isn't complete and that's why the law hasn't passed yet but it's been slowly and progressively making it's way through and now as you said it's passed through the cabinet or is on the verge of passing in the cabinet it would then go to the parliatment and there's great concern . . .
Raed [Jarrar] has done a monumental job of trying to inform the Iraqi parliamentarians just about the law. Until he had helped unearth the draft and help retreive it from the internet that most parliamentarians, or almost all Iraq parliamentarians haven't even seen the law."

Juhasz cited
Hands off Iraqi Oil and Oil Change International as resources for activism geared for the fourth anniversary of the start of the illegal war next month. [Thank you to Megan, Zach and Ty for noting & transcribing the above.]

Picking up on the issue of Iraq being split into regions,
KUNA reports that Abdullah Gul, Turkey's foreign minister, declared yesterday that splitting Iraq into regions or partitions would lead "bloody wars": "Why we refuse the establishment of a Kurdish state in the North of Iraq, the reason is clear, we are against the partition of Iraq because this will trigger engless wars in the region."

Meanwhile Tony Blair's claims of 'success' in Iraq are about as 'truthful' as his claims of a pullout.
Stephen Farrell, Ned Parker and Richard Beeston (Times of London) report: "Tony Blair says Iraq has made 'remarkable' progress. Clusters of red on the British Army's own maps of Basra suggest otherwise. . . . Although the initial perception of British forces in Basra was of experienced troops putting the population at ease by patrolling in berets, instead of the more aggressive posture adopted by US forces further north, the reality has varied widely from town to town."

In WOOPSIE! news,
Kim Gamel (AP) reported the US military arrested "Amar al-Hakim, son of political leader Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim" -- who had face time with Bully Boy in DC last December. CNN reports that the Zalmay Khalilzad (still US ambassador to Iraq for now) "issued an apology" for the arrest and the son has been released.

In other political news,
BBC reports that "Democrats in the US are planning a challenge to President George W Bush's handling of the war in Iraq" with the premise that the authority granted by the resolution was for set things and new things need to be set. CBS and AP report that the new resolution is still unclear but would "leave U.S. troops with a limited mission as they prepare to withdraw."

In Iraq? It's Friday. Did anyone work besides McClatchy Newspapers?


Mohammed al Dulaimy (McClatchy Newspapers) reports a child was killed in a mortar attack in the Amil neighborhood of Baghdad and five other people were injured in the attack while, in the Abu Disheer neighborhood of Baghdad, a mortar attack injured three people.


Mohammed al Dulaimy (McClatchy Newspapers) reports "a U.S. military convoy killed one civilian and injured other two in Zafaraniya, Iraqi police said. The source said the patrol didn't stop after the shooting and the man who was killed was walking on the side road."


Mohammed al Dulaimy (McClatchy Newspapers) reports five corpses were discovered in Baghdad.

Today, the
US military announced: "Three Soldiers assigned to Multi-National Force-West were killed Feb. 22 while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar Province."

agustin aguayo
ehren watada
antonia juhaszraed jarrar