Even more beautiful is the fact that this is coming out of the office responsible for manufacturing the mendacious pablum about how delightful life is now in Iraq...
Sample the following for yourself:
"19. (SBU) Staff members say they daily asses how to move safely in public. Often, if they must travel outside their own neighborhoods, they adopt the clothing, language, and traits of the area. In Jadriya, for example, one needs to conform to the SCRII/Badr ethic; in Yusufiya, a strict Sunni conservative dress code has taken hold. Adhamiya and Salihiya, controlled by the secular Ministry of Defense are not conservative. Moving inconspicuously in Sadr City requires conservative dress and a particular lingo. Once upscale Mansur district, near the Green Zone, according to one employee, by early June was an "unrecognizable ghost town."[emphasis mine]." Boy good thing that freedom is on the march huh? Because otherwise, this might appear to be a complete clusterfuck of the Nth magnitude.
20. (SBU) Since Samarra, Bagdadis have honed these survival skills. Vocabular has shifted to reflect new behavior. Our staff -- and our contacts -- have become adept in modifying behavior to avoid "Alasas," informants who keep an eye out for "outsiders" in neighborhoods. The Alasa mentality is becoming entrenched as Iraqi security forces fail to gain public confidence.
21. (SBU) Our staff report that security and services are being rerouted through "local providers" whose affiliations are vague. As noted above, those who are admonishing citizens on their dress are not known to the residents. Neighborhood power providers are not well known either, nor is it clear how they avoid robbery or targeting. Personal safety depends on good relations with the "neighborhood" governments, who barricade streets and ward off outsiders. The central government, our staff says, is not relevant; even local mukhtars have been displaced or coopted by militias. People no longer trust most neighbors.
But from what I understand, Liberty is always a bit untidy.
Read the entire document though. It gives quite a different view of life on the ground in Bagdad from the Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory world of candy and rainbows that East Blogistan wants us to beleive. "Yeah, sure it's a little different from our waking world, but its a fantasy land of all our American dreams nonetheless. Remember, inside every Hadji Prune Merchant and Towelhead Goatherd is a loyal American just waiting to bust out."
According to these people who live and breath this daily, in fear of just being seen going to work, this place has officially become a MadMax movie, complete with the marauding gangs tear assing around a desert wasteland in search of other people's petrol.
Well, I hate to tell you Blogistan, but this particular dispatch is not from a bunch of limp-wristed, candy-ass, American-hating cheese-eaters from Franceataxachusettestan, but from Condi's own people in the spin machine there on the ground. From what it sounds like is that in spite of any progress we are making in killing people who oppose American policy, the quality of life in Bagdad doth still sucketh with a mighty and most terrible wind to the extent that most of these people haven't known since Saddam was in power.
Yeah, I'm personally glad the Saddam is about to suck the pipe, and that Abu Musab al-Shithead isn't going to blow up any more wedding parties. But that certainly doesn't seem to be solving any real problems for real Iraqis...
If I was a cynic, I would be tempted to say that it is looking like perhaps we never intended to really solve any of those problems.
I would say that ... if I was a cynic...