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Landing at the Iraqi Blogodrome

Crimson rain,vermillion mane
And few people walking, few people sane
From Carmine and Cardinal to Persian Red
To Falu to Gules to just a Red, plain!

From Scarlett of screens and the Five of Maroon
Alluding all voices and blurring your noon
You wonder and ponder then what to do
It goes on and goes on then red comes your moon!

There in the menu, Rouge comes some Wine
Harvesting little heads a drink that is fine
Hue from Sangria to justly Cerise
I serve you Grails then your soul is mine!

From brighter to darker, Red shades of blood
Of Rosso Corsa to the roads they all flood
So speedy, so fierce of Fire Engine flames
To a crash in red, and ends in a thud!

In brighter or darker, all shades of Red
Could come your joy or what you dread!

Shades of Red by Pumpkin Nibbler

As far as politics is concerned, it seems as if three years have been crammed into a single week. The week in politics follows how Iraqi bloggers have responded to the seismic shifts. For a change, only happy stories in the words from the street and if you read to the end find out what really goes on in the mind of an undergraduate university student.

If you read no other blogs this week read these:

Prompted by a reaction from his friend to a video of the everyday horror in Iraq, Baghdad Treasure collects the most powerful stories he has seen in the Iraqi blogs since the war started. He writes “I am going to be speechless and leave the podium for the courageous Iraqi bloggers to talk about one of the dozens of the horrifying incidents they went through since the invasion in 2003. But keep in mind that each story is one incident that is still happening everyday for hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people.” Essential reading..

As the civil war grinds on the front lines are constantly shifting. This week it moved to Nabil's neighbourhood:

3 terrifying days had passed in Adhamiah District (Sunni district), tons of mortars had fell on the area….the targets were random…about 50 innocent people were killed..hunderds are injured…lots of houses are fully destroyed…streets are ruined…..

As what the people in that district said..that gunmen are surrounding the area…killing people..shooting mortars randomly…and we can do nothing to stop them…

‘Too little too late’ does not even begin to describe the inadequacy of the government reaction…

Maliki goes on Tv screen…says that he opened an investigation on from where these mortars are being fired…

If you want to gain a feeling of what it is like to live on the front lines look no further. Baghdad Treasure receives an email from his friend Ahmed detailing seven days of hell in his area of Baghdad. Well, maybe worse, “At least you could be able to get the hell out of hell”, Ahmed writes.

The Week in Politics

Its only been a week and Iraqi Politics has been turned on its head. Saddam has been sentenced to death, the architect of the war has resigned, Bush is eating humble pie and the Americans are seriously considering talking to the ‘Axis of Evil’.

The changes have left some bloggers struggling to keep up. Omar at Iraq the Model writes: “I'm truly shocked to see this unprecedented level of impotent thought coming out from London and from no less than Blair. … Not only that, he's going to ask Washington to do that same and it seems the latter is considering it. Am I missing something here or what?” And Iraqi Pundit cannot understand the silence from the Democrats to mockery from Al-Qaeda and Iran of America after their election victory:

Al Qaeda and Iran are both gloating over the U.S. election results … The White House has declined to comment on these statements, but what about the Democrats? Doesn't it behoove the Democrats to correct the claim that their ascension to power is good news for the enemies of the U.S.? … Speak up, Democrats, or Al Qaeda and the Iranian mullahs will find your silence only too eloquent.

Others are just plain happy. Baghdad Dweller congratulates the Iraqi Insurgency and American voters for bring down Rumsfeld and the news made Abu Khalil just a little optimistic for the first time in a year. He writes:

I listened carefully to what George Bush ,, had to say! It brought an unfamiliar warmth to my old heart to see that man, who brought so much death and destruction to my country, broken. He couldn't hide that. It was written all over him!

Another of the President's Men going down? Rummy, who had the President's full confidence? Arrogant, murderous, contemptuous Rummy?

I am not a Democrat. But those two items made my day.

Can an Iraqi hope now? Perhaps a little.

Ibn al Rafidain responds to one of Bush's speeches where he said:

“… [American and Iraqi forces] cleared neighborhoods of terrorists and death squads”

Ibn al Rafidain disagrees, giving strong examples, saying that terrorists are training a new generation of thugs in the same way Saddam used to by coaching children to take part in acts of violence yet there has been no attempt to investigate the killings.

A last word on Saddam's death sentence comes from LORD who gives an alternative Iraqi point of view that should be heard. He is, to put it lightly, not happy:

This is was not a happy moment for me, it was a shameful moment. Don’t get me wrong, I only want justice to be done, this, sadly, was not justice, it was revenge. And revenge, my dear friends, will lead us nowhere. An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind. ,,, To every Iraqi who is happy about this verdict, I ask this… how are you better than Saddam? How is Hakim, Maliki, Jafari, Dulaimi better than Saddam? How is bush better than Saddam? Again, I am not happy, I am shamed. This verdict means we are still not ready to move on. This verdict means we don’t agree on things we agree upon. I am sorry, but I am not happy.

Words from the Streets

At least in Basrah things appear to be looking up. Fayrouz get an email from her friend Queen Amidala:

If you ask a Basrawi: Has there been any improvements in Basra lately?

If the answer is NO, then this person is either blind or not living in Basra. There is a very important improvement in Basra and the coalition forces are not involved in it. The Southern Oil Company in Basra is making a great self-effort to rehabilitate the sidewalks of all the main streets in Basra. Now, the sidewalks look much cleaner than before. It makes everybody feel there's at least an improvement in our lives. We haven't had any improvement in a very long time.

Aunt Najma gives an update of her Books for Mosul University project which is going from strength to strength. She recently received 27 books from Arkansas State University and many thanks go to Dan Cline. And even more good news:

The package arrived after a month of its shipment, in two very heavy boxes, sealed and unopened at the post office like the previous packages I've received. This proved that mail in Iraq is really working and isn't being stolen at the post office.

New blogger, Iraqi Atheist gives an alternative perspective to Fridays in Iraq. “it is by far the most boring of all days of the week” he writes. Why?

The first reason is that there is no work on it, yeah, believe it or not, people in Iraq actually miss school or work since they're their only get aways of their super boring houses and the over-seen TV. …

One other reason Friday is so boring in here is because of the sermon and the prayer that is practiced by muslims, my house is surrounded by several big mosques one sunni and two shiite, and we have to listen to them for 4 or 5 hours reading Quran and praying and preaching mental inanition. Also no vehicles are allowed to run all that boring time so we are locked inside our houses.

Well I hope I get through Friday one piece, you never know when one side tries to missile the other and poor innocent civilians may die…

And Finally

Riot Starter is turning out to be a serial blogger. Since starting university she declares that she has stopped blogging as herself but is now blogging as Pumpkin Nibbler. And her new blog follows the conversations and desires off her group of first-year university students. Her description is truly frightening. Are they really all that shallow? …

Chopstick was looking really upset when she'd heard the news that Tall Cute Guy might be seeing Tall Cheap Girl. She actually hit me on the head with the binder, working by the quote “DO kill the messenger”.

Tall Cute Guy and Tall Cheap Girl don't seem to be getting along. She didn't get the name out of the blue, she's throwing himself all over him, and he occasionally seems like he will throw up all over her. Chopstick sees that, Chopstick keeps hitting me with the binder. Chopstick finally takes a swing at me and goes home. Meanwhile Pointe is wondering what the fuss is about, Tall Cute Guy is an ordinary looking guy, Tall Cheap Girl is just cheap. They're too concieted. Why is Chopstick upset?

Betty Boop, meanwhile, is too busy hitting on a Medicine Senior. Doing an excessive amount of sighing, accidental brushing (If, by any means, accidental means willful). The senior, Carter, keeps covering his face and wishing the ground would open up and swallow one of them, preferably her.

At which point I run out of the blogodrome screaming.

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