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A city in ruins, sky thick with smoke: 'let's kick ass ... the American way'
guardian.co.uk ^ | Sunday November 14, 2004 | Lindsey Hilsum

Posted on 11/14/2004 7:57:55 PM PST by crushelits

In the huge, muddy field which serves as a forward base, Major-General Richard Natonski prepared his troops for the battle ahead. 'We're goin' in to raise the Eye-raqi flag above Falluja - to give it back to the Fallujans,' he shouted, the eyes of the entire 1st Marine Division on him.

Pausing to remember the marine corps who fought in Vietnam, Korea and the two world wars, they then stood to attention and launched into the marine hymn.

'Only two songs send a shiver up my spine,' said one marine, his face scored with the pockmarks and confidence of youth. 'The marine hymn, and that song by Toby Keith after 9/11 which says "we're gonna kick you up the ass - that's the American way".'

Then the unit was on its way to war. Twenty-five behemoths - tanks and amphibious assault vehicles - lumbered through the desert towards the small, poor, dusty city which has become the symbol of America's failure in Iraq. The idea that Falluja will one day rank as a military victory to rival Hue City, Vietnam, may at present seem ludicrous - but such is the significance the Americans place on this battle.

They need to wrest back Falluja not simply to quell the insurgency but also to show the 'hajis' - as they call the rebels - that they cannot match the mighty US Army.

'After we take Falluja, the terrorists will have no sanctuary, nowhere to hide,' said Major General Natonski, commander of the 1st Marine Division.

No soldier can fight unless he hates the enemy - which makes the message that this is all for the Iraqi people difficult to absorb.

'I guess there are some good people - it's jus' that we don' have nothin' to do with them,' mused a marine as he and his colleagues sorted their kit and cleaned their M16 assault rifles. 'I see the little kids in the cars and I feel sorry for them, but when they turn 16 they're evil.'

On Sunday night they slept in the desert - infantry under the skies, trackers in vehicles. By the time they woke on Monday, other units had seized the hospital and installations on the west of the Euphrates. But the main assault east of the river was still to come.

As they advanced on the city's north-western outskirts, black smoke from earlier artillery and bombing barrages smeared the horizon. On entering Falluja, marines burst into an apartment building, evacuating residents. A huddle of women and children were shepherded away, the women pulling their headscarves tighter, the children staring wide-eyed at the huge, muddy green juggernauts standing outside their home.

At a railway, the column came to a halt. The road bridge beneath could be booby trapped; or there could be an ambush lying in wait. Explosives were laid across the rails and two holes were blown in the breach - one as a feint, one for real. Engines roaring, the huge vehicles then rolled up and over the railway embankment and into a cemetery, where they parked up until dawn.

The following day, the real fighting began. Over the week, the two units I'm accompanying have lost at least two marines and seen several injured in the push through the Jolan district, a rebel stronghold. Captain Brian Chontosh says about a dozen men have been captured and a similar number killed. 'The resistance is in pockets,' he adds. 'There's nowhere for them to go now but jail or Allah.'

The resistance is heard but not seen. On the first day, every time a helicopter gunship flew over, it would meet a barrage of AK-47 fire as the insurgents took wild pot shots. The fire simply alerted the Americans to their positions. By the second day, airpower was scarcely used at all. It was the turn of the foot soldiers, amphibious vehicles providing covering fire.

Marines went house to house, knocking down doors, searching for insurgents and arms. Jolan is deserted. It's possible that insurgents forced people from their houses weeks ago.

One man said they had forced him to keep arms in his house, threatening to take him to the rebel leader Omar Hadid to have his throat slit if he refused. He knelt blindfolded against a wall, waiting for the marines to take him for interrogation by the omi nously-named 'exploitation teams'. Intelligence from prisoners has been vital in locating arms stores.

The amphibious vehicles push down walls, and street stalls and cars go up in spectacular explosions. The attitude is that overwhelming force is necessary.

In one house, marines came across the bodies of five Iraqi men, shot in the back of the head. Their story will probably never be known. Much of Falluja is now in ruins. Every day, the marines open up with mortars, mini grenade launchers, machine guns and tank rounds, aiming to kill anyone hiding behind a wall or in a house.

On Friday, in the debris, they found a family: mother, father and five children. Alive. 'We heard on the radio it would be safer to stay at home,' said Usil Abdul, nursing her baby. The children sat on a sofa in a house marines had taken as a base. They accepted sweets and drinks and chatted to soldiers, seemingly unfazed by four days of bombing and mortar fire.

Other residents may be less sanguine when they return to see the wreckage. Marines lounge in the armchairs of Falluja's elite, blowing smoke rings and eating snacks. One stuck a paper flower behind his ear and posed for the camera before changing his mind - 'I don't want people to think I'm gay!'

Walls have been destroyed to clear lines of fire and terraces are littered with spent cartridge cases, rubble and half-eaten ready-to-eat meals. While some may blame the insurgents for bringing this upon the city, many will point to the Americans.

Despite reports of 'heavy fighting', the overwhelming majority of the firing has been one way. Twenty four US soldiers have died and more than 200 injured. An unknown number of Iraqi soldiers have also died. But the resistance in Falluja was sporadic. Insurgent leaders probably fled several weeks before the onslaught. The marines will claim this as a major triumph in the war on terror but if the insurgency merely shifts elsewhere, they may find Falluja is an empty victory.


TOPICS: Front Page News
KEYWORDS: fallujah; iraq; kickass; theamericanway; tobykeith

1 posted on 11/14/2004 7:57:56 PM PST by crushelits
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To: crushelits

Such sour grapes...too bad.


2 posted on 11/14/2004 8:00:03 PM PST by CWOJackson
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To: crushelits

Wot, no barf alert?


3 posted on 11/14/2004 8:00:27 PM PST by jocon307 (Jihad is world wide. Jihad is serious business. We ignore global jihad at our peril.)
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To: crushelits

Please, no more UK garbage.


4 posted on 11/14/2004 8:00:56 PM PST by silent_jonny (Victory is sooooo sweet!)
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To: crushelits

AMERICA---F*** YEAH!!


5 posted on 11/14/2004 8:01:15 PM PST by lawgirl (Proud 2 time voter for George W. Bush as of 7:21 AM CST, November 2, 2004. LUVYA DUBYA!!)
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To: crushelits

Sigh, more liberal-speak puke from the leftie-liberal Guardian. (yawn)


6 posted on 11/14/2004 8:01:46 PM PST by Ciexyz (Bush still rules. The sun shines over America.)
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To: lawgirl

OOOHHHH Yeah. I second that emotion. LOL.


7 posted on 11/14/2004 8:02:33 PM PST by Miss Behave (There's a WMD hidden in Suha's double chin.)
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To: crushelits

The MsM really somewhere deep down believe that if theislamorats stayed and fight they would win...It just kills them the US military is so superior,in all aspects of war, air artillery,open country.close quarters,house to house,they just can't believe it. It is actually funny to watch.


8 posted on 11/14/2004 8:04:57 PM PST by nothernlights
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To: crushelits
Hope someone can tell the Marines that Lindsey Hilsum is embedded with what he's writing about them.
9 posted on 11/14/2004 8:05:49 PM PST by ml1954
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To: crushelits

The good old Guardian is still at it,eh?


10 posted on 11/14/2004 8:06:14 PM PST by Mears
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To: crushelits
Hey libs and you Dummies over at DU, the Clintons are off for the Holidays, talking points from the second echelon are coming in loud and clear.

(And no I would not question your patriotism, judgment, deviant sexual past or lack of a family tree)
11 posted on 11/14/2004 8:06:17 PM PST by TexasTransplant (It is UNAmerican to put the UN before America)
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To: crushelits

"Over the week, the two units I'm accompanying have lost at least two marines and seen several injured in the push through the Jolan district, a rebel stronghold. Captain Brian Chontosh says about a dozen men have been captured and a similar number killed." This Hilsum 'journalist' needs to be found trembling in a basement, accompanied by the 'insurgents' he appears to admire ... if he doesn't lose his head to the insurgents before Americans arrive. The Guardian isn't one of my favorite British rags, BTW.


12 posted on 11/14/2004 8:07:46 PM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote life support for others.)
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To: Ciexyz

I hate these reporters as much as I hate the terrorists and I want the same thing to happen to them that is happening to the terrorists.


13 posted on 11/14/2004 8:07:59 PM PST by vbmoneyspender
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To: crushelits
My oh my, what a load of tripe disguised as 'color'.

the small, poor, dusty city which has become the symbol of America's failure in Iraq. I am guessing there are a few hundred thousand dead Iraqis who were less than happy with Saddam's "success" in Iraq. And a few million Iraqis with renewed hope now that might quibble with the whole failure thing.

They need to wrest back Falluja not simply to quell the insurgency but also to show the 'hajis' - as they call the rebels - that they cannot match the mighty US Army Well, all fine and dandy, but didn't he just interview some Marines? Was there another DOD reorganization that I missed?

'I guess there are some good people - it's jus' that we don' have nothin' to do with them,' mused a marine Of course, the Guardian will be sure to show you that the barbaric Yanks all talk like Gomer Pyle with a blood fetish; I wonder how much they 'accent' comments from Americans they agree with. Wait, I forgot; there are none.

One stuck a paper flower behind his ear and posed for the camera before changing his mind - 'I don't want people to think I'm gay!' Probably caught a winsome glance from the Guardian reporter and felt a little icky all the sudden...

14 posted on 11/14/2004 8:08:03 PM PST by AzSteven
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To: crushelits

By this reasoning getting all the terror thugs on the run with nowhere to sleep or hide after a series of such "empty victories" will really be hollow. There will be an almost complete reduction of their attacks and that will be really "empty" in the eyes of the press. They they'll write about how even though we've reduced the attacks to insignificance, it's not a real victory because we could have done it more "gently."


15 posted on 11/14/2004 8:08:35 PM PST by AmericanVictory (Should we be more like them, or they like us?)
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To: crushelits
'We're goin' in to raise the Eye-raqi flag above Falluja . . . "

Curious to know how this "reporter" could divine the speaker's spelling.

16 posted on 11/14/2004 8:08:59 PM PST by Fester Chugabrew
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To: Fester Chugabrew
'We're goin' in to raise the Eye-raqi flag above Falluja . . . "

Curious to know how this "reporter" could divine the speaker's spelling.

I don't know about spelling, but I can divine the reporter's smug arrogance.

17 posted on 11/14/2004 8:12:56 PM PST by silent_jonny (Victory is sooooo sweet!)
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To: crushelits
"The marines will claim this as a major triumph in the war on terror but..."

Is this how a victory won by the blood of patriots will be stolen by the lies of leftwing pencil pushers?

18 posted on 11/14/2004 8:13:41 PM PST by drpix
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To: crushelits
While some may blame the insurgents for bringing this upon the city, many will point to the Americans.

And most of them are already employed by The Guardian.

19 posted on 11/14/2004 8:17:38 PM PST by spodefly (I've posted nothing but BTTT over 1000 times!!!)
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To: crushelits
"No soldier can fight unless he hates the enemy - which makes the message that this is all for the Iraqi people difficult to abso.."

I this meant to be a "fact" ? Leftist garbage...from a socialist leftist American loathing rag of a paper!

20 posted on 11/14/2004 8:18:59 PM PST by lawdog
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To: crushelits

I'm sorry if I blow up here for a minute, but I am so sick and tired of the media, both U.S. and International, consistently trashing our military. These brave men and women are putting their lives on the line and smashing the bad guys all over the world while the rest of the world (save the Coalition) cowers in fear. Sadly, there have been casualties in Fallujah, but they have been thankfully lighter than feared. But, the a--wipes in the MSM start their broadcasts with the body count. Other than ignoring the MSM and mocking them, what else can we do?


21 posted on 11/14/2004 8:20:16 PM PST by eddiebear (O tyrant, tremble at the mere mention of my name!)
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To: crushelits
But the resistance in Falluja was sporadic. Insurgent leaders probably fled several weeks before the onslaught.

Uh. Except for 1600 of them.

22 posted on 11/14/2004 8:21:35 PM PST by sam_paine (X .................................)
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To: crushelits

Can this Captain Brian Chontosh be the same who heroically won the Navy Cross during earlier combat in Iraq?


23 posted on 11/14/2004 8:23:05 PM PST by CauseforAlarm
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To: crushelits

Guardian pecker-envy alert.


24 posted on 11/14/2004 8:23:38 PM PST by SquirrelKing ("I have to march because my mother couldn't have an abortion." - Maxine Waters (D-California)
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To: lawgirl

Freedom costs a buck-oh-five!


25 posted on 11/14/2004 8:25:22 PM PST by Uncle Miltie (Democrat Obstructionists will be Daschled!)
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To: Fester Chugabrew
Condescension by a liberal British writer about how those uneducated Yanks talk, I think.

Sorry our troops don't speak the Queen's English as they valiantly clear Falluja of terrorist scum. What has the Guardian of Manchester done for the Iraqi people today? Nothing?
26 posted on 11/14/2004 8:29:04 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: jocon307
The word look awfully dark though


Welders Glasses
The Guardian writers wear them whilst writing about our efforts in Iraq.

27 posted on 11/14/2004 8:32:40 PM PST by TeleStraightShooter (The illogical Left in our country wants to do for Iraq what the USA did for Liberia: FORGET IT!)
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To: vbmoneyspender

I agree with you. Someone should get word to our military what they are writing. They might just leave them behind in one of those houses.


28 posted on 11/14/2004 8:34:01 PM PST by marilew
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To: lawgirl
Check this out.
29 posted on 11/14/2004 8:34:57 PM PST by isthisnickcool (Gads FOX News! Shuddup about Scott Peterson already!!!!!)
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To: crushelits

Lindsey Hilsum is a woman, fuckwits. She works for Channel 4 News which I'm sure you all really hate.

BTW, after the fall of Baghdad, when she wasn't imbedded, her team came across a group of US Soldiers who had been shooting at some cars that were approaching their positions. They wouldn't let the TV crews interpreter approach the vehicles, which were near a housing area. They argued, being liberal types and the translator ran over to the cars. He came back with a little girl, maybe 5 or 6 years old, who had been shot in the head.

The US soldiers, being human beings, then took the little girl away. Lindsey later tracked her down to Kuwait weeks later, where the US medical team had patched her up and she was alive, and with her father, who had also been missing.

Maybe she told some of the marines this, and that's why I saw them protecting her the other day when they were pinned down on a roof. I also imagine that if you tried to wish a horrible death upon her in front of one of those marines, you would be picking teeth out of your shit for the next two weeks.


30 posted on 11/14/2004 8:38:10 PM PST by smallfatcat
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To: crushelits

No, no, no. They got Toby's lyric wrong. It's "We'll put a boot in your ass, it's the American way."

Least they could do is get it right.


31 posted on 11/14/2004 8:39:55 PM PST by bootless (Never Forget - And Never Again)
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To: vbmoneyspender
I hate these reporters as much as I hate the terrorists and I want the same thing to happen to them that is happening to the terrorists.

It would indeed seem as if they admire the terrorists and condescend to, if not revile, the troops.

Perhaps they would prefer to be embeds on the other side...

32 posted on 11/14/2004 8:40:27 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: crushelits

And when the black flag of islam flies from the houses of Parliament, pray, what will the Guardian then print? Verses from the koran? Edicts from the 'Guardians Against Vice and the Promotion of Virtue'?
Bless their evil taliban hearts. They have no idea what they are promoting. Straight out of left-wing, commie journalist school. Wait for it, you snivelling lying pukes. Sharia? Yep. Tell a lie and they will cut your tongue out. Can't happen too soon.
rant over....


33 posted on 11/14/2004 8:41:48 PM PST by Fred Nerks (Understand Evil: Read THE LIFE OF MUHAMMAD free pdf. Click Fred Nerks for link.)
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To: smallfatcat
Maybe she told some of the marines this, and that's why I saw them protecting her the other day when they were pinned down on a roof.

Why, then, does she write so condescendingly of her protectors?

34 posted on 11/14/2004 8:44:18 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: crushelits

I do not know if Lindsey Hilsum is a guy or gal.

But, if the Arabs take over, he/she is not going to like being circumsized again, or at all...
jagged rusty knife to bring an infidel to Islam...


35 posted on 11/14/2004 8:47:29 PM PST by Prost1
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To: okie01

"Why, then, does she write so condescendingly of her protectors?"

It's a job. She has to follow editorial policy. That's why they call them media whores...the independant ones go freelance.


36 posted on 11/14/2004 8:47:31 PM PST by Fred Nerks (Understand Evil: Read THE LIFE OF MUHAMMAD free pdf. Click Fred Nerks for link.)
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To: smallfatcat; Admin Moderator

Please watch your language. This isn't DU.

Lindsey can be a man or a woman's name in the U.S. And most of us (thankfully) don't get the U.K.'s Channel 4 News in the U.S., so we wouldn't know. CBS and CNN are bad enough.


37 posted on 11/14/2004 8:55:08 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: crushelits

No point in shooting the messenger. Fallujah is a humanitarian disaster, and most future reports will be similar in tone. I'm worried at how long Blair can hold out with Brit opinion turning so hard against the war.


38 posted on 11/14/2004 9:09:13 PM PST by beckham
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To: smallfatcat

You should try rereading the article you creep. Her sympathies clearly do not lie with our troops.


39 posted on 11/14/2004 9:12:02 PM PST by vbmoneyspender
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To: beckham
When the military kills people in a war zone it creates the very definition of a humanitarian disaster. There can never be a truly humanitarian war. All you can do is try to minimize the loss of innocent life. The innocent die in a war. No way around it. The dirty little secret is that EVEN the USA has to kill innocents in order to secure final victory. During WWII Dresden was bombed so hard the streets turned to glass. 100,000+ were killed, mostly civilians. The only way to avoid that would have been to Let Hitler alone in his raping of the continent. Then, like today, we are doing the best we can to protect ourselves and the world from totalitarianism.
40 posted on 11/14/2004 9:16:11 PM PST by glennherman (a gun in every home, gays back in the closet, Islam crushed, commies jailed, etc., ad infinitum)
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To: crushelits
"we're gonna kick you up the ass - that's the American way"

Love it
41 posted on 11/14/2004 9:17:11 PM PST by Vision ("When you trust in yourself, you're trusting in the same wisdom that created you")
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To: bootless

(They got Toby's lyric wrong. It's "We'll put a boot in your ass, it's the American way.")

Boot ? I thought it was bullet are you sure?


42 posted on 11/14/2004 9:29:48 PM PST by edchambers ("Rock n Roller with one foot in the grave")
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To: crushelits

The Guardian. What is it the "guardian" of?


43 posted on 11/14/2004 9:41:15 PM PST by Just Lori (Before you can win the peace, you have to win the WAR!!!)
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To: crushelits
We loose 30 men and kill 1,200. Incredible! No wonder the "Brave Jihadi" stick to killing women and children. Nothing like an AK47 as a force equalizer against a baby with a sucker.

Islam is a shame to Allah.

44 posted on 11/14/2004 9:53:14 PM PST by American in Israel (A wise man's heart directs him to the right, but the foolish mans heart directs him toward the left.)
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To: edchambers

I think it's "boot". Makes sense, I picture a big a$$ combat boot every time I hear that song. Besides, it's easy to dance to.


45 posted on 11/14/2004 10:00:34 PM PST by katykelly
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To: Spanaway Lori
The Guardian. What is it the "guardian" of?

Manchester, England. Despite their attempts to claim to be the Guardian of anything more.
46 posted on 11/14/2004 10:20:08 PM PST by conservative in nyc
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To: edchambers

It's definitely "boot."

--Big TK fan. :-)


47 posted on 11/14/2004 11:05:49 PM PST by bootless (Never Forget - And Never Again)
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To: crushelits
They need to wrest back Falluja not simply to quell the insurgency but also to show the 'hajis' - as they call the rebels - that they cannot match the mighty US Army. 'After we take Falluja, the terrorists will have no sanctuary, nowhere to hide,' said Major General Natonski, commander of the 1st Marine Division.

Limey doesn't know the difference between Army and THE US MARINE CORPS.

However, there are Army units in the fight, so maybe he is just trying to simplify it for the left wing "intelligencia" who read his paper.

And the blogs have noted an article where the helicopters, instead of blaring out "the ride of the Valkaries" from their loudspeakers are now blaring out "American F... Yeah" from Team America...

48 posted on 11/15/2004 4:33:36 AM PST by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: beckham
"Fallujah is a humanitarian disaster"

do you have a source for this humanitarian disaster info?

49 posted on 11/15/2004 1:53:01 PM PST by DBeers
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To: lawgirl

"AMERICA---F*** YEAH!!"

Ditto that!


50 posted on 11/26/2004 10:09:47 AM PST by jocon307 (Jihad is world wide. Jihad is serious business. We ignore global jihad at our peril.)
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