Skip to comments.War on Iraq Drags on for Fifth Whole Day
Posted on 03/25/2003 11:36:47 AM PST by Sir Gawain
BASRA, IRAQ- Americans awoke this morning to disappointing news. The war they had for so long anticipated is still ongoing. After months of preparation and nearly five full days of combat, the US-sponsored coalition has still yet to achieve full and complete victory. And as if that weren't enough, Pentagon officials now say the war might take as much as three or four weeks.
Adding to the Coalition's difficulties is the fact that Iraqi troops are not capitulating at the rate the news media expected. UN observers as well as representatives from neighboring Jordan have contacted members of the Hussein regime to remind them that massive surrenders are supposed to be part of the package. The Jordanians wondered if perhaps Iraqi officials had misplaced the memo that clearly explained this, but this did not seem to be the case. For some reason, these people seem committed to defending their country as well as their own fragile political status- even if it means hogging the headlines for several days or even a whole month.
On Saturday, Coalition armored divisions covered more ground in a single movement than any such group in history, and in a quarter the time. Yet the uncomfortable fact remains: almost a week has passed, and we are still at war.
The predictions of several retired military officers that the Coalition forces would be battling for Baghdad by Sunday prime time did not come to fruition, leading some to charge that the Defense department misled the public about a quick, casualty-free war.
On Monday, the key stock indices slid into negative territory for the first time in weeks amid fears of a long and protracted war in Iraq. Not surprisingly, Coalition Central Command General Tommy Franks continues to deny responsibility for the market downturn.
Already it seems Cent Com has become insecure about its failure to complete the war with Iraq on the accepted timetable. Take for example yesterday's terse and defensive exchange with NBC's John Gregory:
Gregory: So, why do you think it is that our forces have not yet been able to secure the entirety of Iraq under Coalition control? Weren't the American people led to believe that the war would be over by now?
Franks: I believe that it was the 24 hour news channels that convinced people that the war would be short and sweet. No one in any official capacity has ever indicated that.
Gregory: So, when do we plan on giving up, pulling out?
Franks: Are you high on the junk, son? It hasn't been a week yet. The President has said on several occasions that the war is still in its initial stages.
Gregory: But why? Shouldn't we be further along than 'initial stages' by now?
Franks: Of course not.
Gregory: There is certainly no need to be defensive, General Franks.
It is also becoming clear that the drawn-out war in Iraq is taking a toll on the American people. Several people we spoke with expressed a mixture of anxiety and boredom concerning the conflict.
"Are we still at war with Iraq?" complained one man. "It's Monday."
"Are we there yet?" asked another.
"Don't make me pull this war over, dammit!" shouted Franks at a recent press conference. "I've had about enough of your bellyachin'. Don't you think for a minute that I won't!"
Although anti-war protests have abated somewhat since the onset of hostilities, other types of opposition to the conflict have popped up.
Just yesterday a group of concerned citizens in Encino, California, picketed their local ABC affiliate to complain about the preemption of prime time programming.
"Don't get me wrong. I'm not pro-Hussein or anti-American," said television activist Leon McCouch. "It's just that the war has gotten so boring. It's, like, the only thing on. If they would at least flash in with blurbs about Ross and Rachel, then that would at least be something."
5 Days - War Drags On
Women and Children Most Affected
Baghdad citizens are divided over The Academy Awards; Michael Moore Booed by Shi'ites.
What idiotic, ignorant fools.
Adding to the Coalition's difficulties is the fact that Iraqi troops are not capitulating at the rate the news media would have, in their shoes.
Well, the Oscars had the lowest ratings ever. So I don't think people are bored just yet. :-)