Riverbend has a question for America

The United States has ended its physical search for weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in Iraq, which was cited by the first administration of President George W Bush as the main reason for invading the country, the White House has said.

Why does this not surprise me? Does it surprise anyone? I always had the feeling that the only people who actually believed this war was about weapons of mass destruction were either paranoid Americans or deluded expatriate Iraqis- or a combination of both. I wonder now, after hundreds and hundreds of Americans actually died on Iraqi soil and over a hundred-thousand Iraqis are dead, how Americans view the current situation. I have another question- the article mentions a "Duelfer Report" stating the weapons never existed and all the intelligence was wrong. This report was supposedly published in October 2004. The question is this: was this report made public before the elections?

Did Americans actually vote for Bush with this knowledge?

The rest of the story

Riverbend is a 25 year old Iraqi woman who has been blogging from Iraq since 2003. Her identity has remained concealed for her own protection. She has been a valued source of information for me and many others as to what is happening in Iraq. I read this morning her post will be made into a book due out in March 2005. I wish her all the best. Her blog is here.


i sent her an email, inviting her to join us. i hope that's ok with everyone 

Posted by angiekruger
1/27/2005 04:48:00 pm  
I can tell you're not a procrastinator, Angie. LOL
Just do it! I think it's a great idea. :) 

Posted by Dianne
1/27/2005 05:05:00 pm  
Anyone know if this woman is really in Iraq? Do you know if I am really in TX? How do you know? Just because a person writes articulatly doesn't mean that that makes them trustworthy. Blindly using someone's blog as your 'inside" info into something a world away, while not being able to check the authenticity of the information, smacks of the same arrogance that I have heard others on this site accuse Mechelle of.

If you do have inside information on who she is and that she is credible, then say that. You can say that without having to say WHO she is or endangering her.

Posted by Catonine
1/27/2005 07:45:00 pm  
Catonine, aren't you just as blindly getting your information from a place just as un-check-able? Have you lately checked the authenticity of the news you are reading? And exactly how have you accomplished this? Please let us know.
The question is, why wouldn't she be in Iraq? If you read her blog, you start to realize that it would be quite difficult to fictiously come up with the kind of minutiae and detail that she does. It doesn't appear that you have read it at all.
Also, I don't recall anyone calling Mechelle "arrogant."


Posted by Sarah
1/27/2005 08:50:00 pm  
"The question is this: was this report made public before the elections?

Did Americans actually vote for Bush with this knowledge?"

Good question. I wouldn't know since I wasn't in the US at the time. Perhaps our American readers can answer the question. Anyone? 

Posted by WhyNot
1/27/2005 08:56:00 pm  
Yes, I know she is in Iraq or I wouldn't have posted the article. I do nothing blindly my friend. I keep up with at least 40 different bloggers who live in Iraq. You don't accept that..oh well.
Did you look at her site taking time to go through it and read her story? If you didn't before posting this than that indeed smacks of arrogance.
As for any arrogance directed toward Mechelle I don't think there has been until Mechelle herself said something she later apologized for.

Do you think anyone would be publishing her book if they did not know she was legitimate? The truth about Iraq may be hard to swallow but it's truth none-the-less.  

Posted by Dianne
1/27/2005 08:57:00 pm  
To save you time searching through her very lengthy archives here is the link to the very beginning of her blog.It's always good to start at the beginning.



Posted by Dianne
1/27/2005 09:10:00 pm  
Cantonine, 2 things:

1) I have a problem with this statement of yours:

"...smacks of the same arrogance that I have heard others on this site accuse Mechelle of.".

Care to explain? Use specific examples please. I'm curious and intrigued.

2) IMO, the main point of the post was the following question - which is an equally valid one, whether the author does live in Iraq or not:

"was this report made public before the elections?

Did Americans actually vote for Bush with this knowledge?"

Since you claim to live in Texas and are thus directly concerned, perhaps you'd like to address the topic and give us your personal answer to this very simple question. It would be a lot more fruitful than engaging in a polemic in total darkness about the author's place of living. 

Posted by WhyNot
1/27/2005 09:14:00 pm  
Well, ... I'll call Mechelle arrogant, better yet I'll add not only is she arrogant she's probably ugly too, I'll bet she asked catonine this question ... so, this is probably her fault also.

And yes Dianne, we both went and read it, and it's hard to read, but I couldn't help questioning it, but please understand it just my nature to question everything ... even though today I've probably said somewhere that I don't care about facts ... I guess I lie a lot too. We thought of WhyNot and how he seems to type such good English, and the fact one would never know he wasn't an American if he didn't tell us. We didn't just question that it might be not what it says it is, we questioned ourselves on the questions we had about it, and argued both sides. My sweet friend has a habit of just going straight to the source and spitting things out ... one of the reason I love her and my husband doesn't. I just don't trust what I see or hear anymore without proof ... proof is hard to come by these days. Question everything, it's just what I do, sometimes just for fun ... cause I'm sick like that. Catonine is my friend and she was just trying to defend me ... it's true, you've none been arrogant to me until I offended one of you by accident ... I wouldn't say it's arrogance, you're pissed and that's fair.  

Posted by Mechelle
1/28/2005 01:35:00 am  
I question things also, Mechelle. But, when I understand the truth and it is out there if you bother to look, I accept it even when it goes against what I would like to believe. And guess what..I don't lie. That's right..not ever. If I can't tell the truth I don't say anything. My drunken sod of a dad did teach me a few good things. He said when you tell a lie you have to remember it. You never have to remember the truth.

I happen to have so much respect for this young Iraqi woman blogging in the midst of war. How sad that the first response that you and Cantonine have of her is whether she's playing a game or trying to fool someone.

Perhaps you've gotten so use to lies that you don't recognize the truth.  

Posted by Dianne
1/28/2005 01:52:00 am  
Riverbend not being a genuine Iraqi blogger has been the object of a lengthy, constantly resurging right wing disinformation campaign.

While before, I could only make the test of ethics, which told me that because the ones who smeared her were behaving like assholes in general they must also be lying, we now actually have the proof.

A book doesn't get published over the internet, you know. The fact that it has a recognized publisher with a reputation at stake, a genuine epilogue written by Riverbend, and a place at Amazon


affirms any legitimacy that might not have satisfied the rightwing before.

Ergo, I can claim with more justification that Bush isn't actually living in the US than I can claim that Riverbend isn't actually living in Iraq. Pwned. 

Posted by Arancaytar
1/28/2005 02:08:00 am  
Riverbend not being a genuine Iraqi blogger....

I've been reading her for so long and there has never been a doubt in my mind she was real. No one could have written with such feeling and factual knowledge without actually being there.

Thanks for dropping in and sharing your thoughts. It's appreciated. I'll drop by your place soon. :) 

Posted by Dianne
1/28/2005 02:17:00 am  

Thank you for clearing the issue up. Now Michelle and Catonine can perhaps actually get back on topic and address the issue raised in the first place, i.e.:

"was this report made public before the elections?

Did Americans actually vote for Bush with this knowledge?".
Well? What was your personal experience, girls? These are 2 simple questions, and each only takes a Yes or a No to answer. 

Posted by WhyNot
1/28/2005 02:20:00 am  
The answer to the question, unfortuanetly, is YES. Americans DID vote for Bush with this knowledge. And here's why: Bush continued to drum that Iraq does have WMD, depsite what his own inspector said. I rememeber having lunch with some friends and the conversation inevitably turned to the election. Myself and another person started trying explain to B. about the Dulfeur (sp?) report. He retorted "that's B.S. Bush said..." and there you have it. No matter what the facts are, no matter how many reports, pictures of soldiers abusing prisoners, pictures of orphans, insiders, terrorist attacks on our troops, etc., come out or happen, they are sheep and will believe the ear that Bush is whispering in rather than the eyes that could help them see the truth.  

Posted by angiekruger
1/28/2005 02:38:00 pm  
It is a cross between willful ignorance, and lack of access to news sources beyond cable television, with it's constant barrage of sound bytes and outright propaganda. Whynot and Dianne, have you seen Outfoxed, yet? I don't know how many years it has been since you have watched television news here in the US, but it has gotten much worse, much angrier, than it used to be, with false "debates" between shouting heads and literally cutting the mike from anyone who dares to speak against the Republican party line. Add to that the incessant advertising, and you have brainwashing indeed. 

Posted by Sarah
1/28/2005 06:01:00 pm  



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