Don’t believe the hype

Don’t believe the hype

The Iraq resistance is stiffening, not softening, as the Bush propaganda machine would have you believe. Witness this report from Ramadi, a regional capital in Iraq.

Ramadi. This may be the most dangerous city in Iraq.

Though battles in places such as Fallujah and Najaf have gotten far more attention, the Marine battalion in this provincial capital has encountered the most deadly combat fighting and logged the highest number of casualties of any U.S. battalion since the war in Iraq began.

In the past four months of fighting, the 2nd Battalion of the 4th Marine Regiment – nicknamed “The Magnificent Bastards” – has had 31 killed and 175 wounded, roughly 20% of its 1,000-man fighting strength.

In an interview a few weeks before his death, <Sgt. Kenneth> Conde described the rebels Marines fight in Ramadi. “They were young just like me. Fighting for something different, something I don’t understand, something they believe in,” he said. “And that’s the worst kind of enemy.”

In his mess hall remarks, <Maj. Gen. James Mattis> Mattis told Marines, “If we don’t hold the government center, if we don’t hold the provincial capital, the rest of the province goes to hell in a handbasket.”