« Alan's APME Speech | Main | keep the faith, red sox nation! [Updated: New Warning Issued] »


So everybody (and by everybody I mean Tim Blair, Sean Gleason and Mudville Gazette) is talking about the For Iraq photo project. Mostly, they are making fun of it, and rightfully so. In fact, I'll be making fun of it through the magic of Photoshop soon enough. But I do think we need to address this in a serious manner, first. FOr those who haven't seen it yet, the Iraq Photo project is a group of bleeding heart liberals who scrawl heartfelt sentiments to the Iraqi people on cardboard and take photos of themselves holding the signs. And then: bq. On October 20 in Washington D.C., we will be presenting our collected photographs of ordinary Americans expressing their feelings to media organizations for broadcast and publication in Iraq. Now, at first blush you might think this is a wonderful idea. Showing the Iraqi people that we are rejoicing in their emerging freedom and share their happiness at no longer having to live under Saddam's rule - wow. But it doesn't exactly play out like that. What we have here are apologists. Example: [click for bigger] Let me insert something here, written by Zeyad at Healing Iraq.
Remember that you are completely blocked from the outside world, you only read newspapers and books allowed by the government, the rest are censored. You only watch state-sponspored tv channels. Websites that are 'unacceptable' are blocked by state-sponspored Internet providers. The government tells you that 'this is for your own good', they protect you from 'the other' which is trying to poison your thoughts, undermine your faith, and destroy your traditions. Your fellow countrymen who inadvertently step over the lines are strictly 'punished' by the state because they have become 'spies' and 'agents'. Anyone else who dares to ask for more liberties, reforms, who criticises or acts against the ruler/government/state is an enemy acting on behalf of Zionists and imperialists, or is part of a grand plan (that has been planned for centuries) against 'the revolution' or the historical role of the ummah/Caliph/Sultan/ruler/government/state. The above situation is not out of George Orwell's 1984, it is what all Iraqis for the last 50 years had to endure.
Perhaps the good people of the Iraq photo project could go tell Zeyad that they are sorry he and his family no longer have to live like that. Here's one of my favorites. The sign reads: We hold no hatred for the Iraqi people. Who does? Are they saying that those of us who are pro-war or the administration itself hates Iraqis? You can read a whole lot into one sentence and I'm sure this nice old couple really believes that our soldiers are over there fighting because we hate the citizens of Iraq. Here's another. The sign reads: We apologize for the suffering inflicted on the Iraqi people in our name. Great, we'll pass that message onto Alaa, who says: bq. Hail our true friends, the Great People of the United States of America; The Freedom giving Republic, the nation of Liberators. Never has the world known such a nation, willing to spill the blood of her children and spend the treasure of her land even for the sake of the freedom and well being of erstwhile enemies. I would like to know how the good people of Ohio who express the sentiments know just how the Iraqi people feel? Have they gone their to visit with them? Talked to them? Asked them at all? Or do they just know what their liberal brethren relay to them through the wonders of the internet and oh, so truthful sites like Indymedia and Iraq Body Count. This one says: We are all God's children. Forgive us. Forgive us. For this - bq. Today we were freed for ever from the fear that a man and his family might once again control Iraq. Is that what you are sorry for? These people are ashamed. They beg forgiveness. bq. There are so much potential for Iraq as a country not to mention the people of Iraq. Now they have tasted some freedom they will never let go of it, I am certain of that. I am extremely optimistic about the new government and the new Iraq. Is that what they are sorry for? Takes balls to apologize for bringing people out of a brutal regime. I'm not going to sit here and tell you that the war in Iraq is without its problems. Yes, I am aware of the deaths of the innocent. But the people involved in this photo project make it appear, with their words, as if we just woke up one day and decided to go kill us some Iraqis. For sport. We are not a barbaric nation. Our intentions are good. And someday, hopefully soon, our intentions will be fulfilled. Look at the picture of the child here. That child, living under Saddam's regimne, was dying from hunger. Would the folks who made those signs prefer this is the way it was left? Yes, children have died in the war. But there are 80,000 children in Iraq right now who are looking at a better future because we are liberating them. You want to see signs? Look at these signs seen in Iraq. Read the good news from Iraq here. There are eleven parts of this series so far. Eleven long pieces about the good news from Iraq. That's a lot of good news. But the people who want to apologize on behalf of the U.S. don't see that. In their complete arrogance, they overlook the amazing steps towards freedom that the citizens of Iraq are taking. It has not been easy and there are hard days ahead of them. But the members of the coalition are there to help them along, to build schools and hospitals, to train new police forces, to weed out the insurgents and terrorists who fear democracy. And yet there are people ashamed of that progress. There are people ashamed that we have taken it upon ourselves to help an oppressed nation help themselves towards a brighter future not just for Iraq, but for the Middle East. Perhaps those people are sorry for what the U.S. government has done, but they do not represent all of us. I certainly am sorry it was not a smooth, death-free process, but war never is. And without this war, the people of Iraq would still be being starved, killed, tortured, raped or just ignored by their own government. And they would be living without hope, which is something they certainly have now. You cannot build a good future without that hope and if that is what we have brought them, then I, for one, am not sorry. I am just sorry that there are American people who wish Iraq was still the way it was when Saddam was in power. These are the same class of people who want to end the war and pull the troops out now, leaving the Iraqis to fend for themselves against the warlords and terrorists who want to keep democracy at bay. Perhaps they should apologize to the hopeful citzens of Iraq for that.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Apologists:

» A Small Victory: from The Shape of Days
Michele Catalano has a fantastic article this morning on the subject of deeply misguided apologies. I would like to know how the good people of Ohio who express the sentiments know just how the Iraqi people feel? Have they gone [Read More]

» The Extreme Hipness of Apologizing to Saddam from Pavel Bloviates
Michele has a very powerful post today (Monday, 10/18) concerning these misguided folks. [Read More]

» Two words: Mo Rons from The LLama Butchers
Tim Blair has an extensive photo essay (and some screenguard-worthy commentary) on the For Iraq Photo Project, an apparent exercise in the worst sort of Lefty self-flagillation. Look, I'll give these people some points for genuinely wanting peace, love... [Read More]

» Michele At A Small Victory Adds A Thoughtful Post from Teacher's Ramblings
I titled my earlier post, 'Terrifying' for a reason, these people really do scare me. It gives me the willies that we share the same country, but that seemed harsh to write, earlier. Michele gives voice, actually several including Zeyad's on why thes... [Read More]


Yeah, they're sorry...

sorry excuses for human beings.

Sigh. Go Sox's :)

I am sorry that more people don't think like you. Good Job, Michele


yeah, that was dope.

Personally, I think this thing is further evidence that for hardcore lefties, the rest of the world doesn't really exist. Sure, they're sending all these pictures to Iraq, but for them, that's about the equivalent of addressing letters to "Santa Claus, North Pole." It's really all about their feelings, and about looking and feeling morally superior to the rest of America, which is of extreme importance to them.

When you really look at the Left, it's amazing how parochial and small-minded they are, something that's obscured by all the "think globally, act locally" type rhetoric. But for them, "global" thinking is just a rhetorical device. If these people ever really thought about actual, living, breathing people in the third world, they'd be aghast at how their own policies would ensure those peoples' permanent poverty and oppression.

Gee, they're sorry we set people free.

The left is anything but liberal.

I'm reminded of the Dr Seuss cartoon, directed at American isolationists circa 1940:

"And the wolf came and ate up all the little children, but they were little foreign children, so it didn't matter."

That's how much these protestors really care about Iraqis.

man, those are some great chops! hahaha.

What sucks though, is that the world is gonna see those and we'll be eating lunch at the loser table with France for the rest of the year. Now we'll never get laid!

I wonder, did all of these people take their cues on what Saddam's Iraq was all about from Michael al-Moore's F911? All kite-flying, laughing kidlet and peace loving?

At least Charles Lindbergh and his America Firsters had the good taste to shut up after Pearl Harbor.

These people are not the loyal opposition, these people are on the other side. They are the moral fellow travelers of Holocaust deniers.

Perfect response at http://timblair.spleenville.com/archives/007772.php

Check out the picture on the bottom.


Peace loving yes. Kite flying and laughing. No, not much to laugh about these days. It is too blustery to fly kites.

I'd like to speak to a comment you made.

"They are the moral fellow travelers of Holocaust deniers."

I'd suggest you are the moral equivalent. Not of the deniers per se, but of the Nazis themselves. You routinely demonize the entire religion of Islam. Then we're supposed to believe you that you are concerned with the welfare of Iraqis? Do you not see how perhaps we might be skeptical?

That is such a non-argument. I don't know what Darleen has said in the past about Islam, and I don't particularly care.

But you are implying that these moonbats are right, and that nothing good has come from the war, and that no Iraqis could possibly be happy about the outcome.

Why would these facts, one way or the other, be dependent on the motives and/or belief system of anyone who is in favor of this war? That is illogical.

Like much of the Left, you seem to consider the people of Iraq to be an indistinguishable mass of people, with but one mind ("bombs bad, peace good").

Do you wonder why we do not take you seriously?

Unlike you & you ilk, millions of Iraqis actually understand that the only way Saddam Hussein would relinquish power was at gun point. They ought to know. They had been on the receiving end of SH's guns for three decades, and they realize that such a man would never go willingly. It's common sense.


You are welcome to do any search of any remarks I've said here, on my own blog or any numerous blogs I've commented on.

I am very specific. I have never attacked the religion of Islam. I have attacked Islamism which is the radical ideology that is evidenced by violent jihadism. Nazism was a radical totalitarian ideology that was quasi-religious in its appeals to occultism and glorious death over life. Islamism is ideologically similar. Why you would want to purposefully obfuscate that point is something you need to reflect on. Islamists themselves are very happy to tell you that they are in this until a modern worldwide Caliphate is in place and Sharia is the only law of the land. Peace? Sure, submit, convert or be destroyed. Non-moslems can "prosper" under a benevolent Islamist regime as long as they know their place as dhimmis.

Lindbergh speechified that FDR was being controlled by the Brits and Jews (doesn't THAT sound familiar) into "interfering" with Germany.

I don't find these "friends of Iraq" decrying Saddam's fall much different than the German-American Bund.

I've seen picture of gassed Kurdish villages that are as bad as anything from the Holcaust. Children fell off their bicycles and died in the street.

Bodies everywhere...

They recently dug up a mass grave where young children were executed - and the European inpectors refused to help on the grounds that this evidence might lead to the death penalty for Saddam.

I don't know who these idiots are, but if I had to guess, I'd say that an actual terrorist, islamist or Baathist put together a shell organization, wrote some literature full of lies and reqruited the dumbest pacifists with pretentions to holyness he could find. The ISM is that sort of organization. They send "peace activists" to Israel, but they're actually a front for Islamic Jihad and those sorts - and have been found hiding actual terrorists in their offices.

Yes, pacifists can be ignorant, but there's a good chance they'd be more careful and less deluded than this on their own.

I say, write the fools organizing this a note explaining how they are endangering American troops, and providing Al-Quada with free pro-terrorism propaganda. Their email:

pclark@forusa.org, iraq@forusa.org, jhyman@forusa.org

Update ...

For those that may think these people are just exhibiting sympathy for the Iraqi people and are not necessarily pro-Saddam

Check out the third picture down. Read the sign thoroughly.

Darleen thanks for the clarification. It makes a difference.

I am not for imperial wars.

I am sorry the U.S. supported Saddam when he was gassing kurds, and didn't see fit to make a statement at that time condemning the Anfal campaign.

The American Bund. I thought of them when we were protesting a notable settler at the Hillel House, Rutgers last year. The Hillel folk had a P.A. system on the front lawn decrying the evils of Islam. Truly it was very bund like.

I see a lot of name calling here, which is not surprising. I wanted a clarification from Darleen, a disavowal of racism, and got one. Thank you.

Looking back at the history of Western colonialism, wars of occupation, whether in the Arab World, or elsewhere, I've come away with a different opinion than ASV and it's visitors.

Many here have unbridled faith in the intentions of our government with regard to the invasion of Iraq, based on a lie, but it's not one that I share.

Why didn't we just put a bullet through sadam's head? Then no Iraqi's would have died. (well, one..)

earl: he wasn't easy to get at.

Maybe we'll soon have orbital lasers that for assasination - can you just imagine the hatred for America that dictators will stir up when they start to feel really threatened by us? Oh it will be amazing - it will be dangerous to travel, so many idiots will be gunning for us.

Hordes and hordes of fools the world over -even safe in Britain and France are always willing and eager to listen to some evil dictator's propagandists tell them who to hate, that's what the last few years have taught me.


I have no opinion on what happened at Rutgers because I am unfamiliar with the incident. That said, in the very few places Jewish student organizations have even been allowed to have speakers, they are the target of the so-called "Palestinian" factions, with the most vile images and messages this side of the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion." Save for some of the most extreme fringe fanatics, I have yet to hear of mainstream Jewish organizations condemning Islam in totality. But they do point out, as I do, that so-called "moderates" of Islam are conspicuous by their silence.

Amazing in democratic Israel you have competing political parties, differing activists arguing in print and in public. You don't see that on the other side. What you see is fall in line with jihad or be dragged into the street and summarily shot as a "collaborator."

And would you please stop with the canard that somehow "we" made Saddam or was his ally. Saddam's Iraq was a Soviet client. Approx 90% of all their military aid came from the Soviets. Only about 1% ever came from the US. AND our "support" was calculated to keep Iraq in a stalemate with Iran (for obvious reasons).

The US had nothing to do with Saddam's rise to power ... which he celebrated by hanging Jews in the city square.

Jewish groups on campus have speakers all the time. Palestine groups call attention to the hardship Palestinians face under an illegal occupation. In NJ, many of those active in solidarity with Palestine are also members of Anti-Racist Action. I'm glad I haven't seen any of the vile acts you have heard of, and I would fight that.

Indeed, Israel is a democracy for its Jewish Citizens. I think the main lesson that we in the U.S. can learn from Israel is that being under attack shouldn't mean suspending civil liberties.

Arab-Israelis are second class citizens. Arab Palestinians living on the West Bank and Gaza do not have any representation in the Israeli government that controls their territory.

By the way, we supported Saddam. There can be no partisan spin on the truth.

Vince...we are going off topic here (apologies, Michele) so this will be my last post on this particular issue. You are free to comment at my blog. But I cannot let your disinformation stand unchallenged.

Arab-Israelis are second class citizens


They vote, they are elected and sit on the Knesset. The ONLY thing they don't have is they don't serve in the Israeli military.

Guess what Arab-Palestinian gays do? They flee to Israel.

SHOW ME ANY Jews with any rights in Islamist theocracies, let alone any political power.

See, this is the type of disinformation that gets the Islamist-American "Bund" to have pictures of Americans apologizing for deposing a murdering tyrant. This is the type of disinformation that corrupted a naive American coed, Rachel Corrie, into a terror-enabler.

Arab-Palestinians are suffering under "occupation?"

Their choice. Have 'em take it up with Arafat and the UN.

So back on the topic of the post... what do you think those folks would do if we sent pictures of us with our own messages that said something, well, different. Think they'd include them?

As usual, lots of good stuff on ASV (I would expect no less). But are we so sure that this war was to "free the Iraqi people" Where was this argument while we were arming Saddam against the Islamists in Iran?

American foreign policy, has been, is, an always has been a fucked up, short-sighted 4-year at a time political game. The folks who pay the price are the brave people who serve in the military, and those on the receving end of the smart bombs.

Sure, Saddam was evil, and had to go, no argument there. But why now? Why not during Bush I? Isn't his existence at least PARTIALLY the fault of the US? see the following:
The Iran-Iraq war was a tragedy for Iraqis and Iranians, resulting in hundreds of thousands of casualties and immense material damage. It was sustained by an arms bazaar made up of a broad spectrum of foreign governments and corporations: British, Spanish, Italian, French, German, Brazilian, Argentinean, Chilean, North Korean, Chinese, South African, Eastern European, Israeli, American, etc., who found both combatants eager consumers of weapons, ammunition, and military technology. Iran needed U.S.-origin weapons compatible with the military infrastructure created by the U.S. during the shah's reign, could not buy them directly, and had to rely on third-party suppliers like Israel. United States Embassy in Turkey Cable from Richard W. Boehm to the Department of State. "Back Up of Transshipment Cargos for Iraq," November 21, 1980.

Hmm, yet another coalition of the willing....?

Again, let me reiterate my position. Saddam had to go, and I agree a bullet in the head would have suited me just fine.

But wasn't the US partially responsible for his creation, and long standing position in the region? I mean, he was fighting the Islamists wasn't he? W

You could argue that the US is partially responsible for his creation, but we're completely responsibly for his downfall. I think that counts for something.

I think the pictures are a good idea. It shows the Iraqi people that not all of us supported the war. I mean I can see how the pictures would offend those who were in favor of the war, but you're not the intended target. If someone were occupying my country, I'd like to know that not all we're in favor.


Truthfully, I apologize, as I didn't mean to upset you.

But I can't help saying that Rachel Corrie was run over because of the decision by the driver of the bulldozer.

There are good and bad people everywhere. I try to see people as individuals.

I'm drawn into ASV partly out of masochism, and partly because it's the only chance I get to see what the "other side" is saying. Michele is funny too (now I'm thinkin of that seen from Goodfellas "funny how?"..) She seems like a nice person. I view her as I do my wayward Neocon army sister from Texas!

There is no meeting of the minds on politics that much is true, but I can't help thinking that it does no harm to at least talk to each other on occassion.

I'll take my break from this post and ASV for awhile. Thank you very much.


But I can't help saying that Rachel Corrie was run over because of the decision by the driver of the bulldozer.
You can only not help this if you have never seen any pictures of the scene. Because unless the bulldozer operators name was Kal-El, he never saw the stupid little git.

"Remember, this is not the usual group photo so no grins or waving; rather a dignified, solemn presence of compassion."

This is my favorite part. NO SMILING. Look at all the overexaggerated frowns in those pictures. They're like snapshots of old-fashioned Melodrama scenes straight out of the 1890s.

Vince mentioned Anti-Racist Action...I have to say that they're a loathsome group of losers, and a Communist front to boot. Luckily, their numbers are tiny, but I'm quite tired of some people assuming that they must be a noble organization since they have "anti-racist" in their name. Kinda like A.N.S.W.E.R., although even dumber and more insignificant.

Damn it. Back.

ARA kicked Nazi Ass in Valley Forge. On the other hand, the Protest Warriors were a no-show.
Communist? Now that is just plain silly.

The reason that I'm so harsh on them, Vince, is out of personal experience. They were one of the most obnoxious bunch of people I've encountered, and yes, out-and-out Communists. It's strange that you're from NJ, because that's exactly the ARA chapter that I'd point to if I wanted to showcase Communist activity. I wouldn't call the ARA chapter in my city "Communist," for example; just rather silly people.

As for them fighting Nazis, call me cynical, but knowing these idiots, I have no sympathy for either side & it would be for the best if commies and nazis would just eliminate each other.


I have no sympathy for either side & it would be for the best if commies and nazis would just eliminate each other.

I would suppose that's why the Protest Warriors didn't show. Why make fun of the idiots from either side?

Saddam's main contributors were the French and the Russians. That's why they're so uncommitted. Now that the UN is now implicated in bribery and corruption in the Oil for Food programs, you'll see where the bodies were really buried, and how much the French and the Russians profited from people dying.

And speaking about people dying, NJ, have you read about the excavation of those mass graves? That the europeans refused to help because it might mean that Saddam gets the death penalty? Is that justice? His miserable, worthless life is somehow more important that the THOUSANDS he killed?

Or maybe they are afraid of what he will say. How much they are implicated.

And for these people who post their pictures, you're right, David C. All about their feelings. No one else's.

Imperial Keeper

"His miserable, worthless life is somehow more important that the THOUSANDS he killed?"

If you include the war he started against Iran, then you can count Saddam's victims at over a million perhaps two. If you don't, you must count in the HUNDREDS of thousands.

Vince--"If someone were occupying my country, I'd like to know that not all we're in favor."

So, is your attitude that you would rather be ruled by a home-grown dictator--even one as vicious as Saddam--than liberated by "foreigners?"

I'm tired of having anti-war protestors and lefties in general equated with being pro-Saddam. I've been anti-Saddam since I found out about him, back in, oh, 1984 or so. I was in college. But we didn't get rid of him then, did we? Reagan didn't get rid of him. Bush 41 didn't get rid of him. Clinton didn't get rid of him. But suddenly now, despite a dearth of evidence tying Saddam to Al-Qaeda, we get an attack of conscience and decide we need to free a nation?

You'll get no quarrel from anyone -- Saddam Hussein was a bad, bad man. It's hard to imagine that the country could be worse off without him, and yet, currently, at least in certain regions, it probably is. Because now, instead of only anti-Saddamists (and, OK, Kurds) having to fear for their lives, every Iraqi fears for his/her life.

It puzzles and frustrates me that a president who ran on an anti nation-building platform in 2000 is suddenly seen as the Great Liberator. Let's not be naive here. If we freed the Iraqis, it wasn't for their benefit. It was for ours. But so far, I don't see the windfall. What I mostly see is a lot of unintended blowback.

Lyra: Ah, so you didn't like Saddam BUT... it was better to leave him be so you could cluck in disapproval at his antics and such.


Oh, you might want to look up something called the Cold War before whingeing about why we didn't topple Saddam the instant you demanded.

Oh, and in case you weren't paying attention: Al Qaeda is not the litmus test for toppling a regime. (Even if there was some evidence linking Saddam to that group, plus a bunch of others.)

It puzzles and frustrates me that a president who ran on an anti nation-building platform in 2000 is suddenly seen as the Great Liberator.

Yeah, it's as if something happened to change his mind or something. Can't imagine what would do that. But I guess you can blame Karl Rove or something.