News Release

One Year After the Fall of Saddam: * Iraqi Uprising * A Vietnam Scenario?

MOHAMAD BAZZI
Currently in Baghdad, Bazzi is Middle East bureau chief for Newsday and is available for a limited number of interviews. He recently won the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism. The award specifically cited stories Bazzi wrote in July 2003 “that helped explain the driving forces behind the Iraqi insurgency…. At a time when U.S. officials were denying that they faced an organized guerilla campaign, Bazzi revealed details about the militia’s inner workings that contradicted the White House’s official line…. Bazzi’s report on their personal stories suggested that the U.S. could face a jihadist movement in Iraq similar to the one that drove the Soviet Union out of Afghanistan in the 1980s.” Bazzi also received the first Daniel Pearl Award from the South Asian Journalists Association.

RAHUL MAHAJAN
Currently in Baghdad, Mahajan is regularly posting to a blog at the above web page. He is author of the book Full Spectrum Dominance: U.S. Power in Iraq and Beyond. Mahajan said today: “What’s happening in Iraq is a qualitative turning point in the occupation. There are two very striking developments. One that has gotten a fair amount of notice is the Sunni-Shia unity which is now going beyond rhetorical pronouncements. Sunnis and Shia are now fighting together in some areas against U.S. forces. The other qualitative shift is massive attempts at civil disobedience, most notably people trying to break through the American checkpoint at Fallujah with food, medicine and blood.”
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BASSAM HADDAD
ADAM SHAPIRO
Haddad and Shapiro are among the filmmakers of the forthcoming documentary “About Baghdad.” There will be a preview of it on Friday, April 16 at American University in D.C.
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CARL CONETTA
Co-director of the Project on Defense Alternatives, Conetta wrote the report “Disappearing the Dead: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Idea of a ‘New Warfare.'” He said today: “All told, it is fair to say that approximately 17,000 people have been killed on all sides in the Iraq war to date, including both combatants and non-combatants.”
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JERRY STARR
In an op-ed piece that appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette nearly a year ago (April 30), Starr wrote that in Iraq “the real challenge always has been political, not military.” During the 1980s, Starr — director of the Center for Social Studies Education — organized a group of about 100 scholars, veterans and teachers to produce “The Lessons of the Vietnam War,” which he describes as “still the leading college and secondary school curriculum on the subject.” Starr said today: “During the Vietnam War, the U.S. public was deluded into thinking it was going to be quick and easy; the same has happened in Iraq. We were told we would be greeted as liberators. Over the last year we have been told that the resistance was the work of non-Iraqis, or Al Qaeda, or disgruntled Ba’ath members, or Sunnis concerned with losing their power. It’s clear now that there’s real resistance in the Shia community…. U.S. fatalities are of course not as high as the height of the Vietnam War. Still, guerilla resistance of the magnitude we are seeing could not be as pervasive and effective as it is without the tacit cooperation of the population. This is a Vietnam scenario.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; David Zupan, (541) 484-9167