The final presidential debate, addressing international issues, managed to promote several falsehood about U.S. foreign policy. And: The toxic legacy of the Iraq War. New research, largely unreported in U.S. media, shows alarming levels of toxic lead, heavy metals and a massive increase in birth defects in the city of Fallujah, the site of two major offensives by the U.S. military.
There is no more important question about the Iraq War than the question of how many Iraqis have died. It is impossible to truly evaluate the war or discuss where to go from here without knowing the human cost of the war, and that cost has overwhelmingly been borne by Iraqis. That's why it's so disappointing that NPR, looking back on the 5th anniversary of the war, treated this issue with either extreme sloppiness or deliberate dishonesty. Here's how NPR anchor Scott Simon introduced a segment on March 15 in which senators James Webb and Jon Kyl talked about "what [...]
Why did it take a non-journalist to ask?
Throughout the Iraq War, the mainstream media have shown little interest in documenting or quantifying the suffering of Iraqis. But a recent comment by George W. Bush provoked an unexpected round of discussion on the topic. At the close of a public event on December 12, Bush took questions from the audience. The very first question was quite direct: “I’d like to know the approximate total of Iraqis who have been killed. And by Iraqis, I include civilians, military police, insurgents, translators.” Bush’s response: “How many Iraqi citizens have died in this war? I would say 30,000, more or less, [...]