Helping Bush Win Re-Election

Patrick Cockburn in Baghdad

Signs of disintegration are everywhere in Iraq. Oily columns of black smoke billow up from the airport road where US patrols are regularly hit by suicide bombers or roadside bombs between Baghdad and Camp Victory, the gigantic US headquarters on the edge of the airport. In a vain attempt to deny cover to resistance fighters, American soldiers have chopped down the palm trees and bushes beside the highway, leaving only the stumps behind. The bombs, usually several heavy artillery shells detonated by a command wire, are very powerful. A family showed me the shattered stock of an American machine-gun, its barrel twisted sideways, hurled onto the roof of their house by the bomb which destroyed a Humvee on the road outside.

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