Friday, December 24, 2004

Minus One

AP for December 24 reports that heavy fighting has again broken out in Fallujah.
[W]arplanes and tanks bombarded guerrilla positions in the heaviest fighting here in weeks. ...

At least three Marines were killed in combat that underlined how far the city and surrounding area are from being tamed as the United States and its Iraqi allies try to bring quiet before national elections Jan. 30. ...

In the center of Fallujah, F-18s dropped several bombs, sending up plumes of smoke. Tank and machine gun fire could be heard to the south, while howitzers at Camp Fallujah southeast of the city boomed throughout the day. The guns fired illumination rounds after dark to help Marines on the ground spot attackers.
What was all that crap about having "broken" the "enemy?"

Meanwhile, hundreds of Fallujans were trying to get through checkpoints to get back to their homes.
Many may be in for a shock. Marines have said many people staying in refugee camps near Fallujah did not seem to be aware of the extent of damage. Few buildings were left unscarred in the U.S. offensive, which began Nov. 8.

"This is all that's left of my property," one returnee said Thursday, waving a dusty blanket.
Okay, students, compare and contrast with CNN for November 14:
CNN's Jane Arraf, embedded with the Army, said the city was heavily damaged but that little was leveled, with many houses repairable.
As always, the happy news at the time, the admissions later.

Footnote: A plus within a minus. The article appeared in the Star-Tribune of Caspar, Wyoming. At the bottom on the article was a link to a "Braille File" with the explanation
[t]his will download to your computer a computer braille ASCII file of the current story translated into grade 2 braille. This file may be sent to any standard braille embosser.
I don't know if that was the work of AP or the Star-Tribune, but whoever it was, it's a really cool thing to do.

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