Leave or we’ll shoot you

by Chris Bertram on August 16, 2004

My post the other day about the Allawi government’s attack on press freedom attracted criticism from some pro-war bloggers. From Stephen Farrell’s report in today’s London Times :

“YOU’VE got two hours to leave or we are going to open fire at you. It’s just our orders,” said a policeman guarding the headquarters of the Najaf Governor, Adnan al-Zurfi, when myself and other journalists arrived at his office yesterday.
(…)
Police threatened to arrest or shoot journalists if they did not leave the city and shots were fired into the hotel housing Western and Arab reporters, which lies within a government-controlled area. The threat came even as Mr Allawi spoke at the country’s long-awaited National Conference in Baghdad, calling it “the first step on the way to democracy”.

{ 7 comments }

1

Ghost of Strawmen Past 08.16.04 at 3:07 pm

“Some of the debate really center around the fact that people don’t believe Iraq can be free; that if you’re Muslim, or perhaps brown-skinned, you can’t be self-governing and free. I strongly disagree with that. I reject that, because I believe that freedom is the deepest need of every human soul.” — April 13, 2004

2

james 08.16.04 at 5:54 pm

If a civilian falls dead in a Najaf forest and no journalist is there to see it, does he actually die?

3

Steve 08.16.04 at 7:05 pm

If insurgents in Najaf abuse the protective status of religious buildings by operating and arming themselves from a shrine, and journalists see it but don’t report it or underreport it because to do so would actually make westerners look good and insurgents look bad, did it actually happen?

4

Lance Boyle 08.16.04 at 8:57 pm

Steve-
Not “a shrine”.
Their shrine.
What better place for a last stand against the devil than your own church?

5

dick 08.17.04 at 1:33 am

Since the shrine belongs to both the besieged and the besieger, then who is the devil?

6

dick 08.17.04 at 1:34 am

Since the shrine belongs to both the besieged and the besieger, then who is the devil?

7

Eunoia23 08.17.04 at 3:19 am

The patriotic freedom-loving forces of the beloved prime minister are only trying to liberate a cultural icon from the clutches of the reactionary be-nighted forces of darkness lead by the known criminal and so-called religious expert Sadr. Foreign Journalists must be excluded so that they do not mis-interprete the sacrifices made by patriotic civilians or the generous help given to the morale of our brave boys by the freedom- loving soldiers of the United States of America who are right behind them with loaded weapons.

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