Peace symbols shot down

by Chris Bertram on March 2, 2010

From the New York Times:

bq. The alliance of Interior Minister Jawad al-Bolani held the largest rally in Baghdad to date, with hundreds filling a large outdoor soccer stadium on Saturday. But it was not exactly a show of overwhelming public support. Many in the crowd were police officers employed by Mr. Bolani’s ministry. One officer, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said his battalion had been ordered to attend. The event was as notable for security as it was for political theater. Iraq Army helicopters circled low overhead, American Apaches higher in the sky. Streets were closed in all directions, snipers lined rooftops and each candidate had his own security detail, forming a phalanx around Mr. Bolani’s tent, a sea of machine guns and stony stairs. At the end of the rally, doves were released as a symbol of peace. Unfortunately, they were set free just as fireworks burst in the sky, catching many birds in the cross-fire.