Jejudo, South Korea
I want to deal with Rubin's article from The National Review first. It's a pretty damning article for Brehmer and company:
By signing an order for the raid on Chalabi, Bremer undermined his own authority among a wide-array of Iraqis. He put Americans in the position of Koran-stealing vandals, responsible for the gratuitous and malicious destruction of property. He also set a dangerous precedent from a U.S. military context. U.S. forces are in Iraq for three reasons: to eradicate the terrorist threat in Iraq, to seek out and destroy Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, and to provide security. The raid on Chalabi's house was political in motivation and a serious abuse of power. Bremer is playing the politics of personal vendetta. Iraqi Sunni, Shia, and Kurds ?including many Governing Council members ?often joke that living in Saddam's palace has rubbed off a little too much on Bremer.[/quote]
NYT has also run a guest editorial on the same issue:
[quote]Thursday's raid on the Baghdad home of Ahmad Chalabi, the Iraqi Governing Council member who for more than a decade was America's staunchest ally among the Iraqi resistance, is the latest bit of madness in the bungled occupation of Iraq. Unable to protect the lives of the governing council members ?who, whatever one thinks of the body, are the only representative voices in Iraq ?the Coalition Provisional Authority has now apparently decided to humiliate any who have the temerity to criticize its plans.
There is of course a shot against the mainstream media in NR, but what strikes me here is that at least in the basic ideas, we have two opinions, from two media outlets across the partisan divide that agree with each other.
1. There are deep rooted administrative problems in Iraq.
2. The Iraqi people, in the majority, do not support the actions of the occupation.
I hope it's obvious that I can't make a case out of two articles, but my point is that bias and partisanship are no obstacles to agreement of certain ideas. It can and does, astonishingly often, lead to agreement on the details. Shrugging off people, whether for their political bias or for their placement in a newspaper or magazine that you disagree with personally, is irresponsible. What should be done, given time, is that you should shop around.
A quick glance at The Nation shows me that they have been very critical of Ahmad Chalabi, they consider him nothing more than an expatriate stooge of American interests. The recent raid shows a problem with that pat answer. He's not a stooge, but perhaps his lack of stoogishness caused the raid?