Blog of Mass Distraction

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Turning the corner

So as everyone knows George Bush was re-elected last week. Some were surprised at how effectively the Republican party was able to get the vote out among the conservative Christian right. Putting gay marriage amendments on the ballot in several states certainly helps. Others are trying to be optimistic and are suggesting that Bush can be more progressive in the next 4 years since he doesn't have to worry about re-election (and maybe he can do something about Palestine-Israel, particularly if Palestinians get some elections with chairman Arafat no longer in control). I doubt this will happen, however, since I think Bush will use the strengthened control the Republicans have in Congress and the Senate to advance in regressive profiteering agenda.
A problem Bush will definitely have to face is the increasing violence in Iraq. US troops are poised outside of Fallujah for a major strike, thinking this will make a big blow against the insurgent forces in the country.
Furthermore, a new report has knocked the hell out of the old estimates of the civilian toll of the invasion. The numbers being stated before were between 10,000 and 15,000 Iraqi civilian deaths because of the US invasion. The scientific journal The Lancet has released a report putting conservative estimates of the civilian death toll at 100,000. The majority of those deaths are the result of violence from occupation forces or the bombing campaign. That number actually exceeds the estimated death toll in Darfur (currently between 70,000 and 80,000) which was called the worst humanitarian disaster in the world today.


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