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Ce fut une étonnante comédie, une mise en scène pathétique et hollywoodienne. John McCain et quelques acolytes républicains du Sénat et de la Chambre, se baladant dans un marché de Bagdad, puis proclamant à la conférence de presse rituelle que tout ne va pas si mal à Bagdad et en Irak.
Les conditions de cette visite sont absurdement rocambolesques, avec un montage auprès duquel les “villages Potemkine” de la Grande Catherine confinent au grand art et à la vertu de quasi-réalité. Cette visite était faite pour donner un coup de pouce à la réalité “Made-in-GW” et au parti républicain, ainsi qu’aux ambitions républicaines et présidentielles de McCain qui est de plus en plus enfermé dans ses engagements pro-guerre et qui a besoin d’une image positive de la situation en Irak. Cette mascarade mesure le degré de cynisme politicien du monde washingtonien, jouant cette comédie dans un pays ravagé par les forces américanistes, sans la moindre conscience de l’indignité de la démarche.
«At a news conference, where he was questioned by skeptical journalists, McCain claimed that “Things are better, and there are encouraging signs.”
»Surreally, Rep. Pence went so far as to comment, “I candidly was not prepared to find a marketplace where thousands and thousands of Iraqis were moving about in regular everyday life like a normal outdoor market in Indiana in the summertime.”
»Sen. Graham indicated that for him the Shorja visit was just another tourist adventure: “We went to the market and were warmly welcomed. I bought five rugs for five bucks.”
»This farce has an element of derangement about it.
»These are the conditions under which McCain and company took their little jaunt April 1: US soldiers entered the area before the American politicians, searched for explosives, sent informants among the people there, set up a perimeter and “secured” the neighborhood. Sharpshooters were deployed on rooftops.
»The Republican delegation flew from the heavily-fortified Green Zone to a forward operating base in Baghdad, and then traveled by Humvee to the market. Once there, the politicians were accompanied by a “small army,” in the words of a Newsweek reporter, perhaps as many as 100 soldiers, while three Black Hawk helicopters and two Apache gunships patrolled the skies above.
»Questioned after the stunt, local merchants ridiculed the visit. The Associated Press quoted Jaafar Moussa Thamir, a 42-year-old who sells electrical appliances. “They were just making fun of us and paid this visit just for their own interests,” he said. “Do they think that when they come and speak few Arabic words in a very bad manner it will make us love them? This country and its society have been destroyed because of them and I hope that they realized that during this visit.”
»Thamir said “about 150 US soldiers and 20 Humvees” accompanied the delegation. “I didn’t care about him, I even turned my eyes away. What were they trying to tell us? They are just pretenders.”
»Karim Abdullah, a 37-year-old textile merchant, said the congressmen were kept under tight security and accompanied by dozens of troops. “They were laughing and talking to people as if there was nothing going on in this country or at least they were pretending that they were tourists and were visiting the city’s old market and buying souvenirs,” he said. “To achieve this, they sealed off the area, put themselves in flak jackets and walked in the middle of tens of armed American soldiers.”
»Merchants whose comments were cited by the New York Times were “incredulous” that McCain drew the conclusion from his pathetic walk that the new security plan for Baghdad was working. Ali Jassim Faiyad, the owner of an electrical appliances shop in the Shorja market, commented to the newspaper’s reporter: “What are they talking about? The security procedures were abnormal!” He went on, “They paralyzed the market when they came. This was only for the media. This will not change anything.”»
Mis en ligne le 4 avril 2007 à 17H21