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Thursday, July 13, 2006

Operation Iraqi Freedom, Part VIII

You might have heard or read a story like this one, from CNN, about Iraqis using fake identification cards to avoid sectarian violence:

"I got a fake ID card to protect myself from the Shiite militias who are deploying in Baghdad and hunt Sunnis at fake checkpoints," said Omar Abdul Rahman, a 22-year-old university student. He refused to give the name on his fake ID.

The growing use of fake IDs reflects the spike in violence between Sunnis and Shiites since the February 22 bombing of a revered Shiite mosque in Samarra. The attack triggered reprisal killings of Sunnis and pushed the country to the brink of civil war.

(entire article here, link via Wolfesblog)

At Wolfesblog, Claire Wolfe makes a good point about the fake ID story:

ONCE AGAIN, GOVERNMENT ID CARDS AID KILLERS. It happened in Rwanda, where tribal classifications on government-issued cards enabled Hutus single out Tutsis for slaughter. Now, in Iraq, Shiites are identifying Sunnis by the names on their mandatory government IDs and singling them out for death. Sunnis have done the same in reverse.


The linked article (sent by Jon Ford of Paladin Press, my new editor) never even mentions the word "mandatory," never even asks the basic question: Why are people carrying any document that might get them murdered? Do we take it so much for granted now that everyone on earth must carry government ID?

So the new, "free" Iraqi government forces its citizens to carry identification, even if it could get them killed. Yep, freedom is on the march!


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