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August 16, 2006

President Disappointed Bubble In Which He Lives Not Completely Opaque

New York Times, "Bush Said to Be Frustrated by Level of Public Support in Iraq":

President Bush made clear in a private meeting this week that he was concerned about the lack of progress in Iraq and frustrated that the new Iraqi government — and the Iraqi people — had not shown greater public support for the American mission, participants in the meeting said Tuesday...

[T]he president expressed frustration that Iraqis had not come to appreciate the sacrifices the United States had made in Iraq, and was puzzled as to how a recent anti-American rally in support of Hezbollah in Baghdad could draw such a large crowd. “I do think he was frustrated about why 10,000 Shiites would go into the streets and demonstrate against the United States,” said another person who attended.

Urm. I guess it's good that Bush is aware the Iraqi demonstration(s) happened. But I'm even more terrified than normal if he's being told there were just 10,000 people there.

New York Times:

More than 100,000 followers of the Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr rallied in support of the Lebanese militia Hezbollah on Friday...

Los Angeles Times:

[T]ens of thousands of Iraqis marched in the capital after Friday prayers in support of the Shiite Muslim militia in Lebanon...

Organizers said half a million people participated in the march, but American military officials, apparently eager to downplay support for Hezbollah, put the figure at 14,000. An Iraqi working for The Times estimated there were at least 100,000 demonstrators.

Associated Press:

Organizers and local police said hundreds of thousands attended the rally, but the U.S. military later estimated the crowd at 14,000. Associated Press reporters at the scene thought attendance was at least in the tens of thousands during the high point of the march.

ABC News of Australia:

While Mehdi Army officials insisted a million people had attended the demonstration, US military spokesman Major Steven Stover said images taken by drone aircraft showed only 14,000.

There was no official government estimate, but reporters at the scene said hundreds of thousands of people had taken to the streets.

Note that even the freakin' U.S. government estimated the demonstration at more than 10,000.

Posted at August 16, 2006 09:08 AM | TrackBack

George has only ten fingers, 1000 per digit=10,000.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 16, 2006 09:35 AM

I'm really bad at estimating crowd size. Does that: a)increase b)decrease c)does not change -- my chances of getting a job with the: a)US Park Service b)US Military c)Mehdi Army?

Hey, it's almost like playing MadLibs!

Posted by: wkmaier at August 16, 2006 09:37 AM

Is he really so delusional and stupid?

Which is worse, that, or just being a greedy bloodthursty asshole who doesn't give a fuck?

I don't know anymore. Would Germany have been better off with Colonel Klink instead of Hitler in 1939?

Posted by: tn at August 16, 2006 09:48 AM

It was a quarter-million.

Posted by: Maezeppa at August 16, 2006 09:56 AM

Oh man, you people are so hard on Bush! Why, I just read an article today in the LA Times about his recent meeting with Middle East experts:,1,4241763.story?coll=la-headlines-world

And you know what they all said? That they "were impressed by Bush's knowledge of the complexities of the situation in Iraq."

So there! Anyway, as Jonathan already mentioned, we live in a world of mystery. It can't be easy, trying to work out why Iraqis hate America and support Hezbollah. That nscrutable Arab mind--it's a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

Oh wait. That was the Russians. Well, when you're an American, all foreigners are alike: hard to understand.

Posted by: Jean at August 16, 2006 10:20 AM

I thought they taught 'rithmetic over at the service academies.

Posted by: Jesus B. Ochoa at August 16, 2006 10:24 AM

He's really something, but give him a chance, people, give him a chance! His father managed to restore democracy to Kuwait. Dub-Dubs is a chip off the old block.

I know you lefties and liberals like to compare his struggles to some of mistakes made in the war with Vietnam. Worse comes to worst? consider: they're making toys for Happy Meals now, and high quality sneakers. In other words, we won! We stayed the course, or a course anyway, and we won. Iraq is like that.

Posted by: J. Alva Scruggs at August 16, 2006 11:10 AM

NOTE; WE had to leave BEFORE they were happy enough to make toys for happy meals.

Posted by: Mike MeyerM at August 16, 2006 11:30 AM

You people with your fuzzy math again.

Posted by: abb1 at August 16, 2006 12:19 PM

OK, according to Wikipedia estimated total number of civilian casualties both in Serbia and Kosovo caused by the bombings is between 2500 and 5000.

Posted by: abb1 at August 16, 2006 01:51 PM

Olmert is a fast draw on the insufferable sanctimony and moral relativism (however many people are killed in respective efforts). He's a true neocon in that regard. The badly conceived, whining justifications are the same, as is the inability to see his victims as human. The Manifest Destiny crowd, wherever it pops up, and the national security state nomenklatura have been producing increasingly infantile, incompetent and frankly embarrassing specimens of hard men.

Posted by: J. Alva Scruggs at August 16, 2006 02:12 PM

Maybe it's some kind of reverse loaves-and-fishes situation.

Posted by: blondie at August 16, 2006 02:23 PM

As a strong leader in tough times we can count on Bush. One, two, um, three, how does that go, four, eight, six.

Posted by: rob payne at August 16, 2006 02:57 PM

I'm waiting for them to release a photo, belatedly acknowledging that it was "many tens of thousands" of people, then for Little Green Footballs to shoot down the photo because of all the photoshopped images of Cindy Sheehan repeatedly added to the crowd to make it look much bigger. Then the mainstream press will pick up on the story.

Posted by: Jonathan Versen at August 16, 2006 09:03 PM

Since our Fearless Leader proclaimed another glorious victory, this time over Hezbollah, he will recant remarks about protesters and gleefully announce:

"Hey! Did ya'll see that Million Shi-ite March for Victory the other day? That warn't no protest! Ya'll can thank me fer bringin' them Ay-Rabs together bout' somethin'!"

Delusional? Methinks he's taking the same Nazi Marching Powder that Der Fuhrer had access to in the waning days of the Third Reich. The similarities are almost too frightening to bear!!!

Posted by: americanintifada at August 17, 2006 01:04 AM

Bush can't figure out why the Iraqis don't love us? I am not surprised; the Bush family, and right wing ideologues generally, still can't figure out why all those black people weren't grateful for the Federal Government's handling of Katrina (see Barbara Bush's "it all worked out fine for these people" or Jonah Goldberg's contention that Bush was "the real victim" of Katrina).

Posted by: Whistler Blue at August 17, 2006 03:49 PM