A different version of
Michael's report from last night -- new video added
and a completely new VO.
Michael went out to a
Sunni neighborhood in Baghdad where al Qaeda death
squads used to torture victims to death. He speaks
with insurgent commanders who have now joined the
"uprising" against al Qaeda, who are blunt in their
evaluation of the situation: once American forces
leave, their next uprising will be against the
Iranian-backed Shia government we put in power.
Over the weekend, Michael
appeared on CNN/I's show "International
Correspondents" to discuss the very troubling case of
AP photographer Balil Hussein, who was arrested by US
forces 19 months ago and is about to finally have his
case heard before an Iraqi court. (Thanks to Délie
for the clip!)
This week's discussion is
whether the current lowering of violence in Iraq can
be sustained. Michael is joined on the panel by
Barbara Starr at the Pentagon and NYT correspondent
Michael Gordon. Gordon says that "accommodation
without reconciliation" is the new mantra of the Bush
administration; Starr points out that their recent
silence re the Maliki government is "deafening." And
Michael talks at further length about the "people
power" he mentioned earlier in the week: how everyday
citizens are breaking down sectarian barriers street
by street in order to regain some normality in their
Wolf asks Michael whether
the quieter-Baghdad stories are true, and whether it
Heidi Collins asks
Michael about yesterday's media reports that two
American security contractors are being held by Iraqi
police in connection with the wounding of an Iraqi
civilian. Turns out those reports were incorrect.
Michael talks to John
Roberts about the impressive decrease in the number
of attacks and civilian deaths in recent months. But
will the politicians find a way to put the country
back together again?
Michael discusses the
political component of the puzzle that is Iraq, and
the lack of progress towards finding any lasting
solutions. As Tom Foreman points out, the surge is
ending, with the first troop drawdowns announced this
week. Tom is joined in the studio by Jamie McIntyre
and Rend al-Rahim.
terrific interview with Michael was posted today on
the website of Asharq Alawsat newspaper.
The interview was conducted while he was in Paris last month.
the clip, read the transcript...
Q & A with CNN's Michael Ware
By Enaam Kajjah Ji in Paris
Q: How did the idea of going to Iraq emerge?
A: I went to Kurdistan at the beginning of 2003 before the military attack [on Iraq]. I got to Baghdad after the fall of Tikrit in April 2003. I’ve been there for four and a half years.
clip, read the transcript...
Michael is back on his Baghdad rooftop for the first time in almost two months, and he does return to an Iraq that has seen some definite progress made in the fight against insurgents and sectarian violence. The politicians, however, are still more concerned with protecting their turf than they are with protecting their citizens or constructing a new country.