Friday, December 23, 2005

I have been reading Rageh Omaar's Revolution Day: The Real Story of the Battle for Iraq for two days now. It is a book to be read slowly, taking in each and every word as Omaar paints a painful picture of the pre-post and war days in 2003. Sterile news reports with casualty statistics don't move one as much as his account of how a family in Baghdad clung onto hope as they shifted homes just days before the war began in March 2003.
I read Salam Pax's Baghdad Blogger last year...a war account very personal, witty and incisive at times...I scoured news media during those days in a case of typical media induced 'Information anxiety; passivity; and the classic well informed futility' ...but nothing was like reading this account of a BBC journalist right in the midst of a war...reading of his interactions with ordinary Iraqis and their concerns and at times disdain...
But that is not what made me open up blogger. In the book Omaar writes:
Saddam Hussein liked to portray himself as a leader for all Iraqis...appearing in posters around the country in a variety of costumes according to local faiths or ethnic and class backgrounds...
The country's been in an uproar ever since our very own version of Saddam Hussein, Pervez Musharraf woke up one day and in a Dubya fashion (talk of East-West fusion) started talking about Kalabagh Dam like God-as He frequents Bush's dreams- decided to pay Mushy, Bush's best friend a visit as well.
And to attend to Sindh's concerns on the issue, Mush came down to make life hell for Karachi'ites, this morning his pictures were plastered across papers...see that ajrak on shoulders? Such stereotypical behaviour... I did not know if I should laugh at his obvious desperation or wait for the paper to get a day older and spit on it. I am not that politically naive to not know what image-making is all about...but somehow just a day after reading Omaar's words this did strike as odd...

PS: I haven't the time to research and offer my own learned opinion on the issue, not that GoP eagerly awaits it, but here are two schools of thought:

If you have the time read through this:
Skardu-Katzarah dam best option: report

Also see how the links relate...and paints me as an obsessive compulsive mush-basher?
And yes, I have read through the report.


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