March 21, 2018

15 years ago I started a notebook... and now we're up to Day 3 of the Iraq War notebook.

The top of the page says "March 21, 2003," and CNN says "'Shock and Awe' under way." I transcribe Wolf Blitzer saying "In 30 years, I've never seen anything like this on live television." (Click images — twice — to enlarge.)

iraq 2 1 24

On Fox News, Jim Angle says "someone is going to get hurt" — the hope was it would be Saddam Hussein:

iraq 2 1 22

Shep Smith waxed poetic about "white flashes... peppering the night air" (because pepper is white):


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Now, Saddam's palace is burning, not the palace he lives in, but the one you've heard about with the golden toilets. Watching from the newsroom, the reporter was thrilled by "pinpoint strikes," "smart bombs," and "precision accuracy":

iraq 2 1 23

Rumsfeld retreated into that cutesy-cagey mode we got to know so well back in those days...

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... when the Iraq war was young and free.

19 comments:

I'm Full of Soup said...

I have not watched a prez address since Bush announced the invasion of Iraq so about as long as you have had your Marginalia notebook.

Btw- You got real artist skillz Althouse!

Achilles said...

Bush Clinton Bush Obama.

A real dream team. They managed to turn the middle east into a mess.

Thank god our current president is more intelligent and decent than all of those jackasses put together.

Sydney said...

What kind of notebook do you use? I purchased a Moleskine for writing notes but it bleeds through the paper even with a ballpoint. Looking for something with thicker paper so you can't see the writing on the opposite side through the paper

gilbar said...

well, white pepper Is white

tcrosse said...

verb: pepper
hit repeatedly with small missiles or gunshot.
"another burst of enemy bullets peppered his defenseless body"
synonyms: bombard, pelt, shower, rain down on, attack, assail, batter, strafe, rake, blitz, hit

Sprezzatura said...

"well, white pepper Is white"

Yup. And salt comes in both colors too.

Cheryl James

Bay Area Guy said...

Where is Bagdad Bob when you really need him?

tcrosse said...

Where is Bagdad Bob when you really need him?

His name is Legion.

etienne said...
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etienne said...
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Michael K said...

Two friends of mine were flying F 18s in that war. They were doing what they were paid to do.

Fortunately, both survived. One had his promotion to BG sidelined because his commanding General though the Bahrainis were too thankful to him for saving them from Saddam.

The General, the Marine wing commander was later cashiered for flying his girlfriend around in a Marine Corps plane.

cf said...

Althouse,
this is such a marvelous imaging of real-time History, thank you. It all comes back fresh, but so charmingly rendered! your report brings me to a space of gentle reflection, compassion for us amazing humans when we get going, and a deep breath oF perspective. Fifteen years is an excellent Gap!
Salud.

JackWayne said...

Shock and Awe was the moment I knew Bush and his generals were full of shit. I was shocked they believed I would be in awe.

Lucien said...

The Iraqi people woN the lottery: even though they were too weak to depose a corrupt dictator, a great power that had no real interest in their situation did it for them. And then they pissed it away.

Charlie Eklund said...

You did a nice job with Jim Angle.

madAsHell said...

Wolf Blitzer on Jeopardy!

Sprezzatura said...

"You did a nice job with Jim Angle."

I disagree. I don't think his mouth looks like a cock holster in real life.

Rusty said...

Wouldn't flashes illuminate?
Maybe he was hungry.
or ignorant.
Anyway. Good caricatures. Which is an artistic talent in itself.

Robert Cook said...

"The Iraqi people woN the lottery: even though they were too weak to depose a corrupt dictator, a great power that had no real interest in their situation did it for them. And then they pissed it away."

Yep! Those lucky, lucky Iraqis! We smashed their country, obliterated their infrastructure, destroyed their government, poisoned their environment, created death and misery, turned millions into displaced refugees...and they just pissed away their great, good fortune. What a pack of miserable ingrates...they didn't deserve our totally disinterested, beneficent rape of their country!