Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Kramer Gets It Wrong

It’s a small story on an inside page. But its length and placement were out of all proportion to the amount of aggravation this New York Times article caused me: “Iraq Troops Mass for Assault in South” by Andrew E. Kramer. What annoyed me was the opening paragraph (or, in newspaper parlance, “lede”):

Aiming at a power base of a rival Shiite leader, Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki sent troops into the southern city of Amara on Saturday.

That makes it sound as if there is something illicit about this offensive. In fact, it is merely a continuation of the operations that Iraqi security forces have mounted in recent months to clear Shiite militants out of Basra and Sadr City and Sunni militants out of Mosul. Critics initially cast the Basra assault in the very terms now employed by Andrew Kramer: as a political move by Maliki to weaken Moqtada al Sadr in advance of upcoming provincial elections. That interpretation was invalidated when it emerged that Maliki’s offensive was welcomed not only by other Iraqi political factions but also by the people of Basra who had been held hostage by Sadr’s thugs for too long. Far from being partisan political moves, these operation are now seen by most Iraqis as exactly the kind of law enforcement operations that the democratically elected government of Iraq should be undertaking against violent militias. Only it seems that Mr. Kramer has not gotten the news. He is still writing as if this were a case of President Bush sending Delta Force into Hyde Park to seize Barack Obama’s campaign staff.


Join the discussion…

Are you a subscriber? Log in to comment »

Not a subscriber? Join the discussion today, subscribe to Commentary »





Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.