January 05, 2005

fcuk 'em

You know, I'd run scared for the airport but:
1) the airport road isn't the best place to be right now, and
2) that's just what the idiot, and his backers, wanted to happen when he detonated his car yesterday.

I think I can make a real positive impact here with just a few more meetings, with at most one of them outside the GZ. I've pulled on a string and I think it leads to something rotten, if I shine a light on it might be fixable. If I leave it alone then things will continue the way they are ... which means broken.

I'm looking to head out of here in a week or so anyway to Amman, or even further west, I can work from there for a while.

The more locals I meet, the more I'm encouraged to stay. We're really making a difference, and our presence is appreciated, and everyone's worst fear is that the vocal minority (mostly religious nuts and FRL, former regime loyalists) will actually make us back out. On the other hand, the more we turn things over to the Iraqis it seems the worse things get -- corruption has been institutionalized here for decades, people live by it, and I think I'm witnessing it first hand. Not to mention that fact that there aren't any real experienced managers here, but we've got to let them run things anyway. So we do. They screw it up a bit, we try to nudge it back in line; they steal some, but leave enough on the table for things to work.

Anyway, while sitting outside about an hour ago, a rocket (a local guard said mortar, but it whooshed with increasing audio frequency and sounded like a rocket) flew right nearby. We heard the whooshing noise for a good 5 seconds (which is a LONG time to hear something like that). It must have landed not that far away. We all ran for different cover, then came back out 5min later and went back to chatting. "Big sky" theory works. Fcuk ‘em.

Posted by rick at January 5, 2005 11:10 AM