Monday, March 07, 2005

doing the math

"...either this was an ambush, as I think, or we are dealing with imbeciles or terrorized kids who shoot at anyone," Pierre Scolari, partner of Giuliana Sgrena.
Your all-purpose checkpoints can kill a shiteload of poor Iraqi folk with impunity, but it's less simple to drown Italians in bullets. They bring bothersome Renaissance aptitudes like perspective to the event, and living memory, and a Viconian penchant for assuming that human things can be understood.

«Stai attenta, perché ti vogliono ammazzare»
Ambushes are intelligible quanta, and typically are denied by states. That tends to leave the unintelligible, often portrayed as the offspring of either madness or chaos.

The thing about US murder is that it is often difficult for administration spokespeople to link it to the unintelligible. It's one thing for a child/lunatic to spray bullets into a crowd. It's another when the spray regularly manages to strike, with lethal accuracy, Martin Luther King, Malcom X, or John Lennon.

Details of death in Iraq - of the US side, that is - can be found here. In a note on that site's methodology, we learn that the US Dept. of Defense issues individual notices of deaths, but in a break with custom and tradition, refuses to add them up:
the government provides no tally of those releases.
This is suggestive of how, as our ability to synthesize information increases, the State responds with checkpoints to blast truth on the fly. Media who look to government-issued information have no second act (well, unless they're Jeff Gucknon pretending to the mantle of HST). Anyway, enough stitches in the fabric and there's a figure in the carpet.

[Note: dead links to Iraq war data were replaced with updated links 9.1.12]


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