Michael Totten Reports from Baghdad

Michael Totten is in Iraq and files Welcome to Baghdad. He relates the long and winding road getting from Kuwait to the Green Zone. But also relates his first impressions as he arrived in Baghdad. It's not nearly the war zone the driveby media depicts it as. In fact, he doesn't hear any explosions or gunshots during his first hours there.

[...] I watched helicopters fly over the city in the distance and launch burning white countermeasure flares to confuse heat-seeking missiles as the pilots flew over hostile parts of the city. This was the only evidence I saw that I was in a war zone. I heard no shots fired, and I heard no explosions.

After having spent several days Baghdad’s Green Zone and Red Zone, I still haven’t heard or seen any explosions. It’s a peculiar war. It is almost a not-war. Last July’s war in Northern Israel and Southern Lebanon was hundreds of times more violent and terrifying than this one. Explosions on both sides of the Lebanese-Israeli border were constant when I was there.

You’d think explosions and gunfire define Iraq if you look at this country from far away on the news. They do not. The media is a total distortion machine. Certain areas are still extremely violent, but the country as a whole is defined by heat, not war, at least in the summer. It is Iraq’s most singular characteristic. I dread going outside because it’s hot, not because I’m afraid I will get hurt.


Recommended reading. There's nothing like the independent journalists who are reporting from Iraq, absent the agenda and framework the MSM typically uses to bound their viewpoint.

h/t: Yael at Oleh Girl