Tuesday, February 01, 2005


OK...so my schtick since I've been back is to tell people that, while the media is not lying to them about what's happening in Iraq (as in, this isn't "Wag the Dog" with actors making up a war), they're not telling the _whole_ story - i.e., people _live_ there, go to school, go to work, go shopping, have babies, get married, etc.

The thing is, lately I've noticed that the media _is_ lying about one thing. They keep talking about the "occupation" of Iraq by US and Coalition forces. From Dictionary.com, here are the definitions of the word "occupation:"

oc·cu·pa·tion ( P ) Pronunciation Key (ky-pshn)

1. a. An activity that serves as one's regular source of livelihood; a vocation.
b. An activity engaged in especially as a means of passing time; an avocation.

2. a. The act or process of holding or possessing a place.
b. The state of being held or possessed.

3. a. Invasion, conquest, and control of a nation or territory by foreign armed forces.
b. The military government exercising control over an occupied nation or territory.

(Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.)

Clearly, definition 1 does not apply in this case. Definition 2 could be applicable, but definition 3 is by far the most applicable.

Now, the Coalition forces _did_ "occupy" Iraq from roughly April 2003 until June 28, 2004. But, on June 28, 2004 (my birthday, btw...have I mentioned that before? Have I mentioned how cool I think that is? Because it's _way_ cool!), the Coalition Provisional Authority (the occupying power) transferred their authority to an interim Iraqi government. So, at that point they stopped exercising control (note in definition 3a the three things required for an "occupation" - invasion, conquest, and _control_) over the sovereign nation of Iraq.

The Interim Iraqi Government promply then _asked_ the Coalition forces to remain in Iraq indefinitely.

Let me tell you a little secret. When a government _asks_ you to be there, you're not an "occupying power," no matter what you may have been in the past.

So write/call in to every news source you hear use the term "occupation" in reference to the current situation in Iraq and tell them that they're wrong. Because they are and it's (purposely) misleading to those in the American/world populus who don't take the time to look up terms like that in the dictionary.

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