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November 09, 2004

To Hell They Will Go

I've been reading various news reports over the last two days regarding the new assault on Falluja, and there was one exchange reported by various media outlets that has really stuck with me.

Interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi visited Iraqi troops at the main U.S. base near Falluja, 32 miles west of Baghdad, a few hours before the assault and said they must free the people "taken hostage" by rebels.

"Your job is to arrest the killers but if you kill them then let it be," he said, according to a pool report.

"May they go to hell," shouted the soldiers. "To hell they will go," Allawi replied.

TO HELL THEY WILL GO. It seems like such a surreal statement to me, and yet inescapably media-friendly. How long will it be before we see a book released with that title, either written by Allawi or someone else? What about a movie (although it might be a little long for a movie title - that's a lot of type to fit on a poster).

Or maybe we'll see "Grand Theft Auto: To Hell They Will Go" in Target next Christmas.

I keep trying to picture the exchange, with the soldiers shouting and Allawi - who takes on a very John Wayne persona - responding, and it seems almost ... life-affirming, in a weird way. There's something inherently attractive (not physically, but mentally) about people who are that passionate about something. Within limits, of course. Maybe it's because I'm not personally religious that I find other people's beliefs - and how they're manifested - so interesting.

Posted by Highwaygirl on November 9, 2004 06:34 AM to the category Current Affairs
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