Monday, April 14, 2003

Apart from the front-page story by Jane Perlez (see below), there were two other pieces in the Saturday, April 12, NY Times that mentioned aid for Iraq.

The front-pager by Michael R. Gordon, the paper's "military analyst," titled "Seeking Calm in the Chaos," had this to say in the jump on page B5:

"The basic American plan for Baghdad calls for the restoration of power and water service, the identification and protection of key installations and the establishment of law and order so that it will be safe for nongovernmental organizations and the United States and other governments to provide aid.

"That plan is still intact. Lt. Gen. David McKiernan, the chief of the allied land command and the senior military officer charged with establishing order in the immediate aftermath of the war, arrived at this airport tonight.

" 'At this point the oppression is gone, and it is time to move forward to help the Iraqi people return to normalcy,' said Maj. Adrian Bogart, the deputy chief of civil military operations in General McKiernan's command. 'In order to do so, we have to provide the conditions so that humanitarian aid can flow unhampered.'

"Two C-130 transport planes full of medical supplies donated by Kuwait arrived here tonight, an event that The American authorities sought to publicize. But it was just a small down payment on the assistance that will ultimately be needed."


Also on page B5 is a box titled "Rumsfeld's Words on Iraq: 'There Is Untidiness' " that contains excerpts from a news conference by Def Sec Rumsfeld on Friday, April 11, including this exchange:

"Q. Given how predictable the lack of law and order was, was there part of General Franks' plan to deal with it?

"A. Of course.

"Q. Well, what is it?

"A. This is fascinating. This is just fascinating. From the very beginning, we were convinced that we would succeed, and that means that that regime would end. And we were convinced that as we went from the end of that regime to something other than that regime, there would be a period of transition. And you cannot do everything instantaneously; it's never been done, everything instantaneously. . . .

"Let's just take a city. Take the port city, Umm Qasr — what the plan was. Well, the British went in, they built a pipeline bringing water in from Kuwait; . . . they brought ships in with food; they've been providing security. . . ."

Well, a ship, anyway. But who's keeping track?