Bob Higgins

On the Wrong Side of the Road

Posted in Politics by Bob Higgins on January 10, 2010

“Why?” Badriya Hussein asked as she surveyed the grim wreckage, the blanket covered bodies before her on the highway south of Baghdad last Wednesday. “Why?’ she pleaded with US troops who had been riding in the convoy, traveling on the wrong side of the road, when one of its vehicles, a 36,000 pound MRAP, tore through a mini van carrying a dozen Iraqi civilians, five of them members of Badriya Hussein’s family. All five were killed; seven other Iraqis were injured along with 3 US soldiers. “Why?”

Her relatives had been on their way to a funeral. Now the only funeral they would attend would be their own.

“Why,” asked Helen Thomas a day later and 7000 miles distant, why do they hate us, what is their motivation for wanting to hurt us? She was pushing the two politicians; counter terror wonk John Brennan and Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano to explain the reasons why an educated, middle class, young Yemeni man would attempt to blow up a perfectly good airplane on which he happened to be riding. “Why?”

He had intended this trip to be his last; a flight that would end in his death and the deaths of many others.

The same question, asked by a grief stricken woman on a blood spattered, wreckage strewn road in Iraq and half a world away, was now asked by the grand old lady of the Washington Press Corps, in a press briefing.

They received the same answer, which was no answer at all.