|Ken Novak's Weblog
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Saturday, October 09, 2004
For Marines, a Frustrating Fight: Amazing quotes from front-line Marines (Oct 2004):
- "I feel we're going to be here for years and years and years," said Lance Cpl. Edward Elston, 22, of Hackettstown, N.J. "I don't think anything is going to get better; I think it's going to get a lot worse. It's going to be like a Palestinian-type deal. We're going to stop being a policing presence and then start being an occupying presence. . . . We're always going to be here. We're never going to leave."
- "Snyder, who was listening, added: "Pretty much I think they just diverted the war on terrorism. I agree with the Afghanistan war and all the Sept. 11 stuff, but it feels like they left the bigger war over there to come here. And now, while we're on the ground over here, it seems like we're not even close to catching frigging bin Laden."
- "Every day you read the articles in the States where it's like, 'Oh, it's getting better and better,' " said Lance Cpl. Jonathan Snyder, 22, of Gettysburg, Pa. "But when you're here, you know it's worse every day."
- Pfc. Kyle Maio, 19, of Bucks County, Pa., said he thought government officials were reticent to speak candidly because of the upcoming U.S. elections. "Stuff's going on here but they won't flat-out say it," he said. "They can't get into it."
- Lance Cpl. Alexander Jones, 20, of Ball Ground, Ga., agreed: "We're basically proving out that the government is wrong," he said. "We're catching them in a lie."
- Asked if he was concerned that the Marines would be punished for speaking out, Autin responded: "We don't give a crap. What are they going to do, send us to Iraq?" "
Behind the Scenes, Officials Wrestle Over Voting Rules: "In the battlegrounds of Ohio and Missouri, Republican secretaries of state have crafted election rules that Democrats say could disenfranchise legitimate voters likely to cast ballots for Kerry. Republicans say Democratic election officials in New Mexico and Iowa are making it easier for potential Kerry supporters to vote. .. Lawsuits have been filed or litigated in more than half a dozen swing states over state officials' interpretations of election law. Even in Maryland and Virginia, which are not battlegrounds this year, court battles have been waged over the role of state election officials and which candidates should be included on ballots. ..
Just as Harris served as co-chair of Bush's 2000 Florida campaign, Ohio's J. Kenneth Blackwell (R) is co-chairing the president's effort in that state. Nevada's Dean Heller (R) and Arizona's Jan Brewer (R) are also active on behalf of Bush, as is Missouri's Matt Blunt (R), who is also running for governor. West Virginia's secretary of state, Joe Manchin III (D), is helping Kerry even as he runs for governor. "
Why is this? The OSCE and some NGOs are visiting the US this year and are shocked. "David MacDonald, a Canadian member of a team organized by the San Francisco human-rights group Global Exchange, said observers were shocked to find that partisan officials run US elections. Requiring election officers to be nonpartisan "is as close as you can get in democratic or electoral terms to a universal norm," MacDonald said after visiting Missouri, where Secretary of State Matt Blunt, a Republican, is the chief electoral officer and a candidate for governor. "There are some very serious problems that need to be addressed," MacDonald said." 10:55:10 PM