Bush in Washington yesterday: “We’re seeing progress on the ground. And we’re also seeing political progress on the ground. The constitution has been written; folks will have a chance to vote it up or down here this month. And then there will be elections, if the constitution is approved, for a permanent government.”
Here’s how that progress looks to a Knight-Ridder reporter from the ground Bush is talking about:
“1 p.m. – On phone with the major, who’s apologizing for being late when a car bomb explodes at Checkpoint 3 entrance. Gunfire ensues.
“1-3 p.m. – Locked down in National Assembly building with legislators while bomb debris and bodies are cleared from the street.
“3:15 p.m. – The major calls back. Come on out, he says. I join him walking to Checkpoint 3.
3:25 p.m. – We step around football-sized chunks of bomber hanging like gruesome Christmas ornaments from the razor wire. I point out the journalists’ security fears, being forced to walk through a dangerous area to get to Iraqi government and U.S. Embassy briefings. He is concerned. “Wow, that’s dangerous,” he says, pushing aside a smoking piece of car interior with a booted toe. …”
*Who are you going to believe — me, or your own eyes?