Thursday, July 13, 2006

The In T View: The Readers Of Iraq The Model Sound Off: DCat

Dashiell by Newleaf - Flickr

Generally, I In T View bloggers, journalists, writers, human rights advocates, and soldiers, but this time I thought I would expand the horizons a bit and In T View the readers of of one of the most popular and beloved Mideast and Iraqi blogs, Iraq The Model, and let them sound off, share their views, about ITM and Iraq.

Iraq The Model comes complete with a strong and loyal readership and a feisty crew of articulate commenters offering their thoughts on Omar's and Mohammed's evaluation of events in their country, the Iraqi conflict, politics, terrorism, Islam, and the actions of the Coalition Forces.

In this In T View, we feature the wondrous DCat, the proprietress of the fine Razor Sharp Claws blog, who hails from the Pacific Northwest and works for a prestigous software company. DCat is also an avid mountain climber, has participated in rescues of her fellow climbers, and loves Omar and Mo to pieces. Take it away, DCat...

MG: Hi DCat, how did you become aware of Iraq The Model and decide to comment there?

DCat: My husband picked it up from Roger Simon. This was when they were still blogging from the coffee house in Baghdad. I wrote to them and got an email back from all three of the brothers the rest is history.

MG: Are you as optimistic about Iraq now, as when you first started reading and commenting at ITM?

DCat: I'm sure of it then and I am sure it will now. They have no choice really but to move forward.

MG: Did you find that ITM was better when Ali was involved with the blog?

DCat: He has his right to his own opinion just like you and me. Isn't this what it really is about? He needs his own space. I find that the blog is still wonderful regardless and if Ali would come back he would just be a contributor to this fine blog.

MG: There have been criticisms directed towards ITM and the brothers that they are too Pro-American or American Agents, Working for the CIA, not really Iraqis or located in Iraq, etc. How do you respond to this?

DCat: He has his right to his own opinion just like you and me. Isn't this what it really is about? He needs his own space. I find that the blog is still wonderful regardless and if Ali would come back he would just be a contributor to this fine blog."

MG: Has it been a learning experience reading ITM? You likely know more about Iraqi politics now, than you did before reading the Brothers' Blog, but have they also given you insights into other
facets of Iraqi Society such as culture and history?

DCat: Well I have a problem with culture and I always will! I love my culture however I don't think they would agree with everything either and that is ok. It's all about freedom as long as it isn't forced on anyone else!"

MG: Should the US have involved itself in Iraq? Has it been a worthwhile endeavor?

DCat: Anytime you are fighting for freedom of others it is a worthwhile endeavor!

MG: Does the World Media (Television, Radio, and Newspapers) present an accurate view of what's happening in Iraq?

DCat: I think they know about us bloggers Mr. Ghost and I think they are trying to win people over but lame stream media still can't win my trust!

Dashiell Painting by Newleaf - Flickr

MG: Which ITM Brother -- Omar or Mohammed -- would you like to give a hug to or have a beer with and why?

DCat: You mean tea! They drink tea Mr. Ghost, remember!? I can't have them all?!!! I can't choose. I would want to meet with them because of all they went through and to show them they have the support for their freedom and are not alone. And for my own personal pleasure of meeting them, face to face would be better then meeting a rock star!

MG: On February 20, 1258 A.D., the Mongols overran Baghdad, plundered and destroyed the city, and conducted a massacre of the residents that claimed 800,000 lives. Things don't look as bleak for the Iraqis now, still the topic of an Iraqi Civil War is being bandied about in the Media every day, and I have to ask: Is Iraq currently involved in a Civil War?

DCat: No!

MG: Do you have a Favorite Poster at ITM, who you like or admire, and can you tell us why?

DCat: Hameed Abid is one of the posters I enjoy because he is Iraqi and he gives good insights on issues, he tells it like it is to the likes of our unpopular posters that seem to be on the terrorist's side. I had the opportunity to speak with him and his wife when they were visiting in the USA!

MG: One of my escapist fantasies is to walk the length and breadth of Iraq from Southern Kurdisitan down to Mosul, though due to my blue eyes and practically albino skin, they'd likely be using me for target practice before I made it out of Mosul, certainly I'd be in trouble in Fallujah LOL... When conditions become safer for travel in Iraq, would you like to visit the country?

DCat: Yes and they must have that swim up bar with an electric Ice tea ready for me LOL!" "I have olive skin with dark brown eyes and was told by an Egyptian I look like them twice once from an Egyptian co-worker and once from a Egyptian vendor in downtown Seattle. Seeing me in my swim suit hmmmm? I guess that would make me a target too.

MG: The Recent Loss of Omar's, Mo's, and Ali's Brother-in-Law elicited many outporings of sympathy from ITM's readers and commenters, similar to if the readers/commenters had lost a member of their own extended family. When you post at ITM, is there a sense of being part of an extended family?

DCat: Mr. Ghost I have been known to show anger and when I get upset I get angry! I am so angry this happened! Yes I feel like after all this time they are family. We can't pick our own family but we can pick our own friends and they become family."

MG: Has a bond been established, both between the posters themselves and Omar and Mo?

DCat: Yes...

MG: Having come to know Omar and Mo through their writings these last few years, what is the one thing, you would like to say to them?

DCat: I do rag at you like an American Aunt would but that is only because I love you!

MG Says: Thanks to DCat!

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