US Embassy Writes Great Memo

stateiraqmemo.jpgNo one ever won a war with a bad attitude, guys.

The U.S. Embassy in Iraq, demonstrating an admirable unwillingness to aide in the President's PR blitz, sent a memo to Condoleezza Rice last week on the day of Bush's surprise Baghdad trip detailing just how much fun everyone's having in the Green Zone these days. It raises the question: Why doesn't the U.S. Embassy ever tell the State Department the good news from Iraq? (Will we ever get tired of that line?)

Our exclusive hungover and cranky analysis, after the jump.

Actually, reading the memo in its entirety (thanks to Al Kamen, who is still, as of noon or so, employed by and writing for the Post), we just thought about how working for the State Department in Baghdad must really, really suck. Not only because of the murder, crime, kidnappings, and mortar fire bits (though we imagine they're no picnic), but also because of the "if you can't say something nice about the occupation, don't say anything at all" attitude in Washington. This memo, we are guessing, was drafted by the diplomat who drew the short straw. The subject, "Public Affairs Staff Show Strains of Social Discord," reads like the subhead of a New York Times news analysis piece about auto workers. Presumably, "Everyone who works for us is justifiably terrified for their lives" wouldn't have made it to Condi's desk. But in drafting a memo like this, one quickly learns that there isn't a diplomatic way to phrase that sentiment. The whole thing's still a bit of a downer, but that's only if you read all the middle bits about women being threatened for not covering their faces and waiting 12 hours for gasoline and 1 hour of electricity for every 6 without. The conclusion, shown above, is kind of brilliant: the problem seems to be that the embassy's Iraqi employees aren't telling them the good news from Iraq!

From the Embassy, A Grim Report [WP]


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