What Corner?

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This front-page report on Iraq in the Washington Post—which notes that it’s proving exceedingly difficult to train Iraqi forces, a task which may take years and years—is today’s big splash of cold water on the idea that we’re somehow turning the corner and getting blinded by all that end-of-tunnel light. A few conservative blogs have suggested that the Post‘s report was biased and chose to focus on training failures. But how is that? U.S. military commanders chose the Iraqi unit the Post could accompany. Presumably, we’re getting a picture of one of the better functioning Iraqi units around. Anyway, to show that bad news from Iraq isn’t just a liberal media thing, read this report on Basra from the National Review‘s Stephen Vincent. Or this report that insurgents in Iraq are making “bigger and better bombs.” Or this report that the Sunni minority is rejecting political compromise. As Juan Cole pointed out in Salon yesterday, at some point endless optimism about Iraq, when unwarranted, ends up becoming a security concern in and of itself.

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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