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April 20, 2004

A WHILE BACK, I reprinted an email from a reader about problems at the CPA in Iraq. Now the Village Voice has an article based on a purported CPA internal memo that suggests that the problems are quite severe indeed. I don't know how much credence to put in this, but it definitely deserves further inquiry ASAP, both from the press and from the Bush Administration's higher-ups.

UPDATE: Reader Michael Midura emails:

I read the article and it's pretty depressing. So what's the fallout? Well, it's a memo that's seems to have a bunch of well-thought out solutions to serious problems facing the CPA in Iraq. Therefore, the media will ignore it.

As long as the right people pay attention, that's okay.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Alexander Sudnik is skeptical:

Forgive me for being skeptical, but where's the full memo? Why doesn't the Voice print the whole thing, so we can see for ourselves what it says? Why do we have to take this reporter's characterization of what it says?

Any decent blog would link to the whole thing. We should expect no less from the Voice. Moreover, I see that the piece is "web only" - so it's not for a lack of space in the print version.

Good points. And it's true -- this memo may be bogus, or it may be wrong. But I want to ensure that things like this aren't ignored, or swept under the rug.

More comments here. Meanwhile a reader who prefers to remain anonymous emails: "I don't think the situation is an any way irretrievable, and I still think the invasion was a good idea - but if the Administration doesn't get its act together, then that could change fast."

UPDATE: By popular demand, they've put the memo on the Web in redacted form. This doesn't prove it's genuine, of course (not that I have any reason to doubt it), but it's helpful to have it. No smoking guns on a first read, really -- it's consistent with a lot of things we've been reading on American and Iraqi blogs. That tends to suggest it's authentic. I certainly hope, at any rate, that the Bush Administration is paying close attention.