"spin" - another word for lies

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    The gulf between the wishful thinking of politicians and military and events on the ground grows ever wider, reports Nick Smyth

    Sunday, The spin

    "Will the problems and attacks spoil the victory achieved by the Americans? Of course not ... It is a certainty Saddam's regime is gone." Gen Tommy Franks, retiring head of Central Command

    The reality

    Two US troops injured and an Iraqi civilian killed in an attack on a military convoy en route to Baghdad Airport ... Insurgents ambush US patrol near Khaldiyah using rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs). Soldiers return fire but attackers get away ... Troops block off Baghdad bridge after bomb alert.

    Monday, The spin

    "There are so many cartoons where press people are saying 'Is it Vietnam yet?' hoping it is and wondering if it is. And it isn't."Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of Defence

    The reality

    In Fallujah, a van fires an RPG at a Bradley vehicle. Soldiers return fire and kill one man ... Massive sweep for suspected Saddam loyalists enters second day ... Insurgents fire RPG at a Humvee in Fallujah, injuring a journalist; three Iraqis killed when truck slams into vehicle helping evacuate him.

    Tuesday, The spin

    "Conditions in Iraq continue to improve. Freedom becomes more entrenched and the dark days of the Baathist regime further back in people's memories." Paul Bremer, US administrator in Iraq

    The reality

    Massive explosion rocks al-Hassan mosque, Fallujah, killing eight Iraqis. The Imam, Sheikh Laith Khalil, dies later ... In Baghdad, a bomb explodes near an army vehicle, wounding four ... An RPG slams into a US truck south of Baghdad, with four casualties.

    Wednesday, The spin

    "A quagmire? No ... These actions against the coalition forces won't succeed and will be dealt with ... There is no question of attacks leading to a pullout." Jack Straw, Foreign Secretary

    The reality

    Two US soldiers die, one from injuries in an attack on Tuesday, one in an accident ... One US marine killed and three injured during mine-clearing in Karbala ... US army detains 20 "high-value" targets, and seizes armoury, including 200 RPGs ... In Fallujah, troops try to convince residents they were not behind Tuesday's mosque blast.

    Thursday, The spin

    "There is still a war going on ... But there is no crisis. We can handle it. We're killing them on a daily basis when they attack us." Maj Gen Ricardo Sanchez, US ground forces commander

    The reality

    Firefight between a sniper and a US patrol in Baghdad wounds one soldier. Troops return fire, killing the gunman and injuring a child ... US vehicle in Baghdad hit by RPG. Troops return fire, killing a bystander ... Sniper kills a US soldier guarding a Baghdad museum ... Iraqis fire mortars at the US base near Balad, injuring 18.

    Friday, The spin

    "Our nation is still at war. The enemies of America plot against us ... With our involvement, tyrants learn to fear, and terrorists are on the run." George Bush to troops on Independence Day

    The reality

    Attackers detonate an explosive on a highway in the outskirts of Baghdad, injuring three civilians and two US soldiers ... US troops kill 11 Iraqis who tried to ambush a military convoy near Balad ... Al-Jazeera airs a message purported to be from Saddam, vowing more attacks on Americans: "No to surrender."
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