Sunday, June 29, 2014

Life in Iraq Grinds On, Whoever Is in Charge

By JAMES GLANZ, NYT
JUNE 28, 2014

HIS name was Thamir, and he was a pool hustler. He was good enough that when a translator shouted in the pool hall that I wanted to meet the best player in Husayba, the gaggle of men parted, opening the way to him. Thamir grinned wryly, pressed an index finger against his chest and lifted his chin in that universal gesture: You want to talk to me?

I did want to talk to him, and when I did he bragged that he came to the pool hall only long enough to make what his family needed to get by — roughly $10 a day, he reckoned — before taking the rest of the day off and enjoying the good life.

“Right now it is very good, very safe,” Thamir said, glancing at the handful of heavily armed United States Marines who had shown me up a narrow stairway to the pool hall.

(More here.)

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