MONDAY'S LETTERS: 'Blade' Photog, 'Solatia' Payouts, Blog Civility

By: E&P Staff In today's letters, an Iraqi refugee responds to Greg Mitchell's column about "solatia" payouts to the families of innocent civilians, a reader tells her own story of being persecuted in the blogosphere, and a photographer says his colleague at the Toledo Blade was lucky to have a staff job.


The Price of an Iraqi Life

Keep up the great reporting.? It wasn't clear to me if the Boston Globe and NYT figures [about payouts to Iraqis] included the cost of administering the "solatia" program (of paying for civilian casualties in Iraq), or just the pay-outs themselves.?

If the latter, this provides disturbing evidence in support of the Waldman-Roberts et al. (Lancet) estimate on Iraqi war deaths. What percentage of those who die in the war receive compensation from the U.S.?? Even 10% would seem very high -- more likely in the order of 5% (or less).? What is the average payment?? $1,500?? That yields 533,000 deaths -- close to the Lancet study.?

Dale Murphy, PhD

As an Iraqi I want to thank you very much for writing on this subject. This is victors justice/injustice American style!

History is written in black and white, but also in the mind of people. The day will come when Americans will know what is being done in their name. I can assure you true justice will prevail even if it takes decades. No question about it -- your kids will pay a lot more than $500 per kid. Thank you again.

Ghazwan Al-Mukhtar
Iraqi refugee in Sweden, running away from the chaos called "democracy"


Freedom of Speech and Blogs

I am certain you never heard the end of that tale. My husband and I were able to get the IP address from the person we suspected wrote those blog postings and in fact, it was the mayor of Smyrna Delaware, Mark G. Schaeffer, our next door neighbor -- that was the IP address the Supreme Court said we couldn't have the identity of. We amended our complaint from Cahill V. John Doe to Cahill V. Mark Schaeffer and his family and successfully settled out of court last year.

Not only was my husband called Gahill, but I was called "a bottom of the barrel scum sucking whore who slept with or tried to sleepwith half the state," I was called a fat assed prostitute, our friend Dr. Chervenak was called a murdering child molestor. All by the mayor, who is currently up for re-election.

This should be fun. Would you care to buy my house?

Julia Cahill
Smyrna, Delaware


Photo Faker at the 'Blade'

Interesting piece. So sad that a photographer doesnt realize how lucky was just to have a staff job.

Chad Hunt


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