In a relatively routine article about entertainment for the troops in Iraq, the Gray Lady misses no chances to stick her 2 cents in:
Certainly, Haditha Dam seems an unlikely venue. The 10-story hydroelectric dam, which was built in the 1980’s, was captured in the opening weeks of the American-led invasion. The secret Delta Force destroyed much of the Iraqi defenses near the dam, while Army Rangers swooped in later to seize the structure.How this relates to the Purrfect Angelz is beyond me. The NYT is ever ready to criticize America.
The Americans said the dam had to be taken to prevent Saddam Hussein from destroying it as part of a scorched-earth policy, though there is no indication that Mr. Hussein ever had such a plan. It was firefight at the dam, in fact, that initially put it at risk. After discovering that the dam was poorly maintained and damaged in the fighting, a sergeant in an Army civil affairs unit flew to the site and worked with the Iraqi engineers to keep the dam functioning.
After a multimillion dollar project by the Army Corps of Engineers, the dam’s turbines were rehabilitated. In addition to generating electricity, the dam also serves as a headquarters for the Marine battalion that is charged with securing the Haditha area and is home to a small contingent of troops from Azerbaijan who are helping the marines guard the structure. (emphasis mine)