An essential piece by Tom Engelhardt on "The Real Meaning of Haditha." Excerpt: If those horrific murders in Haditha become the mother of all "incidents," however, Iraq may not make more sense, but less. So let's widen the Iraq frame and take another look. Those 24 dead noncombatants are not, in fact, an "incident" at all, nor "isolated," nor -- another of those then-and-now terms -- an "aberration." Make no mistake, they are the essence of this war. From the beginning, the continual slaughter of civilians, as well as the destruction of civilian property and livelihoods, has been the modus operandi of the American invasion and occupation of Iraq. That most of it didn't happen eyeball-to-eyeball with revenge on the brain certainly made little difference to the many victims, nor should it make too much difference to us."