Thursday, June 30, 2016

If Hillary loses

Don't you dare try to pin it on me.

Or anyone else who refused to vote for her.

The Democratic Party honchos decided to give the nomination to a deeply unpopular and divisive personality.


They decided to ignore poll after poll that founds her even less trust worthy than Donald Trump.

They ignored all common sense and backed a candidate under federal investigation.

They ignored that the Iraq War is a defining moment of my generation and that Hillary voted for it and only stopped supporting it after public opinion against it went over 60%.


This is all on you.

Don't start your b.s. the day after the election about how Jill Stein or someone else cost the Democrats the election.

The party did it by making Hillary the nominee.

It's not on anyone else's back.

The fault lies solely with Hillary and the Democratic Party honchos.



Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

 
Wednesday, June 29, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, US corporate welfare continues as the White House only tosses out dimes by comparison for refugees, War Hawk Hillary is not forgotten, and much more.



Today, the US Defense Dept announced:

Strikes in Iraq
Bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 17 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Qaim, five strikes struck two ISIL weapons caches, an ISIL finance distribution center and two ISIL communication facilities.

-- Near Rutbah, a strike struck an ISIL vehicle bomb facility.

-- Near Fallujah, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL fighting position, an ISIL vehicle and an ISIL vehicle bomb and denied ISIL access to terrain.

-- Near Mosul, three strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL vehicles and suppressed an ISIL mortar position.

-- Near Qayyarah, five strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL fighting position, two ISIL bunkers, four ISIL rocket rails, two ISIL rocket systems, an ISIL excavator, an ISIL rocket propelled grenade system and ISIL-used engineering equipment.

-- Near Ramadi, two strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL vehicle.


Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use. Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike.


The US government bombs Iraq daily and has since August of 2014.

Why?

One reason is because war is big business.



That was made clear again today.


UPI wrote it up like this:


 The U.S. will extend a $2.7 billion foreign military finance credit facility to Iraq under a deal announced by the U.S. Embassy in Iraq Wednesday.
The deal, signed by U.S. Ambassador Stuart Jones and Iraqi Minister of Finance Hoshyar Zebari, will allow Iraqi security forces to defer payment for the purchase of ammunition and maintenance of its F-16 aircraft and M1A1 Abrams tanks.


REUTERS went with this:

Iraq secured a $2.7 billion loan from the United States on Wednesday to fund ammunition and maintenance of fighter jets, tanks and other military equipment for use in the war against Islamic State.

Baghdad will have eight and a half years, including a one-year grace period, to repay the loan, which carries a 6.45 percent interest rate, a U.S. embassy statement said.


There are many other ways to write it up.


You could lead with something like:

Despite being a bad credit risk, as evidenced by the recent IMF structure loan, the White House has decided to hand over $2.7 billion US tax dollars as a line of credit -- a line of credit that will most likely never be repaid.


Or you might go with:

The White House today made a gift of $2.7 billion to the US weapons industry -- a gift made with US tax dollars.


It's welfare, plain and simple.


It's corporate welfare.


How many helicopters does the Islamic State have?

That's right: zero.

How many planes:

Again, zero.


But the absurd amount of $2.7 billion -- billion -- is being tossed across the globe to enrich the weapons industry -- on the tax payers' dime.


How many members of the Islamic State are currently in Iraq?

30,000?

50,000?


And 2.7 billion is what's thrown out.


At SALON, Patrick Cockburn notes, "The Iraqi army and security forces, for example, had 350,000 soldiers and 660,000 police on the books in June 2014 when a few thousand Islamic State fighters captured Mosul, the country’s second largest city, which they still hold. Today the Iraqi army, security services, and about 20,000 Shia paramilitaries backed by the massive firepower of the United States and allied air forces have fought their way into the city of Fallujah, 40 miles west of Baghdad, against the resistance of IS fighters who may have numbered as few as 900."

There's a refugee crisis in Iraq.


This month, the White House also gave money to that issue.

How many billions?

Not billions.


Here's the press release on that:


June 21, 2016
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC

In light of recent events in Iraq, and in response to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees’ recent appeals for emergency needs in Fallujah, the United States is announcing an additional $20 million in humanitarian aid to UNHCR’s Iraq response. This will be part of a larger package of humanitarian assistance that will be announced later this year. More than 3.3 million Iraqis have been internally displaced since 2014 and more are expected to flee in the coming days and weeks. The UN estimates that about 85,000 people have already fled Fallujah. UNHCR has identified camp coordination and camp management, as well as protection, as its most urgent priorities in the Fallujah response. Other immediate needs include water and sanitation, shelter, and food. Humanitarian agencies are responding to the crisis, but more funding is urgently needed. We urge other governments to contribute generously to the UN’s Iraq appeals.



Over 3.3 million refugees.


And any serious attempt at 'liberating' Mosul is expected to create thousands more refugees.


But $20 million is the ideal number.


Again, war enriches many.

Not the person on the ground.

Not the civilian caught there or the soldier sent there.

But it is big business for many.



“There are 15 of us living in this tent.” Around 85,000 people have escaped seeking safety in camps.









Today, UNICEF released a report entitled [pdf format warning] "A HEAVY PRICE FOR CHILDREN: VIOLENCE DESTROYS CHILDHOODS IN IRAQ" which opens:



Iraq is now one of the most dangerous places in the world for children.
Four decades of conflict, sanctions, violence, insecurity and economic stagnation have brought development in the country to its knees.
At the end of 2015, Iraq had missed all, bar one, of its eight Millennium Development Goals including targets for increasing school enrolment, reducing child deaths before their fifth birthday and improving access to safe drinking water.
The intensification of conflict since 2014 has had a catastrophic impact on children in the country. UNICEF estimates that 4.7 million children across Iraq are in need of assistance - that’s around one-third of all children in the country. Since the war began in Syria in 2011, Iraq has also been hosting more than 245,000 Syrian refugees, nearly a quarter of whom are children. Almost two thirds of Iraqi children in need are in areas beyond the control of the Government of Iraq.
Multiple armed factions are waging war throughout the country, putting people of every ethnicity and background in danger - killing and injuring thousands, trapping civilians in cities under siege and forcing families to flee their homes.
Massive movements of people who have been forced from their homes by fighting - many from areas cut off from aid like Fallujah - characterise the ongoing crisis. Almost ten per cent of the country’s children – more than 1.5 million – have been forced to flee their homes due to violence since the beginning of 2014, often moving multiple times to seek safety.
According to UNICEF, 3.6 million children – one in five of all Iraqi children – are at a great risk of death, injury, sexual violence, recruitment into the fighting and abduction. This number has increased by 1.3 million in just 18 months.
Since 2014, UNICEF has verified 838 child deaths, and 794 injuries in Iraq. The actual number is likely to be much higher. In the last year alone, 455 incidents affected more than 1,200 children.
The large increase in the number of violations against children is largely due to the intensification of violence in the Anbar area, in the west of the country. From the first to the second half of 2015, the number of child victims of grave violations in Iraq shot up by more than five times, from 202 children in the period between January to June, to 1,020 between July and December.
The reported abduction of thousands of children, particularly in 2014, is one of Iraq’s greatest concerns. Since the beginning of 2014, UNICEF has verified the abduction of 1,496 children in Iraq. On average, 50 children per month. Abducted girls are most at risk of sexual abuse, particularly those from religious and ethnic communities. The use of sexual violence and the brutalization of women and girls, has been well documented, with many abducted on a mass scale, held captive for months, sold into sexual slavery and subjected to rape, torture and abuse.



A $2.7 billion line of credit could have been used to provide pre-fab school buildings or structures to Iraq.


A $2.7 billion line of credit could have been used to provide food.


Those are just two possibilities.


It still would have been welfare -- government welfare -- but it would have enriched something other than the defense (war) industry.


Of today's welfare announcement, Jason Ditz (ANTIWAR.COM) explains, "The deal is part of the US Foreign Military Finance (FMF). The same program provided Iraq with upwards of $4 billion during the previous US occupation of Iraq, though in that case the money was in grant form, and not to be paid back."  And, as Ditz points out, this 'loan' will likely be forgiven or paid with US tax payer money later given to Iraq as a grant.




Corporate welfare  exists because so many pigs are in government.


Take Senator Dianne Feinstein  giving contracts to her husband.  I know that not because THE NATION printed the report.  They didn't.  They killed it.  Had to protect Dianne.  Dianne was more important than telling their readers the truth.

So the journalist had to get the report printed elsewhere.

Click here for Peter Byrne's "Senator Feinstein's Iraq Conflict" -- the piece THE NATION didn't want you to read.

Not everyone was as against the truth as Katrina vanden Heuvel (the person who's ruined THE NATION magazine).  For example, here's David R. Baker (SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE) reporting in 2003 on the $600 million contract that Dianne's husband was awarded.


Here's Ken Silverstein (HARPER'S MAGAZINE), in 2009, highlighting Dianne's steering $25 billion tax payer dollars to a firm awarding her husband business.


Here's PROJECT CENSORED on continued efforts on Dianne's part to enrich her husband (and herself -- California is a community property state).


And, of course, War Hawk Hillary Clinton's been happy to dole out corporate welfare as well as to dole out favors to those who donate to The Clinton Foundation.


BRussells Tribunal remains one of the finest outlet for news on Iraq and other wars.  They recently noted War Hawk Hillary.



A leaked Hillary Clinton email confirms that the Obama administration, with Hillary at the helm, orchestrated a civil war in Syria to benefit Israel.
YOURNEWSWIRE.COM|BY SEAN ADL-TABATABAI
Antoine Vandendriessche, Kim McQuaite, Selma Çoban and 2 others like this.
Comments
Janet Anderson
Janet Anderson Dreadful woman if this is true. How about saving the Palestinians??





  1.  Liked 38 times
    hillary destroyed libya haiti and iraq to make a buck
 
 
 
  • To illustrate Hillary's incompetence; Clinton as Senator voted for the greatest strategic blunder in U.S. history, the invasion of Iraq.
  •  
     
     



    Hillary Clinton.. out of touch with AMERICA and the World
     
     
     





     

    Wednesday, June 29, 2016

    The fake senator and the 'news' channel ratings

    My mom's long pointed out that Senator Elizabeth Warren is a joke.

    Josh Varlin (WSWS) reports:

    While in the Senate, Warren has reliably supported the Obama administration. For example, in 2014, she, along with nearly every Senate Democrat and then-independent Senator Sanders, voted to confirm David Barron to the First Circuit Court of Appeals. Barron drafted the legal justification for the administration’s program of drone assassinations. As the senior senator from Massachusetts, part of the First Circuit, Warren could have blocked the nomination simply by withholding her support. Her silence on the issue allowed Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky to posture on the Senate floor as a defender of civil liberties against the Barron appointment.
    Warren also defends the Obama administration’s record, even as she obliquely criticizes the effects of its anti-worker policies. At a January 2015 AFL-CIO meeting, she said, “I think the president and his team deserve credit for the steps they’ve taken to get us here,” even as all net job growth over the past decade was in temporary or part-time work.
    In the end, Warren’s “progressivism” boils down to empty left-sounding oratory. One revealing example is her 2014 appearance on MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews,” during which the host pressed her to explain what the Democratic Party was actually going to do regarding job creation. Warren was unable to do anything except blame the Republicans. “We need people across the country to help push on the Republicans,” she said lamely.

    After her yearlong neutrality in the presidential contest, Warren announced June 9 on the “Rachel Maddow Show” on MSNBC that she was “ready” to endorse Clinton. “I am ready to get in this fight and work my heart out for Hillary Clinton to become the next president of the United States—and to make sure that Donald Trump never gets anyplace close to the White House,” Warren said.


    She exists to mislead, she exists to lie.

    That's all she ever does.

    All.

    People should not trust her.


    Meanwhile, check out this fact from DEADLINE, "For total day, FNC was No. 2, CNN was No. 11 and MSNBC was No. 16."

    I'm not insulting Fox News (I don't watch it, I don't know it).

    I will watch CNN.

    MSNBC?

    No.

    They're too stupid.

    They don't do news, they do lengthy editorials.

    They are dishonest.

    I can't stand them.

    I gave them a real chance but they're just awful.

    Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"


    Tuesday, June 28, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, Brett McGurk dances around the Senate, Haider al-Abadi suffers a legal set-back, Tony Blair is the talk of the UK, and much more.




    Today, Brett McGurk, the Special Envoy to Iraq for Barack Obama, appeared before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee where he did a song and dance and gullible members of the Committee went along with it.


    We may or may not return to the hearing in other snapshots this week.

    But we'll note a typical example of the bulk of the hearing.

    Senator Ben Cardin had a question he wanted to ask.  However, Ranking Member Cardin quickly forgot his question.


    Watch as Brett avoids the question and repositions it to a topic he wants to talk about.


    Ranking Member Ben Cardin:  The Sunni civilian population is justifiably concerned to their safety as it relates to the Shia militias.  What steps are we taking to protect the civilian population in these areas that we have been able to militarily reclaim?

    Special Envoy Brett McGruk:  So, Senator, thank you.  This is a really -- it's been the primary focus of ours from day one.  On the positive side, so far in Iraq, no areas that have been retaken from ISIL, that have been liberated from ISIL has ISIL been able to retake.  And that's fairly significant given how difficult things are in Iraq.  What we've done from day one -- this really goes back to the fall of 2014.  You know, we're not in the business of reconstructing Iraq, of repeating the mistakes that were made in the past.  We've tried to revolutionize how we -- how we do this. We have a Prime Minister Abadi who is a real partner in Baghdad who believes in decentralizing power as much as possible and empowering local people.  So the fundamental example of this was in Tikrit.  Tikrit is a primarily Sunni city, an iconic city, in the heart of the mixed province of Saladin Province. It was entirely depopulated by ISIL in the summer of 2014.  It was a site of mass atrocities, thousands of people killed in mass killings.  Once it was liberated, through the coalition, we were able to flood resources to-to Tirkit through a stabilization fund that we established through the coalition.  And this stabilization fund is focused on the necessities of getting people back to their homes.  And returning people to their homes, it's important to recognize, we've looked at this historically and conflicts like this are the hardest things to do in the world.  It can take years of effort.  And, in Tikrit, by empowering the governor, by empowering local leaders, by making sure the resources are there, the returnees eventually reaches a tipping point.  And now we have almost the entire city is back on the streets of Tikrit.  They're local people, Tikritis, guarding the streets --

    Ranking Member Ben Cardin: How do you deal with the Shi'ite militia?  How do they deal with it?

    Special Envoy Brett McGurk: Well, it's a good question. First of all, Shia militias have to act under the control of the Iraqi government, the Iraqi state, that's a fundamental principle of the government of Iraq.  We think most of the Popular Mobilization Forces operate under the control of the Iraqi state but about 15 to 20% of them actually do not.  And those groups are a fundamental problem.  The number one thing we do is try to make sure they stay out of Sunni populated areas where they did cause real problems.  So in Tikrit, for example, Shi'ite militias are not inside the streets of Tikrit that's one thing that gave the population the confidence to return.  Uh, we have a principle when we support Iraqi forces in the military campaign: We will only support military forces operating strictly under Iraqi command and control.  That means that going up from the ground up an Iraqi chain of command  into a joint operations center where we're working with Iraqi commanders.  If there's a unit that's not operating under that structure, it doesn't get any support.


    Ranking Member Ben Cardin:  Are you confident in Falluja will be able to maintain the safety of Sunni civilians?

    Special Envoy Brett McGurk:  So Falluja, of course, just happened -- the last neighborhood was just liberated over the weekend.  We have about 80,000 displaced people.  Uhm, I'm meeting the head of one of the UN programs later this week.  They're hopeful that all of these IDPs will be under shelter by the end of this week and to begin returns next month.  What's also somewhat encouraging about Falluja is that the destruction of the city looks to be fairly minimal compared to other operations so we're hopeful that we can get the people of Falluja back to their streets as soon as possible, that the government can lead that process.  And of course these Shi'ite militia groups that operate outside the rule of law have to be outside the city otherwise people will not return.  So absolutely.  And we have a plan with local police Falluja police -- policemen from Falluja who have  been trained really since the last year are waiting to go back to-to guard their streets.  That's what we did in Tikrit and we're going to try in Falluja.




    How does that deal with Falluja?

    How does that address the War Crimes that have taken place in Falluja in the last few weeks.

    How does it address reports on Sunday and Monday of Shi'ite forces burning homes in Falluja?

    And there's no way in the world that, by the end of the week, the IDPs from Falluja are over 80,000 -- as the BBC reported here today and the UN stated 85,000 today-- and, no, they will not be "under shelter by the end of this week."


    His spin distorts reality.  He did that under Bully Boy Bush, he does it under Barack.




    “The screams, the cries, the smells and the stifling heat — this must be hell on earth.






    Entire families abandoned in the desert. Aid community must not turn its back on Fallujah.







    1. Iraqi Sunni Woman killed by Shia Militias without guilt or charge









    Ben Mathis-Lilley (SLATE) opens another useless article with this, "House Republicans have released another report about the attack against American compounds in Benghazi, Libya on Sept. 11 and Sept. 12, 2012, during which Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other U.S. citizens were killed."  The article is entitled "How Long Would The House GOP Have Investigated Iraq If It Treated Iraq Like Benghazi?" which is a stupid question.

    An idiotic one.


    If he wants to peer into the souls of the GOP, have at it.

    But what is known is that the Republicans have criticized Benghazi.

    The same way Democrats once criticized the Iraq War (before Barack became president).

    So the better analogy, the better question is "Why didn't the Democrats investigate Iraq the way the Republicans did Benghazi?"

    But that questions means we face reality: Most Democrats in Congress never gave a damn about Iraq except as something to use against Bully Boy Bush and other Republicans at election time.

    They campaigned on it to win control of both houses of Congress in 2006 but they didn't do investigations in the House, then or since.

    Just like Nancy Pelosi 'took impeachment off the table.'

    Why are the Democrats so damn spineless?

    If anything deserved a serious inquiry, it was the illegal Iraq War.


    In England, they've had inquiries.  In fact, the Iraq War Inquiry is set to release its report (finally.)

    Emily Allen (TELEGRAPH OF LONDON) explains:


    The Chilcot Inquiry - also known as the Iraq War Inquiry - was set up in 2009 by then Prime Minister Gordon Brown to examine the UK's involvement in Iraq.
    Its remit has been to examine the way decisions were made both before and during the US-led invasion, what actions were taken, and identify what lessons can be learned.




    Not everyone in the British press will be invited to take part in "the official media event."  Nick Clark (Great Britain's SOCIALIST WORKER) reports:


    Socialist Worker has been blocked from reporting from the publication of the Chilcot report into the Iraq war.
    A press spokesperson told Socialist Worker last week that its reporters would not be given access to the official media event.
    The Chilcot report is set to be published on 6 July. It is reported to contain heavy criticism of warmonger and former Labour prime minister Tony Blair for his role in launching the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
    The official publication event in central London will include a media “lock-in” where journalists will get a first look at the report’s executive summary.
    There will also be a statement from the report’s author John Chilcot.
    Despite applying for press access several weeks ago, Socialist Worker was told its reporter would not be allowed in due to “a limited number of spaces”.
    Socialist Worker has consistently opposed the war on Iraq. We have reported from inside the anti-war movement since the launch of the Stop the War Coalition in 2001.
    We exposed Blair’s lies while other newspapers fell in behind the war.

    Journalists from many of those newspapers will have access to the event.



    Currently, War Criminal Tony Blair is in the news.  THE DAILY MIRROR reports:


     The UN inspector whose team found no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq tonight blasts Tony Blair over his decision to go to war.
    On the ex-Prime Minister’s evidence to back joining US President George W Bush in the 2003 invasion, Mr Blix tells BBC1’s Panorama, Iraq: The Final Judgement: “Many people bring themselves to believe something they want to believe.”

    Former Labour Minister Clare Short claims Mr Blair “made up his mind” to back Mr Bush, adding: “It was a manipulation by people determined to take military action.”



     Today, the US Defense Dept announced:


    Strikes in Iraq
    Fighter and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted 12 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

    -- Near Bashir, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Beiji, a strike destroyed an ISIL mortar system, an ISIL vehicle and an ISIL tunnel system. And, another strike struck inoperable coalition equipment denying ISIL access of said equipment.

    -- Near Fallujah, a strike struck a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL tactical vehicle, an ISIL front-end loader, seven ISIL vehicles, two ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL vehicle bomb, and an ISIL staging area, and damaged two ISIL fighting positions.

    -- Near Hit, a strike destroyed an ISIL anti-aircraft gun and an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Kisik, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit.

    -- Near Mosul, a strike suppressed an ISIL mortar position.

    -- Near Qayyarah, three strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed three ISIL assembly areas, an ISIL vehicle, eight ISIL rocket rails, an ISIL headquarters and an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Tal Afar, a strike suppressed an ISIL mortar system.


    Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use. Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike.



    In other bombing news, the UN issued the following statement on a Monday Abu Ghraib bombing:


          
    28 June 2016 – The United Nations envoy for Iraq has strongly condemned the suicide bombing yesterday that killed or wounded a number of civilians at a mosque in Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad, noting that the attack showed the terrorists’ total disdain for Islam.
    “This cowardly attack, happening during the holy month of Ramadan and as worshippers were gathered for evening prayers, shows the terrorists’ total disdain for Islam and rejection of its values,” said Ján Kubiš, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), in a statement issued today.
    Also in the statement, he expressed his condolences to the families of those killed and wishes the injured a speedy recovery.






    AFP reports Iraq's high court has ruled on two things.

    First, we'll note that Salim al-Juburi remains Speaker of Parliament.

    Why?

    It's the same reason we cited back in April -- 131 MPs does not a quorum make.

    The vote to oust him did not count.

    The second one is even more hurtful to the anti-democratic White House which has been encouraging Haider al-Abadi (the US-installed prime minister) to create a new Cabinet.

    As we've repeatedly noted, the Constitution does not allow for him to make that decision.

    But worse for him, the court found the vote their illegal.

    Why?

    MPs were prevented from entering the Parliament to vote and guards were sent into the Parliament.


    Saif Hameed, Stephen Kalin and Dominic Evans (REUTERS) quote legal expert Tariq Harb stating, "The five ministers who were approved by parliament at the April 26th session have lost their ministerial status. The prime minister must make a new nomination for parliament to vote on."








    the telegraph of london