Today the US military announced: "One Multi-National Corps – Iraq Soldier died of wounds suffered during combat operations in the vicinity of Kirkuk Aug. 28." The announcement brings the ICCC total for the number of US service members killed in Iraq this month to 75 with 3733 being the total number killed in the illegal war since it started.
Yesterday Bully Boy tossed out some more lies in another embarrassing speech (this time in Reno). Lloyd notes this from Michael Abramowitz' "As Iraq Situation Varies, Bush Sticks With Encouraging Words" (Washington Post):
In his address Tuesday to thousands of Legionnaires attending their national convention, Bush seemed especially effusive in touting security gains from the additional 30,000 troops he sent to Baghdad in January -- even as he urged Congress once again to reserve judgment until it hears another assessment next month from Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker.
"The momentum is now on our side," Bush said. "The surge is seizing the initiative from the enemy -- and handing it to the Iraqi people."
Another 'turned corner,' another wave of Operation Happy Talk. Already there have been more announced deaths of US service members than the same time last year (65 was the total for August 2006).
Each wave comes with more deaths and more financial costs. Thomas E. Ricks' "Bush Wants $50 Billion More for Iraq War" (Washington Post):
The request -- which would come on top of about $460 billion in the fiscal 2008 defense budget and $147 billion in a pending supplemental bill to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq -- is expected to be announced after congressional hearings scheduled for mid-September featuring the two top U.S. officials in Iraq. Army Gen. David H. Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker will assess the state of the war and the effect of the new strategy the U.S. military has pursued this year.
Today, Bully Boy has several photo-ops for the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. They include schools. Let's hope he doesn't get entranced by My Pet Goat again.
In news of other lying leaders, Lelia Fadel (McClatchy Newspapers) interviews the puppet of the occupation from his office within the heavily fortified Green Zone. This is from Fadel's "An interview with Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki:"
FADEL: The Sadrists have compared your government to Saddam Hussein's government. Two American Democrats have called for your resignation, and behind the scenes, some say you act as an opposition leader rather than a leader of Iraq. The Kurds have told Western officials that if you don't deliver on promises at the summit they would try to get your resignation. How do you react to this as a leader of Iraq? Would you consider resigning?
MALIKI: In truth I did not come to this position from being a king or a prince but have reached here through a political process, democracy and national will. I did not come here by hereditary right, neither is there a hierarchy in Iraq today. This is the first part.
National will? The members of Parliament that backed him probably had no idea of how awful he'd be. He has been awful. He's been a series of repeated failures. This goes beyond the fact that he's a puppet whose strings are pulled. The US has had many of those over the years. al-Maliki has failed Iraq even in the capacity of heavily controlled puppet.
In addition to the transcript of the interview, Fadel also offers "Iraq's Maliki speaks on government, future" and we'll note this from it:
Despite Maliki's confidence, the scene at his office made it clear that his survival isn't being debated only in Washington. Maliki's security guards were closely watching a talk show on a wide screen Panasonic television in the lobby. The topic was whether Maliki is the only choice for Iraq, and political pundits were debating whether the prime minister should step down.
When Maliki entered, the guards turned down the volume, but kept the program on.
In the New York Times this morning, Stephen Farrell's "50 Die in Fight Between Shiite Groups in Karbala" notes the mass violence in Karbala:
A power struggle between rival Shiite groups erupted Tuesday during a religious festival in Karbala, as men with machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades fought street battles amid crowds of pilgrims, killing 50 people and wounding 200, Iraqi officials said.
[. . .]
Tensions between the Mahdi Army and the Badr Organization have simmered for months. Both are vying for control of the overwhelmingly Shiite regions of central and southern Iraq. Two provincial governors belonging to the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council were assassinated in southern Iraq this month, although the Sadrists deny involvement.
Martha notes Megan Greenwell's "Riots at Iraqi Religious Festival Leave Dozens Dead" (Washington Post):
Many of the estimated 1 million pilgrims ignored prohibitions against carrying weapons. Muntadar al-Jabiri, a commander in the Mahdi Army, said the fighting started because other Shiites were allowed to bring guns into the city while Sadr's followers were not.
"Some of us were carrying pistols, but not all of us," Jabiri said of his 31-person group. "They were authorized pistols from Sadr's office and we had IDs to carry them. They do not respect us just because we are from the Sadr bloc."
In apparent retaliation for the sense of mistreatment in Karbala, Sadr supporters set fire to a Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council office in the Baghdad neighborhood of Kadhimiyah.
Reuters reports puppet al-Maliki has declared "The situation in Kerbala is under control after military reinforcements arrived and police and military special forces have spread throughout the city to purge those killers and criminals"; however, not everyone's reassured by the babbles of the puppet:
"Do we have a government? There is no Iraqi government, because pilgrims were killed in Kerbala between the two shrines," said Qassim Salman, one of thousands of fleeing pilgrims who reached Baghdad in buses.
Despite the puppet's claims, turn on your TV -- it appears the violence in Karbala is still going on but what are your own eyes compared to al-Maliki's statements?
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