Friday, July 24, 2009

al-Maliki says US may stay in Iraq past 2011 and . . . silence

A day after President Barack Obama said that the U.S. was on track to pull its troops out of Iraq by 2011, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki said Thursday that that timeline could change "if the Iraqi forces required further training and support."

That's the opening to Margaret Talev's "Iraq's Maliki raises possibility of asking U.S. to stay on" (McClatchy Newspapers) and some readers may need to give it a second look since McClatchy is the only newspaper outlet covering it. It's not because it just emerged or emerged late. The comments are noted in yesterday's snapshot. It's not ignored because it's not newsworthy. Three outlets rushed to print articles yesterday morning on the topic . . . when they claimed all US troops would be out in 2011. (See yesterday's entry.) It's only not news when it doesn't agree with their outlets spin purposes.

To recap, when you can pimp the lie that all US troops will be out of Iraq in 2011 (and, apparently, pimp yourself as a psychic who can tell the future), you run with it and call it news. When Nouri al-Maliki publicly, in front of a crowd, declares not-so-fast, you duck your head and pretend it didn't happen.

Anne Gearan covers al-Maliki's remarks for AP
. Speaking of AP: "As the Obama administration struggles to handle the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, a majority of Americans are against the long-fought wars, a new poll says. The AP-GfK Poll released on Thursday showed that 63% of respondents oppose the war in Iraq and 53% oppose the war in Afghanistan." You can learn about that poll from AP and it's noted in Wednesday and Thursday's snapshots. But other than that? The quote's from Iran's Press TV. It's easier to learn of the poll of Americans from Press TV out of Iran than from the New York Times. Again, it's only news when it fits their latest wave of Operation Happy Talk.

On that topic, Peter Feaver (Foreign Policy) examines Barry O's Rose Garden remarks with Nouri by his side and wonders why so many are so quick and eager to just go along with the words from Barack's mouth -- whether they're factual or not:

That got me wondering: would those folks (say the mainstream Bob Woodward or Tom Ricks, let alone other people in the nuttier fringes of the Bush-bashing chorus) who established a cottage industry lambasting Bush Administration rhetoric as "happy talk" rise up and start calling a foul on President Obama? President Bush regularly caveated his statements of progress with reminders that there were "tough days ahead" and, if memory serves, Rumsfeld was the guy who coined "long, hard slog." In their coverage of Bush, sometimes the reporters would include mention of the caveats and qualify their lede accordingly; sometimes the reporters would include mention of the caveats and yet stick to a "happy talk" lede; and sometimes the reporters would simply omit any mention of the caveats, perhaps the better to advance the "happy talk" lede. Regardless of how many times President Bush presented carefully caveated assessments, the Bush-bashers could always rest their indictment on one or two off-the-cuff uncaveated remarks.

In this community, we held Bully Boy Bush accountable and we hold Bully Boy Barack accountable. They're both War Hawks. Neither saw fit to serve in the military but are really comfortable allowing Americans to die in far away countries.

Independent journalist John Pilger also holds both administrations accountable. KPFA's Flashpoints yesterday broadcast a speech by Pilger about media and empire and covering Obama, "The Rise of Barack Obama and the Silencing of Much of the Left."

Paul Walsh (Minneapolis Star-Tribune) notes funerals have been scheduled for Daniel Drevnick, James Wertish and Carlos Wilcox who died serving Iraq:

On Friday at 9:30 a.m. in Cottage Grove, a "Hero's Escort" for Wilcox will start at Kok Funeral Home and end at Light the Way Church. Services begin at 11 a.m., with visitation one hour prior at the church. Burial is scheduled for Tuesday at New Albany (Ind.) National Cemetery, where his father, Charles Wilcox Jr., is buried.
Drevnick's funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday at King of Kings Lutheran Church in Woodbury, with burial at Fort Snelling National Cemetery at 1 p.m. A wake will be held Friday at the funeral home from 3 to 8 p.m.
Funeral services for Wertish will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Bird Island, with burial to follow at St. Aloysius Cemetery in Olivia. Visitation is at St. Mary's from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.

Tim Pawlenty is the governor of Minnesota and My Fox 9 notes, "The governor says the loss and pain that the families of the three slain soldiers are feeling is 'unimaginable,' but he wanted to share the state's gratitude for the soldiers' 'incredible courage'."

Meanwhile Alex Dalenberg (Arizona Republic) reports, "The Phoenix-based 3,666th Support Maintenance Company" is deploying to Iraq. The illegal war is not ending and Douglas Cohn and Eleanor Clift see that as a good thing. The two doofus pen "Recruitment of the possible in the U.S. Army" which is a mish-mash of bad writing, even setting aside the argument they're making which is 'Boom Time for US military! Let's get to recruiting!' The following sentence is so confusing it took two bad writers to pen, "If the Obama administration is serious about growing the Army — and we believe it is — Gates would have gone for a much larger number." Do you catch that they failed logic? If . . . then. If Obama's serious than he would have done this and he didn't so . . . Logic dictates that the construction ends with Barack not being serious. But they "believe" he is. It makes no sense and maybe when people reach a certain age that they find it exciting for others to sign up, maybe that's when they need to stop putting their bad gas baggery into text form? Hmm? Maybe?

Journalist Rebecca Lipkin has passed away from breast cancer at the age of 48. Matt Schudel (Washington Post) covers Lipkin's accomplished career which included ABC News (World News Tonight and Nightline) and Aljazeera: "Survivors include her mother, Gladys Lipkin of Hollywood, Fla.; a sister, Harriet Lipkin of Washington; and a brother, Dr. Alan Lipkin of Englewood, Colo."

The following community sites updated last night:

The e-mail address for this site is


thomas friedman is a great man

oh boy it never ends