Thursday, August 26, 2010

Troops continue deploying and fear pay cuts

The drawdown didn't end the Iraq War and repeating the lie it did effects many. Ann Rubin (KSDK) reports some soldiers in Iraq are afraid their pay is going to be cut as a result of the creative terminology the spin is pushing. US House Rep Russ Carnahan tells Rubin, "The bottom line is they're in a dangerous part of the world, but we've got to continue to do everything we can to be sure they get that support." Meanwhile Jarrod Wise (KXAN) reports that 800 members of the Texas Army National Guard's 36th Infantry Division are preparing to deploy to Iraq where they will be stationed in Basra and the 800 include people like Bank of America's Charles Clemons and police officer Stephanie Dugan. Jennie Huerta (KVUE) adds that the 800 head to Fort Lewis at the end of next month and will be in Iraq following Thanksgiving for what "is only the second major deployment of the 36th Infantry Division headquarters since World War II, when the T-Patch soldiers were the first American troops to land in Europe." Nikasha Dicks (Augusta Chronicle) notes that the 63rd Expeditionary Signal Battalion's Bravo Company had a send-off ceremony on Saturday as Bravo Company prepares for a year-long deployment in Iraq and quotes Colen Ortiz whose husband Sgt Ortiz is among those deploying, "The very first three [deployments], I just had to worry about myself. Now I have someone else to worry about." Colen Ortiz "is expecting the couple's first child in October."

The Iraq War has not ended. Sanford News editorializes:

The melodramatic, pre-dawn, overland getaway from Iraq of the last official U.S. combat unit on Thursday, Aug. 19, was more an act of symbolism than substance. Approximately 52,000 American soldiers — many being combat forces now classified as "trainers" and "advisers" — will remain in Iraq through next year to assist Iraqi security forces.
These "advisers" will accompany Iraqi troops on missions when requested. In addition, special forces units will remain active assisting the ongoing hunt for terrorists. So, while the final combat brigade is headed home, U.S. troops will remain in harm's way. It's likely the 4,415 U.S. death toll will rise until America truly ends its active intervention in Iraq.

Meanwhile CBS6 reports (link has text and video) the latest in the November death of Amy Tirador who died while serving in Iraq. Despite numerous questionable details, the US Army Criminal Investigation Command announced yesterday that their finding was that Amy took her own life. Her parents have stated their belief that their daughter did not take her own life and can point to numerous details that make such a finding questioning. That said, the 'verdict' isn't surprising. Amy's mother has noted publicly that all indications were the military was attempting to quickly wrap up the investigation and sweep the whole thing under the rug.

The following community websites -- plus we'll include and World Can't Wait -- updated last night:

We'll note this from "I Am Doing this for the Iraqi and Afghan People" (World Can't Wait):

Matthis Chiroux:

I am a former Army sergeant and war resister. I was press-ganged into the Army by the Alabama Juvenile "Justice" System in 2002. While in the military, I occupied the nations of Japan and Germany for more than four years, with shorter tours in the Philippines and Afghanistan.

I was a Public Affairs noncommissioned officer specializing in strategic communications. In reality, I was a propaganda artist. I was discharged honorably to the Individual Ready Reserve in 2007.

While I have always been against the war in Iraq, I began resisting it actively in 2008, after I received mobilization orders for a year-long deployment to Iraq. I refused those orders in Congress in May of 2008, calling my orders illegal and unconstitutional. I believed appealing to Congress would end the war. When 13 Members signed a letter of support for my decision and sent it to Bush, I thought we had won a victory for peace. This was more than two years ago. The president has changed, and the wars and destruction drag on.

Today, I am blocking the deployment of the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment with my fellow vets and military family members because the wars will continue to victimize our communities until we halt this bloody machine from within. I am putting my body on the line in solidarity with the people of the Middle East, whose bodies have been shot, burned, tortured, raped, and violated by our men and women in and out of uniform. I cannot willfully allow Americans in uniform to put their lives and the lives of Iraqis in jeopardy for a crime. We are here because we have a responsibility to ourselves as veterans and as humans of the world. I will not rest until my people, ALL PEOPLE, are free.

In Struggle and Solidarity,

Matthis Chiroux

Matthis is among those sharing why he took part in the Fort Hood effort. We'll note him in today's snapshot and try to note the effort in greater detail. And we'll close with this from the Institute for Public Accuracy:

Institute for Public Accuracy
915 National Press Building, Washington, D.C. 20045
(202) 347-0020 * *

PM Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Carter: Netanyahu ADDING Demands

Interviews Available

The British newspaper the Guardian reported that Jimmy Carter, who had been in Israel and met with top Hamas officials in Gaza, said of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's recent speech: "My opinion is he raised many new obstacles to peace that had not existed under previous prime ministers. ... He still apparently insists on expansion of existing settlements, he demands that the Palestinians and the Arabs recognize Israel as a Jewish state, although 20 percent of its citizens here are not Jews. This is a new demand."

Cater also stated: "To me, the most grievous circumstance is the maltreatment of the people in Gaza, who are literally starving and have no hope at this time. ... They're being treated like savages. The alleviation of their plight to some means I think would be the most important [thing] the Israeli PM could do."

FRANCIS BOYLE, (217) 333-7954,
Boyle, a professor at the University of Illinois College of Law in Champaign, served as legal advisor to the Palestinian delegation to the Middle East peace negotiations from 1991 to 1993.
He said today: "Netanyahu has now shifted the goal-posts on the Palestinians by demanding that they recognize Israel as a 'Jewish State.' It would be as if the United States demanded that Iran recognize it as a 'White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestant State' as part of any peace settlement. Of course this demand is racist. It would likely lead to the denationalization of the 1.5 million Palestinians who are already second-class citizens of Israel and set the stage for their mass deportation to the Palestinian Bantustan envisioned by Netanyahu in this speech.
"Basically, Netanyahu [is trying] to stall and delay while Israel continues to develop and expand its illegal settlements in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, funded in substantial part by United States taxpayers." Boyle's books include "Palestine, Palestinians and International Law" and most recently "Tackling America's Toughest Questions."

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020, (202) 421-6858; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

The e-mail address for this site is

thomas friedman is a great man

oh boy it never ends