Friday, July 22, 2011

Protests, corruption, combat and stalemate continue

Protests are taking place in Iraq today. Screen snap is from Revolution of Iraq's footage of today's Baghdad protest.

7 22 protest baghdad

The Great Iraqi Revolution notes, "REAFFIRMATION OF IRAQ'S DIGNITY FRIDAY - Masses of people answering the call to attend the protests despite the fact that that there are a great many strictures and restrictions and the presence of Haliki's hooligans in great numbers armed with clubs and knives as well as guns." They note that security forces in Baghdad are chasing photographers and "confiscating mobiles [cell phones] wherever they are seen!" And that "A short while ago the use of fire arms and bulllets by government forces in Tahrir to stop the burning of the Iranian flag." Revolution of Iraq notes that all but one entrance has been blocked and people are being prevented from bringing in water bottles and that protests are also taking place in Mutanabi.

While protests take place, Dar Addustour reports that Parliament's Integrity Commission is stating that there is "mafia control" over contracting in the Ministry of Commerce and that an arrest warrant has been issued against Abdul Falah al-Sudani (former Under Secretary of Commerce).

Corruption continues in Iraq even though Nouri al-Maliki claimed back in February he'd be whipping it in 100 Days. 100 Days came and went. Corruption remains. (In fact, the Integrity Commission avoids naming people until the last minute if they're in the country because they fear them fleeing.) Corruption continues, Political Stalemate II continues. Al Mada cites an unnamed State Of Law official for the claim that there will be another meeting at Jalal Talabani's home ('the second in less than a month") in which an attempt will be made to resolve outstanding differences between the parties. Those outstanding differecnes would be the failure of Nouri al-Maliki to abide by the Erbil Agreement which ended Political Stalemate I (the nine month period after the March 7, 2010 elections) and allowed Nouri to remain prime minister. Nouri took what he wanted from the agreement but refused to otherwise follow it.

Those pinning big hopes on the upcoming Jalal House Party should be aware that the other house parties haven't solved anything. In addition, Alsumaria TV observes, "Al Iraqiya List threatens to give a no-confidence vote for Iraq’s government and call for early elections in case national partnership fails to be achieved. State of Law Coalition MP Khaled Al Assadi on the other hand accused Al Iraqiya of trying to incite Sunnis under the pretext of political imbalance." Aswat al-Iraq reports that there are doubts that Iraqiya would follow through with a no confidence vote:

The Political Analyist, Issam al-Feily, told Aswat al-Iraq news agency that the pressures, exerted by some political blocs against others are part of a political pressure, confirming that “all political blocs are keen to stay in power and non-withdrawal from it.”
“Al-Iraqiya Coalition had been counting highly on the so-called National Council for Strategic Policies (NCSP), because it wanted to achieve something practical from it in drawing Iraq’s internal and foreign policies, and when it failed to form the NCSP, al-Iraqiya began to threaten to withdraw from the political process, because in case if it would be formed, it would affect the whole political arena, though it would lead in the end to undermine the current government, due to the existence of more than one party in it, and not the State of Law, led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, alone,” Faily said.

Aswat al-Iraq also notes, "Aswat al-Iraq: Al-Iraqiya Coalition, led by Iyad Allawi, has called on the Iraqi government to raise a complain at the UN Security Council, about Iranian violations of Iraq’s water interests, according to a statement it issued on Thursday." Iran is a topic in Iraq these days for many reasons including the fact that it has entered northern Iraq to attack Kurds it sees as terrorists. Aswat al-Iraq reports of the CIA-backed Goran ("Change") political party in the KRG, "Opposition Kurdish Change Movement Spokesman said that the Iranian atrocities on the Iraqi borders in the Kurdish region are done with the approval of certain circles within the Kurdish authority."

Iran is not the only foreign government facing accusations in Iraq. Alsumaria TV reports, "Iraq’s Ahrar bloc member Youssef Attai accused US Forces of carrying out intensified patrols in residential neighborhoods in Diwaniya and arresting citizens without the knowledge of the local government, a source told Alsumaria." What is known is that Barack Obama is a liar. Combat operations did not end August 31, 2010 despite Barack's lies that they did. Alsumaria TV notes, "US Forces increased military patrols in the regions surrounding its military bases in Babel, Diwaniya and Waset, the US military said. These measures aim to protect US military bases in these regions and around Iraq against attacks by Iran-supported groups, the US military noted."

And we'll close with this from Ruth Sherlock's report (Telegraph of London via Information Clearing House) on the Libyan War:

The streaks of blood, smeared along the sides of this impromptu mass grave suggested a rushed operation, a hurried attempt to dispose of the victims.

Who the men were and what happened to them, close to the Libyan rebels' western front line town of Al-Qawalish in the Nafusa Mountains, remains unknown.

But the evidence of a brutal end were clear. One of the corpses had been cleanly decapitated, while the trousers of another had been ripped down to his ankles, a way of humiliating a dead enemy.

The green uniforms were the same as those worn by loyalists fighting for Col. Muammer Gaddafi in Libya's civil war. No one from the rebel side claimed the corpses, or declared their loved ones missing.

There was no funeral, or call to the media by the rebels to see the 'atrocities committed by the regime'.

Since the bodies were seen by the Daily Telegraph attempts to discover their identities have been unsuccessful, in part because of obstruction by rebel authorities in the area. Having highlighted the discovery to those authorities the area was subsequently bulldozed and the bodies dissappeared.

The find will add to concerns highlighted in recent days over human rights violations by rebel forces. Human Rights Watch last week said that had looted homes, shops and hospitals and beaten captives as they advanced.

The Daily Telegraph found homes in the village of al-Awaniya ransacked, and shops and schools smashed and looted. The town, now empty, was inhabited by the Mashaashia, a traditionally loyalist tribe that has long been involved in land disputes with surrounding towns.

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