Friday, August 03, 2012

A break in the summer heat?

With a photo of a woman carrying a large bloc of melting ice, Alsumaria reports that, Sunday and Monday, the temperature in Iraq may drop to 44 degrees Celsius (111.2 Fahrenheit).  This would be an improvement in what has been a very hot Ramadan and one that is expected to see temperatures of 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit).  All Iraq News expects the temperature to only drop to 46 degrees Celsisus (114.8 degrees Fahrenheit) in Baghdad and to reach 50 degrees Celsius in Basra. Al Mada reports that the Basra Directorate of Civil Defense is blaming the heat on 180 fires in Basra last month.  Brigadier General Raad Majid Salman blames the temperatures that reached 50 degrees Celsius as well as human actions such as the way generator fuel is stored as well as the way cigarette butts are tossed when some smokers finish their cigarette.

When 111.8 degress Fahrenheit  (44 degrees Celsius) is seen as a 'break' in the extreme heat, it may become clearer why the lack of dependable electricity is such an issue to Iraqis.  It's not just about the basic conviences, it's about the non-stop heat.  And though propagandists try so very, very hard to portray Nouri as a success and popular, six years in office and no improvement on the electrical issue does not success or popularity make.

The lack of success in this area has led to the Minister of Elecriticy becoming the revolving door post in Nouri's Cabinet.  Al Mada reports that National Alliance MP Abdul Hussein Abtan is calling for the Minister of Electricity (or current Minister of Electricity) to appear before Parliament and explain why Najaf is now having ten hours of no electricity each day for every two hours of electricity they receive.  Of course there are other utilities.  Al Mada reports that despite questioning of the Governor of Baghdad by the Parliament in the last days, there is still no answer as to why water has become so scarce in the capital.  44 degrees Celsius (111.8 degrees Fahrenheit) is seen as a potential 'break' in the heat and water is in short supply in the capital?

In London, where the Summer Olympics are taking place, it's 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius).  Iraq has sent 8 athletes to the Olympics and competing today are Safaa al-Jumaili (weightlifting) and Dana Abdul Razak (100 meter run).  That's Dana Abdul Razak in the screen snap below.

Dania Hussein

SPOILER ALERT (because I have no idea what NBC's showing and when -- there has been strong criticism of NBC's inability/refusal to carry many events live), Dana Abdul Razak has made it through the preliminary round for the 100 meter.  From Reuters:

Qualified for Next Round
1.   Toea Wisil (Papua New Guinea)   11.6  
2.   Delphine Atangana (Cameroon)    11.71 
3.   Feta Ahamada (Comoros)          11.81 
3.   Kaina Martinez (Belize)         11.81 
5.   Lorene Bazolo (Congo)           11.87 
6.   Dana Abdul Razak (Iraq)         11.91 
7.   Diane Borg (Malta)              12.00 
8.   Fong Yee Pui (Hong Kong, China) 12.02 
9.   Saruba Colley (Gambia)          12.21 
10.  Bamab Napo (Togo)               12.24

This is Dana Abdul Razak's second Olympics.  She also competed in the 2008 Olympics.  Al Mada reports on her and the other athletes today.  She notes that her goal is to increase her experience and break the previous Iraq record.  From only one athlete in 2008 to eight this year, the goal is to continue to increase their country's level of participation in the Olympics. 

The Iraq Inquiry was supposed to be an independent investigation into the Iraq War.  However, they have frequently faced obstacles and are now being blocked from revealing to the people a pre-war discussion that then-prime minister Tony Blair had with Bully Boy Bush.  Chris Ames (Iraq Inquiry Digest) notes:

The Daily Mail carries a tremendous piece by John Kampfner on the current government’s use of the Freedom of Information Act veto to block disclosure of the pre-war Cabinet minutes:
The decision not to release official papers on the Iraq war exposes yet again how the political class thinks it is above public scrutiny.
Which is very much what I have been thinking

So much for a public inquiry into the war. Felicity Arbuthnot (Dissident Voice) offers:

In the last several days, the shreds of Britain’s threadbare claim to democracy have been ripped away.
The refusal by the current Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government to disclose documents integral to the decision to join the US in invading, occupying, destroying and dismantling the entire civil authority and infrastructure of the very State of Iraq, follows their Labour predecessors, the invasion’s co-architects.
The Iraq Inquiry findings under Sir John Chilcot’s Chairmanship will now be delayed for over another year.
Sir John and his distinguished team will at least have learned one thing that lesser mortals ascertained long ago: When it comes to dodging, diving, weaving and circumventing the truth, no one does it better than top British politicians of all political hues.

The following community sites -- plus On The Wilder Side, Jody Watley,, CSPAN and Chocolate City -- updated last night and this morning:

The Los Angeles Times has a report on the Roseanne Barr - Cindy Sheehan ticket -- article by Robin Abcarian.  They're starting to get some serious attention -- and you know it's serious when the liar POLITICO feels the need to 'credit' the news ('credit' because, as is always the case, they can't get it right).  Here are some upcoming scheduled events for the campaign:

  • South Dakota! We need your signatures to get Roseanne on the ballot. Deadline is 8-7-12
  • Wisconsin!! We need your signatures to get Roseanne on the ballot. Deadline is 8-7-12
  • Iowa! We need your signatures to get Roseanne on the ballot. Deadline is 8-17-12
  • Minnesota! We need your signatures to get Roseanne on the ballot. Deadline is 8-21-12

At Cindy's site, she carries an endorsement from Eugene E. Ruyle:

Yep, she’s got my vote. Like many others, I was skeptical at first, but as I’ve learned more about Rosanne and who she is, my skepticism has changed to enthusiasm and I’ve come to believe that the Barr/Sheehan ticket is the best hope for our party and for our class.

Before explaining, let me note that, as the “Top Two” candidate in the 15th Assembly District (Richmond, Berkeley, Oakland), I endorse all the candidates and will be honored to share the ballot with whoever is chosen by our Convention. Until this week, I had planned to vote for the Durham/Lopez ticket out of the great respect I have for the Freedom Socialist Party. I have equal respect the Party for Socialism and Liberation, the Socialist Party, and Rocky Anderson and hope they will all continue to work in our Party for real Peace and real Freedom.

To begin, let me stress that Rosanne is a socialist who, for many Americans, defines “working class.” She is one of us. She is an established author (I just ordered her latest, Roseannearchy: Dispatches from the Nut Farm.) Rosanne has expressed her support for building Peace and Freedom and for our Platform. Her endorsement of the strongest platform on the American left should calm the fears of any who might question the “purity” of her socialism. The addition of the “Peace Mom,” Cindy Sheehan, further underscores the left credentials of her campaign. Cynthia McKinney and the Black Caucus of the Green Party have endorsed Rosanne’s campaign. All this adds stength to a Barr/Sheehan/Peace&Freedom campaign.

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