Sunday, August 26, 2012


Violence continued in Iraq.  Xinhua reports that 3 security guards were shot dead in Baghdad, 2 police officrs were shot dead in another Baghdad attack, a third Baghdad attack left Sheikh Fadil Abdul Zahraa, a Baghad sticky bombing injured one person, and two roadside bombings outside of Falluja claimed the lives of 3 Iraqi soldiers and left three more wounded.  Areeb Hasni (AFP)
adds 2 corpses (shot to death) were discovered in Kirkuk.  Through Saturday, Iraq Body Count counts 357 people killed in violence so far this month.

Violence gets undercounted all the time.  And the wounded and dead, the ones living in fear, are disappeared from the coverage.  Case in point, Reuters has a cute story where they talk about Iraq closing off a border with Syria and how it's all about the military and about the violence . . .  But somehow they 'forget' the product of the violence: Refugees.

Not one sentence refers to the refugees.  Al-Arabiya reported yesterday that "Iraq has completely sealed its border with Syria in the face of refugees who are fleeing the escalating violence in their home country.  Security forces have blocked the crossing with concrete barriers and closed all the roads leading to the border crossing from the Iraqi side."  With Turkey pursuing a similar strategy, Liz Sly (Washington Post) is able to see the key story, blocking refugees from entering the country.

Let's look at Sly's opening statement, "A surge in the number of Syrians seeking sanctuary from their country’s soaring violence prompted the Turkish government to halt the flow of refugees at two key border crossings Sunday amid an escalating humanitarian crisis that is swamping Syria’s neighbors and intensifying pressure for international intervention."  Yet somehow Reuters can't factor in the refugees or even mention them when reporting on Iraq sealing the shared border?

The refugees that were taken into Iraq (excluding the KRG)  have been treated horribly.  Nouri only took them in after he realized how cold and uncaring he came off on the world stage when he initially denied entry stating that Iraq couldn't handle an influx of refugees.  And more recently, he's attempted to push them out of the buildings they were housed in. 

So now the border's closed and Retuers can only see it in terms of fighters crossing over?  Can't see the refugees or the refugee crisis. 

I'm traveling in some vehicle
I'm sitting in some cafe
A defector from the petty wars
That shell shock love away
-- "Hejira," written by Joni Mitchell, first appears on her album of the same name

 The number of US service members the Dept of Defense states died in the Iraq War is [PDF format warning] 4488.

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