Saturday, March 22, 2014

Nouri finally finds a journalist killing he can condemn

One journalist after another has been killed in Iraq and Nouri al-Maliki's never cared.  In some cases, as with Hadi al-Mahdi, Nouri is likely the one who ordered the murder.

But today, the prime minister and chief thug of Iraq, found a murder he could condemn, that of Mohamed Bedewi.

There are a number of reasons this murder is being condemned and one big reason that's not being stated by the press.

As NINA notes, Bedewi was the "director of Office of Radio al-Iraq  Al-Hur" and was shot in Baghdad by 1 member of the Peshmerga who was charged with protecting the area around President Jalal Talabni's Baghdad residence.

Jalal Talabani is the President of Iraq.  December 2012,  Iraqi President Jalal Talabani suffered a stroke.   The incident took place late on December 17, 2012 (see the December 18, 20102 snapshot) and resulted in Jalal being admitted to Baghdad's Medical Center Hospital.    Thursday, December 20, 2012, he was moved to Germany.  He remains in Germany currently.  His residence proper is in northern Iraq in the Kurdistan Regional Government.   November 20th, his chief bodyguard was shot dead in Sulaimaniyah.

Sameer N. Yacoub (AP) points out Talabani is Kurdish and so are his protection forces.

It also helps that the Peshmerga has already turned the guard over to the police.  All Iraq News notes Nouri arrived on the scene (in time for the press to cover it).

To provide a little perspective on how Nouri treats journalists, let's drop back to the September 8, 2011 snapshot:

In Iraq, a journalist has been murdered.  In addition to being a journalist, he was also a leader of change and part of the movement to create an Iraq that was responsive to Iraqis. 
Al Mada reports Iraqi journalist Hadi al-Mahdi is dead according to an Interior Ministry source who says police discovered him murdered in his Baghdad home.  Along with being a journalist, Al Mada notes he was one of the chief organizers of the demonstrations demanding change and service reform that began on February 25th -- the day he was arrested by Iraqi security forces and beaten in broad daylight as he and others, after the February 25th protest, were eating in a restaurant. The New York Times didn't want to tell you about, the Washington Post did.  And now the man is dead. Gee, which paper has the archives that matter to any real degree.  Maybe it's time to act like a newspaper and not a "news magazine" with pithy little human interest stories?  (That is not a dig at Tim Arango but at the paper's diva male 'reporter' who went on NPR to talk of an Iraqi college this week.)  So while the Times missed the story (actaully, they misled on the story -- cowtowing to Nouri as usual),  Stephanie McCrummen (Washington Post) reported:

Four journalists who had been released described being rounded up well after they had left a protest at Baghdad's Tahrir Square. They said they were handcuffed, blindfolded, beaten and threatened with execution by soldiers from an army intelligence unit.
"It was like they were dealing with a bunch of al-Qaeda operatives, not a group of journalists," said Hussam al-Ssairi, a journalist and poet, who was among a group and described seeing hundreds of protesters in black hoods at the detention facility. "Yesterday was like a test, like a picture of the new democracy in Iraq."

A year after Hadi's murder, Prashant Rao (AFP) reported, despite claims that they weren't responsible and that they would get to the bottom of it, the government has still not solved the assassination (or, I'd argue, even really investigated).  Rao noted:

Mehdi's friends and supporters insist he has not been forgotten, with the radio station he worked at planning a special day of programming, and journalists and activists organising events and demonstrations in his memory this week.
"Hadi would say what people wanted to say but couldn't -- they didn't have his courage," said Karnas Ali, technical director at the Demozy radio station where Mehdi broadcast three 90-minute shows a week.

Today's he's concerned.  Today Nouri cares.

Nouri doesn't give a damn except that he can use it to punish Kurds.

Oh, and one other thing.

Nobody wants to say.  Everybody knows it.

But no one wants to be unkind to the dead.

Tough, we tell the truth.

The dead isn't a journalist.  He's part of a propaganda outlet.

The stations he works for is better known as "Radio Free Iraq."

And if that sounds vaguely familiar, yes, it is one of those "Radio Free" propaganda stations that the US government waste taxpayer dollars on.  Some may remember Hillary Clinton's lunatic ravings against China's outlets and Russia's and demanding Congress -- in her best Nikita Khruschev shoe banging performance -- do more for the propaganda outlets of the US.

Oh, and by the way, Ukraine's about to get Radio Free Europe -- but let's all pretend not to notice that too.

What was the 'journalist' doing?

Who knows maybe he was pursuing a story?

Maybe he was spying for the US government?

Regardless, he was shot in public and by a Kurd so it was a political win for Nouri even before the US government dialed up Nouri announcing this murder be punished.  It was after this call that Nouri got his ass to the scene of the crime.

You should have known something more was going on then what the press was telling you just by the fact that Nouri was finally calling for the murderer of a journalist to be punished.

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stephanie mccrummen