Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Nouri's Iraq comes in number one again!

It's award season all over again!  Monday, the Pulitzers were announced and Jane Arraf won The Quil Lawrence Award.  Iraq has come in first in a poll.  It would be a proud moment for Nouri if the poll were a good thing.

The Committee to Protect Journalist has released its "Impunity Index" and Iraq tops the list:

With 100 journalists murdered in the last decade and 100 percent impunity, Iraq is the worst offender on the Impunity Index, a spot it has held since 2008, when CPJ first compiled the index. Nine new murders in late 2013 amid a resurgence of militant groups broke a two-year quiescence in fatal anti-press violence. Three of the victims, plus two media workers, were killed in a single attack when armed militants bombed and stormed Salaheddin TV station in Tikrit on December 23. Al-Qaeda affiliate Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack, according to news reports accusing it of warring against the Sunni people.
Impunity Index Rating: 3.067 unsolved journalist murders per million inhabitants
Last year: Ranked 1st with a rating of 2.818

For the second year in a row, Nouri's Iraq has come in number one when it comes to getting away with murdering a journalist.

This is big news.

News the chief thug of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki couldn't deliver since violence and a funeral, Alsumaria notes, has caused him to cancel his weekly address which was supposed to be delivered today.  Maybe he was feeling modest about his Impunity Index ranking?

Interventions Watch notes that the Guardian newspaper sleights first placed Iraq to instead use Syria's fifth place ranking on the list to advocate for war on Syria.

In other bad reporting, Qassim Abdul-Zahra (AP) writes, "An Iraqi Justice Ministry official said Wednesday that this week's closure of the infamous Abu Ghraib prison west of Baghdad is temporary and that it will be reopened once the security situation in the surrounding area is stable."

So which is it?  It's temporary or it's until the security is stable -- because those are two different things.

Nouri's continues his War Crimes of targeting civilians with collective punishment.  NINA notes the shelling of residential neighborhoods in Falluja left 16 civilians dead and nineteen injure. From Ned Parker offers "Iraq: The Road to Chaos" (The New York Review of Books):

In interviews, US officials portrayed the fight in Anbar as a battle between Baghdad and al-Qaeda, and sent hellfire missiles for Maliki to use, regardless of the consequences and of the lack of a clearly defined objective. As my Reuters colleagues and I have documented, in recent weeks Iraqi Special Forces soldiers have bragged of executing suspected militants in Anbar. They describe it as revenge for what ISIS did to them. On Facebook community pages, Iraqi soldiers post pictures of ISIS fighters they have killed, depicting the executions as part of a regional war against Sunni extremists that spans from Iraq to Syria to Lebanon. Despite such boasts, control of the province’s main cities, Fallujah and Ramadi, is now divided among the Iraqi security forces, tribal leaders, ISIS, and other Sunni insurgents. ISIS has even seized a dam near Fallujah and flooded land to prevent the military from approaching its strongholds.

In other violence, National Iraqi News Agency reports Baghdad Operations Command announced they killed 4 suspects, a battle in Shura left 2 rebels dead, five homes being built in Khanaqin left two people injured, 1 person was shot dead in Sha'ab, a bombing in Hammam al-Alil left 1 military captain and 1 soldier dead with two more injured, a Sab'a Bour roadside bombing left 2 people dead and nine others injured, a battle at a Ramadi police station left 12 rebels dead, 3 suspects were shot dead by security forces in Tahrir, an attack on a Haouz checkpoint left 4 Sahwa and police dead and six more injured, security forces killed 8 suspects in Babil Province, and an attack on Colonel Salman Mohammed Sheet's car in Mosul left him and his son injured. All Iraq News notes 1 traffic police member was shot dead "north of Mosul city," 2 Ramadi "suicide bombers detonated their car bombs near Ahmed Abu Risha's house," 1 butcher and 1 shop owner were shot dead in Basra, and 2 corpses were discovered dumped "to the north of Salah-il-Din province."  Alsumaria notes that 2 suicide bombers attacked Anbar Operations Command leaving 2 soldiers dead and two more injured as well as three members of the police injured.  Xinhua updates that toll, "The blasts killed five soldiers and three policemen, and wounded seven others, the source said."

The following community sites -- plus Black Agenda Report, The NewsHour, Cindy Sheehan, Jody Watley, Z on TV,, Jake Tapper, Iraq Inquiry Digest and Dissident Voice -- updated:

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