Thursday, November 26, 2015

Iraq snapshot

Thursday, November 26, 2015.  Chaos and violence continue, Ramadi is still not liberated, the US continues bombing Iraq, UK Prime Minister David Cameron insists only bombing can keep the UK safe, the Defense Dept Tweeted what?, and much more.

Thanksgiving was celebrated today in the United States and Canada.  The US government celebrated by dropping bombs on Iraq.  The Defense Dept announced:

Strikes in Iraq

Bomber, fighter, attack, ground attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 23 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Baghdadi, one strike destroyed two ISIL rocket positions.

-- Near Albu Hayat, one strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle.

-- Near Kisik, two strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL vehicles and five ISIL bunkers.

-- Near Mosul, five strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and an ISIL checkpoint and destroyed five ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL vehicle, and an ISIL building.

-- Near Ramadi, seven strikes struck five separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions, two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL mortar, two ISIL structures, an ISIL boat, an ISIL front-end loader, cratered an ISIL road, suppressed an ISIL vehicle’s movement, and denied ISIL access to terrain.

-- Near Sinjar, five strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL vehicle, an ISIL heavy machine gun, two ISIL fighting positions, damaged an ISIL vehicle, suppressed an ISIL heavy machine gun, and wounded an ISIL fighter.

-- Near Sultan Abdallah, two strikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed three ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL vehicle.

Bombings have gone on since August of 2014 and haven't solved a thing.

Isn't this almost verbatim what Tony Blair told us in 2003?

Photo published for David Cameron says bombing IS in Syria will make UK 'safer' - BBC News

Bombing the Islamic State, David Cameron insists, will make Iraq safer?

What safety has come from all these bombings?

ARUTZ SHEVA notes, "The US has been bombing the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria since mid-2015, accounting for the vast majority of the coalition's air strikes."

Nothing's come of it, the Islamic State continues.

Iraq's being destroyed as a result.

Who knows what environmental damage is being done.

The US government's previous use of depleted uranium has resulted in massive birth defects who knows what these bombings will result in?

Right now, it's just supposed to be a wonderful gift -- bombs falling on your country.

That's not all the US government is doing in Iraq though.

For example, US President Barack Obama sent US troops into Iraq to train or 'train.'

The Defense Dept Tweeted the following confusing item today:

  • I'm sorry, who is that US Marine training?

    I don't see training in that photo.

    I see a US Marine standing guard.

    Back in July, Hope Hodge Seck (MARINE TIMES) reported on Al Taqaddum Air Base and how 400 troops were there.  Of course, their presence doesn't really go to the airy training Barack insisted was going on.

    So many lies, so many deceptions.  This week, the US Embassy in Baghdad announced the following:

    On November 22-23, Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken traveled to Iraq to discuss a range of political, security, and economic issues with government officials. While in Baghdad, Deputy Secretary Blinken met with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, Speaker of Parliament Salim al-Jabouri, and other senior officials. During his meetings, Deputy Secretary Blinken reaffirmed the U.S.-led Coalition’s continued support to Iraq and praised the recent successes of the Iraqi Security Forces- including the Peshmerga and Popular Mobilization Forces – in the campaign to degrade and ultimately defeat Da’esh.  Deputy Secretary Blinken also announced $38.7 million in additional economic assistance to Iraq, which will support government reform initiatives as well as post-conflict stabilization efforts.
    Deputy Secretary of State Blinken also traveled to Erbil, Iraq, for meetings with Iraqi Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani, Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, and other senior leaders in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region.  During his visit to Erbil, the Deputy Secretary also met with internally displaced persons from various parts of Iraq, in both camp and non-camp locations, underscoring the United States’ ongoing commitment to working with its international partners, the Government of Iraq, and the Kurdistan Regional Government to facilitate humanitarian assistance to internally displaced persons and refugees.‎

    On this topic, National Iraqi News Agency reports:

    It is said that Anthony Blinken visited Iraq last Sunday to discuss a range of political, security and economic issues with government officials.

    During his stay in Baghdad, he met Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jubouri and other senior officials.

    He also visited Erbil and held meetings with the President of the Kurdistan region Massoud Barzani and Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani and other senior leaders in the region

    Nearly $39 million for reforms?

    What reforms?

    What has Haider al-Abadi done that's a reform?

    I guess he eliminated the positions of vice president, right?

    RT reports today:

    Turkey could bring the world to the brink of the next global conflict, Iraq’s vice President Nuri al-Maliki said in the wake of the downing of a Russian bomber by Turkish air forces.
    "Erdogan's double standards and aggressive policies are threatening a new world war," al-Maliki said in a statement as he criticized the policies of the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, AFP reported.
    The Iraqi politician, who is a former prime minister of the country, also accused Turkey’s leader of hypocrisy as he commented on Turkey’s claims of a short violation of Turkish airspace by the Russian warplane which was downed by the country’s air forces.

    Here's the AFP report and they also refer to thug Nouri as "vice president."


    It was mere months ago that Rudaw reported:

    In an effort to implement a series of political reform Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi decided Sunday morning to eliminate the post of Vice President and other high-ranking positions, and reduce the excessive number of official bodyguards.

    A statement from Abadi’s office read that “The posts of Vice President and deputy prime minister would be eliminated immediately,”

    Ahmed Rasheed (Reuters) reported it this way:

    After weeks of protests demanding better government and a call by leading Shi'ite Muslim cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani for tougher action, Abadi proposed cancelling Iraq's multiple vice president and deputy prime minister positions, currently shared out along sectarian lines.
    Iraq has three vice presidents, two Shi'ites and a Sunni, and three deputy prime ministers, a Shi'ite, a Sunni and a Kurd. Critics say the set-up say hands high office to unqualified candidates and encourages corruption.
    Mounting public anger at the state of politics, expressed in protests in Baghdad and several southern cities, risks hampering Abadi's efforts to rally support for the fight to push Islamic State militants from territory in the north and west.
    One of the vice presidents, Nuri al-Maliki, who stepped down as prime minister last August after eight years of what critics said was ethnically divisive rule, backed the proposal.

    Wait, what was that last part?

    Maliki, who belongs to the same party as Abadi and still wields significant influence, said Saturday evening -- before Abadi outlined his plan publicly -- that he supported the reform drive.

    So Abadi's big reform was sacking the three posts of vice president?

    And Nouri al-Maliki agreed with that?

    But the three remain vice president -- including Nouri?

    Guess that $38 million of US tax dollars -- for support of non-existent reforms -- won't be wasted.

    Violence continues, as always.  THE JOURNAL OF TURKISH WEEKLY notes, "Twelve people were killed and another 42 injured late Wednesday in separate attacks in Iraq’s Baghdad, Anbar and Diyala provinces, according to local police sources."

    Tuesday, the US Embassy in Baghdad issued the following statement:

    November 24, 2015

    The U.S.-led Coalition has consistently encouraged the Iraqi Security Forces to liberate Ramadi as soon as possible, and will continue to provide devastating air power in support of Iraqi ground operations against Da’esh in Ramadi and elsewhere in Iraq. Media reports suggesting that the Coalition has delayed or placed conditions on the Ramadi liberation operation are completely inaccurate.  As Coalition military spokesperson Colonel Steve Warren has repeatedly said, “All the elements are in place to liberate Ramadi.”

    April 15th, Ramadi was seized by the Islamic State.

    It's still not liberated all these months later.

    Press TV says areas are being liberated.  Isn't that sweet.  At this rate, Iraqi forces will be able to 'liberate' Mosul in 2017 or 2018, right?

    Lastly, Isaiah's The World Today Just Nuts "Hillary Ready" went up earlier today.