Saturday, July 09, 2016

Iraq snapshot

Saturday, July 9, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, the persecution of Sunnis continue, Hillary Clinton supposed 'feminist' stands exposed as knowing of the plight of Iraqi women and doing nothing to help them (thank you, WikiLeaks), US House Rep Corrine Brown can no longer pretend to help veterans as she's facing over 20 criminal, federal charges, and much more.

The War Hawk Hillary Clinton is always in the news.  Ben Norton (SALON) reports:

A 2011 email to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton shows how the U.S. pressured Iraq’s new allied government to increase oil production in order “to pay the greatest dividends.”

U.S. State Department officials stressed that “Iraq is potentially one of the largest oil producers in the world,” but lamented that it was not meeting its full potential.

In the email, which was released by the State Department in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, they outline plans “to help move the country in the right direction” — that is to say, to increase Iraq’s oil production by at least 150 percent in the next five years, with the help of “oil contracts with international companies.”
[. . .]
The email to Sec. Clinton shows that, while oil was certainly not the only factor behind the invasion of Iraq, it was a top priority for the U.S. government.

Anti-war protesters frequently accused the U.S. and its allies in the U.K. and elsewhere of spilling blood for control of natural resources. “No blood for oil” was one of the most popular chants in protests against the war.

The e-mail may make many recall then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's 2011 speech.

As David Sirota and Andrew Perez (IBT) reported last September:

When then-U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton voted to authorize the war against Iraq in 2002, she justified her support of the invasion as a way to protect America’s national security. But less than a decade later, as secretary of state, Clinton promoted the war-torn country as a place where American corporations could make big money.
“It's time for the United States to start thinking of Iraq as a business opportunity," she said in a 2011 speech.
The quote was included in an email released by the State Department on Wednesday that specifically mentioned JPMorgan and Exxon Mobil. JPMorgan was selected by the U.S. government to run a key import-export bank in Iraq and in 2013 announced plans to expand its operations in the country. Exxon Mobil signed a deal to redevelop Iraqi oil fields. JPMorgan has collectively paid the Clintons and the Clinton Foundation at least $450,000 for speeches, and Exxon Mobil has donated over $1 million to the family’s foundation.

Trashy Hillary Clinton could pimp Iraq as a business opportunity.

But the alleged 'feminist' couldn't and wouldn't do a damn thing for Iraqi women.

This is most obvious in the e-mails WikiLeaks published this week.

Melanne Verveer e-mails Hillary on December 11, 2011:

We attempted to raise the issue of women's participation in the Iraq government, in their economy and more broadly when Biden was just in Baghdad.  Jeff Feltman was trying to get it into the conversations there.
You will recall the comments of the Iraqi who participated in the NGO meeting with you in Doha about how the door has been closed to women in the government.  We have had many discussions with impressive Iraqi women over the last couple years, and to a person they describe their fate as worse now than years ago.  Yet without them it will be even harder for Iraq to move forward.  To that end, we have been working with post on a action plan along the lines of the National Action Plan on women, peace and security, you will launch next week.
I hope you will find a way to raise the "women's issue" in your discussion tom'w.

And what does the 'great feminist' of all time, the woman with the highest cabinet position in the administration respond:

I raised women's issue w Maliki and Zebari.  Can't say either of them seemed interested.  But, we'll keep trying -- as always!

What a brave feminist Hillary I'm It For Myself Clinton is.

Verveer, at the time she e-mailed Hillary, was the Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues.  She had previously, in the 90s, served as First Lady Hillary's Chief of staff, and, in 2001, she and Hillary created the Vital Voices Global Parternship.

Hillary never used her platform as Secretary of State to publicly encourage Nouri al-Maliki or Hoshyar Zebari (her Iraqi equivalent at the time, Foreign Minister).  Nor did she use her platform to publicly shame either man.

She did, however, use her platform to repeatedly praise Zebari -- a man whose actions never warranted much praise at all.

Well, Verveer mentions an upcoming event, right?

To that end, we have been working with post on a action plan along the lines of the National Action Plan on women, peace and security, you will launch next week.

That's a reference to Hillary's December 19, 2011 speech entitled "Remarks on Women, Peace, and Security."

In that speech, she name checks Ireland, Liberia, Egypt, Senegal, Darfur, Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Central African Republic, Afghanistan, Chile, Kosovo, Yemen and Nepal.

But she never mentions Iraq.

In her approximately 4,500 word speech, she never once mentions Iraq.

Helping the women of Iraq didn't, she believed, help her.

And like so many faux feminists, What's In It For Me Hillary has always defined her own self-interest as feminism.

All week long, I felt awful for not having time to read the WikiLeaks e-mail release.  I was convinced that anything of value would have long ago been mined.

What I forgot was that, of course, the larger corporate press doesn't care about Iraq and that's only more the case when it comes to Iraqi women.

So, no surprise, we're the only site to note that Hillary Clinton betrayed Iraqi women repeatedly as Secretary of State and that one e-mail exchange makes that exceedingly clear.

While Hillary celebrates herself and her War Hawk ways, others wise up.  Take Clare Short.  Over in the United Kingdom, she voted for the Iraq War -- just as Hillary did in 2002.  Unlike Hillary, Short knows how to express honest regret.  Writing for THE DAILY Mirror about the recent report from the Iraq Inquiry, Short notes:

At his emotional press conference responding to Chilcot, Blair said with a catch in his throat that he felt deeply and sincerely all the grief of the people of the UK and Iraq who had lost loved ones. He expressed sorrow, regret and contrition. He claimed the report said there were no lies, Parliament and Cabinet were not misled and there was no rush to war. To cap it all, he said it was the right decision and he would do it all again. At my school we were taught that a lie is the intent to deceive; and that you cannot be forgiven unless you are truly sorry and determined not to sin again.
The great communicator has come to the end of the line. He seemed a broken man.
This is a very sorry tale. For me it is a matter of deep shame. I tried to achieve better decisions with the partial information available to me and in a very hostile atmosphere. But I failed, and this will live with me for the rest of my life.

John Prescott was Deputy Prime Minister at the time.  He also pens a column for THE DAILY MIRROR:

 On Wednesday we finally saw the Chilcot Report .
It was a damning indictment of how the Blair Government handled the war – and I take my fair share of blame.
As the Deputy Prime Minister in that Government I must express my fullest apology, especially to the families of the 179 men and women who gave their lives in the Iraq War.

Chilcot went into great detail as to what went wrong. But I want to identify certain lessons we must learn to prevent this tragedy being repeated.

Hillary's answer to her every error and crime?  "Move on."  Not unlike the laughable 'left' organization created to urge the country to forget Bill Clinton's affairs.

Maybe the US media, so enchanted with Hillary, is devoted to her because they too don't like to tell the truth?

They regularly and repeatedly ignore the Sunni story in Iraq.

Marty Chulov wrote another embarrassing post for THE GUARDIAN.

He left out this key detail:

10 Sunni mosque destroyed by Shia Militias backed by Iraqi Gov. in Fallujah

Life's a lot harder for a number of 'reporters' in the age of the internet.

Amazing how many journalists are lying low right now, hoping they don't get exposed over their reporting.

The only thing more corrupt than 'reporters'?  Some politicians.

Amazing how many journalists are lying low right now, hoping they don't get exposed over their reporting.

The only thing more corrupt than some 'reporters'?  Some politicians.

Happy Fourth of July

Well, Happy Fourth, right back at you, Corrine.

The washed up member of Congress is how wig-hatted Corrine appears these days.

You may remember we were among those who strongly objected to this idiot being made Ranking Member on the House Veterans Affairs Committee.

Well Corrine's way too busy these days to Tweet.  She also had to step down Friday as Ranking Member on the House Veterans Affairs Committee.

That's because she's been indicted by the Justice Dept -- she and her chief of Staff Ronni Simmons.  Kevin Bohn (CNN) reports:

Brown, of Jacksonville, Florida, and her chief of staff, Elias "Ronnie" Simmons, of Laurel, Maryland, were charged in a 24-count indictment, included charges of participating in a conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, multiple counts of mail and wire fraud, concealing material facts on required financial disclosure forms, theft of government property, obstruction of the due administration of the internal revenue laws, and filing false tax returns, the Justice Department said in a news release.

Jim Piggott, Lynnsey Gardner, Vic Micolucci and Chris Parenteau (NEWS4JAX) report that Corrine denies guilt on all charges and add, "If convicted on all charges, Brown could be sentenced up to 357 years in prison and fined $4.8 million."

The trial will be closely watched throughout the country, primarily due to the pleasure of seeing what ratty wig Corrine will wear next.

Thursday, the Veterans Affairs Department announced that they would release a report later this month on veteran suicide rates after "examining over 55 million Veteran records from 1979 to 2014." 2014, the Department states, saw "an average of 20 Veterans a day died from suicide."  They also note:

  • 65% of all Veterans who died from suicide in 2014 were 50 years of age or older.
  • Veterans accounted for 18% of all deaths from suicide among U.S. adults. This is a decrease from the 22% that was estimated in 2010.
  • Since 2001, U.S. adult civilian suicides increased 23%, while Veteran suicides increased 32% in the same time period.  After controlling for age and gender, this makes the risk of suicide 21% greater for Veterans.
  • Since 2001, the rate of suicide among US Veterans who use VA services increased by 8.8%, while the rate of suicide among Veterans who do not use VA services increased by 38.6%.
  • In the same time period, the rate of suicide among male Veterans who use VA services increased 11%, while the rate of suicide increased 35% among male Veterans who do not use VA services.
  • In the same time period, the rate of suicide among female Veterans who use VA services increased 4.6%, while the rate of suicide increased 98% among female Veterans who do not use VA services.

In response to the announcement, the office of US House Rep Jeff Miller, Chair of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, issued the following statement:

Miller Statement on Latest Veteran Suicide Data

Jul 7, 2016

Today, Chairman Jeff Miller released the below statement regarding the latest veteran suicide data from the Department of Veterans Affairs.
“Any time a person who fought to defend America dies by their own hand, it’s a tragedy. And these numbers are heartbreaking proof that we have a long way to go in order to end this troubling trend. Last year, Congress passed and President Obama signed the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act, which is helping to increase the availability and efficacy of VA’s suicide prevention and mental health services. The law is a step in the right direction, but sustained progress will require a comprehensive approach to help ensure our most at-risk veterans have not only the care they need but also a job, a purpose and a system of support in place to help carry them through their struggles. Therefore, we as a nation must do more to encourage veterans in need to seek treatment and ask for help. And until we stop the epidemic of veteran suicides in this country, there will always be more work to do.” – Rep. Jeff Miller, Chairman, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs

Then-Ranking Member on the House Veterans Affairs Committee Corrine was too busy facing federal criminal charges to issue any statement about veterans.  But Senate Ranking Member Richard Blumenthal issued a statement which noted:

“This heartbreaking data—20 veteran suicides every day—mocks our promise to keep faith with our nation's heroes. ‎The data has been updated, but VA action must be as well. VA must more effectively use the new tools provided by recent statues to do the outreach, research and treatment that can help cut this number to zero. The Clay Hunt SAV Act and the Female Veterans Suicide Prevention Act are positive steps, but much more is necessary. These new numbers should be a continuing call to action.”

And Senate Chair of the Veterans Affairs Committee Johnny Isakson issued a statement which included:

“The loss of one veteran to suicide is one too many,” said Isakson, a veteran himself. “That’s why the Senate VA Committee’s first order of business this Congress was to pass the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act last year to improve mental health care and suicide prevention resources for American veterans. The VA’s latest data on veteran suicide rates in the United States shows that some progress has been made, but that we have a long way to go toward providing better access to mental health resources for our veterans.”

“My top priority as chairman is to see to it that we change the paradigm at the Department of Veterans Affairs to deliver quality services in unique ways that will benefit veterans,” Isakson continued. “That’s why I introduced the Veterans First Act – sweeping reform legislation that goes further than ever to improve the VA’s mental healthcare services for our veterans. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to pass the Veterans First Actwithout further delay to address this troubling epidemic and ensure that every American veteran has timely evaluation and coordination of care to help reduce the rate of suicide and improve the quality of health care for all of our nation’s deserving veterans.”

The following community sites -- plus Jody Watley and Iraq Inquiry Digest -- updated:

  • iraq