Sunday, August 14, 2016


Today, the US Defense Dept announced:

Strikes in Iraq
Rocket artillery and bomber and fighter aircraft conducted six strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:
-- Near Mosul, three strikes struck an ISIL headquarters and a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed eight ISIL fighting positions, four ISIL assembly areas, three ISIL command and control nodes, an ISIL-used observation post, an ISIL rocket rail, an ISIL vehicle, an ISIL vehicle-borne bomb and an ISIL supply cache.
-- Near Ramadi, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two separate ISIL fighting positions and three ISIL vehicles.
-- Sultan Abdallah, two strikes destroyed seven ISIL vehicles and an ISIL fighting position, suppressed two ISIL mortar positions and denied ISIL access to terrain.

Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use. Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike.

Fighting on the ground?

XINHUA reports, "Iraqi Kurdish security forces have freed nine villages in the northeast of the Islamic State (IS) major stronghold of Mosul on Sunday, a Kurdish security source said."  AFP adds that 1 Kurdish reporter was killed and another injured in the operation.

That death may get attention.

Another is being swept under the rug.

PHOTOS: pro-PKK journalist killed by unknown attackers in with signs of torture -

One good thing about the Kurds leading the assault above, it may mean less for criminals like Qassem Sulemani to do.

I have no idea what CounterJihad is and don't care, whatever they are it doesn't dispute or negate their Tweet below:

  1. Qassem Sulemani killed 3,000 Americans for . Now he's leading Obama's mission in .


It probably shouldn't be so shocking -- considering US history -- but the government will jump in bed with just about anyone.

Also not shocking, the feelings of Iraqis.  We've noted repeatedly that Haider al-Abadi, Barack's installed savior, is just not popular with the Iraqi people and nor is the rest of the government.

Toby Dodge has a piece that posted Friday at FOREIGN AFFAIRS which notes:

The big point I brought home is the profound crisis of the post-2003 political system. The recent Sadrist-led demonstrations in the Green Zone are simply a recognition of the fact that there is a near universal sense across Iraqi public opinion that the state and its ruling elite have completely failed them. The whole non-Kurdish political elite recognize this but does not want to resolve the crisis in a way that will involve limits being placed on their own party political power or their personal ability to financially exploit the Iraqi state.
The Shia members of the ruling elite blame profound corruption for bringing the system to its knees without recognizing their central role in that corruption.

The Sunni Green Zone politicians see the system’s persecution and marginalization of their constituency as the key, without recognizing that ‘their constituency’ does not and probably never has recognized them as its leaders.

In other news, is the US government bombing electric plants in Iraq?

@ISIS' Releases Video Shows Aftermath Of US Airstrikes On A Electricity Warehouse In Mosul via

If that's true someone has some explaining to do.  Bombing certain targets qualifies as War Crimes.

Equally true, Iraq's power system is already severely degraded and doing further harm to it is just insane.

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] 4520 (including 20 in Operation Inherent Resolve which includes at least 3 Iraq War fatalities).

The following community sites -- plus Jody Watley --  updated:

  • New content is going up at THIRD right now, I'll note it tomorrow.

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