Friday, September 09, 2016

Iraq snapshot

Friday, September 9, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, lying and spinning continue, where does it all end?  Not with the current government in Iraq -- according to CIA Director John Brennan.

Silicone party barbies
To the left and
Joan of Arcs to the right
No one feeling insecure
We were all gorge and famous in our last lives
In the glories of the 80's
You said 'the end is nothing to fear'
I said: blow the end now baby
Who do I gotta shag to get out of here

-- "Glory of the 80s," written by Tori Amos, first appears on her TO VENUS AND BACK

Welcome to the never ending election, where nothing is ever proposed and Trump and Clinton supporters spin and lie in the ongoing campaign of "Yes, my candidate lies but not as much as the other!"

That's what Democratic and Republican politics have come to, "Vote for the liar who lies a little less often than the other."

The madness never ends as FOIA requests are something to ignore -- a long with the destruction of evidence subpeoned by Congress.

Everything can be justified by lying to yourself.

Hiram Lee (WSWS), while reviewing JASON BOURNE --Matt Damon's desperate attempt to extend his flat acting career -- observes this behavior:

The name of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is mentioned at various times throughout Jason Bourne. Damon, for his part, came out publicly in Snowden’s defense in a 2013 interview with the BBC, saying, “I think it’s a great thing that he did.” Around the same time, Damon told Black Entertainment Television that Obama “broke up with him” and that he questioned “the legality of the drone strikes and these NSA revelations.”
By 2015, Damon and Obama had patched things up. Now Damon described the individual at the head of the government responsible for those drone strikes and NSA programs as “a remarkable human being” who was “shockingly easy to be around.”
“I don’t ever question that it’s coming from the right place with him,” Damon reassured the press.

The problems and pressures revealed in that turnabout, as much as anything else, explain why Jason Bourne is ultimately such a poor film.

"I don't ever question that it's coming from the right place with him"?

Maybe you have to picture him saying that with a cock in his mouth to truly appreciate it?

Calm down, Matt.  You're getting uglier and fatter, people will stop wondering if you're gay shortly.  And then when no one cares about you and even TV won't take you, you'll miss the days when you went around teasing the media that you might be gay -- only two decades later to blame others for the rumors.

Equally disgusting is Daniel Ketchum.

At the website INQUISITR, he apparently believes he can just lie:

As proof of his stellar foreign policy experience, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has frequently claimed that he did not support the Iraq War. However – as Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton pointed out at the NBC Commander-in-Chief forum yesterday – Trump did in fact support the war in the beginning and there is clear audio and video evidence backing this up.

Oh, great, I thought, I don't have to be fair anymore.  There's multiple interviews of Donald Trump supporting the Iraq War.

I don't like Trump.

I've never liked him.

And so this was great news.  I didn't have to sit here and be fair anymore.  

He'd dug his own grave.

So I read Ketchum eagerly only to discover that he has nothing.

There is no "clear audio and video evidence."

There's the Howard Stern September 11, 2002 interview where all Donald says is "I guess so."

The media does need to push back.

It needs to push back against this wave of lies.

You can’t just let Trump tell obvious, widely-debunked lies in interviews

For those who don't know or don't remember, Matthew Yglesias cheerleaded the Iraq War.

I guess that explains why he's a liar today.

Because "I guess so" is not support for the Iraq War.

It's a month before Congress is even voting.

It's six months before Colin Powell's 'blot.'

And the words are "I guess so."

Now if you're an idiot, a newborn, a hack or a liar, that's support for the Iraq War.

If you're someone who spoke out against the Iraq War, that's not support for it.

People who spoke out against the Iraq War were targeted.

Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins, Janeane Garofalo, Harry Belafonte, the list is long.

People who supported the Iraq War felt they could lie and publicly attack anyone and everyone.

If the worst any of us had to fear was an Iraq War supporter saying "I guess so," the number speaking out would have been much greater.

I started speaking out in February of 2003.

The fact that I didn't do it in January of 2003, does that mane I supported the Iraq War?

No, I never said "I guess so" but I don't see "I guess so" as support.

I see "I guess so" as let's move the interview along.

And I'd wonder if Howard Stern supported the Iraq War?

That would even more explain why one friend speaking to another on radio would answer "I guess so."

(I don't know Howard Stern's opinions. I don't like him.  Unlike THE NATION magazine, I've never hailed him -- or Bill Maher -- as examples of the great left.  They're sexist pigs and I have no tolerance for either.)

But "I guess so" in September 2002 is not support for the Iraq War.

If you think it is?

(A) You weren't old enough to remember the start of 2003, (B) You've chosen to forget or (C -- most likely) you went along with the mob attacking those of us who spoke out.

I hate Donald Trump but I'm not going to let a lot of little whores rewrite that period.

You were attacked if you spoke out.

There's the pot head columnist who fancies himself a hippie who has repeatedly apologized to me -- I wasn't attacked by him, I just blew him off because of the column -- who floated in a column in February 2003 that those peacefully protesting against the Iraq War were committing "treason" -- he used the term.

So don't come to me now and start your b.s.

Sheryl Crowe was attacked in the press for where she stood on the Iraq War.

The orders came down from editiors -- and I have a list of ten editors -- that in their Grammy pieces, they had to attack Sheryl.

Three years later, Jane Fonda returned to film with MONSTER-IN-LAW which was a funny comedy.  And yet you still had editors giving orders to trash the film.

Don't come to me now with "I guess so" is support of the Iraq War.

Because it isn't.

And you're not going to lie for your War Hawk Hillary and get away with it.

So as you read Ketchum's awful article in search of these pre-war interviews -- this evidence he has! -- you find he has nothing but the 2002 interview.

The lying needs to be called out by the press.

But, of course, that would be depending on the same press that sold the Iraq War.

And we all know they don't do their job.

Alan Greenspan would eventually admit the Iraq War was about oil -- he would do that on live radio and TV (DEMOCRACY NOW!).  He would have to retract it under pressure.

But the Chair of the Fed knew it.

So why we are giving Andrea Mitchell a pass?

Why isn't she being Judy Miller-ed?

She's been married to Greenspan for decades.

So she knew what was what.

Didn't stop her from filing pro-war pieces in the lead up to the Iraq War, did it?

Liars clearly can't call out other liars.

I hate Donald Trump.

I find him offensive on every level and have for years and years.

But that doesn't give me the right to lie about him.

And if I do lie about him to score some political points, then I'm far worse than he is.

I'll never rank as the greatest person in the world -- or in the country -- or in the state -- or even just in the room.

But I do have ethics and I will not turn myself into trash by ignoring my ethics.

I really fear for this crowd today, these whores and liars who sell themselves for politicians.

Where does the whoring end?

What's his name?

They used to say Mary Matalin was him in a dress.

Lee Atwater.

Is that how this whoring ends?

You go through life smearing others and lying and then, on your deathbed, you try to apologize for it?

Like that makes any difference?

Because it doesn't.

You've already done the damage and you just look pathetic -- someone frightened of dying and judgment rushing to be absolved.

As for changing stories, there's always Hillary.

Contra her claims last night, the central premise of HRC's 2008 campaign was that the Iraq vote was *not* a mistake

AFP reports:

In an interview this week with the CTC Sentinel, a publication from the West Point military academy’s Combating Terrorism Center, the head of the Central Intelligence Agency said the current system of governance in the two countries might change altogether.
“I don’t know whether or not Syria and Iraq can be put back together again. There’s been so much bloodletting, so much destruction, so many continued, seething tensions and sectarian divisions,” Brennan said.

“I question whether we will see, in my lifetime, the creation of a central government in both of those countries that's going to have the ability to govern fairly.”

Well Iraq's certainly not governed fairly today.  We'll give Brennan credit for telling the truth there.

It's hard to tell who isn't persecuted in Iraq because it's pretty much everyone and has been that way since the start of the Iraq War.

Among those persecuted are Christians.


After the United States has declared that genocide is taking place against Christians and other religious minorities in Iraq, what is the next step for genocide victims displaced from their homes?
“Together, we will advocate for the Christian, Yazidi, and other communities in Northern Iraq that they may return to their homes on the Nineveh Plain to be secured there by coalition and successive international forces,” Andrew Doran, senior adviser to the group In Defense of Christians, stated at the Sept. 7 press conference beginning the group’s advocacy convention in Washington, D.C.

Years and years of persecution in Iraq ignored by the White House until the right wing p.r. campaign to promote war via the Yazidis came into place and finally, as sop, the word genocide got applied to the systematic eradication of Christians in Iraq.

For those who've forgotten, the Iraqi Christians who were not forced to leave (or killed) began relocation to northern Iraq.

On northern Iraq, we'll note this.

ICYMI: President Barzani: No country is against Kurdistan independence

President Barzani may be a little optimistic.

Yesterday, the US Defense Dept announced:

Strikes in Iraq
Fighter aircraft and rocket artillery conducted seven strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Albu Hayat, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two bunkers and two vehicles.

-- Near Haditha, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a building.

-- Near Mosul, two strikes engaged an ISIL financial center and destroyed a weapons storage facility.

-- Near Qayyarah, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle, 12 rocket rails, four rocket systems and an assembly area.

-- Near Ramadi, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed an ISIL tunnel entrance and suppressed a mortar position.

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.

And out of the rubble grows -- as Hillary Clinton would put it -- business opportunities.

Good for GE -- bringing good things to life -- as anyone who's seen the Hudson River can attest.  (That was sarcasm.)

The following community sites -- plus Cindy Sheehan -- updated: