Sunday, February 26, 2017


Why do nations go to war?

Despite all the lies from a press committed to defending empire, it rarely has to do with concern for civilians.

Many times it's about resources.  Many times it's to kiss ass.

The latter describes why Australia joined the Iraq War.

David Wroe (THE AGE) reports:

On the night of April 12, 2003, Australia’s military commander in the Middle East, Brigadier Maurie McNarn, was woken by a phone call telling him that a RAAF Hercules would soon fly into Baghdad airport to deliver medical supplies for the Iraqi capital’s looted hospitals.
The caller was his boss, then Chief of the Defence Force General Peter Cosgrove. Nevertheless, McNarn protested, saying the airport was not secure and there was no safe way to distribute the supplies to 40 hospitals across the crumbling capital. Cosgrove, now Sir Peter, the nation’s Governor-General, told him to make it happen. It was being announced to the press in 30 minutes.
Operation Baghdad Assist went ahead and became a media triumph for then prime minister John Howard and Sir Peter amid a deeply unpopular war. The Hercules, carrying three journalists and 13 commandos to provide protection, was the first Australian plane to land in Baghdad after the invasion a month earlier.
But the medical supplies never made it out of the airport. They rotted. A second planeload was diverted to the city of Nasiriyah, whose hospitals were already relatively well stocked. McNarn would go on to dismiss the whole thing as a “photo opportunity”. Special forces commander Lieutenant-Colonel Rick Burr, who learned of the operation on CNN, was equally upset, writing in his diary that the operation made “a mockery of our approach”.  
It’s one of many startling revelations in a 572-page, declassified internal report on the Iraq War obtained by Fairfax Media under freedom of information laws. Written between 2008 and 2011 by Dr Albert Palazzo from Defence’s Directorate of Army Research and Analysis, it is by far the most comprehensive assessment of our involvement in the war. Originally classified “Secret”, it was finally released last week after more than 500 redactions.
The report concludes that Howard joined US president George W. Bush in invading Iraq solely to strengthen Australia’s alliance with the US. Howard’s – and later Kevin Rudd’s – claims of enforcing UN resolutions, stopping the spread of weapons of mass destruction and global terrorism, even rebuilding Iraq after the invasion, are dismissed as “mandatory rhetoric”.  

John Howard, the eternal kiss ass.

Meanwhile, in the here and now, The Mosul Slog drags on.  Jason Ditz (ANTIWAR.COM) observes, "After spending much of last week bragging that their invasion of western Mosul was “ahead of schedule,” the Iraqi military’s advance has slowed to a crawl over the weekend, as a sprint through the countryside has given way to intense urban warfare now that they’ve hit the southern districts of the city."

Day 132.

It's appalling.

Equally appalling, the US government's 'plan' for Iraq since August of 2014 was send in more US troops and bomb the country.

If there was a point to that, it was to create space for political reconciliation.

Only the latter didn't take place.

In that regard, it was like Bully Boy Bush's "surge."

Remember that?

Iraq was in trouble politically and security wise.

It was 2007, Bully Boy Bush sent more US troops in.

The point?

To improve security with US troops allowing the Iraqi politicians to focus on the reconciliation.

The second part never happened.

And judging by what's going on now?

It probably never will with the current players.

The editorial board of THE WASHINGTON POST notes:

The rise of the Islamic State was facilitated by sectarian tensions among Iraq’s majority Shiite and minority Sunni and Kurdish populations, and in particular by the discrimination against Sunnis by a Shiite-led Baghdad government backed by Iran. After the fall of Mosul in 2014 the Obama administration helped to engineer the removal of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who fomented the sectarianism, and his replacement by the more moderate Haider al-Abadi, who pledged to build a more inclusive regime. Mr. Abadi’s good intentions have mostly been thwarted by sectarian hard-liners, including Iranian-controlled Shiite militia groups.

Consequently, the military offensive to recapture Mosul has gone ahead without accompanying political steps that might strengthen moderate Sunni leaders against militants who will seek to perpetuate an insurgency against the Baghdad government. A report this month from the Institute for Study of War warned, “Early indicators suggest that a post-ISIS Sunni insurgency may be forming in Iraq and al Qaeda (AQ) is trying to gain traction within it.” It said, “the U.S.-backed Coalition has been focused only on eliminating ISIS, not other insurgent groups or the conditions that grow them.”

Meanwhile, this weekend, POLITICO felt the need to do another 'report' on Donald Trump's ban and how bad it was for Iraqi fighters.

Interesting no one considered that when voting for a piece of crap 'documentary.'

A documentary legitimising Al-Qaeda's firefighters just won at the isn't that great?

That's Haidar Sumeri.

We've long criticized him here.

He's the self-presented voice of the Iraqi forces.

If he sees the documentary -- rightly -- as legitimizing al Qaeda, you can believe many Iraqi forces do as well.

Maybe that'll get probed?

Or are we still pretending George Clooney is both political astute and straight?

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