Friday, September 13, 2013. Chaos and violence continue, twin bombings target a mixed section of Iraq, the Ashraf community remains in turmoil, Desmond Tutu speaks on the topic of Syria, new IRS scandal revelations, and more.
Sunday, in the Bay Area, there's an event:
Sunday, September 15, 2013
12:30pm to 5:00pm
downtown Petaluma, CA
Daniel Ellsberg - Pentagon Papers whistleblower, supporter of Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden
Jill Stein - 2012 Green Party Presidential candidate
Norman Solomon - author, activist, community organizer
Therese Mughannam-Walrath - Palestinian peace activist
Michael Nagler - Director, Metta Center for Nonviolence
Marc Armstrong - Director, Public Banking Institute
Kamal Prasad - food issues activist
Also speakers on:
- Immigration issues
- Stopping mass incarceration
- Fukushima nuclear plant
- Unite Here labor campaign
- Labeling GMOs
The Pounce & Denounce PlayHouse - Occupy Petaluma's own theater troupe
De Colores with special guest, Francisco Herrera (Música de las Americas)
Spoken Word & Drums by Masaba (the Last Poets), &
Michael Rothenburg (100K Poets for Change)
Many Social Justice, Environmental, Labor, and Community Organizations will have Informational booths/tables.
The event is produced by the Petaluma Progressives and is cosponsored by KPFA 94.1 FM, the Peace & Justice Center of Sonoma County, The Bohemian and the Committee for Immigrant Rights, Sonoma County. It takes place at Petaluma Blvd South and D Street, downtown Petaluma. It is free to the public.
Tamales, Rice, Beans, Other Goodies & Drinks Available.
For more info, call 707.763.8134
Or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
friend asked if we could note the event and note that, from one p.m. to three p.m., KPFA
will be covering the event live. That's over the airwaves (94.1 on the FM dial) in the Bay Area and around the world online (KPFA offers live streaming and archives -- some archived program is archived briefly, I didn't think to ask how long this would be archived, sorry).
From an announcement to a quandry, what's wrong with this paragraph:
George W. Bush once flubbed an aphorism (granted, an easy to flub
aphorism) about being fooled once, shame on the fooler, being similarly
fooled twice, then the shame was on you.
Barack Obama has turned the scenario on its head. Obama was not fooled
by Bush and the neocons pushing for an attack on Iraq. In 2002, while a
United States senator, Barack Obama said, “I don’t oppose all wars. What
I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. …
That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on
reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.” For Obama, invading Iraq would be a dumb war.
That's Kim Petersen (Dissident Voice) making a common mistake
. Barack Obama was not a US Senator in 2002. He was in the Illinois state legislature. He would run for the US Senate in 2004. And his opposition to the Iraq War?
And I'm so sad
like a good book
I can't put this
a sorta fairytale
a sorta fairytale
-- "A Sorta Fairytale
," written by Tori Amos
, first appears on her album Scarlet's Walk
For those who can't remember, let's revisit former President Bill Clinton's 2008 remarks:
"But since you raised the judgment issue, let's go over this
again. That is the central argument for his campaign. 'It doesn't
matter that I started running for president less a year after I got to
the Senate from the Illinois State Senate. I am a great speaker and a
charismatic figure and I'm the only one who had the judgment to oppose
this war from the beginning. Always, always, always.' "
[. . .]
"Second, it is wrong
that Senator Obama got to go through 15 debates trumpeting his superior
judgment and how he had been against the war in every year, numerating
the years, and never got asked one time, not once, 'Well, how could you
say that when you said in 2004 you didn't know how you would have voted on the resolution? You said in 2004 there was no difference between you and George Bush on the war and you took that speech you're now running on off your website in 2004*
and there's no difference in your voting record and Hillary's ever
since?' Give me a break.
"This whole thing is the biggest fairy tale I've
"*" It was 2003 when it was first disappeared as Glen Ford has pointed out
Barack took no stand against the Iraq War as a US Senator, instead choosing to vote to fund it over and over. In 2008, Ted Glick became a two-bit whore for the Cult of St. Barack. At the start of 2007, he was much more honest about just how warlike and centrist Barack Obama actually was (and is).
Today Iraq makes Ana Marie Cox's number one item the topic of Syria's crowded out of the news in recent weeks. In a column for the Guardian, she notes
Hey, there's still a war going on there! A milder, less
deadly one, but sectarian conflict did not end with the official US
military exit (over 5,000 armed private security contractors remain).
Of all the other stories Americans should be aware of as the Syria
debate continues, this is the most significant – and not just because
the disaster looms so large in American memories, but because of the
disaster that continues today – and has recently escalated. Car
bombings and suicide attacks were killing a manageable 200-300 people
per month last year; in July, that number
was 900, and 700 in August – the deadliest months in five years. While
far less than the 2,500 per month that died at the height of US
involvement, the higher tolls are linked to Sunni extremists morbidly
encouraged by the chaos next door in Syria.
Arming or aiding the
Sunni rebels in Syria could give Iraqi Sunnis even more reasons to react
with greater violence to the repressive techniques of the Shi'ite-led
government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
Ana Marie Cox is correct that contractors remain. Marines remain to guard the US Embassy and consulates. The US military remains as 'trainers.' As Ted Koppel pointed out in December of 2011, various others would (and did) remain behind. And we'll yet again note Tim Arango's September 25th New York Times report which included
"Iraq and the United States are negotiating an agreement that could
result in the return of small units of American soldiers to Iraq on
training missions. At the request of the Iraqi government, according to
[US] General [Robert L.] Caslen, a unit of Army Special Operations
soldiers was recently deployed to Iraq to advise on counterterrorism and
help with intelligence."
On the ground in Iraq, violence continues. Twin bombings result in a large death toll on the edge of Baquba. AP identifies
the location as Umm al-Adham village. AFP reports
, "Iraqi officials say a bomb has struck a Sunni mosque
during prayers north of Baghdad, killing 28 people in the latest
eruption of violence to rock the country." at least forty-one more
people are said to be injured. BBC News adds
, "Two roadside bombs were detonated as worshippers left the al-Salam mosque after Friday prayers, police said." Lu Hui (Xinhua) reports
At least 30 people were killed and 42 others wounded
around midday when a car bomb hit worshippers as they completed their
Friday prayers and went out of a mosque in the town of Ottomaniya, 15 km
southwest of the provincial capital city of Baquba, a provincial police
source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, one was killed and five others were wounded in a roadside
bomb attack near a Sunni mosque in Qarataba, some 110 km northeast of
Baquba, he added.
Raheem Salman, Isabel Coles and Mark Heinrich (Reuters) explain
the two bombings "occurred about ten minutes apart in the
ethnically and confessionally mixed city, situated around 65 km (40
miles) northeast of the capital Baghdad. The second explosion tore
through a crowd of people who had rushed to help those hurt in the first
blast." KUNA notes
the death toll rose to 35.
The attacks comes during an already violent September. Through yesterday, Iraq Body Count
counts 403 violent deaths in Iraq so far this month.
In other violence today, National Iraqi News Agency
reports a Mosul home invasion has left 6 family members dead
, Khalaf Humeed Mohammed (Board Chair of Shura county local council) was shot dead in Mosul
, a Ramadi sticky bombing left one police officer injured
, an Ishaqi car bombing targeting a bus filled with people journeying from Samarra to Balad and left 3 dead and twelve more left injured
, and, early this morning, 1 Khadija preacher was shot dead and a Alaadheim car bombing left four people injured
One week shy of the nine month anniversary, the ongoing protests in Iraq continue today. Iraqi Spring MC
notes protests took place in Ramadi
, in Falluja
, in Tikrit
, in Mosul
and in Baiji
protesters are demanding basic rights and freedoms. They have to demand
them because Nouri fails to honor the most basic promises fails to
honor the most basic promises government makes to its citizens. AP notes
today, "Members of Iraq's Sunni Arab minority have been protesting against the
Shia-led government since December, angered over what they see as
second-class treatment of their sect and what they see as unfair
application of tough anti-terrorism measures."
In Nouri al-Maliki's Iraq, everyone's a target. The Ashraf community was attacked two Sundays ago in Iraq
. They are a group of Iranian dissidents and the latest attack on them led UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to issue a statement
The Secretary-General deplores the tragic events in Camp Ashraf
today that have reportedly left 47 killed. He expresses his sorrow and
extends his deepest condolences to the families of the victims.
The Secretary-General reiterates his full support for and his
absolute confidence in the relentless work of the United Nations
Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI). He appeals for the urgent
restoration of security in the Camp as it is the responsibility of the
Government of Iraq to ensure the safety and security of the residents.
The Secretary-General calls on the Government of Iraq to promptly
investigate the incident and disclose the findings.
Adam Schreck (AP) reported
that the United Nations was able to confirm the deaths of 52 Ashraf residents. Al Mada noted
that Nouri's declared he should be over the Iraqi investigation since
he's commander-in-chief. And that's exactly why he shouldn't be over it.
Are we really surprised that the concepts of "independence" and
"integrity" would escape Nouri?
Robert Menendez is the Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
and his office issued the following yesterday:
September 12, 2013
DC – U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee, released this statement condemning the attacks on
Camp Ashraf residents, and called on the Iraqi government to protect the
community and secure the release of seven hostages taken after the
massacre at Camp Ashraf.
condemn the brutal violence targeting Camp Ashraf residents in the most
forceful of terms and personally offer my deepest sympathies to the
families of this horrific act of terror. The surviving residents have
been moved to Camp Liberty, but serious threats endure for the community
and they remain targets of future attacks even as they are relocated.
The United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq must proceed with their
independent investigation and thoroughly ensure the safety and wellbeing
of those residents now in Camp Liberty.
hold the Iraqi government directly responsible to protect the
community, to investigate this matter thoroughly, and to prosecute the
perpetrators of this heinous act. I am deeply concerned for the seven
hostages who were taken during this attack. The Iraqi government should
act swiftly to determine their whereabouts and ensure their safety.
There is added urgency for the global community, as well as for the
United States, to help resettle this community outside of Iraq, and end
this cycle of ongoing terror attacks.”
Camp Ashraf housed a group of Iranian dissidents who were welcomed to
Iraq by Saddam Hussein in 1986 and he gave them Camp
Ashraf and six other parcels that they could utilize. In 2003, the US
invaded Iraq.The US government had the US military lead negotiations
with the residents of Camp Ashraf. The US government wanted the
residents to disarm and the US promised protections to the point that
US actions turned the residents of Camp Ashraf into protected person
under the Geneva Conventions. This is key and demands the US defend the
Ashraf community in Iraq from attacks. The Bully Boy Bush
administration grasped that -- they were ignorant of every other law on
the books but they grasped that one. As 2008 drew to a close, the Bush
administration was given assurances from the Iraqi government that they
would protect the residents. Yet Nouri al-Maliki ordered the camp
repeatedly attacked after Barack Obama was sworn in as US President. July 28, 2009
Nouri launched an attack (while then-US Secretary of Defense Robert
Gates was on the ground in Iraq). In a report released this summer
entitled "Iraqi government must respect and protect rights of Camp Ashraf residents
Amnesty International described this assault, "Barely a month later,
on 28-29 July 2009, Iraqi security forces stormed into the camp; at
least nine residents were killed and many more were injured. Thirty-six
residents who were detained were allegedly tortured and beaten. They
were eventually released on 7 October 2009; by then they were in poor
health after going on hunger strike." April 8, 2011
Nouri again ordered an assault on Camp Ashraf (then-US Secretary of
Defense Robert Gates was again on the ground in Iraq when the assault
took place). Amnesty International described the assault this way
"Earlier this year, on 8 April, Iraqi troops took up positions within
the camp using excessive, including lethal, force against residents who
tried to resist them. Troops used live ammunition and by the end of
the operation some 36 residents, including eight women, were dead and
more than 300 others had been wounded. Following international and
other protests, the Iraqi government announced that it had appointed a
committee to investigate the attack and the killings; however, as on
other occasions when the government has announced investigations into
allegations of serious human rights violations by its forces, the
authorities have yet to disclose the outcome, prompting questions
whether any investigation was, in fact, carried out." Those weren't
the last attacks. They were the last attacks while the residents were
labeled as terrorists by the US State Dept. (September 28, 2012
, the designation was changed.) In spite of this labeling, Mohammed Tawfeeq (CNN) observed
that "since 2004, the United States has considered the residents of
Camp Ashraf 'noncombatants' and 'protected persons' under the Geneva
Conventions." So the US has an obligation to protect the residents.
3,300 are no longer at Camp Ashraf. They have moved to Camp Hurriyah
for the most part. A tiny number has received asylum in other
countries. Approximately 100 were still at Camp Ashraf when it was
attacked Sunday. That was the second attack this year alone. February 9th of this year
, the Ashraf residents were again attacked, this time the ones who had been relocated to Camp Hurriyah. Trend News Agency counted
10 dead and over one hundred injured. Prensa Latina reported
, " A rain of self-propelled Katyusha missiles hit a provisional camp of
Iraqi opposition Mujahedin-e Khalk, an organization Tehran calls
terrorists, causing seven fatalities plus 50 wounded, according to an
Iraqi official release."
Today Ramesh Sepehrrad (UPI) offers
Addressing the Syrian situation, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently told Congress, "The word of the United States must mean something."
Back in 2003, it was the very words of the U.S. government that
guaranteed the residents of Camp Ashraf of U.S. protection, words that
remain unfulfilled today.
In early 2009, in a breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention,
Washington recklessly transferred the protection responsibility for Camp
Ashraf to the Iraqi government.
There was ample evidence at the time that Iraq's loyalty to Tehran
was making it less than willing or capable of providing the level of
protection stipulated by the international law.
Since then there have been five deliberate deadly attacks against the
unarmed residents who are members of Iran's opposition group, the
People's Mujahedin Organization of Iran.
Every attack has been a test of America's willingness to stand by its
words and effectively pressure the Iraqis. Escalating violence against
this group shows the United States has failed in every test.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees issued
the following statement today, "UNHCR remains deeply concerned about developments in relation to Camp
New Iraq, most notably the security of the remaining residents, not
least in light of the horrific events leading to the death of 52
residents last week. UNHCR urges that a peaceful solution be found and
calls in particular on the Iraqi government to ensure the security of
the residents." Meanwhile the acting special envoy in Iraq for the UN Secretary-General, Gyorgy Bustin, spoke with the press today. Adam Schreck (AP) quotes
Bustin stating, "What
has happened at Camp Ashraf on the first of September is a game
changer. It should be a wake-up call to all countries who are in a
position to help to come forward. Resettlement is the ultimate guarantee of their security."
Though any country can come to the aid of the Ashraf community, the US government has a legal obligation. It's really amazing that over a year ago the US took the MEK off the terrorist list nearly a year ago (September 28th
) and yet they have failed repeatedly at relocating the Ashraf community out of Iraq. That is an obligation and its one the State Dept is failing.
Dropping back to yesterday's snapshot
for another Ashraf issue:
"The UN has urged Iraq to investigate the disappearances but there has
been 'nothing so far', [UNAMI spokesperson Eliana] Nabaa told AFP." The National Council of Resistance of Iran states:
Kamal Amin, spokesman for the
so-called Ministry of Human Rights of Iraq said today: “Iraqi security
forces have detained these individuals for attacking their own forces
(Iraqi security forces).” (Voice of Free Iraq, September 12, 2013).
As such, 11 days after repeated denials, the Iraqi government
accepted responsibility for the abduction of seven members of the
People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI) and said that the seven
missing PMOI members have been detained by the security forces. He
preposterously claimed that they had been arrested because they had
attacked the security forces.
The Iranian Resistance’s President-elect, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi,
demanded urgent action by the US Secretary of State, the UN Secretary
General, the High Commissioner for Refugees and the ICRC to secure the
immediate release of the seven hostages and their return [to Liberty].
In recent days the seven hostages were seen in blue prison uniforms in Maliki's Golden division.
Today UNHCR issued the following statement
These seven are all known by UNHCR to be asylum-seekers, and the agency
hopes to have an opportunity to interview them. In light of the
numerous and persistent reports over the past week that these
individuals may be at risk of forced return to Iran, UNHCR calls upon
the Government of Iraq to locate them, to ensure their physical
security, and to safeguard them against return to Iran against their
Turning to the US, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu spoke at Butler University last night. Robert King (Indianapolis Star) reports
And characteristic of a man who didn't hesitate to blast a repressive
regime in his own country, Tutu didn’t hesitate to wade into the issue
of the moment. He praised Americans for being skeptical of an attack on
Syria given the “illegal, immoral invasion of Iraq” in 2003.
salute the American people because they learned a lesson in 2003,
because now a majority of the American people are saying no to a
military intervention,” Tutu said. He added: “You Americans are some of
the most generous creatures God ever created. Why don’t you drop food
and not bombs?”
legacy of speaking truth to power, of seeking justice for the oppressed
and for reconciling relationships broken by violence and war is one he
has been building for decades. But despite his animated performance,
it’s not clear how much longer Tutu -- described by [Rev Allan] Boesak as “one of
the greatest living icons of our time” -- would be able to carry on
himself. He hobbled to the stage in a leg cast (he has tendonitis) and
seemed fatigued backstage when his speech was over.
US war on Syria is not a vanished prospect. But a number of pushbacks -- such as the protests and public opinion -- and a blunder have combined to avert it at least for now.
Martin Michaels (Mint Press News) reports
, "About half of all Americans oppose
military intervention in Syria, but opposition to attacks is much
higher among current service members, according to recent opinion
polling by the Military Times -- which found that 75 percent
of the military now oppose a U.S. military strike in Syria." Aaron David Miller (CNN) explains
The American people are their own experts this time around on what
constitutes a vital national interest for the United States and what
they want done about it.
After two of the longest and most profitless wars in American history,
the public has a more discriminating assessment of what's worth fighting
for and what's not. And, deeply dismayed by the standard for victory --
when can we leave, not how do we win -- most Americans rightly see a
U.S. military strike on Syria as an imperfect option that is likely
either to be ineffective or to draw the U.S. into another country's
And yet Barack, even now, can't stop trying to push for war. Jason Hirthler (CounterPunch) points out
, "With almost pathological haste, Western governments
have moved to undermine Russia's sensible proposal for Syria to hand
over its chemical stores, thus avoiding the needless carnage being
proposed by the United States. In an interview
with CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley not hours after the proposal
gained the tentative acceptance of the Syrians, Obama grudgingly
conceded it was a positive development, but quickly added that it would
never have been possible without 'a credible military threat,' and
sounded all the appropriate reservations." Hirthler observes:
In his national address Tuesday night, Obama rather
cynically attempted this when he insinuated that the diplomatic solve
had emerged from his talks with Vladimir Putin. However, the solution
was evidently stimulated by John Kerry’s moment of thoughtless candor,
in which he did what no warmongering deputy should ever do—offer the
villain an escape route. Kerry said
in London on Monday that, sure, if Syria gives up its chemicals, we
won’t attack it. The Russian Foreign Minister smartly seized on the
admission, quickly secured Syrian acquiescence, and announced a
diplomatic breakthrough. Kerry was left dumbfounded, slumping back to
Washington with a laurel leaf in hand, instead of the uranium-tipped
arrows the White House was so poised to launch “across the bow” of
International law isn't the only thing Barack's disrespecting. John Glaser (Antiwar.com) notes
US House Rep Justin Amash's Tweet:
I take it Amash is referring to the clause of the USA PATRIOT Act
which prohibits giving material support to groups designated by the
United States as terrorists. In Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project, the
court found that “training,” “expert advice or assistance,” “service,”
and “personnel,” all qualified as material assistance.
Last year, the U.S. State Department officially designated the Syrian
rebels’ foremost fighting group, Jabhat al-Nusra, a terrorist
organization. The U.S. has maintained all along that they are employing a
“vetting process” to make sure all the material support they send to
Syria’s rebels doesn’t go to the bad guys. But U.S. officials told the Washington Post last
year that the CIA knew very little about who was receiving U.S.
support, nor could they control exactly where it ended up. The New York Times also reported that the Obama administration has been “increasing aid to the rebels” even though “we don’t really know” who is receiving it.
It's amazing that sad fools like Nancy Pelosi would rather get offended
by Russian President Vladimir Putin's column yesterday than by the fact
that the White House is in bed with al Qaeda and any military action the
US takes in Syria would assist and enable al Qaeda. What a way to
'honor' the victims of 9-11.
Wednesday, Ruth noted
, "One year ago today, Glen Doherty, Sean Smith, Chris Stevens, and Tyrone
Woods were killed in Benghazi. We still do not have the needed answers." In this community, Ruth does the heavy lifting on Benghazi. (And does a great job.) We note it mainly in terms of Congressional hearings here. The right-wing Newsbusters (a media watchdog) e-mails to note their piece by Matthew Balan
which opens, "As of Thursday morning, CBS's morning and evening newscasts have yet to mention a revelation made
by their own investigative correspondent, Sharyl Attkisson, on Tuesday --
that Secretary of State John Kerry told Congress 'he will not honor the
request to make Benghazi survivors available for questioning'." The basis for the claim? This Tweet by CBS News' Sharyl Attiksson:
That requires a report and not a Tweet. CBS needs to report it. They can put that up against footage of John Kerry testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee if they're unaware of how this is news. Not only does such a move warrant a report, it also requires a statement to the public from the State Dept and reporters at the department's semi-daily press briefing should be demanding a response to why Kerry is refusing.
We cover the IRS scandal here. Newsbusters also notes Geoffrey Dickens piece on that
The Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC) networks have colluded with the Obama
administration to censor the latest IRS scandal news. The latest: On
September 11 the Wall Street Journal’s
editorial page, in an article headlined “Lois Lerner’s Own Words,”
reported the following: “In a February 2011 email, Ms. Lerner advised
her staff—including then Exempt Organizations Technical Manager Michael
Seto and then Rulings and Agreements director Holly Paz—that a Tea Party
matter is ‘very dangerous,’ and is something ‘Counsel and [Lerner
adviser] Judy Kindell need to be in on.’ Ms. Lerner adds, ‘Cincy should
probably NOT have these cases.’
That’s a different tune than the IRS sang in May when former IRS
Commissioner Steven Miller said the agency’s overzealous enforcement was
the work of two ‘rogue’ employees in Cincinnati. When the story broke,
Ms. Lerner suggested that her office had been unaware of the pattern of
targeting until she read about it in the newspaper. ‘So it was pretty
much we started seeing information in the press that raised questions
for us, and we went back and took a look,’ she said in May.”
The article also offers a review of many developments in the ongoing story. Of those, I would note: "On August 6, as reported on CNN.com
the vice chairman of the Federal Election Commission, Don McGhan,
revealed 'he has seen numerous undisclosed e-mails between FEC staffers
and the Internal Revenue Service that raise new questions about
potential collusion between the two federal agencies in the alleged
targeting of conservative political groups'." Otherwise? We've covered this stuff. Reading their list and what has or hasn't been covered, I was surprised that there was no coverage of the targeting of pro-life groups. I am 100% pro-choice. That's not the issue. The issue is free speech without being hindered or penalized by government. Dropping back to the May 17th snapshot
US House Rep Aaaron Schock had a number of issues to raise about what
the IRS did. A pro-life was group was asked about the content of their
prayers and [then-Acting IRS Commissioner Steve] Miller couldn't weigh in on whether or not that was an
appropriate question for the IRS to ask. Another pro-life group was
asked if they taught "both sides of the issue." As anyone knows, I'm
firmly pro-choice. That does not mitigate my offense at these questions
the IRS asked and, especially with regard to prayer, they crossed a
line. It's a damn shame Steve Miller didn't know how to respond but a
clear indication he was never up for the job. Schock noted another
pro-life group was asked to reveal what writing would be on signs they
carried at a protest? Again, Miller had no comment.
Popular responses from Miller included: "I don't know," "I don't believe
so," "I have no reason to believe . . .," "I don't think so," "I don't
have exact knowledge on that," "I'm really not sure" and "I'd have to go
back and check." He wasn't sure if he had notes. He wasn't sure about
timelines. He was sure about this or about that.
The targeting of pro-life groups was apparently news to The National Review
when they came across it in August. With Benghazi and the IRS, the biggest surprise for me personally is how little so many people know about it. And by 'people,' I mean those writing about it. Bob Somerby has strengths. Benghazi is not one of them. He was very good at repeating what made the papers about hearings. He was lousy with facts because he wasn't at those hearings. A six hour hearing, even with the best reporter, will not be accurately captured in a news article or a TV report. (Nor does my covering a hearing here does not accurately capture the full hearing.) And to hear Bob pontificate about what this or that means and make one factual mistake after another was as frustrating as it was hilarious. Point being, the IRS scandal is a real scandal. The press has done a poor job explaining the whys of that. Josh Hicks (Washington Post) reported
House Republicans on Thursday rekindled a months-old controversy by
releasing what they described as new evidence that the Internal Revenue
Service targeted conservative groups for political reasons.
Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Ways and Means
Committee, revealed e-mails that he said show “high-level IRS employees
in Washington were abusing their power to prevent conservative groups
from organizing and carrying out their missions.”
In one message, IRS official Lois Lerner told her staff: “Tea Party
matter very dangerous. This could be the vehicle to go to court on the
issue of whether [a Supreme Court decision] overturning the ban on
corporate spending applies to tax exempt rules … Cincy should probably
NOT have these cases.”
national iraqi news agency
iraqi spring mc
the new york times