Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Iraq snapshot

Wednesday, March 5, 2014.  Chaos and violence continue, Nouri's assault on Anbar continues, Nouri lashes out at another Sunni politician (Osama al-Nujaifi), in the US Hillary Clinton foams at the mouth and embarrasses herself again while, in Ireland, her husband again proves who was fit to be president, and much more.

And each time I tell myself that I, well I think I've had enough
But I'm gonna show you, baby, that a woman can be tough

Fronting Big Brother & the Holding Company, Janis Joplin took "Piece of My Heart" to number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 November 9, 1968.  And women can be tough and they can be tender and they can be everything under the sun.  Before Janis' hit, in 1965, Nancy Sinatra had offered "These Boots Are Made For Walking."  Many would come after Janis.  Carly Simon would deliver "You're So Vain," Tina Turner would explain "Better Be Good To Me,"  Alanis Morissette would offer "You Oughta Know" and Erykah Badu would take on "Tyrone."

There are many other examples but Janis had a career and all the other women have a career because they offered varieties of strength and other things.

But then there is the one note Hillary Clinton.

We get it, you're the baddest bitch in the whole damn town.

But are you anything else? Because for the last five or so years, you've been like the worst Hillary Clinton impersonator.

Leadership is not snarling and bellowing.

Leadership is not taking an already heated topic and making it worse.

Vladimir Putin is not Adolf Hitler and its deeply insulting to the world -- let alone the Jewish community -- for Hillary to froth at the mouth and make these ridiculous claims.  Who's Hitler?  People may start calling her "Hillary Hitler."  Glen Ford (Black Agenda Report) points out, "With the U.S. and NATO now poised at Russia’s door, as was Germany in 1941, Hillary Clinton attempts to flip the clear historical parallel by ranting that it is President Putin who seeks a 'Greater Russia.' The Kremlin has every reason to believe the barbarians are at the gate."

Her latest raving was noted by Jake Tapper (CNN) and, as he points out,  Karen Robes Meek has the audio at Los Angeles Daily News.  And what does Hillary do when called on it?

Refuse to own her mistake.  That's not leadership either.  Nor is crawling up Barack's ass thinking she can hide there.  But she's not even content with that. She also thinks she can tell Americans what to do, "And it is important for us in this country to recognize the complexity of the situation as it evolves and to support the very careful diplomacy that the president and secretary Kerry and others are undertaking."

People are waving at Hillary right now across America and it's not a hello, it's a middle finger gesture that says stop trying to tell Americans what do so.

You're in trouble because you can't shut your big mouth and you then try to fix that by telling Americans what to do?

And check out the hypocrisy and sense of entitlement there.  Hillary works the crowd by bringing up Hitler and then has the gall to tell Americans they have "to recognize the complexity of the situation as it evolves and to support the very careful diplomacy that the president and secretary Kerry and others are undertaking."  As Barry Grey and David North (WSWS) observe, "The US-backed coup in Ukraine has triggered the most dangerous international crisis since the Cuban missile crisis of October 1962. American and European officials are denouncing Russia for sending troops into Crimea in response to the installation of an anti-Russian regime in Ukraine that has seized power through a coup d’état staged by fascist militia."  And in that crowded theater of blood, Hillary wants to scream "Hitler!"?

She doesn't have what it takes to be president.  Each year she devolves more and more and scares off those who support her husband who has a natural ability to communicate.  We'll be talking about Bill later in the snapshot, I planned to.  I didn't plan to talk about Hillary but she's one psycho meltdown after another these days.

This week's. Black Agenda Radio, hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey (first airs each Monday at 4:00 pm EST on the Progressive Radio Network),  features coverage of the Urkaine.  Excerpt. 

Glen Ford: The United States and western Europe have succeeded in toppling the elected government of the Ukraine -- a nation on the border with Russia.  Neo-Nazi thugs led the opposition forces which have for decades enjoyed financial and political support from Washington.  The US has also been seeking regime change in Venezuela since at least 2002 when it backed an attempted coup against the late president Hugo Chavez.  Sara Flounders of the International Action Center in New York says the United States is engaged in a general offensive of subversion and disruption across the globe.

Sara Flounders:  What's happening is that with enormous US support and mobilization of the 1% in Venezuela and the upper class and the middle class and those who feel threatened, their social position is threatened by very progressive changes made in Venezuela.  Venezuela is key to a whole bunch of countries in Latin America who have broken free of US domination and who were under the thumb of the US since the Monroe Doctrine, one military dictatorship after another. They've broken free and they've passed quite a bit of progressive legislation [. . .] And we could look at what is happening in the Ukraine where, again, mobilized groups are aided and funded by the US, where they give them political support and enormous media coverage for their actions.  It's not to provide any solutions for the society, it's just to see what can be done to destabilize the country as a whole.

Glen Ford:  And in these targeted countries NGO has become a curse word, a very bad name because of how the United States has funded NGOs to spread dissension and destabilize those countries.

Sara Flounders: Very much so.  The NGOs have become a vehicle, also called civil society.  Now the US bragged that before the Orange Revolution in the Ukraine ten years ago, they had established 40,000 -- that's an incredible number -- 40,000 NGOs in the Ukraine.  Both US funded, they're also German, Swiss, and French and Scandinavian and  all sorts of private foundations.  An incredible number, a network of NGOs which at the time was actually employing 10 percent of the population.  These were people who were sent to the West for training and in every way cultivated to be a dissenting force within society and one that was completely oriented to the West and an effort, also, like a brain drain, attract the most interested, young, political people to say, 'Your society has no solutions, look to the West, attend this conference in Geneva, this meeting in New York.  We'll give you a scholarship, you're going to Chicago.'

For more from Sara Flounders, you can refer to her latest column  at Workers World:

When Kiev’s City Hall was seized with guns and Molotov cocktails, one of the first acts of the Euromaidan street fighters was to unfurl a number of flags and insignia. Prominent among the flags were swastikas, Iron Crosses, Nazi SS lightning bolts, the Celtic cross used by the Ku Klux Klan, and the Confederate “stars and bars” flag of slaveholders in the United States. (
This is no accident. The flag of the U.S. Southern slaveholders and the Klan cross are symbols understood around the world. They stand for racism, reaction, lynchings and mass terror, for keeping oppressive institutions intact and for beating down people of color and all those who struggle for a better world.

The Voice of Russia's John Robles interviews (link is audio and text)  Francis A. Boyle is an attorney and a professor of international law.  He's also the author of many books including, most recently, United Ireland, Human Rights and International Law.   Excerpt.

Boyle: It doesn't look good at all, John. Instead of the Obama Administration trying to sit down with president Putin and negotiate a way out of this in good faith, all the signs are that the Obama Administration is going to try to quote “cement” unquote, as Nuland put it, their neo-nazi gang of thugs in Kiev into power.
Today already rumors has it that the OSCE (The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe), they seem to be on board with this project. NATO just came out with a statement, they seem to be on board with this project, the EU under Barroso came out with an appalling statement supporting this saying, that Nuland's neoNazi thugs in Kiev 'reflect European values'.
It is simply astounding.
You saw Secretary of State John Kerry yesterday on Meeting the Press completely out of control, he does not sound to be rational at all.
He is flying over there to Kiev to cement these neo-nazi thugs in power. UK Foreign Secretary Hague was over there this weekend for the same purpose.
Obviously if people were serious about solving this problem, they would be flying over the Moscow and meeting with president Putin and Foreign Minister Lavrov. Instead they are telling president Putin that he should be negotiating with their gang of neo-nazi thugs in Kiev.
So this notion you are seeing –they are trying to find an off-ramp for Putin, it is absurd that is propaganda.
Again, they are trying to consolidate into power this gang of neo-nazi thugs who launched a coup d'état against the democratically elected government in Ukraine.

By the way, we're not linking to Ron Jacobs' nonsense.  Barack's the US president.  When little Ron learns to call him out, we might give a damn what the coward says.  Please note, I've called out John Kerry this week and I know and like John.   I've again called out Hillary above.  And I've never been a little weasel who was too scared to call out a sitting president of either party.  Ron Jacobs needs to grow up.  We will note Renee Parsons (CounterPunch):

Listening to the US media, even the most diligent news junkie would find it difficult to know that the U.S. State Department played not only a vital role in the violence and chaos underway in Ukraine but was also complicit in creating the coup that ousted democratically elected President Viktor Yanuyovch.    Given the Russian Parliament’s approval of Putin’s request for military troops to be moved into Crimea, Americans uninformed about the history of that region might also be persuaded that Russia is the aggressor and the sole perpetrator of the violence.
Let’s be clear about what is at stake here:     NATO missiles on the adjacent Ukraine border aimed directly at Russia would make that country extremely vulnerable to Western goals and destabilization efforts while threatening Russia’s only water access to its naval fleet in Crimean peninsula, the Balkans, the Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East – and not the least of which would allow world economic dominance by the US, the European Union, the IMF, World Bank and international financiers all of whom had already brought staggering suffering to millions around the globe.

Also noting spin from the media passed off as 'reporting' is Russ Baker (Who What Why) who observes:

The problem is, you can only believe that the West truly cares about the people of Ukraine and their democracy if you have zero historical memory. Or if your analysis of all of these events comes from news organizations that don’t ever really, fully do their jobs.
The US corporate media never changes its spots. After being tricked and lied to on Vietnam, the first Gulf War, the Iraq invasion, Libya, Syria, and just about everything else, it once again takes the US foreign policy establishment at its word that it only wishes to do the right thing. The right thing. It bears repeating.
We’re told that the U.S. and its allies are just thrilled about people going into the streets to overthrow corruption and excesses by financial elites.
Yet, when people tried that in….the U.S.…the police were there in force to shut them down. Occupy looked a bit like the Ukrainian uprising, except that the US establishment was desperate to crush it. (For the ultimate in this, see our exclusive report on a suppressed FBI investigation into plans to use high-powered snipers to kill Occupy leaders….no, this is not a joke.)

Or you can look to Iraq where protests have been ongoing for a year and two months and counting.  Did the US government back the peaceful protesters?


Did they at least condemn Nouri when he called them "terrorists" or had his forces attack them?


And the White House still has nothing to say about the April 23rd massacre of a sit-in in Hawija resulted from  Nouri's federal forces storming in.  Alsumaria noted Kirkuk's Department of Health (Hawija is in Kirkuk)  announced 50 activists have died and 110 were injured in the assault.   AFP reported the death toll eventually (as some wounded died) rose to 53 dead.   UNICEF noted that the dead included 8 children (twelve more were injured).

"The Iraqi problem is that they don't have an inclusive government either and if they did, if they followed your lead, they would've been in better shape."  That's a US official speaking.

John Kerry?  Barack Obama?


It's former US President Bill Clinton.  Sky News notes he made that statement to a group he was speaking to in Northern Ireland today.

Let's hear from Bill Clinton one more time,  "The Iraqi problem is that they don't have an inclusive government either and if they did, if they followed your lead, they would've been in better shape."

And that's true.

Thank goodness one American official can speak some sort of truth on Iraq today.

Yesterday saw a suicide attack in Samarra.  The US Embassy in Baghdad issued the following:

The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad Condemns the March 4 attack on the Local Council of Samarra

The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad condemns in the strongest possible terms the March 4 terrorist attack on the Samarra Local Council.  We extend our sincere condolences to the families of the victims and hope for a rapid recovery for those who were injured.

The attack bears the hallmarks of the heinous suicide and vehicle bomb attacks that have murdered so many innocent Iraqis.  The United States stands with the Iraqi people in the fight against terrorism, and will continue to work closely with the Government of Iraq to confront the threat posed by terrorist groups.

World Bulletin notes that Baghdad was slammed with multiple bombings today.  NINA notes a Shula car bombing, 2 Sadr City car bombings and one Bayaa roadside bombing left 3 people dead and thirty-five injured.  Citing police sources, World Bulletin counts 21 dead and sixty-seven injured in Baghdad bombings. AFP also reports 21 dead from Baghdad bombings.

Prensa Latina observes, "The crisis deepened in al-Anbar in December 2013 after authorities dismantled the main Sunni anti-government protest camp in the country, on the outskirts of Ramadi."

And the assault on Anbar continues.

NINA reports the military's bombing of Falluja left 4 civilians ("including a child") dead and seven more injured.  And the military's airstrike in Ramadi left a man and a woman dead and three more in their "civilian car" injured.

At what point does the US government get honest that Nouri is terrorizing the Iraqi people, not hunting down terrorists?

Today someone did get honest.  We'll note it in the snapshot.  Sadly, it wasn't anyone in the current administration -- an administration which appears determined to set new records for lying.

In other violence?


National Iraqi News Agency reports a Jurfi-ssakhar roadside bombing left two people injured, and a Ramadi suicide car bomber took his own life and the lives of 3 security forces with three more injured.


National Iraqi News Agency reports  a Hermat battle left two Iraqi soldiers injured, a Miqdadiya attack left 1 Indian tourist dead and four more injured,  Joint Operations Command states they killed 2 suspects in Mosul,


National Iraqi News Agency reports  1 corpse was discovered "dumped near a water stream" in al-Muqdadiyah.  All Iraq News notes Babel police discovered 5 corpses dumped in the Euphrates River.

Xinhua observes, "Iraq is witnessing its worst violence in recent years. According to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, a total of 8,868 Iraqis, including 7,818 civilians and police personnel, were killed in 2013, the highest annual death toll in years."

All that violence and he thinks he deserves a third term?

Aswat al-Iraq reports that Ayad Allawi, leader of Iraqiya issued a statement this week regarding the assault on Anbar, calling it a failure in terms of its announced goals and declaring, "It is unreasonable leading our youths towards death for political and electoral gains, amid lack of training and armaments."  If there's somehow time or space tomorrow, we'll back up Allawi's call with Congressional testimony from February 11th.

All he's done is create even more violence by refusing to listen to peaceful protesters, by verbally attacking them, by physically attacking them, by tearing down their protest sites.

For over nine weeks, he's attempted to 'solve' issues with violence.

It has not and is not working.

Only an idiot continues down this path.

But Nouri al-Maliki is a real idiot -- which is why Bully Boy Bush made him prime minister to begin with and why Barack Obama insisted he get a second term even though he lost the 2010 elections.

From yesterday's snapshot:

Parliament wants to address the ongoing assault on Anbar in a Thursday session.  Groups are announcing they will be present.  Iraqiya says they will be attending.  The Kurdish Alliance says they will be attending. Yesterday, Al Mada reported on the refusal by Nouri's State of Law to attend and quoted them insisting that such a hearing would be nothing but insults.  And today?  NINA reports:

MP, of the State of Law Coalition, Sadiq al-Labban said that his coalition is boycotting the meetings of the Council of Representatives, and will not attend the meeting of the Council to discuss Anbar crisis, on Thursday . "
He told the National Iraqi News Agency / NINA /: "The issue of the Anbar is a military issue , not a political , therefore it cannot be discussed in the House of Representatives , on the grounds that the armed forces are fighting the terrorists of ISIS , backed by Anbar tribes ."

Not only is there no military solution, Nouri's assault on ANBAR has only revealed how weak he truly is as one city or town after another has been lost to him.

All Iraq News reports today:

MP Hassan Showerid, of the Iraqiya Alliance, called the Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki, to attend the Parliament session to discuss the current security and political situation in Iraq.Showerid reported in a statement received by AIN ''The Parliament should be the supreme authority in Iraq in terms of issuing the resolutions and the Premier should attend the Parliament session since the Iraqi people have the right to get acquainted with the situation in Iraq.''

NINA reports MP Sadiq Labban (with Nouri's State of Law) insists that State of Law will continue to refuse to attend sessions of Parliament.  While Nouri's State of Law boycotts Parliament, NINA notes that Nouri has stated Speaker of Parliament Osama al-Nujaifi is "disrupting the work of the Council" of Ministers.

Nouri's gone after many Sunnis and Iraqiya members -- usually they're both.  Iraqiya was the slate that beat Nouri in the 2010 parliamentary elections.  He's held a kangaroo court against Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi, for example.  He's often trashed Nineveh Province Governor Atheel al-Nujaifi, brother of the Speaker of Parliament.

But he's largely stayed clear of Osama al-Nujaifi.

Now he's going after him.

And he's not just accusing al-Nujaifi of harming his pretty little Council.  NINA notes Nouri's also blaming the failure of the 2014 budget on Osama.   And All Iraq News reports:

The Premier, Nouri al-Maliki, accused the parliament Speaker, Osama al-Nijaifi, of hindering the nomination of the security ministers.

In his weekly speech on Wednesday, Maliki said "Nijaifi and those who target the political process always state that the security ministers are not nominated, but they refuse to ratify the names of the nominees for the Interior and Defense Ministers posts." 

How crazy is Nouri?

He was supposed to make those nominations no later than December 2010.  He never did.  And now, as his second term draws to an end, now he wants to pretend it's Osama's fault?

Let's pretend for a moment it was and that, for years now, Osama's blocked him.

That would only go to how weak and pathetic Nouri is that he waited until a month before his term winds down to announce he was blocked on the security ministries.

What a lying piece of filth Nouri al-Maliki is.