Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Mosul's fall was inevitable

Yesterday, Mosul fell to rebels.

It's resulted in media coverage.

And gas baggery.

For example, Leela Jacinto (FRANCE 24) offers, "The significance of the fall of Iraq’s second-largest city cannot be overstated. As US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki has said, it presents a threat not just to Iraq, but to the region as well -- and, I may add, to Western interests in the region."

Does it?

Does it do that?

I find it not just appalling but also disgusting that the fall of Mosul garners the feigned shock it does.

Since January, Nouri al-Maliki has been bombing residential neighborhoods in Falluja.

I did not define that as a War Crime, the law did.

Collective punishment is illegal -- bombing civilian populations because you can't catch your intended target is not allowed.

It is a War Crime.

And where was the media coverage of that?

Pretty much every day since the start of the year, civilians in Falluja have been wounded and killed.

For six straight months.

Excuse me, where was the media coverage of that?

Where was the lip gnashing and mock horror?

Nouri bombed hospitals in Falluja.

Where was the  media outrage?

The editorial board of the New York Daily News argues, "As many as 150,000 Mosul residents have already fled the city of 1 million. They report that masked fighters and comrades freed from prisons were running through the streets."

This gets alarm.

A government leader kills civilians and no one gives a damn but this gets attention?

The two are linked.

Responses are reactions to events.  Nouri set the stage for all that has followed in Iraq.

The press ignoring that reality allowed the situation to get worse.

There was no oversight being provided.

And there was no outrage being expressed.

To the Sunnis living in Falluja and the Sunnis elsewhere watching the numbers of dead and wounded rise daily, a message was being sent in the media silence:  Sunni lives don't matter.

You send that message, you better expect all that follows.

You also better take some accountability for your role in all that followed.

Try to grasp how important the March 2010 elections.

The people voted.  Despite Nouri claiming that State of Law was going to win big, it didn't.  It didn't even win.  Iraqiya, led by Ayad Allawi, won.

And it won because it was Shi'ite or Sunni.  It was a national party calling for a national identity and a sense of unity.

Nothing could be more important to Iraq then or since.

But Nouri refused to step down as prime minister and Barack Obama backed him on that.  For eight months, Iraq didn't form a government as Nouri refused to step down.

Then Barack ordered US officials in Iraq to broker a deal for Nouri to get a second term as prime minister.  He'd lost the election.  How could a deal fix that?

First, a legal contract would go around the Iraqi Constitution.  Second, to get the heads of the other political blocs to agree to this, the contract would have to offer them certain things.

Nouri used the contract (The Erbil Agreement) to get his second term and then he refused to honor it.  The White House suddenly 'forgot' the contract.

A people had turned out to vote and their vote was overturned.

They protested.

And their protests were ignored.

What the hell do you think is left?

The ballot box doesn't work.  Civil protests do not work.

What are the people left with?


And it's only shocking if you're that stupid.

War Crimes are being carried out by Nouri al-Maliki.  Carried out.  Ongoing.  These are defined as War Crimes.  The Nazis were legally prosecuted for these War Crimes.

And the media looks the other way and the White House not only issues no statement condemning the actions, they also continue to do business with Nouri, to continue to arm him.

Call it karma that some of the weapons the White House insisted Nouri be given are now in the hands of rebels.

But the reality is that the White House has no ethical pony to ride in this race.

It has been craven and corrupt.

And the press has followed the administration's lead.

Dan Murphy (Christian Science Monitor) insists, "The scale of the catastrophe, as troops loyal to Mr. Maliki flood north and troops controlled by the Kurdish Regional Government rush west and south, can't be overstated."

Maybe so.  But War Crimes can't be ignored.

Christiane Amanpour can rant like a lunatic on CNN -- can and did -- about how despite all of her reporting or 'reporting' the world won't scream for US forces to flood into Syria but the same woman is silent on War Crimes?  Christiane's a joke.

She is the press and they are a disease ridden group of whores who will scream for war but will do nothing to help the suffering.  She doesn't care about the people of Syria.  She cares about getting her war.  In other words, Nora Dunn nailed Christiane in David O. Russell's Three Kings.  We all knew that, right?  That Nora's character was based on Christiane?

In 1999, it seemed a little over the top.

Today, it doesn't go far enough.

Because Christiane has embarrassed herself as she moans in an orgasmic frenzy for war.  That's all she wants, destruction in Syria.

War doesn't improve conditions for civilians.  But even if Christiane was too stupid to grasp that -- and she just might be -- there's also the fact that if you care about humanity, as Christiane insists she does, then you damn well call out War Crimes, you damn well call out Nouri bombing residential areas in Falluja and wounding and killing civilians.

And when you don't do that, you leave an already helpless people, already under attack, feeling even more isolated and alone.

Today, the fall of Mosul is a concern.

The six months of wounding and killing Sunni civilians received no attention.

Six months of ongoing, legally defined War Crimes.

In the April 16th "Iraq snapshot," we went over the attacks each day up to that point and how many people were killed.

It was obvious what was happening.

While Amnesty has been shamefully silent, Human Rights Watch has repeatedly sounded alarms.  In May, they noted:

Iraqi government forces battling armed groups in the western province of Anbar since January 2014 have repeatedly struck Fallujah General Hospital with mortar shells and other munitions, Human Rights Watch said today. The recurring strikes on the main hospital, including with direct fire weapons, strongly suggest that Iraqi forces have targeted it, which would constitute a serious violation of the laws of war.

Since early May, government forces have also dropped barrel bombs on residential neighborhoods of Fallujah and surrounding areas, part of an intensified campaign against armed opposition groups, including the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham (ISIS). These indiscriminate attacks have caused civilian casualties and forced thousands of residents to flee.

“The government has been firing wildly into Fallujah’s residential neighborhoods for more than four months, and ramped up its attacks in May,” said Fred Abrahams, special adviser at Human Rights Watch. “This reckless disregard for civilians is deadly for people caught between government forces and opposition groups.”

If the press had bothered, if tele-celebrities like Christiane had bothered, if editorial boards and columnists had bothered to note the reality, the seizure of Mosul might not have been where this was headed.

And people damn well better pay attention because if they don't start noting reality, if they don't start acknowledging the suffering going on (due to Nouri's corruption and War Crimes), Mosul isn't the end of the journey, it's just a rest stop on the road -- likely a brief rest stop.

Violence continues elsewhere in Iraq.  National Iraqi News Agency reports 1 person was shot dead in Almadain and another left injured, a Nu'maniya car bombing left five people injured, and a Karbala car bombing left 5 people dead and four more injured.  Iraq Body Count notes that the first ten days of the month have witnessed at least 584 violent deaths.

The following community sites -- plus Black Agenda Report, Ms. magazine's blog, Pacifica Evening News and -- updated:

  • The e-mail address for this site is