Sunday, December 27, 2015


First off, SHADOW PROOF.  I was asked in an e-mail if I could note the website.  Kevin Gostztola is posting articles there.  He can offer strong reporting.  It's a new site, I'm not sure when it went active, and I'm noting it at the top.

Let's move to the Pentagon which announced today:

Strikes in Iraq
Fighter, attack, bomber, and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 28 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:
-- Near Albu Hayat, one strike destroyed two ISIL heavy machine guns and an ISIL explosives cache.
-- Near Mosul, seven strikes struck six separate ISIL tactical units, destroying 15 ISIL fighting positions, two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL heavy machine gun, an ISIL bunker, four ISIL assembly areas and three ISIL command control nodes, as well as cratering two ISIL roads and denying ISIL access to terrain.
-- Near Ramadi, four strikes destroyed two ISIL tactical vehicles, an ISIL vehicle-borne bomb, a factory and a staging location for ISIL vehicle-borne bombs, an ISIL building, two houses ISIL had rigged with explosives, an ISIL staging area and an ISIL fighting position. The strikes also denied ISIL access to terrain.
-- Near Sinjar, six strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units, destroying two fighting positions, two bridges and two culverts ISIL had used.
-- Near Tal Afar, seven strikes struck four bridges and a culvert ISIL had used and destroyed 12 ISIL bunkers.
-- Near Fallujah, two strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL heavy machine gun position, bridge ISIL had used, an ISIL bunker and an ISIL beddown location.
-- Near Kisik, one strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle and an ISIL tunnel.
Operation Inherent Resolve officials also provided details of four Dec. 25 strikes that were not included in yesterday’s update:
Near Manbij, Syria, one strike struck an ISIL tactical unit. Near Ramadi, Iraq, three strikes struck a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL anti-air artillery position, five ISIL staging locations, two houses ISIL had rigged with explosives, three ISIL weapon caches, three ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL vehicle-borne bomb, two ISIL resupply locations and an ISIL vehicle. The strikes near Ramadi also cratered five roads ISIL had used, damaged an ISIL tactical vehicle and wounded ISIL fighters.

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.

It's funny how reports or 'reports' leave out the US bombings.

Specifically the hoopla over Ramadi.

"Fall of Ramadi flashpoint hands Iraq forces landmark victory," "Iraq security forces take control of Ramadi from Islamic State," "Iraq army declares victory over Islamic State in Ramadi," "Iraq Declares Victory Over Islamic State in Ramadi," "Fall of Ramadi flashpoint hands Iraq forces landmark victory," "Iraq forces take Ramadi from Islamic State in landmark victory" and on and on it goes.

And let's not forget the little priss pot working for Al-Monitor who Tweeted:

  • Are you laughing, Prissy?

    Because I'm laughing at you and your stupidity.

    Ramadi is not under Iraqi control.

    They got a government building.

    That's all.

    They're not even in it, though.

    They're just around it.

    Mohammed Tawfeeq and Mariano Castillo (CNN) report:

    Iraqi forces have retaken control of a government compound long held by ISIS in Ramadi, an important gain that could signal ISIS' imminent exit from the key city.
    Following days of fighting as ISIS militants fought to defend the compound, the resistance ended, and Iraqi forces found that the ISIS fighters had withdrawn, Col. Mohammed Ibrahim , a spokesman for Iraq's Joint Operations Command, told CNN.
      "The government compound is under our full control," Ibrahim said. "This does not mean we have entered the compound. It means it is fully surrounded and fully under our control."
      Most ISIS fighters, who had been using the government compound as a headquarters, fled or were killed in airstrikes and fighting on the ground, Ibrahim said. 

      That's not really a victory.

      I guess the fact that Iraqi forces have yet to desert the battle qualifies as a 'success' for those with relatively low expectations.

      More to the point, as most observers have pointed out the issue won't be running the Islamic State out of Ramadi, the issue will be what happens afterwards.

      Priss pots would do well to stop cackling and start calling out human rights abuses -- and human rights abuses are not just being carried out by the Islamic State.

      I'm traveling in some vehicle
      I'm sitting in some cafe
      A defector from the petty wars
      That shell shock love away
      -- "Hejira," written by Joni Mitchell, first appears on her album of the same name

      The number of US service members the Dept of Defense states died in the Iraq War is [PDF format warning] 4497 (plus 10 in Operation Inherent Resolve which includes at least 1 Iraq War fatality).

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