Sunday, February 28, 2016


The Islamic State is on the run.  The US has pushed them back via bombings, grabbed back territories via bombings.  The plan Barack Obama had is working.

As long as you repeat those lies -- most recently repeated in a teleconferencing briefing from Iraq by the top US commander in Iraq -- we can all pretend.

And as long as we ignore reality.

XINHUA reports:

Two suicide bombers detonated themselves at the crowded popular Mreidy Market in the predominantly Shiite district of Sadr City in eastern Baghdad, killing and wounding dozens of people, according to an IS statement on the Internet, of which the authenticity could not be independently verified.
Earlier in the day, an Interior Ministry source told Xinhua that a booby-trapped motorcycle went off at the marketplace, which was followed by a suicide bomber blowing up his explosive vest at the scene.

Both attacks in Baghdad.  And one in Moqtada's neighborhood, a Shia stronghold.

How did that happen?

BBC News reports the Islamic State has already claimed credit for the bombings. Sinan Salaheddin (AP) counts 59 dead and around one hundred injured.

ALSUMARIA reports that Moqtada al-Sadr is calling for the Baghdad Brigade to defend the capital.  Ammar al-Hakim, leader of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, is blaming the bombings on the security forces.  ALL IRAQ NEWS notes that the National Alliance (largest Shi'ite political body in Iraq) has condemned the bombings.  They also report Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi visited the bombing sites and denounced the attacks.

Meanwhile the US Defense Dept announced another round of bombings:

Strikes in Iraq

Fighter aircraft conducted 12 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Fallujah, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL staging area and two rocket rails.

-- Near Kisik, a strike destroyed three ISIL fighting positions.

-- Near Makhmur, a strike destroyed an ISIL vehicle bomb.

-- Near Mosul, five strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed five ISIL fighting positions and two ISIL rocket rails and suppressed an ISIL rocket position.

-- Near Qayyarah, a strike struck an ISIL financial distribution center.

-- Near Ramadi, two strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL building, an ISIL fighting position and two ISIL vehicles.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike suppressed an ISIL rocket position and an ISIL heavy machine gun position.

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.

Meanwhile ALSUMARIA reports Moqtada is calling for more corruption investigations and is specifically interested in the Minister of Water Resources and the Minister of Industry.  Mohammad Sabah (AL MADA) reports that Haider al-Abadi has announced he's working on forming a bloc in the Parliament to implement reforms.  This as objections are already being raised in Parliament.  ALSUMARIA reports MP Imad Youkhana has declared this a "political trap" and that there is objections to Haider's rush to push new people for Cabinet posistions.

Not noted in the article, Imad Youkhana is a Christian.

Haider's 'reforms' thus far have already diluted minority voices.  The 2005 Constitution created (or aspired to) a government that represented all of Iraq.  There is serious concern that further reforms or 'reforms' by Haider will strip more representation from Iraq's minorities.

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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