Saturday, April 29, 2017

Another US service member dies in the Iraq War

Today, CENTCOM issued the following:

Operation Inherent Resolve Casualty

Release No: 17-164 April 29, 2017
April 29, 2017
Release # 20170429-02

SOUTHWEST ASIA — A U.S. service member died from wounds sustained in an explosive device blast outside of Mosul, Iraq, Apr. 29, 2017. Further information will be released as appropriate.

It is CJTF-OIR policy to defer casualty identification procedures to the relevant national authorities.


Phone: 1-813-529-4636

Thomas Gibbons-Neff (WASHINGTON POST) observes, "Saturday’s death, if caused by hostile fire, would be the fifth U.S. combat death in Iraq since the start of the campaign against the Islamic State there in 2014, and the first during the Trump administration. In October, Navy Chief Petty Officer Jason C. Finan was killed by a roadside bomb on the outskirts of Mosul just days after the battle to retake the city began."

Thousands of US troops have been sent into Iraq since the summer of 2014.

Special-Ops, of course, remained in Iraq even after the 2011 drawdown.  And Barack Obama added a unit of Special-Ops to that total in the fall of 2012.

AP notes, "The Pentagon has acknowledged more than 100 U.S. special operations forces are operating with Iraqi units, with hundreds more playing a support role in staging bases farther from the front lines."

US service member killed after blast near Iraqi city of Mosul, coalition reports

Day 192 of The Mosul Slog.

Is there any end in sight?

No end to the Iraq War.

Neil Clark (RT) notes what this never-ending war has 'accomplished':

Since then over 1 million Iraqis have lost their lives. Over 4,800 soldiers from the US and its allies have also died, including 179 from Britain. 
In 2007, it was reported that between 12 and 20 percent of returning Iraq War veterans suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. 
As its opponents predicted, the war caused a refugee crisis of epic proportions. In 2007, the UN said that the number fleeing Iraq had reached 2 million, while there were an estimated 1.7 million internally displaced people. By the end of 2015, the UN said the number of displaced Iraqis had reached 4.6 million. Among the many Iraqis who were forced from their homes, were the country’s Christians, who have faced terrible persecution.
In 2016, it was reported that 80 percent of Iraq’s 1.5 million-strong Christian community had fled since 2003.
Fourteen years on, the US military is still in Iraq – now seeking to “liberate” Mosul from Islamic State terrorists (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), who would not have existed without the previous “liberation” of the country. Even Tony Blair, one of the architects of the war, has partially acknowledged that, without the Iraq War, there’d be no Islamic State. 
The plight of young women and gay people in Iraq has gotten worse. In 2011, a HRW report said that young women were “widowed, trafficked, forced into early marriages, beaten at home, and sexually harassed if they leave the house.” Child marriage has risen since 2003, with 25 percent of women being married off before their 18th birthday.
In a 2009 Guardian article, Peter Tatchell who had supported arming Iraqi opposition groups to topple Saddam, noted how “Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, homophobia and the terrorisation of LGBT people has got much worse… The western invasion ended the tyrannical Baathist dictatorship. But it also destroyed a secular state, created chaos and lawlessness… The result has been an Islamist-inspired homophobic terror campaign against LGBT Iraqis.

Remember when people used to think the Iraq War could end?

Remember how Barack Obama was elected on the promise that he would end the Iraq War?

Link to headline article

That was his first trip as president.  It was also his only trip to Iraq -- in his eight years as president, only one trip to Iraq.

The caption to the photo?  This:

Cheered wildly by US troops, President Barack Obama flew unannounced into Iraq and promptly declared it was time for Iraqis to "take responsibility for their country" after America's commitment of six years and thousands of lives.

Barack was so full of it.

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    Photojournalist David Bacon has had many exhibits and written many books, his latest book is The Right to Stay Home: How US Policy Drives Mexican Migration.   He has an important new photo essay that we'll note the opening of.

    Photoessay by David Bacon
    Gastronomica, Spring 2017

    A Mexican farmer from Kingsburg, in the San Joaquin Valley, bargains with Chinese mothers over the price of walnuts.

    I do the cooking in my house. To me, it's a way I show my love for the people in my life. I know I'm not the only person like that. When I read Amy Tan's novel, The Joy Luck Club, the sections when the mothers tell their daughters about the importance of the best quality food resonated with me.

    At the Friday farmers' market in Oakland, California, I can see those mothers in front of the stalls, bargaining over the produce. Oakland is a working-class city across the bay from San Francisco, and like many California cities, it has an historic Chinese and Asian American community-a Chinatown. Being right next to Chinatown makes the Oakland farmers' market unique.

    If you go up to the farmers' markets in Berkeley (next door to Oakland) or over to San Francisco, these days you'll find a booth or two with Asian vegetables. Asian cooking is healthy and popular. But because Berkeley and San Francisco are much more affluent communities, stalls at farmers' markets often target more middle-class and even upper-middle-class shoppers.

    At the Oakland market the Asian stalls are the majority. If you come early, you can see the moms of Chinatown around the stall that has the best baby bok choy or lemongrass.


    In the Fields of the North / En los Campos del Norte
    Photographs and text by David Bacon
    University of California Press / Colegio de la Frontera Norte

    Publication date:  May 1, 2017
    302 photographs, 450pp, 9”x9”
    paperback, $34.95

    order the book on the UC Press website:
    use source code  16M4197  at checkout
    receive a 30% discount

    En Mexico se puede pedir el libro en el sitio de COLEF:

    “David Bacon allows us to be there. Inside the temporary ‘homes’ created in cabins standing in the middle of nowhere. Homes that often become permanent by filling them with the workers’ hope.”
    - Ana Luisa Anza, Editor and Managing Editor, Cuartoscuro

    “Bacon nos permite estar presentes, de primera mano. Ahí están, en barracas construidas en medio de la nada, los “hogares” temporales que, de tanta esperanza, muchas veces se convierten en permanentes”.
    - Ana Luisa Anza, Editora y Coordinadora editorial, Cuartoscuro


    Was zwischen den USA und Mexiko schon seit langem existiert
    Die Traurigkeit der Grenzmauer
    Photoessay von David Bacon
    Neue Rheinische Zeitung 14 April, 2017


    Photographs of the marches against Trump's anti-immigrant orders and detention center vigils:


    In den Straßen von Guadalajara

    Kinder – in Berliner Straßen
    "Wir sind obdachlos, und wir wählen"

    THE REALITY CHECK - David Bacon blog

    EN LOS CAMPOS DEL NORTE:  Farm worker photographs on the U.S./Mexico border wall
    Youtube interview about the show with Alfonso Caraveo (Spanish)

    Interviews with David Bacon about his book, The Right to Stay Home:

    Book TV: A presentation of the ideas in The Right to Stay Home at the CUNY Graduate Center

    KPFA - Upfront with Brian Edwards Tiekert

    Books by David Bacon

    The Right to Stay Home:  How US Policy Drives Mexican Migration  (Beacon Press, 2013)
    Illegal People -- How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants  (Beacon Press, 2008)
    Recipient: C.L.R. James Award, best book of 2007-2008

    Communities Without Borders (Cornell University/ILR Press, 2006)

    The Children of NAFTA, Labor Wars on the U.S./Mexico Border (University of California, 2004)

    En Español:  

    EL DERECHO A QUEDARSE EN CASA  (Critica - Planeta de Libros)


    For more articles and images, see and

    You can dislike Trump and Hillary Clinton too (Margaret Kimberley)

    Some Tweets from journalist Margaret Kimberley:

    1. Pinned Tweet
      A Cashless Society? Not Before Tubman’s $20 Arrives Photo of Sojourner Truth in Harriet Tubman article.
    2.   Retweeted
      Listening to NPR economic coverage is like reading about the victims of a serial killer without anyone mentioning a damn serial killer.
    3. Worse because it is true or because he said it?

    1. Exactly. Charlie Sheen shot an ex girlfriend but it was covered up for years.
    2. Of course Trump is in over his head. The admission is icing on the cake. Obama gets paid? Of course. None news on the presidential front.
    3. For the thousandth time, there is no proof that Russia hacked the DNC. Good article by .
    4. I spoke to about American interference in other nation's elections. I don't think Russia hacked but they're no worse if they did.
    5. The U.S. intervenes in elections all over the world. Why would it be worse if Russia did the same thing? My latest thoughts.
    6. Two of my favorite people talking about Syria. and Eva Bartlett. Please listen.
    7. You can dislike Trump and Hillary Clinton too. I dislike her more than ever because her arrogance and incompetence gave Trump the victory.