Monday, March 12, 2018

Iraq snapshot

Monday, March 12, 2018.  More Christians dead in Iraq, the Ministry of Interior tries to spin murder as theft, Hayder al-Abadi doesn't appear to grasp that he's in violation of Iraqi law, ISIS apparently did not hear that Hayder had pronounced them defeated because they staged multiple attacks across Iraq today, and much more

Let's start with nonsense and then we'll go to California.

It was because of such words by fools like this that the in ended up making a miscalculation of historic proportions. Always listen to a range of opinion before taking fateful decisions. The Kurds will suffer long from the effect.

No, Joost, it was not words by Henri that made the Kurds hold their referendum.

They did it because they wanted to -- that's why you had over 95% of the voters voting in it.

You don't like it.

We get that.  The whole world gets it.

You failed to stand for freedom.  You failed to stand for self-determination.

Now you want to come along and call others fools?

Put your head back up your ass cause no one else is licking your crap today.

You should be ashamed of yourself.  You are part of the US establishment.  As such you are a part of long history of lying to the Kurds and turning your back on them.

That's what's happened repeatedly since the days when Henry Kissinger was Secretary of State.  We've demonstrated that here repeatedly by citing the so-called unpublished Pike Report.  The Church Committee?  Most of us know about that.  Congress' Pike Report, not so much.

The US government has repeatedly used and abused the Kurds and their trust.

That after decades of being told not now, the Kurds decided to hold a referendum -- a non-binding referendum whose only purpose was to officially determine the will of the Kurdish people?  That that referendum offends you?

Like I said, stick your head back up your ass -- your the only one licking that flavor.

How typical of an imperialist to gets his panties in a wad over a group holding an election to determine the will of the people.  Kurds are not your children -- they're not children at all, Joost.  They will defend themselves and they will determine for themselves.  Go home, Bwana, and take your superior attitude with you.

Moving to California where we can move into the 21st century with Kevin de Leon or we can stay in last century with elderly Dianne Feinstein.  Yes, she's too old to be in the Senate.  Yes, she needs to go.  Yes, she supported the Iraq War.

Kevin is change.

  1. I'm running for the U.S. Senate because you deserve a seat at the table. Please join my campaign:

  2. What an incredible privilege to spend this afternoon with to talk about our shared values, and our vision for the future of California. Took me back to my freshman days on the campus!
  3. Our thoughts are in . My deepest condolences go out to the friends and family of the officer who was shot and killed while protecting his community. Proud of the brave men and women of and first responders who were on the scene.
  4. We are in mourning over horrific tragedies across California this morning. In yesterday the lives of three brave women ended in an act of senseless violence. Our heartfelt prayers are with the victims' loved ones this morning.

In June, California will hold a primary.  For the US Senate, the two top vote getters in the primary will advance to the November general election.  Party identification will not matter.  Were the primary today, the two advancing would be Kevin de Leon and Dianne Feinstein.

Let's turn to Iraq's elections.

They are scheduled to be held May 12th.

Interesting developments?  Let's look at some of the major players.

ALSUMARIA reports that Moqtada al-Sadr says elections are necessary to protect Iraq and that all voters should participate.

His Eminence Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr (Odeh Allah)   Calls to save Iraq from the corrupt votes of his beloved in the parliamentary elections: "Save Iraq your votes, lovers of the homeland or else lost in the hands of corrupt

Shi'ite cleric and movement leader Moqtada al-Sadr is teaming his party with the Communist Party.

Not all are pleased with Moqtada's move -- as noted in this series of Tweets.

AL MADA notes the partnership is "unprecedented" but not surprising because for the last two years the two groups have been among those turning out in Baghdad's Tahrir Square for the last two years to protest the government corruption.  Moqtada's group AL Ahrar and the Communist Party are two of the six components making up the Alliance for Reform.  Nadia Nasser explains, "Our goal is to change the officials who have ruled us for 14 years.  I am fed up with corruption.  I am in favor of this alliance because I want to see new faces" in government.

Moqtada is one of many Shi'ite leaders.  Amar al-Hakim is another one and, over the weekend, he got press for showing leadership.  As NINA has reported, Amar has encouraged voters to back candidates they feel have the best vision for the country and told young people that they will be responsible for building the Iraqi state.

Meanwhile, in the KRG, Goran (Change) is the political party created with CIA seed money.  NINA reports that they are calling for all citizens to register to vote and to update their contact information.  In the last election cycle, Goran proved to be a major player coming in second only to the KDP which is headed by Massoud Barzani.

Today marks the 48th year anniversary of the March 11, 1970 agreement between the Iraqi government and Kurdistan, an agreement which granted the Kurds some of their rights. (1 of 3)

The March 11 agreement along with other legal agreements between Kurdistan and the central government in Baghdad culminated in the 2005 Iraqi Constitution. Alas, they have collectively failed to grant legitimacy to the concept of partnership. (2 of 3)

This duration of the past 48 years since that agreement has undergone a systematic period of oppression against the Kurds from chemical bombardment to the Anfal genocide. Unfortunately the government in Iraq continues to deliberately neglect the principle of partnership. (3 of 3)

Barzani is not the only one objecting to the budget.  Saturday, THE FINANCIAL TRIBUNE reported:

The International Monetary Fund, which controls Baghdad’s access to over $5 billion in international loans, has come out against Iraq’s recently-passed 2018 budget, in large part due to the decrease of the share allocated to the Kurdistan region.
“The budget is not satisfactory because we think it’s not enough to maintain macroeconomic stability in Kurdistan, which is an important region of Iraq,” Christian Josz, deputy division chief of the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asian department, told Iraq Oil Report, Kurdistan24 reported.
Iraq’s adherence to regulations in the IMF’s Stand-By Arrangement acts to free up $5.34 billion in international loans. It also indirectly allows Iraq to access billions more, due to the positive effect on the confidence of investors and businesses that IMF partnership carries.
If Baghdad fails to reach specific economic and governance benchmarks laid out in the SBA, the IMF can cite non-compliance to put the agreement, and therefore billions of dollars for Iraq, on hold.

Turning to forever thug and former prime minister Nouri al-Maliki.    Over the weekend, ALSUMARIA reported that State of Law is trying to kill rumors that Nouri al-Maliki is rejecting Hayder al-Abadi as prime minister.  Nouri is the former prime minister and forever thug.  Hayder replaced him as prime minister in late 2014.  Nouri has, to this day, refused to move out of the prime minister's home.  Nouri has been plotting to return as prime minister.  Last month, some outlets insisted that Nouri was not interested in another term as prime minister.  If he were to become prime minister, it would be his third term.  The ALSUMARIA report quotes a State of Law official stating that Nouri believes the people -- only the Iraqi people -- have the right to determine the prime minister.  That's laughable when you consider that Nouri lost in 2010 and that Barack had US officials negotiate The Erbil Agreement which gave Nouri his second term.  Nouri wants back in to the post and his minions are wasting everyone's time pretending otherwise.

Nouri's State of Law is also in a tizzy over the candidates.  In previous elections, Nouri's been able to use the Accountability and Justice Committee to weed out candidates he didn't want to run but ALL IRAQ NEWS reported State of Law is objecting to the list of candidates.

Nouri objects to a great deal -- mainly, he objects to the truth.

As noted in Friday's snapshot, Laura Rozen filed a ridiculous story -- that ignored far too many public details.  If she thought Nouri al-Maliki was going to be pleased with her reticence, she was wrong.  Even ignoring everything, she's still angered him.  ALL IRAQ NEWS notes that Nouri has called her report "false" and stated she did not know her facts.  NINA includes Nouri's remarks that the deal was cancelled by the government in 2012.  Both NINA and ALL IRAQ NEWS note that it was the corruption perception -- the Parliament's perception that the deal was corrupt -- that killed the deal.

Please note that ALL IRAQ NEWS and NINA do a better job reporting on the corruption in their reports today than Laura did on Friday -- and Laura used a lot more words and sentences.  Please note that the most deadly country for journalists in 2017 was Iraq.  These were not foreign journalists being killed.  And yet even living under that threat, Iraqis are turning out better journalism than American Laura Rozen who is not in Iraq.

Hayder al-Abadi replaced Nouri as prime minister when Barack Obama installed Hayder in the fall of 2014.  Hayder wants to be prime minister for a second term.

He was supposed to be fighting corruption . . . but he wasn't.

So what does he have to show for it?

Not much.

He claims to have defeated the Islamic State.

And if he defeated it, as he claims, why hasn't reconstruction taken place?

After the defeat of the Islamic State group in Iraq, residents returning to cities like Mosul are finding only rubble and ruin.


Here's the thing about "rubble and ruin," it's unacceptable.

That's not my judgment as an American citizen.  That's per Iraqi law.

KITABAT notes that Iraqi law requires for Mosul and other areas to be immediately rebuilt, for the prime minister to use emergency funds and/or transfer funds out of ministry budgets, and that all non-essential projects stop as the national government directs its funds and focus to the areas in need.  This is the law and it has not happened.  Hayder's in violation of Iraqi law and failing the people of Mosul, of Anbar Province and other areas that have supposedly been 'liberated' from ISIS>

And there's also the fact that, as KITABAT notes, approximately 11,000 residents of Mosul remain missing -- feared dead from ISIS.

ALSUMARIA reports that dozens (looks like hundreds from TV footage) have turned out in Dhi Qar to protest the lack of water and they are saying this is brought on by government corruption.  In addition, dozens of members of one tribe -- al-Niaz  -- protested in Dhi Qar over the government seizure of their land.  These demonstrations follow the protests in various parts of Iraq over the weekend -- protests by farmers who state they must be paid.  ALSUMARIA notes that a protest took place in al-Zubayr (Basra Province) -- city workers protesting that they have not been paid for over two months now and young adults protesting to demand jobs.  And ALMADA reports that the Turkmen are calling on Hayder al-Abadi to guarantee their protection in Kirkuk.  Make the demands before the election because history has demonstrated that the incumbent prime minister only listens before the voting takes place.

Majid al-Khafaji (KITABAT) attempts to explain the mind set of those who are pessimistic about the upcoming elections because each election cycle (since the 2003 US-led invasion) has urged participation and promised change but nothing has ever changed.  They doubt that, even if corruption had actually ended, fair elections would even be possible and they also point out that each of the elections held in post-invasion Iraq has been accompanied by those in power claiming that the elections suffered from forgery.  In addition, they feel that foreign players who have intervened in Iraq will not allow free will and national sovereignty to be achieved.  He notes a belief that there is no point in participating in the elections -- not even "national duty" -- since there is nothing national about the elections and that the outcomes are already decided.  He also notes the feeling that Hayder al-Abadi is attempting to blackmail people into voting -- insisting that no ration card will be issued to any family head who does not register for a voter card.

Other seem more optimistic about the upcoming elections.

His Beatitude Patrarich Louis Sako (Patrarich of of the ) asks Chaldeans everywhere to register to vote in the upcoming elections to be held on May 12, 2018.

ALSUMARIA reports a body was found dumped in the streets of Husseinya, that a truck driver was shot dead on the highway between Kirkuk and Baghdad, and an attack on the border between Salahuddin Province and Diyala Province  left one Iraqi soldier injured.  (The provincial council in Diyala has repeatedly stated that their shared border leaves their safety at risk.)  Nehal Mostafa (IRAQI NEWS) adds that, "Two soldiers were wounded in a blast caused by a bomb that was placed by Islamic State, near Fallujah dam, south of the city, a security source from Anbar police said on Monday."

Saturday, we noted: "In addition, Mewan Dolamari (KURDISTAN24) reports, 'A Christian doctor and two members of his family were killed in a home invasion after being stabbed by unknown assailants in Baghdad on Friday, security sources said'."  It was two doctors and the female doctor's mother.

When we have faces of the dead, we should always note them.

Their loss is devestating to our already persecuted nation.

Wael Grace (AL MADA) reports that the male doctor was 61-years-old and he and his wife (also a doctor) had left Iraq for the United States after the 2003 US-led invasion but had returned.  Due to safety concerns, the doctors and her mother were planning on again returning to the US and had even packed their bags for the upcoming trip according to neighbors.  Grace notes that a Sabean jeweler had been kidnapped and his corpse dumped in the streets two days prior to the murders of the doctor and his family. Grace notes that 75% of Christians have left Baghdad and that over 1,000 have been killed across Iraq in the last years.

Mazen Younis Razouqi is the only Christian member of Baghdad's Provincial Counil and he stated that the attacks took place late Friday and that on Saturday the neighbors saw the bodies dumped in front of the home, in the garden.  He notes that ten days prior another Christian was killed in Baghdad -- he was shot dead by men in a car and on a motorcycle and that the man's body was  in the street for two hours before the police arrived.

Sabeans are said to be blackmailed and harassed when they go to the Baghdad police to report crimes and threats.

The government doesn't care about the religious minorities -- they've allowed militias to attack them throughout the US occupation of Iraq.  And they continue to do so.  NINA reports that the spokesperson for the Ministry of the Interior, Saad Maan, insisted on Iraqi TV today that the murders were the result of an attempted theft -- apparently, 3 were killed for a flat screen Sony?  Is that the lie that's going to be told?  NINA's report also notes that Ayad Allawi sent condolences to Louis Sako (Chaldean Patriarch of Iraq) and to Archbishop Mar Afram Yousef (who heads the Syriac Catholic Diocese in Baghdad).

NINA also reports that Father Louis Sako has declared a day of mourning due to the three murders and the murder of Samer Salah al-Din.  ALL IRAQ NEWS notes that Speaker of Parliament Salim al-Jubouri has declared that the murder of the Christians is an attempt to destroy any national unity and that the murders are a serious threat which must be addressed.