Thursday, October 16, 2014

CodePink national director brags of how she won't protest Barack

CodePink is a ridiculous and useless organization.

Medea and Jodie used it to ride to semi-fame and that's about it.

Now Alli McCracken, their ridiculous national director, has written a column (see snapshot) bragging about how she will protest Leon Panetta or Hillary Clinton . . . but not Barack.

Can these whores just be pushed aside already?

I've had it with them.

I've had with them covering for Barack and distracting for Barack and all the rest.

They have done so much damage to the peace movement.

I had more to say last night but Blogger went down before I could log on.  Now I'm honestly sick at my stomach.

I don't care for liars who harm real efforts at peace.

CodePink, at the top, is nothing but liars.

"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):
Wednesday, October 15, 2014.  Chaos and violence continue, Nouri works to undermine the new prime minister, more US troops are sent into Iraq, CODESTINK's national coordinator reminds us all of how useless that trashy organization is, Susan Rice spins again, and much more.

Let's start with stupid idiots.

Alli McCracken of CODESTINK, get your ugly ass down here.

You can apply any swear word to Alli, they all fit.

She's another useless attention whore who pretends to be against this or that but really just diverts attention and criticism from Barack's War Crimes and actions of hostility while lying that she's for peace.

She has a poorly written article at Dissident Voice where she congratulates herself for being kicked out of a Congressional hearing.  She was disruptive -- I was there -- and she had her moment and was taken out when she was bound and determined to be the junior I Need Attention Medea Benjamin.  Sorry, Alli, your little stunts don't amuse anyone.

You and CODESTINK are real good at going after this or that Secretary of but real poor about criticizing Barack Obama -- well married-for-money (for currency, she gave herself like a nun to God) Jodie Evans was a Barack bundler and as co-founder of CODESTINK, she (mis)used the organization in 2008 to whore for Barack while attacking all of his Democratic rivals in the primaries.

Only CODESTINK could think that was ethical.

Only CODESTINK could think they could get away with that.

A real organization would have forced Evans out.

Alli reveals her own whorish nature throughout the column but it's most evident in this passage:

Three years after my first disruption of Panetta, more than ever I stand by my words. I would do it again, and honestly, I probably will do it again. Whether it’s Leon Panetta, or Hillary Clinton. I’m horrified at the prospect of Clinton being the more “liberal” Presidential choice in 2016. If President Obama campaigned for hope and change, but ultimately enshrined some of Bush’s most egregious foreign policies, what are we in store for next from explicitly pro-war candidates?

What did I say?  What did I say?

Yes, she will rail against Secretaries of.  She will refuse to rail against Barack.

It's there in her own words, whores have to reveal their prices, they have to get the money up front because after the john cums, he (or she) is less willing to pay as much.

So Alli puts it into writing, the CODESTINK way (she is national coordinator of the pig sty), she will probably disrupt Leon or Hillary.

But not Barack.

She's just another whore working the street.

One of many men and women who've spent the last six years ensuring that the US would remain in Iraq by lying for Barack, by refusing to hold him accountable and by constantly inventing 'scandals' to be outraged over.

Meanwhile, Iraq's burned and erupted into multiple crises and the self-attention bitches of CODESTINK, so eager to 'fast' (Medea, want to tell the truth about your 'fast'? didn't think so) for Iraq in 2006 couldn't even call out the slaughter of Sunnis, of Iraq's LGBT community, of religious minorities and so much more.  As women's rights were under constant attack in Iraq, CODESTINK was busying propping up Barack (and, never forget, calling for US troops to remain in Afghanistan).

And if you're not getting what a whore Alli is, she actually wrote this:

Three years ago, during the height of the Occupy movement, I was ejected from a Congressional hearing for allegedly “assaulting” Leon Panetta, then Secretary of Defense and former Director of the CIA. He was testifying to the House Armed Services Committee about “lessons learned by the Department of Defense over the preceding decade.” I jumped out of my audience seat to tell him that young people were paying the price of those “lessons,” and we were sick of the government funding war instead of education. The baseless assault charges against me were ultimately dropped.

Yes, Alli, the great injustice being done by, for example, the Iraq War was that people like you were being denied an education.  (Alli managed to graduate in 2010 somehow.)

That was the great injustice.

Not the Iraqis killed, not the ones wounded, not the ones born with deformities and defects due to the weapons the US government sent into Iraq.

The great injustice, the all time great tragedy, was that you were denied a big spring break blow out in Daytona.

I'm sure that the Iraqis who grieve over the family members and friends they have lost in this never-ending war are touched by your plight, Alli.

(Again, since we are often translated, let me point out the last sentence was sarcasm.  Alli is self-obsessed bitch who lacks both intelligence and perspective.  In the face of over a million dead, her whine is about money -- and money that could have been spent on her and a group of people she's wrongly appointed herself the spokesperson of.)

The bordello that is CODESTINK should have been shut down long ago on the grounds of endangering public health.

US President Barack Obama's non-plan finally got a name and this the media could -- and did -- note.  But when Susan Rice lied (again) on a Sunday chat and chew did anyone blink?

Chuck Todd?  As the latest host of Meet The Press, Todd's coming off stiff and staid on the long running NBC show and has many problems before you even get to his inability to pay attention to the guest speaking before him.

We'll note this exchange from Sunday's Meet The Press:

Considering what's going on in the Anbar Province, considering what's going on in Kobani, I know it's still early, barely two months into this operation against ISIS, but right now, does it feel as if we're degrading and destroying ISIS?
Yes, Chuck. We are in the midst, in the early stages, as you-- acknowledged, of what is going to be, as President Obama said, a long-term effort. Let's recall what it is we're trying to do. We're trying over time to degrade and ultimately destroy ISIL and prevent it from having permanent safe haven, from which it can conduct terrorist attacks against us or our partners in the region from the territory of Iraq or Syria.
Now this is going to take time. Our efforts have various different lines of effort, as we've called them. On the one hand, we're trying to build up the capacity of the Iraqis, which means the Iraqi army, the Kurds, the peshmerga inside of Iraq who have over years, atrophied. They've become more sectarian. They've become less skilled in their ability to take the fight to ISIL.
So we're building up that capacity and we have seen some success in that regard. On the Syrian side, we also have a larger-term challenge of supporting the moderate opposition and giving them, while they have great will, greater capacity to fight Assad and to fight ISIL.
So this is going to take time. Our air campaign is off to a strong start and we've seen very important successes in places like Mosul Dam, Sinjar Mountain, where we were able to rescue many tens of thousands of civilians at risk. And this is going to take time. So it can't be judged by merely what happens in one particular town or in one particular region. This is going to take time and the American people need to understand that our aim here is long-term degradation and building the capacity of our partners.         

War Hawk Susie can't stop lying.

"Our air campaign is off to a strong start and we've seen very important successes in places like Mosul Dam, Sinjar Mountain, where we were able to rescue many tens of thousands of civilians at risk."?

Everyone agreed to look the other way as the always trashy Susan Rice lied.

Barack's 'plan'?

You may remember that back in June Barack sent in a number of US troops ('advisors'!) to nose around.  They were going to be key to what he would decide to do.

The Sinjar Mountain operation?   You can argue it started with Barack's August 7th address where he declares the US will begin bombing Iraq, "Today I authorized two operations in Iraq -- targeted airstrikes to protect our American personnel, and a humanitarian effort to help save thousands of Iraqi civilians who are trapped on a mountain without food and water and facing almost certain death.  Let me explain the actions we’re taking and why."

But it involved Australia and British forces dropping aid and, reportedly, Turkish war planes bombing.

And it was really the Kurdish peshmerga doing work.  The estimates for the number of Yazidis trapped on the mountain is usually 50,000 (which a number of observers say is too high) with 30,000 said to have been provided safe passage by the peshmerga.

It's funny that the old war whore Susan Rice wants to lecture about "what the American people need to know" while she flat out lies to them but, as for the long haul, her tired ass will be working the streets in two years.  And Benghazi will probably prevent future Democrats from bringing her into any administration.

Meanwhile Barack's bombing passed off as a 'plan' finally got a name.  Robert Burns (AP) reports it's been christened Operation Inherent Resolve which Burns dubs "inherently bland."

It got a name, it still lacks a purpose.

August 11th, Barack declared:

This advances the limited military objectives we’ve outlined in Iraq:  protecting American citizens, providing advice and assistance to Iraqi forces as they battle these terrorists, and joining with international partners to provide humanitarian aid.  But as I said when I authorized these operations, there is no American military solution to the larger crisis in Iraq.  The only lasting solution is for Iraqis to come together and form an inclusive government -- one that represents the legitimate interests of all Iraqis, and one that can unify the country’s fight against ISIL. 
Today, Iraq took a promising step forward in this critical effort.   Last month, the Iraqi people named a new President.  Today, President Masum named a new Prime Minister designate, Dr. Haider al-Abadi.  Under the Iraqi constitution, this is an important step towards forming a new government that can unite Iraq’s different communities. 

Earlier today, Vice President Biden and I called Dr. Abadi to congratulate him and to urge him to form a new cabinet as quickly as possible -- one that’s inclusive of all Iraqis, and one that represents all Iraqis.  I pledged our support to him, as well as to President Masum and Speaker Jabouri, as they work together to form this government.  Meanwhile, I urge all Iraqi political leaders to work peacefully through the political process in the days ahead.

That oft mention fabled political solution which now seems to have been little more than lip service.

Tuesday, All Iraq News reported the Council of Ministers met today and did not -- did not -- address the 2014 budget.

Iraq has still not passed a 2014 budget.

The 2015 calendar year starts January 1st, yes.  The 2015 fiscal year?

It started October 1st.

Yet the Council of Ministers, in place for over a month now, just like the previous Council of Ministers they replaced, are unable to pass a budget that should have passed no later than September 30, 2013.

And today National Iraqi News Agency reports that MP Siham al-Moussawi informs them that there is still no "agreement between the political blocs on the choice of candidates for security ministries so far."

This is not minor.

Nor is it surprising.

It is outrageous.

The Iraqi government would rather play helpless and useless and beg others -- including the US -- for weapons and fighters (yes, Americans dropping bombs on Iraq are in combat) than get off their own fat asses in the heavily protected Green Zone and do their damn job.

When you're security situation is as bad as Iraq's is, you do not go weeks, let alone months, refusing to declare a Minister of Defense or a Minister of the Interior (the latter's over the federal police and many of the prisons).

It is outrageous and it is not surprising.

In 2010, the White House installed Nouri al-Maliki for a second term via the US-brokered Erbil Agreement, the press insisted it was okay Nouri refused to nominate people to head the security ministries, it was okay because he would do so in just a few weeks.

And by "press," we're referring to the western press, not the Iraqi press.

Nouri went four years, through his entire second term, and he never had people heading the security ministries because he refused to nominate them.

This contributed to the crises, yes.  However, it also underscores that the current absence of people to head the security ministries is not surprising or something that the White House shouldn't have anticipated as a possibility.

But they appear caught off guard yet again.

August 9th, Barack engaged in the Socratic method, "Did we underestimate ISIL? I think that there is no doubt that their advance, their movement over the last several months has been more rapid than the intelligence estimates and I think the expectations of policymakers both in and outside of Iraq. And part of that is I think not a full appreciation of the degree to which the Iraqi security forces, when they’re far away from Baghdad, did not have the incentive or the capacity to hold ground against an aggressive adversary.

Caught off guard then, caught off guard now.

On even the most basic issues, the White House stumbles and falters.

The same day, August 9th, Barack insisted, "So we’re going to be pushing very hard to encourage Iraqis to get their government together. Until we do that, it is going to be hard to get the unity of effort that allows us to not just play defense, but also engage in some offense."

Barack has to reduce it to sports because if it's not game he loses interest so quickly (see his numerous unmet promises that 'now' he would begin focusing on the economy).

In the August speeches, he was praising new Iraqi prime minister Haider al-Abadi.

But he's apparently done little to help al-Abadi and al-Abadi's also harmed himself and his image.  Dropping back to the September 27th snapshot:

So is Haider al-Abadi a liar or powerless?
A number of people are saying powerless and noting articles like this one at Kitabat which maintains that Nouri is refusing to leave the palace he's lived in since 2006, the housing of the prime minister.  And that even high ranking members of Dawa (Nouri's political party) attempting or persuade Nouri that he must leave and allow al-Abadi to move in have failed.
An image is taking hold.  I'm not surprised.

Nouri should have been run out of the country.

He's a War Criminal, among other things.  He should have to account for the riches he's accumulated while prime minister of Iraq and how his son now affords pricey London digs and a fleet of sports cars.

Instead, he's been allowed to keep the money he's stolen from the Iraqi people and walk the streets of the heavily fortified Green Zone.

Mainly, he's been able to undermine al-Abadi.

As we noted repeatedly, Nouri's not done doing damage until he's in the ground.

So Kirk Semple, Omar al-Jawoshy and Falih Hassan's report for the New York Times on Nouri's efforts to retake the post of prime minister should not be too shocking -- unless you're a member of the administration.

The White House anticipates nothing.  They are so clueless, they are so dumb.

It's not one time, it's over and over.

From Semple, al-Jawoshy and Hassan's report:

During a closed-door meeting of State of Law last month, Mr. Maliki, its leader, seemed intent on humiliating Mr. Abadi, several participants said, granting him only several minutes to address the assembled politicians and frequently interrupting him.
During one interruption, Mr. Maliki suggested that Mr. Abadi did not have a firm grasp on which foreign forces were operating in Iraq and questioned his protection of the country’s sovereignty, participants recalled. Mr. Abadi said that the country’s sovereignty was ceded in June, under Mr. Maliki’s watch, when Mosul fell to Islamic State fighters.
Mr. Maliki has also refused to give up his prime ministerial offices, in one of Saddam Hussein’s former palaces in the Green Zone, several politicians said.

Nouri undercuts the new prime minister, throws obstacles in his path (as the Iraqi press has noted, the nominees for the security ministries were stalled by Nouri's State Of Law) and all in the hopes that a no-confidence vote in the not so distant future will oust al-Abadi and allow Nouri to take over.

Maybe when Barack tires of playing with his bombs, maybe then he'll find time to address issues -- the ones, in fact, that are at the root of the crises in Iraq?

And maybe Barack should have been honest and just dubbed what he's doing (the 'plan') Operation George W. Bush?

That is all he's doing.

Repeating the same mistakes.

Pretending he thought them up.

He's 'surge'ing which is Bully Boy Bush.

And he's pinning his hopes on fostering Sunni forces to create a buy-in of the current government which is also Bully Boy Bush -- remember Sahwa aka "Awakenings" aka Sons (and Daughters) Of Iraq?

More US forces have been sent to Iraq.  Xinhua reports, "Dozens of U.S. military advisors arrived in Iraq on Wednesday to train the country's security forces as they continue to face obstacles in their fight against the Islamic State (IS) militant group, officials said."  Some went to Anbar. National Iraqi News Agency adds:

Chairman of the Provincial Council Sabah Karhut told the National Iraqi News Agency / Nina / that Washington sent today to Anbar province 100 American military to bases of Habbaniyah and al-Assad appointed in the province
He added that the American military personnel will take the task of training security forces and the sons of Anbar tribes in their war with the IS.

CBS News notes:

The U.S. has been training the Iraqi army for a decade and they have been performing abysmally in most areas.
"The Iraqi forces, unfortunately, as a result of actions taken by the previous government, were in many aspects hollowed out," Deputy U.S. National Security Adviser Tony Blinken told CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer in Iraq. "They were deprofessionalized. Competent commanders were moved out. Incompetent ones were moved in based on loyalty to the government."

Violence never ends in Iraq.  One incident of violence today garnered much attention.  AP notes a suicide car bombing in Baghdad left 21 people dead and sixty injured with MP Ahmed al-Khafaji among the dead.  UNAMI issued the following statement:

Baghdad, 15 October 2014 - The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq (SRSG), Mr. Nickolay Mladenov presents his heartfelt condolences to the Iraqi Council of Representatives for the loss of Member of Parliament Ahmed Al-Khafaji, killed yesterday in a suicide car bomb attack in Baghdad, along with dozens other innocent civilians. He also extends his condolences to the family of Mr. Khafaji, along with those of the other victims of terrorism.

“Those who use terror, violence and fear against the people of Iraq will fail. Today Iraq and the world are united and will defeat those who seek to destroy the Iraqi state and will restoring security, prosperity and democracy to this country”, Mr. Mladenov said.

All Iraq News quotes from a statement by MP Ghazwan al-Shiban, "We strongly condemn assassinating MP Khafaji and call the security forces to hold an investigation to reveal the sides behind this issue.  There are some sides aim at assassinating the qualified figures in Iraq."

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


By the 90s, horror films were something of a joke with their route sequences.

Along came Kevin Williamson's great screenplay for Scream.

It both scared you and sent up horror films.

The cast was incredible for the first one: Drew Barrymore, Courtney Cox, David Arquette, Neve Campbell, Rose McGowan and so many more.

Plus, who can forget when the killer corners Rose in the garage and she gets caught trying to go out the doggie door?

"What's your favorite scary movie?" was the catch phrase.

Sadly, in its wake followed one film after another trying to copy it and mix humor and scares.

Most did not fare well.

In fact, the sequels of Scream really only hold up in terms of the Gail and Dewey relationship.

But the first one is priceless and one of the great horror films.

"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):
Tuesday, October 14, 2014.  Chaos and violence continue, Barack Obama attends (but does not lead) a meaningless meet-up, State Dept confuses itself with the Defense Dept (again), Turkey resumes bombing Iraq, Amnesty releases a report on the targeting of Sunnis and much more.

Eugene Robinson (Washington Post via News-Leader) concludes what many still seem afraid to say:

 It's not too soon to state the obvious: At this point, the war against the Islamic State can only be seen as failing.
U.S.-led air power has barely been able to keep the jihadist militants from capturing the Syrian town of Kobane, near the Turkish border — and the besieged city may yet fall. Far to the southeast, Islamic State fighters have come within a few miles of Baghdad and threaten to consolidate their control of the vast Anbar Province, the Sunni heartland of Iraq. The self-proclaimed "caliphate" remains intact and its forces are advancing.

Earlier today, CBS News reported, "President Obama met military commanders from more than 20 countries on Tuesday to discuss how to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)."

That 'brain trust' must have been something.

Better have been considering how much the US taxpayer is forking over for Barack's 'plan.'

  • Pentagon says the airstrike campaign in Iraq & Syria has cost $424 million so far since they started on August 8 -- first strike in Iraq

  • At the meet up today, Barack, of course, advocated leadership.


    Not exactly.

    The White House captioned the official photo, by Pete Souza, as follows:

    President Barack Obama participates in a meeting hosted by Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, with more than 20 foreign chiefs of defense to discuss the coalition efforts in the ongoing campaign against ISIL.

    He participated, did he?

    Well then he takes home a participation trophy!

    Of course, being the highest ranking official in the room, most people would expect him to do more than just 'participate.'  Most people would expect him to lead, right?

    Guess no leadership with Barack.

    Today, he declared, "One of the things that has emerged from the discussions, both before I came and during my visit here, is that this is going to be a long-term campaign.  There are not quick fixes involved.  We’re still at the early stages.  As with any military effort, there will be days of progress and there are going to be periods of setback."

    This is only the beginning.  Well that gives him time to come up with a plan, right?

    Because dropping bombs isn't a plan, no matter how many people pretend otherwise.

    What did he used to say over and over, like a trained parrot, about Iraq?

    Oh, that's right: It required a political solution.

    Help me out, how does the big meet-up of "more than 20" defense ministers get to work on political solutions?

    Oh, that's right, it doesn't.

    And, turns out, the big meet-up?

    It was something of a fake.

    An official explained to the press that it was no big deal. New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key told Audrey Young (New Zealand Herald):

    "It is a regular meeting the CDF always goes to."

    "It's true that one of the topics of conversation will be what contributions countries might make although that is not the purpose of the meeting as I understand it."

    Barack likes to inflate the truth, doesn't he?  And he's got such a willing partner in the US press.

    Also questioning the 'plan'?  Artist Neil Young.  Of the singer-songwriter, Joe Newby (Spokane Conservative Examiner) reports:

    The radical Islamic group ISIS is taking large areas of land in Iraq and Syria, enslaving women and beheading anyone with whom they disagree -- even children. But those are secondary concerns as far as singer Neil Young is concerned, Canada's Sun News reported Tuesday. What's more important to Young is the impact a conflict with ISIS would have on the environment.
    "We can do little things to fight climate change but our armed forces are the biggest carbon dioxide providers in the world, and yet we are fighting, what, ISIS?" he told Howard Stern over the weekend. According to Young, terror groups like al-Qaida and ISIS have smaller carbon footprints than Western militaries and their "big machines," Sun News added.
    "Since 1950 we've lost 90% of the fish in the ocean (and) we've doubled our own population," he told Stern. "Since 1970, we've lost half the wildlife on the planet and again we've doubled our population."

    "And we are fighting these wars against these organizations and their carbon footprint has got to be like one percent of our huge army and our navy and all of this stuff that have with all our big machines," he added, as though America's foreign policy and national defense should be based solely on the carbon footprint of its military. "We're doing more damage to the earth with our wars. And you try to find out? Hey, freedom? No, freedom, you don't get it. You can't find out what that carbon footprint is of the military. It's not available for us."

    Andrew Kirell (Mediaite) adds:

    But when it came to politics, Young made it quite clear he is disappointed in the environmental policies of the Obama administration. “Our leaders are doing a bang-up job,” he snarked when discussing whether policies have shifted in a direction he’d find favorable.
    “Obama just opened up the Gulf of Mexico to fracking for all the oil companies,” he said. “I don’t see the prescience in that.”
    Stern and Young both noted that the president campaigned with an environmental theme back in 2008.
    “Isn’t that what Barack Obama said? ‘Change and hope’ and all that?” Young recalled. “And they’re fracking in the Gulf of Mexico. Hello, Barack! Wake up, buddy!”

    Young insisted that among powerful world leaders, Obama has failed to take a stronger stance in favor of alternative energy sources. “If the United States of America is the leader of the free world, why is it that we are saying that we can maybe have two percent solar energy by 2020 and Germany has 50 percent renewable energy right now with the same sun and the same crops?” he asked.

    That's Neil's own hair.

    I mention that because maybe gutless Robert Redford is so ridiculous while pretending to give a damn about the environment because of that ginger colored rat's nest he wears on his head which he pretends is his own hair?

    Unlike Redford, Neil cares about the environment so he's never going to whore for any politician.  (Or get caught producing a 'documentary' that staged events to make Rahm Emanuel look good.)

    Changing topics, but on the same theme, John Kerry is the US Secretary of State.  Today, he met with Laurent Fabius, France's Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Sergey Lavrov, Russia's Minister of Foriegn Affairs.

    And they discussed Iraq . . . .

    Well . . .

    They discussed how to defeat the Islamic State.

    Secretary of State John Kerry:  And in addition, we particularly talked about ISIL. We both recognize the need to destroy and ultimately defeat ISIL, to degrade their efforts and ultimately to defeat them, and also to counter the violent and oppressive approach of ISIL. Minister Lavrov acknowledged, as we acknowledged, both of us have people from our countries who are fighting in ISIL. There may be as many as 500 or more from Russia. We both recognize that ISIL has absolutely no place in the 21st century. No decent country by any definition could support the horrors that are perpetrated by ISIL, and no civilized country should shirk its responsibility to stand up and be part of the effort to stamp out this disease.
    In our discussions today, I suggested to Foreign Minister Lavrov that we intensify intelligence cooperation with respect to ISIL and other counterterrorism challenges of the region, and we agreed to do so. And we also agreed to explore whether Russia could do more to support Iraqi Security Forces, and the foreign minister indeed acknowledged their preparedness to help with respect to arms, weapons – they are doing that now and they already have provided some – and also potentially with the training and advising aspects.

    In terms of "counterterrorism" and  how "to support Iraqi Security Forces"?

    John Kerry is still head of the State Dept, right?

    Not the Defense Dept?

    Even State doesn't have time to work on diplomacy.

    Or to promote it -- as evidenced by this Tweet today.

  • U.S. military and partner nations continued airstrikes against ISIL in Syria and Iraq today: via

  • Barack and his entire administration are bunch of overgrown kids who think they're in a sandlot with plastic toy soldiers they can play with.

    But apparently, there are a lot of 'big kids' all over the world wanting to play war.  For example, BBC reports:

    Turkish F-16 and F-4 warplanes have bombed Kurdish PKK rebel targets near the Iraqi border, as their ceasefire comes under increasing strain.
    The air strikes on Daglica were in response to PKK shelling of a military outpost, the armed forces said.

    You can do Turkey a favor and pretend this is somehow 'Islamic State' related.

    It's not.

    But you can play dumb.  AFP does.

    This is part of the non-stop violence that began in the 80s between the PKK (Kurdish group that uses violence) and the Turkish government.  At the heart of it all, the PKK feels the Kurds are discriminated against in Turkey -- and they are.  Dan Murphy (Christian Science Monitor) observes, "The PKK, deemed terrorists by both the US and Turkey, have proven among the most capable of Kurdish fighters taking on IS inside both Iraq and Syria. But Turkey's priority is to contain the Marxist group, which it sees as a bigger threat to its interests than IS. For the past 18 months, Turkey has held peace talks with the PKK, which appeared willing to accept some kind of autonomy in Turkey in exchange for giving up its independence ambitions."

    During Nouri al-Maliki's first term as prime minister of Iraq, Turkey began bombing northern Iraq.

    They did so with the help of the US government which, among other things, provided 'intelligence.'

    For Iraq it wasn't a big deal at first.  By the time Nouri was in his second term, it was.  Iraqis -- not just in the north where the bombings took place -- were outraged by the attacks on their sovereignty and by the civilians being killed in these bombings.

    Maybe AFP and others have to lie today because they don't want you to know that Barack's bombings today will soon meet the same fate with Iraqi citizens calling out their 'leaders' who allow the country to be bombed and innocents to be killed.

    But while AFP tried to act as though it was Islamic State related, US State Dept spokesperson Jen Psaki wasn't clowning:

    QUESTION: I mean, although you’re trying to encourage us not to link the situation in Kobani with the bombardment of PKK positions, that might not be the interpretation of ISIS. So my question is: Do you think that targeting PKK, which is fighting ISIS, Turkey is maybe risking sending the wrong message to ISIS?

    MS. PSAKI: I think I’ve addressed this question. I don’t think I have more to add to what I said.

    Reporters had much to add -- including rumors that the White House has made a secret deal with the Kurdistan Regional Government.

    QUESTION: One more question. Secretary Kerry made a phone call with President Masoud Barzani of Kurdistan, I think last week. Do you have anything on that? And shortly after that meeting, according to a statement first of all put out by President Barzani’s office, they discussed the situation in Kobani. That was all it said. And after that, just today actually, President Barzani hosted the Kurdish – the Syrian Kurdish leader in Erbil. I just want to see what – do you have anything on that phone call?

    MS. PSAKI: I don’t – I think it’s not at all out of the ordinary for Secretary Kerry or any Secretary of State to have calls touching base with officials in the region when they’re facing the threat that they do, and it was simply, as I understand it, a check-in call. I can see if there’s anything more we can provide in terms of a readout.

    QUESTION: So just one more thing. Some media outlets in Kurdistan, they have said from anonymous officials again that Secretary Kerry promised Barzani if the Syrian Kurds unite then there will be more U.S. support. Is that something that you can confirm?

    MS. PSAKI: I – that is not our position, so it seems unlikely that’s an accurate report.

    Unlikely is the political solution the White House keeps forgetting to work on.

    Daniel R. Green (The Hill) feels that a model for a Sunni buy-in on the Iraqi government would involved revisiting the program where Sunnis were part of policing force -- they were known as Awakenings, Sons Of Iraq (and Daughters Of Iraq) and Sahwa.  Green writes:

    As the Obama administration begins to implement its strategy to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), Iraq’s tribes are getting a fresh look as a possible partner to confront the terrorist group. Having successfully utilized tribal groups against al-Qaeda in the Sunni Arab heartland of Anbar Province in 2006-2008 during the Awakening movement, Iraq’s tribes provide the U.S. with a number of advantages in an era where placing U.S. troops directly in harms way is off the table. Arab tribes are a social institution based upon extended family and kinship ties that operate like a system with members sharing obligations to each other and to their leaders or sheiks. The tribal structure is hierarchical, usually led by a paramount sheik, with sub-sheiks leading smaller tribal groupings or family clans. These tribal structures can be harnessed to use family loyalty to trump Islamist identity and to better organize communities to resist oppression.

    The “Anbar model” consisted of enlisting local tribes in their own defense by working through local sheiks to form community police forces to not only protect local villages but to partner with the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police against al-Qaeda. When successfully applied to the Fallujah area in 2007, in addition to using a counter-insurgency approach for the city, the number of security incidents went from approximately 750 in March to less than 80 in October. The key benefit of working with the tribes is that they rob the insurgency of manpower by employing their potential recruits into the government’s security services, it increases the eyes and ears of the government against the insurgency, and organizes the community to better resist insurgent intimidation. This very successful program turned Anbar Province around but was eventually undercut by the Maliki Government as it reduced and then eliminated funding, persecuted tribal leaders, and marginalized the Sunni Arab community.

    So what's the status on that?

    Oh, right, a Sahwa leader didn't even get a seat at the table for Barack's DC event today.

    In Iraq?

    Salem, a 40-year-old businessman and father of nine from Baghdad was abducted in July. Two weeks after his family had paid the kidnappers a $60,000 ransom, his body was found in Baghdad’s morgue; with his head crushed and his hands still cuffed together.

    The growing power of Shi’a militias has contributed to an overall deterioration in security and an atmosphere of lawlessness. The relative of one victim from Kirkuk told Amnesty International:

    “I have lost one son and don’t want to lose any more. Nothing can bring him back and I can’t put my other children at risk. Who knows who will be next? There is no rule of law, no protection.”

    Among the Shi’a militias believed to be behind the string of abductions and killings are: ‘Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq, the Badr Brigades, the Mahdi Army, and Kata’ib Hizbullah.

    These militias have further risen in power and prominence since June, after the Iraqi army retreated, ceding nearly a third of the country to IS fighters. Militia members, numbering tens of thousands, wear military uniforms, but they operate outside any legal framework and without any official oversight.

    “By failing to hold militias accountable for war crimes and other gross human rights abuses the Iraqi authorities have effectively granted them free rein to go on the rampage against Sunnis. The new Iraqi government of Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi must act now to rein in the militias and establish the rule of law,” said Donatella Rovera.

    “Shi’a militias are ruthlessly targeting Sunni civilians on a sectarian basis under the guise of fighting terrorism, in an apparent bid to punish Sunnis for the rise of the IS and for its heinous crimes.”

    At a checkpoint north of Baghdad, for instance, Amnesty International heard a member of the ‘Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq militia say: “If we catch ‘those dogs’ [Sunnis] coming down from the Tikrit area we execute them…. They come to Baghdad to commit terrorist crimes, so we have to stop them.” 

    Yeah, the White House might need to work on those abuses.  Amnesty International outlines them in their new report entitled Absolute Impunity: Militia Rule in Iraq.

    The US efforts at political solutions in Iraq are apparently so tiny, they can be reduced to a Tweet:

    On the topic of violence, Lu Hui  (Xinhua) notes, "A total of 50 people were killed on Tuesday in clashes and air strikes against the positions of the Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq, security source said."  Jason Ditz ( examines the Islamic State's movement in Anbar Province, "The new target seems to be the al-Assad airbase, the second largest airfields in Iraq, and one of the last bases around Haditha Dam. The base is now surrounded, according to reports."

    BBC News notes:

    Two Iraqi journalists have been killed by Islamic State (IS) in the past four days, Reporters Without Borders says.
    Mohanad al-Akidi, the correspondent for the Sada news agency in the IS-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul, was shot dead at the Ghazlani base on Monday.
    Mr Akidi was abducted in July while he travelled to Dohuk province.

    On Friday Raad Mohamed al-Azzawi, a cameraman for Sama Salah Aldeen TV, was beheaded by IS militants in the city of Samarra. He had been held for a month.

    Still on violence, State Dept spokesperson Jen Psaki issued the following statement today:

    The United States strongly condemns the vicious string of suicide, vehicle borne, and other attacks that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has perpetrated in Baghdad and surrounding provinces in recent days, taking scores of innocent lives. Those lost in these attacks include courageous citizens from all walks of life and represent the full diversity of Iraqi society, including Ahmed al-Khafaji, an elected Member of Parliament from Basrah Province, and Major General Ahmed Saddak al-Dulaimi, the Police Chief of Anbar Province. We extend our condolences to the families of the victims and hope for a rapid recovery for those who were injured.
    The United States is committed to working with the Government of Iraq and our coalition partners to end this terrorist scourge. We will continue to target ISIL leaders, fighters, supplies and weapons, facilities, and safe havens, working in support of our Iraqi partners, as we also work in parallel to restore the capacity of the Iraqi Security Forces to effectively counter ISIL on their own.
    ISIL, through these attacks, looks to tear apart the diverse fabric of Iraqi society, something it has sought to do over the past decade in its earlier incarnation, al-Qaida in Iraq. The Iraqi people have shown resilience in the face of this terror before, and with the world now united behind a global campaign to degrade and defeat ISIL, they will prevail once again.

    The United States will continue to stand with all Iraqi citizens, from all parts of the country, as they work to root out violent extremists, and promote the unified, federal, pluralistic, and democratic state, as envisioned in the Iraqi Constitution.


    Tuesday, October 14, 2014

    MSNBC continues to sink

    Bill Carter (NYT) reports on MSNBC's lousy ratings which were bad before but are now outright awful.

    No one wants to watch.  You have immediate flops like Ronan Farrow's awful show and then you have shows like Rachel Maddows' show which once had a smallish audience and now have zilch.

    In the article, an executive notes that Rachel says the same thing (propaganda) every night so there's no point in watching.

    That's really the issue.  Indoctrination is what MSNBC aimed for and their programs became the equivalent of the never-ending college lecture by the boring professor.

    Only MSNBC you could ditch without risking harm to your GPA.

    "TV: The WTFs" (Ava and C.I., The Third Estate Sunday Review):
    The Mysteries of Laura.

    A reader writes that we're "pimping" the show because we attacked NBC last season (repeatedly) for failing to add even one show to their lineup that revolved around a woman.

    "You had an impact," the reader writes, "and so now you praise the show."

    No, we praise the show because it's good.

    The Mysteries of Laura is also a hit.

    Right now, it's pulling in twice the audience that, for example, NBC's Parenthood delivers.

    The reader didn't know that (what a surprise) but he did want to explain to us "how wrong you are because Rotten Tomatoes had the last word, 'Despite a talented cast, The Mysteries of Laura is dated both as a cop show and as a representation of single, working mothers'."

    Is that the last word?

    Did the reader not know how to read?  We covered this already.

    If you can't grasp a show, sit your tired ass down.

    Rotten Tomatoes?

    Who gives a f**k about an aggregator that produces nothing and can't even handle a single sentence synopsis.

    Debra Messing is not playing "a representation of single, working mothers."

    The reason?

    She's not single.

    She's married to Josh Lucas' Jake.

    How do you criticize the show, how do you critique it, and presumably watch it to do so, and not notice that Laura is married?

    When we dealt with the show before, we explained how sexists (men and women) were displaying their sexism.

    If someone doesn't like the show, that's fine.  As long as they can call out the actual show.  But when they're inventing things -- like Laura's a bad mother because her twins can't read -- they're not reviewing the show.

    And it's really telling just how much sexism greets women that the egregious Rotten Tomatoes can get away with falsely labeling the married character of Laura as "single."

    The Mysteries of Laura is in the tradition of The Rockford Files and Hart to Hart and many other shows that aren't in production today but remain popular in syndication.

    The Water Cooler Set needs their cocks -- real and imagined (imagined for the women trying to be men) -- teased with displays of crimes scenes where dead women in bras (or less) are covered in blood.  They need the edging to enjoy a show.

    So they're not going to care for The Mysteries of Laura but the reality is The Water Cooler Set rarely knows what audiences want.

    And they clearly want The Mysteries of Laura.  Why wouldn't they?

    It's a funny look each week at a mystery that allows us to explore the talented cast led by Debra Messing but also including Lucas, the awash in physical chemistry Laz Alonso and the always interesting Janina Gavankar.

    It's a wonderful show and it's so nice to see Debra not disgrace herself the way other women have as they've rushed to join existing shows.  We're not the only ones calling out a few actresses privately.  Jennifer Lopez is attempting to develop her own detective show and she has (rightly) made clear that she will be playing a character not a cock-tease.  Everyone knows what actress Jennifer is referring to but Ms. hasn't called that woman out and probably won't.

    In the meantime, they ignore Debra Messing and The Mysteries of Laura.

    But considering how they've savaged Mindy Kaling, maybe that's a good thing?

    And maybe at some point, Ms. can explain why they cover the 'arts' but never found time for Nikita or for Scandal or for Revenge or How To Get Away With Murder or . . .

    Oh, that's right, feminism has a strong strand of elitism in it.  So if it's not on cable, they're not going to cover it.  It's the same reason it was The New Republic, and not Ms. that first explored the feminism in the sitcom Roseanne.  Ms. is too busy trying to be Water Cool Cred to cover shows that women actually watch.  See, shows that women actually watch, are ghettoized by The Water Cooler Set and Ms. is too chicken s**t to stand up to the sexism that dismisses programs women watch as unworthy of exploration or coverage.

    You'd think Ms. would be championing shows women watch, shows that feature women, but instead they're as much into torture porn (Homeland, seriously?) as The Water Cooler Set.

    To be a feminist these days is to live through a series of never-ending WTFs.

    Amen to that.

    "Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):
    Monday, October 13, 2014.  Chaos and violence continue, the Iraqi military flees a base in Anbar, criticism continues to mount of US President Barack Obama's so-called 'plan' to confront the Islamic State, the Islamic State assassinates another journalist, Turkey is letting the US use its air bases and -- oh, maybe it's not, the Iraq and Syria crises continue to result in more and more refugees, and much more.

    Yesterday, ABC's This Week aired an interview Martha Raddatz did with General Martin Dempsey, the Chair of the Joint Chiefs.

     GEN. MARTIN DEMPSEY, CHAIRMAN, JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF: ISIS is blending in to parts of the disenfranchised Sunni population. So for indirect fire, the answer is yes. Heretofore, we've been successful -- mostly the Iraqis have been successful -- in keeping them out of range. But I have no doubt there will be days when they use indirect fire into Baghdad.

    RADDATZ: But perhaps most critical right now, keeping the Baghdad Airport out of the hands of ISIS. The chairman revealing a recent fierce battle near there between ISIS and Iraqi forces, where for the first time the U.S. had to call in Apache attack helicopters to prevent the Iraqi forces from being overrun.
    Those helicopters fly low and at a much greater risk than fighter jets.

    DEMPSEY: The tool that was immediately available was the Apache. The risk of operating in a hostile environment is there constantly.

    RADDATZ: That was righty by the airport.

    DEMPSEY: Well, this is a case where you're not going to wait until they're climbing over the wall. They were within, you know, 20 or 25 kilometers whereƉ

    RADDATZ: Of Baghdad airport?

    DEMPSEY: Sure. And had they overrun the Iraqi unit it was a straight shot to the airport.
    So, we're not going to allow that to happen. We need that airport.

    [. . .]

    RADDATZ: What is it like inside Mosul and Fallujah where ISIS controls those areas?

    DEMPSEY: Extraordinarily strict interpretations of Shariah Law, punishments -- you know, crucifixions and beheadings of a nature that the world hasn't seen in hundreds of years.

    RADDATZ: That's still going on.

    DEMPSEY: Yeah.
    But ISIL is also clever to give the enemy its due. They are also providing basic goods and services. They seek to reach out to children to influence the next generation.

    RADDATZ: It was, of course, Dempsey who testified some weeks back.

    DEMPSEY: If we reach the point where I believe our advisers should accompany Iraq troops on attacks against specific ISIL targets, I'll recommend that to the president.

    RADDATZ: This, after the president had said there would be no American combat boots on the ground.
    Would we be more effective against ISIS if we had U.S. troops on the ground spotting targets, if we had those ground control?

    DEMPSEY: Yeah, there will be circumstances when the answer to that question will likely be yes. But I haven't encountered one right now.

    RADDATZ: What kind of point would that be?

    DEMPSEY: I've actually used the example of -- you know, Mosul will likely be the decisive battle in the ground campaign at some point in the future.

    RADDATZ: When the Iraqi security forces have to go back and try to.

    DEMPSEY: Yeah, when they are ready to back on the offensive. My instinct at this point is that that will require a different kind of advising and assisting, because of the complexity of that fight. 

    Dempsey's focus on Baghdad was mirrored by the media on Sunday.  CBS News' Elizabeth Palmer reported yesterday morning on the advance towards Baghdad:

     ISIS is now on the attack in a kind of half circle around Baghdad from the north around the west, and down to the south. At the closest point their fighters are in an outer suburb called an Abu Ghraib, which is about eight miles from the perimeter of Baghdad International Airport. There are now twelve teams of American military advisors on the ground with the Iraqi forces whose are charged with protecting the capital and America is also carrying out airstrikes nearby, mainly to the west and to the south. Now, nobody expects a major assault on the city anytime soon, but it's likely ISIS will keep up the pressure with a bombing campaign by slipping through the many army and police checkpoints in the city and even civilian security checks that have been set up in all public places, including in mosques. In fact, yesterday more than thirty people were killed in three separate bomb attacks.

    While Palmer noted "nobody expects a major assault on the city anytime soon," the focus remained on Baghdad.  Today, CBS News notes:

    Inside Baghdad itself, there are ISIS sleeper cells that carry out almost daily bombings and assassinations, CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer reported.
    An Iraqi officer told CBS News that the U.S.-led airstrikes are helping to clear an ISIS-free buffer zone around the city, where there are Iraqi boots on the ground. In fact, there are 60,000 men assigned to defend the capital, and CBS News correspondent David Martin reports that there are 12 teams of American advisers deployed with the Iraqi brigades. The estimate is that the Iraqi army will fight for the capital and there is no real concern that Baghdad is in imminent danger, Martin says. 

    But it wasn't Baghdad where major news was made today.  No, news came out of a neighboring province. This morning, CNN (link is text and video) broke the news that Iraqi forces had abandoned a military base "outside the city of Hit" in Anbar Province.  Aziz Alwan (Bloomberg News) observes, "Islamic State came closer to gaining full control of Iraq’s Anbar province after it seized a military base to the west of Baghdad that had been one of the government’s few remaining outposts there."

    Vivian Salama and Sameer N. Yacoub (AP) observe, "In Anbar, the capture of the Iraqi military camp came despite the U.S. airstrikes campaign. The U.S. military, which withdrew its forces from the country in late 2011 after more than eight years of war, first launched the airstrikes in early August to help Iraqi and Kurdish ground forces fight back and retake ground lost to the Islamic State group."

    It's October.  US President Barack Obama started bombing Iraq in August and calling it a "plan" to deal with the Islamic State.  There's been no success and it's comical when officials, such as State Dept spokespersons, are put on the spot by a media asking them to point to even one singular success.

    As Chuck Todd put it yesterday on Meet The Press (NBC), "But after hundreds of U.S. air strikes, the terror group is still gaining ground. "

    Yet 'the plan' continues.

    It's not a 'plan.'  And there are no other facets to it in terms of the military.  (Barack has insisted Iraq needs a political solution but he's done nothing to work towards that solution.)

    He has nothing else to offer.

    Former CIA director and former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta attempted to spin pretty Sunday on Face The Nation (CBS) as he insisted Barack "has taken the right steps" leading a skeptical Bob Schieffer to attempt a redirect.

    BOB SCHIEFFER: Basically, what you are saying, we have to have some kind of people on the ground here.

    LEON PANETTA: You have got to have boots on the ground. Maybe doesn't have to be American boots on the ground, but you have got to have people on the ground who can identify targets and who can help us develop the kind of effective airstrikes that are going to be needed if we are going to be able to undermine, destroy this vicious enemy that we are dealing with.

    Quick note, Leon will be the guest for the second hour of The Diane Rehm Show (NPR) on Tuesday where he will discuss his book Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace  with Diane.

    As for boots on the ground, they really aren't part of Barack's 'plan' thus far (yes, there are US soldiers on the ground in Iraq, Barack splits hairs and pretends otherwise).  On Meet The Press yesterday, Barack's national security advisor Susan Rice insisted that there would be no change to the plan in that regard, "The president has been very plain that this is not a campaign that requires or even would benefit from American ground troops in combat again. The Iraqi prime minister, the government of Iraq have said very plainly, they don't want American troops in combat. We are there to help build up the Iraqi capacity to sustain their territory and to hold their ground. "

    So what is the plan?

    To bomb and continue bombing.  Maybe throw in a couple of prayers for success.

    There is nothing else at present.

    Which is why Barack should never have started bombing Iraq to begin with.

    It was never going to solve anything.  But once the bombing started, all talk of a political solution was set aside as war was treated as a game and bombs as toys by the White House.

    It's really accomplished nothing.

    On Meet The Press, NBC News' Richard Engel offered this evaluation of the 'plan:'

    The Iraqi army is in no better shape now than it was when it collapsed. The new Iraqi government is not instilling confidence in the people. It is not instilling confidence in the armed forces. The U.S. spent years and years and billions of dollars to build the Iraqi army, only to watch it collapse and hand over so many of its weapons.
    So it is completely unrealistic to think that now, with a little bit of outside help and a lot of American good will, that the army is going to fundamentally change and the Iraqi government, which is really just a reshuffle of the same characters, is going to fundamentally change and suddenly inspire the Iraqi people to be behind it.

    Of the Iraqi military, Fareed Zakaria (CNN's Global Public Square) offers, "Billions of dollar poured into it, because it was based on the idea that there was an Iraq, that there was a nation that there would be a national army for. Maybe we need a different strategy, which is to stand up sectarian militias, Shia militias, Sunni militias. They already exist. And the Kurds have their Peshmerga, that model. Send them into fight in their areas, not in other areas where they would be regarded as a foreign army."

    Meanwhile, Peter Symonds (WSWS) notes, "Haditha is reportedly the only major town in Anbar still firmly in government hands. Since the beginning of the month, ISIS forces have captured a series of towns including the provincial capital of Ramadi."  The fall of city after city in Iraq has become almost as much a daily staple in the news cycle as the never-ending violence.  In terms of today's abandoned base and takeover, Al Jazeera notes:

    Al Jazeera's Imran Khan, reporting from Baghdad, said that ISIL's takeover puts nearby towns including Amiri under threat.
    "Amiri is a very key town, that is where the main supply line from Anbar province into Baghdad and the rest of the south of the country goes from," he said.

    The fall of the base comes as residents of the area flee to other parts of Anbar.  BBC News reports:

    As many as 180,000 people have fled fighting between Iraqi forces and Islamic State (IS) militants in and around the city of Hit in western Anbar province, the UN says.
    The civilians - many of whom were already displaced - have headed east towards the war-torn city of Ramadi.

    On the topic of refugees, UNHCR notes Mohammed Ali of Syria and that "He is one of more than 2,500 Kurdish Syrians from Kobane to have made the crossing since Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government opened the border to refugees last Friday, with the authorities predicting that tens of thousands more could arrive in the coming weeks."

    While the military abandoned the base near Hit, they continue to hold the base in Ramadi -- at least so far.  This despite a major loss over the weekend. Jean Marc Mojon (AFP) reports:

    The region's police chief was killed on Sunday by a roadside bomb blast as he led forces battling Islamic State (IS) fighters on the outskirts of provincial capital Ramadi.
    His death was the latest setback suffered by the government in Anbar, a vast Sunni region, parts of which IS had control over even before it launched its sweeping June offensive in Iraq.

    In Peru today, US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel was asked about events in Anbar Province.

    Q: Mr. Secretary, I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about Anbar. The U.N. said today that 180,000 civilians had left. And there was also reports about an airbase near Hit being evacuated by Iraq security forces. I was wondering if you could confirm that, talk a little bit about it.

    SEC. HAGEL: Well, I talked a few hours ago with our CENTCOM commanders on what they know and to give me an update. What they told me was they are not aware of any fighting around the airport or in the area that the press reports are specifically focused on.

    As to the Hit town and whether Iraqi security forces left that area, I'm aware of the fact that the Iraqi security forces make strategic decisions on these issues. They deploy their forces where strategically they think they can have the most impact. I don't know any of the specifics beyond that.

    National Iraqi News Agency reports that Anbar police earlier transferred 82 people suspected of being Islamic State members "from prisons of Ramadi and Khalidiya to Baghdad."

    On the topic of violence, NINA notes 1 corpse was discovered in Husseiniya (gunshot wounds),  13 corpses "were found dumped in a farm south of Tikrit,"  1 person was shot dead in Baghdad, 2 bombs "near Baquba, north of the Edhaym Dam" killed 2 Iraqi soldiers and left four more injured, 2 Baghdad bombings (Aden Square and Sadr City) left 7 people dead and fifty-two injured, and "15 civlians and policemen were killed and injured" in a Kirkuk motorcycle bombing.

    It was just days ago that Raad al-Azzawi became the latest journalist to die in the Iraq War.  All Iraq News noted, "The Islamic State (IS) militants executed on Friday a cameraman works for an Iraqi television and three of his relatives in Iraq's central province of Salahudin, a provincial police source said. Raad al-Azzawi, 37, cameraman for local news Sama Salahudin satellite channel, was kidnapped about month ago with his brother and two relatives by the IS militants for alleged collaboration with Iraqi security forces, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity."  The western press frenzy that greeted the recent deaths of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff was not matched when it came to Raad's murder. Instead, western outlets offered silence on Raad's murder or a brief paragraph.  As we noted at Third in "Editorial: The Western Media Makes Its Point:"

    But the western press did something even more valuable than cover the death.
    They made it clear (yet again) that Iraqi lives do not matter.
    Not to them.
    Repeatedly, they've been (rightly) accused of ignoring the deaths of Iraqis while pretending to care about Iraq.
    But the same media that sold the war in 2003 and that continues to sell the war today doesn't care about the Iraqi people.
    That is the message they sent after their wall-to-wall, non-stop coverage bemoaning the deaths of two American journalists compared to their coverage of the execution of Raad.
    They only care about Iraq in terms of selling war.

    National Iraqi News Agency notes that journalist Muhannad Ekaidat was executed by the Islamic State today in Mosul.  All Iraq News reports:

    The terrorist gangs of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant executed on Monday the Iraqi journalist Muhanad al-Egaidi in Mosul city.
    The Media official within the Kurdistani Democratic Party in Nineveh province, Saeed Memozin, said in a press statement "the terrorists of the ISIL executed on Monday the journalist Muhanad al-Egaidi by shooting him to death."
    "The ISIL terrorists kidnapped Egaidi two months ago and today they executed him in Ghizlani camp of southern Mosul city," he added.  
    Memozin mentioned "The dead body of the killed journalist was transported to the morgue so that his parents can receive it."

    It is worth to mention that Muhanad al-Egaidi was working as a reporter for SADA Press Agency in Mosul as well as program presenter at Mosuliya Satellite channel.

    Some Tweets on the murder:

  • Would really like to see the same outcry when Iraqi journos are executed by - Muhannad Akidi is the latest one. RIP
  • Iraqi journalist Muhannad Akidi was executed by ISIS today. Let's spread as much awareness abt him as his foreign peers that were IS victims

  • Iraq has fallen by the way side repeatedly for the White House as they've rushed to zoom in on Syria and their desire to force out or overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.  The inability to focus may explain the conflicting reports on whether or not Turkey was participating in Barack's 'plan' for Iraq and Syria.  In this morning's New York Times, Eric Schmitt and Kirk Semple noted, "Turkey will allow American and coalition troops to use its bases, including a key installation within 100 miles of the Syrian border, for operations against Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq, Defense Department officials said Sunday."  However, i24 News and AFP report:

    Turkey has denied reports that they had reached an agreement to let the United States use its Incirlik air base for operations against Islamic State militants in Syria.
    Sources at the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's office have said that talks on the subject are continuing.

    The issue/confusion popped up in US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's Peru press conference today:

    REAR ADM. KIRBY: First question will come from Lolita Baldor from the Associated Press.

    Q: Mr. Secretary, Syria, Turkey, have there been any developments in the ongoing negotiations with Turkey over Syria? I'm just wondering, there's a lot of back-and-forth going on. Are you still optimistic about it? And do you have any goals for the chiefs of defense meeting tomorrow? Anything you really hope they try to accomplish?

    SEC. HAGEL: Lita, I am optimistic about progress that we are making with the Turks, as the Turks further define their role in the coalition against ISIL. As you know, we have teams from Central Command and European Command there. As you all know, I spoke with General Allen yesterday to get a readout from his meetings there, as well as I spoke with the Turkish minister of defense.
    I said yesterday that I'll leave public announcements about what the Turks are committed to do to them, but I would say, though, to answer your question, we are making very good progress and I am optimistic.
    As to your question regarding General Dempsey bringing 20 of the chiefs of defense together from 20 nations, that is going to be an important meeting. As I think you know, President Obama is going to stop by at the end of that meeting tomorrow.

      The objective of the meeting that General Dempsey put together was to further coordinate and organize countries' efforts to participate in the coalition. They will be working through those specific areas and defining specific contributions that the nations will make. So I am much encouraged with that meeting, and it's going to be a very important meeting.

    So, in other words, even Chuck Hagel, Secretary of Defense had no idea what the status was with regards to Turkey providing US forces access to their air bases.

    the new york times
    eric schmitt