I certainly agree that the Capitol appeared utterly unprepared for this protest. That will be the subject of investigation. However, the breach of the Capitol happened quickly after a protest that was peaceful for hours on the mall.
The call for the arrests however are beyond the pale. Many of us of criticized Trump’s speech as he was giving it. Many of us opposed the challenge made to the electoral votes. That however is not the crime of insurrection to call for a protest march on Congress. We have seen violent protests on the left and the right being led by instigators from groups like Antifa and Proud Boys.
I previously wrote in opposition of declaring Antifa a terrorist organization or labeling left-wing protesters “seditious.” Such efforts would gut protections of free speech under the First Amendment. The same is true with Scarborough’s Siren’s call. If we start charging people for insurrection for reckless political speeches, we will truly “no longer [be] a nation of laws.”
Why is it that so many screech and clutch the pearls but Jonathan Turley (above) and C.I. (in the snapshot at the end) can be voices of calm and reasoned sanity?
Reminds me of Rudyard Kipling's "If:"
"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Thursday, January 7, 2021. DC sees the American people while in Baghdad an arrest warrant is issued for Donald Trump.
Yesterday, there was a rally and a riot in DC among Donald Trump's supporters. Here's one person's take.
I don't use violence, I don't condone violence. But when there was violence at protests against the police, I didn't rush to condemn the protests and was aware that many more people were protesting peacefully.
"There was nothing to be gained," Caleb says in the video again. He says, "We saw human beings acting like animals. We saw property destroyed."
We saw reality. I'm sorry that a woman was killed.
This was a protest by right wingers and it is not representative of all right wingers. I also don't think it was all that awful. Congress needs to know that they answer to the people.
The Congress is their Congress. It's our Congress. It's the people's house. American people have the right to protest.
Donald Trump is not getting a second term.
I don't get the outrage from people in the center and on the left.
'Oh, it's so awful.'
No, it's really not. It is an ongoing lesson that the process -- such as it is -- works. The protesters -- even those that you want to call a mob (for good reason) -- didn't alter the election.
Donald has used every technique he can think of to overturn the results. The results stand. This is a testament to democracy. Every time he tries something else, it just shows the world what democracy is and how strong it is.
No offense to 'communist' countries, but a lot of them were toppled by things like this. Democracy is strong. (Real Communism might be as well, I don't think we've seen that though. The USSR probably came closest. I'm referring to political science definitions here, if you haven't studied it, we'll just disagree.) Democracy involves the people. The people of America? They elected Joe Biden.
And a protest or a riot doesn't change that. And legal challenges were overturned by the courts.
It's not perfect. (We need to end wars, we need Medicare For All, we need to address climate change -- seriously address, we need to find solutions for the homeless crisis in this country.) But a democratic system works. And that's been obvious every day since the election.
Donald has been given every opportunity to question the results, to challenge them.
And, in a democratic system, that doesn't paralyze the country.
This has been a huge learning experience, a strong testament.
I am so sorry that a woman was shot dead by the police, I am so sorry that other people were injured.
But the system worked.
Joe Biden will be president on January 20th.
I don't like Donald Trump. That predates this site, I've noted that I know him going back to 2005 when Ava and I tackled THE APPRENTICE. I know him and do not like him and avoid him. That didn't happen because he was president. This is due to who he is and it predates that.
But I did not use this site to attack him for personal reasons. And I didn't make this site a response to his Twitter feed -- the way the media did.
Unlike those in the media, I didn't applaud Donald for years.
They may need to take a look at that.
But Donald does have supporters -- he got a huge number of votes -- and they have a right to protest.
Let's stay on Donald but let's move to other news.
A Baghdad court has issued a warrant for the arrest of US President Donald Trump as part of its investigation into the killing of a top Iraqi paramilitary commander.
Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy head of Iraq's largely pro-Iran Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary network, died in the same US drone strike that killed storied Iranian general Qasem Soleimani at Baghdad airport on January 3 last year.
The strike on their motorcade was ordered by Trump, who later crowed that it had taken out "two (men) for the price of one".
I don't like Donald. That said, Iraq issuing an arrest warrant for a sitting US president? While that government is taking US tax dollars?
In the real world, that warrant is a joke. And it's a Baghdad court not the country's supreme court. But this is an issue that appalls me. If they wanted to issue that after he was out of office, it still wouldn't go anywhere in our current system, but fine.
To do it right now?
It just makes clear what I've said all along: ISIS is the problem of the Iraqi government. It's not a US problem. US troops need to leave Iraq. ISIS is still there, yes, but that's up to the Iraqi government to address -- the corrupt Iraqi government.
Another thing to notice is that these two people matter to the Iraqi government. These two deaths matter.
As we noted weeks ago, go to the UN website and look at the seven pages listing the names of journalists who have been killed in Iraq and notice that not one of those cases has resulted in anyone going to prison.
But these two deaths matter?
BLACKWATER was in Iraq due to and with Bully Boy Bush's permission but they didn't go after Bully Boy Bush for the massacre in 2007, did they?
The US government paid of some families who had civilians members killed by US troops at checkpoints and they also paid of members of the US government.
This is news to you? Well maybe you never paid attention of maybe your best source of Iraq information was Phyllis Bennis. In the fall of 2006, there was Phyllis yacking on the useless programs (like COUNTERSPIN) about how the US government refused to keep a tally of the deaths of Iraqis during the war. But, Phyllis, as we pointed out to you in real time -- and not just online -- they did keep a count and it had been reported on. In fact, it was reported on in the summer of 2006.
Nancy A. Youssef reported it. She reported it for KNIGHT RIDDER on the last day that it was still KNIGHT RIDDER. It had already been bought by MCCLATCHY months prior but the switch over would be on the following day.
And maybe that's why Nancy had her article in print while it was still KNIGHT RIDDER? That's the chain that reported the truth about the Iraq War -- even during the lead up to the war. MCCLATCHY didn't. They cheered the war on. And we had to spend years pointing that out before it sunk in.
MCCLATCHY is not a great outlet. It never was. And the KNIGHT RIDDER staff did far less once they were under MCCLATCHY. They also began -- this took place while Barack Obama was president -- allowing opinion into news story -- opinions of those reporters supposedly 'reporting.' They also dropped all standards -- including the two 'star' reporters on Iraq (Warren especially, but both of them). They were heroes in the lies from the faux left. They weren't heroes. They were doing their job with MCCLATCHY which was to question government. They stopped it once it became MCCLATCHY. Do you remember the stories exposing this or that about Libya? The chain of stories about the open slave markets that followed the US attack on Libya?
No. MCCLATCHY's two 'manly' heroes couldn't be bothered with reality anymore.
But, at any rate, these two deaths matter to a BAGhdad court.
I bet I know which one. I bet it's the same one Nouri always counted on to issue verdicts for him that he then pocketed -- and no one knew about -- and would later pull out of his pocket to say, "See, this is what's supposed to happen." He even got away with using that when he didn't like results of an election. Verdict issued before the election, no one knew except the judges and Nouri, he pulls it out when he doesn't like the results of the elections, waives it around and says, "Look, the judicial system is on my side." That's the same court, isn't it, that announced that a defendant -- who had yet to appear before them -- was guilty? Announced it in a press conference. With one of the judges on the panel claiming that he was personally threatened.
That's what they did. And they did it to Iraq's then vice president Tareq al-Hashemi.
I bet it's that Baghdad court.
It's a joke.
But if this is how it's going to go, if the leaders of both government aren't going to communicate with one another, let's pull all US troops right now.
We should have done it a long, long time ago.
We also should have stopped sending money to the Iraqi government a long time ago.
Iraq's about to enter an awful, awful period. And that's appalling but it's due to government corruption. (The US government helped set that system up, so there's responsibility there.)
Iraq's an oil rich nation. Can you imagine if you're a country without any natural resources, watching Iraq bring in billions every month and now tell their citizens that this isn't available and this resource is cut or gutted and this . . .
It's an oil rich country. It should never, ever have an economic problem.
We're talking a pop4ulation around 40 million.
China has almost 1.4 billion people. Iraq's only got 40 million. And yet it's about to hit austerity measures, hit the people with them.
In 2019, Iraq made $78.530 billion off oil. 78.530 billion. And 40 million people. And yet it's had to devalue the dinar.
The corruption has resulted in Nouri al-Maliki being rich. His awful son has multiple sports cars and multiple residence (including his party pad in London). But the Iraqi people have nothing. They don't have jobs. They struggle every day. And they struggle because they have a corrupt government.
That's why ISIS took hold in Iraq. Nouri was persecuting the Sunnis. He was sending tanks to circle the homes of elected Sunnis who were in Parliament. He had the Iraqi military raid the home of a Sunni member of Parliament -- this resulted in one of the MP's family members being killed.
By the way, I don't remember that Baghdad court issuing an arrest warrant for Nouri.
Nouri's thugs were going to the homes of Sunnis they wanted to arrest and not finding the man they wanted to arrest. So what did they do?
They arrested the man's mother. His sister, his wife, his daughter, his son, his grandfather . . .
And these people then 'disappeared.' Off they went into the system that no one could find them in.
And this is what led to the rise of ISIS.
ISIS rose in Iraq presenting itself as a group -- this took place in public -- that was going to defend the Sunni protesters who were shutting down a major road that ran from Falluja to Baghdad.
That's when ISIS makes its public stand in Iraq.
Now that a Baghdad court has issued a warrant for a sitting US president while they have diplomatic relations with the US, it's time to get US troops out of Iraq.
Again, this isn't the supreme court of Iraq. This doesn't represent the view of the current prime minister. But the current prime minister only became prime minister in May of last year. The one before was forced out of office. Meaning, the feelings of a prime minister may or may not matter. What we know is that an arrest warrant against the US can be issued by a Baghdad court. For that reason, we need to get US troops out of Iraq.
Now I'm against the war. Started speaking out against it in February 2003, a month before it broke out. I have called for all US troops to leave Iraq since the US-led invasion started.
And there are so many reasons for that -- strong reasons. But right now, today, there is a new reason and it's that arrest warrant for Donald Trump.
He's not at risk of being arrested.
But this is a precedent that needs to register.
I don't think it will, however. I think, because it's Donald, you're going to see a lot of glee from various US commentators. Some will be endorsing it (that's appalling) and some will be seeing it as something to make jokes about.
US troops are on Iraqi soil. We need to be thinking about that and about what this type of warrant means for them. Again, this isn't going to effect Donald Trump in the least. He's not going to stand trial in Baghdad.
Can we say the same about US troops in Iraq?
I can see an incident leading to huge outcries, I can see the Baghdad court issuing a warrant and I can see militias trying to execute that warrant. That's the worst case scenario and that's what we need to be thinking about because US troops are over there risking their lives and no one, all this time later, can give them an honest reason for why they are in Iraq.
Here's Jimmy Dore on DC events yesterday.
Here's Katie Halper's take.
So that's four different takes -- you got Caleb's take, Jimmy's take, Katie's take and my take. Maybe something in one of them spoke to you, maybe your take is different from all four?
But while you think about DC, try to think about what's taken in place in Baghdad today and what it could mean for any US service member on the ground in Iraq.
It's way past time for all US troops to leave Iraq.
The following sites updated: