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November 27, 2014
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Tag: Iraq


Russians Invade Afghanistan (Again!), Chinese Fight Iraq War (Again!)

After 13 years of doing its damnedest, the U.S. has overseen the rise of the dominant narco-state on the planet with monopoly control over up to 90 percent of the global opium supply and 75 percent of the heroin. It’s also been complicit in the creation of the first terrorist mini-oil state in history, a post-al-Qaeda triumph of extreme jihadism.

Posted on Nov 27, 2014 READ MORE



DoD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo

A Soldier Among Chickenhawks

Chuck Hagel’s departure from his post as defense secretary has been attributed to his failure to fit in with the Obama cabinet’s crowd. Among his other reported deficiencies was that he was only a sergeant in Vietnam, twice wounded.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz

Does Hagel’s Departure Pave the Way for Combat Troops to Iraq?

It’s a surprise to see President Obama actually fire someone. But I have to worry that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s forced departure may signal further expansion of U.S. military involvement in Iraq and Syria.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Executes 26 Sunni Tribesmen in Campaign to Take Ramadi

Islamic State (known in Arabic as Daesh) has mounted a major offensive in a bid to take Ramadi, the capital of al-Anbar Province in western Iraq.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



Malarkey on the Potomac

Unlike my friend M, the well-informed and normally sober Washington Post columnist David Ignatius clings to the fantasy that “Iraq” is or ought to be politically viable, militarily capable, and socially cohesive. But surely this qualifies as wishful thinking.

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 READ MORE



An Interview With Juan Cole: The Historical Drivers of Modern Day Developments in Iraq

Bassam Haddad, a prominent Syria specialist at George Mason University, interviewed Juan Cole this fall for the new Web radio program “Status Hour” on the Middle East.

Posted on Nov 20, 2014 READ MORE



Americans Are 64 Times More Likely to Be Murdered Than Die in an Act of Terrorism

The Institute for Economics and Peace in the U.K. has released a report on terrorism in 2013, which it maintains was substantially up. Conceptually, I have to critique the study.

Posted on Nov 18, 2014 READ MORE



Here Are Some of the Ways Islamic State Is Losing as It Lashes Out Like a Cornered Rat

Islamic State has not had a good month, suffering substantial setbacks in Iraq and watching with concern as the Damascus regime of Bashar al-Assad looks set to retake the major northern city of Aleppo.

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Aid Worker’s Death Confirmed as Islamic State Tries to ‘Mask a Week of Defeats’

American aid worker Peter Kassig is the latest hostage to be slain by Islamic State on video.

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Loses Refinery City in Iraq to Iraqi Army and Shiite Militias

This is perhaps the most significant military loss for Islamic State since it took 40 percent of Iraq in early June.

Posted on Nov 15, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Calls for Terror Attacks on Saudi Arabia

A voice recording has surfaced, attributed to Ibrahim al-Samarra’i, the leader of the brutal terrorist group Islamic State.

Posted on Nov 15, 2014 READ MORE



The Bases of War in the Middle East

There is almost no way to overemphasize how thoroughly the U.S. military now covers the Greater Middle East. After 35 years of base-building there, it’s long past time to look carefully at how this garrisoning affects the region, the U.S., and the world.

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 READ MORE



Shrinking the Empire: A Session on the Imperial Couch

What follows is a transcript of a therapy session between the American Empire and a psychiatrist whose name we at TomDispatch have agreed not to disclose. Normally we wouldn’t consider publishing such a private encounter, but the probative news value of the exchange is so obvious that we decided to make an exception.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



When Will the U.S. Admit to Boots on the Ground in Iraq?

In an age of weasel words and Orwellian diction, it would be refreshing to hear Mr. Obama call the recent escalation in Iraq what it is.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



Tomas Young, Rest in Peace

There were 8,920,000 military veterans in the United States as of last June, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs. Sometime last Sunday or Monday, hours before Veterans Day began, that number dropped by one, when Tomas Young died at home in Seattle, with his wife by his side.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



Why It Doesn’t Really Matter Whether Islamic State’s Leader Was Killed

Rumors are swirling that Islamic State leader Ibrahim al-Samarra’i (who goes by the nom de guerre Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi) was severely wounded and that some of his chief lieutenants were killed by a U.S. airstrike on a meeting of IS leaders Friday.

Posted on Nov 12, 2014 READ MORE


Jon Stewart: We May Have Killed Islamic State’s Leader or ‘Some Other Fucking Guy’

Jon Stewart offers his audience an update on the current situation in Iraq, from the uncertainty surrounding the possible death of Islamic State’s leader to the over 3,000 troops President Obama has now sent to the Middle Eastern country.

Posted on Nov 11, 2014 READ MORE


Veterans Day

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Posted on Nov 11, 2014 READ MORE


VA Closed

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Posted on Nov 11, 2014 READ MORE


Observing Veterans Day

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Posted on Nov 11, 2014 READ MORE



Claudia Cuellar

Tomas Young, Veteran Author of ‘The Last Letter,’ Dies at 34

Iraq War veteran and activist Tomas Young has died, “Democracy Now” is reporting.

Posted on Nov 10, 2014 READ MORE


Ex-State Dept. Official Blasts Obama’s Doubling of Troops in Iraq

Former Marine and State Department official Matthew Hoh, the first known U.S. official to resign in protest over the Afghan War, describes President Obama’s authorization of 1,500 additional troops to Iraq in the campaign against the Islamic State as “for lack of a better phrase ... crazy.”

Posted on Nov 10, 2014 READ MORE


Vets Affairs

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Posted on Nov 9, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Marince Corps/Staff Sgt. Joseph DiGirolamo

Obama Doubles Number of U.S. Troops in Iraq

The president will send an additional 1,500 troops to Iraq. Though they will reportedly serve as advisers, some will head to areas of heavy fighting.

Posted on Nov 7, 2014 READ MORE



Why Is Obama Finally Seeking Congressional Approval for the War on Islamic State?

President Obama said Wednesday that he would seek congressional authorization for his war on the Islamic State after months of maintaining that the authorization of 2001 was still sufficient to underpin this effort. Why the about-face?

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 READ MORE



Building an Escalation Machine

Sometimes it seemed that only two issues mattered in the midterm election campaigns just ended: ISIS and Ebola. Think of them as the two horsemen of the present American apocalypse. And count on this: Oppositional pressure to escalate will be a significant factor in Washington “debates” in the last years of the Obama administration.

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 READ MORE



How a Republican Congress Could Entangle the U.S. Further in the Middle East

It is not surprising that the GOP gained control of the Senate, but how will the change affect foreign policy?

Posted on Nov 5, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Dismayed That Iraq’s Shiite Government Hasn’t Armed Sunni Tribes Fighting Islamic State

Members of the al-Anbar provincial council say they have met with American officials who are “disgusted” at the slowness of Baghdad to arm the Sunni Arab tribes fighting Islamic State.

Posted on Nov 4, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Strives Without End

Unembedded Middle East reporter Patrick Cockburn describes the political and economic facts that enable Isis to continue its sweep through Iraq and Syria, and explains why a defeat for the group in the Syrian city of Kobani would not be the beginning of its end.

Posted on Nov 1, 2014 READ MORE



Iraq’s Grand Ayatollah Sistani and Chuck Hagel Call for the Arming of the Sunni Tribes of al-Anbar

Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani is calling, just as is U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, for the arming of Sunni tribes in al-Anbar Province to fight Islamic State in Iraq.

Posted on Nov 1, 2014 READ MORE



Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com

What Would Republicans Do?

Republicans still refuse to articulate any vision for governing.

Posted on Oct 31, 2014 READ MORE


Iraq Boots

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Posted on Oct 31, 2014 READ MORE



‘When Google Met WikiLeaks’: An Exclusive Excerpt

In 2011 WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange was visited by Google Chairman Eric Schmidt. Here, from Assange’s new book, is part of the extraordinary conversation that resulted.

Posted on Oct 29, 2014 READ MORE



Turkey Allows Kurdish Peshmerga Paramilitary Troops to Cross to Kobane

Turkish intelligence is facilitating the crossing of a couple hundred paramilitary troops (Peshmerga) from Iraqi Kurdistan to the Turkish town of Suruç, 16 kilometers from the Syrian border.

Posted on Oct 29, 2014 READ MORE



Is the Sunni-Shiite Slaughter at Jurf al-Sakhr in Iraq Really a U.S. Victory?

Apparent good news was announced on Sunday in the fight against the extremist Islamic State organization: The Iraqi army, backed by fundamentalist Shiite militias, managed to take the village of Jurf al-Sakhr, southwest of Baghdad, from IS fighters.

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 READ MORE


Smart Bomb

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Posted on Oct 26, 2014 READ MORE


Fear

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Posted on Oct 25, 2014 READ MORE



A Revisionist Take on President Obama

There is no shortage of bad news for President Obama, but history may be kinder to the man.

Posted on Oct 24, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

President Obama’s ‘Dumb’ War

The adventure against the Islamic State increasingly resembles the sort of conflict Barack Obama launched his career opposing.

Posted on Oct 24, 2014 READ MORE



Is This the End of National Sovereignty in the Middle East?

The legislature of the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (a super-province of Iraq) has voted to send Kurdistan forces to the Syrian Kurdish city of Kobane to help it fight off a concerted attack by Islamic State.

Posted on Oct 23, 2014 READ MORE



AP Photo/Hadi Mizban

Blackwater Guards Convicted of 2007 Iraq Massacre

Four former employees of the private security firm formerly known as Blackwater were convicted Wednesday of a mass shooting during the Iraq War.

Posted on Oct 22, 2014 READ MORE


WMDs

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Posted on Oct 22, 2014 READ MORE



Iran Proposes an Axis Against Islamic State to Iraq as an Alternative to the U.S. Coalition

Al-Zaman reports that Iranian President Hasan Rowhani has proposed to visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi an anti-IS axis including Syria, Lebanon and Iraq that would be led by Iran, as an alternative to the U.S.-led coalition proposed by President Barack Obama.

Posted on Oct 22, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Jets Airdropped Supplies for Kurds Fighting in Kobane Against Turkey’s Wishes

In a step that over-ruled America’s Turkish NATO ally, U.S. jets dropped food, first aid and weaponry into the besieged Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane on Monday morning.

Posted on Oct 21, 2014 READ MORE


John Oliver on How America Is Turning Its Back on Middle Eastern Translators Who Risked Their Lives

In a moving (but of course, still funny) episode of “Last Week Tonight,” John Oliver sheds light on the plight of Iraqi and Afghani translators who worked for U.S. forces and contractors, a position that jeopardized the well-being of their families as well as themselves.

Posted on Oct 20, 2014 READ MORE



Shells Land in Turkey as Kurds Fight Off Islamic State Forces in Kobane

Kurdish forces at Kobane (Ayn al-Arab) on Saturday fought off an assault by Islamic State that sought to cut the city off from Turkey and completely surround it, according to an Al-Jazeera reporter on the scene.

Posted on Oct 20, 2014 READ MORE



Seven Worst-Case Scenarios in the Battle With Islamic State

The U.S. is again at war in the Middle East, bombing freely across Iraq and Syria and searching desperately for some non-American boots to put on the ground. Here are seven worst-case scenarios in a part of the world where the worst case has regularly been the best that’s on offer.

Posted on Oct 17, 2014 READ MORE



Why American Efforts to Create Foreign Armies Fail

When confronting IS and its band of lightly armed irregulars, a reputedly professional military melted back into the populace. What this behavior made clear was that U.S. efforts to create a new Iraqi army to the tune of $25 billion over 10 years had failed miserably.

Posted on Oct 16, 2014 READ MORE



GoBOb / Shutterstock.com

The NSA Plays Villain to Captain America—Again

You know you’re living in strange times when the most jingoistic superhero goes to war with his own government.

Posted on Oct 15, 2014 READ MORE


Chris Hedges Takes On the ‘Global Culture of Violence’

On Sept. 28, Chris Hedges spoke at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture’s Charley Horwitz Platform on the pervasive violence that characterizes our era and offered possible solutions.

Posted on Oct 15, 2014 READ MORE


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