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September 26, 2016
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Lawyers, Liars, and the Art of Storytelling

Lawyers, Liars, and the Art of Storytelling

Nobody I know is funnier, smarter, or has a wider breadth of references than my friend Jonathan Shapiro. This book is a bit of a miracle: informative, insightful, poetic, and funny. —Paul Reiser, comedian, actor, and bestselling author Using famous real-life court transcripts, television scripts, and story after story, Lawyers, Liars, and the Art of Storytelling shows the reader how to get their message across and the result they want using the time-tested elements and basic structure of great stories. Part how-to manual, part memoir, always entertaining and never lecture, this book provides storytelling lessons gleaned from years of trial practice and television writing, wrapped in—what else?—great stories.
$14.22

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Tag: Iraq

The Number of U.S. Troops in Iraq Is Approaching 6,000 (Video)


Five hundred more troops will be sent to help with the massive Mosul campaign. They will not engage in fighting at the front but will help call in airstrikes on Islamic State targets and provide tactical advice and training.

Posted on Sep 25, 2016 READ MORE
Square, Category Page

Chris Hedges and Loretta Napoleoni Analyze Spread of Jihadism, Kidnapping and Refugee Trafficking

On a new episode of “On Contact,” the two writers discuss what is creating the billion-dollar trafficking industry and how the U.S. presence in the Middle East is facilitating the growth of “criminal” jihadism.

Posted on Sep 21, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN

Obama’s Approach to Ending Terrorism: Destroying Islamic State in Mosul and Then Rebuilding City


President Obama met Monday with Iraqi Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi and discussed the coming campaign to take the city of Mosul away from Islamic State, entirely destroying the terrorist organization’s territorial power in Iraq.

Posted on Sep 20, 2016 READ MORE

U.S. Seeks to Prevent Islamic State From Looting, Selling or Destroying Antiquities


A meeting was convened recently in Washington, D.C., to discuss how to secure and preserve cultural artifacts in the Middle East.

Posted on Sep 16, 2016 READ MORE

Talking to a 6-Year-Old About War


With armed conflicts and military action, it’s hard to know how much to say to young people, and when, how and whether to say it. Perhaps it is a universal parental urge to shield children from certain hard knowledge.

Posted on Sep 15, 2016 READ MORE

What Did We Buy With the $5 Trillion That the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars Have Cost Us?


The Iraq War was a government-led Ponzi scheme. As usual, the little people are the ones who lost big.

Posted on Sep 13, 2016 READ MORE

Nearly 500 More U.S. Troops Sent to Iraq for Mosul Attack in Advance of Election Day


If Islamic State loses Mosul before Americans go to the polls Nov. 8, it will undermine a key talking point of the Republican right: that Obama is weak on terrorism.

Posted on Sep 10, 2016 READ MORE

NBC’s Presidential Forum Continued the Shameful Corporate Coverage of the Great American Meltdown


It was a wretched performance by both the network and nominees Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, full of fluff and posturing and “Alice in Wonderland” statements of policy—along with an almost complete derogation of authority by the anchors.

Posted on Sep 8, 2016 READ MORE

Islamic State Sends Families Out of Mosul as Kurdish and Shiite Forces Advance


Iraqi military forces have taken the strategic town of al-Qayarah, near the major city of Mosul, from Islamic State. Mosul is the last major city in the hands of the apocalyptic, brutal cult that has lost almost all the territory it took in 2014.

Posted on Aug 30, 2016 READ MORE

Death to the Death Penalty in California


Voters will be confronted with competing death penalty proposals on the November ballot: the praiseworthy Proposition 62 and the defective Proposition 66.

Posted on Aug 26, 2016 READ MORE

Thanks, Obama!









Posted on Aug 17, 2016 ENLARGE

As Islamic State Brewed in Iraq, Clinton’s State Department Reduced Eyes and Ears on the Ground


An investigation finds that Clinton initially pressed to keep civilian programs and listening posts after the U.S. troop pullout in 2011, but then scrapped or slashed them at the behest of the White House and Congress.

Posted on Aug 17, 2016 READ MORE

Obama Did Not Found Islamic State, Mr. Trump—the GOP Did (Video)


In his daily free-association exercise, the Republican presidential nominee accused the president of creating the terrorist organization by withdrawing troops from Iraq in 2011. But the timetable for withdrawal was set by the Bush administration.

Posted on Aug 14, 2016 READ MORE

American Civil Liberties Union Forces U.S. to Release Secret Drone Playbook


The long-awaited release of the guidelines provide “a timely reminder of the breadth of the powers that will soon be in the hands of another president,” an ACLU spokesman said.

Posted on Aug 7, 2016 READ MORE

Islamic State Captures Thousands in Iraq


The terrorist group is said to have executed a number of young men of fighting age who were attempting to flee territory held by Islamic State.

Posted on Aug 6, 2016 READ MORE

An American Formerly Imprisoned in Iran Finds a Way to Break Out of ‘The Box’


After experiencing the horror of solitary confinement for over a year, Sarah Shourd now is using storytelling and the theater to heal herself and others.

Posted on Jul 15, 2016 READ MORE

Chilcot Report









Posted on Jul 11, 2016 ENLARGE

The Real Problem With the Iraq War: It Was Illegal


I won’t disguise my impatience with the release of the Chilcot Report on Britain’s involvement in the 2003-2016 Iraq War.

Posted on Jul 10, 2016 READ MORE

At Least 35 Dead After Suicide Attack at Shiite Site North of Baghdad


Islamic State took responsibility for a triple suicide attack Thursday evening near a Shiite mausoleum north of Baghdad during Eid al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan.

Posted on Jul 8, 2016 READ MORE

Grieving Sister of Slain British Soldier: Tony Blair Is ‘the World’s Worst Terrorist’ (Video)

In the wake of the release of the Chilcot Report, Sarah O’Connor, whose brother was killed in Iraq in 2005, delivered a stunning critique of former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Posted on Jul 7, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN

Iraq War, Based on Lies, Rages On


In the wake of the Chilcot Report, there should be a serious effort to hold leaders like George W. Bush and Britain’s Tony Blair accountable for the ongoing death and destruction in Iraq and beyond.

Posted on Jul 6, 2016 READ MORE

It’s Time for an Investigation Into George W. Bush and the Invasion of Iraq


The release of a long-awaited report on the United Kingdom’s role in the Iraq War is prompting renewed calls to try former Prime Minister Tony Blair for war crimes. And many are asking: What about the war’s principal promoter?

Posted on Jul 6, 2016 READ MORE

Chilcot Report on Iraq War Is ‘Damning Verdict’ for Former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair (Video)


The United Kingdom’s official inquiry into the Iraq War has revealed that former Prime Minister Tony Blair “deliberately exaggerated [the] threat from Iraq” and did not exhaust all possibilities before resorting to military action. After the report was released on Wednesday, current Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn issued an apology on behalf of his party for its role in the war. (Updated)

Posted on Jul 6, 2016 READ MORE

It Is Time to Notice That Horrible Mass Bombings Are Targeting Muslims


It is necessary to call the brutal actions of mass murderers deviant behavior, not radical Islam.

Posted on Jul 6, 2016 READ MORE

Numbers in Obama’s Drone Deaths Report Just Don’t Add Up


The administration’s tally is at odds with those of leading nongovernmental organizations, and its lack of transparency makes it impossible for the public to assess its claims.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 READ MORE

Happy Birthday to Ron Kovic, Born on the Fourth of July

Independence Day is the birthday of the author and anti-war activist, who is also a friend and contributor to Truthdig. Today, we look back on our week with Kovic and the kind words he had for his friend Bruce Springsteen in 2009.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN

Will Westerners Grieve Islamic State’s Victims in Baghdad?


Early Sunday morning, the militant group exploded a car bomb in a shopping district in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, killing at least 200 people and wounding many dozens more.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 READ MORE

Garrison Keillor’s Prophecy and Apostasy


The radio host’s decision to retire from his show “A Prairie Home Companion” on the Fourth of July weekend was likely calculated to extenuate his presumed ties to all things Americana, but it also highlighted his hypocrisies and contradictions.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 READ MORE

We Live in an Age of Disintegration


Nowhere is the process of destabilization more evident than in the Greater Middle East and Africa, in places where it is possible to doubt that civilization will ever return.

Posted on Jun 30, 2016 READ MORE

Fallujah Falls: The Slow Death of Islamic State and the Future of Iraq


As Shakir Jawdat, Chief of the Iraqi Federal Police, announced the complete liberation of the last, northern neighborhoods of Fallujah from Islamic State, Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi came to the city on Sunday to plant the Iraqi flag right downtown.

Posted on Jun 27, 2016 READ MORE

The End of the Beginning: The Fall of Islamic State in Fallujah


Iraqi Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi announced on Friday that Iraqi troops had captured the governmental complex in the center of Fallujah.

Posted on Jun 21, 2016 READ MORE

Should George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Others Be Jailed for War Crimes?


We need a full and public accounting of the CIA’s activities, the doings of military and civilian agencies and outfits, the White House’s drone assassination program, and the illegal, devastating invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Posted on Jun 8, 2016 READ MORE

Fears of Civilian Casualties Slow Baghdad’s Advance on Fallujah (Video)


Estimates of the number of noncombatants trapped in the Iraqi city by Islamic State range from 20,000 to 50,000, and Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi fears they could get caught in the crossfire.

Posted on Jun 5, 2016 READ MORE

Repeat Deployments









Posted on Jun 1, 2016 ENLARGE

Islamic State Counterattack in Fallujah: Can Iraqi Forces Maintain Momentum? (Video)


Iraqi troops are advancing on Fallujah despite facing fierce resistance from Islamic State, but fear is mounting about the fate of the tens of thousands of noncombatants inside the city who are caught in the crossfire.

Posted on Jun 1, 2016 READ MORE

Iraq Recovers Areas of Fallujah From Islamic State


With the help of U.S.-led airstrikes, Iraqi troops wrested parts of the city from Islamic State in an operation that risks a hostage situation involving tens of thousands of civilians.

Posted on May 30, 2016 READ MORE

Modern Mongols: Sunni Arabs Outraged at Iran Role in Iraqi Government Fallujah Campaign


Fallujah fell to Islamic State in January of 2014, and I think it is fair to say that there is much more angst in the Sunni Arab world about its liberation at the hands of Iran-backed Shiites than there has been about Islamic State’s brutal occupation of the city.

Posted on May 30, 2016 READ MORE

A Worrisome New Plan to Send U.S. Troops to Libya as ‘Advisers’


Gen. James Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the United States may soon send “military advisers” to Libya to fight Islamic State. But if the past is any lesson, the plan will presage a large combat contingent.

Posted on May 24, 2016 READ MORE

Baghdad on Lockdown, Not in Fear of Islamic State but of Poor Protesters


Baghdad was a ghost town on Saturday as security forces fanned out, blocking key roads into the Green Zone, the area downtown, closed off by blast walls, that houses Parliament and foreign embassies.

Posted on May 22, 2016 READ MORE

Baghdad Takes Rutba From Islamic State; Jordan-Iraq Commercial Route to Reopen (Video)


Iraqi forces have taken Rutba in al-Anbar province, nearly 200 miles west of the provincial capital, Ramadi, which is also now in government hands (though much of its population is displaced).

Posted on May 19, 2016 READ MORE

Poof! It’s Forgotten: The Snapchat Version of American Victory


I hope you’ll forgive me if I suggest that the Iraq-Syria War against Islamic State is being conveyed to us via Snapchat. Important things happen, they appear in front of us, and then ... POOF! They’re gone.

Posted on May 16, 2016 READ MORE

Surprise! Despite Syria-Iraq Turmoil, Major Mideast Economies Are Growing at 3 to 4 percent (Video)


When you hear only bad news from a place, you form a negative opinion of it.

Posted on May 15, 2016 READ MORE

‘Chaos & Caliphate’: Sanctions, Revolutions and Sectarian War


Excerpts from a new book chronicling a quarter-century of struggle in the Greater Middle East introduce us to a man who risks life and limb defusing land mines for a pittance, and to an idea about the best hope to stop the civil war in Syria.

Posted on May 12, 2016 READ MORE

Baghdad’s Government Paralysis Made the Capital Vulnerable to Massive Islamic State Bombings (Video)


Islamic State launched a series of suicide car and truck bombs in Baghdad on Wednesday, killing nearly 100 people and wounding nearly 200.

Posted on May 12, 2016 READ MORE

To the Next U.S. President, the Unlimited Power to Spy, Imprison and Kill


By mutual consent of those in power in Washington, all resistance to illegal surveillance, detainment and murder is now firmly in the past, and the power to use them will pass to the nation’s next leader—whoever it is.

Posted on May 11, 2016 READ MORE

Searing Heat May Spark Climate Exodus


Temperatures in the Middle East and North Africa could reach unbearably high levels that would make some regions uninhabitable and increase the pressure on climate refugees.

Posted on May 11, 2016 READ MORE

From the Truthdig Archives: The Terror America Wrought


President Barack Obama visited Hiroshima on Friday, the first sitting U.S. president to do so since the World War II atomic bombings of Japan. To acknowledge the historic trip, Truthdig reposts Editor in Chief Robert Scheer’s 2007 piece recalling the bombings.

Posted on May 10, 2016 READ MORE

Bashar Assad’s Brutality in Syria Is Matched by U.S. Devastation Across the Region


Why should Facebook users come down harder on the Syrian leader than on the United States government when it comes to horrific actions and war crimes in that part of the world?

Posted on May 8, 2016 READ MORE

Al-Qaida Everywhere: U.S. Support for Oppressive Governments Made Bin Laden’s Killing Moot (Video)


I think we may conclude that the decapitation strategy of dealing with al-Qaida does not work and has never worked.

Posted on May 8, 2016 READ MORE

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