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Tag: Iraq

Blackwater Founder Takes a Beating in Congress

Blackwater USA founder and chairman Erik Prince stubbornly defended his company Tuesday while members of the House Oversight Committee grilled him with questions such as “Why are we privatizing our military to an organization that has been aggressive and in some cases reckless in the handling of their duties?”

Posted on Oct 2, 2007 READ MORE
Square, Category Page

The State Dept.‘s Murderous Guardians

wounded man
AP photo / Hadi Mizban

How did it come to be that the ostensibly best-educated and most refined representatives of the United States in Iraq are guarded by gun-toting mercenaries who kill innocent civilians?  More urgently, why did State Department employees and their bosses in Washington tolerate—and pay to conceal—the wanton murder conducted on their watch?

Posted on Oct 2, 2007 READ MORE

Our Little Monster









Posted on Oct 2, 2007 ENLARGE

Iron Maiden Meets IEDs in ‘Heavy Metal in Baghdad’

Heavy Metal in Baghdad

Well, this particular motion picture decidedly won’t be the feel-good family drama of the year—and that’s just one more excellent reason to go see “Heavy Metal in Baghdad,” an inside glimpse into the Baghdad metalhead scene, when it (hopefully) comes to a theater near you.  Meanwhile, check out the theatrical trailer here.

Posted on Oct 2, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

The Silent Majority

Voters put Democrats in control of both houses of Congress last fall and, for this act of civic determination, they face an infuriating conundrum. Republicans are still running things.

Posted on Oct 2, 2007 READ MORE

Republicans Warm to Biden’s Iraq Plan

Astonishingly, 26 Republican senators broke with President Bush’s Iraq policy last week. But you may not have noticed this, and it’s not your fault.

Posted on Oct 2, 2007 READ MORE

Good News and Bad News from Adm. Mullen

The freshly sworn-in chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Michael Mullen, started his first day on the job with this revelation: “The fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan will one day end.” That’s a relief, coming from the newest member of Team Bush, but don’t get too excited, there’s more: “We must be ready for who and what comes after.” Oh dear.

Posted on Oct 1, 2007 READ MORE

Report Points to Blackwater’s Excessive Violence

According to a devastating new report from the House Oversight Committee, Blackwater USA employees engaged in at least 195 “escalation of force” incidents since 2005, with the private security firm firing 80 percent of the first shots (despite its purely defensive mandate). What’s worse, the State Department has provided little if any oversight, instead assisting the company as it carried out damage control.

Posted on Oct 1, 2007 READ MORE

Hersh:  Next Stop, Iran

Ahmadinejad and Bush
en.rian.ru

The New Yorker’s ever-tenacious Seymour Hersh is once again on the case of the Bush administration’s Mideast agenda, giving President Bush’s “Mission Evolving” speech from last month a more concrete evolutionary end point:  Iran. 

Posted on Oct 1, 2007 READ MORE

Iraqis Unite Against Splitting the Nation

Biden
uncorrelated.com

Sen. Joe Biden’s plan to divide Iraq along sectarian lines has had an unintended consequence: It has united much of the country, Shiite and Sunni alike, in opposition to the measure.

Posted on Sep 30, 2007 READ MORE

Iran to U.S.: I’m Rubber, You’re Glue

Iranian parliament
worldisround.com

The Iranian parliament has taken the I’m rubber, you’re glue approach to dealing with the U.S., labeling the United States Army and the CIA terrorist organizations, just days after Congress suggested the same designation for Iran’s Revolutionary Guards.

Posted on Sep 30, 2007 READ MORE

Bill Maher vs. Rep. Rahm Emanuel

Rahm Emanuel

The “Real Time” host asks one of the Democratic Party’s shining stars the question that seems to be on everyone’s mind: If you hate the war so much, why are you paying for it?

Posted on Sep 30, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

Dr. Bush









Posted on Sep 29, 2007 ENLARGE

Bush Before the War

Aznar and Bush
voltairenet.org

Joe Conason tells the story revealed by recently released transcripts of a meeting held between Spain’s then-prime minister and President Bush prior to the war. As one might expect, Bush was arrogant and determined to invade, diplomacy be damned.

Posted on Sep 28, 2007 READ MORE

Empty Promises

Yes, you heard it right: At the Dartmouth College debate Wednesday evening, not one of the three leading Democratic candidates could pledge that all U.S. combat troops would be out of Iraq by the end of his or her first term as president.

Posted on Sep 28, 2007 READ MORE

Iraq Will Have to Wait

Cheney and fighter jet
AP photo / Gerald Herbert

If you think the Iraq war is a disaster, just wait until we start bombing Iran. The countdown to another war is both real and terrifying, Ritter argues, and, distasteful though it may seem, it won’t be stopped so long as Iraq holds on to the spotlight.

Posted on Sep 27, 2007 READ MORE

Bush the Saboteur

The president’s strategy is to fake out the public so that it believes Democrats in Congress can’t perform basic governmental tasks. Is this any way to run a country?

Posted on Sep 27, 2007 READ MORE

How to Deal With Iran

The loud, angry and sterile debate over the Iranian president’s visit to Columbia University raises a more serious problem that has long confounded American policymakers: How to cope with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s real masters, the corrupt regime of mullahs who determine both foreign and domestic policy in Iran.

Posted on Sep 27, 2007 READ MORE

Global Consensus, Not Global Conquest

As world leaders gather this week to address the United Nations General Assembly, President Bush’s refusal to negotiate on the two key issues of our day—war and global warming—has been stunning. And the media haven’t helped.

Posted on Sep 25, 2007 READ MORE

Biden One-Ups Bush

Joe Biden
AP photo / Charlie Niebergall

It’s not just Bushie loyalists and Republicans who are gunning for more money to be poured (out of taxpayers’ pockets) into the Iraq war chest.  Take Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.), who is aiming to double Bush’s proposed $12 billion in funding for the rapid production of mine resistant ambush protected (MRAP) vehicles—a proposition which, Scheer argues, is about much more than the security of U.S. troops.

Posted on Sep 25, 2007 READ MORE

Clinton: Not One More Penny for the War

Russert and Clinton

Hillary Clinton shored up her left flank during an interview with Tim Russert, promising to vote against continued funding for the war in Iraq. Still, one must be wary of caveats such as “at the level we’ve seen.”

Posted on Sep 24, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

‘You Left Us With 50 Saddams’

Saddam statue
AP photo / Jerome Delay

As the U.S. government is learning much too late, democracy is not a one-size-fits-all application that can be lifted from one culture and grafted onto another.  Here, UK reporter Ian Black from the Guardian Unlimited takes a look at what’s really going on politically and culturally in Iraq according to a prominent historian and his Iraqi contacts.

Posted on Sep 24, 2007 READ MORE

Team Bush Wants $50 Billion More for ‘08 Military Budget

Add another $50 billion to the tab the Bush administration is looking to run up in military costs for the  ‘08 fiscal year, bringing the potential total to around $200 billion if this latest request goes through. 

Posted on Sep 23, 2007 READ MORE

The Iraqi Flag









Posted on Sep 23, 2007 ENLARGE

AFSC Dissects the Astronomical Cost of War

anti-war march
AP Photo / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

How could the $720 million the U.S. is currently spending on the Iraq war each day be put to better use?  Well, how about paying for the health care costs of 423,529 children?  Or giving 34,904 college students four-year scholarships, or providing 6,482 families with homes?

Posted on Sep 22, 2007 READ MORE

Canadian Mag Calls Bush ‘The New Saddam’

Maclean's cover
Macleans.ca

Chances are pretty darn slim that this is President Bush’s favorite cover model moment: Canadian magazine Maclean’s whipped up quite a provocative picture for its latest cover story, which makes the claim that “a desperate Washington is reaching out to the late dictator’s henchmen.”

Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE

Privatizing Murder

There is no set piece more emblematic of the tragic farce that is the American involvement in Iraq than the grotesque episode of Blackwater USA and the killing of civilians in Baghdad—at least nine and as many as 28—on Sunday.

Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE

Supporting the Troops, GOP-Style

soldiers
warnewsradio.org

Senate Republicans have successfully blocked a three-month expansion of troop leave, which the Democrats hoped would provide pressure to withdraw without cutting off funds. John McCain called the effort to give our fighting men and women 15 months off between combat deployments “dangerous.”

Posted on Sep 19, 2007 READ MORE

Pope Disses Rice

Rice
boston.com

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice may be persona non grata at the Vatican.  When Rice swung through Italy in August, she gave notice ahead of time about her hopes to meet with Pope Benedict XVI, but the pontiff’s camp politely rebuffed her request, explaining that he was on holiday.

Posted on Sep 19, 2007 READ MORE

Insurgency









Posted on Sep 19, 2007 ENLARGE

U.S. Diplomats Confined to the Green Zone

embassy pool
jfkclub.com

The State Department has restricted all U.S. diplomats to the Green Zone in Baghdad while it conducts a security review, presumably inspired by the suspension of its preferred mercenary bodyguards.

Posted on Sep 19, 2007 READ MORE

Iraq to Scrutinize Private Security Firms

The Iraqi government is taking a close look at all private security firms still involved in the ongoing conflict there following Sunday’s shootout in Baghdad, after which several contractors from Blackwater USA were accused of killing innocent bystanders while guarding U.S. officials.

Posted on Sep 18, 2007 READ MORE

War at the End of the Tunnel









Posted on Sep 18, 2007 ENLARGE

Your Handy Guide to Emmy Censorship

Sally Field

Sally Field worked her Emmy acceptance speech into an (unfortunately) incoherent anti-war crescendo during Sunday night’s telecast, which, like the other two muted moments showcased in this video montage by the always-hilarious Defamer team, was awkwardly squelched by hypervigilant editors at Fox.

Posted on Sep 17, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

Scahill on the Blackwater Backlash

Scahill

“Blackwater” author Jeremy Scahill sounds off on the security firm’s recent rampage and the impunity of America’s private militias.

Posted on Sep 17, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

Iraq Bans Blackwater, Launches Investigation

Blackwater
change-links.org

The Iraqi government has ordered employees of the North Carolina-based security firm Blackwater USA to leave the country and is opening a criminal investigation following Sunday’s deadly shootout in Baghdad, during which a group of Blackwater contractors escorting a convoy of U.S. officials opened fire on nearby civilians.

Posted on Sep 17, 2007 READ MORE

Crocker Sounds Alarm on Iraqi Refugees

Crocker and Bush
White House photo / Eric Draper

In a terse State Department memo, U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker admonishes America’s acceptance of Iraqi refugees as critically slow. Crocker estimates that it would take the U.S. nearly two years to process and admit 10,000 refugees referred for resettlement to the U.S.

Posted on Sep 17, 2007 READ MORE

Help With Petraeus’ Testimony

Political comedian Will Durst provides the answers to some frequently asked (and vexing) questions about Gen. David Petraeus’ testimony.

Posted on Sep 16, 2007 READ MORE

Hagel Calls Bush’s Use of Petraeus Dishonest

Hagel

Retiring Sen. Chuck Hagel tells Bill Maher why the president’s exploitation of Gen. Petraeus is “not only a dirty trick, but it’s dishonest, it’s hypocritical, it’s dangerous and irresponsible. The fact is, this is not Petraeus’ policy, it’s Bush’s policy.”

Posted on Sep 16, 2007 WATCH & LISTEN

Chris Hedges: Bush and Israel, Midwives to Radical Islam

The former New York Times Mideast bureau chief argues that America’s failure in Iraq and Israel’s humiliation in Lebanon have emboldened and empowered those in the Arab world who seek to topple U.S.-backed regimes in the Middle East and cripple the Jewish state.

Posted on Nov 6, 2006 READ MORE

Robert Scheer: Top Spys Story on Prewar Intel Is Finally Told

A jaded media ignores CBS’ well-documented revelation that the CIA clearly informed Bush that Saddam Hussein had no WMD program.

Posted on Apr 25, 2006 READ MORE

Robert Scheer: Bush’s Nutty Nuclear Braggadocio

Iran Oil

“A once swaggering president, who so convincingly wielded a bullhorn and modeled a flight suit, now has assumed the pretzel pose of a supplicant attempting to cajole our old enemy in Tehran into dropping its nuclear ambitions while simultaneously initiating talks with Iran aimed at bailing us out in Iraq.”

Posted on Apr 18, 2006 READ MORE

Robert Scheer: Now Powell Tells Us

Colin Powell told me that he and his department’s top experts never believed that Iraq posed an imminent nuclear threat, but that the president followed the misleading advice of Vice President Dick Cheney and the CIA in making the claim.

Posted on Apr 11, 2006 READ MORE

Bush Bombs in Cleveland

Bush Cleveland
AP/Mark Duncan

On the third anniversary of the beginning of his Iraq catastrophe, President Bush yet again dealt in denial, but this time the carefully screened audience at the Cleveland City Club wasn’t buying it.

Posted on Mar 21, 2006 READ MORE

Bush’s Fantasy of ‘Progress’ in Iraq

Iraqi woman wailing
Khalid Mohammed / AP

“If such constant mayhem is taken as a sign of progress, three years after the U.S. invasion, then Bush will surely be thrilled by what the future holds.”

Posted on Mar 14, 2006 READ MORE

Civil War









Posted on Feb 27, 2006 ENLARGE

Dream On, Condi

Condoleezza Rice with Al Jafari
AP

There is no way to soft-pedal it: The astounding rise of an anti-American firebrand like Moqtada al-Sadr is an indicator of how wide and complete a political defeat pro-Western forces have suffered in Iraq.

Posted on Feb 14, 2006 READ MORE

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