Friday, October 15, 2004

<>War News for October 16, 2004 Really early in the morning edition<> Bring ‘em on: Two Iraqi journalists gunned down outside their homes in separate shootings

Bring ‘em on: One killed, 11 wounded in car bomb blast in Iraq

Bring ‘em on: British security guard killed in Kirkuk

Platoon defies orders in Iraq: A 17-member Army Reserve platoon with troops from Jackson and around the Southeast deployed to Iraq is under arrest for refusing a "suicide mission" to deliver fuel, the troops' relatives said Thursday. The soldiers refused an order on Wednesday to go to Taji, Iraq — north of Baghdad — because their vehicles were considered "deadlined" or extremely unsafe, said Patricia McCook of Jackson, wife of Sgt. Larry O. McCook.

Inquiry Opens After Reservists Balk in Baghdad: Some 18 members of the 343rd Quartermaster Company, based in Rock Hill, S.C., were detained at gunpoint for nearly two days after disobeying orders to drive trucks that they said had not been serviced and were not being escorted by armed vehicles to Taji, about 15 miles north of Baghdad, relatives said after speaking to some of the soldiers.

US Probes Whether Troops in Iraq Refused Mission: The military is investigating the reported refusal this week by some U.S. troops to take part in a supply convoy in Iraq, where explosive devices have killed dozens of soldiers, defense officials said on Friday. A statement issued by the U.S. military in Iraq called it an "isolated incident." Family members of some of the nearly 20 troops told a U.S. newspaper that security for the fuel trucks was inadequate.

Department of Timely Actions in the War on Terror: U.S. Orders Freeze on Zarqawi Network Assets: The United States on Friday ordered a freeze on assets of the militant group led by Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, which has claimed responsibility for a series of bombings, kidnappings and beheadings in Iraq. Officials acknowledge that it was unlikely Tawhid and Jihad would hold bank accounts in its own name.

Department of Boy We’re In Trouble Now: Armenia May Not Send Troops to Iraq: Armenia's prime minister suggested Friday the Caucasus country might not send troops to Iraq, saying conditions there have changed since they were promised. The 50 troops Armenia is considering sending — bomb disposal experts, doctors and transport teams — would work under Polish command in Iraq.

Poland to Reduce Number of Troops in Iraq: Poland said Friday it plans to reduce the number of its troops in Iraq from early next year and will not remain there "an hour longer than is sensible." <> 4-Star Plans After Abu Ghraib: The Pentagon plans to promote Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, former head of military operations in Iraq, risking a confrontation with members of Congress because of the prisoner abuses that occurred during his tenure. Senior Pentagon officials, including Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have privately told colleagues they are determined to pin a fourth star on Sanchez, two senior defense officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said this week.

Military, families believe US sent too few troops into Iraq: Poll: "The military clearly likes President George W. Bush better than Senator John Kerry, and strongly believes in its mission in Iraq and his handling of it," said Adam Clymer, political director of the poll. "But the military, without focusing on Bush himself, also has serious doubts about how the war has been managed," he added.

Auditor: It's unclear how Iraq funds spent: U.S. and Iraqi officials doled out hundreds of millions of dollars in oil proceeds and other money for Iraqi projects earlier this year, but there was little effort to monitor or justify the expenditures, according to an audit released yesterday. Files that could explain many of the payments are missing or nonexistent, and contracting rules were ignored, according to auditors working for an agency created by the United Nations.

Jan. 31 election date is 'not sacred': Iraq's president said in an interview published yesterday that the Jan. 31 date for Iraqi elections is "not sacred" and the vote could be postponed if a lack of security threatens the fairness of balloting.

U.S. Intensifying Bombing Attacks on Falluja Sites: Beginning Thursday, American jets began their most intense bombardment of the city yet, dropping 11 satellite- and laser-guided 500-pound bombs on suspected guerrilla safe houses and weapons depots, as 1,600 American marines moved forward under artillery fire to set up the checkpoints, designed to snare insurgents moving out of the city. Ghazi al-Yawar, the Iraqi president and a Sunni Arab, warned recently about the consequences of a military assault on Falluja, which most Iraqi leaders and American commanders here expect will be very violent. "We learn one thing in Iraq: that blood causes more blood," Mr. Yawar said in an interview last week, referring to an attack on Falluja. "It will send ripples as far as Mosul, which has the biggest Sunni Arab population, three million plus, which is living in a very tense situation right now. It is very dangerous."

U.K. Discusses Deployment of Iraq Forces: Britain's Ministry of Defense said Friday that it was discussing coalition troop deployments in Iraq with the country's interim government and U.S. officials. But it denied it had agreed to send British troops to the Baghdad area so that American forces based there could join the U.S. assault on Fallujah, the major stronghold of Sunni insurgents. BBC TV said that Britain is considering sending the regiment from Basra, a relatively peaceful city in southern Iraq, to the Baghdad area in the north, where it would be under U.S. command and rules of engagement.

Analysis: <> Opinion: Bush Re-Election Would Leave Path Open To Imperial Dreams: If the president wins again, he will oversee an even more radical administration than his first. With his all-or-nothing temperament, he will take re-election as carte blanche to go ahead with his program of pre-emption and imperium. Rather than pulling back from future Iraqs, he will rush ahead, feeling ordained by history. In fact, as numerous indicators attest, the neocon group around the president are already readying for the next step -- to force the U.S. to take on Iran as well as Iraq, and perhaps then Syria. (Georgie Ann Geyer is a conservative columnist and foreign affairs specialist whose anti-Bush views have steadily evolved since the last (s)election. It is worthwhile to read through her archived columns, if only to see a conservative who is capable of rational thought.)


<>Local story: Delaware soldier killed outside Baghdad

Local story: Illinois soldier remembered as dedicated mother

Local story: Minnesota DynCorp employee killed in Baghdad bombings

Local story: Connecticut DynCorp employee killed in Baghdad bombings

Local story: Ohio soldier killed in Iraq

Local story: Wisconsin Marine killed in Babil province (login required)


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