Friday, October 21, 2005

DAILY WAR NEWS FOR FRIDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2005 Bring ‘em on: Iraq new black hole of terror, from Gulf Daily News Bring ‘em on: Yet another al -Zarqawi "top aide" captured in Iraq. The statement said Dulaimi was "highly regarded" by top al Qaeda leaders in Iraq including the group's chief, Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. "(Dulaimi) was chiefly responsible for planning and executing all terrorist attacks on Iraqi and Coalition forces in the Ramadi and Falluja areas," the statement said. Bring ‘em on: A suicide car bomb killed police officer in Khalis Bring ‘em on: Defense lawyer in Saddam trial abducted Bring 'em on: UPDATE: Lawyer who was kidnapped found dead. Bring 'em on: Updated story on the child killed at Tigris Primary School Bring 'em on: Canadian report on the fighters from their country who are part of Iraqi's insurgency. Bring ‘em on: Israeli, Irishmen among foreign fighters in Iraq Bring ‘em on: Journalist shot dead in Baghdad by unknown assailants. Bring ‘em on: Marine killed in Karabilah by suicide car bomb. Bring ‘em on: GI’s and Syrians in Tense Clashes on Iraqi Border Bring ‘em on: Gunman fire on Sunni worshippers as they were leaving the al- Hamid mosque in Baghdad, killing three elderly men. Bring ‘em on: A suicide car bomb killed four civilians and injured 14 outside governor’s office in Baquba. Bring ‘em on: Gunmen dressed as Iraqi policemen kidnapped the head of a concrete company in al Mansur district of Baghdad. Bring ‘em on: Soldier killed and four were wounded when their vehicle caught fire near Tikrit. Bring ‘em on: A suicide car bomb killed four and wounded 13 in downtown Diyala. Bring ‘em on: Two people killed in drive by shooting outside a food shop in Baghdad Bring ‘em on: Governor of Salahaddin province survived an assassination attempt. Clashes broke out in several districts of Ramadi, with one civilian killed. Bring ‘em on: US national among 376 foreigners captured in Iraq. 78 came from Egypt, 66 from Syria, 41 from Sudan, 32 from Saudi Arabia, 17 from Jordan, 13 from Iran, 2 from Britain, one from Denmark, France, Israel, and Ireland. Bring ‘em on: Four civilians killed and 18 seriously wounded when mortar rounds landed on the city of Samarra Bring 'em on: Six Iraqis murdered in Babel governorate south of Baghdad Bring 'em on: Three Marines killed by IED near Nasser Wa Salaam Bring 'em on: US soldier dies from wounds received on October 20, 2005 Bring 'em on: British soldier killed in Iraq Bring 'em on: Gunmen kill three Iraqi soldiers Bring 'em on: Deputy Chairman of Arab-Kurd Friendship Society killed in Diyali THE TRAGEDY OF IRAQ: Deliberate destruction of Iraqi civilian infrastructure by US bombing in the First Gulf War, along with US-backed economic sanctions, caused hundreds of thousands to die from treatable diseases and malnutrition. Most vulnerable as always were children, women, and the old. The recent conflict has wrought near-apocalyptic results upon the infrastructure.... “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” —Senior adviser to President Bush, 2002. THE TRAGEDY OF IRAQ: Arab League Chief Condemns Insurgent Violence. The head of the Arab League on Thursday strongly condemned insurgent violence in Iraq, trying to overcome suspicion of the pan-Arab body from the country’s Shiite and Kurdish leaders on his first visit since the fall of Saddam Hussein. Secretary-General Amr Moussa is trying to organize a reconciliation conference among Iraq’s sharply divided Shiites, Kurds and Sunni Arabs, the first major intervention by the Arab League in the country’s relentless bloodshed. But he has faced reluctance from the Shiite and Kurdish leaders who lead the government, who have complained that the league has taken too long to seek a role, resent the league’s past support for Saddam, and are suspicious the mainly Sunni body is biased toward Iraq’s Sunni Arab minority. THE TRAGEDY OF IRAQ: Pre-War Assessment of the Effects of War on the Children of Iraq: OUR COMMON RESPONSIBILITY - The report examines the physical and mental well being of the 12 million Iraqi children based on data collected in Iraq between 20 and 26 January 2003. Perhaps the most startling findings are based on field data collected by two of the world's foremost child psychologists, who are leading experts on the psychological impact of war on children. They found that Iraqi children are suffering significant psychological harm due to the threat of war that is hanging over their head. THE NEIGHBORS ARE WORRIED: Arab League chief Amr Moussa, who has said Iraq is on the verge of civil war, held talks with Iraqi leaders on Thursday on a tough mission to promote national reconciliation in a country ravaged by violence. On his first postwar visit to Iraq, the former Egyptian diplomat met Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari and was also expected to hold talks with President Jalal Talabani and leading Shi'ite cleric Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani. OR THEY MIGHT BE JUDGEMENTAL: Iran thinks Saddam might be guilty. The preliminary charges against Hussein at the time of his July 2004 arraignment related to purported crimes against humanity committed during his Ba'ath Party's 35-year rule of Iraq. These charges reportedly relate to the 1990 invasion of Kuwait, the 1988 chemical attacks on Iraqi Kurds in Halabja, the 1974 intentional killing of Iraqi religious figures, the 1983 killing of Barzani clan members, the 1987-88 Anfal campaign against the Kurds, and the suppression of the Kurdish and Shi'ite uprisings in 1991. (And some of them think that western governments help Saddam out.) He claimed that although the initial chemical attacks on Iranians were ineffective, later ones had a bigger impact because of scientific and technical assistance from the West. WAR PIMP ALERT: Rice won't rule out armed action against Syria, Iran WAR PIMP ALERT: Rice Declines to Give Senators Timeline for Iraq Withdrawal. (Not surprising in that they intend to never leave.) As Rice testified, former U.S. diplomat Mary Ann Wright stood up and shouted from the audience, "Stop the killing in Iraq. You and Congress have to be responsible." Wright, a senior envoy in the U.S. embassies in Afghanistan and Mongolia, resigned in protest in 2003. THERE IS SOME GOOD BEING DONE IN IRAQ: UN touts work being done to help IraqisDuring this summer's fighting in Iraq, the United Nations and Iraqi authorities quietly vaccinated nearly 5 million children. U.N. agencies helped by Iraqi experts also chlorinate vulnerable water supplies every month, which has prevented cholera, and nearly 8 million youngsters are going to school with U.N. help and school bags filled with supplies mainly paid for by the European Union. De Mistura said these are some examples of the little-known work the United Nations is doing in the country - either alone or in cooperation with Iraqis and the international community. AND SOME GOOD NEWS: Iraq Encouraged by Saddam Nephew's Arrest The capture of a nephew of Saddam Hussein who is believed to be the top financier for Iraq's insurgents could help track down the source of the funds from abroad, the interior minister said Thursday. Interior Minister Bayan Jabr said the suspect has told interrogators he was receiving money from someone "from the family of Saddam" living in "other Arab countries" to deliver to insurgents in Iraq. (well, I guess you can call this good news, but I rather think it is pretty trivial to most Iraqis right now.) SOME MORE GOOD NEWS: Rory Carroll, Baghdad correspondent for the Guardian, is free! (and the "insurgents release people faster than the coalition forces do!) ABOUT THAT VOTE: Vote Figures for Crucial Province Don't Add Up. The early vote totals from Nineveh province, which suggested an overwhelming majority in favour of Iraq's draft constitution that assured its passage by national referendum, now appear to have been highly misleading. The final official figures for the province, obtained by IPS from a U.S. official in Mosul, actually have the constitution being rejected by a fairly wide margin, but less than the two-thirds majority required to defeat it outright. Both the initial figures and the new vote totals raise serious questions about the credibility of the reported results in Nineveh. A leading Sunni political figure has already charged that the Nineveh vote totals have been altered. ABOUT THAT TRIAL: Saddam Hussein stands trial in a court he does not acknowledge. MORE MORE ABOUT THAT TRIAL: Hussein facing charges of revenge killings: After would-be assassins opened fire on the leader's convoy in 1982, Hussein's forces razed the village, hauling away the men and older boys to prison and the women and children to desolate stockades in the desert. In Iraq, Two Views: Hero or Villain. As one Iraqi put it: "The women and children who were killed were wives and children of these enemies. When the resistance fought in Fallujah, didn't the Americans destroy the whole the city?" MIXED FEELINGS ABOUT SADDAM: Some remain loyal; others want payback Hassan Alwan Saad, mayor of this farming town 35 miles north of Baghdad, keeps a list of more than 300 local men he says vanished or were killed during the regime of Saddam Hussein. Buhriz, which is in a mostly Sunni Arab area, felt the heel of Saddam's repression. But Wednesday, as Saad watched the beginning of Saddam's trial on charges of murder and torture, he looked back with respect. "He was a great president," said Saad, 50, as images of Saddam's trial flashed on a small television. "He was a dictator. He did bad things to his people. But he was able to control the whole country. Today, everything is out of control." ABOUT THAT CONSTITUTION: Trapped by their initial grandiose plans to remake Iraq and by Ayatollah Sistani's hard-nosed maneuvering in favor of free elections and Shiite majority rule, the United States continues to watch not just Iraq but the region slip out of its hands, even as it continues to bomb. MORE ABOUT THAT CONSTITUTION: Taking Iraq Apart -The constitution cedes almost complete territorial control and authority to the regions of the three principal communities. This includes oil revenues, which would put Arab Sunnis at a big disadvantage since almost all the oil is produced in Shia and Kurdish regions. The constitution also prevents former members of the Ba'ath party, to which most Sunnis belonged, from holding public office. The document will alienate yet more Sunnis, and be another impediment to Iraqis working together again. THE WAR AT HOME: Equipment shortage hindering Guard THE WAR AT HOME: The Iraq war is coming home, with more than one of every four returning vets complaining of mental or physical wounds caused by the conflict. The first time the U.S. went to war with Iraq, in 1991, ground combat lasted precisely 100 hours, but its impact on the U.S. troops who waged it, including physical and mental scars, was ignored and belittled by the Pentagon hierarchy for years. This time, with the war going much worse for U.S. forces, the Pentagon is paying much closer attention to the invisible wounds combat is leaving on soldiers THE SHAME OF AMERICA (ABOUT AFGHANISTAN): US tries to limit damage from Taliban body burning THE SHAME OF AMERICA: Deaths in US Custody (from Human Rights First) Human Rights First’s review of deaths in U.S. custody includes the case of Iraqi Major General Abed Hamed Mowhoush, who suffocated to death after two soldiers allegedly stuffed him inside a sleeping bag, wrapped him in an electric cord, sat on him, and blocked his airways. One of the solders, Chief Warrant Officer Lewis Welshofer, was given a letter of reprimand by his commanding officer, General Swanick. In this memo (right), Welshofer writes a rebuttal to the reprimand; General Swanick’s response, handwritten at the top, is: “Death was from asphyxiation! I expect a better adherence to standards in the future!” Welshofer has since been charged with murder and faces a court martial in January 2005. THE SHAME OF AMERICA: Virginia Company Admits paying "Oil-for-Food" Bribes THE SHAME OF AMERICA: An analysis by human rights lawyers has found numerous flaws in U.S. military investigations into deaths of prisoners in U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan, including failure to interview key witnesses or collect and preserve evidence usable by prosecutors. The Pentagon said about 108 detainees have died in U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2002, not counting those killed in insurgent mortar attacks on detention facilities. THE SHAME OF BRITAIN: Speaking at a Justice debate after his election as Lord Alexander's successor, Lord Steyn said: "After the recent dreadful bombings in London we were asked to believe that the Iraq war did not make London and the world a more dangerous place. Surely, on top of everything else, we do not have to listen to a fairy tale." THE SHAME OF AMERICA: It is true, many Americans would also rather not deal with it — too depressing, too remote from more immediate concerns, and too much a hot-button issue used by "the left" to "beat up" the administration. Others believe the administration’s rhetoric of saving American lives through "harsh" interrogation techniques. Nonetheless, continuing revelations of torture, murder and ill treatment of detainees — and evidence of the practice of rendition, described by one observer as the "outsourcing of torture" to other countries — continue to disturb people of conscience and trouble those who soberly assess the negative impact on America's reputation and security. THE SHAME OF AMERICA: Cenk Uygur: An Offensive War The White House has been pushing two irreconcilable ideas at the same time about the Iraq War. 1. War was a last resort. 2. We decided to go on the offense. How is a war started for the express purpose of going "on the offense" a war of last resort? Furthermore, we seem to have forgotten that preemptive means to preempt. -- You have to be nuts or completely disingenuous to believe that Iraq was about to launch an invasion of the United States. That also has another name: a war of aggression. THE SHAME OF AMERICA: More information on Saddam's guilt and western involvement might be found in these papers released from the National Security Archive. THE SHAME OF AMERICA: PBS does a program on The Torture Question THE AFTEREFFECTS OF WAR: Little progress seen on processing time of veterans' disability claims. THE AFTEREFFECTS OF WAR: Soldier brings Iraqi dog to America: "But when he got back in March 2004, he was determined to complete a final mission: to rescue Scout, a dog he and other soldiers had adopted, from the increasingly bloody streets of Baghdad and bring him to his Howard County home." (I think he should have brought a couple of Iraqi families and orphans home with him.) THE AFTEREFFECTS OF WAR: UN Warns of Dwindling Respect for Rule of Law - Iraq's special war crimes tribunal, and the "anti-terror" measures pursued by its occupying powers, the United States and Britain, are under fire from the United Nations for undermining international human rights standards. COMMENTARY OPINION: We have proof UK bombed us. Iran said yesterday it has proof that Britain was involved in a double bomb attack last week that killed six people and injured more than 100 in Ahvaz. (I am not sure if this is opinion, or a breaking story.) OPINION: Where does terrorism start? If we were Hegelians we would accept Blair and Bush's explanations of historical phenomena by reference to ideology. I, however, prefer to do as Marx did and turn history from its head back on its feet. History is the generator of ideology not vice versa. Rather than explain, ideology is itself in need of explaining. We must go beyond the evil ideology to the evil reality that spawns and fosters it. Ideology cannot be the starting point, but the conclusion to the search for causes and origins. OPINION: Does democracy lead to the end of terrorism? The Bush administration says it does, but experts are increasingly doubtful. OPINION: Commentary: A mix of nationalism, zealotry and humiliation drives rising suicide attacks. OPINION: Being a Conscientious Objector is the highest form of patriotism when it is an objection to an aggressive war that destroys a culture of innocent people for no good reason, and abuses the integrity of the service of those who volunteered to defend our country, expecting the same integrity from those who lead them. OPINION: Robert Fisk talks to Amy Goodman about Iraq and his lack of hope for the region. On DemocracyNow.org for October 20, 2005. (no link, you know where to go.) OPINION: The Evolution of the Iraq War: We know by now that there was precious little "intelligent design" at work in our occupation of Iraq, although the original military attacks were spectacularly accomplished. Our policy moved from 1) believing that the Iraqis would welcome us as liberators and immediately adopt democracy, despite their bitter history, to 2) amazement, finally bordering on despair, over the internal breakup of the country, to 3) the U.S. military command's lowering of expectations for what can be accomplished in that strange and hostile land, to 4) the genuine, if perhaps impossible, creation of an elected and constitutional government that would give "cover" to American withdrawal and leave some mutant form of united Iraq behind, no matter what it might choose to do in the future. OPINION: Arab TV tackles terrorism OPINION: Total Victory -What could be a total victory in at war staged and waged on lies and deceit? In the run-up to the war, Mr. Bush and his administration told us repeatedly that we must invade Iraq because they had weapons of mass destruction, including an imminent nuclear capability that would be used against us because Iraq was involved in the 9/11 attacks and would attack us again. The unspoken objectives were control of Iraq’s vast oil reserves, permanent U.S. military bases, oil and war profits, and a distraction from corporate scandals like Enron. Bush’s fear-fraught excuses to attack Iraq have proven to be as bogus as Adolph Hitler’s charade when he declared that Poland had invaded Germany to justify launching the horror and holocaust of World War II. OPINION: One Iraqi blogger says “Do Not Kill Our Children” OPINION: Gold Star Families for Peace have a message for Bush. OPINION: Why only Saddam? Try them all! Nay, it is not being argued that Saddam is an angel. He and his men belong to the same matrix as monsters like Ivan the Terrible and his black clad and black horse mounted oprichniki who dealt death and devastation to the innocent. But his crimes could have been avoided and tens of thousands of innocent lives saved, hadn’t the West sponsored his oppressive regime and aided and abetted his crimes. PEACE ACTIONS: And Voices in the Wilderness will be holding memorials next week for Iraqi civilian casualties. They are asking 1,000 groups to ring a bell 1,000 times to mark the estimated deaths of 100,000 Iraqi civilians. Voices for Creative Nonviolence and Justice Not Vengeance call for bell ringing ceremonies to grieve and protest the deaths of Iraqis in the US/UK war and occupation. PEACE ACTIONS: Upcoming Vigil - Not one more death. Not one more dollar. American Friends and United for Peace and Justice are organizing vigils against the Iraq war. These will be held the day after the 2,000th reported US military death in Iraq. There are currently 169 events planned in 36 states. The current death toll is 1,992. CASUALTY REPORTS Local story: NC based Marine killed by suicide bomb in Iraq Local story: Maryland Marine killed by suicide bomb in Iraq Local story: Second Stryker brigade soldier dies (Alaska) Local story: National Guard soldier from Maryland dies when truck collision causes ammunition to detonate. Foreign story: French reporter died in Iraq in 2003. They have yet to find his body. Local story: Soldier from Huron dies in Iraq Local story: Community mourns loss of Virginia Marine killed in Iraq Local Story: Another South Dakotan Dies in Iraq QUOTE OF THE DAY: "When this war is over, there will be a reckoning" -Ada Monroe in Cold Mountain Post done by Susan- thanks to matt for teaching me how to do this, let’s hope the links work!


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