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Index » Regional/Local » Africa/Middle East » Iraq Page: 1, 2, 3 ... 134, 135, 136  Next
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RichardPrins
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Posted: Jun 11, 2015 - 12:36am

Obama approves plan to send 450 new troops to Iraq in fight against Isis
US faces dilemma as administration stresses reinforcements ‘will not serve in a combat role’ but will be deployed as advisers and trainers
Barack Obama authorised “up to 450 additional military personnel” to be deployed to the eastern Anbar province, the White House announced on Wednesday. The reinforcements will bring the number of US military forces in Iraq to 3,550.

RichardPrins
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Posted: Jun 2, 2015 - 7:18pm

(...) But Humvees need a lot of maintenance, a lot of fuel and require special parts from the US. For ISIL, the Toyota Land Cruiser was far easier to maintain and more effective. So they came up with a new way of using the vehicle.

Over the last few months ISIL have realised the true worth of the Humvee is not on the frontline, but as a bomb. There are several reasons for this. Firstly the Humvee, with its reinforced armour can easily repel small to medium arms fire, allowing ISIL to drive closely up to Iraq security forces. It's also roomy enough to be packed with a lot of explosives. Finally, the vehicle is still used by Iraqi forces and so can easily be confused for a friendly vehicle at a distance.

ISIL have deployed the weapon to devastating effect against the Iraqis.

When Ramadi fell to ISIL nearly three weeks ago, ISIL used a combination of sleeper cells inside the city and Humvee car bombs to split Iraqi troops. That manoeuvre has encouraged ISIL to deploy the weapon in great numbers against the Iraqis and use other military vehicles that once belonged to their enemy.

On Tuesday, the group used a stolen tank packed with explosives to cause extensive casualties and damage to al Muthanna airbase in Salahudeen province.

The repurposing of civilian cars by emptying the fuel tanks and packing them with explosives has been a feature of every armed rebellion and war, the world over for the last 20 years. In 1982 in Lebanon a truck bomb killed hundreds of US troops. Dealing with the threat in Iraq should now be a priority, but defending yourself against a suicide car bomb is a significant challenge.

Hisham al-Hisham, a military analyst who specialises in strategy in Iraq said the tactic was a game changer.

"The threat matrix has changed. Iraq security forces need to be much more aggressive in targeting the vehicles but that's difficult because of the lack of reconnaissance and intelligence gathering capabilities available," Hisham said.

In urban areas that means detecting car bombs before they explode. Using sniffer dogs, checkpoints and manual searches however can only go so far. ISIL have been bribing poor families into to parking explosive-laden cars in busy areas and remotely detonating the bombs. 

Iraq's biggest problem is that it's nearly impossible to prevent a car bomb. If someone is determined too blow himself up, then that will happen. Airstrikes are ineffective because without intelligence how do you know what to hit? Iraq needs much larger troop presence, with wider perimeters around the areas they control. They also need more anti-tank weapons that can be deployed quickly when a wave of attacks starts.

However, ISIL has numbers on its side. There is no shortage of suicide bombers and no shortage of vehicles.


Red_Dragon
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Posted: Oct 7, 2014 - 8:32am

 cc_rider wrote:

Everything old is new again.

Except Schlabby's linen pants. Those are never coming back in style. 

 
Winter thinks otherwise.
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Posted: Oct 7, 2014 - 8:02am

 RichardPrins wrote:
Almost time for another century celebration...
BBC News - The 1920s British air bombing campaign in Iraq

 
Everything old is new again.

Except Schlabby's linen pants. Those are never coming back in style. 
RichardPrins
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Posted: Oct 7, 2014 - 7:22am

Almost time for another century celebration...
BBC News - The 1920s British air bombing campaign in Iraq
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Posted: Sep 16, 2014 - 9:21am

Everyone who's surprised, please raise your hand...

US General: Ground troops option if anti-IS strategy fails
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Posted: Aug 13, 2014 - 9:32pm

The Rise of ISIS: US Invasion of Iraq, Foreign Backing of Syrian Rebels Helped Fuel Jihadis’ Advance | Democracy Now!

IS: good in Syria, bad in Iraq.

Glenn Greenwald on Iraq: Is U.S. "Humanitarianism" Only Summoned to Control Oil-Rich Areas? | Democracy Now!

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Posted: Aug 8, 2014 - 4:06pm

U.S. "Humanitarian" Bombing of Iraq: A Redundant Presidential Ritual - The Intercept/Greenwald
Isis Consolidates- Patrick Cockburn
(...) The foster parents of Isis and the other Sunni jihadi movements in Iraq and Syria are Saudi Arabia, the Gulf monarchies and Turkey. This doesn’t mean the jihadis didn’t have strong indigenous roots, but their rise was crucially supported by outside Sunni powers. The Saudi and Qatari aid was primarily financial, usually through private donations, which Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6, says were central to the Isis takeover of Sunni provinces in northern Iraq: ‘Such things do not happen spontaneously.’ In a speech in London in July, he said the Saudi policy towards jihadis has two contradictory motives: fear of jihadis operating within Saudi Arabia, and a desire to use them against Shia powers abroad. He said the Saudis are ‘deeply attracted towards any militancy which can effectively challenge Shiadom’. It’s unlikely the Sunni community as a whole in Iraq would have lined up behind Isis without the support Saudi Arabia gave directly or indirectly to many Sunni movements. The same is true of Syria, where Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the former Saudi ambassador to Washington and head of Saudi intelligence from 2012 to February 2014, was doing everything he could to back the jihadi opposition until his dismissal. Fearful of what they’ve helped create, the Saudis are now veering in the other direction, arresting jihadi volunteers rather than turning a blind eye as they go to Syria and Iraq, but it may be too late. Saudi jihadis have little love for the House of Saud. On 23 July, Isis launched an attack on one of the last Syrian army strongholds in the northern province of Raqqa. It began with a suicide car-bomb attack; the vehicle was driven by a Saudi called Khatab al-Najdi who had put pictures on the car windows of three women held in Saudi prisons, one of whom was Hila al-Kasir, his niece.

Turkey’s role has been different but no less significant than Saudi Arabia’s in aiding Isis and other jihadi groups. Its most important action has been to keep open its 510-mile border with Syria. This gave Isis, al-Nusra and other opposition groups a safe rear base from which to bring in men and weapons. The border crossing points have been the most contested places during the rebels’ ‘civil war within the civil war’. Most foreign jihadis have crossed Turkey on their way to Syria and Iraq. Precise figures are difficult to come by, but Morocco’s Interior Ministry said recently that 1122 Moroccan jihadists have entered Syria, including nine hundred who went in 2013, two hundred of whom were killed. Iraqi security suspects that Turkish military intelligence may have been heavily involved in aiding Isis when it was reconstituting itself in 2011. Reports from the Turkish border say Isis is no longer welcome, but with weapons taken from the Iraqi army and the seizure of Syrian oil and gasfields, it no longer needs so much outside help.

For America, Britain and the Western powers, the rise of Isis and the Caliphate is the ultimate disaster. Whatever they intended by their invasion of Iraq in 2003 and their efforts to get rid of Assad in Syria since 2011, it was not to see the creation of a jihadi state spanning northern Iraq and Syria run by a movement a hundred times bigger and much better organised than the al-Qaida of Osama bin Laden. The war on terror for which civil liberties have been curtailed and hundreds of billions of dollars spent has failed miserably. The belief that Isis is interested only in ‘Muslim against Muslim’ struggles is another instance of wishful thinking: Isis has shown it will fight anybody who doesn’t adhere to its bigoted, puritanical and violent variant of Islam. Where Isis differs from al-Qaida is that it’s a well-run military organisation that is very careful in choosing its targets and the optimum moment to attack them.

Many in Baghdad hope the excesses of Isis – for example, blowing up mosques it deems shrines, like that of Younis (Jonah) in Mosul – will alienate the Sunnis. In the long term they may do just that, but opposing Isis is very dangerous and, for all its brutality, it has brought victory to a defeated and persecuted Sunni community. Even those Sunnis in Mosul who don’t like it are fearful of the return of a vengeful Shia-dominated Iraqi government. So far Baghdad’s response to its defeat has been to bomb Mosul and Tikrit randomly, leaving local people in no doubt about its indifference to their welfare or survival. The fear will not change even if Maliki is replaced by a more conciliatory prime minister. A Sunni in Mosul, writing just after a missile fired by government forces had exploded in the city, told me: ‘Maliki’s forces have already demolished the University of Tikrit. It has become havoc and rubble like all the city. If Maliki reaches us in Mosul he will kill its people or turn them into refugees. Pray for us.’ Such views are common, and make it less likely that Sunnis will rise up in opposition to Isis and its Caliphate. A new and terrifying state has been born.

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Posted: Jul 31, 2014 - 5:05am

We get this done and it will enlighten those that don't already know what's up:

9/11 Link To Saudi Arabia Is Topic Of 28 Redacted Pages In Government Report; Congressmen Push For Release
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Posted: Jul 30, 2014 - 6:58pm

 Red_Dragon wrote:

In a national radio address on September 28, 2002, President Bush flatly asserted: "The Iraqi regime possesses biological and chemical weapons, is rebuilding the facilities to make more and, according to the British government, could launch a biological or chemical attack in as little as 45 minutes after the order is given. The regime has long-standing and continuing ties to terrorist groups, and there are al Qaeda terrorists inside Iraq. This regime is seeking a nuclear bomb, and with fissile material could build one within a year."

What the American people did not know at the time was that, just three weeks before Bush's radio address, in early September, Central Intelligence Agency Director George Tenet told the Senate Intelligence Committee that there was no National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Such an assessment had not been done in years because nobody within the intelligence community had deemed it necessary, and, remarkably, nobody at the White House had requested that it be done.

The CIA put the NIE together in less than three weeks. It proved to be false. As the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence later concluded, "Postwar findings do not support the 2002 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) judgment that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.

THANKS OBAMA! 



 
Not to mention that there really was no al-Qaeda presence in Iraq. Hussein was a ruthless dictator and a megalomaniac; he was not going to allow anyone who might threaten his rule to gain a foothold in Iraq , much less welcome them as allies. 
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Posted: Jul 30, 2014 - 6:47pm

In a national radio address on September 28, 2002, President Bush flatly asserted: "The Iraqi regime possesses biological and chemical weapons, is rebuilding the facilities to make more and, according to the British government, could launch a biological or chemical attack in as little as 45 minutes after the order is given. The regime has long-standing and continuing ties to terrorist groups, and there are al Qaeda terrorists inside Iraq. This regime is seeking a nuclear bomb, and with fissile material could build one within a year."

What the American people did not know at the time was that, just three weeks before Bush's radio address, in early September, Central Intelligence Agency Director George Tenet told the Senate Intelligence Committee that there was no National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Such an assessment had not been done in years because nobody within the intelligence community had deemed it necessary, and, remarkably, nobody at the White House had requested that it be done.

The CIA put the NIE together in less than three weeks. It proved to be false. As the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence later concluded, "Postwar findings do not support the 2002 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) judgment that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.

THANKS OBAMA! 


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Posted: Jun 30, 2014 - 11:30am

Before Shooting in Iraq, a Warning on Blackwater - NYTimes.com
Just weeks before Blackwater guards fatally shot 17 civilians at Baghdad’s Nisour Square in 2007, the State Department began investigating the security contractor’s operations in Iraq. But the inquiry was abandoned after Blackwater’s top manager there issued a threat: “that he could kill” the government’s chief investigator and “no one could or would do anything about it as we were in Iraq,” according to department reports.

American Embassy officials in Baghdad sided with Blackwater rather than the State Department investigators as a dispute over the probe escalated in August 2007, the previously undisclosed documents show. The officials told the investigators that they had disrupted the embassy’s relationship with the security contractor and ordered them to leave the country, according to the reports.

After returning to Washington, the chief investigator wrote a scathing report to State Department officials documenting misconduct by Blackwater employees and warning that lax oversight of the company, which had a contract worth more than $1 billion to protect American diplomats, had created “an environment full of liability and negligence.”

“The management structures in place to manage and monitor our contracts in Iraq have become subservient to the contractors themselves,” the investigator, Jean C. Richter, wrote in an Aug. 31, 2007, memo to State Department officials. “Blackwater contractors saw themselves as above the law,” he said, adding that the “hands off” management resulted in a situation in which “the contractors, instead of Department officials, are in command and in control.”

His memo and other newly disclosed State Department documents make clear that the department was alerted to serious problems involving Blackwater and its government overseers before the Nisour Square shooting, which outraged Iraqis and deepened resentment over the United States’ presence in the country. (...)


RichardPrins
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Posted: Jun 21, 2014 - 2:02pm

As US Pressures Maliki to Resign, will Iraqi Gov't Collapse? | Informed Comment

A consensus is forming in Washington that Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki must resign, as part of accountability for his failures with his Sunni Arab citizens. Because Washington is so good about demanding accountability.

While this analysis is correct, and I have said myself that Iraq would be better off with a different leader, it is not clear that right now is the best time to force al-Maliki out. Washington also has to be careful about trying and failing to get rid of al-Maliki. President Obama and Hillary Clinton wanted to get rid of Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan in 2009; they failed, and therefore had bad relations with Karzai ever after.

A potential departure of al-Maliki raises the question of who would take his place. Al-Maliki is the head of the Islamic Mission Party (al-Da’wa al-Islamiyah). This Shiite fundamentalist party won 92 of 328 seats in the parliamentary elections just held. The Da’wa Party was for years covert and still is secretive. We don’t know who is on its politburo. It will likely form the next government with or without al-Maliki.

You could look to another Da’wa member on the cabinet. But al-Maliki has kept most important portfolios for himself. Ali al-Adeeb, Minister of Higher Education, is the other known Da’wa member on The cabinet. al-Maliki is said to have rebuked al-Adeeb for giving free rein in universities to extremist Sadrist militias and for discriminating against Sunnis. You begin to wonder if the problem is with the Da’wa Party.

The new Da’wa PM will have to attract the support of radical or just committed Shi’ites. Such as the Sadrist movement, the Supreme Council, and the Virtue Party. The Sadrists hate al-Maliki and may find it difficult to cooperate with Da’wa.

In 2010 the Kurds put al-Maliki over the top because he was not a hawk on Kirkuk. Now the Kurds have de facto annexed Kirkuk. They have no reason to back anyone. But the Shiite parties only have 155 but need 164 for a majority.

There are likely to be months of wrangling before a new PM can be chosen. And maybe it will have to be a minority PM because the parliament is permanently hung. In the meantime, if al-Maliki is deposed, who will command the armed forces?

So if you depose al-Maliki, you can’t be sure who will take his place. His successor may be even worse.

As in Libya, the government could also collapse.

"Iraq" Is Still Arabic for "Vietnam"

An Iraqi Perspective: How America's Destruction of Iraqi Society Led to Today's Chaos
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Posted: Jun 21, 2014 - 9:56am

 mutepoint wrote:
ISIS captures chemical-weapons plant in Iraq

I know, I know.  There weren't supposed to be any WMD in Iraq, right?  So this must be more disinformation from the eeevil neo-cons!

Carry on. 


 
And the rest of the story

"In the aftermath of the U.S. invasion a decade ago, the U.S.-impaneled Iraq Study Group determined that the facility was sufficiently dismantled and that the remaining chemicals were useless."


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Posted: Jun 21, 2014 - 9:46am


While armchair warriors in Washington cry “back to Iraq,” military historian Andrew Bacevich says no way.
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Posted: Jun 20, 2014 - 10:10am

William Rivers Pitt | They Belong in Prison, Not on TV

I wrote my first article on the folly of an Iraq invasion in August of 2002. There are no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, I argued. There are no 9/11 connections in Iraq. There is no al Qaeda presence in Iraq, because Saddam Hussein was notorious for hanging Wahabbists from the nearest available light pole. An invasion would tear the country apart, explode sectarian tensions, and plunge the region into chaos.

Neither I nor the world knew at that time that George W. Bush and Tony Blair had decided four months earlier that the deal was going down no matter what. Neither I nor the world knew at that time that a decision had been made one month earlier to ensure that "intelligence and facts" would be "fixed around the policy" of invasion. I stayed on the no-invasion beat for the next seven months, writing dozens of articles and a book, as the world watched millions of people take to the streets in an attempt to stop something that was, as it turns out, inevitable.

Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Doug Feith, Condolleeza Rice, and of course, George W. Bush, piled the sandbags high and deep around a decision that had already been made. We know they have these weapons, we know where they are, we don't want the evidence to be a mushroom cloud, plastic sheeting and duct tape, 9/11 9/11 9/11 9/11 9/11. Save for 23 bold souls, a craven Senate caved to the pressure and delivered the Iraq War Resolution to the Bush administration, and in late March of 2003, the skies over Baghdad glowed orange as the city was turned into a bowl of molten fire.

As the WMD argument fell to ashes, I kept writing. As the 9/11-connection argument collapsed, I kept writing...and then, first in a trickle and then a flood, people started writing me. Mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters of American soldiers who had died in Iraq wrote me letter after letter, email after email, demanding answers. Why? Why did this happen? Why did my loved one die over there?

Well, you see, I didn't have the heart to tell them, this is about election-year politics, as Karl Rove demonstrated in 2002 when he told Republicans facing midterm elections to "Run on the war." This is about an enormous payday for the oil industry, the arms industry, and Dick Cheney's friends. This is about the fever dream of a pack of neo-conservatives from think tanks like the Project for a New American Century, who believed that just because they want something really bad, and have the lives of soldiers to play with like pawns, meant it would happen just as they planned it.

Eleven years later, the worst tidings from those of us who saw this coming have arrived. I am sure you've been watching the news, and others have taken the time to detail exactly what is unfolding in Iraq. Syria has become a major factor in the situation, also because of the Iraq invasion of 2003: as that war grew larger and more ferocious, millions of refugees poured over the border into Syria and destabilized the country. The current civil war in Syria, which has become umbilically connected to the events in Iraq, owes its roots to no small degree to the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq eleven years ago.

The Iraqi regime is begging the Obama administration to deliver airstrikes in order to slow the advance of ISIS troops as they draw nearer and nearer to Baghdad. Several large cities have fallen into ISIS hands. Iran has sent Quds soldiers to help defend Baghdad, 275 American soldiers have been deployed to defend our massive Iraq embassy, and the USS George H. W. Bush has steamed into the Gulf.

And I have never, ever been angrier in my life.

Never mind the fact that I and so very many others spent so much time and energy for so many years trying to stop all this from happening. Never mind the fact that the perpetrators of this enormous fraud, this smash-and-grab robbery, this looting of the Treasury, this act of first-degree murder on a massive scale, all walked away scot-free to pursue new careers and live lives of comfort. Amazingly enough, that's not the worst part.

The worst part is that they're all on my television again, trying to blame President Obama for the circumstances created by their own feckless, murderous decisions. (...)


Even this bottom-feeder gets it...
Beaker

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Posted: Jun 20, 2014 - 8:25am

ISIS captures chemical-weapons plant in Iraq

I know, I know.  There weren't supposed to be any WMD in Iraq, right?  So this must be more disinformation from the eeevil neo-cons!

Carry on. 

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Posted: Jun 20, 2014 - 8:25am

 Red_Dragon wrote:

We needed to create a new enemy, the old one wasn't effective enough. Gotta have an enemy for the masses to focus on and feel threatened by while you're furthering their empoverishment/enslavement. 1984 wasn't fiction.

 
just think if you were a politician and how you would have to sell that

(enter every political campaign rhetoric stump speech ever spoken)
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Posted: Jun 20, 2014 - 8:05am

 Red_Dragon wrote:

We needed to create a new enemy, the old one wasn't effective enough. Gotta have an enemy for the masses to focus on and feel threatened by while you're furthering their empoverishment/enslavement. 1984 wasn't fiction.

 
Shut up, you. Have a bite of bread and watch the circus.
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Posted: Jun 20, 2014 - 7:59am

In Rare Consensus, Sunnis and Shiites Tell Cheney to Shut Up : The New Yorker
Page: 1, 2, 3 ... 134, 135, 136  Next