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Archive for the ‘iraq war’ Category

3CHICSPOLITICO

Posted on March 19, 2012by

NINE years ago today, March 19, 2003, President George W. Bush and the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA declared “WAR on Terror” and invaded Iraq.

December 18, 2011 President Obama speaks in Fort Bragg about the last troops getting out of Iraq.

3 Chics wanted to HIGHLIGHT this significant anniversary, because, we know the MEDIA isn’t going to do it.

VIDEOS AND MORE HERE

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Tony Blair will face scathing criticism from Sir John Chilcot’s inquiry over his role in the Iraq war, according to reports.

The former prime minister will be held to account for major failings in the war in which 179 British soldiers, 3,500 US soldiers and more than 100,000 Iraqis died, it has been alleged.

He will be criticised for claiming it was ‘beyond doubt’ Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, the Mail on Sunday reported.

Sir John Chilcot’s findings will also criticise Mr Blair for failing to admit to a ‘secret pledge’, allegedly made with former US president George Bush, that he would go to war.

In the report, due out this autumn, Mr Blair will also come under fire for failing to plan to avoid the post-war chaos in Iraq.

Former foreign secretary Jack Straw and ex-Downing Street spin doctor Alastair Campbell are also expected to be criticised.

Read more: http://www.metro.co.uk/news/870992-tony-blair-to-face-scathing-criticism-from-chilcot-inquiry-into-iraq-war#ixzz1TllBQxxz

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I’m going to start this post out properly. This is a day meant to honor fallen veterans, so let’s do that first.

This is a list of United States Armed Forces members killed in Afghanistan in the month of May, 2011.

Army Pfc. William S. Blevins

Army Pvt. Andrew M. Krippner

Army Pvt. Thomas C. Allers

Army Sgt. 1st Class Clifford E. Beattie

Army Pfc. Ramon Mora Jr.

Army Cpl. Brandon M. Kirton

Army Staff Sgt. David D. Self

Army Spc. Bradley L. Melton

Army Pvt. Lamarol J. Tucker

Army Pvt. Cheizray Pressley

Army Spc. Brian D. Riley Jr.

Army Sgt. Robert C. Schlote

Army Sgt. Amaru Aguilar

Marine Lt. Col. Benjamin J. Palmer

Marine Sgt. Kevin B. Balduf

Army 1st Lt. Demetrius M. Frison

Army Sgt. Ken K. Hermogino

Army Spc. Riley S. Spaulding

Army Sgt. Kevin W. White

Does this bother you? It makes me sick to my stomach. It bothers me even more that we officially crossed the 6,000 dead mark in May of 2011 (Iraq and Afghanistan combined) and nobody noticed. We officially stand at 6,014; I do not have the latest death listed here because the name of the latest dead soldier has not been released, as far as I can tell.

(more…)

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Militarized Conservatism and End(s) of Higher Education

Tuesday 5 April 2011
by: Henry A. Giroux, Truthout

The Pathologies of War

There can be little doubt that America has become a permanent warfare state.(1) Not only is it waging a war in three countries, but its investment in military power is nearly as much as all of the military budgets of every other country in the world combined. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute states, “The USA’s military spending accounted for 43 per cent of the world total in 2009, followed by China with 6.6 per cent; France with 4.3 per cent and the UK with 3.8 per cent.”(2) The conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost Americans a staggering $1 trillion to date, second only in inflation-adjusted dollars to the $4 trillion price tag for World War II.”(3) Pentagon spending for 2011 will be more than $700 billion. To make matters worse, as Tom Englehardt points out, “We dominate the global arms trade, monopolizing almost 70% of the arms business in 2008, with Italy coming in a vanishingly distant second. We put more money into the funding of war, our armed forces and the weaponry of war than the next 25 countries combined (and that’s without even including Iraq and Afghan war costs).”(4) Moreover, the United States maintains a massive ring of military bases and global presence around the world, occupying “over 560 bases and other sites abroad”(5) and deploying over 300,000 troops abroad, “even as our country finds itself incapable of paying for basic services.”(6) In spite of how much military expenditures drain much-needed funds from social programs, the military budget is rarely debated in Congress or a serious object of discussion among the public. Rather than avoid squandering resources and human lives on foreign wars, we avoid “the realities and costs of war.”(7)

War is now normalized even as the United States becomes more militarized, moving closer to a national security state at home and an imperial/policing power abroad. Military historian Andrew Bacevich is right in arguing, “The misleadingly named Department of Defense serves in fact as a Ministry of Global Policing.”(8) War has become central to American character, but what is often unacknowledged is that its perpetual wars abroad are increasingly matched by a number of wars being waged on the domestic front. Such a disconnect becomes clear in the refusal of politicians, anti-public intellectuals and the general public to acknowledge how the federal deficit has been run up by our military adventures. As Frank Rich argues, “The cultural synergy between the heedless irresponsibility we practiced in Iraq and our economic collapse at home could not be more naked. The housing bubble, inflated by no-money-down mortgage holders on Main Street and high-risk gamblers on Wall Street, was fueled by the same greedy disregard for the laws of fiscal gravity that governed the fight-now-play later war[s]” in Iraq and Afghanistan and more recently in Libya.(9) Similarly, as the spirit of a hyper-militarized America bleeds into everyday life, politics increasingly becomes an extension of war, and right-wing, liberal and conservative politicians eagerly embrace a militaristic approach to policy and the need to cleanse the social order of any institution, mode of dissent, social group and public sphere willing to question its state of permanent war and its militarized and unchecked embrace of economic Darwinism. These foreign and domestic wars are not unrelated, given that they are waged in the interests of right-wing militarists, neoconservatives, liberals and corporate moguls – all of whom have a political and economic stake in such military incursions abroad and wars at home. Wars make the economic elite even richer just as they undermine civil liberties, public services and public dissent. A hyper-militarized America has not only fueled violations of executive power, it has also promoted armed conflicts that are directly related to an economic crisis that has produced a wave of political extremism in the United States, while furthering the rise of a punishing state that places the burdens of the current economic crisis on the backs of the poor. We seem to have no trouble in spending money for the production of organized violence designed to kill people, but we have little money to spend on education, health care, or other serious social problems facing the United States. As one educational journal pointed out:

This juxtaposition of robust war spending and inadequate support for education highlights the moral bankruptcy of political and economic leaders who seem to find endless piles of money to kill people abroad but not much to educate them at home. And, of course, the relationship is plain: The more dollars spent on war, the fewer available for human needs – whether alternative energy, food stamps, in-home elder care, public libraries or keeping teachers in their classrooms.(10)

MORE HERE

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Joschka Fischer accuses former CIA chief George Tenet over his knowledge of Iraqi defector’s sketchy background

Helen Pidd in Berlin guardian.co.uk,
Thursday 17 February 2011 14.08 GMT

Germany‘s former foreign minister Joschka Fischer has accused the former head of the CIA George Tenet of making implausible claims about the handling of the Curveball case by the US.

On Wednesday Tenet, the director of central intelligence between 1997 and 2004, issued a statement on his website saying he discovered “too damn late” that Curveball – the Iraqi defector who became a key source for the CIA and the German secret service (BND) – might be a fabricator.

Reprinting an extract from his autobiography, Tenet claimed he only found out in 2005, two years after the Iraq invasion, that the BND had doubts about Curveball’s claims to have witnessed first-hand Saddam Hussein’s bio-weapons programme.

More…

Colin Powell demands answers over Curveball

Former US secretary of state asks why CIA failed to warn him over Iraqi defector who has admitted fabricating WMD evidence

Curveball could face jail for warmongering, says German MP

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By Marjorie Cohn , ZNet,  September 29, 2010

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is accused of leaking military secrets to the public.  [His] supporters are holding rallies in 21 cities, seeking Manning’s release from military custody. Manning is in the brig for allegedly disclosing a classified video depicting U.S. troops shooting civilians from an Apache helicopter in Iraq in July 2007. The video, available at www.collateralmurder.com, was published by WikiLeaks on April 5, 2010. Manning faces 52 years in prison. No charges have been filed against the soldiers in the video.

In October 1969, the most famous whistleblower, Daniel Ellsberg, smuggled out of his office and made public a 7,000 page top secret study of decision making during the Vietnam War. It became known as the Pentagon Papers. Dan risked his future, knowing that he would likely spend life in prison for his expose.

The release of the Pentagon Papers ultimately helped end not only the Nixon presidency, but also the Vietnam War, in which 58,000 Americans and three million Indochinese were killed. Dan’s courageous act was essential to holding accountable our leaders who had betrayed American values by starting and perpetuating an illegal and deadly war.

Manning’s alleged crimes follow in this tradition. The 2007 video, called “Collateral Murder,” has been viewed by millions of people on the Internet. On it, U.S. military Apache helicopter soldiers from Bravo Company 2nd Battalion 16th Infantry Regiment can be seen killing 12 civilians and wounding two children in Iraq. The dead included two employees of the Reuters news agency.

Continues >>

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Excerpted from: Tony Blair: Gordon Brown tried to blackmail me
The Daily telegraph
By Robert Winnett and Henry Samuel
Published: 6:31AM BST 01 Sep 2010

Tony Blair's book A Journey Photo: AP

The pressure on Mr Blair to step aside became so great that he admits he may have become reliant on alcohol as he faced coup attempts from Mr Brown’s supporters. He discloses that he began drinking every day and needed the “support” that alcohol provided.

He discloses his “anguish” over the Iraq war and admits that he failed to predict the “nightmare” in the aftermath of the conflict. But he insists going to war was correct and says he will devote the rest of his life to making amends.

He also discloses how American hawks, particularly Dick Cheney, the then US vice-president, were apparently keen to invade other countries in the Middle East, including Syria.

“Diana was a manipulator like me.”

George W. Bush did not recognise the prime minister of Belgium or understand why he was at a G8 meeting, Tony Blair has disclosed

The book also reveals:

  • Mr Blair’s growing concerns over his relationship with alcohol. He describes how he used to drink a whisky or gin and tonic before his evening meal, then have several glasses of wine. He said he became aware it was “becoming a support”.
  • He still feels “anguish” about the Iraq war and says that he had never guessed “the nightmare” that would unfold after he took the decision to commit British troops to the American-led invasion.
  • He also discloses how American hawks, particularly Dick Cheney, the then US vice-president, were apparently keen to invade other countries in the Middle East, including Syria.
  • George W Bush is praised for his intelligence.
  • An entire chapter is devoted to the death of Princess Diana within months of his election. He says that both he and the princess were “manipulators”.
  • Tony Blair: Gordon Brown tried to blackmail me
  • Diana ‘was a manipulator like me’
  • Blair’s deep misgivings about Gordon Brown
  • Blair ‘lied to stop Northern Ireland peace talks collapsing’
  • George W. Bush did not recognise the prime minister of Belgium or understand why he was at a G8 meeting, Tony Blair has disclosed
  • Tony Blair: I did not understand Islam at time of 9/11 attacks
  • http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/tony-blair/7974820/Tony-Blair-A-Journey-PMs-drinking-habit.html
  • Tony Blair ‘cannot say sorry in words’ about the Iraq war
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