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Iraq

Three Years Since 2019 Protests In Iraq, Most Demands Remain Unfulfilled

This October marks the third anniversary of the 2019 popular protests in Iraq. On Tuesday, October 25, a large number of people gathered in the Tahrir square in capital Baghdad and paid homage to the people who were killed in the protests. They raised slogans in support of what has been termed by the protesters as the Tishreen movement. The countrywide protests in 2019, rooted in the long-term grievances of people against successive governments, went on for months. Before the global COVID-19 outbreak forced them to end, the protests were successful in forcing the then government led by Adil Abdul Mahdi to resign, putting the ruling classes on the defensive and pressing for reforms.

Over 1,000 US-Backed ‘Terrorist Bases’ Spread Across Iraqi Kurdistan

The Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces, Major General Mohammad Bagheri, says that – with the help of the US – the Iraqi Kurdistan Region (IKR) has become a “safe haven” for Iranian-Kurdish opposition groups that “pose a threat to Iranian national security.” “Today, there are 1,200 military camps [with] 3,000 armed terrorists operating against us,” Bagheri claimed during a speech on 15 October. He added that Iran continues to keep US bases in Iraq “under surveillance.” “We know where the US bases are situated across Iraq, as well as the number of forces in them and the nature of their actions,” Bagheri said, before warning that “if the US takes any action against our drones, we will undoubtedly take responsive measures.”

Exclusive: Tracking The Flow Of Stolen Syrian Oil Into Iraq

Although the porous Iraqi-Syrian border stretches for over 600 kilometers, about half of it – in practice – is not subject to the authority of either state. Over the years, this lack of comprehensive border control has given rise to a number of security threats to both nations, not least the persistent presence of ISIS elements in border regions. From the Iraqi side, there has been a pro-active approach in countering this low-level terrorism with the establishment of two defensive lines by the Joint Operations Command, in addition to concrete barriers and watchtowers. Smuggling from Syria into Iraqi border towns is another salient feature of current border activities, and one which presents both a threat and an opportunity for the US-led international coalition whose forces operate on both sides of the border.

The US Must Compensate Burn Pit Victims In Iraq Too

On August 10, United States President Joe Biden signed the PACT Act, aiding approximately 3.5 million American veterans with severe medical conditions linked to toxic exposure to burn pits during service, including in Iraq and Afghanistan. Open air pits of military waste, sometimes as large as football fields, are burned to destroy munitions, chemicals, plastics, and medical and human waste, typically using jet fuel. Used widely until at least 2010, burn pits were still permitted at least as of last year, when waste management facilities were not available. Their impact, however, extends beyond the harm to those who were deployed and exposed to toxins in the short term. Fatal cancers. Birth defects that can cause infant death or lifelong disabilities. Malformations including a missing hand, cleft lip and paralysed club foot.

Sadrists Occupy Iraqi Parliament

The political crisis escalated in Iraq as supporters of Muqtada Al-Sadr stormed the parliament and began an indefinite sit-in on Sunday, July 31. The protesters who are opposing the government formation efforts of Mohammed Shia al-Sudani claimed that consensus-based government formation and the sectarian quota of power sharing are the core reasons for inefficiency and widespread corruption in the country.

Ready, Fire, Aim: US Interests In Afghanistan, Iraq, And Syria

I have been asked to join my fellow panelists in speaking about U.S. interests in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. For some reason, our government has never been able to articulate these interests, but, judging by the fiscal priority Americans have assigned to these three countries in this century, they must be immense – almost transcendent. Since we invaded Afghanistan in 2001, we have spent more than $5 trillion and incurred liabilities for veterans’ disabilities and medical expenses of at least another trillion dollars, for a total of something over $6 trillion for military efforts alone. This is money we didn’t spend on sustaining, still less improving, our own human and physical infrastructure or current and future well-being. We borrowed almost all of it. Estimates of the costs of servicing the resulting debt run to an additional $8 trillion over the next few decades.

Iraq Passes Law Making Ties With Israel Criminal Offence

Its passage cemented the Arab countries invariable, and age old, policy of refusing to recognize the occupying regime. The legislation applies to all Iraqis, governmental and independent institutions, as well as foreign nationals working in Iraq. In a statement, the Parliament said the legislation is a true reflection of the will of the people. On closer inspection, the law bans any relations with the Israeli regime, including political, economic, cultural, scientific, or sports related ties. Violators of the law will face severe penalties, including life imprisonment or even capital punishment. A most important fact is that the law was adopted unanimously meaning that all 275 parliament members who were present voted in favour of the motion. - Navid Behrooz, Press TV, Baghdad

Madeleine Albright’s Funeral Buried Her Legacy Of War-Making And Deceit

It’s fitting that Joe Biden and Bill and Hillary Clinton should eulogize Madeleine Albright at the mammoth Episcopalian institution calling itself the “National Cathedral”. After all, just last year, Albright eulogized fellow war maker, “trailblazer” and fellow Episcopalian Colin Powell there for his “honesty, dignity, loyalty and an unshakable commitment to his calling and word.” Albright, Biden and the Clintons covered for each other’s criminal war making – and ultimately, they all enabled and covered for Republican criminality as well. All showed they were capable of murderous deceits. It sparked some measure of attention during the 2020 election, but it’s largely been forgotten that the current sitting president, who with great hypocrisy calls Vladimir Putin a war criminal, Joe Biden, won’t tell the truth about his Iraq war record – and he hasn’t for years.

After The Wars In Iraq, ‘Everything Living Is Dying’

As far back as 2005, the United Nations had estimated that Iraq was already littered with several thousand contaminated sites. Five years later, an investigation by The Times, a London-based newspaper, suggested that the U.S. military had generated some 11 million pounds of toxic waste and abandoned it in Iraq. Today, the country remains awash in hazardous materials, such as depleted uranium and dioxin, which have polluted the soil and water. And extractive industries like the KAR oil refinery often operate with minimal transparency. On top of all of this, Iraq is among the countries most vulnerable to climate change, which has already contributed to grinding water shortages and prolonged drought. In short, Iraq presents a uniquely dystopian tableau—one where human activity contaminates virtually every ecosystem, and where terms like “ecocide” have special currency.

I Want To Get Our Rights From The Americans Who Harmed Us

On 12 July 2007, two US AH-64 Apache helicopters fired 30-millimetre cannon rounds at a group of Iraqi civilians in New Baghdad. These US Army gunners murdered at least a dozen people, including Reuters photographer Namir Noor-Eldeen and his driver Saeed Chmagh. Reuters immediately asked for the US to conduct a probe into the killing. Instead, they were fed the official story by the US government that soldiers of Bravo Company, 2-16 infantry had been attacked by small arms fire as part of their Operation Ilaaj in the al-Amin al-Thaniyah neighbourhood. The soldiers called in air strikes, which came in and cleared the streets of insurgents. Reuters had information that the helicopters filmed the attack, and so the media house requested the video from the US military.

Iraq Announces End Of US Combat Mission

Iraqi groups expressed dissatisfaction and opposition to the official announcement of the end of the US combat mission in the country on Thursday, December 9, weeks before the deadline of December 31. The groups pointed to the official declaration by the US that no troops will be withdrawn from Iraq immediately but that the remaining troops will shift their mission to assisting and training the Iraqi forces. The groups have reiterated their demand for a complete withdrawal of foreign troops. Qasim al-Araji, Iraq’s national security advisor, tweeted, “today we finished the last round of dialogue with the international coalition..to officially announce the end of the combat mission of the coalition forces and their withdrawal from Iraq.”

The Unlearnt Lessons Of 9/11, Twenty Years Out

Twenty years after 9/11, America is less safe, a deeply troubled country, ravaged by COVID, racism, inequality, extreme weather from global warming and political strife. Its political leaders have embraced an Orwellian approach to the truth in which war is peace and large segments of our society are polarized by widely divergent concepts of reality. On the afternoon of 9/11, with the American media joining with the leaders of the two major parties in banging the drum for war, I wrote one of the first statements calling for America to seek peace instead, to not turn our cries of grief into a call for war. Eventually, many joined with early voices such as those of the Green Party and the War Resisters League in warning that peace and freedom both at home and abroad would be undermined if the United States went to war instead of participating in international criminal prosecution of this crime against humanity.

Axis Of Resistance Responds To Biden’s Aggression

Richard Medhurst: "The Americans have come under attack in numerous places in Iraq and Syria in the last 24 hours. It appears to me, and I think anyone would agree, to be a coordinated move by the resistance. So I am going to show you what has taken place. So you had three attacks that took place. One was at the Ain al Asad Air Base. You may recall that this is the air base that the Iranians fired at after Trump assassinated General Suleimani. There were no casualties because they actually warned the Americans in advance. It was more of a warning, a retaliation without casualties. And this is the strategy that is being pursued. I plotted what is going on on a map..."

Rumsfeld Was Not ‘Controversial’

When word came down yesterday that former Defense Secretary and brazen orchestrator of mass death Donald Rumsfeld had shuffled loose the mortal coil at age 88, CNN and the other networks began to do their standard back-and-fill exercises to shore up the fiction while burying the truth after a genuine monster drops dead. “Controversial,” they called Rumsfeld, while showing footage of him scurrying around the wreckage after the Pentagon attack on September 11. “I think that’s what we’ll all remember,” said one talking head of those images. Not if I have anything to say about it. See, on the same day he was doing no more or less than what any average citizen would likely do at an emergency scene, Rumsfeld returned to his office and immediately began scheming to use the attacks as a pretense for invading Iraq.

Biden’s Bombing Of Iraq And Syria Only Serves The Weapons Industry

For the second time in the five months since he was inaugurated, President Joe Biden on Sunday ordered a U.S. bombing raid on Syria, and for the first time, he also bombed Iraq. The rationale offered was the same as Biden's first air attack in February: the U.S., in the words of Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, “conducted defensive precision airstrikes against facilities used by Iran-backed militia groups in the Iraq-Syria border region.” He added that “the United States acted pursuant to its right of self-defense.” Embedded in this formulaic Pentagon statement is so much propaganda and so many euphemisms that, by itself, it reveals the fraudulent nature of what was done. To begin with, how can U.S. airstrikes carried out in Iraq and Syria be "defensive” in nature? How can they be an act of “self-defense"?
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