Saturday, June 11, 2016

How crooked can she be?

"One of Secretary Clinton’s Top Nuclear Security Advisers Was a High-Frequency Trader (Who Donated to Her Campaign)" (Eric Levitz, NEW YORK):
In 2011, Rajiv K. Fernando was a high-frequency trader with no experience in the realm of national-security policy. But he had donated a lot of money to Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign and to the William J. Clinton Foundation. Through this association with Fernando, Secretary Clinton apparently developed an appreciation for his experience with “sophisticated risk management tools.” And her chief of staff Cheryl Mills decided that financial savvy was just the thing the International Security Advisory Board needed to diversify its analysis on containing the nuclear threat posed by Pakistan.

The appointment first caught the attention of ABC News in 2011, and Fernando resigned shortly after the network began asking questions. But newly declassified emails obtained by ABC give more insight into how Fernando obtained the job — and how State Department public-relations operatives worked to keep Clinton’s name out of the story.

In an email exchange from August 2011, a press aide asks one under secretary of State for the rationale behind Fernando’s appointment.

“The true answer is simply that S staff (Cheryl Mills) added him,” Wade Boese, who was chief of staff for the Office of the Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, replied. “Raj was not on the list sent to S; he was added at their insistence.”

Hillary Clinton just gets more and more crooked.

Selling spots to Clinton donors?

Putting the country at risk with her nonsense and greed?

She is not fit for public office.

Every day makes that ever more clear.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):

Saturday, June 11, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, the persecution of the Sunnis continue, Barack Obama's inability to address the roots of the Islamic State's support in Iraq continue, Moqtada al-Sadr orders his followers to stop protesting, and much more.

NATIONAL IRAQI NEWS AGENCY reports that the head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, Ammar al-Hakim, has decried the protests Friday at the offices of various political figures and parties.

Friday,  bridges and roads to Baghdad were closed by the US-installed prime minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi in an attempt to head off protests against corruption in the government.  ALSUMARIA reported Haider issued a statement stressing actions against political officials or public institutions will be dealt with firmly.

IRAQI SPRING MC reported that the Dawa party is shooting at protesters in Dawa.  The Dawa political party is the party that both the present prime minister (Haider) and the most recent one (Nouri al-Maliki) hail from. Forever thug Nouri denounced the Najaf protesters who had blocked off his office.   In Wasit, protesters stormed political headquarters.
Iraq, a major OPEC exporter which sits on one of the world's largest oil reserves, ranks 161 out of 168 on Transparency International's Corruption Index.
The dispute within Iraq's majority Shi'ite community began turning violent when Sadrist protesters stormed Baghdad's heavily fortified government district, known as the Green Zone, for a second time, on May 20. Four demonstrators were killed.
Sadr's followers have been staging protests demanding anti-corruption reforms since February. His rivals see in the demonstrations an attempt by the cleric to dictate his views to the rest of the political class. 

Today, ALSUMARIA reports Shi'ite cleric and movement leader Moqtada al-Sadr called on those protesting corruption by targeting the headquarters of political parties to cease their demonstrations and wait until the end of the holy month of Ramadan to protest.  He added that regardless of when they protest, the government forces must protect protesters, not attack them.  ALL IRAQ NEWS adds that he also called on his followers to pray and practice worship.

Those have not been the only protests in Iraq.

Demonstrations in Karbala   against the Iranian Qassem Soleimani & Against the Iranian occupation

Concern continues to grow in Iraq over the involvement of the Iranian government within Iraq's borders.  At MIDDLE EAST MONITOR, Dr. Noureddine Miladi offers:

American satellite TV channels as well as human rights organizations have signposted the Iranian involvement in the invasion of Fallujah and other remaining Sunni majority places. The Al-Hashd Al-Shaabi army has been reported to be waging a war by proxy for the Iranian ‘Revolutionary’ Guard. The fact that Kassim Sulaiman, leader in the Iranian ‘Revolutionary’ Gard, is roaming free in Iraq, giving advice to the militia, while he is wanted internationally raises a lot of questions, argues the head of Al-Hayat newspaper in New York.
The recent shutting down of Al-Jazeera offices in Iraq is another attempt to silence the witness. Along with other Arab media outlets, Al-Jazeera has been accused of misinformation and fabrication of news. The same reasons ostensibly had been given by the US army in 2003 when they decided also to shut down the channel’s offices in Iraq because of its daring journalism.

History will soon unveil that the invasion of Fallujah is not merely to uproot [the Islamic State] but to strategically broaden the sectarian rule backed by Iran on all Iraqi soil. This plan is partly about silencing all forms of Sunni dissent against the sectarian government of Baghdad and partly to expand the Iranian hegemony in the region.

The liberation or 'liberation' of Falluja continues.  The Iraqi military -- which includes the Shi'ite militias -- struggle to follow commands, Shi'ite militia leaders openly criticize Haider al-Abadi, civilians are targeted and persecuted.

Chris Rogers (GUARDIAN) writes:

As US and Iraqi forces continue to press against Isis in Falluja, over 50,000 civilians remain trapped in the city. Protecting them is not only a moral imperative, but critical to long-term US strategic objectives. As a new report by the Open Society Foundations details, failing to do so would be a rebuke to the hard-learned lessons of US generals in Afghanistan.

Shia Militias crimes
فديو مسرب جديد يظهر الحشد الشيعي الارهابي يعذب شيوخ سنه عراقيين كبار بالعمر بطريقه وحشية

Iraqi Sunni civilians displaced from Fallujah tortured  by Shia Militias 

النائبة الشيعية حنان الفتلاوي تهدد الشاهد السني الذي قال انها اشرفت على تعذيبي
حياته الان بخطر

This needs to be investigated - Dawa Party MP Hanan al-Fatlawi allegedly oversaw the torture of Sunni captives

Dawa Party MP Hanan al-Fatlawi allegedly oversaw torture of Sunni captives fm Fallujah - see video

Douglas Burton (WASHINGTON TIMES) speaks with Sunni Atheel al-Nujaifi, the former governor of Nineveh Province who states that he's assembles a force of 1500 Sunni fighters:

Mr. Nujaifi shares the concerns of many U.S. analysts that the largely Sunni populations in Islamic State-held cities such as Mosul and Fallujah harbor deep suspicions of the Iraqi national army and Shiite militias that are leading the fight in Anbar Province.
Mike Pregent, an adjunct scholar from the Hudson Institute and a former U.S. military intelligence officer, warned that "continued U.S. support to Iraqi units that work with, tolerate and integrate Shia militias into their operations will reset the conditions that led to ISIS to begin with: A disenfranchised Sunni population that would be ripe for ISIS 2.0 to exploit."
Added retired Gen. Jay Garner, director of the Office for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance for Iraq following the 2003 invasion: "If the Shia militia enter Mosul, there will be a bloodbath."

The US continues to ignore the War Crimes.


Same reason they tolerated Nouri al-Maliki's persecution of the Sunnis throughout Nouri's second term, they want to change Iraq -- not for the Iraqi people but for the corporations.  That's what the IMF invasion is all about.  Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani gets that which is why he warned against it throughout 2015 and this year.

The violence continues in Iraq.  ALSUMARIA reports a Baghdad roadside bombing left three people injured, and a bombing outside of Baquba left two Iraqi soldiers injured.

Today, the US Defense Dept announced:

Strikes in Iraq
Fighter and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted 18 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Baghdadi, two strikes destroyed two ISIL artillery pieces and an ISIL front-end loader.

-- Near Fallujah, two strikes struck a large ISIL tactical unit; destroyed nine ISIL fighting positions, two ISIL recoilless rifles, three ISIL light machine guns, two ISIL heavy machine guns and an ISIL anti-air artillery piece; and denied ISIL access to terrain.

-- Near Habbaniyah, two strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL staging area, an ISIL command and control node, and two ISIL storage areas and denied ISIL access to terrain.

-- Near Haditha, a strike destroyed an ISIL rocket cache.

-- Near Kisik, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL supply cache and an ISIL vehicle.

-- Near Mosul, three strikes struck two ISIL tactical units; destroyed an ISIL fighting position, three ISIL assembly areas, an ISIL vehicle bomb and an ISIL heavy machine gun; and denied ISIL access to terrain.

-- Near Qayyarah, seven strikes struck a large ISIL tactical unit, five ISIL communication sites, an ISIL recruitment facility, and an ISIL bed-down location; destroyed four ISIL assembly areas, an ISIL vehicle, six ISIL rocket rails and an ISIL mortar position; and suppressed a separate ISIL mortar position.

Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use. Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike.

This has been Barack Obama's answer since August of 2014, daily bombings.

They've really not helped.

At the end of March, Brookings' Kenneth M. Pollack attempted to spin things pretty but even he struggled:

As has too often been the case in Iraq, progress in the military sphere is not being matched by equivalent (or even commensurate) political progress. I continue to see Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi as a decent, intelligent man who wants to take Iraq in what I consider to be the right direction: toward ethno-sectarian reconciliation, more efficient government, and a more balanced foreign policy (or at least reduced foreign influence in Iraq). He continues to make smart moves in the military sphere, he has taken some important steps to decentralize power to the provinces, and his desire for a more technocratic and less political (or cronyist) government is laudable. However, his government continues to have little to show for all its good intentions, and that is costing the prime minister support in a variety of quarters.
[. . .]
As part of this debilitating process, reconciliation among Sunni and Shiite Arabs remains moribund. President Fuad Massoum has convened a committee on reconciliation to try to push the process forward, but the committee rarely meets, and when it does, it accomplishes little. Sunni leaders are pleased with Abadi’s willingness to decentralize authority and resources to the governors of Anbar and Salah al-Din provinces to help with the reconstruction of Ramadi and Tikrit respectively, but still regard it with suspicion, fearing that the prime minister is giving them that rather than seats at the table in Baghdad.
Even some of Abadi’s closest allies among the moderate Sunni leadership are becoming frustrated that there is so little tangible progress on reconciliation. Of course, the Sunni leadership remains badly fragmented (even more so than the ever more fragmented Shiite leadership), but the government makes little effort to unify them or to use proxies to negotiate on behalf of the Sunni community. As I have written previously, I believe it critical for the United States to take on that role because I do not believe the Iraqis are able to do so themselves. That point was only reinforced by my impressions from this trip.

Trying to spin pretty, Pollack sugar coated the political failure by glorifying the military success -- or, as it turns out, 'success.'

On last weekend's THE NEWSHOUR (NPR), host Hari Sreenivasan spoke with REUTERS' Ned Parker about Parker and Jonathan S. Landay's report on the state of the Iraqi military:

HARI SREENIVASAN: The Reuters news agency reports that the 17- month U.S. effort to train and build up the Iraqi army has fallen short. Current and former U.S. officers and officials told Reuters that despite U.S. efforts, the army’s combat capacity has barely improved, and that the government relies too heavily on Shiite militias to do the fighting.
For more about the readiness of the Iraqi army, I am joined via Skype by Ned Parker of Reuters, who co-wrote the report.
For someone watching at home, give us a little bit of the lay of the land here. What’s the mix between the Iraqi army and the militias? Who is doing most of the fighting?

NED PARKER, REUTERS: Well, it’s a mixed bag, really. The problem is is that the Iraqi army only has about five functioning divisions, according to U.S. officers. And those divisions are about 60 to 65 percent capacity. So on the ground now, when fighting happens, the Iraqi military has basically a shortage of labor. And the one good fighting force that’s there, that’s effective from the state, is the Iraqi Special Forces. And according to U.S. officers, those forces are in real danger of burning out because they are the only force the state has been able to rely upon time and time again over the last two years.

So the other force fighting alongside the special forces are militia groups that many of them are funded by Iran. They have hard-line sectarian ideology, and have been deeply controversial. So on the ground, what happens is many places like north of Baghdad, in areas like Tikrit or Beiji that were retaken from the Islamic State, by the Iraqi special forces, as soon as the battle is over in effect, the militias take over. And people in these areas, whether local officials, ordinary citizens, see not the state but the militia forces as the ultimate power.

There's no real success in Iraq because the issues that drove the rise of the Islamic State have still not been addressed.

The White House has focused solely on a military solution despite Barack declaring June 19, 2014 that the only answer was a political solution.

In September of 2014, the RAND Corporation's Ben Connable testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and declared, "The thrust of my proposition here is that the success or failure of any coalition effort to defeat IS --  and ultimately to stabilize Iraq -- hinges not on tactical considerations or tribal engagement efforts, but on the more critical issue of Sunni Iraqi reconciliation. I believe the new anti-IS coalition can succeed if it predicates all of its actions in Iraq on national reconciliation between Sunni and Shia Iraqis. If political reconciliation is not the core aspect of an anti-IS strategy then coalition efforts are likely to fail in the long run."

As Loveday Morris and Missy Ryan (WASHINGTON POST) observed this week:

At the same time, only limited progress has been made in addressing the frustration that Iraqi Sunnis have with their Shiite-led government, a core reason some of them initially welcomed militants into their cities. That jeopardizes the longevity of any territorial victories U.S. trainers hope to achieve.

the washington post

Thursday, June 09, 2016

So the ridiculous Bill Fletcher Jr realizes he made a mistake?

Toy radical Bill Fletcher Jr. went around -- with Progressives for Obama -- providing cover for Barack throughout 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 . . .

But low and behold, look who finally realized he made a mistake.

I'm not holding my breath. "How dare you criticize the first woman president?!" Almost everyone folds.

It's a real shame that Fletcher couldn't have realized that when there was time to do something.

Instead, he was just another whore for Barack.

He was useless this whole time.

I will neither forgive nor forget.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS): 

Thursday, June 9, 2016.  Chaos and violence continue, the persecution of the Sunnis continues, the civilians killed in US-led airstrikes gets a bit of attention, and much more.

In Iraq, the persecution of the Sunnis continues.

  1. Shia Militias crimes
    عاجل صور مسربه
    الحشد الشيعي الارهابي يعذب مئات النازحين السنه العراقين الابرياء

  • Iraqi Sunni civilians displaced from Fallujah tortured & killed  by Shia militias

  • Sunni mosque destroyed in Fallujah Saqlawiyah by Shia Militias

    Thousands of male Sunni residents arrested, tortured & disappeared during goverment assault on

    Dr. Mordechai Kedar (ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) notes:

    Government forces and Shiite militias are being helped by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, fighting under the direct command of Kassem Suleimani, head of the Quds Force, aided by US-led coalition air power. Iran's goal is clearly the elimination of any Sunni presence in Fallujah, including both ISIS and the city's residents. Worst of all is the cooperation between the Western coalition members and Iran, together destroying a city that, as of last week, was home to an estimated 45,000 Iraqi civilians.

    Human Rights Watch issued a press release today which opens:

    (Beirut) – The announced investigation into allegations of abuse of civilians around Fallujah by Iraqi government forces is a test for the government’s ability to hold abusive forces accountable. Judicial officials should conduct this investigation transparently and impartially, assess command responsibility, and ensure protection for victims and witnesses.
    Ahead of the offensive in Fallujah against forces of the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said that his government had taken measures to protect civilians. Human Rights Watch, however, has received credible allegations of summary executions, beatings of unarmed men, enforced disappearances, and mutilation of corpses by government forces over the two weeks of fighting, mostly on the outskirts of the city, since May 23. On June 4, 2016, in response to allegations of abuse, al-Abadi launched an investigation into abuses in Fallujah and issued orders to arrest those responsible for “transgressions” against civilians. On June 7, al-Abadi announced the “detention and transfer of those accused of committing violations to the judiciary to receive their punishment according to the law.”
    “The Iraqi government needs to control and hold accountable its own forces if it hopes to claim the moral upper hand in its fight against ISIS,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director. “It’s high time for Iraqi authorities to unravel the web of culpability underlying the government forces’ repeated outrages against civilians.”
    Human Rights Watch also expressed grave concern about reports of ISIS preventing civilians from fleeing Fallujah and allegedly executing and shooting at those who attempted to do so. Human Rights Watch is concerned about the presence of ISIS fighters among civilians inside Fallujah, perhaps amounting to human shielding, a war crime. But the presence of fighters among civilians does not absolve forces fighting ISIS from the obligation to target only military objectives and to take all feasible measures to avoid civilian harm, Human Rights Watch said. ISIS forces should allow civilians to leave areas under their control and not use civilians to shield its military objectives from attack, Human Rights Watch said.
    Human Rights Watch directed questions about the composition of the investigative committee, its authority, and relation to the judiciary to five Iraqi government institutions in addition to the human rights section of the United Nations Assistance Mission to Iraq. A member of the parliamentary Human Rights Committee told Human Rights Watch that the committee had started its own investigation and was liaising with the investigation by the prime minister’s office, which remained secret. The other officials contacted did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
    On June 3, Human Rights Watch received information alleging that members of the Federal Police and the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), an auxiliary fighting force created after ISIS advanced in June 2014, and that includes many pre-existing Shia militias, had executed more than a dozen civilians from the Jumaila tribe fleeing Sajar, a village north of Fallujah. Human Rights Watch spoke to five people, including two officials from Anbar governorate, who said they were protecting three surviving witnesses to the executions.

     Three of those interviewed confirmed the account that a survivor gave on Tigris (Dijla) Channel television that a group consisting of Federal Police and PMF had separated men from women, marched the men to where the troops’ officers were, lined them up, and shot at least 17 of them, including one teenage boy. One person said that the incident took place on June 2. The PMF are, at least nominally, under the command of the prime minister.
    One of the Anbar governorate officials provided Human Rights Watch with a list of names of those killed and said that the incident happened near the Sharhabil school in Al-Bu Sudaira neighborhood in the northern outskirts of Fallujah. The other Anbar official said that the witnesses met with senior Iraqi government officials on June 5, following which he said Prime Minister al-Abadi launched an investigation into the incident. A former Iraqi government official with good contacts in the security forces told Human Rights Watch, on June 5, that the investigation had already led to the arrest of a police officer whom survivors could name.

    Another person who said he was in the Sajar area, 7 kilometers northeast of Fallujah, at the time told Human Rights Watch that on May 28, he saw Federal Police and PMF, including dozens of fighters from the Badr Brigades and Hezbollah (two prominent Shia militias in the PMF), fatally shoot civilians with white flags raised fleeing toward the government forces that day. He said that a fighter told him his superior officer had ordered the shootings. He also told Human Rights Watch he was in Saqlawiya around May 30. This person said a villager and several PMF fighters in the area told him that PMF fighters stabbed dozens of villagers to death with knives.

    Human Rights Watch follows an earlier cry.  Tuesday, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein which included:

    “There are extremely distressing, credible reports that some people who survive the terrifying experience of escaping from ISIL, then face severe physical abuse once they reach the other side,” the High Commissioner said. “Eyewitnesses have described how armed groups operating in support of the Iraqi security forces are intercepting people fleeing the conflict, separating the men and teenage boys from the women and children, and detaining the males for ‘security screening’, which in some cases degenerates into physical violations and other forms of abuse, apparently in order to elicit forced confessions. There are even allegations that some individuals have been summarily executed by these armed groups.”

    When that alarm was raised, the US State Dept played dumb.  They did so again today:

    MR TONER: We can go to Fallujah, sure.

    QUESTION: Okay. First of all, could you give us an update of what’s going on? And second, there seems to be, like, some sort of a campaign to aid the “Sunnis,” quote-unquote, in Fallujah in places like Saudi Arabia and other places. A spokesman for the ministry of interior in Saudi Arabia says we cannot stop people’s sentiments and so on. Are you concerned or would you sort of take this up with the Saudis to --

    MR TONER: You – I’m sorry, just – I missed it. You’re saying that there seems to be a – yeah, sorry, sorry. Yeah.

    QUESTION: No, two things. First of all, can you give us an update? And then I’ll follow up with --

    MR TONER: Okay.

    QUESTION: -- other one.

    MR TONER: Sure thing, hold on one second. Apologize; my book has grown too large.
    So as I think I said yesterday, Iraqi forces are making progress, are advancing on the city. I’d obviously refer you to the Iraqi authorities to speak more about what progress has been made. I do know that – and I think I’m speaking to your – maybe your second question – but we are concerned about the plight of civilians who are fleeing Fallujah, and I spoke about this yesterday. Our understanding is that ISIL [. . .] is holding tens of thousands of civilians hostage and under terrible conditions. Iraqi Security Forces are trying to screen those who are fleeing the city to ensure that [Islamic State] fighters are not hiding among these innocents – civilians. And it’s difficult work, but we expect it to be conducted in a way that respects human rights and the safety of these civilians who are fleeing the fighting.

    QUESTION: And it seems that the Fallujah battle is stirring or polarizing the Sunni-Shia schism; and in fact, in places like Saudi Arabia and other Sunni-dominated countries are collecting contributions and money and so on being sent. Some fear that it might find its way to ISIS, or others fear that it will only exacerbate this --

    MR TONER: Sure.

    QUESTION: -- sectarian schism.

    MR TONER: Well – and we’ve, again, talked about this the last couple of days. I mean, look, we’re obviously aware of the underlying dynamics and tensions inherent to this assault or this offensive to retake Fallujah. We understand Prime Minister Abadi has opened safe passageways for civilians to be able to escape. We’ve talked a lot about messages from Prime Minister Abadi as well as Ayatollah al-Sistani’s message that Iraqi Security Forces involved in this offensive should protect civilians and civilian properties.
    We are troubled by reports that civilians in Fallujah and the surrounding area have been subject to torture or abuse and in I think some cases even murder. I know Prime Minister Abadi has pledged to investigate all credible reports and hold those accountable – the perpetrators. He’s issued clear instructions to Iraqi Security Forces, including the Popular Mobilization Forces, to protect civilians and respect their human rights. And we firmly support this approach.
    I think that the Iraqi Government is saying the right things, pledging to do the right things, and we’re obviously working closely with them to ensure that they follow through.

    QUESTION: Finally, are you troubled by reports that suggest that Iranian General Qasem Soleimani is giving personal advice or field advice to – personally to Prime Minister Abadi on how to conduct the Fallujah battle? Are you aware of those reports?

    MR TONER: I mean, look, this offensive – we’ve seen the reports, certainly, and I acknowledge that we’ve seen them. We’re not in a position to confirm any of these images as accurate. We don’t know about his travel schedule or where he is. I’d have to refer you to Iranian authorities to speak to that.

    The Fallujah operation though, writ large, is under the command and control of the Iraqi Government, and we’d refer you to them to answer any questions about that. But this is a large-scale operation involving tens of thousands of Iraqi forces and with the support of these Popular Mobilization forces, and thus far it’s a difficult fight. It’s a long fight. As we talked about, there’s – we’re watching closely reports of – credible reports of abuses on civilians, but thus far we’re hearing the right things from the Iraqi Government.

    Are you hearing credible reports, spokesperson Mark Toner?

    Or are you ignoring reality?

    The same way the US government ignored the realities of abuse throughout Nouri al-Maliki's second term as prime minister of Iraq (2010 - 2014) allowed the situation to grow worse and worse until the Islamic State began to appear to be a viable alternative to some Sunnis in Iraq.

    The US government will back anyone if they think it will help with regards to oil.

    There are never real concerns for the people caught on the ground.

    Today, the US Defense Dept announced:

    Strikes in Iraq
    Bomber, fighter, ground-attack and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted 18 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:

    -- Near Huwayjah, a strike struck an ISIL improvised weapons factory. 

    -- Near Beiji, a strike destroyed an ISIL vehicle-borne bomb.

    -- Near Fallujah, two strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed 23 ISIL fighting positions, eight ISIL light machine guns, six ISIL heavy machine guns, two ISIL recoilless rifles, an ISIL supply cache and an ISIL rocket propelled grenade system and denied ISIL access to terrain.

    -- Near Habbaniyah, a strike destroyed an ISIL vehicle.

    -- Near Haditha, two strikes struck an ISIL staging facility and destroyed three ISIL vehicles and an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Kisik, a strike stuck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle and an ISIL tunnel system.

    -- Near Mosul, three strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL assembly areas.

    -- Near Qayyarah, five strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, an ISIL weigh station, an ISIL beddown location, an ISIL headquarters and an ISIL meeting site and destroyed an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Ramadi, a strike destroyed an ISIL fighting position and an ISIL heavy machine gun.

    -- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed an ISIL rocket rail and an ISIL supply cache.

    Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use. Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike.

    On the airstrikes, Greg Jaffe and Loveday Morris (WASHINGTON POST) explain:

    The White House is on the verge of releasing a long-delayed accounting of how many militants and civilians it has killed, primarily with drones, in countries where the United States is not at war. The list will include airstrikes in countries such as Libya, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen.
    It will not include deaths in Iraq or Syria. Nor is it likely to mollify critics who say that Obama’s largely defensive, low-American-casualty approach puts too many civilians at risk and too often feeds resentment that benefits U.S. enemies. The report will mean little to Iraqis and Syrians in places such as Mosul, Ramadi and Raqqa, where the tragic consequences of American mistakes are often easily ignored and American precision bombs sometimes do not seem very surgical or precise.

    In nearly two years of fighting in Iraq and Syria, U.S. officials say they have killed as many as 20,000 Islamic State fighters and caused only 41 civilian deaths. Military analysts and human rights activists said those figures are absurd. “They don’t pass the straight-face test,” said retired Col. Christopher Kolenda, who led troops in Afghanistan and served as a senior adviser to U.S. commanders there. He recently completed a study on civilian casualties for the George Soros-funded Open Society Foundations.

    AIRWARS counts 8,768 air strikes in Iraq and 4,128 in Syria with a minimum of 1,278 civilians killed.  To put just two faces on the many civilians killed in Iraq, last September, RADIO SAWA journalist Zaid Benjamin Tweeted this:

    | Mouselaon bloggers say a man & his son were killed in an airstrike by US-led coalition in Sunday

    The following community sites updated:


  • the washington post