Saturday, November 10, 2018

Forget the birds for a moment, let's talk about the bees

That the bees are in danger is not a new story.  And if we lose the bees, we lose so much on this planet.  NPR reports:

A team of researchers peered inside bumblebee colonies and spied on insects individually labelled with a tiny tag to figure out exactly how exposure to a common insecticide changes their behavior in the nest.
They found that the insecticide — from a controversial group called neonicotinoids — made the bees more sluggish and antisocial, spending more time on the periphery of the nest. It also made them less-attentive parents, according to research published Thursday in the journal Science.

Neonicotinoids, commonly known as "neonics," are near-ubiquitous in farming in many countries. They're commonly applied to the seeds of crops such as corn or soy before planting. The plant then carries traces of the insecticide as it grows, even showing up in the pollen, which scientists believe is one way bees are exposed. As NPR's Dan Charles has reported, "neonicotinoid residues also have been found in the pollen of wildflowers growing near fields and in nearby streams."


Taken together, Crall believes the findings point to the need for tighter regulation of neonicotinoids and other pesticides that may be impacting bees.
"I think we're at a point where we should be very, very concerned about how the ways in which we're changing the environment is undercutting and decimating insect populations that are important not only for the function of every ecosystem...but that are very important for food production," he said. "Our food system is becoming more and more pollinator-dependent over time -- today about a third of food crops are dependent on pollinators, and that's only rising. Up until now, we've had this abundant, natural gift of pollinators doing all this work for us, and now we're starting to realize that isn't a given, so I think we should be very worried about that."

This research was supported with funding from BioBest, the National Science Foundation, the Winslow Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship Program, the Moore and Sloan Foundations, a Sloan Research Fellowship, a Klingenstein-Simons Fellowship Award and the Statistical and Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute.

Why do bees matter?  Well they are one of the many species that bless this planet and do so in many ways:

Many domestic and imported fruits and vegetables require pollination. Examples include avocados, soybeans, asparagus, broccoli, celery, squash, and sunflowers for oil, cucumbers, citrus fruit, peaches, kiwis, cherries, cranberries and melons. For crops such as blueberries and almonds, the honey bee plays an essential role in pollination of commercial crops,  with around 80% of the US crop said to be dependent on honey bees. Honey bees can also pollinate clover and alfalfa, which are fed to cattle, so there are implications for the meat and dairy industry too. And that is not to mention the huge range of manufactured food products made from all these ingredients.

In addition, honey bees play a significant role in the pollination of other important crops such as cotton and flax. And there are also a number of valuable non-food products produced by the honey bee, such as beeswax used in cleaning and beauty products .

Globally there are more honey bees than other types of bee and pollinating insects, so it is the world’s most important pollinator of food crops. It is estimated that one third of the food that we consume each day relies on pollination mainly by bees, but also by other insects, birds and bats.


Bees Provide Sources of Food

few examples of the foods that would no longer be available to us if bees ceased pollinating our agricultural goods are: broccoli, asparagus, cantaloupes, cucumbers, pumpkins, blueberries, watermelons, almonds, apples, cranberries, and cherries.
Honey is a food product created by bees and is not to be forgotten. Made by bees regurgitating nectar and passing it back and forth in their mouths to one another before depositing and sealing it in a honeycomb, its intended use is for the bees’ winter food stores. Humans are quite fond of this amber liquid as well – the 2013 honey crop was valued at $317.1 million.

Bees Beautify the Planet

Pollinating flowers and contributing to the beautification of the planet’s floral landscapes may be the bees’ perhaps simplest and least economically important actions, but it’s certainly its most aesthetically pleasing one.
By keeping flowers pollinated, bees perpetuate floral growth and provide attractive habitats for other animals such as insects and birds.

Bees are easily amongst the most important insects to humans on Earth. These humble, buzzing bugs deserve a huge thanks – for helping provide us with our favorite fruits and vegetables, their delicious honey, and beautiful, flowery gardens!

So bees are important in a huge number of ways.

And check out MOTHER NATURE NEWS for a story about five ways bees work together:

"Bees are constantly in communication," said Common. That includes sharing where food resources are — they don't keep information like that to themselves. When they find nectar sources, "...they come back into the colony and do a dance. In the dark, they can't see it, but they can smell the pattern. That tells the other bees the direction of the food, what the food is and how long it's going to take to get there (or if there's a problem, they can sound an alarm). That waggle dance, as it's called, is just one more way the bees work as a group. 

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Friday, November 9, 2018.

Dog Eat Dog
It's dog eat dog
I'm just waking up
The dove is in the dungeon
And the white washed hawks
pedal hate and call it love
Dog Eat Dog
Holy hope in the hands of
Snakebite evangelists and racketeers
And big wig financiers

Dog Eat Dog
On prime time crime the victim begs
Money is the road to justice
and power walks it on crooked legs
Prime Time Crime
Holy hope in the hands of
Snakebite evangelists and racketeers
and big wig financiers

Where the wealth's displayed
Thieves and sycophants parade
And where it's made
the slaves will be taken
Some are treated well
In these games of buy and sell
And some like poor beasts
Are burdened down to breaking

Dog Eat Dog
It's dog eat dog ain't it Flim Flam man
Dog eat dog you can lie cheat skim scam
Beat' em any way you can
Dog eat Dog
You'll do well in this land of
Snakebite evangelists and racketeers
You could get to be
a big wig financier

Land of snap decisions
Land of short attention spans
Nothing is savored
Long enough to really understand
In every culture in decline
The watchful ones among the slaves
Know all that is genuine will be
Scorned and conned and cast away

-- "Dog Eat Dog," written by Joni Mitchell, first appears on her classic 1985 album DOG EAT DOG

Thieves and sycophants parade?  Hey, Joe, where you going with that award in your hand?  Off to War Hawk Land?  To give it to Bully Boy Bush?

A war criminal will get the Liberty Medal and Joe Biden will hand it to him. ⁦⁩ is not your friend.

As the far-right is emboldened across the country, the "compassionate conservative" George W. Bush is being awarded for his service to veterans. Sign and Share this petition.

Thank you, FL veterans for letter...a medal for Bush, the one who lied us into war with Iraq, causing deaths of thousands, horrific physical, and mental devastation to thousands...beyond the pale, disgraceful. Shame on you, Joe Biden.

Damn It, Joe Biden and Michelle Obama, Stop Rehabilitating George W. Bush! | The Nation

, why is war criminal, Geoge W. Bush, being presented with the Liberty Medal? , why are you participating in this travesty?

Will Bunch:

It's a pretty safe bet that no one on the Constitution Center's panel that selected the Bushes for the now-tarnished Liberty Medal consulted with the Iraq-born novelist Sinan Antoon, who wrote in the New York Times in March that "Fifteen Years Ago, America Destroyed My Country" and noted that estimates of as many as one million dead mean the war "is often spoken of in the United States as a 'blunder,' or even a 'colossal mistake,' " but, he writes, "It was a crime."
Nor did the panel likely investigate the "blessings" that America under Bush's leadership bestowed upon Lakhdar Boumediene, a Bosnian national scooped up in 2001 by U.S. intelligence on baseless allegations and flown to the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, where during nine years of imprisonment he said he was kept awake for days at a time, forced into uncomfortably painful positions, and brutally force-fed during a hunger strike. "These are things I do not want to write about," he wrote. "I want only to forget."
Apparently America only wants to forget the Bush years as well. (The Iraqi Antoon complained of our "mostly amnesiac citizenry" after watching Bush do a happy dance with liberal TV host Ellen DeGeneres.) 


Where the wealth's displayed
Thieves and sycophants parade
And where it's made
the slaves will be taken
Some are treated well
In these games of buy and sell
And some like poor beasts
Are burdened down to breaking

War Criminals are celebrated.  Everything comes with a price tag, eh, Ellen?

US Senate Affirms Support for Child Soldiers and Child Sex Slaves.

BREAKING: Calif. bar mass shooting suspect identified as Ian Long, 29, several law enforcement officials tell -

: Neighbors are saying David Ian Long was a veteran who suffered from PTSD, "I have no idea what he was doing with a gun"

He suffered with Post-Traumatic Syndrome?  But, by all means, let's give Bully Boy Bush an award for his 'work' with veterans -- you know, for killing them and wounding them.  For using them to try to distract from his War Crimes?

And let's pretend, while we're at it, that the wars themselves don't destroy the Ian Longs.  No, every veteran is not going to end up hurting people.  (Veterans with violence issues traditionally turn the violence on themselves.  Which does explain the high rates of  suicide.)  And there's no need to give rise to a stereotype.  But there's also no reason to deny that these ongoing wars effect a large number of people -- including those who serve in them.

Now it doesn't effect Bully Boy Bush.  He's still dumber than dirt.  His wallet's a lot thicker but he's still Satan incarnate and, if there's a hell, he'll get to know it quite well.

But Bully Boy Bush didn't serve in Iraq.  He sent others to serve.  He didn't serve himself.  He was too busy doing other things.  Hence the incomplete National Guard records.

Bully Boy Bush was happy enough to send men and women into war and he was happy enough to not "do body counts" (a lie, as we found out during the last week of KNIGHT RIDDER", in a Nancy Youssef report).  Now he thinks he can emerge from beneath his rock and accept an award.  The delusions of the entitled.

Shame on Joe Biden.  I love Joe but I'm appalled and this isn't something I'll forget.  If he gives out that award, I will not support him in a 2020 run.  His presenting that award shows he learned nothing from the Iraq War -- that he voted for.  He's learned nothing.  That makes him worse than Hillary.  Yes, she gave a weak ass apology but it's a hell of a lot better than what Joe Biden's about to do.

The Iraq War continues and bully Boy Bush is getting an award -- and Joe Biden's handing it to him.

XINHUA reports of 'liberated' Mosul, "At least three people were killed and 11 others wounded in a car bomb explosion near a restaurant in the west of the city of Mosul, the capital of Iraq's northern province of Nineveh, a local police source said Thursday."

That's Bully Boy Bush's legacy.  "The war on terror."  He was the terror.  Iraq, Afghanistan, these wars continue and their death toll increases.  AFP notes:

A report of the study conducted by Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs put the toll between 4,80,000 and 5,07,000 people, but said the actual number is likely to be higher since there are “limits in reporting”.

Now those deaths do not rest solely with Bully Boy Bush.  Barack Obama continued those wars.  Donald Trump continues them now.  And there were a lot of people in Congress -- Joe Biden, that includes you -- who signed off on them.

For Iraq alone, Brown's study counts 295,00.  And, as the study notes, this is an undercount.

How many people have to die before Joe Biden's bothered enough not to hand an award to Bully Boy Bush?

Jason Ditz (ANTIWAR.COM) observes:

This is admittedly a dramatic under-report of people killed in the wars, as it only attempts to calculate those killed directly in war violence, and not the massive number of others civilians who died from infrastructure damage or other indirect results of the wars. The list also excludes the US war in Syria, which itself stakes claims to another 500,000 killed since 2011.
The report also notes that over 60,000 US troops were either killed or wounded in the course of the wars. This includes 6,951 US military personnel killed in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11.

The Brown study also faults the US for having done very little in the last 17 years to provide transparency to the country about the scope of the conflicts, concluding that they are “inhibited by governments determined to paint a rosy picture of perfect execution and progress.”

Iraq remains destroyed.  The war continues.  The occupation continues.

Kirk Sowell (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace) examines the latest government:

Adel Abdul-Mahdi—a former minister of finance, minister of oil, and vice president of Iraq—barely managed to secure a confidence vote for two-thirds of his cabinet on October 25. The former member of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI), a Shia Islamist party, was nominated prime minister on October 2. But he has since nearly failed to launch his government, which will face pressure from a population frustrated by years of failures on security and public services.
The roots of Abdul-Mahdi’s weak government lie in the manner in which the prime minister himself was elected. After he resigned as minister of oil in 2016, Abdul-Mahdi left ISCI to become an independent and did not run in the May 2018 parliamentary elections. However, on May 23 he published a Facebook post explaining why he could not be prime minister because all the reforms he would want to implement would be opposed by many. These included such broad changes as moving away from the rentier state, strengthening state institutions and ensuring their independence from political influence, reining in illegal militia activity, and reducing the influence of tribalism.
This pitch aligned well with the rhetorical vision of populist Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who has long associated himself with such themes. The political class was focused for much of the summer on the struggle over Haider al-Abadi’s effort to secure a second term. Yet once the fallout over Basra’s massive water pollution crisis ended Abadi’s hopes in early September, Sadr quickly backed Abdul-Mahdias a replacement, and Barham Salih designated him to head the next government immediately after his own election as president on October 2. Sadr conditioned his support two days later by declaringthat he was giving Abdul-Mahdi “a period of one year to prove his success.” This gives Sadr the option to take credit for the government’s success if it does well or turn against it next year if protests over poor public services swell again.
Moreover, the coalition nominating him was unclear and fractured. Although Sadr was the driver behind his nomination, the only figure who actually ran in the election whose approval was essential for Abdul-Mahdi’s candidacy was Hadi al-Ameri—leader of the Badr Organization and head of the Fatah Alliance, which with 48 seats is the second largest in parliament after the 54 for Sadr’s Sairun. The process was so opaque that Iraqi journalists were uncertain which of these blocs had nominated him.
Sadr and Amiri, being political rivals with very different worldviews, also never agreed on a specific policy program or even a method of choosing ministers, with Sairun giving Abdul-Mahdi full discretion to nominate their share of the ministries while Amiri’s Fatah insisted on naming specific ministers. Furthermore, Abdul-Mahdi conducted separate bilateral negotiations for ministerial positions with Nouri al-Maliki’s State of Law Coalition (SLC) and the Sunni Arab National Axis Alliance, even though they were technically both part of Amiri’s Construction Bloc (Bina). Without agreements with both parties, they likely would have blocked passage of his cabinet, but this situation also underlines Abdul-Mahdi’s lack of a unified coalition. His bilateral agreements with parties do nothing to bind them to each other into a working majority capable of passing legislation or approving executive appointments.
The lack of a real coalition behind the new government became evident when parliament met to approve the proposed cabinet on October 24. Abdul-Mahdi got off on the wrong foot during his speech presenting his government program by failing to make more than passing reference to the demands of Sunni Arab MPs—such as reconstruction and the return of Sunni provinces’ displaced citizens. This led Speaker Mohamed al-Halbousi of Anbar to push through a motion to incorporate a list of Sunni demands into Abdul-Mahdi’s prepared text regarding the government’s program, holding a vote to approve his statement before the body could proceed to consider ministers.

15 years and counting, still the Iraq War continues and no one responsible for starting the war or continuing it deserves any award.

The following community sites updated:

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Lung Cancer Awareness

Did you know this is Lung Cancer Awareness week?
It is.  Saw it at a bulletin at work and found this at the CDC:

Sue, 55, grew up with a smoker in the house: her father. “I used to be very against smoking. I would do things like mark little lines on the cigarettes, break cigarettes, hide cigarettes.”
But even “knowing how super bad smoking is for you,” as she says, didn’t stop her from trying one for the first time when she was 18 years old.
“I had a friend who was smoking,” Sue says. “I remember being very upset about something, and she said, ‘Here, have a cigarette. It’ll calm you down.’”
That first smoke was the start of a habit that has followed her throughout her adult life and led to a diagnosis of lung cancer.( The cancer had spread from her lungs to her lymph nodes. She immediately started chemotherapy and went through 35 radiation treatments as well.
Sue, who is on her fourth year of maintenance chemotherapy, urges people to understand that smoking is an addiction to tobacco products. “Don’t start smoking,” she says, adding, “but if you already have, quit.”
You Can Lower Your Lung Cancer Risk
Don’t Smoke, and Avoid Secondhand Smoke
The most important thing you can do to prevent lung cancer is to not start smoking, or to quit if you smoke. For help quitting, visit, call 1 (800) QUIT-NOW (784-8669), or text “QUIT” to 47848 from your cell phone.
Smoke from other people’s cigarettes, pipes, or cigars is called secondhand smoke.( Make your home and car smoke-free.
Get Your Home Tested for Radon
The second leading cause of lung cancer is radon,( a naturally occurring gas that comes from rocks and dirt and can get trapped in houses and buildings.
Lung Cancer Screening Quiz
Photo of a doctor helping a patient get screened for lung cancer
How much do you know about lung cancer screening? Test your knowledge with our simple quiz!(
Is Lung Cancer Screening Right for You?
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends yearly lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography (CT scan) for people who—
·         Have a history of heavy smoking, and
·         Smoke now or have quit within the past 15 years, and
·         Are between 55 and 80 years old.
Lung cancer screening has risks. That is why lung cancer screening is recommended only for adults who have no symptoms( but who are at high risk for developing the disease because of their smoking history and age.
If you are thinking about getting screened, learn more( and talk to your doctor. Lung cancer screening is not a substitute for quitting smoking.
Fast Facts
·         Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death and the second most common cancer among both men and women in the United States.
·         Each year, about 218,000 people in the United States are told they have lung cancer and more than 150,000 people die from this disease.
·         In the United States, about 7,300 people who never smoked die from lung cancer due to secondhand smoke exposure every year.
·         Different people have different symptoms( for lung cancer. Most people with lung cancer don’t have symptoms until the cancer is advanced.

I know every month is some form of awareness these days and I wish I noted all of them.  But this is one month that I do note at least one.

Thursday, November 8, 2018.

Yet again, the Bubble Boy makes a fool of himself.


America isn't at war?

That's our Bubble Boy.  Elevated by his circle jerk -- CJR bloggers you are not missed nor are you forgotten -- Ezra Klein moved to THE WASHINGTON POST briefly.  He contributed what there?


He never contributes anything of value.  He's an idiot.

What does this man from Irvine have to offer?  He's not smart.  He's damn well not attractive.  Did he serve in the military or in a war?  Did he get a doctorate?  Does he have some outstanding talent?  Has he dedicated his life to public service?  What did the White man do to qualify to be a spokesperson?

Oh, right, he was born entitled.

And that entitlement reeks and it's why he can claim that the US is not at war.  He's not a liar, he's just an entitled brat who thinks every day is his bar mitzvah and a celebration of his manhood.

Short changed forever, Ezra Klein.

How do you get to be so stupid?

Entitlement, yes.  But also it helps to live in a bubble.  He did the hideous JournList.  And he's doing something similar today.  You can see it in the ravings of various characters who were part of the original (yes, Paul Krugman, that includes you).

Not only is the US at war still in Afghansitan and Iraq and . . .  but last week, Tom Westcott (MIDDLE EAST EYE) reported:

On the ground, however, a senior source in Iraq's Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilisation) forces told Middle East Eye that coalition forces - mainly American, French and Canadian - were based in three adjacent military bases occupying an approximately four-square-kilometre area near the Anbar town of al-Baghdadi, 150km from the border, along with other operational bases closer to al-Qaim.
"Al-Baghdadi is now one of the biggest US military bases in Iraq," he said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "It is three bases in one area heavily guarded by the Iraqi Army, and no other Iraqi forces can get near there."

How do you miss that.

By being entitled like Ezzie and residing in Sugar Town.

Yesterday it rained in Tennessee
I heard it also rained in Tallahassee
But not a drop fell on little old me

Because I was in shoo-shoo-shoo, shoo-shoo-shoo
Shoo-shoo, shoo-shoo, shoo-shoo Sugar Town

I understand Ezzie had his mommy sew him the same outfit Nancy Sinatra wears and that he looks quite fetching prancing around in it.

Ezra Klein is another wasted life.  Not wasted talent, because he'd have to have talent and, sorry, Ezzie, partisanship doesn't make a star -- ask Karl Rove or . . .  Well there's not many to ask because they all fade from memory as soon as they perish.  They leave nothing that lasts.  Propped up soley by ego, they come crashing down rather quickly.  And the circle jerk that made them?  They've moved on to others.

That someone who is the editor of an alleged news outlet could publicly Tweet that the US was not at war goes a long, long way towards explaining not only how out of touch Ezzie is but also how unneeded he is.

In Ezzie's world, there are no victims -- just chubby boys overpraised by pathetic parents who failed to instill ethics or meanings.

“Nothing good comes from war. It kills people and no one likes it.” Ta is unsure of her exact age. War in took her father and her home. She's been living in a camp for almost two years:

She doesn't exist in Ezzie's world.  Stay in Sugar Town, Klein, we don't need you in the real world.

In other news . . .

US President will nominate current Amb to Yemen Matthew Tueller to replace outgoing Amb Silliman at


The US needs a new ambassador desperately.

They have for some time.

When Barack Obama was president, US Ambassador to Iraq was a constantly rotating position -- Crocker, Hill, Jones, Jeffrey, Beecroft, did we forget anyone?  There was Brett McGurk whom Democrats in the Senate met with Barack to oppose and make clear that they would not support him for a variety of reasons.  And, of course, there's this guy:

Douglas A. Silliman

Photo of Douglas A. Silliman
U.S. Ambassador to Iraq
Term of Appointment: 09/01/2016 to present

Douglas A. Silliman is the United States Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq. He arrived in Baghdad on September 1, 2016.
He served as Ambassador to Kuwait from 2014 until July 2016. In 2013-2014, he served as a Senior Advisor in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs in the Department of State in Washington, D.C., working on Iraq issues and the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit. He was Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq from 2012 to 2013 and Minister Counselor for Political Affairs in Baghdad from 2011 to 2012. He was the Deputy Chief of Mission in Ankara, Turkey from 2008 to 2011. He joined the Department of State in 1984 and is a career member of Senior Foreign Service.
Ambassador Silliman earlier served as Director and Deputy Director of the State Department’s Office of Southern European Affairs, as Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Amman, Jordan, and as the Regional Officer for the Middle East in the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism. Ambassador Silliman worked as political officer in Islamabad, Pakistan, in the Office of Soviet Union Affairs, as Lebanon Desk officer, and as Staff Assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs. He began his career as a visa officer in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and a political officer in Tunis, Tunisia.
Ambassador Silliman received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science summa cum laude from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, where he was also a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He earned a Master of Arts in International Relations from the George Washington University in Washington, DC.
He has received numerous awards from the Department of State, including the Secretary’s Award for Public Outreach in 2007 and senior performance awards. The American Foreign Service Association gave Ambassador Silliman its Sinclaire Language Award in 1993 and the W. Averill Harriman Award for outstanding junior officer in 1988. He speaks Arabic and French. 

So in Barack's eight years as president, there were six ambassadors to Iraq.  Does that speak to stability?  No, it doesn't.  And it was amazing during all this that we stood alone calling it out.  It's also appalling that we were also the only ones noting all the people he nominated for the post and how every one of the nominated was a man.

Iraqi women have suffered due to the Iraq War, the war the US-led and continues to lead.  Their rights have been ripped up.  A symbolic move of appointing a woman to the post could make a difference and other countries -- including Canada -- were willing to try.  Not the US.

Donald's no different than Barack, he's nominated a man.  For his first term, he kept Silliman in place (we'll come back to Silliman), and now?  He's nominated Matthew Tuellerman.

Unless Trump withdraws the nomination, Tuellerman is the next ambassador to Iraq.  I say that because he's breezed through the Senate confirmation period twice -- Kuwait and Yemen.

Will he be good in the post?  Good question.

But Silliman has made the need for a new ambassador mandatory.

Over the weekend, a non-story in many ways took place.  Iraq slammed a Tweet.  There are certainly more important stories.  The only import for the story was going to be the fall out and the fall out is Silliman is out of a job.

While he was US Ambassador to Iraq, the US Embassy did a Tweet.


The Iraqi Foreign Ministry rejected on Saturday a statement issued by the US embassy in Baghdad in which it called on Tehran to “respect the sovereignty of the Iraqi government and permit the disarming, demobilisation, and reintegration” of Shia militias.
The Iraqi ministry considered the US embassy’s remarks which were posted on Twitter, last week, as “interferences in its internal affairs”.

PRESS TV added:

The Iraqi foreign ministry reiterated the US embassy statement went well beyond diplomatic norms, adding that Baghdad expected the embassy to remove the post from its Twitter page.

“Iraq looks forward to erase the statement by the US Embassy and to avoid issuing such statements in the future and to observe the rules of international law governing the embassy work in Iraq,” said the ministry.

This is the Iraqi government's statement in full (and I've removed a typo -- there was an "a" in the first use of "Ministry").

Statement / Ministry of Foriegn affairs

Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sat, Nov 3, 2018

The Foreign Ministry followed up the statement issued by the US Embassy in Baghdad regarding the effectiveness of the unilateral US sanctions against the neighbor of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The Ministry would like to point out that the second part of the said statement goes beyond diplomatic norms and mutual respect for the sovereignty of States as a well-established principle of international law. Iraq refuses the interference in its internal issues, especially the issues of internal security reform and the status of Iraqi security forces under the authority of the Prime Minister leader of Military Forces.
Iraq looks forward to the deletion of the Embassy of those statements that are inconsistent with international norms and to avoid their recurrence in the future and to observe the rules of international law governing its work in Iraq as its host State.

Dr. Ahmed Mahjoub
Spokesman for the Iraqi Foreign Ministry

To read the full article from Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, click here.

It was a major embarrassment.

Silliman had to be replaced.  As for Tueller?  Coming from Yemen, considering US actions and enabling, he's probably going to turn out to be a big disappointment to those of us on the left -- but that will make him just like the all the ones who came before!  The only one this qualifies as a smart move for is Donald Trump.  Tueller will be confirmed and that will (a) look good for Trump, (b) make it look like Donald chose to work in a bipartisan fashion and (c) give the impression -- true or not -- that there are no real consequences of the election (the House flipping to the Democrats in Tuesday's election while the Senate remains controlled by the Republicans).

The other winner?

Iraq.  For a few hours, the US Senate will have to acknowledge the ongoing war.

On the elections, a few people are asking why we didn't cover them?

What was to cover?

Iraq wasn't an issue.  War wasn't an issue.  The press ignored these realities.

Jim Sciutto never asks about the war in any way that matters.  When does it end?  How does it end?  How much more money will be spent on it?

Instead, he wastes everyone's time with nonsense of: When are you going to visit the troops in Iraq!!!!!

Barack visited once and only once as president and that never bothered Jim.

And I'm bothered also by Jim's loose relationship with the truth.  To provide one example, he keeps claiming he won the Edward R. Murrow Award for "reporting from Iran during the 2009

 On the topic of the election, we'll note Barbara Golberg (REUTERS):

The freshman class of the new Congress will boast the largest number of military veterans in nearly a decade, including a record number of former servicewomen, bolstering a corps of ex-military lawmakers that has been depleted in recent years.
More than 150 military veterans ran as either Republicans or Democrats for the U.S. House of Representatives in Tuesday’s midterm election, at a time when the number of former servicemen and women in Congress is near a historic low as older members retire or have left for roles in the Trump Administration.
Voters elected more than 75 veterans to Congress, said Seth Lynn, a former Marine who serves as executive director of the Veterans Campaign, which has tracked veterans campaigning for the U.S. House for the last decade. Of veterans who won their races, 16 will serve their first terms, outnumbering the freshman class of 14 veterans elected in 2016 and 12 in both 2014 and 2012.
Of the 16 rookies, three were women, nearly doubling the number of female veterans already serving in the House and Senate.  

So 16 new veterans will serve in the Congress.

The following community sites -- plus Jody Watley, PACIFICA EVENING NEWS, BAR  -- updated: