Friday, October 18, 2013

It was all an illusion






I see NSA-whistle blower Ed Snowden as a hero.  Some do not see him as such.  I think he did the country (and the world) a great service by exposing the illegal spying.  Again, some don't feel the same.

Today, when an NBC friend e-mailed me Geoffrey Cowley's long article kind-of about Iraq, I immediately thought of Ed Snowden's whose sacrificed so much to tell the truth.  I thought of him as Cowley tried to turn "Skip" Burkle (Dr. Frederick Burkle) into a hero.  Burkle was over Iraqi health in 2003 and has a great deal to say.


Today when it doesn't really matter one damn bit.  Today when Bully Boy Bush's image and reputation is so destroyed that Cowley can do a 'serious' news piece that basically mocks Bush.

Bully Boy Bush is a War Criminal.  But the US press won't note that.  Like little cowards, they won't note it, but, like little cowards, they'll stick their tongues out at him.

So Iraqi health was a failure and Burkle resigned from USAID as desired by the 2003 White House and now, ten years later, we're supposed to be impressed that he's telling (what he says is) the truth?

I'm not impressed.  Ed Snowden blew the whistle.  Coward Burkle?  He waited until Bush was out of office and a public relations disaster to come forward.

In other words, while Iraqis suffered, and he knew they were suffering, he refused to speak.  As Pat Benatar sang:

It's a little too little
It's a little too late
I'm a little too hurt 
And there's nothing left that I got to say
You can cry to me baby
But there's only so much that I can take
It's a little too little
It's a little too late

Cowley wants to snicker (behind a straight face) about Bully Boy Bush's lies.  He's sort of like a 17-year-old just realizing "I'm coming" can be interpreted in many ways while his peers stare at him amazed that he's only just now caught on to that.

If there's a reason to write about broken promises in 2013 -- broken promises with regards to Iraq -- one reason would be the Ashraf community who disarmed at the request of the US government and were promised protection (and were protected people under Geneva) but whom, since Barack came into office, have been attacked repeatedly.  As Betty noted earlier this week at her site:

The US government gave its word to the Ashraf community.
And now it doesn't want to keep its word.
But it has not had the guts to say that.
Maybe if, when Barack was sworn in back in January 2009, he'd announced that the promise was now broken, the Ashraf community would have had a heads up?
Instead, they've been left with false hopes (and no protection).

He wants to write about "the brain drain" in terms of the medical situation:

Unfortunately, the wars that spawned Iraq’s myriad health challenges have also robbed it of the capacity to address them. The country has lost more than half of its physicians since 2000 (20,000 out of 34,000), and though 1,500 to 1,800 Iraqis are now completing medical degrees each year, a fourth of them are leaving the country. Dr. Nabil Al-Khalisia, an Iraqi physician who fled to the United States in 2010, has since surveyed others in Iraq and around the world, and his findings aren’t encouraging. As he told the Lancet in an interview published last week, more than half of the doctors he surveyed in June 2011 said they had been threatened. Of those still working in Iraq, 18% had survived assassination attempts and nearly half said they still planned to leave the country.

What a stupid idiot.

I hope he loathes Bully Boy Bush because, otherwise, there's no point to his article.

Doctors are killed in Iraq all the time.  He can't tell you that.  Not even that, six days ago, a doctor was shot dead in Mosul.

He pretends he's interested in the medical but can't tell you that and seems unable to utter the word "nurse."  No where are Nouri's failures in the last seven years more clear than with regards to nurses.  He's importing nurses into the country -- a country with an unemployment rate around 30% (unofficial).  Nouri's importing nurses and has been over seven years.  A nursing degree -- an RN -- is a two year program.  He's had seven years to fast track Iraq's large pool of unemployed workers into a nursing program that would do away with the need to import 60,000 nurses every few months.

Most of all, if you're going to write about Iraq today you need to note reality on the ground -- especially when you open your 'report' with this 2003 quote from Bully Boy Bush:

The Iraqi people can be certain of this. The United States is committed to helping them build a better future. We will bring Iraq food and medicine and supplies, and most importantly, freedom.

Where's the freedom issue in your overly long article?

No where to be found.

Following the 2005 elections, Iraqi MPs wanted Ibrahim al-Jafaari to be prime minister (to continue in that post).  He had rubbed the Bush administration the wrong way and they demanded it be Nouri al-Maliki.  In the 2010 parliamentary elections, Nouri's State of Law came in second meaning the Iraqi people were finally free of him.

Except the Barack Obama White House wanted to keep him on.  So they overroad the votes of the Iraqi people, they overrode the Iraqi Constitution, they overroad the rules and spirit of democracy, went around all of that to broker a legal contract that gave Nouri a second term.

That contract is why Iraq has had an ongoing political crisis for over three years.

And when Iraqis try to protest, Nouri's forces attack them.  The most infamous example is the April 23rd massacre of a sit-in in Hawija which resulted from  Nouri's federal forces storming in.  Alsumaria noted Kirkuk's Department of Health (Hawija is in Kirkuk)  announced 50 activists have died and 110 were injured in the assault.   AFP reported the death toll eventually (as some wounded died) rose to 53 dead.   UNICEF noted that the dead included 8 children (twelve more were injured)."

Marcia wrote about the attacks on protesters last night and she noted an August 31st report by Aswat al-Iraq:

A number of casualties were reported in mid of Nassiriya city following clashes between SWAT forces and hundreds of demonstrators.
The security forces used live bullets to disperse them, as reported to Aswat al-Iraq.
Civil activist Bassam al-Jabiri told Aswat al-Iraq that 10 persons were injured for "unjustified use of force by SWAT forces".

Marcia concluded, "People need to be aware of this and they especially need to be aware of it with Nouri coming to the US to meet Barack in about two weeks.  He is attacking the Iraqi people.   Our government doesn't need to schmooze him, they need to hold him accountable."

Can NBC explain how you open with a 2003 quote about democracy in an article about failed promises to Iraq and never note the attacks on protesters?  Or how about how this article about Iraq 'today' can't mention Barack Obama who has been president for over the last four years of 'today'?

Like most Americans in 2000, I didn't vote for Bully Boy Bush.  I didn't vote for him in 2004. Starting in February 2003, I spoke out against him, calling him out for war on Iraq.  I still speak about war on Iraq every week.  Bully Boy Bush isn't really my focus.  He is thankfully out of the White House.  NBC's filed something today.

While they pretend it's a report on Iraq, it just reads to me like a lot of Bush hatred.  And I'm not going to defend Bully Boy Bush from that but I'm also going to pretend like it's got much to do with what's going on in Iraq today despite the lie in the subheading of "What are their lives like today?"

What their lives are like today would include the Sunni vice president.  From the December 19, 2011 snapshot:

CNN reported this afternoon that an arrest warrant had been issued for Iraqi Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi by the Judicial Commitee with the charge of terrorism.  Omar al-Saleh (Al Jazeera) terms it a "poltical crisis" and states, "The government says this has nothing to do with the US withdrawal, that this has nothing to do with the prime minister consolidating his grip on power.  However, members of al-Iraqiya bloc, which Hashimis is a member of, say 'No, [Maliki] is trying to be a dictator."  Sam Dagher (Wall St. Journal) observes, "The arrest warrant puts Mr. Maliki on a possible collision course with the Kurds, who run their own semiautonomous region in the north and participate in the central government but have longstanding disputes with Baghdad over oil and land; and with Sunni Arabs in provinces like Anbar, Diyala, Nineveh and Salahuddin who have pressed in recent weeks for more autonomy from Baghdad with the backing of the Kurds."

They were questionable charges to begin with and al-Hashemi could not get a fair trail in Baghdad. In fact, the Baghdad judges declared him guilty in February 2012 at their press conference and while one judge was stating that he had been threatened by al-Hashemi.  (The judge actually claimed to have been threatened by 'supporters' of al-Hashemi -- he can't even make the claim if press for proof that it was by a bodyguard of al-Hasehmi.) That was before the trial ever began.  Before hearing any evidence, the judges made clear that al-Hashemi was guilty.

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