Saturday, July 11, 2020

Rachel Toilets

From October 28, 2018, that's "Rachel Toilets."  C.I. noted:

Isaiah's latest THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Rachel Toilets."  Rachel Maddow explains from her toilet, "It's me, America's number one newsperson Rachel Maddow.  With Trump inviting Putin to DC, Tweeting is no longer enough.  I'll now be toileting as well.  Consider this my first news dump." Isaiah archives his comics at THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS.

Rachel is the queen of the dump -- that's all her work has ever been -- one steamy dump.

That was true of her work on AIR AMERICA RADIO where she was a War Hawk who kept calling for the Iraq War to continue.  That is true of her garbage on MSNBC.

Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Friday, July 10, 2020.  We look at presidential candidates in the US and note the increase (again) in deaths from COVID in Iraq.

Starting in the US where a presidential election is set to take place in November.  Among those running for the presidency?  Gloria La Riva who is the presidential nominee of the Party for Socialism and Liberation as well as for the Peace and Freedom Party.  LIBERATION notes:

In an exciting development for the Party for Socialism and Liberation, on July 2 the PSL was officially designated by the New Mexico Secretary of State as a qualified political party in the state of New Mexico. This despite the onerous requirement of signature gathering, made even tougher in time of the pandemic.
Now, when New Mexicans register to vote or update their registration, they can make their party affiliation the Party for Socialism and Liberation. Also, when they go to the polls in November, New Mexicans will be able to vote for a grassroots socialist presidential campaign!
Karina Aracely, New Mexico PSL organizer, stated, “Soon, the Statewide Convention of the PSL-NM will be held. There, delegates of the party will officially nominate our 2020 socialist candidates for the November 3 presidential election: the national candidates of the Party for Socialism and Liberation, Gloria La Riva for president and her running mate, Native activist and political prisoner Leonard Peltier. Our campaign is raising Leonard Peltier’s freedom struggle and in support of his longtime defense efforts. In reality, he should have never spent one day of his 44 years in prison.
“We are excited about the opportunity to talk with people throughout New Mexico, of an alternative not only for the election, but the urgent need for the system we are fighting for, socialism, which puts the people first, not profits.”
In addition to being the PSL candidates in several states, La Riva and Peltier will be the 2020 candidates for the Peace and Freedom Party of California, and the Liberty Union Party of Vermont.
The U.S. electoral system is rigged to give only the two ruling-class parties a competitive chance to win. Third-party candidates are subject to exclusionary and expanding obstacles in every state. For more than two years, the Democrat and Republican candidates have had non-stop media coverage, while the people only get realistic exposure to third-party candidates at their polling place, due to strict media censorship.
Still, the PSL nationally is running an energetic campaign to put forth our 10-point program, while also marching in the streets against racism and police brutality, holding car caravans to Cancel the Rents and more.

Milan Simonich (SANTA FE NEW MEXICAN) also notes: "The Party for Socialism and Liberation also has received minor-party status. It has a presidential candidate, Gloria La Riva."  Also fighting for ballot access is the Socialist Equality Party and their presidential candidate Joesph KishoreAt WSWS, Kishore writes:

On Wednesday, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Michigan denied the Socialist Equality Party’s challenge to the state’s 12,000 physical signature ballot access requirement during the coronavirus pandemic.
The judge, Sean F. Cox, a Republican, sided with the Democratic administration of Governor Gretchen Whitmer in ruling that the coronavirus pandemic did not seriously “burden” our constitutional rights or the rights of those Michiganders who want to vote for our campaign.
Cox issued his ruling as the deadly coronavirus pandemic is spiraling out of control. Yesterday, the official global death toll surpassed 550,000, and the number of infections increased to more than 12.3 million.
The United States is the epicenter of the virus, which is now spreading without restraint. Already, COVID-19 has claimed more than 135,000 lives in the United States. More than 61,000 people tested positive yesterday, a new record, and the daily death toll is approaching 1,000.
Hospitals in Texas, Florida and Arizona are overwhelmed, and nurses are again facing critical shortages of personal protective equipment and ventilators. Cases are increasing in most states, including in Michigan, where they are at levels not seen since the end of May.
The surge in cases and deaths is the direct and predictable outcome of the criminal policies of Trump and the entire political establishment, including the Whitmer administration. Even as the pandemic exacts its horrific toll, the White House is demanding that schools reopen in the fall, threatening the lives of hundreds of thousands of teachers and students, as part of the overall back-to-work campaign.
It is under these conditions that Judge Cox declared his full support for the argument of the state of Michigan that SEP should have been gathering signatures and that it still should be doing so.
Cox’s decision is not a serious legal ruling grounded in jurisprudence or reasoned analysis. It is a political decision aimed at barring socialists from the ballot, with the legal rationalization serving to justify a conclusion determined in advance.
Cox asserts that it is not the coronavirus pandemic or the governor’s stay-at-home orders that have prevented signature gathering, but the candidates’ own lack of “diligence.”
In fact, it is the “diligence” of the SEP that required that it not attempt to gather signatures. If we did make this attempt, we would have been violating our own political principles and our warnings of the dangerous consequence of the reckless policies of the ruling class—warnings that have now been completely confirmed.

Julianna Forlano interviewed Joseph for ACT TV yesterday.

Yesterday, Joseph Tweeted about the Democratic Party's presumed presidential nominee Joe Biden and Joe's athletic supporter Bernie It Lifts And It Separates Sanders:

Sanders' political revolution--ends not with a bang, but a whimper. "The task forces did not recommend... 'Medicare for all,' tuition-free public college for everyone or canceling all student debt." Not surprising, and they are meaningless anyway.

But assessing just how much Biden’s task force’s plan would improve the lives of patients depends on details we simply don’t have. The proposal stipulates that premiums will be capped at 8.5% of income (more for a family), which could potentially mean that a slate of relatively robust public option plans would force private plans to improve substantially to compete. Or, more likely, private insurers could take a cue from Medicare Advantage and find ways to cherry-pick healthier patients while off-loading sicker ones onto the public program.
Cost-sharing is also partially unresolved—a public option plan with zero deductibles, for example, may well entail higher copays and coinsurance, perhaps going so far as to foist enrollees into private supplemental plans parallel to “Medigap” coverage for Medicare recipients.
Furthermore, the crucial issue of provider networks goes unmentioned. As networks have narrowed in recent years with insurers trying to save money by covering fewer and fewer providers, many ACA plans have failed to adequately cover certain types of care, like mental health. Traditional Medicare, by contrast, doesn’t have networks and thus affords patients free choice of providers. What kinds of benefits and cost-sharing will be applied to which public option plans will make a world of difference—and will require even more expertise to suss out than the notoriously confusing ACA exchanges already do.
Ultimately, however beefy a public option turns out to be, there are things it can never do. By offering one more insurance product to a list of several others—even if it’s the best of the bunch—the public option does little to alleviate the misery of navigating the administrative quagmire endemic to our healthcare system. It still leaves gaps for patients to fall into, and forces them to beg claims assessors for coverage by phone. And it still casts us as healthcare consumers, shopping for the best-valued access to a foundational human need that shouldn’t be commodified to begin with.

Also at IN THESE TIMES, Hamilton Nolan notes the labor and working rights platform:

Perhaps the most notable part of the platform, however, is an omission. It asks to “ensure that all private-sector workers' right to strike... is vigorously protected.” But for public sector workers, it asks only to “Provide a federal guarantee for public sector employees to bargain for better pay and benefits and the working conditions they deserve.” In other words, despite the fact that the public sector is much more heavily unionized than the private sector, and has been under legal attack from the right for decades, there is no demand that public sector workers be granted the right to strike—the single most potent weapon in any union’s toolbox.
More remarkable is the fact that Lee Saunders, one of America’s most powerful public sector union leaders and an Obama confidante, represents the faction that was not seeking to give his own members the right to strike. “In the public sector, AFSCME has taken the position that… in order to come to a conclusion if there are difficult negotiations, we should have binding arbitration in place of the right to strike,” Saunders told In These Times. “Public sector unions believe binding arbitration is better because we provide valuable public services.”
Saunders acknowledged that the issue of the public sector’s right to strike was discussed in the task force’s negotiations, but his view, unsurprisingly, carried the day. Sara Nelson, a leftist in the labor movement who is often mentioned as a future candidate to lead the AFL-CIO, pushed unsuccessfully for public workers to have the same right to strike as their counterparts in the private sector. “My mind wasn't changed during this process on any issue we brought forward. I fundamentally believe in the right to strike. The strike is a necessary component of collective bargaining,” she told In These Times. “If federal workers had the right to strike, there would never be a government shutdown ever again.”

To dethrone the overtly racist and imperially undependable Donald Trump, the oligarchs ensured the presidential nomination of hapless Joe Biden, who vows to veto Medicare for All, opposes defunding the police, and whistles tunes of war with Russia (but doesn’t remember the words). Biden personifies ruling class determination to double down on endless war, Race to the Bottom austerity, and an ever-expanding national security state, including the local police component -- the same policies that led to the Crisis of Legitimacy of 2020. (The Covid mass deaths and accompanying economic shutdown is the result of privatization and austerity). The oligarchs get what they pay for. Therefore, the Democrats will wipe the clown paint from their faces, fold up their kente cloths, and apologize to the cops for joining in the “dozens” circle (“Your cops so brutal…”), as soon as the movement has been sufficiently exhausted or co-opted.  
If the “Black Lives Matter” movement is to be neutralized, it will be by capture/cooptation by the Democratic Party – just as befell the great mass Black movement of half a century ago. The oligarchs are now vastly more concentrated and powerful than in the previous era, and their Democratic duopoly apparatus has thoroughly infested every nook and cranny of Black civic life. The Democrats are the capitalist enemy within Black America, ultimately answerable to the same forces that pull Republican strings. The main difference is that Democrats, like most of the oligarchy, have seen the advantages of a diversified, multiracial management of Black grassroots unrest and repetitive capitalist crises. Send in the Kente squads.
Half a million or more protesters in the streets, resisting the police, brought people’s politics back to life, but the Black movement will be asphyxiated by the ubiquitous fingers of the Democratic Party if it does not build independent nexuses of people’s power. ‘Defunding the police” may result in some reshuffling of local budget funds to social services, but does not in itself transfer power over those services -- or the police -- to the people. Movement-speak is replete with the word “transformational,” but only people’s power can transform the relationship between the Black masses and the oligarchs’ state. Cutting police budgets does not alter the anti-Black nature of the police mission, and neither does adding Black cops to the blue ranks. Only community control of the police can create the institutional people power to transform, and eventually do away with, policing as we know it. The cops will still be the cops, whatever their numbers and pay scales, unless they are made accountable to the communities they “serve,” who will shape the security force’s mission and manage and evaluate its performance. 
Community control of the police is a project in democracy and Black self-determination, while defunding the police – inevitably, in practice – is an immersion in Democratic Party budgetary dickering that legitimizes the imposition of the police upon the people. It will suck the righteous energy out of the movement, while failing to transform any power relationships of importance. Along the way, key operatives will be “captured” as they form alliances with the “better” Democratic politicians in divvying up the budgetary spoils. 

Jo Jorgensen is the Libertarian Party's presidential candidate.  Earlier this week, her campaign issued the following:

GREENVILLE, S.C.—July 7, 2020. An article in the Guardian, a British newspaper, featuring a picture of Dr. Jo Jorgensen, attempts to smear the Libertarian Party presidential candidate by associating her with a movement known as boogaloo, because of her appearance on a podcast hosted by some members of the movement. The Guardian describes boogaloo by detailing its most radical elements.
The boogaloo movement has no organization and no leadership. Participants within vary widely, from white supremacists, at one extreme, to those who vehemently condemn both racism and white supremacy. Their unifying characteristic is the belief that citizens have the right to rise up against an oppressive government, and in particular, one that denies their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, or their right to self-defense.
This view is enshrined in America’s Declaration of Independence from, coincidentally, Great Britain. It states that whenever a government becomes destructive of human rights, “it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it.”
The Guardian article fails to distinguish between anti-government and anti-authoritarian government sentiment, the latter of which better describes the views of boogaloo members.
As both the Libertarian Party and the Jorgensen campaign have made consistently and abundantly clear, and as the Guardian‘s journalist surely knows, libertarians vehemently oppose the initiation of force, whether by government or civilian forces.
As Dr. Jorgensen explained to the reporter, the Libertarian Party has a membership requirement unlike that of any other U.S. political party. To be eligible to join, each individual must sign a pledge attesting that they oppose the initiation of force for the purpose of achieving social or political goals.
“I reject violence and bigotry, and I advocate non-aggression, peaceful persuasion, and voluntary cooperation,” Jorgensen said. “At the same time, I and my fellow libertarians reject so-called cancel culture, which denies people their right to free speech.”

THE GUARDIAN is a UK publication that is controlled by New Labour -- a right-wing element of the Labour Party.  That's why THE GUARDIAN did not come out against the Iraq War and why they never reported on The Downing Street Memo.  They employ centrists and right-wing American Democrats as columnists and that tells you all you need to know.  

The Green Party kicks off it's presidential nominating convention Saturday, July 11th.  Howie Hawkins is the party's presumed presidential nominee.  Louise Boyle (INDEPENDENT) reports:

Mr Hawkins, 67, a longtime grassroots organiser, has run for office two dozen times. He was the Green Party’s candidate for New York governor in 2010 and 2014, where he received 5 per cent of the vote, one of the highest for an independent progressive party candidate in the state’s history. 
His campaign aims to pull together disillusioned liberals, the Bernie Sanders “refugees”, he says, and beyond.
“Our main target is the 100 million voters who sat out the 2016 election. They are disproportionately working class, people of color, and young. They are the future of independent left politics in the US,” Mr Hawkins writes.
He gives short shrift to both the main parties’ nominees. President Trump is a “loser”, and a “modern Typhoid Mary” who is willing to risk infecting his own supporters at his “super-spreader rallies”.
Joe Biden’s “conservative policies … would fit comfortably into the centre-right parties of Europe”. 
Boyle is reporting on -- but fails to link to -- this column Howie wrote for THE INDEPENDENT.  From the column:

But where is Joe Biden? As the Democrats’ presumptive nominee, he has the national stage. When you think of Biden, what issue is he the champion of? Biden should be mobilising the public behind a federal test, trace, and isolate programme to suppress the virus like most other organised countries are doing – and he should be the driving force behind universal mail-in balloting so everyone can vote in this pandemic. 

Turning to Iraq, a country still shattered by the decisions Joe Biden made as US senator and Vice President.  KURDISTAN 24 reports:

The Iraqi Ministry of Health and Environment on Thursday announced that health officials had confirmed more than 2,000 new COVID-19 infections and the death of over 100 patients across the country within the previous 24 hours.
The ministry’s daily statement on the current health crisis noted that it had conducted 11,809 coronavirus tests in a single day, 2,170 of which returned positive.
According to the statement, since the spread of the virus to Iraq in late February, 69,612 people have been infected, 39,502 have recovered, and a total of 2,889 individuals have died from its complications.
Iraq faces multiple issue.  Paul Iddon (ARAB NEWS) notes:

In an act that shocked the Arab world late on Monday, unidentified gunmen on a motorcycle shot and killed Hisham Al-Hashimi, a leading Iraqi expert on Daesh and other armed groups. As with so many unsolved murders of prominent public personalities in Iraq since 2003, there is no dearth of suspects. The big question is what action Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi can afford to take under the circumstances.
The 47-year-old Al-Hashimi was a well-respected Iraqi academic and political analyst. His expertise on Daesh earned him the position of adviser to the US-led Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. After the destruction of Daesh’s self-styled caliphate in 2018, he shifted his focus to the workings of the Hashd Al-Shaabi (or Popular Mobilization Forces) units that participated in the anti-Daesh campaign.
Al-Hashimi had expressed fears in recent weeks that Iranian-backed constituents of Hashd had him in their crosshairs. A medical source at the hospital where he was taken after Monday’s shooting said he had suffered “bullet wounds in several body parts.”
 Iraq witnessed a spate of deadly attacks on intellectuals, academics and moderate politicians at the height of the insurgency. More than 500 people have been killed since protests erupted in Oct. 2019, demanding an end to corruption and Iran’s overarching influence. But analysts believe that with Al-Hashimi’s killing, a loud warning shot has been fired across Al-Kadhimi’s bow.
“The assassination is intended to signal militia displeasure with Al-Kadhimi and his inner circle,” said Michael Knights, a noted Iraq analyst and Lafer Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
“They are saying that there is a cost to the Al-Kadhimi team for arresting militia members and disrupting militia money-making enterprises,” he added.

Remember when ISIS took Mosul?  Remember years later when Iraq claimed to have finally liberated Mosul?  There's no real progress there.  AFP reports:

Iraq gathered $30 billion in pledges from international donors in Kuwait in 2018 to rebuild, but virtually none of the funds have been disbursed.

The lack of progress has been widely blamed on Iraq's infamous bureaucracy, corruption that has siphoned off reconstruction funds and polarised city politics.

Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic and plummeting oil prices, Iraq's government is struggling to rake in enough monthly revenues to break even – pushing rebuilding even lower on its priorities list.

"Politicians keep telling us we need to go home," Hamed said, slamming the government's insistence on closing down the camps where more than one million Iraqis, rendered homeless by the fighting, are still seeking shelter.

"But how? Our homes are destroyed and there isn't a single public service that works."

According to a Norwegian Refugee Council survey in Mosul, over 270,000 people remain unable to return home and of those living there, 64 percent said they would be unable to pay rent in the next three months.

The following sites updated:

Read on ...

Friday, July 3, 2020

Get her, Hillary!

get her hillary

From October 15, 2018, that's  "Get her, Hillary!"  C.I. noted:

Bill Clinton hides behind Hillary's skirt urging her, "Get her, Hillary! Get her!" while Hillary insists, "Bill's affair with Monica was not an abuse of power!  Yes, he was leader of the free world but Monica was an unpaid intern!  Unpaid!  She had the power!"  Isaiah archives his comics at THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS.

The comic says it all, I don't need to add anything.

Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Friday, July 3, 2020.  Joe Biden, who overthrew the 2010 Iraqi election results, has the nerve to claim Donald Trump might not honor this year's US election results, the Iraqi government is considering filing a complaint with the United Nations of Turkey bombing the country and sending ground soldiers in, Susan Rice supported the Iraq War but Steve Chapman smokes a blunt and decides otherwise, and much more.

Here's a thought: Next time Steve Chapman's on a pot high, how about he just eat some munchies and not try to write a column for THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE?  

He want to save Susan Rice.  He's convinced not only that he can, but that he should.  Why?  He just knows she's the one to be Joe Biden's running mate.

Okay, unlike Steve, I'm not stoned as I'm dictating this.  

So I realize that more than anything, Joe's running mate has to bring energy to the ticket.  That's not Susan Rice.  She brings nothing.  

Of the women mentioned, only Kamala Harris -- via her supporters -- brings passion.  If it's not Kamala, the smart move would be to go with someone not currently seen as a potential running mate because the rest are all dull and inspire no passion.

That's especially true of Dirty Rice who carries with her the scandal of Benghazi.  Is Steve trying to re-elect Donald Trump?  Because picking Susan means bringing up Benghazi all over again.  And while that might not matter to Democrats and neocons, I believe they'll need to reach beyond the group that turned out for Hillary in 2016 if they're going to win the White House this time.

Before we get back to Steve Chapman's stupidity, let's deal with the other stupidity right now.  Peter Van Buren addresses it and we'll note him in just a section.  But the stupidity is the conspiracy talk that Donald, if he loses, will refuse to step down.  

That nutty conspiracy theory did not start last week or last month.  Crackpot Bob Somerby has been pimping that for several years now.  Bob's been projecting his own grand lunacy onto Donald.  Donald is many things (none of which I like) but he's not "grand" in any sense.  He doesn't have big ideas or plans.  After three years in the White House, I'd think that would be obvious to even the most ignorant in this country.  As a business person, Donald never had big ideas either.  He copies and ripped off.  He wasn't an original.  So this notion that suddenly, Donald's capable of a grand conspiracy?  It only speaks to the crackpots who repeat these lies.

Peter Van Buren, at ICH, notes how this nonsense is being pimpec by many -- including Joe Biden.  Ptere misses an important point and we'll get back to that but this is from his column:

For nearly four years, the same forces that may declare 2020 invalid tried very hard to convince us 2016 already was. There are plenty of Hillary people (including Hillary) who have not accepted 2016. Has Stacey Abrams really accepted her defeat yet? Think back to everything that happened during the last election, the gaming by Comey and the FBI to influence results. Remember how the intelligence community manipulated Russiagate. Why wait for November 2020 to have a coup? We’ve been in what Matt Taibbi calls a permanent coup for years. They’ve been practicing.
Any of the those things would have been considered crazy talk only a few years ago. None would have ever passed into the mainstream. Compare Russiagate to the Great Obama Birth Certificate kerfuffle. The idea that Obama was ineligible for office festered on right-wing talk radio. It was dismissed as fact-less by just about everyone else. Fast forward to 2016+ and America’s paper of record is happy to front a story claiming the president is subject to a foreign enemy’s blackmail based on nothing but desperate hope that it might be true.
The critical tool for the ending of democracy is people’s conditioned readiness to believe almost anything. The media tells the world what’s important using a very narrow range of truth, or just makes things up if truth is not around to be manipulated.
We are exhausted, neck-deep in cynicism, decline, and distrust. And scared. There are no facts anymore, only what people can be made to believe. That power was not well understood in 2016 and was clumsily applied. Today it is ripe for exploitation, far beyond generating clicks and ad revenue. I don’t think Trump will try to stay in office if he loses. But there are people who will tell us that to manipulate our fears and steal this election. That’s why I am finally scared.

It's a great column and one that he deserves praise for writing.  But, yes, he missed one point that surprised me.  Joe Biden is going around insisting that Donald may not accept the 2020 election results and, if he loses, may refuse to step down.

Joe Biden is saying that.

We've covered why that's offensive before.

I guess we'll need to cover it again.

Joe Biden needs to shut his damn mouth.  He has no right to ever talk about someone refusing to leave when they lose an election.  Why is that?

Joe is the mother of ISIS in Iraq.  He passed it through his slim birthing hips in 2010.

That's the year Iraqis voted incumbent Nouri al-Maliki out of office.

Remember that?  Iraqis risked their lives to vote that March.  They turned out in record numbers. That really hasn't happened since but why should it?  When you risk your own safety to vote and your vote is overturned why ever bother again?

Who overturned those votes?

Joe Damn Biden.  Robinette.  Joseph Robinette Biden Jr.  Miss Priss Instant Coco Biden.

US Gen Ray Odierno knew giving Nouri a second term he didn't earn was a mistake.  But, hey, Ray was only the top US officer in Iraq, why listen to him, right?

US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates was against it as well.  So was US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

But who cares what they thought, Joe knew best.

Barack decided to listen to Joe who was (along with Susan Rice, Samantha Power and Chris Hill) of the opinion that Iraq didn't need democracy, it needed a "strongman" (thug).  So Joe called for the election results to be overturned and Barack, who had put Joe in charge of Iraq, went along.

So Nouri, who spent eight months after the election refusing to step down, got a second term.  Joe was the lead behind The Erbil Agreement -- the US negotiated legal contract that overturned the 2010 election.  It gave Nouri a second term.  To get the heads of the other political parties to go along with this theft of democracy, Joe offered bribes.  That's all The Erbil Agreement was -- a bribe list put into a contract.  To get Kurds to go along, for example, the contract said Article 140 would be implemented.

Kurdish leaders were idiots.  The Iraqi Constitution called for it to be implemented and that didn't lead to it being implemented.  But this legal contract was going to change everything?

It didn't.

Nouri went along with the promises going into the contract and used The Erbil Agreement to get his second term as prime minister and then he refused to honor it.  He kept none of the promises made to get a second term.

And the US had sworn to all the parties that the contract was something that they would stand by and demand it would be honored.  Barack Obama, on the telephone, gave his word to Ayad Allawi who had walked out of Parliament.  

But the US government looked the other way.

They did that over and over for Nouri.  He persecuted Iraqis, especially Sunnis, he ran secret prisons and torture chambers -- the US just looked the other way.

ISIS rose in Iraq because of that.  No one was sure, at first, what they were. Black masks.  They showed up to defend the protesters against Nouri's attacks -- protesters blocking the road between Baghdad and Anbar Province.  

We covered it here.  Not only that, we predicted it here.

The Iraqi people had done everything that they could and they were failed, they were betrayed.

They went to the ballot box to change things and the US government, led by Joe Biden, overturned their voices, disregarded the will of the Iraqi people.  What happened next?

Too many in America didn't pay attention.  Next you had the various leaders -- Barzani, Moqtada, al-Hakim and others -- insist that Nouri implement The Erbil Agreement or they would vote him out via a no confidence vote in Parliament.  They'd given him a year to implement The Erbil Agreement.  He refused.  Moqtada al-Sadr said, the whole time they were threatening a no confidence vote, that Nouri could stop the effort at any point by implementing the contract (the contract he had agreed to, the contract he had used to claim a second term).  Nouri refused.

The Parliament followed the law as outlined in the Constitution.  They gathered the signatures.

Per the Constitution, the President of Iraq, reads it into the record.  At the time, fat ass Jalal Talabni was the president.  Under pressure from Joe Biden to stop the no confidence vote, Jalal refused to introduce it.  It's a ceremonial task but Jalal created new 'powers.'  He said he'd contacted people who signed it.  To ask if they had signed it?  No, to see if they would sign it right now.  He then claimed that many said they wouldn't -- this was all done in secrecy and all anyone had was Jalal's claims -- so he was refusing to introduce the petition for a no confidence vote.

He then lied that he had to have surgery in order to save his life and fled to Germany where fat ass had . . . knee surgery.

He's blown out his knee due to his intense girth.

Karma bit him in his fat ass.  Months later, in December, he got into a verbal fight with Nouri and suffered a stroke.  He was care flighted from Baghdad to Germany.  This time it was a life or death issue.  Karma signed off on his earlier lie.

Jalal never recovered.  His family posed him for photos and pretended he could move his body and speak.  He couldn't.  18 months later, he returned to Iraq.  He was a joke.  He still couldn't speak.  And his lies ensured that the PUK party he led went from one of Iraq's two dominant political parties to a weak third party in the next elections.

Joe destroyed Iraq in so many ways.  Most infamously, he destroyed it by spitting on democracy.  The Iraqi people voted and being a racist and a xenophobe, that didn't matter to Old Racist Joe. Old White Man knew best.

He gave Nouri the second term and he and Nouri gave birth to ISIS.  It's their baby.

I need to work something in here, following the 2012 elections, Nouri called the White House to congratulate Barack.  Barack, disgusted with Nouri, refused to take the call and fobbed it off on Joe. We've noted that here since it happened.  Barack and I share a mutual friend who, over the weekend, told me that one point I got wrong or left out on that was that Barack did so because Joe was responsible for Nouri.  It was his disgust in Nouri and in Joe that made him refuse to take the call.  I said I'd work that in the next time I discussed 2010 in the snapshot so there it is.

But the point is, in 2010, Nouri lost the election and refused to step down.  And who called him out?  Not Joe Biden.  No, Joe Biden was all about ignoring the vote of the people.

So he needs to shut his damn mouth and the press needs to be calling out his hypocrisy.

Now let's get back to Steve Chapman's nutty nonsense.  He tries to rewrite history.  Susan Rice didn't support the Iraq War -- despite what everyone says -- despite what the public record says.  She's an innocent!!!!!

He concludes his revisionary history with this: "A lot of smart, knowledgeable people made the mistake of endorsing the Iraq War. Susan Rice deserves credit for not being one of them."

She didn't oppose the war.  She did endorse it but Steve lies and, even lying, can only offer that she didn't endorse him.

She didn't speak out against it either.  (And she did endorse it.)

It's moments like this that make me wish Steve would stop his pot habit and switch to heroin in the hopes that an overdose could spare the world from his hideous writing and his constant need to lie.  Or at least leave him too strung out to write.

We don't need your lies, Steve, we never did.  Toke up and pretend the world needs you, Steve.

Meanwhile, the Turkish government continues to terrorize Iraq.  Martha Leah Nangalama Tweets:

via Iraq sets up border posts to try to prevent Turkish advance: Iraq is enforcing positions along the border with Turkey to try to prevent a Turkish military advance deeper into Iraqi territory after two weeks of airstrikes as Ankara…

Baghdad is taking a look at its trade with Turkey as it considers using economic pressure to compel Ankara to end its military attacks within Iraq’s borders, the foreign ministry spokesperson told Rudaw on Thursday.

“There is a trade balance between Iraq and Turkey in favor of Turkey with a value of more than $16 billion annually, and there are hundreds of Turkish commercial companies operating in Iraq. We put all of these criteria under urgent evaluation,” said Ahmed al-Sahaf, spokesperson for Iraq’s foreign ministry.

Baghdad is also applying diplomatic pressure. “We are still communicating and coordinating with the Turkish side on the need to apply international laws, good-neighborly rules, and diplomatic agreements,” Sahaf said, adding Iraq plans to push for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council to condemn Turkey’s military intervention. 

Trade's not all that Iraq's considering.  Mina Aldroubi (THE NATIONAL) notes:

Iraq said on Friday it might file an official complaint to the UN Security Council if Turkey does not halt its military operations against Kurdish fighters in the north.
"We reject any unilateral action that would harm our sovereignty. We started with a statement of condemnation and may resort to gathering support from the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation and could file a complaint to the UNSC,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmad Al Sahaf said in a statement.
The “unilateral” action taken by Turkey will not “enhance security nor will it result in joint efforts to combat terrorism”, Mr Al Sahaf said.
Baghdad has requested an emergency meeting of the Arab League meeting to discuss the issue, he said.
The government of Iraq better take some serious steps immediately.  Not only are they letting the Iraqi people down, they are also risking Mustafa al-Kadhimi looking even weaker.  He's only been prime minister since May 7th and he's already becoming a joke.  Mustafa Salim and Louisa Loveluck (WASHINGTON POST) report:
A raid ordered by Iraq's new prime minister on militiamen accused of planning an attack against Baghdad's international zone could mark a turning point in his government's efforts to bring Iran-backed groups to heel.
The arrest of 14 members of Kataib Hezbollah late last month marked the boldest move yet by any Iraqi leader against the Iran-linked militias, which often operate in Iraq outside the law. Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, who took office in May, has vowed to halt their attacks on foreign forces in the country, primarily U.S. troops.
But the response of the powerful militia to the June 26 raid underscores how challenging it will be for Kadhimi to recast the relationship between Iraq’s government and some of the country’s armed groups.
After gunmen in pickup trucks cruised Baghdad’s Green Zone demanding their comrades’ release, most were let go, then welcomed back to the group’s headquarters as heroes. Television stations linked to the militias live-streamed the men burning American flags and stamping on photographs of Kadhimi’s face.

In the raid against Kataib Hezbollah, Kadhimi’s message was simple: Shiite militia groups in Iraq can no longer operate with impunity. The operation was audacious insofar as it could have prompted an armed response from the group, disrupting the fragile political consensus that enabled Kadhimi’s appointment two months ago.
However, the events that followed the raid have done little to carry Kadhimi’s message. It appears very probable that the operation was carried out in coordination or consultation with Iran and Iran-aligned political actors. For instance — whether out of sheer luck, or prior coordination with Iran or the leadership of militia groups and parliamentary blocs — the group did not respond in a major way. After the raid, Kataib Hezbollah mobilized a force of roughly 150 fighters in nearly 30 pickup trucks around the prime minister’s residence, which was designed to intimidate Kadhimi but avoid escalating the crisis into an armed confrontation.
Moreover, it was telling that the militiamen captured during the raid were placed under the supervision of the security directorate of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the umbrella militia organization that is dominated by Kataib Hezbollah and other Iran-aligned groups. The directorate is led by a Kataib Hezbollah commander. Therefore, the group was essentially able to get the prime minister to release the suspects into its own custody and deter the government from escalating the crisis in the process. On Monday, the militiamen were then, unsurprisingly, released by the PMF’s security directorate on the basis that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute them.  

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