From September 9, 2007, that's "Bully Boy 'lets' David Petraeus speak to Congress." Still doing the wedding gown thing for Bully Boy.
The sock puppet? At the time, Bush had floated the notion that Petraeus might just update him and not Congress. And he probably could have gotten away with that in 2006 but now Dems controlled the House. And the Senate.
Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
Thursday, April 7, 2011
Thursday, April 7, 2011. Chaos and violence continue, at least 5 US soldiers have died this month while serving in Iraq, the House Armed Services Committee wants to stop repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, the US wants Iraq to provide an extension of the SOFA allowing US soldiers to stay on Iraqi soil past the end of the year, and more.
1) This Agreement shall be effective for a period of three years, unless terminated sooner by either Party pursuant to paragraph 3 of this Article.
Get it? Paragraph three: "This Agreement shall terminate one year after a Party provides written notification to the other Party to that effect." Meaning only 2009 is set in stone. It is too late for either party (US or Iraq) to give one year's notice and cancel it in 2009. They can give notice to cancel in 2010 or 2011. The second clause is also worth noting because it weakens the strength of any agreement as well: "This Agreement shall be amended only with the official agrement of the Parties in writing and in accordance with the constitutional proceudures in effect in both countries." That's the aspect that allows for a change and all the 'flowery' respect for Constitutional procedures is hog wash. The Iraqi Parliament needed to have two-thirds of all members (not just members present) to pass the treaty today. They did not have that. According to their Constitution and their laws, that's what was needed. In the US, Congressional approval is needed over all treaties and we know that has not take place. We further know that Barack Obama -- alleged Constitutional scholar -- doesn't give a damn about the Constitution. He show boated and did his little pretty words number while campaigning but despite all his insisting that the treaty would have to come before the Congress -- including becoming one of thirteen co-sponsors on Hillary Clinton's Senate bill insisting upon that -- he shut his corporate mouth and put his tiny tail between his legs to slink off like the disgusting, cowering trash he is. He's not going to stand up for the Constitution 'later.' He couldn't stand up for it right now.
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Prior to the three-year SOFA, the US military presence on the ground in Iraq (post-invasion) was covered by a yearly UN mandate. Each year, Iraq would ask for a one-year extension. Each time the prime minister did, the mandate was extended. When Nouri became prime minister (spring 2006), he had to ask for an extension and did. The Parliament was outraged because they had not been consulted. Nouri promised he would never do that again -- leave them out of the procees -- but as 2007 was winding down, he did it again. Having twice asked for extensions, Nouri was facing considerable ire. The White House (Bush White House) agreement factored that in. Instead of a yearly request, it would last for three years. Otherwise, it was the UN mandate for all intents and purposes.
So many people wrongly stated the SOFA meant the end of the war. Many of those people were 'antiwar activists' who disappeared the second calling out the continued Iraq War meant calling out American's new president Barack Obama. Some were journalists. And the most annoying thing about the journalists is that reporting is very basic. "April 21st, I will have Chinese for lunch." That's not reporting. Especially not on April 7th. "April 21st, C.I. plans to have Chinese for lunch" is reporting. It was never -- not in 2008, not in 2009, not in 2010 . . . -- reporting to state, "US forces will all leave Iraq at the end of 2011."
That's not reporting. That's predicting. You can say the SOFA calls for it, but you cannot say "It will happen." Predictions are not reporting. Reading US newspapers over the last years has left the impression that editors don't give a damn about their jobs or the reporting anymore -- the few left -- and they are just praying to hit retirement before they're laid off. How else do you explain all the outlets that presented predictions as fact?
(There are other explanations -- including far less charitable ones where certain journalism outlets actively participated with the administration to tamp down on outrage over the Iraq War.)
When 'antiwar' 'leaders' tell the peace movement to 'go home' -- as Leslie Cagan infamously did in that awful Novembe 2008, right after the election, message posted on United for Peace and Justice's website, when the press tells you that all US troops leave Iraq at the end of 2011, you begin to focus on other things. That's really too bad because were Bush in office right now, you can be damn sure that the peace movement would be complaining that the Iraq War had passed the 8 year mark. A 2009 announcement by Bush that the war would end in 2011 would have been met with "OUT OF IRAQ NOW!" and much worse.
Electronic media passing "predictions" off as "reporting" were able to justify their own rush from Iraq (to Afghanistan because, as many outlets insisted, that's where Barack's focus is) at the end of 2008 and start of 2009. Have we ever before, in the TV age, had a network (ABC) announce (with pride -- believe it or not) that they'd carry BBC reports from Iraq to justify the fact that they were out even though over 100,000 US service members (at that point) were still in Iraq? No, that has never been seen before. Thanksgiving night, 2008, I wrote the following regarding this site continuing:
What I would really like -- if I didn't have to write the entries between now and then -- would be to here December 31, 2011 so we could review every LIAR in the press who has made a point to schill for the administration. It would be wonderful to be here then and to say, "Are troops out? B-b-b-but, the press said . . ."
With that background out of the way,
The deadline for eligible service members, veterans and their beneficiaries to apply for Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay (RSLSP) has been extended to April 8, 2011, allowing personnel more time to apply for the benefits they've earned under the program guidelines.
The deadline extension is included in the continuing resolution signed by President Obama Friday, providing funding for federal government operations through April 8, 2011.
Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay was established to compensate for the hardships military members encountered when their service was involuntarily extended under Stop Loss Authority between Sept. 11, 2001, and Sept. 30, 2009. Eligible members or their beneficiaries may submit a claim to their respective military service in order to receive the benefit of $500 for each full or partial month served in a Stop Loss status.
When RSLSP began on Oct. 21, 2009, the services estimated 145,000 service members, veterans and beneficiaries were eligible for this benefit. Because the majority of those eligible had separated from the military, the services have engaged in extensive and persistent outreach efforts to reach them and remind them to apply. Outreach efforts including direct mail, engaging military and veteran service organizations, social networks and media outlets, will continue through April 8, 2011.
To apply for more information, or to gather more information on RSLSP, including submission requirements and service-specific links, go to http://www.defense.gov/stoploss.