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America Is the World Leader at Committing ‘Supreme International Crimes’

The front page of The New York Times on June 26 featured a photo of women mourning a murdered Iraqi.

He is one of the innumerable victims of the ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) campaign in which the Iraqi army, armed and trained by the U.S. for many years, quickly melted away, abandoning much of Iraq to a few thousand militants, hardly a new experience in imperial history.

Right above the picture is the newspaper’s famous motto: “All the News That’s Fit to Print.”

via America Is the World Leader at Committing ‘Supreme International Crimes’ — zcomm.org.

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2014 in North America

 

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When Obama got it right

Was Barack Obama, then just an Illinois state senator, wrong back in 2002 when he thought that an invasion of Iraq would only “fan the flames of the Middle East and encourage the worst, rather than the best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of Al-Qaida”? Did vice-president Richard Cheney see things more clearly when he promised that US troops would be “welcomed as liberators”? Yet now it is Cheney who dares to accuse Obama of being a traitor and a fool in Iraq, concluding without shame: “Rarely has a US president been so wrong about so much, at the expense of so many” (1).

via When Obama got it right — mondediplo.com.

 
 

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The Silence of American Hawks About Kiev’s Atrocities

For weeks, the US-backed regime in Kiev has been committing atrocities against its own citizens in southeastern Ukraine, regions heavily populated by Russian-speaking Ukrainians and ethnic Russians. While victimizing a growing number of innocent people, including children, and degrading America’s reputation, these military assaults on cities, captured on video, are generating pressure in Russia on President Vladimir Putin to “save our compatriots.” Both the atrocities and the pressure on Putin have increased even more since July 1, when Kiev, after a brief cease-fire, intensified its artillery and air attacks on eastern cities defenseless against such weapons.The reaction of the Obama administration—as well as the new cold-war hawks in Congress and in the establishment media—has been twofold: silence interrupted only by occasional statements excusing and thus encouraging more atrocities by Kiev. Very few Americans notably, the independent scholar Gordon Hahn have protested this shameful complicity. We may honorably disagree about the causes and resolution of the Ukrainian crisis, the worst US-Russian confrontation in decades, but not about deeds that are rising to the level of war crimes, if they have not already done so.

via The Silence of American Hawks About Kiev’s Atrocities — www.thenation.com.

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2014 in Europe

 

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Iraq crisis: As Shia shrines are targeted and Tikrit is strangled, the fiercest of wars lies ahead

The meltdown of American and British policy in Iraq and Syria attracts surprisingly little criticism at home. Their aim for the past three years has been get rid of Bashar al-Assad as ruler of Syria and stabilise Iraq under the leadership of Nouri al-Maliki. The exact reverse has happened, with Mr Assad in power and likely to remain so, while Iraq is in turmoil with the government’s authority extending only a few miles north and west of Baghdad.

via Iraq crisis: As Shia shrines are targeted and Tikrit is strangled, the fiercest of wars lies ahead — www.independent.co.uk.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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Ahmed Chalabi: Right man, wrong time for Iraq’s once-exiled opposition leader?

The enemy is at the gates of Baghdad. A small insurgent force has humiliatingly defeated an enormous Iraqi army. The government has no authority in that half of Iraq lying north and west of the capital. The Syrian civil war has spread and capsized the Iraqi state. In his eight years in power Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki created a dysfunctional and corrupt dictatorship that alienated two out of three of Iraq’s main communities.

via Ahmed Chalabi: Right man, wrong time for Iraq’s once-exiled opposition leader? — www.independent.co.uk.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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Iraq crisis: Saudi troops mass at border after claims 2,500 Iraqi troops have abandoned their positions

Saudi Arabia has sent 30,000 soldiers to its 500-mile border with Iraq after claims that Iraqi soldiers had abandoned their positions along the frontier, though this is denied by Baghdad.

via Iraq crisis: Saudi troops mass at border after claims 2,500 Iraqi troops have abandoned their positions — www.independent.co.uk.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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Iraq crisis: Parliament in deadlock as Isis advance continues

The Iraqi parliament closed its inaugural session after two hours because political parties have not decided on new leaders to seek a way out of the crisis caused by the fall of Mosul and the takeover of much of northern and western Iraq last month by Isis.The likely outcome of the first sessions of the new parliament chosen in an election on 30 April will be the replacement of Nouri al-Maliki, the Prime Minister since 2006, who has been discredited by military disasters. Many Iraqis see his image as a sectarian Shia leader hated by most of the Sunni community, as ruling out any role for him in any compromise with the Sunni.The wrangling by the parties over who should be the new parliamentary speaker normally a Sunni, President a Kurd and Prime Minister Shia may confirm Iraqis in their low opinions of the competence and honesty of MPs. “The parties are all corrupt and all they want to do is steal,” said Abu Ali, a Trade Ministry employee, about the new parliament. “Some of them get their orders from Saudi Arabia or Iran. The Iraqi people can go to hell for all they care.”

via Iraq crisis: Parliament in deadlock as Isis advance continues – Middle East – World – The Independent.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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Israeli teenagers’ funeral: It is obscene when either side kills children – not only Palestinians

Three Israeli teenagers killed by Palestinians. Vicious, cruel, unforgivable. True. At least 37 Lebanese children killed by Israel. Regrettable, unfortunate, but the ultimate fault of “terrorists”. Untrue. The slaughter of the children at Qana in Lebanon in 1996 – among 109 civilians killed by Israeli shellfire as they sheltered in a UN camp – was a war crime. So, I might add, is the murder of three Israeli teenagers.But the obscene theatre of the Israeli-Palestinian war follows a script as scandalous as it is lethal. This week, the Israeli Prime Minister called the Palestinians who killed three Israelis “beasts”. So what? Didn’t Menachem Begin call Palestinians “two-legged animals” in 1982? And then Begin unleashed thousands of Israeli air raids against them – just as Netanyahu says that Hamas “will pay” for these latest deaths.

via Israeli teenagers’ funeral: It is obscene when either side kills children – not only Palestinians – Voices – The Independent.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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Abe’s Long March

TOKYO – Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo’s coalition government has decided to “reinterpret” the postwar Japanese constitution. According to Article 9 of the constitution, drafted by American lawyers in 1946, when Japan was under Allied occupation, Japan renounces “war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes.” The new interpretation would allow Japan to use military force in support of an ally if Japanese security is under threat.Abe chose to reinterpret the constitution because revising it would require the approval of two-thirds of the Japanese Diet. Given that most Japanese are still allergic to military force, securing the necessary votes would have been impossible.The reinterpretation will almost certainly result in protests from China and South Korea against resurgent Japanese militarism. Because Abe is the nationalist grandson of a former prime minister who was once arrested as a war criminal, and because he has paid public tribute to soldiers who died for the emperor in World War II, these protests might seem reasonable.

via Abe’s Long March by Ian Buruma — www.project-syndicate.org.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Asia

 

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Israel’s impunity culture: War crimes, intimidation and oppression

Fakher Zayed, a 47-year-old Palestinian man from the occupied West Bank city of Beitunia, lives just down the road from Israel’s Ofer military prison, an area where demonstrations by Palestinians are common. On May 15, as Palestinian youth and Israeli forces clashed in front of his home, he witnessed Israeli forces shoot and kill two Palestinian teens with live ammunition. The fatal shootings were also captured by his security cameras attached to the building.Upon its release, the security camera footage depicting the killings of Nadeem Nawarah, 17, and Mohammad Abu Daher, 16, went viral, prompting the Obama administration to call on Israeli officials to “conduct a prompt and transparent investigation”. The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights declared the killings may amount to “extrajudicial executions” or “willful killings” under international law, and Human Rights Watch recently found that the killings constitute an apparent war crime.Despite these allegations of war crimes, as well as widespread criticism of the Israeli military’s use of excessive force against civilians, Israeli authorities have yet to commit to a serious and transparent investigation. Instead, a month after the fatal shootings, the authorities have directed their efforts toward discrediting the victims’ families and intimidating eyewitnesses.

via Israel’s impunity culture: War crimes, intimidation and oppression – Opinion – Al Jazeera English.

 
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Posted by on July 9, 2014 in Middle East

 

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