American casualties and 'bravery' plummet ... Iraqi civilian casualties and Resistance rise
. "This month has seen the smallest number of Americans killed in Iraq than any other month since March 2006. But the reasons may have less to do with progress in the war than with the way we're now fighting it. Just 29 U.S. military personnel have died in Iraq in October so far—down from 65 in September, 84 in August, 78 in July, 101 in June …
... However, some perspective is warranted. First, all told, 2007 has been a horrible year for American lives lost in this war—832 to date, more than the 822 lost in all of 2006, and, by the time the year ends, almost certainly more than the 846 killed in 2005 or the 849 in 2004. ...What accounts for the decline in American deaths since the summer? It's hard to say for sure, but one little-reported cause is almost certainly a relative shift in U.S. tactics from fighting on the ground to bombing from the air. On Sunday, U.S. soldiers were searching for a leader of a kidnapping ring in Baghdad's Sadr City. The soldiers came under fire from a building. Rather than engage in dangerous door-to-door conflict, they called in air support. Army helicopters flew overhead and simply destroyed the building, killing several of the fighters but also at least six innocent civilians.* (The bad guy got away.)
...From January to September of this year, according to unclassified data, U.S. Air Force pilots in Iraq have flown 996 sorties that involved dropping munitions. By comparison, in all of 2006, they flew just 229 such sorties—one-quarter as many. In 2005, they flew 404; in 2004, they flew 285. In other words, in the first nine months of 2007, Air Force planes dropped munitions on targets in Iraq more often than in the previous three years combined. (emphasis added)
"The semi-secret air wars (‘semi-secret’ because the information is released and is even reported on, but no American mentions it as a possible moral issue) (emphasis added):
“The U.S. military has increased airstrikes in Iraq four-fold this year, reflecting a steep escalation in combat operations aimed at al-Qaeda and other militants. Coalition forces launched 1,140 airstrikes in the first nine months of this year compared with 229 in all of last year, according to military statistics.
... The increasing use of air power also stems from improved accuracy and smaller munitions that allow commanders to launch airstrikes against insurgents who travel in small groups and sometimes hide among civilians.”
Whoever they claim they are trying to hit, it is civilians who are the actual targets (that last paragraph is unintentionally gruesome) (emphasis added). Air Force Maj. Gen. Allen Peck said: “We are using air power in lieu of putting extensive forces on the ground.” Exactly right, as they lack the manpower (emphasis added) to do the job properly, and they don’t want the American casualty rates to go up. The real political benefit is that the civilian casualties are increasing hatred of the Americans..." The semi-secret air wars October 25, 2007 . It is not only the lack of manpower, but also the lack of 'bravery' of the armed to the teeth American soldiers. . "Iraq war veterans now stationed at a base here in upstate New York say that morale among US soldiers in the country is so poor, many are simply parking their Humvees and pretending to be on patrol, a practice dubbed "search and avoid" missions.
... Aliff said he participated in roughly 300 patrols. "We were hit by so many roadside bombs we became incredibly demoralized, so we decided the only way we wouldn't be blown up was to avoid driving around all the time." "So we would go find an open field and park, and call our base every hour to tell them we were searching for weapons caches in the fields and doing weapons patrols and everything was going fine," he said, adding, "All our enlisted people became very disenchanted with our chain of command."
Aliff, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), refused to return to Iraq with his unit, which arrived in Kirkuk two weeks ago. "They've already lost a guy, and they are now fostering the sectarian violence by arming the Sunnis while supporting the Shi'ites politically ... classic divide and conquer."
Aliff told Inter Press Service (IPS) he is set to be discharged by the military next month because they claim his PTSD "is untreatable by their doctors".
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the number of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans seeking treatment for PTSD increased nearly 70% in the 12 months ending on June 30. The nearly 50,000 VA-documented PTSD cases greatly exceed the 30,000 military personnel that the Pentagon officially classifies as wounded in both occupations."
...Other active duty Iraq veterans tell similar stories of disobeying orders so as not to be attacked so frequently. "We'd go to the end of our patrol route and set up on top of a bridge and use it as an over-watch position," Eli Wright, also an active duty soldier with the 10th Mountain Division, told IPS. "We would just sit with our binoculars and observe rather than sweep. We'd call in radio checks every hour and say we were doing sweeps." Wright added, "It was a common tactic, a lot of people did that. We'd just hang out, listen to music, smoke cigarettes, and pretend." US soldiers shy from battle in Iraq October 26, 2007 .
Endgame for Iraqi Oil? The oil game in Iraq may be almost up. On September 29th, like a landlord serving notice, the government of Iraq announced that the next annual renewal of the United Nations Security Council mandate for a multinational force in Iraq – the only legal basis for a continuation of the American occupation – will be the last. That was, it seems, the first shoe to fall. The second may be an announcement terminating the little-noticed, but crucial companion Security Council mandate governing the disposition of Iraq's oil revenues.
Make Walls, Not War: IN a surge of realism, the Senate has voted 75-23 to acknowledge that Iraq has broken up and cannot be put back together. The measure, co-sponsored by Joe Biden, a Democratic presidential candidate, and Sam Brownback, Republican of Kansas, supports a plan for Iraq to become a loose confederation of three regions — a Kurdish area in the north, a Shiite region in the south and a Sunni enclave in the center — with the national government in Baghdad having few powers other than to manage the equitable distribution of oil revenues.
(In a forwarded comment to the above New York Times opinion piece Issam Chalabi writes: "NO WONDER. THIS IS COMING FROM PETER W. GALBRAITH WHO HAS BEEN THE MAIN ADVISOR TO MASOUD BARZANI FOR OVER TEN YEARS AND PLAYED A MAJOR AND ACTIVE ROLE IN THE NEGOTIATIONS FOR THE CONSTITUTION, OIL & GAS LAW AND MANY OTHER EVENTS THAT ARE INTENDED FOR THE BREAK UP 0F IRAQ.")
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I'm changing the t-shirt slogan: The shit is really going to hit the fan when the Jew-controlled media is no longer able to block the stunningly obvious fact . . . that Iraqi oil is going to be controlled by Iran, and is going to be sold to China. So the war couldn’t have been about oil . . . and as oil is the major commodity, it couldn’t have been about ‘imperial reach’ . . . so that leaves . . . a war for Israel! Oh oh!
The funny thing about the ‘vassal’ government in Iraq is that it doesn’t seem to realize that it is a vassal government. In fact, a real vassal state like Canada can only dream of having the autonomy that Iraq is showing. Iraq doesn’t like the oil plans prepared by the Americans, so it shreds them. Iraq and Turkey sanely meet to deal with the challenge posed by the Zionist trick to break up Iraq (and Turkey) by using a Turkish attack against the Kurds (there is a big advantage to knowing what is really going on when you obtain your info from other than the Jew-controlled media!). Iraq is tired of murderous Blackwater, so the Americans will set Blackwater up with a nice gig policing the Mexican border. If you thought it was fascist for the U. S. to use a private psycho-paramilitary in Iraq, wait to you see how fascist it will be for the United States to employ a private psycho police force within its own borders. Talk about ‘blowback’!
I’m changing the t-shirt slogan to: ‘My President is Spending Trillions (and Trillions) on a War for the Jews but all I got was this Lousy T-Shirt and a Domestic Fascist Psycho Police Force’.
CIA and Syrian intelligence have gathered evidence that a Saudi child trafficking ring, with cells in Damascus and Dubai, is procuring orphaned Iraqi children from Iraq, as well as children being sold to Saudi interlocutors by their parents and guardians from squalid refugee camps along the Syrian-Iraqi border. Some Iraqi boys are being transported to Saudi Arabia to be placed in "boy harems" maintained by wealthy Saudi men.
Syria's General Security Directorate, the Idarat al-Amn al-'Amm, has been trailing members of the child sex trafficking ring from refugee camps in eastern Syria, through Damascus, and to Saudi Arabia. Evidence on the trafficking has been complied by Syria's Ministry of Information but the Bush administration has been reluctant to act on the actionable intelligence and put pressure on the Saudis and the intermediaries involved in the trafficking who are based in Dubai.
After the December 2004 tsunami in Southeast Asia, local orphans as well as European children, particularly Swedish children, separated from their parents were reportedly picked up by child sex traffickers and sold to harems in Dubai, Saudi Arabia, and India. The International Committee of the Red Cross, the Swedish Red Cross, and other aid agencies attempted to investigate this trafficking but were met with strong resistance from Saudi and Emirati authorities. The Russian-Ukrainian-Israeli Mafia (RUIM) is heavily engaged in child prostitution and trafficking in Southeast Asia. [ . . . ]
CHEMICAL WEAPONS MYTHS (Quoting) Marine Corps Historical Publication FMFRP 3-203 Lessons Learned: Iran-Iraq War 10 December 1990 APPENDIX B CHEMICAL WEAPONS [ . . . ] Chemical weapons have a low kill ratio. Just as in WWI, during which the ratio of deaths to injured from chemicals was 2-3 percent, that figure appears to be borne out again in this war although reliable data on casualties are very difficult to obtain. We deem it remarkable that the death rate should hold at such a low level even with the introduction of nerve agents. If those rates are correct, as they well may be, this further reinforces the position that we must not think of chemical weapons as "a poor man’s nuclear weapon." While such weapons have great psychological potential, they are not killers or destroyers on a scale with nuclear or biological weapons. For comparison, during WWI, the U.S. Army suffered some 70,552 gas casualties requiring hospitalization. Of these, 1,221 died. Deaths on the battlefield attributed to gas are recorded as 200, but on WWI battlefields, cause of death was often difficult to ascertain. The point is that 27.3 percent of all American casualties were gas generated and 31.4 percent of wounded were gas related, but the death rate was only 2 percent.
Bush's Free-Fire Zones: ... [T]he U.S. chain of command has approved standing orders that give the U.S. military broad discretion to kill suspected militants on sight – and to blast away at civilians who might get in the way.
Iraq is still the issue - Part 2: Amerika’s New Iraq - The Quiz [ . . . ] Acknowledgement: This Quiz could have never been possible without the generous contribution of the so-called international community, starting with the pathetic United Nations and its grotesque International Criminal Court, those human rights groups that are in the empire-building business, that excellent Western propaganda apparatus composed by “the media” and the intelligentsia Joseph Goebbels would be proud and many other actors (and there are really too many to mention here) who played a first, second or third role in the annihilation of Iraq. Hopefully the Western citizenry has enjoyed the show so far, after all that show has been possible only because of the leaders and representatives we have elected and the tax-money we have paid to them. Thank God we got Democracy!
JEWS WITHOUT GUNS: It's an unfortunate reality in this region, but the only Jews ever seen by young Palestinians are either gun toting soldiers or settlers. At the same time, these children constantly hear that 'they are the terrorists'... it's a sad reality to live with.
Getting your victims to love you: Only Israel has the right to be chauvinistically nationalist, monopolising for itself the privilege of suffering the tribulations that arise from this: its victims, meanwhile, must express their appreciation or, at the very least, learn to live with it.
Desmond Tutu: Realizing God's dream for the Holy Land: God has a dream for all his children. It is about a day when all people enjoy fundamental security and live free of fear. It is about a day when all people have a hospitable land in which to establish a future. More than anything else, God's dream is about a day when all people are accorded equal dignity because they are human beings. In God's beautiful dream, no other reason is required.
God's dream begins when we begin to know each other differently, as bearers of a common humanity, not as statistics to be counted, problems to be solved, enemies to be vanquished or animals to be caged. God's dream begins the moment one adversary looks another in the eye and sees himself reflected there.
The Human Rights Report for the second quarter of 2007 was long overdue, and was finally published on October 11. The report explains that it was modified following discussions with U.S. and Iraqi occupation authorities, and this appears to account for the long delay in its publication.
The report makes it clear that U.S. air strikes in densely populated civilian areas are violations of international human rights law. A footnote to the section on "MNF military operations and the killing of civilians" explains, "Customary international humanitarian law demands that, as much as possible, military objectives must not be located within areas densely populated by civilians. The presence of individual combatants among a great number of civilians does not alter the civilian character of an area."
UNAMI demands "that all credible allegations of unlawful killings by MNF (Multi National Force) forces be thoroughly, promptly and impartially investigated, and appropriate action taken against military personnel found to have used excessive or indiscriminate force" and adds that, "The initiation of investigation into such incidents, as well as their findings, should be made public."
The UNAMI report provides the following details of 88 Iraqi civilians killed by air strikes, 15 civilians killed "in the context of raid and search operations" by U.S. ground forces and several incidents of torture and extra-judicial execution by members of Iraqi auxiliary forces under overall U.S. command. UNAMI investigated these incidents because a relative, a journalist or a local official brought each one to its attention. Without doubt, the U.S. Department of Defense is aware of many more killings of civilians by air strikes and ground operations, hence UNAMI's urgent demand for full public disclosure and investigation of all such killings.
March 11 - Nine civilians in 5 villages near Ba'quba killed by U.S. air strikes.
March 13 & 14 - Twelve Palestinians detained by the Interior Ministry at al-Baladiyat and tortured with electric shocks to sensitive parts of the body, forcing metal sticks down the throat, and rape and other sexual assault with metal objects.
March 15 - Two civilians killed in Dulu'iya by a U.S. air strike.
March 29 - A 14-year-old boy and three other family members killed in Mosul by a U.S. raid on the home of Zeyour Mohamed Khalil.
March 30 - Sixteen civilians killed in Sadr City by U.S. air strikes.
April 2 - Six civilians killed in U.S. raids on the homes of Bashar Mahfoudh and Walid al-Ahmadi near Mosul.
April 3 - Twenty-seven civilians killed in Khaldiya, near Ramadi, by U.S. air strikes.
April 12 - Three civilians killed in southern Haditha in a house raid by U.S. forces.
April 26 - U.S. air strikes kill four civilians in Sadr City and four more in Taji.
April 29 - Al-Kesra, Baghdad, five men found dead after being detained by Iraqi Army in al-Sifina.
April 30 - Three civilians killed by an air strike in Basra.
May 3 - Hay al-Amel, Baghdad, 16 people detained and killed by Interior Ministry Public Order Forces.
May 4th - Al-Dubbat, Baghdad, 14 civilians arrested and then shot dead by Iraqi security forces.
May 5 - Seven civilians killed by a U.S. air strike east of Baghdad.
May 5 - Hay al-Rissala, Baghdad, men guarding a mosque detained and executed by Iraqi security forces.
May 6 - One civilian killed by a U.S. air strike in Sadr City.
May 8 - Seven children killed by a U.S. helicopter attack on an elementary school in Diyala province.
May 26 - Eight civilians in Basra killed by air strikes.
May 29 - Four prisoners executed by the Kurdistan Regional Government after testifying to the death under torture of Fahmi Ismail Abu Bakr in 2005.
June 6 - Yassin Farhan and his son Sarmad killed by U.S. troops in a house raid in Baghdad.
April-June - Seventy-three percent of KRG detainees interviewed by UNAMI reported being victims of torture.
The recent increase in U.S. air operations in Iraq has brought a spate of reports of more such incidents. On the day the UNAMI report was released, six women, nine children and 19 men were killed in air strikes near Lake Tharthar, north of Baghdad. The Centcom press office immediately declared that the 19 men were "terrorists" but similar claims regarding previous air strikes have been contradicted by local residents and officials, and they beg the question as to how you know that 19 men were "terrorists" after you've blown them off the face of the earth. An air strike on September 25 in Mussayyib, 30 miles south of Baghdad, killed five women and four children; and one on September 28 on the al-Saha district of Baghdad killed seven men, two women and four children. Once again, I must stress that these incidents just happen to have been reported and that they are probably only the tip of the iceberg of civilians being killed by U.S. air strikes.