Sunday, December 25, 2011

Iraq: Obama's historical enormity

WaPo: "Obama’s worst error", by Jennifer Rubin

President Obama missed the boat on tax reform. He put politics above entitlement reform. He worsened already-tense relations with Israel. But the worst error, in large part because it was both avoidable and is not irreversible, was to pull all troops out of Iraq. (...) >>>

Dec. 25, 2011
An activist spy -

NewsMax: "Colin Powell Rips CIA Over Sham WMD Source"

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell is demanding answers from the CIA and Pentagon after an Iraqi defector stepped forward to admit that he fabricated claims that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction in advance of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Powell -- who has stated that his prewar speech to the United Nations accusing Iraq of harboring weapons of mass destruction was a "blot" on his record – spoke out a day after Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi told the Guardian newspaper that he made up claims of mobile biological weapons and clandestine factories when making reports to Germany's intelligence service, the BND.

The BND had approached Janabi, who was codenamed "Curveball" by U.S. and German intelligence officials, in 2000 and again in 2002 looking for inside information about Iraq. (...) "It has been known for several years that the source called Curveball was totally unreliable," Powell told the Guardian. "The question should be put to the CIA and the DIA [Defense Intelligence Agency] as to why this wasn't known before the false information was put into the NIE sent to Congress, the president's State of the Union address and my 5 February presentation to the U.N." (...) >>>

Feb. 17, 2011

Of revisionism and a selective morality -

Heritage: "WikiLeaks’ Inconvenient Truth about Iraqi Chemical Weapons"

Buried in the WikiLeaks avalanche of documents related to the war in Iraq are various reports about the discovery of chemical weapons caches inside Iraq—reports which contradict the revisionist narrative about the genesis of the war. Scattered throughout the roughly 392,000 documents illegally published by WikiLeaks are accounts of U.S., coalition and Iraqi forces recovering chemical munitions left behind by Saddam Hussein’s overthrown regime.

While the chemical munitions recovered appeared to be manufactured before the 1991 Gulf War, after which Iraqi forces were required to surrender and destroy their illegal chemical weapons, the leaked documents are a reminder that Saddam Hussein’s regime could not be trusted to fulfill its disarmament obligations and fully cooperate with U.N. weapons inspectors, as the Bush Administration correctly argued before the 2003 war. (...) >>>

Nov. 3, 2010

Why Saddam had to go -

Pajamas: "Newly Declassified Iraqi Testimony Shows Why Saddam Had to Be Removed", by Ryan Mauro

Recently declassified documents focusing on the testimony of Tariq Aziz, Saddam Hussein’s deputy prime minister, reminds us why Saddam had to be removed from power. (...) >>>

October 11, 2010 -

Double lost WMD alert -

American Thinker: "Saddam was ready to purchase nuke package from A.Q. Khan", Clarice Feldman

As troops massed on his border near the start of the Persian Gulf War, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein weighed the purchase of a $150 million nuclear "package" deal that included not only weapons designs but also production plants and foreign experts to supervise the building of a nuclear bomb, according to documents uncovered by a former U.N. weapons inspector.

The offer, made in 1990 by an agent linked to disgraced Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, guaranteed Iraq a weapons-assembly line capable of producing nuclear warheads in as little as three years. But Iraq lost the chance to capitalize when, months later, a multinational force crushed the Iraqi army and forced Hussein to abandon his nuclear ambitions, according to nuclear weapons expert David Albright, who describes the proposed deal in a new book. (...) >>>

NYTimes: "U.S. Helps Remove Uranium From Iraq", by ALISSA J. RUBIN and CAMPBELL ROBERTSON - Published: July 7, 2008

American and Iraqi officials have completed nearly the last chapter in dismantling Saddam Hussein’s nuclear program with the removal of hundreds of tons of natural uranium from the country’s main nuclear site. The uranium, which was removed several weeks ago, arrived in Canada over the weekend, according to officials. (...) >>>

Mar 13, 2010

When democracy doesn't come gratuitous - cast your ballot at your peril -

OnePageNews: "Blair arch spin doctor unapologetic for free Iraq"

Insurgents bombed a polling station and lobbed grenades at voters Sunday, killing 36 people in attacks aimed at intimidating those taking part in an election that will determine whether the country can overcome the sectarian divisions that have plagued it since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion (...) >>>

Mar 7, 2010

Blair arch spin doctor unapologetic for free Iraq - I never thought I'd ever be actually proud of anything Blair aide Alistair Campbell would say or do, but there it is! Being free themselves, to the anti war crowd liberty is no longer an universal value. They rather have others live in tyranny so that they can feel good about themselves as pacifists. The Vietnam War revisited. The discussion is being waged on both sides of the Channel. Here's London:

NYT: "Blair Aide Unapologetic Over Britain’s Role in Prelude to Iraq War"

A close aide to former Prime Minister Tony Blair made a defiantly unrepentant appearance on Tuesday before the panel investigating Britain’s involvement in the Iraq war, saying Britain should “be really proud of the role that we played in changing Iraq from what it was to what it is now becoming.” (...) >>>

Jan. 13, 2010

This is still a developing story which may well cause the Govt to resign. The report by the Commission of Enquiry is opening up the old can of worms which has the opponents of the war 1. raising excruciating apologetics for Saddam, 2. reconstructing Blair's red herring of WMD as a case for war, and 3. rejecting Saddam's 13 years of violating the Gulf War I stipulations, as a case for war. Sigh. To be continued ...

NRC: "Dutch government misrepresented case for Iraq war"

(...) The Dutch government was less than honest in making its case for the Iraq war, the report went on to note. For one, the committee found the government justification for the invasion “to some extent disingenuous”, since it maintained that the dismantling of WMD stockpiles was the main reason for the Anglo-American invasion, long after it had learned that regime change was the most important goal. Davids and his fellow committee members also noted that Dutch intelligence agencies mainly sourced their information from foreign colleagues, but presented a “more nuanced” picture than these did. Dutch ministers, however, failed to adequately communicate this fine distinction to parliament. (...) >>>

JPost: "Terrorism plot in Baghdad thwarted, says Iraq"

Iraqi forces arrested suspected insurgents and seized a huge cache of explosives Tuesday, in a crackdown across the capital that brought parts of the city to a standstill.

The government's announcement that it had arrested 25 suspects and seized 880 pounds (400 kilograms) of military grade explosives also set off bitter accusations from some Sunni politicians that the government had exaggerated the incident to burnish its security credentials.

The sweep followed hours of cordon and search operations across the capital. Such operations have become rare since security in Iraq improved in 2008. However, every couple of months, insurgents still succeed in carrying out horrific bombings. Hundreds were killed when blasts targeted government institutions in central Baghdad in recent months. (...) >>>

Jan. 12, 2010

Stratfor: "Iraq: A Rebounding Jihad", by Scott Stewart

On Oct. 25, militants in Iraq conducted a coordinated attack in which they detonated large vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) at the federal Ministry of Justice building and the Baghdad Provincial Council building nearly simultaneously. The two ministries are located in central Baghdad near the Green Zone and are just over a quarter of a mile apart.

The bomb-laden vehicles were driven by suicide operatives who managed to detonate them in close proximity to the exterior security walls of the targeted buildings. The attack occurred just before 10:30 a.m. on a workday, indicating that it was clearly designed to cause maximum casualties -- which it did. The twin bombing killed more than 150 people and wounded hundreds of others, making it the deadliest attack in Baghdad since the April 18, 2007, attacks against Shiite neighborhoods that killed more than 180 people. (...) >>>

Oct. 29, 2009

Domestic note: As we move well away from George W. Bush's Iraq era and the time that the MSM chose to report it as they liked, the time has come to rename this dossier: hence on "The News from Iraq, as We Like to Report It" will be labeled simply "Iraq" until inspired by a more creative choice.

NewsMax: "FBI: Saddam Said WMD Were for Iran, Not U.S."

After Saddam Hussein's capture, he told the FBI that he falsely allowed the world to believe Iraq had weapons of mass destruction because he feared revealing his weakness to Iran, the hostile neighbor he considered a bigger threat than the US. Saddam also dismissed Osama bin Laden as a "zealot," said he had never personally met the al-Qaida leader, and that the Iraqi government didn't cooperate with the terrorist group against the US, according to FBI interview notes made public by the National Security Archive, a non-governmental research institute. (...) Saddam denied having unconventional weapons before the US invasion of Iraq but refused to allow U.N. inspectors to search his country from 1998 until 2002. The inspectors returned to the weapons hunt in November 2002 but still complained that Iraq wasn't cooperating. (...) >>>

July 2, 2009
The Washington Times: "EDITORIAL: The surge worked - Iraqi transfer of power is a sign of stability"

It may not be "Mission accomplished," but we are getting closer. Yesterday, the United States completed the process of withdrawing from Iraq's cities. American forces closed or turned over to Iraqi authorities 150 bases and facilities. The Iraqis are happy to see us go, and we are glad to be leaving. The pullout is more proof of the effectiveness of the surge strategy adopted in early 2007 over vociferous Democratic objections, particularly from then-Sen. Barack Obama and then-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, who now ironically direct our foreign policy.

The timeline for the urban withdrawal was codified in the Status of Forces Agreement signed by the George W. Bush administration in November 2008. It committed "all U.S. combat forces" to "withdraw from Iraqi cities, villages and towns ... no later than June 30, 2009" and all forces whatever to be out of the country by Dec. 31, 2011. This makes the Obama pullout plan seem somewhat redundant, but in any case, the departure was made possible because the surge succeeded in reducing violence in the country. Had we left precipitously in 2007, as the Democrats demanded, the debate would be whether Iraq was an American victory or a Vietnam-style defeat. (...) >>>

Also, from the Institute for the Study of War:

July 1, 2009
CNSNews: "Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Credits Bush’s Military Surge Strategy for Ongoing Progress"

The deputy prime minister of Iraq on Wednesday credited the 2007 troop surge, ordered by then-President George W. Bush, with improving security in his country. “Regarding the surge, I think, yes, the surge was positively affecting the culture of security and was an excellent step controlling the security and changed a lot in the situation there in Iraq,” Rafi Al-Issawi told when asked about the surge following his remarks at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C.

Bush unveiled his "new way forward” in a televised speech on Jan. 10, 2007. “It is clear that we need to change our strategy in Iraq,” Bush said. “So my national security team, military commanders, and diplomats conducted a comprehensive review.” Bush said winning the war in Iraq was vital to winning the war against terrorism. (...) >>>

June 10, 2009

Front Page Magazine: "The Great Betrayal", by David Horowitz and Ben Johnson - FEATURE

On this sixth anniversary of America's invasion of Iraq, there is finally a consensus among supporters and opponents that we’ve won the war. The surge that Bush launched and Democrats opposed has been successful and, as a result, Iraq has become a Middle Eastern democracy, an anti-terrorist regime, and an American ally. It would be hard to imagine a more remarkable turnabout or a more comprehensive repudiation of conventional political wisdom.

Yet this has not led to a comparable reappraisal by critics of the war of their previous attacks, or to any mea culpas by Democrats who launched a scorched earth campaign against the president who led it, and continued it for five years while the war dragged on. The Democratic attacks on the war described America’s commander-in-chief as a liar who misled his country and sent American soldiers to die in a conflict that was unnecessary, illegal and unjust. This made prosecution of the war incalculably harder while strengthening the resolve of our enemies to defeat us. It is time to re-evaluate the words and actions of the war’s opponents in the stark light of a history that proved them wrong.(...) >>>

Mar 19, 2009

News.Scotsman: "From bullets to ballot box – Iraq's violence-free election" - Hat Tip: Janinco

Candidates in this month's Iraqi provincial elections are answering questions from voters and debating issues ranging from housing shortages to the need for foreign investment. This style of campaigning is new to Iraq, where candidates for the first time feel safe enough to canvass for votes and focus on grass-roots issues. Earlier elections held after Saddam Hussein was toppled in 2003 were overshadowed by religious divisions and violence. (...) A new rule allows Iraqis to vote for individuals instead of only parties. That has led a number of first-time candidates to stand, hoping to persuade voters to turn against politicians criticised for misrule.

The field is crowded. (...) US and Iraqi officials have high hopes for the first nationwide balloting in three years, looking for it to unify ethnic and sectarian groups. The goal is to bolster local government – a key step in rebuilding the country. The vote will also been seen as a verdict on the conduct of the government of Nouri al-Maliki, the prime minister. (...) The United States expects that many tribal leaders whose support of "Awakening Councils", neighbourhood patrol units instrumental in reining in violence, will win power from other Sunni parties. (...) >>>

Jan 23, 2009

... draw your own conclusion ... it pictures the sad losers to a t ...

WSJ: "No Vote for the Troops"

Even Barack Obama, who opposed the Iraq troop surge, has finally acknowledged its success. But some of his fellow Democrats in Congress apparently remain unconvinced. Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin teamed up to block a vote on a bipartisan resolution "recognizing the strategic success of the troop surge in Iraq" and thanking our men and women in uniform for their efforts. (...) >>>

21st Sep 2008

ISW: "The Endgame in Iraq" (The Weekly Standard), by General Jack Keane (US, Ret.), Kimberly Kagan, and Frederick W. Kagan

On September 16, General Raymond Odierno will succeed General David Petraeus as commander of U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq. The surge strategy Petraeus and Odierno developed and executed in 2007 achieved its objectives: reducing violence in Iraq enough to allow political processes to restart, economic development to move forward, and reconciliation to begin. Violence has remained at historic lows even after the withdrawal of all surge forces and the handover of many areas to Iraqi control. Accordingly, President Bush has approved the withdrawal of 8,000 additional troops by February 2009. (...) >>>

18th Sep 2008

To archive >>>

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

No comments: