Thursday, August 14, 2014

Iraq Updates ( August 14 , 2014 ) -- Yazidis Weren’t Stranded, Pentagon Looks for Other Missions State Dept Tries to Credit US With Solving Phony Problem ....... Between Oil and Grains , ISIS really becoming quite the Commodities Broker ...... Any heavy arms given to the Kurds likely will be used at some point against the Iraq Army when the Kurds inevitably seek independence ........ State of the various battles around Iraq and Maliki still hasn't gone away........

Moon of Alabama....

August 14, 2014

Obama Lies - There Never Was A "Siege Of Mount Sinjar"

Obama today:
We broke the ISIL siege of Mount Sinjar,” Obama said."We do not expect there to be an additional operation to evacuate people off the mountain, and it's unlikely we'll need to continue humanitarian air drops on the mountain," Obama continued.
This "broke the siege" statement is a lie. There never was a "siege" on the Sinjar mountain range. The Yazidi who had fled there were quickly welcomed and evacuated to Syria by the Kurdish PKK and YPG forces. There are now some 15,000 of Yazidis in the Kurdish part of Syria. Some thousand refugees may still be in the mountains but the nomadic shepherds who live there will likely help them along.

The PKK was already there doing the job three days before the first U.S. action took place.
On August 6 GulfNews reported:
“The PKK fighters have reached the Jabal Sinjar area, where they are protecting the Sinjaris from attacks” by militants, Penjweny said.

But another PUK official warned it could be some time before the civilians can be rescued.
“The PKK is working to open a safe passage for the displaced; it is not easy and it will require days,” Harem Kamal Agha said.
Here is video uploaded August 8 headlined "YPG and PKK rescue people from Sinjar" which shows part of the evacuation. Notice the tanker trucks with water and/or gasoline to keep the refugees going.

Herbert Maddison tweeted pictures from the area:
#HPG [#PKK] guerrilla in mount #Shingal / #Sinjar vicinity with trapped Ezidis, #Kurdistan #Iraq August 9, 2014
The PKK did even more than just rescue the Yazidis:
60 PKK guerrillas arrived to Lalesh, the sacred place of #Yazidis, in order to defend #ISIS #ISIL #Kurdistan
The only reason Obama sent troops and jets to the area was to protect the city of Erbil with its CIA station, the international airport and the local headquarters of various "western" oil companies.

When U.S. jets started bombing a few ISIS positions near to Erbil most Yazidis were already safe and on their way out of the mountains. The U.S. announced its first airstrikes on Friday the 8th while the PKK had started its operation to help the Yazidis on Tuesday the 5th. There was never a blockade or a siege and always a safe way out towards Syria which the refugees were helped along by the PKK.

But that good deed was done by the socialist from the PKK and YPG. The U.S. State Department officially designates the PKK as a "terrorist group" for its fight against the Turkish state. Unlike the pesh merga under the Iraqi Kurdish leader Barzani these people know how to fight and have the discipline and training to achieve successes against ISIS and other Jihadi organizations.

But that is a story Obama does not want to tell. He needs an excuse to reintroduce U.S. forces back into Iraq, to secure the oil U.S. companies are pumping from there and to pressure for regime change in Baghdad. The Sinjar mountain "siege" was an easy excuse. Nearly as good as the sinking of the Maine and the Gulf of Tonkin incident.

Anti War......

Yazidis Weren’t Stranded, Pentagon Looks for Other Missions

State Dept Tries to Credit US With Solving Phony Problem

by Jason Ditz, August 13, 2014
The 40,000 Yazidis stranded on the mountain. That was the pretext for US military intervention in Iraq, as set out by President Obama last Thursday. The air war was commenced, and officials were talking up sending ground forces for “rescue” operations as recently as this afternoon.
But a funny thing happened when the US “advisers” got to Mount Sinjar. There weren’t 40,000 starving Yazidis stranded there. In fact, the indications are that there never were, and the Pentagon quickly dropped the “rescue” plan.
What happened? It turns out there were Yazidis already living on the top of the mountain, and while there were some refugees who fled up there, the humanitarian crisis was never what it was made out to be, and an influx of Kurdish PKK fighters from Syria quickly broke the overblown siege.
The Pentagon is trying to manage the narrative by simply saying the rescue mission “appears unnecessary,” but the fact that it was used to start a US war remains, and the State Department is doubling down, trying to spin the lack of a crisis as vindication of the war.
“President said we’re going to break the siege of this mountain, and we broke that siege,” bragged Brett McGurk on Twitter, neglecting to mention that the siege was largely mythical in the first place. The Pentagon wasn’t nearly so daring as to take credit for solving a crisis that didn’t exist.
Instead, the Pentagon is combing the countryside of northwestern Iraq, where their former casus belli was before it so rudely evaporated, and looking for other crises that they might use as a justification for continuing and escalating the war.
Officials seem to be totally ignoring the obvious question: where the false story of a massive Yazidi crisis came from in the first place. In that regard, there are no easy answers, though the obvious beneficiaries of the new US war are the Kurdish Peshmerga, which are suddenly getting flooded with Western arms to fight ISIS, and eventually, to fuel their secession.
The administration just seems grateful that they got an excuse to start a war they’ve been chomping at the bit for, and even if the excuse didn’t exactly pan out, they’ll quickly find another.

In Iraq Offensive, ISIS Seizes Key Wheat Reserves

ISIS Distributing Flour to Locals

by Jason Ditz, August 13, 2014
The ongoing ISIS offensive against Iraq has seen them not only seizing key resources like oil fields and hydroelectric dams. The fertile crescent territory they’ve seized has another big asset: wheat.
Reports say ISIS now controls about 30% of Iraq’s overall wheat production, and they have captured major wheat reserves in the area, which threatens to cause food shortages in the areas they aren’t controlling.
ISIS has been milling seized wheat to distribute flour in the cities they currently control, and are said to be smuggling wheat into Iraqi government-held territory to sell it there, raising more money for their already well-funded war.
The Iraqi Trade Ministry claims 1.1 million tons of already harvested wheat are stored in silos in the territory ISIS has taken over, around 20% of annual Iraqi consumption, according to most estimates. Between those reserves and the farmland they now control, ISIS has become a major food producer.

Western Arms for Iraqi Kurds Could Fuel Future Independence Push

Fear of Changing Balance on the Ground Prevented Arms Before

by Jason Ditz, August 13, 2014
The Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) was on the cusp of secession just weeks ago, but the sudden losses to ISIS have changed that calculation. The latest round of US and French arms shipments are changing it again.
Officials are pumping arms into the Kurdish Peshmerga in hoping that it will change the balance of power between them and ISIS, but it is inevitably changing the balance between them and the Iraqi central government as well.
The reason the US et al. were not selling arms to the Peshmerga in the first place, and indeed the reason the US was previously limiting arms sales to the Maliki government, was to keep the Kurds from securing enough arms to successfully secede, or for the Iraqi military to get strong enough to crush their autonomous region.
With the US now throwing itself headlong into another Iraq war, the fear of upsetting this balance has gone out the window, and they and their allies are now arming everyone with reckless abandon, irrespective of the inevitable consequences.

Maliki Takes Bid to Retain Power to Iraqi Courts

Insists He Is Only Constitutional Candidate

by Jason Ditz, August 13, 2014
Though the military deployments around Baghdad don’t seem to be an imminent coup, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki doesn’t seem to be any closer to relinquishing power, and is simply trying to take the matter to the Iraqi courts first.
Maliki is claiming that the appointment of Hayder Abadi was unconstitutional because he is the leader of the State of Law coalition, which won the plurality in the election. He also claims President Masum is staging a “coup” by appointing someone else.
The legal underpinnings of this claim are unclear, as after the last election the Iraqiya Party won the plurality, and Maliki was still declared PM-designate even though, by his current argument, that should’ve gone to Ayad Allawi.
Moreover, Abadi, like Maliki, is actually a member of State of Law and the Dawa Party, and was chosen by the Iraqi National Alliance as a preferred “consensus candidate” primarily because Maliki was so unpopular.

Bombs And Airstrikes Kill Civilians In Iraq; 241 Killed, 74 Wounded
by , August 13, 2014
At least 241 were killed today and 74 more were wounded. Another 20 Peshmerga troops are missing and possibly dead. Baghdad saw a number of bombings today, but in Kirkuk civilians were killed in airstrikes.
In his weekly address, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki again complained about the "illegal" nomination of Haider al-Abadi and said he’s waiting on the Supreme Court’s decision on his challenge against Abadi. Maliki has a history of manipulating the courts in his favor. Because he has lost support, it is unclear how he will enforce any decision against Abadi. Even less clear is what Maliki will do should the court rule in favor of Abadi.
The European Union was unable to agree to a presence in Iraq but allowed members states to individually embark on their own operations. France says it willsupply arms to the Kurds, who want weapons urgently. The Czech governmentalso wants to supply the Kurds. Meanwhile, the British have promised to help with the humanitarian effort but are, so far, rejecting military intervention.
U.S. Special Forces dropped in on Sinjar Mountain last night to evaluate the situation. They feel it is not necessary to launch a mass evacuation, as the refugees are in better shape than first thought. Early evacuations and food drops lessened the urgency, and airstrikes stunted the Islamic State’s ability to harm the refugees.
Still, the United Nations estimates that as many as 30,000 refugees are still trapped on Sinjar Mountain. Many people have already escaped to Iraqi Kurdistan, but they also are in need of immediate aid.
In Baghdad, a bomb killed 10 people and wounded 21 more in Baghdad al-Jadida.
A bomb in Bayaa killed six people and wounded nine moreNine people were wounded by a blast in Amil. Gunmen in Ghazaliya killed a civilianTwo people were killed and seven more were wounded in a bombing in Karrada; it was the second bomb that was detonated near the premier designate’s family home since his nomination. Security forces killed 14 militants. Another militant died while planting a bomb. West of Baghdad, 33 militants were killed.
Airstrikes in Shamar village of Daquq left eight civilians dead and 20 woundedFive people were killed and eight were wounded in another airstrike in Albado village.
In Kirkuk, a roadside bomb wounded three civiliansTwo militants were killed when the explosives they were transporting blew up.
Shelling forced 3,000 families to flee Haditha, according to a provincial councilman.
In Mosul, a drone bombed a large water works and it no longer operates. A militant "prince" and three aides were killed.
Military forces in Adhaim said that 120 militants were killed during operations.
Peshmerga forces killed 11 militants in Jalawla.
In Jurf al-Sakharseven militants were killed, including a financial officer. Thirty Peshmerga are missing and are probably dead.

Tweets of the day......

Massive explosion rocked the center of ..

: Only 4000-5000 are on top mountain ..

Sources told Rudaw, PM Nuri would stay in political process and has demanded the post of vice president in the next Govt

ISCI's Buratha News going after Maliki hard blaming bombings in Karrada on him & calling for prosecution of his followers

Iraqi state television reporting that Nouri al- has given up his post as prime minister to

Update: ISIS militants occupy 8 towns in the northern countryside of Aleppo

Abu Gharib Hospital is full of dead government soldiers

Iraqi rebels say they shot down "a plane" in al-Taji (north of Baghdad)

US Defense Department says about Yazidis "Not only were there fewer people up there, but they were in relatively good condition"

Iraqi rebels kill many government soldiers in Balad

Iraqi rebels confirm they control an oil refinery in al-Tarmiya

Iraqi rebels occupy an oil field in Kirkuk

calls on US to lift "ban" on sale of Kurdish oil to help Kurds battle against .

The UN declared "Level 3 Emergency" in (highest level)-will trigger additional goods, funds and assets to respond 2displaced ppl needs