Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Iraq Updates ( August 20 , 2014 ) -- The heart of Iraq's problem stems from sectarian strife . will the new Prime Minister break that trend ? Obama and the US Congress demonstrate why we shouldn't confuse their actions with leadership...... Tweets of the morning !

Evening tweets......

graphic showing distribution of US airstrikes in Iraq, mostly focused on Mosul dam and approaches to Erbil:

ISIS images from the recent ISF assault on Tikrit show ISIS fighters repelling an attack by IA armored column:

State Department requests 300 more US troops for Iraq: official

 Retweeted by Alexblx
RT Ryan Crocker tells NPR U.S. should bomb ISIS inside Syria: "They don't respect the border, but neither should we."

BREAKING: Finance minister: $170 million of exported oil revenues arrived in .

representative to Rome: has agreed to dispatch military aid to KRG.

Anti War.....

Iraq’s New PM, Like Maliki, Defined by Years of Sectarianism

Abadi Pushed De-Ba'athification Measures, Opposed Reconciliation

by Jason Ditz, August 19, 2014
Outgoing Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s eight years of failed rule were defined by hostile sectarianism and centralization of power. Everyone is desperately hoping his successor, PM-designate Hayder Abadi, breaks that trend.
But is it a reasonable hope? A cursory look at the record would say no, as Abadi, amember of the exact sameDawa Party as Maliki from the time he was 15 years old, has made a habit out of the same sectarian politics that have gotten Maliki in such trouble.
From the installation of the new government during the US occupation, Abadi was a leading voice in the de-Ba’athification push to ban former Ba’athists, overwhelmingly Sunnis, from public service. He was also a major opponent of efforts at reconciliation that came in the following years.
Iraqi politics at large have been driving by sectarianism, and Abadi hasn’t been bucking that trend. Rather, he’s been the consummate follower of the Dawa Party, under Maliki’s rule, and picked many of the fights Maliki wanted in parliament.
Politically, Abadi has not only alienated most of the Sunni MPs over the years, but the Kurds as well, as his recent leadership of the finance committee centered on picking fights with Kurdish MPs over oil revenue, and it was Abadi who led the push to cut off revenue sharing with the Kurds.

Neither Obama Nor Congress Eager for Vote on Iraq

Obama Loathe to Ask, Congress Won't Press Matter

by Jason Ditz, August 19, 2014
The Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) in the lead up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq became a huge political issue in the years to come, with Congressmen and Senators defined to a great extent by whether they voted for the war or against it. They’re not making that mistake again.
Not the mistake of starting a big war in Iraq, that’s totally happening. Rather, Congress is eager to avoid a vote that could come back to haunt them when the new war inevitably turns sour and stops being the trendy thing for officials to support.
It was less than a month ago, incredibly, that the House passed a resolution saying they opposed any troops being sent to Iraq without Congressional authorization. That came in the wake of polls showing overwhelming opposition for a new Iraq War, but weeks before President Obama unveiled his “humanitarian intervention.”
Congressmen have, virtually without exception, been cheering the escalation of the new Iraq War ever since, and the primary dividing line is between the pro-war and really pro-war sides, with the usual suspects pushing for a dramatic escalation above and beyond what’s already been announced.
President Obama has long made clear his preference not to seek Congressional authorizations, arguing he can unilaterally launch such wars as he sees fit and will “keep Congress informed” of his plans, more or less.
Congress pushed back a bit on Libya, though a vote never took place, and the US invasion of Syria, announced by Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, was actually stopped by Congressional opposition. This time, they’d just as soon not be asked.
It’s not that a no vote is even a serious possibility, of course. Anything more than a handful of no votes in the House would be shocking. Instead, Congress wants to avoid messy conversations with constituents about what they did when the new Iraq War was launched, preferring to leave the whole thing up to the administration.

Tweets of the morning.....

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KDP official, Ibrahim Betal, assassinated in his home last night in .

— Hoshyar Zebari, "We will not participate in Iraq's new government unless our requirements are achieved".

Despite being framed as “punishment” for US airstrikes, IS is baiting to retaliate & expand horizons to . Big days ahead.