Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Iraq / Syria Regional War watch ( September 2 , 2014 ) -- Vaunted ‘Secular Rebels’ Annoyed They Are Left Out of US Plans for Syria FSA Leaders Complain US Isn't Sending Them Even More Weapons ( Fighting ISIS by way of Al Qaeda linked Islamic Front , FSA on the sidelines ) ....... 4,800 Killed in Iraq During August ........ US-Backed Capture of Iraq’s Amerli Fuels Fear of Revenge Killings Shi'ite Militias Sweep Into Area, Threatening Sunni Villages ....... Tweets of note !

Morning tweets - 9/3/14....

— U.S. jets drop pamphlets over urging locals to stay away from locations inside the city.

assigns an additional 350 troops to protect the American Embassy in .

German and American special forces are reportedly fighting alongside against , Pentagon denies...

.: A wider spate of kidnapping is motivated by a desire to acquire ransom payments.

.: The Islamic State is capable of bringing in some $2 million a day just from the sale of oil.

LOOOOL! WTF! : You are watching the weekly statement by the outgoing Prime Minister ..

Evening tweets - 9/2/14 ....

Memo To Washington: Iraq Is Not A Nation And You Can’t Build One There With Bombs

Air bombardment on few minutes ago.. Reports of huge casualties among women and children..

Eyewitnesses: Massive fires spread inside air-port as we speak..

An enormous suicide attack rocked the entire airport few minutes ago..

The exact air-base scenario is repeating again in .. Stay tuned..

Haditha attacked today on 3 fronts by IS & repulsed insurgents again

KRG MNR Ashit Hawrami says, "Our cooperation with Baghdad in the field of energy depends on the $8.5 billion...

MNR: If Baghdad would send the budget for Sep, Oct and Nov, we can start our energy cooperation with by exporting 100,000 bpd.

Day declared war not just on US - also on UK.

MAP UPDATE: the situation in Iraq as of 01/09/2014, bigger at .

 Retweeted by Alexblx
Picture of devastation city in province

 Retweeted by Alexblx
Let us also remember that a Syrian Muslim journalist Bassam Raies was also killed by ISIS. [pic v ]

Anti war......

More US Troops Headed to Iraq; Senate Bill Would Expand War to Syria

White House Insists No Decision Made on Attacking ISIS in Syria

by Jason Ditz, September 02, 2014
President Obama has signed off on yet another deployment of ground troops to Iraq today, agreeing to send another 350 troops to the capital city of Baghdad to protect “American diplomatic facilities” across the city.
It is the first announcement of new ground troops deployed to the country in about a week, and one of several over the past month and a half as the US builds up its military presence in both Baghdad and Irbil.
So far the US ground troops haven’t engaged in any direct combat in the war with ISIS, and the US has simply launched airstrikes against them to set up Kurdish Peshmerga and Iraqi Shi’ite militias’ ground operations.
The continued escalation suggests that’s probably not going to be true in the long run, or that at the very least the administration recognizing the likelihood of transitioning into a ground war.
And perhaps transitioning into other countries. Sen. Bill Nelson (D – FL) is pushing a new bill that would give the White House explicit authorization to expand the air war into neighboring Syria. Sen. Nelson insisted he wanted to ensure there was “no question” that the president could expand the war as he sees fit.
The White House declined to express any position on the legislation, insisting no decision has yet been made on attacking ISIS inside Syria. Officials have previously indicated they don’t really believe they need Congressional authorization for the war itself, and indeed no effort was made to get an authorization for the Iraq side of the conflict.

Protests Over Troop Deaths Shut Down Iraqi Parliament

Families Want Iraqi Govt to Account for Troop Deaths

by Jason Ditz, September 02, 2014
The Iraqi parliament was shut down today as protesting relatives of apparently slain Iraqi soldiers stormed the building, forcing the building to close.
The protesters are complaining about the government’s lack of accountability after the June 11 attack on the Speicher military base north of Baghdad, one of the first ISIS attacks in the region.
ISIS routed the base and killed hundreds of troops, but the protesting family members say the government has not provided any official list of who died and who didn’t, nor have they retrieved and buried the bodies.
Parliament scheduled a “special session” for Wednesday to discuss the Speicher incident, but the government insists it is doing the best it can in trying to identify the slain in the incident.

UN Negotiating With al-Qaeda on Release of Fiji Troops

Al-Qaeda Faction Wants It's Name Off Terrorist List

by Jason Ditz, September 02, 2014
According to the Fiji government, the United Nations is engaged in negotiations with al-Qaeda’s Jabhat al-Nusra fighters in Syria in an attempt to secure the release of 44 Fiji troops who were operating under the UN banner and captured last week.
The fate of the troops has remained unknown since their capture in the Golan Heights, but Nusra has reportedly assured them that they have been taken out of the combat area for safe keeping.
Nusra has issued multiple demands for the release of the Fijians, including a shipment of humanitarian aid for one of its territories near Damascus, and the group’s formal removal from the UN list of international terrorist organizations.
Since Nusra is formally affiliated with al-Qaeda, it is hard to imagine how they can be removed from the list, and particularly as a term for the release of hostages, but Fijian officials say the negotiations are ongoing and that the UN had given them assurances ever effort was made to secure their release.

Vaunted ‘Secular Rebels’ Annoyed They Are Left Out of US Plans for Syria

FSA Leaders Complain US Isn't Sending Them Even More Weapons

by Jason Ditz, September 01, 2014
Though last month he dismissed the whole strategy as a “fantasy,” President Obama has long been bullish on the Free Syrian Army (FSA), the mostly secular rebel faction that they’ve been bankrolling for years in an effort to foster regime change in Syria.
The FSA is irked, however, that they’ve found themselves on the outside looking in as the US begins planning for an escalation of their new ISIS war into Syria. They figured they were in for a bunch of new aid, but they’re not even in the planning meetings.
FSA leaders claim they’ve been marginalized, as the US aid is sent directly to its various fighters without going through the FSA chain of command. The US has responded that the FSA leaders don’t have a good working relationship with them, and that’s why they’re no longer part of the equation.
US disillusionment with the FSA dates back to last December, when the Islamic Front routed the FSA leadership, chased their commander into Turkey, and seized several warehouses full of US-provided aid.
Despite some very public ties between the Islamic Front and al-Qaeda, the US has since been trying to portray the group as the “moderate Islamists” of Syria, and has been arming some of them as well.
The FSA never proved itself a viable opponent for the Syrian military, and often relied on Islamist factions to do the heavy lifting in battle. In that regard, it’s unsurprising that the US isn’t putting its eggs in that particular basket.

4,800 Killed in Iraq During August

by , September 01, 2014
Antiwar.com has found that at least 4,800 people were killed across Iraq during August. Another 2,839 were wounded. Our analysis follows. In other news, the U.N. and Amnesty International are looking into war crimes conducted by Islamic State militants, as well as the problem of internally displaced refugees. Meanwhile, another 161 people were killed today and 79 more were wounded. They are the first casualties of September.
August Casualty Analysis:
Using various published sources, Antiwar.com has tallied 1,652 killed and 1,460 wounded among Iraq’s security forces and civilians. Another 3,112 militants were killed, and 673 of their colleagues were wounded. The United Nations released higher figures (see below), but ignored all reports of militant casualties. Using our militant casualty figures, the total numbers are 4,800 dead and 2,839 wounded.
Due to the conditions across Iraq, completely accurate figures are impossible. Many areas have no independent observers able to confirm each reported attack, clash or other deadly event. Also, the Iraqi government has been known to skew figures to suit their political purposes. Regardless, these figures should be viewed as a low estimate of the casualties.
The number of dead this past month is about 900 fewer than in July, but that may only be the result of a change in reporting habits. Previously, the Iraqi government was releasing very rough estimates. Now, the estimates have transformed into vague statements such as "a number of militants" or "many militants." Consequently, those deaths were not added. Considering that U.S. forces are now conducting airstrikes, it is likely that the number of militants killed should be on the increase, not decrease.
The United Nations reported 1,265 civilians and 155 security forces were killed across Iraq during July. The numbers do not include Anbar province where the U.N. does not have an adequate number of observers. Another 1,370 people were reported wounded. They did release figures obtained from the Anbar Health Directorate. They reported 268 killed in Anbar, while another 796 were wounded. Together, the tallies add up to 1,688 dead and 2,166 injured. The fatalities figure is very close to Antiwar.com’s, but their observers found many more wounded.
Their report also warns that figures could be significantly higher. They have purposefully left out casualties due to secondary events, such as dying of exposure while fleeing violence. More importantly, they admit they cannot confirm many attacks occurring deep within Islamic State territory.
Other News:
The United Nations, working with the Kurdish Regional Government, hasdetermined that Iraqi Kurdistan is hosting about 1.4 million refugees from Iraq and Syria. About 850,000 were displaced internally since January. Another 335,000 moved from other parts of Iraq before 2014. The smallest segment (at 216,000) came from Syria. Only about 5 million people permanently reside in the Kurdish region, so this large influx is a substantial burden on the local people and infrastructure. Duhok province has taken about 64 percent of the refugees so far.
Amnesty International released a 26-page report on what it considers to be "ethnic cleansing" by the Islamic State. The United Nations said they will send a fact-finding team to Iraq to investigate the many claims of war crimes.
Today’s Casualties:
In Baghdad, two car bombs in the Bayaa district left 13 dead and 45 wounded. Adumped body was found. Three snipers were killed.
Six security personnel were executed by the I.S. in Hawija.
A roadside bomb in Mosul wounded six civilians.
Six people were wounded by a blast in Diwaniya.
In Shamiya, an I.E.D. wounded two civilians.
During operation in Amerli56 militants were killed.
Security forces killed 25 Chechens while liberating Suleiman Bek.
Yankja was also freed, but no casualties were reported.
Al-Bashir and al-Salam were also liberated.
Twenty militants were killed in a failed attack on Tikrit University.
U.S. airstrikes in Zumer left 12 militants dead and 20 wounded. The town may have been taken back by security forces.
Tribal fighters killed 11 militants in Duluiya.
Artillery fire in Barwana killed 11 militants.
Airstrikes in Albu Ausag killed militants.

US-Backed Capture of Iraq’s Amerli Fuels Fear of Revenge Killings

Shi'ite Militias Sweep Into Area, Threatening Sunni Villages

by Jason Ditz, September 01, 2014
Backed by US airstrikes, Kurdish Peshmerga and Shi’ite militias swept into the Turkomen town of Amerli over the weekend, ending the ISIS siege of the town and giving US officials a chance to pat themselves on the back about the “liberation.”
Yet the complex ethnic and religious lines along which Iraq is divided mean that no town can simply be retaken without having huge consequences. Amerli may be “liberated,” but the move puts Sunni Arab villages nearbydirectly in the crosshairs of the militias the US airstrikes helped enter the area.
That’s not something that should be surprising. Shi’ite militias have been particularly brutal in Sunni neighborhoods they’ve taken closer to Baghdad, believing the locals are pro-ISIS, and with some of these villages formerly used as ISIS staging areas, revenge killings are a real possibility.
That’s been both a primary cause an ongoing problem with this latest Iraqi War, as the pro-government militias, and the Iraqi military itself, have been hostile toward the Sunni Arab minority nationwide, and have responded to the growing unrest among them with violent crackdowns. The vicious cycle continues.


Rights Mission to Investigate Violations by , Forces

|i army and Shia militias retreated from north now after suffered heavy losses..

2 dozen airstrikes hit today

As battle lines shift in Iraq, Sunnis who welcomed the Islamic State fear retribution

. +D Levy argue regionally brokered power-sharing in Damascus (w/ Assad still at helm) key to fighting ISIS