Tuesday, October 16, 2018


TCM did something good yesterday and this morning, they had Disney films on.  Not a huge Disney fan but it was a good change and they were films we don't see a lot of.

Elliot Gould in MAX DUGAN RETURNS, for example, was playing when I woke up this morning.  They also had THE BLACK HOLE and BEDKNOBS AND BROOMSTICKS.

For me the best Disney films are the ones with Kurt Russell and things like CANDLE SHOE with Jodie Foster.  After that, I love the two original WITCH MOUNTAIN films -- and the one with the Rock.

With few exceptions, I haven't cared for their animated films.

But it was good to see some new offerings on TCM.

Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Tuesday, October 16, 2018.  The war machine grinds on and Michelle Obama clutches Bully Boy Bush while Elizabeth Warren tugs her own hairy nuts to attack someone who avoided war and not the criminals who start wars.  The Women's March on the Pentagon is this weekend, it's time to stand for freedom.

Let's start with a bit of Evan Hill's argument at SLATE that the Barack Obama administration failed the Middle East:

By refusing to label Sisi’s takeover in Egypt as a coup in order to avoid severing a useful decades-old relationship, Obama’s top advisers accepted the emergence of a new military junta in the Middle East as a fait accompli. In a new book about the Egyptian uprising and its fallout, David Kirkpatrick, the New York Times correspondent in Cairo at the time, persuasively portrays the administration as an abettor of the counterrevolution, happy to see stability return at any cost. Weeks after the coup, Secretary of State John Kerry would infamously claim that the military was “restoring democracy.”
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, ordered to talk Sisi down from massacring his opposition, instead told him that he knew what was best for his country, later explaining to Kirkpatrick that officials from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had inundated him with complaints, telling Hagel it was time to “extinguish” the Brotherhood.
Sisi did just that, orchestrating the Aug. 14, 2013, massacres in Cairo that left more than 900 protestors dead, the worst such incident in modern history.
[. . .]
U.S. acquiescence to the death of the Arab Spring stemmed from both the cynical realism of key Obama officials and heavy pressure from the Saudis and the Emiratis, both of whom viewed the regional uprisings as mortal threats to their style of monarchical rule. The reactionary kings and princes of the Gulf did all they could to smother Egypt’s democracy movement, funneling billions of dollars to Sisi and his supporters. Such was their antipathy to the Arab revolts and the political Islamists they empowered that they viewed even the Obama administration’s tepid openness to the Muslim Brotherhood as a foul conspiracy.

Is that what it stemmed from?  Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was against the Arab Spring from the beginning.  She was very close to Saudi Arabia.  As Amy Chozick and Steve Eder (NEW YORK TIMES) reported in August of 2016:

The kingdom of Saudi Arabia donated more than $10 million. Through a foundation, so did the son-in-law of a former Ukrainian president whose government was widely criticized for corruption and the murder of journalists. A Lebanese-Nigerian developer with vast business interests contributed as much as $5 million.
For years the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation thrived largely on the generosity of foreign donors and individuals who gave hundreds of millions of dollars to the global charity. But now, as Mrs. Clinton seeks the White House, the funding of the sprawling philanthropy has become an Achilles’ heel for her campaign and, if she is victorious, potentially her administration as well.
With Mrs. Clinton facing accusations of favoritism toward Clinton Foundation donors during her time as secretary of state, former President Bill Clinton told foundation employees on Thursday that the organization would no longer accept foreign or corporate donations should Mrs. Clinton win in November.
But while the move could avoid the awkwardness of Mr. Clinton jetting around the world asking for money while his wife is president, it did not resolve a more pressing question: how her administration would handle longtime donors seeking help from the United States, or whose interests might conflict with the country’s own.
The Clinton Foundation has accepted tens of millions of dollars from countries that the State Department — before, during and after Mrs. Clinton’s time as secretary — criticized for their records on sex discrimination and other human-rights issues. The countries include Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Brunei and Algeria.
Saudi Arabia has been a particularly generous benefactor. The kingdom gave between $10 million and $25 million to the Clinton Foundation. (Donations are typically reported in broad ranges, not specific amounts.) At least $1 million more was donated by Friends of Saudi Arabia, which was co-founded by a Saudi prince.

Saudi Arabia knew what they were buying: Influence.  Hillary knew what she was selling as well.  And she sold a great deal for the millions donated.

Around the world, people suffer for positions Hillary advocated -- whether it was her war hunger for Libya or her embrace of dictators.  In Iraq, right now, women are suffering and those expressing any level of autonomy tend to be targeted and murdered.  As Zahra Ali (WASHINGTON POST) explains:

These deaths cannot be disconnected from social and political developments provoked by the U.S.-led invasion and occupation of Iraq and the political economy and mechanisms of the “war on terror.”

The 2003 U.S. invasion provoked an ethno-sectarian fragmentation of the country and a cycle of violence, creating the conditions for the emergence of armed groups, including the Islamic State. The war against the Islamic State in Mosul and parts of northern Iraq exacerbated Iraq’s militarization by arming and strengthening various political groups, paramilitary forces and militias.
Many Iran-backed militias have been armed and institutionalized through their involvement in the war against the Islamic State in Mosul. These armed groups are deeply connected to the corrupt sectarian political elite that came to power after 2003. And through their participation in the parliamentary elections in May, groups such as the Badr Organization, Asaib Ahl al-Haq (Righteous League), Ashura Brigades and Kitaeb Hezbollah have been further normalized.

Leaders of paramilitary forces and militias are now institutionalized members of parliament who participated in negotiations to form a new government. Yet some of these same leaders are accused of bearing responsibility for the threatening, kidnapping and killing of civil-society activists as well as for human rights violations in Mosul and elsewhere. Some of these groups have also fought alongside Bashar al-Assad’s Baath regime in neighboring Syria.

How are the two topics connected?  The failures of Barack and his administration.  The Righteous League is the League of Righteous.  They are a terrorist organization.  Their leaders were in custody -- US custody -- for the murders of American service members.  They were released when Barack Obama decided to make a deal with the terrorists.  Dropping back to the June 9, 2009 snapshot:

This morning the New York Times' Alissa J. Rubin and Michael Gordon offered "U.S. Frees Suspect in Killing of 5 G.I.'s.Martin Chulov (Guardian) covered the same story, Kim Gamel (AP) reported on it, BBC offered "Kidnap hope after Shia's handover" and Deborah Haynes contributed "Hope for British hostages in Iraq after release of Shia militant" (Times of London).  The basics of the story are this. 5 British citizens have been hostages since May 29, 2007. The US military had in their custody Laith al-Khazali. He is a member of Asa'ib al-Haq. He is also accused of murdering five US troops. The US military released him and allegedly did so because his organization was not going to release any of the five British hostages until he was released.  This is a big story and the US military is attempting to state this is just diplomacy, has nothing to do with the British hostages and, besides, they just released him to Iraq.  Sami al-askari told the New York Times, "This is a very sensitive topic because you know the position that the Iraqi government, the U.S. and British governments, and all the governments do not accept the idea of exchanging hostages for prisoners.  So we put it in another format, and we told them that if they want to participate in the political process they cannot do so while they are holding hostages.  And we mentioned to the American side that they cannot join the political process and release their hostages while their leaders are behind bars or imprisoned." In other words, a prisoner was traded for hostages and they attempted to not only make the trade but to lie to people about it.  At the US State Dept, the tired and bored reporters were unable to even broach the subject.  Poor declawed tabbies. Pentagon reporters did press the issue and got the standard line from the department's spokesperson, Bryan Whitman, that the US handed the prisoner to Iraq, the US didn't hand him over to any organization -- terrorist or otherwise.  What Iraq did, Whitman wanted the press to know, was what Iraq did.  A complete lie that really insults the intelligence of the American people. CNN reminds the five US soldiers killed "were: Capt. Brian S. Freeman, 31, of Temecula, California; 1st Lt. Jacob N. Fritz, 25, of Verdon, Nebraska; Spc. Johnathan B. Chism, 22, of Gonzales, Louisiana; Pfc. Shawn P. Falter, 25, of Cortland, New York; and Pfc. Johnathon M. Millican, 20, of Trafford, Alabama."  Those are the five from January 2007 that al-Khazali and his brother Qais al-Khazali are supposed to be responsible for the deaths of.  Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Robert H. Reid (AP) states that Jonathan B. Chism's father Danny Chism is outraged over the release and has declared, "They freed them?  The American military did? Somebody needs to answer for it."

No one's ever had to answer to that.  Not even when The League of Righteous publicly -- and repeatedly -- mocked Barack.

Their leaders were in custody and the group was neutralized.  Then Barack decided to release them and, today, The League terrorizes Iraqis.

Actions have consequences.  You can bury your head in the 'feel good' sand but that's not reality.  Actions have consequences.

On a day like today, 2002, US Congress authorized the invasion to Iraq because it allegedly had and kept WMD. There were no such weapons. It was an excuse for appropriation of Iraqi oil. Today Iraq is a ruined country that lost more than 1 million people during such invasion

Actions have consequences.  The consequences for Iraq?  They remain an occupied country with leaders selected by foreigners.  The selected are always cowards that fled the country years ago and only returned following the 2003 US-led invasion.

Let's talk cowards by the way.  Elizabeth Warren is a coward and an idiot.  No, we're not going to talk about how her embarrassing claim to be Native American exploded in her ugly face.

He demands military parades in his honor but cheats our veterans out of charitable donations, attacks their families, ducked out of Vietnam, & can't even be bothered to visit the troops that he refuses to bring home from Afghanistan or Iraq.

I read that and think, "Maybe Cher's right and some woman do deserve to be called the c-word?"

"Ducked out of Vietnam."

I'm sorry, Elizabeth, if you can get your hands off your nuts and out of your pants, want to explain that one?

I don't know what world that lying idiot lives in -- maybe DANCES WITH WOLVES? -- but she's gone over to the danger side as have so many in our society.

"Ducked out of Vietnam."  Little Liar Lizzie, that was the bulk of the US.  Any who could did.  And good because the issue is not that they "ducked," the issue is that it was an illegal war based on lies.  Note that the WHORE calls out those who "ducked out" and not the liars who started that war.

As someone who remembers that time very well, let's not that Liar Lizzie isn't speaking to a huge group of voters.  Yes, I'm for peace.  But even those who weren't for peace aren't represented by Lizzie's remarks.

The Republican turned Democrat has apparently never absorbed a moment's honest truth.

I am glad for anyone and everyone who did not go to Vietnam.  I wish no one had gone there.  It was a war based on lies and it destroyed lives -- both in Vietnam and in this country.

Lizzie's been nuzzling at the crotches of too many Big Warriors today if she doesn't grasp that.  The fumes have apparently left her deeply confused.

And the government, the same government, that lied to the country and sent innocents to die in Vietnam gets a pass from her today as she acts as though the great crime was being someone who legally avoided the draft.

Elizabeth Warren is problematic for so many reasons but chief among them is that when she sees a huge crime, she refuses to blame the actual criminals and instead blames minor players.  Donald Trump did nothing illegal by avoiding the draft.

As someone who knew many US service members killed in Vietnam, I wish everyone had avoided it.  I wish the ones who started the illegal war had been put in prison.  It might have prevented the lies that led to the war on Iraq.

There are many reasons to call out Donald Trump and I've called him out plenty of times.  I have never called him out for not serving in the war on Vietnam.  I'm not that desperate or stupid.  Elizabeth Warren clearly is that desperate and stupid.

You'll note her silence on those who carried out the crime of the war on Vietnam and those who carried out the crime of the war on Iraq.

Iraq was an example to the world. Strongest education system, top professors, doctors, artists & architects. Decades of imperialism & war drained the minds of its citizens & now strong women are being hunted down in the country.
Self proclaimed western feminists where tf are you?

The Elizabeth Warren's can't admit reality.  All these years later, the Iraq War remains an illegal action, a war of choice that violated every aspect of the long accepted premise of Just War.  All these years later, she and so many others who present themselves as informed refuse to call out the ones responsible.

That's why Michelle Obama can shower War Criminal Bully Boy Bush with praise, as she did last week.  Nick Barrickman (WSWS) provides the walk-through:

Asked about a friendly interaction caught on camera between the two as they sat together during the recent funeral for Republican Senator John McCain, Obama explained: “President Bush and I are forever seat mates because of protocol; that’s how we sit at all the official functions.” Rather than ending it there, Obama continued, gushing: “He is my partner in crime at every major thing where all the formers gather. I love him to death. He’s a wonderful man. He’s a funny man.”
Any belief that Obama was speaking merely in personal terms about former president Bush was put to rest when she explained: “Party doesn’t separate us. Color, gender—those kinds of things don’t separate us. It’s the messages we send. And if we’re the adults and the leaders in the room, and we’re not showing that level of decency, we cannot expect our children to do the same.”
Obama’s statement is an even more explicit version of what Barack Obama said days after the November 2016 election: “We’re actually all on one team,” referring to the election contest between Trump and Clinton as “an intramural scrimmage.”
Bush is “my partner in crime” and “a wonderful man” … What can one say? Bush is in fact a criminal of the highest order, responsible for overseeing the invasion of Iraq based on lies, which led to the death of at least 1 million people. Following the attacks of September 11, his administration launched the “war on terror” as a pretext for ripping up the Constitution, expanding illegal domestic spying, and introducing torture as an instrument of US foreign policy. He deserves to be arrested and prosecuted for war crimes.
Terms such as the “war on terror,” “shock and awe” bombing of civilian populations, the “extraordinary rendition” of accused terror suspects and “water boarding” will forever be associated with Bush’s name. To any list of crimes must be added Bush’s domestic policy, including a massive attack on social programs, tax cuts for the rich and the initial response of the ruling class to the 2008 financial crisis—the bailout of the banks.
That Michelle Obama can speak in such terms about Bush is an expression of the fact that, however bitter their differences, the political representatives of the ruling elite are united. It is not a matter of personal friendship, but shared class interests.
Indeed, the right-wing policies of the Bush administration carry like a red thread through succeeding administrations.

Democratic President Barack Obama only deepened the anti-democratic and militarist policies of his predecessor, refusing to hold any member of Bush’s cabinet responsible for violations of domestic and international law, even retaining and promoting some of them in his own administration. Initially campaigning with mild criticisms of the Bush administration’s occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, Obama continued these wars while beginning wars of his own in Libya, Syria and Yemen, which have led to untold misery and suffering.

Elizabeth Warren attacks Donald Trump for avoiding Vietnam -- something so many did (including Bruce Springsteen) -- when, in fact, it may have been the best thing he ever did in his life.  She doesn't attack the ones who started that war.  She's drawing a line, making it clear where she stands: You will not question your government, you will only comply.

And she thinks she's ready to be president?

A lot of people are expressing similar sentiments.  Monica Lewinsky is being called a "slut" and far worse.  Because Hillary's little feelings are hurt.  Reality, Hillary went on NBC's TODAY and attacked Monica as a liar, calling her part of the "vast right-wing" conspiracy.  Monica was an innocent.  Bill and Hillary held all the power.  How telling that the knee jerk reaction from some who are supposed to be politically aware is to attack the innocent and not the rulers.

This is happening over and over in the United States.  It needs to stop.

The Women's March on the Pentagon this weekend is one way to support accountability, to call for an end to these never-ending wars.

  • Hey ! Stand in solidarity with the Women’s March on the Pentagon at your local action!

    Hey ! Stand in solidarity with the Women’s March on the Pentagon at your local action!

    This Saturday & Sunday, join me and many others in marching, rallying and planning against the military industrial complex - both here and abroad.

    The U.S. is a war economy. We continually spend our money on useless things for the war machine, which we’re now bringing to space. Can privatization of the space industry save us from bringing the world to war? [WATCH]

    Hey ! Stand in solidarity with the Women’s March on the Pentagon at your local action!

    Join us at the Pentagon on October 21st. Hear from and others as we call for an end to the bipartisan war machine.

    Solidarity events are popping up across the US:

    Los Angeles
    Asheville, NC
    Buffalo, NY
    Patchogue, NY
    Montclair, NJ
    Las Vegas

    Don't see one near you? Organize your own!

    The Women's March on the Pentagon is one week away. Please share!

    Solidarity Rally for the Women's March on the , 1PM on Sunday October 21st at Boeing Headquarters, 7755 E Marginal Way


    Women's March on the , October 20-21

    on the 51st anniversary of the 1967 big antiwar event in & subsequent march on the Pentagon that had 50,000 people


    This is NOT a pink-pussy-hatted event to only oppose Trump and Get Out the Vote for the treacherous and warmongering Democrats (or Republicans): This is a principled non-partisan march on the bi-partisan US war machine.

    Join us at the Pentagon on October 21st. Hear from Walter Teague and others as we call for an end to the bipartisan war machine.

    We did it! 1,001 followers. Thanks for following and for supporting this movement. Head over to our website to get involved if you haven’t already!

    The following community sites -- plus BLACK AGENDA REPORT -- updated:

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