Friday, October 15, 2021

HALLOWEEN KILLS

HALLOWEEN KILLS is the latest HALLOWEEN movie.  They're built around the killer Michael Myers.  He attacks on Halloween.  Jamie Lee Curtis played Laurie Strode in the first film -- she survived.  She shows up next in 1981's HALLOWEEN II.  Then came 1998's HALLOWEEN H20: 20 YEARS LATER which was Jamie stepping back into the role one more time, the final time, Laurie was about confronting evil or some such nonsense.  It was a strong film in spots.  When it tried to be SCREAM and not HALLOWEEN, it was weak.  Jamie Lee and Adam Arkin worked well together but the four kids were weren't ready for THE WB -- not even a guest spot on DAWSON'S CREEK.  Yes, Michelle Williams is one of the four kids and, yes, she was already playing Jen on DAWSON'S CREEK but she's as bad as the other three.  The film was a hit.  I didn't see the point of  2002's HALLOWEEN RESURRECTION much better and this was another one Jamie Lee appeared in.  Then, in 2018, she was being tempted to return to the role again for HALLOWEEN.


She did and it was a big hit so you knew there would be another one.


In that one, Laurie, her daughter and her granddaughter worked together to take on Michael and trapped him in a burning home . . . killing him.  Or not.


I didn't believe it when I saw that film. 


Okay, spoilers will be coming so stop here.


Tonight, HALLOWEEN KILLS was available on PEACOCK and it is in theaters (having opened Thursday night).


Why?


Let me ask that obvious question.  


I wasn't looking forward to this one.


I like Jamie Lee Curtis so I was always going to watch it -- and I'll watch the next one that's coming out next year for her as well.


But I thought it was really past time for her to stop this role.  The one in 2018 didn't really offer that much to for Laurie.  She's in every scene but did she really grow?  Was it worth pursuing the role again?  There's an immediate response to the film because of her strong acting but it didn't really seem all that much to me in retrospect.  More of a wasted opportunity when you have Jamie Lee back.


Jamie Lee is great in the new film, yes.  But she's not in enough of it to put it over.  


This one needed something more and it has something more, it's got a script and it's got a point.  It also gives Laurie something more to do.  She did get a little more in the H20 one.  But otherwise, Laurie's not really had much growth or knowledge or shading.


That changes with this one.  Laurie gets not just that she and Michael share that bond (a big step and one of the reasons H20 works), she also gets what the terror feeds on, what Michael feeds on, how we create our world with our decisions and our responses.  It's this knowledge that she has at the end of the film that makes HALLOWEEN KILLS so satsisfying.


A major death is taking place as Laurie's reaching this realization and I'm sorry that character dies but I was more blown away with what Laurie realizes and understands.

So this film picks up where the last one left off.  The house is burning.  Laurie, her daughter and her granddaughter are trying to get away from the burning house, they're in the back of a truck and Laurie needs medical attention.  


Laurie ends up at the hospital and Michael's on a rampage.


I was really worried at this point that we were going to have Michael terrorizing a wounded Laurie in the hospital.  


Instead, Laurie's in the hospital away from Michael's terror which allows her to think and draw conclusions (which will prepare for next year's HALLOWEEN ENDS).  


Judy Greer gives a very strong performance.  And Anthony Michael Hall deserves huge praise as well (yes, from 16 CANDLES, etc).  I'll also say that I liked Big John and Little John couple.  The best new face, though, was Carmela McNeal who really connected.  


But the film belongs to Jamie Lee and this despite the fact that she's so far from the bulk of the action is really a testament to how good the script is.  Jamie Lee gives a great performance which isn't a surprise but this script is worthy of her.  I really am excited about HALLOWEEN ENDS.



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

Friday, October 15, 2021.  The Iraqi election results still aren't official, Hunter Biden is a national security risk and much more.



Let's start with a clarification. Sending articles videos on Iraq to the public e-mail site is a good thing.  And I've noted at lest once a year that we can't be picky the way we were when this site started and there was a wealth of coverage regarding Iraq.  But someone is upset that his suggestions have been ignored.  That's because every one has been a VOA article.  That is VOICE OF AMERICA.  He notes in an e-mail that one even notes that the US is planning a "drawdown" and not a "withdrawal" in Iraq.  Yes, that is the term and it's the term (appropriate) that the US Defense Dept used for what Barack Obama did in 2011 -- that was not a withdrawal.


But we don't highlight VOA.  It's a new century and others may feel differently.  VOA is paid propaganda -- our tax dollars spent by the US government.  When I was young, VOA couldn't broadcast in the US because it was propaganda.  It's been identified as such by the US Congress and it was forbidden from broadcasting in the US.  Weak ass members of Congress don't care about 'disinformation' -- for all their chest puffing these days -- and they relaxed the rules.  


But there was a reason they were forbidden from broadcasting in the US.  And that reason is why we do not link to them here.  The VAO exists to lie and to sell falsities to the world.  It's now allowed to sell those to the American people thanks to a pathetic Congress.  They may have no ethical character but we do have some standards here.  We do not link to VOA.  Sorry.


Sunday, Iraq held elections.  Ben van der Merwe (NEW STATESMAN) offers:


The months leading up to election day were marred by a spate of attacks by IS, as well as Turkish airstrikes against Kurdish and Yazidi militants. The attacks by Turkey are reported to have killed between 65 and 125 Iraqi civilians since 2015.

Since 2018, the share of Iraqis describing the status of security in the country as “good” has fallen from 81 per cent to 38 per cent, including just 27 per cent of Kurds.

The growing role of armed groups in Iraq has also been a topic of concern: 59 per cent of Iraqis see non-state militias as having more control over domestic politics than the Iraqi state itself. Militias backed by Iran have played a key role in the government’s violent crackdown on protesters, including being deployed as snipers to fire on demonstrators. Iraqi attitudes towards Iran have nosedived. The share of Iraqis having a favourable view of their neighbour has fallen from 70 per cent in 2017 to just 15 per cent in 2020. 

“People certainly knew that these guys killing demonstrators were backed by Iran, so of course this significantly contributed to a shift in their perception towards Iran,” Mera Bakr, an Erbil-based Iraqi politics and security researcher, told the New Statesman.


Did you read it?  Did you grasp it?  As one of the few sites on the left not turning a thug into a martyr in January of 2020, I hope we all grasp it.  It was very easy to say -- and we did -- the US should not be killing by drone.  You didn't have to trun a thug responsible for harassing protesters and kidnapping them and killing them into a hero or a poet or any other laughable claim.


But Donald Trump orders a drone attack and because there are a lot of idiots on the left (on the right as well) it immediately became, "Man killed was saint!"  No, he wasn't.  He should have stood trial for his actions and been put into prison.  Your stupidity and your addiction to daulities does not help anyone.  Life is not either/or.  A Donald Trump (or Joe Biden) can be wrong in killing someone -- execution without a trial -- without meaning the person assassinated was a saint or even a good person.  That man was a horror.  CODESTINK and others need to start deciding whether they stand with young protesters or with the thugs that terrorize young protesters.  And if resolving that dilemma is too damn much for them, they should just close shop -- honestly, no one would miss them.  They became a joke in 2007 and they're just a tired joke all these years later.

And your ignorance of The October Revolution -- whether you're a member of CODESTINK or some other idiotic organization -- is inexcusable if you present as someone even mildly concerned about world affairs.  In the fall of 2019, The October Revolution began.  If you're unaware of this grou pof young Iraqis who brought down a prime minister, then that's really on you at this point.


Let's aso remember that Medea Benjamin of CODESTINK cried over a pie-ing -- cried in public repeatedly.  Because someone hit her in the face with a pie.  Oh, poor little baby.  I've had red paint thrown at me at demonstrations, wiped it off as best I could and kept marching.  But Medea wanted to turn a pie-ing into a terrorist act.  So forgive me if I don't excuse her ignorance of the peaceful, young protesters in Iraq who were stalked, who were intimidated, who were wounded, who were killed in public at demonstrations and who were killed after they left demonstrations and were just living their lives.


I used to think CODESINK's greatest embarrassment was allowing themselves to be used by their leader Jodie Evans who was an Obama bundler and who used the roup to attack John Edwards and Hillary Clinton -- 'bird-dogging' -- while pretending like there was no connection between Jodie's political motivations and the rag tag band's actions.  Tehy'll get what they deserve, this all tends to even out eventually.  Ask Jodie.  She married for money but she'll still ended up miserable.


Let's note Hassan al-Ahmed (AL-MONITOR):


Preliminary election results were a shock to political parties affiliated with the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) and associated militias. Meanwhile, the historical ally of these parties, Nouri al-Maliki, earned a remarkable victory. This puts them in a difficult position, as accepting the results means conceding defeat and rejecting the results means undermining their ally's victory.

Updated preliminary results show the PMU-affiliated political parties, the Fatah Alliance and its affiliates on the losing side. It indicates a major reduction for the PMU in the number of parliamentary seats, from the previously 48 seats held in 2018 to merely 20 seats. Five of those 20 seats are for Hadi al-Amiri’s Badr Organization; 10 are for Qais Khazali’s Asaib Ahl al-Haq; and five are for other small blocs such as the Sanad al-Watani bloc represented by the commander of Jund al-Imam, Ahmad al-Assadi.

Other PMU factions formed their own political bloc called the Huqooq movement, which is affiliated with Kata'ib Hezbollah and represented by Hussein Muanis. The Huqooq movement earned 1 parliamentary seat. According to deceased Iraqi researcher Hisham al-Hashimi, Muanis is actually the spokesman for Kata'ib Hezbollah, Abu Ali al-Askari. In addition, PMU head Faleh al-Fayadh’s al-Aqd al-Watani gained five parliamentary seats.

Maliki’s State of Law Coalition almost doubled its number of seats, so far winning over 37 parliamentary seats compared to the 2018 elections when they won 25 seats.


 Imagine that.  Who could have guessed that Nouri had grown more popular than 2014 when he was forced out of office in disgrace?  Uh, we pointed it out.  REpeatedly.  And I noted Nouri was  a thug and I was not meaning it as an endorsement but he had grown more popular and would do well in the elections.  That was a reflection on how pathetic Mustafa al-Kahdimi was as prime minister.

I'm not the Arab press  Meanng I never worked with Mustafa when he was a jouranlist so I had no reason to lie for him or make him look better than he was.  I'm also not the White House so I had no reason to insist he was a healer and a leader and . . .

He is a pathetic politician who couldn't accomplish one damn thing.  He allowed the militia to disrespect the office in multiple ways.  The militia is part of the government forces  That never should have happened but it did.  Once that happened, they needed to toe the line like any other security force.

Instead, they gave interviews to the press calling Mustafa a traitor and saying he was guilty of treason -- did so publicly, with their names attached to their comments to the press.  And no fall out.  They got enraged when one of their leaderrs was taken into custody.  They basically stormed Baghdad and encircled Mustafa's home.  He didn't use the military to disperse them, he saw to it that their leader was released.  

He's pathetic.

He can't protect Iraq from the Turkish military which bombs northern Iraq daily and has set up a military base there and has ground forces there.  

He can't provide jobs.

He can't keep his promises. 

He can't protest the citizens.

What has he done?

Joe Biden picked the wrong horse in the race and now Iraqis have to suffer.  




Iraq’s electoral commission is investigating 356 complaints and will announce final election results after all complaints have been resolved, an official told state media on Friday.

“The number of appeals submitted from the general vote amounted to 329, while the number of complaints from the special vote was 27,” Hassanein Laith, head of the complaints division at the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), told state media. The general vote was held on October 10 and a special vote took place two days earlier for security forces, displaced persons, and prisoners. 


So they promised, the electoral commission, that the results would be known by Monday.  Now it's Friday and they still don't have any official results.


The incompetence is on full display.


Don't be surprised that the Iraqis distrust the results when there's been no reason at all to trust the results.


And this is a people who already didn't trust the government that the US imposed upon them.  



It's nice to see one official publicly acknowledge the way the system exclused those who were challenged or disabled.  As we've said all week, Human Rights Watch called attention to this problem for weeks prior to the election.  Nothing was done to address that. 


Meanwhile, MEMO notes:


The independent candidate, Ansam Manuel Iskandar, was amongst the list of winners in the elections this week, obtaining 2,397 votes and winning one of the five seats allocated for the country's Christian community under the quota system.

Iskandar's victory, however, was not to be enjoyed, as many social media users expressed their anger that she was allowed to run for the elections, despite having died almost two months ago.

In a Facebook post published on her page by her family, they confirmed that "she died on 24 August, after being infected with the Coronavirus." They also responded to the angry comments by users, saying that they allowed her to be elected in order to "immortalize her and their belief in her and their unwillingness to have their votes in vain."


Nothing spells vote integrity quite like a candidate dead for two months being on a ballot?  Integrity is in short supply all over the world:


After press secretary Jen Psaki chided a reporter for asking a question about the White House’s art arrangement with Hunter Biden, the former Obama-appointed director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub, criticized her and the administration’s dismissive attitude, calling it “disappointing.”

“These are legitimate questions. It’s disappointing to hear @jrpsaki send a message that the WH thinks the public has no right to ask about ethics. After the last 4 years, these questions have never been more important. I know this isn’t a popular opinion, but this stuff matters,” Shaub tweeted Wednesday.

New York Post reporter Steven Nelson questioned Psaki about the potential ethical red flags of the president’s son selling multiple paintings recently for massive price tags, despite his lack of experience in fine art.

“We at the New York Post reported on Friday that the First Son had sold five prints of his artworks for $75,000 each and that a team of lawyers is reviewing prospective buyers who are going to be allowed into an upcoming New York show,” he said. “That seems to suggest a departure from the White House–brokered agreement where the purchasers would be anonymous.”

When he inquired as to the identities of the buyers and whether the condition of the deal that all prospective buyers remain anonymous was breached, Psaki bristled at the suggestion.

“I know this is your favorite topic,” Psaki said. “But it, again, it’s still is the purview of the gallerist. We still do not know and will not know who purchases any paintings. And the president remains proud of his son.”


Hunter Biden was a red flag and the bulk of the press elected to ignore it.  Jonathan Turley discusses the latest developments:


“Come on H this is linked to Celtic’s account.” Those nine words from a retired Secret Service agent to Hunter Biden in recently released emails may prove a nasty complication for some in Washington who have struggled to contain the blowback from the still-unfolding scandal linked to Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop.

“Celtic” was the Secret Service code name for Joe Biden, and recent disclosures may puncture the media’s cone-of-silence around the scandal. The emails link President Biden to his son’s accounts and indicate a commingling of funds with money coming from controversial foreign sources.  Even more embarrassing, the shared account may have been used to pay a Russian prostitute named “Yanna.”

The commingling of funds is the latest contraction of President Biden’s repeated claims that he was unaware and uninvolved in past dealings by his son. Given these links, there are legitimate questions of why the Justice Department has not sought a special counsel in the ongoing investigation of alleged money-laundering and tax violations linked to the president’s son. More importantly, even if there are no criminal charges, there is now a compelling need for an independent report on the alleged influence peddling operation by Hunter, his uncle James Biden, and potentially his father, President Biden.

In the latest disclosures from the laptop, a former secret service agent reportedly texted Hunter on May 24, 2018, when he was holed up with a Russian prostitute in an expensive room at The Jeremy Hotel in Los Angeles. Hunter wired the woman $25,000. That alone was nothing out of the ordinary for Hunter who, while his father served as vice president, seemed to divide his time equally between influence-peddling and personal debaucheries.

Hunter clearly only had influence and access to sell. We know now that foreign interests gave Hunter millions at a time that he admits that he was a crack addict and alcoholic — in his words, “Drinking a quart of vodka a day by yourself in a room is absolutely, completely debilitating,” as well as “smoking crack around the clock.”

However, the tranche of emails raises a new and disturbing element: the possible mixing of accounts and funds between Hunter and his father. If true, President Biden could be directly implicated in ongoing investigations into his son’s money transfers and dealings.

Most notable are the new emails from Eric Schwerin, his business partner at the Rosemont Seneca consultancy, referencing the payment of household bills for both Joe Biden and Hunter Biden. He also notes that he was transferring money from Joe Biden. If true, the communications indicate that some of President Biden’s personal expenses were paid out of shared accounts with Hunter, including accounts that may have been used to pay for prostitutes. Rosemont Seneca is directly involved in the alleged influence peddling schemes and questionable money transfers from Chinese and Russian sources.

Schwerin also was involved in President Biden’s taxes and discussions of a book deal for the then-vice president; he popped up in the donation of Biden’s official papers to the University of Delaware, with restrictions on access.


Jonathan thinks a special counsel may be needed.  I'd say that's the minimum.


Hunter is corrupt and he violated every ethical guideline when his father was vice president.  Joe Biden's response?  My son did nothing wrong.


Grasp that.


Grasp that Hunter is the target of a criminal investigation by the FBI.  Despite the fact that Joe heads the executive branch of the national government -- which is over the FBI -- Joe's seen to violate ethics and weigh in as he declared his son was innocent.  (As the President of the United States, all he can say is, "I cannot comment on an ongoing election.")


He's lied repeatedly to protect Hunter, he's broken the rules of his office by weighing in on an ongoing criminal investigation.


You don't see the problem?


It's there in Jonathan's column.


National security risk.


Hunter says the Russian government may have one of his laptops.  


If they do, what happens?


I think we've seen what happens: Joe lies for Hunter Biden and breaks the law to protect him.


Hunter is a security risk.  That's no longer in doubt.  By his own admission, the Russians may have one of his laptops.  Does it have the e-mail about the mother being concerned about Hunter's actions towards her underage daughter?


The press didn't want to talk about that back in October of last year.  That, and a few other e-mails on the laptop Hunter surrendered when he refused to pick it up or pay for it at the repair shop, caused the press to clam up and go into denial. The woman exists.  The Bidens know her.  There's even a Biden family member commenting on it and telling Hunter to leave the underage girl alone.  


The woman's a neighbor of the Bidens.  


Hunter's a security risk and Joe Biden has made him that.  He's publicly lied for Hunter.  When asked the mildest of questions about Hunter, Joe has shown how irrational he is on this topic by lashing out at the reporter asking the question.  Joe's made it clear who he's going to pick in any situation: Hunter.


The law or Hunter?  Hunter.  Ethics or Hunter?  Hunter.  A neighbor's underage daughter or Hunter?  Hunter.


Hunter says Russia may have a laptop of his.  


That means Joe is open to blackmail by a foreign government.  Hunter meets the definition of a security risk and you can thank Joe for that and the press for it.


If Joe had taken his office seriously, he wouldn't have announced Hunter was innocent after being voted president.  


If the press shad done its job, everything about Hunter, everything on the laptop would be out there in the public landscape.  That would have made it harder to blackmail Joe about Hunter.


Hunter Biden's a security risk by any definition of the term.  





The following sites updated:
















 

Thursday, October 14, 2021

JACK RYAN, BLINDSPOTTING, Kim Stanley Rachel Weisz

DEADLINE reports JACK RYAN has been renewed for season four on AMAZON and BLINDSPOTTING for season two on STARZ


If you're a fan of either, I'm happy for you.  I haven't watched JACK RYAN since season two and didn't even know there was a season three.  Has it been released already? Nope. Looked it up, season three hasn't started streaming yet.


As for BLINDSPOTTING?  I haven't watched it.  I have STARZ as an add-on via AMAZON PRIME and I really don't watch it.  I should have made it an add-on via YOUTUBE TV.  I go to AMAZON and I never find time to go to STARZ because I always find something there in less than five minutes and then forget all about checking out STARZ.  I have HBO MAX via YOUTUBETV and do remember to check it for that reason.  (I also have it as a stand alone app on my ROKU TV.)  

The other thing I wanted to note?  Rachel Weisz.  I'm not a fan but I'm not an enemy. I look at the news of her remaking SEANCE ON A WET AFTERNOON.  And?  I groan.  That's Kim Stanley's film role to beat.  She was Oscar nominated for it.  She was considered 'the Female Brando' (there's even a book about her with that title).  The film itself is perfection.  And the black and white just adds to the atmosphere.


A color film version?  And with Rachel of CHAIN REACTION 'fame' starring?


I just don't see it.  SEANCE with Kim Stanley is a classic film.



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


 Thursday, October 14, 2021.  Iraq did not have a fair and free election.


Iraq elections were supposed to prove something. And the US government really wanted that.  They want Mustafa al-Kahdimi to have a second term as prime minister and they want the elections to send a message to the world.  And a message has been sent, it's just not the message that the US government was hoping for.


The Iraqi people are not fooled by the government that has been imposed upon them.  They are not fooled by the politicians and officials who promise to represent them but never do.  Maybe if, like in the US, they'd lived under the current system for over 200 years, it woul dbe different.  But 'democracy' in Iraq is still a new thing and the Iraqi people know there is something better, that there has to be, then what is being imposed upon them.


This shows in the record low turnout.  It shows in reactions to the results.  


Some see the results as a "scam."




Mina al-Orabia (FOREIGN POLICY) provides a walk-through:


On Sunday, Iraq held its fifth national elections since the removal of Saddam Hussein in 2003, with the national parliament’s 329 seats at stake. While final results have yet to be announced, the biggest losers appear to be pro-Iranian militant groups, which have already said they’ll reject the outcome and have issued veiled and not-so-veiled threats of violence.

Another loser of the election is Iraq’s struggling democracy itself. Believing their system to be manipulated, about 60 percent of eligible voters stayed away from the polls. That hasn’t kept the government and election monitors from touting the vote as a success—it went relatively smoothly, there were no incidents of violence, and most voters had easy access to polling stations. Electronic voting and biometric registration cards had been introduced with the promise of eliminating the kind of fraud that undermined the last elections in 2018.

However, the Iraqi government and Independent High Electoral Commission promised to deliver the results within 24 hours of the polls closing, which would have been Monday night. Instead, the results of only 10 provinces were announced on Monday, with Baghdad and eight other provinces still trickling in. When the electoral commission made the initial results public online, its website crashed as Iraqis rushed to see the results. A delay in electronic vote counting meant that some boxes had to be counted manually without external monitors, further undermining Iraqis’ trust.


The elections and the results aren't credible -- not to the outside world, not inside Iraq.  PRENSA LATINA notes:


Former Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Thursday said that due to mistakes in the procedures of the Electoral Commission, there is a lack of credibility in Sunday's election results.


Al-Abadi said in a tweet that he was among the first to support an early parliamentary elections that would win popular confidence, but the recent polls failed in that objective.

Meanwhile, Hadi al-Ameri, Head of the Conquest Alliance (al-Fatah Alliance), expressed his rejection to preliminary reports of vote counting.


Some in the press are rushing to spin the results as a mark against Iran.  


They are imposing their wishful eye glasses on others.


Iran and Iraq are neighbors.  They will get along.  They will squabble.  It's been that way for decades.  They have links and they have barriers.  You'd be better off arguing the election was a reproach to the militias.  I don't know what to say here so I'm just going to say it.  The US government is stupid beyond words.  It's wanted, for years and years, to turn Iraq against Iran.  But they never grasp how.  It's fairly obvious how. And it's not in the way they've done it.  I'm going to stop there because I don't want to help empire.  But all the US government is doing right now is ensuring that Iran and Iraq will resolve conflicts.  

This is nonsense:


Iraq: Pro-#Iran forces slam preliminary legislative elections results as 'scam'


You can say "Iran-linked."  But "pro-Iran"?  Are we going to include others in that?  Certainly, the KDP in Kurdistan is pro-Iran.  Does Hero Talabani make a move without darting off to Tehran first?  Not a significant move.


Iran and Iraq are neighbors.  There are many Iraqis who are 'pro-Iran."  And that same group can -- and does -- include pro-Iran Iraqis who are also pro-Iraq and want an independent Iraq.


What's passing for analysis is soggy and ill defined.


Some of the rush to spin Iran as the loser is also about trying to move the spotlight off the US.  It's the US government that imposed the corrupt system in Iraq.  It's the US that back the current prime minister -- the low turnout can -- and should -- be read as a reflection upon him.  This election was a debacle for the US government and for it's 'mission' in Iraq.  


Thanks to Mina al-Oraibi for getting it right regarding the Commission's promise that they'd have the results on Monday -- and that they didn't.  And apologies to her because until the person I was dictating this snapshot to this morning said it was "Oraibi," we have spelled it here "Draibi" -- and that's been for years.  My apologies.


I have no idea why the Commission would make that promise.  For over two weeks, we noted that as follows:


In one surprising development, Dilan Sirwan (RUDAW) has reported: "Iraq’s electoral commission aims to announce the results of the upcoming parliamentary elections on October 10 within 24 hours, they announced on Thursday following a voting simulation."


It was never going to happen.  But they made the promise and they weren't able to keep it which is one more thing being pointed to on social media with some suggesting that they weren't able to do that because the results did not go as they wanted so they were rigging it.


That's one possibility.  I don't subscribe to it but I could be wrong and often am.  What I find most appalling is the lack of census.  I'm surprised by how many adults were registered to vote -- I'm going by the commission's published figure for 2020 that we noted earlier this week.  Every adult is not registered to vote.  The CIA's estimate -- an estimate -- is 40 million.  Iraq is a land of widows and orphans.  21 years-old is the median age.  It's past time that Iraq held a census and I would question every election held until they do at this point. 


This election was not transparent and it was not fair.  I am no fan of the militias -- I'm opposed to them being part of the government (as security forces) and I see the bulk of them as thugs and call them that here regularly.  But the Iraqi government made them part of the security forces.  To have done that and then not allowed some to early vote?  That's not fair.  That's not a free election.  As security forces, they were deployed around Iraq on election day.  If they couldn't early vote, they had to return to their homes to vote and for some that wasn't possible.  


If we did that to any security forces in the US, it would be denounced as unpatriotic.  Joe Lieberman helped destroy the 2000 election, please remember, by going on NBC's MEET THE PRESS and responding that US military ballots should be counted even if they didn't meet the regulations.  


I don't know how Mustafa gets away without having to publicly weigh in on that.


I don't support the militias being part of the Iraqi government.  All the problems that they cause ar problems we noted here -- years ago.  Because they tried to make them part of the government for years.  But it doesn't matter right now what I think about whether they should be government forces or not, they are government forces.


And some were deprived -- by the government -- of the right to vote.


That's a corrupt system and that's not a fair and free election -- and I don't care how many foreigners you dub "observers" -- it doesn't make it fair.



People are protesting for many reasons.  


And it's amazing that the press wants to talk about low turnout but doesn't take the time to note that many disabled and challenged voters were deprived of the right to vote.  Weeks before the election, Human Rights Watch loudly warned about the barriers for this group and called for this issue to be addressed.  After they published that call, they raised it on their Twitter feed at least once a day.  And yet news outlets supposedly want to address low turnout but don't have a minute to devote to how one group was not equal to all others and faced hardships and obstacles that others didn't.


I marvel at what passes for  news analysis from the major outlets.


Let's wind down with this from Burn Pits 360:


 

October 2021 Newsletter

Jon Stewart's Apple+ Show Premieres
The Problem With War:
Burn Pits & Sick Veterans

On September 30th, "The Problem With Jon Stewart" premiered on Apple+ and we are so proud and honored to have been his first guests to discuss his first "problem" with what's happening in America -- and that is veterans dying from burn pits exposure.

We were introduced and became friends with Jon Stewart back in 2019 when he heard about Le Roy's story and the stories of the many veterans we advocate for. After his successful fight for New York City First Responders who were suffering similar fates after the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks, he took up our cause and has been a fierce ally and advocate since.

Since this program aired, support for our veterans suffering from burn pits exposure has been beyond what we can imagine.
We've been in this fight for our veterans for over a decade and we're glad to see this issue getting the attention that it deserves. We have other projects in the works that we look forward to sharing with you.
"The Problem With Jon Stewart" can be seen starting Sept. 30th and features Rosie & Le Roy Torres of Burn Pits 360. Click the photo to watch a clip.
Rosie Torres, Jon Stewart, Rep. Takano, and John Feal advocating in  DC.
Please consider supporting our efforts by making a contribution today.
Honoring Heroes That We Have Lost...
SFC (Ret) Frederick Timothy Slape retired from the Army after 20 years of service on August 31, 2012. He was diagnosed with Stage 4 Adenocarcinoma Lung Cancer with Metastatic Brain Tumors, due to his extensive exposure to the burn pits during his 2 tours in Afghanistan. Just 9 weeks after his diagnosis, on October 22, 2015, he passed away which was only 3 years after retirement. His wife Diane has been an ardent advocate for Burn Pits 360 in honor of her late husband's legacy.
LISTENING IN...
Earlier this Summer, Burn Pits 360 teamed up with Grunt Style to launch a new podcast called "Gaslighting the Warfighter" which focuses on the injustices our veterans face after returning home from war, and spreads awareness that they are being denied health and compensation benefits after being diagnosed with respiratory and other exposure-related health conditions.

The show is hosted by Marine Veteran and Grunt Style CSO Tim Jensen, as well as Rosie Torres of Burn Pits 360. The podcast features political activists, epidemiologists, and various other medical experts that discuss how military service-members that return home from war are facing numerous roadblocks when it comes the VA, dealing with the various illnesses, and also how Americans can get involved to support those veterans.


Click here to check out all episodes.
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE


Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Marco Rubio team up with Rep. Raul Ruiz to pass meaningful burn pits legislation.


Bipartisan and bicameral legislation by the Senators called the Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act, and its companion legislation introduced in the House by Rep. Raul Ruiz would support over 3.5 million veterans exposed to toxic burn pits while serving overseas. Visit Warfighters2021.com to learn more about and support the War fighters bill.

Senator Jon Tester who is Chairman of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee had unveiled sweeping legislation that would also provide veterans suffering from toxic exposure their due benefits and care by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). This bill has been passed out of the Veterans' Committee and will be going to the Senate floor for a full vote.

We encourage all of our subscribers and supporter to contact their Member of Congress and US Senator to push for this legislation to be voted on and passed so it can be signed into law as soon as possible. They move when we apply pressure. Visit Warfighters2021.com to learn more about our efforts behind this legislation.

You can find out who your Member of Congress and US Senator is by 
clicking here.
BURN PITS 360 BULLETIN BOARD
NVLSP Announces Program for Free Representation of Veterans on VA Disability Claims Based on Exposure to Burn Pits

The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) – a nonprofit veterans service organization that has been representing veterans for free since 1981 – is opening its doors to representing veterans on claims for VA disability benefits for diseases related to exposure to burn pits. You can read about NVLSP on its website – www.nvlsp.orgIf you would like NVLSP to consider representing you on your VA burn pits claim, send your name and email address by November 15, 2021 to ryan.kelley@nvlsp.org. Ryan Kelley will then let you know the information NVLSP needs to decide whether it can take on your case.
OUR PROGRAMS
WARRIOR HOPE NETWORK
 
Burn Pits 360 is proud to announce the establishment of our Warrior Hope Network. This program will provide access to our various network partners that are providing many types of healthcare modalities at either a discounted rate or under full scholarship grant. Our partners are providing services such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy, stem cell therapy, detoxification, as well as nutritional, emotional and spiritual support. We will begin taking applications for participation in this program in January 2022.
 
Our pilot program launched in the Spring of 2021 with an initial cadre of 4 veterans undergoing treatment at the NorthStar Hyperbaric Clinic in Tucson, AZ. These treatments were made possible through the support of a wonderful 501(c)3 charity, Healing Arizona Veterans. All four of our veterans came from other areas of the country and due to the length of treatment and the accompanying logistical support demands that go along with that, Burn Pits 360 provided a communal home free of charge so they could have a place to rest and heal while undergoing treatment without worry of how to pay for accommodations while away.

We are currently looking for additional providers to expand our network across the United States. If you are interested in joining in our efforts, please email bpadvocates@burnpits360.org.
We here at Burn Pits 360 would just like to thank all our donors, subscribers, and others for always fighting for our veterans. We honestly would not be able to do this without your continued support. Your support means the world to us.

If you are interested in making a recurring donation of $10 a month, please consider doing so here.
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Our mailing address is:
Burn Pits 360 Veterans Organization
P.O Box 1475
RobstownTX 78380





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