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Colin Powell’s Own Staff Had Warned Him Against His War Lies

By David Swanson | Let’s Try Democracy | October 17, 2021

In the wake of WMD-liar Curveball’s videotaped confession, Colin Powell was demanding to know why nobody warned him about Curveball’s unreliability. The trouble is, they did.

Can you imagine having an opportunity to address the United Nations Security Council about a matter of great global importance, with all the world’s media watching, and using it to… well, to make shit up – to lie with a straight face, and with a CIA director propped up behind you, I mean to spew one world-class, for-the-record-books stream of bull, to utter nary a breath without a couple of whoppers in it, and to look like you really mean it all? What gall. What an insult to the entire world that would be.

Colin Powell doesn’t have to imagine such a thing. He has to live with it. He did it on February 5, 2003. It’s on videotape.

I tried to ask him about it in the summer of 2004. He was speaking to the Unity Journalists of Color convention in Washington, D.C. The event had been advertised as including questions from the floor, but for some reason that plan was revised. Speakers from the floor were permitted to ask questions of four safe and vetted journalists of color before Powell showed up, and then those four individuals could choose to ask him something related – which of course they did not, in any instance, do.

Bush and Kerry spoke as well. The panel of journalists who asked Bush questions when he showed up had not been properly vetted. Roland Martin of the Chicago Defender had slipped onto it somehow (which won’t happen again!). Martin asked Bush whether he was opposed to preferential college admissions for the kids of alumni and whether he cared more about voting rights in Afghanistan than in Florida. Bush looked like a deer in the headlights, only without the intelligence. He stumbled so badly that the room openly laughed at him.

But the panel that had been assembled to lob softballs at Powell served its purpose well. It was moderated by Gwen Ifill. I asked Ifill (and Powell could watch it later on C-Span if he wanted to) whether Powell had any explanation for the way in which he had relied on the testimony of Saddam Hussein’s son-in-law. He had recited the claims about weapons of mass destruction but carefully left out the part where that same gentleman had testified that all of Iraq’s WMDs had been destroyed. Ifill thanked me, and said nothing. Hillary Clinton was not present and nobody beat me up.

I wonder what Powell would say if someone were to actually ask him that question, even today, or next year, or ten years from now. Someone tells you about a bunch of old weapons and at the same time tells you they’ve been destroyed, and you choose to repeat the part about the weapons and censor the part about their destruction. How would you explain that?

Well, it’s a sin of omission, so ultimately Powell could claim he forgot. “Oh yeah, I meant to say that, but it slipped my mind.”

But how would he explain this:

During his presentation at the United Nations, Powell provided this translation of an intercepted conversation between Iraqi army officers:

“They’re inspecting the ammunition you have, yes.

“Yes.

“For the possibility there are forbidden ammo.

“For the possibility there is by chance forbidden ammo?

“Yes.

“And we sent you a message yesterday to clean out all of the areas, the scrap areas, the abandoned areas. Make sure there is nothing there.”

The incriminating phrases “clean all of the areas” and “Make sure there is nothing there” do not appear in the official State Department translation of the exchange:

“Lt. Colonel: They are inspecting the ammunition you have.

“Colonel: Yes.

“Lt. Col: For the possibility there are forbidden ammo.

“Colonel: Yes?

“Lt. Colonel: For the possibility there is by chance, forbidden ammo.

“Colonel: Yes.

“Lt. Colonel: And we sent you a message to inspect the scrap areas and the abandoned areas.

“Colonel: Yes.”

Powell was writing fictional dialogue. He put those extra lines in there and pretended somebody had said them. Here’s what Bob Woodward said about this in his book “Plan of Attack.”

“[Powell] had decided to add his personal interpretation of the intercepts to rehearsed script, taking them substantially further and casting them in the most negative light. Concerning the intercept about inspecting for the possibility of ‘forbidden ammo,’ Powell took the interpretation further: ‘Clean out all of the areas. . . . Make sure there is nothing there.’ None of this was in the intercept.”

For most of his presentation, Powell wasn’t inventing dialogue, but he was presenting as facts numerous claims that his own staff had warned him were weak and indefensible.

Powell told the UN and the world: “We know that Saddam’s son, Qusay, ordered the removal of all prohibited weapons from Saddam’s numerous palace complexes.” The January 31, 2003, evaluation of Powell’s draft remarks prepared for him by the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (“INR”) flagged this claim as “WEAK”.

Regarding alleged Iraqi concealment of key files, Powell said: “key files from military and scientific establishments have been placed in cars that are being driven around the countryside by Iraqi intelligence agents to avoid detection.” The January 31, 2003 INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK” and added “Plausibility open to question.” A Feb. 3, 2003, INR evaluation of a subsequent draft of Powell’s remarks noted:

“Page 4, last bullet, re key files being driven around in cars to avoid inspectors. This claim is highly questionable and promises to be targeted by critics and possibly UN inspection officials as well.” That didn’t stop Colin from stating it as fact and apparently hoping that, even if UN inspectors thought he was a brazen liar, US media outlets wouldn’t tell anyone.

On the issue of biological weapons and dispersal equipment, Powell said: “we know from sources that a missile brigade outside Baghdad was disbursing rocket launchers and warheads containing biological warfare agents to various locations, distributing them to various locations in western Iraq.”

The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK”:

“WEAK. Missiles with biological warheads reportedly dispersed. This would be somewhat true in terms of short-range missiles with conventional warheads, but is questionable in terms of longer-range missiles or biological warheads.”
This claim was again flagged in the February 3, 2003, evaluation of a subsequent draft of Powell’s presentation: “Page 5. first para, claim re missile brigade dispersing rocket launchers and BW warheads. This claim too is highly questionable and might be subjected to criticism by UN inspection officials.”

That didn’t stop Colin. In fact, he brought out visual aids to help with his lying

Powell showed a slide of a satellite photograph of an Iraqi munitions bunker, and lied:

“The two arrows indicate the presence of sure signs that the bunkers are storing chemical munitions . . . [t]he truck you […] see is a signature item. It’s a decontamination vehicle in case something goes wrong.”
The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK” and added: “We support much of this discussion, but we note that decontamination vehicles – cited several times in the text – are water trucks that can have legitimate uses… Iraq has given UNMOVIC what may be a plausible account for this activity – that this was an exercise involving the movement of conventional explosives; presence of a fire safety truck (water truck, which could also be used as a decontamination vehicle) is common in such an event.”

Powell’s own staff had told him the thing was a water truck, but he told the U.N. it was “a signature item…a decontamination vehicle.” The UN was going to need a decontamination vehicle itself by the time Powell finished spewing his lies and disgracing his country.

He just kept piling it on: “UAVs outfitted with spray tanks constitute an ideal method for launching a terrorist attack using biological weapons,” he said.

The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this statement as “WEAK” and added: “the claim that experts agree UAVs fitted with spray tanks are ‘an ideal method for launching a terrorist attack using biological weapons’ is WEAK.”

In other words, experts did NOT agree with that claim.

Powell kept going, announcing “in mid-December weapons experts at one facility were replaced by Iraqi intelligence agents who were to deceive inspectors about the work that was being done there.”

The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK” and “not credible” and “open to criticism, particularly by the UN inspectorates.”

His staff was warning him that what he planned to say would not be believed by his audience, which would include the people with actual knowledge of the matter.

To Powell that was no matter.

Powell, no doubt figuring he was in deep already, so what did he have to lose, went on to tell the UN: “On orders from Saddam Hussein, Iraqi officials issued a false death certificate for one scientist, and he was sent into hiding.”

The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK” and called it “Not implausible, but UN inspectors might question it. (Note: Draft states it as fact.)”

And Powell stated it as fact. Notice that his staff was not able to say there was any evidence for the claim, but rather that it was “not implausible.” That was the best they could come up with. In other words: “They might buy this one, Sir, but don’t count on it.”

Powell, however, wasn’t satisfied lying about one scientist. He had to have a dozen. He told the United Nations: “A dozen [WMD] experts have been placed under house arrest, not in their own houses, but as a group at one of Saddam Hussein’s guest houses.”

The January 31, 2003, INR evaluation flagged this claim as “WEAK” and “Highly questionable.” This one didn’t even merit a “Not implausible.”

Powell also said: “In the middle of January, experts at one facility that was related to weapons of mass destruction, those experts had been ordered to stay home from work to avoid the inspectors. Workers from other Iraqi military facilities not engaged in elicit weapons projects were to replace the workers who’d been sent home.”

Powell’s staff called this “WEAK,” with “Plausibility open to question.”

All of this stuff sounded plausible enough to viewers of Fox, CNN, and MSNBC. And that, we can see now, was what interested Colin. But it must have sounded highly implausible to the U.N. inspectors. Here was a guy who had not been with them on any of their inspections coming in to tell them what had happened.

We know from Scott Ritter, who led many UNSCOM inspections in Iraq, that U.S. inspectors had used the access that the inspection process afforded them to spy for, and to set up means of data collection for, the CIA. So there was some plausibility to the idea that an American could come back to the UN and inform the UN what had really happened on its inspections.

Yet, repeatedly, Powell’s staff warned him that the specific claims he wanted to make were not going to even sound plausible. They will be recorded by history more simply as blatant lies.

The examples of Powell’s lying listed above are taken from an extensive report released by Congressman John Conyers: “The Constitution in Crisis; The Downing Street Minutes and Deception, Manipulation, Torture, Retribution, and Coverups in the Iraq War.”

October 20, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

Iraqi Government Rejects “Normalization” Conference Held in Erbil

Al-Manar | September 25, 2021

The Iraqi government highlighted its rejection of the conference held by some tribal figures in Erbil city in Kurdistan for advocating the normalization of ties with the Israeli enemy.

The Iraqi government also stressed that the tribal figures who attended the conference did not represent the cities they came from, adding that the assembly was aimed at stirring sectarian sedition amid the national preparations for the upcoming public elections.

The government further indicated that normalization is constitutionally, legally and politically rejected in Iraq, reiterating support to the Palestinian cause and rights in face of the Israeli aggression.

September 25, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , | 2 Comments

US Expulsion from West Asia Region is Inevitable: IRGC

Al-Manar | September 24, 2021

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has issued a statement on the anniversary of Sacred Defense, saying that the United States has no choice but withdrawal from the West Asia region.

The IRGC issued a statement on Friday to commemorate the anniversary of the Iraqi Saddam regime-imposed war on Iran and the beginning of Sacred Defense by the Iranian nation against the Baathist regime of Saddam, which was sponsored and fully backed by Western powers between 1980-1988.

The statement said that after 41 years since the start of the imposed war, which was sponsored and supported by the world powers, the nation has grown more resilient and the country has solidified its defensive power.

The IRGC added that the imposed war ended while even a handspan of Iranian soil was not given to the enemy.

It also noted that the western powers continued non-stop to conspire against Iran over the past 33 years since the end of the imposed war.

The Guards also said that the power of hegemonic powers such as the United States, which supported Saddam’s regime, was declining while they made wrong calculations and invaded Islamic countries of Iraq and Afghanistan.

“But today, after more than twenty years [since the occupation of Afghanistan by the US and NATO], we are witnessing the humiliating escape of the Americans from Afghanistan and at God’s willing, we will see their expulsion from West Asia in the near future,” the IRGC statement read.

September 24, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , , , , | 2 Comments

US military contractor claims legal immunity in Iraq’s Abu Gharib torture case

Press TV – September 12, 2021

A US military contractor being sued for its involvement in the brutal torture of Iraqi inmates at the country’s Abu Ghraib prison during the US-led invasion of the nation has argued that recent Supreme Court cases make clear it cannot be held liable for misconduct that occurred overseas.

The Virginia-based military contractor CACI, which supplied interrogators at the notorious prison compound, sought on Friday to have the 13-year-old legal action dismissed, with the most recent legal debate centering on the extent to which American companies can be sued for their violations overseas, AP reported.

According to the report, the US Supreme Court has restricted corporations’ potential liability in recent years as the high court recently dismissed a civil suit against a subsidiary of American chocolate maker Nestle after it was accused of complicity in child slavery on cocoa farms in Ivory Coast.

CACI lawyer John O’Connor insisted during a hearing in the US District Court in Alexandria on Friday that the high court’s ruling in the Nestle case earlier this year compels the CACI lawsuit to be thrown out on similar grounds.

However, US District Judge Leonie Brinkema appeared unpersuaded from the outset, emphasizing, “I think you overread Nestle.”

While the judge did not immediately reject CACI’s motion, she did point out that she sees major differences in the allegations against Nestle and the allegations regarding CACI’s complicity in the brutal torture of inmates at Abu Ghraib.

In the CACI case, for instance, company personnel were assigned directly to Abu Ghraib under a government contract, an element that was not present in the Nestle case.

In fact, Iraq’s status at the time as an invaded nation governed by the Coalition Provisional Authority, a multinational entity dominated by the US military, calls into question whether Iraq and Abu Ghraib were truly foreign territory, lawyers for the Abu Ghraib victims argued.

Brinkema further pointed to an email from a CACI employee assigned to Abu Ghraib that she described as a potential “smoking gun.” The email was uncovered in the discovery process of the lawsuit, but it is filed under seal.

But as described in generic terms in court papers and by Brinkema, it was sent by a CACI employee to his boss outlining abuses he had personally witnessed. The employee apparently resigned in protest, Brinkema said as cited in the report, adding that she was “amazed” that no one at CACI seemed to follow up on the employee’s concerns.

CACI has strongly denied that any of its employees engaged in or sanctioned torture, the report adds, noting that the three inmates who filed the suit — with the assistance of the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights — acknowledge that they were never directly assaulted or tortured by any CACI employees.

But the lawsuit alleges that CACI was complicit and aided and abetted the torture by setting up the conditions under which soldiers conducted the brutal treatment that shocked the world when photographs of the abuse were made public in 2004.

CACI’s legal arguments are just the most recent in a string of challenges to the lawsuit. On two prior occasions, a judge did in fact toss out the lawsuit, only to see it reinstated on appeal.

Most recently, CACI argued it had immunity from a lawsuit in the same way that the US government would enjoy immunity because it was working as a contractor at the behest of the government.

Brinkema, however, ruled that when it comes to fundamental violations of international norms like those depicted at Abu Ghraib, the government enjoys no immunity, and neither does a government contractor.

September 12, 2021 Posted by | Subjugation - Torture, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

The Evil That Men Do Lives After Them

How about some accountability for Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen?

BY PHILIP GIRALDI • UNZ REVIEW • AUGUST 24, 2021

If you want to know how the United States wound up with “government by stupid” one need only look no farther than some of the recent propaganda put out by members of Congress, senior military officers and a certain former president. President George W. Bush, who started the whole sequence of events that have culminated in the disaster that is Afghanistan, is not yet in prison, but one can always hope.

Regarding the current crisis, former FBI special agent and 9/11 whistleblower Coleen Rowley cited Richard W. Behan who mused over “How perverse we have become. We chastise President Biden for a messy ending of the war in Afghanistan and fail to indict George Bush for its illegal beginning.” She then observed, in her own words on Facebook, “So Rehabilitated War Criminal Bush can maintain his legacy as stalwart statesman as he cutely dances with Ellen DeGeneris and Michelle Obama on television screens. Washington is just a big fact-free political show where the blame game winners are the best manipulators.”

I would add to that the hubris of the “Mission Accomplished” banner on the tower of an aircraft carrier as Bush, wearing a flight suit, inaccurately announced victory and an end of combat in Afghanistan, presumably so he could focus on his new war in Iraq. As the Taliban had not attacked or threatened America, had no means of doing so, and were even willing to turn over “their guest” Osama bin Laden to US justice after the bombing of the USS Cole in late 2000, they were hardly a formidable foe. The Bush Administration refused the offer to surrender bin Laden on four occasions before 9/11 and once more five days after the attack because it wanted a war. Given all of that backstory, what Bush and his posse of Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Wolfowitz, Tenet, Feith, Powell and Libby did was indisputably a war crime. And they followed up with fake intelligence to justify a second war against Saddam Hussein, who had also sought to avoid war by offering to go into voluntary exile. The Nuremberg tribunals considered aggressive war against an unthreatening nation to be the ultimate war crime. That would make it an ultimate war crime times two, not to mention the killing of civilians and torture that went along with it. And President Barack Obama added to that toll by subsequently destroying an unthreatening Libya. Unfortunately, many of those war criminals from the Bush and Obama cliques who are still alive are sitting fat and pretty in retirement or in lucrative private sector positions while the only ones who have been punished are the whistleblowers who tried to stop the madness.

George W. Bush is not particularly good at apologies so it is not surprising that he did not deliver one regarding the war he unnecessarily started and even more unnecessarily prolonged through the US occupation. In his view, the US should now remain in Afghanistan and he claims to be worrying about what will happen to Afghan women in particular and to the growing number of refugees, who he opines should be allowed to enter the United States. His statement includes a tip of the hat to the armed forces: “Many of you deal with wounds of war, both visible and invisible… And some of your brothers and sisters in arms made the ultimate sacrifice in the war on terror. Each day, we have been humbled by your commitment and your courage. You took out a brutal enemy and denied Al Qaeda a safe haven while building schools, sending supplies, and providing medical care. You kept America safe from further terror attacks, provided two decades of security and opportunity for millions, and made America proud. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts and will always honor your contributions.”

The delusional Bush makes it all sound like a mission of mercy which inter alia destroyed a ruthless enemy preparing to strike and kept America free of terror, none of which is true but it certainly sounds nice. But what is really interesting is how the fall of Afghanistan is being used by some to hype Bush’s war on terror, making the case that it is now more important than ever to strengthen US counterterrorism efforts. Which is another way of saying, “keep the cash flowing!” Those who have a vested interest in the war on terror are warning that the Taliban’s rapid takeover of Afghanistan has raised concerns relating to a possible resurgence of terror groups that might once again use the country as a home base. The frequently wrong on every issue General Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said that “the United States could now face a rise in terrorist threats from a Taliban-run Afghanistan.”

Of course, if that were the case, Afghanistan might well face a bout of heavy strategic bombing by the United States, so there is not exactly an incentive for them to do something that provocative. Nor do they have the resources to act outside their own borders and they presumably would not welcome any of their “guests” provoking another US invasion.

Milley’s dumb comments on Afghanistan, to include the astonishingly wrong claim that US intelligence did not report in extenso the sorry state of the Afghan Army and the imminent collapse of the government, demonstrate that ignorance on major issues relating to foreign policy is not limited to those who call themselves Republicans. Secretary of State Tony Blinken insists that the retreat from Kabul is not a replay of Saigon, nor were the withdrawal plans, such as they existed, “botched.” Word in Washington is that Blinken will be the designated fall guy for the disaster to protect his boss.

Apart from the Afghanistan fiasco, stupid extends to how the government operates, particularly in Congress. In a recent memo to supporters and constituents Virginia Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who heads the Senate Intelligence committee described his top priorities. Three of them are quite interesting. They are: “(1) Root out anti-government extremism, including the white nationalist militias who participated in the January 6th insurrection at our Capitol; (2) Rebuild intelligence community agencies and departments that were understaffed and under-resourced in the previous administration, and (3) Depoliticize our intelligence-gathering apparatus, so these tireless and patriotic public servants can stay above the partisan fray and focus on their jobs: defending the American homeland.”

Enough has been said about the Democratic Party’s obsession with putting white Americans in their proper place, which is some deep hole where they can be ignored and berated as necessary. Purges are already taking place at the Pentagon and at the Justice and Homeland Security Departments. But Warner’s stated “priority” to engage in the rebuilding of an intelligence community that has seen its budget grow year after year comes as somewhat of a surprise. Perhaps it needs the extra cash to root-out those pesky whites. And finally, “depoliticizing” intelligence gathering has to be something of a joke, coming as it does from the party that did the most to politicize it in the first place under President Barack Obama working hand-in-hand with the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign to promote the Trump-Russia collusion hoax. I suppose Senator Warner does not see the party in power using the CIA, NSA and FBI to discredit an opponent and destroy his campaign as politicization. Or you can always blame it on the Russians.

All in all, we have had a fine team working in harmony to protect the American people. Hopefully the time they spend in prison somewhere down the road will not discourage them and they will emerge with their brilliant insights fully intact. With leaders like Bush, Milley, Blinken and Warner, what could possibly go wrong?

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is https://councilforthenationalinterest.org address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org

August 24, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why Americans No Longer Trust the Biden Administration

By Ron Paul | August 2, 2021

For libertarians – and even many non-libertarians – it’s not shocking to discover that a US Administration lies and deceives the electorate. For government on all levels, lying to the American people is as American as apple pie. Sometimes the liars are held to account for their deception, but most often they are not.

Watching these early months of the Biden Administration it’s hard not to think that lying, deceiving, and manipulation is rising to a whole new level.

Take “ending the endless war” in Afghanistan. President Biden was cheered for achieving what even Donald Trump could not deliver: an end to the pointless 20 year – and several trillion dollar – war in Afghanistan. By the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we were told, the war would be over.

The only people furious about this decision were the bombmakers at Raytheon and the rest of the military-industrial complex and the laptop warriors in the Beltway think tanks. It turns out, they really didn’t need to worry.

The US is not finally leaving the Afghan people alone to run their country as they see fit. Just this week, Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of US Central Command (CENTCOM) announced that the US is increasing – not ending – its airstrikes on Afghanistan. The US would be pulling regular military troops out of the country (though likely keeping CIA, Special Forces, and mercenaries on the ground), but it would continue to bomb Afghanistan using “over the horizon” facilities from the Persian Gulf.

I’m sure that makes Afghan victims of US bombs feel much better.

Then last week Biden announced an “end of the US combat mission” in Iraq by the end of the year. While we’ve heard that line before, still it seemed like good news. However, as usual, the devil was in the details. While the “mission” was over, the US troops would remain in-country in an “advisory role.” This is despite the fact that the Iraqi Parliament formally requested last year that US troops leave the country.

Biden has bombed anti-ISIS militias supported by the Iraqi government twice this year (so far).

The 900 US troops illegally occupying Syrian territory would also remain in-country, the Biden Administration announced last week.

Also, just over a week ago President Biden told us that if we got the vaccine we would not get Covid. Then a few days later his own CDC released data from a Massachusetts study showing that 78 percent of the people who caught Covid were fully vaccinated. Is it any wonder Americans have lost all faith in “the science” as it pours forth from the politicized “scientists” in charge of US public health institutions?

The US mainstream media has morphed into a de-facto arm of the Biden Administration, however, covering up for all of these lies and word-games and holding precisely no one in government accountable. So much for a free media acting as a check on government power.

In fact, any “enemy” country overseas with such a subservient press would be targeted for a State Department color revolution.

Governments lie. We understand that. It is the nature of politics and power. In the absence of independent institutions to hold government accountable, however, such lies become indistinguishable from facts, and soon “freedom” itself becomes slavery, as Orwell wrote. Let’s hope more of America wakes up soon.

Copyright © 2021 by RonPaul Institute

August 2, 2021 Posted by | Deception | , , , , | 3 Comments

Iraqi politicians slam Turkey’s interventionist remarks, vow strong response

Press TV – July 22, 2021 

A number of Iraqi politicians and lawmakers have reacted to recent interventionist remarks by Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu during his recent visit to the city of Sirnak in southeastern Turkey, vowing a strong response to any infringement of the Iraqi sovereignty and territorial integrity.

According to a report by Rudaw news agency on Thursday, during his visit to Sirnak, the Turkish minister claimed that establishing peace in Muslim countries, including Iraq and Syria, was Turkey’s responsibility.

Soylu’s comment reverberated widely through social media platforms, enraging Iraqi people and politicians.

Ra’ad Hussein, representative of Saairun Alliance affiliated with Iraq’s influential cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, said the sovereignty of Iraq is beyond all considerations and the positions of the Sadr movement in this regard are clear.

“The Sadr movement is totally Iraqi and has no links to foreign countries, and it prefers the interests of Iraq over all interests, and to this end, the head of al-Sadr’s bloc decided to withdraw from the elections,” Hussein said.

“Our position is firm, which means that we will sever ties with any of the neighboring or regional countries if they do not have a positive attitude towards Iraq,” he added.

Hussein underlined that such statements, whether made by Turkish or other officials, are unacceptable and no one will ever be able to encroach on a single inch of Iraqi soil.

Iraqi Shia cleric Ammar al-Hakim took to Twitter on Wednesday, calling on neighboring countries to respect Iraq’s sovereignty.

Hakim, who heads Iraq’s National Wisdom Movement political bloc, said, “Achieving peace in the region and the world comes through the interaction of states among themselves in accordance with international covenants and cooperation based on the foundations of mutual relations and common interest.”

He added, “It is not allowed to compromise the sovereignty of Iraq and for its land to be infringed,” without making any direct reference to Turkey.

Meanwhile, Iraqi MP and member of the Law Coalition, Kadhem Finjan al-Hamami, reacted to Turkish minister’s remarks, saying that the Turkish provocations were not the first of its kind in clear reference to Turkey’s deforestation of Kurdish areas and the continuous attacks on the Iraqi territory under the pretext of fighting Kurdish separatists.

“There have been no reactions from the Iraqi government or the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) towards all these attacks on Iraqi lands,” he said, adding that the Turkish government believes that “Iraq and the neighboring countries are a subject of the Ottoman Empire.”

July 22, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

Envoy Rejects US Accusations against Iran as Baseless

Al-Manar | July 3, 2021

A top Iranian diplomat penned a letter to the UNSC, strongly rejecting allegations of the United States against Tehran over a recent attack near the Iraq-Syria border.

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi wrote a letter to the president of the UN Security Council, to react to anti-Iranian accusations of Washington.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has repeatedly announced that it has not had any direct or indirect role in attacks against US facilities or personnel in Iraq, reads the letter. Therefore, the letter continues, any attempt to attribute such allegations to Iran, either explicitly or implicitly, is false and baseless and lacks the most basic credible information. Tehran strongly rejects such claims and considers them legally invalid, added the envoy.

Iran vehemently rejects the arbitrary interpretation of the US of Article 51 of the UN Charter to justify its illegal June 27 attack on Syria and Iraq, said the envoy, adding that Tehran strongly condemns the aggression as violation of sovereignty of the two countries.

The US argument that such attacks were carried out to “deter” the Islamic Republic of Iran and so-called “Iranian-backed militias” from further attacks on US personnel or facilities in Iraq has no real or legal basis as it is based solely on an arbitrary interpretation of Article 51 of the UN Charter, added the diplomat.

Recent US attempts to accuse others to cover up its irresponsible and destabilizing activities and adventurous military actions in the region are doomed to failure, noted Takht-Ravanchi.

Earlier, the US representative to the UN had sent a letter to the UNSC, making accusations against Iran and claiming that the decision for attack was taken after it was proved that non-military measures were not enough.

July 4, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , , , | 2 Comments

Iraq PM strongly condemns US raids on PMU forces as ‘flagrant violation’ of country’s sovereignty

Press TV – June 28, 2021

Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhemi has strongly condemned as a “flagrant violation” of the Iraqi sovereignty an overnight airstrike by US warplanes against the positions of the anti-terror Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), also known as Hashd al-Sha’abi, in which several resistance fighters were killed.

“We condemn the US air attack that targeted a site last night on the Iraqi-Syrian border, which represents a blatant and unacceptable violation of Iraqi sovereignty and Iraqi national security,” said a statement from Kadhemi’s office on Monday.

The statement added that the government will “study all legal options” to prevent such action being repeated.

The statement came after the Iraqi cabinet, headed by al-Kadhemi, held an emergency security meeting following the U.S. airstrikes.

In the early hours of the day, US warplanes attacked three positions purportedly belonging to the PMU along the border.

Later, the 14th Brigade of the PMU announced that four of its fighters had been killed when the warplanes hit its headquarters. The brigade is made up of the Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada anti-terror resistance group.

The PMU in general is an Iraqi government-sponsored umbrella organization composed of about 40 factions of volunteer counter-terrorism forces, including mostly Shia Muslims besides Sunni Muslims, Christians, and Kurds. The organization had a significant role in defeating the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group in Iraq.

Iraqi military condemns U.S. airstrikes on PMU’s positions

Separately, Iraq’s military spokesman Yehya Rasool denounced the US airstrike and said it was a “breach of sovereignty.”

“We condemn the US air attack that targeted a site on the Iraqi-Syrian border last night, which represents a blatant and unacceptable violation of Iraqi sovereignty and national security in accordance with all international conventions.”

Rasool further called on all involved parties to exercise restraint and avoid any escalation of tensions.

He said Baghdad would work thoroughly to prevent the recurrence of such incidents.

Foreign Ministry: US attack on PMU violation of Iraq’s sovereignty

Additionally on Monday, Iraq’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement, condemning the deadly strike. It was an “assault and a violation of national sovereignty and a clear departure from international norms and conventions,” the statement read.

“We affirm our adherence to Iraq’s sovereignty and unity and to rely on everything that would enhance that, through sustained coordination and communication with various parties and through diplomatic initiatives and endeavors that ensure the non-repetition of such rejected and condemned hostilities.”

Syria: US attacks prove its presence meant to serve Israel’s goals

Syria, for its part, also condemned in strongest terms the US flagrant aggression in the Syrian-Iraqi border region, describing it as a blatant violation of the sanctity of the Syrian and Iraqi territories.

An official source at Foreign and Expatriates Ministry told SANA that the US aggression, which was ordered by the highest ranks in the US leadership, proves once again “the recklessness of US policies and the need for Washington to withdraw its aggressor forces” from the region.

The Syrian foreign ministry source added that such acts of aggression only escalate the tense situation in the region and prove “what we have repeatedly said in Syria that the US military presence in our region is basically meant to serve the Israeli goals and the separatist forces contrary to the interests of its own people.”

The Syrian source concluded by saying that Damascus, once again, demands the US administration respect the territorial integrity of Syria and Iraq and to immediately stop those attacks on the independence of the two countries.

Al-Nujaba Movement: US will pay for its folly

In a relevant development on Monday, a senior member of Iraq’s al-Nujaba Movement, which is part of the PMU, said in a Twitter post that Washington would pay for its folly in attacking Iraq’s popular forces.

Ali al-Asadi said the Monday US airstrike was a desperate reaction to the latest manifestation of power by the PMU through a huge military parade, which was held to mark the anniversary of the PMU’s formation.

“This [attack] is another reason, which proves that the occupier does not care about stability of this country…. We tell the occupier: you will pay for your despicable measure and will suffer the consequences of your folly,” Asadi said.

Hezbollah: US airstrikes on PMU aimed to weaken anti-terror fight

Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement also reacted to the latest airstrikes by the occupying American forces on the PMU positions in western Iraq and Syria, strongly condemning the US act of aggression.

In a statement on Monday, Hezbollah said the air raid by American warplanes was blatant violation of sovereignty of both Iraq and Syria, which is aimed at weakening these countries’ power to fight terrorism on their soils.

Hezbollah then expressed support for the official condemnation of the US airstrike by Iraqi government and armed forces as well as various popular groups.

Yemen’s Ansarullah: US strikes aimed at supporting Daesh, al-Qaeda

In another development on Monday, the political office of Yemen’s Ansarullah movement issued a statement on the latest US airstrikes on Iraq’s PMU, expressing the movements condolences for the families of the PMU fighters killed in the US strikes.

“The US aggression is in line with its policy to provide aerial support for its criminal proxies, that is, the Daesh [Takfiri terrorist group] and al-Qaeda” in Syria and Iraq.

The Yemeni movement added that it strongly supported the powerful positions taken by Iraq’s officials and popular forces in opposition to the projects planned and carried out by the Great Satan, the United States, and Israel.

Yemen’s Ansarullah movement noted that the US act of aggression will only strengthen the determination of the Iraqi people and proves that the path chosen by the Iraqi nation is correct and should continue until complete expulsion of all occupying forces from the country.

US congresswoman: This failed policy will not make us any safer

Meanwhile, Ilhan Omar, a US congresswoman who represents Minnesota’s 5th congressional district, took to Twitter on Monday, condemning US act of aggression against Iraqi popular forces.

“This constant cycle of violence and retribution is a failed policy and will not make any of us safer,” she said.

Omar added that the US government cannot take any hostile action in other countries without the Congress’ approval, saying, “Congress has authority over War Powers and should be consulted before any escalation.”

Anti-American sentiments have been running high in Iraq since the US assassinated Iran’s anti-terror commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, and the deputy head of Iraq’s PMU, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, in Baghdad on January 3, 2020.

Just two days later, Iraqi lawmakers unanimously passed a bill mandating the withdrawal of all foreign troops from Iraq.

Iraqi resistance groups have pledged to take up arms against US forces if Washington fails to comply with the parliamentary order.

June 28, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

Iran’s Ahmadinejad Reveals Why Iran Doesn’t Need Nukes, Says World Should Know Truth About 9/11

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 24.06.2021

The veteran politician, who served as Iran’s president between 2005 and 2013, and as Tehran mayor and Ardabil province governor before that, attempted to take part in both the 2017 and 2021 presidential elections, but was barred from doing so by Iran’s powerful Guardian Council.

The world needs to know the truth about the 9/11 terror attacks, and Iran doesn’t need to pursue nuclear weapons because they cannot protect even superpowers from collapse, former President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said.

“Deciphering the events of 11 September, 2001 will be the key to an understanding of all political events and processes in the sphere of global security over the past 70 years, and this will pave the way for us all to a better world,” Ahmadinejad said, speaking to Russian media in a broad ranging interview published on Thursday.

“When the terrorist attack took place, I announced to the United Nations the need to create a consolidated investigative group to establish all the circumstances of the incident and to find the culprit, and said that the Americans themselves were investigating this incident, holding court themselves, deciding everything themselves and fighting wars in other countries on this basis, not allowing anyone to comment on what is happening,” the former president recalled.

“I remember at this time the United States was very angry with me. But all I said was that there was a need for an international investigation, so that the whole world could know who carried out these attacks, and what connections [the attackers] could have to US intelligence and the American security apparatus to be able to break through all defensive barriers and destroy two towers in the very heart of the American nation,” Ahmadinejad added.

According to the politician, the US invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, mounted in the aftermath of 9/11, were an attempt to change the situation in the world and the Middle East in Washington’s favour, and to hide “deep economic and social problems” plaguing the United States. Time has shown that neither war was a success, Ahmadinejad said, with both wars continuing to claim lives and forcing people to flee as their countries, while the states’ infrastructure collapses and their future remains uncertain.

No Need for Nukes

Commenting on Iran’s commitment not to pursue nuclear weapons, and recent attempts by the Biden administration to return to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action agreement, Ahmadinejad said the Democratic president has failed to make any substantive changes to his predecessor’s policies, but that this was because US foreign policy is not controlled by presidents – who are only a small part of the decision-making process.

As for nuclear weapons, Ahmadinejad suggested that “today, nuclear weapons have no practical application, so all the costs of their creation are superfluous. I in principle consider the production and accumulation of weapons an inhuman act and am categorically opposed to it. If world powers reject hegemony and are not looking for disagreements and wars, why start an arms race? Why should the wealth of nations be spent on the production of weapons intended only for murder and not for prosperity?”

“In my first meeting with Mr. Putin at the UN in 2005, I asked him if nuclear weapons could have prevented the collapse of the Soviet Union. These weapons were highly developed, yes, but they did not stop the collapse of the USSR. Because weapons, in principle cannot improve human relations. Today, the capitalist world order led by America is in decline. Can American atomic bombs stop the collapse of US global hegemony? I don’t think there is a single wise person in the world who would say yes,” the Iranian politician added.

World Needs Fundamental Changes

Ahmadinejad expressed certainty that the current world order is unsustainable and is in need of “fundamental changes.”

“Over the past 100 years, it has spawned hundreds of wars, assassinations, arms races, broad class divisions, poverty and social constraints for nations. I believe that we must all join hands and build a new world – a world in which all people will be free and respected –and where justice is central. And I believe that the noble people of Russia can play a very important role in this process,” he stressed.

Candidacy Rejected

Ahmadinejad was barred from running in Iran’s presidential elections twice in a row, first in 2017 and then in the June 2021 vote, which was handily won by Chief Justice Ebrahim Raisi, a conservative with close ties to the clergy and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Ahmadinejad did not contest the decision to bar him, made by the Guardian Council – Iran’s powerful constitutional watchdog of six high-ranking Shiite clerics appointed by Khamenei and six lawyers chosen by parliament from nominations by the judiciary.

In the West, Ahmadinejad is best remembered for his war of words with the Bush administration over the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as his 2006 statement that Israel [sic] (the “Zionist regime” ) must “vanish from the page of history,” often misquoted as “wiped off the map,” which sparked outrage in Tel Aviv and conservatives in Washington. Also in 2006, CNN famously misquoted his statement that Iran has a “right to nuclear energy” as Iran’s “right to nuclear weapons,” with that scandal prompting Iran to boot the US cable news network’s journalists out of the country.

In 2007, Ahmadinejad stirred up anger among liberals during a trip to New York when he told students at Columbia University that gays and lesbians “don’t exist” in Iran.

Since completing his term as president in 2013, Ahmadinejad has occasionally popped up in the news cycle, especially while quoting the lyrics of well-known American rap artists, who he apparently vibes to, to make a political point. Last year, the politician’s use of the late Tupac Shakur’s “Pull the trigger kill a N**** he’s a hero” to refer to the death of Minnesota black man George Floyd got him in trouble online.

In his home country, Ahmadinejad is better known for his ascetic lifestyle, populist economic policies, campaigns against corruption, and programmes to improve Iran’s self-sufficiency in a range of areas, including defence. During his time in office, he advocated for a compromise between Western-style capitalism and socialism. Under him, Tehran was also able to form a strategic alliance with Venezuela – with that partnership remaining strong to this day.

June 24, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Economics, False Flag Terrorism, Militarism | , , , , , | 1 Comment

American unilateralism & intervention is driving global instability, not Russian actions: Putin

RT | June 14, 2021

While Washington constantly talks of the need for international harmony, it has rarely played a positive role in it in recent years, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said, stressing that stability is vital in world politics.

Asked during an interview with NBC’s Keir Simmons, broadcast on Monday, whether he would support a call for predictability and stability from his US counterpart, Joe Biden, when the two leaders meet in Geneva on Wednesday, Putin said that it is the most important value… in international affairs.” However, he added, “on the part of our US partners, this is something that we haven’t seen in recent years.”

Simmons pointed out that Biden has previously accused Russia of causing “a lot of instability and unpredictability,” with Putin responding that Moscow is concerned about the impact of American foreign policy as well. The Russian president pointed to what he described as Washington’s role in destabilizing Libya in 2011, as well as across much of the Middle East.

Putin also said that, when he asked US officials about their views on Syria’s political trajectory in the event of President Bashar Assad’s departure from power, they said they had no clear picture of what might follow.

“If you don’t know what will happen next, why change what there is?” the Russian president asked, adding that Syria could “be a second Libya or another Afghanistan” if Washington and its allies had succeeded in removing Assad from power. Russia has supported the Syrian government in the conflict, following a request from Damascus in 2015.

Eventually, it is America’s unilateralism and Washington’s desire to impose its will on others that disrupts stability in the international arena, Putin claimed. “That’s not how stability is achieved,” he said, adding that only dialogue can ensure security and peace.

“Let us sit down together, talk, look for compromise solutions that are acceptable for all the parties. That is how stability is achieved,” the president urged.

Putin’s comments came ahead of his first meeting with Biden since the US leader took office in January. The Russian president has said that US-Russia relations are at their “lowest point in recent years” in the run-up to the summit.

Biden said he wants to use the session to help build a “stable and predictable relationship” with Moscow. Yet, at the G7 summit, held in England last week, he also insisted that the US “will respond in a robust and meaningful way” to any “harmful activities” by Russia.

June 14, 2021 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Israel pursuing ultimate goal of destroying Iraq, annihilating its people: Asa’ib leader

Press TV – June 3, 2021

The leader of Iraq’s anti-terror Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq movement says Israel’s Mossad spy agency has silently expanded its presence in Iraq and is working to pit resistance groups against each other, warning that the regime is pursuing the ultimate goal of destroying the Arab country and annihilating its people.

“Israel’s presence, not only in Kurdistan but also in Iraq, is more than expected. Israel already operated in Iraq through its elements, but today, they themselves are present in several provinces in Iraq,” Qais Khazali said on Wednesday, according to Iraq’s al-Ahad television network.

He said Mossad is attempting to assassinate some figures of Kata’ib Hezbollah and Saraya al-Salam resistance group in order to drive them into war with each other.

Pointing to Israel’s presence in Anbar town, Khazali said the Israelis have entered Iraq through civil society organizations and some companies using fake passports.

“The Israelis believe that the land of Babylon (Iraq) must be destroyed and its people annihilated and even the trees there must be uprooted,” he said.

The remarks came almost two months after a facility affiliated with Mossad was attacked by resistance forces in northern Iraq, dealing a heavy blow to the regime and its spy agency.

Khazali also criticized the US military’s presence in Iraq as illegal, saying Baghdad must drive the American forces out in accordance with the Iraqi constitution and a bill passed by the country’s parliament, requiring the Baghdad government to end the presence of all foreign military forces in the Arab country.

The Iraqi MPs’ decision came two days after the high-profile assassination of top Iranian and Iraqi anti-terror commanders – General Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy head of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) – near Baghdad airport in a drone strike authorized by former US President Donald Trump.

Since then, Iraqi resistance groups have announced a new phase of resistance against US forces in the country as the only option that guarantees the liberation of Iraq from the occupiers.

June 3, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 3 Comments