Category Archives: War in Iraq

The NYT finally comes out against the Iraq War

The NYT, leader in the MSM..as least as far as the leader of the asshats that drummed all of BushCo’s bullshit into our heads in the runup to the war has finally written an Editorial condemning the War in Iraq and the need to GET THE FUCK OUT NOW!

Sorry, I do get emotional discussing the Iraq war and the asshole that put us there. Here is a little taste of how hard they bitchslap The Shrub:

Like many Americans, we have put off that conclusion, waiting for a sign that President Bush was seriously trying to dig the United States out of the disaster he created by invading Iraq without sufficient cause, in the face of global opposition, and without a plan to stabilize the country afterward.

At first, we believed that after destroying Iraq’s government, army, police and economic structures, the United States was obliged to try to accomplish some of the goals Mr. Bush claimed to be pursuing, chiefly building a stable, unified Iraq. When it became clear that the president had neither the vision nor the means to do that, we argued against setting a withdrawal date while there was still some chance to mitigate the chaos that would most likely follow.

Here is MY EDITORIAL ON THE NYT Editorial:

A Corporation owns the NYT. Its not an accident that they backed BUSHCO on the war. I don’t give a rat’s ass how they suck up to the American Public now.

Everyone that wishes to pat them on the back..do so, I have no bones with that. I will not under any circumstances.

They held on to the Wiretapping story for months to MAKE SURE Bush got elected. This is unconscionable as well.

Oh yes, they still do the heavy lifting for BushCo, but they decided since over 70% of the population is down on this war, they needed to jump on the bandwagon too. Latecomers but there they are none the less.

I would like to give the NYT editorial staff a big, hearty FUCK YOU FELLAS! Your bullshit pandering to the most corrupt administration ever to hold office in our once-great country put us INTO this shit..and now you have the balls to weakly attempt to cover your fucking ass by explaining why you thought it was a grand idea but now you just can’t seem to find your way to support it any longer? Your a day late and a dollar short as my dear old dad used to say..and he is a staunch republican that came OUT AGAINST THE WAR over 2 friggin years ago!

Bastards and charlatans at the helm of what used to be a great newspaper.

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Commanders refuse military Drs advice for troops in action.

After my Sunday post about Army Spec. Jeans Cruz and his PTSD, this morning I got to read how the military continues to put the war before the troops mental health:

U.S. commanders in Iraq are rejecting a recommendation made by Army health experts that troops receive a one-month break after they spend three months in a combat zone. U.S. troops in Iraq are spending more time in combat than those who fought in Vietnam or World War II, and experts say continuous exposure can lead to more mental health problems.

So, Army health experts can kiss off? WTF here? Army psychologists say continual combat may cause more mental health problems. Their research, conducted in Iraq last year, shows that 30% of troops experiencing high levels of combat demonstrate signs of anxiety, depression or acute stress.

This research was conducted last year..it has to be worse now..judging by the violence and deaths spiraling up as the “Surge” has led to worsening numbers in dead and injured troops.

30% of our troops IN THE COMBAT THEATRE show high levels of anxiety,depression and stress….yet we can’t do shit to fix it? How effective can they be working at that level?

Are the military commanders fucking nuts or is it that the war is more important than the lives and health of our troops?

Great way to support the troops gents..fucking awesome. You vile pricks.

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Happy Fathers Day, Army Spec Jeans Cruz

More horror from WaPo’s Dana Priest and Anne Hull on what our soldiers must deal with when they return mentally broken from Iraq. The full article can be read at the source linked above..and its worth every minute of your time.

Army Spec. Jeans Cruz helped capture Saddam Hussein. When he came home to the Bronx, important people called him a war hero and promised to help him start a new life. The mayor of New York, officials of his parents’ home town in Puerto Rico, the borough president and other local dignitaries honored him with plaques and silk parade sashes. They handed him their business cards and urged him to phone.

But a “black shadow” had followed Cruz home from Iraq, he confided to an Army counselor. He was hounded by recurring images of how war really was for him: not the triumphant scene of Hussein in handcuffs, but visions of dead Iraqi children.

In public, the former Army scout stood tall for the cameras and marched in the parades. In private, he slashed his forearms to provoke the pain and adrenaline of combat. He heard voices and smelled stale blood. Soon the offers of help evaporated and he found himself estranged and alone, struggling with financial collapse and a darkening depression.

At a low point, he went to the local Department of Veterans Affairs medical center for help. One VA psychologist diagnosed Cruz with post-traumatic stress disorder. His condition was labeled “severe and chronic.” In a letter supporting his request for PTSD-related disability pay, the psychologist wrote that Cruz was “in need of major help” and that he had provided “more than enough evidence” to back up his PTSD claim. His combat experiences, the letter said, “have been well documented.”

None of that seemed to matter when his case reached VA disability evaluators. They turned him down flat, ruling that he deserved no compensation because his psychological problems existed before he joined the Army. They also said that Cruz had not proved he was ever in combat. “The available evidence is insufficient to confirm that you actually engaged in combat,” his rejection letter stated.

Yet abundant evidence of his year in combat with the 4th Infantry Division covers his family’s living-room wall. The Army Commendation Medal With Valor for “meritorious actions . . . during strategic combat operations” to capture Hussein hangs not far from the combat spurs awarded for his work with the 10th Cavalry “Eye Deep” scouts, attached to an elite unit that caught the Iraqi leader on Dec. 13, 2003, at Ad Dawr.

Veterans Affairs will spend $2.8 billion this year on mental health. But the best it could offer Cruz was group therapy at the Bronx VA medical center. Not a single session is held on the weekends or late enough at night for him to attend. At age 25, Cruz is barely keeping his life together. He supports his disabled parents and 4-year-old son and cannot afford to take time off from his job repairing boilers. The rough, dirty work, with its heat and loud noises, gives him panic attacks and flesh burns but puts $96 in his pocket each day.

This is disgusting and it must stop now. The Military has recognized PTSD as an illness since 1980 for the love of GOD! May every bastard that denies these men and women care rot in hell. Support our troops, bring them home now!

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What’s a dead Iraqi relative worth these days?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketAs I write this Wednesday afternoon, the death toll in Iraq for today only, is: 160 human beings and counting. The folks who work for the ACLU have doggedly persevered in their mission to bring us the hidden truths about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They spend thousands of dollars and hundreds of man hours filing FOIA requests and re-requests to the federal government and our court systems for information that many times, should be readily available.

When I read this last week, I was stunned at how callous and cold the report was. But, I suppose I shouldn’t of been, afterall..its merely an accounting of finances. The strange feeling I got while perusing the list in the middle of the night can only be explained as voyeuristic, but it was far from titillating.

The list starts out with death# 18 and goes through death# 1771. It covers Afghanistan and Iraq, but only a small percentage of the deaths are in Afghanistan. Either we didn’t pay them for their pain and suffering or it was an out-of-pocket, petty cash expense…We weren’t exactly accurate in our bookkeeping over in the war zone remember.

Lets take the first one, It took place in Kabul, Afghanistan on 5/29/06: Claim filed on behalf of Afghan taxi driver [Redacted] by brother. Taxi driver happened to be at site of a riot that broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redacted]. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 200, 000 Afghani (appx. $3,991.22 US). See Army 30- 34, 35- 39, 40- 43, 44- 48, 49- 51, 67- 74 for related deaths. The Statement of Facts in the DOD memo appear to be copied for all relevant death investigations.

Apparently the dollar value of a life is roughly $3991 in Afghanistan and Iraq. There are of course some that are more or less expensive..even some that weren’t even compensated with little explanation.

We, in America, would scoff at such an offer if one of our loved ones were killed for no apparent reason, or by ‘accident’ at the hands of a member of our military or even a government official.

The NYT, that wretched liberal rag, did a piece about this FOIA document dump by the DoD. I was going to add up the total dollar value of the lives snuffed out on this report but a hat-tip to the NYT for doing it for me:

They represent only a small fraction of the claims filed. In all, the military has paid more than $32 million to Iraqi and Afghan civilians for noncombat-related killings, injuries and property damage, an Army spokeswoman said. That figure does not include condolence payments made at a unit commander’s discretion.

The ACLU has kindly broken down the payments for us:

Of the 496 files, 198 were denied because the military found that the incidents arose “from action by an enemy or resulted directly or indirectly from an act of the armed forces of the United States in combat,” which the military calls “combat exclusion.”
Of the 496 claims, 164 incidents resulted in cash payments to family members. In approximately half of the cash payment cases, the United States accepted responsibility for the death of the civilian and offered a “compensation payment.” In the other half, U.S. authorities issued “condolence” payments, which are discretionary payments capped at $2,500 and offered “as an expression of sympathy” but “without reference to fault.” Claims based on incidents that were not reported in the military’s “SIGACT” (”significant act”) database, despite eyewitness corroborations, are generally denied for compensation although a condolence payment may be issued.

If you ignore the hard, cold, dead facts above and concentrate on a few of the stories contained in these numbers you will find ones like these:

In one file, a civilian from the Salah Ad Din (PDF) province in eastern Iraq states that U.S. forces opened fire with more than 100 hundred rounds on his sleeping family, killing his mother, father and brother. The firepower was of such magnitude that 32 of the family’s sheep were also killed.

In the case of the fisherman in Tikrit, he and his companion desperately tried to appear unthreatening to an American helicopter overhead. “They held up the fish in the air and shouted ‘Fish! Fish!’ to show they meant no harm,” said the Army report attached to the claim filed by the fisherman’s family. The Army refused to compensate for the killing, ruling that it was “combat activity,” but approved $3,500 for his boat, net and cellphone, which drifted away and were stolen.

In Haditha, one of the most notorious incidents involving American troops in Iraq, the Marines paid residents $38,000 after troops killed two dozen people in November 2005.

When our military blows away one of your relatives in Iraq, they hand you a card, just like the one in my graphic. It reminds me of a penalty card in soccer.

And it has just about as much power and authority. There is no guarantee we won’t shoot your children, husbands or close relatives ‘by accident’ and then reimburse you for it in Iraq and Afghanistan. And if that Iraqi or Afghani happened to be the sole provider of your entire family, that’s too damn bad.

Because it’s not our military’s fault ‘those people’ had the audacity to try to live their lives in the middle of a warzone. Perhaps they should get out now..as my dad used to say; While the getting is still good. Because this writeup tells us that the masses of refugees leaving Iraq are finding it very hard to leave that little piece of hell on earth.

But that’s for another post…and btw..the final count on deaths Wednesday in Iraq was 183 just in Baghdad, 223 Nationwide.

Cross-Posted at Bring It On!

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Bush-Pelosi-Reid meeting: how did it go?

Unnamed sources have given us a brief look into the little tea party BushCo held for the head Dems, Reid and Pelosi. From TPM’s Greg Sergeant:

A source familiar with the meeting — at which no compromise of any kind was reached, though Speaker Nancy Pelosi said publicly today that it had been “productive” — shares a few interesting tidbits. First, the source says, Bush bristled and was taken aback when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid compared the current situation to Vietnam; he also appeared irked by those who said the war couldn’t be won.

Second, according to the source, Reid told Bush that he understood that the White House would come after Congressional Dems after the veto of the bill with everything they had; Reid vowed to respond every bit as aggressively.

“Reid talked about a recent conversation he had with a retired general where they talked about the similarities between the current situation and Vietnam,” the source relates. “He talked about how the President and Secretary of Defense [during Vietnam] knew that the war was lost but continued to press on at the cost of thousands of additional lives lost.”

“The analogy to Vietnam appeared to touch a nerve with the President. He appeared a little sensitive to it,” the source continued. “And he clearly didn’t like to hear people in the room say that the war couldn’t be won militarily.”

Bush’s Waterloo is really his Vietnam. The vile prick.

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