More Troops but Less Control in Iraq

December 28, 2006

You have got to be kidding me. Isn’t clear that we should get the hell out of Iraq?

More U.S. troops are expected to be deployed in Iraq in the New Year. Despite obvious rethinking, there is no decision on withdrawal of occupation forces.

The presence of troops may be raised just for their own protection. According to a Pentagon report, U.S. and Iraqi forces are facing close to 1,000 attacks a week now. U.S. forces comprise more than 90 percent of the “coalition of the willing” in Iraq.

According to the White House, 49 countries joined that coalition at the time of the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003. That number has shrunk to 32, after countries like Italy and Canada withdrew troops this year.

Britain is expected to withdraw its 7,500 troops next year, after pulling out 1,300 earlier this year.

Yeah, that’s the spirit. Lets send in MORE troops and everything will magically be solved! How about addressing some of the real problems?

Sunnis are concerned how far U.S. forces will take that tilt next year. “They (the U.S. military) lifted their checkpoints around Sadr City in Baghdad saying it was ordered by Maliki,” Mahmood said. “Yet, when it comes to our Sunni areas they increased killing of innocent civilians.”

Most of the victims of death squads are Sunnis, whose bodies are found on the streets of Baghdad every day. Many bodies show signs of torture, particularly holes drilled into them, and wounds and deformation caused by acid.

U.S. forces ignore such killings, and carry out their own, in moves to crush Sunni resistance. And they are looking for reinforcements to carry out this job. Since the middle of December, the Bush Administration has been discussing sending an additional 20,000-50,000 troops to Iraq in a “temporary” move. There are currently 141,000 U.S. troops in Iraq, with at least 5,000 U.S. “advisors”.

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3,000 U.S. soldiers dead by Christmas 2006

December 27, 2006

Well Dubya, chalk another one to your growing list of “accomplishments”:

– 96 American soldiers killed in December 2006
– 2,983 total U.S. soldiers killed thus far
– over 25,000 U.S. soldiers injured

Heck of a job, ain’t it?


Climate Change Clash in Africa

December 27, 2006

This is an intriguing article linking conflict, the arms trade, poverty, disease and climate change all into one. Think this is far-fetched? Welcome to the real world, where everything is interconnected. The title, “Climate Change Clash in Africa” is not just change in the environment:

It’s been a bloody first half of the dry season in Uganda’s Karamoja region. October to February is the time when grass turns brittle, mud dries and cracks, and competition for scarce resources increases. More than 40 people have died in recent weeks in fighting between Karimojong warriors and the Ugandan Army in the arid northeast of the country.

The semi-nomadic Karimojong are pastoralists who protect their cows, violently if necessary. The warriors are well-armed, and this has put them on a collision course with Uganda’s government. But the recent clashes are a symptom of more universal problems.

As elsewhere in Africa, the population in eastern Uganda continues to grow as the environment deteriorates, putting more and more pressure on a land that grows ever drier. At a United Nations conference on climate change held in neighboring Kenya last month, environmentalists warned that Africa would bear the brunt of global warming.

With more people forced to share fewer resources, experts warn that conflict will increase. “Climate change will hit pastoral communities very hard,” says Grace Akumu, executive director of environmental pressure group Climate Network Africa. “The conflict is already getting out of hand and we are going to see an increase in this insecurity.”


Updated: Best cover of the year goes to Esquire Magazine

December 26, 2006

Update #1: Welcome Crooks & Liars readers! This blog features mainly health & human rights news… so if you like what you see and like to keep up with the latest human rights news – the ones the mainstream media won’t cover – please consider bookmarking my blog, or adding my feed. I’m a new blogger, so the support is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Esquire magazine cover

Make that best articles as well. From the current Esquire Magazine, “The Meaning of Life”:

I could be perfectly fine without kids. If my wife wants kids, that’s fine, too. It’s not an issue because of this. But I plan on wearing my prosthetics most all the time. And if I have those on, I’m not going to be able to carry my kids. I can’t really bend over because it’ll throw my balance off. So I’m not going to be able to pick up my kids. So you’re walking through the park and they don’t want to walk, they want to be carried. Sorry, I can’t do it. I’ve thought about that a lot. It’s going to be hard.

He just lost 3 limbs, but is still upbeat about life, about accomplishing more in life – his life did not stop. He must be courageous to pose in the cover of a magazine like that – not because of his amputee status, but because the right wing will go out of his way to get him and smear him.

If this magazine cover does not stop you in your tracks, nothing will.

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Update #2:

Due to popular requests, here are the most popular posts in my blog:

Saddam Hussein Hanging Video – War Porn for You (NOT!)

Bratz Dolls Just Stopped Being Cool

Merry Christmas? Not for Iraqi Children

How bad is it in Iraq? Pretty fucking bad…

3,000 Dead U.S. Soldiers by Christmas 2006

The AIDS-Malaria Connection, and more

Let’s Stop the Bomblex!

How bad is climate change? Even the bears have stopped hibernating!

Dumb-but-stupid? Leave that Lewinsky girl alone!