Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#101

Post by Foggy » Wed Jun 18, 2014 6:16 am

The president will not, we are told, present a prepackaged decision to congressional leaders but will instead seek consensus.He will never learn. ?(


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#102

Post by Addie » Wed Jun 18, 2014 6:27 am

[link]BBC News,http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-27897648[/link]





Sunni militants invade Iraq's biggest oil refinery





An official quoted by Reuters said the militants now controlled 75% of the Baiji refinery, 210km (130 miles) north of Baghdad.





Government forces have made new air strikes on militants advancing towards the capital.





Fighting is also reported in the western city of Ramadi.





The government is battling to push back ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) and its Sunni Muslim allies in Diyala and Salahuddin provinces, after the militants overran the second city, Mosul, last week.





Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki appeared on television with Sunni Muslim and Kurdish leaders on Tuesday to issue a call for national unity in the face of the advance - they demanded that non-state forces lay down their arms.





However, such a call is unlikely to have much effect as Mr Maliki has openly sponsored the formation of Shia Muslim militias to fight alongside regular Iraqi troops, the BBC's Jim Muir reports from Irbil in northern Iraq.Also:





[link]BBC News,http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-27883157[/link]: Iraq's central government suffers mortal blow


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#103

Post by Volkonski » Wed Jun 18, 2014 10:24 am

[quote name=Adelante][link]BBC News,http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-27897648[/link]





Sunni militants invade Iraq's biggest oil refinery





An official quoted by Reuters said the militants now controlled 75% of the Baiji refinery, 210km (130 miles) north of Baghdad.





Government forces have made new air strikes on militants advancing towards the capital.





Fighting is also reported in the western city of Ramadi.





The government is battling to push back ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) and its Sunni Muslim allies in Diyala and Salahuddin provinces, after the militants overran the second city, Mosul, last week.





Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki appeared on television with Sunni Muslim and Kurdish leaders on Tuesday to issue a call for national unity in the face of the advance - they demanded that non-state forces lay down their arms.





However, such a call is unlikely to have much effect as Mr Maliki has openly sponsored the formation of Shia Muslim militias to fight alongside regular Iraqi troops, the BBC's Jim Muir reports from Irbil in northern Iraq.




Also:





[link]BBC News,http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-27883157[/link]: Iraq's central government suffers mortal blow




Refineries are very delicate things. Operating one is like juggling chainsaws whilst riding a unicycle. ;) It requires the minute by minute attention of highly trained operators under the direction of engineers. It takes about 3 to 4 days to shutdown a large refinery safely, I have been though it a few times due to hurricanes. (Actually, I was ordered to evacuate inland but I was involved with preparations for the shutdowns and the subsequent restarts.) It is unlikely the operators and engineers stayed when the ISIS approached. Therefore the Baiji Refinery is now in ruins (even if it seems to look OK in photos) and will be out of operation for a very long time. :(





So let's look at news reports-





from The Guardian-





[/break1]theguardian.com/world/middle-east-live/2014/jun/18/iraq-crisis-maliki-sacks-officers-and-calls-for-national-unity-live-updates]http://www.theguardian.com/world/middle ... ve-updates





The oil company ExxonMobil has has carried out a "major evacuation'' of staff from Iraq, while BP had evacuated 20% of its staff, Reuters reports citing the head of Iraq's state-run South Oil company, Dhiya Jaffar.




Yes, the engineers left.





And expat operators also-





A British security company helped evacuate Western employees trapped in Baiji oil refinery before the overnight attack, the Times reports.





The German government confirmed that around 50 foreign employees of Siemens, including eight German citizens, were flown to safety from the plant on Sunday. The German company won a maintenance contract in February.




ISF source: Baiji refinery under control by ISF after ISIS attack repelled by air force. Only 1 oil store on fire, being addressed




Oh really is that all? There will be major internal damage to equipment that was not shut down properly.





On way from Qosh 3 kms long queue of cars waiting to get petrol in amid reports of severe fuel shortages

http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Gua ... 0x276.jpeg





No tank truck driver in his right mind would try to delivery gasoline in a chaotic war zone.





Meanwhile at NBC-





[/break1]nbcnews.com/storyline/iraq-turmoil/iraqs-biggest-oil-refinery-shut-wake-militant-attacks-n132956]http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/iraq-t ... ks-n132956





TIKRIT Iraq - Iraq's biggest oil refinery was shut down overnight and its foreign staff evacuated, officials told Reuters on Tuesday.





Snip---





“Due to the recent attacks of militants by mortars, the refinery administration decided to evacuate foreign workers for their safety and also to completely shut down production units to avoid extensive damage that could result," a chief engineer at the refinery said on condition of anonymity.




They couldn't have shut down a large refinery safely "overnight". It takes days. They could have dumped everything to the flare system then shutdown the process equipment but doing that would have caused considerable damage.





The Washington Post-





BAGHDAD — Iraq said Wednesday that its forces repelled an attack by Islamist insurgents on the country’s largest oil refinery and recaptured part of a key northern town.





The assertions of gains in Iraq’s battle against the radical Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) came as foreign governments expressed concern about the fate of dozens of foreign workers reportedly kidnapped by the insurgents.





According to Lt. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi, Iraq’s chief military spokesman, government forces repelled an attack by militants on the oil refinery at Baiji, killing 40 attackers in fighting there overnight and on Wednesday morning, the Associated Press reported. The claim could not immediately be confirmed.




One can only imagine the damage caused to the refinery by that fighting.





The good news for the rest of the world is that Iraq doesn't export any refined products. It uses all its production itself. Iraq does export crude oil, mostly from ports in the south. Those are not involved in the fighting.


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#104

Post by Addie » Wed Jun 18, 2014 11:59 am

[link]Aljazeera,http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeas ... 58412.html[/link]





Kurdish-Turkmen tension on the rise in Kirkuk





Kirkuk, Iraq - Wearing a flak jacket with a pistol on his hip, the president of the Iraqi Turkmen Front (ITF), Arshad Salihi, announced yesterday the mobilisation of a new Turkmen militia in the city of Kirkuk, saying that if the Kurdish Peshmerga forces "refuse to return Kirkuk (to the Iraqi government) we will fight back".





Heavily armed men gathered at the offices of the ITF in Kirkuk. The announcement came after Kurdish forces seized control of the city on June 12 following the complete withdrawal of Iraqi army forces in the face of rapid advances by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant militants.





Yousif Mohammed Sadiq, the parliamentary speaker of the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), said that the KRG has no plans to hand back control of Kirkuk, a city which has long been at the centre of disputes between the KRG and Baghdad.





Kirkuk has been extremely important to the Kurds both culturally and economically. It is a mixed city with Kurdish, Arab, Turkmen and Assyrian populations and is frequently subject to attacks on the security forces and civilians carried out by militants aligned with al-Qaeda. Large oil reserves in the region of Kirkuk are a major factor in the dispute over control of the city.


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#105

Post by Whatever4 » Thu Jun 19, 2014 2:09 am

The good news for the rest of the world is that Iraq doesn't export any refined products. It uses all its production itself. Iraq does export crude oil, mostly from ports in the south. Those are not involved in the fighting.Massively excellent post, BTW. :-bd


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#106

Post by Suranis » Thu Jun 19, 2014 2:33 am

The president will not, we are told, present a prepackaged decision to congressional leaders but will instead seek consensus.He will never learn. ?(Or he is in his own way far more relentless than they are. He has gotten victories right under their nose while they snigger at him.Anyway, I would imagine that if the Iraqi Army has actually started to fight ISIS they will beat the, ISIS has only 10,000 men, which while significant enough is far outmatched by Iraq's army. Any losses suffered by ISIS will be very very significant as they simply don't have the resources to absorb losses, and the more territory they hold the harder it will be to hold it as they become more and more stretched. I would imagine the gains made have more to do with willingness to fight for Malihi than brilliant skills by Isis. However then drawing means Baghdad means that the will fight due to cultural love for the city.Frankly, the United states should handle this much like they did Libya, do background logistics work for other people to support the people on the ground, and then met the people on the ground sort it out. But this will be rumbling on for decades and expecting the oil to keep flowing in that environment is just not realistic. It needs stability to pump and refine oil, and Iraq has lost it. Since we know that the refineries are wrecked, and would possibly take months to get repaired even in peacetimes, I would think that Iraqs days of refining its own oil is over. Whats the point of rebuilding when another phase of the civil war will cause the workers to flee again?Just my uninformed and probably wrong thoughts


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#107

Post by Foggy » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:00 am

Actually, I agree with your analysis right on down the line.


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#108

Post by Foggy » Thu Jun 19, 2014 8:40 am

Congressional leaders left the White House on Wednesday “deeply frustrated” that President Obama had not found a swift resolution to the conflict between Sunnis and Shiites that began in the seventh century A.D.After meeting for more than an hour with the President in the Oval Office, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed disappointment that Mr. Obama “came up empty” when asked for a plan to heal the rift between the two religious groups, which began in the year 632.“All we ask of this President is that he do one thing: settle a religious conflict that has been going on for a millennium and a half,” McConnell said. “What did he offer today? Nothing.”Speaker of the House John Boehner acknowledged that there was a possibility that Obama might find a way to resolve the centuries-old Sunni-Shiite conflict, but the Ohio Republican was not optimistic.“This struggle between Sunnis and Shiites has been going on for almost fifteen hundred years,” he said. “That means President Obama has had ample time to fix it.”Source: [link]The Borowitz Report,http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/b ... flict.html[/link]


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#109

Post by Addie » Thu Jun 19, 2014 9:37 am

[link]Daily Beast,http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2 ... -isis.html[/link]: This Is How You Fight ISIS





[link]Daily Beast,http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2 ... nning.html[/link]: The Monster of Mosul: How a Sadistic General Helped ISIS Win


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#110

Post by Dolly » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:43 pm

Obama to deliver statement on Iraq at 12:30 pm ETPresident Barack Obama will meet with members of his national security team and will deliver at statement on the situation in Iraq at 12:30 pm ET. CNBC.com will be streaming this event live.The situation in Iraq continues to worsen as Sunni militias—spearheaded by the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS)—have seized broad swaths of the country, including Iraq's second-largest city. Shiite fighters and Iranian troops have reportedly mobilized from the country's south and east to fight the insurgency, leading many experts to project a protracted and bloody sectarian war.Reports from Wednesday said that Obama had moved away from considering imminent air strikes in Iraq, and last week the president said that he would not be sending ground troops to fight the insurgents. The U.S. did, however, deploy up to 275 troops to protect embassy staff and other U.S. personnel. [/break1]cnbc.com/id/101769727]http://www.cnbc.com/id/101769727


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#111

Post by Addie » Thu Jun 19, 2014 1:54 pm

Good grief. Look who's back.





[link]New York Times,http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/20/world ... -iraq.html[/link]





Iraqi Factions Jockey to Oust Maliki, Citing U.S. Support





BAGHDAD — Alarmed over the Sunni insurgent mayhem convulsing Iraq, the country’s political leaders are actively jockeying to replace Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, Iraqi officials said Thursday.





The political leaders have been encouraged by what they see as newfound American support for replacing Mr. Maliki with someone more acceptable to Iraq’s Sunnis and Kurds, as well as to the Shiite majority, the officials said.





They stressed that the discussions were all within the framework of Iraq’s Constitution and the recent elections in the country, which calls for the formation of a new government over the next few weeks.





Over the past two days the American ambassador, Robert S. Beecroft, along with Brett McGurk, the senior State Department official on Iraq and Iran, have met with Usama Nujaifi, the leader of the largest Sunni contingent, United For Reform, and with [highlight]Ahmad Chalabi[/highlight], one of the several potential Shiite candidates for prime minister, according to people close to each of those factions, as well as other political figures.


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#112

Post by Addie » Thu Jun 19, 2014 2:52 pm

[link]WSJ,http://online.wsj.com/articles/sunni-ex ... 1403190600[/link]





Sunni Extremists in Iraq Occupy Hussein's Chemical Weapons Facility





Washington—Sunni extremists in Iraq have occupied what was once Saddam Hussein's premier chemical-weapons production facility, a complex that still contains a stockpile of old weapons, State Department and other U.S. government officials said.





U.S. officials don't believe the Sunni militants will be able to create a functional chemical weapon from the material. The weapons stockpiled at the Al Muthanna complex are old, contaminated and hard to move, officials said.





Nonetheless, the capture of the chemical-weapon stockpile by the forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, known as ISIS or ISIL, the militant group that is seizing territory in the country, has grabbed the attention of the U.S.





"We remain concerned about the seizure of any military site by the ISIL," Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, said in a written statement. "We do not believe that the complex contains CW materials of military value and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to safely move the materials."





The takeover underscores the chaos gripping Iraq and the possibility that the growing Sunni rebellion could further destabilize the Middle East. Not lost on U.S. government and military officials is the irony that the latest chapter in a war designed to strip Iraq of chemical weapons could see radical Sunni extremists take control of that same stockpile.


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#113

Post by Dolly » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:22 pm

Iraq Forces 'Retake' Oil Refinery From ISISIraqi forces have regained full control of the country's biggest oil refinery after heavy fighting with Sunni militants attempting to seize it, the authorities claim.A refinery employee and witnesses said the insurgents led by the jihadist Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) had withdrawn from the sprawling Baiji complex after losing 100 fighters as troops and helicopter gunships repelled repeated attacks, according to the Iraqi military.The retaking of the plant, north of Baghdad, comes amid calls for the Iraqi prime minister Nouri al Maliki to quit as a condition of US help in driving back insurgents who have seized large swathes of the country.The administration of Mr al Malaki has requested that America launch airstrikes against the ISIS extremists, whose lightning offensive in the north of the country - including the capture of the city of Mosul - saw the US-bankrolled military crumble.Speaking at the White House, Barack Obama said the US would be prepared to take targeted military action but that American troops would not return to combat in Iraq. The president said additional equipment and up to 300 additional military advisers could be provided to help fight the ISIS insurgency [/break1]news.yahoo.com/iraq-pm-under-pressure-us-mulls-airstrikes-115825583.html#syiDUGX]https://uk.news.yahoo.com/iraq-pm-under ... ml#syiDUGX[/break1]sky.com/story/1285416/iraq-forces-retake-oil-refinery-from-isis]http://news.sky.com/story/1285416/iraq- ... -from-isis


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#114

Post by Volkonski » Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:18 pm

The battle for the refinery was in its fourth day on Friday, although fighters for the radical Islamic militia ISIS have apparently taken control of much of the facility and are willing to keep the government forces isolated until they run out of food and ammunition, sources said."There is very little the Iraqi government can do to save or liberate those guys," a U.S. official told ABC News.The loss of the Baiji refinery, located 130 miles north of the capital Baghdad, would be a serious blow to the government of President Nouri al-Maliki. After rapidly sweeping through the northern city Mosul and driving south past Tikrit last week, ISIS -- which stands for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria -- moved to expand their reach by attacking Baiji.Both sides have claimed to be in control of the facility, but witnesses have reported that ISIS has hung its black banners from the refinery. And thick black smoke can be seen on satellite photos coming from the refinery as a result of the battle.[/break1]630wpro.com/common/more.php?m=58&ts=1403351405&article=ED05A906F89A11E3B51EFEFDADE6840A&mode=2]http://www.630wpro.com/common/more.php? ... 40A&mode=2http://d3s695o1g63xqg.cloudfront.net/oZAwvV9h9J.jpgAbove photo is from June 18th.[/break1]go.com/International/hundreds-troops-remain-surrounded-iraqs-key-refinery-us/story?id=24243767]http://abcnews.go.com/International/hun ... d=24243767There are approximately 200 Iraqi Security Forces inside, including about 70 members of Iraq's counterterrorism forces, trying to hold off 300 to 500 ISIS fighters, sources said. The defenders have been helped by Iraqi attack helicopters, but have been unable to dislodge the ISIS fighters who have completely surrounded the sprawling Baiji grounds.Sources told ABC News that the government troops do not have enough supplies inside to survive for a long time, and they can't get out. In addition, Iraq has been unable to send reinforcements because the road to Baiji is controlled by the militants, the source said.The Maliki government has yet to mount a counteroffensive to roll back the ISIS blitzkrieg, although thousands of Shiite Iraqis have rallied to the government's side to defend against ISIS, which is composed of Sunni Muslims.Maliki's regime suffered another blow today when Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the spiritual leader of Iraq's Shiites, called for a new, "effective" government.Photo below probably from June 19th. The fire appears to be in the tank farm which is where fire could do the least damage.http://blogs-images.forbes.com/maggiemc ... i.jpgAfter five days of fighting in and around the refinery there will be a lot of bullet damage to pipelines, vessels, towers and perhaps most importantly controls and instrumentation. The refinery can not be restarted until every leak is fixed and tested and until all the control circuits and instruments are working. Miles of wiring and hundreds of delicate instruments may need to be replaced. Also, the refinery did not do a controlled shutdown. There just wasn't time. Rotating equipment (pumps, compressors, etc.) probably suffered bearing damage. If the refinery supplies its own electricity (which I think is likely) the gas turbines and generators also may have been damaged in the shutdown. Furnaces and boilers may have overheated and once the tubes overheat they must be replaced. A lot of long-lead-time parts which come from overseas are going to be needed for repairs. They can't even begin to assess the damage until the fighting stops. It will be months before that refinery starts up again.


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#115

Post by ducktape » Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:22 pm

A lot of long-lead-time parts which come from overseas are going to be needed for repairs. They can't even begin to assess the damage until the fighting stops. It will be months before that refinery starts up again.And that will mean that gasoline will be in short supply, which will lead to skyrocketing prices and even more general dissatisfaction among the populace.



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#116

Post by Volkonski » Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:55 pm

A lot of long-lead-time parts which come from overseas are going to be needed for repairs. They can't even begin to assess the damage until the fighting stops. It will be months before that refinery starts up again.And that will mean that gasoline will be in short supply, which will lead to skyrocketing prices and even more general dissatisfaction among the populace.It will also affect electricity supplies since that refinery supplies fuel to a nearby power station that serves (among other cities) Baghdad.


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#117

Post by Addie » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:00 am

[link]Xinhua,http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world ... 427666.htm[/link]





Iraqi troops withdraw from three cities in Anbar





RAMADI, Iraq, June 22 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi security forces withdrew from three cities in Iraq's western province of Anbar, after the Sunni militants took control of a fourth strategic city near the border with Syria, a provincial police source said on Sunday.





The city of Rawa, some 275 km northwest of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, and the nearby city of Aanah, are under the control of the Sunni militants who seized the police stations and government offices in the two cities without fighting late on Saturday, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.





Later on Saturday night, the Sunni gunmen, including those who are linked to the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL), an al- Qaida offshoot, took control of the city of Rutba, some 370 km west of Baghdad, the source said.





The insurgent groups also seized Albu Haiyat area and the small town of Jubba near the city of Hadithah, some 200 km northwest of Baghdad, as they are preparing for an attack to enter Hadithah, the source said.





Reinforcement troops have arrived in Hadithah since the early hours of the day, in an attempt to stop the march of the militant groups, the source said.


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#118

Post by Addie » Sun Jun 22, 2014 2:04 pm

[link]WaPo,http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/ira ... story.html[/link]





Iran’s leader says Tehran and Washington not aligned on Iraq





TEHRAN — Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, made remarks Sunday that lessened any remaining possibility of military cooperation between the Islamic republic and the United States in securing Iraq against an onslaught from al-Qaeda-inspired militants.





“We don’t support any foreign interference in Iraq and we’re strongly opposed to U.S. interference there,” Khamenei said at an event with members of Iran’s judiciary, according to the Islamic Republic News Agency.





While officials in Washington and Tehran had earlier signaled a willingness to work together to rid the presence of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the comments from Khamenei show a growing divide between the interests of the long-opposed governments.





Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said last Saturday that once he knows what the U.S.’s plans are for intervening, his government would “think about cooperation with them in Iraq.” ...





While some Iranian officials quietly welcomed the possibility of U.S. airstrikes, as Washington’s patience for the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki diminishes, so do the prospects of coordinated efforts as Tehran sees Maliki as a reliable partner in Baghdad.


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#119

Post by Addie » Sun Jun 22, 2014 7:13 pm

[link]Associated Press,http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/mid ... story.html[/link]





Militants blitz through Iraq’s western desert ...





For now, however, the militants are on a seemingly unstoppable offensive.





On Sunday, their military advances took the conflict in Iraq to the doorstep of Jordan, a key U.S. ally that also borders embattled Syria to its north.





Sunday’s capture of crossings bordering Jordan and Syria follows the fall on Friday and Saturday of the towns of Qaim, Rawah, Anah and Rutba, all of which are in Sunni-dominated Anbar province, where the militants have since January controlled the city of Fallujah and parts of the provincial capital, Ramadi.





Rutba is on the main highway from Baghdad to the two border crossings and the capture of the crossing into Jordan has effectively cut the Iraqi capital’s main land route to its neighbor. It is a key artery for passengers and goods and has been infrequently used in recent months because of deteriorating security.





The capture of Rawah on the Euphrates River and the nearby town of Anah appeared to be part of a march toward a key dam in the city of Haditha, the destruction of which would damage the country’s electrical grid and cause major flooding. The military has dispatched reinforcements to the dam’s site to protect it.


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#120

Post by SueDB » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:25 pm

One you take the ground, you have to figure out how keep it.It's all well and good to jihad all day. But when the sun sets, you have to figure out how you are going to govern to ensure your long term survival.


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#121

Post by RTH10260 » Mon Jun 23, 2014 4:08 pm

One you take the ground, you have to figure out how keep it.It's all well and good to jihad all day. But when the sun sets, you have to figure out how you are going to govern to ensure your long term survival.Like this:Marry me, quick! ISIS fighters ‘seek brides’ in Iraqi townResidents said their worst fear came from ISIS fighters going door to door asking about the numbers of married and unmarried women in the house.Al Arabiya NewsSunday, 22 June 2014Residents of Baiji, an Iraqi town under the control of fighters belonging to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, are trying to keep unmarried women safe from attempts to wed them to the Sunni militants, the UK's Independent reported Sunday.Residents who spoke to the daily said their worst fear came from ISIS fighters going door to door asking about the numbers of married and unmarried women in the house. “I told them that there were only two women in the house and both were married,” Abu Lahid, one resident, told the paper. They said that many of their mujahedin [fighters] were unmarried and wanted a wife. They insisted on coming into my house to look at the women’s ID cards [which in Iraq show marital status].”According to the daily, although ISIS says its men have been ordered not to bother local people if they are members of the Sunni community, in many areas the militants are imposing “puritanical social norms.”[/break1]alarabiya.net/en/variety/2014/06/22/Marry-me-quick-ISIS-fighters-seek-brides-in-Iraqi-town.html]http://english.alarabiya.net/en/variety ... -town.html



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TollandRCR
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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#122

Post by TollandRCR » Mon Jun 23, 2014 7:19 pm

Stephen Walt in Foreign Policy via [link]The Dish,http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2014/06/ ... ere-wrong/[/link]One reason neoconservatism survives is that its members don’t care how wrong they’ve been, or even about right and wrong itself. True to their Trotskyite and Straussian roots, neoconservatives have always been willing to play fast and loose with the truth in order to advance political goals. We know that they were willing to cook the books on intelligence and make outrageously false claims in order to sell the Iraq war, for example, and today they construct equally false narratives that deny their own responsibility for the current mess in Iraq and portray their war as a great success that was squandered by Obama. And the entire movement seems congenitally incapable of admitting error, or apologizing to the thousands of people whose lives they have squandered or damaged irreparably. Like Richard Nixon or Silvio Berlusconi, in short, the neoconservatives keep staging comebacks because they simply don’t care how often they have been wrong, and because they remain willing to do or say anything to stay in the public eye. They also appear utterly indifferent to the tragic human consequences of their repeated policy failures. Being a neoconservative, it seems, means never having to say you’re sorry.


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#123

Post by SueDB » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:40 am

I have always felt that the 1991 Gulf War should have been named Oil War I, the Iraq fiasco - Oil War II ... So the latest may be the 3rd iteration?


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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#124

Post by Addie » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:15 pm

[link]LA Times,http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast ... story.html[/link]





Iraq facing 'a new reality,' Kurdish leader tells Kerry





The president of Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region said Tuesday that “we are facing a new reality and a new Iraq” as he met with U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry in Irbil for talks on ending Iraq’s sectarian political crisis.





The remarks by Kurdish President Massoud Barzani signaled deep concern in Iraq’s oil-rich northern region about the possibility of establishing a new, multi-sectarian government in Baghdad to help quell a fast-advancing insurgency by Sunni Muslim militants and opponents of Prime Minister Nouri Maliki.





As vast swaths of northern and western Iraq slipped from the hands of Maliki’s Shiite-led government in recent weeks, the crisis has renewed the prospect that Iraq could be partitioned along sectarian lines. Many in the northern Kurdish region – secular, stable and friendly to the West – have called it their best chance to gain a long-awaited independent state, particularly after Kurdish peshmerga security forces took control of the oil-producing town of Kirkuk earlier this month.





Kerry, who met with Maliki and other top Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish leaders in Baghdad a day earlier, said Kurdish support was crucial to forming a new Iraqi government that shares power with all ethnic and religious groups.





“A united Iraq is a stronger Iraq, and our policy is to respect the territorial integrity of Iraq as a whole,” Kerry told NBC News, according to a State Department transcript. “And President Barzani understands that, particularly right now. At this moment, he is going to participate in the government formation process.”


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Addie
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Iraq II (formerly named Al Qaeda)

#125

Post by Addie » Wed Jun 25, 2014 7:44 am

[link]WaPo,http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/nat ... ml?hpid=z5[/link]





Syrian aircraft bomb Sunni militant targets inside Iraq





Syrian government aircraft bombed Sunni militant targets inside Iraq on Tuesday, further broadening the Middle Eastern crisis a day after Israeli warplanes and rockets struck targets inside Syria.





Iraqi state media initially reported that the attacks near Iraq’s western border with Syria were carried out by U.S. drones, a claim that was quickly and forcefully denied by the Pentagon.





Separately, the Pentagon said that 90 additional U.S. troops arrived in Iraq, part of a group of up to 300 military advisers that President Obama said last week he would deploy there to assess the situation before taking any further U.S. military action. A statement said that U.S. aircraft are now flying 30 to 35 manned and unmanned daily surveillance flights over Iraq.





Reuters reported early Wednesday that militants had attacked one of Iraq’s largest air bases, a site near the town of Yathrib that was once know as “Camp Anaconda” when U.S. troops were present. The news agency said the base had been surrounded on three sides and was under mortar fire from the militants.


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