Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
Friday, September 23, 2022. Did US forces kill a 15-year-old girl in Iraq this week, does no one get insult humor when Whoopi Goldberg practices it, what MSNBC program brought on a guest to praise Joe Biden and the Democrats this week and failed to disclose that Joe Biden has nominated the guest's wife for a post?
Whoopi responded to the question with a quip at Graham’s expense. “Maybe he’s getting married. Do it quick, because I know people are fooling around with our marriage rights,” she said. While the co-host didn’t make any outright statements about the senator’s sexuality, some interpreted the comment as such. An editor for Media Research Center and conservative outlet Newsbusters Nicholas Fondacaro accused Whoopi of “dabbling in homophobic bigotry,” on Twitter. “This plays to the smear that Graham is closeted,” he wrote.
When the show returned from a commercial break, Whoopi explained that she wasn’t making a serious statement. “I was doing what I do as a comic. Sometimes I make jokes,” she said. “I just got a whole conversation about people misunderstanding the joke. I mean, okay. I should probably never do this show again if this is what it’s coming to. It was a joke, guys.”
Iraqi security forces have vowed to reveal the "truth" behind the death of a 15-year-old girl killed on Tuesday.
Pro-Iran and Tehran-linked media outlets and militias have blamed "American army drills" at a "US military camp" near Baghdad Airport.
It did not mention which location the alleged gunfire referred to the former US base Camp Victory, located close to Baghdad Airport, was handed over to the Iraqi government in 2008.
This has not prevented pro-Tehran militias from blaming US forces for her death and comes after international outrage over the alleged killing of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, by Iranian morality police.
AL BAWABA covers the events here. This is a scandal brewing. No, the facts aren't known yet. Could be US forces had nothing to do with the death. Could be they are responsible. But this is a scandal and, for some reason, the US press isn't interested.
Just like Joe Biden's apparently not interested in meeting with Mustafa al-Kadhimi, the caretaker prime minister of Iraq. Joe can dash off to London for the funeral of a woman who never attended the funerals of even one US president -- not the funeral of Harry Truman, not the funeral of Dwight Eisenhower, not the funeral of John F. Kennedy, not the funeral of Lyndon B. Johnson, not the funeral of Gerald Ford, not the funeral of Ronald Reagan, not the funeral of George H.W. Bush. But Joe can scurry across the Atlantic to act like a royal subject.
This week, Joe wouldn't have even needed to take Air Force One to Baghdad in order to meet face-to-face with Mustafa because Mustafa came to the US to speak at the United Nations. He's met with many leaders while in the US. For example . . .
RUDAW reports on the above meeting here. When not meeting with world leaders, Mustafa has been meeting the press.
Asked about the solution to the political crisis, Mr Al Kadhimi said one word: “Dialogue”.
He went on to say that there are two options: either “we go towards a clash in a society that has tried all types of violence or an opportunity for dialogue”.
Since taking office more than two years ago, some of the primary concerns for Mr Al Kadhimi have been to limit the role of militias, reinforce security in the country and re-establish an effective state.
But two years in, he is dealing with emboldened militias and complete political gridlock. His critics say he should take a stand against the militias, but that could lead to more bloodshed.
“A thousand years of dialogue is better than one moment of killing,” he said.
He said it was high time to “divorce the violent past and a future built on true democratic values built not just on the ballot box votes”.
But dialogue takes time. Though time is not in Iraq’s favour with all the crises it faces, he said: “What other choice do we have?”
For those who've forgotten -- or never knew -- his term is over. Iraq held elections October 12th. There's still no prime minister or president. Both positions have still not been determined all this time later. Joe Biden likes to go on and on about respecting election results. Well he could have stood next to Mustafa and addressed the press pointing to what is happening right now in Iraq when the results (and the process) are not respected. We'll note one more thing from Mina's interview in a moment but this is from Andrew Parasiliti's report for AL-MONITOR:
Kadhimi came to office in May 2020, in the wake of the resignation of his predecessor, Adel Abdul Mahdi, who stepped down after security forces and armed groups killed over 500 anti-government protesters between October and December 2019.
The popular Tishreen movement, and the increased role of new independent parties in Iraq, is a sign of change, which Kadhimi takes to heart.
“My priorities are dialogue, then dialogue, then dialogue,” said the Iraqi prime minister.
The government deadlock occurs in the wake of some noteworthy achievements in foreign policy and regional integration over the past two years.
Kadhimi’s regional policies have included being “very clear with the Iranians, telling them that we want relations, a state-to-state relationship, and we want noninterference in internal affairs.”
“Iran has friends in Iraq, and it is able to influence them and push them toward dialogue rather than using the weapons that they currently possess,” Kadhimi noted. “We need a good relationship and we currently do have a good relationship with Iran.”
We'll wind down with this from Margaret Kimberley (BLACK AGENDA REPORT):
Every day the republican governors of Texas, Greg Abbott, and Florida, Ron DeSantis, eagerly announce that they are sending people generically labeled as migrants to what are known as sanctuary cities. The corporate media report that thousands of people have been convinced to board buses to New York City or Washington DC or Sacramento or Chicago or even chartered flights to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. What they don’t explain is who these migrants are and why their status is highly problematic and a function of imperialist foreign policy.
Republicans rail against what are called sanctuary cities and imply that federal law doesn’t apply in these places or that undocumented people get some sort of special deal. However, the term sanctuary city doesn’t really mean very much. In New York it means that the city government and its employees will not assist in the deportation process. It does not mean that no one is ever deported or that federal rules don’t apply. Undocumented people are eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and other benefits only under very limited circumstances and applying in a sanctuary city doesn’t change that fact. The media cannot seem to disseminate this easily provable information and people in this country are whipped into a frenzy over non-issues.
But there is a larger issue at work here that also goes unaddressed. The people taken to Martha’s Vineyard have made legal requests for asylum, which may be granted because of U.S. policy against their home country of Venezuela. Migrants from nations targeted by the U.S. are automatically eligible for asylum. In this hemisphere Venezuelans, Cubans, and Nicaraguans are likely to be granted asylum because the U.S. doesn’t like their governments. Ukrainians are favored because the U.S. supports their government’s role in attacking Russia and they are also given asylum when they arrive at the border. Some 100,000 Ukrainians have arrived here since February 2022.
Conversely, Haitians are routinely deported. Their country is in worse shape than any of the others mentioned and entirely because of U.S. interference in their sovereign rights. In 2010 the Obama administration even ordered Haiti to hold an election twice because they didn't like the initial result. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton famously pressured the Haitian government to lower the already low minimum wage there. Now the U.S. orders the current illegitimate president Ariel Henry to enact austerity programs that create misery. The U.S. coups, UN occupations and other interventions have made Haiti unlivable.
But the Joe Biden administration has no sympathy for Haitians fleeing the problems of U.S making. As of February 2022 more than 19,000 Haitians were deported in the first year of Biden’s term. That figure is more than three times the number deported in the last three administrations combined.
Not only do Abbott and DeSantis lie about who they are sending around the country, but no one in the media calls them out on their subterfuge. They are scoring points by claiming to send undocumented people when they are in fact sending people who under international law have a legal right to request asylum in the U.S.
The corporate media are complicit because they are joined at the hip with the Biden administration. Sloppy reporting is not a problem for them. Pointing out the inherent injustice of U.S. sanctions against Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela might damage precious connections and white house access. Any responsibility for informing readers and viewers doesn’t matter and journalistic ethics go out the window so that the media can be slipshod and curry favor simultaneously.
The following sites updated: