BULLY BOY PRESS & CEDRIC'S BIG MIX -- THE KOOL-AID TABLE
CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARRY O MAY BE ON VACATION BUT DISAPPOINTMENT TAKES NO VACATION THEREBY EXPLAINING THE CONTINUED DISENCHANTMENT WITH AMERICA'S PRINCESS BARRY O. YESTERDAY HE REACHED HIS ALL TIME LOW, 38% APPROVAL RATING AND 54% DISAPPROVAL IN GALLUP'S DAILY TRACKING
. RASMUSSEN ALSO FINDS BAD NEWS FOR PRINCESS BARRY, 56% OF LIKELY VOTERS DISAPPROVE OF HIS 'JOB' PERFORMANCE
MEANWHILE POLITICO'S ALEXANDER BURNS AND CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN ATTEMPT CAREERS AS COMEDY WRITERS PROCLAIMING PRINCESS BARRY "THE RELUCTANT WAR PRESIDENT." UH, HOW MANY WARS DO YOU HAVE TO OVERSEE TO BE 'RELUCTANT'? THERE'S THE IRAQ WAR, THE AFGHANISTAN WAR, THE LIBYAN WAR, THE PAKISTAN DRONE WAR . . .
WHILE PRINCESS MAY BE A RELUCTANT PRESIDENT, WHEN IT COMES TO WAR, BARRY NOT ONLY PUTS OUT, HE SPREADS.
ALEXANDER, CARRIE, PUT THOSE DREAMS OF SCRIPTING SMALL WONDER: THE MOVIE
TO REST AND RETURN TO JOURNALISM.
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
WASHINGTON, DC -- August 26 is Women's Equality Day, the anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote. In recognition of this, and of the anniversary of the August, 1963 civil rights March on Washington, strengthening the right to vote for women of color, a coalition of women's organizations, representing millions of American women, will unveil HERvotes and release a list of top ten historic laws that impact women's lives, but are now most in danger of being weakened, cut, or eliminated by extremist policies at the local, state and federal levels, at a nation audio news conference on Wedensday, August 24.
AUDIO NEWS CONFERENCE
Eleanor Smeal President, Feminist Majority
Joan Entmacher Vice-President for Family Economic Security, National Women's Law Center
Dr. Avis Jones-DeWeever Executive Director, National Council of Negro Women
Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner Executive Director, MomsRising
WHEN: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern Time)
HOW: Via toll-free number 800-289-0517 pass code: HERvotes
Women's leaders from participating organizations will be available for Q&A. See below list of participating organizations and their leaders.
HERvotes, Women's Groups Leadership
National Coaltion of 100 Black Women
American Association of University Women
Black Women's Roundtable, National Coalition on Black Civic Participation
Dolores Huerta Foundation
Dolores Huerta, President
Feminist Majority Foundation/ Ms. Magazine community
Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, Executive Director,
Nationale Congress of Black Women
National Council of Women's Organization
National Council of Jewish Women
National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, Incoming Executive Director
National Organization for Women
National Women's Health Network
National Women's Law Center
Raising Women's Voices
Cindy Pearson, Co-Founder
Women's Information Network
Women's Research and Educational Institute (WREI)
Susan Scanlan, Executive Director
No, that has nothing to do with Iraq. At the end of the snapshot, we'll spend several paragraphs noting the passing of a true artist and a wonderful friend. But onto Iraq . . .
Cenk Uygur: So first in Iraq, [US Secretary of Defense Leon] Panetta says that we might have made "progress" and that his view is that the Iraqi government finally has said yes to us staying longer in Iraq. Now remember, President Bush signed the Status Of Forces Agreement -- SOFA for short -- saying that we will be leaving by the end of 2011. Now President Obama has said on multiple occassions, over and over again, that he was going to withdraw everybody and that he was going to stick to that agreement and, in fact, he constantly brags about, "Oh, we're getting out of Iraq and look at me I get you out of wars just like I promised on the campaign." Well maybe not. It looks like we're going to have -- No, no, no, the administration assures us, we won't have "combat troops" troops there because that is what President Obama has promised. That we might leave over 10,000 -- and that's a conservative number -- "noncombant troops." Will they have guns? Oh, yeah, they'll have guns, but they will be "trainers." So are we staying in Iraq a lot longer? You betcha.
Good for The Young Turks
. Very few people have even covered in what is supposedly "left media." (I'm referring to alternative media, not corporate media, nor am I making a blanket statement that the media -- all the media -- is left.) Katrina vanden Heuvel used to love to grand stand on the Iraq War. Last Friday, Leon Panetta tells the country that troops staying in Iraq beyond December is a done-deal
and Katrina 'weighs in' with a column on . . . Rick Perry. Priorities. Not even Robert Dreyfuss who supposedly Iraq for The Nation
magazine has managed to write about it. At The Progressive
? Not a word, not a peep. It's the same at In These Times
has nothing to say, of course, but, really, hasn't that been Michael Albert's whole sad life. (Yes, yes, it has.) So good for The Young Turks
. They've told their audience the truth. Others on the left apparently haven't figured out how to yet spin this as a really good thing and something people should be grateful to Barack for doing.
You used to be so proud
Now you're head's a little lower
And you walk a little slower
And you don't talk so loud
--"Didn't You Know You'd Have To Cry Sometime," written by Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson, recorded by everyone from Gladys Knight and the Pips to Diana Ross
Green points out that Barack was once against the Iraq War. In fairness to Barack, he didn't actually Tweet until after he was president. So we should say someone who Tweeted for him talked big about ending the Iraq War once upon a time.
Northern Iraq continues to be bombed by Turkish warplanes. Sebnem Arsu (New York Times) reports
, "The Turkish military killed at least 100 Kurdish separatists and injured more than 80 during air strikes into northern Iraq during the past week, an army statement said on Tuesday. It added that the strikes would continue." Apparently 'modesty' prevented the Turkish military from boasting of the family of eight they killed on Friday. Why Arsu didn't note it is a question for the New York Times
. Meanwhile Ivan Watson (CNN) notes
, "On Sunday night, a PKK spokesman said no rebels had been killed." BBC News adds
, "The PKK has confirmed three deaths, while local reports say a family of seven were killed by the bombing." Al Rafidayn reports
that the KRG's Parliament has criticized the United States for not protecting the Kurdistan region from attacks by Turkey and Iran. The Speaker of the Kurdistan Regional Government, Kamal Kirkuki, held a press conference where he stated, "The Americans have thus far unfortunately refused to carry out their duty to maintain the safety of the borders and the skies of Iraq properly."
Nor will the US be defending northern Iraq anytime soon. At yesterday's US State Dept press briefing (link has text and video) the final question for spokesperson Victoria Nuland was about Turkey's continued bombing of northern Iraq and Nuland replied
, "I don't think I have anything new on this from what we said last week, which was that we understand these air strikes were conducted, we recognize Turkey's right of self-defense, we urge Turkey and Iraq to maintain close contact on these issues and to cooperate." Wang Guanqum (Xinhua) reports
the Turkish military claims they have "hit 13 targets in Metina, Zap, Avashin - Bashyan and Kharkurk on Aug. 20, four targets in Qandil, Gara, Zap and Metina on Aug. 21, and seven targets in Zap, Kharkurk, Avashim - Bashyan and Qandil on Aug. 22." And that the Turkish military claims their "jets hit 132 targets while artillery untis shelled 349 targets. Seventy-three hiding places, six shelters, 18 caves, eight depots, 14 buildings, one arsenal, nine anti-aircraft positions and three control points were destroyed." And that the Turkish military claims that "90 to 100 terrrorists were rendered ineffective [killed]. More than 80 terrorists were wounded." And, most importantl, this is, according to the Turkish military, a response to an August 17th PKK attack which left nine Turkish forces dead (one was a security guard) and fifteen more injured."
I guess if might made right, the country of Turkey would already be in the European Union. It doesn't and the country continues to struggle that its human rights policies are in keeping with those of the modern world. Constanze Letsch (Guardian) reports
that the largest opposition party in Turkey, the Republican People's Party (CHP) is criticizing the government's response. Sezgin Tanrikulu, the party's deputy leader, is quoted stating, "For years, the Turkish government has battled the PKK with air strikes and ground operations. If military force would be the solution, we would not have a problem today. With no clear stance regarding democracy, human rights and freedom of speech, all the AKP currently does is incite discrimination and violence among the population.
The PKK is one of many Kurdish groups which supports and fights for a Kurdish homeland. Aaron Hess (International Socialist Review) described them in 2008
, "The PKK emerged in 1984 as a major force in response to Turkey's oppression of its Kurdish population. Since the late 1970s, Turkey has waged a relentless war of attrition that has killed tens of thousands of Kurds and driven millions from their homes. The Kurds are the world's largest stateless population -- whose main population concentration straddles Turkey, Iraq, Iran, and Syria -- and have been the victims of imperialist wars and manipulation since the colonial period. While Turkey has granted limited rights to the Kurds in recent years in order to accommodate the European Union, which it seeks to join, even these are now at risk." The Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq has been a concern to Turkey because they fear that if it ever moves from semi-autonomous to fully independent -- such as if Iraq was to break up into three regions -- then that would encourage the Kurdish population in Turkey. For that reason, Turkey is overly interested in all things Iraq. So much so that they signed an agreement with the US government in 2007 to share intelligence which the Turkish military has been using when launching bomb raids. However, this has not prevented the loss of civilian life in northern Iraq. Aaron Hess noted, "The Turkish establishment sees growing Kurdish power in Iraq as one step down the road to a mass separatist movement of Kurds within Turkey itself, fighting to unify a greater Kurdistan. In late October 2007, Turkey's daily newspaper Hurriyet accused the prime minister of the KRG, Massoud Barzani, of turning the 'Kurdish dream' into a 'Turkish nightmare'."
Dear People of Kurdistan,
As you know, the situation in the Kurdistan Region's border areas has deteriorated, causing our people to face daily Iranian and Turkish bombardment and aerial attacks.
These attacks have inflicted great suffering on our people in the border areas, leaving some dead and injured. They have intensified in recent days to the point that we can no longer remain silent and watch our innocent, vulnerable civilians pay the price of this fight.
The presence of armed PJAK and PKK members in the mountainous border areas provides an excuse for our two neighbouring countries to commit these attacks. The continuation of their actions, the use of violence, and the use of Kurdistan Region border areas as bases will lead to the spread of violence to the Kurdistan Region and this will not in any way help the legitimate Kurdish question. It is unfortunate that no consideration is given to the interests and welfare of the people of the Kurdistan Region.
It has been our policy all along, and we reiterate again, that the Kurdistan Region aspires to develop friendly and good neighbourly relations with all sides, and it has never been involved in the internal problems of these two countries. We would never interfere in the internal affairs of any country. However, we can not remain silent when our innocent citizens are being killed.
As the Kurdistan Region, we deplore the shedding of innocent blood. We believe that dialogue and mutual understanding are keys to resolving all problems. In the past, we never spared any effort to resolve these issues through dialogue and always advocated for the pursuit of peaceful means by all sides. Unfortunately, the situation has once again become complicated.
In some point in our history, we resorted to armed struggle to defend our land, to obtain our rights, and to protect the dignity of our people. With our resolve and with the backing of our people, we managed to preserve our existence and identity. But today is different. In today's world, the language of dialogue is far more effective than fighting and military action. We have spared no efforts to spread this message.
Our goal has always been the provision of prosperity for our people and maintaining the stability of our Region. We would never do anything to jeopardize the prosperity and stability of our Region, whatever the circumstances. Therefore, we request that the interests of the people of the Kurdistan Region be observed. The achievements made by our people are the result of hard work and great sacrifices, and it is incumbent on every Kurd to be proud of these achievements and to protect them.
It must be clear to the people of the Kurdistan Region that military action along the border areas gives an excuse to both countries to openly conduct their own military actions in the Kurdistan Region. The main victims of these bombardments and military actions are the people of the Kurdistan Region. I am certain that fighting and violence will not lead to any resolution. At the end of the day, peaceful means must be pursued. The sooner this fighting ends the better; however, if the opposing factions have chosen and insist on the option of fighting, we ask all sides to do their fighting elsewhere and spare the Kurdistan Region.
We are prepared for any cooperation to return the situation to normalcy through dialogue and peaceful means. At the same time, we call on the Iraqi federal government to use its diplomatic channels with our two neighbouring countries to bring these attacks to an end and protect the sovereignty of Iraq.
In light of this delicate situation, I ask the Iraqi Kurdistan Parliament to comprehensively study this situation and then formulate a policy that reflects the unanimous view of the Kurdistan Region.
President of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq
Aswat al-Iraq reports
, "Parliamentary Foreign Relations Commission MP warned of escalation of the crises with Iran and Turkey due to their continued military operations against the Kurdish border villages, calling the Iraqi government to adopt 'a firm stand' through opening a dialogue with the two countries."