themcglynn.com

12 Aug

United States Wars, News and Casualties

United States Wars, News and Casualties

NYT: War Without End

In the Viet Nam era, stories like this and television reporting on the war contributed to the end of the Viet Nam War in a time frame of much less than 17 years.

As deployment of the last 17 years only came to a sub set of young people, and TV and news rarely covered the searing violence of war, eschewing such content for minor content (Kardashians, Tweets, outrageous behavior), the daily violence and futility went “off stage”.

One is invited to read the daily post, “United States Wars, News and Casualties” and then watch the daily news on the U.S. TV Media.

The absence of U.S. War News is atrocious.

We need this daily report of our wars in our face………..Daily.

The McGlynn

Damn The War Criminals

The war criminals, Bush,Cheney,Rice,Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell and Blair from England.

How many Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion 15 years ago? Some credible estimates put the number at more than one million. You can read that sentence again.

The invasion of Iraq is often spoken of in our country as a “blunder,” or even a “colossal mistake.” It was a crime.

Those who perpetrated it are still at large. Some of them have even been rehabilitated thanks to the horrors of a mostly amnesiac citizenry.

We condemned children to death, some after many days of writhing in pain on bloodstained mats, without pain relievers. Some died quickly, wasted by missing arms and legs, crushed heads. As the fluids ran out of their bodies, they appeared like withered, spoiled fruits. They could have lived, certainly should have lived – and laughed and danced, and run and played- but instead they were brutally murdered. Yes, murdered!

The war ended for those children, but it has never ended for survivors who carry memories of them. Likewise, the effects of the U.S. bombings continue, immeasurably and indefensibly.

The McGlynn

 

War News

Photos: Children of war

NYT: The Iraqi Spy Who Infiltrated ISIS

Capt. Harith al-Sudani’s wife, Raghad Chaloob, center, and their three children, Riyam, Rawan and Muamal, atop their home in Baghdad.CreditIvor Prickett for The New York Times

BAGHDAD — The driver was sweating as his white Kia pickup truck sped along a rain-slicked Baghdad highway toward a neighborhood bustling with open-air markets.

With every jolt and turn, his pulse quickened. Hidden in the truck’s chassis was 1,100 pounds of military-grade explosives that the Islamic State planned to use in an audacious attack on New Year’s Eve shoppers in the Iraqi capital.

A reckless driver on Iraq’s notoriously chaotic roads might clip him, accidentally setting off the bomb. A clash at one of Baghdad’s frequent checkpoints could escalate into gunfire, potentially igniting one hellish fireball.

But there was another reason he was afraid. The driver, Capt. Harith al-Sudani, was a spy.

For the past 16 months, he had worked as a mole, posing as a militant jihadist in the Islamic State while passing critical information to a secret branch of Iraq’s national intelligence agency.

His record was stunning: He had foiled 30 planned vehicle-bomb attacks and 18 suicide bombers, according to Abu Ali al-Basri, the agency’s director. Captain Sudani also gave the agency a direct line to some of the Islamic State’s senior commanders in Mosul.

A 36-year-old former computer tech, he was, agency officials said, perhaps Iraq’s greatest spy, one of a few in the world to have infiltrated the upper reaches of the Islamic State.

But now, on this last day of 2016, as he cruised along the four-lane crosstown highway toward his assigned target, the markets of Baghdad al Jdeidah, he had a nagging suspicion that his cover had been blown.

Every day he remained embedded with the Islamic State was another day he risked his life. Today he had been caught in a small lie, the second in a matter of months.

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REU: U.N. envoy says Yemen talks to focus on transition, disarmament: newspaper

DUBAI (Reuters) – Talks between Yemen’s warring parties next month will focus on a transitional governance deal and disarmament, the U.N. special envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, said in remarks published on Saturday.

Griffiths is trying to negotiate an end to the three-year conflict that has killed more than 10,000 people and pushed Yemen to the verge of starvation.

Air strikes by a Saudi-led coalition killed dozens of children traveling on a bus in the northern province of Saada on Thursday. U.N. chief Antonia Guterres has called for an independent investigation of the raid.

Consultations are due to begin in Geneva on Sept. 6 on a framework for peace talks and confidence-building measures.

“Primarily, we are trying to reach an agreement between the Yemeni government and (the Houthis’) Ansarullah on the issues essential to ending the war and on a national unity government in which everyone participates,” Griffiths told the Arabic-language Saudi-owned Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.

“This will require a signed agreement that includes setting up a transitional political operation under a national unity government … and putting in place security arrangements for the withdrawal of all armed groups in Yemen and disarming them.”

He said the consultations would lead to direct negotiations……………The coalition of Sunni Muslim Arab states backed by Western powers including the United States and Britain intervened in Yemen’s civil war in 2015 against the Iranian-aligned Houthi movement to restore the internationally recognized government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.

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AP: Blast in northern Syria kills at least 18; cause unclear

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian opposition activists say an explosion in the country’s north has killed at least 18 people and wounded many others. The cause of the blast wasn’t immediately known.

The opposition-run Syrian Civil Defense, also known as White Helmets, says the blast occurred Sunday in the village of Sarmada near the Turkish border and “killed and wounded dozens.” The explosion collapsed a five-story building, burying many of the victims.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the death toll at 18. It’s unclear if the casualties are all civilians.

The Observatory says an arms depot in the basement of a building had detonated. It says the depot was run by an arms dealer close to the al-Qaida-linked Levant Liberation Committee.

Meanwhile, Syrian government forces are fighting rebels in Idlib province.

REU: Syrian rebels build an army with Turkish help, face challenges

AZAZ, Syria (Reuters) – A “National Army” being set up by Syrian rebels with Turkey’s help could become a long-term obstacle to President Bashar al-Assad’s recovery of the northwest – if they can end factional rivalries that have long blighted the opposition.

The effort is at the heart of plans by the Turkish-backed opposition to secure and govern a strip of territory that forms part of the last big rebel stronghold in Syria.

The presence of Turkish forces on the ground has helped to shield it from government attack.

Assad, backed by Russia and Iran, has vowed to recover “every inch” of Syria, and though he has now won back most of the country, the Turkish presence will complicate any government offensive in the northwest.

Turkey’s role has gone beyond supporting allied Syrian forces to rebuilding schools and hospitals. At least five branches of the Turkish post office have opened in the area.

Colonel Haitham Afisi, head of the National Army, says setting up the force has been no easy task over the last year.

“We are at the beginning. We face many difficulties but we are working to overcome them,” Afisi told Reuters in an interview in the town of Azaz near the Turkish border………………..The National Army compromises some 35,000 fighters from some of the biggest factions in the war that has killed hundreds of thousands of people and forced some 11 million people from their homes over the last seven years.

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NYT: Afghan Forces Battle Taliban in Key City for Third Day

KABUL, Afghanistan — An Afghan official says security forces are battling the Taliban for the third straight day after the insurgents’ massive attack into the key city of Ghazni.

The Taliban pushed into the city, the capital of Ghazni province, from different directions on Friday and destroyed a telecommunication tower, cutting off landline and cell phone communications.

Gen. Sharif Yaftali, army chief of staff, says all strategic and government offices in Ghazni are still under government control.

He said on Sunday that fighting is still underway as the Taliban are hiding in residential areas and in civilian homes.

Yafteli pledged Ghazni would be cleared in a couple of days and the highway between Kabul and the city reopened.

Taliban claims of capturing parts of Ghazni, taking Afghan forces captive, couldn’t be independently verified.

NYT: Intense Fighting in Afghan City Ghazni as Taliban Presses

KABUL — Taliban insurgents attacked police headquarters and other government buildings in Ghazni in central Afghanistan on Sunday and were threatening to seize control of the city, with the main highway now heavily mined, local lawmakers and residents said.

U.S. aircraft conducted at least four air strikes but details of the fighting were unclear as most of the city’s telecoms masts were destroyed in fighting over recent days.

But lawmakers from Ghazni who managed to talk to some residents said Taliban were in control of much of the city after launching an initial attack in the early hours of Friday.

“Only the governor’s office, police headquarters and intelligence agency’s compound are in the hands of the government and Taliban are pushing to take them,” said Chaman Shah Ehtemadi, a lawmaker from Ghazni……………..There was no confirmed word on casualties. Quoting a hospital official, Afghanistan’s 1TV television reported more than 90 members of the security forces and 13 civilians had been killed, with more than 100 wounded. It said there had also been heavy Taliban casualties.

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NYT: Afghan Taliban Delegation Visits Uzbekistan to Talk Security, Power Lines

KABUL — A delegation from the Afghan Taliban met officials in Uzbekistan during a five-day trip to the country last week to discuss issues including transport and power lines and peace in Afghanistan, the movement’s political office said.

Muhammad Sohail Shaheen, spokesman for the Taliban’s political office, said on Saturday Taliban representatives met Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdul Aziz Kamilov and Special Representative for Afghanistan Ismatulla Irgashev during the Aug. 6-10 visit.

He said they “discussed current and future national projects such as security for railroad and power lines.”

“Views were also exchanged with officials of Uzbekistan about the withdrawal of foreign forces and how to achieve peace in Afghanistan,” he said……………….A senior Taliban official said the movement had established a political office in the Uzbek capital Tashkent aimed at developing better ties and showing that they did not intend to support local insurgent groups.

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NYT: Taliban’s Political Stature Rises With Talks in Uzbekistan

ISLAMABAD — In a rare diplomatic foray and the strongest sign yet of increasing Taliban political clout in the region, the head of the insurgents’ political office led a delegation to Uzbekistan to meet senior Foreign Ministry officials there, Uzbek and Taliban officials said.

Taliban political chief Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai represented the insurgents in the four-day talks that ended on Friday and included meetings with Uzbekistan’s Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov as well as the country’s special representative to Afghanistan Ismatilla Irgashev.

The meetings follow an offer made by Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev in March to broker peace in Afghanistan.

Suhail Shaheen, spokesman for the Taliban’s political office in Qatar, said in a statement to The Associated Press on Saturday that discussions covered everything from withdrawal of international troops from Afghanistan to peace prospects and possible Uzbek-funded development projects that could include railway lines and electricity……………”The Taliban also exchanged views with the Uzbek officials about the withdrawal of the foreign troops and reconciliation in Afghanistan,” he said in the statement.

Uzbek’s Foreign Affairs Ministry website offered a terse announcement on the visit, saying “the sides exchanged views on prospects of the peace process in Afghanistan. “

Still, the meetings are significant, coming as the Taliban are ramping up pressure on Afghan security forces with relentless and deadly attacks. Washington has held preliminary talks with the insurgents in an attempt to find a negotiated end to Afghanistan’s protracted war.

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Ghazni city’s all strategic parts under full control of ANDSF: Gen. Yaftali

The Afghan National Army Chief of Staff General Sharif Yaftali confirmed that sporadic clashes continue in some parts of Ghazni city, the provincial capital of Ghazni province.

Speaking during a press conference in Kabul, Gen. Yaftali said the control of all strategic parts including the civilian and security institutions are under the full control of the Afghan Nationla Defense and Security Forces.

Gen. Yaftali ruled out reports that the control of some key government compounds including the provincial security commandment have fallen into the hands of the Taliban militants.

He said the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces including Afghan army forces are busy conducting clearance operations to eliminate militants from the city.

However, he said the Afghan forces are facing hurdles during the operations as the militants have taken position inside the houses, shops, and other civilian compounds.

According to Gen. Yaftali, the Afghan armed forces are conducting operations with care to prevent harm to the civilians.

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