themcglynn.com

22 Dec

United States Wars, News and Casualties

United States Wars, News and Casualties

 

Damn The War Criminals,

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

.

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.

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!

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The McGlynn

War News

GUARD: Trump’s Syria withdrawal has handed a huge gift to Islamic State

The president’s announcement will destroy any trust in the US among local allies fighting terror

Christmas came early in Syria. Donald Trump’s surprise tweet heralding the withdrawal of US troops neatly indicated the winners and losers in the murderous eight-year Syrian war. While the US never had much leverage in Syria – thanks to Barack Obama’s disastrous 2013 decision not to act following the Ghouta chemical attacks – Trump has managed, in a 16-word message, to embolden Islamic State, Moscow, Damascus, Hezbollah and Iran. In a sense, he has abandoned any western influence over Syria and handed the territory to dictators, murderers and terrorists.

First up is the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, who began “engagements” in Syria in 2015 – relentless campaigns that targeted civilians. For Putin, US withdrawal represents a green light to remain in Syria as long as he wishes, to consolidate his power base and pursue his personal Syrian agenda without meddlesome threats from Washington.

For the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, it means more time to finish off a war that began as a peaceful demonstration of people calling for their freedom: a war that now involves gulags, unimaginable torture, ethnic cleansing and the chemical gassing of civilians.

In a strange example of camaraderie, turning a blind eye to grievous human rights violations in Syria is one of the few areas where Trump and Obama meet. Still, having the US involved – even minimally – complicated Assad’s scorched-earth campaign against the Syrian opposition. All he needs now is the north-western city of Idlib and the country is his (except that he has to share it with Russia and Iran).

For the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, who held talks with his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, on Thursday, Trump’s message is a blessing. The US involvement in Syria meant empowering the Kurds, whom he has always seen as an existential threat. On Monday, Erdo?an said he was ready to launch a new cross-border military operation at any moment against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG, which have been shielded – until now – by the US military presence.

His hawkish stance was echoed by his defence minister, Hulusi Akar, who said Turkey was preparing “intensely” for a military offensive east of the Euphrates River in Syria, where Kurdish-led forces, the Syrian Democratic Front, have battled Isis. The Kurdish fighters there, he told Turkish reporters, have already dug trenches and tunnels in anticipation of a military operation.

“But whatever they dig … when the time comes they will be buried in the trenches,” he gloated. “Of this there should no doubt.”………………..The announcement may be one of Trump’s impulses that change daily, though he is consistent in his distaste for any kind of protracted foreign entanglement. The irony is that he is committing exactly the same blunder he blamed Obama for: withdrawing without stabilising Syria means creating a vacuum that will soon be filled by either Iranian-backed militias or Isis – or by both.

Yet what Trump has done in the long term is far more catastrophic than withdrawing US troops. He has sent a message that will destroy any trust local fighters worldwide will ever have in the US to join forces fighting to eradicate terrorism. He has, in a sense, signed a death warrant for potential military partners and alliances.

We live in a time of conflict fuelled on many levels by terrorism. When the US wants the support of local militias in conflict-ridden areas such as Yemen, Afghanistan, Somalia or the Sahel in fighting terrorists, they will look long and hard at the lesson of the Kurds and what they got from the US. Help us, but at your own peril. We will abandon you whenever we so desire.

Read Full Article>>

NYT: Pentagon Considers Using Special Operations Forces to Continue Mission in Syria

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon is considering using small teams of Special Operations forces to strike the Islamic State in Syria, one option for continuing an American military mission there despite President Trump’s order to withdraw troops from the country.

The American commandos would be shifted to neighboring Iraq, where an estimated 5,000 United States forces are already deployed, and “surge” into Syria for specific raids, according to two military officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The strike teams are one of several options — including continued airstrikes and resupplying allied Kurdish fighters with arms and equipment — in a new strategy for Syria that the Pentagon is developing as officials follow the order Mr. Trump gave on Wednesday for a military drawdown even as it tries to maintain pressure on the Islamic State.

The Pentagon will deliver the options to Mr. Trump for approval within weeks — well before Defense Secretary Jim Mattis steps down at the end of February. Mr. Mattis resigned on Thursday, in part because of Mr. Trump’s decision to overrule his senior advisers and withdraw troops from Syria.

Read Full Article>>

REU: Turkey says nearly 300,000 Syrians return home after military operations

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Nearly 300,000 Syrians have returned to their country after Turkey’s two cross-border operations in northern Syria, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu was quoted as saying on Saturday.

Turkey has carried out two operations, dubbed “Euphrates Shield” and “Olive Branch”, against Kurdish YPG militia and Islamic State in northern Syria. Ankara regards the U.S.-backed YPG as a terrorist organization.

Turkey hosts more than 3.5 million Syrian refugees who have fled the conflict in their homeland. Some Turks view them as an economic burden and a threat to jobs.

“The number of Syrians that returned to their country after the Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch operations is 291,790,” Soylu was quoted by state-owned Anadolu news agency as saying.

Read Full Article>>

REU: Police use live rounds to disperse protest in Iraq’s Basra for second week

BASRA, Iraq (Reuters) – Iraqi security forces used live bullets and teargas on Friday to disperse protesters who were trying to storm a local government building in the southern city of Basra.

It was the second week in a row that riot police used force to quell the demonstrators.

About 250 people gathered outside the temporary headquarters of the provincial council throughout the afternoon to protest against corruption and demand jobs and better public services.

Protesters threw rocks and empty water bottles at riot police.

By nightfall, some of the protesters broke through the main gate of the building’s outer perimeter using a large cylinder, and attempted to storm the building.

No injuries were reported.

AP: Large US troop pullout planned in Afghanistan, officials say

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon is developing plans to withdraw up to half of the 14,000 American troops serving in Afghanistan, U.S. officials said Thursday, marking a sharp change in the Trump administration’s policy aimed at forcing the Taliban to the peace table after more than 17 years of war.

One official said the troops could be out by summer, but no final decision has been made.

President Donald Trump has long pushed to pull troops out of Afghanistan, considering the war a lost cause. But earlier this year, he was persuaded by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and others military leaders to keep troops on the ground to pressure the Taliban and battle a stubborn Islamic State insurgency. Officials said the latest White House push for withdrawal was another key factor in Mattis’ decision to resign Thursday.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

U.S. troops stormed into Afghanistan in November 2001 in an invasion triggered by the Sept. 11 attacks.

Since then, America has lost more than 2,400 soldiers and spent more than $900 billion in its longest war. Three U.S. presidents have pledged to bring peace to Afghanistan, either by adding or withdrawing troops, by engaging the Taliban or shunning them, and by struggling to combat widespread corruption in the government.

The U.S. and NATO formally concluded their combat mission in 2014, but American and allied troops remain, conducting strikes on the Islamic State group and the Taliban and working to train and build the Afghan military.

Taliban insurgents, however, control nearly half of Afghanistan and are more powerful than at any time since a 2001 U.S.-led invasion. They carry out near-daily attacks, mainly targeting security forces and government officials.

Read Full Article>>

54 militants killed during the joint operations in past 24 hours: MoD

The Ministry of Defense of Afghanistan (MoD) has claimed that 54 militants have been killed during separate operations conducted jointly by the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) in the past 24 hours.

According to a statement released by MoD, the operations were conducted with the help of the close air support of the coalition forces based in Afghanistan.

The statement further added that the operations were conducted in Nangarhar, Paktika, Ghazni, Daikudni, Zabul, Farah, Balkh, Faryab, and Helmand provinces.

At least 29 of the militants were killed in Qarabagh district of Ghazni province and 9 others were wounded, MoD said, adding that 19 militants were killed and 7 others were wounded during the operations while 2 motorcycles were destroyed in Pashtun Kot and Sherin Tagab districts of Faryab province.

The Afghan forces also killed 6 militants in Posht Rod district of Farah province and two others were wounded in Shajoi district of Zabul and Washir district of Helmand province, MoD added in its statement.

The anti-government armed militant groups including Taliban have not commented regarding the operational update of the Ministry of Defense so far.

Read full story »

Casualties, Exclusive of Civilians

Recent Casualties

Color Denotes Today’s Confirmation

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

Sgt. Jason Mitchell McClary, 24, from Export, Pennsylvania, died Dec. 2, 2018, in Landstuhl, Germany, as a result of injuries sustained from an improvised explosive device on Nov. 27, 2018, in Andar District, Ghazni Province, Afghanistan. The incident is under investigation.

McClary was assigned to 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.

The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two soldiers and one airman who were supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

The service members died Nov. 27, 2018, from injuries sustained when their vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device in Andar, Ghazni Province, Afghanistan.

The soldiers were assigned to 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The airman was assigned to the 26th Special Tactics Squadron at Cannon Air Force Base, New Mexico.

The incident is under investigation.

The deceased are:

Army Capt. Andrew Patrick Ross, 29, of Lexington, Virginia.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Eric Michael Emond, 39, of Brush Prairie, Washington.

Air Force Staff Sgt. Dylan J. Elchin, 25, of Hookstown, Pennsylvania.

Cost of War in Iraq>>

Cost of War in Afghanistan>>

Care for Veterans:

PTSD: National Center for PTSDPTSD Care for Veterans, Military, and FamiliesSee Help for Veterans with PTSD to learn how to enroll for VA health care and get an assessment.

All VA Medical Centers provide PTSD care, as well as many VA clinics.Some VA’s have programs specializing in PTSD treatment. Use the VA PTSD Program Locator to find a PTSD program.

If you are a war Veteran, find a Vet Center to help with the transition from military to civilian life.

Call the 24/7 Veteran Combat Call Center1-877-WAR-VETS (1-877-927-8387) to talk to another combat Veteran.DoD’s Defense Centers of Excellence (DCoE) 24/7 Outreach Center for Psychological Health & Traumatic Brain Injury provides information and helps locate resources.

Call 1-866-966-1020 or email resources@dcoeoutreach.orgMilitary OneSourceCall 24/7 for counseling and many resources 1-800-342-9647.Need further assistance? Get Help with VA PTSD Care

War Children

Please do not forget the children.

The McGlynn

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