Jabba The Jihadi

Ever hear of this guy?

Of course not you have been focused on and bitching about the impeachment trial……

It seems that this overweight jihadist has been arrested in Iraq…

Iraqi authorities made an arrest so large they had to load it onto a flatbed truck.

An Iraqi SWAT team arrested 560-pound Islamic State preacher Abu Abdul Bari, also known as Shifa al Nima, this week in Mosul. The extremist ideologue was transported in the back of a truck.

The Iraqi government said the large jihadi is a top ISIS leader known for “provocative speeches against the security forces,” according to a statement by the Iraqi government.

Bari issued religious decrees, known as fatwas, that ordered the execution of clerics and scholars who refused to pledge loyalty to the brutal terrorist group.

He also ordered the 2014 demolition of a mosque built on the site believed to be the burial spot for the biblical prophet Jonah. As ISIS came to power in the region, its clerics ordered the destruction of many cultural sites, ruining centuries of history.

Maajid Nawaz, founder of anti-extremism group Quilliam, said that images of the arrest are likely humiliating for ISIS.

“Do not underestimate the psychological blow the image of this obese monster being arrested is to ISIS. Gluttony is frowned upon by jihadists. But, also, ISIS branded themselves as fighters possessing rare courage & discipline… meanwhile this walrus was their top religious cleric,” he said

No way he was gonna outrun the law……

High-ranking Islamic State official, Abu Abdul Bari

Another terrorist taken from the field…..and yet it keeps going and going kinda like the Energizer Bunny…..

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Sanctions For Iraq

We know that Trump’s favorite tool is economic sanctions…..easy to install and have very little effect…..that sums up his presidency.

I bring up sanctions because it seems to be the next step in the battle with Iraq.

Yes I said Iraq.

Recently the Iraqi government passed a non-binding solution to have US troops leave the country.

The Trump administration has started drafting sanctions against Iraq over its push to expel US troops from the nation, a White House official who requested anonymity confirmed to Business Insider on Tuesday.

President Donald Trump first threatened economic penalties over the weekend after the Iraqi parliament passed a nonbinding resolution to urge the US military to leave, a rebuke of the lethal drone strike that targeted a top Iranian general in Baghdad late Thursday. Along with Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, an Iraqi militia official was also killed in the escalation.

The Washington Post reported late Monday that senior administration officials had initiated preliminary talks on the potential sanctions, which the US has not yet decided to move forward with.

https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/trump-administration-preparing-economic-sanctions-against-iraq-military-withdrawal-iran-2020-1-1028801079

Sanctions and now the idea of cutting military aid to Iraq……

In addition to bankrupting Iraq by seizing the entirety of their oil revenue account, the Trump Administration is now also threatening to cut military aid to Iraq, if the Iraqi government formally asks the US to leave.

The US State Department and Pentagon have discussed the matter, with the State Department working on cutting all $250 million from the 2020 military aid budget already approved, and asking the budget office to cut $100 million from the 2021 request.

While US officials insist they have no intention of leaving Iraq, the continued threats to punish Iraq with sanctions and cuts suggest that they are taking seriously the possibility that Iraq will actually order them out, and that the US may not be able to just ignore it.

While $250 million in aid is substantial, it is likely well down Iraq’s priority list with the oil revenue account containing 90% of Iraq’s annual budget. Iraqi officials haven’t indicated what their intentions are since the threats began, but parliament already voted 170-0 to expel all foreign troops, US included, as soon as possible.

(antiwar.com)

What will all this chest thumping do with ISIS waiting in the shadows?

https://lobotero.com/2020/01/10/isis-in-the-shadows-2/

Now Iraq is worried about a total economic co;;apse if sanctions and such go into effect….

Iraqi officials are warning that they would face almost immediate economic collapse if President Trump follows through on sanctions against them for asking US troops to leave. Iraq’s parliament voted on January 5, 170-0, to order the government to expel all foreign troops.

President Trump has threatened massive sanctions against Iraq, and more recently, suggestions are that the US would freeze Iraq’s bank account at the New York Federal Reserve, where all of Iraq’s oil revenues go.

Which is also 90 percent of Iraq’s budget. Iraqi officials have confirmed “threatening calls” from the US over the troops, insisting that they have no intention of leaving Iraq just because Iraq is asking.

The collapse of their entire economy, while still theoretical at this point, isn’t a healthy thing to have hanging over Iraq going forward. Siemens CEO Joe Kaesar warned he believes that “putting sanctions on something just because you don’t get your will is maybe also not always helpful.

Siemens has a $15 billion electricity development contract for Iraq. While they say they don’t intend to scale back the project, there is a risk for them, like everyone else, that the US will just take all of Iraq’s money and leave them unable to pay.

(antiwar.com)

So just to retaliate Trump will econ0mically ruin a country like Iraq…..someone that is suppose to be a “friend”…..someone who is a “partner” in the war on ISIS……

Sorry do not see the logic in all this ignorance.

A country swimming in oil and yet it could face economic collapse…..funny but that would be because the oil belongs to corporations and not the Iraqis……if problems then a case for nationalization of the oil could be waiting for a test run.  And that would mean more war….after all oil is why we are there in the first place.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

ISIS In The Shadows

Our mash up with Iran seems to be dialing down….kinda like all other “crisis” in this era of Trump.

We are laser focused on Iran and its proxies in Iraq (BTW contrary to the idiots on the Right ISIS is not an ally of Iran)…..but problems could be brewing elsewhere…..

In an emergency session of Iraqi parliament, a bill was passed revoking Iraq’s request for US help in fighting ISIS, and calling for the government to expel US forces. The US troops may not be leaving, but they’d already suspended their operations.

Over the weekend, US officials reported that they suspended their training missions for Iraqi forces to scale up defense of their own base security. On Sunday they confirmed that the anti-ISIS mission is also suspended going forward.

While President Trump is threatening sanctions against Iraq for wanting the troops out, he seems comfortable with them not actually doing anything other than staying in Iraq for its own sake. The US command in Iraq says it is “committed” to the mission, though the mission isn’t entirely clear at this point, beyond staying and threatening Iraq with sanctions.

How many troops are required for this non-mission remains to be seen, but indications are that the US is going to keep adding troops to Iraq and Kuwait, and President Trump will react furiously to any indication that Iraq doesn’t want the occupation to continue.

(antiwar.com)

Do not take your eye off the real enemy…ISIS…..

The militants are now more skilled and more dangerous than al-Qaeda, according to Lahur Talabany, a top Kurdish counter-terrorism official.

“They have better techniques, better tactics and a lot more money at their disposal,” he said. “They are able to buy vehicles, weapons, food supplies and equipment. Technologically they’re more savvy. It’s more difficult to flush them out. So, they are like al-Qaeda on steroids.”

The veteran intelligence chief delivered his stark assessment in a London accent – the legacy of years in the UK after his family had to flee from the regime of Saddam Hussein.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50850325

Never a good idea to overlook the obvious…..but then I am not part of the Trump foreign policy team……

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Soleimani–The Rest Of The Story

By now everyone has heard the news . the attack that killed a high ranking Iranian general …if you have not then just go back under your rock and wait for the end to come.

But like all things in the Trump White House…..it has been reported that the general was in Iraq to deliver a message from Iran on the peace proposal with the Saudis…..

the US assassinated top Iranian Gen. Qassam Soleimani in a drone strike at Baghdad International Airport. His arrival was actually part of ongoing diplomatic efforts, according to Iraqi PM Adel Abdul-Mahdi.

Soleimani’s visit was related to well-documented Saudi attempts at diplomacy to ease tensions with Iran. The Saudis had dispatched a message of peace to Iran, with Iraq acting as an intermediary. Soleimani was coming to Iraq to deliver the Iranian government’s reply.

The US assassination, then, undercut the peace effort to an enormous level. Iraq was keen to facilitate peace between its two neighbors, hopefully to calm down US threats against Iran. Instead, the US undercut the entire process.

It’s not clear this totally ends the Saudi effort for peace, though it may be difficult for Iran to safely get messengers into Baghdad in the near future, with the US rather openly threatening more assassinations. Since peace overtures were the Saudi “plan B” after the US didn’t attack Iran, they may no longer bother, given the rapidly escalating military tensions.

(antiwar.com)

I have seen nothing in the MSM about this “peace message”….why?

The Iranians and the Saudis have been at each other’s throat for centuries….and the possibility of a peace deal that could lessen this animosities would be a big deal in international relations circles….but not so much in Trumpian circles.

Who did this assassination benefit?  Not Iraq…..not Saudis….not Iran….then who?

Them only nation that comes to mind  is Israel. 

How ling has Israel been predicting the rise of Iran?

Peace between Saudis and Iranians would not benefit Isreal’s constant claim of victimhood.

Yossi Cohen, head of Israel’s Mossad, spoke openly about assassinating Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, the head of the elite Quds Force in Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

“He knows very well that his assassination is not impossible,” Cohen said in an interview. Soleimani had boasted that the Israel’s tried to assassinate him in 2006 and failed.

“With all due respect to his bluster,” Cohen said, “he hasn’t necessarily committed the mistake yet that would place him on the prestigious list of Mossad’s assassination targets.”

After Mossad Targeted Soleimani, Trump Pulled the Trigger

Nothing about this death, this assassination, will bode well…..yes we took out a “bad guy” while we allow other “bad guys” to go unchallenged…..

This action, the death of Soleimani, is not something that will make the US safer regardless what the liars in the WH would have you believe.

Don’t Underestimate Iran’s Ability to Fight a Bloody War

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

You Asked For It And Now You have It

The rhetoric is now over!

After days of threats and counter threats the war that slugs like Pompeo and Bolton have wanted for decades has now begun…..

Qasem Soleimani Tuesday night, striking two air bases housing US troops in Iraq with ballistic missiles. The New York Timesreports that Iranian officials said the strikes began at 1:20am Wednesday local time—the same time the general was killed in a drone strike in Iraq Friday. To make it even clearer that this was retaliation, numerous Iranian officials, including former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, tweeted images of the Iranian flag, apparently mocking President Trump for tweeting an American flag after the strike that killed Soleimani, reports the Week. US and Iraqi officials said there were no immediate reports of casualties, though a presenter on Iranian TV claimed the strikes killed ” at least 80 terrorist US soldiers,” the AP reports.

Sources tell the AP that Iran fired a total of 15 missiles. Ten hit the Ain al-Asad air base, one hit the Irbil base, and four failed to reach their targets, the sources say. Trump had promised to strike 52 targets in Iran if the country exacted revenge for the killing of Soleimani, but he did not announce any fresh strikes Tuesday. “All is well! Missiles launched from Iran at two military bases located in Iraq. Assessment of casualties & damages taking place now. So far, so good!” he tweeted. “We have the most powerful and well equipped military anywhere in the world, by far! I will be making a statement tomorrow morning.” A source tells the Times that Iranian officials waited for Trump to address the nation Tuesday night and when he did not, they suspected the US would either wait to respond or seek to de-escalate the situation.

“So far, so good”?

Appears that the missiles killed no Americans in the attacks….but that could be a moot point.

I am sure that there will be more to report later.

Could Soleimani be the 21st century equivalent to the death of Archduke Ferdinand?

Watch This Blog!

“lego ergo scribo”

Should We Go Or Should We Stay?

The death ofm the Iranian general has had a flurry of statements and Tweets (mostly by Trump)….plus the SecState Pompeo on every Sunday news channel to regurgitate a pathetic clarification of what the attacks were all about and what we should do……

The usual chest thumping by Trump and the warhawks…..but the big news was the vote in the Iraqi Parliament…..

Iraq’s Parliament, the Council of Representatives (CoR), passed a non-binding resolution to cancel the request for military aid from the government of Iraq to the U.S.-led anti-ISIS coalition. The resolution does not require a U.S. withdrawal, which only the Prime Minister can order by rescinding the Status of Forces Agreement with the U.S. It is unclear whether caretaker Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mehdi has the authority to do so. The CoR resolution sets political conditions to justify subsequent Iranian proxy attacks on U.S. forces and installations, however. Nationalist Shi’a Cleric Muqtada al Sadr also called for the mobilization of new “resistance” groups to support such attacks.
 
Iraq’s parliament passed a non-binding resolution rejecting the presence of U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq. 172 members of the Iraqi Council of Representatives (CoR) convened on Sunday, January 5 in an “extraordinary session” to discuss the U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian IRGC Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi Popular Mobilization Committee Deputy Chief and Kata’ib Hezbollah commander Abu Mehdi al-Muhandis on January 3, 2020. Kurdish political parties boycotted the session, as did many Sunni political parties. Caretaker Prime Minister (PM) Adel Abdul Mehdi submitted the resolution. It passed with 170 votes.
 
The resolution does not require an immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces. The CoR’s resolution asks the Government of Iraq (GoI) to cancel the 2014 military aid request from the GoI to coalition forces. The resolution does not explicitly ask the GoI to revoke the State of Forces Agreement (SOFA) between the U.S. and Iraq. It does, however, say the GoI “must work to end the presence of any foreign troops on Iraqi soil and prohibit them from using its land, airspace or water for any reason.” It also calls on the Iraqi government to establish a timetable for the withdrawal of all foreign troops. The CoR cannot itself cancel the 2014 request for coalition support or the SOFA, which requires executive action from the PM. It is unclear if PM Mehdi has the legal authority to do so given his status as a caretaker PM. Mehdi resigned on November 29, 2019 during mass protests.
 
Nationalist Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr may participate in attacks on US forces and installations. The leader of Sadr’s Toward Reform bloc issued a statement to the CoR on Sadr’s behalf that included demands for an even greater response. In addition to withdrawing from U.S. security agreements, Sadr called for the immediate closure of the “Embassy of American Evil in Iraq,” the closure of U.S. bases in the country, the “humiliating expulsion” of U.S. troops, the “criminalization” of any communication with the U.S. government, and the boycott of American products. In a tweet following the session, Sadr condemned the CoR resolution as insufficient and called on “the Iraqi resistance factions in particular and the factions outside of Iraq for an immediate meeting to announce the formation of “international resistance groups.”
 
Implications: This resolution renders the maintenance of a U.S. or coalition military presence in Iraq politically difficult but does not yet legally require a U.S. withdrawal. However, it solidifies the Iranian narrative of a U.S. “occupation” of Iraq and sets political conditions to justify subsequent attacks on U.S. forces across the Middle East. These escalations will likely come not only from Iran’s direct proxy militias, but also from a pan-Shi’a resistance movement that Muqtada al-Sadr is now attempting to generate. The Iraqi Security Forces have up until this point depended on coalition military support to sustain pressure on the Islamic State (ISIS). Any withdrawal of coalition forces from Iraq offers ISIS increased freedom of movement and improves conditions for ISIS to reconstitute itself inside of Iraq and Syria.
Iraq wants the US to leave and yet we say “no way”…….what part of that is anything but an authoritarian approach to the situation?
 
That said let’s return to SecState Pompeo and his performance on the Sunday talk shows…..

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hit the Sunday talk-show circuit and blamed the entire Iran crisis on former President Obama, USA Today reports. “We’re trying to correct for what was the Obama administration’s appeasement of Iran,” Pompeo said on ABC News’ This Week, after President Trump ordered the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, sparking protests in Iran and threats of retaliation. “This is a regime that has been acting against America for an awfully long time. And we are suffering from eight years of neglect and we’re trying to push it back. We’re trying to contain them.” Appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, he referred to the current conflict as a “war,” saying “this war kicked off” when Obama and the European Union signed its nuclear deal with Iran. For more:

  • ‘BS’: “This is BS from Pompeo,” tweeted former Obama adviser Ben Rhodes. “This isn’t a ‘both sides argue’ issue, it’s about facts: Iran was complying with deal that rolled back nuke program and there were 0 rocket attacks on US interests in Iraq during that time. Trump pulled out and Iran resumed nuke program and rocket attacks.”
  • ‘Endless war’: “I really worry that the actions the president took will get us into what he calls another ‘endless war’ in the Middle East,” said Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) on This Week, per the Washington Post. “He promised we wouldn’t have that. And I think we’re closer to that now because of his actions.”
  • ‘Act of war’: “Let’s not mince words: the assassination of Qasem Soleimani was an act of war undertaken without Congressional authorization,” write Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Barbara Lee (D-Texas) in a statement, per KSTP. “…We in Congress must exercise our Constitutional duty—and do everything in our power to stop another disastrous war.”
  • In his defense: Trump “is not saying, ‘Congress, I need 100,000 American troops to invade Iran.’ That’s why all this talk about war powers and congressional authority is so silly,” said Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla) on CBS’s Face the Nation, per the Sun-Sentinel. “The president’s not talking about invading Iran. He’s talking about responding to anything Iran may do in the future.”
  • More Pompeo: “Endless wars are the direct result of weakness,” Pompeo said on Fox News Sunday, per RealClearPolitics. “And President Trump will never let that happen. We’re going to get it right.”

So much spin…like the attack will prevent a war……Trump will never let our wars become endless……two examples of manure spreading.

Sorry but targeting cultural sites is targeting civilians….is they what them US has come to?  If so then we are no better than some of the “terrorists” we are supposedly fighting.

All this chaos is looking like “amateur hour” foreign policy.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Big News In The Middle East

Breaking news has the tale of the US killing a top Iranian general in an airstrike in Iraq…..

Iran vowed “harsh retaliation” after its top general was killed by an American drone strike in Iraq Thursday night. The Pentagon confirmed that it had taken “decisive action” against Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, who was killed as he left Baghdad airport in a convoy with leaders of Iran-backed militias, the Washington Post reports. Soleimani, commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force, “was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region,” Defense Secretary Mark Esper said in a statement. “This strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans.” Officials said the strike was carried out by order of President Trump, who tweeted an image of an American flag.

At least four other people are believed to have been killed in the strike, including Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi. Soleimani, 62, was responsible for Iran’s interventions across the Middle East and was “hailed as a heroic national figure,” reports the BBC. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called the general the ” international face of resistance” and called for three days of public mourning, the AP reports. An Iranian government spokesman said the country’s top security body will meet to discuss a response to the ” criminal act of attack.”

Sorry but this is not the best way to start a new year.

With that said…just how will Iran react to the death of their general?

Six months ago, WhoWhatWhy presented a cast of characters that could trigger a war between the US and Iran. Now that Quds Force General Qasem Soleimani has been assassinated in an American drone strike in Baghdad, that list is shorter … but the possibility of another armed conflict in the Middle East is much higher.

For Americans, the Fourth of July is a day filled with fun, family barbeques, poolside parties, fireworks, and overt displays of patriotism. For Iranians, however, it is a solemn day, a day of mourning, and a day of remembrance.

How Will Iran Respond After US Kills Top General?

The spin has begun…..why attack now?  Who will benefit the most?

Question with few answers…..

My thought is that this will do nothing to weaken the “Guard”….if anything it will strengthen their resolve…..and that could be just the trigger a war needs.

Watch This Blog!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”