Syria, Iraq, war 1916-2016


This video says about itself:

The Disastrous Legacy of Sykes-Picot

16 May 2016

In 1916, the United Kingdom and France signed an agreement to divide the Middle East between themselves. One hundred years later, many of the region’s ongoing problems can be dated to the Sykes-Picot treaty.

Thousands of civilians in danger as US-backed forces mount offensives in Iraq and Syria: here.

‘Prosecute Tony Blair about Iraq war’


Anti-Tony Blair demonstrators, photo Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

New move to impeach Tony Blair over Iraq War gains cross-party support

Former SNP leader Alex Salmond has begun rallying support for an attempted prosecution

Charlie Cooper, Whitehall Correspondent

A cross-party group of MPs, including former SNP leader Alex Salmond, may renew their attempts to impeach Tony Blair following the publication of the Chilcot report later this year.

According to reports, Mr Salmond has begun rallying support for an attempted prosecution, pending the findings of the report, which will be released in July.

In the UK, impeachment is the procedure whereby MPs can vote to have someone put on trial before the House of Lords. It is a centuries-old procedure which has not actually been used since 1806.

While some MPs still want to use the procedure to hold Mr Blair to account over his actions in the run-up to the Iraq War, Mr Salmond told The Times the best route to a prosecution could lie through the International Criminal Court (ICC).

“If, as I believe…Chilcot finds that there was a prior commitment from Blair to [George W.] Bush at Crawford ranch in 2002, that would provide the reason for pursuing the matter further,” he said. “My own view is that the best route would be to use the ICC because the prosecutor is able to initiate action on his or her own behalf on presentation of a body of evidence, which Chilcot would provide,” the former First Minister of Scotland, and current SNP foreign affairs spokesman said.

A campaign to impeach the former Prime Minister was first launched in 2004, backed by a cross-party group of MPs that included Boris Johnson – now the figurehead of the EU referendum Leave campaign and a favourite to become Prime Minister in the event of Brexit.

Conservative MP Sir David Amess told The Times he had been contacted by Mr Salmond seeking support for a new campaign, pending the findings of the Chilcot report.

“If it’s proved that Tony Blair misled everyone, I personally am determined to see justice prevail and to see him impeached,” Sir David said.

See also here.

Iraq war 2003-2016, new film


This film trailer video from Belgium says about itself:

…WHOSE PEACE WILL IT BE?

18 December 2015

Exploring a future for Iraq and the Middle East, we interviewed all kinds of people. We let people speak for themselves in their true colors. Fiction meets reality in poetry of the image and in esteem of the human kind! – a production of The BRussells Tribunal with the support of theWizard.

You can watch the film here.

From the filmmakers:

…WHOSE PEACE WILL IT BE?

A documentary by Luc Pien

ABOUT THE DOCUMENTARY

War is intensifying in Syria and Iraq … with the support of our governements. Life has become unbearable in both countries. Hundreds of thousands of refugees seek safe haven in Europe. Many drown attempting to cross the Mediterranean. Others make it across only to discover that there is no place for them in Hotel Europa. A peaceful life seems a distant dream …

Drawing on voices other than those we hear, see and read daily in the media, “… Whose peace will it be?” traces the origins and causes of the present disaster. The documentary weaves memories of the past through experiences of the present to create a mosaic within which the pathway to peace might be discerned. It provides an impetus to think differently about the future and act accordingly. But, above all, the film seeks to chart a pathway to peace.

Iraqi academics in the diaspora muse about the need for freedom, education and humanity in the Arab world. Refugees from Iraq and neighboring countries highlight the horror of the catastrophe. Artists discuss other ways of social thinking and acting. United Nations officials recount what has gone wrong in recent decades. European philosophers and experts explain how knowledge of, and respect for, other cultures has gotten lost.

In what sense are we, “the West,” complicit in—perhaps even responsible for—the disaster that has struck Iraq and Syria? What political action should the UN take? What’s stopping the supposedly enlightened nations from entering into genuine dialogue, with respect for the identity of all concerned?

What means do we have at our disposal to restore the human and cultural riches of Iraq and Syria? How can we show solidarity with the desire of people to decide their own fate? What can we do to make sure Iraq and the entire region become, once again, a secure and decent place to live? Can so much suffering be forged into hope? Whose peace will it be once the war is over?

All these questions have led to a movie full of options and possibilities for the future. We do not show the atrocities of war: we know them all too well. Nor do we show the unbearable and self-destructive side of human behavior. We let people speak for themselves, in all their uniqueness and sincerity. Utopia and reality meet in the poetry of the narration, and respect for everyday people.

This video from London, England says about itself:

At the invitation of Lord Maginnis of Drumglass and Lord Clarke of Hampstead, a conference was held at the House of Commons on 10 June 2014 “11 Years After the Occupation of Iraq” to discuss the major concerns in Iraq including the situation of human rights, the lack of security, absence of social developments and Iraq’s international obligations.

Participants in the conference included Mr Sabah Al Mukhtar, official of Arab Lawyers and Legal Consultant in UK, Dr Isam Al Chalabi, Former Iraqi Oil Minister, Prof. Saad Naji Jawad, Professor of Political Science and visiting professor at LSE, Dr Subhi Toma, Expert on Minorities and Immigrants, His Excellency Sid Ahmed Al Ghozali, former Prime Minister of Algeria, and Messrs Denis Halliday and Hanz von Sponeck, former Assistant Secretary Generals at the UN.

Iraq war giving children cancer


This video from the USA says about itself:

U.S. Radioactive Weapons Fueling Birth Defects in Iraq

7 April 2016

Investigative journalist Barbara Koeppel examines how the U.S. is getting away with using radioactive weapons that are causing spikes in birth defects and cancer in both Iraqi citizens and U.S. veterans.

Ex-Abu Ghraib torture prison interrogator speaks


This video from the USA says about itself:

A Torturer’s Confession: Former Abu Ghraib Interrogator Speaks Out

7 April 2016

Eric Fair served as an interrogator in Iraq working as a military contractor for the private security firm CACI. He was stationed at the Abu Ghraib prison and in Fallujah in 2004. In a new memoir, Fair writes about feeling haunted by what he did, what he saw and what he heard in Iraq, from the beating of prisoners to witnessing the use of sleep deprivation, stress positions and isolation to break prisoners. The military described such actions as “enhanced interrogations,” but Eric Fair uses another word—torture. He writes, “If God is on anyone’s side in Iraq, it’s not mine.”

This video from the USA says about itself:

Former Abu Ghraib Interrogator: Because of Trump & Cruz, Door Still “Wide Open” for U.S. to Torture

7 April 2016

As Republican presidential candidates promise to bring back the torture techniques used under the George W. Bush administration, we speak with one of the men who actually carried out these policies. Eric Fair served as an interrogator in Iraq working as a military contractor for the private security firm CACI. He was stationed at the Abu Ghraib prison and in Fallujah in 2004. His new book, “Consequence: A Memoir,” has just been published.

This video from the USA says about itself:

7 April 2016

As a former interrogator in Iraq working as a military contractor for the private security firm CACI, Eric Fair was stationed at the Abu Ghraib prison and in Fallujah in 2004. While in Fallujah, he witnessed a torture device known as the Palestinian chair. He writes in his new book, “Consequence: A Memoir,” that the chair was a way to immobilize prisoners in order to break them down both physically and mentally. He also wrote that the Israeli military taught them how to use the Palestinian chair during a joint training exercise. For more, we’re joined by Eric Fair, whose new book, “Consequence: A Memoir,” has just been published.

United States country singer Merle Haggard dies


Merle Haggard

Today, United States country singer Merle Haggard has died.

This music video from the USA, of a song about the Iraq war, says about itself:

26 February 2009

Music video by Merle Haggard performing America First.

To remember him, I repost a 2007 blog post about him.

From Rocky Mountain News:

[US country singer Merle] Haggard, 69, talking to Rocky music writer Mark Brown from his home in Redding, Calif., continues to be the outlaw and renegade, a quality that has taken him to both jail and the top of the charts. …

*Your song America First came out against the war in Iraq without sounding unpatriotic.

“I think it’s pretty well agreed upon that I am an American.

My family history and my actions and my relatives who fought in previous wars, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam.

I’ve had grandchildren and brothers and cousins (serve).

I tried to get in but I was too young. I wound up going to jail for trying to get in the Army.

I think it’s a well-known fact that Merle Haggard is a red, white and blue American.

There are a lot of red, white and blue Americans who don’t believe in what we’re doing now, don’t believe we’re being told the truth.

We’re being told the truth after the fact because they get caught in their damn lies.

It’s a terrible time, politically, for America.

That Merle Haggard, during the Vietnam war seen as supporting that war, now opposes the Iraq war says quite something on George W. Bush.