Hundreds of thousands of protesters filled the streets of Baghdad Friday in a mass demonstration demanding the immediate withdrawal of US troops from the country: here.
This 24 January 2017 CNN video from the USA says about itself:
Donald Trump is under scrutiny for remarks he made during an appearance at the CIA where he suggested the United States might “have another chance” to take Iraq’s oil supply. CNN’s Barbara Starr reports.
By Steve Sweeney:
Monday, January 20, 2020
US accused of sending Isis fighters to Iraq after government vote
The Council of Representatives voted 170-0 on January 5 in a non-binding resolution ordering an end to the US presence in Iraq where it had around 5,200 troops stationed in military bases.
This 6 January 2020 BBC video says about itself:
President Trump has threatened severe sanctions against Iraq after its parliament called on US troops to leave the country.
The Steve Sweeney article continues:
They were invited back into Iraq in 2014 to help in the coalition fight against Isis, after the jihadists took control of large swathes of the country and made Mosul its regional caliphate.
But anger has deepened after the targeted assassination of the Iranian Quds Force commander General Qasem Soleimani who was killed in a US drone strike at Baghdad International airport on January 3.
Washington has given mixed messages about whether it will comply with the request and critics have accused the US of acting as an occupying force for a second time since the illegal invasion in 2003.
Qusai al-Anbari, who leads the Badr Organisation in Anbar province, claimed on Sunday that US forces are relocating Isis fighters from Syria to the region after the area was cleansed of jihadist forces.
This claim was supported by Iraqi security commentator Karim al-Khikani who said Isis operatives had been trained at US bases in Syria, including al-Tanf.
Protests took place across Iraq on Sunday, including the holy cities of Najaf and Karbala as demands for political and economic reform continue to grow.
Preparations are under way for Friday’s “million-man march” called by Islamist cleric Moqtada al-Sadr to demand that US troops leave Iraq.
Mr Sadr called for the government to refrain from attacking the demonstration.
“I hope they are committed to peace, not to harm the security of the people and to subject the country to a fierce civil war,” he said.
Million-man march today to expel all US troops from Iraq: here.
This January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
This 8January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
Status Coup’s Jordan Chariton reported from an Iran war protest in New York City on January 4th, 2020.
This is a particularly difficult moment for US energy suppliers with natural gas overproduction generating extremely low prices and Wall Street investors calling in massive loans on frackers. Financial pundits are warning of serious losses, well closures and bankruptcies. US producers benefit from chaos among their competitors, chaos that seems to be more and more the goal of US foreign policy. With Iran (and Qatar) owning the world’s largest gas field, US suppliers would be grateful for disruption of its exploitation, allowing for greater export of US liquified natural gas. Oil prices rose 4 per cent on the announcement of Soleimani’s assassination: here.
IRANIAN AMERICANS FEEL TRAPPED Mana Kharrazi is the lead plaintiff in one of several lawsuits challenging Trump’s executive order banning travel to the U.S. from seven Muslim-majority countries, including Iran. “I’ve never been in the same room with my mom and all her siblings. I know I might never be able to,” Kharrazi said. “There’s a whole side of a family that I may never see or know.” [HuffPost]
This is a Dutch NOS radio map about United States soldiers’ numbers in the Middle East.
By Lamiat Sabin in Britain:
Tuesday, January 7, 2020
JEREMY CORBYN accused Boris Johnson of kowtowing to US President Donald Trump today over the assassination of an Iranian general to protect the prospect of a post-Brexit trade deal.
The Labour leader also accused the Prime Minister of “hiding behind” his Cabinet colleagues when he was absent from the Commons during the reading of a government statement on Iran.
Earlier in the day, Mr Johnson called a National Security Council meeting with senior government and military officials.
Mr Corbyn urged the government to say what evidence it has to believe that the assassination of Qassem Soleimani in a US airstrike in Baghdad last Friday was carried out in “self-defence”.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said during the statement that Iran should “resist the urge to retaliate.”
Mr Corbyn said: “[Mr Johnson] is scared to stand up to President Trump because he has hitched his wagon to the prospect of a toxic Trump trade deal.
“At this highly dangerous moment, we find the government giving cover and expressing sympathy for what is widely regarded as an illegal act because [it’s] so determined to keep in with Trump.
“Whatever the record of any state official, the principle and the law is that we don’t go around assassinating foreign leaders.”
Campaign Against Arms Trade’s Andrew Smith added his voice to the condemnation of Gen Soleimani’s killing.
Mr Smith suggested that the assassination was ordered by Mr Trump to “help him politically, rather than because of any military threat.
He warned: “Extrajudicial killings of government officials cannot be normalised and the US government cannot be allowed to act in this way on the world stage, regardless of the brutal and appalling record of the Iranian regime.”
In the Commons, Mr Corbyn also asked what the government is doing to secure the release of British-Iranian nationals imprisoned in Iran.
Richard Ratcliffe, whose wife Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe is languishing in a Tehran jail, urged Mr Johnson today to pay a £400 million debt to Iran, as he pledged to do when he was foreign secretary.
He said his wife, who is halfway through a five-year sentence for alleged spying, fears that she could receive a second prison term.
This 8 January 2019 United States TV video says about itself:
Trump Brings U.S. to Brink of War with Iran | The Daily Show
The Trump administration gives muddled explanations of the reasoning behind the Soleimani assassination, while the Pentagon announces plans to withdraw troops from Iraq, then clumsily retracts the statement.
Johnson’s evasiveness on Soleimani’s killing heightens the risk of war: here.
Johnson ‘too craven and cowardly’ to stand up to Trump: here.
Tories ask Iraq ‘let UK troops remain’: here.
Iranian-Americans detained at US-Canada border in wake of Suleimani assassination: here.
Worse than you think: Reasons a US war with Iran would not go well: here.
Iran strikes US bases in Iraq as Pentagon deploys B-52 bombers: here.
This 7 January 2020 video from Kenya says about itself:
WTF! 500 Ugandan GUARDS “Defending” US Embassy In Iraq CAUGHT in Running Battles During Attack!🤦🏾♀️
A Ugandan newspaper is alleging that at least 500 Ugandan guards were caught in running battles with the Iraqis
Mercenary paramilitary corporations like Blackwater recruit cannon fodder for war zones like Iraq in many countries, including African countries. That is illegal in Namibia. It should become illegal everywhere.
This 7 January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
Exploring the Trump administration‘s absolutely bogus justification for the assassination of Iranian leader Qassim Soleimani
From Bernie Sanders‘ Our Revolution organisation in the USA today:
Tragically, this strike came just weeks after the politicians who take money from the military-industrial complex killed a measure supported by Bernie Sanders in the 2020 defense funding bill that would have explicitly forced President Trump to get Congressional approval before taking such an aggressive action that could plunge us into war.
The fact that 188 House Democrats voted to give President Trump an increased military budget without proper restraints is shameful.
With so much power and money against us, the only recourse we have is to organize and prove the power of our strength. That’s why we are reaching out to you directly. Sign if you oppose war with Iran!
Thank you for standing up for peace.
The whole team at Our Revolution
This 6 January 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
Over the weekend, Democracy Now! spoke with New York Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and asked her response to the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. “We need to be tactical about how we can actively resist further escalation on already an unprecedented level of escalation and aggression by the president, and therefore by the United States,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “He did this on behalf of our entire country. And that’s what makes the potential illegality of his action so flagrant, because he did not consult Congress and this was not done with the support of the United States.”
By Karen Meredith in the USA, 6 January 2020:
I’m writing to you with a serious and important ask in light of Donald Trump’s recent erratic and dangerous foreign policy decisions.
Will you join me in signing VoteVets’ petition to demand Congress put a check on Donald Trump and stop him from starting a war with Iran? It only takes a minute to sign and stand in solidarity with all veterans and military families in this moment of uncertainty.
I lost my son in Iraq in 2004 when an unmanned machine gun mounted on his tank accidentally discharged during combat against members of the Iranian-backed Mahdi army.
I supported the Iran deal because had we tried diplomacy first, perhaps my son would be alive today. The deal was working, and I was shocked and alarmed when Donald Trump pulled out of it — exacerbating an already tense situation.
Now, he has brought our country back to the brink of war where the only thing we can be certain about is the uncertainty of what is coming next at any given hour.
I made a promise to my son when I buried him 15 years ago that I would do everything to stop any war, so no other mothers have to go through what I did when I buried my only son. That’s why I’m asking you today:
With no clear plan or strategy, the situation with Iran is devolving by the hour. It’s critical we make our voices heard on this issue as loud and as soon as possible to stop the possibility of a war with Iran. That’s why I’m asking you to join me in signing the petition today.
Thanks for your support,
Gold Star Families Liaison
This 6 January 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
Iranian General Assassinated By Trump Was On Peace Mission At The Time
Desperate to justify the US drone assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo insisted that Washington had made an “intelligence-based assessment” that Soleimani was “actively planning in the region” to attack American interests before he was killed.
Read more here.
From the USA, 7 January 2020:
The people of the world must fight back and demand: No war on Iran!
On Saturday, January 25, actions across the world will oppose a new war in West Asia. Now is the time for all those opposed to war to speak up. Please join us.
Initiators for this call include the International Action Center, ANSWER Coalition, CODEPINK, Popular Resistance, Black Alliance for Peace, National Iranian-American Council (NIAC), Veterans For Peace, US Labor Against the War (USLAW), Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), United National Anti-War Coalition (UNAC), Pastors for Peace/Interreligious Foundation for Community Organization (IFCO), International Workers Solidarity Network, United For Peace and Justice, FIRE (Fight for Immigrants and Refugees Everywhere), Alliance For Global Justice (AFGJ), December 12th Movement, World Beyond War, Peoples Opposition to War Imperialism and Racism (POWIR), Dorothy Day Catholic Worker, Dominican Sisters/ICAN, Nonviolence International, Food Not Bombs, No War on Venezuela and many other anti-war and peace organizations.
This 6 January 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
Former Top Bush Official: I Saw the March to War in 2003. I’m Seeing the Same Thing with Iran Now
We look at the Trump administration’s assassination of Iran’s top military commander Qassem Soleimani with Lawrence Wilkerson, a retired United States Army colonel who served as Secretary of State Colin Powell’s chief of staff from 2002 to 2005. On February 5, 2003, he watched as Powell made the case for war in a speech to the United Nations. He has since become an outspoken critic of U.S. intervention in the Middle East. In 2018, Wilkerson wrote an article for The New York Times titled “I Helped Sell the False Choice of War Once. It’s Happening Again.”
U.S. BARS TOP IRANIAN DIPLOMAT, VIOLATING UN AGREEMENT Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s top diplomat, planned to come to the U.S. to address the United Nations Security Council in a meeting on Jan. 9, but was denied a visa. He had been expected to speak on the U.S. assassination of Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani. [HuffPost]
U.S. WARNS CITIZENS IN ISRAEL OF ROCKET FIRE RISK The United States warned Americans in Israel and the Palestinian territories to be vigilant, citing the risk of rocket fire. The alert issued on the websites of the U.S. State Department and the U.S. embassy in Israel did not specifically mention the killing of Qassem Soleimani, but referred to heightened tensions in the Middle East. [Reuters]
From daily The Morning Star in Britain:
Sunday, January 5, 2020
All efforts must be made to stop war with Iran
OUR Foreign Secretary declares Britain is “on the same page” as a US government whose extrajudicial killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani and a host of others has brought the world to the brink of war.
“On the same page” as a US President who publicly declares he intends to target Iranian “cultural sites”, despite this being a war crime under the Hague Convention and one unanimously condemned by the UN security council just three years ago in response to the widespread destruction of ancient monuments by the Isis terror group.
“On the same page” as Washington’s military despite killing Soleimani on Iraqi territory being a shameless breach of its supposed alliance with Baghdad — one which has prompted Iraq’s parliament to demand the immediate withdrawal of all US troops from its country.
Dominic Raab claims to want to avoid a war. So for that matter does Donald Trump, who ludicrously asserts that he ordered Soleimani’s killing to stop one. But the uproar sweeping the Middle East in the wake of this outrageous breach of international law will be difficult to contain.
Trump pointing to Iranian repression of peaceful protesters in recent weeks, claims by Mike Pompeo that ordinary Iraqis will celebrate Soleimani’s death, are deeply misleading.
It is true that Iran put down popular protests with great savagery; but the arbitrary murder of one of its most senior military officers is clearly sparking popular fury on the streets of its great cities.
Mass protest movements in Lebanon and Iraq, which were indeed opposed to Iranian influence associated with their corrupt governments, will now find their democratic struggle faces threats of subversion in the interests of foreign powers.
Despite issuing inevitable threats of “severe revenge”, Iran has so far confined its specific response to hints it will further breach the terms of the international treaty on nuclear development that the US has in any case already rejected.
International pressure for de-escalation is vital if a new Middle Eastern war likely to take millions of lives and ruin millions more is to be avoided: but Britain will not assist that process by parroting US warnings to Iran not to retaliate like a playground bully’s weedy sidekick.
Trump’s reckless action puts British lives in danger as well as Iranian, Iraqi and US ones, and this is an escalation the whole world can see comes from the White House and nowhere else, the same White House that tore up the nuclear deal and shredded landmark arms limitation treaties with Russia that signalled an end to the cold war, the same White House that has been trying for a year to impose an unelected puppet as president of Venezuela and which stood behind the brutal military takeover in Bolivia last month.
In short the same White House that is the biggest threat to peace and security on the planet, including in its role as denier-in-chief of the climate change catastrophe we are now seeing unfolding in Australia on an apocalyptic scale.
While a number of Labour leadership hopefuls cautiously distance themselves from the radical manifesto presented at last month’s general election (most of them, ironically, prominent supporters of the ultra-Remain tendency that by any measure did Labour far more damage than pledges to provide free broadband or renationalise water) it is hard not to feel grateful that as this crisis develops Labour is still led by an anti-imperialist who has called out US belligerence.
Jeremy Corbyn’s demands the privy council urgently meet to see how war can be avoided contrast with the radio silence from a Prime Minister who can’t be bothered to cut short his Christmas holiday in the Caribbean.
Other leading Labour figures have also stepped up to the plate, noting the urgency of building an anti-war movement. As over 80 demonstrations against war in the US alone this weekend demonstrate, the world agrees.
This 5 January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
Status Coup’s Jordan Chariton spoke with Vietnam War veteran John at an Iran War protest in New York City on January 4th, 2020.
This 4 January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
A commenter reacted:
The State Department said all Americans should leave Iraq. Aren’t our troops Americans too?
This 5 January 2020 video says about itself:
Iraq’s Parliament passes resolution calling for expulsion of US troops from the country