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War Whore

U.S. will send 130 "military advisors" to Iraq

© AFP Photo / Karim Sahib
US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced that the United States has sent another 130 "military advisers" to Iraq's Kurdistan region in an ongoing effort to halt the advance of Islamic State militants.

Hagel made the announcement while speaking to troops in California. In a statement describing the decision, the defense official said the new team would "assess the scope of the humanitarian mission and develop additional humanitarian assistance options beyond the current airdrop effort in support of displaced Iraqi civilians trapped on Sinjar Mountain by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant."

The new "assessment team" reportedly arrived in Erbil on Tuesday, and is comprised of a significant portion of Marines. Officials however emphasized that the new advisers are not combat troops, as President Obama has insisted American troops would not become involved in another ground campaign in Iraq.
Breaking: #SecDef Hagel announces that additional assessment team will be sent to #Iraq

- U.S. Dept of Defense (@DeptofDefense) August 12, 2014
Apple Green

EU goes bananas! Tries to pressure Latin America not to export food to Russia

© RT
The European Union is reported to be planning to dissuade Latin American countries from providing Russia with agricultural produce, saying it would be unfair and 'difficult to justify.'

"We will be talking to the countries that would potentially replacing our exports to indicate that we would expect them not to profit unfairly from the current situation," the Financial Times (FT) quotes one senior EU official talking at a briefing on the situation in Ukraine on Monday.

The food producers could sign new contracts with Russia, but it would be "difficult to justify" the desire of the countries to pursue the diplomatic initiatives to fill the gap left by the EU, the official added.

Another EU official explained that negotiations could be part of political discussions aimed at addressing the importance of a united international front on Ukraine, rather than hindering food exports to Russia.

Despite being the world's largest trading bloc, the EU has little influence, as its 15-year negotiations with Latin America's Mercosur have been mired in difficulties over market access.

Since Russia imposed an import ban on agricultural products from the EU, US, Australia, Norway and Canada, several Latin America countries and trade groups have said Moscow's measures could offer them a lucrative windfall.

Health

Kiev opposes Russian escort for delivery of humanitarian convoy

© RIA Novosti / Maksim Blinov
Truck convoy sets out from Alabino near Moscow, will deliver humanitarian relief aid to Ukraine.
Kiev intends to hold up the internationally-supervised Russian humanitarian aid convoy meant for the Ukraine's east for at least a week, a spokesman for the Ukrainian military said.

Ukraine said the time is needed for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which is contributing to the Moscow-initiated mission, to establish where the aid should go in the Ukrainian region engulfed by civil war.

However, Russia's Emergencies Ministry spokesman, Aleksandr Dobryshevsky, said that the destination for the Russian humanitarian aid will be determined jointly by Moscow's representatives, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Ukrainian government.

The convoy of 280 trucks dispatched on Tuesday "did not pass the ICRC certification," Andrey Lysenko said.

Presidential aide Valery Chaliy said Kiev wants the entire cargo to be unloaded on the border and transferred to Red Cross vehicles.

"We will not allow any escort of the Russian Emergencies Ministry or Russian military," he said. "Ukraine will take responsibility for this procedure."

Lysenko claimed that the convoy consists of repainted military trucks and is accompanied by an S-300 air defense system, according to the news agency Ukraine National News.

Vader

Psychopathy unmasked: A president bares his teeth

U.S. President Barack Obama
© Reuters/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Barack Obama
"We tortured some folks," President Obama casually remarked as a kind of afterthought at the end of his Friday afternoon press conference.

Let those brutally cavalier words be chiseled deep into the door of his soon-to-be-built shrine to himself so that visitors can be warned to "Abandon hope, all ye who enter here."

"Folks" should also be advised to bring their own barf bags, because they probably won't be on sale in the gift shop alongside Barack's (TM) golf bags.... and the sweatshop-produced Bo and Sunny plushies and Michelle's overpriced "Drink Up! (TM) plastic bottles of designer tap water.

Seriously. I didn't think that the Drone President could possibly do or say anything else to make me queasier than I normally feel whenever I look at him on TV. So I really do have to hand it to him. He totally outdid himself in the sociopathy department on Friday.

Even normally staunch Obama supporters like Charles Pierce are disgusted. (" ... If the president thinks he can use the (torture) word and then just walk away from its profound implication in a cloud of banalities, he's been out on the golf course without a hat too long. Yeesh.")

The only thing worse than Obama's folksy sangfroid was that he admitted the torture and promised protection for the torturers all by himself, with no prodding whatsoever from the feeble White House press corps. They were more interested in the theatrical lawsuit being brought by Republicans, and of course, the kidnapped Israeli soldier who is so much more important to their corporate sponsors than 1400 slaughtered Palestinian civilians.

When Obama shockingly confessed to torture and the enabling of torture, there was not one single follow-up question from the scribbling stenographers in the audience.
Eye 1

Wilders calls for anti-Islam march in The Hague; city council to discuss problem district

© Unknown
Dutch puppet politician Geert Wilders
Geert Wilders is calling on 'everyone' to take part in an anti-Islam demonstration in The Hague Schilderswijk district on September 20.

The anti-Islam PVV party leader made the call on Wednesday morning following reports in the Telegraaf about continuing unrest in the district.

Last weekend, a riot broke out in the district when around 150 Muslim youngsters began an illegal protest, blocking the route of a legal march against Muslim radicals and the IS (Islamic State) terror group.

It was the latest in a string of problems in the Schilderswijk which includes the harassment of psychiatric patients, fans of ISIS who dream of a caliphate in the area and anti-semitism.

Comment: Interesting developments since a bunch of ISIS flag-waving people showed up at a pro-Gaza demonstration in the Hague. This ''string of problems'' will not only become a trouble for peaceful demonstrators who want to spread the truth about Israel's inhumane actions, it is also diverting people's attention away from other important matters.

Also see: SOTT EXCLUSIVE - The Bigger Picture: Pro-ISIS demonstrators in the Netherlands

Bizarro Earth

Psychopaths can't understand empathy: A Russian convoy carrying aid to Ukraine is dogged by suspicion


A gift horse or a Trojan horse?

That about summed up the latest, almost farcical encounter between Moscow and Kiev, as a mammoth convoy of some 260 trucks thundered across Russia on Tuesday bearing thousands of tons of humanitarian aid for the people of the besieged Ukrainian city of Luhansk.

The Kremlin has insisted that it is interested only in relieving the suffering of civilians and has called for the supplies to be delivered speedily under the auspices of the International Committee of the Red Cross. But Ukraine, suspecting that the convoy is more a threat than a sincere offer of help - perhaps an attempt to infiltrate Russian forces into the country under the guise of a humanitarian mission - said on Tuesday that the trucks would be barred at the border.


Comment: If it is delivered under the auspices of the International Committee of the Red Cross, what is the problem? Does the Kiev junta not trust the Red cross? Does the suspicion in Kiev feed the starving population in Luhansk?


The tumult seemed the latest in a series of international episodes involving President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia casting himself as a savior while the objects of his largess try to find a way to avoid taking it. Even the Red Cross did not seem that eager to become embroiled in the situation, with its spokesman slow to return telephone calls or saying simply that the technical details were incomplete
Rocket

3 countries are at risk if Kiev shelling leads to Gorlovka chemical leaks

toxic waste
© AFP Photo / Alexander Khudoteply
Employees of Ukrainian Emergency Ministry carry a barrel containing highly toxic waste during the removal of waste containers from the former Soviet military chemical plant in Gorlovka, an industrial city in the Donetsk region.
Millions of people will be affected if shelling of the village of Gorlovka by the Ukrainian army leads to leaks at local chemical plants, experts warn, adding that the toxic clouds are also capable of spreading around the world.

A spokesman for Ukraine's largest chemical plant, Stirol, made headlines on Monday after releasing a video appeal, in which he said that "irresponsible actions" by the military, who are fighting the anti-Kiev rebels in the area, may cause a massive ecological disaster.

But there's another large chemical facility in Gorlovka, which is likely to drastically increase the scale of the catastrophe if its hit by Ukrainian shells, Viktoria Polyakova, chairman of the Ukrainian ecological NGO Deko-Vita, told RT's Russian service.

The removal of hazardous materials from the Gorlovka Sate Chemical Plant, which is situated just a couple of kilometers away from the Stirol facilities, has been halted for a long time now due to military action, she said.

According to Polyakova, the Gorlovka Sate Chemical Plant was in disastrous condition even before the fighting broke in the Donetsk Region this spring.

The working lifespan of the protective structures at the plant has expired long ago and the slightest damage will result in the release of toxic substances from the storages, she said.

"There are a lot of dangerous substances there: TNT and sulfates, totaling around 300,000 tons, which are lying around in the open air. There are also 11,600 types of different poisonous and highly dangerous substances in the repository and they pollute the soil. The service life of these storages expired back in 1998," the ecologists said.

Comment: Will the Neo-Nazi Junta in Kiev and their Masters at NATO and the Pentagon care for the effected people in Ukraine, Belarus, or Russia if the chemical plant is bombed and leaks spread? Probably not.

Bad Guys

ISIS militants threaten to attack America

Even as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria fights to expand the territory under its control in the Middle East, statements from members of ISIS suggest the terror group views America as a future target.

"Everywhere our camera went, there seemed to be a young man eager to extol the virtues of the newly formed caliphate," VICE Media's Medyan Dairieh narrated in part four of his video report from the ISIS-controlled Syrian city of Raqqa, which the terror group has proclaimed the capital of its newly declared Islamic caliphate.

"I swear to Allah we will divide America in two," one child, who looked no older than 12, declared to VICE Media in an angry rant, speaking as if he was already a member of the terror group. "And we'll destroy the enemies of the religion all of them, all who fight the Islamic State."

Comment: Comment: ISIS is an American creation and they are vowing to attack America. America's in bed with strange fellows.

Bad Guys

U.S., NATO war crimes against thousands of Afghan civilians ignored - Amnesty


One of many victims of U.S. strikes: A 3-month old child wounded in Jalalabad due to U.S. bombardment of residential areas.
Apparent war crimes committed by US and NATO troops in Afghanistan have gone uninvestigated, leaving the families of thousands of the victims without justice, Amnesty International said in a new report.

"Thousands of Afghans have been killed or injured by US forces since the invasion, but the victims and their families have little chance of redress. The US military justice system almost always fails to hold its soldiers accountable for unlawful killings and other abuses," said Richard Bennett, Amnesty International's Asia Pacific Director.

"None of the cases that we looked into - involving more than 140 civilian deaths - were prosecuted by the US military. Evidence of possible war crimes and unlawful killings has seemingly been ignored."
Bullseye

Noam Chomsky on Israel's actions in Gaza - "much worse than apartheid"

blue chomsky
© shamantrixx.deviantart.com
Professor Noam Chomsky tells it like it is.
The United States is complicit in human rights violations committed by Israel against Gaza, said linguist and political scientist Noam Chomsky.

Chomsky told Democracy Now that U.S. coverage of the shelling reflected Israeli propaganda, and he dismissed a widely quoted remark by Israel's former prime minister, Golda Meir, as dishonest and cruel.

Bob Schieffer, host of CBS' Face the Nation, repeated the quote - "We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children, but we can never forgive them for forcing us to kill their children" - on a recent broadcast, and Chomsky said U.S. media coverage has been "shameful."

"I guess maybe the best comment about that was made by the great Israeli journalist Amira Hass, who just described (Meir's remark) as 'sadism masked as compassion,'" Chomsky said. "That's about the right characterization."

He said the U.S. had violated its own laws by providing military and monetary support to Israel in its campaign against Gaza.

"You look at U.S. foreign assistance law, it bars any military assistance to any one country, unit, whatever, engaged in consistent human rights violations," Chomsky said. "Well, you know, Israel's violation of human rights violations is so extreme and consistent that you hardly have to argue about it. That means that U.S. aid to Israel is in - military aid, is in direct violation of U.S. law."


Comment: The U.S. military and monetary support of Israel is not only a violation of U.S. law, it is also a violation of International Humanitarian Law based on the Geneva Conventions and its subsequent protocols and the Hague Convention.

- Soldiers who surrender or who are hors de combat are entitled to respect for their lives and their moral and physical integrity. It is forbidden to kill or injure them.

- The wounded and sick must be collected and cared for by the party to the conflict which has them in its power. Protection also covers medical personnel, establishments, transports and equipment. The emblem of the red cross, red crescent or red crystal is the sign of such protection and must be respected.

- Captured combatants are entitled to respect for their lives, dignity, personal rights and convictions. They must be protected against all acts of violence and reprisals. They must have the right to correspond with their families and to receive relief.

- Civilians under the authority of a party to the conflict or an occupying power of which they are not nationals are entitled to respect for their lives, dignity, personal rights and convictions.

- Everyone must be entitled to benefit from fundamental judicial guarantees. No one must be sentenced without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court. No one must be held responsible for an act he has not committed. No one must be subjected to physical or mental torture, corporal punishment or cruel or degrading treatment.

- Parties to a conflict and members of their armed forces do not have an unlimited choice of methods and means of warfare. It is prohibited to employ weapons or methods of warfare of a nature to cause unnecessary losses or excessive suffering.

- Parties to a conflict must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants in order to spare civilian population and property. Adequate precautions shall be taken in this regard before launching an attack.

The International Committee of the Red Cross is regarded as the "guardian" of the Geneva Conventions and the various other treaties that constitute international humanitarian law. It cannot, however, act as either policeman or judge. These functions belong to governments, the parties to international treaties, who are required to prevent and put an end to violation of IHL. They have also an obligation to punish those responsible of what are known as "grave breaches" of IHL or war crimes.

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