Tag Archives: iraq

War Supplemental Vote Early Next Week

Here is status of the Iraq-Afghanistan-Pakistan war supplemental bill for the remainder of 2009.

According to a report I received from a constituent who talked with Maine Rep. Chellie Pingree’s Military Legislative Assistant, Eric Hansen, the bill is in the House Appropriations Committee now and that it would likely be voted on in the House of Representatives as early as next week.

President Obama had requested $83 billion for the war supplemental but House Democrats have added $9.3 billion to that request to bring the supplemental to now stand at $94.2 billion.

According to Hansen Rep. Pingree would vote on the supplemental and he said that she wants to first "see what form the bill takes" before deciding on her vote. He said that the Congresswoman was wanting to see if bench marks and timelines were included in the bill. So far Obama has not submitted any timelines on ending the Afghanistan occupation.

Hansen said that the war supplemental will also include funds for economic assistance to the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan. He talked about "soft power" options being important like moving some Pakistan funds from the Pentagon to the State Department’s control for diplomatic purposes and for expansion of counter-insurgency capabilities.

Hansen also said that Rep. Pingree was seriously considering signing on as a co-sponsor to a bill presented by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) that would "require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to Congress outlining the United States exit strategy for United States military forces in Afghanistan participating in Operation Enduring Freedom."

As of today the cost of the war in Afghanistan to American taxpayers has been more than $172 billion and the Iraq war has cost more than $656 billion.

It is important to remember that Obama has also already requested $130 billion for war funding for fiscal year 2010.

Please make a call immediately to your member of your state Congressional delegation. Urge them to vote against any more war funding.

Where is everyone?

Where is the rage? “Hundreds” of demonstrators? It seems as though since Obama has been elected people have let down their guard. At our regular vigil in Salt Lake City not long ago a bus driver pulled up and shouted out “Obama won, why are you still out here?” There’s still a war, there are still injustices, there is still corporate control and domination. Now, more than ever, we need to hit the streets and demand an end to all of this!


There is an interesting conversation happening over on Facebook about the article I posted,

The Emperor’s New Clothes

I have hidden the names of all the commentors, but here are the contents of the response thus far:

Respondent 1:  Are there actually people dumb or gullible enough to believe the absurdly blatant lies upon which this left wing loon bases his ideological rants? Everything I read in the limited time I could stomach the contents of this Bush-hating, America-bashing diatribe is blatantly false.

Respondent 2:  How did this idiot get in here?

Respondent 1:  Anybody that doesn’t agree with you is an idiot? That’s the left wing strategy — when you can’t argue with the facts, disparage the presenter and / or make up your own "facts."

This article says the U.S. killed 1.0MM Iraqi’s? Even Tim Robbins only came up with 400,000 when he fabricated his number. The U.N. and IRC both estimate the number at …  Read More75,000 people, which is roughly the same number of innocent Iraqi’s that Saddam Hussein killed every 4 months, year after year after year. If Saddam Hussein were still in power, he would have murdered far more people than were killed by U.S. forces since they removed him from power. Instead, this author makes up numbers (among other things) to make the US look bad. The U.S. is a great, noble, nation — an opinion that apparently makes me an idiot.

I can respect the viewpoints of others, and agree to disagree. When a link like this shows up on my home page, I want to be clear that I do not support such nonsense.

DeeIdentifying people as "dumb", "idiot", "gullible enough", "America bashing" or "nonsense" are all names that are not respectful. I am hopeful that people here can engage in dialogue without resorting to such labels or name calling and can indeed "agree to disagree" or choose to delete the offensive persons from their friends list. Continue reading

Shoes for Bush action

It warms my heart when people take an event in the news and turn it into action:

SHOES FOR BUSH action "For the widows, the orphans, and those killed in Iraq."

send me your old shoes to take to DC. ALL SHOES DONATED to the needy in the DC/Baltimore area and distributed by the DC Greens

  On January 20th,tens of thousands of people will be gathering to celebrate the Inaugural of President Barrack Obama.It will be a historical marker  and a joyous and celebratory occasion. However, the promise of change, does not mean that we can shut the door, on the past eight horrific years of the Bush administration and wipe clean the images of  shear terror, torture and suffering on the faces innocent Iraqis who have faced death and total destruction of their country. Also, it will not be easy for our own families, like Melida and Carlos Arredondo who have lost their child to an unjust and immoral war. Americans of conscience are grieving for our children and  for those in Iraq. To watch president Bush leave office, unaccountable is like rubbing salt into a wound.

On Monday, January 19th at 11:00 people will be converging at a permitted site near the White House for what may be a cathartic action of hurling a shoe at an image of President Bush. In the spirit of Mutadhar Al-Zaidi and in solidarity with the people of Iraq, we invite you to join us.

If you are will be in town for the Inaugural, bring an extra pair of shoes with you! If you cannot be there with us you can send us your shoes and we will take them to DC in a U-Haul. No Bomb-sniffing dogs at our post office! Unfortunately if you send shoes to the White House they are taken to a remote location and the gesture will be for not.

 We are designating a page  on this web site to post the names of people who are collecting shoes in your area. These people will deliver  the shoes to collection points where those who will be traveling  to DC, by car, will pick bring them up.

Please consider writing notes and putting them in your shoes. We will read them at the  SHOES FOR BUSH event where documentary film maker Scott Hamann will be recording this historic mass action. Artists are invited to be creative if they choose to create a work of art work with their shoes.

ALL SHOES WILL BE DONATED TO THE NEEDY IN THE WASHINGTON/BALTIMORE AREA. A few will be saved for posterity and perhaps we should donate those to the Bush Library.

My appreciation goes out David Swanson for his literary contribution and support as well as to Andrew Lehman, Marcia Bernstein and Dana Simpson for their contribution of web site creation, The Washington Peace Center, the DC Statehood Green Party and my activist friends and organizations in DC who are supporting this mass action.

Jamilla El-Shafei

You too can take a swipe!


From the rawstory

The aim of "Sock and Awe" (www.sockandawe.com), launched by Britain’s Alex Tew, is to knock Bush out with a shoe, a feat already attained by 1.4 million players, according to the website Tuesday.

Aptly named after the US "Shock and Awe" military campaign to knock out Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, the game gives players 30 seconds to aim at a figure of Bush ducking behind a rostrum.

It was in protest against the Bush administration’s Iraqi policy that journalist Durgham Zaidi threw both his shoes at the outgoing president Sunday during his swansong visit to the battleground. The action won Zaidi widespread plaudits in the Arab world where Bush’s policies have drawn broad hostility.

Why Impeachment Should Still be on the Table

The Emperor’s New Clothes
(or Bil Kundara* America)
*a threatening remark involving the potential use of a shoe

By Vi Ransel


Our strutting, imperial president
paid his farewell visit to Iraq
where he appeared with puppet, Nouri al-Maliki,
not expecting to find himself under attack.

He stood in front of the world’s TV cameras
and pontificated at a press conference podium
“The work hasn’t been easy, but it’s been necessary” he said,
thus exposing America as the world’s moral colon


with this flippant dismissal of four million refugees
and the destruction of an entire society,
the erasure of the beginnings of Western Civilization
and the taking of more than a million Iraqi lives

by means of his aggressive and illegal war
on a non-threatening, essentially unarmed nation.
And then Bush got as close as he’d ever come
to confronting the reality of one of his failures.

As this genocidal, sociopathic Upper Class Twit
was doing a rhetorical backstroke in Iraqi blood,
he was given a final and fitting tribute
in the universal language of television.

A young, Iraqi journalist introduced him
to one of the Middle East’s most well-known customs
which exposed the indecency of George W. Bush
like Joe Welch did to McCarthy and his Commission.

While world journalists still refuse to ask the questions
which would skewer Bush with his own callous charade,
he stood up and with the courage of his convictions
threw his shoes into George W. Bush’s smug face.

He yelled “Ya kalb!” calling Bush “You Dog!”
treating the occupier to a souvenir of his “victory”,
not a shower of flowers from grateful Iraqis,
but a shower of shoes from Muntather al-Zaidi.


This is the farewell kiss, you dog.
This is a gift from the Iraqis, he went on.
This is from those who were killed in Iraq,
from the injured, the widows and the orphans.

Bush ducked the first shoe and in seconds
Muntather had fired off the other
aimed just above Bush’s head, it hit the American flag,
and brought a whole new meaning to the term “shoe bomber”.

In most Middle Eastern countries, the shoe
is seen as an object of dirt, pollution and disrespect
and can be used to insult or to denigrate someone
and millions the world over share the same contempt

for this miserable, draft-dodging chicken hawk
who’s conducted a War of Terror and stunning atrocities
from the distant safety of his Washington Offal Office
for eight years and made it seem like eternity.

And while protected by billions in military technology,
still he stood exposed, not as emperor, but as fool,
and he proved he was no match for a man without a weapon,
armed with only the truth and two of his shoes.

Overnight Muntather al-Zaidi became
one of the most beloved people on the face of the earth,
and even in America the man who humiliated the president
is more popular than the president himself.

Please go to http://www.uruknet.info and click on either “Sacred Shoe” or “The Hero Who Made Bush’s Head a Playground for His Shoes” to sign a petition for the release of this courageous young man. Thank you. Thanks also to Layla Anwar for the term “bil kundara” and its definiton.

Poet and part-time actor Viola Ransel is a Senior Contributing Editor with CJO.

It’s the wars, silly

Tonight at our weekly sidewalk peace vigil (ongoing weekly since 2001), a bus driver stopped in front of us, opened the door, and said "Obama won, so why are you still out here?".  I answered:  "Because there are still wars going on."  He nodded his head in agreement and then stated, "I’m afraid it’s going to get worse before it gets better."

Although people are really happy that Obama has won the presidential race in an historic presidential election, and that the Bush cronies will no longer be in office, I do feel that there is cautious optimism….

Cynthia McKinney’s TV ads on the Issues

Single Payer Health Care

View the rest of Cynthia’s tv ads:
Sustainable Investment instead of Corporate Bailouts
Green Values – Grassroots Democracy, Peace Social Justice, Environmental Wisdom
Green Party Seat At The Table will invite the Public
Constrained by the Two Party Paradigm
Restore Our Constitutional Rights
Rebuild the Economy with Energy Efficient Cars
Bring All The Troops Home
Katrina survivors right of return
Oppose Africom

Shot and edited by Don Debar

Order 81: Mutant Seeds for Mesopotamia

Thanks to Paul Bremer, this is what “democracy” looks like in Iraq:

Mutant Seeds for Mesopotamia
By Andrew Bosworth, Ph.D.Uruknet,

One would think that Iraqi farmers, now prospering under “freedom” and “democracy,” would be able
to plant the seeds of their choosing, but that choice, under little-known Order 81, would be illegal. But first, it is important to set the context.

Most people have never heard of the infamous “100 Orders,” but they help explain why the majority of
Iraqis remain opposed to foreign occupation. The 100 Orders allow multinational corporations to basically privatize an entire nation, and this degree of foreign and private control has not been witnessed since the days of the British East India Company and its extraterritoriality treaties.

A few examples of the 100 Orders are illuminating: — Order 39 allows for the tax-free remittance of all corporate profits. — Order 17 grants foreign contractors, including private security firms, immunity from Iraq’s laws. — Orders 57 and 77 ensure the implementation of the orders by placing U.S.-appointed auditors and inspector general in every government ministry, with five-year terms and with sweeping authority over contracts, programs, employees and regulations. (1)

Back to one of the most blatant orders of all: Order 81. Under this mandate, Iraq’s commercial farmers must now buy “registered seeds.” These are normally imported by Monsanto, Cargill and the World Wide Wheat Company.
Continue reading

Cynthia McKinney’s Debate Reponse to Our Biggest Lesson from the war in Iraq