Sunday, May 11, 2008

"THUNDER ROAD"-BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN'S VIDEO TRIBUTE TO THE FORGOTTEN HEROES OF THE IRAQ WAR

Only "THE BOSS" knows how to spell out in song the true picture of the Iraq war. "Thunder Road" is Bruce Springsteen's musical video tribute to the brave young men and women who are caught in the middle of an ugly war started for no reason whatsoever by President Bush, Vice President Cheney and a band of "chickenhawks" who NEVER served a day in their life in the uniform of any branch of the Armed Forces of the United States of America.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hb8SCqWRc7I

DEAR MR. PRESIDENT: HOW DO YOU SLEEP KNOWING YOU STARTED ALL THIS? (GRAPHIC MUSIC VIDEO OF IRAQ WAR)

There have been many music videos made of the Iraq war, but this is one of the best because it asks the question of President Bush how does he sleep knowing he started all this. His daughters will never see service in the military, nor will Dick Cheney's daughter. In fact, very few members of Congress have a loved one serving in the military of the United States of America.

This is a VIDEO you can't just watch ONCE. It shows graphic footage from the war and asks the question on the minds of so many people: "Mr President: How do you sleep at night knowing you started all this?"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWaaXiFmRG0

IRAQ WAR (MUST SEE VIDEO)

Far too many Americans have been shielded by the mainstream media from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. And when the media does show something from the wars, it is some sanitized version of the war that is right out of Pentagon propaganda files. This VIDEO doesn't pull any punches and shows the war as it is seen by our brave young soldiers and Marines fighting the war. We are determined to not let their valor go unnoticed. BILL CORCORAN, editor of this blog.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MU4CwBBSdyE

NOT FOR THE TIMID: IRAQ WAR MUSIC VIDEO. VERY GRAPHIC

This is a collection of scenes from the Iraq war and is not for the timid, but is posted for people who want to know what our troops are REALLY going through in Iraq.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MU4CwBBSdyE

NEW VIDEO SHOWS 2nd Battalion 24th Marines Firefight In Yusufiyah, Iraq

This video shows a Marine unit in a firefight in Yusufiyah, Iraq. Warning: Explicit language.
We show this video because the mainstream media in the United States no longer covers the Iraq war the way it should be covered.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xd-cUy3bV7c

CBS' LARA LOGAN AND A NEW VIDEO OF EYE TO EYE FIGHT IN SADR CITY

Lara Logan, the CBS News war correspondent, interviews Lt. Col. Dan Barnett, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, about the battle for Sadr City in this NEW video from CBS News on the war in Iraq.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSe6FT-pzDE&feature=related

GRIPPING VIDEO OF A NIGHTVISION FIREFIGHT IN SADR CITY (NEW)

Ever wonder what our brave young soldiers and Marines go through during a night fight? Now you can see exactly what it is like as seen through night vision goggles on this exclusive YouTube video of a recent firefight in Sadr City.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UjI--xP9fk

TEN GIS KILLED IN FIRST TEN DAYS OF MAY: NAMES AND HOMETOWNS

This is the latest casualty list from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Names of deceased are in BLUE and additional information can be obtained by clickong the name of the deceased GI.

Date
Total
Name
Place of Death - Province
Cause of Death
10-May-2008
1
US: 1 UK: 0 Other: 0

US
NAME NOT RELEASED YET
Al Asad - Anbar
Non-hostile - vehicle accident
09-May-2008
1
US: 1 UK: 0 Other: 0

US
Specialist Mary J. Jaenichen
Iskandariyah - Babil
Non-hostile - injury
06-May-2008
2
US: 2 UK: 0 Other: 0

US
Private 1st Class Aaron J. Ward
Anbar Province
Hostile - hostile fire - small arms fire

US
Specialist Alex D. Gonzalez
Mosul - Ninewah
Hostile - hostile fire - small arms fire, RPG
02-May-2008
3
US: 1 UK: 0 Other: 2

GE
Lieutenant Giorgi Margiev
Diyala Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

GE
Corporal Zura Gvenetadze
Diyala Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

US
Private Corey L. Hicks
Baghdad (eastern part)
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack
01-May-2008
5
US: 5 UK: 0 Other: 0

US
Lance Corporal Casey L. Casanova
Al Anbar Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

US
Corporal Miguel A. Guzman
Al Anbar Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

US
Lance Corporal James F. Kimple
Al Anbar Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

US
Sergeant Glen E. Martinez
Al Anbar Province
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack

US
Specialist Jeffrey F. Nichols
Baghdad (central)
Hostile - hostile fire - IED attack (VBIED)
Total
12
US: 10 UK: 0 Other: 2


MARINE CORPS TIMES: ON AGAIN OFF AGAIN SHIFT OF MARINES TO AFGHANISTAN IS ON AGAIN

Shift of Marines to Afghanistan back on table

By Andrew Tilghman - Staff writerPosted : Sunday May 11, 2008 10:02:51 EDT
http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2008/05/marine_afghanistan_051008w/

Even if peace breaks out across Anbar province and the rest of Iraq, Marines may not get a break from the current op tempo.

Next stop: Afghanistan. Not this year — but maybe in 2009.

Senior Pentagon officials say the proposal to shift Marines out of Iraq and into Afghanistan in large numbers is back on the table.

Top military leaders shot down the idea last fall when Commandant Gen. James Conway said publicly that he’d like to leave Iraq to the Army and essentially take over the U.S. mission in Afghanistan.

Click on this link to read full account: http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2008/05/marine_afghanistan_051008w/

IRAQ'S AMBASSADOR TO US TICKED OFF AT DEMS FOR WANTING TO CUT FUNDING FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF IRAQ

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Iraq's ambassador to the United States insisted Sunday his government was doing more to pay its own way as angry Democrats in Congress push to cut US funding for reconstruction.

Iraq envoy rejects Democrats' anger over US funding
21 minutes ago
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080511/pl_afp/usiraqcongresspoliticsbudget

Samir Sumaidaie told CNN: "We are taking over as fast as we can. We are taking over on the construction side. We are taking over on the security side.

"And as time goes on, the money spent by the Americans on reconstruction or on our arms (armed) services will come down to zero and we'll take on the full load," he said.

Democrats say that with Iraq profiting from booming oil prices, its government is letting billions of dollars sit idle in US bank accounts as Washington spends up to 12 billion dollars a month in the country.

The Senate's armed services committee has proposed banning US funds for all large-scale projects in Iraq costing above two million dollars, demanding Baghdad assume a larger share of reconstruction costs.

Click on link to continue reading

AP IMPACT: NUMBER OF DISABLED VETS RISING

WASHINGTON - Increasing numbers of U.S. troops have left the military with damaged bodies and minds, an ever-larger pool of disabled veterans that will cost the nation billions for decades to come — even as the total population of America's vets shrinks.

By JENNIFER C. KERR, Associated Press Writer 23 minutes ago
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080511/ap_on_re_us/disabled_veterans

Despite the decline in total vets — as soldiers from World War II and Korea die — the government expects to be spending $59 billion a year to compensate injured warriors in 25 years, up from today's $29 billion, according to internal documents obtained by The Associated Press. And the Veterans Affairs Department concedes the bill could be much higher.

Why?

Worse wounds. More disabilities. More vets aware of the benefits and quicker to file for them.
Also, ironically, advanced medical care. Troops come home with devastating injuries that might well have killed them in earlier wars.

Time is also a factor when it comes to disability compensation costs. Payments tend to go up as veterans age, and an increasing number of soldiers from the Vietnam War will be getting bigger payments as they get older and are less able to work around their disabilities.

The number of disabled veterans has jumped by 25 percent since 2001 — to 2.9 million — and the cause really is no mystery.

"This is a cost of war," says Steve Smithson, a deputy director at the American Legion. "We're still producing veterans. We've been in a war in Iraq for five years now, and the war on terror since 9/11."

VA and Census Bureau figures show the previous six-year period, before hostilities in Afghanistan and Iraq, saw a more modest increase of 4 percent in the number of disabled vets.

Veterans can make claims for disability benefits long after their military service has ended.
Today's veterans — disabled or not — number nearly 24 million. That population is projected by the VA to fall under 15 million by 2033, mostly because of dying World War II and Korean War vets. But costs are expected to rise.

Inflation accounts for a big chunk of the increase. But even when the VA factors out inflation, the compensation for disabled veterans would still grow from $29 billion to $33 billion in today's dollars — a more than 10 percent increase. And the department acknowledges the estimate could rise by 30 percent.

VA officials were not eager to talk about reasons for the increases. They declined several requests for interviews. In a written response to a handful of questions, the agency noted a few factors at play in the rising costs, such as the aging veterans population, an increase in the number of disabilities claimed and the severity of injuries sustained.

Click on link to read full story.

TIMES ONLINE GRAPHIC VIDEO SHOWING PARADING OF FIGHTER'S BODIES IN SADR CITY

This graphic video and accompanying story shows fighter's bodies being paraded as a taunt to the Mahdi Army in the Sadr City section of Baghdad.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/iraq/article3908164.ece

WASHINGTON POST: DEAL REACHED ON CEASEFIRE IN SADR CITY. WILL IT HOLD?

There have been a number of deals made between warring factions in Iraq on a ceasefire, but the problem is many of militants are in separate groups and they don't feel an obligation to abide by the ceasefire.

Will this time be different? Only time will tell.

Deal Reached to End Fighting in Sadr City Agreement Reported by Aide to Cleric

By Sholnn Freeman and Ernesto LondoƱo Washington Post Staff Writers Sunday, May 11, 2008; A21

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/05/10/AR2008051000626.html

BAGHDAD, May 10 -- A top aide to Moqtada al-Sadr said Saturday that the influential Shiite cleric had reached an agreement with lawmakers aligned with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to end fighting in the Sadr City district of the capital.

The aide, Salah al-Obaidi, said Sadr agreed to take his Mahdi Army militia off the streets as early as Sunday in exchange for restrictions on raids and arrests. The agreement also includes provisions to reopen roads into Sadr City and expand government humanitarian assistance, he said.

Obaidi said the deal was reached after several days of discussions between leaders in Sadr's political movement and the United Iraqi Alliance, the majority bloc in Iraq's parliament.
Ali Dabbagh, chief spokesman for Maliki, said the government supported the agreement but would continue a security operation aimed at ridding Sadr City of gunmen and heavy weapons.

U.S. military officials did not respond to requests for comment about the truce, and Dabbagh said the agreement did not include language calling for the withdrawal of American troops from Sadr City.

Violent clashes have erupted almost daily in Sadr City since late March, leaving as many as 500 people dead and 2,100 injured. The conflict has pitted Sadr, who also leads one of Iraq's most popular Shiite political organizations, against Shiite-led government forces backed by the U.S. military.

The U.S. military has said it has killed more than 200 fighters in the past month in the area, where it says militiamen have fired hundreds of rockets and mortars at U.S. and Iraqi targets.
Meanwhile, Maliki launched an operation Saturday in northern Iraq to crack down on Sunni insurgents who flocked to the city of Mosul after being run out of other provinces.

Click on Washington Post link to read full story.

YAHOO/REUTERS REPORTS: US FORCES KILL WOMAN AND CHILD IN MOSUL

Two civilians killed in U.S. operation in N.Iraq
51 minutes ago
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080511/wl_nm/iraq_attack_dc

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A woman, a child and two gunmen were killed by U.S. forces conducting a military operation targeting al Qaeda in northern Iraq, the military said on Sunday.
It said U.S. forces fired on a car carrying suspected militants that refused to stop near the northern city of Mosul on Saturday.
"Coalition forces fired three warning shots, but the driver refused to stop and one man made threatening movements from inside the vehicle," the military said in a statement.
"Coalition forces responded to the perceived threat and engaged the vehicle."
It said a woman and a child in the vehicle were killed, along with the two armed men.
The military said it regretted the deaths of civilians.

WASHINGTON POST: WARRING WITH SHADOWS: ON PATROL IN MOSUL

Frustration and Deceit on U.S.-Iraqi Patrol in Mosul

By Ernesto LondoƱoWashington Post Foreign ServiceSaturday, May 10, 2008; A07
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/05/09/AR2008050902836.html

MOSUL, Iraq -- An hour before sunrise, under a star-studded sky, 1st Lt. Michael Baxter's soldiers packed their gear into Bradley Fighting Vehicles, heading out to patrol neighborhoods where fighting insurgents often seems like warring with shadows
.
Soldiers took long drags on cigarettes before strapping 40 pounds of armor and gear onto their backs, saying little save for quick back-and-forth on radios. They crammed into the cabins of the tracked, armored vehicles that rattle like flimsy wooden roller-coaster cars and tuned out the sights and sounds of the city.

Mosul, a city in northern Iraq that straddles the Tigris River, has long been a stronghold of Sunni insurgents. When U.S. and Iraqi security forces aggressively fought Sunni extremists in Baghdad and other provinces, insurgents flocked to Mosul in recent months.

The patrols took place on the eve of an offensive against the insurgents that Iraqi officials had vowed to undertake here. The offensive has been dubbed Lion's Roar, and it may cast a spotlight on the readiness and competence of the Iraqi military and police in northern Iraq.

"This is their operation," said Maj. Amanda Emmens-Rossi, a U.S. military spokeswoman in Mosul. "It was conceived and led by the Iraqi military."

U.S. military officials say an offensive here is unlikely to unfold like the 2004 battle of Fallujah, in which U.S. troops fought entrenched insurgent cells with considerable success. And the battle in Mosul is considerably different from recent fights in Baghdad and Basra.

Click on link to read full account.

US CONFIRMED DEATHS: NAMES, HOMETOWNS, CAUSE OF DEATH

U.S. Confirmed Deaths Reported Deaths:

4075 Confirmed Deaths:

4073 Pending Confirmation:

2 DoD Confirmation List

Latest Coalition Fatalities (click on BLUE for more details)
05/10/08 MNF: Soldier killed in non-combat incident
A U.S. Soldier was killed when the vehicle he was traveling in experienced a roll over near Al Asad May 10. [url pending]

05/10/08 MNF: MND-Center Soldier dies
Center soldier died of non-combat related injuries May 9. The name of the deceased is being withheld pending notification of the next of kin and release by the Department of Defense.
05/09/08 DoD Identifies Army Casualty

Pfc. Aaron J. Ward, 19, of San Jacinto, Calif., died May 6 in Al Anbar, Iraq, of wounds suffered when his unit came under small arms fire while conducting cordon and search operations. He was assigned to the 170th Military Police Company...

05/09/08 DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Spc. Alex D. Gonzalez, 21, of Mission, Texas, died May 6 in Mosul, Iraq, of wounds suffered when his vehicle encountered small arms fire and a rocket-propelled grenade attack. He was assigned to the 43rd Combat Engineer Company...