Saturday, June 24, 2017

Oh, Loretta!

Let's note this press release from Senator Charles Grassley:

Judiciary Committee Probes Reported Lynch Assurances to Stifle Clinton Email Investigation

Jun 23, 2017
WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein, Crime and Terrorism Subcommittee Chairman Lindsey Graham and Ranking Member Sheldon Whitehouse sought information about alleged political interference by then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch during the FBI’s investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server. The bipartisan inquiry comes as the Judiciary Committee is examining the circumstances surrounding the removal of James Comey as FBI Director.
In April, The New York Times reported that the FBI came into possession of a batch of hacked documents, one of which was said to be authored by a “Democratic operative who expressed confidence that Ms. Lynch would keep the Clinton investigation from going too far.”  Chairman Grassley then requested a copy of the document from the Justice Department, which has failed to respond.  A month later, The Washington Post reported similar facts and provided further details about individuals involved in these communications.  The Post reported that the email in question, sent by then-chair of the Democratic National Committee Debbie Wasserman Schultz to Leonard Benardo of the Open Society Foundations, indicated that Lynch had privately assured Clinton campaign staffer Amanda Renteria that the FBI’s investigation wouldn’t “go too far.”
Comey was reportedly concerned that the communication would raise doubts about the investigation’s independence and began discussing plans to announce the end of the Clinton email investigation rather than simply referring it to the Department for a prosecutorial decision. Comey’s extraordinary action to announce the end of the investigation was a break from Justice Department protocol, and was later cited as justification for his removal from the FBI.
In their letters to Benardo, Open Society Foundations’ General Counsel Gail Scovell, Renteria and former Attorney General Lynch, the Senators seek details about the reported communication, copies of any related documents and whether the FBI contacted them to investigate the alleged communication.
The reports come amidst numerous allegations of political inference in controversial and high-profile investigations spanning the current and previous administrations. The Senate Judiciary Committee has jurisdiction over the FBI and Justice Department and is obliged to oversee any potential misconduct or inappropriate political influence at these agencies.
Full text of the letters can be found at the following links.

And this comes as THE HILL reports, "A majority of voters say former Attorney General Loretta Lynch should be investigated for an election-year meeting with former President Bill Clinton that took place while the FBI was investigating Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server from her time as Secretary of State."

Oh, Loretta.

I stood up for you and defended you here.

I thought you took your oath of office seriously.

Turns out, you may have been just another partisan.

I hope not.

Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Friday, June 23, 2017.  Chaos and violence continue, a judge weighs in on Iraqi Christian refugees in the US, The Mosul Slog continues and much more.

Starting with the topic of refugees . . .

Replying to 
From Syria to Libya to Iraq and beyond, millions of refugees wouldn't have fled if the US, the UK and co. didn't destabilize their homelands

They didn't create themselves.

Before the start of this decade, the Iraq War had already created the largest refugee crisis in the Middle East since 1948.

And that's only continued through this day.

Some of the displaced stay in other parts of Iraq.

Some leave for other countries.

Those who turn to other countries arrive hoping they've found a place where they can create a home.

For a number of Iraqi Christians, the US may not be that place as they've been informed that they are being deported.

Some hope emerged yesterday.

BREAKING: Detroit judge temporarily halts deportation of more than 100 Iraqi Christians who fear torture if sent back.

A Detroit judge has temporarily halted deportation of 100+ Iraqi Christians who fear persecution if returned. ICYMI:

US judge halts deportation of more than 100 Iraqi Christians

Federal judge temporarily blocks Iraqi Christians’ deportation

Meanwhile, it's day 247 of The Mosul Slog.

Mosul to be liberated in a few days as [the Islamic State] on the verge of defeat says Iraqi PM
Thousands of civilians trapped in Mosul as fighting continues
Mosul's Old City is being reduced to rubble. More than 100 thousand people are believed to be trapped as the battles continues. Iraqi PM says forces will retake Mosul within days.

Of course, prime minister Hayder al-Abadi has been making the "within days" claim for 247 days, over eight months.

247 days.

And the operation only kicked off after Mosul had been occupied by the Islamic State for over two years.

The Islamic State seized control in June of 2014.

The liberation has resulted in increasing the refugee population and civilians being targeted.

This is what, the Iraqi army, U.S and France allies in the region is doing...

Iraq's late for provincial elections.  They were supposed to be held in April.

National elections are to be held next year -- or supposed to be.

Protests are taking place over the Independent High Electoral Commission.

Which is a good thing.

It's impacted each election negatively.

And usually the complaints are on hold until after the election is days away.

What's happening? ماذا حدث؟

These protests could make a difference.

Meanwhile, the violence continues.

XINHUA reports, "Six civilians were killed and 11 wounded on Friday when four suicide bombers attacked the town of al-Baghdadi in Iraq's western province of Anbar, a provincial police source told Xinhua."  AFP notes that the death toll has now increased to nine.

The following community sites updated:

  • Thursday, June 22, 2017

    ObamaCare would not fly in the UK

    Rita Ora, her voice is perfection on "Your Song."  Amazing.

    Amazing but appalling is US healthcare.

    1.   Retweeted
    2.   Retweeted
      " pulls out of markets in Wisconsin and Indiana for 2018." Such a scam! US needs .

    We need Medicare for all.

    ObamaCare was a scam.

    Those of you reading from the UK, you need to be paying attention because you've got a number of columnists praising ObamaCare.

    You have Medicare for all.

    If they're praising ObamaCare, they want to move you out of national healthcare and into a corporate program.

    You need to be aware of that.

    And you need to call those columnists out.

    Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

    Thursday, June 22, 2017.  Chaos and violence continue, the media amplifies ISIS' power with a story choice, and much more.

    Day 246 of The Mosul Slog.

    Old city map. Before and after (24hrs later).

    Day 246 and if you inflate the map so that the tiny area seems much larger, maybe you can fool people into believing major progress is taking place.


    Let's move over to what the media has made the biggest story out of Mosul.

    1. The first images of what's left of Al-Nuri Mosque and its minaret in Old City.

    2. BREAKING: Iraqi officer: IS detonates iconic al-Nuri mosque in Mosul where IS leader al-Baghdadi declared the Islamic caliphate.

    1. The moment when detonated Al-Nuri Mosque, footage proves that it was blown up with explosives and not an airstrike.
    2. Islamic State blows up Mosul mosque where it declared 'caliphate': Iraqi military

    1. Iraqi military sources say Islamic State has blown up The Grand al-Nuri Mosque in Mosul
    2. Iraqi forces say IS militants have blown up a landmark mosque in Mosul:
    3. Damning for Iraqi mil footage which proves Nuri mosque minaret in downed by placed explosives, not airstrike
    4. The Iraqi military says Islamic State has blown up the al-Nouri Mosque, but IS say it was destroyed by a US airstrike
      Al-Nouri Mosque destroyed
      The Iraqi military says Islamic State has blown up the al-Nouri Mosque, but IS say it was destroyed by a US airstrike

    fighters in Iraq blew up a historic mosque that stood for more than 840 years.

    The US and Iraq say ISIS blew up historic mosque in Mosul that was the ideological heart of the terror group

    1. The Leaning Minaret (Al-Hadba Minaret)1172-1173 A.D Twelfth Century A.D Iraq, Nineveh, Mosul On Wednesday 21/6/2017 9:35 pm
    2. ⭕️ The Great Mosque of al-Nuri destroyed! Read “The Mosque of Nur al-Din in Mosul, 1170-1172” by Yasser Tabbaa

    Why the outrage over this?

    It's historic.

    So is much of Mosul but no real tears from the press over other things damages and bombed.

    No tears over the hospitals or the homes.

    (But then those were bombed by the US government -- is that the reason for the lack of tears?)

    History is important.

    But if the choice is between concern over people or historic artifacts, sorry, I'll always be more concerned over people.

    Which would include the civilians toruted and killed by Iraqi forces in what's supposed to be the liberation of Mosul.

    But, again, no tears from the media.

    No outrage.

    Just a lot of nonsense.

    Last night, this story was the top story on GOOGLE NEWS around nine p.m. EST.


    As I looked at the non-stop coverage -- which has only continued -- I wondered, "Why is this not an item listed mid-way through other coverage?"

    Did ISIS blow it up?

    It appears it did.

    So why would you make it the most important story?

    If ISIS is finally on the ropes in Mosul, why would you make it the story?

    If I were a member of ISIS and we got this kind of coverage for blowing up a mosque, I'd start blowing up others so I could go out with a bang.

    ISIS cares about coverage.  They have their own press outlets.  They're on social media.

    So this kind of stop-the-world-and-look coverage could encourage more bombings before they leave Mosul.

    I understand this Tweet.

    The most beautiful comment: Mosul without al-Hadba'a is like Paris without Eiffel Tower or London without Big Ben,Thanks aamer.

    Paris would still be Paris without the Eiffel Tower.

    The people make it Paris.

    Their community, their beliefs, their hopes and dreams.

    Mosul is a city of culture.

    The Islamic State seized it in June 2014.

    And it has suffered.

    But the structures don't make it Mosul, the people do.

    And there's something really sad about the fact that death and torture in Mosul get far less press than a structure being blown up.

    But the Islamic State wants to instill terror in people's hearts and the media's made clear in the last 24 hours to ISIS how they can get massive publicity.

    Why did they destroy it (if they did)?

    If they're getting ready to leave, they may destroy many sites seen as sacred because they consider others to be infidels and that view can argue 'better to destroy it than allow infidels to have it.'

    RUDAW reports:

    Five million children are in dire need of humanitarian assistance in Iraq after three years of ISIS and conflict within the country.

    As violence intensified in the country after the rise of ISIS in 2014, children are the most vulnerable, trapped in an endless cycle of extreme violence and poverty, according to a United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) assessment released today entitled “Nowhere to Go.”

    As Iraqi, Peshmerga and coalition forces have been fighting to defeat ISIS, frequently with the use of heavy weaponry and bombing in densely populated areas, especially in Mosul, Fallujah and Ramadi, the battles have been fierce and bloody.

    Children have suffered the most during the conflict, many being seriously injured, maimed, and some killed. Children were even direct targets of ISIS snipers seeking deter families attempting to flee conflict areas. Other children have been forced to join ISIS fighting or used as human shields.

    It's a shame that news -- important news -- cannot get the same attention.

    Even when picked up by print and online publications, it gets very little radio or TV attention.

    The following community sites -- plus Cindy Sheehan, BLACK AGENDA REPORT, PACIFICA EVENING NEWS and GORILLA RADIO -- updated: