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Iraq: A Decade of Hell (unlisted, I'm curious about your thoughts)


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#1
Stefan Molyneux

Stefan Molyneux
  • 19755 posts

[View:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXByOA9kSvc]

1.5 million deaths: http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/iraq

[background=transparent; font-family: Arial; font-size: 24px; white-space: pre-wrap; font-weight: bold; line-height: 1.15]0. Economics of the War on Individuals [/font]





  • Link (March 20, 2008) The Iraq war, for $100 month




    [/list]



    - In a speech  on March 20, 2008, Obama, in the midst of his 2008 presidential campaign, stated “When Iraq is costing each household about $100 a month, you're paying a price for this war,".




    - Book: The Three Trillion Dollar War, a new book by Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist, and Linda J. Bilmes, a former Commerce Department official from the Clinton administration who is now a professor at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.




    - The book says the monthly operating cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is about $16-billion.




    - "To think of it another way," the book says, "roughly every American household is spending $138 per month on the current operating costs of the wars, with a little more than $100 per month going to Iraq alone."






    • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Cost per Person[/font]

      [/list]


      The Democrats on the Joint Economic Committee, which estimated a $3.5 trillion cost through 2017, say the war will cost the average U.S. family $46,400. Per person, the total cost, given these estimates, would be $11,627




      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][font=" Arial; color: #222222; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap"]$13.2 billion per month in 2011, 10.5 billion per month in 2012 for U.S Military[/font]


      • Link[font=" Arial; color: #222222; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap"] $16 billion per month in 2008[/font]

        [/list]




        • Link (October 2012) The real jobs numbers: 41% of America unemployed, 1 in 3 doesn't want work at all



          [/list]




          • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]U.S Population [/font]313,847,465 (July 2012 est.)

            [/list]




            • [background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Simple Math: [/font]

              [/list]


              All in the year 2012  (including government employees in sum of number of jobs):


              Population(313,847,465) * Percentage Gainfully Employed(0.59) =

              Total Gainfully Employed(185 170 004)


              Cost Per Month of Wars ($10 500 000 000) / Number of Gainfully Employed people (185 170 004) =  

              Cost Per gainfully Employed Person Per Month ( $56.7)


              All in the year 2008  (including government employees in sum of number of jobs):


              Link Total Gainfully Employed in 2008 (138 million)


              Cost Per Month of Wars ($16 000 000 000) / Total Gainfully Employed (138 million) = Cost Per Gainfully Employed Person Per Month ($116)


              Link Over 22 Million Government Employees in 2008


              All in the year 2008  (not-including government employees in sum of number of jobs):


              Cost Per Month of Wars ($16 000 000 000) / Total Gainfully Employed (138 million - 22 Million Government Employess = 116 million) = Cost Per Gainfully Employed Person Per Month ($138)





              1. The wastefulness and in-efficiency of the military




              • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font]Total amount of money lost or unaccounted for from the Iraq War: 9 Billion


              • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font]Total amount of money lost in unaccounted for or stolen equipment: $549.7 million


              • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font]Iraq war costs U.S. more than $2 trillion: study

                [/list]

                (Reuters published March 14th 2013) - The U.S. war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion with an additional $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released on Thursday said.




                • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Re-construction[/font]

                  [/list]

                  Much of the country’s infrastructure remains in shambles as well. Critics point to corruption and the mismanagement of reconstruction funds: Of the $60 billion that Washington supposedly spent on reconstruction, much of that amount was squandered.




                  • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Total Waste[/font]

                    [/list]

                    Members of the Wartime Contracting Commission estimated that a lack of oversight of private contractors, a lack of competition for winning contracts and a culture of corruption plagued reconstruction projects and battlefield support in both countries. Those failings cost between $31 billion and $60 billion, The Associated Press reported.


                    Link: As much as $60 billion in U.S. tax dollars -- or $12 million a day -- has been squandered through waste and fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade from lax oversight of contractors, poor planning and corruption, according to an independent panel.





                    • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Total Waste: Story[/font]

                      [/list]

                      After U.S. and allied warplanes destroyed a key bridge carrying 15 oil and gas pipelines in northern Iraq during the 2003 conflict there, officials in Washington and Baghdad made its postwar reconstruction a top priority. But instead of spending two months to rebuild the span over the Tigris River at an estimated cost of $5 million, they decided for security reasons to bury the pipelines beneath it, at an estimated cost more than five times greater.


                      What ultimately happened there tells the story — in a microcosm — of a substantial chunk of the massive nine-year U.S. effort to reconstruct Iraq, the second-largest such endeavor in history (only  the U.S. investment in Afghanistan has been larger).

                      Studies conducted before the digging of the new pipelines started showed that the soil was too sandy, but neither the Army Corps of Engineers overseeing the effort nor the main contractor at the site, Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR), heeded the warning.  As a result, “tens of millions of dollars [were] wasted on churning sand” without making any headway, as Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Stuart W. Bowen Jr., described it in his recently published final report on the U.S. occupation.


                      By the time the digging effort was halted, and the old bridge and piping repaired — more than three years later — the bill had reached more than $100 million. “Because of the nature of the original contract, the government was unable to recover any of the money wasted on this project,” Bowen said.  More than $1.5 billion in oil revenues may have been lost as a result of the delays. KBR did not respond to a request for comment.





                      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Destroyed Agriculture and more waste[/font]

                        [/list]

                        The commission cited numerous examples of waste, including a $360 million U.S.-financed agricultural development program in Afghanistan. The effort began as a $60 million project in 2009 to distribute vouchers for wheat seed and fertilizer in drought-stricken areas of northern Afghanistan. The program expanded into the south and east. Soon the U.S. was spending a $1 million a day on the program, creating an environment ripe for waste and abuse, the commission said.


                        "Paying villagers for what they used to do voluntarily destroyed local initiatives and diverted project goods into Pakistan for resale," the commission said.




                        • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Giving the money to the enemy to justify a war[/font]

                          [/list]

                          The Associated Press reported earlier this month that U.S. military authorities in Kabul believe $360 million in U.S. tax dollars has ended up in the hands of people the American-led coalition has spent nearly a decade battling: the Taliban, criminals and power brokers with ties to both.




                          • Link Cost per hour

                            [/list]

                            Iraq war is costing us 11 million dollars per hour.

                            $6,000 every second in Iraq


                            2. The environmental hazard that is the military




                            • Link[color= #333333; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/color][color= #333333; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]River damage, irrigation and drinking water quality damage, toxic bombed zones...[/color]

                              [/list]


                              -  Four years after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq and despite 22 billion dollars spent on recovery and reconstruction, Iraq’s environment remains in disastrous shape.


                              - “The Tigris and Euphrates rivers are essentially open sewers,” Azzam Alwash, head of Nature Iraq, a conservation group based in Baghdad, told Tierramérica.


                              - Industrial waste, hospital waste, fertiliser run-off from farming, as well as oil spills plague the two rivers that define the Mesopotamia region and which provide much of the irrigation and drinking water.


                              - Many of those industries were devoted to producing military material, and have been bombed and looted, leaving the country dotted with highly toxic industrial zones. Other contaminated sites belong to the oil and metal industries.


                              - “Clean-up is needed on more than 500 state industrial plants. Each of these would be a ‘Superfund’ site in the United States,” says Nature Iraq’s Alwash. The United States has 1,240 toxic waste sites called Superfunds, where billions of dollars are being spent on clean up.




                              • Link Various effects of the war that cause massive environmental damage

                                [/list]


                                Spilled oil in the Arabian Gulf

                                - The first Gulf War had a horrific effect on the environment, as CNN reported in 1999, "Iraq was responsible for intentionally releasing some 11 million barrels of oil into the Arabian Gulf from January to May 1991, oiling more than 800 miles of Kuwaiti and Saudi Arabian coastline. The amount of oil released was categorized as 20 times larger than the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska and twice as large as the previous world record oil spill. The cost of cleanup has been estimated at more than $700 million."


                                Oil fields lit on fire by Saddam loyalists

                                - During the build up to George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq, Saddam loyalists promised to light oil fields afire, hoping to expose what they claimed were the U.S.’s underlying motives for attacking their country: oil. Hostilities in Kuwait resulted in the discharge of an estimated 7 million barrels of oil, culminating in the world’s largest oil spill in January of 1991. The United Nations later calculated that of Kuwait’s 1,330 active oil wells, half had been set ablaze. The pungent fumes and smoke from those dark billowing flames spread for hundreds of miles and had horrible effects on human and environmental health.


                                - On the second day of President Bush’s invasion of Iraq it was reported by the New York Times and the BBC that Iraqi forces had set fire to several of the country’s large oil wells. Five days later in the Rumaila oilfields, six dozen wellheads were set ablaze. The dense black smoke rose high in the southern sky of Iraq, fanning a clear signal that the U.S. invasion had again ignited an environmental tragedy.


                                New Source: Rate of Oil burned in the first week of conflict Link

                                - On the second day of the conflict it was reported that Iraqi forces had started to set fire to several of the country’s oil wells (Times, 2003). Five days later (25.3.03) in the Rumaila oilfields around half a dozen wellheads were blazing, at a rate of $12m (£7.6m) of oil an hour (Judd, 2003).

                                - During the Gulf war retreating forces set fire to 736 Kuwaiti oil wells. The resulting smoke was enough to block out the sun (EMS, 2002).

                                - This resulted in the average air temperatures falling by 10 degrees C while the oil well burned over 9 months.

                                - Oil, soot, sulphur and acid rain came down as far as 1,900 kilometres (1,200 miles) away and the vegetation and animals were poisoned while the water was contaminated and the people choked (Kirby, 2003), The burning oil fields released almost half a billion tons of carbon dioxide.


                                - Link Worldwide, motor vehicles currently emit well over 900 million metric tons of CO2 each year. These emissions account for more than 15 percent of global fossil fuel CO2 releases


                                The CO2 produced from the burning oil fields is the equivalent to the sum of the CO2 output of all the cars in the world, for over 200 days.


                                (Math: Oil field CO2 = 500 million  Cars = 900 million/365days

                                Oil field = 500/900 or 55.6% of the total output of the cars in a year or the output of the cars for 55.6% of the year. 0.556*365days = 202.8 days


                                Verification: For cars 900million/365days = 2.466million/day

                                Oil fields total = 500 million | days to run cars to match oil field: 500/2.466 = 202.8 days)




                                • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]  [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Most fuel Spend to deliver fuel [/font]

                                  [/list]

                                  Two-thirds of the Army’s fuel consumption in the war zones is spent delivering fuel to the battlefield.




                                  • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]The Department of Defense is the country’s largest consumer of fuel[/font]

                                    [/list]

                                    Department of Defense has been the country’s single largest consumer of fuel, using about 4.6 billion gallons of fuel each year




                                    • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font]War-Accelerated Destruction and Degradation of Forests and Wetlands

                                      [/list]

                                      The wars have also damaged forests, wetlands and marshlands in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq.  Radical deforestation has accompanied this and the previous wars in Afghanistan.  Total forest area decreased 38 percent in Afghanistan from 1990 to 2007.



                                      Health and Environmental effects of the lit oil fields

                                      - This smoldering oil was laced with poisonous chemicals such as mercury, sulfur and furans, which can causes serious damage to human as well as ecosystem health.


                                      - According to Friends of the Earth, the fallout from burning oil debris, like that of the first Gulf War, has created a toxic sea surface that has affected the health of birds and marine life.


                                      Environmental damage and health effects directly caused by the U.S

                                      - However, the United States military was also responsible for much of the environmental devastation of the first Gulf War. In the early 1990s the U.S. drowned at least 80 crude oil ships to the bottom of the Persian Gulf, partly to uphold the U.N.’s economic sanctions against Iraq. Vast crude oil slicks formed, killing an unknown quantity of aquatic life and sea birds while wrecking havoc on local fishing and tourist communities.


                                      Uranium bombings

                                      - Months of bombing during the first Gulf War by U.S. and British planes and cruise missiles also left behind an even more deadly and insidious legacy: tons of shell casings, bullets and bomb fragments laced with depleted uranium. In all, the U.S. hit Iraqi targets with more than 970 radioactive bombs and missiles.



                                      Long term consequences of the bombings

                                      - When the tank-busting bombs explode, the depleted uranium oxidizes into microscopic fragments that float through the air like carcinogenic dust, carried on the desert winds for decades. The lethal bits when inhaled stick to the fibers of the lungs, and eventually begin to wreak havoc on the body in the form of tumors, hemorrhages, ravaged immune systems and leukemias.


                                      Effects of the bombings 15 years later and more

                                      - More than 15 years later, the health consequences from this radioactive bombing campaign are beginning to come into focus. And they are dire. Iraqi physicians call it "the white death"-leukemia. Since 1990, the incident rate of leukemia in Iraq has grown by more than 600 percent. The situation was compounded by Iraq’s forced isolation and the sadistic sanctions regime, once described by former U.N. secretary general Kofi Annan as "a humanitarian crisis", that made detection and treatment of the cancers all the more difficult. The leukemia rate in Sarajevo, pummeled by American bombs in 1996, tripled in five years following the bombings.


                                      - Depleted uranium has a half-life of more than 4 billion years, approximately the age of the Earth.


                                      Consequences of the destroyed infrastructure

                                      - The destruction of Iraq's infrastructure has had substantial public health implications as well. Bombed out industrial plants and factories have polluted groundwater. The damage to sewage-treatment plants, with reports that raw sewage formed massive pools of muck in the streets of Baghdad immediately after Bush’s ‘Shock and Awe’ campaign, is also likely poisoning rivers as well as human life. Cases of typhoid among Iraqi citizens have risen tenfold since 1991, largely due to polluted drinking water.


                                      New Source: Bombing of chemical and biological weapons plants Link

                                      - The military targeting of industrial sites and armament factories will cause acute pollution. Nine sites, expected to be targets, were named by the UK government as being involved in the production of chemical and biological weapons (McLaren et al, 2003).


                                      Link Devastated Wetlands and the species that habitat them

                                      - Thirty-three of Iraqi wetlands are considered of international importance particularly for wildfowl. They have been found to support at least seven IUCN Red List species of mammals and birds, over 60 waterfowl species and nine birds of prey (McLaren and Willmore, 2003). Before the conflict, the WWF said that 16 globally threatened or near-threatened bird species and three unique endemic wetland bird species would be further threatened (Star, 2003).


                                      The root cause of child mortality in the 1990s; probably hasn’t changed

                                      - In fact during the 1990s, while Iraq was under sanctions, U.N. officials in Baghdad agreed that the root cause of child mortality and other health problems was no longer simply lack of food and medicine but the lack of clean water and of electrical power, which had predictable consequences for hospitals and water-pumping systems.


                                      Link Enormous amount of fuel burnt

                                      - The amount of fuel that is being burnt by military vehicles to keep the operation moving is massive. The US military has said that its planes, boats and tanks are consuming 15 million gallons of fuel a day. Britain will not say how much fuel it is using but it is estimated to be around a quarter of that.  To put this in context, the amount of fuel that the coalition is using in one day is the approximate amount that 1.1 billion people in India need to keep their whole economy going for the same amount of time (Brown, 2003).





                                      3. The functional incompetence of the military




                                      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] and specific [/font]Link[background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] Poor planning from the start[/font]

                                        [/list]

                                        Post-war planning was non-existent. It talks about a meeting of war planners and intelligence planners in March 2003 (the month the Iraq war started) in which a lieutenant colonel who was giving a briefing on the Pentagon's plans for rebuilding Iraq after the war could say only, "To Be Provided".

                                        A veteran State Department officer involved directly in Iraq policy said, "We didn't go in with a plan. We went in with a theory."




                                        • Link Missing Explosives

                                          [/list]

                                          We are learning (late October 2004) that 380 tons of powerful conventional explosives have been missing since April 2003, after the U.S. invaded Iraq. ANY Times article of 25 October 2004 says that the facility was supposed to be under U.S. military control but is now a no-man's land. The U.S. was warned about this stockpile of explosives before the war. Only incompetent planning could have led to such a fiasco, which puts the whole world in danger.




                                          • Link Progress in the military

                                            [/list]

                                            1,188: Number of global terrorist incidents from January - September 11th, 2001. [American Security Project, "Are We Winning?," September 2007]

                                            5,188: Number of global terrorist incidents in from January- September 11th, 2006. [American Security Project, "Are We Winning?," September 2007]

                                            30: Percent increase in violence in Afghanistan from 2006 to 2007. [Reuters, 10/15/07]

                                            21: Number of suicide bombings in Afghanistan in 2001. [Center for American Progress, "The Forgotten Front," 11/07]

                                            139: Number of suicide bombings in Afghanistan in 2006, with an additional increase of 69 percent as of November 2007. [Center for American Progress,"The Forgotten Front," 11/07]



                                            4. The evils of the military and the horrors it produces




                                            • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Paktia Murders[/font][background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] ([/font][color= #ff0000; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]warning really horrid[/color][background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap])[/font]

                                              [/list]


                                              On February 12 of this year, U.S. forces entered a village in the Paktia Province in Afghanistan and, after surrounding a home where a celebration of a new birth was taking place, shot dead two male civilians (government officials) who exited the house in order to inquire why they had been surrounded, and then shot and killed three female relatives (a pregnant mother of ten, a pregnant mother of six, and a teenager).  The Pentagon then issued a statement claiming that (a) the dead males were “insurgents” or terrorists, (b) the bodies of the three women had been found by U.S. forces bound and gagged inside the home, and © suggested that the women had already been killed by the time the U.S. had arrived, likely the victim of “honor killings” by the Taliban militants killed in the attack.


                                              After initially denying involvement or any cover-up in the deaths of three Afghan women during a badly bungled American Special Operations assault in February, the American-led military command in Kabul admitted late on Sunday that its forces had, in fact, killed the women during the nighttime raid.


                                              Or another account of the same incident... Link

                                              Another example of expert incompetence occurred in February of 2010, when U.S. forces entered a village in the Paktia Province in Afghanistan. After surrounding a home where a celebration of a new birth was taking place, the soldiers shot dead two male civilians who exited the house in order to inquire why they had been surrounded. They then shot and killed three female relatives, including a pregnant mother of ten, a pregnant mother of six, and a teenager. These U.S. special forces soldiers proceeded to dig the bullets out of their victims’ bodies, then lied to their superiors about what had transpired.

                                              When the Pentagon issued a statement on the raid it claimed that the dead males were terrorists, the bodies of the three women had been found by U.S. forces bound and gagged inside the home, and it suggested that the women had already been killed by the time the U.S. had arrived, likely the victim of “honor killings” by the Taliban militants killed in the attack. This was all a fabrication, and the Pentagon was later forced to admit as much..2 Such bumbling efforts by the American military are so commonplace as to be legion. One could write a book about them; in fact many people have, including David Swanson’s War is a Lie and Nick Turse’s recent Kill Everything that Moves.




                                              • Link Children Deaths

                                                [/list]

                                                • 14,705 (13%) of all documented civilian deaths were reported as being

                                                directly caused by the US-led coalition. The report notes that

                                                Of the 4,040 civilian victims of US-led coalition forces for whom age data was available, 1,201 (29%) were children

                                                • Of the 45,779 victims for whom IBC was able to obtain age data, 3,911 (8.54%) were children under age 18.

                                                • Police forces have been a major target, with 9,019 deaths reported - by

                                                far the largest toll of any professional group.

                                                • Baghdad, which contains roughly one fifth of the country's population,

                                                has suffered roughly half of the recorded civilian deaths, or about 2.5

                                                times more than the national average.





                                                • Link Children that have lost their parents

                                                  [/list]

                                                  A 2011 survey conservatively estimated that between 800,000 and a million Iraqi children have lost one or both parents





                                                  • Link[background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] Iraqi civilian deaths[/font]

                                                    [/list]

                                                    The war has killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have contributed to the deaths of as many as four times that number, according to the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.

                                                    Another source: Link

                                                    The Iraq Body Count project (IBC), for example, puts the number between 110,937 and 121,227. But the Opinion Research Business (ORB), an independent polling agency based in London, has calculated the number of fatalities at over 1 million.




                                                    • Link Poisoning Children

                                                      [/list]

                                                      A World Health Organization (WHO) study published last year connected the grave situation with the effect of toxic substances prevalent in many conventional weapons. Hair samples taken from the civilian population of Fallujah showed levels of lead in children with birth defects five times higher than elsewhere; mercury levels were recorded at six times higher.




                                                      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Soldier deaths[/font]

                                                        [/list]

                                                        4,448 U.S. soldiers who died and the 32,221 wounded. At least 3,400 U.S. contractors died as well, a number barely mentioned or underreported.




                                                        • Link Total percentage of U.S. soldiers wounded with serious brain or spinal injuries: 20%


                                                        • Link Total percentage of U.S. soldiers who served in Iraq War who developed serious mental health problems within 4 months of returning home


                                                        • Link Imprisonment and Torture

                                                          [/list]

                                                          - In Iraq, over 100,000 prisoners have passed through the American-run detention system, with prisoners not having any effective way to challenge their detention.[1][2] In the first years of the war, many detainees were processed through the notorious Abu Gharaib prison facility, which housed over 8,000 prisoners at its peak in 2004.


                                                          - The International Red Cross estimated in 2004 that between 70% and 90% of detainees in Iraq were innocent


                                                          Link -  In 2004, accounts of physical, psychological, and sexual abuse, including the torture, rape, sodomy, and death of Abu Ghraib prisoners came to public attention.

                                                          - At least 108 such people have died in detention in the first four years of the war, [9] and at least 80 more have died in subsequent years. (Total wars, not just Iraq).



                                                          5. The fraudulent claims of the military




                                                          • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Various Lies: [/font]

                                                            [/list]


                                                            LIE: "The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program ... Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons." -- President Bush, Oct. 7, 2002, in Cincinnati.


                                                            FACT: Department of Energy officials, who monitor nuclear plants, say the tubes could not be used for enriching uranium. One intelligence analyst, who was part of the tubes investigation, angrily told The New Republic: "You had senior American officials like Condoleezza Rice saying the only use of this aluminum really is uranium centrifuges. She said that on television. And that's just a lie."


                                                            LIE: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." -- President Bush, Jan.28, 2003, in the State of the Union address.


                                                            FACT: This whopper was based on a document that the White House already knew to be a forgery thanks to the CIA. Sold to Italian intelligence by some hustler, the document carried the signature of an official who had been out of office for 10 years and referenced a constitution that was no longer in effect. The ex-ambassador who the CIA sent to check out the story is pissed: "They knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie," he told the New Republic, anonymously. "They [the White House] were unpersuasive about aluminum tubes and added this to make their case more strongly."


                                                            FACT: Link Additional evidence on this lie from a second source:

                                                            In March, Mohamed ElBaradei, director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), tells the U.N. Security Council that the documents substantiating the claim of alleged Iraqi efforts to buy uranium in Niger were fakes (and bad ones at that) and that "these specific allegations are unfounded." The unnamed ex-ambassador whom the CIA sent to check out the story tells The New Republic: "They knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie."


                                                            LIE: "We've learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases ... Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints." --President Bush, Oct. 7 .


                                                            FACT: No evidence of this has ever been leaked or produced. Colin Powell told the U.N. this alleged training took place in a camp in northern Iraq. To his great embarrassment, the area he indicated was later revealed to be outside Iraq's control and patrolled by Allied war planes.


                                                            LIE: "We have seen intelligence over many months that they have chemical and biological weapons, and that they have dispersed them and that they're weaponized and that, in one case at least, the command and control arrangements have been established." -- President Bush, Feb. 8, 2003, in a national radio address.


                                                            FACT: Despite a massive nationwide search by U.S. and British forces, there are no signs, traces or examples of chemical weapons being deployed in the field, or anywhere else during the war.


                                                            LIE: "Our conservative estimate is that Iraq today has a stockpile of between 100 and 500 tons of chemical weapons agent. That is enough to fill 16,000 battlefield rockets." -- Secretary of State Colin Powell, Feb. 5 2003, in remarks to the UN Security Council.


                                                            FACT: Putting aside the glaring fact that not one drop of this massive stockpile has been found, as the United States' own intelligence reports show that these stocks -- if they existed -- were well past their use-by date and therefore useless as weapon fodder.


                                                            LIE: "We know where [Iraq's WMD] are. They're in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat." -- Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, March 30, 2003, in statements to the press.


                                                            FACT: Needless to say, no such weapons were found, not to the east, west, south or north, somewhat or otherwise.


                                                            Link LIE: MAY 1, 2003: Mission Accomplished

                                                            My fellow Americans: Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. [Bush, 5/1/03]


                                                            Link LIE: DECEMBER 15, 2011: The US formally declares an end to the Iraq war


                                                            Link LIE: MAY 29, 2003: Bush: We found the WMD

                                                            We found the weapons of mass destruction. [Bush, 5/29/03]


                                                            Link FACT: Number of WMDs discovered: 0


                                                            Link LIE: MAY 1, 2004: Bush says “daily life” of Iraqis is improving.

                                                            One year later [after Mission Accomplished], despite many challenges, life for the Iraqi people is a world away from the cruelty and corruption of Saddam’s regime. At the most basic level of justice, people are no longer disappearing into political prisons, torture chambers, and mass graves — because the former dictator is in prison, himself. And their daily life is improving. [Bush, 5/1/04]



                                                            Link FACT: Captain William Ponce, an MI captain in Iraq, writes in an email, "The gloves are coming off gentlemen regarding these detainees, Col. Boltz has made it clear that we want these individuals broken."


                                                            Now-Capt. Wood arrives at Abu Ghraib and recommends establishing area for detainees thought to have intelligence value.


                                                            Bush designates six Al Qaeda suspects at Guantanamo eligible for military tribunals—the first since World War II.


                                                            MPs from the 372nd Company arrive to guard prisoners at Abu Ghraib. Spc. Joseph Darby later tells GQ he "saw like fifteen prisoners sitting in their cells in women's underwear.... This stuff was going on before we arrived. After we took over, it basically just escalated."


                                                            Abdou Hussain Saad Faleh, a prisoner soldiers call Gilligan, is hooded and cloaked and made to stand on box as MPs attach dead wires to him and warn he'll be electrocuted if he moves.


                                                            Prisoners stacked into naked pyramid, made to masturbate and simulate fellatio. "A present for your birthday," Graner tells England, who is turning 21.

                                                            Washington Postreports that Gen. Sanchez approved letting senior officials at a Baghdad jail use dogs, temperature extremes, sleep and sensory deprivation, and diets of bread and water on detainees "whenever they wished."


                                                            Former Sec. Def. James Schlesinger releases report that blames poor leadership throughout the chain of command. But to reporters, Schlesinger emphasizes, "There was sadism on the night shift at Abu Ghraib, sadism that was certainly not authorized. It was kind of Animal House."




                                                            6. The lack of accountability for the military’s worst crimes




                                                            • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Wars let alone legal wars are no problem![/font]

                                                              [/list]

                                                              MARCH 5, 2004: Former chief U.N. weapons inspector declares Iraq war illegal

                                                              The former chief UN weapons inspector Hans Blix has declared that the war in Iraq was illegal, dealing another devastating blow to Tony Blair. [Independent, 3/5/04]




                                                              • Link War declared and continued on false premises

                                                                [/list]

                                                                The United States opened a military offensive against the Arab Republic on the premise that the Baathist government of Saddam Hussein was harboring weapons of mass destruction.


                                                                One decade later, the global community is aware that the intelligence claims of Iraqi WMDs were patently false at least – and a blatant fabrication at worst – but this knowledge has done nothing to erase the damage of the conflict.




                                                                • Link Ten years after, the justifications for the war detailed to the international community have been proven baldly false, but no decision maker in the biggest scam of the 21th century was brought to justice. On top of that, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair keeps getting generously paid to defend the rationale for the war in conferences and interviews, even if we now know the initial motives were deceitful.

                                                                  [/list]




                                                                  • Link Government can say something and do the opposite of it without hesitancy

                                                                    [/list]

                                                                    $50-60 Billion: Bush Administration's pre-war estimates of the cost of the war. [New York Times, 12/31/02]

                                                                    $12 Billion: Direct cost per month of the Iraq War. [Washington Post, Bilmes and Stiglitz Op-Ed, 3/9/08]

                                                                    $526 Billion: Amount of money already appropriated by Congress for the War in Iraq. [CRS, 2/22/08]

                                                                    $3 Trillion: Total estimated cost of the Iraq War. [Washington Post, Bilmes and Stiglitz Op-Ed, 3/9/08]

                                                                    $5 Trillion - $7 Trillion: Total cost of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan accounting for continued military operations, growing debt and interest payments and continuing health care and counseling costs for veterans. [McClatchy, 2/27/08]




                                                                    7. The non-obvious effects of military action




                                                                    • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Cost per person[/font]

                                                                      [/list]

                                                                      (August 2011) According to a recent Brown University study, the wars and their ripple effects have cost the United States $3.7 trillion, or more than $12,000 per American.




                                                                      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Rightfully infuriated population set for blowback[/font]

                                                                        [/list]

                                                                        Approximately 2.8 million Iraqis, out of a population of 34 million, are displaced internally or into neighboring states


                                                                        Approximately 1.4 million are refugees and 1.3 million are internally displaced


                                                                        The UNHCR estimates that 90 percent of displaced Iraqis have no plans to return


                                                                        The percent of Iraqis living in slum conditions tripled from 17 percent prior to the 2003 invasion to 53 percent in 2010


                                                                        Crucial health indicators in Iraq have drastically worsened. The infant mortality rate increased 150 percent from 1990 to 2005, the worst retrogression in that basic indicator of well-being in the world.




                                                                        • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] Loss of professionals and academics[/font]

                                                                          [/list]

                                                                          As of 2006, an estimated 160 to 380 Iraqi professors had been killed, and over 30 percent of Iraq’s professors, doctors, pharmacists and engineers emigrated between 2003 and 2007.


                                                                          8. The rampant corruption within the military




                                                                          • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Oil Smuggling[/font]

                                                                            [/list]

                                                                            “Between 100,000 and 300,000 barrels a day of Iraq’s declared oil production over the past four years is unaccounted for and could have been siphoned off through corruption or smuggling, according to a draft American government report. Using an average of $50 a barrel, the report said the discrepancy was valued at $5 million to $15 million daily.” [New York Times, 5/12/2007]




                                                                            • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]6.6 Billion goes “missing”[/font]

                                                                              [/list]

                                                                              JUNE 13, 2011: Department of Defense announces that $6.6 billion dollars earmarked for Iraq has been lost with no explanation.

                                                                              Link Potentially the biggest robbery in American History

                                                                              Auditors investigating the disappearance of $6.6 billion in cash intended to rebuild Iraq's shattered infrastructure told the Los Angeles Times that the money may have been stolen, an occurrence that the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction said would be the largest theft of funds in national history.




                                                                              • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Welfare for the Rich[/font]

                                                                                [/list]

                                                                                Halliburton overcharges classified by the Pentagon as Unreasonable and Unsupported: $1.4 billion




                                                                                • Link[background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] Corrupt Contracting[/font]

                                                                                  [/list]

                                                                                  The commission determined that contracting waste in Afghanistan ranged from 10 percent to 20 percent of the $206 billion spent there so far, with fraud -- which includes bribery and rigging bids -- comprised between 5 percent and 9 percent of the total.




                                                                                  • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Missing documents on massive expenditures[/font]

                                                                                    [/list]

                                                                                    Pentagon-funded fuel purchases were particularly problematic: When Bowen’s office asked to see a logbook documenting $1.3 billion in fuel purchases by the Coalition Provisional Authority, “the log book could not be found.” Defense officials also could not produce documents supporting their expenditure of over $100 million in cash found in a vault at the Republican Palace, the gilded Saddam Hussein parlor that became a headquarters of the occupation.


                                                                                    Average U.S. expenditures for Iraqi reconstruction in 2005, for example, were more than $25 million a day. When Bowen’s auditors went looking for documents supporting billions of dollars of fund transfers to the Iraqi government in that period, they discovered the paperwork was “largely missing.”




                                                                                    • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] [/font][background=transparent; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap]Ridiculous Overcharging[/font]

                                                                                      [/list]

                                                                                      Weak oversight predictably led to rampant overcharging. A firm based in Dubai managed to keep around $4 billion in Pentagon construction contracts, for example, despite routinely marking up the price of switches and plumbing parts between 3,000 and 12,000 percent, according to an audit Bowen conducted in 2011.


                                                                                      9. Graphs


                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      Link (That graph, which reflects Americans being asked if they think we did the right thing going into Iraq)


                                                                                      Link (MotherJones)

                                                                                      Link



                                                                                      Link The Pew Research Center released its latest poll on American views of the Iraq war a few days ago and the headline number was that only 44 percent of Americans at present think the invasion was a bad idea ( 41 percent think it was a wise decision).

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      Link https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/e3LL41T427GsNXBPupWWGiqifh857mZ89aL6I7xW1irweCduZ082VK8m8Qo4QxUqUVh5lyj9JDiyogUZvHrDTxRHPAvi2dLGGOpYP1s54gjXFbfTKLnupBVC

                                                                                      Link More than 2000 participants across Iraq have been interviewed for this representative survey, often under extreme conditions, and many of the interviewers have been arrested.

                                                                                      https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/7rZZkUSbLhCbuLJmCXUeuk56YcjcAdTji-rNCDPgXiuWwwR4r6e8U1DXsjlpI_bK6DBLMQ-_YAi3XpcQY4Q8QaJ9DSCNtZS782ao9YS7BkskB5HhBAnl_Gu8

                                                                                      Link https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/6D2b-tvLCOJHZeBcCeiTUjpHqCpUwK_Qx3wgvCY-r8Rce9EUBPGLb20jxcJSni-MrPBPK6OOWZOcX_BkH8BP4OqsPACwV3X1y0IfSPW61oOrPV2_ZrgsMmbt

                                                                                      Link https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/FMu52ztjT6z9lLw0nXRp7rJI0i5EDFXIrhz2aKky6M5Ob-1jk_g4-XftF7hOddjrXgG6QuAQt1hOxRULKNiw09GvUIVqKd4ljf4It8IBdkFDIpYQruQwa330

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/3jzhniRlnJalLSsZ16GbQFJWnFolB_nYRwHjQCbIJE91hkUlUvNIoftWCvm81P9MnYMUkw71zdihUAVBAnicscy8dqAg0Ax6qS_Jo6axKRuqJs4j-7Wn9uAo

                                                                                      Link https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/GE4sWE5cILIZ0C5_xGfO7-Rk5iNqHTJN_jUcwHpxX_goebbzwqIhn-v05Mrr6vKB1XmtwkoSgCvNaJQ5cLtN8a-6xdUk1IYWiFg54NEwmmp0l7CN5AFlX2ts

                                                                                      Link A third of people in the UK think going to war in Iraq was justified, but six in 10 believe it was a mistake, a BBC survey suggests.

                                                                                      https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/bfDqKpOalOukoe_l6-tq9ZgLqGxzecnmg5q5vWS5fxi9iKB6Kkp6uQT6B6QQiQuXn7nMLY6JQKQc03XCuv1C3Umtiz94NEZZT3SNW42r9YRwnVe_KQUOXUGs

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/zmBlabuNXuaR4_DPfW2tDcfy7y1CckQAsRpytwwdjcJha14Hou_3Hh8huGv7TshD-BSe7PteU2icIGxHONArKzYeaI9nyfbbG2nqYi-EH5nFw9IrFucPyqmr

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/RGCKsIbx0SEckIe9SXEN77pIcO0PDUBZW4fub10iBfAwCXcTMuK2GrKQ5dVjl8wog4Ea0ANWmc-N5ug9gQe26SnlkcHz6r8aNd_oR6FPSkzm8xcjACxYSYFQ

                                                                                      Link Link https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/yd7DcRPlFjPrwwgT7_dcKctY2wOxgerrYmGCBq-o174Sic_zdXqI0AEcv1HP5MKpKXXZnlqTsooZiXHBjPAUDA9QtElXyZjYSCd4uiDWJ0EjRFCe_3PVi0BQ

                                                                                      Link https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/I66HXEyWD9PDP6Zl9OY3h_jK4nwqtlY_AqSmM98BwAvInHNebT7E89iN692bw99LPhL6Y1IdKbIrJVp7l-n18_h2yICtIfCEeZ90eoiOftwMnKZ523RhTABq

                                                                                      Linkhttps://lh3.googleusercontent.com/GdEjw-NvWF0Ax8ZAvWbjp_4_sh7WEFk-kGiwHCVMCO9MtrA1_IwQyCuT0MIBz9U0K9X0PJej5KOOu3VwGM4QB4gB_cvYiqYyz5nIiyUpvqDMiTmJeAuke15t

                                                                                      Linkhttps://lh5.googleusercontent.com/eid1AM7TmDeU3UfaQ59tUdoq8XMxMe3CJJnE9CTbfsBrNDq7Hkom68wBWFx7TNe7t5CHksL3UDXRjIthFrLdMinRKoVTpoKqdFPaR__l1RSlXa1RwAXTfyKB

                                                                                      Link

                                                                                      https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/a9KszeCnmXQjARybcuAoMk6X7GOCDY30CJtv0Vykhylz-EkIc6fh0U_PMCS6yA_q-Iu_3txkWJ0zLdbIx8wBVWfa2aFJ--5uc7FNhtY28q6vlw1_QqnJFTaYhttps://lh3.googleusercontent.com/cvWYQMaVcIWXDBW8fOKYE2NDxLtXnxSAPXXIMh7_YexI-25MqP6_lsW70qBFMZZJTfBt9KMMlS8hfGGE0sYRZUhfBUQ7Ih5I2pEIv9f8N3Tr3AtZTCr5Q5uw

                                                                                      Link


                                                                                      Architects of war
                                                                                      http://tv.msnbc.com/2013/03/18/architects-of-the-iraq-war-where-are-they-now/


                                                                                      10. Propaganda




                                                                                      • Link[background=transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap] Mechanism of the Monstrosity[/font]

                                                                                        [/list]


                                                                                        - Donahue and Bill Moyers, the last honest men on national television, were the only two major TV news personalities who presented the viewpoints of those of us who challenged the rush to war in Iraq.

                                                                                        - General Electric and Microsoft — MSNBC’s founders and defense contractors that went on to make tremendous profits from the war

                                                                                        - An internal MSNBC memo leaked to the press stated that Donahue was hurting the image of the network. He would be a “difficult public face for NBC in a time of war,” the memo read. Donahue never returned to the airwaves.

                                                                                        - Donahue said of the pressure the network put on him near the end, “It evolved into an absurdity.” He continued: “We were told we had to have two conservatives for every liberal on the show. I was considered a liberal. I could have Richard Perle on alone but not Dennis Kucinich. You felt the tremendous fear corporate media had for being on an unpopular side during the ramp-up for a war. And let’s not forget that General Electric’s biggest customer at the time was Donald Rumsfeld.

                                                                                        “Nobody sees the pain,” he said. “The war is sanitized.”

                                                                                         

                                                                                         

                                                                                         

                                                                                         

                                                                                         

                                                                                         


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stefan_molyneux


#2
Nathan T_ Freeman

Nathan T_ Freeman
  • 600 posts

Incredibly powerful closing, Stef. I have some reservations about that 5 million children number you start with. That doesn't seem to be cited in the sources. And I'd like to see the math on the 1.5 million. I get that this might be a total from several different periods that are covered by different sources.

Otherwise, all I can say is that I feel shellshocked just from having watched it. When you're ready to list it, I will definitely share with friends and family.


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#3
Nathan T_ Freeman

Nathan T_ Freeman
  • 600 posts

Also, when you want to draw out the perspective sizes of body counts, etc, these might come in handy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_population

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/US_Cities_by_population

So if you happen to re-record any of it, you could highlight how the proportional population figures compare to American states or cities. Calling out that the number of displaced people is the equivalent of the entire state of Illinois having to move someplace else might give a litlte more meaning to some of these population numbers.

You do a great job with conveying the sums of money by breaking them down to hourly rates. I think you could get a more human connection to the population numbers by comparing them to known populations.

Thanks again for all you do. 


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#4
magentawave

magentawave
  • 219 posts

Depressing as hell but amazing work Stefan. I appreciate all the time you spent compiling this. Thank you.


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#5
zg7666

zg7666
  • 237 posts

[color= #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px]"This Is What Winning Looks Like"[/color]

[color= #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px]A disturbing new documentary about the ineptitude, drug abuse, sexual misconduct, and corruption of the Afghan security forces as well as the reduced role of US Marines. In part one, we see just how chaotic and hopeless the situation is in Sangin, one of the most violent towns in Afghanistan.[/color]

 

[View:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKHPTHx0ScQ]

 

[color= #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px]Full article here: [/color]http://www.vice.com/read/this-is-what...

[color= #333333; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 17px]Podcast interview with Ben Anderson, the producer of "This Is What Winning Looks Like," here: [/color]http://bit.ly/Ben-Anderson-Podcast


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FDR_LIBRARY_ANIM_4.GIF


#6
Alan Chapman

Alan Chapman
  • 5097 posts

Depleted uranium used by US forces blamed for birth defects and cancer in Iraq

 

“After the start of the Iraq war, rates of cancer, leukemia and birth defects rose dramatically in Najaf. The areas affected by American attacks saw the biggest increases. We believe it’s because of the' illegal' weapons like depleted uranium that were used by the Americans. When you visit the hospital here you see that cancer is more common than the flu," Dr. Sundus Nsaif tells RT's Lucy Kafanov while talking on the rooftop of her house in Najaf, instead of her laboratory. Why the secrecy? As she reveals, there’s an active push by the government perhaps not to embarrass the coalition forces, not to really talk about this issue.

 

. . .

 

At least 440,000kg of DU was used in Iraq, some ending up as DU dust, some as corroding penetrators and leaving a still unknown number of sites with contaminated vehicles, buildings and soils, according to a Dutch report.


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