Olive Branch Optimism
what a wonderful world...
Friday, May 27, 2005
Condition For Change
US policy in Iraq is becoming stagnant. They are getting bogged down and their pathways out of Iraq by peaceful means are limited, and rapidly declining in numbers....

US Helicopters are regular targets of Surface-to-Air missile fire,
and It is no longer un-common to hear the words "we have a black hawk down"...
Just recently (Yesterday) and also a few days ago an American Chopper was downed killing two US soldiers in each of the attacks...

Now, you may think wow, a whole chopper and two soldiers - no biggy. But really, a whole chopper in Iraq in a fight against a resisting pocket is like having a spare, rapid response army in the sky. When one of these go down the ground troops it is supporting are left naked to the Guerrila's.

The Psychological warfare being undertaken by the Guerilla's no doubtedly spawns from the dirty tactics the US used against the Iraqi Repubilican Guard and the Iraqi people themselves with its "show and awe" campaign (ie Blow Shit UP campaign). This included bombing an empty house every half an hour in each district for days at a time to remind every person around of the ever-present birds in the sky, and I cannot begin to imagine what that kind of "shell-shock" would do to a person, especially with JDAM's and Bunker Busters that create giant explosions which rock whole cities at a time.

The Guerrila's too are running a similar campaing. They aim to make each individual American soldier as scared of them as the American Officer Class and Generals hoped the Iraqi Resistance would be of the US forces. So every time a convoy passes down a main stretch their is a bomb, or and ambush, or death and warnings left as intimidating messages along the way that the troops see and are reminded of the ever-present danger to their lives.

A bomb blows up 10 meters a head of a US convoy, or slightly off the road killing noone and causing only injury to those in the front vehicles, but every memeber of that whole convoy has hundreds of "What-If?" scenarios run through their head that day, the next day, and every convoy they ever get in for the rest of their lives.

This has a devistating impact on the Moral of the media and of the US troops and their reliant benefactors, the Iraqi National Guard, and strengthens the resolve of Guerrila's winning in an all-too-familiar campaign of oppression.

Well, its near on time for me to go to work, but keep reading over the coming days as I elaborate on what I call the psychological warfare being fought AGAINST the US soldiers. This will become a major part of all future combat, and makes strategists rethink the importance of intelect and morale in troops, particularly troops trained for the "Occupation" period of a "War", not just the "Invasion" itself.

Without sturdy, psychologically sound troops then an Occupation can never be sustained because the irrational acts of psychologically crippled troops could indefinately incite trouble amongst the local population when their paranoia drives them to doing things such as the shooting of Italy's Intelligence Agent, or an Iraqi family in a mini-van, or an ambulance, or other such vehicle 'accidents' where someone has shot-first and realised later.

enough for now, things are beginning to change in Iraq, and US foreign policy is about to take a shift one way or another as it cannot remain on its current course. This does not mean a pull-out is imminent, or that the war is over, or that it is intensifying(which it is), it means that the suffering caused by the US is coming back at them, and it is being felt by their economy and can be seen evidently in the Political Polarization and emergence of mass-activism within the USA.

Hopefully this will bring some kind of nerve-settling, violence crushing ideas into policy in Iraq and begin saving valuable lives, Iraqi and Coalition lives.

Thursday, May 26, 2005
Updating Stuff
Just a quick post to remind people who haven't read all the old posts to go back and read them, also those who have read them all go back and read the these ones which I have just updated!

bush clearly outlined invasion of iraq

Saudi's, Israelis and Irani's Investing in reconstruction

More modifications will be made over the coming week, and more posts will be added forever more!
YSAW returns
Actions against the Occupation of Iraq have been announced world-wide for Saturday September 24th, spawned in Washington, this exciting prospect for a peaceful anti-war gathering has proppelled me in to further action.

Much of the last week I have spent aranging a gathering of friends, associates and anyone I know who is against the current state of war in Iraq.

It will be held next month on Sunday, June 26th in a lovely park(The Esplenade) in the port-side town of Fremantle here in Western Australia.

The purpose of this meet-up is mostly to get to know each other, and combine our hopes and ideas for a peaceful end to this brutal invasion/occupation of Iraq.

One of the only things on the agenda for this meet is the September 24 rally, and the prospect of how to get the word out. I am working on getting the local media (ABC TV, ABC RADIO, Fremantle Radio, community newspaper, etc) involved in the campaign to build this rally/vigil/anti-war-picnic!

My hope is that with the right combination of people, far-lefties and moderates, children teenagers and adults, high-school students and teachers, primary school students, uni students, uni lecturers, bakers, radio presenters, bloggers and anyone else who is accepting of others and also against war, we can build a solid base from which to work towards peace.

The inspiration and drive that comes from a successful gathering or rally can be amazingly strong. I have felt it myself before and lived off it for weeks at a time.

I am hoping that June 26 will show that people from all walks of life are still interested, and can work together to fight against this war. I also aim to remind everyone and that every little contribution, be it an hour a month, and hour a week, and hour a day or even just one small smile makes a difference.

Confidence is one of the keys for success, and a smile is definately a confidence booster, and a "well done" or an "I agree" or even a CONSTRUCTIVE disagreement can have underlying effects on those involved.

Many hands make life work, and no congregation will ever agree 120% of the time on all issues indefinately, and thus the need for inclusiveness,responsibility and reasoning, are essential to the survival and effective working of any group.

From my view, this is particularly so in an anti-war group, where opinions are often conflicting and people are often polarised.

This is why I am bringing parents, teachers, and other responsible adults or reasonable people together with activists, children, teenagers and the likes.
The combined qualities of these people have great potential for work and activism alike.

Children (like my 12 year old sister) offer simplicity and common sense. They also tend to bring a happy atmosphere to places that THEY CHOOSE to go to, and a somewhat different perspective on life that can occasionaly prove them wise beyond their age.

Teenagers are energectic, often optimistic go-getters with contacts and access to resources and other students at High School. As we found out in 2003, this is a largely undiscovered resource that is actually quite huge and active.

Uni Students - the stereotype of anti-war activists is the uni student, and with good reason since they are often the most active, are highly resourcesful and intelligent members of the movement. Their resourcefullness and close relations to other parts of the activist community are an essential for building a peaceful future.

Seniors command respect merely for being who they are. There is something about the wisdom gained with age that is humbling. The experience from before our times is sure to come in handy, as it did indeed prove to be in 2003. We also need to be in contact with seniors, to find out what their views are and/or why, this will also help us to build credibility amongst the general population and definately stump the media that have previously labelled YSAW as "radical youths".

Parents worry for their children, and this worry bring on many thoughts, many wisdoms that cannot be replicated any other way. Parents also mould the lives of future generations, and influence other parents to do so similarly. Definately another credibility builder, and another group that command respect and are excellent at humbling ego's before they even surface.

Teachers/Lecturers are an interesting addition that I think adds strength and resolve to any related students, members of the same uni/school and DEFINATELY helps to identify any parents/students who also disagree with the war in Iraq and other such war-related issues.

Ultimately the idea is to diversify and be inclusive, allow people to feel like they can be openly involved in Youth and Students Against War, whether they are a Youth, a Student or not. Though the group was sparked and built by youth and students, without the help of older experienced persons, it is easy for the media to discredit YSAW as just another radical student movement.....

I am also still taking donations and want help for fundraising for the Jarrar' Family Project, which is a fully transparent operation buying medical supplies in Jordan, and transporting them directly to hospitals treating WOUNDED CIVILIANS. All transactions, the medicines themselves etc are documented by the Jarrar family online, accessible to the general public

Unexpected Change
Sorry to my regular readers (Najma particularly :D),due to a few un-forseen Tornado's (which never ever usually happen in Western Australia)... the few days of resulting dodgy-power and then work and taking my girlfriend to get an RSI injury examined by a specialist and other such things, I have been unable/unwilling to blog in what little spare time was left.

But after speaking to my girlfriend yesterday, I feel that since this is my passion and writing is where my future lays, that I will promise to blog consistently whenever possible from now on.

I will also try to include a larger part of my own writings, opinions and experiences. So far, this blog has for me been mainly a way of relating to Iraqi's, and of preserving their stories, more than it has been of expressing my own views.

Well, sometimes that is better anyway.

I cannot tell the story of an Iraqi whose friend narrowly survived a car-bomb and the related fear for the life of a friend better than an Iraqi can himself.

How ever, If I get in to the habit of writing in like that, things in my own life which effect war often get overlooked, and sometimes I forget that my own life actually does matter.

So from now on you will notice a change in the posts, but the information will remain of high quality and hopefully high quantity. My opinions will be expressed strongly and I will still post links to stories of Iraqi's and other war-related issue's on my blog.

Check out the next post in a couple of hours, one about what I am currently centering my life around, re-building the anti-war movement and in particular the group which inspired me so much in 2003, Youth and Students Against War (YSAW).

[olivebranch out]
Saudi's, Israeli's and Irani's investing in Reconstruction

Israeli investment in Iraq War -> Media Jews + Media Profits = Israeli Profits.
War stories + 24/7 viewing = $$$ revenue .


Who has most at stake in the outcome of the war on Iraq?

Is it Iran? is it Israel? is it the USA?
or is it Saudi Arabia???

This is a debate I enjoy having with myself, since noone else seems willing to have it with me,
or indeed informed enough to care about said debate (not people I see in real life here in Perth, Western Australia anyways)

Lately I am not sure, I have been noticing an increasing acknowledgement for the heavy influence that Irani factions in Iraq such as SCIRI and the Da'awa Party have been having on the civilian population, including their attempts to segregate religion, and radicalize the general public so as to sway the government towards a Shia controlled Islamic Theocracy like that imposed on Iran in 1979 when the Shah was over-thrown by Ayotollah Khomeini.

I have also been reading alot about the conditions of life itself and the religious ways and beliefs of the Saudi Royal family and the Bin Laden Group, including a book by the name of "The Veiled Kingdom" By Carmen Bin Ladin, ex-wife of prominent Bin-Laden Brother Yeslam Bin Ladin. It shows that much is at stake for Saudi Arabia in Iraq too, for if the Irani model of Islamic Theocracy were to rise in Iraq, on the border of Saudi Arabia there would be much trouble.

From one perspective I see that as the US invaded Iraq, the amount of oil consumption by the US government must have increased greatly. Doubt over the stability of the Middle-East and the future of oil reserves and the environment world-wide has driven prices-per-barrel souring upward. At the same time there would have been a rapid decline in the amount of oil being provided from Iraq even through the oil-for-food program wich was highly controversial and generally exploited anyway, as pipelines were being destroyed, and oil was being emptied into trenches and burnt as a smoke-screen against US invading forces.

For the oil-rich Saudi's, this meant an economical boom. Their stocks in the Carlisle Group and Lockhead Martin and other such military markets in the USA also boomed, adding great personal gains for the Bin Laden's and Saudi Royals, as well as for the official government of Saudi Arabia and its people themselves.

And, if, as many experts predict (though I disagree), that the price of oil is being driven mainly by instability in the Middle East rather than concern for global ecology, then an end to the war on Iraq could mean recession for the Saudi Economy. To the Saudi princes, who enjoy fast expensive cars and frequent flights overseas this could pose some problems.

The Saudi Royals have a huge amount of money invested in US trends, in Weapons development and distribution, in land and in the Carlisle Group, along with the Bin Laden Clan, Bush Senior and many other war-mongering politicians. If the war in Iraq
turns foul enough for the American's to have to leave, this profit would slow or even turn to debt very quickly.

With constant discontent towards them inside the country, the rising threat of civil war or coup-de-ta would be fueled by any poverty created, or by the stark differences in the life-styles enjoyed by the rich Saudi Royals, and the common Saudi man/woman.

To add to this, any turn further towards Western ideals inside Iraq would quickly spill further into Saudi society, and begin eroding away at the strict religious base used to keep a hold of the country by the Royals and the supporting Bin Laden Clan. This could quickly mean women, particularly foreigners living inside Saudi Arabia,of which there are many, start to stand up for them selves, start to dissent. Ultimately, this leads to the collapse of the Saudi Monarchy.

Now maybe you understand that people in Iraq are being forced by either side to start wearing their Hijab's, because both Iran and Saudi Arabia fear that further "westernisation" of Iraq could spill into their borders as more American technology
pours into the country. In Iran this too would erode away at the religious foundations that float the powerful Ayatollah Khomeini and his supporting clan in the Irani Government and Republican Guard.

Israel on the otherhand have a hell of a lot to lose aswell, but their involvement in Iraq is much more symbolic and political than it is directly military or economical based. If, as before, Iraq comes out with a very pro-Palestine government, only this time with better relations to its neighbours, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria..... There could very quickly become a powerful united front backing the Palestinian resistance, and this would very quickly threaten the basis on which Israel stays on Occupied Palestinian territory. (Security)

On the other hand, Israeli and American Jews are reknown for their ownership of the global corporate media based mostly inside the USA, and the Corporate Media companies as such are known for being the first to profiteer from war. I know that I certainly bought a paper every day for a month either side of invasion day in March 2003. I know I watched the news and kept reading every peice of media available. (though I also used non-corporate resources to get a much better, in depth knowledge base to form my personal view from)

I have available a VERY VERY large list of Jews involved at the highest level in corporate media such as Fox , Walt Disney, Time Warner, CNN, Universal studio's, DreamWorks SKG, Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation - which owns somewhere near 90% of
Australian newspaper sales and television news contracts. They Also control The Associated Press, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY MANY more.

For further information on Jews in the Media check these links.

http://www.stormfront.org/jewish/whorules.html <--- good source of info, but I dislike his opinions.
http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=1406 <-- even better info, less opinion, less story... read the top one first...

Well, Now I have given you an overview of my opinion, here is some information and fruther argument that I present to prove that Israel, Saudi Arabia and Iran all have much at stake in Iraq.


The connection that appears to me most blatant of all between these countries, is that of SCIRI (the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq) and the Irani revolutionary group SCIRI (Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iran) which

toppled the Shah of Iran in 1979 and imposed the religious rule of Ayotollah Khomeini upon Iran. Perhaps most concerning about SCIRI, is it's military wing, Badr Corps, originally the Badir's Brigade.

Here is a couple of paragraphs giving a brief rundown of the history of SCIRI's origins. The more documents can be found

from the following links:

Also check out http://www.juancole.com/ for much information about Iraq and those involved with it.


The Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), a Shi'i resistance group also known as the Supreme Assembly of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SAIRI), was formed in Iran in 1982 to provide an opposition to Iraqi aggression against Iran. Following the Iran-Iraq war, the organization continued to operate with the aim of toppling the regime of Saddam Hussein. SCIRI was directly supported with funds by Tehran and with arms by Iran's elite Revolutionary Guard. The movement advocated theocratic rule for Iraq and conducted a low-level, cross-border guerrilla war to bring Islamic revolution to Iraq.

The Badr Corps consist of thousands of former Iraqi officers and soldiers who defected from the Iraqi army, Iraqi refugees, and Iraqis who fled the country to join SCIRI during the Iran-Iraq war. The Badr Corps' main military goal was to crush Iran's nemesis, the Mujahedeen Khalq Organisation (MKO), a guerrilla group of Iranians who fell out with Tehran in the early days of the 1979 revolution and allied themselves with Baghdad.

The Badr corps consist of Infantry, Armored, Artillery, Anti aircraft and commandos units. The training courses are supervised by Iraqi military officers and commanders who defected from Iraqi army.

The Badr forces strategy is as follows:

1. To build military bases in some safe areas such as the Marshes in southern Iraq and Kurdistan in Northern Iraq.
2. To establish secret resistance cells all over Iraq.
3. To keep mobilising and training camps outside Iraq in the neighbouring countries which allow such activities.


So, if you haven't already read into this yourself and deducted what this can mean for the future of Iraq, I think maybe you should go borrow some books from your library on the Irani revolution,

go read some Irani blogs which can be found in english at http://blogsbyiranians.com/

Or maybe I will just elaborate a little bit for you on how I percieve it. SCIRI, which formed with the support of the Irani government and its Elite Republican Guard in the midst of war with Saddam's Regime, has its primary objectives as "Crushing Iran's Nemesis", and to "Bring Islamic Revolution to Iraq", in other words, to Iranify(hehehe I made up a new funny word) Iraq.

It is this same party, with the same said goals, that is now supported by the American Occupation forces in Iraq. Infact, the whole government that was in all practicle terms imposed on the Iraqi people by the US government is ridden with connections to Iran deeper than the American's wallet.

The top two winning parties in Iraq's elections, which together won more than 70 percent of the vote are, much to the dismay of neo-conservatives in America, Iran's closest allies in Iraq.

"This is a government that will have very good relations with Iran. The Kurdish victory reinforces this conclusion. Talabani is very close to Tehran," said Juan Cole, a University of Michigan expert on Iraq. "In terms of regional geopolitics, this is not the outcome that the United States was hoping for."

These results will have some extreme long-term implications. The US government have played Baghdad and Tehran off each other to ensure neither became a regional giant threatening or dominant over U.S. allie, notably Saudi Arabia and the oil-rich Gulf sheikdoms, for many many years.

It appears to me that the US can do nothing but wait for it to happen. The US can't win a popularity contest in Iraq, and their only means for staying in Iraq is do act as a pawn for the United Iraqi Alliance, which is expected to very quickly strengthen ties between Iraq and Iran as a shield against outside influences like the US, Israel and the Saudi's.

Tehran's in-action against the Iraq war was advantageous to its own future, by toppling saddam and lining Badr's Brigade up on the border while the US tanks were wading their way into Baghdad, they ensured their ability to influence the people of
Iraq towards supporting their Theocratic and extremist interpretation of Sharia (or islamic Law, if I spelt it right, being the silly westerner I am :D

It also could be the one thing protecting them from America and Israel[other than its own military might]. If Iraq was all pro-USA and conforming to US ideas, IRAN would be FUCKED. But Iran knows better of Iraq's military capabilities and ingenuity, having faced its formidable foe for many years during the Iran/Iraq war and I am sure they kept their eye on what Saddam was doing in preperation of invasion since 1991 much better than the US did.

They probably knew of the likely emergence of Al-Sadr, they would DEFINATELY have planned for SCIRI to move in and undoubtedly knew the fierce resistance the sunni's would put up to any invasion, UN, US, IRAN, SAUDI, SYRIAN, TURK -ANYONE-
Saddam laid down his weapons and retreated into his people, he then fought until his capture, a story I will link to at a later stage when I can be bothered finding it to disprove the US 'he was in a hole underground' bullshit, just like the Private Jessica Lynch rescue! and the shooting of the Italian Intelligence agent Nicola Calipari.

Most of these so called 'insurgent cells' in the Sunni triangle are not pro-saddam, but they were equipped by Saddam, they were in agreeance with Saddam. If the American's come we wont fight, we will let them in, we will shoot a few bullets and
seem week. We will let them get worn out and fight to the death over time.

Face-to-Face all out combat with the US war machine is suicide. Incensing revolutionary movement and alienating the people against US policy is the highly successfull plan laid long before the Invasion had been realised. Im sure Saddam was ready for it in 1998, and if not, im sure the 5 years between were DEFINATELY time for preperation.

Iran knows this. I mean, if by reading what I have found on the internet, in books, from my own little hunches to look at a particular person and find many worlds behind them, that I can see that this is what happend, from my little desk here in
the most isolated major city in the entire world, then surely Iraq's closest neighbours, closest religion and arch-rival would have known. So they played along too, I wouldn't even be surprised if Saddam's friends had made deals with SCIRI
though I have no evidence to back this claim.

-- Now back to Saudi Arabia, this is mostly based on regional information, not its ties to America which information can be

found on at many sites already.

If the new government of Iraq comes out close to the hard-line Isalmic Theocracy of Iran, then the future of relations between Iraqi's and their Wahhabi brothers to the west looks very shakey and very shadey.

Although Riyadh declared its neutrality at the outset of the Iran-Iraq War in 1980, it helped Baghdad in nonmilitary ways.

For example, during the conflict's eight years, Saudi Arabia provided Iraq with an estimated US$25 billion in low-interest loans and grants, reserved for Iraqi customers part of its production from oil fields in the Iraq-Saudi Arabian Neutral
Zone, and assisted with the construction of an oil pipeline to transport Iraqi oil across its territory.

Despite this though, Riyadh's fears concerning Baghdad's ultimate intentions prompted Saudi Arabia to become involved directly in the war against Iraq during January and February 1991. This caused major divisions between the Saudi and Iraqi governments.

Saudi Arabia's fear of losing oil sales to Iraq have prompted them to exerpt their influence on Iraq in the form of aggitation against the US presence. They will not openely support the invasion of Iraq, and condemn the presence of non-Muslim troops as 'peace keepers' or 'liberaters' on Muslim soil. If a pro-US government were to eventuate from the invasion or Iraq, that would mean that US dependancy on Saudi Arabia for oil would decrease greatly, and the supply-demand balance would once again be pushed away from Saudi favour. This would open up the way for judgement of the Saudi regime by western leaders openly, without the fear of losing a vital oil supply.

This would mean that Saudi Arabia's harsh religious law enforcement could come under human rights scrutiny, and combined with the afformention arguments about economic harshities and inequalities in lifestyle, this could be enough to fuel an explosion of radicalism away from traditional Saudi Wahhabism.

"The road to the entire Middle East goes through Baghdad," <--- This is true whether you are Wahhabi', Kurd, Shi'a, Sunni or another sect of Islam, whether you are the USA, the UK, the USSR.... Mesopotamia is and always had been the center of civilization, particularly for the Muslim/Arab world.

The Saudi's still need Iraq as a religeous buffer between their hardline Wahhabi'ism interpretation of Sharia and Iran's Shi'te population, and Jordan's secular government. Such melding of religion could bring an end to the oppression of women in Saudi Society, which would require a totally new reshaping of Saudi Society, and would this change would deffinately turn many against the Saudi Royal family for its oppressive ways.

So you see that the Saudi's too, even before we move into physical investment in the USA and military equiptment or the ACTUAL reconstruction effort in Iraq have a large interest ideologically in the future of Iraq. The removal of Saddam Hussein could have been a pro or a con for Saudi's, and could still go either way. As can be found on many Iraqi' blogs like Riverbends' - quotes resounding the following message "Before the invasion, we had never heard of Wahhabi'sm in Iraq, women needn't wear hijab's and could walk alone in the streets".

In Saudi Arabia a woman can barely answer the front door without permission of her husband, or in his absence the eldest son, or in absence of an eldest son or father, then the closest male relative must permit them to do so and make sure no non-related male see's their face or be spoken to or speak to them. I fear for the future of women in Iraq when Wahhabi'sm is mentioned in Iraq's future, is doesn't sound nice to me.

I will conclude by stating that I probably don't have enough physical evidence in this blog 'YET' to prove that Saudi Arabia 'gains' from the invasion of Iraq. However if you would care to read Michael Moore's "Stupid White Men", and watch some documentaries on Saudi Royals and their connection to the BUSH family such as "House of Bush, House of Saud" or "Farrenheit 9/11" or "9/11 in plane site", you can see the hidden investments made by Saudi Royals and the Bin Laden' family in the Carlisle Group and other parts of the American economy, amounting to a total of 13% of the economy of the USA.

Monday, May 23, 2005
The Saddest Thing
http://www.english-cafe.com/showthread.php?p=11080#post11080 (source of poem)

The Saddest Thing

Looking up
Seeing hate
Who's slowly becoming life's mate
People talking about the lost lives
About the disturbed hearts and sickened minds
So many innocent lives buried
So many hopes and dreams shattered
So many sleepless nights from now until forever

By the casket tears fall
Losing friend after friend
Time after time
It's getting old
We lost the faith and hope of the world
We lost love and replaced it with violence and harsh words

Wishing danger wasn't in the day
Wishing people would simply walk away
News keep on coming out
Another got shot
Another committed suicide
We'll never see what's going on
Until the days end and everyone is gone.............?

I don't know what to say or do about the conflict. Someone help me.
Someone give me inspiration, someone direct me which way to go.....
How do I fight this evil. How do we evade this peril?
Saturday, May 21, 2005
Irani Bloggers
Today I will blog alot, when I get home from work I will hit the Iraq' update...

but for now I want to bring to your attention something sinister from outside Iraq... In neighbouring Iran, 20 bloggers have been taken captive by the government in an attempt to create internet-censorship.

Now it is getting to the point where one particular case, which has been dragging on over years now, is coming towards a catastrophic end... The blogger, Mojtaba Saminejad


has felt his right and life so threatened he has decided to go on hunger-strike, and as a sign of respect some bloggers (myself included), are dedicating next thursday to his case and sympathy --- see the below quote from an email from

"Devote next Thursday to an expression of sympathy for an innocent who has been unjustly detained. Observe a fast on your blog for Mojtaba, linking to this page. Those among us who are healthy and so inclined might consider an actual day-long fast. When asked why, tell your family, friends, neighbors and coworkers about Mojtaba. "

If you want to help immediately,

write to the following people, requesting Mojtaba be given a pardon and unconditional, immediate release and that, in the meantime, he be transferred to a less violent facility.

Outside the U.S., you can contact either the Permanent Representative to the United Nations or the Iranian ambassador in your own country. Here is the page on the Interest Section website that lists some of Iran's embassies around the world.


Finally, contact directly the people responsible for Mojtaba’s detention.

Leader of the Islamic Republic His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed 'Ali Khameni
The Presidency
Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran

President, His Excellency Hojjatoleslam Sayed Mohammad Khatami
The Presidency
Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email the president

Head of Judiciary, His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi
Head of the Judiciary
Ministry of Justice
Park-e Shahr
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Tehran
Fax: +98 21 879 6671 or +98 21 640 4018/4019 (Please mark "care of Director of International Affairs)
Email the Public Relations Department
Email the Public Relations Director

You can also sign the following partition calling on the head of the judicial system, Ayatollah Sharoudi, to grant Mojtaba a pardon and unconditional release.


come on bloggers, UNITE...
this could be OUR chance to set the precedent. OUR chance to be in charge of our future. If the Irani government get away with taking him, who says the Australian government wont try to take me in the future if I say something they don't like... Who says the Iraqi National Guard wont start destroying bloggers computers or houses?

Who says the Patriot Act wont be extended upon bloggers?

If we can unit now then we can unite any time, and if we are victorious once,
we may avoid the situation recurring (doubtful, but cant blame me for being an optimist).

more from me later today

Friday, May 06, 2005
Bush Clearly Outlined an Invasion of Iraq on Jan30, 2001
[snip]At George W. Bush's National Security Council (NSC) on Jan. 30, 2001, the first meeting of George W. Bush's National Security Council (NSC) the president made it clear that toppling Saddam Hussein sat at the top of his to-do list, according to then-Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neil, who was there.[/snip]

I have been trying to tell people since November 2002 that there is something odd about the reasons for being in Iraq, or wanting in to Iraq as the case was at the time. I found the idea of WMD in a country that could barely smuggle food in under the ever watchful US nose absurd.

Though oil was traded both legally and illegally, through the oil-for-food programme and illegal exports to Russia, this was allowed by the US because if this export slowed down, the demand on other suppliers would increase, forcing prices higher which would ultimately hurt the US economy. But the US would surely not permit the smuggling of WMD's in and out of Iraq, and Iran certainly wouldn't help them with it either.

So that leaves us with Syria and Saudi Arabia. Syria has its eyes on Palestine and Lebanon, and is hoping to god Iraq turn out OK. Saudi Arabia on the other hand is playing the game, influencing Iraq and BOMBING the USA on September 11.

Fear and war drives up oil consumption, war keeps their biggest buyer the USA consuming petrol, the resistance destroying Iraq's oil pipelines and limiting the flow from Iraq increases the demand on the Saudi's oil revenue's, and they in turn churn out more oil at higher prices.

If George W Bush wanted to remove Saddam Hussein on Jan.30 2001, could it be possible that the plan involved the thousands of US troops at the time still stationed in Saudi Arabia? This meant the plan would have to have Saudi backing... Could it be possible that the Carlisle Group's potential profits meant money for the US economy, the Saudi Royal's and the Bin Laden Group?

What made the Saudi's turn around? Was it when the American's started to slaughter Afghani's? When The Bin Laden clans most religously respected son, Osama was being hunted as the number 1 enemy of the US Government? Or was it that they realised, when and if the US ever DID claim victory in Iraq and enstate a US-friendly government as they wished, that there would be no need for Saudi Oil exports to the US anymore?

Or maybe it was just when the public discovered the connection between the two ruling elitist groups, through the Carlisle Group.

Read the below articles confirming the GEORGE.W.Bush had ANNOUNCED his TOP PRIORITY was the TOPPLING OF SADDAM HUSSEIN on JANUARY 30, 2001. Long BEFORE the WAR ON TERROR.

Another link to verify this can be found at http://www.progressivetrail.org/

Proof Bush Fixed The Facts

by Ray McGovern

published by TomPaine.com

Proof Bush Fixed The Facts

"Intelligence and facts are being fixed around the policy."

Thanks to an unauthorized disclosure by a courageous whistleblower, the evidence now leaps from official documents�this time authentic, not forged. Whether prompted by the open appeal of the international Truth-Telling Coalition or not, some brave soul has made the most explosive "patriotic leak" of the war by giving London's Sunday Times the official minutes of a briefing by Richard Dearlove, then head of Britain's CIA equivalent, MI-6. Fresh back in London from consultations in Washington, Dearlove briefed Prime Minister Blair and his top national security officials on July 23, 2002, on the Bush administration's plans to make war on Iraq.

In emotionless English, Dearlove tells Blair and the others that President Bush has decided to remove Saddam Hussein by launching a war that is to be "justified by the conjunction of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction." Period. What about the intelligence? Dearlove adds matter-of-factly, "The intelligence and facts are being fixed around the policy."

At this point, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw confirms that Bush has decided on war, but notes that stitching together justification would be a challenge, since "the case was thin." Straw noted that Saddam was not threatening his neighbors and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.

Blair does not dispute the authenticity of the document.

Dearlove notes "there was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."

At George W. Bush's National Security Council (NSC) on Jan. 30, 2001, the first meeting of George W. Bush's National Security Council (NSC) the president made it clear that toppling Saddam Hussein sat at the top of his to-do list, according to then-Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neil, who was there.

O'Neil was taken aback that there was no discussion of why it was necessary to "take out" Saddam. CIA Director George Tenet showed a grainy photo of a building in Iraq that he said might be involved in producing chemical or biological agents, the discussion then proceeded immediately to which Iraqi targets might be best to bomb.

Another NSC meeting two days later included planning for dividing up Iraq's oil wealth.

U.S. Mishandled $96.6 Million in Rebuilding Iraq [another??]
How many times will these types of reports surface, and when will the Iraqi's see the F*CKING MONEY. THEY NEED IT YOU, excellent politicians you!

here's the article, don't want to cause trouble so I'll just let you read :)
its from the new york times and can be viewed here-

it requires free registration - or just use this
login: mediajunkie
password: mediajunkie

:) mmmm bloggers tricks are great =-)

[short article] -

American officials rushing to start small building projects in a large swath of Iraq in 2003 and 2004 did not keep required records on the spending of $89.4 million in cash and cannot account at all for another $7.2 million, a federal watchdog reported yesterday.
The Reach of War
Go to Complete Coverage
Forum: The Transition in Iraq

Most of the poorly documented spending appeared to involve incompetence or haste, but in some cases the auditors said they suspected theft. "We found indications of fraud," said the report by Stuart W. Bowen Jr., the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction. Some cases were referred to a criminal investigations unit of the inspector general's office.

The report did not name the people suspected of crimes or say how much money may have been involved in possible fraud.

The report described instances in which district and field officers in the small-scale construction program did not provide adequate receipts for money they had reported as having been spent, or left Iraq without accounting for all the cash they had received. It said the chief money manager in Baghdad "did not maintain full control and accountability."

The district and field workers included military officers and American civilians under contract.

The auditors reviewed the disbursement of $120 million in cash in south-central Iraq. Starting in spring 2004, with the repair of Iraq's major infrastructure stalled and the insurgency intensifying, American officials rushed to spread jobs and money through small projects.

They also rushed, critics charge, to spend Iraqi money entrusted to the Americans before June 28, 2004, when the new Iraq government took charge of it. The evidence of sloppy controls is of international concern because the Americans were using the Iraqi funds under authority from the United Nations that required strict accounting. United Nations monitors have said the United States has not fully documented how billions of dollars in Iraqi money, from the Development Fund for Iraq, was spent in 2003 and 2004. The new report noted that a division agent got $58.8 million in cash from the American office in Baghdad that dispensed Iraqi funds in January 2004, but that later documents said he got $1 million less, a discrepancy that has not been explained.

The report also noted that two field agents finished their contracts and left Iraq with apparent cash surpluses of $777,000 and $715,000. The money has not been located.

In one of those cases, the report said, the manager closed the agent's account with a paper transfer of $777,000 to a different office without ascertaining where the money went. "This appears to be an attempt to remove outstanding balances by simply washing accounts," it said.

The Pentagon, which administered the Iraqi money, said it agreed with the report's main conclusions and had acted to improve controls. Responding to a draft of the report, Col. Thomas S. Stefanko, commander of Joint Area Support Group-Central in Baghdad wrote that his office had taken "extensive corrective action" and was reviewing expenditures. He also said high turnover, a shortage of monitors, the urgency of the building effort and the dangers of travel had contributed to the shortcomings.
Information about Iraq
I found something interesting to post from another blog-
"Free Iraq, The New Birth" - by Saleem

Hi again ,I return back to write and publish some news about the situation in Iraq, but today I have the full information about Iraq and I was taken this information from american site.

Formerly part of the Ottoman Empire, Iraq was occupied by Britain during the course of World War I; in 1920, it was declared a League of Nations mandate under UK administration. In stages over the next dozen years, Iraq attained its independence as a kingdom in 1932. A "republic" was proclaimed in 1958, but in actuality a series of military strongmen ruled the country, the latest was SADDAM Husayn. Territorial disputes with Iran led to an inconclusive and costly eight-year war (1980-88). In August 1990, Iraq seized Kuwait, but was expelled by US-led, UN coalition forces during the Gulf War of January-February 1991. Following Kuwait's liberation, the UN Security Council (UNSC) required Iraq to scrap all weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles and to allow UN verification inspections. Continued Iraqi noncompliance with UNSC resolutions over a period of 12 years resulted in the US-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the ouster of the SADDAM Husayn regime. Coalition forces remain in Iraq, helping to restore degraded infrastructure and facilitating the establishment of a freely elected government, while simultaneously dealing with a robust insurgency. The Coalition Provisional Authority transferred sovereignty to the Iraqi Interim Government (IG) in June 2004 and the election of its president, Ghazi al-Ujayl al-YAWR, was held in January 2005.


Middle East, bordering the Persian Gulf, between Iran and Kuwait
Geographic coordinates:
33 00 N, 44 00 E
Map references:
Middle East
total: 437,072 sq km land: 432,162 sq km water: 4,910 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly more than twice the size of Idaho
Land boundaries:
total: 3,650 km border countries: Iran 1,458 km, Jordan 181 km, Kuwait 240 km, Saudi Arabia 814 km, Syria 605 km, Turkey 352 km
58 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm continental shelf: not specified
mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry, hot, cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring, sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq
mostly broad plains; reedy marshes along Iranian border in south with large flooded areas; mountains along borders with Iran and Turkey
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m highest point: unamed peak 3,611 m; note - this peak is not Gundah Zhur 3,607 m or Kuh-e Hajji-Ebrahim 3,595 m
Natural resources:
petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, sulfur
Land use:
arable land: 13.15% permanent crops: 0.78% other: 86.07% (2001)
Irrigated land:
35,250 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
dust storms, sandstorms, floods
Environment - current issues:
government water control projects have drained most of the inhabited marsh areas east of An Nasiriyah by drying up or diverting the feeder streams and rivers; a once sizable population of Marsh Arabs, who inhabited these areas for thousands of years, has been displaced; furthermore, the destruction of the natural habitat poses serious threats to the area's wildlife populations; inadequate supplies of potable water; development of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers system contingent upon agreements with upstream riparian Turkey; air and water pollution; soil degradation (salination) and erosion; desertification
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Law of the Sea signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification
Geography - note:
strategic location on Shatt al Arab waterway and at the head of the Persian Gulf


25,374,691 (July 2004 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 40.3% (male 5,198,966; female 5,039,173) 15-64 years: 56.7% (male 7,280,167; female 7,094,688) 65 years and over: 3% (male 357,651; female 404,046) (2004 est.)
Median age:
total: 19.2 years male: 19.1 years female: 19.3 years (2004 est.)
Population growth rate:
2.74% (2004 est.)
Birth rate:
33.09 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate:
5.66 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate:
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.89 male(s)/female total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 52.71 deaths/1,000 live births male: 58.58 deaths/1,000 live births female: 46.55 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 68.26 years male: 67.09 years female: 69.48 years (2004 est.)
Total fertility rate:
4.4 children born/woman (2004 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
less than 500 (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
noun: Iraqi(s) adjective: Iraqi
Ethnic groups:
Arab 75%-80%, Kurdish 15%-20%, Turkoman, Assyrian or other 5%
Muslim 97% (Shi'a 60%-65%, Sunni 32%-37%), Christian or other 3%
Arabic, Kurdish (official in Kurdish regions), Assyrian, Armenian
definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 40.4% male: 55.9% female: 24.4% (2003 est.)

Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Iraq conventional short form: Iraq local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Iraqiyah local short form: Al Iraq
Government type:
none; note - the Iraqi Interim Government (IG) was appointed on 1 June 2004
Administrative divisions:
18 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Al Anbar, Al Basrah, Al Muthanna, Al Qadisiyah, An Najaf, Arbil, As Sulaymaniyah, At Ta'mim, Babil, Baghdad, Dahuk, Dhi Qar, Diyala, Karbala', Maysan, Ninawa, Salah ad Din, Wasit
3 October 1932 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration); note - on 28 June 2004 the Coalition Provisional Authority transferred sovereignty to the Iraqi Interim Government
National holiday:
Revolution Day, 17 July (1968); note - this holiday was celebrated under the SADDAM Husayn regime but the Iraqi Interim Government has yet to declare a new national holiday
interim constitution signed 8 March 2004; note - the Transitional Administrative Law (TAL) was enacted 8 March 2004 to govern the country until an elected Iraqi Transitional Government can draft and ratify a new constitution in 2005
Legal system:
based on civil and Islamic law under the Iraqi Interim Government (IG) and Transitional Administrative Law (TAL)
formerly 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: Interim Iraqi Government (IG) President Ghazi al-Ujayl al-YAWR (since 1 June 2004); Deputy Presidents Ibrahim al-JAFARI and Rowsch SHAWAYS (since 1 June 2004); note - the President and Deputy Presidents comprise the Presidency Council head of government: Interim Iraqi Government (IG) Prime Minister Ayad ALLAWI (since 28 June 2004) cabinet: 31 ministers appointed by the Presidency Council, plus a Deputy Prime Minister, Barham SALIH elections: scheduled to be held January 2005
Legislative branch:
Iraqi Interim National Council formed in July 2004
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court appointed by the Prime Minister, confirmed by the Presidency Council
Political parties and leaders:
note - the Iraqi political parties included below reflect only the major groups; new political parties continue to emerge, indicative of a rapidly changing political landscape; Al-Sadr Movement [Muqtada Al-SADR]; Da'wa Party [Ibrahim al-JA'FARI]; Iraqi Hizballah [Karim Mahud al-MUHAMMADAWI]; Iraqi National Accord or INA [Ayad ALLAWI]; Iraqi National Congress or INC [Ahmad CHALABI]; Jama'at al Fadilah or JAF [Ayatollah Muhammad ' Ali al-YAQUBI]; The Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq or SCIRI [Abd al-Aziz al-HAKIM]; Constitutional Monarchy Movement or CMM [Sharif Ali Bin al-HUSAYN]; Independent Iraqi Alliance or IIA [Falah al-NAQIB]; Iraqi Independent Democrats or IID [Adnan PACHACHI, Mahdi al-HAFIZ]; Iraqi Islamic Party or IIP [Muhsin Abd al-HAMID, Hajim al-HASSANI]; Iraqi National Unity Movement or INUM [Ahmad al-KUBAYSI, chariman]; Muslim Ulama Council or MUC [Harith Sulayman al-DARI, secretary general]; Kurdistan Democratic Party or KDP [Masud BARZANI]; Patriotic Union of Kurdistan or PUK [Jalal TALABANI]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
an insurgency against the Iraqi Interim Government and Coalition forces is primarily concentrated in Baghdad and in areas west and north of the capital; the diverse, multigroup insurgency is led principally by Sunni Arabs whose only common denominator is a shared desire to oust the Coalition and end US influence in Iraq
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant) chancery: 1801 P Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20036 telephone: [1] (202) 483-7500 FAX: [1] (202) 462-5066
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador John D. NEGROPONTE embassy: Baghdad mailing address: APO AE 09316 telephone: 00-1-240-553-0584 ext. 4354; note - Consular Section FAX: NA
Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black with three green five-pointed stars in a horizontal line centered in the white band; the phrase ALLAHU AKBAR (God is Great) in green Arabic script - Allahu to the right of the middle star and Akbar to the left of the middle star - was added in January 1991 during the Persian Gulf crisis; similar to the flag of Syria, which has two stars but no script, Yemen, which has a plain white band, and that of Egypt which has a gold Eagle of Saladin centered in the white band; design is based upon the Arab Liberation colors

Economy - overview:
Iraq's economy is dominated by the oil sector, which has traditionally provided about 95% of foreign exchange earnings. In the 1980s financial problems caused by massive expenditures in the eight-year war with Iran and damage to oil export facilities by Iran led the government to implement austerity measures, borrow heavily, and later reschedule foreign debt payments; Iraq suffered economic losses from that war of at least $100 billion. After hostilities ended in 1988, oil exports gradually increased with the construction of new pipelines and restoration of damaged facilities. Iraq's seizure of Kuwait in August 1990, subsequent international economic sanctions, and damage from military action by an international coalition beginning in January 1991 drastically reduced economic activity. Although government policies supporting large military and internal security forces and allocating resources to key supporters of the regime have hurt the economy, implementation of the UN's oil-for-food program beginning in December 1996 helped improve conditions for the average Iraqi citizen. Iraq was allowed to export limited amounts of oil in exchange for food, medicine, and some infrastructure spare parts. In December 1999, the UN Security Council authorized Iraq to export under the program as much oil as required to meet humanitarian needs. The drop in GDP in 2001-02 was largely the result of the global economic slowdown and lower oil prices. Per capita food imports increased significantly, while medical supplies and health care services steadily improved. Per capita output and living standards were still well below the pre-1991 level, but any estimates have a wide range of error. The military victory of the US-led coalition in March-April 2003 resulted in the shutdown of much of the central economic administrative structure, but with the loss of a comparatively small amount of capital plant. The rebuilding of oil, electricity, and other production is proceeding steadily at the start of 2004 with foreign support and despite the continuation of severe internal strife. A joint UN and World Bank report released in the fall of 2003 estimated that Iraq's key reconstruction needs through 2007 would cost $55 billion. In October 2003, international donors pledged assistance worth more than $33 billion toward this rebuilding effort.
purchasing power parity - $37.92 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
-21.8% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $1,500 (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 6% industry: 13% services: 81% (1993 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
29.3% (2003 est.)
Labor force:
7.8 million (2004 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture NA, industry NA, services NA
Unemployment rate:
NA (2003 est.)
revenues: $12.8 billion NA expenditures: $13.4 billion NA, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 budget)
Agriculture - products:
wheat, barley, rice, vegetables, dates, cotton; cattle, sheep
petroleum, chemicals, textiles, construction materials, food processing
Industrial production growth rate:
Electricity - production:
36.01 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - consumption:
33.49 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
2.2 million bbl/day; note - prewar production was 2.8 million bbl/day (January 2004 est.)
Oil - consumption:
460,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
1.7 million bbl/day (January 2004)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
113.8 billion bbl (1 January 2002)
Natural gas - production:
2.76 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
2.76 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
3.149 trillion cu m (1 January 2002)
Current account balance:
$1.136 billion (2003)
$7.542 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports - commodities:
crude oil
Exports - partners:
US 48.8%, Jordan 8.4%, Canada 8%, Italy 7.9%, Morocco 5.3% (2003)
$6.521 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports - commodities:
food, medicine, manufactures
Imports - partners:
Turkey 18.1%, Jordan 13.4%, Vietnam 10.7%, US 6.9%, Germany 5%, UK 4.7% (2003)
Debt - external:
$93.95 billion (2003 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
more than $33 billion in foreign aid pledged for 2004-07 (2004)
New Iraqi dinar (NID) as of 22 January 2004
Currency code:
NID, IQD prior to 22 January 2004
Exchange rates:
New Iraqi dinars per US dollar - 1,890 (second half, 2003)
Fiscal year:
calendar year


Telephones - main lines in use:
675,000; note - an unknown number of telephone lines were damaged or destroyed during the March-April 2003 war (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
20,000 (2002)
Telephone system:
general assessment: the 2003 war severely disrupted telecommunications throughout Iraq including international connections; USAID is overseeing the repair of switching capability and the construction of mobile and satellite communications facilities domestic: repairs to switches and lines destroyed in the recent fighting continue but sabotage remains a problem; cellular service is expected to be in place within two years international: country code - 964; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region), and 1 Arabsat (inoperative); coaxial cable and microwave radio relay to Jordan, Kuwait, Syria, and Turkey; Kuwait line is probably nonoperational
Radio broadcast stations:
after 17 months of unregulated media growth, there are approximately 80 radio stations on the air inside Iraq (2004)
Television broadcast stations:
21 (2004)
Internet country code:
Internet users:
25,000 (2002)


total: 1,963 km standard gauge: 1,963 km 1.435-m gauge (2003)
total: 45,550 km paved: 38,399 km unpaved: 7,151 km (2000 est.)
5,275 km (not all navigable) note: Euphrates River (2,815 km), Tigris River (1,895 km), and Third River (565 km) are principal waterways (2004)
gas 1,739 km; oil 5,418 km; refined products 1,343 km (2004)
Ports and harbors:
Umm Qasr, Khawr az Zubayr, and Al Basrah have limited functionality
Merchant marine:
total: 13 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 83,221 GRT/125,255 DWT by type: cargo 6, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 5, roll on/roll off 1 registered in other countries: 3 (2004 est.)
111; note - unknown number were damaged during the March-April 2003 war (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 79 over 3,047 m: 21 2,438 to 3,047 m: 36 1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 7 under 914 m: 10 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 32 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 12 under 914 m: 9 (2004 est.)
6 (2003 est.)


Military branches:
note: in the summer of 2003 the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) began recruiting and training a New Iraqi Army (NIA) that would have a purely defensive mission and capability; in March 2004, the Iraqi Interim Government established a Ministry of Defense to create an Iraqi Armed Force; at that time the NIA was renamed the Iraqi Armed Force - Army (IAF-A); plans also were put into effect to reconstitute an Iraqi Army Air Corps (IAAC) and Coastal Defense Force (navy), but there are no plans to reconstitute an Iraqi Air Force; the Army's primary new focus will be domestic counterinsurgency, which is a change of direction from the CPA's intent to create an army not involved in domestic politics; in mid-2004 the Iraqi Civil Defense Corps (ICDC) was designated the Iraqi National Guard (ING) and subordinated to the Defense Ministry and the Iraqi Armed Forces Pre-war Iraqi military equipment was largely destroyed by Coalition forces during combat operations in early 2003 or subsequently looted or scrapped (September 2004)
Military manpower - military age and obligation:
18 years of age; the Iraqi Interim Government is creating a new professional Iraqi military force of men aged 18 to 40 to defend Iraqi territory from external threats (September 2004)
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 6,547,762 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 3,654,947 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 304,527 (2004 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$1.3 billion (FY00)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:
coalition forces assist Iraqis in monitoring boundary security, but resolution of disputes and creation of maritime boundaries with neighboring states will remain in hiatus until full sovereignty is restored in Iraq; Turkey has expressed concern over the status of Kurds in Iraq
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
refugees (country of origin): 150,000 (Palestinian Territories) IDPs: 1,340,280 (ongoing US-led war and Kurds' subsequent return) (2004)....

Thank you.
Tuesday, May 03, 2005
Riverbends 'explosive' return
Riverbend returned today!
after a long time between blogs for riverbends friends and fans (or groupies
like me!!), she finally returns to let us know she is safe- well alive, for now.

Here's an excerpt- read the whole thing here


the aunt decided she was going to stay and help us remove said rugs the next day. We would go upstairs to clean the roof of the house very thoroughly. We would drag the rugs to the roof the next day and one by one, beat them thoroughly to get out the excess dust, then wipe down the larger ones with my aunts secret rug-cleaning mix and wash the smaller ones and set them out to dry on the hot roof.

Her son couldn't spend the night however, and he decided to return home the same day. It was around maybe 1 pm when he walked out the door, planning to walk the two kilometers home. He listened to my aunt as she gave him instructions about heating lunch for his father, studying, washing fruit before eating it, picking up carrots on the way home, watching out for suspicious cars and people and calling as soon as he walked through the door so she could relax. He shook his head in the affirmative, waved goodbye and walked out the gate towards the main street.

Three minutes later, an explosion rocked the house. The windows rattled momentarily and a door slammed somewhere upstairs. I was clutching a corner of the living room rug where I had pulled it back to assure my aunt that there were no bugs living under it.

"Car bomb." E. said grimly, running outside to see where it had come from. I looked at my aunt apprehensively and she sat, pale, her hands shaking as she adjusted the head scarf she wore, preparing to go outside.

"F. just went out the door..." she said, breathlessly referring to her son. I dropped the handful of carpeting and ran outside to follow E. My heart was beating wildly as I tried to decide the direction of the explosion. I sensed my aunt not far behind me.

"Do you see him?" She called out weakly. I was in the middle of the street by then and some of the neighbors were standing around outside. [/Riverbend]
A little bit of inspiration
Sunday May 1st, 2005

I've found many interesting and factual things to put in todays post, but I decided against it.
If I become just another news outlet I would be ashamed, I am also myself and I also write poetry,
and I like poetry, and I also like short stories or even paragraphs describing emotional events, so read these few little things, some written by me, some from inside Iraq, some from other places and enjoy them :)

- This written by me, Today


Two towers stand together, and then fall one by one.
The American Republic, the USA, the rich,
and those people who sell you guns.

They stand together, in a palace in Baghdad,
in the most inner walls of the pentagon,
or in hotels as so-called 'friends'.

They meet with Bush's daddy, in the Carlisle isles.
They plan to decieve you, and the plan begins.

With those people they gather round them,
the Saudi's
, Israeli's and
investing in reconstruction.

Investing in the streets of Falloojeh,
in Al-Basrah, in Amiraya, in Riverbends friends.
Investing in the DEconstruction, the damage never ends.

Like the Saudi-backed Bin-Ladens', investing in US trends,
investing in dual-purpose rockets, in gas masks and medicines.
While all the while, their people must go on PRETENDING to smile.

They feel deceived from start to end, with opening wounds that never mend.
Like a coldsaw on the corner of your' mouth, is the US presence in Baghdad,
Everytime you eat, you sleep or stretch, it splits; and blood is spilt,
a mother, another brother, a father and bestfriend now insanely mad.

Enough is said too get the view, you understand but must now see,
I was inspired by ideas, views that I would never have seen.
I had never thought about the most likely deaths,
the scarey ways in wich to die.

A man sits in his office at home, the front-door gets blown away..
The house windows shatter through duct-tape and all,
then glass ricochetes from wall to wall.

He hears a scream and runs to see,
his son is barely standing,
his eyes are blank; he is not there...

"I.. I was watching T.V and.... and I.. I saw a jeep and.."
"and so I ran to find (Omar? mother?)...."

"and when I left the room, and.. I... I turned around....
then.. then it.. It was blown away..."

The boy broke down and cried,
though a real man he was inside,
he was broken down to the basics,
as he had just so nearly died....

The seat in which he had been sat,
was now pressed against the wall,
now ripped and torn enough to ensure,
into paranoia our brains must fall.

Imagine trying not to cry when,
we are picking out the shards of glass and,
thanking god he did not die....

The thought strays past and we break down,
what if the T.V had been turned on?
what if it happens again?
And what if we're not so lucky this time, and...

I really don't want to say....

***Inspired by Riverbend***
written by Luke(y) Skinner

- This what inspired it.

September 11… he sat there, reading the paper.
As he reached out for the cup in front of him for a sip of tea,
he could vaguely hear the sound of an airplane overhead.

It was a bright, fresh day and there was much he had to do… but the world suddenly went black-
a colossal explosion and then crushed bones under the weight of concrete and iron…

screams rose up around him… men, women and children… shards of glass sought out tender, unprotected skin
… he thought of his family and tried to rise, but something inside of him was broken…
there was a rising heat and the pungent smell of burning flesh mingled sickeningly with the smoke and the dust…
and suddenly it was blackness.

9/11/01? New York? World Trade Center?


9/11/04. Falloojeh. An Iraqi home.

- This possibly the most reasonable definition of Terror I've ever seen...

The Definition of Terror.

Terror isn't just worrying about a plane hitting a skyscraper…
terrorism is being caught in traffic and hearing the crack of an AK-47 a few meters away because the
National Guard want to let an American humvee or Iraqi official through.

Terror is watching your house being raided and knowing that the silliest thing might get you dragged away to Abu Ghraib
where soldiers can torture, beat and kill.

Terror is that first moment after a series of machine-gun shots,
when you lift your head frantically to make sure your loved ones are still in one piece.

Terror is trying to pick the shards of glass resulting from a nearby explosion out of the living-room couch
and trying not to imagine what would have happened if a person had been sitting there.

------------- By now I am angry, just pasting and re-reading this here. Are you angry too? Wish you could help? Now imagine how the victims feel, and maybe you will get angrier.. Maybe you will search until you find the way in wich you can help.

Everyone can do something to help, be it e-mail Iraqi's telling them you love them, that you don't want them to come to pain, that you know you didn't do enough to stop the government, but you have no clue what else to do.... They will give you the best answer you can get, the answer you need to hear.

They will tell you what they most need, not those rich bastards in the media who are full of nothing but power and greed. [olivebranch]

- here's another quote from Riverbend, going a bit riverbend crazy on this blog, but she's just too good! I can't imagine how this feels, I mean, Gaza is closer or about as close to Iraq as Adelaide to Perth (the closest major city to Perth, where I live, is Adelaide in South Australia and thats like, thousands' of kilometre's away!) So Gaza is the farest point of conflict she mentions, so the closest major city to me; would be a distant battleground to Riverbend.... and what about Baghdad and Falloojeh, thats just too scary a thought....

The assault on Falloojeh and other areas is continuing. There are rumors of awful weapons being used in Falloojeh. The city has literally been burnt and bombed to the ground. Many of the people displaced from the city are asking to be let back in, in spite of everything. I can't even begin to imagine how difficult it must be for the refugees. It's like we've turned into another Palestine- occupation, bombings, refugees, death. Sometimes I'll be watching the news and the volume will be really low. The scene will be of a man, woman or child, wailing in front of the camera; crying at the fate of a body lying bloodily, stiffly on the ground- a demolished building in the background and it will take me a few moments to decide the location of this tragedy- Falloojeh? Gaza? Baghdad?

{snip}on a lighter note[olivebranch]{/snip}

Condolences and heartfelt tears-
You get Bush for four more years!


Sympathies in advance
For when they reinstate the draft!
We hope (insert_name_here) stays as safe as he/she can
And writes frequently while in Iran!


Bush and Cheney- what a pair!
Who said life isn't fair?
While Iraq gets tanks and occupation-
You have idiots to run your nation!


Cheer up...
Your son was too young for Afghanistan.
And it's still a bit early for Iran-
But there's plenty of time for Syria...
And he'll definitely serve in North Korea!

Another site I’m checking out lately is a site by "Malcom Lagauche", a journalist/author who writes about Iraq, amongst other things. His site is called Lagauche is Right. One post that got my attention was his September 25 post about that atrocious toy that was being sold in America- the “Forward Command Post” which shows an Iraqi home, complete with bloodstains, crumbling walls, no family members (they were probably detained) and a triumphant American soldier…
I can imagine a child receiving the huge package for Christmas or a Birthday and opening it up with glee… seeing the chaos, the havoc, the destruction and feeling… what? Pride? Victory? Elation? And they say it's Al-Jazeera that promotes violence. Sure.

hmmm, what to say about this one? this is what I say "FUCK THE RICH AND GREEDY YANKY BASTARDS"
note I say, the 'RICH AND GREEDY', this applies to anyone who believes they are Rich and Greedy.
If you dont think you are Rich and Greedy, it doesn't apply to you *cough*.. Ahh, sorry had a fly in my throat..

If you have gotten off your' lazy ass to try and help out, it definately doesn't apply to you
*notice there is no cough here*.

- and that's all from me, hopefully I will actually post this post on Monday the 2nd, as I can't use the internet from this laptop this evening. Peace and protection to you all..

Sunday, May 01, 2005
My email to the Prime Minister
This written by me just prior to March 20th 2003, Invasion day, a sad day world-wide.
- [olivebranch]

A few words to share, as the first Highschool Student of Youth and Students Against War - I'd like to say something about the rage, anger, sadness, empathy, but most of all, the feeling of helplessness, without the help from my own government to save MY future, and that of my peers of which very few disagree, war is evil, we dont want it, and never will, its not your future, its my future that you kill.

Your futures now, your futures here,
our future is coming, and for it we fear,
war and death, and childrens screams
its not the future, we see in our dreams

you brought this war, and the pain
our lost dream future, it's you i blame
if you spent, just one day with me
you'd see our choice, you'd hear our plee

maybe then, after you could see
in your hands, is our lives living free
then the choice, we'd leave to thee
in your hands, our lives war-free.

we had no choice, we had no say
but we're the ones, the ones who pay
a future of war, our lives now grey
my pain and hurt, is your fault today.

Thanks for reading, i hope it makes you see, that this war his impact on every person,
all walks of life, we do care, we do know. The facts are - the people are smart,
we read what is written, and spoken, and taped, accept though what you say, we do not.
The lies, the propaganda, your tretchery will be remembered by the people forever,
especially us youth, YOUR future, and the future of all your relatives,
friends and associates.
Ache! 12 days later!
Riverbend still has yet to post in 12 days! I HOPE SHE IS OKAY.
WE NEED RIVERBEND for the future of the world!
Oneday I want to know who she is!@ MaYbe even meet her to congratulate her on her efforts.

Well, I can't write a whole blog about worrying for Iraqi' Bloggers, there are other Iraqi's too remember.

This Iraqi girl, known as Aunt Najma,
and her family friends all have blogs, and links to some great articles/blogs/poetry etc.
here are some more Iraqi Blogs including hers to check out!

http://dear_raed.blogspot.com/<--- Salam Pax blog, dates back to pre-war, and is where Riverbend's posting originates from! YAY FOR SALAM, I wish I knew what happend to him so I could contact him. Anyone who hears off Salam please email me! --------------------------------- and to the news for today from http://dailywarnews.blogspot.com/

"There are some who, uh, feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is: Bring 'em on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation. “ - George W. Bush, July 2, 2003.

- keep this in mind when reading the following news

War News for Friday, April 29, 2005

Bring ‘em on: One US soldier killed, four wounded by car bomb near Hawija.
Bring ‘em on: Four Iraqis killed in mortar attack on US position near Musayyib.
Bring ‘em on: One Iraqi policemen wounded in police patrol ambush in Baghdad.
Bring ‘em on: Fifteen Iraqis killed, 54 wounded in six car bombings in Baghdad.
Bring ‘em on: Iraqi general assassinated in Baghdad.
Bring ‘em on: Insurgents reportedly execute six Sudanese truck drivers.
Bring ‘em on: Five Iraqis killed, 14 wounded by three car bombs near Madain.
Bring ‘em on: Two Iraqi policemen killed, five wounded by roadside bomb near Samarra.
Bring ‘em on: Three US soldiers, four Iraqi soldiers and nine civilians wounded by car bomb near Tikrit.

theres more of those kind of reports from yesterday aswell, but enough of the grim death and so and so forth, so look at this, it might make you laugh until you cry, realising that you (if you are on of THEM) had voted for/agree'd with this invasion on FALSE PRETEXT.

From blogger:-

Those pesky elusive WMDs: The U.S.-led group that scoured Iraq for weapons of mass destruction has found no evidence Iraq hid such weapons in Syria before the U.S. invasion in March 2003, according to a final report on the investigation.

The 1,700-member Iraq Survey Team, responsible for the weapons hunt, also said in a report released late on Monday it found no Iraqi officials with direct knowledge of a transfer of weapons of mass destruction developed by former President Saddam Hussein.

President Bush and other U.S. officials cited a grave threat posed by Iraq's chemical and biological weapons and Baghdad's efforts to acquire a nuclear arms capability as a justification for war. No such weapons were found but U.S. officials said it was possible Saddam sent them to Syria for safekeeping.

The report said the WMD investigation had gone as far as feasible and there was no reason to continue holding many of the Iraqis who had been detained in the process.
Bring ‘em on: One Iraqi soldier killed, two wounded by roadside bomb near Basra.


And one more bloggers post on a situation from a few days ago.... And some people In perth think that their lives are truely sad and not worth living, that they cant amount to anything or cant help anyone.. You might be amazed how much the words "My heart and thoughts are with you" truely mean to a person, or how much writing your anger down for others to see can help both you and them.

To feel comfort is to feel like someone else out there understands. To write your frustration into a blog is to let other people feel comfort.

From Aunty Najma's blog - http://astarfrommosul.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

What's happening?

On Sunday, we went to school to find out that a car bomb has exploded nearby.. The windows were not broken but some parts of the car were found in the school-yard! When we came back, a tent has been set up in the street, the kind in which people make funerals in (In Iraq, sometimes people make the funeral in a big tent to contain all the visitors). One of our far neighbors has been killed by robbers.. He's in his 30s, and was the friend of my closer neighbors..

The principle of our school, along with the school's consoler started asking my friend questions, they are interviewing her as the student who has the best grades, they asked her questions and wrote the answers they wanted, not the ones she was telling them! We laughed long about that..

Winter has ended, and spring is about to end.. We're waiting for summer. I love summer when it's winter, and love winter when it's summer.. Same as loving school in the break, and loving break in the school..
Same as loving technology in peace times and loving peace in technology's? No, no one would trade the safety of his family and friends for satellites and mobiles.

Today, our mathematics teacher told the story of her son-in-law's death after a student started crying because her father lost his eye in shooting at some time.. She didn't tell the story in our class, but in a friend's class. As my friend described, the mathematics teacher started crying while telling the story, some of the students started crying for her, and some others for realizing how pitiful the situation in the class was. Our teacher's daughter got pregnant, and called her husband to tell him the good news, he told her not to tell him the details and that he's going to come right away, which he didn't.. He was shot by the Americans on his way there..

One of the new computer teachers had a car accident when speeding up during shooting near the school.. I don't know how she is. I haven't talked to her at anytime, she hasn't taught me anything, but I'm concerned for her.

Note:The last explosion near our house (As the most trustful sources said) caused the injury of 13 persons, including 2 policemen... None of whom I know but the baker's sons.