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Monday, Sep 01st

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Iraq Vets Come Home Physically, Mentally Butchered

TVNL Comment: Posted for historical reference.

Imbascini said he amputated the genitals of one or two men every day.

"I walk into the operating room and the general surgeons are doing their work and there is the body of this Navy SEAL, which is a physical specimen to behold," he told IPS. "And his abdomen is open, they're exploring both intestines. He's missing both legs below the knee, one arm is blown off, he's got incisions on his thighs to relieve the pressure on the parts of the legs that are hopefully gonna survive and there's genital injuries, and you just want to cry."

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US offers Pakistan government $7bn in non-military aid to fight terrorism

The US has promised to curb air strikes by drones against suspected militants in Pakistan, as part of a joint counter-terrorism strategy agreed with the new civilian government in Islamabad, the Guardian has learned. That strategy will be supported by an aid package potentially worth more than $7bn (£3.55bn), which is due to go before Congress for approval in the next few months.

The package would triple the amount of American non-military aid to Pakistan, and is aimed at "redefining" the bilateral relationship, US officials say.

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Whose mass graves are these?

The phrase "mass graves" in Iraq has long been associated with former leader Saddam Hussein. But not anymore. In U.S.-administered and occupied Iraq people now talk of 'Bush’s mass graves.’

More and more mass graves are being unearthed with hundreds of bodies, most of them unidentified, but all of them dug in the post-Saddam era which Iraqis associate with President Bush and his occupation troops.

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It's Occupation, Not War

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan ended some years ago. In Iraq, the war ended with the fall of Saddam Hussein's government; in Afghanistan, with the fall of the Taliban government. What's been happening since is occupation and resistance to occupation.

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Khalil regrets toppling statue of Saddam

Baghdad - Ibrahim Khalil, who five years ago took part in the iconic toppling of a giant statue of Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad, said on Wednesday he now regrets taking part in the hugely symbolic event.

"If history can take me back, I will kiss the statue of Saddam Hussein which I helped pull down," Khalil told reporters on the fifth anniversary of the statue's toppling.

"All my friends who were with me that day feel the same as me," Khalil told reporters in Firdoos Square, which was virtually deserted on Wednesday amid a vehicle ban in the capital imposed by the government to prevent insurgent attack.

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Report: US no closer to Iraq goals

The United States is no closer to achieving its goals in Iraq than it was a year ago but a quick military withdrawal could lead to massive chaos and even genocide, according to a report released Sunday by a U.S. think tank.

The U.S. Institute of Peace report was written by experts who advised the Iraq Study Group, a panel mandated by Congress to offer recommendations on U.S. policy in Iraq in 2006.

TVNL Comment: Everyone is missing the point and pretending like there was a legitimate goal. We were told that the invasion of Iraq was necessary because they were a threat to us. Remember the term "WMD?" Well, when it was confirmed that IRAQ did not have WMD and as we knew, had no intentions to harm us the "goal" became moot. THERE IS NO LEGITIMATE GOAL! This is a shell game and everyone is falling for it!!!

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Iraq contractor fights suit over toxic exposure

The workers got it on their hands and clothing every day while racing for 2 1/2 months to meet a deadline to get the plant, a crucial part of Iraq's oil infrastructure, up and running.

But the chemical turned out to be sodium dichromate, a substance so dangerous that even limited exposure greatly increases the risk of cancer. Soon, many of the 22 Americans and 100-plus Iraqis began to complain of nosebleeds, ulcers, and shortness of breath. Within weeks, nearly 60 percent exhibited symptoms of exposure, according to the minutes of a meeting of project managers from KBR, the Houston-based construction company in charge of the repairs.

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