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Joel Pett | Good Luck w/Your Own Shaky Democracy / Slate.com

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US 'likely to stay in Iraq beyond 2011'

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  • About 50,000 US troops remain in Iraq supposedly on 'training' and 'advisory' roles until a complete pull out.
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  • US officials are planning to employ thousands of private contractors mercenaries to conduct operations formerly performed by US troops.
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  • Fact Check: Is Iraq combat really over for US?
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From Citizens for Legitimate Government, in PressTV

Despite US announcement of complete withdrawal from Iraq in 2011, Washington will reportedly keep thousands of soldiers in the war-torn nation. American military experts said the remaining forces are expected to stay in Iraq beyond 2011 as a 'peacekeeping force' for a decade, AFP reported.

About 50,000 US troops remain in Iraq supposedly on 'training' and 'advisory' roles until a complete pull out. Meanwhile, US officials are planning to employ thousands of private contractors mercenaries to conduct operations formerly performed by US troops.

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Fact Check: Is Iraq combat really over for US? Calvin Woodward, Associated Press, New York Times | NY

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  • Despite President Barack Obama's declaration Tuesday (August 31) of an end to the combat mission in Iraq, combat almost certainly lies ahead.
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  • The occupation of Iraq isn't over - it's being rebranded
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Alan Simpson Condemns Disabled Vets for Breathing Agent Orange

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  • Maybe if Simpson and the ruling class weren’t so damned bloodthirsty, we wouldn’t have choices like this to make.
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  • Veterans Group Calls for Removal of Alan Simpson
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  • Show Alan Simpson, Vet Hater, the Door
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David Dayen, FireDogLake

Alan Simpson’s scorn for people who use federal money goes beyond… well, everyone, in the form of Social Security. He also doesn’t like it when Vietnam-era soldiers breathed Agent Orange and put their greedy little hands out to cough into them because they had respiratory trouble the rest of their lives.

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The system that automatically awards disability benefits to some veterans because of concerns about Agent Orange seems contrary to efforts to control federal spending, the Republican co-chairman of President Barack Obama’s deficit commission said Tuesday (Aug 31).

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Veterans Group Calls for Removal of Alan Simpson,  David Dayen, FireDogLake

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  • It’s a fact of American life that veterans are seen as inviolate, and criticisms of veterans approaching treason.
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  • It’s one thing for Alan Simpson to call Social Security recipients greedy bastards, even though a chunk of them, a substantial chunk (almost half), includes military veterans. It’s quite another thing for him to go after veterans directly, as he did in denouncing disabled vets for luckily sucking up health care resources after exposure to Agent Orange.
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It's Time to Show Alan Simpson, Vet Hater, the Door, David Culver, Evergreene Digest

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  • I call on the Congress and President to show Alan Simpson to the door of the deficit commission’s deliberations and to restore honor and decency to our national conversation on veterans!
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  • I also call on my fellow citizens to hold their President, Congressional Representatives, and Senators accountable for removing Mr. Simpson by contacting them and reminding them that their oath of office demands meeting this country’s obligations to its veterans.
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  • Alan Simpson Condemns Disabled Vets for Breathing Agent Orange
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  • Veterans Group Calls for Removal of Alan Simpson
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Simpson: Veterans 'Not Helping Us' Save Country From Debt

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Aging vets' costs concern Obama's deficit co-chair

Brian Beutler, Talking Points Memo

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Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Thomas Sklarski

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National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility co-chairman Alan Simpson

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If Social Security is "a cow with 310 million tits" then what's the proper metaphor for veteran's benefits? We don't know. But Alan Simpson seems to think they're too expensive. Or too overused. Or something. Anyway, it's bad.

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"The irony (is) that the veterans who saved this country are now, in a way, not helping us to save the country in this fiscal mess," said Alan Simpson, co-chair of the White House's fiscal commission, according to the Associated Press.

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Simpson was referring specifically to the disability benefits the Department of Veterans Affairs dispenses to Vietnam veterans exposed to Agent Orange.

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Aging vets' costs concern Obama's deficit co-chair, Mike Baker, AP News, in Talking Points Memo
VA's move to sweeten benefits for aging vets worries Obama deficit chair; Senate to review it.

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Rumsfeld Rules of Engagement Allowing 30 Innocent Civilian Murders for Every One High Value Target

God's reasoning is in inverse proportion to the Pentagon's. Then with the gift of God's son Jesus, the whole calculus of war is subtracted. "Love your enemies, pray for those who persecute you. Mt 5:44.

Michael McCarthy, Pax Vobiscum

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Gary Kohls

“…a former targeting expert who'd worked for the Pentagon in the initial "Shock and
Awe" campaign said (on National Public Radio’s “This American Life”) that the threshold ratio not to be exceeded was 30 civilians to be killed in order to execute one high value target.1

“There you have it--the morally callous thinking that is prohibited by the principles of our Christian faith. Decapitate the leadership to end the war sooner, despite "taking out" innocents at the same time. The concept of "collateral damage" has been invented to obfuscate the fact of the certain unavoidable deaths of great numbers of civilians in all of these wars fought in population centers, large and small.

“In Afghanistan / Pakistan this has been one of the major issues in the conduct of the war, with many innocents being killed in bombings and raids. Our armed forces are given woefully insufficient information on who is friend and who is foe, and more enemies are being created daily as more civilians die in Predator drone attacks and special forces missions. We might sometimes "get our man" but the local community is more deeply turned against us.

" [Classified] documents were posted by WikiLeaks, an organization dedicated to public disclosure, shortly before the Afghan government said (Monday, 7-26-10] that "up to" 52 Afghan civilians have been killed in a coalition rocket attack on a village in southern Helmand province [last week]." 2 The Afghan government is using the 90,000 pages to further their persistent demands, over the past 9 years of U.S. occupation, that civilians be protected.

“The ratio of 30 innocents that can be sacrificed for 1 bad insurgent, has not changed, to my knowledge, since instituted by Donald Rumsfeld’s Dept. of Defense--no public report of any alteration in these rules of engagement. Contrast these numbers with the dialogue between Abraham and God in last Sunday's Old Testament reading. [Gen 18:20-32] Abraham bargains for mercy with God – Sodom & Gomorrah are to be destroyed because of their tremendous evil. But will God destroy the innocent with the guilty? Would God spare the whole evil city if only 50 just individuals are found? The bargaining continues by tens down to 10, and God agrees. If only 10 innocent are found then a whole city of evil-doers survives.

“God's reasoning is in inverse proportion to the Pentagon's. Then with the gift of God's son Jesus, the whole calculus of war is subtracted. "Love your enemies, pray for those who persecute you." Mt 5:44.”

1 At 21 minutes into This American Life, Act 1, Mark Velasco tells his story of being a targeter for the Pentagon. [This is the only place in the media I've seen this discussed--worth listening to the whole program]: Stream the story at:
<http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/300/Whats-In-A-Number>

2 http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704700404575391164167045700.html?mod=WSJ_newsreel_world

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