Friday, December 16, 2011

Binocular Snapshot for 12/16/2011

LastDayWatchers watch the true reality's on ground

"A miserable chapter in American history, one that did not have to happen and should not have happened."

The Iraq War has not been the costliest war the United States has ever fought, but when taking into account the how and why of getting into it in the first place.

The Iraq War ranks as one of the greatest blunders in American history and one of the biggest travesties in the relations of the United States with the rest of the world.

A ledger on the war assembled by the Center for American Progress summarizes some of the huge costs. There are, first and foremost of course, the

Nearly 4,500 members of the U.S. military who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

That's about one and a half times the death toll of 9/11, the terrorist event that the promoters of the war repeatedly linked with Iraq in order to sell their project.

Over 32,000 Americans were wounded—many of them grievously maimed from combat that in earlier wars, when today's body armor was not used, would have killed them.

Among Iraqis—the people whom we were supposedly rescuing from a savage dictator—over

100,000 civilians have been killed, and more than 2.8 million have been driven from their homes as either refugees or internally displaced persons. And the bloodshed and civil strife in Iraq are far from over.

The direct monetary cost to the United States of Operation Iraqi Freedom has been over $800 billion, the political, diplomatic and strategic costs are not quantifiable but vast.

The United States severely damaged its image and standing in the rest of the world, especially in predominantly Muslim countries.

Even a halfway careful examination of the prowar sales campaign could have seen through it, including such things as a phantasmagorical alliance between the Iraqi regime and al-Qaeda.

Finally there are the prime promoters of the war. The lesson to be drawn about them is how atrocious the war showed their judgment to be.

Many of those cheerleaders are still prominent members of the policy-influencing Washington elite and still writing and talking about the very sorts of things on which they showed such terrible judgment in the case of Iraq. Some of them are even cheering for yet another war."

"The fact that the Iraqi leaders failed to show up to publicly thank the Americans for “Operation Iraqi Freedom” was a painful reminder of the limits of what the war had achieved."

It’s an open secret in Baghdad that a key reason for Maliki’s government declining the agreement needed to keep U.S. troops in Iraq beyond this month was deference to Iran’s wishes.

Tehran’s strategic position, on the other hand, has been vastly enhanced by the elimination of its most dangerous enemy, Saddam Hussein."

You will see the hand of God and see the ways of God

"TEPCO has not been able to take direct measurements of the temperatures at the bottoms of the containment vessels, and the site is still too radioactive for the fuel rods' status to be visually confirmed."

Even if the reactor is under control, the cleanup could still take 30 years, and the problems remain "immense," writes The Wall Street Journal.

Daiichi's reactors are littered with debris. Many measurement and control systems are on the blink. Radiation levels are too high for people to get close to the reactors, leaving engineers and scientists to make important judgments using computer simulations, scattered bits of data and guesses.

And whether the cleanup effort is moving ahead is dubious, according to an undercover report by freelance reporter Tomohiko Suzuki. Mr. Suzuki worked at the Fukushima No. 1 site for a month as a general laborer while documenting a long list of substandard practices and unsafe behavior by companies involved in cleanup at the plant.

"absolutely no progress is being made" toward resolving the Fukushima crisis, reports the Mainichi Daily News.

Despite there being no concrete data on the state of the reactor cores, claims by the government and TEPCO that the disaster is under control and that the reactors are on-schedule for a cold shutdown by the year's end have promoted a breakneck work schedule, leading to shoddy repairs and habitual disregard for worker safety, he said.

"Working at Fukushima is equivalent to being given an order to die,"

With 100% accuracy inside the May 15th Prophecy written at LastDayWatchers