In Iraq, Drought and Abundance in the Mesopotamian Marshes

Once vengefully drained by Saddam Hussein, the wetlands in southeastern Iraq have since been partially restored. Now the region and its isolated settlements face a new set of challenges.

#deserts, #drought, #euphrates-river, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #photography, #tigris-river, #water, #wetlands

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Nemam Ghafouri, Doctor Who Aided Yazidis in Iraq, Dies at 52

Dr. Ghafouri helped survivors of an ISIS genocide and reunited formerly enslaved women with children taken from them. She died of Covid-19.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #deaths-obituaries, #doctors, #ghafouri-nemam-1968-2021, #humanitarian-aid, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #syria, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity, #women-and-girls, #yazidi-religious-sect

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Women Once Enslaved by ISIS Are Reunited With Their Children

Yazidi women freed from sexual slavery under ISIS were forced to give up their babies. Two years later, some are risking everything to get them back.

#iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #orphans-and-orphanages, #syria, #terrorism, #war-and-armed-conflicts, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity, #women-and-girls, #yazidi-religious-sect

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Pope Francis Ends Historic Trip at a Critical Moment for Iraq

Iraqi officials say the successful four-day visit is a testament to Iraqi capabilities and the battered country’s integral role in the region.

#christians-and-christianity, #francis, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #kurdi-aylan-2011-15, #muslims-and-islam, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #roman-catholic-church, #salih-barham, #sistani-ali-al

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Pope Francis Defends Iraq Trip During Coronavirus Pandemic

The pontiff said that he had wrestled with the decision to travel, but put the fate of the Iraqis who flocked to see him in God’s hands.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #francis, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #muslims-and-islam, #religion-and-belief, #roman-catholic-church, #sistani-ali-al

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Pope Francis’ Iraq Trip Ends, but Coronavirus Fears Remain

Crowds gathered over Francis’ three-day visit, sporting high spirits but few masks. Few in the country have been vaccinated.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #francis, #internal-essential, #iraq, #roman-catholic-church

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Amid the Rubble of Mosul, Francis Offers a Salve for Iraq’s Wounds

The first pope ever to visit Iraq, Francis voiced sorrow and hope for a shrunken Christian community that has suffered persecution, and preached fellowship among religions.

#christians-and-christianity, #churches-buildings, #erbil-iraq, #francis, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #mosul-iraq, #muslims-and-islam, #qaraqosh-iraq, #roman-catholic-church, #terrorism

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Pope Francis Meets Iraq’s Top Ayatollah as Both Urge Peace

The meeting with Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani came as Francis sought to protect his persecuted flock in Iraq by forging closer bonds between the Roman Catholic Church and the Muslim world.

#christians-and-christianity, #francis, #iraq, #najaf-iraq, #nasiriya-iraq, #religion-and-belief, #roman-catholic-church, #shiite-muslims, #sistani-ali-al, #yazidi-religious-sect

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Francis Begins Visit to Iraq, in ‘Duty to a Land Martyred’

The pope’s four-day trip is intended to nurture ties with Shiite Muslims and encourage a Christian population decimated by years of strife.

#al-qaeda-in-mesopotamia, #christians-and-christianity, #francis, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #jesus-christ, #politics-and-government, #roman-catholic-church

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In Pictures: Pope Francis in Iraq

As the pope makes a three-day trip to Iraq, a look at images of the historic moment.

#christians-and-christianity, #francis, #iraq, #roman-catholic-church

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In Iraq’s Christian Heartland, a Feud Over a Town’s Identity

Pope Francis will arrive in a country whose ancient Christian towns are in danger of disappearing. In one, a Christian community’s survival may come at the expense of another minority group.

#christians-and-christianity, #churches-buildings, #francis, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #minorities, #muslims-and-islam, #roman-catholic-church, #shiite-muslims

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Pope Francis Visits Iraq: What to Know

The trip is taking place despite concerns about the pandemic and security. Here’s a brief look at why Francis is visiting Iraq, what the trip will entail and what he hopes to achieve.

#christians-and-christianity, #francis, #iraq, #religion-and-belief, #roman-catholic-church

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Pope’s Planned Visit to Iraq, Amid Pandemic, Raises Questions of Timing

Pope Francis has said he is determined to visit the war-torn country. But some worry that the visit will become a superspreader event in a land where the virus still rages.

#christians-and-christianity, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #disease-rates, #francis, #iraq, #pilgrimages, #quarantines, #religion-and-belief, #roman-catholic-church, #vaccination-and-immunization, #vatican

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Rockets Hit Iraqi Base Where U.S. Troops Are Stationed

At least 10 missiles were fired on the Ain al-Asad air base one week after U.S. airstrikes on Iran-backed militia positions along the Syrian-Iraqi border.

#iraq, #military-bases-and-installations, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces

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Biden Orders Airstrike in Syria Targeting Iran-Backed Militias

President Biden ordered retaliatory strikes against the militias whose attacks in Erbil this month killed one civilian contractor and wounded a U.S. service member.

#austin-lloyd-j-iii, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #defense-and-military-forces, #defense-department, #erbil-iraq, #iran, #iraq, #kataib-hezbollah, #kirby-john-f, #syria

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U.S. Airstrikes in Syria Target Iran-Backed Militias That Rocketed U.S. Troops in Iraq

President Biden ordered retaliatory strikes against the militias whose attacks in Erbil this month killed one civilian contractor and wounded a U.S. service member.

#austin-lloyd-j-iii, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #defense-and-military-forces, #defense-department, #erbil-iraq, #iran, #iraq, #kataib-hezbollah, #kirby-john-f, #syria

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Shlomo Hillel, Who Helped 120,000 Jews Flee Iraq, Dies at 97

Working undercover, he used bribes, fake visas and a network of smugglers to bring refugees to Israel in the late 1940s and early ’50s.

#deaths-obituaries, #hillel-shlomo, #immigration-and-emigration, #iraq, #israel, #jews-and-judaism

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Rocket Attack in Iraq Kills a U.S. Military Contractor

Some saw the barrage of rockets aimed at an airport in the northern city of Erbil as a test of the new administration in Washington.

#civilian-casualties, #erbil-iraq, #iran, #iraq, #kurds, #military-bases-and-installations, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces

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A Decade After the Arab Spring, Autocrats Still Rule the Mideast

The popular uprisings of 2011 mostly failed, but they gave the region a taste for democracy that continues to whet an appetite for change.

#assad-bashar-al, #bahrain, #ben-ali-zine-el-abidine, #cairo-egypt, #iran, #iraq, #jordan, #lebanon, #middle-east, #middle-east-and-north-africa-unrest-2010, #mubarak-hosni, #muslim-brotherhood-egypt, #muslims-and-islam, #nahyan-mohamed-bin-zayed-al-1961, #obama-barack, #politics-and-government, #qaddafi-muammar-el, #russia, #saudi-arabia, #sudan, #syria, #tahrir-square-cairo, #trump-donald-j, #tunisia, #turkey, #united-arab-emirates, #united-states, #united-states-international-relations, #war-and-armed-conflicts, #yemen

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With a Mass Funeral, Yazidi Survivors Honor Victims of ISIS

#funerals-and-memorials, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #murad-nadia, #sinjar-iraq, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity, #yazidi-religious-sect

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U.S. Airstrike Kills Top ISIS Leader in Iraq

The joint operation with Iraqi forces was aimed at stemming the group’s resurgence, and illustrates Iraq’s continued reliance on the U.S. military.

#baghdad-iraq, #baghuz-syria, #defense-and-military-forces, #drones-pilotless-planes, #iran, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #kadhimi-mustafa-al, #kirkuk-iraq, #targeted-killings, #terrorism, #united-states, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #war-and-armed-conflicts

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Iraqis Flout Coronavirus Precautions Amid Belief in Immunity

Even some Iraqi health officials are promoting the false idea that Iraq has acquired herd immunity. Scientists say that Iraq could be in for a major new outbreak.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #disease-rates, #iraq, #quarantines, #rumors-and-misinformation, #vaccination-and-immunization

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Iraq, Struggling to Pay Debts and Salaries, Plunges Into Economic Crisis

Oil-rich Iraq, its economy hobbled by neglect and corruption, has devalued its currency and had its imported electricity cut off for nonpayment.

#baghdad-iraq, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #currency, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #electric-light-and-power, #embargoes-and-sanctions, #iraq, #kadhimi-mustafa-al, #labor-and-jobs, #politics-and-government, #unemployment

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Horrified by the Blackwater Pardons

The F.B.I. agent who led the Blackwater investigation and two other letter writers are appalled by the pardon of men who killed innocent civilians.

#blackwater-worldwide, #iraq, #mercenaries-and-private-military-contractors, #trump-donald-j

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Trump’s Most Disgusting Pardons

Blackwater mercenaries committed a massacre. Now they’ll go free.

#amnesties-commutations-and-pardons, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #human-rights-and-human-rights-violations, #hussein-saddam, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #justice-department, #manafort-paul-j, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-army, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity

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Trump Warns Iran of Retaliation After Attacks on U.S. Embassy in Baghdad

The administration and military officials blame Tehran for recent rocket attacks in Iraq, adding to the growing tensions between the United States and Iran.

#deaths-fatalities, #defense-department, #diplomatic-service-embassies-and-consulates, #iran, #iraq, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-central-command, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Laura Poitras: Journalism Is Not a Crime

The Justice Department is setting a dangerous precedent that threatens reporters — and the truth.

#assange-julian-p, #classified-information-and-state-secrets, #espionage-and-intelligence-services, #guardian-british-newspaper, #iraq, #national-security-agency, #news-and-news-media, #political-prisoners, #surveillance-of-citizens-by-government, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity, #washington-post, #whistle-blowers, #wikileaks

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When Does an Enemy’s Cultural Heritage Become One’s Own?

The cease-fire in Nagorno-Karabakh may offer new hope for the preservation of threatened monuments everywhere.

#abkhazia-georgian-republic, #afghanistan, #aliyev-ilham-h, #anatolia, #armenia, #armenians, #azerbaijan, #baku-azerbaijan, #bokova-irina, #bosnia-and-herzegovina, #china, #churches-buildings, #cyprus, #destruction-of-cultural-antiquities-and-heritage, #erdogan-recep-tayyip, #european-union, #hagia-sophia-istanbul-turkey, #historic-buildings-and-sites, #idlib-syria, #international-criminal-court, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #istanbul-turkey, #mali, #modi-narendra, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #mosques, #nagorno-karabakh, #palmyra-ny, #pantheon-rome, #restoration-and-renovation, #roman-catholic-church, #timbuktu-mali, #trump-donald-j, #turkey, #united-nations-educational-scientific-and-cultural-organization, #war-and-armed-conflicts, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity, #world-heritage-sites, #xinjiang-china, #yazidi-religious-sect

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Cooperative Competition Is Possible Between China and the U.S.

A former vice foreign minister of China proposes a way forward for the world’s two leading powers.

#afghanistan, #china, #far-east-south-and-southeast-asia-and-pacific-areas, #international-relations, #iraq, #libya, #national-peoples-congress-china, #politburo-standing-committee-of-the-communist-party-of-china, #taiwan, #territorial-disputes, #tiktok-bytedance, #united-states, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-navy

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U.S. Troops Are Packing Up, Ready or Not

The Pentagon has announced a reduction down to 2,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan before President-elect Biden takes office. Afghan officials fear the cuts will encourage the Taliban to keep fighting.

#afghanistan, #afghanistan-war-2001, #iraq, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations

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Trump Sought Options for Attacking Iran to Stop Its Growing Nuclear Program

The president was dissuaded from moving ahead with a strike by advisers who warned that it could escalate into a broader conflict in his last weeks in office.

#defense-and-military-forces, #defense-department, #embargoes-and-sanctions, #international-atomic-energy-agency, #iran, #iraq, #israel, #natanz-iran, #nuclear-weapons, #pence-mike, #pompeo-mike, #stockpiling, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government, #uranium

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Trump Is Said to Be Preparing to Withdraw Troops From Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia

Facing the end of his time in power, the president is pushing to accelerate withdrawals from counterterrorism conflicts. He campaigned on ending the longstanding wars.

#afghanistan, #afghanistan-war-2001, #al-qaeda, #defense-department, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #obama-barack, #shabab, #somalia, #taliban, #terrorism, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

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From Iraq, an Intimate Glimpse of the Religious Holiday of Arbaeen

Every year, millions of pilgrims descend on the central Iraqi city of Karbala to commemorate the Shiite holiday of Arbaeen, one of the largest organized gatherings in the world.

#hussein-saddam, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #karbala-iraq, #mohammed-the-prophet-of-islam, #muslims-and-islam, #photography, #pilgrimages, #shiite-muslims, #travel-and-vacations

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Biden Hopes to Fight Autocracy Abroad. He’ll Have to Start at Home.

America has to be a functioning democracy before it can be an exemplary one.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #corruption-institutional, #iraq, #obama-barack, #rhodes-benjamin-j, #trump-donald-j, #united-states, #united-states-international-relations

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Pickle app puts on users, as millennials/Gen-Z latch onto location apps to fight Covid lockdowns

As the coming of winter combined with the coronavirus continues to put new restrictions on peoples’ movements, location-based apps are on the rise again. People are looking to find out who is close to them. Who is in their community. People are understandably looking for new friends and resources close to them.

Apps that connect young mums locally (Pumpspotting, Peanut), professionals (Fishbowl, Lunchclub), Jetset daters (Raya, Bumble), digital nomads (Homeis), locals (Nextdoor ) and millennials (Friended) are all being dialed-up.

And with government lockdowns coming back for their “2nd album” the UK’s millennials and Gen-Zs are increasingly turning to location-based apps to try and hang out with each other and burst the so-called ‘rule of six’ bubble, whether the government wants them to or not.

Pickle is fast making a name for itself amongst an estimated 350,000 millennials and Gen-Zs for that reason. After starting out as a taskrabbit-style app for Gen-Z, it is now seeing growth as an app for that generation to find fellow travelers locally, even as their normal travel has been curtailed by COVID-19.

Founder Daneh Westropp says: “Loneliness is the number one fear of young people today – ranking ahead of losing a home or a job. 71% of millennials reported feeling lonely [survey conducted by Cigna] and 69% of millennials experience FOMO when they can’t attend something that their family or friends are going to [study by Eventbrite]. So it comes as no surprise that people genuinely hate doing certain activities alone.” That’s why, she says, Pickle is climbing up app-store rankings.

Westropp understands the feeling of alienation. She ran away from Tehran during the 1988 Iran/Iraq war with her mother and sister, and was raised by a single mother who suffered from loneliness and depression. After dropping out of school at the age of 15 she went on to join the ranks of other entrepreneurs.

But a few problems remain with the Pickle app that are cause for concern. It has no 2FA for starters. Plus, the lack of regulation or content filtering means it’s anyone’s guess who users might be arranging to meet. Those are big red flags for the average observer.

Whether Gen-Z cares or not during a global pandemic that has shut down their lives, remains to be seen.

#articles, #bumble, #cigna, #demographics, #europe, #eventbrite, #events, #fishbowl, #iran, #iraq, #millennials, #nextdoor, #pickle, #tc, #united-kingdom

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Islamic State ‘Beatles’ Fighters Being Brought to U.S. to Face Charges

The federal prosecution of two Britons involved in the kidnapping and torture of American hostages comes more than two years after they were captured in Syria.

#defense-and-military-forces, #detainees, #emwazi-mohammed, #extradition, #foley-james-1973-2014, #great-britain, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #kassig-peter-edward-1988-2014, #kidnapping-and-hostages, #kotey-alexanda, #sotloff-steven-j, #syria, #terrorism, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-politics-and-government

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They Came for My Father Nearly 30 Years Ago. It Still Haunts Me.

The recent antigovernment protests in Iraq remind me of Saddam Hussein’s regime of fear and of the rebels who, like my parents, opposed it at great risk.

#abu-ghraib-iraq, #baghdad-iraq, #bush-george, #hussein-saddam, #iraq, #kurds, #kuwait, #politics-and-government, #prisons-and-prisoners

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U.S. Repatriates Last of Islamic State Suspects Believed Captured in Syria

The suspects had been held by Syrian forces along with prisoners from other countries whose governments have been reluctant to take back the men.

#defense-and-military-forces, #detainees, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #justice-department, #syria, #syrian-democratic-forces, #terrorism, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Pentagon Is Clinging to Aging Technologies, House Panel Warns

Despite the Pentagon’s talk of embracing quantum computing and artificial intelligence, the politics of killing off old weapons systems is so forbidding that the efforts often falter.

#artificial-intelligence, #carter-ashton-b, #china, #defense-department, #iraq, #moulton-seth-w, #obama-barack, #quantum-computing, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces

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U.S. to Reduce Troop Levels in Iraq to 3,000

The long-planned cuts maintain a U.S. counterterrorism force in Iraq but help fulfill President Trump’s goal to reduce overseas deployments.

#defense-department, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #mckenzie-kenneth-f, #terrorism, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Trump Meets With Iraqi Leader Amid Negotiations Over U.S. Troop Levels

Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s visit to the White House is largely focused on negotiations, which started in May, on resetting the United States military mission in Iraq.

#defense-and-military-forces, #defense-department, #iran, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #kadhimi-mustafa-al, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #syria, #terrorism, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Regrets? Even Brent Scowcroft Had a Few

In an oral history released after his death, the former national security adviser revealed a few key moments in which his ideas failed in the war against Saddam Hussein.

#bush-george, #bush-george-w, #iraq, #persian-gulf-war, #schwarzkopf-h-norman, #scowcroft-brent, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations

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Scorching Temperatures Bake Middle East Amid Eid al-Adha Celebrations

Record high temperatures were recorded in Baghdad and Damascus, and experts warned of the effects of prolonged heat waves as the planet warms.

#amara-iraq, #amman-jordan, #baghdad-iraq, #basra-iraq, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #damascus-syria, #global-warming, #iraq, #israel, #lebanon, #riyadh-saudi-arabia, #saudi-arabia, #tel-aviv-university, #united-nations-framework-convention-on-climate-change, #weather, #world-meteorological-organization

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Trump Officials Reconsider Prosecuting ISIS ‘Beatles’ Without Death Penalty

American military officials in Iraq want two detainees taken off their hands and a British court has blocked sharing evidence for any death-penalty case. But other options are also getting a second look.

#barr-william-p, #detainees, #elsheikh-el-shafee, #emwazi-mohammed, #foley-james-1973-2014, #great-britain, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #justice-department, #kidnapping-and-hostages, #kotey-alexanda, #national-security-council, #sessions-jefferson-b-iii, #syria, #terrorism, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces

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The Meeting That Brings the International Desk Closer to Home

Stationed all over the world, my colleagues and I can feel isolated. But a weekly call that began because of the pandemic has provided a comforting support system.

#baghdad-iraq, #beirut-lebanon, #bogota-colombia, #china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #iraq, #new-york-times, #news-and-news-media, #rubin-alissa-johannsen, #slackman-michael

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‘Our Role is to Reduce Their Grief’

None of Iraq’s existing graveyards wanted the bodies of Covid-19 patients. So Shiite leaders created a burial ground for them that is also open to Sunnis and Christians.

#cemeteries, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #funerals-and-memorials, #iraq, #najaf-iraq, #nasiriya-iraq, #sistani-ali-al

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Southern Iraq’s Toxic Twilight

Burning Gas and Poisoning the Air

#accidents-and-safety, #basra-iraq, #cancer, #environment, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #international-energy-agency, #iraq, #natural-gas, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #power-failures-and-blackouts

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Colin Powell Still Wants Answers

In 2003, he made the case for invading Iraq to halt its weapons programs. The analysts who provided the intelligence now say it was doubted inside the C.I.A. at the time.

#armitage-richard-l, #bush-george-w, #central-intelligence-agency, #cheney-dick, #franks-tommy-r, #general-assembly-un, #iraq, #iraq-war-2003-11, #libby-i-lewis-jr, #mclaughlin-john-e, #powell-colin-l, #rice-condoleezza, #rumsfeld-donald-h, #tenet-george-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Killing of Security Analyst Seen as Message to Iraqi Government

The analyst, Hisham al-Hashimi, was a proponent of government efforts to rein in the Islamic State and Iraq’s Shiite militias. Suspicion fell on both groups.

#al-qaeda-in-mesopotamia, #assassinations-and-attempted-assassinations, #baghdad-iraq, #civilian-casualties, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #kataib-hezbollah, #politics-and-government, #terrorism

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In Iraq, a New Prime Minister Takes Stock of His Bloodied Land

In one city ruined by war, even the stones seem to have voices. They tell the stories of people who can no longer speak for themselves.

#al-nuri-grand-mosque-mosul-iraq, #destruction-of-cultural-antiquities-and-heritage, #iraq, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #mosul-iraq, #nineveh-iraq, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #sinjar-iraq

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