Tag Archives: Iraq

Journalist shares heartbreaking story of young Yazidi girl held as ISIS slave

Journalist Jenan Moussa ofArabic Al Aan TV shared an absolutely heartbreaking story of a young Yazidi girl who was captured by ISIS when she was only 8-years old and held in Raqqa as a slave until she was recently freed.

It’s 16 tweets long, but well worth the read (and maybe have some tissues handy):

‘Holy crap’: Hindsight exposes team Obama’s hat-trick of failure


The beauty of Twitter is that it often gives people just enough rope to hang themselves. Especially if you’re an operative for a “say anything to win” campaign.

With all the turmoil around the globe, people are revisiting the foreign policy debates of the 2012 presidential campaign. Shocker: the Obama flacks who mocked Mitt Romney’s warnings about our enemies look pretty silly now. There is no shortage of people rubbing it in either.


Al Qaida, Russia, and Iraq. Oh my. A hat-trick of fail with one tweet.

But there’s more.



It wasn’t just the OFA hacks. Remember this creepy dude?


And then there’s Piers Morgan.





Is al-Qaida ‘on the run’? Laura Ingraham suggests possible spin for Obama admin

‘We’re screwed’: Obama won’t concede Romney was right, writes off Russia as ‘regional power

Thousands flee as Islamist militants ‘seize control’ of Mosul, Iraq [pics]

He Called His Uncle Before His Plane Took Off. When He Hung Up He Was Kicked Off!

A senior at the University of California Berkeley thought his flight from Los Angeles to Oakland, California, would be like any other.

He boarded the plane, took his seat, and made a phone call. The 26-year-old student had just attended an event that featured the United Nations Secretary General as a speaker.

Since the plane was still at the gate, he called his uncle to tell him about the exciting speech.

He told him about the delicious food that was served and how he got to ask a question of the Secretary General.

But as he had the private conversation, he noticed the woman in front of him was listening in.

He said goodbye to his uncle…and that’s when things took a turn for the worse.

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The woman told the flight crew that the student had made “potentially threatening comments” during his call.

When he got off his call, a flight attendant came over and walked him off the plane.

The student was then questioned by Southwest Airlines staff before the FBI was called to the scene.

If this sounds unfair to you, you’re not alone.

A man was removed from a plane without the opportunity to defend himself or get any explanation as to why he was being kicked off. Khairuldeen Makhzoomi was ultimately cleared of any suspicion and was given a refund on his flight. He arrived home in Oakland eight hours after he was due to land initially.

It shouldn’t matter that Makhzoomi was speaking Arabic.

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It also shouldn’t have mattered that he’s an Iraqi refugee.

Makhzoomi was having a private, perfectly harmless conversation with his uncle. And yet, he was discriminated against simply because he was speaking an unknown language.

(via The New York Times)

What would you have done if this happened to you? It really puts it all in perspective when you exclude just one tiny detail…the fact that he was speaking Arabic.

Share your thoughts in the comments section.

This Soldier Suffers From PTSD, But Found Therapy In Hiking With His Dog…And Cat

It’s always a gift to have a soldier return home from war, but nowadays, about 20% of veterans returning from the Middle East struggle with PTSD, which is a different kind of battle entirely.

When Stephen Simmons came back from Iraq in 2008, he had trouble adjusting to life at home. His body had become so accustomed to the endorphins that were triggered by his high-stress occupation. To combat this, Simmons created his own “adventure therapy” program. He, his dog Puppi, and his cat Burma hike Oregon’s mountains to help the vet get back on track.

I’ve never seen a cat so cool with hiking…and in the snow, no less! I guess if Simmons can use the hikes to get over his PTSD, Burma is willing to get a little wet in the process.

‘Put him in jail!’ Marine deserter Wassef Ali Hassoun returns after decade on run


After allegedly faking his own kidnapping and bolting from the U.S. amid formal charges of desertion, U.S. Marine deserter Wassef Ali Hassoun has finally returned. It has been a decade since he went missing in Iraq.




On June 20, 2004, Hassoun bailed on guard duty at his base in Fallujah. He took his military-issued gun and his Muslim prayer rug. Military records obtained by the Salt Lake Tribune showed that he was “torn between military loyalty and his Muslim beliefs.”

According to the internal probe, he undermined intelligence-gathering operations by refusing to translate questions about Islam. He balked at raising his voice to suspected jihadi imams and sheiks. He openly threatened to “walk out the front gate and leave.”

The Muslim Marine told his colleagues he supported Hezbollah terrorist attacks on Israel. Members of his unit told investigators he was “anti-American” and listened to jihad sermons on propaganda CDs. Hassoun had received spiritual counseling from Navy Lt. Cmdr. Abuhena Saifulislam, a Muslim military chaplain tied to a radical Wahhabist outfit under federal investigation, according to Hoover Institution fellow and journalist Paul Sperry.

A bizarre video by Hassoun’s Islamist “kidnappers” showed him blindfolded with a sword above his head. But his fellow Marines suspected it was all staged and the “abduction” a collaborative fake. What did the purported hostage-takers want in return for the shady, disgruntled American serviceman? The release of jihadists in “U.S.-led occupation prisons.” Translation: Gitmo detainees. (Americans would never negotiate such a reckless trade, right? Oh, wait.)

In an even weirder twist, Hassoun somehow resurfaced at the U.S. embassy in Lebanon a few weeks after he walked away from his base. His family was rumored to have enlisted the aid of an Islamist group associated with the Muslim Brotherhood.

Hassoun denied desertion charges, came back to the U.S. for trial and then deserted a second time after failing to return to Camp Lejeune after visiting family in Utah.

May justice finally be served.


‘Racism, straight up’: Joan Walsh whines about Southwest Airlines


It ain’t easy bein’ Joan Walsh. This afternoon, she revealed that she’s been suffering from some serious travel woes:


If she was looking for sympathy, she didn’t really get it:


Ouch! That stings.

But maybe, just maybe, there was an even more sinister reason for Walsh’s bad experience:


That’s gotta be it.


Ain’t that the truth! Walsh should probably avoid Southwest for a while.





Twitchy coverage of Joan Walsh

Democrats Want Time Limit On War Against ISIS

“There is no doubt that our current offensive amounts to war, and Congress should take action both to authorize its prosecution and to set limits on that authorization,” Rep. Adam Schiff tells BuzzFeed News.

Iraqi Sunni fighters north of Baghdad. Ahmad al-Rubye / Getty Images

WASHINGTON — House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Adam Schiff Wednesday introduced narrowly crafted legislation authorizing the Obama administration to wage a limited, three-year war against ISIS in Iraq and Syria while prohibiting the use of ground troops.

Schiff’s bill, which is similar to legislation the California Democrat introduced last year, will almost certainly face stiff opposition from the Obama administration and Republican leaders in both chambers, all of whom favor a far more expansive authorization.

But his bill stakes out an early, bright-line position for the growing coalition of lawmakers who favor reining in the administration’s ability to essentially wage unlimited war against terrorists.

“There is no doubt that our current offensive amounts to war, and Congress should take action both to authorize its prosecution and to set limits on that authorization so it may not be used by any future administration in a manner contrary to our intent,” Schiff said in a statement.

The White House’s current war effort against ISIS has been conducted under a 2001 Authorized Use of Military Force bill originally designed to respond to al-Qaeda’s attacks on the United States in 2001.

But that 60-word law has been read extremely broadly by the Bush and Obama administrations to allow for attacks in Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. That has led to bipartisan charges that the executive branch has overstepped its authority, and a growing number of Republicans and Democrats in both chambers have called for tighter limits on the war effort.

In addition to barring the use of ground troops, the new AUMF would also sunset in three years, as well as sunset the 2001 AUMF at that time. Additionally, Schiff’s bill would be “geographically limited” to contain counter terrorism war efforts to Iraq and Syria.

Although the White House and hawks in both parties have argued tying the administration’s hands is inappropriate, Schiff argued the overly broad interpretation of the existing AUMF should give Congress pause.

“If circumstances change, they should come to the Congress and make the case” for an expanded AUMF, Schiff told BuzzFeed News in an interview Tuesday evening. But “given how previous authorizations have been broadly construed, we would be wise to tailor this one to the current circumstances,” Schiff added.

House Speaker John Boehner has committed to bringing legislation to the floor in the coming months, and the White House is expected to work with lawmakers in drafting a separate AUMF that would give the president the kind of broad latitude he enjoys under the existing AUMF.

But Schiff warned that approach is likely to run into stiff bipartisan resistance.

“I think there’s a real reluctance in Congress to write a blank check,” Schiff said.

Airstrike Kills At Least 17 ISIS Militants In Iraq

At least nine civilians were also injured in the attack.

Aris Messinis / Getty Images

A U.S.-led coalition airstrike in the town of al-Qaim, near Iraq’s border with Syria, killed at least 17 ISIS militants, Al Arabiya reported.

An unnamed hospital source told the news outlet that 29 militants were wounded in the airstrike and that some were being treated across the border in Syria. At least nine civilians were also injured in the attack.

The U.S.-led coalition has completed hundreds of airstrikes in Iraq and Syria since launching a campaign against ISIS last year.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

‘Obama built that!’ Jihadists declare caliphate, Americans forewarned [video]


Those who have buried their hands in the sands before, during, and after the 9/11 terrorist attacks have long scoffed at trenchant opponents of the spread of Islamic jihad and sharia. Caliphate? What caliphate?

Oh, this caliphate:


Who helped build the new Islamic imperialism?




‘I am so grateful’: Wounded warrior’s moving encounter with Iraqi cab driver


A veteran of the Iraq war, amputee and wounded warrior named J.R. Salzman has written an incredibly moving series of tweets based on a Dallas cab ride.

Here are Salzman’s tweets in Storify, and all tweets also appear below:


Salzman’s tweets:


What a touching story.

(h/t @Terry_Jim)



Wounded warrior J.R. Salzman recalls IED blast that cost his arm