(Post from Debbie (The IQD Team))
Thanks to Brenda for compiling this information:
The IQD Team Conference Call
Sept. 11, 2011
"Joey, Vic, Diana, Tim, Debbie & Yukon"
As Always.... The Latest Iraq/Dinar Discussion and Analysis
CC Replay Sept. 11, 2011
Replay # 760-569-7699 Pin 219055#
This is abbreviated information and the articles from the Call Last Night...Listen to the 30 minutes of the call above to hear all the News shared last night.
Joey: Going to go thru the news rather quickly tonight due to our special guest...
Tuesday night we will be back with full lineup of Iraqi/Dinar News and Full Q & A Program for the entire evening
Tonight I am just going to bring some of the headlines that I thought were most important to the Dinar Community
As we always say "We are here to bring a little hope..security....and a little but of sanity to the dinar community and to our investment"
Read More button on right
Going to start out with the articles on the Zeroes...my favorite subject with the CBI and Mr Shabibi Article came out about wether Iraq is in hyperinflation or not... Iraq in hyperinflation; currency to be revalued
09-08-2011 09:38 BJT
While many Asian nations battle stubbornly rising prices, Iraq offers an example of the extreme - hyperinflation, that is - inflation that has spiraled out of control.
It occurs when there is an unchecked increase in the money supply. Iraq's central bank is planning to solve the issue by completely re-valuing its Dinar.
In countries experiencing hyperinflation, the central banks often falls into a vicious cycle - printing money in larger and larger denominations as smaller denomination notes become worthless. One way to avoid the use of large numbers is by declaring a new unit of currency.
Mudher Kasim, Vice President of Iraq Central Bank said, "Over the past 30 years, inflation and economic intervention has caused the denomination of the Dinar to continue to rise. But the exchange rate is so low that the highest denomination is worth less than 25 dollars. Therefore, we need to carry out currency reform." While many Asian nations battle stubbornly rising prices, Iraq offers an example of the extreme - hyperinflation.
Iraq's central bank announced back in June that it would re-denominate the Iraqi Dinar, removing three zeroes.
The central bank says complete currency reform will take 2 to 3 years. Experts say it won't be an easy task.
Adnan Al Sady, an economic analyst said, "It is unfortunate that the Iraqi market is unstable right now. Currency reform will have great impact on the market. That's what we are worried about."
Many residents are also concerned about what impact the change might have on their spending habits.
Majeed Laftah, a resident in Baghdad said, "The sudden change of the Dinar might cause problems. We hope that after the currency reform, we can still buy things like the way we did before."
Right now, the highest denomination of Dinar is 25 thousand, and the lowest is 250. One U.S dollar is equivalent to 1180 Dinars.
Joey: I got some news that I will share with you later that will dispute that - ones mans analysis compared to The Worlds analysis So don't be worried about this mans view... Iraqi Currency Restructuring- Development of Coins
FLASHBACK ARTICLE Iraqi Central Bank has decided to begin local currency restructuring and developing of local currency coins in cooperation with world international organizations and economists .
The deputy of Central Bank Governor Modhr Mohammed Saleh, announced Thursday in a statement that Forat TV received a copy of it that the central bank agreed with the Governmental financial institutions on currency restructuring, organization and development of coins . "Also,the central bank decided to introduce a metal coins next three months, which will be of class 1000 dinars and 500 dinars . Saleh , added that the Central Bank of Iraq conducted extensive contacts to coordinate with world international organizations and experts in order decision take his way" . http://www.alforattv.net/en/index.php?show=news&action=article&id=535
Deletion of zeros from Iraqi dinar raises fears of Parliamentarians Inflation block the Iraqi currency
Samira Ali Mandi
With the arrival of a bill deleting zeros from Iraqi dinar to the Iraqi Council of Representatives, began the debate in the media representative on the feasibility of adoption of this project at the moment, and raised questions about the assurances of the Central Bank about the economic benefits of the move. The Rapporteur of the Committee of Finance in the Iraqi Council of Representatives Rep. Najiba Najib, said that the Finance Committee discussed with the governor of the central bank and general managers in the bank bill deleting zeros from the dinar and asked to prepare a study on the reasons for its adoption and its advantages on the Iraqi economy, and drew Najiba to fears of rising inflation. Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of the appearance of Dr. Mohamed Saleh He told Radio Free Iraq that the draft law which was submitted to both the government and the parliament, includes all the details of the legislative and executive for the subject of deleting zeros from the dinar and the positive economic effects which would leave if passed, and attributed the fears of some parliamentarians to ignorance of the House of Representatives the subject or the presence of personal motives that lie behind These fears of the politicians or citizens. Chancellor appearance of Mohammed Saleh stressed the importance that has the law to delete the zeros with the consent of the government and the Iraqi Council of Representatives as it relates to the national economy, pointing out that many developed countries have resorted to this decision to reduce inflation and reduce the liquidity excess in Iraq suffers from sagging mass of cash. Congress considered the application of the law to delete the zeros of the Iraqi dinar as negative at the present time in the absence of security and economic stability in Iraq. Which is confirmed by the Rapporteur of the Committee of Finance of the House of Representatives Rep. Najiba which called for the need for economic reforms to increase the value of the Iraqi currency, instead of deleting the zeros. economist Hilal Taan agreed with the opinion of the Iraqi Central Bank's view of the importance of deletion of zeros from the dinar, calling on MPs who worry about the adoption of this law to reduce their salaries instead of blocking a law that serves the Iraqi economy. ruled out Rep. Najiba Najib to be the law was passed during the year due to preoccupation with the financial budget of the Federal 2012, and pointed to the fears of parliamentarians from the exploitation of the law to delete the zeros by Alsemsarh and currency dealers and counterfeiters. expert Economic Hilal Taan see that the concerns of parliamentarians unfounded ruled out for fraud for the new currency or the exploitation of the switch the old currency new currency by the counterfeiters. On his part, adviser to the Central Bank of the appearance of Mohammed Saleh lamented the existence of currents hinder and impede the continued implementation of any project that aims to Iraq's progress. The citizens expressed their concerns on the morning of the deletion of zeros currency they are dealing with for decades. However, 'Abdul Hakim Jassim considered a positive step to delete the zeros in the event of currency maintained in monetary terms with the ease of handling. appearance of the central bank adviser Mohammed Saleh assured the citizens that the Iraqi currency will retain its value and that the Iraqi per capita income will not be affected by deleting the zeros, indicating that the process of switching the currency in the currency new may take a year or more according to the law to be approved by the House of Representatives. http://www.iraqhurr.org/content/article/24323702.html
Joey: Saleh Assured the Citizens - He is talking to the citizens thru the Public news ......Love that sentence SET TO ADOPT IN the HOUSE...We know it will take a year or two to get those bigger denoms off the streets.
Representatives discuss deleting zeros currency on Sunday
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 10 / SEPTEMBER 2011 12:23 Twilight News / Committee announced the economy and investment representative, Saturday, to discuss the project to delete the zeros from the currency with the current consultants and specialists on Sunday, indicating at the same time reject the project if it has proven negative consequences on the economy of the country.
The head of the economy and investment representative Ahmed al-Alwani, had announced earlier in the interview with "Twilight News" that his committee will be discussed with a number of consultants and specialists of the project submitted by the Central Bank, which provides for deletion of zeros from the current currency.
The Member of the economy and investment Nahida Daini in an interview with " Twilight News ", that of its" on Sunday will host the President of the Central Bank and a number of economic advisers and specialists to discuss the draft law to delete the zeros of the current currency. "
Daini and showed that "the economic and investment commission will listen to the views of advisers and specialists in this regard and if there is evidence of fraud and corruption exploit some change in the currency, the Committee will announce its reservation on it."
Economists have warned Congress and the incidence of corruption and money laundering plans to influential figures within the government to do in case of changing the current currency, demanding a review and deliberation on this matter.
The Central Bank of Iraq began to discuss amending the categories of the dinar, last year, and is still a large part of the payments being in cash due to the evolution of the banking system.
Joey: We know how hard Shabibi has worked to strengthen the banking systems so there wont be a need for large sums of cash The currency they have right now isn't right for ATMS...but they are about to fix that
High possibility that Iraq will be the most important economic zone in the Middle East
11/09/2011 BAGHDAD - morning,
moving the attention of many of the world towards a foothold investment in Iraq, and likely many economists global and local increasingly demand global companies towards Iraq, arguing that Iraq is the most prominent waterways and land between Asia and Europe, especially as the global financial crisis has affected a clear and significant economies Europe, which began the search for safe investments say many of the local it abound in the areas of the Gulf and specifically in Iraq, that country starved of foreign investment and to rebuild the infrastructure to have .. have guessed adviser in international trade and transport Tawfiq inhibitor that Iraq will be the area economic mission in the Middle East for the attributes of the elements of great economic, calling exploited properly to become Iraq's first free zone for trade exchange in the world.
and Mani said during the interview to him, could turn Iraq into an economic mission in the Middle East and the host country to the world of what attributes of the elements of great economic, including the port of Faw. stressed inhibitor on the need to exploit all the economic resources of the country properly by the government of Iraq to become the first free zone for the exchange of international trade in the world, noting that all European countries have been issued instructions as a result of the global financial crisis investment toward the Middle East, particularly in Iraq.
The Mane: The Office of International Trade a study in this regard and submitted to the Ministry of Transport and contained 10 projects, including the port of Faw, which will hopefully be a free zone shall meet each manufacturers in the world, he said, but study was rejected for lack of environment executing them. He called on Chancellor in international trade and transport to reconsider this study because it will be a pillar of the world economy and the recipient of the first and the last is Iraq, stressing the need to work hard to save the Iraqi economy and the development of economic environment ..
Iraq has been working at the moment the construction of the port of Faw, which is hoped to be the station first and most prominent in the region, and experts expect the economy to head most of the commercial shipments destined to the west or to the rest of Asian countries through this port, which is expected to spend almost entirely on unemployment in Basra province, and works to increase the volume of investments .. http://www.alsabaah.com/ArticleShow.aspx?ID=13298
JOEY: Shares couple of articles that reminds us how important Iraq's economy is... Full article link below....just items brought out on the call are below... Thanks to Heinzy444 for his post and Reminder of why we all got involved with this investment
Here's a reminder of why we all got involved - hang in there people January 2009
The man tasked with the difficult job of overhauling Iraqi industry is Paul Brinkley. In an exclusive interview with Banker Middle East, he told Mike Gallagher of the challenges he faces as the point man for investors in Iraq and what it takes to turn a ruined economy around in spite of the daily dangers that are a way of life in Iraq
Paul Brinkley is the Director of the Task Force to Improve Business and Stability Operations in Iraq. He oversees business modernisation for the US Department of Defense while also leading economic revitalisation efforts in Iraq. Brinkley has a reputation as a straight-talking, passionately driven man who has earned the respect of both Iraqi government officials and business leaders. As a former business executive turned government official, his views on overhauling Iraq's struggling economy have been optimistic, yet realistic during this time of transition. Brinkley recognises Iraq's security and stability challenges, but that has not deterred him from taking the initiative to ensure Iraqis have all of the tools to move forward and successfully rebuild and revitalise their country's economy. Brinkley recognised this, and with the support of Multi-National Force Iraq commanders, has helped restore jobs to hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. Additionally, under his leadership, the Task Force brings private multinational investors into the country. Brinkley continues to lead the Task Force in Iraq, where he spends an average of two weeks every month. The Task Force continues to focus on private sector development, revitalisation of closed factories and industries, transitional privatisation of the state-sector economy, banking modernisation, and agricultural development. Iraq is a resource rich country not just rich in petroleum, but in mineral wealth, agricultural capacity, and most importantly, human capital. It is a highly literate population compared to other developing economies, and has many skilled engineers, accountants, doctors, and professionals. This mix of resources and human capital makes Iraq a unique place to invest. The global economy will eventually emerge from the current downturn, and Iraq is positioned to be a very prosperous country. Investment in virtually any new business can result in high returns over time. It is a ground floor opportunity, maybe the last great ground floor opportunity left in the world after the recent emergence of China and India. The temporary spike in food commodity prices last summer is a bellwether of things to come Iraq has the land and water to serve as the breadbasket of the Middle East. But it is increasingly unnecessary. Baghdad is assuming its historic place as the center of commerce and culture in Iraq, and one can now start there. There are many opportunities for investors, but it is hard to argue against real estate development as the lowest risk/highest return area at this point. I believe that we are nearing the point of irreversible momentum in the rapid development of the Iraqi economy. Our goal is to continue to support private sector development, banking development, foreign investment, and industrial revitalisation and privatisation. We hope to be able to 'fade away' in terms of our presence and direct support sometime this year, as the market takes over with the support of Iraqi institutions. Given the remarkable progress and resilience in the face of untold violence and hardship that the Iraqi people have shown, Link
“The Challenges for the Global Economy”: Opening Remarks at the Royal Institute for International Affairs - Chatham House
By Christine Lagarde
Managing Director, International Monetary Fund
London, September 9, 2011
As prepared for delivery
Good morning. It’s a pleasure to be here with you today, at this beautiful and historic venue. About six weeks ago, I spoke at a similar early morning event in New York, at the Council on Foreign Relations. These two sister organizations—founded in the wake of the Great War—have a common goal of fostering the ideas and dialogue needed to build a prosperous and secure world for all. Given the precarious state of the global economy, such dialogue is clearly essential. I wish to thank Chatham House for organizing this event, and thank my friend, Chancellor Osborne, for inviting me to speak. I look forward to hearing his views, as well as those of the eminent economists joining us at this roundtable.
The key message I wish to convey today is that countries must act now—and act boldly—to steer their economies through this dangerous new phase of the recovery. The world is collectively suffering from a crisis of confidence, in the face of a deteriorating economic outlook and rising concerns about the health of sovereigns and banks. All this is happening at a time when the scope for policy action is considerably narrower than when the crisis first erupted. But while the policy options may be fewer, there is a path to recovery.
Challenges for the global economy
Let me set out the principal economic challenges. The bottom line is that global activity has slowed, and downside risks have increased. At the same time, the global rebalancing of demand needed for sustainable global growth has stalled.
In key advanced economies, the necessary hand-off from public to private demand is not taking place. The fundamental problem is that weak growth and weak balance sheets—of governments, financial institutions, and households—are feeding negatively on each other. If growth continues to lose momentum, balance sheet problems will worsen, fiscal sustainability will be threatened, and the scope for policies to salvage the recovery will disappear.
In the emerging economies, performance has been considerably better. But in some countries, growth may be too fast, and policies are needed to contain overheating risks. Another issue is that in many of the key surplus economies, there has been little progress in shifting from external to domestic demand. In these economies, significant currency appreciation and structural reforms can help bring about the rebalancing needed to support strong, stable and sustainable global growth.
The picture I have painted is not a rosy one. But although the tools have become fewer, policymakers do still have options to support the recovery. The key, however, is for policymakers to act with conviction and urgency in tackling today’s challenges—while at the same time being nimble, should circumstances change.
The time to act is now
For the advanced economies, there is no question that fiscal sustainability must be restored through credible consolidation plans. But we also know that consolidating too quickly will hurt the recovery and worsen job prospects. So the challenge is to find the pace of adjustment that is neither too fast, nor too slow.
The precise path of fiscal consolidation will differ by country. Those that are facing considerable market pressure, or could face it in the absence of upfront adjustment, must press ahead with fiscal consolidation now. But in others, there is scope for a slower pace of consolidation, combined with policies to support growth. The key is to clarify a credible medium-term strategy to first stabilize, and then lower debt ratios. Within this strategy, fiscal measures that reliably deliver savings tomorrow will help create space for supporting growth today—by permitting a slower pace of consolidation.
Monetary policy also has a role to play in the advanced economies. Broadly speaking, it should remain highly accommodative, as the risk of recession outweighs the risk of inflation. This is particularly true since inflation expectations are well anchored in most economies, and commodity price pressures are waning. So policymakers should stand ready, as needed, to take more action to support the recovery—including through unconventional measures.
I’d like to focus briefly on some of the key policy priorities for the United States, the Eurozone, and the United Kingdom.
First, the United States. Recent economic performance has disappointed, and downside risks to growth have increased. At the same time, agreeing on the policies needed to secure the required fiscal adjustment—while at the same time sustaining economic growth—has proven more difficult than expected.
Credible decisions on fiscal consolidation—involving future entitlement spending, but also other revenue and expenditure measures—would create some space for policies that support growth and jobs today.
We welcome the proposals announced by President Obama last night, which focus on supporting growth and job creation in the short term. As the President also emphasized, it remains critical for the United States to clarify its medium term plan to put public debt on a more sustainable path, and we look forward to the proposed consolidation plan to be announced in the coming days.
Second, the Eurozone. Policymakers face two major and related challenges to the recovery: sovereign risks and banking risks. Because these two challenges are deeply intertwined, they must both be solved to clear the way to a sustainable recovery.
To address sovereign risks, many in the Eurozone need more fiscal action and more clarity about the availability of sovereign financing. Fiscal adjustment is critical for the long-term sustainability of public finances in many economies—not just in the program countries. And with regards to financing, it is essential that Eurozone leaders implement their groundbreaking July 21 commitments as soon as possible.
As this process unfolds, we should see a decline in sovereign risk—which should go a long way in removing some of the uncertainty weighing on European banks. As I have said before, this will take time. In view of the heightened risks and uncertainties—and the need to convince markets—some banks need additional capital. We must not underestimate the risks of a further spread of economic weakness, or even a debilitating liquidity crisis. That is why action is needed so urgently so that banks can return to the business of financing economic activity.
Third, in the United Kingdom strong fiscal consolidation is essential to restore debt sustainability, given the UK’s very high structural budget deficit and large financial sector relative to GDP—which, as we’ve seen, can pose contingent liabilities for the government sector. The IMF’s annual Article IV consultation with the UK authorities, which took place over the summer, supported the government’s plans to move decisively on the fiscal front. But we also cautioned that there are downside risks and that policymakers should be nimble.
As we all know, the policy path was premised on a greater role for private sector demand—especially a robust recovery in exports—to take over as the public sector retrenches. But since the summer, the outlook has become more subdued—including in the rest of Europe and the United States, the UK’s major trading partners. So risk levels are rising. The policy stance remains appropriate, but this heightened risk means a heightened readiness to respond—particularly if it looks like the economy is headed for a prolonged period of weak growth and high unemployment.
On the fiscal side, the free operation of automatic stabilizers—which are government tax and spending programs that automatically ease the pace of deficit reduction as GDP growth slows—provides an important cushion. And on the monetary side, there is room for additional easing if the outlook does not improve soon.
Before I close, I would like to say a few words also about the financial sector in the UK. One of the key findings of our analysis of spillovers between economies was that UK financial stability is a global public good, requiring the highest quality regulation and supervision. Recognizing this, the UK authorities’ approach to stringent capital and liquidity regulations, including the emphasis on building buffers ahead of Basel III requirements, and intensive supervision is hence both commendable and essential.
But the stability of the UK financial sector also depends on a stronger international framework for oversight of cross-border financial institutions. Coordinated multilateral frameworks for crisis management need to be developed with clear principles to guide information exchange and cross-border bank resolutions. Making progress on this critical issue will require difficult policy decisions and increased cooperation from all stakeholders involved.
In just a few hours, I will be traveling to Marseille, to join the meeting of G-7 central bank governors and ministers of finance. I look forward to a discussion of the outlook and the balance of risks at this pivotal time for the global economy, and what this means for their policies.
We will also be focusing on the challenges facing the Middle East and North Africa. The region is experiencing a historic transformation, which also has significant economic and financial consequences. Clearly, the countries themselves must take the lead in charting their forward course, to building stronger and more open economies. But they will have a strong partner in the international community—including the IMF. More broadly, the IMF will continue to support its members as they seek the best policies to deal with the challenges they face today—be they advanced, emerging, or developing economies.
In two weeks, our members will come to Washington for the IMF Annual Meetings. Together, we will discuss the critical challenges facing the global economy. The road ahead may be rocky, but a way forward exists—if we act now. With each country playing their part, we can identify the actions needed to achieve strong, sustainable and balanced growth.
Thank you. http://www.imf.org/external/np/speeches/2011/090911.htm
JOEY: WOW...In these economies, significant currency appreciation and structural reforms can help bring about the rebalancing needed to support strong, stable and sustainable global growth. But they will have a strong partner in the international community....including the IMF.....WOW......thats exciting JOEY: If you were wondering about the Security Ministers......she reads several lines from this article expected to "witness the coming days, an initiative of the President to resolve this problem." because there is a need and an urgent need to find a minister security," Waeli confirms that the security ministries will be decided next week Follow-up - and babysit - MP for the National Alliance Shirwan Waeli Saturday that next week will see the naming of the security ministries, while the detection of the nomination of the Alliance for the interior ministry, he noted that the names of nine by the Iraqi List to fill the defense portfolio scrutinized now by the President Minister. Waili said that "the security ministries of the important ministries as they are a hot, a security file and is the first threat of a draft of the Iraqi state, which caused a problem and a node in this matter," expected to "witness the coming days, an initiative of the President to resolve this problem." He Waeli that "node security ministries will be the first decade of political will next week because there is a need and an urgent need to find a minister security," noting that "the Iraqi List, presented candidates to accept one of them, whether military or civilian applicants As for the National Alliance, there are no Bmarchah a big problem for the internal. " The Waeli that "there are the names of figures provided by the Iraqi List to fill the defense portfolio is respectable, and are now scrutinizing by the Prime Minister-class basis to be agreed upon by all the lists," adding that "the National Alliance, nominated me for the post of Minister of the Interior, as the task of the Ministry of the Interior the task of difficult, complex and sensitive in this circumstance that Iraq is going through. " http://alrayy.com/30745.htm
JOEY: Shares some information from an article near and dear to her heart "journalism" and the journalist of this world and people who stand up like they do and like the heros of 9-11.... Murder of popular radio host and writer has Iraqis fearing a new dictatorship
Friday, 09 September 2011
Hadi al-Mahdi was killed Thursday before attending Friday protest in Tahrir Square in Baghdad. (File Photo) Comments discussed by Joey below from this article not entire article.. Death threats did not stop Hadi al-Mahdi, a popular radio talk show host in Baghdad, from criticizing and mocking the Iraqi government’s waste and inefficiency. What silenced him was his actual death. Mahdi, 45, who was also a playwright, filmmaker, columnist and an important organizer of the protests that have been taking place in the capital since February 25 of this year, was killed one day before he and his activists colleagues planned to stage a protest.
Mahdi was killed by gunshot, perhaps from a silenced weapon. Altahreernews also reported that Mahdi had written on Facebook that he lived in fear. “In the last three days I lived in horror, there are those who are warning that protesters will be raided and arrested, and there are those who say that the government will do this and that, and there are those who create phony Facebook accounts to threaten me.” Mahdi was defiant up until his death. Another Facebook post of his demonstrates this: “I will join the protests and show my support, I believe and absolutely that the political process represents but garbage of national, economic political failure and it deserves to be changed, and we [Iraqis] deserve a better government. In brief I do not represent any political party and I am independent, but I represent reality that we live in, I am tired of watching our mothers begging in the streets, and I am tired of the heavy political news and the politicians pillaging Iraq’s resources.” “In a cowardice operation a criminal hand killed the activist and the organizer of tomorrow’s protest ... ” one member wrote, while another commentator said “the path of freedom has become the path of martyrdom … the revolution has began.” Some journalists have said even their children have been threatened. Last year, protesters aired their anger at the Iraqi government after the murder of Sardasht Osman, a journalist who was investigating allegation of corruption against government officials. More and more Iraqis are complaining that the current government is no different from Saddam Hussein’s practice of silencing dissent, and recall the 1991 uprising and the mass graves found after the US invasion when Saddam’s forces killed many Iraqis who protested against his Baath party. “In a short electronic message we received from an Iraqi newspaper it said that : I was the last person talking to the martyr Hadi al-Mahdi before his assassination, he told me that ‘al-Maliki’s son-in law-is the one that was threatening me’.” Mahdi, who witnessed his own brother’s killing by the Baath regime, anticipated a more democratic Iraq after returning to his homeland from 18 years in exile. Demonstrations swept Iraq's cities 09/09/2011 12:13 http://www.aknews.com/ar/aknews/4/260971/
Joey: 18 years after this man spoke up and was killed...he had courage to do something People are in the street demonstrating..against corruption, etc It was the largest since 2003...when you stop and think about it 9-11 was such an important day which changed the world espceially for our country and in turn for the Iraqis.... Iraq: Victim or beneficiary of Sept 11
By Waleed Ibrahim
BAGHDAD | Fri Sep 9, 2011 11:05am EDT
(Reuters) - Ten years after the hijacked airliner attacks on the United States, Iraqis are swamped in the violent wake of a war launched on a tenuous premise and uncertain if they are headed to democracy or dictatorship. While the sectarian slaughter that pushed Iraq to the brink of civil war is years past, the violence spawned by the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein continues to take a heavy toll in an oil-rich former pariah trying to rebuild. To this day, some Iraqis believe the line drawn by the Bush administration between September 11 and Iraq, and its discredited theory that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, belied a darker U.S. desire for control in the Middle East. "Please don't deceive people and say what happened in Iraq was due to September 11th. America's plan to occupy Iraq is old," said Ahmed Raheem, 40, the owner of an electrical shop in Baghdad. "What happened on September 11th was just a reason to implement this plan." While the invasion of Afghanistan marked Washington's first foray in retaliation for the attacks on New York's twin towers and the Pentagon, Iraq became the primary battlefield for then- President George W. Bush's "war on terror." Islamist militants moved in by the thousands to engage U.S. troops. More than eight years after American soldiers pulled down Saddam's statue in Baghdad's Firdous Square, an event cast as a first step from dictatorship to democracy, casualties of the war continue to mount as Iraq's rebuilt police and army struggle to contain a lethal Islamist insurgency. The United States has lost more than 4,400 troops in Iraq, a toll half again as great as that of September 11. Fifty-six of those deaths followed President Barack Obama's August 31, 2010 end-of-combat declaration, seen by some Americans as the end of the war "A BIG LIE" "What democracy are they talking about?" Raheem, who lost his job at a Saddam-era government weapons manufacturer after the invasion, asked angrily as he sipped tea in his shop. "What is said about democracy is a big lie." War-weary Iraqis appear anxious to put eight years of violence behind them. Protests earlier this year inspired by uprisings across the Arab world were aimed not at deposing their elected government but rather to serve notice that they expected their politicians to improve electricity and services. Violence is slowly loosening its grip. From the sectarian bloodbath that killed tens of thousands at the peak of the war in 2006-07, attacks by Sunni insurgents and Shi'ite militias have fallen to an average of about 14 a day across the country. Night-life and traffic have returned to Baghdad streets still dominated by massive concrete blast walls meant to protect against suicide and car bombs. But with the sound of explosions heard daily, Iraqis venture forth warily. "Nothing has changed in Iraq except the fear. Now it is bigger than before. I leave my house and I don't know if I'll return again or not," said Tony Mukhlis, 45, a Baghdad laborer. "U.S. democracy in Iraq is the democracy of killing in the streets." If the United States won sympathy in 2001 as video of the crumbling twin towers appeared on TV screens, it was the image of erupting violence in Iraq and shocking photos of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison that stained America's standing in the world. For some Iraqis, a war that has killed more than 100,000 people -- according to figures compiled by Iraq Body Count -- created a battlefield for extremists where none existed before. "If there is anyone responsible for the damage in Iraq, it is Bush. I swear to God I'll kill him with my own hands if I catch him, even if they kill my family and children," Mukhlis said. "He himself said more than once that he would go to Iraq to protect Americans and to turn Iraq into a battlefield against radical groups." SIGNS OF PROGRESS Now governed by a fragile and contentious coalition of Shi'ite, Sunni and Kurdish political factions, Iraq has held free elections and implemented free market reforms, cutting deals with global oil majors to develop its vast oil reserves. Such measures of post-war progress are not lost on some Iraqis. "Iraq is the big beneficiary for what happened in the U.S. on September 11th because it saved us from a nightmare that was perched on our chest for more than 30 years," said Nief Farhan, 82, a retiree who said he had two brothers executed by Saddam's government in 1983. "Before 2003 I was afraid to talk in my own house ... now we are sitting in a cafe and talking politics and people around us listen to what we say. What more do we want?" But as they watch the Arab Spring uprisings with interest and some envy, many Iraqis are uncertain their country will become the shining Middle East democracy that Bush envisioned. "I don't believe that what happened in Iraq in and after 2003 can be an example to be cited or copied by other regional and Arab countries," said Yahya al-Kubaisy, a researcher at the Iraqi Center For Strategic Studies. "Iraq is on a path of dictatorship different from what existed in Iraq before 2003. Even the advocates for what was called the liberation of Iraq are disappointed at how things turned out." (Writing by Jim Loney; Editing by Jon Hemming) http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/09/us-sept11-iraq-idUSTRE7884BN20110909
JOEY: A couple of weeks ago I had a watched special in Kurdistan region and they interviewed some troops over there and what they had to say is what American and the young men who fought for their freedom WE KNOW THE PRICE AMERICANS HAVE PAID FOR OUR FREEDOM, we will never forget that - they showed us we had rights...noone will ever occupy us again.....we love our American comrades and we know they will never leave us again ONE FINAL THOUGHT..Saw a quote yesterday Simply said: "For those who fought for it.... freedom has a flavor the protected will never know" God Bless Our Country, God Bless our troops, God Bless those that sacrificed so much on Sept 11th Its good to be an American....We are all very proud of that and We came here tonight to share that.. DIANA: Diana received an email from our friend, TARIQ from IRAQ, when she recd this morning she was very emotional and wanted to share his beautiful thoughts for all of us.
In you I trust, O my God. Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse
Dear American Friends,
On the tenth anniversary of the most barbarian attack on unarmed civilians using the dirtiest methods, civilian planes carrying civilian people going to civilian destinations as bombs to kill their brothers, sisters and fellow citizens. these attacks' objective was to set the United States back. I believe that some people tend to destroy high buildings rather than building higher, unfortunately those people are allowed to live. I would like to share my sympathy and sorrow for those who died on those attacks and for every American on this day. we all deny such actions and we will all stand by you to restore your normal life and the American dream.
Dear Friends, You are now stronger, You are now more vigilant, You are now more aware of your enemies. God Bless you, Your families and God Bless the United States of America.
Very Respectfully TARIQ
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