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Spencer Ackerman: Where we really are in Iraq (plus drone talk)

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This is a nice interview, a great where-we-are piece. You should come away pleased with the way you spent your minutes.

We (the U.S.) have supposedly left Iraq, and the chest-bumps are everywhere. But where are we really? What have we left behind? Ackerman is an expert on this stuff.

The piece starts with a discussion of the NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) now before Congress. This is the bill that includes the "Indefinite Detention on the Everywhere Battlefield" provision. (The interview took place prior to the Senate's successful vote to approve.)

If that sounds like martial law by the way, rolled out in stages, your ears aren't lying to you. Could the Republicans be worse than our own irrepressible Dems? (That 2012 Obama scare-arg gets harder and harder to make, doesn't it?)

At 5:45 Ackerman discusses Iraq and what we've left behind. (Hint: That would be us; we've left us behind, with 5000+ mercs as guards.) Ackerman: "The U.S. military comes home; the hired military goes in."

At 13:55 the talk shifts to drones, Pakistan, and the money we give them. The discussion of North Waziristan in Pakistan (described as "the epicenter of global terrorism" and "a complete black box") is fascinating, as is the ultimate Pakistani problem — how do they take their money and yet stop us from killing them?


The interviewer is Sam Seder of the daily political podcast (an excellent national daily broadcast, by the way, and good news source).


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