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tv   [untitled]    December 30, 2011 7:01pm-7:31pm EST

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and tonight we'll take a look back at the most memorable events of the year from the occupy movement to the law enforcement of war on camera find out what made two thousand and eleven year to remember. it's friday december thirtieth seven pm in washington d.c. i'm christine for you're watching our t.v. well it is the end of december the end of the year and also we're told the end of the war in iraq throughout the day today this evening will be taking a look at what was left behind despite the more than one hundred thousand troops that have come and gone but first a recap of some of the most significant aspects of operation iraqi freedom and a look at where it all began. our citizens at this hour american and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm iraq to free its
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people and to defend the world from grave danger. it started with a campaign shock. and awe designed to be rapid and power. at first many americans were on board with the plan in part because of this earlier announcement by secretary of state colin powell one of the most worrisome things that emerges from the thick intelligence file we have on iraq's biological weapons is the existence of mobile production facilities used to make biological agents weapons of mass destruction a key factor in selling the war. combined with the idea of bringing freedom to the iraqi people this gesture. largely symbolic and discovered later to be staged and directed by u.s. troops so it was presented as a win for the americans and a sign of
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a free iraq just twenty days after the invasion began. a few weeks later president bush landed on an aircraft carrier and declared mission accomplished in the battle of iraq the united states and our allies have prevailed . it was a short lived victory speech that withered in the shadows of reality that the short war that was promised became one of america's longest with more than four thousand american deaths and nearly a million iraqi civilians estimated killed as well along the way america's reputation increasingly soiled by images of americans humiliating iraqi prisoners. were helicopter pilot shooting unarmed iraqis video game style still many stick. the storyline they hope will show up in the history books. progress in iraq has allowed us to continue our policy of return on success i don't. think that it
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damaged our reputation around the world i just don't believe that i think it was sound policy that dealt with a very serious problem and that he limited saddam hussein this image another graphic and memorable one iraq's former leader being hanged on december thirtieth two thousand and six even president obama who's anti iraq war stance helps propel him into office he's asking others now to leave iraq alone other nations must not interfere in iraq. iraq's sovereignty must be respected iraq now home to the largest u.s. embassy in the world and while the combat troops are gone sixteen thousand will say to guard the embassy today we mark the end of operation new dawn now the flags are being lowered the story colors will fly no more they will never fade in the memory of all who have sacrificed so much the bases cleared out to bring the promise of freedom to the people of iraq it was a freedom never asked for and came with
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a high price for both iraq and american citizens the war was neither painless nor prompt it left the people of iraq with a country destroyed by a decade of war teetering on the verge of sectarian chaos has to change nations try now to look ahead christine for is now our t.v. . there are of course not just the events of the war but the results of those events and the implications it had on the past present and future of this country and its place in the world so i talk about all of this i spoke earlier with iraq war veteran and r.t. blogger jake del barco as well as michael o'brien a former contractor in iraq who wrote this book america's failure in iraq and here is what they had to say. i mean it absolutely has been extraordinary disaster both for the americans and iraqis and mainly because it was an unnecessary war and after nine eleven when we chose to go into iraq we single
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handedly destroyed our our reputation i mean the iraq war what the skepticism that the greater islamic world had prior to the iraq war only was exactly exasperated and also at the top of that if you consider all the failures the the bat the vacation the abu ghraib incident the double down and surging the the massive ethnic cleansing that took place in baghdad it just was a complete. political and military disaster whether the surge was successful or not and whether stability or not doesn't matter we can never ever reclaim the place we had before the iraq war due to the ethnic cleansing the abu ghraib incident and basically because we just gave the middle east to iran it's a very remote so jake we've got some really important points especially about the u.s. reputation so michael i want to get your perspective as a former contractor it's pretty interesting because when people especially in this
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country think about contractors working in iraq the reputation of them has sort of been tainted a little bit certainly after the blackwater incident. you know i want to know what do you have to say to people who say you know contractors they have the best of both worlds you know they get paid one hundred dollars an hour or more tons of money they have immunity they can do whatever they want and they don't get disciplined is that really what's going on that's basically a nutshell but that's only one group of contractors security contractors which who are mercenaries ok contractors do everything else too because our military don't you know they do everything they drive the trucks there they cook the food because our military is so small they don't the soldiers don't do that anymore so we don't have the draft so we have to depend on the guard the reserves and all the active forces the guard the reserves all of them combined can't handle the wars that our politicians get us into so we have to augment lack of numbers of troops with
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contractors that do everything specifically speaking about security contractors such as blackwater aka z. services aka academy or whatever its name is today. they are mercenaries they are making a ton of money it's all about money it's all about money and the money that they're making i mean this is really interesting because before iraq if you look at our defense contracting industry i mean it has become a multibillion dollar kind of a machine the military industrial calm. plex that dude why guys in our ward to serve in one nine hundred sixty one we are knee deep it's that we're not need to keep up tours he warned the country be wary of it it's the tail is wagging the dog and we are there now and instead of just making bullets rifles tanks and planes and boats they're now soldiers too so interesting i think the money aspect of this is really important to look at i want to put up
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a survey of opinions in iraq now that the combat troops are gone when asked who benefited the most from the war with iraq iraq is were allowed to give two responses and they most often answered iran to four percent of them forty eight percent say the united states benefited the most forty percent say the iraqi elite and just four percent of iraqis say the iraqi people benefited the most from war jake are you surprised by these results you know i'm surprised that iran's not at the top of the list because i want is greater fifty four percent of iraqis say iran a better than benefited the most. ok well yeah i mean and then i missed that point no this is shouldn't be surprised at all i mean the this year in the south have totally you know hand over fist had partnered with the iranians and prime minister maliki he and macdowell solder as well as the iranian special operations forces
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should pat themselves on the back because they hoodwinked hoodwinked the united states and this it's this situation and it wasn't obama that did it this was an agreement that the bush administration screwed up again so now i'm not i'm not surprised by this and it's it's it is just a sad sad tragedy and i think it's a thank god that the things over with though we can say that much michael you're sitting here nodding your head that in that jake said that that sort of resonated with you agreeing with everything jake said and all i can do is add more to what he said both his first segment and the one that the just ended look at the the disparity top of the list is is iran's at the very bottom of the list with four percent is the iraqi people the iraqi people are the ones without a doubt that suffered the most up to a million iraqi people are dead and the whole the whole thing is that what are we
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going to learn we obviously didn't learn anything from viet nam. we went to iraq so we didn't learn anything from viet nam it was an illegal war in your in your segment in the piece you did which by the way i thought was excellent you said it was a freedom the iraqi people didn't ask for you nailed it when i was there they would say mr mike that's what they called you they called you mr or ms by your first name we understand mr bush wants to fight the war on terror why does he have to fight it here they would be nothing i could say in response to that they're the ones that are the big losers and dick cheney and those guys can say whatever they want it's all smoke and mirrors i think that's a really good point i think it's also a good point that you brought up. what did we learn what did we really learn and i think back i remember where i was when that announcement that i showed at the beginning my report was made by george bush on march nineteenth two thousand and three i was living in d.c. i was celebrating st patrick's day you know at an irish bar and there were hundreds
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of people in this bar watching the guy playing tunes on this little guitar and just a couple of us were looking at the small t.v. on the other side of the bar and it was the president announcing something that would change our world forever jake you were there will you ever be the same can americans understand what exactly you went through without having you know the ones who didn't go like you did. now this i mean this this iraq war and this afghanistan war has been the bloodiest war the united states has ever fake not in terms of casualties but in terms of the amount of deployments i mean we've gone on you know i mean i went on two combat tours and to chip in two years and a lot of these guys are in there serving now in their tenth and twelfth and some of them fifteenth tour in both iraq and afghanistan and that amount of trauma is incredible i mean divorce rate in the military right now is that eighty percent
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we've got an astonishing number seventy percent of the force deployed have gauged in combat some form so it is. it is beating the military to pieces that said as you said about you personally how has this war impacted you personally. well you know i wrote a post for r.t. if that blog and i talk about the talk about basically what what for me what it was and it's total distrust in our government i feel betrayed i feel that the bush administration lied us into this war and that obama is doubling down the lies and that it's just it's just ruined a lot of what i think about the great part about america is it's a great country and i lost a lot of friends there i was at a lot of friends that were killed and nobody can take them back and if you look if you're in iraq or if you're a muslim and you're thinking about the afghans pakistanis and iraqis i've been
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killed it's unimaginable the amount of trauma that's been caused by this war michael i want to talk to you about sort of what's left behind he mentioned it a little bit when you were talking about you know the growth of the defense contracting industry it's not just the people guarding the embassy it's not just all those contractors as you say that are there now that are going back that's a whole lot of weapons thousands of weapons being sold by u.s. defense contractors to iraq number one to to build up the iraqi military number two to make sure that there's arms there in the case of iran what are your predictions for the future i mean there are people who are already seeing signs of a civil war in iraq this isn't over really a civil war is going on right now. we just saw the ouster of the vice president the most hadn't even dried the boots leaving iraq and going into kuwait when the prime minister munroe moloch he fired vice president cheney i mean any sunni i mean it's
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all it's it's all ethnic and then the kurd population to the north the whole the the reason given by bush the first and powell back in one thousand ninety one for stopping halfway to baghdad was we didn't want to create a power vacuum twelve years later bush jr goes over there. and creates the very thing we were afraid of creating in ninety one we invaded illegally a country that was of no threat to us no threat to a neighbor we invaded with a fraction of the forces we set and did nothing for four years while the place went down the drain and now we're we're we're watching wall all the ethnic cleansing is jake mentioned is starting to go on it's all sunni versus shia and up in the north in kurdistan it's a little bit better of a place but. as bad as saddam was absolutely he was a tyrant he was terrible he was a bad actor a fifty cent bullet would have saved a million iraqi lives and five that forty five hundred american lives yet we don't
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do assassinations ok fine got it but we never should have invaded iraq in the first place why did we invade why did george bush invade iraq. what we do do is that the nation now i just thought that obama fixed that problem for us well actually that's a true maybe yes it we didn't at the time judith. yeah right now to now we do have an. i can't wait to see what dick cheney and feith space is going to look like when with total solder becomes the next brought by mr of iraq because you can bet your boots that the shiite majority of congress inside of iraq is priming him up abseiling him up to do lead the charge when the allowed him to do that we allowed him to get away with murdering american soldiers and american marines and let him take off to iran to study for a couple years and now he's back to his tricks again it's
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a mess that's an interesting discussion and a really important to have especially as this year wraps up the war is you know sort of over the for the combat troops are gone but there is still a lot that we're going to keep in our eyes on takes over as how iraq war veteran in our team blogger joining us from london we do appreciate it and right here with me michael o'brien author of america's failure in iraq. all right so let's talk a little more about this and about the legacy and look at this from a historic perspective and put it into context artie's on thomas travel to iraq to find out a little more. packing up to head home it may be easy to overlook the total costs of war at least one hundred fourteen thousand iraqi civilians killed as well as four and a half thousand american soldiers millions displaced from their homes not to mention a one trillion dollars financial burden still the former occupiers leave behind some words of encouragement i can say that with confidence that in the next twenty or fifty years iraq will we do here in the gulf region that rivals any country
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inside of the gulf region i think that iraq now is a safe and secure environment it's not a safe and secure is as it should be or it will be but it's progressing very well the american occupation of iraq saw the fall of the badness regime the capture and execution of deposed leader saddam hussein and the implementation of a democratic government but now nearly nine years later is the country better off a little. but the u.s. troop invasion of iraq in two thousand and three and the grief mistake he committed made the situation here worse there are so many mistakes committed by the u.s. military leadership especially in managing civilian aspects here this had a negative effect because i said but in fact many here say it was the american mismanagement of iraq and that led to the rise of sectarian violence in the country all people if you ask who brings the threat of us to iraq. he said us a.
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whole ring of damage to the infrastructure of iraq he said usa so i think. we are and america must cooperate in order to. this. culture the hate. between two peoples the timeline for u.s. troop withdrawal was set in two thousand and eight and while the obama administration initially tried to extend the deadline the official transfer of power came sixteen days ahead of schedule on december sixteenth two thousand and eleven we hope that the future. will bring us. many good things if. and then he can look today at ikea in a quilt a balance not the way the view with see. follow america must
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have been everything on an american. subsidies that must sources and also the mind. and many people who. love. our country right now the u.s. and iraqi governments are working on a new type of diplomatic relations building a new type of trust if you will but now the next step is in the hands of the iraqi government to move the country forward and america's influence waned political infighting and sectarian divisions in the iraqi parliament has diminished as well giving iraqis hope for a strong future a mother just as regards other aspects civil life the political and parliamentarian aspects as well as the economic aspect that lets me see that iraq has good capabilities but the need to it to become one of the developed states but as iraq prepares to move past this dark chapter they have a message for their former occupiers to our defense the american. what the
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police don't know about a mistake and because you're mistake is a great mistake. but it's teach. you charlie sheen and friends are few right now in a region in which america's reputation lies in shreds in the eyes of many in iraq sean thomas r.t. . and still ahead on our team we remember the events that made headlines this year and those that deserve a little more attention from the mainstream media two thousand and eleven interview is coming up next. here the police corruption is. what it was after the you know what he seems to know. that never
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appropriate to face but the argument that they're being overly dramatic. looking at the capitol and now i'm floored less for. me to be happy that. people calling
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what you said for free and fair elections. and we're still reporting from the. you can hear behind me loud explosions. i got it t.v. . and what drives the world the fear mongering used by politicians who makes decisions to break through it's already been made who can you trust no one who is you know in view with a global missionary see where we had a state controlled capitalism it's called sessions when nobody dares to ask we do our tea question more. a new
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website with twenty four seven live streaming news towns what to do about the ongoing financial hurricane unlimited free high quality videos for download. and stories you never find on mainstream news. that is a family or political. question more on our t.v. one thing. all right now we want to take a look back at two thousand and eleven and during our earlier newscast we focused on some of the biggest events out of new york city and spoke to our new york correspondents but let's give equal treatment to the left coast as well and talk to r.t. correspondent ramon the lindo in our los angeles studio. all right ramona we've got of course to talk about the occupy movement on the west coast oakland certainly made almost as many waves as new york did with the critical injury of iraq war
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veteran scott olsen also the port shutdowns there and also where you are there in los angeles some pretty big days talk a little bit about that. no that's right i mean here in los angeles the occupy movement got started just a couple of weeks after it started there in new york and it got going with a lot of enthusiasm i remember on day one there was more than a thousand people there people with signs people with noisemakers showing their discontent with the financial institutions of political institutions and what was interesting in a way that what i observed anyway was that these people were not the type of people that you would expect at protests we've been to a lot of protests here in los angeles we know a lot of the activists around town but what we're seeing at occupy were moms with their children soccer moms who were just unhappy that the war was still going on accountants teachers people from all walks of life and what was interesting and what differed here in los angeles compared to new york were was that the
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politicians here from the very start were very very supportive of the movement and then suddenly after a month of so the encampment just kept growing and growing and growing and people the establishment seemed to get scared and told them you guys have to leave eventually all that support turned to you guys are causing a public safety hazard a health hazard and i eventually saw it was i was going to say i remember the the mayor mayor antonio antonio of your across the handing out rain ponchos because the first few days it was raining there in l.a. talk a little bit more about that or not i know i cut you off but also kind of put that into light of what you've been seeing an ally certainly some parts of southern california the hardest hit when we talk about you know the economy and the growing homeless problem. no that's exactly right well the homeless problem took center stage once all those tents came to city hall but i mean this is
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a growing problem throughout los angeles and throughout southern california now or that it was a very emotional series of stories that we did here in los angeles and throughout southern california on the homeless problem i mean we met families who were arrested for sleeping in their cars and unfortunately many of this these families that's the only option that they have we went to a shelter and one of the most interesting people that we met this year was a young man a fourteen year old boy named tokyo he's only fourteen years old he was a victim of hurricane katrina and him in his father came across the country and just showed up at the worst possible time as far as economics went they ended up on the streets and yet this child is resilient he's still going to school he's trying to be a musician but it really speaks to the nature of the changing face of homelessness not just here in southern california but throughout america where people who were at one time very comfortable are now being forced to live on the streets homeless advocates who are passing out food are being arrested so it's
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a really disturbing trend and the story with tokyo as well is that it many children are ending up like him where they don't have a home so it's really difficult for them to do a sort of homework homework and made time to live on skid row where i can tell you from visiting that area that many times is not a safe place for a child so it was doubly of an emotional series of stories that we did we met a lot of good people who were on the streets but of unfortunate been victims of the economic crisis that we're in right now always good when and when some of those names and faces really are memorable as journalists because that probably means that they're sticking out to those who watch the stories as well well switch gears a little bit ramon a lot of people might be surprised about this because we did see a lot of police action brutality with the on fire wall street movements around the country but where you are i remember we did some stories about the police waging a war on the use of cameras talk a little bit about that. right this story also got a lot of attention we met
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a young man by the name of jeremy m r it's he was a high school student videotaping a police officer who appeared to be roughing up another student now what was unusual was that the only thing that jeremy it seemed to be doing was videotaping the police officer yet hours later he was arrested and later charged with an unusual charge that many people here hadn't heard of of attempted lynching. now he was held for several months in jail because his parents couldn't afford to get him out but it kind of speaks to a lot of these catch all the laws that different states are using in order to prosecute people who are videotaping police officers now it took a google engineer to help jeremy get out of jail so that he could spend time with his family eventually the prosecutors did have to drop the case because of all the media attention and just what appears to be a ridiculous charge right artie's among the lenders certainly a lot of good stories there is talk about a whole lot more i'm sure we'll see you do coming up in the new year thanks so much
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well that is going to do it for now but for more on the stories we covered go to our to dot com slash usa or you tube dot com slash our team america and you can always follow me on twitter at christine france now. you know sometimes you see a story and it seems so you think you understand it and then you glimpse something else you hear or see some other part of it and realized everything you thought you knew you don't i'm tom ford is a big issue.


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