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Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

A place to talk about domestic politics in Middle East (Iran, Iraq , Turkey, Syria) Also includes topics about Assyrian, Armenian, Chaldean .

Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Dec 27, 2019 3:02 pm

After Mosul:

Who cares for the caretakers?

Seventeen year old Hala* was pale, and she was quickly bleeding out. Her mother was screaming and crying while her grandmother prayed silently from a wheelchair.

They had all been brought into our trauma hospital in Adhba by our field ambulance after their last minute decision to flee their ISIS captors resulted in a horrifying gunshot wound to Hala’s stomach. She was 9 months pregnant.

This was during the final battle for Mosul in 2017, the offensive to retake control of the city and push the terror group out from their final stronghold.

As a psychologist and former Australian Army medic, I was on my first deployment to Mosul. 15 km from the frontline, my organisation had turned a broken down cement factory into a trauma and maternity hospital to provide medical services for those fleeing ISIS captivity in Mosul.

Hala was immediately taken into the operating room. Her mother and I walked around the small compound while her grandmother rested. Hala’s mother cried and pulled out a small Christian card from her pocket, kissed it and handed it to me, curling my fingers around it. We prayed together and walked some more.

The situation was critical. Hala’s mother was sobbing inconsolably, and I began to wonder if she or her baby would survive. I was careful not to create any false hope, as her condition did not appear hopeful.

After many hours, surgeons finally managed to save both Hala and her baby, who had only suffered a bullet graze to her tiny wrist. The trauma team emerged from the operating theatre smiling triumphantly after working tirelessly to save both of them.

As surgeons presented Hala’s baby to her proud grandmother, she smiled but motioned with her hands to give the child to me first. After I held Hala’s baby in my arms, her grandmother handed me back the Christian card as a parting gift. To me, Hala’s baby became known as ‘The Miracle Baby of Mosul.’

Unfortunately, the reality is that even the most dedicated medical staff are ordinary human beings, not miracle workers, and things don’t always work out so well. Two years after the liberation of Mosul, the medical personnel who treated the wounded still carry the weight of the countless lives lost and the memory of the many atrocities we witnessed.

We saw many casualties, and the sight of blood flowing out of the ambulance doors never got any easier. At times there were up to five victims of violence that had been shot, blown up, or cut up all in one ambulance. No matter how severe the wounds, they had to wait at the front gate with precious seconds ticking away while a security check was done.

Trained medical professionals learn early about boundaries and the emotional cost of over-identifying with patients, but the context of war changes that. War injuries are vastly different from car accidents and regular admissions that are often seen, and the staff at our field hospital outside Mosul was constantly exposed to blast and chemical injuries, burns, and other severe injuries for 12-18 hours a day, seven days a week.

One afternoon, staff gathered around the bed of a dying man. The man had eventually passed away after sustaining blast injuries. Staff members were struggling to contain and conceal their emotions, avoiding each other’s gaze.

Alex, our security officer, took me to the front gate to inform the family. It was the hardest thing I had ever done. His brother fell to his knees onto the sharp stones and sobbed hysterically. Alex and I watched him drive away, holding his dead brother in the back of a stranger’s utility.

The people we treated reminded us of our own family and friends, and the difficulty of coping with such emotionally intense working conditions could often be seen in the form of silent tears, confusion, and social withdrawal. Alex has since left Iraq, but three years later he continues to express his sadness, saying, “The things that hurt me the most, was not being able to save everyone - all those children…”

We ate dinner that night under the stars, mopping up rice and tomatoes with stale bread. Flat expressions all around, shuffling back to the kitchen to make tea before heading off to try and sleep and then rising to do it all again the following day. A joyous win for Hala and the devastating loss of somebody’s brother, and more patients to care for after either scenario; this is the harsh daily reality of such deployments and missions.

In the months that followed, the toll taken on medical staff ranged from confusion and anxiety to alcoholism and trauma. The importance of pre and post deployment screening, as well as follow up interviews and regular counseling and debriefing for all personnel deployed in hostile environments, cannot be understated.

While I served our mission as a staff psychologist employed for the sole purpose of providing psychological intervention to staff members, this type of support is not typical for medical and humanitarian missions in Iraq. In most cases, staff are usually given nothing more than a phone number for a mental health contact that is often based in a completely different country.

In May of this year an exasperated senior level security advisor to 3 major NGOs operating in Iraq said, “the mental health care chain is non-existent, and there is no psycho-social support for NGO staff, just a phone number.” Another medical officer who served in Iraq and has since returned to her home country referred to this mental health phone contact as “useless.” One nurse who I know personally refused to go on any further missions due to “the lack of support there and when you get back home.”

As the humanitarian effort continues in Iraq with no end in sight, it is my professional opinion that all humanitarian organizations working here need to undertake a review of the deployment, debriefing, and follow up processes to ensure the integrity of the working contract, insurer commitments, and duty of care to all personnel. As a professional who works in the field of psychological care and as an individual who has personally experienced the inadequate debriefing process, it is clear to me that more needs to be done.

Medical personnel put their lives on the line and are frequently subjected to vicarious traumatization, which may not present itself for years. If we can summon the funds and manpower to execute such humanitarian missions, then our efforts should also focus on protecting and supporting those who come to Iraq to offer humanitarian aid.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/opinion/26122019

NEVER FORGET THE MOSUL MASSACRE
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:52 am

Sixth anniversary of
ISIS Mosul’s occupation


Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi vowed to prevent a repetition of the occupation and destruction of Mosul on Wednesday, marking the sixth anniversary of the Islamic State (ISIS) group’s capture of the city

“We must never again allow what happened in 2014 to be repeated,” reads a tweet by the Iraqi government, attributed to the PM.

Kadhimi visited the liberated city of Mosul Wednesday for the first time in his tenure as Iraqi PM, where he met with several Iraqi military commanders and senior officials from Nineveh province, including Najim Al-Juburee, governor of Nineveh.

ISIS first swept into Iraq in 2014, capturing cities across northern and central Iraq including Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city and the capital of Nineveh province.

At the height of its power, ISIS controlled a contiguous area of Iraq and Syria equivalent in size to the entire United Kingdom, subjecting close to ten million people to its extreme interpretation of Islam.

ISIS also caused the forced displacement of more than a million Iraqis who fled the organization’s brutal violence. These internally displaced people (IDP’s) moved into camps, mostly located in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

The city of Mosul was all but demolished during an offensive that saw Iraqi and Coalition forces battle ISIS to retake the city. Control was finally wrestled from the terrorist group in June 2017.

Three years on, the city remains mostly in ruins and its destroyed infrastructure has yet to be rebuilt or restored by the Iraqi government.

Kadhimi is said to have informed the Iraqi commanders and officials in Mosul that “corruption and mismanagement” have contributed to past disasters in Mosul.

“All Iraqis played a part in the liberation of Mosul. Iraq was victorious thanks to their [sacrifices] and to the heroism of the Iraqi Armed Forces,” reads another tweet attributed to Kadhimi.

Although the Iraqi government announced the territorial defeat of ISIS in December 2017, remnants of the group have since returned to their earlier insurgency tactics, ambushing security forces, kidnapping and executing suspected informants, and extorting money from vulnerable rural populations.

Having lost all of its urban strongholds, the group is now most active in Iraq’s remote deserts and mountains, and in the disputed territories contested by the federal government and the autonomous Kurdish region, where a wide security vacuum has opened up.

ISIS has been held responsible for a spate of attacks on the Iraqi Security Forces and Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF, also known as Hashd al-Shaabi in Arabic) units.

The latest Pentagon Inspector General report, covering January 1 to March 31, said ISIS remnants are “regrouping and reforming” and continue to pose a threat in both Iraq and Syria.

US CENTCOM in February described ISIS as ‘regrouping and reforming’ in the Makhmour Mountains in northern Iraq, while the 2021 DoD budget justification for overseas contingency operations said that ISIS is expected to seek to re-establish governance in northern and western areas of Iraq,” the Lead Inspector General’s report said.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeas ... -100620202
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:46 pm

Slim funds keep Mosul in ruins

Ahmed Hamed has dreamt of rebuilding his pulverised home in Iraq's Mosul from the moment government forces recaptured the city from jihadists in 2017. But three years on, it remains a pile of rubble

He is among tens of thousands of Iraqis who have filed claims to the Nineveh province's Subcommittee for Compensation, seeking reparations for material goods, injuries and even lives lost in the months-long fight to retake Mosul from the Islamic State (ISIS) group.

"I still haven't gotten a cent, even though it's been so long since the liberation," said Hamed, 25, who works menial day jobs to afford a small apartment.

His original home lies in Mosul's ravaged western half, where ISIS made its final stand in the city and reconstruction has been the slowest.

Iraq gathered $30 billion in pledges from international donors in Kuwait in 2018 to rebuild, but virtually none of the funds have been disbursed

The lack of progress has been widely blamed on Iraq's infamous bureaucracy, corruption that has siphoned off reconstruction funds and polarised city politics.

Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic and plummeting oil prices, Iraq's government is struggling to rake in enough monthly revenues to break even – pushing rebuilding even lower on its priorities list.

"Politicians keep telling us we need to go home," Hamed said, slamming the government's insistence on closing down the camps where more than one million Iraqis, rendered homeless by the fighting, are still seeking shelter.

"But how? Our homes are destroyed and there isn't a single public service that works."

According to a Norwegian Refugee Council survey in Mosul, over 270,000 people remain unable to return home and of those living there, 64 percent said they would be unable to pay rent in the next three months.

Government is stalling

Every day, dozens of people queue outside a reception window at the Subcommittee for Compensation, clutching thick packets of multi-coloured forms they pray will be approved by the central committee in Baghdad.

Among them under the midsummer sun was Ali Elias, hoping for news of his son, a soldier kidnapped by ISIS in 2017.

"I filed a claim on him shortly after the liberation, at least so we know what happened to him. It was sent to Baghdad, but no one answered," the 65-year-old told AFP.

"I'm getting old and I'm exhausted by spending my life in these different government offices," he said.

According to subcommittee head Mohammed Mahmoud, the body has received 90,000 claims, of which about 48,000 to 49,000 were for goods, houses, shops and other properties, and 39,000 for human loss - dead, wounded or missing

"We processed three-fourths of the claims on material damage, but there aren't enough funds to actually pay them out. We were only able to compensate 2,500 families," he said.

Most of the rebuilding efforts in the northern city have either been undertaken by individuals or by the United Nations and other international organisations.

The UN has reconstructed 2,000 homes, dozens of schools, healthcare centres, and water or power plants in Mosul since 2018, but even it has faced challenges.

According to a recent report by the American University of Iraq in Sulaimani, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) complained the "government is stalling or blocking projects rather than facilitating them".

Seeking to root out corruption, the UN introduced long vetting processes, which further delayed rebuilding.

Dark past, grim future

The report accused ex-Mosul governor Nawfal Aqoub of seeking bribes and kickbacks from reconstruction companies.

Even when a project was completed, authorities often failed to hire staff, wrote its authors Zmkan Ali Saleem and Mac Skelton.

The scandalous testimonies found an audience in Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, who travelled to Mosul in June and promised things would change.

"I want to personally look at every contract for Mosul's reconstruction, so that we no longer see a single case of exploitation or corruption," Kadhimi said.

But the outlook remains grim

Already, the housing and migration ministries were two of the worst-funded, making up two percent and 0.1 percent of cabinet's 2019 budget, respectively.

They were the only two ministries whose salary expenses shrunk that year.

"Baghdad has done too little in response to this catastrophe," said Muzaham al-Khayyat, who briefly governed the city when Aqoub was ousted.

Now, with the government facing a liquidity crisis, authorities are scraping together funds each month to pay eight million workers, pensioners and welfare recipients.

Barely breaking even, they appear unwilling to grow costs further by funding compensation or reconstruction.

"We asked the finance minister to set aside up to 20 billion IQD ($17 million) for compensation in Nineveh, but he hasn't approved our request," said lawmaker Mahasen Hamdoun, who hails from the province.

"Kadhimi promised a lot during his visit, but nothing was done."

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/10072020
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:02 pm

Mosul’s train station remains in ruins

Mosul’s once bustling train station that transported people to Baghdad and beyond now rests as a de facto graveyard for rusting iron and overturned train wagons

Wheels came to a stop when the Islamic State (ISIS) group took control of the area in 2014, later using the station as a hideout.

By the time Iraqi forces retook the country's second city in 2017, irreparable damage had devastated the station’s facilities, with the main building bombed and many train tracks pulled from the ground.

Click to enlarge:
1241

The Iraqi government pledged to rebuild and salvage what is left of the dilapidated station last year, but no work on the facility has begun to date.

In a city that largely remains in ruins from the battle to reconquer the city, the railway is hardly the only structure to be rebuilt.

Tens of thousands of Iraqis have filed claims with the government, seeking compensation for property destroyed in the fight.

Mosul’s fraught local politics, compounded with Iraq's bureaucracy and corruption that has leached off reconstruction funds, has largely been blamed for the slow progress in resuscitating the city’s structures.

Click to enlarge:
1242

Moreover, the coronavirus pandemic, combined with plummeting oil prices, has rendered the Iraqi government in a state of struggle to break even through monthly revenue, let alone rebuild.

Originally built in 1938, Mosul’s train station is located in the older area of the city. The station's first train trip was to Baghdad, and was later followed by travel to Syria and Turkey in the following years.

The Germans and Ottomans had planned on using Mosul’s train station in plans for the Bagdadbahn - a line that would have linked Berlin with Baghdad and Kuwait.

The use of the station was slowed following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait by Saddam Hussein, as well as when Iraq was under UN sanctions in the 1990s.

The railway’s traffic stopped during the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, restarted operations following the failure of the regime.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeas ... #images-17
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Jan 06, 2021 12:12 am

93 bodies retrieved in Mosul

Over 90 bodies were retrieved under mounds of rubble in the war-ravaged city of Mosul, an official told state media on Tuesday

Iraqi Civil Defense rescue teams in cooperation with Forensic Medicine Department and Mosul municipality “managed to retrieve 93 bodies of the victims of Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists belonging to unarmed civilians” in separate old Mosul neighborhoods, Civil Defense Director in Nineveh, Brigadier General Hussam Khalil, told Iraqi state’s al-Sabaah news agency on Tuesday.

More than likely they were liberated corpses - victims of the coalition mass bombing

ISIS controlled Mosul from June 2014 until its liberation by Iraqi forces in July 2017 with the support of the US-led international coalition. Despite more than three years having passed since the liberation of the city from the group, bodies continue to be discovered buried under the rubble of destroyed homes and buildings in the city.

Khalil stated that the civil defense determines whether the deceased belong to civilians or ISIS members by having the forensic medicine department conduct DNA tests to match with civilians reported missing.

The bodies were retrieved “during the process of removing rubble” to start the reconstruction of destroyed neighborhoods and government institutions, where “ISIS terrorists used to detain innocent citizens” and execute them en masse, he added.

More than four thousand bodies have been retrieved in Mosul since its liberation, Mosul mayor Zuhair al-Araji told Rudaw’s Sami Zuber on Tuesday.

“More than 2,000 bodies of Daesh (ISIS) militants and around 2,193 bodies of civilians” have been retrieved under destroyed houses and buildings in the city, he added.

Most of Mosul still lays in ruins. Nineveh’s governor Najim al-Jabouri estimated the northern Iraqi city needs more than $20 billion to rebuild.

The 2019 federal budget allocated $560 million for Mosul’s reconstruction, according to Reuters. Due to political turmoil Baghdad did not approve a full budget for 2020.

The budget given to his province “does not match the size of destruction” caused during the Islamic State (ISIS) conflict, said Jabouri.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/050120212
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Jan 19, 2021 10:25 am

Bodies, debris haunt Mosul nearly
four years after ISIS liberation


Mosul residents are calling on authorities to clear dead bodies and return services to the war-ravaged city, almost four years after its liberation from the Islamic State (ISIS)

Student Ahmed Mohammed says the city is still full of dead bodies (liberated corpses)

"We are asking that the western side of Mosul and the old city be cleared [of human remains]. There are hundreds of human remains. The corpses smell.”

"Clothes of [dead] men and women are visible on the streets..." added local Humadi Khamis.

Residents also say the government hasn’t helped them rebuild, or compensate them for their losses.

"The government has not given us a penny in compensation. They have not given us even a single glass of water in compensation. We have restarted life entirely on our own. We do not have any money. No assistance or support is given to us by the government,” Hashim Mahmood told Rudaw.

"Our situation is dire. No one comes to us, nor does anyone even talk about our miseries. There are no good quality clinics, nor is there any good service. No one is worried about us,” added local resident Terfa Sibari.

An estimated 8,000 families who have returned to Mosul since the city was cleared of ISIS in July 2017 had at least one family member killed by ISIS, said Nineveh's assistant governor for displaced people and organizations affairs Omer Khidir.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/19012021
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Jan 20, 2021 1:20 am

Mosul's healthcare sector in shambles

Mosul residents have said they cannot find doctors or medicine in the city, almost four years after its liberation from the Islamic State (ISIS)

Image

"There are no medical centres in Mosul. If you have a patient, you are in trouble. There is not a single cannula at the hospitals," said Taha Mohammed, who lives on the western side of the city.

"This is the Harmat neighbourhood. There are no nurses, no physicians. If you happen to fall ill during nighttime, you do not know where to go. Those who do not have a car do not know where to go. You will be in trouble," added Fatima Abbas, who lives in east Mosul.

People also say the hospitals are running low on medicine, with doctors asking patients to bring it themselves, or go elsewhere.

Of 13 public hospitals in Mosul, nine of them were damaged during the battle to free the city, reducing healthcare services by 70 percent, Shaalan Aziz, the manager of Ibn al-Athir Teaching Hospital for Children told Rudaw earlier this week.

"Undoubtedly, Mosul needs much bigger and more hospitals. There are currently attempts to build more hospitals. There has been a deal to build a 600-bed German hospital and this will alleviate the burden on the health sector of Nineveh province," he said.

Two of the damaged hospitals were repaired by the government, he added.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/190120213
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Jan 20, 2021 10:49 pm

Mosul Cast Receiving Death Threats

Mosul Cast Receiving ISIS Death Threats After Huge Viewership Numbers On Netflix For Iraq Drama

There has been a continuing sense of unease and high alert from the stars and filmmakers behind Mosul, the Iraqi-language thriller based on the true tale of an Iraqi SWAT police squad that took to the streets to wipe out ISIS members to avenge the love ones that unit members lost at the hands of the terror organization.

The film made a high-profile Thanksgiving debut on Netflix and became one of the most viewed movies on the site in Europe and the Middle East. Unfortunately with the film’s popularity, several of the stars of the film have seen their social media pages filled with unsettling threats of violence that purport to be coming from members and loyalists of the fractured ISIS organization.

“When I posted on my social media that the film was going to come out, the first day there was a lot from ISIS,” said Suhail Dabbach, who plays the steely Colonel Jasem, the leader of the SWAT team. “They put on a lot of videos and bad words. Like, they have said, now we know you, and you have to watch yourself. Every day, touch your head to make sure it is still on. They said, ‘We know where you live and we will reach you.’ “

Dabbach’s family has received similar scary threats, and his co-star Adam Besa, who plays the policeman who gets drafted into the SWAT team, watched his Instagram page get wiped clean and he has been threatened on WhatsApp. Those threats were traced to Turkey. Both the film’s financier AGBO, Netflix and 101 Studios have taken it seriously enough to direct internal security forces to step in and make sure everyone is safe.

“It was certainly an unnerving experience for the actors,” Joe Russo told Deadline. “It’s never a comfortable feeling to have your privacy violated, and it’s terrifying to receive death threats from anonymous sources. We feel it has been handled expertly by Netflix and by our own security team.”

Anthony Russo declined to say if they verified the death threats actually came from ISIS after AGBO re-engaged the TigerSwan security service they used to be sure the actors and crew were safe during production in Morocco.

“I will only say we’ve treated this very seriously,” Russo told Deadline. “We knew the movie was provocative and potentially dangerous for anyone involved. We took the highest security measures we could think of and we were familiar with that process after working on the Marvel movies. This was a whole new level in terms of secrecy.

We didn’t distribute scripts, we had a code name for the movie and pulled every reference of ISIS out of scripts when we did have to distribute them, so they were never explicitly mentioned as they were in the film. We had the best security people working with us but still, there was danger, but we had to be in a Middle Eastern country to make the film like we did. We were exposed and had to do as responsible as we could but everyone felt it was worth the risk.”

Matthew Michael Carnahan, who wrote and directed the drama for AGBO, said the threats are a terrible byproduct of the extremely high viewership of the film, audience numbers particularly remarkable because they shot in Iraqi language with subtitles to keep the feeling of authenticity.

It has been hard on Dabbach, whose performance as the SWAT leader has been widely acclaimed. He has waited long for his big acting moment; he graduated from the Baghdad College Fine Arts intent on being an actor, but had to flee when Saddam Hussein came in and installed son Uday to be in charge of the arts. That turned filmmaking into a perilous profession.

Dabbach spent time in Jordan refugee camps before finding his way to the U.S., where he scraped for jobs but made his living primarily working in a retirement home. While he was in a memorable scene with Jeremy Renner in the Best Picture winner The Hurt Locker — he was the man bolted into an explosive vest who begs the bomb expert to defuse the mechanism and save his life, to no avail — Mosul is a real showcase of his acting skills, and it is a shame he has had to worry about threats as he waits for the next starring role.

To Carnahan, this is just the latest in a winding and sometimes dangerous road for the film. He would like to see his actors getting roles off the film, not death threats. Fortunately, Netflix and AGBO have been on high alert with security teams that merely had to be reactivated to assess the threat levels.

“It has been this way since we started shooting under a goofy cover name,” Carnahan told Deadline. “It was always called Picnic, because the security guys at TigerSwan said, you’re in Morocco, the third largest national contingent of ISIS are Moroccans, we have to take every step possible to make sure we’re safe.”

Carnahan said they concealed the plot as much as possible when shooting in the country, and most there didn’t recognize the SWAT team flag that flew above an armored Humvee in the battle scenes. “There was only one time where things get dicey on set and that wasn’t even ISIS related, it was more like gang warfare,” he said. “We were in a really sh*tty part of Marrakesh, so from that point forward, we’ve always been cognizant of threats.

Now that the movie is out and it is as successful as it was. It was the number two film in the world when it came out, and I just got something forwarded to me, that said it was the eighth most popular film on Netflix in the month of December. I don’t know if Netflix ever thought it was going to be that big; I was over moon when 101 Studios [which acquired it after Toronto 2019 for a planned theatrical release dashed by the pandemic] was talking about putting us in 800 theaters. That felt too good to be true.

The idea these people are now threatening us, I guess it comes with the territory. That Suhail’s family in the Middle East would be threatened, that they would hack into his wife’s phone, or that Adam’s Instagram page would disappear and he would get these WhatsApp threats, none of use knew it would get to that level. In one way, it was terrifying, in another we thought, man we must have hit close to home. We must have hit a nerve, in what remains of ISIS, or at least that ISIS mind-set.”

“It would be great if the world realized these guys – and Suhail was working in a retirement community when I cast him, that he is now on the radar of some very bad people,” Carnahan said. “I want him to be acknowledged for the risk that he has taken, I want Adam to be acknowledged for the risk he’s taken, and I want people to think about this movie and see it knowing there are very dangerous people out there, who hate that they’re watching it. Who hate that somebody has depicted this struggle, with a narrative they have no control over.

“I think 48 hours after we came out in Iraq, ISIS puts out this 44-minute response to the movie, but uses a pirated Netflix logo that runs over the top of it. I want people to know what these guys did, how crazy this movie was from inception, when they’re watching, Yes, it’s a movie, but that it has carried physical risk for everyone involved, and especially those actors. It’s testament to how good they are.”

Netflix put its security and AGBO re-engaged TigerSwan, their security firm that provided security on set and technical advisors, most of them ex-Delta, Green Beret, and Foreign Legion soldiers.

“They went through all of it with Suhail and Adam, and helped them scrub pages and protect themselves,” Carnahan said. “We have done the most we can do on the front end of it, but there are people out there who are murdering people with knives, because they have insulted Islam. It would be silly to not be on edge and a little bit freaked out.”

The Marrakesh scare was about money, not political ideology, Carnahan said.

“We were in a really tough part of Marrakesh, in those scenes with the narrow alleyways where there are caverns but they are apartments,” he said. “To shoot in that really tough part of Marrakesh, you have to hire security, which means the local dominant gang so people aren’t harassed and hurt on the high end and on the low end, people aren’t screaming during your take, because that’s a tactic as well to get money.

The gun laws are so strict in Morocco that if you’re caught with a spent shell, you go to jail. So these guys fight with knives. A handful had the Glasgow smiles, where the cut starts at the corner of the mouth and goes up to the ear? That’s how they fight. They are all high on Parkinson’s medication because that’s where this particular Parkinson’s medication is made in Morocco.

We’re shooting there, everything is going as well as it can, and then the rival gang hears the other is being paid. Right when school lets out, they get a bunch of kids from their part of the neighborhood and they rush the set. Marrakesh police show up, they have riot shields. It got dicey for 15-20 minutes. John Sweeney, who ran the TigerSwan crew, always said, if you ever feel me grab you, go with it. I won’t do it unless it really means something, that we’re in a tough spot. That was the only time he grabbed me.

We always had a secure green room facility. We waited there 10 minutes and it all panned out. The people who needed to get paid got paid and the people who needed to be threatened got threatened. We were able to continue shooting.”

None of those gang members had an allegiance to ISIS, it turned out. “They were the kind of gang you would see in the U.S., or in the Michael Jackson ‘Beat It’ video, fighting with knives,” he said. “It helped greatly that there was no American cast or uniforms, nothing identifying with American soldiers. It kept us under the radar and we carefully covered the Humvees at night.”

Dabbach told Deadline he was eagerly awaiting his next role. The Russos have put several of the actors in some of their other AGBO films including the sequel to the Netflix hit Extraction, and the hope is the film will draw them some attention in awards season where it is eligible for Golden Globes as the Iraq selection. It was not qualified as the Iraq selection for Best International Feature Film Oscar but is eligible in all other categories.

“I don’t want them to look at it from the terms of foreign picture or Hollywood picture,” Carnahan said. “It was American filmmakers making a movie in a different language with different faces, about people and a story that is eminently human. The idea we would be considered a foreign film, well, I get it, but I am not lobbying for that. I want people to judge the movie on its merits and come what may.”

What Carnahan really wants is for the brave actors in the film to use Mosul serve as the calling card for future roles, and perhaps not just as drivers or terrorist thugs.

“Nothing would make me happier than to see these guys work again and not in any war movie capacity,” Carnahan said. “Just get roles playing lawyers, something completely removed from that world. Especially Suhail, because that guy is talent and dreams deferred for decades, because of the country he happened to be born in.

This madman comes into power and he has to flee, and this budding career he was starting to build gets put on hold and for the next few decades, he is working at a retirement community, after living in a refugee camp in Jordan. I would love it if they were able to translate the popularity of this into continuing career opportunities. They’re all in that same spot, waiting for what comes next.”

https://deadline.com/2021/01/mosul-cast ... 234671486/

To me it seems wrong to make a film of such a terrible massacre

The terrible way the Shia treated the Sunni living in Mosul

The Iraqi army running away from Mosul, leaving all there tanks and weapons behind for ISIS - something that has never been explained

The way ISIS were welcomed into Mosul as saviors by the Sunni

Many of those Sunni who had run away from Mosul returned when ISIS took control

The way ISIS then committed horrendous tortures and slaughter on the innocent inhabitants of Mosul

Coalition governments allowed ISIS into Mosul because they wanted as many ISIS supporters contained in the one area making it easier for coalition to attack

Understandably, armies went in to rid Mosul of ISIS, they had no choice due to the slaughter

The worst part was the coalition bombing leaving a large number of liberated corpses some of whom still lay beneath the rubble

As has been the case in most other coalition liberated areas: the bombings have destroyed vast areas but failed to help in the rebuilding of that which they have bombed into oblivion

The coaltion appears to have a policy of: let's bomb the sh*it out of everyone and let god sort them out
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Jan 29, 2021 8:03 pm

Negligent in reconstruction of Mosul

Out of 60,000 compensation applications sent to Baghdad from Mosul, only 2,000 of them have received a response and been resolved

“We have submitted around 60,000 compensation requests for the people in Nineveh province, but the federal government has solved only around 2,000 of those cases,” Zuhair al-Araji, mayor of Mosul, told Rudaw’s Samia Hassan on Friday. “These cases are families who are poor and need aid to rebuild their homes.”

    He said these delays are why areas of the city are still in ruins almost four years after the Islamic State (ISIS) group was declared defeated in Mosul
ISIS first swept into Iraq in 2014, capturing cities across northern and central Iraq, including Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city and the capital of Nineveh province, where the group declared its so-called caliphate.

At the height of its power, ISIS controlled a contiguous area of Iraq and Syria equivalent in size to the entire United Kingdom, subjecting close to ten million people to its extreme interpretation of Islam. It also caused the forced displacement of more than a million Iraqis who fled the organization’s brutal violence. These internally displaced people (IDPs) moved into camps, mostly located in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

The city of Mosul was severely damaged and some neighbourhoods all but demolished during an offensive by Iraqi, Kurdish, and global coalition forces to retake the city. Control was finally wrestled from the terrorist group in summer 2017.

Almost four years later, the people of the city are still working to rebuild and their efforts have been stalled by Baghdad, Araji claimed.

“After ISIS, we went back into a destroyed city. The former administration [in Baghdad] also acknowledged that the city is destroyed, but they did not do much for the city and have neglected the reconstruction process,” he said.

Bodies of both civilians and ISIS militants still lie under the rubble, giving off a bad odor and preventing locals from returning. Araji said they have two teams digging bodies out of the ruins on a daily basis and “so far we have found 2,393 civilian bodies and 2,600 ISIS bodies.”

The city’s basic infrastructure is also in need of repair.

With the Tigris River flowing through the centre, Mosul was famous for its many bridges, most of which were destroyed or damaged during the war against ISIS.

“Out of the five main bridges of Mosul, two have been rebuilt, and a third will be fully rebuilt within a month. However there are nearly 70 smaller bridges in the city and only 30 of them have been rebuilt,” Araji said.

Reconstruction of one of Mosul’s most famous landmarks is underway. During the Mosul offensive when Iraqi and coalition forces were advancing, ISIS blew up al-Nuri mosque. Built in the 12th century during the Turkic Zengid dynasty that ruled over parts of modern-day Iraq and Syria, the mosque was famous for its "hunchback" — the leaning al-Hadba minaret, a symbol of the city featured on Iraqi banknotes.

“The reconstruction of the mosque started two years ago after a deal with UNESCO. The expenses are covered by the United Arab Emirates which adds up to $50,400,000. However the process is very slow and we have expressed our concern multiple times regarding this issue,” Araji said.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/290120211
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Jan 29, 2021 8:12 pm

Mosul's ruined Old City
for sale, but few buyers


Mosul's Old City still lies in ruins three years after intense fighting drove out Islamic State (ISIS) jihadists. With rebuilding unlikely and Iraq's economy in tailspin, homeowners are desperate to sell

Image

But many who lived through the horrors of ISIS rule there are now unable to find buyers for their properties in what still resembles a warzone.

Piles of rubble block streets and collapsed buildings mar the shattered ancient city centre once famous for its mosques, churches and synagogues and maze of historic streets.

Entire neighbourhoods remain blanketed by a pungent stench which locals say is caused by still unrecovered bodies, broken sewage systems and illegal trash dumps.

Many family homes on the banks of the Tigris river have remained largely undamaged, but are still off limits because ISIS booby-trapped them.

"For months, I've been trying to sell my home in the Old City because it's too damaged to live in," said 62-year-old Saad Gergis. "But no one wants to buy it because it's surrounded by homes emitting horrible smells."

ISIS, which ran a self-declared "caliphate" across vast parts of Syria and Iraq, captured Mosul in 2014 but was driven out by the Iraqi army in mid-2017 after months of gruelling street fighting.

Many Mosul residents long waited for compensation or rebuilding -- in vain, as Iraq remains mired in political and economic crisis.

Gergis finally scraped together what he could and bought a plot of land outside the city to build a new home for his wife and four children.

Until the house is ready, his family is living in a rented apartment across town, on the eastern outskirts of Mosul.

Returning to his old neighbourhood is difficult for Gergis, who lived for three years under brutal ISIS rule.

"When I go back, I can see all the old horrors of ISIS : the killings, the explosions, the executions," he told AFP.

Waiting for state help

ISIS may have been defeated in Mosul, but Iraq is now struggling through its worst economic crisis in years, deepened by last year's collapse of oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic.

The dinar currency has been devalued by 25 percent.

"I bought my home well before the war at 60 million Iraqi dinars," around $50,000 at the time, Gergis told AFP. "It's not even worth a quarter of that now. It's the same for all the houses of the Old City."

Mosul real estate agent Maher al-Naqib said property prices have collapsed across a devastated city which has seen little government help.

"The state has not paid for the damage, public services have not been restored, government buildings haven't reopened and bridges have not been rebuilt," he said.

According to local authorities, Mosul has sent 90,000 requests for compensation to the central government, including 40,000 for the loss of a loved one and 50,000 for destroyed property.

But with dwindling state resources, Baghdad has compensated just 2,500 families.

As a result, Naqib said, the once expensive Old City has seen property prices "drop dramatically".

Flight to new suburbs

Many have turned their backs on Mosul's once beloved centre.

Naqib said its original residents have been flocking to his offices to enquire about buying land in the suburbs, which is cheaper and now features better services.

On Mosul's outer edges, farmlands are being gradually replaced by residential complexes with neatly paved roads, reliable electricity and clean water.

The new suburbs with names like Zayyuna, Fellah-2 and Jamiyati promise the normalcy and basic services that many Mosul residents have missed for most of the past decade.

Yunes Hassun, a 56-year-old real estate developer from Mosul, said these new suburbs are the city's future.

"These massive building complexes are easier to register with authorities than the old cadastral lots, where the bureaucratic process scares people," he said.

It's also cheaper, he said, with land selling at the equivalent of $75 to $200 per square metre.

Uday Hamid, 42, bought a piece of land just over a year ago and recently finished building his home.

"I was able to buy 200 square metres for around 20 million dinars, while the same money would have bought me half that size in Mosul's city centre," he told AFP.

The father of five said sales are booming in the area.

Turning farmland into residential property usually requires a long bureaucratic process under Iraqi zoning laws.

But with Mosul's city-wide reconstruction unlikely, compensation apparently far-off and nearly 1.2 million people still displaced across Iraq, few are paying attention to such regulations -- and authorities are struggling to keep up.

Mosul's mayor Zuhayr al-Araji, asked about the flourishing suburbs, said the city was preparing a proper urban development plan.

"It's still being studied," he told AFP.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/290120212
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Re: Mosul Massacre killed THOUSANDS of INNOCENT people

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Feb 27, 2021 2:52 am

Healing Mosul

Rebuilding the city’s landmarks, piece by piece

What used to be an apartment, a home, is now part of what is barely a building. A message is spray-painted on the bullet-ridden wall: “Don’t demolish the apartment because it’s sound, thank you”. It is true – compared to any other building in west Mosul’s Old City, it is sound.

As you walk through the Old City neighborhood, you are surrounded by piles of rubble, torn down roofs, and scorched walls. But what is left of the walls speak to you as you move past them, reading off scripts written in the colors of the Iraqi flag; “we want a peaceful country” in red; “freedom” in green; “I want my rights” in black.

The scars of the oppressive rule of the Islamic State (ISIS) and the war with it that followed in Mosul cut deep, and are unlikely to heal soon. But what is seeing repair – slowly but surely – are its landmark buildings, their reconstruction soundtracked by the sound of hammers, drills and shovels being put to work.

In the Old City is Jami al-Kabir (Great Mosque) Street, where al-Nuri Mosque stands. It once held a symbolic significance for ISIS, because it was where their leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared the establishment of the caliphate in 2014, following the ISIS occupation of Mosul.

The mosque and its leaning al-Hadba ("hunchback") minaret, which stood at 45 meters tall, were built in 1172 and became iconic Mosul landmarks. Both were destroyed during the battle of Mosul in 2017, two of more than 40 historically valuable buildings were either destroyed or completely torn down during ISIS rule and the war that followed.

ISIS was expelled from the city by the Iraqi security forces and its allies in July 2017. From then on, the city could begin its long and difficult journey on the road to recovery.

Many of the houses and buildings in Mosul’s Old City turned to rubble during the ISIS war remain unbuilt, as can be seen in this photo from February 23, 2021.

Click on image to enlarge:
1308

Revive the Spirit of Mosul is an initiative launched by UNESCO in February 2018. Funded by the United Arab Emirates and the European Union, among others, it works towards reviving landmark cultural and religious sites like the mosque and its minaret and the al-Saa’a and al-Tahira churches.

The first stage of the reconstruction of al-Nuri mosque began in February 2019, with around 5,600 tons of rubble removed from the site. Reconstruction is now in its second stage, said Omer Taqa, a contract engineer and Mosul native at the scene. Close to the mosque, ten historical houses that were destroyed during the war with ISIS are also being restored.

“The first difficulty that we faced was with the rubble removal, because the site was unsafe -- we found about 20 IEDs, some of them yet to have exploded,” Taqa said. “ISIS also put some of them inside the walls of the prayer hall, because the wall is one meter thick".”

Seven IEDs were found inside the mosque’s prayer hall walls, all of which were removed without causing any damage.

Thirty-nine stones of different shapes and sizes from the original mosque and minaret are stored at the al-Nuri Mosque complex warehouse, as seen in this photo from February 23, 2021, to be used as models for reconstruction. Each is more than 800 years old.

In a warehouse on the 12,000 square meter site, 39 stones of different shapes and sizes that once formed part of the mosque and minaret have been preserved. Around 40,000 stones have been kept to be reused later for reconstruction, to rebuild the mosque and minaret the way Mosulites want them rebuilt.

Earlier this month, UNESCO shared the results of a survey it conducted with the Statistics Consultancy Bureau (SCB) of the University of Mosul. More than 700 Mosulites from both sides of the Tigris river, as well people displaced from the city, were asked how they would like to see the al-Hadba Minaret and al-Nuri Mosque’s prayer hall rebuilt.

The results were emphatic. Ninety-four percent of respondents said they would prefer that the Minaret be positioned and decorated as it was before its destruction in 2017. Seventy percent of respondents said they wanted the prayer hall to be rebuilt as it was in 2017 with some improvements, provided that “the essence and main values are preserved”. Just under thirty percent preferred that it be rebuilt exactly as it was in 2017.

Elsewhere in Mosul, life has inched back to normal. Despite coronavirus restrictions, the shopping streets of East Mosul are busy. In the city center, visitors, mostly Mosulites, take photos in front of the shrine of Nabi Yunus (Prophet Jonah), a revered religious site for centuries also brought to ruin during the reign of ISIS.

More than a million people from East and West Mosul were displaced by August 2017, and about 138,000 houses were damaged or destroyed during the conflict. Nearly four years after the city’s liberation, more than 300,000 people remain displaced, according to UN data from 2020.

As we walk back through the Old City, a woman takes a seat at the foundation four layers of brick high, the site where her old home used to sit overlooking the Tigris and where she is rebuilding her home once more.

“This used to be my house,” she says as we walk past her. “These used to be my neighbors,” she tells us, pointing to mounds of rubble.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/26022021
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