Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sun Setting on Bush’s Empire

International Viewpoint, September 2007

David Finkel

With the George W. Bush presidency limping into its final sixteen months and a line of rats led by torture boy Alberto Gonzales and dirty trickmeister Karl Rove jumping ship, several questions come to mind. Even if definitive answers aren’t possible, the questions provide a kind of window into the state of the regime and the larger crisis it has helped to create.

Rove and Gonzales

- Is this administration, as some serious historians suggest, the very worst in U.S. history?
- Following its failure and debacle in Iraq, will this gangster regime take the ultimate plunge the world into the ultimate catastrophe of a war with Iran?
- Will the Democrats who narrowly control Congress do anything to force Bush out of Iraq?
- Will the sudden turmoil in financial markets triggered by the sleazy “subprime mortage” collapse translate into political crisis for an administration on the brink? The question of the Bush regime’s place in history should be divided into two parts. Certainly in its levels of corruption, mendacity, destruction of the Bill of Rights and of people’s freedom from government abuse, this administration has combined the criminality of the Nixon (Watergate) and Reagan (Iran-Contra) presidencies and, as we say on this side of the pond, “taken them to a new level.” Just take the Supreme Court – please!

Keep reading . . .

One more Argument for the U.N.

Posted: 2007/09/29
From: Mathaba

While I am working with the already famous Greenspan book, I read an article published by El Pais, a Spanish newspaper with a circulation of more than 500,000, according to reports; I would like to pass this on to the readers. It is signed by Ernesto Ekaizer, and it literally reads.

Reflections by Cuban President Fidel Castro

“Four weeks before the Iraq invasion which happened in the night of March 19 to 20, 2003, George W. Bush publicly sustained his demands of Saddam Hussein in the following terms: disarmament or war. In private, Bush acknowledged that war was inevitable. In a long private conversation with the then Spanish president, José María Aznar, held on Saturday, February 22, 2003 at the Crawford Ranch in Texas, Bush made it clear that the moment had come to get rid of Saddam. ‘We have two weeks. In two weeks our military will be ready. We will be in Baghdad at the end of March', he told Aznar.

Keep reading . . .

General Musharraf uses brutal force to suppress protesters

CBS News,
Islamabad, Pakistan, Sept. 29, 2007

Lawyers Protest Musharraf Re-election Bid

Police Clash With Lawyers Who Say The Pakistani President Is Ineligible To Run

(AP) Pakistan's Election Commission approved President Gen. Pervez Musharraf's re-election bid on Saturday, while riot police fired tear gas and used batons on lawyers protesting the decision.

A day after the Supreme Court quashed legal challenges to Musharraf's candidacy, the Election Commission approved his nomination, a senior commission official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to media.

The commission approved only five of 43 candidates, including Musharraf's two main challengers: Wajihuddin Ahmed, a retired judge nominated by lawyers, and Makhdoom Amin Fahim, vice chairman of ex-Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party, the official said. A full list was to be released later Saturday.

Continued . . .

Why did Israel attack Syria?

Jonathan Cook, Electronic Lebanon, Sep 28, 2007

Just months after Israel's war on Lebanon came to an end, Israeli peace-activists protest in Tel Aviv with stickers reading, "Talk with Syria," November 2006. (Moti Milrod/MaanImages)

Israel's air strike on northern Syria earlier this month should be understood in the context of events unfolding since its assault last summer on neighboring Lebanon. Although little more than rumors have been offered about what took place, one strategic forecasting group, Stratfor, still concluded: "Something important happened."

From the leaks so far, it seems that more than half a dozen Israeli warplanes violated Syrian airspace to drop munitions on a site close to the border with Turkey. We also know from the US media that the "something" occurred in close coordination with the White House. But what was the purpose and significance of the attack?

Keep reading . . .

Congress Quietly Approves Billions More for Iraq War, September 28, 2007

By John Nichols

The Senate agreed on Thursday to increase the federal debt limit by $850 billion — from $8.965 trillion to $9.815 trillion — and then proceeded to approve a stop-gap spending bill that gives the Bush White House at least $9 billion in new funding for its war in Iraq.

Additionally, the administration has been given emergency authority to tap further into a $70 billion “bridge fund” to provide new infusions of money for the occupation while the Congress works on appropriations bills for the Department of Defense and other agencies.

Translation: Under the guise of a stop-gap spending bill that is simply supposed to keep the government running until a long-delayed appropriations process is completed — probably in November — the Congress has just approved a massive increase in war funding.

The move was backed by every senator who cast a vote, save one.

Keep reading . . .

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Bush was happy to invade Iraq

The war president "at peace" with himself

Bush's 2003 conversation with the Spanish prime minister shows his smug determination to invade Iraq at all costs.

By Joe Conason


Reuters/Larry Downing

George W. Bush answers a question during a joint news conference with Spanish Prime Minister José María Aznar at the president's compound in Crawford, Texas, Feb. 22, 2003.

Sept. 28, 2007 | "The only thing that worries me is your optimism."

So remarked José María Aznar, then the prime minister of Spain, in a prescient moment during a February 2003 conversation with George W. Bush about the impending invasion of Iraq.

According to the transcript of that conversation published on Wednesday by the Spanish daily El Pais, Aznar implored Bush for "a little more patience" in building international consensus for action against Saddam Hussein and in seeking possible alternatives to war, in order to assuage the intense public opposition to American policy in Spain and throughout Europe.

Keep reading . . .

Books of Bhagat Singh Shaheed are rottening in Lahore

Dawn, September 29, 2007

By Jawed Naqvi

NEW DELHI, Sept 28: Scores of books belonging to the great revolutionary Bhagat Singh that were confiscated and used as evidence to award capital punishment to the freedom fighter in the 1929 Lahore Conspiracy case, are currently lying in a state of neglect in Lahore, his nephew has claimed.

“This heritage of our great freedom struggle is still lying as‘malkhana record’ in a lower trial court of Lahore,” Prof Jagmohan Singh, nephew of the revolutionary icon, said on Thursday as celebrations began to observe his 100th birthday on Friday.

Bhagat Singh was hanged in Lahore in March 75 years ago and Quaid-i-Azam was one of the few Indian leaders at the time to have defended him publicly.

Efforts are being made to ensure that the books are preserved and are made available to Indians, Prof Singh said.

“Shaheed-i-Azam had a library of 175 books by around 70 authors in his office located at Nai Ki Mandi in Agra. These were confiscated by the British police to be used as evidence in the case for murdering police officer Saunders,” Press Trust of India quoted Prof Singh as saying.

He was speaking at the release of the book ‘To Make The Deaf Hear’ written by S Irfan Habib, here on Wednesday.

Bhagat Singh, according to Prof Jagmohan Singh, was a serious reader.

He made an exhaustive study of history, politics, science, anddifferent religious texts.

“In fact his full-throated cry for ‘Long live the Revolution’ during India’s struggle for independence was derived from his serious and scientific reading of diverse subjects,” Prof Singh said, adding that Bhagat Singh was never in favour of violence, contrary to the general notion spread by his ideological opponents.

The Media Presenting War As Freedom

Information Clearing House,

The media anesthetizes our minds

War As Freedom, And Fraud As Fact

By Greg Felton
“Things like… the Russian purges and deportations, the dropping of the atom bombs on Japan, can indeed be defended, but only by arguments which are too brutal for most people to face, and which do not square with the professed aims of the political parties… Political language—and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists—is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” George Orwell, from Politics and the English Language, 1946

09/28/07 "ICH" -- - -In his famous novel 1984, George Orwell introduces us to “Newspeak,” the pseudo-language by which the Ingsoc (English Socialist) government of Oceania, led by Big Brother, sabotages independent thought and imposes a repressive conformity on the public.

“The purpose of Newspeak,” wrote Orwell, “was to make all other modes of thought impossible. It was intended that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all, and Oldspeak [standard English] forgotten, a heretical thought… would be literally unthinkable.”

For example, in Newspeak, “liberty and equality,” are reduced to “crimethink”; “free” only has the sense of “without” as in “free from” something; “dissent” is “thoughtcrime.” Syme, a senior editor of the 11th edition of the Newspeak Dictionary proudly describes the purpose behind this linguistic destruction: “The whole climate of thought will be different. In fact there will be no thought, as we understand it now. Orthodoxy means not thinking—not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”

Keep reading . . .

True Burma Death Toll May Never Be Known

A crowd of around 3,000 people, with six monks at the front, faced the riot police and soldiers across barbed wire.

  • Photos show 'death' of Japanese man
  • Your view: What should the world do?
  • Beyond them shone the great gold dome of the Sule Pagoda. When three trucks of soldiers drew up the crowd began to run.

    Burmese monk faces police

    Seconds later, without warning, there were several cracks of automatic gunfire.

    A Japanese man carrying a camera fell to the ground, grimacing in pain - the latest victim in Burma, formerly known as Myanmar.

    A few minutes later the soldiers removed his limp body. It took six of them to do so.

    Many people have been shot in Rangoon yesterday and the true death toll may never be known.

    Japan later confirmed that a journalist, Kenji Nagai, 50, had been killed.

    The Burmese Government said nine people were killed, which is almost certainly a gross understatement.

    Keep reading . . .

    Lives wasted in an impossible war

    The Seattle Post Intelligence, September 27, 2007


    Working people from both sides of the border will gather Saturday at the Peace Arch border crossing to send a strong message to both our governments -- it's time to bring our troops home.

    It should come as no surprise that organizations representing more than 800,000 workers have come to the same conclusion. It is not because we are afraid to fight that we are opposed. Working people are fighters. Our movement and our countries have been built by the struggle and sacrifices of ordinary citizens acting with extraordinary courage.

    As trade union leaders, we are challenged to speak out because it is the young daughters and sons of working people whose lives are being wasted in an impossible war that will have no end.

    Keep reading . . .

    Friday, September 28, 2007

    "The Revolt of the Generals": Generals opposing Iraq war break with military tradition

    Global Research, September 28, 2007
    Union Tribune - 2007-09-27

    The generals acted independently, coming in their own ways to the agonizing decision to defy military tradition and publicly criticize the Bush administration over its conduct of the war in Iraq.

    What might be called The Revolt of the Generals has rarely happened in the nation's history.

    In op-ed pieces, interviews and TV ads, more than 20 retired U.S. generals have broken ranks with the culture of salute and keep it in the family. Instead, they are criticizing the commander in chief and other top civilian leaders who led the nation into what the generals believe is a misbegotten and tragic war.

    The active-duty generals followed procedure, sending reports up the chain of command. The retired generals beseeched old friends in powerful positions to use their influence to bring about a change.

    Keep reading . . .

    US Senate calls for Iraq's partition

    EUX.TV, September 26, 2007

    Washington (dpa) - US lawmakers voted Wednesday to split Iraq into a loose federation of sectarian-based regions and urged President George W Bush to press Iraqi leaders to agree.

    More than 20 Republicans joined Democrats to pass the non-binding measure in the Senate, 75-23, showing frustration in both parties about Bush's war policy and lagging national reconciliation in Iraq.

    Supporters of Iraqi partition believe it would let Shia, Sunni and Kurdish factions settle their differences and make it easier for US troops eventually to return home.

    But the measure, attached to the 2008 defence budget, runs against US administration policy to keep Iraq united and would likely face a veto if it reached Bush's desk.

    The proposal to breaking up Iraq into decentralized regions came from Senator Joseph Biden, who heads the chamber's foreign relations committee and is running for the 2008 Democratic Party presidential nomination.

    Biden has long championed the federal plan, saying it would give Iraq's main groups "breathing room in their own regions" and speed up a US troop withdrawal.

    But partition would raise concern in neighbouring Turkey, which is fighting a Kurdish separatist movement and would be wary of broader autonomy for Iraqi Kurds across the border.

    Sunni-led Saudi Arabia would likely fear a further rise in Iranian influence over Iraq if Iraqi Shiites controlled their own mini-state.

    A key Republican supporter and presidential candidate, Senator Sam Brownback, has urged Bush to send a high-level envoy to Iraq "to get these people in a room to cut the deal to get different states, where you have the power mostly residing in the states."

    Biden's amendment calls for the US government to work for a "political settlement based on the creation of federal regions within a united Iraq."

    Dr Billy Graham, the Prince of War

    Counterpunch, September 27, 2007

    The Dark Side of Rev. Billy Graham

    Prince of War Exposed


    "The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same."

    - Stendhal

    The propaganda machine of the Evangelical Christian Right will soon be in counter attack mode. One of its darling preachers is about to take it on the proverbial chin. The Rev. Billy Graham, who has created a multimillion dollar media empire, that a Rupert Murdock would envy, is the subject of a shocking expose' due out on Nov. 15, 2007. It's entitled, "The Prince of War: Billy Graham's Crusade for a Wholly Christian Empire." The author is Cecil Bothwell. He hails from Asheville, North Carolina and is an award winning investigative reporter. Bothwell's unflattering portrait of Rev. Graham shows him as a wily warmonger and a lackey for the Establishment. He describes Rev. Graham as a public figure who: "Undermined the Founders' skeptical Deism and sought to rebrand the U.S. as a Christian nation, [and] its armies [as] the rightful instruments of [a] Christian crusade and empire."

    Keep reading . . .

    Bush Threatened Nations That Did Not Back Iraq War

    Agence France Presse, September 26, 2007

    US President George W. Bush threatened nations with retaliation if they did not vote for a UN resolution backing the Iraq war, according to a transcript published Wednesday of a conversation he had with former Spanish prime minister Jose Maria Aznar. 0926 08

    In the transcript of a meeting on February 22, 2003 — a month before the US-led invasion of Iraq — published in the El Pais daily, Bush tells Aznar that nations like Mexico, Angola, Chile and Cameroon must know that the security of the United States is at stake.

    He says during the meeting on his ranch in Texas that Angola stood to lose financial aid while Chile could see a free trade agreement held up in the US Senate if they did not back the resolution, the left-wing paper said.

    The confidential transcript was prepared by Spain’s ambassador to the United States at the time, Javier Ruperez, the paper said.

    Prior to the US-led invasion of Iraq on March 20, 2003, Washington unsuccessfully lobbied the 15 members of the UN Security Council for a second resolution paving the way for military action against Iraq if Saddam Hussein failed to comply with demands to disarm.

    But during the meeting with Aznar, Bush made it clear the US would invade Iraq by the end of March 2003 whether or not there was a UN resolution to authorize it, El Pais reported.

    “We have to get rid of Saddam. There are two weeks left. In two weeks we will be ready militarily. We will be in Baghdad at the end of March,” Bush said in the transcript which was translated into Spanish by the newspaper.

    Victory would come “without destruction”, he added.

    The meeting between Aznar and Bush came just days after a massive protest in Madrid by more than a million people against the invasion which Aznar’s conservative government backed.

    Aznar tells Bush in the transcript that he needed Washington’s help to get Spanish public opinion behind the invasion. He adds that he is worried by Bush’s optimism.

    “I am optimistic because I believe I am right. I am at peace with myself,” Bush responded.

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007

    None Dare Call It Genocide


    By Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

    How comfy we are all in the United States, as we engage in living-room debates about the US occupation of Iraq, whether "we" are bringing them freedom and whether their freedom is really worth the sacrifice of so many of our men and women. We talk about whether war aims have really been achieved, how to exit gracefully, or whether we need a hyper-surge to finish this whole business once and for all.

    But there's one thing Americans don't talk about: the lives of Iraqis, or, rather, the deaths of Iraqis. It's interesting because we live in an age of extreme multiculturalism and global concern. We adore international aid workers, go on mission trips abroad, weep for the plight of those suffering from hunger and disease, volunteer in efforts to bring plumbing to Ecuador, mosquito nets to Rwanda, clean water to Malawi, human rights to Togo, and medicine to Bangladesh.

    But when "we" cause the calamity, suddenly there is silence. There is something odd, suspicious, even disloyal about a person who would harp on the deaths of Iraqis since the US invasion in 2003. Maybe a person who would weep for Iraq is really a terrorist sympathizer. After all, most of the deaths resulted from "sectarian violence," and who can stop crazed Islamic sects from killing each other. Better each other than us, right?

    Keep reading . . .

    Greenspan: the Iraq war was largely about oil

    Global Research, September 17, 2007

    Greenspan admits Iraq was about oil, as deaths put at 1.2m in New York.

    The man once regarded as the world's most powerful banker has bluntly declared that the Iraq war was 'largely' about oil.

    Appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1987 and retired last year after serving four presidents, Alan Greenspan has been the leading Republican economist for a generation and his utterings instantly moved world markets.

    In his long-awaited memoir - out tomorrow in the US - Greenspan, 81, who served as chairman of the US Federal Reserve for almost two decades, writes: 'I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.'

    In The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World, he is also crystal clear on his opinion of his last two bosses, harshly criticising George W Bush for 'abandoning fiscal constraint' and praising Bill Clinton's anti-deficit policies during the Nineties as 'an act of political courage'. He also speaks of Clinton's sharp and 'curious' mind, and 'old-fashioned' caution about the dangers of debt.

    Greenspan's damning comments about the war come as a survey of Iraqis, which was released last week, claims that up to 1.2 million people may have died because of the conflict in Iraq - lending weight to a 2006 survey in the Lancet that reported similarly high levels.

    Keep reading . . .

    Pentagon has plans to bomb 2,000 targets in Iran


    By Philip Sherwell in New York and Tim Shipman in Washington

    Senior American intelligence and defence officials believe that President George W Bush and his inner circle are taking steps to place America on the path to war with Iran, The Sunday Telegraph has learnt.

    Dick Cheney ('The Man') with George W Bush
    Dick Cheney (’The Man’) with George W Bush

    Pentagon planners have developed a list of up to 2,000 bombing targets in Iran, amid growing fears among serving officers that diplomatic efforts to slow Iran’s nuclear weapons programme are doomed to fail.

    Pentagon and CIA officers say they believe that the White House has begun a carefully calibrated programme of escalation that could lead to a military showdown with Iran.

    Now it has emerged that Condoleezza Rice, the secretary of state, who has been pushing for a diplomatic solution, is prepared to settle her differences with Vice-President Dick Cheney and sanction military action.

    Keep reading . . .

    It Is Unjust and Absurd To Apply Economics To The Hell That Is Palestine

    The Guardian/UK, September 18, 2007

    The government must acknowledge the present catastrophe in Palestine is a direct consequence of Israeli intransigence

    by Karma Nabulsi

    No people, territory or issue on earth have had more international attention devoted to them than Palestine and its people. Yet no conflict looks further from resolution, and no people further from achieving the freedom promised them. More Palestinians lack more basic freedoms today than they did 60 years ago. While an expensive and extensive peace process was in full swing, Israel managed to illegally expropriate most of the occupied West Bank and Arab East Jerusalem, install hundreds of thousands of illegal settlers, kill more Palestinian families, arrest more young men, destroy more crops, homes and businesses, build a monstrous wall deemed illegal by the international court of justice, and set forth, unchecked, a policy of aggressive expansionism in Palestine that continues until this moment.

    Continue reading . . .

    Tuesday, September 18, 2007

    Conservatism isn’t what it used to be

    Information Clearing House

    By Paul Craig Roberts

    09/17/07 "
    ICH" -- -- When I was in the Reagan administration, America had a lively press that never hesitated to take us to task. Even the “Teflon President” received more brickbats than Bush and Cheney.

    The lively press disappeared along with its independence in the media concentration engineered during the Clinton administration. Shortly thereafter all the liberal news anchors disappeared as well. Today the US media serves as propaganda ministry for the government’s wars and police state. Yet, some conservatives continue to rant on about “the liberal media.”

    That other conservative bugaboo, liberal academia, has also been crushed. Universities once controlled their appointments, but no more. Recently, the political science faculty at DePaul, a Catholic university, voted to give tenure to the courageous scholar and teacher Norman Finkelstein. The department was unable to make its tenure decision stick over the objections of the Israel Lobby and their conservative allies, who were able to reach in over the heads of the political science department and the College Personnel Committee and force DePaul’s president to block Finkelstein’s tenure. Finkelstein, a Jew, had angered the Israel Lobby with his criticisms of Israel’s misuse of the holocaust sufferings of Jews to oppress the Palestinians and to silence critics.

    Keep reading . . .

    Drift into war with Iran out of control, says UN

    Julian Borger, diplomatic editor and Angelique Chrisafis in Paris
    Tuesday September 18, 2007
    The Guardian

    The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Mohamed ElBaradei
    Mohamed ElBaradei: 'I would not talk about any use of force.' Photograph: Samuel Kubani/AFP/Getty Images

    The UN's chief nuclear weapons inspector yesterday warned against the use of force against Iran, in what UN officials said was an attempt to halt an "out of control" drift to war.His outspoken remarks, which drew a parallel between Iran and Iraq, appeared to take aim at the US and Britain. They followed comments on Sunday night by the French foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner, who said: "We have to prepare for the worst,"

    Continued . . .

    Monday, September 17, 2007

    General Musharraf plans to become civilian president !

    Swissinfo, September 17, 2007

    September 17, 2007 - 8:29 AM

    By Zeeshan Haider

    ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf plans to quit as army chief to become a civilian leader, removing a key objection to his proposed re-election in October, a senior ruling party official said on Monday.

    "We expect that after his re-election process next month, God willing, General Musharraf would take his oath of office as a civilian president before November 15," Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, secretary-general of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League (PML), told Reuters.

    U.S. ally Musharraf has held the post of army chief since he seized power in a military coup in 1999, despite calls from the opposition to quit the dual office.

    Continued . . .

    Bush setting America up for war with Iran

    By Philip Sherwell in New York and Tim Shipman in Washington
    Last Updated: 2:29am BST 17/09/2007

    Senior American intelligence and defence officials believe that President George W Bush and his inner circle are taking steps to place America on the path to war with Iran, The Sunday Telegraph has learnt.

    Dick Cheney ('The Man') with George W Bush
    Dick Cheney ('The Man') with George W Bush

    Pentagon planners have developed a list of up to 2,000 bombing targets in Iran, amid growing fears among serving officers that diplomatic efforts to slow Iran's nuclear weapons programme are doomed to fail.

    Pentagon and CIA officers say they believe that the White House has begun a carefully calibrated programme of escalation that could lead to a military showdown with Iran.

    Now it has emerged that Condoleezza Rice, the secretary of state, who has been pushing for a diplomatic solution, is prepared to settle her differences with Vice-President Dick Cheney and sanction military action.

    In a chilling scenario of how war might come, a senior intelligence officer warned that public denunciation of Iranian meddling in Iraq - arming and training militants - would lead to cross border raids on Iranian training camps and bomb factories.

    Continued . . .

    Sunday, September 16, 2007

    160 arrested as thousands march against Iraq war in Washington, September 15, 2007

    WASHINGTON (AP) -- Several thousand protesters marched Saturday from the White House to the Capitol to demand an end to the Iraq war, and at least 160 people were arrested when they jumped a barricade at the foot of the Capitol steps.


    Thousands of demonstrators protest the Iraq war in the streets of Washington on Saturday.

    Many of the protesters were arrested without a struggle after they jumped over the waist-high barricade. But some grew angry as police attempted to push them back using large shields. At least two people were showered with chemical spray. Protesters responded by throwing signs and chanting: "Shame on you."

    The arrests came after protesters initially decided to lie down on the Capitol lawn with signs on top of their bodies to represent soldiers killed in Iraq. When police took no action, some of the protesters climbed the barricade.

    Before arriving at the Capitol lawn, the demonstrators marched on Pennsylvania Avenue holding banners and signs and saying, "What do we want? Troops out. When do we want it? Now."

    Continued . . .

    British academics warn US is preparing “shock and awe” attack on Iran

    Global Research, September 15, 2007

    An 80-page study written by two British security analysts and released on August 28 makes a chilling estimation of the overwhelming force that the US would use in the event of any attack on Iran. “The US has made military preparations to destroy Iran’s WMD, nuclear energy, regime, armed forces, state apparatus and economic infrastructure within days, if not hours, of President George W. Bush giving the order,” the paper declared.

    The authors, Dr Dan Plesch and Martin Butcher, concluded on the basis of publicly available sources that “US bombers and long range missiles are ready today to destroy 10,000 targets within Iran in a few hours. US ground, air and marine forces already in the Gulf, Iraq and Afghanistan can devastate Iranian forces, the regime and the state at short notice.”

    Both Plesch and Butcher have written extensively on security and international relations. Plesch is director of the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy at the prestigious School of Oriental and African Studies. The study, entitled “Considering a war with Iran: A discussion paper on WMD in the Middle East” made no estimate of Iran’s nuclear programs—the nominal pretext for a US war—and reached no definitive conclusion as to the likelihood of an attack. But it did outline the Pentagon’s extensive preparations and examined probable US military strategies.

    Keep reading . . .

    Saturday, September 15, 2007

    Were War Critic Soldiers Killed To Send Message?

    Prison Planet, September 14, 2007

    Two soldiers who wrote op-ed that contradicted Patraeus report die in strange accident, while another is shot in the head in case that bears chilling resemblance to Pat Tillman story

    By Paul Joseph Watson

    The mother of a soldier who died in an apparent vehicle accident shortly after writing a New York Times op-ed critical of the war in Iraq is demanding to know the truth about what happened to her son, while another author of the piece was also shot in the head in a case that bears a sinister resemblance to the murder of Pat Tillman.

    Like Tillman, 28-year-old Sergeant Omar Mora enlisted shortly after 9/11 in the belief that he was fighting to protect his country from terrorists.

    However, after the invasion of Iraq Mora became increasingly skeptical of the true agenda behind the war and in August he, along with six other active duty soldiers of the 82nd Airborne Division, wrote a stinging New York Times op-ed that slammed the occupation as "flawed," "absurd," and concluded that the sentiment of the Iraqi people renders the ultimate withdrawal of American troops inevitable.

    Keep reading . . .

    Is the U.S. Responsible for a Million Iraqi Deaths?

    by Patrick McElwee
    and Robert Naiman
    September 11, 2007
    Just Foreign Policy

    In October 2006 researchers from Johns Hopkins University published a peer-reviewed article in The Lancet, one of Europe's most important and respected medical journals, estimating that 650,000 Iraqis had been killed due to the U.S.-led invasion of their country, 601,000 violently. [1] The report was quickly marginalized in public debate in the United States.

    The researchers' methods were not to blame. They used the method accepted around the world to measure demographics such as birth and death rates in the wake of natural and man-made disasters: a cluster survey. No one found substantive flaws in the way they conducted their research. Instead, their findings were dismissed because they asked the politically charged question of how many Iraqis have died, and the answer they found was unacceptably high.

    Since the Lancet estimate was based on a survey completed in July 2006 and no new demographic studies have been conducted since, Just Foreign Policy has created an update of the Lancet estimate to account for the violent deaths that have occurred since, in an effort to put the question of the overall death toll back on the table. We did this by extrapolating from the Lancet estimate using a trend line derived from a database of deaths reported in the Western media, maintained by Iraq Body Count. [2] Our best estimate, which we update regularly, is that over a million Iraqis have been killed violently as a result of the invasion and occupation. [3]

    Continue reading . . .

    9/11 Explains the Impotence of the Anti-war Movement

    Information Clearing House

    By Paul Craig Roberts

    09/14/07 "
    ICH" -- - -The anti-war movement has proven impotent to stop the war in Iraq despite the fact that the war was initiated on the basis of lies and deception. The anti-war movement stands helpless to prevent President Bush from attacking Iran or any other country that he might demonize for harboring a future 9/11 threat.

    September 11 enabled Bush to take America to war and to keep America at war even though the government’s explanation of the events of September 11 is mired in controversy and disbelieved by a large percentage of the population.

    Although the news media’s investigative arm has withered, other entities and individuals continue to struggle with unanswered questions. In the six years since 9/11, numerous distinguished scientists, engineers, architects, intelligence officers, pilots, military officers, air traffic controllers, and foreign dignitaries have raised serious and unanswered questions about the official story line.

    Continue reading . . .

    Friday, September 14, 2007

    Bush calls for permanent US military occupation of Iraq in nationally televised address

    WSWS : News & Analysis : North America

    By Barry Grey
    14 September 2007

    Use this version to print | Send this link by email | Email the author

    President Bush’s nationally televised speech, delivered Thursday evening from the Oval Office, was the low point of a week of lies and absurdities designed to justify the United States’ bloody colonial war in Iraq. The ugly farce began with the congressional testimony Monday and Tuesday of Gen. David Petraeus, the top US commander in Iraq, and US Ambassador Ryan Crocker.

    Bush cited their fraudulent assessment of the “success” of the military “surge” to outline a perspective for continuing the American occupation of Iraq and transforming the country into a permanent American protectorate, whose vast oil resources will be exploited by US oil companies, and whose territory will be used as a staging ground for military attacks on Iran and a strategic base for American domination of the Middle East.

    Keep reading . . .

    The mysterious silence around Israel's raid into Syria

    Thursday, September 13, 2007

    Israel's Syria 'raid' remains a mystery

    By Jonathan Marcus

    Diplomatic correspondent, BBC News

    During the early hours of last Thursday morning, a number of Israeli jets appear to have entered Syrian air-space from the Mediterranean Sea, possibly penetrating deep into the country.

    Later unidentified drop tanks, which may have contained fuel for the planes, were found on Turkish soil near the Syrian border, indicating perhaps the Israeli jets' exit route.

    The Syrian authorities are livid. They say that the aircraft were driven off but that they fired their weaponry into a deserted area.

    The implication is that the planes effectively dumped their munitions so better to manoeuvre during their escape.

    The Syrian government has briefed Western diplomats and complained to the United Nations.

    But there have been no images of the empty countryside where the weapons are alleged to have landed.

    Israeli sources are saying nothing.

    Long-standing contacts are uncharacteristically silent, noting only that Israel's military censorship on this subject is as tight as they can ever remember.

    Mood of satisfaction

    From Washington has come some partial illumination of the shadows.

    US officials indicate that at least one target in northern Syria was hit and despite the Israeli silence there does seem to be a perceptible mood of satisfaction in Israel; a sense that what they wanted to achieve was carried out.

    So what actually went on during the early hours of Thursday morning? Why were Israeli jets over Syria at all?

    And if they indeed released weapons, what were they firing at?

    Initially experts suggested that this might simply have been an over-flight to trigger air defence radars and gather electronic intelligence.

    Such a probe might be linked to new air defence missiles reportedly supplied to Syria by the Russians.

    Other pundits wondered if a potential strike path to Iran was being tested out; though a southern route here into US-controlled Iraqi air-space would be more logical.

    And neither option would explain why such aircraft might be armed with air to ground weapons.

    North Korea link

    As far as likely targets of any attack go there are two broad suggestions.

    One, cited by the New York Times newspaper quoting a US source, suggests that the attack was in some way linked to North Korea.

    The former US ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, in a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, raised the possibility that Syria is sheltering technology or materials relating to North Korea's nuclear programme.

    When I spoke to Mr Bolton in London just the other day he strongly defended this thesis though he would not be drawn on the reliability of his sources.

    Another suggestion is that maybe a missile store or factory with weaponry heading to Hezbollah in Lebanon was hit.

    Israel has long complained that the Damascus government is at the very least turning a blind eye to such weapons supplies coming from Iran.

    Maybe Israel decided to send the Syrian government a message that it would understand.

    Muted response

    What is intriguing is that the response of both the Syrian and Israeli governments has been muted - in the Israeli case largely mute.

    The Syrians, while angry, are clearly embarrassed that something may have occurred that they failed to prevent.

    Israel's deterrent capacity, weakened by the summer 2006 war in Lebanon, is partially restored.

    But an explanation too is needed for Israel's silence.

    Maybe it does not want to over-play its hand.

    This apparent raid comes after a summer of tensions between the two countries which some feared might lead to open warfare.

    During the past few weeks tensions have markedly declined.

    Indeed prior to the bombing mission, if that is what it was, Israel reportedly sent messages to Syria via an intermediary, indicating that it was scaling down its forces on the Golan Heights.

    Was this an effort to ensure that this "raid" was not interpreted by the Syrians as a prelude to a large-scale Israeli attack?

    There are still more questions than answers in this affair. More information is slowly seeping out.

    But in many ways it is remarkable that in an age of instant news and the worldwide web spreading information almost at the speed of light, there can still be episodes like this that remain shrouded in so many layers of mystery.

    Was a Covert Attempt to Bomb Iran with Nuclear Weapons foiled by a Military Leak?

    War In Iraq

    By: Michael E. Salla, M.A., Ph.D. on: 14.09.2007
    Critically exploring whether or not there was a covert attempt to instigate a catastrophic nuclear war against Iran is illuminated through an introduction using the recent B-52 Incident. On August 30, a B-52 bomber armed with five nuclear-tipped Advanced Cruise missiles travelled from Minot Air Force base, North Dakota, to Barksdale Air Force base, Louisiana, in the United States. Each missile had an adjustable yield between five and 150 kilotons of TNT which is at the lower end of the destructive capacities of U.S. nuclear weapons. For example, the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima had a yield of 13 kilotons, while the Bravo Hydrogen bomb test of 1954 had a yield of 15,000 kilotons. The B-52 story was first covered in the Army Times on 5 September after the nuclear armed aircraft was discovered by Airmen. LINK

    What made this a very significant event was that it was a violation of U.S. Air Force regulations concerning the transportation of nuclear weapons by air. Nuclear weapons are normally transported by air in specially constructed planes designed to prevent radioactive pollution in case of a crash. Such transport planes are not equipped to launch the nuclear weapons they routinely carry around the U.S. and the world for servicing or positioning.

    The discovery of the nuclear armed B-52 was, according to Hans Kristensen, a nuclear weapons expert at the Federation of American Scientists, the first time in 40 years that a nuclear armed plane had been allowed to fly in the U.S. LINK. Since 1968, after a SAC bomber crashed in Greenland, all nuclear armed aircraft have been grounded but were kept on a constant state of alert. After the end of the Cold War, President George H. Bush ordered in 1991 that nuclear weapons were to be removed from all aircraft and stored in nearby facilities.

    Continued . . .

    Thursday, September 13, 2007

    U.S.-PAKISTAN: Sharif's Exile "Flouts" International Law

    IPS News

    By Haider Rizvi

    NEW YORK, Sep 12 (IPS) - The George W. Bush administration and its closest ally in the Islamic world, Saudi Arabia, are facing scathing criticism from one of the world's leading human rights watchdogs for their covert support to the Pakistani government's continued crackdown on democracy activists.

    Deploring the forced transfer of Nawaz Sharif, an opposition leader and former prime minister of Pakistan, to Saudi Arabia early this week, the influential Human Rights Watch (HRW) said the continuing U.S. acceptance of political repression is not only "unwise," but "wrong" as well.

    "The U.S. is not immune to the fallout when two of its closest allies conspire to deny a political opposition leader the right to return to his country," said Ali Hasan, HRW's South Asia researcher.

    Last Monday, when Sharif returned to Pakistan after seven years of exile, he was forcibly returned to the Saudi city of Jeddah by Pakistani authorities shortly after landing in the country. HRW said by doing so, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, the United States' two closest allies in its so-called "war on terror", have "flouted" international law.

    The group describes Sharif's forcible return as a violation of international law because the Universal Declaration of Human Rights clearly states that "no one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention, or exile," and that "everyone has the right to return to his country".

    Full article . . .

    Leonard Peltier: Silence Screams

    Dissident Voice

    The Message

    Silence, they say, is the voice of complicity.

    But silence is impossible.

    Silence screams.

    Silence is a message,

    just as doing nothing is an act.

    Let who you are ring out and resonate

    in every word and deed.

    Yes, become who you are.

    There’s no sidestepping your own being

    or your own responsibility.

    What you do is who you are.

    You are your own comeuppance.

    You become your own message.

    You are the message.

    In the spirit of Crazy Horse,

    Leonard Peltier

    31 years behind bars!

    Leonard Peltier will be 63 years old on September 12, 2007. It’s an international day for demanding the immediate, unconditional freedom of this Native American artist, writer, and activist–one of the most widely recognized political prisoners in the world.

    Full article . . .

    Exclusive Speech Excerpt: Obama Warns Bush Over Iran War

    The Huffington Post | Nico Pitney | September 12, 2007 11:50 AM

    Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) delivered a "major policy speech" on Iraq Wednesday in Clinton, Iowa. Below, an excerpt of the speech obtained by the Huffington Post:

    We hear eerie echoes of the run-up to the war in Iraq in the way that the President and Vice President talk about Iran. They conflate Iran and al Qaeda. They issue veiled threats. They suggest that the time for diplomacy and pressure is running out when we haven't even tried direct diplomacy. Well George Bush and Dick Cheney must hear - loud and clear - from the American people and the Congress: you don't have our support, and you don't have our authorization for another war.

    Keep reading

    Is George Bush Restarting Latin America’s Dirty Wars?

    Disssidet, September 5th, 2007


    Signs are emerging of a new wave of U.S.-backed militarism in Latin America.

    Two soldiers in Paraguay stand in front of a camera. One of them holds an automatic weapon. John Lennon’s “Imagine” plays in the background. This Orwellian juxtaposition of war and peace is from a new video posted online by U.S. soldiers stationed in Paraguay. The video footage and other military activity in this heart of the continent represent a new wave of U.S.-backed militarism in Latin America.

    Note Video : “The War On Democracy by John Pilger” below the article

    It’s a reprise of a familiar tune. In the 1970s and 1980s, Paraguay’s longtime dictator, Gen. Alfredo Stroessner, collaborated with the region’s other dictators through Operation Condor, which used kidnapping, torture and murder to squash dissent and political opponents. Stroessner’s human rights record was so bad that even Ronald Reagan distanced himself from the leader. Carrying on this infamous legacy, Paraguay now illustrates four new characteristics of Latin America’s right-wing militarism: joint exercises with the U.S. military in counterinsurgency training, monitoring potential dissidents and social organizations, the use of private mercenaries for security and the criminalization of social protest through “anti-terrorism” tactics and legislation.

    Keep reading . . .

    It Only Takes 51 Senators to End This War

    CommonDreams News Center, September 11, 2007

    By Robert Naiman

    Regardless of the spin and counter-spin around the various Iraq reports, a key domestic political fact - perhaps the most fundamental fact - is once again being buried in the debate.It only takes 51 Senators to end the Iraq war, regardless of how many are prepared to cut off funding.

    It is obviously true, as many have pointed out, that 51 Senators could cut off funding for the war, simply by not voting to approve it. But to make funding the sole focus significantly understates the case, and contributes to the utterly false and harmful notion that cutting off funding is the only thing Senators can do.

    It was clear in previous Senate votes that there were not 51 Senators who were willing to stand firm on any position in effective opposition to the President. There were not 51 Senators willing to stand firm on a timetable for withdrawal, even stated as a goal. There were not 51 Senators willing to stand firm on a popular prohibition against forcing soldiers to serve longer deployments than they spend at home - a prohibition that all sides agreed would force troop withdrawals.

    Continued . . .

    Wednesday, September 12, 2007

    The real benchmarks in Iraq

    Socialist Worker online, September 14, 2007 | Page 5

    ALAN MAASS compiles the statistics about Iraq that Congress ought to be examining.

    TO THE surprise of exactly no one, Gen. David Petraeus, commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, revealed this month that he believes the situation in U.S.-occupied Iraq is “improving.”

    Petraeus’ parade of appearances was supposed to assess the situation after the escalation of U.S. troop strength ordered by his boss, George Bush. Since January, 28,500 new U.S. troops have “surged” into Iraq, bringing the total to 162,000 soldiers by mid-August--an all-time high, surpassing the troop count during the invasion itself.

    “Naturally enough,” Tom Engelhardt of wrote in drawing up the terrible balance sheet of the occupation, “other ‘all-time highs’ of the grimmest sort follow.”

    The real benchmarks about Iraq that members of Congress ought to be examining tell a very different story.

    Read the full article . . .

    Fidel Castro says U.S. fooled world over 9/11

    Swissinfo, September 12, 2007
    HAVANA (Reuters) - Ailing Cuban leader Fidel Castro said the U.S. government misinformed Americans and the world about 9/11, echoing conspiracy theories about the terror attacks against the United States six years ago.

    In an essay read by a Cuban television presenter on Tuesday night, Castro said the Pentagon was hit by a rocket, not a plane, because no traces were found of its passengers.

    "Today one knows there was deliberate misinformation," wrote Castro, who has not appeared in public since July of 2006 when life-threatening surgery for a secret illness forced him to hand over power to his brother Raul Castro.

    "Studying the impact of planes, similar to those that hit the Twin Towers, that had accidentally fallen on densely populated cities, one concludes that it was not a plane that crashed into the Pentagon," Castro said.

    "Only a projectile could have caused the geometrically round hole that allegedly was made by the plane," he said.

    "We were fooled like the rest of the planet's inhabitants," he wrote.

    Castro said the truth behind the September 11 attacks with hijacked planes that killed nearly 3,000 people will probably never be known.

    Castro's 4,256-word essay made no mention of Osama bin Laden and his militant Islamist al Qaeda network behind the attacks on New York's World Trade Centre and Washington.

    Castro, who was the target of CIA assassination plots after his 1959 revolution, said Cuba tipped off U.S. security services in 1984 about a plan to kill then President Ronald Reagan while he campaigned for re-election in North Carolina.

    The information provided by Cuba led to the arrest of a group of would-be assassins and foiled the plot, he wrote.

    Reuters (IDS)

    Israel conducted air strike inside Syria -- CNN

    Agence France-Presse

    Last updated 11:31pm (Mla time) 09/11/2007

    WASHINGTON -- Israel carried out a rare air strike inside Syria last week targeting a shipment of arms, CNN reported Tuesday quoting US government and military sources.

    Israeli officials have so far maintained a veil of silence over Syrian reports that Israeli warplanes violated its airspace on Thursday ratcheting up the tension between the neighboring foes still officially at war.

    Reporter Christiane Amanpour said Tuesday on the Cable News Network (CNN) that "sources now are telling me that in fact Israel did conduct a military strike against Syrian territory. That it was an air strike, that it perhaps involved Israeli ground forces."

    She added it was believed the strike targeted "weapons that were either coming into Syria or that were being trans-shipped from Iran through Syria to Hezbollah."

    US government and US military officials had told CNN that Israel did conduct a rare air strike inside Syria and "it has left a big hole in the desert," she added.

    Syria said its air defenses had opened fire on Israeli warplanes flying over the northeast of the country in the early hours of Thursday and warned it was weighing its response to the Israeli "aggression."

    But Israeli officials have made no comment on the allegations, as Prime Minister Ehud Olmert "specifically instructed ministers not to talk about the incident related to Syria at all," one senior Israeli government official said.

    9-11, Six Years Later

    Information Clearing House

    By Paul Craig Roberts

    09/11/07 "
    ICH" -- -- On Sept. 7, National Public Radio reported that Muslims in the Middle East were beginning to believe that the 9-11 attacks on the WTC and Pentagon were false flag operations committed by some part of the U.S. and/ or Israeli government.

    It was beyond the imagination of the NPR reporter and producer that there could be any substance to these beliefs, which were attributed to the influence of books by U.S. and European authors sold in bookstores in Egypt.

    NPR's concern was that books by Western authors questioning the origin of the 9-11 attack have the undesirable result of removing guilt from Muslims' shoulders.

    The NPR reporter, Ursula Lindsey, said that "here in the U.S., most people have little doubt about what happened during the 2001 attacks."

    NPR's assumption that the official 9-11 story is the final word is uninformed. Polls show that 36 percent of Americans and more than 50 percent of New Yorkers lack confidence in the 9-11 commission report. Many 9-11 families who lost relatives in the attacks are unsatisfied with the official story.

    Why are the U.S. media untroubled that there has been no independent investigation of 9-11?

    Why are the media unconcerned that the rules governing preservation of forensic evidence were not followed by federal authorities?

    Why do the media brand skeptics of the official line "conspiracy theorists" and "kooks"?

    Keep reading . . .

    Historian: 'The US Will Lose War Regardless What it Does'

    Spiegel online International, September 10, 2007

    In an interview with SPIEGEL ONLINE, American military historian Gabriel Kolko argues that the situation in Iraq is worse than ever and that the artificial nation, created after World War I, is breaking up. The "surge," he says, is also failing.

    US soldiers in Iraq: "Some of the most acute criticisms made of the gross simplisms which have guided interventionist policies were produced within the American military."

    US soldiers in Iraq: "Some of the most acute criticisms made of the gross simplisms which have guided interventionist policies were produced within the American military."

    SPIEGEL: The long awaited results of the "surge" are now in. Has the surge succeeded? Is there reason for optimism in Iraq?

    KOLKO: Both United States General David H. Petraeus and US Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker will deliver "progress" reports to Congress on Monday, but the skeptics far outnumber those who believe Bush's strategy in Iraq is succeeding. They will say that Shiite attacks on Sunnis in Baghdad have fallen but they will not add that Baghdad has been largely purged in many areas of Sunni inhabitants and their flight much earlier -- and not the increase in Americans -- is the reason "success" can be reported to Congress. Indeed, most of the administration's statistics have been met with a wave a skepticism.

    Continued ...

    Tuesday, September 11, 2007

    This was No Accident: Nuclear Weapons are Different

    by Dave Lindorff | Sep 10 2007

    Nobody should fall for a story that those six (yeah, it was first reported as five, but now the original military whistleblowers have told Army Times it was six) nuclear-tipped cruise missiles that were flown in launch position on a B-52 from Minot, ND to Barksdale, LA, were put on there inadvertently.

    I had some experience with the way nuclear weapons get handled, as compared to conventional weapons, and I can assure you that there is no way anyone would just "accidentally" pick up the wrong weapons.

    article continues...

    Who Really Calls the Shots?

    Information Clearing House

    By Jim Kirwan

    09/08/07 "ICH " --- - The United States has had a standing presence in the skies around the world since the Cold War began. The division of the Air Force that has that responsibility was Strategic Air Command – that was the case until the Berlin Wall went down. Since that time it is unclear who is in charge of this vast nuclear fleet of global bombers that always kept a full third of their forces in the air, around the world, at all times prior to the end of the Cold War. (1)

    Those B-52’s were armed with nuclear weapons, because they were part of our forward defense shield to deter the communist regime of the USSR from a pre-emptive attack upon the USA or on any of our military bases scattered all over the planet. We also had Trident submarines that also encircled the seas – and they too carried nuclear weapons, theirs were in the form of ICBM’s. What remains unclear today is who now controls our nuclear bomber fleet – and what will happen to them on September 14, when the US Air Force grounds all its planes because of this “incident.’ (2)

    Today there are 190 nations in the world and we have 130 military bases on this planet in other nations: If we do not have a WAR department, why do we need so many bases? We call the military—the Department of Defense—yet how can this be considered a Defensive department - when so many of our bases are still located in 130 other countries?

    Continued . . .

    Nobel Prize author: Iraq war 'major disaster' for West

    War In Iraq
    By: AKI on: 11.09.2007 [05:21 ] (107 reads)
    Article image

    Turkish author Orhan Pamuk says prestige of Western civilisation ruined by 'horrors and injustice' of war.

    TURIN, Italy - The Iraqi war was a disaster for the US and its allies and had undermined support for democracy and secularism in the Islamic world, Nobel Prize-winning Turkish author Orhan Pamuk told Adnkronos International (AKI).

    On a visit to Italy, Pamuk said the prestige of Western civilisation had been ruined by the 'horrors and injustice' of the war and it had poisoned relations between the Arab world and the US and its European allies.

    "I think it is one of the major disasters in the last three or four decades, this war in Iraq. It's destroyed a peaceful approach in the Middle East towards democracy, towards human rights, western values and women's liberation," Pamuk told AKI.

    Continued . . .

    Monday, September 10, 2007

    Six Years of 9/11 as a License to Kill

    by Norman Solomon

    It evokes a tragedy that marks an epoch. From the outset, the warfare state has exploited “9/11,” a label at once too facile and too laden with historic weight — giving further power to the tacit political axiom that perception is reality.

    Often it seems that media coverage is all about perception, especially when the underlying agendas are wired into huge profits and geopolitical leverage. If you associate a Big Mac or a Whopper with a happy meal or some other kind of great time, you’re more likely to buy it. If you connect 9/11 with a need for taking military action and curtailing civil liberties, you’re more likely to buy what the purveyors of war and authoritarian government have been selling for the past half-dozen years.

    “Sept. 11 changed everything” became a sudden cliche in news media. Words are supposed to mean something, and those words were — and are — preposterous. They speak of a USA enthralled with itself while reducing the rest of the world (its oceans and valleys and mountains and peoples) to little more than an extensive mirror to help us reflect on our centrality to the world. In an individual, we call that narcissism. In the nexus of media and politics, all too often, it’s called “patriotism.”

    Continued . . .

    Mossad Agent Pearlman Behind New Bin Laden Video

    Sunday September 9, 2007

    Adam Pearlman, the Jewish Mossad agent who once wrote stinging essays condemning Muslims as "bloodthirsty terrorists", has been singled out as the creator of the suspicious "new" Osama Bin Laden video.

    From the London Telegraph:

    A Californian heavy metal fan, who converted to Islam and became the first American to be charged with treason in half a century, has been fingered as the author of Osama bin Laden's latest video lecture - which left the terror chief sounding like an anti-globalisation protester.

    The al-Qaeda leader's first video message for three years featured a bizarre rant against America, with references to global warming, "insane taxes", the US mortgage market meltdown and rising interest rates.

    American spy chiefs were quick to name Adam Gadahn, the head of al-Qaeda's English language media operations, as the author of large sections of bin Laden's broadcast.

    Continued . . .

    Why was a nuclear-armed bomber allowed to fly over the US?

    By Bill Van Auken

    Global Research, September 9, 2007 - 2007-09-07

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    Wednesday’s revelation that a US Air Force B-52 bomber flew over the length of the United States armed with six cruise missiles carrying nuclear warheads has attracted amazingly little media attention.

    The story, first broken by the Military Times web site based on tips from military officers, was relegated to the bottom of page 16 in Thursday’s New York Times and to page 10 of the Washington Post.

    Featured prominently in both newspapers and generally in media coverage were reassurances from a spokesman for the Air Force that it represented “an isolated mistake” and that “at no time was there a threat to public safety.”

    This incident, however, has immense and ominous significance. Describing it as an “isolated mistake” begs the obvious questions of how a nuclear-armed B-52 was allowed to become airborne—ostensibly without the approval of senior officials—and who ordered this extraordinary flight, and why.

    The B-52 took off from Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota and flew to Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana on August 30 after six nuclear-tipped Advanced Cruise Missiles were mounted on the pylons under its wings. Each of the warheads carried a yield of up to 150 kilotons, more than ten times as powerful as the US bomb that leveled Hiroshima at the close of the Second World War.

    Continued . . .