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Showing posts from July 15, 2007

A vote for Bush was a vote for the terrorists - The Smirking Chimp

A vote for Bush was a vote for the terrorists - The Smirking Chimp: "The past week was an interesting one in the so-called 'war on terror'.
First, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said that his 'gut feeling' was that the U.S. is at high risk this summer for a terrorist attack. On other words, the guy in charge of homeland security told us that the homeland is not very secure.
Almost immediately afterwards, as if on cue, we learned that al-Qaeda has regrouped and is now as strong as it was before 9/11.
But wait! How can this be?"

One in a Million: More on the Killing of Khalid Hassan. Digg_url = "http://www. (He, Comment, *, His, Comments)-Empire Burlesque - Chris Floyd Online

One in a Million: More on the Killing of Khalid Hassan. Digg_url = "http://www. (He, Comment, *, His, Comments)-Empire Burlesque - Chris Floyd OnlineHere's an update on the previous post. The NYT has now followed up on the killing of their reporter, Khalid Hassan, in Baghdad. He was apparently gunned down by militiamen after his car had been diverted into the backstreets by an American roadblock. It was a two-stage hit; he was forced off the road by a black Mercedes and shot, but survived. As he was calling his mother to say that he was OK, a second car came along, carrying a gunman who shot Hassan twice more and killed him.

The impenetrable murk which covers the atrocities on all sides in Iraq will almost certainly make it impossible to determine just who killed Hassan, and why. As the NYT's John F. Burns reports:

The murderous turmoil in Baghdad has reached a point where many families never know the killers of their loved ones, or their motives. Sunni insurgents? Shiite m… Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia: Books: John Gray Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia: Books: John Gray: "Review

“When the fashionable pundits of the age of globalization are as forgotten as those who, in the run-up to World War I, predicted globalization had rendered war obsolete, John Gray's work will still matter. It is at once a reproof and an antidote to the reigning wishful thinking that makes Voltaire's Dr. Pangloss look like a realist. Gray's work has always been about separating reality and delusion. In Black Mass, Gray dissects the greatest of all political delusions, utopianism, and maps the way in which, against all expectations it has migrated from left to right, from communism to neo-conservatism. This is that rarest of things, a necessary book.” –David Rieff"

NPR : Al-Qaida, Nationalist Insurgents Differ in Strategy

NPR : Al-Qaida, Nationalist Insurgents Differ in Strategy: "The focus on al-Qaida in Iraq may actually be making them more dangerous because it helps their propaganda war, one expert says.
Marc Lynch, political science professor and author of the Mideast politics blog, Abu Aardvark, says al-Qaida actually inflicts less damage in Iraq than nationalist insurgency groups. The primary difference between al-Qaida and the nationalist groups is their strategy.
Lynch says the focus on al-Qaida gives the group more credibility and power than they would otherwise have.

Lynch talks to Deborah Amos."

'Just World News' with Helena Cobban

'Just World News' with Helena Cobban: "Uzodinma Iweala, a young novelist from Washington DC and Nigeria, has a great opinion piece in today's WaPo that should be must-reading for all young whitefolk who get the urge to 'save' Africa.
He writes:

News reports constantly focus on the continent's corrupt leaders, warlords, 'tribal' conflicts, child laborers, and women disfigured by abuse and genital mutilation. These descriptions run under headlines like 'Can Bono Save Africa?' or 'Will Brangelina Save Africa?' The relationship between the West and Africa is no longer based on openly racist beliefs, but such articles are reminiscent of reports from the heyday of European colonialism, when missionaries were sent to Africa to introduce us to education, Jesus Christ and 'civilization.'"

Not so Kind... :: from :: news from occupied Iraq - it

Not so Kind... :: from :: news from occupied Iraq - it: "I am very pissed.

I do not have many kind words towards my fellow Iraqis. Let me qualify here, before you start jumping to conclusions.

I have no kind words towards that category of Iraqis who gave it away for Free to the Americans and the Iranians. I have absolutely no respect for them, no consideration and zero sympathy.

I have zero respect for those bastards living and working in the Green zone.
I have total disdain for those who voted and now come meagerly complain about 'lack of the promised democracy'...'but we voted' broken record. Sure you voted. You voted for your sects and your wallets.
I have absolutely no sympathy for those who applauded and filled their blogs with hurrays 'Saddam is gone' and now cry over poor Iraq...and congratulate themselves with cheap words of sympathy coming from the occupier.

It took a bunch of your kind to make it happen. Now you have lost it all.
I do n… "2,000 days after the opening of Guantanamo Bay: remembering the US’s abuses of human rights
While Americans celebrate the US Declaration of Independence on July 4, campaigners around the world will mark the 2,000th day since the opening of the Guantanamo Bay detention centre on January 11, 2002. In this issue, FAHAD ANSARI discusses the differences between the ideals that the US claims to represent and its own behaviour in the world today."

Chechnya Weekly from the Jamestown Foundation

Chechnya Weekly from the Jamestown Foundation: "

Rebels Reportedly Becoming More Active
Kavkazky Uzel reported on July 4 that the “armed formations of the separatists” have become noticeably more active in recent days, with armed clashes between the rebels and security forces taking place in Chechnya’s mountains and foothills. “In Chechnya, rumors are actively being spread that in the coming months the militants may launch a series of large-scale offensive actions for the purpose of demonstrating their real capabilities,” the website wrote. “Some time ago, information appeared that the separatist leader Dokka Umarov demanded that members of the republic’s law-enforcement bodies quit their jobs, promising ‘amnesty’ in exchange.” Kavkazky Uzel quoted a Grozny resident, identified only as Sakhab, as saying: “Several weeks ago, leaflets with an appeal from Dokka Umarov to the employees of the police force were found in various places. Apparently, they said that those policemen who do n…

Chechnya Weekly from the Jamestown Foundation

Chechnya Weekly from the Jamestown Foundation: "In addition to the newspapers, politicians and officials have also begun to openly criticize Kadyrov for his groundless optimism. 'What Kadyrov is saying is just wishful thinking,' said Viktor Ilyukhin, deputy head of the State Duma’s Security Committee (, July 10). Viktor Alksnis, a State Duma deputy, said the same day that “what is going on in Chechnya cannot be called peaceful life.” Alksnis added: “Kadyrov discredits himself by asserting that the republic is the most stable in the North Caucasus, even as an armed rebellion continues in Chechnya and people are dying there. I feel ashamed for him.”"

Carbon Dioxide: The Anti-Poverty Gas by Tom Hanson

Carbon Dioxide: The Anti-Poverty Gas by Tom Hanson: "There are no prosperous countries that have low carbon dioxide emissions, no poor countries that have high emissions, and the higher the per-capita carbon dioxide emitted, the higher the expected GDP. None of this is a surprise since the machinery of production harnesses energy that is mainly produced by burning coal, oil, and gas. People who want to alleviate poverty should advocate more energy consumption, not less, and environmentalists intent on reducing carbon emissions should own up to the poverty that they implicitly promote."

No halt to Iran's peaceful nuclear activities: Hosseini - Irna

No halt to Iran's peaceful nuclear activities: Hosseini - Irna: "Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad-Ali Hosseini here Sunday said there is no 'stop or suspension' in Iran's peaceful nuclear activities.

'Iran's nuclear activities are continued within a codified and precise framework and are free from political ups and downs,' he told reporters at his weekly press conference. "

Iraqi Unions Fight the New Oil Law -- In These Times

Iraqi Unions Fight the New Oil Law -- In These Times: "Iraq’s proposed oil law, which would open up control of the country’s oilfields to multinational corporations, is one of the Bush administration’s top political priorities. On July 3, Bush called Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to encourage him and other leaders to move “aggressively forward” on it, and as In These Times went to press, its latest draft appeared headed to the Iraqi Parliament for debate. Even if it passes, however, enacting it won’t be easy, as it faces strong opposition from Iraqi oil workers. "


TomDispatch: "Okay, it's another lemon, the second you've bought from the same used-car lot -- and for $1,000 more than the first. The transmission is a mess; the muffler's clunking; smoke's seeping out of the dashboard; and you've only had it a week. You took it, grudgingly, as a replacement for that beat-up old Camry that only lasted two months, but the salesman assured you it was a winner. No wonder you're driving onto the lot right now. Before you can even complain, the same salesman's there. He's firm. It's not his fault. You must have done something. Nonetheless, he's ready to offer you a great deal. For an extra 2,000 bucks, you can have the rusted-out Honda Prelude right behind him, the one that, as a matter of fact, has just burst into flames -- and, he assures you, it's a dandy. It may not look so great today, what with the smoking hood and all, but it's a vehicle for the ages.
Would you buy a used car from this man? (Hint…

Bush like Hitler, says first Muslim in Congress | International News | News | Telegraph

Bush like Hitler, says first Muslim in Congress | International News | News | Telegraph: "America's first Muslim congressman has provoked outrage by apparently comparing President George W Bush to Adolf Hitler and hinting that he might have been responsible for the September 11 attacks.
Addressing a gathering of atheists in his home state of Minnesota, Keith Ellison, a Democrat, compared the 9/11 atrocities to the destruction of the Reichstag, the German parliament, in 1933. This was probably burned down by the Nazis in order to justify Hitler's later seizure of emergency powers.
'It's almost like the Reichstag fire, kind of reminds me of that,' Mr Ellison said. 'After the Reichstag was burned, they blamed the Communists for it, and it put the leader [Hitler] of that country in a position where he could basically have authority to do whatever he wanted.'
To applause from his audience of 300 members of Atheists for Human Rights, Mr Ellison said he would no…

Asia Times Online :: Southeast Asia news - An alleged terrorist goes legit

Asia Times Online :: Southeast Asia news - An alleged terrorist goes legit: "DILI - After spending two years in prison on terror-related charges, Abu Bakar Ba'asyir, widely regarded as Indonesia's most radical Islamic cleric, is plotting his next career move: into mainstream politics.
A spokesman for Ba'asyir's Indonesian Mujahedeen Council (MMI) told Indonesian media last week that the controversial cleric is weighing a run for the presidency at the 2009 polls. Ba'asyir's
spokesman said that before officially declaring his candidacy, 'He wants to see what people say first.' "

ei: Palestinian refugees from Iraq heading to Brazil

ei: Palestinian refugees from Iraq heading to Brazil: "AMMAN, 4 July 2007 (IRIN) - After spending over four years languishing in a refugee camp in the Jordanian desert, 100 Palestinian refugees from Iraq will finally be heading to their new home -- Brazil.

A statement by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), said the group, which includes children and the elderly, will start moving from Rweished refugee camp, 60km from the Jordanian-Iraqi border, to Brazil by September.

'The UNHCR is grateful to ... the government of Brazil for resettling an estimated 100 Palestinian refugees who formerly lived in Iraq,' said the statement made available to IRIN.

The refugees will be sent to their new country in three batches, with priority given to the elderly and families with children.

According to the plan, an estimated 22 families will be settled in Sao Paulo state, while 18 families will go to Rio Grande do Sul, in the southeast and southern regions of Brazil, said the statement.

Unaccompanied …

ei: Who will save Palestine?

ei: Who will save Palestine?: "These days the Hamas acting government and Fatah 'emergency government' are sapping the interest from any news story that might report on Israel's criminal acts inside Gaza and the West Bank. Both these Palestinian enclaves are still under Israel's military occupation -- one shunned and isolated by political intrigue and the other apparently working at cooperating with the occupier, and there's the tragedy of it all. Nothing that has happened in the last fortnight has stopped Israel in its tracks. Life for the Palestinians in the occupied territories is just as bitter and just as terrifying as it ever was only with a new dimension -- no one knows whom to believe or if there is a viable Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) left to champion their struggle against Israel's unrelenting land theft, apartheid practices and violent human rights abuses. "

Robert Fisk: TE Lawrence had it right about Iraq

Robert Fisk: TE Lawrence had it right about Iraq
How typical of Lawrence to use the horror of gas warfare as a metaphor for insurgency. To control the land they occupied, he continued, the Turks "would have need of a fortified post every four square miles, and a post could not be less than 20 men. The Turks would need 600,000 men to meet the combined ill wills of all the local Arab people. They had 100,000 men available."

Now who does that remind you of? The "fortified post every four square miles" is the ghostly future echo of George W Bush's absurd "surge". The Americans need 600,000 men to meet the combined ill will of the Iraqi people, and they have only 150,000 available. Donald Rumsfeld, the architect of "war lite" is responsible for that. Yet still these rascals get away with it.