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Garowe Online - Home

Garowe Online - Home: "A leading Ethiopian opposition figure has been imprisoned, and faces life behind bars after a pardon she was granted last year was revoked. Opposition parties charge the arrest was politically-motivated.

Ethiopian authorities said opposition Unity for Democracy and Justice party chief Birtukan Mideksa could spend the rest of her life in jail after refusing to acknowledge that she asked for the pardon that led to her freedom last year. She was among dozens of opposition leaders jailed in the violent aftermath of the Horn of Africa nation's 2005 elections and later convicted of treason.

Birtukan, a charismatic young lawyer and former judge, was widely reported to have made comments during a recent European tour denying that she had asked to be pardoned. The reports are said to have infuriated senior government officials, who said those convicted in connection with the 2005 protests were freed only after signing a document admitting guilt and asking to be pa…

Al Jazeera English - Europe - Ex-mayor killed in Caucasus attack

Al Jazeera English - Europe - Ex-mayor killed in Caucasus attack: "A former mayor of the provincial capital of North Ossetia has been shot dead in his car by unidentified gunmen.

Kazbek Pagiyev died of multiple gunshot wounds in Wednesday's attack in Vladikavkaz, the Russian interior ministry said.

The assassination comes weeks after his successor in the post was also killed, police said.

Pagiyev's driver died in the shooting.

Pagiyev, who stood down as deputy prime minister in North Ossetia last week, had previously served as the mayor of Vladikavkaz.

He was replaced by Vitaly Karayev, who was killed by an armed man last month.

Provinces in Russia's north Caucasus have been troubled by unrest linked to fighters based in the neighbouring province of Chechnya, a police crackdown on clan rivalries and internal power struggles."

Next EU president supports Israeli op

The Czech Republic, which takes over the European Union's presidency on January 1, defended Israel's strikes against Hamas on Tuesday.
While the EU has called for a cease-fire to end the violence between Israel and Hamas that has killed almost 350 Palestinians since Saturday morning, Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg insisted Israel had the right to defend itself, according to the Reuters news agency.

"Let us realize one thing: Hamas increased steeply the number of rockets fired at Israel since the cease-fire ended on December 19. That is not acceptable any more," Schwarzenberg told the daily Mlada Fronta Dnes in an interview.

The country currently holding the EU presidency, France, has condemned Israel's strikes and the rocket attacks from Hamas terrorists and called for both sides to stop immediately.

Freedom of the Press.

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A second New York City man pleaded guilty Tuesday to providing material support to a foreign terrorist organization by broadcasting Hezbollah television channel Al Manar to U.S. customers, prosecutors said.Saleh Elahwal, who lives in New Jersey, admitted that between about September 2005 and August 2006 he provided satellite transmission services through Brooklyn-based HDTV Ltd to Al Manar, in exchange for thousands of dollars payment.His co-defendant Javed Iqbal, a Pakistani who moved to the United States more than 25 years ago, pleaded guilty to the same charge on Dec. 23.Hezbollah, an Iranian- and Syrian-backed Shi'ite Muslim group with a powerful guerrilla army, was designated by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organization in 1997.The U.S. Treasury branded Al Manar a terrorist organization in March 2006, saying it supported Hezbollah's fund-raising and recruitment activities.Elahwal is due to be sentenced on Feb. 19 and Iqbal on March 24. Bo…

Iraqi Court Postpones Shoe-Thrower’s Trial

Previously scheduled to begin tomorrow, the closely watched trial of Iraqi journalist Muntadar al-Zeidi was postponed today according to a spokesman of the Iraqi court.The delay is pending an appellate court ruling on what charges Zeidi will face for throwing his shoes at President George W. Bush earlier this month. The government has sought to charge Zeidi with assaulting a foreign leader, but his legal team argues he should only face a charge of insulting a leader, insisting that “the case is within context of an insult and not an intention to kill.” If the charge is reduced, Zeidi could be released on bail.The act of defiance turned Zeidi into an international celebrity overnight, Iraqis took to the streets in the wake of the incident, calling for Zeidi’s release, and also lead to the resignation of Iraqi Parliament Speaker Mahmoud Mashhadani and indirectly the severing of Iraq’s largest Sunni political bloc.

Israel's Constant Crisis- by Justin Raimondo

Israel's Constant Crisis- by Justin Raimondo
Because Israel is almost entirely dependent on international support – and especially American support – for its very survival, without U.S. public opinion behind it the Jewish state would soon wither on the vine. What this means, in practice, is that a constant stream of pro-Israel propaganda must be directed at the American people in order to justify the high levels of financial and military aid that keep Israel afloat. What's more, the Israelis must constantly generate the urgency and immediacy of the need to support their country. They have succeeded in doing this by projecting a sense of continuing crisis. The idea that Israel is in danger, that unless we ship billions more in taxpayer dollars the Israeli state will sink beneath the waves of an unrelenting Arab assault, is constantly being pushed – and we wonder why the "peace process" is perpetually stalled.

Nir Rosen: Gaza: Israel, Hamas and the logic of colonial power | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk

Nir Rosen: Gaza: Israel, Hamas and the logic of colonial power | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk: "I have spent most of the Bush administration's tenure reporting from Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Somalia and other conflicts. I have been published by most major publications. I have been interviewed by most major networks and I have even testified before the senate foreign relations committee. The Bush administration began its tenure with Palestinians being massacred and it ends with Israel committing one of its largest massacres yet in a 60-year history of occupying Palestinian land. Bush's final visit to the country he chose to occupy ended with an educated secular Shiite Iraqi throwing his shoes at him, expressing the feelings of the entire Arab world save its dictators who have imprudently attached themselves to a hated American regime."

ei: Falling into the moral abyss

Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron arrest Palestinians suspected of throwing stones during a protest against Israel's bombing of Gaza, 30 December 2008. (Mamoun Wazwaz/MaanImages)

ei: Falling into the moral abyss
The gradual process of ethnic cleansing in the occupied Palestinian territories is accelerating, and with it so is the moral culpability of Israel and the supporters of its policies in the United States. More and more people from the mainstream of Israeli politics are voicing alarm. In the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, former Knesset Speaker Avraham Burg compared the situation in Israel today to Germany on the eve of Nazis coming to power. Writing for The Huffington Post, former Israeli peace negotiator Daniel Levy likened Israel to a drunk and the US to a friend who gives them bottle of vodka and keys to his car. Even current Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who has ordered incessant attacks on Gaza since coming to power, has called recent attacks by…

Arab News: Israeli Terrorism and the Framing of Muslims

Arab News: Israeli Terrorism and the Framing of Muslims: "The actions of Mossad, in misdirecting and suborning information, led to it pulling the wool over its allies eyes globally. It also enabled the Jewish state to put suspicion on Arab states with coordinated covert operations that led to some of the Arab and Muslim states being targeted by the United States.

The Israeli and Jewish lobbies, with their control over world media, managed to convince the world that the Muslims and the Arabs were responsible for the crimes that were committed by the Jews.

The incidents below, obtained exclusively from Jewish authors, former Mossad agents, US congressmen, senators and military personnel give us an insight into some of the Jewish crimes for which Arabs got blamed."

The Angry Arab News Service/وكالة أنباء العربي الغاضب: Saudi aid

The Angry Arab News Service/وكالة أنباء العربي الغاضب: Saudi aid: "Saudi Arabia sent two plane loads of Qur'ans and prayer books to the people of Gaza. That will end the humanitarian crisis, I am sure. Leave it to the wisdom of the Servitor of the Two Holy Sites (and the IKEA store in the Kingdom)."

Harold Pinter Nobel Prize Speech 2005. Art, Truth, Politics. Video by Alex - MySpace Video

Harold Pinter Nobel Prize Speech 2005. Art, Truth, Politics. Video by Alex - MySpace Video
Harold Pinter Nobel Prize Speech 2005. Art, Truth, Politics.


From Nobel laureate Harold Pinter

"As every single person here knows, the justification for the invasion of Iraq was that Saddam Hussein possessed a highly dangerous body of weapons of mass destruction, some of which could be fired in 45 minutes, bringing about appalling devastation. We were assured that was true. It was not true. We were told that Iraq had a relationship with Al Quaeda and shared responsibility for the atrocity in New York of September 11th 2001. We were assured that this was true. It was not true. We were told that Iraq threatened the security of the world. We were assured it was true. It was not true.

The truth is something entirely different. The truth is to do with how the United States understands its role in the world and how it chooses to embody it."

"Everyone knows what happened in the Soviet Union…

Gaza+Arab+League.jpg (image)

Hosni+Mubarak+Gaza.jpg (image)

More than 100,000 massacred by allies during Korean War - Telegraph

More than 100,000 massacred by allies during Korean War - Telegraph: "Korean War civilian massacres, Daejeon Massacre Busan Massacre Namyang Ju Massacre Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Authorities in the country have discovered mass burial sites containing thousands of bodies, including scores of children.

Trawls of records including declassified files in Washington have uncovered evidence of the massacres of at least 100,000 people suspected of having sympathy with the North Koreans.

In some cases, American forces are alleged to have been present and in at least one case an American officer authorised a massacre of prisoners believed to have left-wing sympathies."

TheHill.com - Kucinich criticizes Israel; wants U.N. probe

TheHill.com - Kucinich criticizes Israel; wants U.N. probe: "Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) is calling for a United Nations investigation into Israel’s attacks on Gaza, criticizing Israel for a disproportionate response to Hamas rocket attacks.

The criticism stands in stark contrast to the statements of other Democrats, who have offered near-unanimous support for Israel amid the latest violence in the Middle East.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and other Democrats have blamed Hamas for the violence, which has left more than 300 people in Gaza dead. One person in Israel has been killed by a Hamas rocket.

Kucinich likened the Israeli attacks on Gaza to its war with Hezbollah in southern Lebanon in 2006. In both cases, he said, civilian populations were attacked and “countless innocents” were killed or injured.

“All this was, and is, disproportionate, indiscriminate mass violence in violation of international law,” Kucinich said in a sta…

Israeli Navy Attacks Gaza-Bound Aid Ship

The SS Dignity, the chartered ship the Free Gaza Movement has repeatedly used to deliver humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip is no stranger to Israeli threats. Still, despite being condemned as “provocateurs” by an Israeli government that has threatened the use of force against the ship, the Dignity has always managed to find its way to the strip safely and without incident. Until today.

The latest voyage, laden with three and a half tons of medical aid at a time when Gaza hospitals are running dangerously short on them, ran afoul of an Israeli naval patrol boat in international waters. One of the ships passengers, 2008 US Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney, reports the ship was rammed three times by the Israelis. Others report shots were fired at the Dignity, though this has not been confirmed.

After the attack, the Dignity’s captain was radioed by the Israelis, who accused the ship of “being involved in terrorist activity.” The ship began to take on water; passengers were ordered …

Five Gaza Sisters Killed in Their Beds in Israeli Attack

The latest innocent casualties of the Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip were five young sisters, who died this evening when an attack on the mosque of the refugee camp they lived in caused a wall to fall on their small home, killing them and injuring their father and three other siblings.

The Israeli military defended the attack, saying the mosque was a “known gathering place” for Hamas supporters. The uncle of the slain girls insisted that his family has had nothing to do with the rocket attacks coming from the strip.

The civilian death toll in the Gaza attacks is difficult to ascertain, but the United Nations put the estimate very conservatively at 51 early this morning. This would not include the sisters, or anyone else killed today. It’s unclear the methodology of the estimate, however as the early attacks focused on Hamas-run police stations it seems likely all those working in the stations were considered legitimate non-civilian targets, whether they worked as armed police or …

375 Killed, Over 1,600 Wounded as Gaza Strikes Continue | News From Antiwar.com

375 Killed, Over 1,600 Wounded as Gaza Strikes Continue | News From Antiwar.com
Israeli warplanes pounded the Gaza Strip for a third straight day, and Defense Minister Ehud Barak promised that the war would continue “to the bitter end.” The death toll has continued to rise, with at least 375 killed and over 1,600 wounded.

Eyewitnesses on the ground in the strip report an increasingly dire humanitarian situation, with widespread blackouts, food shortages, and impossibly crowded hospitals, while United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon said he was “deeply alarmed” by the escalation of violence. And though Israel has not yet launched its ground invasion of the strip, deputy Prime Minister Haim Ramon says his government is committed to toppling the Hamas government. In fact Ramon went so far as to say Israel would look favorably on any Gaza Strip government that didn’t include Hamas.

Today also marked the first day stock markets in the west have been open since the Israeli attacks began,…

Chechen Interior Minister Tries to Play Down the Insurgency - The Jamestown Foundation

Chechen Interior Minister Tries to Play Down the Insurgency - The Jamestown Foundation: "It is worth noting that the news reports issued by the media outlets of the Chechen militants provide more figures about the police officers and servicemen from the Russian armed forces killed in Chechnya. Still, it is possible to infer even from the information provided by the Russian mass media that the number of Chechen police casualties as imagined by Chechen Interior Minister Alkhanov. For instance, five representatives of the law-enforcement authorities were killed and 22 were wounded in Chechnya over the last month alone. The figures for those who were killed do not include civilians, who were assassinated by the militants for their collaboration with the pro-Moscow police: if you add them in, the true number of people killed in the republic over the past month is 12. (These numbers are based on Russian mass media reports during the month of November.) In other words, nine years since …

Ethiopian News | The Ethiopian dictator is worst than Robert Mugabe

Ethiopian News | The Ethiopian dictator is worst than Robert Mugabe
Can someone prove me wrong if I say the Ethiopian dictator Meles Zenawi is the worst dictator comparing to Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe? I’ll bet no one can.

There is no question that Robert Mugabe is a dictator. However, when it comes to the intensity of the crimes he has committed against his own people, he is way less criminal than Meles Zenawi. Even at these defining moments, the falling Mugabe regime is not arresting or killing his own people. Observably, his political opponents are exercising their constitutional rights; they are assembling, they are freely expressing their views, they are protesting, etc. There is no local journalist that was arrested illegitimately and sent to prison for criticizing the Mugabe regime.

Was there any point in time in the Mugabe regime in which hundreds of citizens were killed and tens of thousands of opposition supporters were arrested for having different political views? Never. Not …

Tutu: Israel actions against Gaza bears "hallmarks of war crimes"

Tutu: Israel actions against Gaza bears "hallmarks of war crimes": "Johannesburg - South African Nobel laureate and Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on Sunday said Israel's air attacks on the Gaza Strip 'bears all the hallmarks of war crimes.'

'In the context of total aerial supremacy, in which one side in the conflict deploys lethal aircraft against opponents with no means of defending themselves, the bombardment bears all the hallmarks of war crimes,' Tutu said in a statement.

The attacks would not contribute to the security of Israel, said the anti-apartheid icon who won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1984.

'It is a blight not only on the Middle East, but on the entire world - and particularly world leaders who have consistently failed the people of Palestine and Israel over the past 60 years,' Tutu added.

Israel launched air raids on the Strip on Saturday in response to rocket fire from Palestinian militants in the salient."

Tutu: Israel actions against Gaza bears "hallmarks of war crimes"

Tutu: Israel actions against Gaza bears "hallmarks of war crimes": "Johannesburg - South African Nobel laureate and Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on Sunday said Israel's air attacks on the Gaza Strip 'bears all the hallmarks of war crimes.'

'In the context of total aerial supremacy, in which one side in the conflict deploys lethal aircraft against opponents with no means of defending themselves, the bombardment bears all the hallmarks of war crimes,' Tutu said in a statement.

The attacks would not contribute to the security of Israel, said the anti-apartheid icon who won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1984.

'It is a blight not only on the Middle East, but on the entire world - and particularly world leaders who have consistently failed the people of Palestine and Israel over the past 60 years,' Tutu added.

Israel launched air raids on the Strip on Saturday in response to rocket fire from Palestinian militants in the salient."

Gulfnews: Opposition says Mubarak blessed Israeli attacks

Gulfnews: Opposition says Mubarak blessed Israeli attacks: "Cairo: Egyptian opposition has reacted furiously to Israel's deadly airstrikes on Gaza, and accused the government of President Hosni Mubarak of blessing the raids to weaken Hamas.

'The decision to strike at Gaza was made in Cairo following talks between Ahmad Abul Geit [Egypt's foreign minister] and Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni,' said Islamist MP Hussain Ebrahim.

Livni visited Cairo on Thursday, where she vowed to stop Hamas from firing rockets at Israeli towns.

'The threats declared by Livni in Cairo against our Palestinian brethren in Gaza are a stigma for the Egyptian regime,' said Sayed Abdul Gani, the secretary General of the Nasserist Lawyers. 'These statements confirm that this regime is a partner in the aggression on Gaza,' he told Gulf News."

Chaos in Gaza as Israel’s strikes continue | Antiwar Newswire

Chaos in Gaza as Israel’s strikes continue | Antiwar Newswire: "Terrified prisoners fled a Gaza City jail bombed by Israeli warplanes on Sunday, their faces white with dust and red with blood as they stumbled over huge piles of rubble.

Across the territory, grieving families pitched traditional mourning tents of green tarp outside the homes. Yet the rows of chairs inside these tents remained largely empty, as residents cowered indoors for fear of new Israeli strikes. Plumes of gray smoke rising into the sky marked the site of the latest Israeli attacks."

The Associated Press: US: 14 children die in bombing near Afghan school

The Associated Press: US: 14 children die in bombing near Afghan school
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The U.S. military says that a suicide bombing near an Afghan primary school killed 14 children. Authorities had earlier said five children were killed.

A bomber was trying to attack a meeting of tribal elders in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday. The military says a total of 16 people were killed in the explosion and 58 were wounded.

Khost deputy police chief Yacoub Khan says the suicide blast went off near the entrance to a police and army post. U.S. troops are also stationed inside the outpost, but no troops were wounded or killed in the attack.

Suicide bomber hits Iraqi Gaza protest | Antiwar Newswire

Suicide bomber hits Iraqi Gaza protest | Antiwar Newswire: "A suicide bomber on a bicycle blew himself up Sunday amid a crowd of demonstrators in northern Iraq who were protesting Israel's airstrikes on Gaza, killing one demonstrator and wounding 16 others, Iraqi police said.

The bomber rode his bicycle into the demonstration of about 1,300 people in the center of the northern city of Mosul, said a police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with news media.

The demonstration was organized by the Sunni Iraqi Islamic Party. The party's Mosul spokesman, Yahiya Abid Mahjoub, complained that police and the Iraqi army had not taken security precautions for the demonstration.

There has been no claim of responsibility for the attack, the officer said."

Israel Using New US-Supplied Smart Bombs in Gaza Attacks | News From Antiwar.com

Israel Using New US-Supplied Smart Bombs in Gaza Attacks | News From Antiwar.com: "When Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declared Hamas responsible for all the killings in Israel’s attacks on the Gaza Strip, it was easy to dismiss it as an expression of the Bush Administration’s “special relationship” with the Israeli government and knee-jerk support for any killings with the word terrorist remotely linked to them. Yet it seems there may have been a more practical concern of culpability at play.

When he Israeli government was bombing every police station in the densely populated strip, some of those attacks were coming by way of US-supplied GBU-39 smart bombs. It is unclear how many of the hundreds of people killed in the Gaza Strip in the past 48 hours died at the hands of American munitions, but to the extent that the carnage has gotten some television coverage in the United States, direct American involvement is likely to be unpopular with a war-weary nation."

The Politics of the Gaza Massacre- by Justin Raimondo

The Politics of the Gaza Massacre- by Justin Raimondo: "If you're looking for the cause of the most recent Israeli aggression against the Palestinians – over 300 killed so far, and many more wounded – forget Hamas. The real casus belli is politics, in Israel and America.

On the Israeli front, elections loom large. The current Israeli government is enormously unpopular, and – with polls showing a massive swing to the right – this latest 'incursion' is its last attempt to shore up their sagging power base. The rightist surge in Israel has been building for a long time, with the settler movement gaining momentum and the Likud Party likely the chief beneficiary – in which case there will be no chance of a peaceful settlement of the Palestinian question, no matter how evenhanded President Barack Obama turns out to be.

Speaking of Obama, the real focal point of the Israeli assault isn't Gaza – it's Washington, D.C. The whole point of this exercise in futility – …

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Somali president steps down

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Somali president steps down: "Somalia's president has resigned after months of political infighting within the UN-backed transitional government.

Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed has been under pressure since the parliament last week blocked his attempts to dismiss Nur Hassan Hussein, the prime minister.

'As I promised when you elected me on October 14, 2004, I would stand down if I failed to fulfil my duty, I have decided to return the responsibility you gave me,' he told legislators in Baidoa, where the administration is based, on Monday.

'The speaker will take over my responsibility.'

The government has failed to restore security to Somalia, which has been without an effective central government since 1991.

'Most of the country was not in our hands and we had nothing to give our soldiers. The international community has also failed to help us,' Yusuf told parliament in his resignation speech."

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Israel in 'all-out war' with Hamas

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Israel in 'all-out war' with Hamas: "Israel's military is in an 'all-out war' with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, Ehud Barak, the defence minister, says.
Palestinian medical sources say at least 345 Gazans have been killed and another 1,450 wounded in three consecutive days of Israeli bombardment in the heavily-populated territory."

Iranian official: Israeli offensive in Gaza similar to Hitler's actions - Israel News, Ynetnews

Iranian official: Israeli offensive in Gaza similar to Hitler's actions - Israel News, Ynetnews: "A senior Iranian Parliament member compared the Israel Air Force strikes in the Gaza Strip to Adolf Hitler's actions during World War II.
According to Alaeddin Borojerdi, chairman of the National Security and Foreign Relations Commission of the Iranian Parliament, 'The Zionists are repeating the same thing Hitler did during World War II, attacking innocent people in a barbaric way. (Dudi Cohen)"

American terrorist Support Israel.

Pelosi: US must stand strongly with Israel - Israel News, Ynetnews
According to Pelosi, "Peace between Israelis and Palestinians cannot result from daily barrages of rocket and mortar fire from Hamas-controlled Gaza. Hamas and its supporters must understand that Gaza cannot and will not be allowed to be a sanctuary for attacks on Israel." (Yitzhak Benhorin, Washington) Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi issued a statement concerning the Israeli operation in Gaza in which she wrote that "When Israel is attacked, the United States must continue to stand strongly with its friend and democratic ally."

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ahlu Sunna Takes Control of Central Town (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ahlu Sunna Takes Control of Central Town (Page 1 of 1): "Guri'el — Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a group have taken control of Guri'el district in central Somalia after heavy fighting with Al-shabab group, witnesses said on Saturday.

Ten people have been killed and more than six others have been injured in Guri'el town on Saturday morning when the two groups fought in and around the town.

Heavy machine guns and mortar shelling were used in the fighting and the two groups fought the third time in the town.

Sectarian violence in Somalia had not been common, but as Al-Shabab try to extend their influence in Somalia, the more moderate groups like Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a organization may try to neutralize Al-Shabaab influence triggering further bloodshed.

Ahlu Sunna Waljamaa is a religious organization with no political ambitions, but al-Shebab is fighting for to rule Somalia and impose Sharia Law."

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Explosion Kills Three Ethiopian Soldiers (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Explosion Kills Three Ethiopian Soldiers (Page 1 of 1): "Afgoi — Heavy explosion targeted to the Ethiopian troops have killed at least three Ethiopian soldiers and injured more others in Afgoi town 30 kilometers south of Mogadishu city on Saturday, witnesses told Shabelle radio.

'The explosion was a remote controlled landmine that was targeted to the Ethiopian troops who were passing around the livestock market and they were going to their military base in Afgoi town in Lower Shabelle region. Three Ethiopian soldiers have been killed in that blast and more other Ethiopian troops have also been wounded,' one resident said.

More Ethiopian troops have arrived the scene of the blast and halted the transportation and movement of the people in Afgoi and the troops have conducted search operations around the area where the accident of the blast occurred this morning."

Gaza.jpg (JPEG Image, 3640x2240 pixels) - Scaled (23%)

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Gaza toll nears 300 amid new raids

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Gaza toll nears 300 amid new raids: "Palestinian medics say that more than 280 people have been killed and more than 600 injured in a second day of Israeli bombing of the impoverished Gaza Strip.

A police station and a factory were among the targets reportedly hit on Sunday, after a mosque and the headquarters of al-Aqsa television had been struck overnight.

Reports say the latest air attacks have hit Gaza City, Khan Yunis and Jabaliya, in the north.

The Reuters news agency reported that at least one missile hit the offices of Ismail Haniya, the Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip, but he was not in the building at the time."

Informed Comment

Informed Comment
The Israelis on Saturday killed 5% of all the Palestinians they have killed since the beginning of 2001! 230 people were slaughtered in a day, over 70 of them innocent civilians. In contrast, from the ceasefire Hamas announced in June, 2008 until Saturday, no Israelis had been killed by Hamas. The infliction of this sort of death toll is known in the law of war as a disproportionate response, and it is a war crime.

Can there be any doubt who the real terrorists are? US definition fits perfectly :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it

Can there be any doubt who the real terrorists are? US definition fits perfectly :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it: "December 27, 2008

The patience of all decent men must surely be exhausted.

Today’s slaughter of innocents in Gaza, with at least 230 reported killed in raids on 'Hamas terror operatives' (as the Israeli military put it), amounted to 'a mass execution', said Hamas.

Can there now be any doubt who the real terrorists are?

The killing spree couldn’t have happened without the tacit approval of America, Britain and the EU. The political pea-brains that direct the pro-Israel western alliance were partying, gorging themselves on Christmas fare or binge-shopping while this massacre of hungry women and children and their despairing menfolk in Gaza was being planned and executed.

According to the US's own definition of terrorism Israel is squarely in the frame. Under Section 3 of Executive Order 13224 …

ei: Gaza massacres must spur us to action

ei: Gaza massacres must spur us to action: "'I will play music and celebrate what the Israeli air force is doing.' Those were the words, spoken on Al Jazeera today by Ofer Shmerling, an Israeli civil defense official in the Sderot area adjacent to Gaza, as images of Israel's latest massacres were broadcast around the world.

A short time earlier, US-supplied Israeli F-16 warplanes and Apache helicopters dropped over 100 bombs on dozens of locations in the Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip killing at least 195 persons and injuring hundreds more. Many of these locations were police stations located, like police stations the world over, in the middle of civilian areas. The US government was one of the first to offer its support for Israel's attacks, and others will follow.

Reports said that many of the dead were Palestinian police officers. Among those Israel labels 'terrorists' were more than a dozen traffic police officers undergoing training. An as yet unknown numb…

        Bush Winks at Israel’s Slaughter in Gaza, While Obama and Clinton Are Silent              : Information

        Bush Winks at Israel’s Slaughter in Gaza, While Obama and Clinton Are Silent              : Information
Israel recklessly bombed Gaza on Saturday, killing at least 205 Palestinians and wounding at least 350 more, according to Palestinian health officials.

This wholly disproportionate response to Hamas’s immoral but largely ineffective rocket attacks on Israel is guaranteed to further enflame the Middle East.

Not lost on anyone there will be the Bush Administration’s winking at Israel’s attacks.

White Houses spokesman Gordon Johndroe laid all the blame on Hamas.

"Hamas's continued rocket attacks into Israel must cease if the violence is to stop," Johndroe said.

Then even as he gave a perfunctory nod toward safeguarding civilians, he showed no displeasure with Israel going after Hamas: "The United States urges Israel to avoid civilian casualties as it targets Hamas in Gaza," Johndroe said.

Meanwhile, President-elect Barack Obama and Secretary of State-to-be Hill…

Obama on Gaza: ‘No Comment’ | News From Antiwar.com

Obama on Gaza: ‘No Comment’ | News From Antiwar.com: "by Justin Raimondo

“There was no immediate comment on the Israeli air strikes on Gaza from Obama, who is vacationing with his family in Hawaii, or his staff.”

This is how our incoming President has reacted to the worst attack on the Palestinian people in 20 years – by not reacting at all.

The Bush White House, of course, has responded as we all know they would: Israel-has-the-right-to-defend itself, let the killing begin, etc., ad nauseum.

And don’t expect much better from the Obama camp. Remember how he scolded the UN for daring to even discuss the Gaza situation?:

“We have to understand why Israel is forced to do this… Israel has the right to respond while seeking to minimize any impact on civilians. The Security Council should clearly and unequivocally condemn the rocket attacks… If it cannot bring itself to make these common sense points, I urge you to ensure that it does not speak at all.”

With his silence – or, at least, his v…

Gaza Voices, American Silence - by Kenneth Ring

Gaza Voices, American Silence - by Kenneth Ring: "by Kenneth Ring

Author's note: Just after this article was written, it became evident that Israel is likely to launch at least a limited attack on Gaza, which only heightens the sense of urgency for action that is advocated here.

The baby is crying again. You wake up. Cold. There is no electricity in the house; it went off during the night. For the last week – weeks, months – it has been on only sporadically. You throw on a coat and go to check on the baby. It seems listless. There is no milk in the house, and very little food. The UN shipments have stopped again, and you are not sure when they will resume.

In the other room, you hear your husband coughing. He has been sick for weeks and lately he has been spitting up blood. He has tried to get permission to get to a hospital in Israel, but every time he has been denied permission to leave.

You go outside to see if a neighbor can give you any milk. The first thing that hits you i…

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Scores dead in Israeli raid on Gaza

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Scores dead in Israeli raid on Gaza
At least 155 Palestinians have been killed in an Israeli aerial bombardment on Hamas security installations.
Israel launched air attacks across the besieged Gaza Strip on Saturday, threatening that further operations would be carried out later in the day.
Witnesses reported heavy damage as at least 30 missiles were fired on the targets.
Emergency services said that at least 200 people were also wounded.

BBC NEWS | Africa | Somalis held in Ethiopia capital

BBC NEWS | Africa | Somalis held in Ethiopia capital
Hundreds of young Somalis have been arrested in the past few days in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

A number were questioned and then released but it is thought at least 200 are still being held.

Most of the arrests took place on Tuesday night and Wednesday in the Bole area, the part of the town where most of the Somali community live.

Harold Pinter: Nobel-Winning Playwright Dies At 78

Harold Pinter: Nobel-Winning Playwright Dies At 78: "LONDON — British Nobel laureate Harold Pinter _ who produced some of his generation's most influential dramas and later became a staunch critic of the U.S.-led war in Iraq _ has died, his widow said Thursday. He was 78.

Pinter died Wednesday after a long battle with cancer, according to his second wife Antonia Fraser.

In recent years he had seized the platform offered by his 2005 Nobel Literature prize to denounce President George W. Bush, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and the war in Iraq.

But he was best known for exposing the complexities of the emotional battlefield.

His writing featured cool, menacing pauses in dialogue that reflected his characters' deep emotional struggles and spawned a new adjective found in several dictionaries: 'Pinter-esque.'

'Pinter restored theater to its basic elements: an enclosed space and unpredictable dialogue, where people are at the mercy of each other and pretense c…

www.haroldpinter.org - Politics

www.haroldpinter.org - Politics

God Bless America

Here they go again,
The Yanks in their armoured parade
Chanting their ballads of joy
As they gallop across the big world
Praising America's God.

The gutters are clogged with the dead
The ones who couldn't join in
The others refusing to sing
The ones who are losing their voice
The ones who've forgotten the tune.

The riders have whips which cut.
Your head rolls onto the sand
Your head is a pool in the dirt
Your head is a stain in the dust
Your eyes have gone out and your nose
Sniffs only the pong of the dead
And all the dead air is alive
With the smell of America's God.

Harper's index (Harper's Magazine)

Harper's index (Harper's Magazine): "Chance an American believes it is very likely that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will lead to World War III: 1 in 51

Chance an American believes that peace in the Middle East will require a military victory: 1 in 22

Military budget of Israel in 1967 expressed as a percentage of the budgets of Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, and Syria combined: 583

Israeli military budget today expressed in these terms: 1874"
read it all

25 Years of the Harper's Index : Indybay

25 Years of the Harper's Index : Indybay
Tuesday, December 23, 2008 :Harper's Magazine is marking the twenty-fifth anniversary of its popular monthly feature, the Harper's Index. The Index reports sometimes funny, often sobering political realities through statistics and unusual figures. Turn to this month's edition, and you'll find out things like how much the Bush campaign paid Enron and Halliburton for use of corporate jets during the 2000 recount, or the estimated total calories members of Congress burned giving President Bush's 2002 State of the Union standing ovations.

TomDispatch

TomDispatch: "What do you do when you notice that there seems to have been a killing spree? While the national and international media were working themselves and much of the public into a frenzy about imaginary hordes of murderers, rapists, snipers, marauders, and general rampagers among the stranded crowds of mostly poor, mostly black people in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, a group of white men went on a shooting spree across the river.

Their criminal acts were no secret but they never became part of the official story. The media demonized the city's black population for crimes that turned out not to have happened, and the retractions were, as always, too little too late. At one point FEMA sent a refrigerated 18-wheeler to pick up what a colonel in the National Guard expected to be 200 bodies in New Orleans's Superdome, only to find six, including four who died naturally and a suicide. Meanwhile, the media never paid attention to the real rampage that took place …

In Oft-Invaded Afghanistan, Many Still Admire Alberto Cairo, a Foreigner - NYTimes.com

In Oft-Invaded Afghanistan, Many Still Admire Alberto Cairo, a Foreigner - NYTimes.com: "There was the catastrophic retreat of a British expeditionary force in 1842. Nearly 150 years later came the Soviet troop withdrawal of 1989. Now, with the Taliban pressing in on this city and dominating the countryside, there are fears that this occupation, too, will eventually fail.

But whatever the outcome, Afghans of all ethnic and political stripes, even the Taliban, seem likely to count Alberto Cairo as one foreigner who left the country better than he found it."

Informed Comment

Informed Comment

Even Santa Claus is protesting the walling off of Bethlehem Some 15 percent of the 10 million Palestinians is Christian, and they are after all the original Christians. Bethlehem has a special place in their hearts because it is the birthplace of Jesus in Christian belief.

Somali president decides to resign - Mail & Guardian Online: The smart news source

Somali president decides to resign - Mail & Guardian Online: The smart news source
Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf has decided to resign and is expected to announce his departure on Saturday, his spokesperson said.

The announcement came shortly after the resignation of a politician he named prime minister last week, who said he did not want to be an obstacle to peace in the Horn of Africa nation.

"The president has already written his resignation letter and he is expected to announce it on the coming Saturday," said Hussein Mohamed Mohamud, a presidential spokesperson.

"It is not good for me to predict or explain his reasons for resigning. President Yusuf will explain everything when he resigns."

Yusuf appointed Mohamed Mohamud Guled after sacking Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein earlier this month, but Parliament and the international community backed Hussein, effectively leaving the already weak government with two prime ministers.

The president has since come un…

Iraqi Shoe Thrower, Visited in Jail, Describes Torture - NYTimes.com

Iraqi Shoe Thrower, Visited in Jail, Describes Torture - NYTimes.comBAGHDAD — The television reporter who threw his shoes at President Bush was burned by a cigarette in the hours after his arrest on Dec. 14 and was beaten so badly by Iraqi security personnel that one of his teeth was knocked out, the reporter’s brother said Sunday after a visit to the jail.

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ethiopia Accused of Killing 70 People (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ethiopia Accused of Killing 70 People (Page 1 of 1)
Dhagahbur — Western Somali liberation front (WSLF) has accused the Ethiopian troops of killing seventy Somali ethnic people in Abarsan District in Dhagahbur region, officials said on Saturday.

Sheik Ibrahim Mohamed Hassan, a leader of the Western Somali Liberation Front (WSLF), said the Ethiopian soldiers refused the bodies to be buried after killing them.

He accused the Ethiopian troops of ethnic cleansing in the region and called for the world to intervene.

There are no confirmed reports about the leader's statement.

Human Rights Watch has recently accused Ethiopia of limiting access to the region and had hit out at Western donors for failing to condemn war crimes on the mainly ethnically Somali people of the region.

Jaffa mosque daubed with 'Mohammed is a pig,' 'Death to Arabs' - Haaretz - Israel News

Jaffa mosque daubed with 'Mohammed is a pig,' 'Death to Arabs' - Haaretz - Israel News: "Extremists spray-painted 'Mohammed is a pig' and 'Death to Arabs' early Sunday on the walls and doors of the Sea Mosque in Jaffa, sparking the fury of the Islamic Movement in the mixed Arab-Jewish city.

The hate slogans also included 'Kahane was right,' a reference to the slain Rabbi Meir Kahane, founder of the outlawed anti-Arab Kach movement, and 'No peace without the House of Peace,' alluding to the Hebron structure from which dozens of far-right activists were evicted earlier this month."

A Radical Islamist Takeover Drives the Young From Somalia

A Radical Islamist Takeover Drives the Young From Somalia: "DADAAB, Kenya -- By the time Mohamed Abdi Ibrahim decided to leave Somalia, life in the southern city of Kismaayo had become, as he put it with consummate understatement, 'complicated.'

Young men there had long shouldered AK-47 assault rifles and joined clan militias. But as an Islamist militia known as al-Shabab took control this year, it had become a place where boys were paid $50 to throw bombs, soccer fields served as militia training camps, and Islamist leaders walked into classrooms to take names of potential recruits.

Ibrahim and two friends fled several months ago, just after the Shabab began beating people not attending Friday prayers and just before the group publicly stoned to death a 13-year-old girl it had convicted of adultery.

The options for young men like them, it seemed, had narrowed to two: sign up or run.

'For us, it was not good to join,' said Ibrahim, a lanky 22-year-old who fled to this…

Robert Fisk’s World: One missing word sowed the seeds of catastrophe - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent

Robert Fisk’s World: One missing word sowed the seeds of catastrophe - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent: "A nit-picker this week. And given the fact that we're all remembering human rights, the Palestinians come to mind since they have precious few of them, and the Israelis because they have the luxury of a lot of them.

And Lord Blair, since he'll be communing with God next week, might also reflect that he still – to his shame – hasn't visited Gaza. But the nit-picking has got to be our old friend United Nations Security Council Resolution 242. This, you'll recall, was supposed to be the resolution that would guide all future peace efforts in the Middle East; Oslo was supposed to have been founded on it and all sorts of other processes and summits and road maps.

It was passed in November 1967, after Israel had occupied Gaza, the West Bank, East Jerusalem, the Sinai and Golan, and it emphasises 'the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by wa…

A Legacy of Evil - by Alan Bock

A Legacy of Evil - by Alan Bock: "In what might be called their legacy interviews (their exit interviews), President Bush has tried to soften his image and project a sense of competence, while Vice President Cheney has, if anything, gone out of his way to confirm that he was the administration's Darth Vader, devoted to protecting and extending the Empire and proud of it. Perhaps because I had the opportunity to meet with Cheney early on and get some sense of him as a person, I am inclined to credit him as more reliable. Dubya, perhaps understandably, strikes me as less honest – perhaps most dishonest with himself. He has acknowledged that introspection is not exactly his thing, and there is a great deal in his record a self-aware person would have to be ashamed of."

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ethiopia Will Back Off (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Ethiopia Will Back Off (Page 1 of 1)
STATESMEN ought to have a special prize just for themselves, like fools have the Darwin wards.

The Darwin Awards commemorate very stupid people who did a service to human evolution by accidentally removing themselves from the gene pool. The statesman's equivalent could be called something like the Cheney-Zenawi Award.

I mention this because the shining stupidity of the US Vice-President and the Ethiopian Prime Minister are on special display this week, as the Ethiopian army prepares to withdraw from Somalia two years after its foredoomed invasion, leaving the country in the hands of precisely the people whom they wanted to eliminate.

We need negative role models too, and you couldn't ask for worse than this pair.

I can't actually prove that getting Ethiopia to invade Somalia was Dick Cheney's brainchild, but it smells exactly like a Dick Cheney idea: crude, violent, and barking up entirely the wrong tree. Just lik…

Tiny tribe claim Ethiopian allegiance in border row with Eritrea - Yahoo! News

Tiny tribe claim Ethiopian allegiance in border row with Eritrea - Yahoo! News


DOHAN, Ethiopia (AFP) – Groups of children giggling as they walk home from school in the shadow of Mount Asimba and the timeless stillness of Ethiopia's northeastern highland convey a deceptive sense of peace.

After living in this region for more than 700 years, the tiny Irob ethnic group is torn, in its heart, by the border with Eritrea and engaged in a futile struggle for recognition dwarfed by the regional conflict pitting the two rival nations.

A few miles from the front line, where tens of thousands of Ethiopian and Eritrean troops have been facing off for years, on the brink of war, children return from school on a dusty trail.

The mountainous region in northeastern Ethiopia was ravaged by the border conflict that left some 80,000 dead between 1998 and 2000.

The border subsequently drawn by an international UN-backed commission in a bid to end the war left the bulk of the Irob territory on Eritrea'…

Press TV - Karzai: US forces alienated Afghans

Press TV - Karzai: US forces alienated Afghans
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has criticized the US strategy in troop deployment, admitting his government's mistake concerning security.

In an interview with the Chicago Tribune, Karzai blamed US operational strategy as a key element in alienating the Afghan tribes with "extrajudicial killings", leading to the fragile security condition in the country.

He said the NATO forces should have focused on fighting insurgents in their hideouts in neighboring Pakistan.

"For years, I've been saying that the war on terrorism is not in Afghanistan, that it's in the training camps, it's in sanctuaries," Karzai noted, adding that the US officials ignored the warnings.

Karzai reiterated that concentrating more troops around the Afghan capital was not a good idea and called for clarification of responsibilities of the ISAF forces and the Afghan government.

President Hamid Karzai has grown increasingly impatient with the Ame…

Iraqi+Hero+Muntazer+al+Zeidi+.jpg (image)

ACLU Blog: Because Freedom Can’t Blog Itself: Official Blog of the American Civil Liberties Union » A Call to Action for Women of All Beliefs

ACLU Blog: Because Freedom Can’t Blog Itself: Official Blog of the American Civil Liberties Union » A Call to Action for Women of All Beliefs
Lisa Valentine’s arrest on Tuesday is yet another example of the discrimination that Muslim women who wear hijab (headscarves) face on a daily basis. Valentine was told that she could not enter the courthouse in Douglasville, Georgia, unless she removed her hijab, and was jailed for contempt of court when she refused to do so. “I just felt stripped of my civil, my human rights,” the AP reported Valentine saying. The ACLU of Georgia has expressed grave concern over policies that deny court access to Muslim women and followers of other faiths who wear religious headgear.

Muslim women and girls have been prohibited from wearing their headcoverings in a number of contexts. They have been fired from jobs, thrown off school sports teams, denied access to public places, and otherwise discriminated against because they wear hijab.

This isn’t just a Muslim …