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Showing posts from August, 2008

allAfrica.com: Somalia: UIC Hails Ethiopian Troop's Withdrawal Announcement (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: UIC Hails Ethiopian Troop's Withdrawal Announcement (Page 1 of 1): "The Islamic courts union has hailed Ethiopian prime minister's remarks on the withdrawal of his troops from Somalia even if the Somali government doesn't become stable.
Speaking to Shabelle radio the spokesman of the group Sheikh Abdi Rahin Isse Addow has stated that it was laudable the announcement of Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawe on the pull out of the Ethiopian troops saying' it was positive'"

Why we love 'America's Outrageous War Economy' - MarketWatch

Why we love 'America's Outrageous War Economy' - MarketWatch: "ARROYO GRANDE, Calif. (MarketWatch) -- Yes, America's economy is a war economy. Not a 'manufacturing' economy. Not an 'agricultural' economy. Nor a 'service' economy. Not even a 'consumer' economy.
Seriously, I looked into your eyes, America, saw deep into your soul. So let's get honest and officially call it 'America's Outrageous War Economy.' Admit it: we secretly love our war economy. And that's the answer to Jim Grant's thought-provoking question last month in the Wall Street Journal -- 'Why No Outrage?'"

blackagendareport.com - Obama’s Choice of Biden: ‘The Devil Made Me Do It.”

blackagendareport.com - Obama’s Choice of Biden: ‘The Devil Made Me Do It.”: "Flip Wilson's comedic character 'Geraldine' knew who to blame for her own indiscretions: 'The Devil made me do it.' The same goes for Barack Obama who, his supporters are quick to explain, is blameless for his political sins and betrayals. The 'white folks' made him do it, or 'the polls' made him do it - but never the candidate, himself. However, it will be hard to find a devil to blame for Obama's choice of Sen. Joe Biden - 'as much a war monger as George Bush' - as his running mate. The fact is, Obama 'was never a progressive - he just briefly played one to win points in an Illinois Democratic primary election six years ago.' Let the Devil be."

S. Ossetia to be absorbed into Russia - UPI.com

S. Ossetia to be absorbed into Russia - UPI.com
TSKHINVALI, Georgia, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- South Ossetia says it will become part of Russia and host Russian military bases under a new agreement.

The former province of Georgia will be absorbed into Russia, declared Trazan Kokoity, deputy speaker of South Ossetia's parliament in Tskhivali, only three days after Russia recognized the Georgian breakaway provinces of South Ossetia and Abkhazia to be independent states, The Times of London reported Saturday.

   Jimmy Carter Conspicuously Absent From Podium       : Information Clearing House - ICH

   Jimmy Carter Conspicuously Absent From Podium       : Information Clearing House - ICH
Denver — Former president Jimmy Carter’s controversial views on Israel cost him a place on the podium at the Democratic Party convention in late August, senior Democratic operatives acknowledged to the Forward.

Breaking with the tradition of giving speech time to living former presidents, convention organizers honored Carter with only a short video clip highlighting his work with Hurricane Katrina victims and a brief walk across the Pepsi Center stage.

The sidelining of Carter was driven by recognition in the Obama camp and among Democratic leaders that giving the former president a prominent convention spot might alienate Jewish voters.

“What more could we do to diss Jimmy Carter?” said a Democratic official who was involved in deliberations on how to handle the former president’s presence at the convention. The treatment Carter received, the official added, “reflects the bare minimum that could be …

withdraw+georgia+iraq+palestine.jpg (image)

BBC NEWS | Africa | Ethiopia hints at leaving Somalia

BBC NEWS | Africa | Ethiopia hints at leaving Somalia
Ethiopia invaded its neighbour in 2006 to oust an Islamist militia and re-install the transitional government.

He told the UK's Financial Times paper that financial pressures had to be taken into account and said the commitment was not open ended.

The withdrawal of Ethiopians is a key demand of the Islamist insurgents.

Al-Shabab, the radical wing of the Islamists who controlled much of Somalia in 2006, has refused to recognise a recent UN-brokered agreement the interim government has signed with an opposition group including a top Islamist leader.

It has demanded that Ethiopian troops leave Somalia before any ceasefire is considered.

Somalia has experienced almost constant civil conflict since the collapse of Mohamed Siad Barre's regime in January 1991.

'Lose patience'

"The operation has been extremely expensive so we will have to balance the domestic pressures on the one hand and pressures in Somalia on the other and …

Rep. Dennis Kucinich: “Wake Up America!” : Information Clearing House - ICH

Rep. Dennis Kucinich: “Wake Up America!” : Information Clearing House - ICH
Former presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich delivered one of the most passionate addresses Tuesday night. “Wake up, America. We went into Iraq for oil. The oil companies want more,” Kucinich said. “War against Iran will mean $10-a-gallon gasoline. The oil administration wants to drill more, into your wallet. Wake up, America. Weapons contractors want more. An Iran war will cost 5 to 10 trillion dollars.”

IRIN Asia | Asia | Philippines | PHILIPPINES: UN appeals for peace as fighting escalates in south | Early Warning Conflict Refugees/IDPs | News Item

IRIN Asia | Asia | Philippines | PHILIPPINES: UN appeals for peace as fighting escalates in south | Early Warning Conflict Refugees/IDPs | News Item: "MANILA, 25 August 2008 (IRIN) - UN agencies have appealed for peace in the southern Philippines, where fighting between government forces and Muslim separatist rebels has escalated over the past two weeks and the number displaced is now over 270,000.

In a 22 August statement, the UN Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) said civilian lives were at risk as a result of fighting between the army and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), which has been attacking, and trying to take control of, civilian communities in the southern island of Mindanao.

'It is with great concern that we witness the deteriorating humanitarian situation in various parts of Mindanao as a result of the recent upsurge in conflict,' the IASC stated. 'Many civilians have lost their lives and many more are at risk.'

Aswat Aliraq

Aswat Aliraq: "DIALA, Aug. 25 (VOI) – A massive demonstration will be staged on Tuesday against the entry of Iraqi security forces into Khaneqeen district, the mayor of the district said on Monday, noting that the forces set up checkpoints throughout Khaneqeen.
“Large Iraqi army force entered Khaneqeen today and set up checkpoints,” Mohamed Mulla Hassan told Aswat al-Iraq – Voices of Iraq (VOI).
“There are political reasons behind the entry of the forces because they entered in the pretext of hunting down gunmen in a region, which is considered one of the most stable regions in Iraq,” Hassan added.
“Residents, local administration and Kurdish parties reject this interference and will announce that during the protest tomorrow,” he also said.
Last July, thousands of Iraqi soldiers and police launched a major security operation dubbed as Bashaer al-Kheir (Promise of Good) in northeastern Diala province in the latest move by the government to assert its authority over militants.
Diala pro…

Joe Biden: I am a Zionist : Information Clearing House - ICH

Joe Biden: I am a Zionist : Information Clearing House - ICH: "Joe Biden: I am a Zionist

US Senator Joe Biden, candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, speaks with Shalom TV CEO Mark S. Golub on Israel and Jewish-related issues in this exclusive interview.

Shalom TV is an American Jewish cable television network carried on Comcast and Blue Ridge cable systems. Complete programming information is available online at http://www.shalomtv.com"

: Information Clearing House - ICH

: Information Clearing House - ICH: The selection of Senator Joseph Biden as the vice-presidential candidate of the Democratic Party underscores the fraudulent character of the Democratic primary campaign and the undemocratic character of the entire two-party electoral system. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, the supposed protagonist of “change,” has picked as his running-mate a fixture of the Washington establishment, a six-term US senator who is a proven defender of American imperialism and the interests of big business.

The rollout of the Biden selection over three days of escalating media attention, culminating in the text-message announcement early Saturday and a kickoff rally in Springfield, Illinois, is a metaphor for the entire Obama campaign. His presidential candidacy represents not an insurgency from below, but an effort to manipulate mass sentiments, using Internet technology and slick marketing techniques, aided by a compliant media, to produce a p…

Air Terror: American Terrorism.

BBC NEWS | South Asia | Strike 'killed 60 young Afghans': "There is convincing evidence that 60 children and 30 adults were killed in a US air strike in western Afghanistan last Friday, the United Nations says.

The US originally said its planes had killed 30 militants in the attack in the province of Herat.

President Karzai sacked two senior Afghan army officers over the incident. The US says Afghan forces led the operation in the district of Shindand."

BBC NEWS | Europe | Russia recognises Georgian rebels

BBC NEWS | Europe | Russia recognises Georgian rebels: "President Dmitry Medvedev has declared that Russia formally recognises the independence of the breakaway Georgian regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

The move follows a vote in both houses of parliament on Monday, which called on Moscow to recognise the regions.

The move, in defiance of a specific plea from the US president, provoked a wave of protest from Western countries.

Russia and Georgia fought a brief war this month over the provinces, which already had de facto independence.

Analysts say the move is likely to further escalate tensions between Russia and the West."

Israel Unable To Stop Liberty: Report from SS Liberty docked in Gaza : Information Clearing House - ICH

Israel Unable To Stop Liberty: Report from SS Liberty docked in Gaza : Information Clearing House - ICH: "By Yvonne Ridley

25/08/08 'ICH' -- - 24/08/08 - Gaza-- I was too overwhelmed yesterday to put pen to paper after the magnificent welcome I and my fellow peace activists from SS Liberty and SS Free Gaza received as we entered the port of Gaza ... the first ships to sail in since 1967.

But I really want to make one thing very clear to you here and now.

Israel did not give us permission to enter Gaza - the reality is they could NOT STOP us even if they tried.

And believe me some of the tactics to scupper our historic voyage were unbelievable.

Some of us, our family and friends have received death threats by telephone, text and emails while the whole Free Gaza Movement was targetted by Zionists lawyers who tried to sink our mission beofre it even began.
We were accused of being a front for a Hamas operarted gun-running venture and even iran was accused of being party …

allAfrica.com: Ethiopia: Urban Poor Finding It Harder to Get Food (Page 1 of 2)

allAfrica.com: Ethiopia: Urban Poor Finding It Harder to Get Food (Page 1 of 2)
Addis Ababa

Fatuma Ali and Tieba Hussein left Hara village in Wollo, Amhara region of northeastern Ethiopia with some of their neighbours, believing that they could improve their livelihoods in the capital city, Addis Ababa.

"Our husbands decided to stay in the village with the children," Fatuma, a mother of three, told IRIN as her sister and mother of one looked on. "If rain comes, we will return to the village."

Like various villages across Ethiopia, Hara did not receive adequate precipitation in the short, or belg rainy season, which usually begins in February and ends in late April or early May.

As a result, local residents have had to endure serious food and water shortages. The situation was exacerbated by a poor harvest from the 2007 meher growing season.

Fatuma and Tieba worked hard to help their husbands try and get a good harvest. "After harvest, we sold the produce in the mark…

allAfrica.com: Somalia: 'Djibouti Agreement Does Not Concern Us' - Al Shabaab (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Somalia: 'Djibouti Agreement Does Not Concern Us' - Al Shabaab (Page 1 of 1): "A spokesman for Somalia's al Shabaab insurgent group has rejected a peace agreement signed between the country's interim government and the opposition Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia (ARS).

Muktar Robow 'Abu Mansur,' the al Shabaab spokesman, told local radio stations that 'the Djibouti Agreement does not concern us [al Shabaab].'"

New Guidelines Would Give F.B.I. Broader Powers - NYTimes.com

New Guidelines Would Give F.B.I. Broader Powers - NYTimes.com: "WASHINGTON — A Justice Department plan would loosen restrictions on the Federal Bureau of Investigation to allow agents to open a national security or criminal investigation against someone without any clear basis for suspicion, Democratic lawmakers briefed on the details said Wednesday.

The plan, which could be made public next month, has already generated intense interest and speculation. Little is known about its precise language, but civil liberties advocates say they fear it could give the government even broader license to open terrorism investigations."

Ethiopian Olympic Committee failed our athletes and country :: Ethiopian Review

Ethiopian Olympic Committee failed our athletes and country :: Ethiopian Review
By ER reader

What a beautiful joy to see our athletes wining their race and representing our Ethiopia in the international venues such as Beijing where the world is focusing for the last two weeks, their effort s presented to the world the other side of our Ethiopia than the poverty, famine or hunger (though Woyanne is playing games with these words).

Like most of Ethiopians, I waited for hours to see our athletes at the opening ceremony, and the moment came but my long wait was in vain. Instead I saw unknown individuals, except Miruts Yifter holding the flag, representing Ethiopia in one of the best event ever held and watched by billions of people around the world. I said where is Haile, Tirunesh, Kenenisa, Meseret, Berhane, Gete or even Derartu or Fatuma?

Then I started to look into why our athletes were not part on the opening ceremony, and the first reason which came is shortage of budget! The Ethiopian g…

Georgia-Russia conflict a blow to Bush foreign policy

Georgia-Russia conflict a blow to Bush foreign policy: "Since the Georgia conflict erupted, Bush has repeatedly cited it progress toward democracy as he promised American support. 'The people of Georgia have cast their lot with the free world, and we will not cast them aside,' he said.

Faced with a massive deployment of Russian military power, however, the U.S. response was confined to condemning Moscow's actions, pushing for humanitarian aid and pressing Georgia to accept a cease-fire agreement brokered by France that would leave Russian troops still inside Georgia's two breakaway enclaves.

'What freedom strategy?' asked David L. Phillips, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and author of a report on Georgia. 'It is scorned worldwide. Afghanistan is backsliding. The bar has been set low in Iraq. Georgia is in ruins.'

The damage may not be confined to Georgia, many analysts believe.

The U.S. had intended to renew its push for expanding the North At…

Al Jazeera English - CENTRAL/S. ASIA - Pakistan's Musharraf steps down

Al Jazeera English - CENTRAL/S. ASIA - Pakistan's Musharraf steps down: "Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan's president, has said he will resign from his position, following months of pressure form the country's civilian government.

The move, which came in a televised address to the nation on Monday, is intended to help him avoid impeachment charges drawn up by the ruling coalition.

'After consultations with my legal advisers and close political friends, for the country and the nation today, I am deciding to resign from my office,' Musharraf said.

'I am leaving with the satisfaction that whatever I did for this country and the population, I did with honesty and commitment.

'But I am also a human being,' he added. 'I might have made some mistakes, but I have hope that this nation and the population will tolerate those mistakes with the belief that my intentions were always clear and to the benefit of this country.'"

blackagendareport.com - New York Times Attempts to Define and Dictate Black Politics

blackagendareport.com - New York Times Attempts to Define and Dictate Black Politics
The Sunday magazine of the nation's most influential newspaper predicts that Black politics as we know it is headed for extinction, that Barack Obama's "brand of ‘race-neutrality' shows Black politics is obsolete, and should be abandoned." Of course, that's wishful thinking from a hostile quarter, based on assumptions that all Black politics is electoral, Blacks are becoming more conservative, and a generational crisis deeply divides Black America - none of which is true. However, Blacks have been set up for a fall. "To the extent that African Americans expect more from Barack Obama than they got from Bill Clinton, they will be devastatingly disappointed."

GeorgiaRussiaUsNatoOssetiaMoralGrounds.gif (GIF Image, 3472x1520 pixels) - Scaled (29%)

BBC NEWS | World | Africa | Somali minibus attack toll rises

BBC NEWS | World | Africa | Somali minibus attack toll rises: "More bodies have been discovered in Somalia, near the scene of an attack on two minibuses outside Mogadishu.

Local people returning to their farms after the attack said they had found a further 16 bodies, bringing to nearly 60 the number of civilians killed.

The Ethiopian forces started shooting after their military convoy was hit by a roadside bomb, witnesses said.

The transitional government backed by Ethiopian troops threw out Islamists in 2006, but unrest is continuing.

Islamist insurgents have been carrying out frequent raids in the Mogadishu area.

After the latest attack on minibuses, witness Sahra Nor Osma told the Associated Press news agency: 'Ethiopian convoys opened fire into different areas where thousands of displaced people were living; they killed everyone on the road.'"

Squashed by Tank - The Washington Note

Squashed by Tank - The Washington NoteThis video of a seemingly innocent taxi getting demolished by a tank in Iraq has awakened in me all of the reasons we must withdraw from that country.

American soldiers are too distant from the fate of Iraqis and on a systems basis can't ever act in their interests. Acting in their own interests -- and America's in a perverse way -- means lots of taxis will be squashed and many innocent Iraqis killed.

And this leads to blowback, just as it would if it happened in the U.S.

Mr. Bush, Enough!! - Pravda.Ru

Mr. Bush, Enough!! - Pravda.Ru: "So you have the colossal audacity, Mr. Bush, to “warn” Russia to pull back? As the wanton, perverse war criminal under whose watch the world saw the crime known as “shock and awe” committed, I’d say you were well out of your mind to suggest that Russia should pull back.
What’s a little shock and awe among inferior people we want to rob and destroy, eh?

What do human beings need an infrastructure for?

Why do they need clean water? Why do they need electricity?

What’s a little torture?

What’s a little regime change? Don’t recall when that was a goal of yours?

What’s a little deviant, perverted sexual experimentation and humiliation?

What’s a few secret detention camps?

What’s wrong with destroying an environment for 4 billion years and generations after generations of people? After all, they’re just rag heads, aren’t they Mr. Bush? "

Garowe Online - Home

Garowe Online - HomeM ore than 50 people were killed in Somalia's capital Mogadishu since Thursday in some of the worst violence in weeks, Radio Garowe reported.

Fighting sparked Thursday afternoon along a key road that connects Mogadishu's Aden Adde International Airport and the Villa Somalia presidential palace after suspected insurgents attacked government security forces.

The road was closed as President Abdullahi Yusuf and Prime Minister Nur "Adde" Hassan Hussein traveled to the airport on their way to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where the African Union plans to mediate between the two leaders. [ Full story]

One Ethiopian soldier was killed in the initial blast. Four civilians were killed when the Ethiopian soldiers opened gunfire afterwards, according to witnesses.

In a separate attack, two Ethiopian soldiers and three civilians were killed when a hidden landmine exploded, destroying an army vehicle and a civilian car near Arbiska area.

Ethiopian troops traveling in the…

The Daily Star - Politics - Ethiopian troops kill five civilians in Somali bus

The Daily Star - Politics - Ethiopian troops kill five civilians in Somali bus
MOGADISHU: Ethiopian forces killed five Somali civilians and wounded seven others when they opened fire on a minibus south of Mogadishu, witnesses and elders told AFP Thursday.

The Ethiopian troops had earlier been attacked by Islamist insurgents and reputedly mistook the minibus - travelling south from Mogadishu to Wanlaweyn - as hostile, the witnesses said.

"They were ambushed by insurgents hours before they opened fire on the bus. The bodies of five civilians killed in the incident were brought to Wanlaweyn," local elder Adan Nur Jisow said. Witnesses said that the driver survived but seven others were wounded.

"The driver told us that the Ethiopian forces sprayed gunfire on the minibus ... It was dark and maybe they could not identify whether they were insurgents or civilians," resident Mohammad Sheikh Yusuf said.

Free Iraq

Free Iraq
"The Iraq Intelligence Chief, Tahir Jalil Habbush — a man still carrying with $1 million reward for capture, the Jack of Diamonds in Bush’s famous deck of wanted men [emphasis added]— has been America’s secret source on Iraq. Starting in January of 2003, with Blair and Bush watching, his secret reports began to flow to officials on both sides of the Atlantic, saying that there were no WMD and that Hussein was acting so odd because of fear that the Iranians would find out he was a toothless tiger. The U.S. deep-sixed the intelligence report in February, “resettled” Habbush to a safe house in Jordan during the invasion and then paid him $5 million [emphasis added] in what could only be considered hush money.
In the fall of 2003, after the world learned there were no WMD — as Habbush had foretold — the White House ordered the CIA to carry out a deception. The mission: create a handwritten letter, dated July, 2001, from Habbush to Saddam saying that Atta trained in Iraq befor…

How Tenet Betrayed the CIA on WMD in Iraq - by Gareth Porter

How Tenet Betrayed the CIA on WMD in Iraq - by Gareth Porter: "Tenet has called the story of the Habbush prewar intelligence a 'complete fabrication,' claiming Habbush had 'failed to persuade' the British that he had 'anything new to offer by way of intelligence.' His statement actually reinforces Suskind's account, however, by indicating that he had simply chosen not to believe Habbush. 'There were many Iraqi officials who said both publicly and privately that Iraq had no WMD,' said the statement, 'but our foreign intelligence colleagues and we assessed that these individuals were parroting the Ba'ath Party line and trying to delay any coalition attack.'

Contradicting Tenet's claim that the British did not take the Habbush report seriously, MI6 director Dearlove told Suskind he had asked Prime Minister Tony Blair why he had not acted on the intelligence from Habbush."

McClatchy Washington Bureau | 08/10/2008 | United States holds little leverage over Russia in Georgia conflict

McClatchy Washington Bureau | 08/10/2008 | United States holds little leverage over Russia in Georgia conflict
WASHINGTON — Even as it accused Russia of using "disproportionate" force in the conflict over Georgia's rebel South Ossetia province, the United States on Saturday found itself with few diplomatic or military options to deter Moscow's ferocious air and ground assault.

In fact, most of the key cards, including the power to veto any United Nations Security Council resolution, were held by Russia, which appeared to be using the crisis to ram home to the United State and its allies that it will not accept further expansion of NATO. Both Georgia and the former Soviet republic of Ukraine are seeking to join the alliance.

The Russian invasion "sends a message to all of the countries in the former Soviet space that Russia is resurgent and is willing to flex it muscles," said David Phillips, an expert with the Atlantic Council.

"This is Russia's assert…

The tragic last moments of Margaret Hassan - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent

The tragic last moments of Margaret Hassan - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent: "For some in the Al Jazeera studios these archives are intensely personal. 'I trained Ali Khatib – he was a great reporter,' I am told. 'The war was almost declared at an end in Iraq and he went out with our cameraman to cover some story and, while he's approaching an American checkpoint, you can hear an American soldier on the tape say 'Stop – you have to go back'. And then the soldier just shot at them and killed both of them. Ali had got married two weeks earlier.'

For some, the videotapes will always be too much. When I met Margaret's husband Tahseen in his Baghdad home after her murder, he was a picture of courage and mourning. There were terrible times. 'I would come home and sit here and weep,' he told me then. 'I would sit here sometimes and go out of my mind crying and sobbing. I don't think insurgents did this. I don't think Iraqi …

The US Government Is the Real Bioterror Threat - by Ivan Eland

The US Government Is the Real Bioterror Threat - by Ivan Eland
Assuming the federal government has, after almost seven years, finally identified the perpetrator of the anthrax attacks in 2001 – admittedly a generous assumption given that for most of those years, it pursued, hounded, embarrassed, and ruined the career of the wrong man – larger dangers remain. As is normally the case with issues surrounding terrorism, the average citizen will probably be shocked to learn that their government is often a bigger threat than the terrorists. Remember the CIA's creation of the 9/11 threat by supporting the most radical Islamist groups fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan during the 1980s and then the U.S. government's provocation of terrorist attacks from those same militants by its non-Islamic military presence in Islamic Persian Gulf countries in the 1990s, which had continued unnecessarily subsequent to the first Gulf War.

Similarly, in the case of bioterrorism, the threat from the g…

Ethiopia: Pain amid Plenty :: Ethiopian Review

Ethiopia: Pain amid Plenty :: Ethiopian Review: "Paleontologists hunting fossils of early man in the Rift Valley of southern Ethiopia call the area the cradle of mankind. This year it's bursting with life, especially in the fields where local farmers grow barley, potatoes and teff, a cereal used to make the flat, spongy bread injera. As a warm July rain falls on a patchwork of smallholdings half a day's walk from the nearest road, the women harvest yams, the men plow behind sturdy oxen and fat chickens, goats and cows roam outside mud huts. And yet for all the apparent abundance, this area is so short of food that many are dying from starvation.

All morning, the hills above the village of Kersa have echoed with the wails of women walking in from the fields. They gather on a patch of open grass before a stretcher made from freshly cut bamboo, bound and laid with banana leaves. On it is a small bundle wrapped in a red-and-blue blanket. An imam calls the crowd together, asks …

VOA News - Afghanistan Coalition Says 4 Women, Child Killed in Offensive Against Militants

VOA News - Afghanistan Coalition Says 4 Women, Child Killed in Offensive Against Militants
U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan say Friday they inadvertently killed four women and a child while battling militants in central Afghanistan.
A U.S. military spokeswoman, Lieutenant Colonel Rumi Nelson-Green, says the civilians were killed Thursday as troops moved in on a key Taliban militant in the Giro district of central Ghazni province.

She says armed militants threatened coalition forces, which responded with small-arms fire, killing several Taliban as well as the women and the child. Three militants were arrested.

The U.S. military called the deaths "inadvertent" and promised a full investigation.

About 2,500 people, including civilians, have been killed so far this year during fighting between coalition forces and militants.

Garowe Online - Home

Garowe Online - Home: "MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — Mortar shells slammed into a residential area in Somalia's capital, killing at least 10 people — including a mother and her child, witnesses and a hospital official said Tuesday.

The bloodshed Monday came as Ethiopian troops backing Somalia's shaky government battled Islamic insurgents who have been fighting an Iraq-style guerrilla war for more than a year. Thousands of civilians have been killed.

'There were 40 of us gathered under a wall to shield us from the mortars, but one landed near us,' Mogadishu resident Shamsa Kheyre told The Associated Press from her hospital bed.

Kheyre said she saw six bodies — including a mother and her young son. Another resident, Shekhey Nur Ahmed, said he and his friends collected the bodies of four people nearby.

'All of them died because of mortar shelling fired from the Ethiopian base,' Ahmed said.

Long one of the world's most violent cities, Mogadishu has been decimated i…

For Kenya, a month of attacks, then quick progress | csmonitor.com

For Kenya, a month of attacks, then quick progress | csmonitor.com: "Nairobi, Kenya - In the first few days following the Dec. 27 election, many Kenyans didn't realize – or didn't accept – that they had a problem. Horrific ethnic violence – Kalenjins and Luos attacking Kikuyus – flared in the Rift Valley and western Nyanza provinces. But many African academics, aid workers, and politicians in Nairobi predicted that the 'disturbances' would last for just a few days, like a teakettle letting off steam.

Ensconced in the State House – the official presidential residence – President Mwai Kibaki continued to insist that the Dec. 27 elections were legitimate and he'd been reelected. International observers called the elections 'flawed.' The opposition, holed up in their own headquarters (ominously dubbed 'the Pentagon'), continued to cry foul, and to urge for peaceful mass action. As each side claimed victory, the country burned.

'I don't know w…

Bush Proposes Regulatory Change to Ease Spying

Bush Proposes Regulatory Change to Ease Spying: "With these Bush guys, you’ve got to read the fine print.

On July 31, they published in the Federal Register a proposed change to Title 28, Section 23, of the Code of Federal Regulations.

This is the section that governs domestic spying.

The existing language said that information gathered in an intelligence case could be disseminated only “where there is a need to know and a right to know the information in the performance of a law enforcement activity.”

This limitation was designed to protect “the privacy and constitutional rights of individuals,” the statute behind this section states.

Well, that limitation would be null and void.

The new regulations would allow dissemination “when the information falls within the law enforcement, counterterrorism, or national security responsibility of the receiving agency or may assist in preventing crime or the use of violence or any conduct dangerous to human life or property.”

Boy, you can’t get mu…

Held Hostage For Six Years In Guantanamo  : Information Clearing House - ICH

Held Hostage For Six Years In Guantanamo  : Information Clearing House - ICH
Silvia Cattori : What kind of torture did they subject you to?

Sami El Haj : All kinds of physical and psychological torture. As all the detainees were Muslim, the camp administration subjected them to many forms of harassment and humiliation linked to religion. With my own eyes I saw soldiers tearing up the Qur’an and throwing it in the toilet. I saw them, during interrogation sessions, sitting on the Qur’an until their questions were answered. They insulted our families and our religion. They made fun of us by pretending to ring our God, asking him to come and save us. The only Imam at the camp was accused of complicity with the detainees and was sent away, in 2005, for refusing to tell visitors that the camp respected religious freedom.

They beat us up. They taunted us with racist insults. They locked us in cold rooms, below zero, with one cold meal a day. They hung us up by our hands. They deprived us of sle…

Held Hostage For Six Years In Guantanamo  : Information Clearing House - ICH

Held Hostage For Six Years In Guantanamo  : Information Clearing House - ICH

Standing straight and tall, an impressive and deeply introspective man, Sami El Haj walks with a limp and the help of a walking stick. Neither laughter nor smiles light up the refined face of this man, old before his time. A deep sadness pervades him. He was 32 years old when, in December 2001, his life, like that of tens of thousands of other Muslims, became a horrific nightmare.

He endured horrendous suffering. Weakened by a hunger strike which lasted 438 days, set free on the 1st May 2008, he greets you attentively and with a gentle manner. He calmly tells you of a world whose paralyzing, suffocating horror is beyond your comprehension.
He is the first of the released detainees from the camps built by the Bush administration at the Guantánamo Bay naval base to be authorised to travel.

“I came to Geneva, the city of the United Nations and freedom, [1] to ask for the law to be respected, to demand the closure of…

Bomb kills Ugandan peacekeeper in Somalia

Bomb kills Ugandan peacekeeper in Somalia: "A roadside bomb killed a Ugandan peacekeeper in the Somali capital Friday, witnesses and an official said, breaking a brief period of relative quiet following a peace agreement between some of the fighting factions.

The explosion occurred near the Ugandan base at Mogadishu's international airport, said Ugandan commander Col. Godfrey Golooba.

Keyse Ali, a witness, said the bomb was hidden in a pile of garbage and exploded as the soldiers were making routine checks on the road. The blast knocked Ali back several yards.

Muhyadin Nor, another witness, said the area was covered in blood.

A spokesman for the African Union said the peacekeepers would continue their efforts.

'Unfortunately, this is not the first attack against our troops in Mogadishu,' said El-Ghassim Wane at the AU's headquarters in Ethiopia. 'But we are as determined as ever to carry out the mandate of the mission. ... This is an attack by elements bent on unde…

Sadr movement: U.S. should agree to go - UPI.com

Sadr movement: U.S. should agree to go - UPI.com
The Sadr Movement supports any agreement that would lead to the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, the group's foreign relations spokesman said Friday.

Sheik Hassan al-Zarqani, in an interview with Alalam News Network, said Iraqi sovereignty is a key issue for the followers of Moqtada Sadr.

Sadr in a public statement Thursday urged Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki not to sign an agreement that does not include the complete withdrawal of U.S. forces by the end of next year.

Zarqani suggested the government should wait until President George W. Bush leaves office, signing an agreement with the next administration. He criticized the Bush administration for sending mixed messages about a U.S. pullout and ignoring Iraqi opposition to any agreement that would allow U.S. forces to remain in the country.

When Extremists Attack - Swampland - TIME

When Extremists Attack - Swampland - TIME: "I have now been called antisemitic and intellectually unstable and a whole bunch of other silly things by the folks over at the Commentary blog. They want Time Magazine to fire or silence me. This is happening because I said something that is palpably true, but unspoken in polite society: There is a small group of Jewish neoconservatives who unsuccessfully tried to get Benjamin Netanyahu to attack Saddam Hussein in the 1990s, and then successfully helped provide the intellectual rationale for George Bush to do it in 2003. Their motivations involve a confused conflation of what they think are Israel's best interests with those of the United States. They are now leading the charge for war with Iran.

Happily, these people represent a very small sliver of the Jewish population in this country. Unhappily, their views have had an impact in the highest reaches of the Bush Administration--and seem to have an influence on John McCain's ca…

On Joe Klein and the Jewish Neoconservatives (Prospects for Peace)

On Joe Klein and the Jewish Neoconservatives (Prospects for Peace): "There is a small group of Jewish neoconservatives who unsuccessfully tried to get Benjamin Netanyahu to attack Saddam Hussein in the 1990s, and then successfully helped provide the intellectual rationale for George Bush to do it in 2003… Happily, these people represent a very small sliver of the Jewish population in this country…I remain proud of my Jewish heritage, a strong supporter of Israel…But I am not willing to grant these ideologues the anonymity they seek…I believe there are a small group of Jewish neoconservatives who are pushing for war with Iran because they believe it is in America's long-term interests and because they believe Israel's existence is at stake. They are wrong and recent history tells us they are dangerous. They are also bullies and I'm not going to be intimidated by them."

Living Through the Age of Denial in America - by Tom Engelhardt

Living Through the Age of Denial in America - by Tom Engelhardt: "I set foot, so to speak, on this planet on July 20, 1944, not perhaps the best day of the century. It was, in fact, the day of the failed German officers' plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler.

My mother was a cartoonist. She was known in those years as 'New York's girl caricaturist,' or so she's called in a newspaper ad I still have, part of a war-bond drive in which your sizeable bond purchase was to buy her sketch of you. She had, sometime in the months before my birth, traveled by train, alone, the breadth of a mobilized but still peaceable American continent to visit Hollywood on assignment for some magazine to sketch the stars. I still have, on my wall, a photo of her in that year on the 'deck' of a 'pirate ship' on a Hollywood lot drawing one of those gloriously handsome matinee idols. Since I was then inside her, this is not exactly part of my memory bank. But that photo does t…

Joe Klein Speaks Truth to Power- by Justin Raimondo

Joe Klein Speaks Truth to Power- by Justin Raimondo: "It's been just about a month since Joe Klein's column accusing 'Jewish neoconservatives' of having 'divided loyalties' appeared in Time magazine, and already the controversy surrounding it is taking on the grand scale of an opera – perhaps a stage adaptation of Shirley Jackson's 'The Lottery.' His original sin was writing this:

'The notion that we could just waltz in and inject democracy into an extremely complicated, devout and ancient culture smacked – still smacks – of neocolonialist legerdemain. The fact that a great many Jewish neoconservatives – people like Joe Lieberman and the crowd over at Commentary – plumped for this war, and now for an even more foolish assault on Iran, raised the question of divided loyalties: using U.S. military power, U.S. lives and money, to make the world safe for Israel. And then there is the question – made manifest by the no-bid contracts offered U.S. …

BBC NEWS | Health | 'Fitness pill' being developed

BBC NEWS | Health | 'Fitness pill' being developed: "Scientists are moving closer to developing a pill which could deliver some of the benefits of exercise - even for those who do not move a muscle.

The journal Cell reports US researchers now have two possible pills which appear able to build muscle, increase stamina and even burn fat.

In tests, mice were able to run 44% further - suggesting humans may be able to do the same without prior training."

BBC NEWS | South Asia | Pakistan admits to Taleban spies

BBC NEWS | South Asia | Pakistan admits to Taleban spies: "Pakistan's government has said it needs to purge Taleban sympathisers from within the ranks of the country's intelligence service - the ISI.

The statement comes amid claims from the US and India of links between the ISI and Islamic extremists.

Analysts say it is the first time that the Pakistan government has made such an admission.

US officials have claimed that spies in the ISI helped plan the recent suicide attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul."