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Showing posts from February 25, 2008
"Starting in 2002, the CIA conducted interrogations of captured Al Qaeda operatives, including Abu Zubaydah and Ramzi Binalshibh, at undisclosed CIA prisons outside the US. During these interrogations the CIA resorted to “enhanced interrogation techniques” (the CIA’s euphemism for torture) to extract information.[5] The methods included “waterboarding,” which induces a sensation of drowning in the unlucky individual. Evidently, the CIA decided for its own internal reasons to video-tape these early interrogation sessions. However, years later (in 2005), Jose A, Rodriquez, the CIA’s Director of Operations, ordered the tapes destroyed. For what reason? Well, according to current CIA Director Michael V. Hayden, because the tapes posed “a serious security risk.”[6] Hayden went on to clarify his rather cryptic remark, and explained to the press that if the tapes had become public they would have exposed CIA officials “and their families to retaliation from Al Qaeda and its sympathizers…

Hezbollah and the ‘Unknown Knowns’

Hezbollah and the ‘Unknown Knowns’
We know well who killed the top Hezbollah commander, Imad Mugniyah on Feb 12th in Damascus.

While in the US media, only journalists like Seymour Hersh will have the nerve to point out the obvious, the Israeli media has not shied away from evidence of the Israeli intelligence’s involvement in this well-calculated assassination.

A major Israeli daily newspaper Maariv shared the views of many others when it concluded that: “Officially, Israel yesterday denied responsibility for the killing. But experts say the brilliant execution of the attack was characteristic of the Mossad.”

The Financial Times reported on the “triumphant mood” of the Israeli Press which hailed “the demise of one the country’s most feared adversaries” and quoted an Israeli paper stating “the account is settled.”

The Obama photo flap - War Room -

The Obama photo flap - War Room - "The big news of the day thus far is a photograph of Barack Obama in traditional Somali dress, which the Drudge Report says 'stressed [Hillary] Clinton staffers circulated ... over the weekend.' (The photograph in question is the one accompanying this post; it was obtained from its owner, the Associated Press.)

Given the continuing efforts by some to paint Obama as somehow foreign, even -- gasp! -- Muslim (incorrectly, we should add), it's no surprise that the Obama campaign responded swiftly, and harshly. In a statement, Obama's campaign manager, David Plouffe, said, 'On the very day that Senator Clinton is giving a speech about restoring respect for America in the world, her campaign has engaged in the most shameful, offensive fear-mongering we've seen from either party in this election. This is part of a disturbing pattern that led her county chairs to resign in Iowa, her campaign chairman to resign in New Ham…

Ethiopa's war on its own - Los Angeles Times

Ethiopa's war on its own - Los Angeles Times: "DADAAB, KENYA -- The bullet tore through Ibrahim Hamad's torso and lodged in his hip. The 26-year-old teacher was at home with his elderly father when government forces swept through his town in the Ogaden region of Ethiopia, burning huts and killing civilians. 'The young girls were the first to die. The soldiers shot them and gathered the bodies and burned them,' he said. The troops demanded that surviving men join their ranks, threatening those who refused with torture, imprisonment and death."

IRIN Africa | East Africa | Kenya | KENYA: Armed and dangerous | Early Warning Governance Conflict Urban Risk | Feature

IRIN Africa | East Africa | Kenya | KENYA: Armed and dangerous | Early Warning Governance Conflict Urban Risk | Feature: "NAIROBI, 22 February 2008 (IRIN) - Kenya is at risk of plunging into a new wave of violence, despite progress in negotiations to end a political crisis, because several armed groups are mobilising on all sides of the country’s ethno-political divisions, according to the International Crisis Group (ICG) think-tank.

Firearms are much less widely available in Kenya than in neighbouring countries. In the context of this article, “armed groups” include those using machetes, spears, poison arrows and clubs."

The massacre at Yaka China :: :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it

"Below, the instruments of American revenge used in the Korengal Valley
during October 2007:"

The massacre at Yaka China :: :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it:

Asia Times Online :: Middle East News, Iraq, Iran current affairs

Asia Times Online :: Middle East News, Iraq, Iran current affairs: "The high Qandil mountains and deep gorges on the northern Iraqi border region with Iran must be one of the world's most ideal terrains for guerrilla war. That is where the fighters of the separatist Turkish Kurdish movement the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) have set up its headquarters. The PKK is close enough to the Turkish border to stage its guerrilla attacks and can easily frustrate 'hot pursuits' by the Turkish army.
There is a popular saying that Kurds have no friends but the mountains. The region offers one of the world's spectacular natural fortresses, virtually impossible to penetrate. Especially so in the winter with heavy snowfall, frequent treacherous avalanches and howling icy winds mercilessly ransacking anything out in the

AlterNet: Election 2008: Run, Ralph, Run! (But I Won't Vote for You)

AlterNet: Election 2008: Run, Ralph, Run! (But I Won't Vote for You): "In announcing another quixotic presidential bid on Meet the Press, Ralph Nader was his usual cogent self, asking, as he does, why so many in the 'liberal intelligentsia' condemn him for discussing the important issues that the two major parties ignore.

Although the Democratic debates during this primary season are about a thousand times better than those of recent years, he was, as usual, right -- why the hell haven't the Democrats come up with a coherent position on trade, for example?

As he spoke, one could almost hear Democrats across the country pulling knives from their sheaths. Another Nader run, another opportunity for Democrats -- even progressive Dems -- to attack him, in the words of Michael Tomasky, 'with lupine ferocity.'"

ei: Three Gaza picnickers killed by Israeli missile

ei: Three Gaza picnickers killed by Israeli missile: "The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) strongly condemns the Israeli war crime perpetrated in the evening of Saturday, 23 February 2008, east of the town of Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip. Three Palestinian civilians were killed by an Israeli rocket fired as they were on a picnic in the Nazaz area east of the town.

The Centre's preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 3:40pm on Saturday, Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) fired a surface-to-surface missile from one of its bases along the Gaza Strip border. The rocket targeted three friends in a bamboo hut in a field belonging to the family of one of the victims in the Nazaz area east of Beit Hanoun. The targeted area was approximately 1.2 kilometers away from the border with Israel. The rocket landed in the middle of the three civilians who were preparing food during their picnic in the field. They were instantly killed and dismembered. Their r… - Framing Muslims and Locking Up Their Money - Framing Muslims and Locking Up Their Money: "The U.S. government has for years been engaged in a witch hunt against Muslim charities, seizing assets and persons on little or manufactured evidence of 'terrorist' activities. Meanwhile, blatant spying on behalf of Israel goes unprosecuted, and is even rewarded with promotions to the highest, most sensitive levels of government. Human rights cease to exist in a legal free-fire zone in which all things Muslim or Arab are deemed subversive. All pretense of constitutional government vanishes when institutions and individuals are targeted based on ethnicity and religion. The real conspiracy against so-called 'American values' is headquartered in U.S. law enforcement and 'security' agencies that 'wreak fear and terror inside this country's Muslim community.'" - A Black President? Sure. But If We Don't Do Nothin' He Won't Do Nothin' - A Black President? Sure. But If We Don't Do Nothin' He Won't Do Nothin': "a speech by Amiri Baraka, recorded earlier this month in Newark

Give Obama a break, some of his supporters argue. He's got to get elected first. Till them he can't be seen acknowledging the needs of Black America for job creation on a vast scale, for an end to foreclosures, the repeal of No Child Left Behind, the equitable rebuilding of the Gulf Coast, and lowering of the prison population and cutting military budget to free up money for these and other human needs.

Poet, playwright and longtime activist Amiri Baraka has a different take on the Obama candidacy, and the responsibility of the politically conscious. In this speech he cautions those who imagine Obama will make a difference without a strong left movement pressuring and pushing him further and faster than he and his corporate backers really want to go.

'Even if there's gonna be a black p… - Freedom Rider: Bush Wins in 2008 - Freedom Rider: Bush Wins in 2008: "Among people who call themselves 'progressives,' it is common to hear George W. Bush derided as an idiot, a fool, an incompetent. In reality, 'Bush is clearly the most successful president in modern history,' having stolen two elections, wrecked the Constitution and pursued wars with no end in sight - all with absolute impunity. The Democrats' pitiful weaknesses are Bush's strengths, the reason he prevails. Unless he is impeached, Bush's legacy will last long beyond his term in office, since 'a Democratic president will not undo what Bush has wrought' - not Obama, not Clinton. 'The lack of movement politics and dependence on the hapless Democratic party have made the Bush winning streak possible and guarantee that it will continue after he leaves office.' Bush is triumphant. The 'opposition' has failed."

Politics | $4.5 million for a boat that nobody wanted | Seattle Times Newspaper

Politics | $4.5 million for a boat that nobody wanted | Seattle Times Newspaper: "By David Heath and Hal Bernton

Seattle Times staff reporters"
Tucked away on Seattle's Portage Bay, a sleek, 85-foot speedboat sat idle for years — save for an annual jaunt to maintain its engine.

The Navy paid $4.5 million to build the boat. But months before the hull ever touched water, the Navy gave the boat to the University of Washington. The school never found a use for it, either.

Why would the Navy waste taxpayer dollars on a boat that nobody wanted?

Aswat Aliraq

Aswat Aliraq: "Anbar, Feb 24, (VOI) - Anbar Salvation Council calls for the dissolution of the provincial council, the leader of al-Dulaim tribes said on Sunday, accusing the Iraqi Islamic Party of holding sway over the municipal council.
'Anbar Salvation Council urges the government to intervene to dissolve the provincial council and conduct fair elections in April 2008,' Sheikh Ali Hatim al-Sulaiman, who is also a member of the anti-al-Qaeda Anbar Salvation Council, told Aswat al-Iraq, Voices of Iraq, (VOI) on Sunday.
The chieftain called on the Iraqi government to pay attention to Anbar province, where he says provincial council members are exercising full control over governmental posts.
'Only members of the Iraqi Islamic Party are allowed to apply for posts in governmental departments, which makes the province live under deteriorating social and economic conditions,' Sulaiman said.
'Anbar provincial council is under the influence of the Islamic party' he …

Turkish raid strains U.S.-Kurd ties |

Turkish raid strains U.S.-Kurd ties | "Amadiyah, Iraq - Peshmerga Gen. Muhammad Mohsen took down his American flag, folded it up, and placed it in his office corner Sunday, reflecting the growing anger in Iraq's Kurdish north with US support for Turkey's campaign against separatist rebels operating in the region.

The intermittent offensive against the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) reached a crescendo Thursday when ground troops crossed into Iraq in a campaign involving nearly 8,000 soldiers. Officials here say it is Turkey's most significant strike against the rebels in more than 10 years.

Frustration over the Turkish incursion cuts across the spectrum. Many average Iraqi Kurds sympathize with the PKK rebels' aim to form an independent Kurdistan and officials say Turkey's real goal is to destabilize its semiautonomous government, the leaders of which have long been American allies.

'We think the United States is making a big mistake,' …

American Civil Liberties Union : The Fear Factor

American Civil Liberties Union : The Fear Factor: "WASHINGTON - Statement of Caroline Fredrickson, director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

'In an attempt to get sweeping powers to wiretap without warrants, Republicans are playing politics with domestic surveillance legislation. The president is saying he does not want the courts to have any say in whether telecommunications companies acted illegally when they turned over private information to the government. As usual, the Bush administration is trying to insulate its activities from public scrutiny, this time by trying to keep the telecommunications providers out of court for illegal actions.

'The ACLU's plaintiffs are not in it for money; they want the truth to come out. They deserve their day in court against companies that were supposed to keep their information private. Let the courts decide. Have some faith in the U.S. justice system Mr. President. If the companies did not break any laws, why would the… Kenya: What a Prime Minister Might - And Might Not - Do (Page 1 of 1) Kenya: What a Prime Minister Might - And Might Not - Do (Page 1 of 1): "A fifth week of talks to end Kenya's violent election dispute is scheduled to begin Monday, with the extent of power to be exercised by a new prime minister one of the key items on the agenda.

The creation of the prime minister's post forms part of establishing a power-sharing government which it is hoped will see Kenya to move forward from the stand-off which ensued after the opposition rejected the outcome of recent presidential polls. Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga, who looks set to take up the post, accuses President Mwai Kibaki of rigging the Dec. 27 vote to remain in office; international observers have also expressed concerns about the ballot."

Al Jazeera English - News - Interview: Cindy Sheehan

Al Jazeera English - News - Interview: Cindy Sheehan
Cindy Sheehan, an American activist who was nicknamed the "Peace Mom" by the media for her criticism of the Iraq War, retreated from her public campaigns in 2007.
The death of her son Casey, a US soldier, in a Baghdad battle in 2005 had transformed Sheehan into a public figure in the US.
But she resurfaced in Cairo last week as a member of a delegation from the Muslim American Society which is in Egypt to protest against the military trial of 40 members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood.
She spoke to Al Jazeera about her journey from peace activist to Congressional candidate, her thoughts on Iraq and her experiences in Egypt.