Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from June, 2009

 7 Years In Chains     : Information Clearing House - ICH

7 Years In Chains : Information Clearing House - ICH: "7 Years In Chains

Detained At 14, Tortured and Released At 21

Video

El-Gharani was treated with appalling brutality. After being tortured in Pakistani custody, he was sold to US forces, who flew him to a prison at Kandahar airport, where, he said, one particular soldier “would hold my penis, with scissors, and say he’d cut it off."

Raw Story » Claim: Leftist leader assassinated in Honduras

Raw Story » Claim: Leftist leader assassinated in Honduras: "The leader of Honduras’ only major left-leaning party has been killed by the country’s military, says a report in the NarcoNews blog.

Citing a report from Mexico’s Notimex news service, the blog reports that Cesar Ham, presidential candidate and leader of the Democratic Unification of Honduras party, was killed while resisting arrest in the early hours of Sunday morning, as the Honduran military fanned out to arrest leftist leaders throughout the country, including President Manuel Zelaya and the country’s chancellor, Patricia Rodas.

“Despite being from a different party, Ham was a close ally of ousted President Manuel Zelaya,” NarcoNews writes."

Living testament to Somalia's descent into hell - The Irish Times - Mon, Jun 29, 2009

Living testament to Somalia's descent into hell - The Irish Times - Mon, Jun 29, 2009: "A Kenyan refugee camp is host to 280,000 Somalis, who have fled the brutality of their homeland, writes ROB CRILLY in Dadaab, Kenya

THE WORLD’S largest refugee camp in a sandy corner of Kenya stands as a miserable testament to Somalia’s descent into hell.

Dadaab camp should not still be here, 18 years after it was built. It should not be home to 280,000 people who dream of a new life in America rather than returning across the border.

Yet still they come, riding in trucks or on donkeys before completing their journey by walking miles through a desiccated landscape.

About 500 people are arriving every day as Islamist insurgents battle a fragile government: people such as Abdirahman Sharif Mohamed, who reached safety last week after a series of chilling telephone threats.

“They said they would kill me if they found me,” said the father-of-six. “They told me since I was working for the government…

   Deadly US air-strike on Afghan village   : Information Clearing House - ICH

Deadly US air-strike on Afghan village : Information Clearing House - ICH
The Afghan government says around 140 villagers were killed in a US airstrike in Afghanistan last month, prompting fears that the level of civilian deaths is undermining the United States military campaign. The report by Jonathan Rugman contains scenes which viewers may find distressing.

Raw Story » US gives up on eradicating Afghanistan’s opium

Raw Story » US gives up on eradicating Afghanistan’s opium: "Since the United States invaded Afghanistan, the country’s number one cash crop, opium, has repeatedly broken production records. By some estimates, the occupied territory now supplies some 90 percent of the world’s poppies.

So far, eradication efforts have merely fueled the Taliban’s coffers and driven civilian farmers further outside of U.S. influence. Because of this, the United States has formed a new strategy in the fight against the crop: They are giving up."

At Least 65 Killed as US Drones Attack South Waziristan Funeral Procession -- News from Antiwar.com

At Least 65 Killed as US Drones Attack South Waziristan Funeral Procession -- News from Antiwar.com: "On Thursday, US drones launched an attack on a compound in South Waziristan, and when locals rushed to the scene to rescue survivors, they launched more missiles at them, leaving a total of 13 dead. The timing and target of the attack were controversial, as was the tactic of luring locals in with a first strike to maximize the kill count. Today, locals were involved in a funeral procession when the US struck again."
Drones attacked what they suspected was a “militant hideout” early today, killing at least 17. When mourners gathered to offer prayers for those slain in the first attack, the drones struck again, attacking the procession it self and bringing the overall toll to at least 65, according to witnesses.

Free Ezra

Free Ezra: "His name is Ezra Nawi

Join Naomi Klein, Neve Gordon, Noam Chomsky and thousands of others and tell Israel not to jail Ezra Nawi, one of Israel’s most courageous human rights activists.

His crime? He tried to stop a military bulldozer from destroying the homes of Palestinian Bedouins in the South Hebron region.

Nawi, a Jewish Israeli of Iraqi descent, is a threat to the settlers and the Israeli government because he has brought international attention to efforts to illegally remove Palestinians from the Hebron region. He will be sentenced in July.

(Watch the remarkable video of Nawi trying to stop the home demolition and his subsequent arrest.)"

Israeli police humiliate Palestinians in video - Yahoo! News

Israeli police humiliate Palestinians in video - Yahoo! News: "JERUSALEM (AFP) – Israeli border guards have posted videos online in which they humiliate Palestinians, including ordering a young man to sing and slap himself, Israel's Haaretz newspaper reported on Saturday.

In one video clip posted on YouTube the man is ordered to repeatedly slap himself in the face while chanting 'I love the border police' as off-screen border guards laugh and cheer him on.

'Say one hummus, one ful (fava beans), I love the border guard,' the off-screen voice says. The Hebrew and Arabic phrase rhymes.

Another video shows a Palestinian man sitting in what appears to be a police vehicle chanting the same song.

A third clip includes still photos showing Palestinians bound and blindfolded in a room with an Israeli flag. In one of the photos an Israeli soldier is posing and smiling next to one of the detainees.

The caption of the video says it was made in November 2007.

A third clip shows …

   New Film Chronicles Civilian Slaughter In Afghanistan   : Information Clearing House - ICH

New Film Chronicles Civilian Slaughter In Afghanistan : Information Clearing House - ICH: "The footage you are about to see is poignant, heart-wrenching, and often a direct result of U.S. foreign policy.

We must help the refugees whose lives have been shattered by U.S. foreign policy and military attacks. Support the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, an organization dedicated to helping women and children, human rights issues, and social justice. Then, become a Peacemaker. Receive up-to-the-minute information through our new mobile alert system whenever there are Afghan civilian casualties from this war, and take immediate action by calling Congress. http://rethinkafghanistan.com/"

  Why aren't Jews outraged by Israeli occupation?    : Information Clearing House - ICH

Why aren't Jews outraged by Israeli occupation? : Information Clearing House - ICH: "June 18, 2009 'Haaretz' -- During this year's AIPAC conference in Washington, Executive Director Howard Kohr warned the 7,000-plus crowd that the global movement to 'delegitimize Israel' was gathering steam.

'These voices are laying the predicate for an abandonment,' he said. His sentiments were almost apocalyptic: 'The stakes in that battle are nothing less than the survival of Israel, linked inexorably to the relationship between Israel and the United States. In this battle we are the firewall, the last rampart.'

The age of Barack Obama has unleashed a global wave of Jewish unease over Israel's future and the Diaspora's relationship to the self-described Jewish state. It's a debate that is long overdue.

Zionist organizations in Australia campaigned loudly in May against the allegedly 'anti-Semitic' play Seven Jewish Children, a ten-m…

BBC NEWS | Europe | World hunger 'hits one billion'

BBC NEWS | Europe | World hunger 'hits one billion': "One billion people throughout the world suffer from hunger, a figure which has increased by 100 million because of the global financial crisis, says the UN.

The UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said the figure was a record high.

Persistently high food prices have also contributed to the hunger crisis.

The director general of the FAO said the level of hunger, one-sixth of the world's population, posed a 'serious risk' to world peace and security."

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Khamenei: Vote protests must end

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Khamenei: Vote protests must end: "Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, has backed the outcome of the country's presidential elections and warned protests against it must stop.

'Street actions are being done to put pressure on leaders, but we will not bow in front of them,' he said in a sermon during Friday prayers at Tehran University.

'I want to tell everyone these [protests] must finish.'"

Al Jazeera English - CENTRAL/S. ASIA - Afghan Al Jazeera producers held

Al Jazeera English - CENTRAL/S. ASIA - Afghan Al Jazeera producers held
Two Al Jazeera employees have been detained in Afghanistan after being told by officials to report to the country's intelligence headquarters.Concern for the welfare of Qais Azimy and Hameedullah Shah was growing on Monday, a day after they arrived at the official building in Kabul, the capital.Azimy, a senior producer for Al Jazeera English, had travelled to the headquarters after being told to meet authorities for an interview, two days before campaigning for the country's presidential elections was due to begin.Shah, who works for the Al Jazeera Arabic television channel, was picked up from the network's bureau by two officers.

Iraq's New Death Squad

Iraq's New Death Squad: "As Hassan tells it, it was a quiet night on June 10, 2008, in Sadr City, Baghdad's poor Shiite district of more than 2 million people, when the helicopter appeared over his house and the front door exploded, nearly burning his sleeping youngest son. Before Hassan knew it, he was on the ground, hands bound and a bag over his head, with eight men pointing rifles at him, locked and loaded.

At first he couldn't tell whether the men were Iraqis or Americans. He says he identified himself as a police sergeant, offering his ID before they took his pistol and knocked him to the ground. The men didn't move like any Iraqi forces he'd ever seen. They looked and spoke like his countrymen, but they were wearing American-style uniforms and carrying American weapons with night-vision scopes. They accused him of being a commander in the local militia, the Mahdi Army, before they dragged him off, telling his wife he was 'finished.' But before th…

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Chadian released from Guantanamo

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Chadian released from Guantanamo: "A Chadian national held for more than seven years at the US prison facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, has been released and sent to his home country.

The US department of justice said Mohammad al-Qurani arrived in Chad on Thursday while a second released man from Iraq, Jawad Jabber Sadkhan, was sent home to Iraq on Wednesday.

Al-Qurani, sometimes referred to as al-Gharani, was cleared of all charges by a US judge in January.

He told Al Jazeera earlier this year that abuse of detainees in the prison had continued despite Barack Obama, the US president, being elected.

The news comes after US media reported that Barack Obama, the US president, has all but abandoned efforts to resettle Guantanamo detainees cleared for release to live on US soil.

It also comes after four Chinese Muslim Uighur detainees were resettled in the Caribbean island of Bermuda on Thursday, and after the tiny Pacific island of Palau said it would take…

  Oil and Indians Don't Mix     : Information Clearing House - ICH

Oil and Indians Don't Mix : Information Clearing House - ICH: "June 12, 2009 'Information Clearing House' -- There's an easy way to find oil. Go to some remote and gorgeous natural sanctuary, say Alaska or the Amazon, find some Indians, then drill down under them.

If the indigenous folk complain, well, just shoo-them away. Shoo-ing methods include: bulldozers, bullets, crooked politicians and fake land sales.

But be aware. Lately the Natives are shoo-ing back. Last week, indigenous Peruvians seized an oil pumping station, grabbed the nine policemen guarding it and, say reports, executed them. This followed the government's murder of more than a dozen rainforest residents who had protested the seizure of their property for oil drilling.

Again and again I see it in my line of work of investigating fraud. Here are a few pit-stops on the oily trail of tears:

In the 1980s, Charles Koch was found to have pilfered about $3 worth of crude from Stanlee Ann Mat…

More New York Times Warmongering by Gordon Prather -- Antiwar.com

More New York Times Warmongering by Gordon Prather -- Antiwar.com: "Well, the New York Times warmongering capability has apparently not been much diminished by the loss of Judith Miller, who, in intimate association with the Cheney Cabal, did so much on the Times‘ front-pages to enable the Bush-Cheney War of Aggression against Iraq (still in progress).

You see, the NYT still has William Broad and David Sanger."
Last week Broad and Sanger apparently somehow obtained access to the confidential report Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei had just submitted to the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency, which included – among other things – its quarterly report on Iran’s compliance with its NPT-related IAEA Safeguards Agreement. Broad and Sanger also apparently somehow obtained access to the confidential report ElBaradei had just submitted on Syria’s compliance with its NPT-related IAEA Safeguards Agreement

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Ahmadinejad 'wins second Iran term'

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Ahmadinejad 'wins second Iran term': "Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's president, has won a second term in office after a bitterly fought election, Iran's interior ministry has said.

Ahmadinejad took 62.63 per cent of the vote, crushing Mir Hossein Mousavi, his main rival, who got just 33.75 per cent, according to results released on Saturday.

The Guardian Council, a powerful body of clerics which oversees Iran's constitution, is still to release its count, but there seemed little doubt about the result after Ayatollah Ali Khameini, the supreme leader, congratulated Ahmadinejad."

MinnPost - Obama, Michael Medved and the CIA overthrow of democracy in Iran

MinnPost - Obama, Michael Medved and the CIA overthrow of democracy in Iran: "Obama, Michael Medved and the CIA overthrow of democracy in Iran

By Eric Black | Published Mon, Jun 8 2009 10:20 am

I consider this a follow-up to a recent post about 'American exceptionalism,' a mindset that helps Americans blind themselves to the reasons that much of the world views U.S. foreign policy as hypocritical, bullying and imperialist.

I take my text from President Obama's big Cairo speech of last week, from radio host Michael Medved's reaction to the speech in a TV appearance I happened to catch, and from 'All the Shah's Men,' by the estimable Stephen Kinzer. But before I walk you through, I'll cut to the chase:

Iranians who hate America have at least some valid cause for their anger. The United States committed a historical crime against Iran much larger than anything Iran has done to us. Because of the powerful force in human psychology that I call 'confirma…

Afghan Official Says US Air Strike Kills 10 Civilians, Including Children -- News from Antiwar.com

Afghan Official Says US Air Strike Kills 10 Civilians, Including Children -- News from Antiwar.com: "Yesterday it was reported that an overnight US air strike in Afghanistan’s Ghor Province killed a warlord named Mullah Mustafa with reported ties to Iran’s Quds Force. Today it’s being acknowledged, in the wake of a phone interview with the mullah, that he likely survived the attack. To make matters worse, the US says it is also investigating what it called “unsubstantiated” reports that it killed civilians."

Top Iraqi Sunni Lawmaker Assassinated as He Condemns Maliki -- News from Antiwar.com

Top Iraqi Sunni Lawmaker Assassinated as He Condemns Maliki -- News from Antiwar.com: "Harith al-Obaidi, leader of the Sunni Iraqi Accordance Front (IAF) in parliament, was assassinated today in a Baghdad mosque after delivering a sermon condemning the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for abuses of human rights."
After the sermon at the upscale Sunni mosque, a gunmen entered and opened fire on Obaidi, then threw a grenade into a crowd of worshippers. The attacker was then killed, though it is unclear if Obaidi’s guards killed him or he died when a second grenade detonated. The attack left five killed and 12 wounded.Fellow MP Ahmed Masuudi, a member of the Shi’ite opposition bloc loyal to cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, said “the attack was not a coincidence, it was planned.” He suggested that the attack was retaliation for Obaidi’s campaign for human rights, which the Sadr bloc is also in support of.So far it is unclear who was responsible for the attack, though the gover…

FT.com / Iran - US senator opens Iran nuclear debate

FT.com / Iran - US senator opens Iran nuclear debate: "One of the most senior Democrats in Washington has dismissed a key element in the west’s long standing strategy on Iran’s nuclear programme as “ridiculous”. His comments throw open the debate about how far the US and its partners should go in seeking a compromise with Tehran after on Friday’s presidential election.

John Kerry, chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee and the Democrats’ 2004 presidential nominee, told the Financial Times in an interview that Iran had a right to uranium enrichment – a process that can produce both nuclear fuel and weapons grade material."

Goodbye Gitmo - Uighurs Going to Palau

Goodbye Gitmo - Uighurs Going to Palau: "WELLINGTON, New Zealand - The tropical Pacific island nation of Palau announced Wednesday it will accept up to 17 Chinese Muslims who have languished in legal limbo at Guantanamo Bay despite a Pentagon determination that they are not 'enemy combatants.'

China's Foreign Ministry had no immediate reaction to the decision by Palau to grant Washington's request to resettle the detainees from China's Uighur minority who had been incarcerated at the U.S. Navy base in Cuba. Palau is one of a handful of countries that does not recognize China and maintains diplomatic relations with Taiwan."

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Gabon's president Bongo dies

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Gabon's president Bongo dies: "Omar Bongo Ondimba, the president of Gabon, has died in a clinic in the Spanish city of Barcelona, the country's prime minister has said.

Bongo, who had been the longest-serving ruler of a African state, died at the Quiron clinic on Monday at the age of 73, Jean Eyeghe Ndong said in a statement."

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Nasrallah concedes election defeat

Al Jazeera English - Middle East - Nasrallah concedes election defeat: "The secretary-general of Hezbollah, a Shia political party, has accepted that his opposition alliance has lost a parliamentary election in Lebanon to the ruling March 14 coalition.

Hassan Nasrallah made the acknowledgment on Monday, hours after official results of the popular poll were released.

'We accept the official results in a sporting spirit,' he said in a televised address.

'I would like to congratulate all those who won, those in the majority and those in the opposition,' he said."

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Peru protest leader in asylum bid

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Peru protest leader in asylum bid: "A Peruvian Indian leader charged with sedition for leading protests against land development in the Amazon is seeking asylum at the Nicaraguan embassy, Peru's prime minister has said.

Alberto Pizango took refuge in Nicaragua's embassy on Monday, days after violent clashes between Peruvian police and indigenous Indian protesters left dozens dead, including at least 22 police officers.

Pizango, the head of the Peruvian Jungle Interethnic Development Association, 'has already taken asylum,' Yehude Simon, Peru's prime minister, told a special session of congress called to discuss the protests."

Dokka Umarov 'killed' in response to success of Mujahideen in Dagestan - Kavkazcenter.com

Dokka Umarov 'killed' in response to success of Mujahideen in Dagestan - Kavkazcenter.com: "The representative of General Mission (the Wekalat) of the Caucasus Emirate has told Kavkaz Center that the information on wounding and death of Emir Dokka Abu Usman is not true.
According to him Dokka Umarov had not been wounded, he is alive and nobody of his security had been killed. A fuss around the fictional 'death' of Dokka Umarov and the so-called 'examination of body' which should 'confirm his death', is a 'response' of invaders to elimination by Mujahideen in Dagestan of the ringleader of puppet gang of 'MIA' Magomedtagirov."

Daily Times - Leading News Resource of Pakistan - Taliban faction parts ways with Mehsud

Daily Times - Leading News Resource of Pakistan - Taliban faction parts ways with Mehsud: "Taliban faction parts ways with Mehsud

PESHAWAR: The leader of a Taliban faction at odds with Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud denounced Mehsud for staging attacks inside the country.

“Whatever Baitullah Mehsud and his associates are doing in the name of Islam is not a jihad, and in fact it is rioting and terrorism,” Qari Zainuddin said in a face-to-face interview with the AP. ap"

RebelReports - BREAKING: $15 Million Settlement in Wiwa vs. Shell Oil

RebelReports - BREAKING: $15 Million Settlement in Wiwa vs. Shell Oil: "Today, the parties in Wiwa v. Shell agreed to settle human rights claims charging the Royal Dutch/Shell company, its Nigerian subsidiary, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC or Shell Nigeria), and the former head of its Nigerian operation, Brian Anderson, with complicity in the torture, killing, and other abuses of Ogoni leader Ken Saro-Wiwa and other non-violent Nigerian activists in the mid-1990s in the Ogoni region of the Niger Delta.

The settlement, whose terms are public, provides a total of $15.5 million. These funds will compensate the 10 plaintiffs, who include family members of the deceased victims; establish a Trust intended to benefit the Ogoni people; and cover a portion of plaintiffs’ legal fees and costs. The settlement is only on behalf of the individual plaintiffs for their individual claims. It does not resolve outstanding issues between Shell and the Ogoni people, and the plaintiffs d…

Bill Moyers Journal . Watch & Listen | PBS

Bill Moyers Journal . Watch & Listen | PBS
June 5, 2009 BILL MOYERS: Welcome to the JOURNAL. There was good news and bad news about Afghanistan this week. And it was the same news. That's right. The Senate held confirmation hearings for Lieutenant General Stanley McChrystal, slated to be the next commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan. Here's how two different news organizations reported his testimony: The Associated Press headline read, "War in Afghanistan is 'Winnable,'" but the "Washington Independent" reported that the general had, quote, "painted a bleak picture of the Afghanistan war" and that the United States "needed to show significant progress within '18 to 24 months' or risk the war spiraling out of control." What we know for sure is that the fighting in Afghanistan is escalating. At least 21 thousand more American troops are going in and the number of private security contractors working for the military…

Mud, mud, glorious mud. Nothing quite like it for beating the Israeli blockade - Middle East, World - The Independent

ei: Obama in Cairo: A Bush in sheep's clothing?

ei: Obama in Cairo: A Bush in sheep's clothing?: "Once you strip away the mujamalat -- the courtesies exchanged between guest and host -- the substance of President Obama's speech in Cairo indicates there is likely to be little real change in US policy. It is not necessary to divine Obama's intentions -- he may be utterly sincere and I believe he is. It is his analysis and prescriptions that in most regards maintain flawed American policies intact.

Though he pledged to 'speak the truth as best I can,' there was much the president left out. He spoke of tension between 'America and Islam' -- the former a concrete specific place, the latter a vague construct subsuming peoples, practices, histories and countries more varied than similar."

Raw Story » Bush FBI sent 18 armored agents to search my house, wiretap whistleblower says

Raw Story » Bush FBI sent 18 armored agents to search my house, wiretap whistleblower says: "The Bush Administration’s FBI sent 18 agents in body armor to the home of a man who revealed details of the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping program, according to a little-noticed account of the whistleblower published Thursday.

Thomas Tamm, a former Justice Department lawyer in the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, revealed details of the wiretapping program to the New York Times in 2004. In 2007, FBI agents raided his Potomac, Maryland home.

Tamm wasn’t there. His college-aged son, wife and young daughter were — but their father had never told them of his leak to the Times.

“They asked me questions like ‘Are there any secret rooms or compartments in the house’?” Terry Tamm, his son, told Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff last December. “Or did we have a safe? They asked us if any New York Times reporters had been to the house. We had no idea why any of this was happening…

FAIR Blog » Blog Archive » Rule of Law vs. 'Blind Support' for Israel in Media

FAIR Blog » Blog Archive » Rule of Law vs. 'Blind Support' for Israel in Media: "Responding to 'both Likud Party members in Israel as well as their Americans supporters' who 'complain that the Obama administration is unduly 'interfering' in Israeli politics'--as exemplified by Ben Smith of Politico reporting that 'the administration's escalating pressure on Israel to freeze all growth of its settlements on Palestinian land has begun to stir concern among Israel's numerous allies'--Salon's Glenn Greenwald (6/3/09, ad-viewing required) likens the situation to 'teenagers who tell their parents that they are not compelled to comply with parental dictates' and are told that 'as long as they seek financial support, then the parents have the right to demand certain actions in return':

Identically, if Israel wants to be free of what it and some of its U.S. supporters call 'interference' from the Obama administr…

Israeli army kills one, injures 4 during non-violent demonstration in Ni'lin :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it

Israeli army kills one, injures 4 during non-violent demonstration in Ni'lin :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it: "During the weekly non-violent demonstration against the wall in the village of Ni'lin, in the central West Bank the Israeli army killed a 36-year old Palestinian man and wounded a Palestinian boy, who was taken to the hospital in critical condition. Three others sustained moderate wounds."

Obama in Cairo: a new face for imperialism :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it

Obama in Cairo: a new face for imperialism :: www.uruknet.info :: informazione dall'Iraq occupato :: news from occupied Iraq :: - it: "The speech delivered by US President Barack Obama in Cairo yesterday was riddled with contradictions. He declared his opposition to the 'killing of innocent men, women, and children,' but defended the ongoing US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the US proxy war in Pakistan, while remaining silent on the most recent Israeli slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza. These wars have killed at least one million Iraqis and tens of thousands in Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Palestinian territories.

Obama declared his support for democracy, human rights and women’s rights, after two days of meetings with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, two of the most notorious tyrants in the Middle East. He said nothing in his speech about the complete absence of democratic rights in Saudi Arabia, or about the ongoing repression u…

Ethiopia charges 46 with 'assassination plot' - Yahoo! News

Ethiopia charges 46 with 'assassination plot' - Yahoo! News: "ADDIS ABABA (AFP) – Ethiopia on Thursday charged 46 people, most of them ex-military, of plotting to assassinate government officials, a government spokesman said.

'The charges can be summed up as conspiring to kill different government officials and conspiring to demolish public utilities,' Communications Minister Bereket Simon told reporters.

'The prosecution presented the charges to the court today,' he said, more than a month after their arrest.

Authorities are holding 32 out of the 46 suspects with the rest believed to have fled to the United States, Europe, Eritrea and Sudan.

Ethiopian authorities in April said they had unearthed a plot by senior serving and former military officers aligned with the opposition Coalition for Unity and Democracy (CUD) to kill top government officials and attack key infrastructure.

The group has been detained and held in communicado for more than a month.

Bereket d…

Obama to Muslims: Put Up and Shut Up by Paul Craig Roberts -- Antiwar.com

Obama to Muslims: Put Up and Shut Up by Paul Craig Roberts -- Antiwar.com: "'I’ve come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect.'

Cairo is the capital of Egypt, an American puppet state whose ruler suppresses the aspirations of Egyptian Muslims and cooperates with Israel in the blockade of Gaza."

Israel Rejects Appeals in Obama’s Speech -- News from Antiwar.com

Israel Rejects Appeals in Obama’s Speech -- News from Antiwar.com: "Yesterday President Obama delivered his historic speech to the Muslim world, calling for an independent Palestinian state and calling on Israel once again to halt the growth of its West Bank settlements. Today, Israeli officials say they will ignore the appeals, and continue on with the policy of settlement growth."

CIA 'plot to kill Hugo Chavez' - Telegraph

CIA 'plot to kill Hugo Chavez' - Telegraph: "The Venezuelan president said on state television that he had eluded an assassination attempt in El Salvador where he was due to attend the swearing in of its new leader, a Left-wing ally.

'I am not accusing Obama. I think the American president has good intentions,' Mr Chavez said. 'But over and above Obama, there is the CIA, and all of its tentacles. I have no doubt US intelligence services are behind this.'"

Press TV - Masterminding CIA torture paid $1,000 a day

Press TV - Masterminding CIA torture paid $1,000 a day: "The Central Intelligence Agency is revealed to have paid USD 1,000 a day to former military trainers to integrate torture into the body's interrogation methods.

Beating the whistleblowers on the CIA's torture of 'terrorist suspects', on Thursday, the ABC News named two army psychologists and former military staffers as the officials receiving the steroidal paycheck to devise and administer the 'advanced' grilling methods.

Bruce Jessen and Jim Mitchell, medics of questionable interrogation background, were enlisted to ensure the methods would guarantee pain but would not kill.

The two reportedly engineered the CIA's 10-step interrogation plan. The final step was waterboarding or near drowning during which the victim would be laid on his back with half of his head dipped into water.

They had an 'important role in developing what became the CIA's torture program,' an American Civil Liberties…

Yemeni Prisoner Muhammad Salih Dies At Guantánamo | Andy Worthington

Yemeni Prisoner Muhammad Salih Dies At Guantánamo | Andy Worthington: "It has just been reported that Muhammad Ahmad Abdallah Salih (also known as Mohammed al-Hanashi), a Yemeni prisoner at Guantánamo, has died, apparently by committing suicide.

The news comes just three days after the second anniversary of another death at Guantánamo — that of Abdul Rahman al-Amri, a Saudi prisoner who died on May 30, 2007 — and just eight days before the third anniversary of the deaths of three other prisoners — Ali al-Salami, Mani al-Utaybi and Yasser al-Zahrani — who died on June 10, 2006, and it must surely hasten calls for the urgent repatriation of other prisoners before there are any more deaths at the prison.

The Associated Press, which first reported the story, stated that US military officials had reported that Salih, who was 31 years old, was found “unresponsive and not breathing in his cell Monday night,” and that he had died of an “apparent suicide.”

Like the other prisoners who died o…

Robert Fisk: Police state is the wrong venue for Obama's speech - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent

Robert Fisk: Police state is the wrong venue for Obama's speech - Robert Fisk, Commentators - The Independent: "Maybe Barack Obama chose Egypt for his 'great message' to Muslims tomorrow because it contains a quarter of the world's Arab population, but he is also coming to one of the region's most repressed, undemocratic and ruthless police states. Egyptian human rights groups – when they are not themselves being harassed or closed down by the authorities – have recorded a breathtaking list of police torture, extra-judicial killings, political imprisonments and state-sanctioned assaults on opposition figures that continues to this day."

Democrats to Obama: Ease pressure on Israel - Israel News, Ynetnews

Democrats to Obama: Ease pressure on Israel - Israel News, Ynetnews
WASHINGTON – As Barack Obama prepares for his trip to Saudi Arabia and Egypt, Democratic Congress members are expressing concern over the pressure exerted by the president on Israel, the Politics website reported.


According to the report, the Congress members asked Obama to moderate his pressure on the settlement freeze issue.

“My concern is that we are applying pressure to the wrong party in this dispute,” Politico quoted Rep. Shelley Berkley as saying. “I think it would serve America’s interest better if we were pressuring the Iranians to eliminate the potential of a nuclear threat from Iran, and less time pressuring our allies and the only democracy in the Middle East to stop the natural growth of their settlements.”


Politico reported that other representatives expressed similar sentiments in respect to Obama and Israel. Rep. Anthony Weiner, for example, said he would have liked to see President Obama pay more attenti…

Ethiopian News | Ethiopian rebel group threaten foreign oil companies

Ethiopian News | Ethiopian rebel group threaten foreign oil companies: "By Barry Malone

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - An Ethiopian rebel group on Wednesday warned international oil companies against exploring in a region of the Horn of Africa nation where the rebels attacked a Chinese-run field in 2007 killing 74 people.

The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) — whose hundreds of fighters seek autonomy for the ethnically Somali Ogaden region — said oil firms had cleared some 1,600 square kilometers, displacing locals and destroying vegetation."

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Several dead in fresh Somalia clash

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Several dead in fresh Somalia clash: "At least 14 people have been killed in fresh fighting in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, between government forces and fighters.

Dozens more were wounded as government forces intensified efforts to drive out fighters who have pledged to topple the interim government of Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, the Somali president.

At least five of those killed in what was described as intense fighting in the city's Jamhuriya area were civilians, witnesses said.

'I saw the dead bodies of five civilians, one of them a woman,' Mohamed Bashir, a resident of the city's Jamhuriya district told the AFP news agency.

'Three of the victims died when a mortar shell struck their house.'"

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Americans 'negative' about Muslims

Al Jazeera English - Americas - Americans 'negative' about Muslims: "As Barack Obama, the US president, seeks to mend the image of the US in the Muslim world, a new survey indicates almost half of Americans have a negative opinion about Muslim countries.

The 46 per cent of respondents who held an unfavourable view of Islamic nations was up five per cent from 2002, while just 20 per cent said they held a positive opinion."

ei: Pushing for "normalization" of Israeli apartheid

ei: Pushing for "normalization" of Israeli apartheid
The Arab League proposed in 2002 what became known as the Arab Peace Initiative to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It was an unprecedented, bold offer which promised Israel full normalization in exchange for a complete withdrawal from the territories occupied in 1967 and the creation of a Palestinian state. The plan called for a "just settlement" to the Palestinian refugee issue. This, in practical terms, meant renunciation of the right to return, despite this being an individual right under international law of which no state or authority can forfeit on behalf of the refugees. The Arab Peace Initiative was based on what fallaciously became known as the "international consensus" for the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, that of "two states, for two peoples," championed by the Zionist left as well as Israel's patrons in the West. The plan represented a rare united front a…