August 5th, 2008

glasses

Voters are "Sheep-like", "Conditioned", "Controllable"

Posted in August 5th, 2008

Jack KevorkianJack Kevorkian, once known as Dr. Death for his assisted suicide advocacy, is now an independent candidate for Congress in Michigan. Kevorkian is running a low-budget campaign and not taking donations. It appears he is trying to make up for the financial limitations with some interesting campaign observations.

At a recent forum, Kevorkian said voters were “kind of sheep-like. You’ve all been conditioned to think and act like sheep.”

“You are enslaved, but you don’t know it. You don’t want to admit it because you’re walking around free, eating good dinners. As long as you’re comfortable, you’re controllable,” said Kevorkian.

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Hundreds of banks will fail, says Roubini

Related
July planned layoffs rise 26 percent vs June

US junk-bond defaults may quadruple
A second, far larger wave of U.S. mortgage defaults is building
Ambrose Loses The Plot


Sun Aug 3, 2008 3:52pm EDT

NEW YORK, Aug 3 (Reuters) - The United States is in the second inning of a recession that will last for at least 18 months and help kill off hundreds of banks, influential economist and New York University Professor Nouriel Roubini told Barron's in Sunday's edition.

Taxpayers will pay a big price for helping bail out the rest of the financial services industry as well, Roubini said -- at least $1 trillion and more likely $2 trillion.

The banks will become insolvent because of mounting losses as a result of the housing bust and because they have only written down their subprime loans so far, he said. Still in front of them are their consumer-credit losses, for which they lack the reserves, Barron's reported.

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Fmr FBI Official: White House Told FBI To Blame Anthrax Attacks On Al Qaeda

Related
An Anthrax tip...: I have been a close friend of Dr. Bruce Ivins for years.

muellerbush23.jpg

Last week, Bruce Ivins, a government scientist who researched anthrax and was expected to be charged in connection with the 2001 attacks, reportedly committed suicide. As Glenn Greenwald has noted, President Bush and his administration initially attempted to link the anthrax attacks to Iraq.

The New York Daily News has a new twist in the administration’s attempt to peg the anthrax attacks to its own bellicose aims. Immediately after 9/11, the Daily News reports, “White House officials repeatedly pressed FBI Director Robert Mueller to prove it was a second-wave assault by Al Qaeda,” according to a former FBI official:

After the Oct. 5, 2001, death from anthrax exposure of Sun photo editor Robert Stevens, Mueller was “beaten up” during President Bush’s morning intelligence briefings for not producing proof the killer spores were the handiwork of terrorist mastermind Osama Bin Laden, according to a former aide.

They really wanted to blame somebody in the Middle East,” the retired senior FBI official told The News.

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Why did the FBI use a hard-core drunk, drug user and spouse abuser to frame Ivins?

There's a wealth of info at this blog by Meryl Nass, M.D.

Duley had several DWI's? And was caught with drug paraphenalia?

Was she looking at jail time for the DWI's, and loss of her license to practice and loss of her job?

Sounds like motive to make someone squeal like a pig to the feds.

And why is Duley hiding out? Or did the feds hide out Duley, so the press would not have access to this

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Bush ordered fake letter linking Iraq to 9/11

Book says White House ordered forgery

By: Mike Allen

August 5, 2008 07:46 AM EST

A new book by the author Ron Suskind claims that the White House ordered the CIA to forge a back-dated, handwritten letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam Hussein.

Suskind writes in “The Way of the World,” to be published Tuesday, that the alleged forgery – adamantly denied by the White House – was designed to portray a false link between Hussein’s regime and al Qaeda as a justification for the Iraq war.

The author also claims that the Bush administration had information from a top Iraqi intelligence official “that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion.”

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FBI tormented mentally ill daughter of dead anthrax scientist

The FBI showed his clinically depressed daughter, who was institutionalized in a mental hospital, photos of the anthrax victims, and said "your father did this.


An Anthrax tip...

UPDATE BELOW

To my colleagues in the press running around after the Anthrax story, I have gotten an interesting comment that could be a tip worth following. Let me be clear, I do not know who this is or if the person is using their real name or if any of the allegations are true. But I am also not investigating this story for an article as I am traveling for a different story at the moment. I have the commentators email and will share it with reputable journalists so long as there is an agreement that the person's contact information remain private until you are able to get a release from him. Contact me at my RS account.

For those of you on this story, I think you should see if you can locate the person named and see if you can authenticate that it was them who posted the comment. If it pans out, then your next question to the FBI will be obvious (hint: the son):

##

I have been a close friend of Dr. Bruce Ivins for years. The FBI needed a scapegoat, especially after Stephen Hatfill, whose foot the FBI ran over, won a $5.2 M lawsuit against them.Aug 4, 2008.

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McCain a key player in the anthrax-Iraq link lie

John McCain: Key Player in Speading the False Anthrax Story About Iraq

by: tremayne

Mon Aug 04, 2008 at 11:29

Once again, let's go back to the beginning. The beginnings of the war in Iraq where American soldiers are still dying today in the latter half of 2008 and will still be dying in 2010, even if we elect Barack Obama and he ends the war on his stated 16-month timetable.

Back to 2001, in the days after 9/11 when the anthrax scare begins. A small group of people start spreading the story that the anthrax was connected to Iraq and Saddam Hussein. This cabal, if you will, operated not unlike the Cheney-centered one tasked with fomenting public opinion against Iraq. Same cabal? You decide. Anyway, they got their message to the media, specifically ABC News, as Glenn Greenwald has capably described. But you know who was spreading this (false) rumor weeks before ABC News? The "Maverick," John McCain. Follow for details.
tremayne :: John McCain: Key Player in Speading the False Anthrax Story About Iraq
A month after 9/11, before 4 of 5 anthrax victims had died, McCain went on Letterman and said "some of this anthrax may - and I emphasize may - have come from Iraq":

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"Whole Load Of Crap"-Larisa Alexandrovna Has Low Down On "Therapist" To The Anthrax Suspect

Mon Aug-04-08 09:48 AM
 Updated at 10:26 AM
Edited on Mon Aug-04-08 10:09 AM by kpete

August 03, 2008

Jean C. Duley... tell us again...

Okay, well the more research I do into the now infamous Ms. Jean C. Duley - the "therapist" who filed a restraining order against the alleged anthrax attacks suspect Bruce E. Ivins - the more her story sounds like a whole load of crap.

Let's rehash Ms. Duley's role in the whole saga.

According to The Smoking Gun, documents they obtained and posted show that Ms. Duley filed a restraining order request against Bruce Ivins on July 24th. In that complaint, she wrote the following (the errors are hers):
http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2008/0801081...

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The New Yorker: McCain has opted out of truth

Comment

Changing Lanes

by Elizabeth Kolbert August 11, 2008

Late last month, Senator John McCain went up with a new television ad, titled “Pump.” The ad begins no place in particular with a gasoline pump, circa 1965. “Gas prices—four dollars, five dollars,” a female narrator intones, as the numbers on the pump’s front panel spin. “No end in sight, because some in Washington are still saying no to drilling in America, no to independence from foreign oil.

“Who can you thank for rising prices at the pump?” the narrator asks. She leaves the question hanging, while a recording from a recent political rally grows louder and louder. “Obama! Obama!” the crowd screams.

How important is it for candidates to tell the truth? Throughout his long career in politics, McCain, who called his PAC Straight Talk America, has presented frankness as his fundamental virtue. If his positions—on campaign finance, on immigration reform, on the Bush tax cuts—were unpopular with either the White House or the Republican Party faithful, that just showed that he was willing to tackle the tough issues. When his campaign very nearly collapsed and then revived, in December, McCain attributed his rally not to the fact that voters liked what he was saying but to the fact that they didn’t. “I’ve been telling people the truth, whether I thought that’s what they wanted or not,” he said. After his crucial victory in New Hampshire, in January, he again credited his candor: “I went to the people of New Hampshire to tell them the truth. Sometimes I told them what they wanted to know, sometimes I told them what they didn’t want to know.”

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What You Should Know about The Associated Press


And What You're Not Learning from Them

 

Image © Eyeranian.net

The Associated Press is a monstrous contradiction. On one hand, the 162-year-old, corporate-media collective feigns high concern for accuracy, objectivity, and other journalistic principles; on the other hand, it operates at the expense of same.

By way of its being a corporate collective, its top priority is to maximize revenues of its members. While this is not an illegal goal in and of itself, no corporate enterprise should be able to get away with accomplishing that goal at any cost and by any means, including deception and flat-out lies.

Too many people in the world are fooled by AP’s self-styled image of being the most trustworthy source for breaking news the world over. Sure, it is the world’s largest and most widely-distributed news service; but in light of certain patterns of shoddy and sometimes blatantly fraudulent reporting, this only makes it the most dangerous and subversive.

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Ivins is the Third Scientist the FBI has Tried to Pin the Anthrax Attacks On

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Surrender to the Printing Presses

Related
America the Broke is the biggest debtor in the world, carrying more than 1/4 of the total world debt, a debt that it has no means to pay

By tmartin • August 5, 2008

In his latest essay Dr. Ron Paul accurately diagnoses the government’s money dilemma and prescribes a painful but effective cure. We the people are in agreement, but our decadent politicians and bankers have decided to prolong the “easy credit” bonanza for as long as they possibly can. Are they oblivious to the risk of total financial collapse and the potentially devastating consequences?

Washington’s Intervention Addiction

by Ron Paul

One problem with politicians is that when problems they create come to a head, they typically feel this irresistible urge to DO something, rather than to UN-do something, or to simply back off to avoid exacerbating the situation. Too often, that which they end up doing has very little connection to the cause of the crisis, but plays well in the press and superficially makes everyone feel better. Bills that are rushed through Congress under duress are never studied enough, providing too tempting an opportunity to quietly slip in unrelated provisions that erode freedoms in ways that would never pass as a stand-alone bill. We famously saw this with the PATRIOT Act, but Washington learned nothing from that.

The current housing crisis and the corresponding big government fix are another prime example. First of all, the so-called solution will actually make the problem worse. The problem stems from easy credit and a rush to flood the housing and mortgage markets with money. Relaxed or non-existent lending standards led many into mortgages and houses they could not afford. As more foreclosures hit, the lending institutions will continue collapsing like dominoes under the weight of all the bad paper they underwrote. Some are reacting and reintroducing lending standards. Thus the number of buyers in the market for homes is beginning to shrink back to its natural size, and hyper-inflated prices are falling back down to earth. In these ways, the market is trying to correct itself in the wake of the mistakes government intervention encouraged them to make through easy credit. However, this correction is causing pain, especially to Wall Street investors and those who bought homes at the top of the market bubble, never expecting it to crash, always assuming they would easily be able to refinance.

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Mullen warns against USS Liberty redux

Related
Corporate Media Ignores White House Planning of "False Flag" Operations to Trigger War with Iran

Mon, 04 Aug 2008 18:36:57 GMT
The top American military officer has warned Israel against orchestrating 'USS Liberty Part II' to provoke a US-led war against Iran.

In early July, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen visited Israel to discuss the Iranian nuclear program with his Israeli counterpart, Lieutenant General Gabi Ashkenazi, and other Israeli officials.

During the talks, Adm. Mullen cautioned that the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty in 1967 is the type of incident that should be 'avoided in any future military actions' in the Middle East, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The USS Liberty, a $40m state-of-the-art surveillance ship, was 'inadvertently' attacked by Israeli fighter jets and torpedo boats in international waters north of the northern Sinai Peninsula coast.

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The 'scoop' the US papers ignored

Independent.co.uk

Guy Adams' US Media Diary

Monday, 4 August 2008

That old cliché about everything being bigger in America seems especially pertinent when attempting to describe the sheer scale of the crisis currently afflicting the US newspaper industry, which makes all Fleet Street's woes look like a summer picnic.

Last week, The Los Angeles Times decided to flog its historic downtown offices, on top of sacking 150 of its 870 journalists. So did The Chicago Tribune. Almost every title in the land is now shedding staff; a hundred New York Times hacks have been offered voluntary redundancy; Newsweek recently announced cuts. It's a bloodbath out there, as US media companies attempt to claw a pound of flesh from haemorrhaging readerships.

Consider, against this backdrop of falling circulation and a failing industry, the decision of every mainstream paper in America to ignore the juiciest political story of the month (and possibly the year): the discovery by National Enquirer hacks of John Edwards, in the corridors of a Beverly Hills hotel, where his alleged mistress and alleged love child were also staying, at half past two on the morning of Tuesday, 22 July.

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Karadzic 'lived under protection of CIA agents until he broke deal'

Related
Sacirbey: They knew about Karadzic deals


Independent.co.uk

By Vesna Peric Zimonjic in Belgrade

Monday, 4 August 2008

The former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic lived under US protection after the Dayton peace accords until the CIA intercepted a phone call in which he broke the terms of a "secret deal" to stay out of politics, a Serbian newspaper claims.

"Karadzic, indicted for genocide and war crimes, was under US protection until 2000, when the CIA intercepted his telephone conversation that clearly proved he personally chaired a meeting of his old political party," the Belgrade daily Blic quoted a "well-informed US intelligence source" as saying.

"They went crazy realising Karadzic was making a fool of them," it said yesterday. "The US and CIA withdrew [his] informal protection.

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West Point Terrorism Expert: Turkish involvement in Terror is 'best kept story'

Friday, July 18, 2008

"The story of Turkish involvement in transnational jihadism is one of the best kept stories of the war on terror."
Brian Glyn Williams, associate professor who "has tracked the movement of jihadis for the U.S. military's Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.


A newly released AP article notes that al-Qaida is recruiting many foreign fighters - from Turkey, Central Asia, Chechnya and the Middle East - for the war in Afghanistan. According to the article,
"Turkey appears to have emerged as a source of recruits. Williams estimated as many as 100 Turks had made their way to Pakistan to join the fight in Afghanistan."

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Mars secret is not life. It's energy


In fact percholate...

pOss

I just did a napkin guestimation, It would seem this reduces the cost of a permanent settlement significantly. I mean, your talking about cutting the cost for oxygen creation and food down to nearly nothing. after the initial setup mission each shuttle need only bring enough oxygen and water for the trip. Infact over a few years, you could be exporting food back to earth. The cost of getting it back would be drastically reduced as well. In fact, its been shown that we could build an orbital elevator on mars with todays technology, let alone the possibility of creating rocket fuel...

As near as i can tell it, this at least halves the initial start-up cost of a mars colony. Not only that.. but it reduces the time before self sufficiency by a factor of at least ten.

This discovery (once fully confirmed) fully justifies immediate and extensive investment in Mars colonisation. Whoever gets there first will make themselves the richest party on both planets within 50 years.

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News Releases

Text Size

Dwayne Brown
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-1726
dwayne.c.brown@nasa.gov

Guy Webster
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
818-354-6278
guy.webster@jpl.nasa.gov

Sara Hammond
University of Arizona, Tucson
520-626-1974
shammond@lpl.arizona.edu

Aug. 4, 2008
 
RELEASE : 08-199
 
 
NASA Spacecraft Analyzing Martian Soil Data
 
 
WASHINGTON -- Scientists are analyzing results from soil samples delivered several weeks ago to science instruments on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander to understand the landing site's soil chemistry and mineralogy.

Within the last month, two samples have been analyzed by the Wet Chemistry Lab of the spacecraft's Microscopy, Electrochemistry, and Conductivity Analyzer, or MECA, suggesting one of the soil constituents may be perchlorate, a highly oxidizing substance. The Phoenix team has been waiting for complementary results from the Thermal and Evolved-Gas Analyzer, or TEGA, which also is capable of detecting perchlorate. TEGA is a series of ovens and analyzers that "sniff" vapors released from substances in a sample.

NASA will hold a media teleconference on Tuesday, Aug. 5, at 2 p.m. EDT, to discuss these recent science activities. Participants will be introduced at the start of the briefing. To participate in the teleconference, reporters should contact Steve Cole on 202-358-0918 for dial-in and passcode information.

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Woman shot by cops was complying say experts

Experts testify that woman was on knees when Lima officer fired gun

Posted by kturner July 31, 2008 10:45AM

Lima, Ohio -- A woman shot and killed by a police officer during a drug raid was likely on her knees and complying with a SWAT team's orders to get down when she was hit in the neck and chest, two experts testified Wednesday at the officer's trial.

A forensic pathologist and firearms expert each said that bullet wounds indicate that Tarika Wilson, 26, wasn't standing.

Sgt. Joseph Chavalia has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor counts of negligent homicide and negligent assault. He faces up to eight months in jail if convicted of both counts.

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WSJ: Bruce Ivins Wasn't the Anthrax Culprit


Related
Pressure Grows for FBI to Show Anthrax Evidence


OPINION

By RICHARD SPERTZEL

August 5, 2008

Over the past week the media was gripped by the news that the FBI was about to charge Bruce Ivins, a leading anthrax expert, as the man responsible for the anthrax letter attacks in September/October 2001.

But despite the seemingly powerful narrative that Ivins committed suicide because investigators were closing in, this is still far from a shut case. The FBI needs to explain why it zeroed in on Ivins, how he could have made the anthrax mailed to lawmakers and the media, and how he (or anyone else) could have pulled off the attacks, acting alone.

I believe this is another mistake in the investigation.

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YouTube Ditching High Profile Users In Fear of Copyright Enforcers: Has Viacom Made Google Scared?

YouTube Logo 2YouTube is clearly trying to clean up in light of the Viacom lawsuit, ironing out any potential issues over copyright theft. But high profile YouTube posters such as Loic Lemeur and Chris Crocker are being dragged in to the mess, potentially causing more harm to the site than good.

Google, YouTube’s parent company, often has a very strong and formidable stance about copyright issues. The internet giant is regularly pushing for more relaxed definitions of copyright law and often quoting ‘fair-use’ and the DMCA to fight off rights holders who don’t appreciate how Google allows their content get used.

However, recent actions on YouTube is showing Google as being more apprehensive about retaliations from rights holders.

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Italy takes another goose-step towards fascism

Yet Another Step To Feudalism

Bookmark This 

In another step towards a society based upon the feudalism of the middle ages, British police have begun blocking food deliveries to the “climate camp” being held at Kingsnorth coal power station in Kent.

While the protesters’ reasons for protest are simply wrong, their right to protest is inviolable. The attempted use of hunger as a crowd control mechanism is a giant leap too far. When will the general public start getting angry about this stuff?

Meanwhile, in Italy, Silvio Berlusconi deployed more than 1000 troops on Italian streets yesterday, to “help police fight crime.” He intends to raise the number to 3000 in the near future. Will it stop there, do you think?

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US accused of backing terrorism in Pakistan

Indo-Asian News Service
Islamabad, August 05, 2008

First Published: 14:12 IST(5/8/2008)
Last Updated: 15:47 IST(5/8/2008)

Pakistan has accused the US of backing militancy within the country, saying this goes against the grain of the Washington-led global war against terror.

Quoting "impeccable official sources", The News reported on Tuesday that "strong evidence and circumstantial evidence of American acquiescence to terrorism inside Pakistan" was outlined by President Pervez Musharraf, army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Lt. Gen. Nadeem Taj in separate meetings with two senior US officials in Islamabad on July 12.

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Novak retires

Sun-Times political columnist Robert Novak retires

August 4, 2008

FROM SUN-TIMES STAFF REPORTS

Robert Novak has announced his immediate retirement following the diagnosis of a brain tumor, a prognosis the Sun-Times' political columnist describes as "dire."

"The details are being worked out with the doctors this week, but the tentative plan is for radiation and chemotherapy," Novak said.

The Evans-Novak column was first distributed by Publishers Newspaper Syndicate on May 15, 1963, with the New York Herald-Tribune, the flagship newspaper. When the Herald-Tribune folded in 1966, the Chicago Sun-Times became their home newspaper.

Link
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'Obama will name Bayh his VP choice on Wednesday'

Obama will name Bayh his VP choice on Wednesday

Filed by: Bil Browning

August 4, 2008 11:00 AM

Updated at the end of the post.

I'm going to put my neck out on theObamaBayh08.jpg line by making a prediction. Barack Obama will announce his vice-presidential choice Wednesday morning. It will be Indiana Senator Evan Bayh.

While Washington Post columnist Chris Cillizza has positioned Bayh at the top of the heap for a few weeks now, after getting tips to Bilerico-Indiana and making some logical conclusions the choice is obvious. Why?

Multiple reasons after the jump - including an inside scoop from an Obama staffer on an upcoming event.

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Our Living Dead

Reham Alhelsi

By Reham Alhelsi • Aug 5th, 2008 at 12:43 • Category: Artwork, Biography, Children's Corner, Culture and Heritage, Education, Israel, Music, Poetry, Events, Newswire, Palestine, Resistance, Somoud: Arab Voices of Resistance, Uprooted Palestinians' Testimonies, Zionism

During a seminar I attended in Germany about journalism and its role in conflicts, some participants were against the idea of TV stations like Aljazeera showing the horrific photos of Palestinian victims. They argued that seeing such pictures would only increase the hate and the anger and fuel the conflict. I was against that, and said that when we talk about the Zionist crimes committed against us, we are either accused of lying or exaggerating, and since the written word in western press is mostly pro-Israeli, we have only these photos left to speak for us. It is because one single such photo speaks a thousand honest words, many prefer not to see them or pretend not to know of their existence. When Palestinians distribute pictures of the victims killed by the IOF to news agencies, they are accused of using their dead for propaganda. But when the Israelis spread pictures of their dead, they are pitied for their loss and their dead are glorified. The world is allowed to see Israeli mothers crying near their dead sons and allowed to see scenes of suicide bombings with blood all over the place, but not that of Palestinian mothers crying the loss of their loved ones, or of the scenes of the various massacres or Palestinian houses covered with blood after an Israeli raid. How come we are not allowed to see photos of Palestin-ian victims who were killed while on their way to school or work, or who were simply killed by an Israeli air strike while sitting in their own living rooms? It has nothing to do with the photos being too graphic, too horrific to be seen, too inappropriate for the viewers or even the excuse that it might increase the hate. It is true that many of these photos are horrific and painful to look at, but they constitute the very few instruments available to us to speak about our suffering in a world that practices a selective freedom of press. And because these photos speak for themselves and on behalf of the victims condemning the killers, they are forbidden. As far as I can remember the Israeli TV was continuously showing films about the Holocaust, the concentration camps and photos of the victims. Western media does the same. Al-most 70 years after the Holocaust, we are reminded of it on an almost daily basis through all forms of media, but there is almost no mention whatsoever in this same media about the Palestinian victims and their ongoing Holocaust.

Photos have their own power and often send a clearer and more honest message than a thousand words. That is one reason why there are lots of things the western media won’t show its viewers or readers, especially when it comes to Zionist terror. For us, these pictures represent a way of saying we will never forget our victims and show our solidarity with the families of these victims. I remember when I was a child we had at home a drawing of Lena Nabulsi by the well-known Palestinian artist Suleiman Mansour. This is a well-known painting in Palestine that hangs on the wall of many Palestinian houses. It shows Lena lying on the ground in a field, with blood streaming out of her head. Lena was a 15-year-old Palestinian pupil who was killed in cold blood in 1976 by the IOF while visiting a friend of hers after school. As I grew up, I often heard the song of Lena at home and at my grandparents’ house. It is as well-known as the painting itself, and especially during the first Intifada one could practically hear this song and others coming from almost every corner and every street in Palestine. The song “Fe Al Daffa” (In the West Bank) written by Hasan Daher and sung by Ahmed Kabour says: Lena was a child making her future, Lena fell, but her blood was singing… was singing for Jerusalem, Jaffa, Jericho… I remem-ber how at night I used to wake up and look at the painting which hung in the bedroom exactly opposite the bed. I used to watch the painting and think about her and how she was killed just like that and for no reason other than that she is Palestinian. Sometimes I would think about how real she looked in that painting, about her lying there in the field, her long hair spread around her face like some halo and her blood watering the earth beneath her. It was as if she would stand up any minute and walk back home. In those moments in the middle of the night, I used to wonder if she would be scared waking up alone at night in that field, so far away from her home. Through this painting and through the song, Lena’s mem-ory is kept alive in the minds of Palestinians and her story will be forwarded from one generation to the following.

In older days, the memory of Palestinian national heroes was kept alive through folklore, especially folk songs and stories. Who among us doesn’t memorize the song of Sijin Akka (Acre Prison)? This song narrates the story of the three Acre heroes: Mohammad Jamjoum, Fouad Hijazi and Atta Al-Zeir who were executed by the British mandate government on Tuesday the 17th of June 1930. This sad song talks about the last minutes of the three heroes, their courage and their love for Palestine which even the gallows couldn’t extinguish, how all of Palestine mourned these heroes and a general strike was declared on the day of their execution. Other folk songs narrate stories of other heroes such as the story of Mish’al, the story of Jafra and others.

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Freddie Mac Chief Ignored Warnings

Related
  1. Housing Lenders Fear Bigger Wave of Loan Defaults


The New York Times

August 5, 2008

At Freddie Mac, Chief Discarded Warning Signs

By CHARLES DUHIGG

The chief executive of the mortgage giant Freddie Mac rejected internal warnings that could have protected the company from some of the financial crises now engulfing it, according to more than two dozen current and former high-ranking executives and others.

That chief executive, Richard F. Syron, in 2004 received a memo from Freddie Mac’s chief risk officer warning him that the firm was financing questionable loans that threatened its financial health.

Today, Freddie Mac and the nation’s other major mortgage finance company, Fannie Mae, are in such perilous condition that the federal government has readied a taxpayer-financed bailout that could cost billions. Though the current housing crisis would have undoubtedly caused problems at both companies, Freddie Mac insiders say Mr. Syron heightened those perils by ignoring repeated recommendations.

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The Pfc. LaVena Johnson Petition: Calling on the House Oversight Committee to investigate her death

Monday, August 4, 2008

Truthdig on military sexual assault hearing

Activist and retired Army Colonel Ann Wright has been indispensable to the effort to prompt a renewed investigation of the death in Iraq of Pfc. LaVena Johnson. She has also fought to make known the wider issue of murder and sexual assault of women in the armed forces. Col. Wright attended the recent hearings on sexual assault in the military held by the Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, and has written at Truthdig a critical account of the refusal of the Department of Defense to allow a witness to be heard:

Sexual Assault in the Military: A DoD Cover-Up?

There was quite a struggle in Congress this week. The Department of Defense refused to allow the senior civilian in charge of its Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO) to testify in Thursday’s hearing on sexual assault in the military. Rep. John Tierney, chair of the House Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, angrily dismissed Principal Deputy Undersecretary of Defense Michael Dominguez from the hearing when Dominguez said that he, the DoD chief of legislative affairs and the chief of public affairs, had ordered Dr. Kaye Whitley, chief of SAPRO, to refuse to honor the subpoena issued by the subcommittee for her appearance.

Full committee Chairman Henry Waxman called the DoD’s decision to prevent Whitley from testifying “ridiculous and indicating DoD is covering something up.” It could also place Whitley in contempt of Congress. Rep. Christopher Shays said the DoD’s decision was “foolish.”

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McCain security ousts black reporter

Article published Aug 2, 2008

By Paul Flemming

FLORIDA CAPITAL BUREAU

Tallahassee Democrat senior writer Stephen Price on Friday was singled out and asked to leave a media area at the Panama City rally of presidential candidate Sen. John McCain.

Price was among at least three other reporters, and the only black reporter, surrounding McCain's campaign bus — Gov. Charlie Crist and his fiancee, Carole Rome, were already aboard — when a member of the Arizona senator's security detail asked the reporter to identify himself. Price had shown his media credentials to enter the area.

Price showed his employee identification as well as his credentials for the Friday event.

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House GOP Enters Second Day Of Sit-In

GOP returns for Day 2 of talkathon

By JOHN BRESNAHAN & DANIEL W. REILLY | 8/4/08 6:56 PM EST

“Madam Speaker, let my people vote!” said Rep. Tim Walberg on the House floor.

If Friday’s impromptu House protest session had all the passion of a revival meeting, Monday’s Episode II was more like a prayer circle — intense but smaller, with shouts of glory replaced by wishful thinking.

Two dozen Republicans kicked off their second day of protests with an array of sometimes inartful, off-topic or histrionic floor speeches ranging in topic from John Quincy Adams’ views on slavery to a shout-out to Moses.

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McCain volunteers his wife for a topless beauty pageant

August 05, 2008
Categories: John McCain

Topless in Sturgis

Meanwhile at a biker rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, John McCain appears to have volunteered his wife for a topless beauty pageant:

McCain felt so comfortable at the event that he even volunteered his wife for the rally’s traditional beauty pageant, an infamously debauched event that’s been known to feature topless women.

“I encouraged Cindy to compete,” McCain said to cheers. “I told her with a little luck she could be the only woman ever to serve as first lady and Miss Buffalo Chip.”

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20,000 protest Bush arrival in Seoul

S. Koreans fire water cannons at Bush protesters

By PAUL ALEXANDER, Associated Press Writer2 hours, 1 minute ago

Police fired water cannons at thousands of protesters Tuesday as President Bush got a volatile reception in South Korea at the start of his three-nation Asian trip.

Dueling demonstrations reflected mixed sentiments in this U.S. ally, where public opinion surveys remain generally positive about America, though many people decry Washington for a variety of issues. Bush will meet Wednesday with President Lee Myung-bak for the third time since the conservative, pro-American leader took office in February.

Some 18,300 police were on high alert with riot gear and bomb-sniffing dogs to maintain order during Bush's brief visit, the National Police Agency said.

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Pentagon Studied Ancient Empires For Tips On Ruling The World

Don't Know Much About History

The Pentagon looks back to four great empires for tips on how to rule the world.

Justin Elliott

August 04  , 2008  In the summer of 2002, the Pentagon's Office of Net Assessment (ONA) published an 85-page monograph called "Military Advantage in History". Unusual for an office that is headed by Andrew Marshall, the Pentagon's "futurist in chief," the study looks back to the past—way back. It examines four empires, or "pivotal hegemonic powers in history," to draw lessons about how the United States "should think about maintaining military advantage in the 21st century." Though unclassified, the study was held close to the vest; a stamp on the cover limits its dissemination without permission. Mother Jones obtained it only through a Freedom of Information Act request. Though the report is far from revelatory, it provides a window into a mindset that unselfconsciously envisions the United States as the successor to some of history's most powerful empires.

The study looks a little like a high school text book, devoting chapters to Alexander the Great, Imperial Rome, Genghis Khan, and Napoleonic France and citing texts by Sun Tzu, Livy, and Jared Diamond. It attempts to break down exactly how historic empires sustained their military might across continents and even centuries. The study posits that the historical examples offer "insights into what drives U.S. military advantage," as well as "where U.S. vulnerabilities may lie, and how the United States should think about maintaining its military advantage in the future." There is no one secret to world domination, however. The Mongols' military advantage was rooted in their "tactical and operational superiority"; the Macedonians' in the "exceptional leadership" of and "cult of personality" surrounding Alexander the Great; Napoleon's in "innovative operational concepts" and "information superiority"; and the Romans' in "robust tactical doctrine" and "strong domestic institutions" which were "designed to incorporate conquered peoples as the empire grew." In an extraordinary passage, the study cites the Roman experience—from over a millennium ago—as a precedent for America's long-term dominance: "The Roman model suggests that it is possible for the United States to maintain its military advantage for centuries if it remains capable of transforming its forces before an opponent can develop counter-capabilities. Transformation coupled with strong strategic institutions is a powerful combination for an adversary to overcome."

The report's language is jargon laden and opaque—a lance used by Macedonian horsemen is referred to as a "primary weapon system." That may be due to the methodology of "net assessment," a fancy term for the ONA's approach to analyzing complicated real-world situations that is rooted in systems analysis and game theory. Military author James Dunnigan compares it to engineering. "You take apart historical events, reassemble them as a simulation, and then tinker with the simulation until you can recreate the historical event accurately," he explains. "What that allows you to do is play out 'what if?' situations: What if Napoleon did this? What if Ghengis Khan did that?"

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Apartheid in Practice

"While most foreign nationals who marry Israelis can live in the Jewish state and eventually obtain citizenship, Palestinians and some other Arabs are unable to do so."

In Israel, married but without rights

Report, The Electronic Intifada, 5 August 2008

BEERSHEBA/JAFFA (IRIN) - Some 15,000 Palestinians who married Israeli citizens in the past decade are illegal or temporary residents. Their lives and those of their families have become "unstable," according to non-governmental organizations.

"Many families are being forced to live underground," said Orna Cohen, an attorney from Adalah, an Israeli rights group fighting the ban on "family unifications" (mixed marriages involving Palestinians or some other Arabs) in Israel.

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Gaza Under Siege

Monday, August 04, 2008

by Stephen Lendman

After Hamas' January 25, 2006 electoral victory, Israel targeted Gaza oppressively. All outside aid was cut off. Sanctions and an economic embargo were imposed, and the democratically elected government was falsely called a terrorist organization and isolated. Stepped up repression followed along with repeated IDF incursions, attacks, killings, targeted assassinations, arrests, destruction of property and more in a pattern all too familiar to Palestinians for over six decades. Gazans are imprisoned in their own land and have been traumatized for months. In June 2007, things got worse after Israel placed the Territory under siege - described by some as medieval because of its extreme harshness.

On June 14, 2007, collaboratively with Israel and the US, Palestinian Authority (PA) president Mahmoud Abbas declared a "state of emergency," illegally dismissed Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh and his national unity government, and appointed his own prime minister and new "emergency" cabinet. Authority is now split. Abbas runs the West Bank. Hamas governs Gaza while Israel controls everything - land, sea, air, movement inside and between the Territories, the population registry, family unification, and all goods and services in and from Occupied Palestine. Especially Gaza under siege for nearly 14 months and solely dependent on Israel for its fuel, electricity and gas. Other essentials as well.

Hamas remains isolated. It's called a "hostile entity," and after last September 19 was squeezed by tightened sanctions. Electricity, fuel and gas were reduced and intermittently cut off. So were supplies of food, medicines, water and other essentials. Its industrial production dropped 95%, and its agricultural output is about half its pre-2007 level. Nearly all construction also stopped, and according to a new UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) report, poverty tops 50% and unemployment is nearly as high. Other unofficial estimates say 80% for both is more accurate. Things are bad and worsening

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Vaccine Cover-Up Worst In Military History

Added: July 31, 2008

This news item is a shocking story about how the US government is killing it's own soldiers, by giving them shot of a vaccine that is causing severe reactions and illnesses.

How can any civilised government do this to it's own people.

Just imagine the horror they are inflicting upon the people of Iraq.

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The Zionist Madrasa: Rabbis who bring shame to Judaism

Rabbis who bring shame to Judaism

[ 05/08/2008 - 01:07 AM ]

By Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank


Religious extremism is very dangerous. It means that every thinkable vice under the sun can be committed, “sanctioned” and “justified” in the name of the Almighty.

In Israel, rabbis with hundreds of thousands of followers, many of whom serve in the Gestapo-like Israeli occupation army, openly teach that non-Jews are only human in form but animals in substance.

These racist teachings can’t be dismissed as “innocuous” or “esoteric.” Very often, they constitute “a manual for action” for many Jewish settlers roaming the hills of the West Bank, fetching for an Arab prey to kill, or attack or tie up to a power pole.

The teaching also serve as a direct inspiration to numerous Israeli soldiers operating in the West Bank who, thanks to the racist indoctrination they receive from their rabbis, have come to view the estimated 3.7 million Palestinians living under Israel’s military rule, not as real human beings, but rather as animals walking on two feet. The often barbaric treatment meted out to the Palestinians in the occupied territories testifies to the rampantly racist indoctrination soldiers and settlers receive at the hands of religious Zionist rabbis.

Last year, a Jewish immigrant from France, who murdered an Arab taxi driver after luring him to his home north of Tel Aviv, told police interrogators that he didn’t kill a human being; he only killed an animal.

“Merkaz Harav”

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A War of Self-Destruction

Truthdig

Posted on Aug 4, 2008

By Chris Hedges

An attack on Iran, which Israeli and Bush administration officials appear set to carry out if Iranian uranium enrichment is not halted, would ignite a regional war in the Middle East and lead to economic collapse and political upheaval in the United States.

“In short and simple terms, we would be plunged into a depression that would make the Great Depression of the 1930s in which I spent my childhood look like boom times,” said William R. Polk, former professor of history at the University of Chicago and a member of the Policy Planning Council under President Kennedy. “Industries would fail, banks would collapse, government revenues would dry up, universities would have to close, health care, even as limited as it now is for roughly 75 million Americans, would virtually cease. In short, something like [what] the South suffered at the end of the Civil War would plague the country.”

The passage of vast amounts of oil and liquefied gas through the Persian Gulf would be disrupted. Iranian attacks, carried out with rocket- and bomb-equipped speedboats and submarines, would be deadly and effective. A classified Pentagon war game in 2002 simulated these swarming attacks by Iranian speedboats packed with explosives in the gulf; the Navy lost 16 major warships, according to a report in The New York Times. Iranian oil, which makes up 8 percent of the world’s energy supply, would instantly be taken off the market. And oil would jump to over $500 a barrel and perhaps, as the conflict dragged on, to over $750 a barrel. Our petroleum-based economy would come to a halt.

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'Shin Bet Decides Who'll Die in Gaza'


04/08/2008 The Shin Bet (Israeli Security Agency) is the arbiter of life and death for gravely ill Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip, the NGO Physicians for Human Rights charged in an 83-page report released early Monday morning.
 
The report includes dozens of pages of testimony by 11 Gazan citizens whom the Shin Bet has allegedly questioned and tried to pressure into providing intelligence information in return for permission to cross into occupied territories on their way to medical treatment outside the Gaza Strip.
 
According to the report, entitled Holding Health to Ransom, PHR charged that Shin Bet interrogators question Palestinians who have applied (and often already received) exit permits to enter Israel on their way to urgent medical treatment in Israel, the West Bank or Jordan. According to the report, the interrogators demand that the patients provide intelligence information in return for permission to leave.

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The Insolvency of the FSLIC: a warning from the S&L crisis?

The Blogosphere Banking Panic (III. The Failure of the FSLIC)

The Savings and Loans Crisis of the 1980's was one of the biggest financial crises in US history. The insurer for savings and loans, the FSLIC became insolvent and was abolished in 1989. A new institution, the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) was established to liquidate failed financial institutions. Federal insurance of S&L deposits was transferred to the FDIC in 1989.

One contemporary account described the scope of the financial meltdown as follows:

The failure rate of FSLIC insured savings and loan associations (S&Ls) in the United States during recent years has assumed unprecedented proportions. For the period from 1934 through 1941, a total of 33 F.S.L.I.C. insured S&Ls failed. Over the period from 1942 through 1962, a total of 15 FSLIC insured S&Ls failed. The number of failed so-insured S&Ls rose to 82 for the period from 1963 through 1979. However, since 1980, the annual number of failed FSLIC insured S&Ls has reached unprecedented levels. Indeed, ... over the period 1980 through 1989, a total of 525 FSLIC insured insolvent S&Ls failed.

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Fmr Terror Czar Warns Of Internet-9/11; A Secret Internet-Patriot Act Already Exists Says Prof

"There’s going to be an i-9/11 event. Which doesn’t necessarily mean an Al Qaeda attack, it means an event where the instability or the insecurity of the internet becomes manifest during a malicious event which then inspires the government into a response. You’ve got to remember that after 9/11 the government drew up the Patriot Act within 20 days and it was passed.

The Patriot Act is huge and I remember someone asking a Justice Department official how did they write such a large statute so quickly, and of course the answer was that it has been sitting in the drawers of the Justice Department for the last 20 years waiting for the event where they would pull it out.

Of course, the Patriot Act is filled with all sorts of insanity about changing the way civil rights are protected, or not protected in this instance. So I was having dinner with Richard Clarke and I asked him if there is an equivalent, is there an i-Patriot Act just sitting waiting for some substantial event as an excuse to radically change the way the internet works. He said “of course there is."

Above at 4.30 of the following video:

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Bush Praises Indicted Senator

Countdown to Crawford: Tracking the final days of the Bush administration

Presidential hug for controversial senator

Republican Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens listens as President Bush praises him in a speech to military personnel in Eielson AFB, Alaska, Monday, Aug. 4, 2008

Republican Ted Stevens is the king of pork-barrel earmark spending. The senior senator from Alaska is also the architect of the infamous Bridge to Nowhere, a project to connect the town of Ketchikan (population 8,900) with its airport on the Island of Gravina (population 50) at a cost to federal taxpayers of $320 million.

Last month he was indicted on seven counts of falsifying his Senate disclosure forms. The federal charges allege that he hid $250,000 in gifts from an oil producing company to renovate his Anchorage area home. The inference is that the company got many favors in return from the senator's legislative juice as chairman or ranking Republican on the Appropriations Committee.

But none of that stopped President Bush from embracing Stevens, at least verbally, when he stopped at Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska last night to refuel on his trip to Asia. Stevens is popular in Alaska, known as "Uncle Ted" for his faithful record of steering federal funds to the 49th state over the years. When Bush acknowledged h

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Rulings May Stymie White-Collar Prosecutions

Posted on Mon, Aug. 04, 2008

Enron setbacks could hurt other white-collar prosecutions

Marisa Taylor | McClatchy Newspapers

last updated: August 04, 2008 04:27:04 PM

WASHINGTON — Almost seven years after the energy giant Enron collapsed, a series of court decisions has opened the door to new trials for some of the convicted corporate executives and threatened to hobble the Justice Department's efforts to pursue future corporate-fraud cases.

In the wake of the scandal, prosecutors pursued executives for covering up the company's financial bleeding and unloading millions of dollars in stock. The Bush administration was under pressure to hold the company's executives accountable for what at the time represented the largest bankruptcy in U.S. history. More than 4,000 Enron employees lost their jobs, and investors lost billions.

However, legal experts said the government's recent setbacks in court raised troubling questions about how federal prosecutors handled the high-profile cases and suggested that the Justice Department could face serious obstacles in other white-collar investigations:


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We Don’t Need a War on Terrorism

We Don’t Need a War on Terrorism
August 1, 2008
Ivan Eland

Many opponents of the Bush administration’s invasion and occupation of Iraq have always argued that this conflict is an irrelevant and even counterproductive sideshow to the real “war on terrorism” in Afghanistan. In fact, Barack Obama led the parade to initiate a troop surge in Afghanistan after having opposed it in Iraq. The more hawkish John McCain, not to be outdone by a weak-kneed Democrat, proposed that even more troops be sent to Afghanistan. In American politics after 9/11, it seems that candidates have to support some sort of war or they will be perceived as being too wimpy to get elected.

Only a small minority of foreign policy gadflies has doubted whether any war on terrorism is needed in either Iraq or Afghanistan. Now a new report by RAND, the government’s own captive think tank, supports this small band of renegades. The study, “How Terrorist Groups End: Lessons for Countering al-Qaeda,” written by terrorism experts Seth Jones and Martin Libicki, followed more than 600 terrorist groups, including al-Qaeda, over the long-term. The report concluded that the administration’s war on terrorism has not significantly degraded al-Qaeda and that the group has morphed into a more formidable enemy. In fact, al-Qaeda has perpetrated more attacks after September 11, 2001 than before it.

RAND deduced that the best way to kill a terrorist group is to capture or kill its leaders. This task is best carried out, according to the study, by law enforcement, intelligence, and, if needed, troops from the local country. Instead of giving terrorists the exalted status of warriors, they should be deemed criminals. In other words, the authors conclude that in most past cases in which terrorist groups have been defeated by getting their leaders, local law enforcement did the job. They say that when troops are needed, local troops have a better understanding of the culture and terrain and thus have more legitimacy than do U.S. forces. In fact, the study says that the presence of U.S. forces on Muslim soil can create more terrorists to fight; thus the authors argue that the U.S. military should confine itself to training the locals.

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The man who put Charles Manson on Death Row would do the same to George W. Bush

"With all the death, horror and suffering he has caused, what type of a monstrous individual could be happy with his life?”

Prosecuting the president

By Joe Piasecki 07/31/2008

Vincent Bugliosi is no left-leaning softie or fringe conspiracy theorist, and he does not take facts lightly.
As an LA County prosecutor with a flawless homicide conviction rate, Bugliosi put Charles Manson and his followers on Death Row for the infamous 1969 slayings of actress Sharon Tate and six others.

Of nine nonfiction books — including “Helter Skelter,” the story of the Manson case and the biggest-selling true-crime book of all time — it is his 1.5 million-word, 10,000-source tome affirming the findings of the Warren Commission and dissecting at length the varied alternate theories that the 73-year-old Bugliosi considers his greatest work. (“Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy” is currently being made into a miniseries for HBO by Tom Hanks.)
Like much of today’s music and culture, computers are foreign to him, in part because Bugliosi associates the machines with “the country going down the tubes.” He keeps up a seven-day work week, doing all his research in libraries and with the help of a secretary, who also types up his handwritten manuscripts for publication.

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The Caucasian conflict in the context of world politics

Update
Georgia to meet South Ossetia rebels for landmark talks: official

Related
Russia says threat of war between Georgia, South Ossetia real


20:10 | 04/ 08/ 2008

MOSCOW. (Fyodor Lukyanov for RIA Novosti) - South Ossetia is once again on the brink of war. Alarming reports are coming from Abkhazia, and Russian-Georgian relations continue to be tense.

Why have these two unresolved conflicts on Georgian territory grown so markedly worse? Their indefinite status is by definition volatile, and sometimes a minor event can turn a frozen conflict into a hot one. In this case, however, we are seeing a major change that reflects a fundamental process.

Kosovo's unilateral proclamation of independence from Serbia last February played a key role in these developments. There may be endless disputes over whether this has created a legal precedent or not, but realpolitik takes its course regardless.

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'Stand up for what's right about America'

Added: August 03, 2008

Kucinich inspires peace rally in Cleveland

http://kucinich.us

Congressman Dennis Kucinich, featured speaker at a peace rally in downtown Cleveland, urges the wildly receptive crowd to "Stand up for what's right about America." Support health care, jobs, home ownership, education, civil liberties, and the Constitution, he urged. Continue to oppose the war in Iraq and the threatened war against Iran.

*Please Subscribe for the latest video message from Dennis*

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'They’ll all get lawyers': Cheney’s excuse for not releasing innocent detainees

The New York Times

August 3, 2008

Black Sites

By ALAN BRINKLEY


THE DARK SIDE

The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals.

By Jane Mayer.

Illustrated. 392 pp. Doubleday. $27.50.

Within hours of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, Dick Cheney in effect took command of the national security operations of the federal government. Quickly and instinctively, he began to act in response to two longstanding beliefs: that the great dangers facing the United States justified almost any response, whether or not legal; and that the presidency needed vastly to enhance its authority, which had been unjustifiably and dangerously weakened in the post-Vietnam, post-Watergate years. George Bush was an eager enabler, but not often an active architect, of the government’s response to terror. His instinct was to be tough and aggressive in response to challenges, and Cheney’s belligerence fit comfortably with the president’s own inclinations.

In fairness, in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks and the anthrax scare that followed, who could not have imagined the worst and contemplated extraordinary efforts to prevent it? But as Jane Mayer, a staff writer for The New Yorker, makes clear in “The Dark Side,” a powerful, brilliantly researched and deeply unsettling book, what almost immediately came to be called the “war on terror” led quickly and inexorably to some of the most harrowing tactics ever contemplated by the United States government. The war in Iraq is the most obvious and familiar result of the heedless “toughness” of the new administration. But Mayer recounts a different, if at least equally chilling, story: the emergence of the widespread use of torture as a central tool in the battle against terrorism; and the fierce, stubborn defense of torture against powerful opposition from within the administration and beyond. It is the story of how a small group of determined men and women thwarted international and American law; fought off powerful challenges from colleagues within the Justice Department, the State Department, the National Security Council and the C.I.A.; ignored or circumvented Supreme Court rulings and Congressional resolutions; and blithely dismissed a growing clamor of outrage and contempt from much of the world — all in the service of preserving their ability to use extreme forms of torture in the search for usable intelligence.

Occasional lurid revelations of abuse — most prominent among them the appalling photographs of Iraqi detainees in Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad, made public in 2004 — have been widely denounced throughout the world. The president has expressed outrage and has insisted that the degradation was the work of a few bad apples who would be appropriately punished. But it was only the pictures that made Abu Ghraib an aberration. The tactics the president denounced were precisely those he had authorized and encouraged in the growing network of secret prisons around the world. The detainees in these scattered sites — many of them innocent — have been held for months and years without charges, without lawyers, without notification to their families and often without respite from torture for weeks and months at a time. The Bush administration’s response to the Abu Ghraib scandal was not to stop the behavior, but to try to hide it more effectively.

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Obama links energy troubles to Cheney

By TOM RAUM – 3 hours ago

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama sought on Tuesday to link the troubled economy with administration energy policies that he asserted Vice President Dick Cheney helped shape and rival Republican John McCain would continue.

"McCain has taken a page out of the Cheney playbook," Obama said as he stumped in this key battleground state.

With polls showing concern over gas prices a prime concern of Americans, Obama has been depicting energy as the nation's most pressing national security and economic issue. In that effort, he criticizes McCain as more concerned about oil company profits and drilling than an overall energy strategy.

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Fannie bail out was for China

Related
Fannie and Freddie Own 44% Of Foreclosed Homes

Bernanke May Sound Tougher to Avert Fed Rebellion
Housing Crisis Likely to Wipe Out Two Decades of Family-Earned Wealth


If you wondered who the Fannie bail out was for, wonder no longer…

Published b yMorgan

at August 5, 2008 in Economy, Mortgage Musings and Mortgage News/Insight. Tags: No Tags.

If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to my RSS feed. Thanks for visiting!

I’ve said numerous times that the main reason for bailing out the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac was not for the US homeowner but for the Chinese who have bought a huge portion of our mortgage backed debt. By letting the GSEs go under the US government would have defaulted on a huge promise to its number one pimp partner who has helped fuel this massive expansion in credit and debt.

Bloomberg now has an article confirming that there were high-level talks between the US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, Fannie Mae CEO Mudd and Asian investors who hold a bulk of this debt. When you think of the homeowner bail out, remember, $300 billion was earmarked for American citizens. The rest of the near $2 trillion will go to securing our partners cash flow in to our country.

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George Tenet And White House Admit Iraq's Intelligence Chief Told Them Iraq Had No WMD

August 05, 2008

Ron Suskind was on NPR this morning to discuss his new book The Way of the World, which alleges Iraq's intelligence chief Tahir Jalil Habbush told the US before the war that Iraq had no WMD.

NPR asked George Tenet and the White House for comment, and, remarkably enough, they both essentially admitted this was true.

SUSKIND: What we now know from this investigation is that a secret mission was conducted in which a British manager, intelligence agent, met with the head of Iraqi intelligence in a secret location in Amman, Jordan. And what the Iraqi intelligence chief told the British—and essentially the Americans, because we're all in this together—is that there were no WMD in Iraq. And what that meant is that we knew everything that became so obvious by the summer after the invasion. And the president made a decision essentially to ignore that intelligence...

NPR: We have called key players in Ron Suskind's account...George Tenet says the Iraqi failed to persuade, and a White House spokesman adds that any information the Iraqi may have provided was, quote, "immaterial."

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DEA may be using mercenaries

Aug-02-2008 15:15printcomments

Is the Bush Administration Using Blackwater Mercenaries in the DEA?

Perspective by Tim King Salem-News.com

An extremely angry employee of the dispensary compared the DEA raid to being "robbed by a bunch of thugs downtown."


This photo from the LA Times shows what we assume is a DEA agent, wearing a shirt from Blackwater, the mercenary group accused of slaughtering innocent people in the streets of Iraq that has gone from black to hot water over the last two years. Are Blackwater and the DEA trading members?

(LOS ANGELES) - Are members of a disputed mercenary killer group now working with the DEA? A photo from the LA Times shows proof of one of two things; either Blackwater members are now working for the Bush White House's Drug Enforcement Agency, or this semi-illegitimate band of rogue federal cops have worse discipline than any of us ever imagined.

As a U.S. Marine, I would have faced charges for simply wearing my camouflage utility uniform into a store. There are these things called standards that the Corps and other military and police groups are obligated to follow. It is to avoid giving someone the wrong idea about who you are and your application in society. I guess Blackwater and the federal marijuana plant warriors don't care what people think.

The LA Times article suggests that the California pot dispensary raids have put the DEA's tactics in question. Far beyond the idea of these clowns wearing Blackwater shirts, the overall point is that they are operating above the law. California voters firmly stated that they want people to have access to medical marijuana.

Feds Make Mockery out of California Voters

The fact is that in addition to the state's ignored laws making medical marijuana legal, two appellate court decisions in California said federal laws don't take priority. But the DEA operates above the law and they are the ones who should be charged, tried and jailed. In fact, I see this happening in the future as we are probably very close to electing a new President who will reallocate the mission of these agents who needlessly press the pot issue, as the nation's problems with methamphetamine spirals out of control.

We have never had a federal government so out of touch with the realities of the people in this country.

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US housing bill will not save the economy

By Julian Bene on Monday, August 04, 2008

Congress finally passed the housing bill and the President signed it, but champagne corks have not been popping. The president dropped his threat to veto the bill, presumably when his Treasury Secretary explained that, without the Fannie and Freddie bailout that it now encompasses, there would be a financial meltdown. The general view is that the bill is better than nothing and better late than never.

But it is not going to avert a whole lot more pain in housing, the credit markets and the economy.

While the mortgage refinancing piece of the bill is usually cited as designed to head off 400,000 foreclosures, it turns out that it's really more like 240,000.

The other 140,000 borrowers who use the provisions to re-negotiate their loans are expected to default on their new mortgages, too. That double default prospect is a depressing thought for taxpayers who will pick up the tab, and for anyone expecting much relief for the housing market. Worse still, whether the measure just passed averts 400,000 or 260,000 extra homes being put on the market, it seems likely to be a drop in the bucket. Dean Baker at American Prospect expects five to six million foreclosures this year and next.

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Purported 'Anthrax killer' was a Democrat

BLOGGED BY Brad Friedman ON 8/4/2008 6:13PM 

Party Affiliation of the Now-Deceased Bruce Ivins, as Confirmed by His Local County Board of Elections, Adds Yet Another Curious Question to the Increasingly Troubling Investigation into the Post-9/11 Terrorist Attacks on American Soil...

-- Brad Friedman

Bruce E. Ivins, reportedly on the verge of being indicted for capital murder in the anthrax killings, was a registered Democrat, according to the Fredrick County, MD, Board of Elections. He had been registered there since 1982 and records indicate that he voted in "every election since 1996," including Democratic primaries, according to the official who responded to a request from West Virginia-based radio host Bob Kincaid.

The party affiliation of the bio-terror researcher who worked at U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Disease (USAMRIID) adds a notable twist to the ever increasing questions surrounding the bizarre case following Ivins' reported suicide last week. He was, according to media reports, soon to be indicted for charges related to the post-9/11 terror attacks that rocked the nation and, as Salon's Glen Greenwald has very effectively argued, served as a crucial influence in marching the country towards war with Iraq.

Last week, as the story of Ivins' reported suicide were breaking, The BRAD BLOG excoriated the corporate mainstream media for failing to note that the targets of the multiple post-9/11 terror attacks on American soil were primarily powerful men, perceived as "liberals" by the Republican right wing. Nonetheless, despite two senior Democratic U.S. senators, Tom Daschle of SD and Patrick Leahy of VT, having been the only known governmental targets in the deadly letter campaign, which also included perceived "liberal" media figurehead Tom Brokaw, the MSM coverage --- almost uniformly --- failed to note the obvious correlations in the attacks. Most even failed to even mention the names of those who were directly targeted in what was clearly meant to appear as a follow-up attack from Muslim extremists.

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Critical of McCain, Obama quiet on own energy vote

By TOM RAUM, Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 23 minutes ago

Democratic candidate Barack Obama criticized Republican John McCain on Tuesday for taking a page out of "the Cheney playbook" on energy, overlooking his own support of oil-friendly policies that the unpopular vice president helped to craft.

Vice President Dick Cheney, a former oilman, early in the Bush administration helped draft an energy policy that Obama asserted is biased in favor of tax breaks and favorable treatment for big oil. Obama's remarks were an attempt to capitalize on Cheney's unpopularity.

"President Bush, he had an energy policy. He turned to Dick Cheney and he said, 'Cheney, go take care of this,'" Obama said. "Cheney met with renewable-energy folks once and oil and gas (executives) 40 times. McCain has taken a page out of the Cheney playbook."

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France took part in genocide says Rwanda

4 hours ago

KIGALI (AFP) — France played an active role in the 1994 Rwanda genocide, a report unveiled Tuesday by the Rwandan government said, naming French political and military officials it says should be prosecuted.

The indicting report accused a raft of top French politicians of involvement in the massacres, threatening to further mar relations between the two countries, which severed diplomatic ties in November 2006.

"French forces directly assassinated Tutsis and Hutus accused of hiding Tutsis... French forces committed several rapes on Tutsi survivors," said a justice ministry statement released after the report was presented in Kigali.

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Economic Free Fall?

Related
Only luck can save America's economy


This article appeared in the August 18, 2008 edition of The Nation.

July 30, 2008

AVENGING ANGELS

Washington can act with breathtaking urgency when the right people want something done. In this case, the people are Wall Street's titans, who are scared witless at the prospect of their historic implosion. Congress quickly agreed to enact a gargantuan bailout, with more to come, to calm the anxieties and halt the deflation of Wall Street giants. Put aside partisan bickering, no time for hearings, no need to think through the deeper implications. We haven't seen "bipartisan cooperation" like this since Washington decided to invade Iraq.

In their haste to do anything the financial guys seem to want, Congress and the lame-duck President are, I fear, sowing far more profound troubles for the country. First, while throwing our money at Wall Street, government is neglecting the grave risk of a deeper catastrophe for the real economy of producers and consumers. Second, Washington's selective generosity for influential financial losers is deforming democracy and opening the path to an awesomely powerful corporate state. Third, the rescue has not succeeded, not yet. Banking faces huge losses ahead, and informed insiders assume a far larger federal bailout will be needed--after the election. No one wants to upset voters by talking about it now. The next President, once in office, can break the bad news. It's not only about the money--with debate silenced, a dangerous line has been crossed. Hundreds of billions in open-ended relief has been delivered to the largest and most powerful mega-banks and investment firms, while government offers only weak gestures of sympathy for struggling producers, workers and consumers.

The bailouts are rewarding the very people and institutions whose reckless behavior caused this financial mess. Yet government demands nothing from them in return--like new rules for prudent behavior and explicit obligations to serve the national interest. Washington ought to compel the financial players to rein in their appetite for profit in order to help save the country from a far worse fate: a depressed economy that cannot regain its normal energies. Instead, the Federal Reserve, the Treasury, the Democratic Congress and of course the Republicans meekly defer to the wise men of high finance, who no longer seem so all-knowing.

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Obama and McCain as neo-neocons

They compete over who can better attack Al Qaeda in Pakistan – unilaterally.

By the Monitor Editorial Board

from the July 30, 2008 edition

On one issue – who'd be tougher on Al Qaeda – John McCain and Barack Obama are one-upping each other in rhetoric. It's a risky dynamic and may be giving a green light to the current president. Just before President Bush met Pakistan's new prime minister Monday, the US conducted an attack on Al Qaeda – inside Pakistan.

The unilateral airstrike by an unmanned drone allegedly killed Al Qaeda's leading expert on chemical and biological weapons, Abu Khabab al-Masri. The result may be difficult to argue against but this US violation of Pakistani sovereignty was criticized by Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani and perhaps most Pakistanis who cherish their recent return to full democracy.

And as if to disregard his guest, Mr. Bush stated that he "supports the sovereignty of Pakistan" – despite the same-day attack on one of Al Qaeda's havens in the largely lawless tribal areas

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US revokes visas to Palestinian Fulbright scholars

1 hour ago

WASHINGTON (AFP) — The US government as a "safety precaution" revoked visas it had issued to four Palestinian recipients of prestigious Fulbright fellowships, the State Department said Tuesday.

"We had interviewed four scholars. We had issued visas," said State Department spokesman Gonzalo Gallegos.

But, Gallegos said that "subsequent to the issue of the visas to the students, who live in the Gaza Strip, we received additional information that we believe was pertinent and needed to be reviewed further before they were allowed entry into the United States," he said.

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With DNC in mind, city bans carrying urine, feces

By Daniel J. Chacon, Rocky Mountain News (Contact)

Originally published 01:38 p.m., August 4, 2008

Updated 11:00 a.m., August 5, 2008

Poo and pee dominated a public hearing Monday on a new law that prohibits people from carrying certain items if they intend to use them for nefarious purposes.

The law, crafted in advance of the Democratic National Convention, was adopted unanimously by the City Council.

But not before a hearing laced with comedy and profanity.

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Chinese police beat, detain 2 Japanese reporters


Aug 5, 11:09 AM EDT

By JAY ALABASTER

TOKYO (AP) -- Two Japanese journalists were briefly detained and beaten by police in western China, their companies and one of the men said Tuesday, triggering a protest by the Japanese government. Chinese officials later apologized.

They were working in Xinjiang at the scene of a deadly attack Monday on Chinese policemen when they were forcibly taken to a border police facility, said Shinji Katsuta, a reporter for Japanese broadcaster Nippon Television Network Corp.

"My face was pushed into the ground, my arm was twisted and I was hit two or three times in the face," he said in a phone interview broadcast on his station.

A photographer from the Tokyo Shimbun newspaper, Shinzou Kawakita, was also apprehended and roughed up, said a company spokesman who declined to give his name, citing company policy.

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Major UK city controls internet access

Freethinker Sunday Sermonette: preventing theonomas

Category: Freethinker Sermonettes


Posted on: August 3, 2008 7:00 AM, by revere

Birmingham, England is not a little country burg. The Greater Birmingham area has about a million people. It also has a city council to run the place and a computer web access monitoring system to help the people who run the people who run the place "control internet access." Not so unusual. Mrs. R. works in a state health department where they seem obsessed with preventing staff from accessing sites not related to work, although a lot of sites get blocked inappropriately because the filters are "stupid." She has had her access to CDC blocked on occasion because some word triggered a block (e.g., "breast" as in "breast cancer") or a site had a non-standard address. Pretty much, though, it's fruitless and often counterproductive to try to control internet access unless you make access limited to only a few sites strictly related to a particular activity. The Birmingham city council, though, has decided to pick and choose in broad categories. You can go to a site dealing with almost any religion (except, apparently, Wicca) but not to a site advocating atheism:

The authority's Bluecoat WebFilter computer system allows staff to look at websites relating to Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and other religions but blocks sites to do with "witchcraft or Satanism" and "occult practices, atheistic views, voodoo rituals or any other form of mysticism".(BBC)

here is a profound silliness in lumping atheism, most often based on an explicitly rational world view, with voodoo rituals, whose character is closer to certain practices involving symbolic cannibalism (don't worry, we won't go there in this post). Unfortunately it's symptomatic of the deluded and confused thinking typical of too many guardians of our public morals.

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Suskind’s research assistant of White House ordered forgery detained by feds and interrogated

Book says White House ordered forgery

By MIKE ALLEN | 8/5/08 11:51 AM EST Updated: 8/5/08 11:51 AM EST

--In the first days of his presidency, Bush rejected advice from the CIA to wiretap Russian President Vladimir Putin in February 2001 in Vienna, where he was staying in a hotel where the CIA had a listening device planted in the wall of the presidential suite, in need only of a battery change. The CIA said that if the surveillance were discovered, Putin’s respect for Bush would be heightened.

But Condoleezza Rice, Bush’s national security adviser, advised that it was “too risky, it might be discovered,” Suskind writes. Bush decided against if as “a gut decision” based on what he thought was a friendship based on several conversations, including during the presidential campaign. The CIA had warned him that Putin “was a trained KGB agent … [who] wants you to think he’s your friend.”

--Suskind reports that Bush initially told Cheney he had to "‘step back’ in large meetings when they were together, like those at the NSC [National Security Council], because people were addressing and deferring to Cheney. Cheney said he understood, that he’d mostly just take notes at the big tables and then he and Bush would meet privately, frequently, to discuss options and action.”

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Corporate Media Ignores White House Planning of "False Flag" Operations to Trigger War with Iran

Submitted by mark karlin on Mon, 08/04/2008 - 8:41am.
White House Plans "False Flag" Operations to Trigger War with Iran, and the Corporate Media Ignores Such a Criminal Enterprise As If It Were Anthrax

THE BUZZFLASH EDITOR'S BLOG

Mark Karlin

Editor and Publisher

August 4, 2008

Seymour Hersh is the most trusted and well-connected national security investigative reporter in the nation. (His heir apparent at The New Yorker is Jane Mayer.) He has reliable connections everywhere, including the Bush White House, the CIA, and the Pentagon.

Almost no one vigorously attacks Hersh’s reporting, including the White House and the right-wing media echo chamber. Why? Because many of his sources are from inside the administration and he has such credibility that they would just be drawing attention to his revelations.

Unfortunately, while some of Hersh’s bombshells get picked up by the corporate media, they are usually the ones that the White House actually wants disseminated, such as Hersh’s New Yorker piece on how the Bush Administration is currently conducting special military operations inside of Iran to destabilize the government. The White House wants to ratchet up the pressure on Iran with this sort of saber rattling.

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Protesters Arrested for Blocking Military Equipment for Iraq

Tacoma

Tuesday, 05 August 2008

Seattle, Washington

Port Military Resistance Protesters Arrested in Tacoma for Blocking War Equipment

Tacoma, Washington is a Port city 30 minutes south of Seattle. The USNS Brittin has been docked at the port and in recent days has unloaded returning Strykers from the 4th Brigade stationed at Ft. Lewis. They are unloading large weaponry to be re-furbished at Ft. Lewis and then sent back to Iraq. Here we have the murderous tools of war in our midst, the Bush regime is literally "bringing the war home". People of conscience see all this and have pledged to put their bodies literally in front of the path of these shipments.

The Seattle chapter of WCW joined with the Port Militarization Resistance, a grouping of regional organizations and individuals whose aim is to end the war by resisting military shipments via public infrastructure. Last night Emma and Rave were part of a group of 5 people who were arrested in an attempt to block the Strykers. Here is what we've learned so far:

About 20-30 people, most of them youth, had mobilized to be in Tacoma yesterday. They had to wait out the army, which was at the Port loading trucks with weaponry. The police were on the offensive, making it impossible to get near the Port. Emma said the youth had a spirit of defience and determination, and that they strategized collectively around the best way to block the trucks. A group of them went closer the Port entrance and were met by the police. This kept the cops occupied.

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How Obama’s Campaign is Trying to Deaden Opposition to An Attack On Iran

August 3, 2008

By jill mclaughlin

By Jill McLaughlin, World Can't Wait Steering Committee Member

The Democrat-led Congress, voted in November 2006, was empowered by a majority of people who believed what they said about ending the war in Iraq, and the most heinous of the Bush Regime's policies. To the confusion and anger of many, these promises were cast aside over and over. This Democrat-led Congress is now poised to all but give Bush their blessing to attack Iran through HR 362, which would give Congressional approval to a blockade of Iran - an act of war.

While for many people the victory of 2006 held so much hope for change, in the minds of this Congress it was about nothing more than getting back the White House. And thus began the 2008 campaign. This campaign is like a virus spreading to the people with a presentation of symptoms that begins with the delusion that the Democratic nominee represents the opposite of Bush foreign policy, then slowly accepting what was once unacceptable, and finally and most fatal of all silence and complicity. We need only look at the local level to understand that this is indeed a killer campaign.

In May, the Human Relations Committee of the Chicago City Council passed a resolution that stated the City of Chicago opposes an attack on Iran, after having heard expert testimony from persons such as Scott Ritter, former chief U.S. weapons inspector. He spoke of the disastrous consequences of an attack on Iran. Ritter had this to say if the U.S. were to widen the war in Iraq to a war on Iran: "...To extend this human suffering and tragedy into Iran would be to create a level of suffering for which America can never, and should never, be forgiven."

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Ohio cop acquitted of killing mom holding baby during botched drug raid

from The Associated Press

LIMA, Ohio August 4, 2008, 07:08 pm ET · A white police officer was acquitted Monday in the drug-raid shooting death of an unarmed black woman that set off protests about how police treat minorities in a city where one in four residents is black.

The all-white jury found Sgt. Joseph Chavalia not guilty of misdemeanor charges of negligent homicide and negligent assault. He had faced up to eight months in jail if convicted of both counts.

Chavalia shot 26-year-old Tarika Wilson and her year-old son she was holding, killing her and hitting him in the shoulder and hand, during a Jan. 4 SWAT raid on her house. One of the child's fingers had to be amputated.

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Suskind Book Excerpt: Secret Iraq mission

Book reveals secret Iraq mission and more

Suskind unravels what he calls ‘America’s diminished moral authority’

TODAY
updated 2:08 p.m. MT, Mon., Aug. 4, 2008

In Ron Suskind’s bold new book, “The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist critically examines the Bush presidency and addresses what he calls “America’s diminished moral authority.” To coincide with the book’s Tuesday release date, Suskind appears live on TODAY on Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss the revelations contained within the book. Tune in at 7:10 a.m. both days to catch Meredith Vieira’s interviews with Suskind.

Prologue: Border crossing
From the dawn of time, human beings have been attentive to signs of distinction — the approach of a tribe with a different manner or dress, posture or skin color. The swift sizing-up of friend or foe, and acting upon it — upon suspicion — was often a matter of survival. Those faculties became finely tuned over thousands of years. Now, in a world of vivid, colliding images and technology’s bequest of awesomely powerful weapons, we struggle to leap forward, to reshape instinct enough to reach across the divides of us and them, peak and valley. And to do it in time.

That shared effort is, at the very least, a starting point for a working definition of “hearts and minds struggle,” that smooth, slippery phrase on the lips of people across the world. Its definitions are often self-interested and oddly narrow, but they nearly always rest on a fundamental two-part question: Can disparate people ever truly understand one another, and is such understanding necessary for them to coexist? There’s considerable dispute over the matter. Some knowledgeable observers say that bringing diverse peoples together mostly serves to exacerbate distinctions and fuel divisiveness, something we can little afford in an era of such unleashed destructive capability. They point to countless bitter conflicts along borders, and within them, and recommend tall fences. Others contend that the world is steadily becoming borderless and blended, and that such conflict — the friction caused by the conjunction of opposites — must be endured, and mastered, on the way to discovering shared interest and common purpose.

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London Censors Political Websites

Major International Transport Hub Censors Political Websites

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet
Monday, August 4, 2008

While establishment media outlets in the UK spent most of last week reporting on China’s censorship of political websites in anticipation of the Olympic games, they ignored the fact that London’s St. Pancras International, one of the biggest transport hubs in the west, has already implemented stringent filters that block users of their wi-fi service from accessing even mildly political websites.

Upon clicking on my favorites menu and selecting prison planet.com, I was quickly met with a white screen and bold black text informing me that the website in question was blocked and could not be accessed.

Traveling through St. Pancras in order to board the Eurostar on my way to Switzerland, I had an extra couple of hours that I thought I would fill by checking in on some of my favorite alternative news websites.

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Dear world, please confront America


By Naomi Wolf

First Published: August 1, 2008

Is it possible to fall out of love with your own country? For two years, I, like many Americans, have been focused intently on documenting, exposing, and alerting the nation to the Bush administration’s criminality and its assault on the Constitution and the rule of law — a story often marginalized at home. I was certain that when Americans knew what was being done in their name, they would react with horror and outrage.
Three months ago, the Bush administration still clung to its devil’s sound bite, “We don’t torture.” Now, Doctors Without Borders has issued its report documenting American-held detainees’ traumas, and even lie detector tests confirm they have been tortured. The Red Cross report has leaked: torture and war crimes. Jane Mayer’s impeccably researched exposé “The Dark Side” just hit the stores: torture, crafted and directed from the top.

The Washington Post gave readers actual video footage of the abusive interrogation of a Canadian minor, Omar Khadr, who was seen showing his still-bleeding abdominal wounds, weeping and pleading with his captors.
 
So the truth is out and freely available. And America is still napping, worrying about its weight, and hanging out at the mall.

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Why Misgovernment Was No Accident in George W. Bush's Washington

Follow This Dime

By Thomas Frank

Washington is the city where the scandals happen. Every American knows this, but we also believe, if only vaguely, that the really monumental scandals are a thing of the past, that the golden age of misgovernment-for-profit ended with the cavalry charge and the robber barons, at about the same time presidents stopped wearing beards.

I moved to Washington in 2003, just in time for the comeback, for the hundred-year flood. At first it was only a trickle in the basement, a little stream released accidentally by the president's friends at Enron. Before long, though, the levees were failing all over town, and the city was inundated with a muddy torrent of graft.

How are we to dissect a deluge like this one? We might begin by categorizing the earmarks handed out by Congress, sorting the foolish earmarks from the costly earmarks from the earmarks made strictly on a cash basis. We could try a similar approach to government contracting: the no-bid contracts, the no-oversight contracts, the no-experience contracts, the contracts handed out to friends of the vice president. We might consider the shoplifting career of one of the president's former domestic policy advisers or the habitual plagiarism of the president's liaison to the Christian right. And we would certainly have to find some way to parse the extraordinary incompetence of the executive branch, incompetence so fulsome and steady and reliable that at some point Americans stopped being surprised and began simply to count on it, to think of incompetence as the way government works.

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Impeach Obama Campaign Already Underway

Friday, August 1, 2008.

A Petition for The Impeachment of Senator Barack Obama

TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES

Whereas: Senator Barack Obama is an admitted illegal drug user and
is believed to have used illegal drugs as recently as November 1999
or more recently. Mr. Obama has maintained contact with other
admitted illegal drug users.

Whereas: Senator Barack Obama has maintained regular contact
with known criminals such as Antoin (Tony) Rezko and other
criminal elements in Chicago and Illinois. Mr. Obama has
conducted business with these criminals and received campaign
donations from them. Mr. Obama was compelled to return an estimated $250,000 in
donations related to Tony Rezko.

Whereas: Senator Barack Obama has consistently lied about his
contact with convicted criminal Tony Rezko. The Tony Rezko
corruption trial revealed that FBI mole John Thomas helped investigators
“build a record of repeat visits to the old offices of Rezko and former
business partner Daniel Mahru’s Rezmar Corp., at 853 N. Elston, by
Blagojevich and Obama during 2004 and 2005,” according to the February
10, 2008 Chicago Sun-Times.

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None Dare Call it Murder

Kevin Cullen

The end of Rakan's war

Life asked far too much of Rakan Hassan, the Iraqi boy brought to Boston in 2005 for treatment after a mistaken shooting by American troops. The next chapter of his story is hard to write.

Rakan Hassan flashed his famous smile during a physical therapy session in Boston in November 2005. Rakan
Hassan flashed his famous smile during a physical therapy session in Boston in November 2005. (Globe Staff Photo / Michele McDonald)
By Kevin Cullen Globe Columnist / August 3, 2008

We were standing on a dusty road in Mosul, Dr. Larry Ronan and I, and he had just left us.

It was January 2006 and this boy named Rakan had driven away in an Opel sedan identical to the one he was riding in when his life changed forever a year before, and so we stood there, with this odd mix of hope and apprehension, and waved goodbye.

Rakan Hassan had been shot and paralyzed, his parents killed, when American soldiers panicked and opened fire on the family car as it sped toward them in the fading light of dusk. Ronan and other doctors and therapists in Boston had put Rakan back together, and I had watched the whole process, to write about it, and then we brought Rakan back to the war zone where he was nearly killed because that was what Rakan and his family wanted.

As we waved, and the car driven by Rakan's brother-in-law disappeared into the dust, Larry Ronan must have felt what I was feeling because he put his hand on my shoulder, looked me in the eye, and said, "Don't worry. We'll see him again."

We never did.

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The FBI's emerging, leaking case against Ivins

Related
Like porn? You must be the anthrax killer...

FLASHBACK - Iraq, Anthrax, and the Hawks
FLASHBACK - Star Witness on Iraq Said Weapons Were Destroyed

Glenn Greenwald

Tuesday Aug. 5, 2008 06:54 EDT
(updated below - Update II - Update III - Update IV)

It's certainly possible that once the FBI closes its investigation and then formally unveils its evidence -- which apparently will happen tomorrow -- a very convincing case will be made that Bruce Ivins perpetrated the anthrax attacks and did so alone. But what has been revealed thus far -- through the standard ritual of selected Government leaks which the establishment media, with some exceptions, just mindlessly re-prints no matter how frivolous -- is creating the opposite impression. The FBI's coordinated leaking is making their claim to have solved the anthrax case appear quite dubious, in some instances laughably so.

One glaring and important exception to the dynamic of uncritical media recitation is this morning's New York Times article by Scott Shane and Nicholas Wade, which evinces very strong skepticism over the FBI's case thus far and discloses facts that create more grounds for skepticism. Given everything that has happened over the last seven years -- not just with the anthrax attacks but with countless episodes of Government deceit and corruption -- it's astonishing (and more than a little disturbing) how many people are willing, even eager, to assume that the Government's accusations against Ivins are accurate even without seeing a shred of evidence to support those claims.

When you add on to that the magnitude of this case and the ample reasons for error and deceit -- it's the first lethal bioterrorism attack on the U.S., one which, according to the Government itself, originated at a U.S. Government facility, perpetrated by a U.S. Army scientist, that was then used by numerous factions inside the Government and out to ratchet up fear levels and falsely blame Iraq and/or Al Qaeda for the attacks and, thereafter, was blamed on someone who appears to have been completely innocent -- what minimally rational person would be willing to assume that the Government's uncorroborated, unexamined, untested claims are accurate? In today's Los Angeles Times, Gabriel Schoenfeld of Commentary wrote:

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Gitmo detainees subject to detention even if acquitted: Pentagon

Related
Changing lug nuts not a war crime, jury told


2 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AFP) — Some detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba will likely never be released because of the danger they pose, and those tried and acquitted will still be subject to continued detention as enemy combatants, a Pentagon spokesman said Tuesday.

Geoff Morrell, the Pentagon press secretary, made the remarks as Salim Hamdan, a Yemeni, awaited a verdict in the first war crimes trial to be held under a special regime created for "war on terror" suspects.

Morrell said Hamdan, a former driver of Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, could appeal the verdict in US courts.

"But in the near term, at least, we would consider him an enemy combatant and still a danger and would likely still be detained for some period of time thereafter," he said.

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What the Iraq Forgery Says About 9/11

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Bestselling Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind has revealed that the White House ordered the CIA to forge and backdate a document falsely linking Iraq with Muslim terrorists and 9/11 . . . and that the CIA complied with those instructions and in fact created the forgery, which was then used to justify war against Iraq.

Suskind also revealed that "Bush administration had information from a top Iraqi intelligence official 'that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion.' ”

This is a stunning revelation in its own right. But what does it say about the government's claims that 9/11 was an attack by Muslim extremists which the U.S. government could not have anticipated?

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Brazilian Supreme Court Warns Country On Brink Of Civil War

International Herald Tribune

Brazil's courts, military question Amazon policy

The Associated Press
Monday, August 4, 2008

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil: Deep in the northernmost reaches of the Amazon jungle, a land conflict between rice farmers and a handful of Indian tribes has turned so violent that the country's Supreme Court warns it could escalate into civil war.

The court is expected to decide in August if the government can keep evicting rice farmers from a 4.2 million acre (1.7 million hectare) Indian reservation decreed by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in 2005. The evictions were stopped in April when rice farmers started burning bridges and blockading roads, and justices said they feared a "veritable civil war."

The court's decision could help determine the future of the Amazon, whose remaining jungles provide a critical cushion against global warming. It could also redefine Brazil's policy toward its Indians at a time of frequent confrontations, as the country spends billions of dollars opening roads, building dams and promoting agribusiness across the world's largest remaining tropical wilderness.

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Britain admits veterans exposed to radiation

Posted Mon Aug 4, 2008 2:46pm AEST

Radiation exposure: Australian veterans of the nuclear tests are planning to begin their own lawsuit

* Audio: Veterans plan legal action over radiation exposure (The World Today)

After years of denials, British defence chiefs have reportedly admitted that some servicemen were exposed to deadly radiation during nuclear tests in Australia and the South Pacific in the 1950s.

The Sunday Mirror newspaper says the admission is in papers filed with the High Court in London by lawyers for the Ministry of Defence.

A class action by hundreds of British veterans is due to start next year.

And Australian veterans of the nuclear tests are planning to begin their own lawsuit if they do not get better treatment from the Australian Government.

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CIA Agent Allegedly Involved In Forged Iraq Letter Ran Previous Operation To Create Pretext For War

August 05, 2008

In Ron Suskind's interview on NPR today (and also in his new book), he names CIA operative John Maguire as one of the people allegedly involved in the Iraq letter forging. This is from Suskind's NPR appearance:

SUSKIND: In the fall [of 2003]...the White House, they decide that a letter should be fabricated, dated July 2001, a handwritten letter from [Iraqi intelligence chief] Habbush to Saddam Hussein. And the letter should say that in fact Mohammed Atta, the 9/11 hijacker, trained in Iraq prior to 9/11, showing a connection between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda, and the letter should say Iraq was buying yellowcake uranium from Niger with the help of al-Qaeda...

NPR: Are you saying the White House ordered the CIA to fabricate evidence, even after the invasion of Iraq, fabricate evidence linking Iraq to 9/11, in effect.

SUSKIND: Absolutely. George Tenet comes back from a White House briefing...folks at CIA remember seeing the creamy White House stationery. Tenet says, we want a letter fabricated, and we want this letter to essentially emerge, this handwritten letter from Habbush, to Saddam, which is essentially a checking of the box on all the controversies on WMD that are unfolding that the United States may have been taken to war under false pretenses...

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Now We Know: The Anthrax Attacks Were an Inside Job

Author: Stephen DeVoy

August 2, 2008

The first of the anthrax letters were sent on September 18, 2001, just seven days after the events of 9/11 (the same day I wrote the essay: Is This the Dawn of an Orwellian Police State?). Immediately after the attacks of 9/11, yet before the anthrax attacks, many individuals within the government and the media were warned of impending anthrax attacks,, told to procure Cipro and, in some cases, start taking it preemptively. These warnings came from "high government officials.'

We know now that the anthrax used in the attacks came from the super secret and locked down facility in Maryland known as Fort Detrick. You can be certain that the weapons of mass destruction held at this facility are maintained with a high level of security. After all, there are few things more dangerous to human life than bioweapons. Nevertheless, anthrax was removed from the facility with the purpose of terrorizing Americans and targeting enemies of the Bush Regime within the press, media and the government itself. The Bush Regime knew, in advance, of the anthrax attacks and warned certain individuals in advance. Bruce E. Irvins, apparently one of the team of individuals asked by the Bush Regime to carry out the attacks, was rewarded for his efforts with the bestowal upon him of the Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service, the U.S. Army's highest honor for civilian workers.

The targets of the Bush Regime's terrorist attacks included the Senate Majority Leader of the opposing political party, Tom Daschle and liberal Senator Patrick Leahy, both opponents of George Bush. We can only speculate that these attacks were either an attempt to assassinate or intimidate these opposition leaders and to terrorize the American people into accepting the new dictatorship.

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Time: 'The FBI itself sent the anthrax letters to Ivins and his colleagues at the biodefense lab'

 "The FBI itself sent the anthrax letters to Ivins and his colleagues at the biodefense lab for analysis 'almost immediately' following the attacks in 2001"

Tuesday, Aug. 05, 2008

How Solid Is the Anthrax Evidence?

By Amanda Ripley and Massimo Calabresi

While the FBI waits to formally release its evidence against Bruce E. Ivins, the microbiologist it claims to have linked to the anthrax mailings seven years ago who killed himself on July 29, the public is getting a sneak peek — by way of federal leaks to the media. The leaks are piling up almost too fast to keep track of. Some seem damning, others perplexing, but the pause is creating a strange void — in which leaks are followed by rebuttals from Ivins' colleagues and his attorney (who steadfastly denies his client had any role in the attacks) and then followed by more leaks. The result leaves neither Ivins nor the FBI looking good.

Most notably, unnamed federal officials are telling media outlets that the FBI used new DNA technology to link the anthrax that killed five people in 2001 to anthrax handled by Ivins in his federal lab. But scientists who knew Ivins — and some who didn't — tell TIME this is not a simple matter, technically speaking.

For one thing, a group of people have access to the anthrax at any given lab. "What you can do with all those forensic techniques is trace the anthrax to a lab, but you can't trace it to a person," says Meryl Nass, a Maine doctor who studies the anthrax vaccine and was a professional acquaintance of Ivins for over 15 years. What's more, Nass adds, the link is not accurate with 100% certainty. "You can't convict someone with that evidence."

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It was FBI agents who told Jean Duley to seek a protective order against Ivins

The action that then created the record used by most media outlets to depict Ivins as a crazed psychopath

'I'm scared to death' of Ivins, Duley testifies

Originally published August 05, 2008

By Gina Gallucci-White
News-Post Staff

DULEY DESCRIBES HARASSMENT, THREATS

Jean Duley testified that she was “scared to death” of Dr. Bruce Ivins after he left her a string of harrassing phone messages, according to an audio recording taken during a July 24 peace order hearing.

Listen to part of Duley's testimony

Jean Duley testified that she was "scared to death" of Bruce Ivins after he left her a string of harassing phone messages, according to an audio recording taken during a July 24 peace order hearing.

Duley, 45, told Judge Milnor Roberts that Ivins planned to "go out in a blaze of glory," had bought a bulletproof vest and a gun and planned to kill his co-workers.

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The Jewish settler pogrom against Palestinians must be stopped now

By Khalid Amayreh • Aug 5th, 2008 at 11:41 • Category: Analysis, Human Rights, Israel, Khalid Amayreh, Our Authors, Palestine, Zionism

In the picture: nets run over the pavements of the Old Quarter of Hebron,  to spare the pedestrians getting hit by the trash dropped out the windows by the settlers. Nazi-like Jewish settlers have of late stepped up their indiscriminate attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property throughout the West Bank.

In some areas, like in the Hebron region, settler attacks have assumed pogrom-like proportions. What is particularly outrageous is that most of these attacks take place in full view of Israeli soldiers who watch passively as heavily armed settlers gang up on helpless Palestinian civilians.

The latest acts of savagery included an assault on a Palestinian wedding party and the attempted lynching of an Arab boy near Hebron, an attack on a civilian car near Nablus that caused a massive brain hemorrhage to a 6-year-old girl who is now fighting for her life, beating up and stoning Arab children near Tuwwani in the southern West Bank and setting fire to Palestinian groves and fields in several parts of the occupied territories.

A Christian Peace-making Team (CPT) member was also assaulted and badly injured by Jewish settlers in southern Hebron hills last week.

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Israeli Disgrace and Thievery

Written by Michael Warschawski, Alternative Information Center (AIC)

Monday, 04 August 2008

judgedorner.jpg
Judge Dorner and the recommendations of her commission of inquiry concerning Israel's treatment of Holocaust survivors are being ignored by the Israeli government.
Yet again Judge Dorner, chairperson of the governmental investigative commission in the matter of assistance to Holocaust survivors, and the Israeli Prime Minister are located on two sides of the ethical divide. While the Dorner Commission concluded that the allocations given to the survivors must be linked to 75% of the allowance paid by Germany to Israel for each survivor, and that this recommendation should be implemented immediately, the Prime Minister is trying, yet again, to buy time. The disagreement over time is much more important than that over the amount, as time acts to the detriment of the survivors, almost all of whom have reached an advanced age.


Each day that passes decreases the financial debt of Israel to the Holocaust survivors. The government’s decision to postpone discussion of these recommendations to 2009 means delaying implementation by one year, which means disinheriting thousands more survivors from what they deserve, and already today not so many survivors remain. This is not only daylight robbery, but also crass desecration of the memory of the Holocaust and its victims. The State of Israel exists thanks to the Holocaust of European Jewry, and in two ways: firstly, without the destruction of European Jewry and the existence of hundreds of thousands of survivors-refugees whom no state wanted, it is doubtful whether the international community would have given its support to the establishment of Israel, at a time when the world was beginning a process of decolonialisation. Secondly, a majority of the payments were given by Germany to Israel and not to the survivors and families of the victims. Under pressure of the international Jewish committee and the Zionist Histadrut, Germany decided to compensate the Jews collectively, through the State of Israel which presented itself, with absolutely no justification, as the representative body of world Jewry throughout the ages! The initial infrastructure of Israel was built thanks to the hundreds of millions of dollars paid by West Germany in compensation for the Holocaust of European Jewry.

It must be noted that in transforming Israel into the representative of the destroyed communities in Europe there is much bad taste, to say the least. As is known, the Zionist leadership did not overextend itself to attempt and save European Jewry, neither prior to nor during the war, even if it is correct to note that its abilities were limited. Even on the level of empathy toward the victims and survivors, Israel does not receive a good mark – again also to say the least. “The Seventh Million” of Tom Segev brings endless testimonies which document the lack of sensitivity of the Zionist leadership toward the victims of the Holocaust.

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NEWSWIRE: AUGUST 5, 2008 - CRIMES AND CORRUPTION OF THE NEW WORLD ORDER NEWS

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5th
08:15 am: Voters are "Sheep-like", "Conditioned", "Controllable"
08:20 am: Hundreds of banks will fail, says Roubini
08:23 am: Fmr FBI Official: White House Told FBI To Blame Anthrax Attacks On Al Qaeda
08:26 am: Why did the FBI use a hard-core drunk, drug user and spouse abuser to frame Ivins?
08:28 am: Bush ordered fake letter linking Iraq to 9/11
08:31 am: FBI tormented mentally ill daughter of dead anthrax scientist
08:35 am: McCain a key player in the anthrax-Iraq link lie
08:37 am: "Whole Load Of Crap"-Larisa Alexandrovna Has Low Down On "Therapist" To The Anthrax Suspect
08:42 am: The New Yorker: McCain has opted out of truth
08:45 am: What You Should Know about The Associated Press
08:52 am: Ivins is the Third Scientist the FBI has Tried to Pin the Anthrax Attacks On
08:55 am: Surrender to the Printing Presses
08:59 am: Mullen warns against USS Liberty redux
09:03 am: The 'scoop' the US papers ignored
09:05 am: Karadzic 'lived under protection of CIA agents until he broke deal'
09:06 am: West Point Terrorism Expert: Turkish involvement in Terror is 'best kept story'
09:10 am: Mars secret is not life. It's energy
09:15 am: Woman shot by cops was complying say experts
09:37 am: WSJ: Bruce Ivins Wasn't the Anthrax Culprit
09:38 am: YouTube Ditching High Profile Users In Fear of Copyright Enforcers: Has Viacom Made Google Scared?
09:48 am: Recruiters Caught on Tape Threatening High School Students
09:56 am: Italy takes another goose-step towards fascism
09:58 am: US accused of backing terrorism in Pakistan
10:20 am: Novak retires
10:22 am: 'Obama will name Bayh his VP choice on Wednesday'
10:25 am: Our Living Dead
10:34 am: Freddie Mac Chief Ignored Warnings
10:44 am: The Pfc. LaVena Johnson Petition: Calling on the House Oversight Committee to investigate her death
10:46 am: McCain security ousts black reporter
10:49 am: House GOP Enters Second Day Of Sit-In
10:51 am: McCain volunteers his wife for a topless beauty pageant
10:53 am: 20,000 protest Bush arrival in Seoul
10:58 am: Pentagon Studied Ancient Empires For Tips On Ruling The World
11:02 am: Apartheid in Practice
11:05 am: The rise and fall of stupidity in America
11:07 am: Gaza Under Siege
11:15 am: citizenarrest.org
11:16 am: 'Bush committed an impeachable offense'
11:22 am: Vaccine Cover-Up Worst In Military History
11:25 am: The Zionist Madrasa: Rabbis who bring shame to Judaism
11:29 am: The Peace Candidate
11:34 am: A War of Self-Destruction
11:36 am: 'Shin Bet Decides Who'll Die in Gaza'
11:39 am: The Insolvency of the FSLIC: a warning from the S&L crisis?
11:47 am: Fmr Terror Czar Warns Of Internet-9/11; A Secret Internet-Patriot Act Already Exists Says Prof
11:58 am: Black Reporter Tells Olbermann About Being Booted From McCain Event
12:02 pm: Bush Praises Indicted Senator
12:08 pm: Rulings May Stymie White-Collar Prosecutions
12:14 pm: We Don’t Need a War on Terrorism
12:17 pm: The man who put Charles Manson on Death Row would do the same to George W. Bush
12:19 pm: The Caucasian conflict in the context of world politics
12:22 pm: 'Stand up for what's right about America'
12:28 pm: Karl Rove Caught Lying About Iraq War
12:29 pm: 'They’ll all get lawyers': Cheney’s excuse for not releasing innocent detainees
12:50 pm: Obama links energy troubles to Cheney
12:53 pm: Fannie bail out was for China
12:57 pm: George Tenet And White House Admit Iraq's Intelligence Chief Told Them Iraq Had No WMD
12:58 pm: DEA may be using mercenaries
01:03 pm: US housing bill will not save the economy
01:04 pm: Purported 'Anthrax killer' was a Democrat
01:06 pm: Critical of McCain, Obama quiet on own energy vote
01:11 pm: France took part in genocide says Rwanda
01:13 pm: Economic Free Fall?
01:19 pm: Obama and McCain as neo-neocons
01:20 pm: US revokes visas to Palestinian Fulbright scholars
01:22 pm: With DNC in mind, city bans carrying urine, feces - 1 comment
01:27 pm: Chinese police beat, detain 2 Japanese reporters
01:29 pm: Major UK city controls internet access
01:36 pm: Suskind’s research assistant of White House ordered forgery detained by feds and interrogated
01:43 pm: Olbermann covers the Anthrax anomalies
01:50 pm: Corporate Media Ignores White House Planning of "False Flag" Operations to Trigger War with Iran
01:59 pm: Protesters Arrested for Blocking Military Equipment for Iraq
02:08 pm: Bush Jokes About WMDs, Pelosi Laughs Along
02:11 pm: How Obama’s Campaign is Trying to Deaden Opposition to An Attack On Iran
02:15 pm: Ohio cop acquitted of killing mom holding baby during botched drug raid
02:19 pm: Suskind Book Excerpt: Secret Iraq mission
02:26 pm: London Censors Political Websites
02:27 pm: Dear world, please confront America
02:31 pm: Why Misgovernment Was No Accident in George W. Bush's Washington
02:34 pm: Impeach Obama Campaign Already Underway
02:38 pm: NYPD brutality towards cyclists is common
02:39 pm: None Dare Call it Murder
02:54 pm: The FBI's emerging, leaking case against Ivins
02:55 pm: Gitmo detainees subject to detention even if acquitted: Pentagon
03:02 pm: What the Iraq Forgery Says About 9/11
03:10 pm: Brazilian Supreme Court Warns Country On Brink Of Civil War
03:11 pm: Britain admits veterans exposed to radiation
03:14 pm: CIA Agent Allegedly Involved In Forged Iraq Letter Ran Previous Operation To Create Pretext For War
03:19 pm: Now We Know: The Anthrax Attacks Were an Inside Job
03:23 pm: Time: 'The FBI itself sent the anthrax letters to Ivins and his colleagues at the biodefense lab'
03:27 pm: It was FBI agents who told Jean Duley to seek a protective order against Ivins
03:42 pm: The Jewish settler pogrom against Palestinians must be stopped now
03:43 pm: Israeli Disgrace and Thievery