Thursday, June 30, 2005

'To abandon Viet Nam would be wrong' — Text of speech by President Lyndon Johnson, delivered April 7, 1965

Tonight Americans and Asians are dying for a world where each people may choose its own path to change. This is the principle for which our ancestors fought in the valleys of Pennsylvania.

It is the principle for which our sons fight tonight in the jungles of Viet Nam.Viet Nam is far away from this quiet campus. We have no territory there, nor do we seek any. The war is dirty and brutal and difficult.

And some 400 young men, born into an America that is bursting with opportunity and promise, have ended their lives on Viet Nam’s steaming soil.

Why must we take this painful road? Why must this nation hazard its ease, its interest, and its power for the sake of a people so far away?

We fight because we must fight if we are to live in a world where every country can shape its own destiny, and only in such a world will our own freedom be finally secure...
sound familiar????????
for the rest, click HERE

Tell the gov that you want BeNow to be Over!!!

Scrap the Pentagon's New Database

Last month, the Pentagon announced that since 2002 it has secretly been compiling a database containing the personal information of tens of millions of Americans as young as 16 years of age. The database includes information such as Social Security numbers, height, weight, ethnicity, grade-point averages, e-mail addresses and phone numbers.
The custody and maintenance of this database has been contracted out to a private firm named BeNow. BeNow has no privacy policy posted to its website, nor a privacy or security officer listed on its management team.
The Defense Department now proposes a wide range of "routine uses" for this database, including disclosure of records contained in the database for functions wholly unrelated to recruitment. Although individuals can opt-out of recruitment solicitations, there is no way to opt-out of this enormous database as a whole.
Compilation of this database is not only a spooky invasion of our families' privacy, it's also a violation of the law. The Federal Privacy Act requires that government agencies accept public comment before new records systems are created -- a requirement that was blatantly ignored in this case.
The DOD should scrap this mega-database of young Americans, and rely upon traditional mass-media advertising to reach potential recruits.


Call to action--CLICK HERE to
Tell your representative to investigate this violation of the Privacy Act and force the Pentagon to scrap this intrusive and illegal database.

YES!

Veterans GROUP ISSUES "DECLARATION OF IMPEACHMENT"

Activism

Veterans For Peace
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Veterans GROUP ISSUES "DECLARATION OF IMPEACHMENT" AND ANNOUNCES PETITION TO REMOVE pRESIDENT bUSH

St. Louis – A national veterans’ organization today issued a “Declaration of Impeachment” and announced it is beginning an online petition to remove President Bush from office for crimes committed during the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Using the same language as the original “Declaration of Independence,” Veterans For Peace cited many of the same reasons to remove George Bush that Thomas Jefferson cited to separate from King George of England. And in a modern version of the signing of the Declaration, VFP announced the posting of its online impeachment petition.

“The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny,” Jefferson wrote, and then added the famous litany of abuses charged against the king that VFP said is unchanged today:

“He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has…deprive(ed) us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury…transport(ed) us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
He has constrained our fellow Citizens…to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands
He is at this time transporting large Armies…to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
A (President) whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”

The veterans’ Declaration of Impeachment came to the same conclusion as Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, when it declared “…it is the Right of the People…it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

VFP President, Dave Cline, a decorated Vietnam combat veteran, said, “You bet it’s our right and our duty! Today’s tyrant named George may have little regard for the Constitution, but as members of the military we took an oath to uphold that document. George Bush has repeatedly violated not only the Constitution but federal law, by invading and occupying Iraq. In our system the remedy for such high crimes is clear: he must be impeached.”

Emphasizing the gravity with which Veterans for Peace takes the impeachment of George Bush, Cline concluded by quoting the final sentence of the Declaration of Independence: “And for the support of this Declaration…we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”

To sign the online petition, or to read the “Declaration of Impeachment” and VFP’s documented case for removing George Bush, go to: www.veteransforpeace.org

Veterans For Peace is a national organization founded in 1985, with 123 chapters across the country.

FROM.....afterdowningstreet

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Others said it so much better than I could

I was going to post about the Rapturists Poster Boy's bloody remark last night. Personally, I think it is one of his worst, and a statement that he may be remembered in times forward for, ie: "I am not a crook," but, others have responded in a much more eloquent manner than I, so here goes.
United For Peace and Justice said:
"Worth it"?!!
Could President Bush be any more shameless or disgusting? The man who shirked his own National Guard duty has the nerve to tell those who have lost loved ones in this pointless, immoral war that it is "worth it"?
The man who lied to lead us into war has the nerve to repeat those lies, falsely linking this illegal imperial adventure to the horrible tragedy of 9/11?
We have to stop him. We have to end this war. We have to create such a groundswell of public outrage that it becomes politically impossible for Bush to "stay the course" in Iraq. And to do that, we need your financial support -- today.

Ted Kennedy sent an email with his response the speech, and, he has a campaign going to demand an exit stratedgy--Click HERE to sign it!--he also asked for Rumf*'s resignation last week.

Aljezeera reported on what the US papers had to say:

"Sadly, Mr Bush wasted his opportunity last night, giving a speech that only answered questions no one was asking," said the New York Times on Wednesday, referring to Bush's mantra that a stable and democratic Iraq would be worth US sacrifices.
"We did not expect Mr Bush would apologize for the misinformation that helped lead us into this war, or for the catastrophic mistakes his team made in running the military operation.
"But we had hoped he would resist the temptation to raise the bloody flag of 9/11 over and over again to justify a war in a country that had nothing whatsoever to do with the terrorist attacks," said the daily.

A Texas blogger posted about the "bloody mess."

Americablog has several posts on the speech worth reading, including the fact that before a captive audience....the soldiers....ABC reported that White House advance team FAKED the applause ..go figure.

Societas has a detailed, informative post about troop levels....

Today in Iraq has a very informative post about the training of the Iraq Forces.......

Bushflash pulls it all together

and..Blondsense has a post that captures the reasons why the lying, elitist, draftdodging, rapture boy could actually utter those words..
The daughters should serve
by Jimmy Breslin June 29, 2005

Newsday.com
If George W. Bush wants young people to get into this war so much, why doesn't he send his two daughters over to Iraq and fight for their country? Read today what Bush has to say about fighting in Iraq.

Read it on a day when we still have three women killed in Iraq, one from the Bronx. The Bush daughters are 23, and at the Republican National Convention in New York last summer, they were a whirlwind at night. They looked as fit to fight for their country as any high school dropout......

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

THINK OF THE DAMAGE HE COULD HAVE DONE WITH THESE FOR THE PAST TWO + YEARS, WHILE LOOKING FOR NON EXISTENT WMD'S.....RIP THE RNEP!!!


Bush says "It's da Bomb" WE say NOT!
WHY WOULD HE WANT THESE? WHY?? WHO WOULD MAKE A KILLING FROM THESE NUCLEAR BOMBS?
AND, IF BUSH COULDN'T FIND BINLADEN ALL OF THIS TIME, COULD HE FIND THESE IF THEY WERE STOLEN?
BY BINLADEN??
The Bush administration has asked for $8.5 million in the 2006 budget for research on a "Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator" (RNEP). This new nuclear weapon, also known as the nuclear "bunker buster," is being promoted as a useful tool in attacking deeply buried command centers or underground stores of chemical and biological weapons.
But numerous scientific critiques, including one by the National Academy of Science, find that in many cases such a weapon would be ineffective. In addition, the nuclear blast and radioactive fall-out could kill millions of innocent people in surrounding areas. A single "bunker buster" would be nearly 100 times more powerful than the nuclear bomb that destroyed Hiroshima. In the coming weeks, the Senate will consider funding for this new nuclear weapon. Please tell your Senators to reject all funding for the dangerous nuclear "bunker buster." CLICK HERE and CLICK HERE

Monday, June 27, 2005

Pres. Bush, the self proclaimed War President, asks the American public to "Stay with me", after he challenged the insurgents to ...Bring it ON...

and quickly....TAKE ACTION---Urge Your Rep to Join Out of Iraq Caucus being held June 28th
and..Urge Congress to Investigate Bush's Iraq War Lies

you should read......"The Automobile Trade in Iraq "

Remember the Wounded

The War After the War ...what the Bush administration doesn't want you to see

"We declared a war on terror and those who practice terror," said Ritter. "Are we going to declare war on ourselves?"

Rumsfeld braces for more violence in Iraq
WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Sunday he is bracing for even more violence in Iraq and acknowledged that the insurgency "could go on for any number of years."
---HE is bracing for more violence? Start a war, and then retire, pockets full from Halliburton et al profits? How many people have died in Iraq since the wonderfully democratic elections??????

stay with me....Bring it on....I am a WAR President.....


stay with me.... ...

Bush asks US: stay with me on Iraq

pic from..President Bush's "Bring It On" album at the memory hole

Funds for Health Care of Veterans $1 Billion Short

Blood Sacrifices for Empty Slogans

U.S. headed for disaster when efforts in Iraq collapse

"Secret" Air Base for Iraq War started prior 9-11

Stay with me......come on....stay with me, stay with me...


Sometimes, I just can't believe what comes out of the mouth of the "War President"
Bush asks US: stay with me on Iraq
As casualties and criticism mount, the President warns of more violence ahead and pleads for 'resolve and faith' ...........


General admits to "Secret Air War" in 2002......


MSNBC News Services
Updated: 3:43 p.m. ET June 27, 2005
MISHAHDA, Iraq - A U.S. Apache attack helicopter crashed Monday north of Baghdad, killing both pilots, after a witness said he saw the aircraft hit by a rocket that "destroyed it completely in the air."
Later Monday, a car bomb exploded between a movie house and Sunni Arab mosque in eastern Baghdad, killing at least four people and wounding 16, authorities said.

The Ever Changing Definition of "Mission" In Iraq

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Desperately Seeking a Diversion

Despite the fact that the Bush Administration's response to the Downing Street memos has been dismissive at best, the fact that Karl Rove is now hitting the news circuit desperately playing the 911 card, is an indication of desperate measures by the Bush league. Rove is not being met with much enthusiasm, though. Using the tragic deaths of 911 as an attempt to drum up a reason why we went to war against a country that didn't attack us, and also as the reason why we should STAY in that war, is pretty despicable.

Using the deaths of the 3000 people who perished in 911 as an attempt to deride the other political party is also pretty despicable, as well as desperate. What Karl Rove's words betray is:
1) extreme stupidity--someone please tell both him AND George that Saudi's attacked us. Saudi Arabians, not Iraqis. The same Saudi's that Bush and family have been close friends with for years, who were business partners of GWB's, and with whom our president tiptoed through the bluebonnets with hand in hand a few months ago.

2) as to Democrats dropping the ball after 911... What? Did we have a Democratic president in the fall of 2001? NO. Did we have a Democratic administration in 2001? NO. Did GWB sit and look very very stupid, and not initiate ANYTHING, did he just keep reading that book, when he heard about the first plane? YES. DId he immediately get up, and order our air force into the area around NYC? NO. Did he listen to any of the prior warnings that al-Qaida was planning to attack our country? NO. He was on vacay for most of the summer of 2001.

3) As to seeing the WTC towers fall, and those poor people jumping out of the towers... Karl Rove says the first thing he thought of was ....WAR.

Unfortunately we all know that now, Karl. We all know exactly what war you were thinking of. And it wasn't one against the Saudis who attacked us...
And, if you had listened to the Democrats who, as you said, "called for moderation and restraint" after 911, well, then over one hundred thousand more souls would still be alive, NOW.

Read below, and then tell YOUR congressperson and the media your opinion. Should Karl Rove apologize or resign? Make your voice heard!

From Yahoo..
"Rove, Bush's chief political adviser, said in a speech Wednesday that "liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers." Conservatives, he told the New York state Conservative Party just a few miles north of Ground Zero, "saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war."
Rove said the Democratic Party made the mistake of calling for "moderation and restraint" after the terrorist attacks.
Democrats were quick to respond — and in growing numbers.
"Karl Rove should immediately and fully apologize for his remarks or he should resign," Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said in a statement. "I hope the president will join me in repudiating these remarks."

If you didn't give birth to a corporation, then you and yours count as nothing more than food for the war profit machine

Pentagon Creating Student Database
Recruiting Tool For Military Raises Privacy Concerns
By Jonathan Krim


The Defense Department began working yesterday with a private marketing firm to create a database of high school students ages 16 to 18 and all college students to help the military identify potential recruits in a time of dwindling enlistment in some branches.

The program is provoking a furor among privacy advocates. The new database will include personal information including birth dates, Social Security numbers, e-mail addresses, grade-point averages, ethnicity and what subjects the students are studying.
The data will be managed by BeNow Inc. of Wakefield, Mass., one of many marketing firms that use computers to analyze large amounts of data to target potential customers based on their personal profiles and habits.
"The purpose of the system . . . is to provide a single central facility within the Department of Defense to compile, process and distribute files of individuals who meet age and minimum school requirements for military service," according to the official notice of the program.

Grasping at Straws.......Rove on the DSM and...nothing less than victory. On who's dime?

Karl Rove on msnbc hardball--The Downing St. memo section:
Downing Street Memo
GREGORY: As you well know, critics of this war have seized on what's being called now the Downing Street Memo, based on meetings that Britain's Chief of Intelligence had with American officials about the war. One issue that comes up in that memo and subsequent memos is British concerns about the fact that the White House in their view wasn't adequately thinking about what happens after the regime falls.

ROVE: I'm glad you brought that up because I want to put that in context. First of all that is the British. a Brit making a comment about what he perceived to be U.S. policy. the "perceptions" are by Jack Straw, who, um, is more than a "brit" he was the British Foreign Secretary, and Lord Goldsmith, the "brit" attorney general........

But remember the time frame, it is months and months and months before the balloon goes up in Iraq.
exactly, Karl, now you get it. It was months and months before the blood filled ballon starting shooting RPG's and pissing napalm on Iraq. SO, if, on 10/16/02, the Pres. stated that "Our goal is not merely to limit Iraq's violations of Security Council resolutions, or to slow down its weapons program. Our goal is to fully and finally remove a real threat to world peace and to America. Hopefully this can be done peacefully. Hopefully we can do this without any military action." - George W. Bush, October 16, 2002"
Then why were military preparations for a war going on months and years prior?

And in those intervening months there was plenty of time planning for post-war efforts, vast amounts of planning. You never know exactly how a war is going to plan out. Napoleon once said, 'vast numbers of refugees enormous problems with food aid'- did not happen. Vast uprising- didn't happen. That we would see a vast uprising by hundreds of thousands of Iraqis- didn't happen. War is ugly, but a lot went very well with this effort and in part it was because the United States government and our coalition partners used the months to plan for any eventuality. well, did you guys forget to plan in the insurgents and suicide bombers??????? Your planning sucks, big time. And, ugly?Don't you think "ugly" is a bit of an understatement, and more than a bit of an insult to the dead and maimed of the Iraq War? And, Napoleon lost, idiot. Didn't you read the rest of the book?

GREGORY: But if you're talking about the number of troops necessary, the level of American casualties, the force and intensity of the insurgency, did the president mislead the American people about the cost of the war or was he just simply surprised by what happened?

ROVE: I would go back to the president's statements over the last several years and I would defy you to find one speech which he talked about Iraq where he doesn't say there would be difficult times ahead, that we had a long road to hope that a great deal of sacrifice was going to be called for by both the American people and by the Iraqis to achieve this goal. So what, he's always making speeches full of general rhetoric bullcrap, and so are you!

Look, we do not underestimate the ferocity and the anger and the viciousness of the people that we face. Yes, you did
We are in a war. You started it, and you mislead the American public and the world on the reason's for it, the WMD's
Some people may treat it as a law enforcement matter and be worried about indictments from the U.S. attorney from the southern district of New York. mmmmmm
But we recognize this administration and the American people we are in a war and the only way you have a successful outcome in the war is to aim for a complete and total victory, which is exactly what we're doing. ......Just like Napoleon.

I won't examine the arrogance and bravado that spills from that last statement. The disregard for everyone's safety, by insisting on "victory." The disregard for the military, so many of them National Guardspeople, that he has committed to "victory," instead of to a life with their families. Some of the articles below do much more justice to the Napoleon admirer's statement, than I ever could.

More on the Downing St. memos--but first, please TAKE ACTION

Crooks and Liars: Video of Keith Olbermann on the DSMs

From News & Notes with Ed Gordon (NPR Radio programming Tuesday, June 21):
"Democrats Stage Mock Hearing on Iraq Memo"

CounterPunch: Kevin Zeese interviews Col. Sam Gardiner

Counterbias: Sibel Edmonds—An Appeal to the Internet Community

The Nation: David Corn’s got Rove’s response to the DSMs

TomPaine: Fixed is Fixed

TomPaine: David Corn on why he’s obsessed with the DSMs

Rolling Stone Blog:

Original Detroit Free Press article:

The Miami Herald: Americans Inching Closer to a Reckoning

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

DYING TO BECOME A CITIZEN

Discrepancies in the number of Iraq War deaths reported by the US Government, and what other sources say are anywhere from 7-9000 dead, and 30,000 injured seem to arise from a lot of different areas.
One reason may be the question of whether the US government only reports the WAR DEAD who are actually US citizens.

The problem with that type of underreporting is there are almost 40,000 non citizens who are part of the US military,
who are in the front lines of the army.

We've all read the story of the Military recruiters who have harassed high school seniors, and who promise all manner of "bonuses" to anyone who will sign up.

Seems like
the promise of a green card and a fast track to US citizenship has been used almost 40,000 times.

Posthumous citizenship on Fast Track, Include Family Benefits

"The Pentagon says that there are 37,401 non-US citizens on active duty, and that joining up has a special incentive for them - an American passport.
"The military services have processes and programmes in place to help service members expedite their citizenship," says a US Department of Defence spokesperson.
"The estimated time for the application is about six months."
Citizenship has been especially hard to come by due to the draconian immigration rules imposed by the US Department of Homeland Security since the 11 September 2001 attacks.
It can take several years to gain citizenship, for those lucky enough to get it. Signing up to the army can speed this up, provided the GI comes home alive." the rest HERE


And, Suburban Guerilla has this info on the death number discrepancy....

Would the US government LIE about something so tragic and heartrending as the deaths of it's soldiers?
..............were are the WMD's?......................

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

www.patriotdaily.com Read the Patriot

and...get a newsroundup not found elsewhere....

Patriot daily---read the real news.....

More than 1,200 who had anthrax vaccine now sick
By Jeff DonaldsonLAS VEGAS SUN
More than 1,200 military personnel who received the anthrax vaccine before going to Iraq have developed serious illnesses, according to an Army report released last month, though local military officials contend the shots still are safe and necessary.


"Breaking ranks" Bush tone deaf to military leaders' opinions on Iraq when they differ from Bush's view: Military officials in Iraq say US comments not true on number of issues, such as insurgent attacks and defeat of insurgency and positive trends allowing major drawdown of troops.

On BBC Television's Newsnight, Aljibury himself explained,
"It is an invasion, but it will act like a coup. The original plan was to liberate Iraq from the Saddamists and from the regime."
March 2001 - Vice-President Dick Cheney meets with oil company executives and reviews oil field maps of Iraq. Cheney refuses to release the names of those attending or their purpose. Harper's has since learned their plan and purpose -- see below.
October/November 2001 - An easy military victory in Afghanistan emboldens then-Dep. Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz to convince the Administration to junk the State Department "coup" plan in favor of an invasion and occupation that could remake the economy of Iraq. And elaborate plan, ultimately summarized in a 101-page document, scopes out the "sale of all state enterprises" -- that is, most of the nation's assets, "… especially in the oil and supporting industries."
2002 - Grover Norquist and other corporate lobbyists meet secretly with Defense, State and Treasury officials to ensure the invasion plans for Iraq include plans for protecting "property rights." The result was a pre-invasion scheme to sell off Iraq's oil fields, banks, electric systems, and even change the country's copyright laws to the benefit of the lobbyists' clients. Occupation chief Paul Bremer would later order these giveaways into Iraq law.
Fall 2002 - Philip Carroll, former CEO of Shell Oil USA, is brought in by the Pentagon to plan the management of Iraq's oil fields. He works directly with Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith. "There were plans," says Carroll, "maybe even too many plans" -- but none disclosed to the public nor even the US Congress.


Bag of burned Korans left in front of Va. Muslim center
BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) — A bag stuffed with burned Korans was left in front of an Islamic center, shocking members when they arrived for prayers.
The torched copies of the Muslim holy book were inside a plastic shopping bag, members of the Islamic Center of Blacksburg said. They said the bag had been placed at the center's front door sometime before Saturday prayers.
"It is a shame that people are so ignorant," member Idris Adjerid said.

A message from AFTER DOWNING ST.

The U.S. corporate media has rolled over, yawned, stretched, cleared its throat, and rubbed its eyes. All that's needed now, after all the noise we've been making, is an ice cold bucket of water in the face.
Here's How to Deliver It:


Go to the AfterDowningStreet.org site, and find the Take Action box on the right.
http://www.afterdowningstreet.org

After writing to your Congress Member, click also on
"
Contact Local Media Outlets,"

"
Contact TV Networks,"and on

"
Awaken the Mainstream Media"

http://www.afterdowningstreet.org

Read all the latest news at http://www.afterdowningstreet.org

Including: Remember When Bush's Lies Weren't "Old News"?http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/407

Videos of Last Week's Hearing:
In case you missed it, watch it here:
http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/314

If we are going to pass a Resolution of Inquiry through Congress, we will need your financial help as well.
Please Donate to AfterDowningStreet.org
http://elandslide.org/elandslide/edonate.cfm?campaign=ads

Monday, June 20, 2005

Buhriz Mystery Pictures


can you sleep? I can't

warning--graphic pictures

looking backwards

A chronology..... of sorts....check it yourself and see...

1) 8/6/00
Whatever the policy, the United States has made it clear it cares little about the suffering of innocent Iraqis, who live -- and die -- with inadequate diets, unclean water that spreads disease and barely functioning medical facilities.
From the point of view of creating and maintaining real peace, U.S. policy is a failure.
Former U.N. weapons inspector Scott Ritter -- hardly an ally of the Iraqis -- has called for lifting the sanctions, saying that Iraq is qualitatively disarmed (meaning that the capability to produce or use weapons of mass destruction has been eliminated). But U.S. insistence on quantitative disarmament (accounting for every last weapon or related material) ensures there will be no constructive change.
The sanctions also have done nothing to advance democracy in Iraq. Living on the edge of survival, the Iraqi people have few resources for pressing political change. As Denis Halliday, the former U.N. humanitarian coordinator in Iraq, notes, ``Sanctions will not change governance to democracy. Sanctions encourage isolation, alienation and possibly fanaticism.''


3/4/00
Squeezed to death
Half a million children have died in Iraq since UN sanctions were imposed - most enthusiastically by Britain and the US. Three UN officials have resigned in despair. Meanwhile, bombing of Iraq continues almost daily. John Pilger investigates.

2001 — September 11
terrorist attacks on World Trade Center and Pentagon. U.S. government declares perpetual “war on terrorism” and begins indefinite campaign to restrict rights and freedoms of the American people. NATO is reinvigorated, military spending soars, and military-industrial complex expands, all for the indefinite future.

You MUST, MUST, read the RUDE PUNDIT today.
Excellent. Absolutely Excellent.

necessary reading, and, trying to get one count up, and one count down....

Empire Burlesque ......

Killing Hope

and..the desperate measures taken to up the count with our children.....parents of high school teens, beware.

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And when you look into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you. ~ Friedrich Nietzche

yes, but are you REALLY injured, or are you just faking that missing leg?

The most seriously disabled veterans will now have to wait for their claims to pass a second review before they can receive any disability pay from the federal Veterans Affairs Department, according to a new policy ordered last week.
more here
via suburban guerilla

After Admitting it 'Dropped Ball,' AP Produces Tough Piece on Memos

...."If 11 September had not happened, it is doubtful that the U.S. would now be considering military action against Iraq," Straw wrote. "In addition, there has been no credible evidence to link Iraq with OBL (Osama bin Laden) and al-Qaida." He also questioned stability in a post-Saddam Iraq: "We have also to answer the big question — what will this action achieve? There seems to be a larger hole in this than on anything."

....LONDON : When Prime Minister Tony Blair's chief foreign policy adviser dined with Condoleezza Rice six months after Sept. 11, the then-U.S. national security adviser didn't want to discuss Osama bin Laden or al-Qaida. She wanted to talk about "regime change" in Iraq, setting the stage for the U.S.-led invasion more than a year later.

more.....from AP, click HERE
and more HERE

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Bush and Nixon, the Peacemakers

in his weekly radio address, Bush had this to say..
"We went to war because we were attacked, and we are at war today because there are still people out there who want to harm our country and hurt our citizens,"
How many times does it have to be pointed out to him that Iraq did not attack us?
How many times does he have to be reminded that the war, oil, Halliburton, etc., connection has already been made by a majority of the American public, and keeps being made by yet more?
How many more people will have to die before he gets it?
How many more pictures will there be of U.S. Congressmen standing outside locked White House gates, holding petitions signed by hundreds of thousands of Americans who are demanding the truth about this war, before he realizes that he must formulate an exit strategy that doesn't include ""By making their stand in Iraq, the terrorists have made Iraq a vital test for the future security of our country and the free world. We will settle for nothing less than victory.""
How many times will it have to be pointed out to him that the recruitment numbers are down, way down? So who is going to fight this war until victory is won, and nothing less than victory?
And how in the world can you fight a war against something as vague as terror?
And are all of the enemy terror combatants in Iraq? Surely there must be a few of the enemy in some other country? No? Oh, that's right, now, they are all making their stand in Iraq. Well, now... they may be. Now they have a large audience of people outraged, grieving, who will listen to their speal of the necessity of committing acts of violence against the imperialist aggressor.
How many times will it have to be pointed out to him that there is now proof, for anyone who actually needed written evidence, that his reasons for the Iraq War were bogus?

Let me try to follow his reasoning. Mostly Saudi Arabian terrorists attack us on 911, so...we attack Iraq.
While in Iraq, the US starts work on 14 permanent military bases, destroys cities to remove "insurgents" including the use of napalm in Fallujah, and conducts air raids that result in tens of thousands of dead, maimed, and or homeless Iraqis. The list of reasons that would initiate retaliatory strikes against the occupier of another country, by the citizens of the occupied country goes on, and yet somehow, somehow, the GWB manages to transpose those "terrorists" allegedly those "terrorists" who were behind 911, into the insurgents now in Iraq. Yes, the insurgents now blowing themselves and others up were behind 911, and attacked the US. We are not presently in their country, as an occupying force. As a hostile occupying force.
Either he is a C student. Or, he is stalling for time....gotta get that oil flowing, gotta keep his corporate donors happy with those defense contracts....

and now, for some comparisons..

Asked about the memo last week, Bush said, "Nobody wants to commit military into combat. It's the last option."
He added, "We worked hard to see if we could figure out how to do this peacefully." (Not according to the Downing St. memos, you didn't)


After the hearing, Conyers and a dozen congressional colleagues delivered to the White House bundles they said contained the names of more than 560,000 Americans gathered on the Internet who had endorsed his letter to Bush demanding answers to questions raised by the British memo. Some 122 members of Congress also signed the letter.


Asked about Conyers' letter and the British memo, Scott McClellan, the president's chief spokesman, described the congressman as "an individual who had voted against the war in the first place and is simply trying to rehash old debates that have already been addressed."
"And our focus is not on the past," McClellan said. "It's on the future and working to make sure we succeed in Iraq."

It is almost unbelievable that McClellan could make such a dismissive statement about the reasons for this war. Almost...

and flash it back......
...The president continued to assure the public that he was among the war-makers perennially in pursuit of peace. In his second inaugural address, Nixon repeated his mantra for a "lasting peace." Moments after being sworn in again, he resumed spinning for the history books and more immediately for public opinion. "Because of America's bold initiatives," he said, "1972 will be long remembered as the year of the greatest progress since the end of World War II toward a lasting peace in the world."

What Nixon didn't mention was that he had recently inflicted a huge new wave of murderous violence against Vietnamese people. Ellsberg, in his superb memoir "Secrets," describes the late December 1972 bombing spree this way: "President Nixon sent B-52s over Hanoi for the first time ever. In the next 11 days and nights -- with Christmas off -- American planes dropped on North Vietnam 20,000 tons of bombs," amounting to "the explosive equivalent of the Nagasaki A-bomb."

But on January 20, 1973, just weeks after the massive Christmastime bombing of North Vietnam, Nixon spoke with notable shamelessness, laying claim to the mantle of peacemaker: "Let us be proud that by our bold, new initiatives, and by our steadfastness for peace with honor, we have made a breakthrough toward creating in the world what the world has not known before -- a structure of peace that can last, not merely for our time, but for generations to come."



wow, peace by bombs. Great minds truly do think alike.

Priest unrepentant after crucifying of nun...Or, the patriarchy still rules

From IOL
via tvnewslies
"Tanacu, Romania - A Romanian Orthodox priest who ordered the crucifixion of a young nun because she was "possessed by the devil" and now faces murder charges was unrepentant on Saturday as he celebrated a funeral mass for his alleged victim.

"God has performed a miracle for her, finally Irina is delivered from evil," Father Daniel, 29, the superior of the Holy Trinity monastery in north-eastern Romania, said before celebrating a short mass "for the soul of the deceased", in the presence of 13 nuns who showed no visible emotion.He insisted that from the religious point of view, the crucifixion of Maricica Irina Cornici, 23, was "entirely justified", but admitted that he faced excommunication as well as prosecution, and was seeking a "good lawyer.................................................................................. .........................a 34-year-old parishioner who had come to defend Daniel and gave her name as Dora, said Sister Irina " had to be punished, she had an argument with the Father during a Sunday mass and insulted him in front of the congregation.
"Sociologist Alred Bulai said that corporal punishment was still commonly used in certain Romanian monasteries."
_______________________________

In the summer of 2001, I marched in NYC, from a square near 4th St., to the Vatican's NYC residence. I marched with nuns, against Nun Abuse committed by priests. The stories that I heard that day, were almost unbeliveable. Almost. Unless of course, you had already been a victim of the catholic church and it's sexual and financial excesses.

I was still amazed and incredibly saddened, though, to hear the stories told by the nuns, that summer day in 2001. Stories that the catholic church knew about, and did nothing about. In fact, the method employed by the cc, of solving the problem of priests who had raped nuns all over the world, was the same one that was/is used with the child victims of sexual abuse by the catholic church's priests. They simply moved them to a different missionary location, or brought them back to their native country and installed them in a parish there.

I listened to the story's of nuns who were sent all over the world on the catholic church's Missionaries, only to find when they arrived in a remote corner of the world, a lecherous priest who not only made them "bend down" to his higher authority, but who had already twisted his patriarchal religious authority into ensuring a supply of nubile young local parishioners be gathered into the fold he resided over, as "noviates".
Once in, the young prenuns were often raped, and if a pregnancy occurred due to the rape, then the ever obliging head of his flock would demand of the local hospital staff, that an abortion be performed on the flock leaders progeny...
If the young, pregnant woman died during the abortion, the leader of the flock was the one who also presided over her funeral. These types of horrendous abuse stories abounded that day.

That summer day in 2001 that I walked in solidarity with the nuns, I walked with so many women who were so advanced in age, that they could not stand up straight while they marched. The dowagers hump on their back precluded that.

But still they came that day, bused in from all over the US and Canada. And they marched, in the NYC summer heat, in memory of their friends, their fellow sisters. Women who went to a remote corner of the world to help the victims of poverty and social injustice, only to become victims of a two thousand year old patriarchy, themselves.

Some of the scars were more than fifty years old, some were too, too, fresh. At the end of the march, the large crowd stood in front of the Vatican residence, and respectfully requested that a representative come out and answer their requests for a review of the sexual abuse committed against nuns by priests.

THE VATICAN REFUSED TO ACKNOWLEDGE THESE WOMEN. They never came out of their very expensive brownstone hole. They would not answer the women who had spent their lives in devotion to the cc's god. Women who had financially, verbally, and through the giving of their professional lives, supported the cc.
That is an example of the extreme arrogance of the patriarchy of the moneyed catholic church.
When I saw the recent picture of John Conyers, a member of Congress, holding petitions signed by 540,000 Americans, standing at the locked gates of the White House, the flashback to that day in 2001 was immediate. The supremacy of the moneyed patriarchy was absolute both times.
Abuses are not answered to, questions about it's processes are deemed insignificant, and if you persist in coming to it's door, you will be ignored. It's power is absolute.

The cc has since spent over a billion dollars in settlements of sexual abuse of children by it's priests. I have yet to hear of any settlements of, or recognition of, the abuse of it's nuns.

I have written off and on in this blog about the reasons why I refuse to join a religion that holds a male god as it's only god. It is the very essence of prejudice. It assumes a reigning sex. It holds one of the only two genders in this world in a superior state over the remaining one. It allows society at large to then hold and justify god given dominion over others. It allows, due to the fact that GOD, the SUPREME BEING, is imaged as one of the male sex, to deem the humanity of the "other, non god imaged" sex, less.

And when you are deemed, in reality or by implication, less of a human, then you do not enjoy all of the same rights as the god imaged one. Your suffering is not as valid, your pain is of less consequence, your voice means less, your rights are less meaningful, less substantial. You can then be abused, and your cries of abuse be ignored, much as a dog in the street's cries are ignored. They simply do not mean as much as the god imaged ones. How could they?

Recently, there has been some controversy in the blogosphere due to a prominent male liberal blogger making the statement at the end of this post, in response to queries as to why he would have an ad on his much viewed site, that was denigrating.
I saw the ad, and it is out of place on a "liberal" blog. But, it wasnt the ad that offended me. I would go insane if I let every sexist ad, movie, and statement in this world offend me.

No, it wasn't the ad. It was the male bloggers arrogant, dismissive, demeaning, and patriarchal response to criticisms of it, on a prominent liberal blog. In addition, his response to that criticism showed his immaturity, and extreme lack of insight into, as he called it, "the important shit."

From the DailyKos "Pie fight ad by kos
Sun Jun 5th, 2005 at 22:01:25 PDT

So over the weekend, certain segments of the community have erupted in anger over the TBS ad for their reality show, the Real Gilligan's Island. Apparently, having two women throw pies at each other, wrestle each other in a sexy, lesbianic manner, then having water splashed on their ample, fake bosoms is degrading to women. Or something like that.

Whatever. Feel free to be offended. I find such humorless, knee-jerk reactions, to be tedious at best, sanctimonious and arrogant at worst. I don't care for such sanctimony from Joe Lieberman, I don't care for it from anyone else. Some people find such content offensive. Some people find it arousing. Some people find it funny. To each his or her own.

But I am not Lieberman. I won't sit there and judge pop culture and act as gatekeeper to what I think is "appropriate", and what isn't.

And I certainly won't let the sanctimonious women's studies set play that role on this site.
Feel free to be offended.
Feel free to claim that I'm somehow abandoning "progressive principles" by running the ad. It's a free country.
Feel free to storm off in a huff. Other deserving bloggers could use the patronage.

Me, I'll focus on the important shit.

For the rest of his post, go here
The above link includes his 'apology'? if you can call it that. I think it only makes his original post even more offensive. The end of it states "Sorry about that, but not sorry about my broader point -- that being sanctimonious about this ad is no different than the sanctimony we decry from people like Lieberman, Dobson, and the Family Values Coalition.


It is a far stretch from asking why a major liberal blog would put offensive ads on it's site, to the Lieberman, Dobson, et al reference that DKos uses as his defense. Is that the best defense that you can come up with? Another offense?
---Abuses are not answered to, questions about it's processes are deemed insignificant, and if you persist in coming to it's door, you will be ignored. It's power is absolute.---

For what it's worth, this is my take on the DailyKos' statement, and why it is tied in here to this Sunday post.


YOUR ARROGANT RESPONSE, AND OBVIOUS HOLD TO PATRIARCHIAL PRINCIPLES AND BELIEFS, ARE WHAT HELPS SO MANY PEOPLE, GOVERNMENTS, AND RELIGIONS IN OUR WORLD, TO FURTHER ERODE THE RIGHTS OF HUMAN BEINGS EVERYWHERE.
WHERE ONE IS NOT FREE, ALL ARE NOT FREE, AND THE INDIVIDUAL CONTINUES TO SUFFER.
THANKS FOR NOTHING.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Born on the Fourth of July---Ron Kovic speaks again

excerpts......

.....Editor's Note: Ron Kovic served two tours of duty during the Vietnam War. He was paralyzed from the chest down in combat in 1968 and has been in a wheelchair ever since. Along with Oliver Stone, Kovic was the co-screenwriter of the 1989 Academy Award-winning film based on his book, Born on the Fourth of July (Akashic Books). The following is the introduction to the new edition of the book.

It was exactly forty years ago this past September that I left my house in Massapequa, New York to join the United States Marine Corps and begin an extraordinary journey that was to lead me into a disastrous war which would change my life, and others of my generation, profoundly and forever. There are times in the lives of both individuals and nations when we cross certain thresholds where there is no going back, no return to the innocence we once knew; the change is utter and irreconcilable. We often sense these moments. I know I did that day.
I can still remember leaving my house that morning, saying goodbye to my mother, my father driving me down to the Long Island Railroad station with only a few words being said between us...........................

.........................I remember seeing those photos on several occasions after I came home from Vietnam and each time having terrible nightmares that shook me badly. I couldn't look at them, could not face that young man I had been before the war and my injury. I would always promise myself to never look at them again. My trauma was still very deep, and that beautiful boy, that body, had been destroyed, defiled, and savaged. My wounding in Vietnam both physically and emotionally haunted me, pursued me, and threatened to overwhelm me. ..............................................................

................I had driven all the way up in a used car I had just bought in L.A. and later abandoned in their driveway. It was deep in the woods, quiet and peaceful, so very different from the war and the hospitals and all that I had been through. The air was fresh and there was a pond behind their cottage where I dictated to Roger, and I remember feeling exhausted as he held me in his arms and I began to cry in the midst of all that stillness....................................................................................................

.......................I have watched in horror the mirror image of another Vietnam unfolding. So many similarities, so many things said that remind me of that war thirty years ago which left me paralyzed for the rest of my life. Refusing to learn from our experiences in Vietnam, our government continues to pursue a policy of deception, distortion, manipulation, and denial, doing everything it can to hide from the American people their true intentions and agenda in Iraq. ................................................
......................................
The paraplegics, amputees, burn victims, the blinded and maimed, shocked and stunned, brain damaged and psychologically stressed, now fill our veterans hospitals. Most of them were not even born when I came home wounded to the Bronx V.A. in 1968. The same lifesaving medical-evacuation procedures that kept me alive in Vietnam are bringing home a whole new generation of severely maimed from Iraq. .......................................................

......................................................To kill another human being, to take another life out of this world with one pull of a trigger, is something that never leaves you. It is as if a part of you dies with them. If you choose to keep on living, there may be a healing, and even hope and happiness again--but that scar and memory and sorrow will be with you forever. ..............................
..................................I saw firsthand what our government's terrible policy had wrought. I endured; I survived and understood. The one gift I was given in that war was an awakening. I became a messenger, a living symbol, an example, a man who learned that love and forgiveness are more powerful than hatred, who has learned to embrace all men and women as my brothers and sisters. No one will ever again be my enemy, no matter how hard they try to frighten and intimidate me. No government will ever teach me to hate another human being.
I have been given the task of lighting a lantern, ringing a bell, shouting from the highest rooftops, warning the American people and citizens everywhere of the deep immorality and utter wrongness of this approach to solving our problems, pleading for an alternative to this chaos and madness, this insanity and brutality. We must change course. .....

Read the entire introduction, HERE.

And read the email that was sent to me, with this article...
"Hi! I am truly moved by what this man has to say. Please read all of it. He is one of the reasons I am on the Department of Peace campaign committee - to try to win support for the bill to be introduced into Congress in September to make a cabinet level Department of Peace. You can read more about this at www.dopcampaign.org/main.htm Let me know what you think of Ron Kovic's essay and the DOP!! Thanks!! Peace and love, Ruth"

Make PEACE an organizing principle of our WORLD SOCIETY. How many times does Ron Kovic, do all of the Ron Kovics all over this world, have to tell their story?

GOOD!! Senator Barack Obama says NO to Bush appointee

Senator Seeks Details on Nominee's '87 Speech

By CARL HULSE
Published: June 18, 2005
WASHINGTON, June 17 - Senator Barack Obama says he may try to block the confirmation of a high-level nominee to the State Department out of concerns over racially insensitive comments attributed to her in the past.

Mr. Obama, Democrat of Illinois and the only African-American member of the Senate, said he was pressing to gain access to a background report by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other records regarding the nominee, Henrietta Holsman Fore, the director of the United States Mint, who is President Bush's candidate to be under secretary of state for management. The position is the State Department's top human resources job. .......

-------------

The Bush Admin at work...pick someone with a history of racist comments to head the top human resources job, pick a violent, confrontational man who has spoken out against the UN to be it's Ambassador........does Bush not understand the relationship between those individuals he keeps choosing, and the positions that he is choosing them for? Is this a product of his self described C-student brain? Or is he purposely trying to create problems and distress in those departments? Does he not realize that the problems that will occur due to his appointees will be a reflection on him, and that he will then have to deal with those problems? Oh, right, I forgot, he doesn't manage problems, they don't exist, and if they try to get in, he'll just "lock the Gates"....................................

Friday, June 17, 2005

Congressman John Conyers at the White House, delivering almost 600,000 names, 100+ of those the names of members of Congress, and...


THEY WOULDN'T LET HIM IN!!!!!!!!

From Shakespeare's Sister.......
FIrst, they said all of the rooms were being used, and that the hearing would have to be held in the Basement!! Then after the hearing (which was heartening to watch, you should try and view it), he went to the White House to present this petition, and they would not let him past the gate...
Post this pic and story everywhere. The WHITE HOUSE would not let a member of CONGRESS in with a petition signed by members of Congress and the American people..
And then take this poll..
Do you believe President Bush misled the nation in order to go to war with Iraq?
VOTE HERE

War Crying.......

"Fragging" in Iraq
--------------
Fragging entered the American lexicon in the Vietnam War. Such incidents increased late in the 1960s as the strains grew on a draftee army waging an unpopular war. Young men feeling harassed or unnecessarily put in harm's way by their commanders settled their grievances with a fragmentation grenade or a bullet in the back.

The military initially concluded the commanders were killed by "indirect fire" on the Iraqi base — a mortar round that struck a window on the side of the building where Esposito and Allen were.

A criminal investigation was launched after it was determined that the "blast pattern" at the scene was inconsistent with a mortar attack. Martinez is accused of using some kind of explosive device, possibly a grenade, in the attack.
A motive was unclear.------------------


over 1700 dead, over 10,000 injured--physically, and now the mental injuries taketheirr toll. How many more stories like this will we hear about, especially in light of the "relaxed" recruiting requirements that are bypassing ordinary mental health requirements, and promoting soldiers to officers in a much shortened time frame than the normal process?
2200 National Guards People from Pennsylvania were just deployed to Iraq, Central Iraq. Not the marines, the army, but, the National Guard..... ------------------------------------

From the DSM Hearing, via SH SP.....
2:53 - Cindy is reading a letter from a father whose son killed himself after returning home from Iraq. (This is horrible to listen to; I can't imagine the thought of losing your child because of this administration's lies.) "I believe Casey and his buddies died to line the pockets of people who are already wealthy and feed a war machine... I believe an investigation of the Downing Street Memo is warranted and the first step toward...accountabilty... How many more people are going to receive a visit from the grim reaper in a military uniform while we petition Congress to do their job?" (not exact)

Bring them home now. Support the Downing St. memo.
VOTE to Impeach Him

War Crying.........In the so-called "Battle against terror"....

It just gets worse and worse.. from the Memory Hole, via Buzzflash. Could this be part of the reason that Republicans are now breaking away from the current stronghold?? This is what the money that WE worked for has been used for...Did you know you were a party to rape and murder???......

and, it gets better--our Vice President's ex company, Halliburton, just won a 30 million dollar bid to build a NEW Guatanamo--tell your Congressman and Senator NO to a burgeoning Gulag! Stop this Administration beofre it is any more entrenched--petition to impeach him.

-----------------------------
The Rest of the Abu Ghraib Photos & Videos
While we're waiting for the rest of the photos from Abu Ghraib to be released or leaked to the media--and while the pro-torture crowd tries to convince us that what we see in the available pictures is no big deal--it'll be instructive to reiterate what two high-level officials have told us about them. Members of Congress and the Defense Department, among others, have been privately shown many of the thousands of photos (and briefed about the videos) that the rest of us have yet to see. Here's what they said about them.


Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld:
First, beyond abuse of prisoners, there are other photos that depict incidents of physical violence toward prisoners, acts that can only be described as blatantly sadistic, cruel, and inhuman.
Republican Senator Lindsay Graham:
The American public needs to understand, we're talking about rape and murder here. We're not just talking about giving people a humiliating experience. We're talking about rape and murder and some very serious charges.---------------------------------------

Could this report from a German magazine be perhaps...part..of what these two "leaders of American Government" are talkng about........
Via boingboing....From The Report:

One who knows something about it is Sergeant Samuel Provance from the US Army's secret service. He was stationed for half a year in the notorious torture prison Abu Ghraib. Today, five months later, we meet Sergeant Provance in Heidelberg.,

His superiors have strictly forbidden him to report to journalists about what he experienced in Abu Ghraib. Nevertheless, Provance does want to talk about it, he is troubled by pangs of conscience. He tells us about a 16-year old boy he had to take away himself.

Original soundtrack, Samuel Provance, US Sergeant:
"He was terribly afraid. He had the skinniest arms I've ever seen. He was trembling all over. His wrists were so thin that we couldn't even put handcuffs on him. Right when I saw him for the first time, and took him for interrogation, I felt sorry for him. The interrogation specialists poured water over him and put him into a car. Then they drove with him through the night, and at that time it was very, very cold. Then they smeared him with mud and showed him to his father who was also in custody. They had tried out other interrogation methods on him. But he wasn't to be brought to talk. The interrogation specialists told me, after the father had then seen his son in this state, his heart broke. He wept and promised to tell them everything they wanted to know."

But the son nonetheless remained in custody. As a 16-year-old, the boy came to the adults. But Provance also reports of a special department, specifically for children. A secret children's section in the horror prison Abu Ghraib.
One person who has seen the children's wing with his own eyes is the journalist Suhaib Badr-Addin Al-Baz. Our correspondent met him last week in Baghdad. The Iraqi TV reporter tells how he himself was arrested arbitrarily by the Americans while shooting a film and spent 74 days in Abu Ghraib.

Original soundtrack, Suhaib Badr-Addin Al-Baz, TV reporter:
"I saw a camp for children there. Boys, under the age of puberty. There were certainly hundreds of children in this camp. Some have been released, others are certainly still there."
From his single cell in the adults' section, Suhaib heard a perhaps 12-year-old girl crying. Suhaib learned that her brother was being held on the second floor of the prison. Suhaib says he saw her there himself once or twice.
In the night, they had been in her cell. The girl had shouted to the other prisoners and called out her brother's name.
An artist has drawn the scene for the British TV station ITN.
Original soundtrack, Suhaib Badr-Addin Al-Baz, TV reporter:
"She was beaten. I heard her call out: They have undressed me. They have poured water over me."
Daily, says Suhaib, one had heard her cries and her whimpering. Some of the prisoners had therefore wept. Suhaib also reports about a sick 15-year-old boy. They had hounded him up and down the corridor with heavy water canisters. So long until he had collapsed with exhaustion, says Suhaib. Then they had brought his father, captive. With a hood over his head. The boy had collapsed again with shock.
In the so-called "Battle against terror", the Americans storm Iraqi dwellings. According to Suhaib, in the course of this they sometimes arrest whole families who appear suspicious to them. Individual statements by witnesses, difficult to check.
We research for further evidence for the imprisonment of children. And indeed. UNICEF in Geneva, the United Nations' relief agency for children. We find an explosive report. Just a few days old.In this we read:
Quote:
"Children who had been arrested in Basra and Kerbala (…) were handed over as a matter of routine to an internment facility in Um Qasr".
The internment camp Um Qasr. Pictures from 2003, Today it is too dangerous for reporters to travel to Um Qasr. The camp, a prison camp for terrorists and criminals. Here of all places, the Americans are thus said to have kept children interned like prisoners of war.UNICEF
writes:
Quote:
"The classification of these children as 'Internees' is worrying as it means an indefinite period of custody, without contact with their families, expectation of proceedings or a trial."
UNICEF does not yet want to comment on the as yet unpublished report. Their own staff in Iraq are not to be endangered. We look for further information, turn to the International Committee of the Red Cross. Their helpers inspect Um Qasr, Abu Ghraib and other places of detention. And after intensive talks, then further confirmation and even figures.
Original soundtrack, Florian Westphal, International Committee of the Read Cross:
"Between January and May of this year, we registered a total of 107 children. Namely during 19 visits to 6 different places of detention. It must be stressed here, these are places of detention that are really controlled by the Coalition troops."
In the internment camp Um Qasr, and also in Abu Ghraib, the Red Cross registered prisons in their minority. Two international organisations thus confirm to us independently of one another that the occupation troops are holding Iraqi children in custody. But we do not get any information directly from the prisons. Not even UNICEF was allowed to visit the children's clink in Baghdad.
Quote:
"In July 2003, UNICEF applied for a visit to this prison, but access was refused."
According to UNICEF, no independent observers at all have been in the children's clink any more since December.
The US Army did, it is true, open the scandal prison Abu Ghraib for a tour by journalists. But the reporters were presented with a model prison. The press were not shown captive children.
For the rest, click HERE

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Gang raped, and then she used her "compensation " money to build schools and a shelter.....

Some people in this world have the kind of hearts and courage that humble us all.

Your Action Needed Now to Support Pakistani Women's Rights Activist Mukhtar Mai

The Pakistani government is trying to silence human rights defender Mukhtar Mai, whose courage and refusal to be silenced has increased international attention to abuses against women in Pakistan.

In 2002, Mukhtar Mai was gang-raped on orders of a traditional village council as punishment for acts allegedly committed by her younger brother. She courageously testified in court against the men responsible for her rape and, using compensation money, built schools for girls and boys and started a shelter for abused women. She has emerged as a powerful symbol of the brutality and blatant inequality of the justice administered by tribal councils in rural Pakistan.


Earlier this month, Mukhtar Mai was put on Pakistan's "exit control list," notorious for preventing government critics from leaving the country, in response to her plans to speak about her experiences in the United States. On Thursday June 9, Mukhtar Mai was placed under strict police watch and prevented from leaving her home, and was later taken to an undisclosed location by government officials.


At a June 14 press conference, a government representative announced that restrictions on Mukhtar Mai's movement would be lifted, but that a police squad would accompany her for her own protection. She tearfully told Pakistani human rights activists that she had faced significant pressure from the Pakistani government to sign a letter withdrawing her visa application to the United States.

Human Rights First condemns the silencing of Mukhtar Mai. Join us in taking action to demand that Mukhtar Mai's rights are protected, and that she be free to travel to speak about her experiences.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Peter Ricketts, Blair political advisor, in a memo to Jack Straw, 3/22/02

"For Iraq, "regime change" does not stack up. It sounds like a grudge between Bush and Saddam. Much better, as you have suggested, to make the objective ending the threat to the international community from Iraqi WMD [...]."

and...

David Manning, Blair foreign policy advisor
Letter to the Prime Minister on dinner with Condoleezza Rice March 14, 2002


"I said that you would not budge in your support for regime change but you had to manage a press, a Parliament and a public opinion [...]"
"Condi [Rice]'s enthusiasm for regime change is undimmed."
"Bush has yet to find the answers to the big questions: [...] what happens on the morning after?"


Raw Story outlines the burgeoning group of Downing St. memos well. You should check them out.

I am amazed at their content. I am also amazed at the fact that the media has not jumped on them. Although the Philadelphia Inquirer had two articles on the DSM this past Sunday. One was located on page six. Not bad, page six of a major Sunday paper. It was a long article that reprinted parts of the memo. The second article was actually a commentary. It was titled, "Why the Downing Street memo hasn't rocked Bush's world."

At first the commentary appears to take a "so what?" attitude to the DSM. A bit further into the piece, though, you can see that the author views the memos as "interesting" but proceeds to attribute the only people who consider them important as "the anti-war" protestors. A bit farther into the piece and you can discern the real reason behind the author's view. He is upset with the MSM bashing. He then attempts to chide the people who are bringing these memos to the publics attention by stating, "For example, by summer 2002 it was no secret to any attentive American citizen that their leaders were spoiling for war with Iraq. The Inquirer electronic database shows 60 plus articles discussing the race to war."

I didn't view the previous sixty articles mentioned. I don't know what there actual content was. However, those sixty articles, while in some repsects I am sure the author feels take the onus off of the MSM --read Inquirer--for it's lack of reporting on the war since 2002, well, those sixty articles, did any of them contain the actual memos that said that the intelligence around it was FIXED? That we and the UK were basically RIGGING this war? I doubt it.

And trying to dis the people who are bringing these new facts to light, NOW, doesn't help the situation. The author, Chris Satullo, also "The plain fact is that an amazing percentage of Americans just don't care about the facts of the Iraq war."

Well, perhaps if they were told the truth about it initially, and barring that, NOW, are told the truth, they might.
They might also have cared more about the war if had not been sanitized by the MSM that the author attempts to protect.
And, if the anti war groups that the author sneers at were given as much press and coverage as the PRO war Pro blind patriotism groups were, in 2002, then maybe someone would have listened.
The author lays the blame mainly at the feet of the American public. And yes, some of it has to lay there. BUT the bulk of it should be plopped, Hummers, RPG's insurgents and all, at the foot of the Bush and company neocons. They, after all plotted to start the war, plotted to continue it, and turn a blind eye to the atrocities it perpetuates. They also are the ones who PROFIT from it.

And sorry, Chris, but I stopped reading the major newpapers and turned to the net for actual news quite awhile ago. Why? Because I was so very tired of seeing article after article, way more than sixty of them, that yes, spoke of the Iraq War, the Iraq War in all of it's pro Bush GLORY. Yeah WAR!! Yeah Warrior! Great Patriots! Waive the Flag! Get yourself a magnet! A good sized chunk of that blame has to fall squarely on the MSM's toes. And from the touchy tone of your article, I think some of it already has.
GO BLOGGERS..

and in the meantime...
Impeachment is in the Air
Rep. John Conyers to Hold June 16 Hearing on the Downing Street Memo
Join the tens of thousands on September 24
Who Will Call for Impeachment
Gather at the White House at 12 noon