Today's conditions brought to you by the Bush Junta - marionettes of their hyperdimensional puppet masters - Produced and Directed by the CIA, based on an original script by Henry Kissinger, with a cast of billions.... The "Greatest Shew on Earth," no doubt, and if you don't have a good sense of humor, don't read this page! It is designed to reveal the "unseen."
If you can't stand the heat of Objective Reality, get out of the kitchen!
May 21, 2003
As always, Caveat Lector!
Cassiopaea relies completely on individual reader contributions. This allows us to keep our independence.
Send your comments and suggestions to sottSPAMNOT@cassiopaea.com.
IMPEACH GEORGE BUSH!
successful tyranny is not the one that uses force to assure
uniformity but the one that removes the awareness of other
possibilities, that makes it seem inconceivable that other ways are
viable, that removes the sense that there is an outside.
This country, with its institutions, belongs to the
people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the
existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right
of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or
"It is dangerous to be
right in matters on which the established authorities are
Faith of consciousness is freedom
Life is religion. Life experiences reflect how one
interacts with God. Those who are asleep are those of little faith
in terms of their interaction with the creation. Some people think
that the world exists for them to overcome or ignore or shut out.
For those individuals, the worlds will cease. They will become
exactly what they give to life. They will become merely a dream in
the 'past.' People who pay strict attention to objective reality
right and left, become the reality of the 'Future.'
AlltheWeb indexes over 2.1 billion web pages, 118 million multimedia files, 132 million FTP files, two million MP3s, 15 million PDF files and supports 49 languages, making it one of the largest search engines available to search enthusiasts. AlltheWeb provides the freshest information because we update our index every 7 to 11 days and index up to 800 news stories per minute from 3,000 news sources.
[prev] [list] [???] [join] [next]
May 20, 2003
Flash floods and mudslides killed 237 people and displaced 177,000 families over the weekend in southern Sri Lanka, the government confirmed.
The flood damage was severe in five districts in the south of the island, but homes had been submerged in western province too, a statement said Tuesday.
"The Ministry of Social Services has announced that over 177,000 families have been displaced and 237 persons were killed due to floods and landslides in a number of districts in the country," the government statement said.
BEIJING (APOnline) - A Chinese computer engineer was sentenced to five years in prison for subversion after politically sensitive articles were posted on his Web site, a court official said Monday.
Huang Qi, 40, was sentenced May 9 by the Chengdu Intermediate People's Court in the southwestern province of Sichuan, the court official said. Huang spent nearly three years in police custody following his 2000 arrest.
The official refused to discuss other details, including why Huang was detained so long before sentencing. The official also refused to give his name.
The sentencing of computer engineer Huang followed an April order by a Communist Party leader calling for a crackdown on "enemy efforts," the Information Center for Human Rights and Democracy said.
Huang and his wife started the Web site www.6-4tianwang.com in 1999 as a forum for information about missing people. The site became a popular place for posting articles about politically sensitive topics, including a potential opposition party and the banned Falun Gong spiritual movement, because its name is shorthand for June 4.
[...] China encourages Internet use for business and education but lashes out at efforts to use it to criticize communist rule and demand political reform. Authorities try to block access to Web sites abroad run by dissidents and human rights groups.
At least 33 people have been detained for posting political material online, according to human rights groups.
Huang's sentencing followed a secret order issued April 28 by Luo Gan, a member of the party's ruling Standing Committee, to "sternly suppress 'enemy efforts'," the Information Center said. Luo is the senior party official in charge of law and order...
Comment: Get ready America, because this is exactly where the US is heading. Under the Patriot Act, what happened to Huang Qi in China can happen to any US citizen. It's only a matter of time.
DeNeen L. Brown
TORONTO, May 20 -- "Mad cow" disease was discovered in a single cow in the province of Alberta, Canada's agriculture minister announced today, prompting the United States to immediately ban all beef imports from Canada.
An 8-year-old cow that was killed in January after showing signs of illness was confirmed today to have had mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), Lyle Vanclief, the minister, told reporters. The human form of it, variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, is almost always fatal. [...]
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman said in an announcement that the risk to people in the United States was low, as was the possibility that the disease was transmitted to animals in the United States. Veneman said the USDA nonetheless banned beef imports pending further investigation. The United States sent a technical team to Canada to help the investigation.
Comment: Given US anger at Canada for its refusal to join the "Coalition of the Willing", might it be too much to suggest that the Americans are engaging in a little chemical warfare themselves in its fight to subdue its "Austria"? Nah...that'd be too much like a conspiracy theory....
By BRIAN BENNETT AND MICHAEL WEISSKOPF
Baghdad nights are full of menace. The smoke of looted, burning buildings turns the sunset blood orange. Once darkness falls, tracer fire arcs across the sky like red fireworks. It's dazzling but dangerous. One recent salvo came down on a gasoline tanker, setting off an explosion that killed a man and injured several others.
When the sun goes down, the streets empty quickly. Curfew unofficially begins at 11 p.m., but few drivers, even those earning dollars from foreigners, stay out that late. One learns to fear the shadows that move. Gunfire punches holes in the city's eerie quiet. Two sharp cracks signal an American checkpoint firing warning shots. Rapid automatic fire sounds the news that electricity has returned to a neighborhood. Most ominous of all is the single shot.
One evening last week a small crowd gathered around two men lying on the central divider of Saadoun Street an hour after nightfall. We stopped our car for a closer look. Both men had been shot in the head. One was plainly dead, the other bleeding from a bullet hole in his right eye and struggling to breathe. The onlookers merely gawked at the grisly scene, muttering "Ali Baba," Arabic slang for thieves. We didn't know if they meant the victims or the gunmen.
In a city virtually without civil authority since Saddam Hussein's fall, many districts have organized vigilante night patrols to scare off looters and shooters. But these victims received no help: no phones work; no police patrol the beat. None of the gawkers even lent a hand as we tried to lift the wounded man into our Daewoo sedan. It took several universally understood expletives to elicit help.
After a 15-minute dash across a city lighted only by a full moon, we pulled up at al-Yarmouk hospital, an over-burdened 700-bed facility guarded by U.S. troops. Frustrated staff members trying to practice lifesaving without morphine, stretchers or clean linen could do little. "We have no neurologist here," a white-smocked doctor said. "It's hopeless."
Three doctors dragged the unconscious man to a wheelchair and pushed him to an emergency room filled with similar unfortunates. Medics hoisted him onto an unsheeted gurney and hooked up a bag of saline. Doctors said he was the 12th gunshot victim in five hours; before the war, they might have handled one such case a day.
'My skin itches. I can't breathe well'
From Karl Penhaul
TUWAITHA, Iraq (CNN) -- Villagers near Iraq's largest nuclear research facility complain that they are falling ill from what doctors say may be radiation poisoning.
The research facility, which stores nonweapons-grade radioactive materials, was looted in the final days of the Iraq war. Many containers were stolen and used by residents near the Tuwaitha complex to store drinking water, among other things. The facility is about six miles (10 kilometers) south of Baghdad.
U.N. weapons inspectors who monitored the site before the war said low-grade radioactive material may have been stored in the drums.
Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency said they had sealed nuclear materials before the start of the war.
It is unclear how long the nuclear complex was left unguarded. U.S. troops are now on the scene...
Comment: The question that is not asked in this article is why wasn't the facility secured by US forces before it could be looted? Bush repeatedly claimed that weapons of mass destruction are the reason for war against Iraq. Yet this research facility, a potential goldmine of radioactive material for making "dirty bombs," sat untouched and unguarded by US forces. Perhaps the soldiers were too busy looting Saddam's palaces and Iraq's cultural institutions.
Jim Clancey, CNN
Other than a professional job, there have been rumors that U.S. Marines were involved in this, opening the doors to the museum.
I talked to the one man today who was actually there when the looters plundered the building. He said the Marines were absolutely not involved in any way.
The Marines did come briefly, firing over the heads of the looters, he said. The looters left, but came back when the Marines departed and cleaned up the job, devastating the museum.
One of the greatest wonders of civilisation, and probably the world's most ancient structure - the Sumerian city of Ur in southern Iraq - has been vandalised by American soldiers and airmen, according to aid workers in the area.
They claim that US forces have spray-painted the remains with graffiti and stolen kiln-baked bricks made millennia ago. As a result, the US military has put the archaeological treasure, which dates back 6,000 years, off-limits to its own troops. Any violations will be punishable in military courts. [...]
There are reports that walls have been damaged by spray-painted graffiti, mostly patriotic or other slogans, and regimental mottos. One graffiti reads: 'SEMPER FE' - Always Faithful - the motto of the Marines, who stormed through this region on their way to Baghdad, and form a contingent at the base.
Other reports by groups who cannot be named for fear of losing access to medical patients being treated on the base say there has been widespread stealing of clay bricks baked to build and restore the structures at Ur.
The Army Public Affairs office at Ur refused to speak to The Observer.
Just where are those weapons?
CHICAGO - The Bush administration's claims that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq are starting to sound about as convincing as O.J.'s effort to find the real killer.
It's been two months since we went to war to prevent Saddam Hussein from terrorizing us with these armaments, and we haven't found a single warhead, artillery shell, barrel or refrigerator containing his vile creations. What would Johnnie Cochran make of that?
The best the U.S. government has been able to do is locate a couple of trailers that military specialists thought were mobile laboratories for making biological agents. But by the end of last week, the Pentagon was abandoning that claim.
As embarrassments go, this one is in a league with having your pants fall down on Main Street at high noon. In his State of the Union address, the president managed to give the impression that Mr. Hussein had piles of the stuff reaching to the sky. That was why we had to act immediately. [...]
Before the war, Mr. Hussein's arsenal was hidden away under the tightest control, and he didn't dare use it. Today, the nastiest stuff he owned could be in the hands of Osama bin Laden and his confederates, who will use anything they can get. Are you feeling safer?
Last week the ground-forces commander in Iraq, Lt. Gen. David McKiernan, told NEWSWEEK he's confident evidence will emerge. "We haven't found yet the big, hard evidence, but I think that will come," he said. Officials in Washington spoke more cautiously. "I think we're going to find that they had a weapons-of-mass-destruction program," said Stephen Cambone, under secretary of Defense for intelligencecarefully not saying the weapons themselves would be found. Proving Saddam's guilt is almost beside the point. The urgent job now is to keep his WMD materials out of terrorist hands if it isn't already too late.
Comment: The gist of the above article is that the U.S. can't find weapons of mass destruction because the looters got there first! There is a new excuse almost every day, and they are becoming more and more fantastic. And this excuse nicely sets up an explanation for new terrorist attacks. Where did they get the makings for a dirty bomb? From a looting raid committed underneath the U.S. military's noses, of course.
The US remains in the driving seat in post-Saddam Iraq Occupying US and British forces are due to stay for a long-term role in Iraq, British officials say.[...]
Iraqis believe American corporations favoured by the Bush administration will benefit regardless of merit, our correspondent says.[...]
Comment: If Iraq wants the freedom that Bush promised them, than they are going to have to stand up and demand it in front of the world. The U.S. had no intention of giving back soverignty to France, Germany, Japan, or Italy after WWII. Imperalistic intentions go way back. Terrorist acts won't work, since that will only turn world opinion against them. They are probably smart enough to figure that out, but we won't be surprised if terrorism continues unabated. Perpertated by who, no matter what the Bush Reich media says, is the question.
For Nadthme and friends, these are words worth fighting for. The essence of their argument is that the true voice of a future and sovereign Iraq is being railroaded by the machinations of the American reconstruction effort and the formerly exiled opposition groups.
"When I spoke before the war, I was holding back," Nadthme acknowledged. "But not just about Saddam. We all know he lost touch with reality after 1991. What I could not reveal then is how shameful we find the opposition groups who are working with the Americans.
"They have no authority, no constituency, no claim on what will become of the new Iraq."
Nadthme complains that he and the others are being kept in the dark, literally and figuratively.
There was no electricity in his home on this night, thanks to rotating blackouts that continue in the Iraqi capital.
"But we also have no clue about what the American's are up to inside the Republican Palace, whatever plans they are making about our oil, our future.
"This is very disturbing."[...]
"One way or another, we will get our country back."
From Stephen Farrell in al-Shinafiyah
A MASS grave believed to contain the bodies of hundreds of Kurds killed after the chemical attack on Halabja has been found in a desert in southern Iraq.
Villagers of al-Shinafiyah, 50 miles south of Najaf, led The Times to a site where they claimed that Iraqi soldiers had shot men and women in July 1988 and buried them in a trench. One said he saw the massacre, another that he had heard machinegun fire daily.
What the site at al-Shinafiyah holds may be the latest evidence of Saddam's Anfal campaign in the late 1980s, when tens of thousands of people disappeared as he sought to depopulate the Kurdish countryside and wreak revenge for the Kurdish guerrillas' decision to side with Iranian forces during the Iran-Iraq War.
Even as the Anfal genocide continued, Saddam's most infamous atrocity was perpetrated in March 1988, when he dropped nerve gas on Halabja, killing 5,000 people. Four months later, al-Shinafiyah villagers say, buses arrived in the area and the killings began.
Hadi Khadoum, a shepherd, said that he saw soldiers use a mechanical digger. The next day he saw three cars and 25 green buses, their windows painted out. "The buses were reversed to the trench and soldiers were pulling people by the arm and throwing them as far as they could into the ditch, while the soldiers around the trench started shooting. I just heard some women screaming and that was all."
Comment: Remember this:
By Pepe Escobar
[...] Strange, no journalist has stood up and ask Rumsfeld, in one of those cosy Pentagon spinning sessions, how was his 90-minute session with Saddam in Baghdad in December 20, 1983. The fuzzy photo of Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam, observed by Iraqi vice premier Tarik Aziz, is now a collector's item. Rumsfeld was sent by Reagan to mend relations between the US and Iraq only one month after Reagan had adopted a secret directive - still partly classified - to help Saddam fight Iran's Islamic Revolution that had begun in 1979. This close cooperation led to nothing else than Washington selling loads of military equipment and also chemical precursors, insecticides, aluminum tubes, missile components and anthrax to Saddam, who in turn used the lot to gas Iranian soldiers and then civilian Kurds in Halabja, northern Iraq, in 1988. The selling of these chemical weapons was organized by Rumsfeld...
The Pentagon is hard at work pushing to develop the first new class of U.S. nukes since the end of the cold war
May. 19, 2003
By MARK THOMPSON
Although President Bush spends endless hours trying to stop the spread of nuclear weapons, his Administration isn't above creating a few itself. The Pentagon is hard at work pushing to develop the first new class of U.S. nukes since the end of the cold war. Two plans are on the table: retooling existing warheads into atomic sledgehammers capable of destroying bunkers under 1,000 feet of rock, and designing new mini-size nukes ideal for targeting stockpiles of biological and chemical weapons. Congress banned work on mini-nukes for the past decade out of fear that smaller nuclear weapons might be more likely to be used. But the Bush Administration, citing the jump in what it calls hard and deeply buried targets (HDBTs) has persuaded the House and Senate Armed Services Committees to lift the prohibition. Both houses could vote on the measure as early as this week when they take up next year's military budget. The Pentagon has included $21 million for the two new programs as well as $25 million to jump-start nuclear tests, if the Administration sees fit.
Why does the U.S. need new nukes? The Administration argues that the current arsenal consists largely of mammoth city blasters that can't burrow underground where U.S. officials believe nations such as Iran and North Korea are assembling weapons of mass destruction. Moreover, Pentagon officials say, this arsenal is no longer an effective deterrent. Washington's enemies, they say, calculate that the U.S. won't use its existing nuclear weapons because of the widespread carnage they would cause.
But the new plans have their own detractors, including nuclear scientist and Pentagon adviser Sidney Drell, who says even a tiny 1-kiloton weapon exploding 50 ft. deep in rock would spew radioactivity across a wide swath of the planet. Arms-control advocates worry that possessing smaller and more precise nuclear weapons would scuttle efforts to stop worldwide proliferation. Said Senator Dianne Feinstein last week: "This Administration seems to be moving toward a military posture in which nuclear weapons are considered just like other weapons."
Comment: The Bush Gang's hypocrisy knows no bounds.
May 20, 2003
By Vicki Allen
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate on Tuesday backed the scrapping of a decade-long ban on researching "mini-nuke" weapons, but Democrats condemned the measure which they said would spur a new arms race and heighten risks of nuclear warfare.
The Senate voted 51-43 to uphold a request from President Bush to repeal the ban on research and development of tactical nuclear weapons with one-third or less the force of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in World War II that killed more than 100,000 people.
[...] Rumsfeld said the administration just wanted to study these weapons, "not to develop, not to deploy, not to use" them.
But Democrats said it was foolish to think the administration would invest in research on the weapons with no intention of producing them.
[..] "The hard-liners say things are different today. A nuclear war won't be so bad if you just make the nukes a little smaller," said Sen. Edward Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat. "Is half of Hiroshima okay? Is a quarter of Hiroshima okay?"...
We have been far too polite in allowing US companies to hog Iraqi contracts
There really is no delicate way to put this: Britain helped the United States in the Iraq war and now we want our financial reward.
Such words are not for the squeamish. They will feed the prejudices of the peaceniks and appal the sensibilities of the chattering classes. Only behind the most solidly shut of closed doors do even the most fervent capitalists concur with each other that justice demands that a share of the contracts for rebuilding Iraq should come Britain's way...
Comment: Iraq is in complete chaos, and yet dear Patience (ironic, don't you think?) is whining about her reward. The greed is unbelievable. This is the world of the Organic Portal, run according to their desires, their "soulless" view of reality. This is the norm, this is the standard by which all is measured in the realm of the Absolute 3.
This became possible thanks to new legislation adopted in Germany last year German attorneys have registered a claim against US President George W. Bush in the General Office of the Public Prosecutor in Germany. In addition to George W. Bush, the claim includes members of the German and British governments, who are all alleged to be in violation of international law in launching the war in Iraq.
Registration of this claim became possible thanks to new legislation adopted in Germany last year. Now courts of the country can consider cases connected with violations of international law even in situations in which the violation doesn't concern Germany directly.
Heinrich Comes, one of the 14 attorneys suing the US president, says: "The American president is protected from prosecution by immunity. However, we hope to take other governmental officials mentioned in the claim to court."
Germany didn't give its official support to the war campaign
against Saddam Hussein's regime; however, it allowed coalition
warplanes to cross German airspace.
MIAMI (USATODAY.com) - Government forecasters are predicting a busier-than-normal Atlantic hurricane season. Six to nine hurricanes overall, including two to four major storms packing winds of at least 111 mph, are likely, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Monday.
Last month, William Gray of Colorado State University and his group updated their 2003 prediction to say there would be eight hurricanes, three of them severe.
The NOAA forecasters said higher-than-normal ocean temperatures and other factors should make conditions ripe for hurricanes this year.
They also said there is a 70% chance that La Niña will develop this summer. The weather phenomenon of lower-than-normal eastern Pacific Ocean temperatures near the equator typically leads to more hurricane activity. Last summer's El Niño, on the other hand, probably reduced the number of hurricanes.
Overall, 11 to 15 tropical storms are expected develop during the season that runs from June 1 to Nov. 30; the historical average is 10 tropical storms and six hurricanes.
Last year, there were 12 tropical storms and four hurricanes.
Since 1995, forecasters have noted an increase in overall tropical storm and hurricane activity. Officials are warning residents to be prepared...
May 21, 2003
By Basildon Peta, Southern Africa
Reports of mass murder and cannibalism emerged in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) yesterday, as French military officers arrived yesterday to assess the possibility of France deploying peace-keeping troops.
Aid workers said they had found 231 bodies of people killed since 4 May on the streets of Bunia, in the north-east, including women and children, some decapitated, others with their hearts, livers and lungs missing. United Nations officials are already investigating reports of cannibalism and have asked the European Union and Britain to send troops.
[...] In January, UN officials said they had substantiated reports that ethnic militias were killing Congo bushmen, also known as pygmies, for food. Aid workers said they were being told of ethnic militias feeding on the hearts and livers from bodies of civilians belonging to other ethnic groups. They said reports of such murders were common in the eastern part of the Congo. One added: "Sometimes you don't have to see these atrocities to believe. The misery and fear of the fleeing civilians is enough to make you believe the extent of the atrocities..."
By Martin Crutsinger
May 19, 2003 | WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Bush administration warned Congress on Monday it would run out of room by May 28 to juggle the government's books to stay within the current national debt limit.
Legislation to boost the debt limit by $984 billion -- the largest increase in history -- has been caught up in a battle between Democrats and the White House over President Bush's proposed new tax cuts.
[...] The House has passed a bill to boost the current debt limit of $6.4 trillion to $7.38 trillion, but so far it has been blocked in the Senate by Democrats, who are trying to use the issue to hold down the size of new tax cuts.
Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., criticized Snow's letter, saying Republican tax-cut policies will push the national debt to $12 trillion by the end of 2013, right before a wave of baby boomer retirements dramatically increases demands on Social Security.Two of America's Richest Assail Bush Tax Cut
NEW YORK (Reuters) - You would think two of the wealthiest Americans would have no problem with a tax cut that would put thousands, if not millions, of dollars in their pockets.
But billionaire investors Warren Buffett ( news -web sites ) and George Soros, Nos. 2 and 24 on Forbes Magazine's list of the 400 richest Americans, both railed on Tuesday against President Bush ( news -web sites )'s plan to deepen income tax cuts and eliminate taxes on corporate dividends.
Bush, who has campaigned around the country touting the plan as a way of creating jobs and boosting stock prices, is pressing for final agreement this week as Congress wrangles to fit the package into a $350 billion limit set by the Senate.
[...] Soros, renowned for both his swashbuckling speculative bets on currencies as well as his philanthropic work, dismissed the tax cuts. He said they would not revive the U.S. economy in the short-term but were only aimed at helping the rich get richer.
"This move is designed not to have much impact now. It's designed to have an impact over an extended period and it's basically using the recession to redistribute income to the wealthy," Soros said in an interview with financial news network CNBC.
think that is really not a very effective way of using a deficit,"
said Soros, whose wealth is estimated at $6
Reuters Tuesday, May 20, 2003; 1:54 PM
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Billionaire investor George Soros, in an interview with cable television station CNBC on Tuesday, said he was selling the dollar against most major currencies.
In the wide-ranging interview in which he assailed the Bush administration's policies, Soros said he was buying the euro and the currencies of Australia, Canada and New Zealand against the dollar, as well as gold. The euro briefly broke above $1.17 following his comments before retreating.
Soros was sharply critical of Snow's policy shift, branding it a "mistake," and labeling it a wrongheaded attempt to stimulate the U.S. economy at the expense of other economies.
"It's a beggar-thy-neighbor policy," he said. "I think (Snow) was somewhat irresponsible by talking down the dollar." [...]
With the dollar already under pressure, traders sent the euro above $1.17 , a fraction of a cent from Monday's four year high at $1.1738 -- a hair below the single currency's launch price. Gold, meanwhile, set a three-month high at $370 an ounce.
The Canadian dollar held a six-year high against its U.S. counterpart, trading near C$1.3476 , or 74.21 U.S. cents.
Robert Stacy McCain
A federal children's health agency is funding a study of the sex habits of old men. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) provided more than $137,000 for a three-year study to "provide the most comprehensive picture to date of the sexual behavior of aging men." [...]
That NIH-approved project was called "disgusting" by a congressman who said the agency rejected his request three years earlier to study whether the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine was associated with autism. "The NIH couldn't find the money to look into this relationship between kids with regressive autism and the mandatory MMR vaccine, but they can pay people $150,000 to watch pornography," Rep. Dave Weldon, Florida Republican, said in December. The NIH annual budget of $27 billion has more than doubled in the past five years.
Federal sex research turns "Uncle Sam into a taxpayer-funded Peeping Tom," Mr. Knight said. "Wouldn't you love to ask James Madison if this was the sort of expenditure he envisioned when drafting the Constitution?"
Puget Sound Business Journal
The state Employment Security Department said Tuesday that Washington's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in April was 7.3 percent, its highest level since a 7.4 percent rate was recorded in September 2002.
Despite President Bush's expansive and expensive "war on terrorism," al Qaeda-by apparently and simultaneously bombing several housing complexes in the police state of Saudi Arabia-has shown its continued viability and potency as a terrorist group. According to the Saudi Interior Minister, the attacks were conducted by men who escaped Saudi authorities a week ago, but left behind an arms cache. The Saudi government noted that the men were bent on attacking U.S. and British targets in Iraq, as well as the U.S.-supported Saudi royal family. They chose to do so shortly before Secretary of State Colin Powell arrived in Saudi Arabia. In addition, one target of the bombing was a complex housing the employees of an American company that uses former U.S. military personnel to train the Saudi National Guard. Despite victims of other nationalities, early evidence indicates that the main targets of the attack were the United States and Britain, the two nations conducting the war against Iraq.
The terrorist attacks support the views of those who argued against such a war on the grounds that it would increase anti-American terrorism, not reduce it. After arriving in Saudi Arabia, Secretary Powell said: "Terrorism strikes everywhere and everyone. It is a threat to the civilized world." Although the Secretary's statement is technically true, he needs to read his own department's reports entitled "Patterns of Global Terrorism." Those annual reports regularly indicate that terrorists launching international attacks strike U.S. targets an astounding 40 to 60 percent of the time. Those numbers are unusually high for a nation that has no ethnic or civil war within its borders, has no unfriendly neighbors stoking such internal unrest, and is far removed from the world's major centers of conflict.[...]
When people in the United States speak of U.S. foreign policy, they often use the term "we." Although most Americans supported the war against Iraq, the average citizen might consider that the neo-conservatives currently running the U.S. government have different interests than they do. The neo-conservatives freely use the words "American empire"-an utterance that Americans have avoided ever since they shook off their own colonial oppressors during the American revolution. Empires cost money and lives as defense budgets go through the roof and America's sons and daughters die in foreign brushfire wars. Now, blowback from such overseas military adventures-in the form of terrorist reprisals-has and will likely continue to harm U.S. citizens even here at home. Throughout history, governments have gone to war and the common people have paid the price. Same stuff, different day.
May 20, 2003
The entire United States is beginning to stink like New Jersey.
In these times, when we have to race to keep abreast of the speed at which our freedoms are being snatched from us, and when few can afford the luxury of retreating from the streets for a while in order to return with an exquisite, fully formed political thesis replete with footnotes and references, what profound gift can I offer you tonight?
As we lurch from crisis to crisis, beamed directly into our brains by satellite TV, we have to think on our feet. On the move. We enter histories through the rubble of war. Ruined cities, parched fields, shrinking forests, and dying rivers are our archives. Craters left by daisy cutters, our libraries.
So what can I offer you tonight? Some uncomfortable thoughts about money, war, empire, racism, and democracy. Some worries that flit around my brain like a family of persistent moths that keep me awake at night.
Some of you will think it bad manners for a person like me, officially entered in the Big Book of Modern Nations as an "Indian citizen," to come here and criticize the U.S. government. Speaking for myself, I'm no flag-waver, no patriot, and am fully aware that venality, brutality, and hypocrisy are imprinted on the leaden soul of every state. But when a country ceases to be merely a country and becomes an empire, then the scale of operations changes dramatically. So may I clarify that tonight I speak as a subject of the American Empire? I speak as a slave who presumes to criticize her king.
Since lectures must be called something, mine tonight is called: Instant-Mix Imperial Democracy (Buy One, Get One Free)...
By Laura Casey
Under cover of night last weekend, pranksters brought their anti-corporate, anti-Bush administration message to a Piedmont Avenue billboard.
Baywolf restaurant owner Larry Goldman noticed the sign Monday as he came to work. Once a campaign for the cellular phone provider Verizon Wireless, it now reads:
"Get on the gulf war gravy train, Halliburton. To the victor goes the spoils." The "oil" in "spoils" is written in red.
"It does get people's attention," Goldman said.
Billboard "improvements" such as the one on Piedmont Avenue usually can be traced to the politically charged, guerrilla art group Billboard Liberation Front.
The group has been "liberating" billboards around the Bay Area since 1977. Attempts to contact the group failed.
Michelle Williams, who works on Piedmont Avenue, immediately recalled a sign on the street that changed earlier this year from a Sony Playstation ad to an anti-Bush denunciation. "It just kind of took me by surprise," she said, blinking at the sign above her.
Does she hate it? Not at all.
"It makes me feel good," she said. "It's cool to know you can get away with it here in Oakland."
Except for a mother who kept her head down while pushing a baby in a stroller and mumbled, "I like to keep to myself," very few people on Piedmont Avenue reacted negatively to the message on the sign.
Josh Burke, who works at a nearby hospital, says he is a card-carrying, NPR-listening, democratic liberal. The sign is his piece of cake.
"It is sort of nice to see a reflection of what's not being popularly disseminated to people," he said.
Adam Drucker said he laughed a bit watching two "little old ladies" look at it for a long while.
"This is the third one I've been awake for," he said.
Comment: This comic complements the article nicely.
May 20, 2003
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Bush marked Cuban Independence Day on Tuesday by denouncing Cuban President Fidel Castro and expressing hope his rule will soon end.
"My hope is for the Cuban people to soon enjoy the same freedoms and rights as we do. Dictatorships have no place in the Americas. May God bless the Cuban people who are struggling for freedom," Bush said in a message played on U.S.-backed Radio Marti, which is beamed into Cuba.
[...] Washington has condemned Cuba's imprisonment of about 75 dissidents in recent weeks, Havana's harshest crackdown in decades. Havana called the crackdown and prison sentences of six to 28 years a defense against U.S. "mercenaries."
Last week the United States expelled 14 Cuban diplomats, accusing them of "unacceptable activities" -- a diplomatic euphemism for spying.
Bush announced no new steps against Cuba in response to the actions against dissidents, although one Bush administration official said, "We will determine what we do when its convenient for us."
[...] But the White House is discussing ways to aid pro-democracy forces, such as giving dissidents communications equipment, an activist said. The administration was also seeking to rally additional international opposition to Castro...
Paths of Glory
The central dogma of American politics right now is that George W. Bush, whatever his other failings, has been an effective leader in the fight against terrorism. But the more you know about the state of the world, the less you believe that dogma. The Iraq war, in particular, did nothing to make America safer in fact, it did the terrorists a favor.
How is the war on terror going? You know about the Riyadh bombings. But something else happened this week: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, a respected British think tank with no discernible anti-Bush animus, declared that Al Qaeda is "more insidious and just as dangerous" as it was before Sept. 11. So much for claims that we had terrorists on the run.
Still, isn't the Bush administration doing its best to fight terrorism? No.[...]
I've written before about the Bush administration's amazing refusal to pay for even minimal measures to protect the nation against future attacks measures that would secure ports, chemical plants, nuclear facilities and so on. (But the Department of Homeland Security isn't completely ineffectual: this week it helped Texas Republicans track down their Democratic colleagues, who had staged a walkout.)
INFIELD and WARREN P. STROBEL
[...] U.S. officials are pushing the International Atomic Energy Commission to declare Iran in violation of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and are urging Russia not to cooperate with Iran's nuclear power program. The Russians have said they won't stop helping Iran.
One longtime Iran expert said the faster-than-expected progress in Iran's nuclear program, Iran's links to terrorism and other developments have forged an administration-wide consensus that the country poses a major threat.
But "they haven't yet figured out what they're going to do about it," said the analyst, who also asked not to be named.
May 20, 2003
By Will Dunham
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, brushing off Iranian denials, on Tuesday renewed U.S. allegations that al Qaeda figures were operating inside Iran and pointedly warned against giving safe haven to members of "terrorist" groups.
[...] "There's no question but that there are al Qaeda in Iran. There's also a good deal of speculation about their role in what took place in Saudi Arabia," Rumsfeld said on Tuesday.
Asked this alleged role, Rumsfeld said: "I know. ... (But) I'm not going to get into it. That's for others to do."
Rumsfeld did not state the nature of the evidence that led him to believe al Qaeda operatives were located inside Iran, nor did he name the al Qaeda members he believed were in Iran.
Comment: Of course not. The idea is to operate by innuendo, slurring your enemies with " ambiguous" slander to justify more slaughter of innocent lives so that Americans can have gas for their SUVs while the Bush Reich conquers the Middle East and carries out its plan for the annihilation of the Semitic peoples.
Rumsfeld did say, "I have no information that people who engaged physically in terrorist acts in Saudi Arabia have since fled to Iran."
Comment: But he can imply a connection by bringing it up, just as he did with the alleged connections between Saddam and al-Quaeda, accusations that had no basis, no proof.
Saudi authorities have arrested several suspects they said were linked to Saudi-born Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network in the aftermath of the coordinated bombings in Riyadh that killed at least 34 people, including eight Americans. The United States has accused al Qaeda of carrying out the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on America.
U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, have said al Qaeda figures in Iran include Saif al-Adel, an Egyptian indicted for conspiracy in the 1998 bombings of two U.S. Embassies in east Africa. One official also said bin Laden's son Saad, while not considered a top al Qaeda leader, may be in Iran...
Comment: See here for an analysis that debunks the link between al-Quaeda to the Riyadh bombing, showing how it is much more likely the bombers were Sausi anti-monarchists.
May 20, 2003
(ABC Australia) - Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda terror network has threatened to deliver devastating blows to the United States and Israel, a Saudi-owned weekly reports.
"The next strikes will stun the Americans and Israelis," Abu Mohammad al-Ablaj, "coordinator of the al Qaeda-affiliated Mujahedeen Training Centre," said in an email published by London-based Al-Majallah on Friday.
"The upcoming strikes will throw the enemy off balance. They will target the rear of the snake (the United States), which Abu Abdullah (bin Laden) said should be hit," he wrote.
"These strikes will hearten the faithful and disconcert the infidels," he said, applauding Monday's triple suicide bombings in Riyadh which killed at least 34 people, including nine bombers.
The threats came as US President George W Bush said in his weekly address that half of the Al Qaeda leadership had been eliminated...
May 20, 2003
By Andy Sullivan
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A controversial Defense Department program that would comb computer records to identify potential terrorists will have safeguards to ensure it does not violate individual rights, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.
Responding to concerns that its Total Information Awareness program would allow unfettered surveillance, the Pentagon said in a report to Congress that the program would have built-in mechanisms to ensure that it did not intrude on Americans' privacy.
The Pentagon also renamed the program Terrorist Information Awareness.
Launched in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, TIA would search a wide array of travel records, credit card transactions and other public and private data sources in an effort to prevent terrorist activity.
[...] Privacy expert Marc Rotenberg said that compared to telephone wiretaps and other forms of electronic surveillance, TIA is subject to very limited oversight.
"This research program still has at its core a belief that a centralized system of surveillance can be made privacy-friendly, and I think that premise is essentially rejected by the U.S. Constitution," said Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center.
Comment: The idea of a centralized system of surveillance that does not violate citizens' privacy is rejected by good old fashioned common sense. It doesn't matter, anyway. Once the next big attack on US soil is created by the Bush Reich, Americans can kiss goodbye any rights they may have left.
New Name of Pentagon Data Sweep Focuses on
WASHINGTON, May 20 Saying they are worried about Americans' privacy, Pentagon officials announced in a report today that they were changing the name of a projected system to mine databases for information to help catch terrorists to Terrorist Information Awareness from Total Information Awareness.
The officials said the name was changed because the earlier version created a false impression that system was being created "for developing dossiers on U.S. citizens."
The report, which Congress demanded 90 days ago as a condition for allowing further research, said the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency was complying with all federal privacy laws as it developed the program. The report said the Darpa was not tapping into government or private databases, but was using synthetic or artificial information generated for the program "to resemble and model real-world patterns of behavior."
The Pentagon said it would be up to agencies that would use the program with real information to comply with privacy laws.
Privacy advocates said that was not good enough, because federal laws had huge national security loopholes. Senator Ron Wyden, the Oregon Democrat who pushed through the legislation that required the report and barred using the system without new legislation, said it was insufficient to promise that the system would deal only with "legally collected information."
"Legally collected information," Mr. Wyden said, "includes just about everything. There really isn't much with teeth to protect lawfully collected medical records, travel records, credit records and financial data." [...]
"These transactions would form a pattern that may be discernable in certain databases to which the U.S. government would have lawful access."
Comment: American QFS members are already reporting that they are being requested to sign consent forms at doctors' and chiropracters' offices to allow government access to their medical records. Does knowing who has a lumbar adjustment help find terrorists? These are probably just formalities, so that after there is a huge uproar they can point out that Americans have signed away their freedoms. What patterns are they looking for?
May 19, 2003
by AHMAD FARUQUI
There is nothing that infuriates us Americans more than a suggestion that our intensely held feelings of patriotism amount to nationalism. Nationalism, we contend, is a quality found in older nations. And it does not take much for actions by other Americans to be considered unpatriotic. Thus, during the build up to the Iraq war, anti-war protestors were called unpatriotic. As the war began, the anti-war community splintered into two groups. The larger group, saying it supported the troops, muted its opposition to the war. The smaller group said it could not support the troops, because they were fighting an immoral war. Not surprisingly, it drew much flak for its "unpatriotic" actions, which some said amounted to treason.
[...] Just because [they] fail to recognize their own nationalism does not mean it does not exist. American nationalism is based on values rather than ethnicity or race. According to Paul McCartney of Rutgers University, it embodies two values that are often at cross-purposes with each other. The first value is universalism, which says that Americans share the same moral ideals as the rest of humanity, including freedom, liberty and democracy. The second value is exceptionalism, which says that Americans have a right to pursue policies to preserve their national sovereignty, but other countries do not have a similar right. The dichotomy between these values is as evident to those outside of the U.S. as it is invisible to those living within the U.S.
[...] The U.S. is troubled when its enemies possess weapons of mass destruction, but is not troubled when its allies or itself possess similar weapons. Thus, the presence of such weapons by itself is not intrinsically evil. The rest of the world sees this as hypocrisy but most Americans don't.
May 21, 2003
Yasser Arafat's fate hung in the balance after five suicide attacks in 48 hours killed 17 people and encouraged the Israeli cabinet to push for the Palestinian leader's ouster.
Palestinian prime minister Mahmud Abbas's future was also on the line, with US President George W. Bush stressing in his first phone call to the moderate premier that he was expecting him to fight the militant groups responsible for the wave of bombings.
[...] "The wave of attacks has not reached its peak and will continue," a senior defence official warned Tuesday, quoted on Israeli radio.
White House spokesman Ari Fleischer described Bush's first conversation with Abbas, also called Abu Mazen, since he was sworn in on April 30 as "friendly and hopeful" but the US president continued to put the onus on the Palestinians.
[...] But the Israeli government appeared to be giving Abbas a chance to make an impression and put the blame for the latest violence squarely on Arafat, with Israeli ministers stepping up calls for his expulsion.
"We have to hit Arafat, because from his headquarters in Ramallah he is continuing to send messages abetting terrorism, receiving guests, when he should be completely isolated, his life made more difficult and his political death precipitated," Science and Technology Minister Eliezer Zandberg, from the centrist Shinui party, told public radio.
Comment: Arafat has not been able to stop the terrorism...waged by the Israelis against his people.
"We have lost our livelihood. We have lost our orange gold," said Maher al-Shawwa, walking through his ruined citrus groves. "Each tree is like my baby." [...]
The worst collective punishment on Beit Hanoun, however, is the destruction of more than 70 per cent of its citrus groves since the beginning of the uprising 32 months ago. In the latest occupation 300 hectares were bulldozed, bringing the total to 1,000 hectares.
"Will this stop terrorism?" asked Mr Shawwa. "It is leading to the opposite.
"I, my uncle and my two aunts have lost 2,500 citrus trees. [This] is more than a catastrophe. It is real terrorism. It will generate terrorism."
May 20, 2003
By Deborah Charles
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government on Tuesday raised its terror alert status to the second-highest level because of the renewed risk of terrorist attack in the United States in light of recent attacks in the Middle East.
The decision to raise the alert level to "high" or "orange" from "elevated" or "yellow" on the color-coded scale was made by top national security officials after a review of recent intelligence.
"This change is based upon the recent terrorist bombings in Saudi Arabia and Morocco, also in conjunction with intelligence reports concerning anti-U.S. terrorist groups' intentions," said Department of Homeland Security Undersecretary Asa Hutchinson.
"The United States' intelligence community believes that terrorists continue to plan attacks against targets in the United States, and for this reason the alert level has been raised," he told reporters.
[...] "Recent intelligence suggests (these) attacks may be a prelude to an attack on the United States," the FBI said in a message sent to law enforcement agencies across the country. "However, the FBI possesses no information indicating a specific threat in the United States." [...]
Comment: Scared enough yet? Scared enough to do something about this? To refuse the lies of the Bush Reich? Your freedoms are being stripped away so that the merchants of war can enrich their coffers, so that any dissent can be labelled "terrorism", so that the US can be brought completely under the heel of the new Nazis.
Just days before visitors by the hundreds of thousands arrive for the Indianapolis 500, the nation has raised its terror threat level to orange, signifying a high risk for attacks.
Local and federal officials said they had not received any information that the Indianapolis 500 is a possible target, but Mayor Bart Peterson announced the city would increase security for the weekend. On the heels of a Downtown parade Saturday that could draw 250,000 spectators, Sunday's race could attract an even bigger crowd -- and two former presidents -- making it the largest national event after the heightened warning. [...].
"People who are planning to drop off somebody or pick up somebody need to be aware their vehicle could be searched," he said.
Comment: Terrorist's are everywhere, every beer cooler could contain a dirty bomb, every car could contain a suicide bomber. Is this the kind of America anyone would want to live in? If not, get busy, and Impeach Bush.
May 20, 2003
By Shaun Waterman From the Washington Politics & Policy Desk
WASHINGTON, May 20 (UPI) -- Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge acknowledged Tuesday that "sloppiness" in the recruitment of passenger screeners for airports allowed many with criminal records to pass background checks designed to weed them out.
He said that faced with time constraints imposed by congress -- which gave a strict deadline for the new federalized screener system to be in place -- the Department of Homeland Security turned to the private sector to get the background checks completed on time.
"We couldn't possibly get the FBI and others to do that," he told lawmakers on the new House Homeland Security Committee, "so we had to engage companies within the private sector."
Comment: So much room for " ambiguity"...
Military officials in the United States are expressing enthusiasm about an experimental drug that they say could help protect troops, police officers and emergency medical personnel against nuclear weapons or "dirty bombs." The drug appears to offer significant protection from radiation sickness. "We want it on the fast track," said Navy Admiral James Zimble, a top military health official who is president of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. "We've been very encouraged by the very positive results" of tests on animals.
By Nick Assinder
Tony Blair and George Bush may be close - but for them to lose their spokesmen on the same day is verging on the paranormal.
Just a couple of hours after White House press secretary Ari Fleischer announced he was standing down, the prime minister's official spokesman Godric Smith revealed he too was quitting.
On this, however, there is absolutely no sign that the announcements were co-ordinated - so it must be planetary alignments!
Marie Woolf, Chief Political Correspondent
Tony Blair has been accused of misleading MPs and concealing the tapping of politicians' telephones by the security services.
The Prime Minister promised when he came to power in 1997 that no MPs' telephones would be tapped, and to make a statement to the Commons if the policy changed. But two MPs - one a minister - are known to have had their phone conversations recorded by the security services. MI5 was named in reports as having taped conversations between Martin McGuinness, Sinn Fein MP for Mid Ulster, and Mo Mowlam while she was Secretary of State for Northern Ireland between 1997 and 1999.
Norman Baker, MP for Lewes, and Andrew Mackinlay, Labour MP for Thurrock, have written to the Prime Minister requesting that he state whether authorisation had been given to tap the phone of any Member of Parliament since 1 May 1997.
Mr Blair has refused to make a statement on the tapping of phones used by Mr McGuinness and Mo Mowlam despite being asked twice in the House of Commons.[...]
Istanbul, TURKEY, May 17, 2003 -The State Minister for Finance Ali Babacan's participation in the 49th Bilderberg meetings at the 'Trianon' Hotel in Versailles, France this weekend, has caused controversy.
Stating the participants of the meeting are not allowed to issue statements and to write articles about the subjects being discussed, an analysts pointed out that Minister Babacan needed to inform the public about the meetings. The participant of Bilderberg meetings participants are not allowed to issue statements and to write articles about the subjects to be discussed in the meetings. However, the analysts assert that the minister Babacan should inform the public about the meetings as well as journalist-writer Fehmi Koru, well-known for his studies on Bilderberg meetings who said that minister Babacan has to make statements about the issue in a group meeting or in the parliament.
In the meeting, plans for a new Middle-East map in the post-Iraq war period were reportedly discussed. This, the first serious encounter between the new Justice and Development Party (AKP) government and the 'Lords of the New World Order', which have been following Turkey closely for years, is truly significant, says researcher Aytunc Altindal. He said: "Some demands will be made of the AKP there. If they satisfy the demands, they will feel free in foreign and internal politics, otherwise they will find themselves in a very tough situation indeed." He added that swift changes on economic policies would be a primary demand.
Babacan had met with Bilderberg Turkey Representative Selahattin Beyazit during Forum 2003 meeting previous week in Istanbul.
Comment: The Propaganda Matrix made the interesting connection that shortly after this meeting Turkey gets a taste of terrorism. Was it a message being sent to Babacan that he had better fall in line, or a mere coincidence? We don't know.
HAVE you ever wondered how Adolph Hitler a mediocre painter of Austrian origin transformed himself into Germany's Fuhrer during the 1930s and 1940s?
The Nazi phenomenon was no historical coincidence, and far less a philosophical whim made real by just one man. Nazism had its followers, many of them exceptionally wealthy, veritable alchemists of the financial world back then.
According to research carried out over the last few years, Wall Street bankers (amongst others) financed Hitler's rise to power whilst making large profits at the same time. What is yet still more deplorable is the fact that relatives of the current U.S. president were amongst this group of individuals.
U.S. authors Webster G. Tarpley and Anton Cheitkin reveal in the recently published George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography that Prescott Bush (George W. Bush's grandfather) and other directors of the Union Banking Company (UBC) were Nazi collaborators.
The book relates how in 1922 when national socialism was emerging railroad impresario W. Averell Harriman traveled to Berlin and interviewed the Thyssen family with a view to founding a German-U.S. bank. The Thyssens were already behind-the-scenes owners of several financial institutions that allowed them to transfer their money from Germany to the Netherlands and from there onto the United States.
The banks in question were the August Thyssen Bank whose headquarters were located in Berlin; the Bank voor Handel (Netherlands) and the Union Banking Corporation (New York). At the beginning of the 1920s, one of the members of this family, Fritz Thyssen author of I Paid Hitler contributed some $25,000 USD to the recently formed German National Socialist Workers' Party, becoming the prime and most important financier of the Fuhrer in his ascent to power.
According to the book's authors, Thyssen was fascinated by Hitler, citing his talent as a public speaker and his ability to lead the masses. However, what impressed him most was the order that prevailed at his rallies and the almost military discipline of his followers.
And so, in 1931 Thyssen joined the Nazi party, becoming one of the most powerful members of the Nazi war machine.
At that time, the magnate presided over the German Steel Trust, a steel industry consortium founded by Clarence Dillon, one of Wall Street's most influential men. One of Dillon's most trustworthy collaborators was Samuel Bush: Prescott's father, George Senior's grandfather and great-grandfather of the current U.S. president George W. Bush.
In 1923, Harriman and the Thyssens decided to set up a bank and appointed George Herbert Walker Prescott's father-in-law as president. Later, in 1926, they established the Union Banking Corporation (UBC) with Prescott Bush at the helm. That same year, he was also named vice president and partner at Brown Brothers Harriman. Both firms allowed the Thyssens to send money to the United States from Germany via the Netherlands.
U.S. economist Victor Thorn has noted that although a large number of other corporations aided the Nazis (such as Standard Oil and Rockefeller's Chase Bank, as well as U.S. automobile manufacturers) Prescott Bush's interests were much more profound and sinister.
Thorn adds that UBC became a secret channel to protect Nazi capital leaving Germany for the United States via the Netherlands. When the Nazis needed to retrieve their funds, Brown Brothers Harriman sent them directly to Germany.
In this way, UBC received money from the Netherlands and Brown Brothers Harriman sent it back. And who was on the executive of both of these companies? Prescott Bush himself, the Nazis' first money launderer.
In their book, Tarpley and Cheitkin explain that in this way a significant part of the Bush family's financial base is related to supporting and aiding Adolph Hitler. Therefore, the current U.S. president, just like his father (former CIA director, vice president and president) reached the peak of the U.S. political hierarchy thanks to his great-grandfather and grandfather and generally his entire family, who financially aided and encouraged the Nazis.
Some time later, in October 1942, the U.S. authorities confiscated Nazi bank funds from the New York UBC, whose then president was Prescott. The firm was condemned as a financial and commercial collaborator with the enemy and all its assets were seized.
Later, the U.S. government also ordered the seizure of the assets of a further two leading financial agencies directed by Prescott through the accounts of the Harriman banking institution: the Holland-America Trading Corporation (a U.S.-Dutch commercial firm) and the Seamless Steel Equipment Corporation.
Then on November 11, 1942, an embargo was imposed on the Silesian-American Corporation another firm headed by Bush and Walker under the same Trading with the Enemy Act.
However, in 1951, the embargo was lifted and the enterprising businessman recovered some $1.5 million USD, earmarked for new investments largely to swell the Bush family's patrimony.
To this should be added a resume of files belonging to Dutch and U.S. information services confirming the direct links between Prescott Bush, the German Thyssen family and the blood money of a group of rich U.S. families from the Second World War.
Tarpley and Cheitkin affirm that the great financial crash of 1929-1931 affected the United States, Germany and Britain, weakening their respective governments. At the same time, Prescott Bush became even more diligent, still more desirous of doing everything that was necessary to safeguard his place in the world. It was during this crisis that some members of the Anglo-U.S wealthy class supported the installation of Hitler's regime in Germany.
To sum up, the authors categorically state that the Bush family's fortune arose as a result of its unconditional support for Adolph Hitler's political project.
The UBC, under Prescott Bush's direction and with the long-term cooperation of Fritz Thyssen's German Steel Trust participated in the emergence, preparation and financing of the Nazi war machine through the manufacture of armored vehicles, fighter planes, guns and explosives.
The Bush family's habit of dominating territories and wealth is nothing new. Their fascist genes were generated during the 1930s. Therefore defining the occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq and the threats to other countries as a continuance of blitzkreig offensives as fascist is no blunder. Neither is convening an anti-fascist front is a rhetorical exercise.
Comment: For more information regarding the background of the current Bush Reich you may want to check out the online book George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography by Webster G. Tarpley & Anton Chaitkin.
Is President Bush a religious zealot, or does he just pander to that crowd? That, crudely put, is probably the most persistent question I hear about Mr. Bush when I travel outside the country, and it comes up all the time in the less godly American precincts (universities, Bush-hater Web sites, Hollywood, the island of Manhattan). On issues from Saddam to sodomy, the assumption is that Mr. Bush is an evangelist for a moralistic agenda that grows from his born-again Christianity. Or else (the more cynical variation), regardless of what he believes in, he has handed over the presidential portfolio to the preacher pols of the religious right in exchange for their influence as campaign ward heelers. [...]
it is a nonsectarian comfort. Mr. Bush has talked of bonding with
Vladimir Putin over the story of a crucifix Mr. Putin's mother gave
him. According to Deborah Sontag's reporting in The New York Times
Magazine last Sunday, Mr. Bush startled Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the
devout Muslim who now leads Turkey, by declaring: "You believe in
the Almighty, and I believe in the Almighty. That's why we'll be
great partners." [...]
WASHINGTON -- The Justice Department, in the most detailed public accounting of how it has used its expanded powers to fight terrorism, released information on Tuesday showing that federal agents have conducted hundreds of bugging and surveillance operations and visited numerous libraries and mosques using new law enforcement tools.[...]
Why have US television stations refused to broadcast this documentary?
In Afghanistan, filmmaker Jamie Doran has uncovered evidence of a massacre: Taliban prisoners of war suffocated in containers, shot in the desert under the watch of American troops.
Download the entire movie (53 MB, QuickTime required)
May 21, 2003
Taiwan recorded its largest single day rise in SARS deaths and new cases as the crisis in the island's hospitals worsened, while China said most of the country was close to controlling the epidemic.
[...] Hong Kong is reporting just a handful of cases daily, Singapore has recorded just one new case in 20 days and, despite some scepticism, the number of new cases in China has plummeted from some 200 a day to just 17 Tuesday.
The exception is Taiwan where 39 new cases of the illness were reported, bringing the total number of cases to 383. Another 12 deaths were recorded from the disease, bringing the death toll on the island to 52.
[...] In Brussels, US Health Secretary Tommy G. Thompson warned SARS was likely to kill people in more continents before the end of the year.
[...] Asked how confident he was that United States and Europe could avoid SARS deaths, he said: "I'm not confident at all. I think you will see them..."
By:CHRIS WILLIAMS Staff Writer
EASTON - Someone get Agents Mulder and Scully on the phone. Mysterious crop circles have appeared in Talbot County.
When Easton attorney Lex Kramer drove into town along Matthewstown Road on Saturday morning, he noticed an odd formation in the wheat fields, but didn't think much of it.
Then he noticed another one.
"It's like a very defined shape that looks like someone had taken a roller out there and rolled it in some sort of configuration," Kramer said.
In nearly every wheat field between the Tuckahoe Bridge and Easton, elliptical imprints appeared over the last day or so. The winter wheat crops, most of which are still green, were flattened in some areas with adjacent crops left untouched.
"It looked like the whole field had been done," Kramer said. "It was likely some hoax, maybe. I don't want to be looked at as some kind of crackpot, but there's definitely something there."
UFO was observed in various parts of capital approximately from 5 pm to 7pm (Baku time). In the cloudless sky the large light stain similar to an extended “drop of milk” has appeared.
The object was not similar to a cloud, aboard the plane or the helicopter, as moved on a complex trajectory, Ekho newspaper report says. At 18:35 "drop" suddenly started quickly to leave, was not dissolved yet in the sky. The abnormal object has caused interest not only the people of Baku, but also Azerbaijani experts.
Professor Elchin Khalilov, chief of a commission on the abnormal phenomena at presidium of Academy of Sciences, shot the UFO on amateur. Mr. Khalilov has noted that they had already started to study the video.
"With similar UFO we face for the first time," he told to reporters. "It is already unequivocally clear, that the fixed object is not the plane, helicopter or other flying means. The UFO represents enough, slightly extended form. Thus is abundantly clear, that it is object of a technical origin."...
As Baku Today reported early this year, an UFO appeared on Baku on January 2. Some scientists claim that UFOs were also observed before and warned about natural disaster. Mr. Gasimov stated that UFOs hinder the prediction of earthquakes and researches carried out in this field.
"They don't want mankind reveal their secret. But there are some facts stating that UFOs keep in touch with the scientists. Though most approach these unserious, objects keep in touch with selected persons by the means of Morse alphabet or telepathy signals and transmit information related to the future," he told to journalists in January of this year. It seems UFO will become “normal guest” for Baku inhabitants soon.
By Joy Danison, Kokomo Tribune
The Kokomo hum may consist of several different sounds coming from several different potential sources.
That's what sound and ground vibration measurements are telling consultants hired by the city to study the low-frequency phenomenon...
An earlier trip in March included visits to six or seven different places. The tests have revealed the presence of both infrasound -- sound that is so low in frequency it can't be heard by the human ear -- and audible noise, said Jim Cowan, a senior consultant for Acentech and project manager for the Kokomo study.
Further array testing, used to determine the direction a sound is coming from, suggests the hum could be coming from several potential locations, Cowan said, though he declined to give further details.
"At this point, I'd like to be as nonspecific as possible, because we still have data to go through," Cowan said.
Something weird was happening near Dacula in 1995.
Loud explosions would roll across the countryside and the ground would shake, sometimes four or five times a day.
The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms believed a backwoods bomber was behind the suspected blasts, which also drew the attention of media outlets and scientists.
Although the ATF in Washington D.C. sent agents to investigate, it was the scientists — or seismologists to be exact — who had the answer to what had become a real-life mystery for law enforcement officials and residents near Brooks Road.
It was an earthquake swarm, and it wasn’t the first time seismologists had trekked to Gwinnett County to study the phenomenon...
Rob Hoppe, however, has no problem recalling the sequence of quakes that rattled his neighborhood about one mile south of Dacula in the winter of 1995. He does, though, have a problem describing them.
“There’s no way to really describe what you felt because it was somewhat like you were on a ship hitting a wave. Can you imagine being in a horror movie and there is something big pushing against the side of your house?
“Those were the two descriptions we came up with,” he said...
After placing seismometers in the area, Long was able to confirm that it was a series of earthquakes with a magnitude of less than 2 on the Richter scale that had everyone all shook up...
Unlike an isolated earthquake — which has foreshocks, a main event, and aftershocks — a swarm occurs over an extended period of time. It starts slowly, with a handful of events happening each day, and then picks up speed. After peaking, it loses momentum and fades away.
“It’s a cluster of low-intensity earthquakes occurring in a small area,” Gore said.
As for the cause of the Norris Lake swarm, Georgia Tech’s Long said there could have been several contributing factors...
Long said there is evidence that the large Nicaraguan quake changed the rock conditions here, rearranging them in such a way that there was increased pressure between the subsurface formations.
An earthquake occurred and released the pressure, but instead of that being the end of it, the event created pressure elsewhere in the rock fracture. “That pressure can either decay slowly, or it can build up and migrate to an area in the rock where another quake can be triggered,” Long said...
Instead of occurring along fault lines like earthquakes in California, earthquakes in the Piedmont region of north Georgia typically result from slight movements along fractures that have been weakened by groundwater and weathering, said Gore.
“Interestingly, these earthquakes are typically accompanied by a booming sound, somewhat like an explosion or thunder,” she said. “These earthquakes sound and feel like explosions.”
For some who did not have the benefit of technology and seismologists, the cause of the explosion-like sounds remained a mystery.
According to Long, native Americans in New England passed down legends about a “land of thundering rocks.”
The area they were referring to in Connecticut is now known to have earthquake swarms.
By George Johnson New York Times
...It's probably not the math lesson that has propelled ["The Da Vinci Code"] onto the best-seller lists. But the mysterious aura that has long been attributed to the number adds to the playful illusion that readers are getting the inside scoop, an important clue to how the universe works.
In a world otherwise crippled by math anxiety, books about phi and other so- called constants of the universe are multiplying so quickly that "The Da Vinci Code" threatens to become part of a genre.
In "The Golden Ratio: The Story of Phi, the World's Most Astonishing Number," Dr. Mario Livio offers a more sober, and nonfictional, treatment of this seemingly ubiquitous parameter. "Gamma: Exploring Euler's Constant" by Dr. Julian Havil gives the starring role to another mysterious number, 0.5772156 . . ., which pops up in enough odd places to suggest to some that it may be an expression of the underlying beauty of mathematics.
Taking a broader sweep, Dr. John D. Barrow's new book, "The Constants of Nature: From Alpha to Omega — The Numbers That Encode the Deepest Secrets of the Universe," closely follows the work of Dr. Barrow's British colleague, Dr. Martin J. Rees, and his popular account, "Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces That Shape the Universe."
Despite the mystical tone of some of the subtitles, these books are science, not science fiction, yet they tap into a mystery far more compelling than the shopworn Grail legend: why the world seems to operate according to mathematical laws.
Nowhere does the phenomenon emerge more forcefully than with the constants, quantities that seem to be encoded within the software of the universe. Not all of these numbers are inherently remarkable. The National Institute of Standards and Technology, keeper of the constants for the United States Government, defines the speed of light in a vacuum, called c, as 299,792,458 meters per second and the charge of the electron, or e, as 1.602176462 10-19 coulombs. (A coulomb is the quantity of electricity transported in one second by a current of one ampere.)
There is no point in trying to find some cabalistic significance to these constants any more than there is in the recently issued NIST peanut butter standard. Too much arbitrariness goes into the numbers' manufacture. If length is measured in something other than meters or time in something other than seconds, the numbers would be expressed by entirely different strings of digits. Nothing very magical there.
The weirdness comes when you combine c and e with another quantity called Planck's constant, the most important number in quantum theory. Twiddle with the units so that the meters and seconds and other parochial Earthling units cancel out and the result is a dimensionless, "pure" number, 7.297352533 10-3 or almost exactly one-137th. The number, called alpha, would be the same for alien races using measuring sticks based on the width of the fourth planet circling Betelgeuse or clocks with faces bearing 79 numerals.
Put together from values important to both special relativity and quantum mechanics, alpha is suspected by some physicists to be a key to the long-sought theory of everything. The secret of the universe is why alpha is one-137th and not, say, one-136th or one-138th. Calculations indicate that if it were slightly different, stars would not exist to produce elements and there would be no life...
This kind of obsessive behavior started as far back as the sixth century B.C., when a cult of number worshipers called the Pythagoreans taught that fire was made of 24 right-angled triangles, surrounded by 4 equilaterals, which are made in turn of 6 right-angled triangles. "All is number," the brothers would intone.
Strip away the religious trappings and the notion that emerges is not so different from one embraced by numerous physicists and mathematicians today: God is a mathematician and the universe experienced by the senses is a shadow play of a deeper reality, the hidden realm of numbers.
Trying to get a grip on this, the physicist Eugene Wigner published an essay called "The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences." After struggling through and rejecting some possible explanations for why the world seems to be ruled by numbers, he concluded that the phenomenon might always remain a mystery. It's "a wonderful gift," he wrote, "which we neither understand nor deserve."
Comment: We feel the mystery of the universe, its vastness, its grandeur. We want to comprehend the universe and our place within it. Mathematics, as the universal language, is the key. Unfortunately, due to a general mathematical illiteracy, the cosmic COINTELPRO gang can come along and turn it into mumbo jumbo about sacred geometry and ritual, turning genuine seekers off the path.
Notice also that, as quoted in CRC Concise Encyclopedia of mathematics" by Eric W. Wesstein (I recommend this encyclopedia to everybody), the late British philosopher (and mathematician) BertrandRussel once whimsically defined mathematics as:
"The subject in which we never know what we are talking about nor whether what we are saying is true."
A BLAZE gutted a garage wrecking everything except a bottle of holy water. Doug and Anne Mangan were amazed to find the plastic bottle of holy water virtually untouched among the charred remains of their garage, which was destroyed after a neighbour's touring caravan exploded and sparked an inferno. The blaze gutted next door's conservatory and garage before spreading to the Mangan«s home on Winchester Drive, Prestatyn. It took firefighters hours to control the fire, which was caused by faulty electrics in the caravan.
The devastated couple believed everything in the garage had been destroyed including a beloved £6000 Yamaha Dragstar motorbike until Doug made the miracle discovery as he started clearing the debris. His mother had brought the vial of water back from Lourdes, France more than 10 years ago and it was kept in a canvas bag in the garage.[...]
Adding fuel to the already fierce debate over abortion, Republicans in Congress are evoking the Laci Peterson murder case as they try to enact the first federal law to endow a fetus with legal rights separate from the expectant mother.
Comment: Oh, if they where only as concerned about the rights of the children already born . . .
A woman who is worried her husband might leave her if she loses her looks has insured her face for £100,000.
Nicole Jones, of Bristol, is paying £3200 a year for the FaceSafe policy, which will pay out if she is no longer deemed to be attractive.
She took the policy out as a birthday present for her husband Simon, who had always joked he would leave her if she let herself go as she got older.
Mrs Jones, 26, said: "When I met him I knew he was the sort of person who likes good looking ladies, but I've had a baby now and my figure isn't what it was before.
"He hated it when I was pregnant and my figure was changing and it was out of our control."
Check out the Signs of the Times Archives
Send your comments and article suggestions to us.