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!
June 28, 2003
Imagine our surprise Wednesday to read in the Israeli paper Haaretz (online), that Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Abu Mazen, meeting recently with militants to enlist their support for a truce with Israel, said that, when they met in Aqaba, President Bush had told him this: "God told me to strike at al Qaeda and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam [ Hussein], which I did, and now I am determined to solve the problem in the Middle East. If you help me I will act, and if not, the elections will come and I will have to focus on them."
So who needs to find WMD or a link with al Qaeda when the orders come from The Highest Authority?
Comment: This piece evoked the following comment from a blogger in Berkeley:
Of course, maybe the Almighty will intervene for poor George and do something to cancel the elections so that they don't distract the President from carrying out the Lizard God's work.
Comment: The article is interesting account of the propaganda machine in action pre-WWI. Fleming states, "There are few better examples [of propaganda] than the British and American demonization of Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany before and during World War I." Fleming also wrote The Illusion of Victory: America in World War I , and the editorial review on Amazon describes it as a, "scathing new look at Woodrow Wilson's handling--and mishandling--of World War I, the war that spawned all the catastrophes of the twentieth century. [...] Thomas Fleming tells this story through the complex figure of Woodrow Wilson, the contradictory president who wept after declaring war, devastated because he knew it would destroy the tolerance of the American people, but who then suppressed freedom of speech and used propaganda to excite America into a Hun-hating mob." Check out our timeline for other shocking examples of American complicity in starting and funding both sides of WWI and WWII.
by Servando González
[...] Instrumental in making the connections between American bankers and Nazi leaders were Allen and John Foster Dulles, then corporate lawyers at Sullivan and Cromwell. Another important firm who heavily collaborated with the Nazis was W.A. Harriman & Company. In 1931 Harriman & Company merged with another company and became Brown Brothers, Harriman. One of the senior partners of the new company was Prescott Bush, president W. Bush's grandfather. In 1942 the U.S. government charged Prescott Bush with running Nazi fronts in the U.S. During the investigation, it was found that Prescott Bush's companies had been covertly working for Nazi Germany. [...]
The Nazis extracted the fillings of its victims after being informed by Degussa that the company could refine it into marketable gold bullion. Degussa was awarded an exclusive contract with the Nazis to refine all gold. The company was also joint owners with I.G. Farben of Degesch, a firm that produced Zyklon-B cyanide tablets used in the gas chambers. Due to the hoard of gold fillings stacking up at Auschweitz, Degussa built a smelter there. The bullion was then shipped back to Berlin and commingled with the Nazis gold stash. Undoubtedly some of it made its way back to the banker in charge of United Steel Works, Prescott Bush. [...]
STAMFORD -- Florida Gov. Jeb Bush paid tribute last night to his family's political beginnings and helped add more than $200,000 to the Connecticut Republican Party's war chest at a sold-out GOP fund-raiser at The Westin Stamford that honored one of Greenwich's own.[...]
But the main reason for the Florida governor's visit was his 10-minute keynote speech at the Prescott Bush Award Dinner, the state Republican Party's largest fund-raiser of the year. The award is named after Bush's late grandfather, a former U.S. senator, who, like award recipient Charles Glazer, was a Greenwich resident.
"Family matters a whole lot, as you know, to the Bush family," Bush told a room full of 900 supporters, most of whom paid $225 a plate to attend the fund-raiser. [...]
Bush touched on family values, education reform and the state of the Republican Party during his speech, predicting that his older brother would win re-election next year by a "landslide." He described the president as having a servant's heart and possessing an internal compass that always points north. [...]
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, June 25 — Argentine President Nestor Kirchner on Wednesday ordered a probe into whether officials covered up the extent of exiled Nazis' links to the South American country's government after World War II. [...]
Argentina is home to the largest Jewish population in Latin America, with 300,000 members.
The Supreme Court struck down a state law intended to help Holocaust survivors collect on insurance policies from the Nazi era, ruling yesterday that the law was unconstitutional meddling by states in foreign affairs.
The court decided 5-4 to side with the Bush administration, which had urged the court to strike down the law. [...]
[...] Yet even after Saddam began gassing his own people in Northern Iraq, the flow of goods continued. In November 1989, Bush approved $1 billion in loan guarantees for Iraq in 1990, and from July 18, 1989, to Aug. 1, 1990, the U.S. approved $4.8 million in advanced technology sales. [...]
Christopher Scheer, AlterNet
Iraqi dictator must not be permitted to threaten America and the
world with horrible poisons and diseases and gases and atomic
[...] The mainstream press, after an astonishing two years of cowardice, is belatedly drawing attention to the unconscionable level of administrative deception. They seem surprised to find that when it comes to Iraq, the Bush administration isn't prone to the occasional lie of expediency but, in fact, almost never told the truth.
What follows are just the most outrageous and significant of the dozens of outright lies uttered by Bush and his top officials over the past year in what amounts to a systematic campaign to scare the bejeezus out of everybody:
LIE #1: "The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program ... Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment need for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons." – President Bush, Oct. 7, 2002, in Cincinnati.
FACT: This story, leaked to and breathlessly reported by Judith Miller in the New York Times, has turned out to be complete baloney. Department of Energy officials, who monitor nuclear plants, say the tubes could not be used for enriching uranium. One intelligence analyst, who was part of the tubes investigation, angrily told The New Republic that, "You had senior American officials like Condoleezza Rice saying the only use of this aluminum really is uranium centrifuges. She said that on television. And that's just a lie."
LIE #2: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." – President Bush, Jan.28, 2003, in the State of the Union address.
FACT: This whopper was based on a document that the White House already knew to be a forgery thanks to the CIA. Sold to Italian intelligence by some hustler, the document carried the signature of an official who had been out of office for 10 years and referenced a constitution that was no longer in effect. The ex-ambassador who the CIA sent to check out the story is pissed: "They knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie," he told the New Republic, anonymously. "They [the White House] were unpersuasive about aluminum tubes and added this to make their case more strongly."
LIE #3: "We believe [Saddam] has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons." – Vice President Cheney on March 16, 2003 on "Meet the Press."
FACT: There was and is absolutely zero basis for this statement. CIA reports up through 2002 showed no evidence of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program.
LIE #4: "[The CIA possesses] solid reporting of senior-level contacts between Iraq and al-Qaeda going back a decade." – CIA Director George Tenet in a written statement released Oct. 7, 2002 and echoed in that evening's speech by President Bush.
FACT: Intelligence agencies knew of tentative contacts between Saddam and al-Qaeda in the early '90s, but found no proof of a continuing relationship. In other words, by tweaking language, Tenet and Bush spun the intelligence180 degrees to say exactly the opposite of what it suggested.
LIE #5: "We've learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases ... Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints." – President Bush, Oct. 7.
FACT: No evidence of this has ever been leaked or produced. Colin Powell told the U.N. this alleged training took place in a camp in northern Iraq. To his great embarrassment, the area he indicated was later revealed to be outside Iraq's control and patrolled by Allied war planes.
LIE #6: "We have also discovered through intelligence that Iraq has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. We are concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles] for missions targeting the United States." – President Bush, Oct. 7.
FACT: Said drones can't fly more than 300 miles, and Iraq is 6000 miles from the U.S. coastline. Furthermore, Iraq's drone-building program wasn't much more advanced than your average model plane enthusiast. And isn't a "manned aerial vehicle" just a scary way to say "plane"?
LIE #7: "We have seen intelligence over many months that they have chemical and biological weapons, and that they have dispersed them and that they're weaponized and that, in one case at least, the command and control arrangements have been established." – President Bush, Feb. 8, 2003, in a national radio address.
FACT: Despite a massive nationwide search by U.S. and British forces, there are no signs, traces or examples of chemical weapons being deployed in the field, or anywhere else during the war.
LIE #8: "Our conservative estimate is that Iraq today has a stockpile of between 100 and 500 tons of chemical weapons agent. That is enough to fill 16,000 battlefield rockets." – Secretary of State Colin Powell, Feb. 5 2003, in remarks to the UN Security Council.
FACT: Putting aside the glaring fact that not one drop of this massive stockpile has been found, as previously reported on AlterNet our own intelligence reports show that these stocks – if they existed – were well past their use-by date and therefore useless as weapon fodder.
LIE #9: "We know where [Iraq's WMD] are. They're in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat." – Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, March 30, 2003, in statements to the press.
FACT: Needless to say, no such weapons were found, not to the east, west, south or north, somewhat or otherwise.
LIE #10: "Yes, we found a biological laboratory in Iraq which the UN prohibited." – President Bush in remarks in Poland, published internationally June 1, 2003.
FACT: This was reference to the discovery of two modified truck trailers that the CIA claimed were are potential mobile biological weapons lab. But British and American experts – including the State Department's intelligence wing in a report released this week – have since declared this to be untrue. According to the British, and much to Prime Minister Tony Blair's embarrassment, the trailers are actually exactly what Iraq said they were, facilities to fill weather balloons, sold to them by the British themselves.
Seven months before two-dozen or so al-Qaida terrorists hijacked three commercial airplanes and flew two of the aircrafts directly into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, killing 3,000 innocent civilians, CIA Director George Tenet, testified before Congress that Iraq posed no immediate threat to the United States or to other countries in the Middle East.
But immediately after the terrorist attacks on 9-11, which the Bush administration claims Iraq is partially responsible for, the President and his advisers were already making a case for war against Iraq without so much as providing a shred of evidence to back up the allegations that Iraq and its former President, Saddam Hussein, was aware of the attacks or helped the al-Qaida hijackers plan the catastrophe.
It was then, after the 9-11 attacks, that intelligence reports from the CIA radically changed from previous months, which said Iraq posed no immediate threat to the U.S., to now show Iraq had a stockpile of chemical and biological weapons and was in hot pursuit of a nuclear bomb. The Bush administration seized upon the reports to build public support for the war and used the information to eventually justify a preemptive strike against the country in March even though much of the information in the CIA report has since been disputed.
In just seven short months, beginning as early as February 2001, Bush administration officials said Iraq went from being a threat only to its own people to posing an imminent threat to the world. Indeed, in a Feb. 12, 2001 interview with the Fox News Channel Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said: "Iraq is probably not a nuclear threat at the present time." [...]
Who killed Daniel Pearl?
[...] When BHL (the author) starts to follow the money, his investigation really takes off. It all starts with the famous $100,000 wired to September 11's chief operative Mohammed Atta's account in the US by one Ahmad Umar Sheikh, following instructions by Pakistani General Ahmad Mehmoud - the ISI director general at the time. General Mehmoud was removed by Musharraf less than a month after September 11. The Pakistani press reported at the time that Mehmoud was removed because US investigations had proved a liaison between himself and none other than Omar Sheikh. So BHL then arrives at an even juicier hypothesis: "Not only an Omar linked to al-Qaeda through its most spectacular terrorist operation - but of a collusion ... between al-Qaeda and ISI working together to destroy the Towers. For the Indian services, there's no doubt about the association."
BHL also advances the hypothesis that Daniel Pearl was investigating al-Qaeda's American network - based on the fact that Gilani was linked to the ISI, but maybe also to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA): "Could the key to the mystery of his death be found in the hard disks of agencies in Washington?" What then: a nosy Pearl eliminated by an ISI-CIA tandem?
Comment: And where was General Mahmoud on the morning of September 11, while Dubya was in Florida reading upside down books? Why, the good general just happened to be having breakfast with Florida's senator, Bob Graham - our esteemed chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. Also present at breakfast was Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S. Maleeha Lodhi. There were other members of the Senate and House Intelligence committees present.
Seems likely that Pearl went the same way as so many others who have gotten a little to close to the truth about America's dirty secrets.
Kroll report reveals long and difficult path to stability
LONDON, June 24, 2003 – Post-War Iraq is delicately poised between a future that offers some stability for Iraqis and international business and a more unstable state where the country seeks to throw out U.S. and British forces, according to the latest report from Kroll.
‘Iraq: Risk Scenarios' says that post-war Iraq is most likely to face one of two scenarios in the next six months:
[...] The report will be of interest to potential direct investors in Iraq and those with significant exposure in neighboring countries, particularly those in industries such as construction, government, utilities, transportation, oil and gas, engineering and communications.
The Iraq Risk Scenario, which comprises a 90-page written risk assessment, is available at a cost of US$5,800 (£3,750 and €5,400), which includes a personal briefing from Kroll specialists, in either London or New York... Kroll Inc. (NASDAQ: KROL), the World's leading independent risk consulting company, provides a broad range of investigative, intelligence, financial, security, and technology services to help clients reduce risks, solve problems and capitalize on opportunities.
Comment: So in the best case scenario, a "wobbly landing" that takes years: in the worst case, "Iraqi Revolt". Some choice. If these high-rollers read Signs of the Times every day, they could have known this for free...Kroll has a had a jump in their stock prices after this release.
SATURDAY, JUNE 28, 2003 03:11:50 PM ]
The latest violence occurred just after 11 p.m. Friday, when attackers fired on a US convoy making its way through the predominantly Shiite Thawra neighborhood of northeast Baghdad. One American soldier was killed and four were wounded, said military spokesman Sgt. Patrick Compton.
A civilian Iraqi interpreter was also wounded, he said. The torrent of attacks and ever-harsher US crackdowns is sparking frustration on both sides. Since Thursday, at least three
US soldiers have been killed, with a fourth dying in a non-combat accident. Two US soldiers remained missing Saturday, four days after their apparent abduction from a guard post north of the capital.
Saboteurs also have been attacking Baghdad's power grid and oil pipelines, foiling coalition efforts to restore basic services like water and electricity as temperatures climb as high as 47 Celsius (117 Fahrenheit).
The daily bloodshed has overshadowed the progress made since the end of the war May 1...
In Friday's civilian death, however, US soldiers in western Baghdad thought they were shooting at a possible attacker carrying an AK-47 assault rifle. Instead, they killed a boy on the roof of his home.
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The Pentagon has awarded a 48-million-dollar
contract to train the nucleus of a new Iraqi army to Vinnell
Corporation, a US firm which also trains members of the Saudi
They just don't get it. Honestly, can there be a more culturally insensitive and brazen lot than the U.S. and U.K. forces in Iraq? The recent massacre of six British troops and subsequent wounding of eight more (three in critical condition) in a small town northeast of Basra is testimony to how proud the Iraqi people are, how protection of their honor and belongings takes paramount priority. Please, Saddam is a moot point here.
While the U.K. government is busy issuing threats to the Iraqis of Basra and Ammarah, they had better reshuffle their communications with the Iraqi people. First off, this country does not belong to the British and the Americans. It never has, it never will. Consequently, coalition soldiers cannot merely kick their way into homes and begin to search for weapons (of mass destruction or otherwise), violating the sanctity of the house, the privileged privacy of the domain, and the sacred honors that have become cultural laws in Iraq.
Al Jazeera footage of U.S. soldiers frisking Iraqi women through the traditional abbaya covering have incensed Iraqis throughout the world and have pushed many inside Iraq to take arms against a sea of cultural mishaps. As more Americans and British sons and daughters die, the public must question the competence of the leaders who sent them there in the first place.
How difficult is it to teach a soldier the Arabic for "no" or "stop" or "go back"? Or to take an hour and review religious and cultural norms? It seems the number of Iraqi women and children who have been killed at the hands of coalition forces because soldiers could not even speak a few words of Arabic goes unnoticed in Western media. The message is clear -- Iraqis, we don't care! We are in your country to occupy you, we come and go as we please, and we care little for your pathetic honor rituals.
So, to cover up their embarrassing and fatal bungling in Iraq, the U.S. and U.K. administrations talk about Saddam and his mercenaries. This is most saddening. They still don't get it. You cannot impose your culture on another people, and definitely not on the 7000-year old culture of historical Iraq.
No, forget Saddam. Der fuhrer ist kaput, as the phrase goes. But something far more threatening, more serious, more deadly has been awakened in Iraq: the Lion of Babylon -- Iraqi pride.
The BBC claims it has footage of a British soldier punching an Iraqi civilian while handing out water.
The soldier is shown punching a man in the stomach in an apparently unprovoked attack, says a spokesman for the corporation.
It will be shown during the Fighting the War series on Sunday, and comes amid claims heavy-handed weapons searches in Al Majar al-Kabir could have contributed to the riot which left six Royal Military Police officers dead on Tuesday. [...]
An American soldier was killed and four others were injured when attackers opened fire on a US convoy in a Baghdad street, the US military say.
The attack occurred in the Thawra neighbourhood, said military spokesman Sgt. Patrick Compton. A civilian Iraqi interpreter was also wounded in the incident, Compton said. The wounded were evacuated to a combat support hospital, he said.
U.S. soldier shot while shopping
Meanwhile, the U.S. military said it detained three Iraqis in connection with the disappearance of two servicemen earlier this week north of Baghdad. Witnesses said a gunman shot a U.S. soldier shopping for video compact discs on a sidewalk in northwest Baghdad.
Ammar Saad, a 44-year-old vendor, said the soldier was shot in
the neck at close range and appeared to have been
Child Malnutrition Rising in Iraq, Experts
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iraq health care system is operating at less than half capacity and since the war, acute malnutrition rates among children younger than 5 have nearly doubled in some areas, U.N. experts said on Thursday.
Comment: Free at last! Thank you Uncle
Soldiers' killers may never be
investigators fear clues have disappeared Inquiry into fiasco of
six Red Cap deaths
killers of six British military policemen in al-Majar may never be
brought to justice, the Army admitted last night. Investigators say
that with no evidence to work on, a conspiracy of silence among
witnesses and no British survivors of the slaughter at the
al-Yarmok police station to help them, the murderers may well go
Comment: Another great
example of subtle mind programing by the media. It seems the
media's main tools are hypocracy and double standards. What of the
killers of the 10,000 innocent Iraqi civilans? Have they not gone
US push for global police force
The United States would train and lead an international police force, bypassing traditional peacekeeping bodies such as the United Nations and NATO, under a proposal by the Defence Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld.
The plan, involving thousands of Americans permanently assigned to peacekeeping, would also be a major reversal by the Bush Administration, which has strongly opposed tying up its troops in such operations.
"I am interested in the idea of our leading, or contributing to in some way, a cadre of people in the world who would like to participate in peacekeeping or peacemaking," Mr Rumsfeld told defence industry leaders in Washington last week.
"I think it would be a good thing if our country was to provide some leadership for training of other countries' citizens who would like to participate in peacekeeping ... so that we have a ready cadre of people who are trained and equipped and organised and have communications [so] that they can work with each other." [...]
Comment: And tell us this, just what would 'ol Rummy know about "peace keeping or peace making"?? The man is a war criminal, plain and simple.
02:00 AM Jun. 27, 2003 PT
The fighting in Iraq hasn't stopped and the country isn't stable, but U.S. telecom companies are already trying to muscle in to sell cellular-phone service.
It's unclear how quickly the country's economy can turn around, how much cellular service is in demand or who would even pay to have it built, but at least two U.S. providers are poking around the country for new business.
Most recently, Tecore Wireless Systems, a private company in Columbia, Maryland, said it would lay the groundwork for phone companies to offer wireless in Iraq. Tecore sells cellular infrastructure and software to carriers in Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates and other parts of the Middle East. It plans to begin building a distribution center in Iraq by the end of summer, the company said.
Tecore's plan closely follows news last month that the U.S. government awarded WorldCom a $45 million contract to build a cell network in Iraq. The Pentagon also gave Motorola a $10 to $25 million contract -- depending on options the company exercises -- to install radio communications for security forces in Baghdad.
The WorldCom deal was especially eye opening because the company has never before operated a cellular network in the United States. It also filed for bankruptcy protection last year after having committed $11 billion in accounting fraud...
WorldCom and Tecore use cellular technology based on Global System for Mobile Communications, or GSM. The technical cellular standard is common throughout Europe and Asia, but not the United States.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) was so irked by the government's decision to use GSM technology -- which he called a "European-based wireless technology" -- that he shot off a letter to U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in March demanding that the government consider a "native" network standard called code-division multiple access, or CDMA. The technology was developed by Qualcomm, a company based in San Diego in Issa's district. It is the most common U.S. cellular standard and is used by Verizon Wireless and Sprint PCS.
Q: (L) Ok, we have several things that we discussed
earlier, is there anything you wish to say before we launch into
Q: (T) Is the Earth expanding? That's just putting
it bluntly, but, is the Earth expanding, how did you put that?
(Ark) Yes, that's the theory: the idea is that the continents move
away because the Earth is expanding, and this is much faster than
you know, than geologists were thinking.
Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela once again condemned the United States for the war on Iraq saying "anybody, especially a leader of a super state country to work outside the United Nations, must be condemned".
Addressing media in Johannesburg after meeting with the French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin, Mandela said there had not been any world wars since the establishment of the UN because the body promoted peace across the globe.
He said he was happy with French President Jacques Chirac's attitude towards the Iraqi war.
"Chirac took the correct attitude not to support the war. He is in favour of peace."
When asked whether he would tell US President George Bush about his stand on the Iraqi war when he visited South Africa next month, Mandela replied: "Do not assume that he will meet with me - I know he is coming to see President Thabo Mbeki but I am not sure if he wants to see me."...
[De Villepin] said the two discussed the economic and conflict problems in Africa. France supported the mediation efforts by South Africa to bring peace on the continent.
"We support the New Partnership for Africa's Development and any projects that will help to revive the continent's economy.
"We are ready to work with Africa on any projects," he said.
Ashcroft and Thurmond Jr press federal charges
for protesting outside "free speech zone"
BRETT BURSEY will be back in court again, fighting the forces of reaction, on June 24th. The veteran protester was arrested last October for trespassing at the Columbia Metropolitan Airport as he held a sign (“No War for Oil”) while waiting for George Bush to arrive.
was not a new experience for him. Thirty-three years earlier, at
almost the same spot, Mr Bursey was tossed in the paddy wagon for
holding a sign that criticised another war (Vietnam) while waiting
for another Republican president (Richard Nixon) to show up.
Last month, when President George W. Bush donned his coronation clothes and landed on the deck of the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln, I felt like the skunk at the victory party. I went around asking the partygoers: Where were the weapons of mass destruction?
What bothered me wasn't just whether the United States would find the weapons Americans were warned about with such terrifying, repetitive certainty. The question was whether it would matter.
Would the American people care if they'd been conned into conflict? I was haunted by a congressional aide who said the absence of smoking guns wouldn't "sway public opinion much," because "everyone loves to be on the winning side."
Since the column on the con job, the search for the weapons of mass destruction has become the subject of O.J. Simpson jokes as well as some solid reporting. The president has switched seamlessly from proclaiming certainty about the weapons to certainty about the weapons programs. There's now a congressional inquiry asking whether the intelligence community offered faulty ingredients or the executive chef cooked up a recipe for war.
But public opinion has yet to sway in this breeze. For openers, the most recent Washington Post/ABC poll reports that 24 percent of Americans thought the Iraqis did use chemical and biological weapons in the war and another 14 percent weren't sure. That's better than an earlier poll that showed half of all Americans falsely believing the Iraqis were among the 19 hijackers, but it's still fairly startling.
More to the point, two-thirds of those in the current poll still believed the war was justified even if we didn't find weapons of mass destruction. Maybe they love to be on the winning side, maybe they're happy to see one dictator bite the dust. But they think it was, in short, justified even if the justification wasn't just. [...]
Comment: "The loud little handful will shout for war. The pulpit will warily and cautiously protest at first.... The great mass of the nation will rub its sleepy eyes, and will try to make out why there should be a war, and they will say earnestly and indignantly: "It is unjust and dishonorable and there is no need for war."
Then the few will shout even louder.... Before long
you will see a curious thing: anti-war speakers will be stoned from
the platform, and free speech will be strangled by hordes of
furious men who still agree with the speakers but dare not admit
it...Next, the statesmen will invent cheap lies...and each man will
be glad of these lies and will study them because they soothe his
conscience; and thus he will bye and bye convince himself that the
war is just and he will thank God for a better sleep he enjoys by
McGOVERN, former CIA Analyst
As though this were normal! I mean the repeated visits Vice President Dick Cheney made to the CIA before the war in Iraq. The visits were, in fact, unprecedented. During my 27-year career at the Central Intelligence Agency, no vice president ever came to us for a working visit.
During the '80s, it was my privilege to brief Vice President George H.W. Bush and other very senior policy-makers every other morning. I went either to the vice president's office or (on weekends) to his home. I am sure it never occurred to him to come to CIA headquarters.
The morning briefings gave us an excellent window on what was uppermost in the minds of those senior officials and helped us refine our tasks of collection and analysis. Thus, there was never any need for policy-makers to visit us. And the very thought of a vice president dropping by to help us with our analysis is extraordinary. We preferred to do that work without the pressure that inevitably comes from policy-makers at the table.
Cheney got into the operational side of intelligence as well. Reports in late 2001 that Iraq had tried to acquire uranium from Niger stirred such intense interest that his office let it be known he wanted them checked out. So, with the CIA as facilitator, a retired U.S. ambassador was dispatched to Niger in February 2002 to investigate. He found nothing to substantiate the report and lots to call it into question. There the matter rested--until last summer, after the Bush administration made the decision for war in Iraq.
Cheney, in a speech on Aug. 26, 2002, claimed that Saddam Hussein had "resumed his effort to acquire nuclear weapons."
At the time, CIA analysts were involved in a knock-down, drag-out argument with the Pentagon on this very point. Most of the nuclear engineers at the CIA, and virtually all scientists at U.S. government laboratories and the International Atomic Energy Agency, found no reliable evidence that Iraq had restarted its nuclear weapons program.
But the vice president had spoken. Sad to say, those in charge of the draft National Intelligence Estimate took their cue and stated, falsely, that "most analysts assess Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program." [...]
Frustrated US Democrats launch own Iraq weapons
Frustrated by what they see as
Republican stonewalling, US congressional Democrats Friday launched
their own probe into whether the Bush administration had
manipulated intelligence about alleged Iraqi weapons of mass
destruction to justify the war.
Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defense, was so eager to see the United States launch a preemptive strike against Iraq in early 2002, that he ordered the CIA to investigate the past work of Hans Blix, the chief United Nations weapons inspector, who in February 2002, was asked to lead a team of U.N. weapons inspectors into Iraq to search for weapons of mass destruction, in an attempt to undermine the scientist.
The unusual move by Wolfowitz underscores the steps the Bush administration was willing to take a year before the U.S. invaded Iraq to manipulate and or exaggerate intelligence information to support it's claims that Iraq posed an immediate threat to the United States and that the only solution to quell the problem was the use of military force.
Qatari Man Designated An Enemy
Ali S. Marri, who arrived in the United States the day before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, was trained in computer hacking and the use of poisons, according to new information the United States has obtained from former al Qaeda operations chief Khalid Sheik Mohammed and another captured al Qaeda operative, prosecutors said. He was sent to the United States to help settle al Qaeda members arriving for follow-up attacks, the captives reportedly have told interrogators.
Marri was transferred yesterday from a federal jail in Illinois to an undisclosed military brig, where he could be detained indefinitely without legal protections afforded to defendants in the court system. He may eventually be brought before a military tribunal, officials said.
Comment: And the fascist state just rolls on. This will be last anyone will be seeing of this unfortunate guy, and guess what, the very same could happen to ANY US citizen. Feeling a little " disgruntled" lately? Better be careful...
China Analyst Willy Wo-Lap Lam
HONG KONG, China (CNN) -- The Iraqi war has convinced the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership that some form of confrontation with the U.S. could come earlier than expected.
Beijing has also begun to fine-tune its domestic and security policies to counter the perceived threat of U.S. "neo-imperialism."
As more emphasis is being put on boosting national strength and cohesiveness, a big blow could be dealt to both economic and political reform.
That the new leadership has concluded China is coming up against formidable challenges in the short to medium term is evident from recent statements by President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao.
Hu indicated earlier this year Beijing must pay more attention to global developments so that "China make good preparations before the rainstorm ... and be in a position to seize the initiative." [...]
As People's Daily commentator Huang Peizhao pointed out last Saturday, U.S. moves in the Middle East "have served the goal of seeking world-wide domination."
State Council think-tank member Tong Gang saw the conflict as the first salvo in Washington's bid to "build a new world order under U.S. domination."
Chinese strategists think particularly if the U.S. can score a relatively quick victory over Baghdad, it will soon turn to Asia -- and begin efforts to "tame" China. [...]
What is China doing to forestall the perceived U.S. challenge?
Firstly, the CCP leadership is fostering nationalistic sentiments, a sure-fire way to promote much-needed cohesiveness.
While not encouraging anti-U.S. demonstrations, Beijing has informed the people of what the media calls "increasingly treacherous international developments."
This explains what analysts including Beijing scholars considered the unexpectedly virulent official reaction to the start of the Iraq war.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan said the U.S.-led military campaign had "trampled on the U.N. constitution and international law" and that it would lead to regional and global instability.
Equally tough statements were issued by the National People's Congress (NPC) and the advisory Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.
Major official media such as Xinhua and People's Daily have run dozens of articles and analyses whose gist is that, in the words of commentator Li Xuejiang, the invasion of Iraq had "damaged the international order." [...]
Comment: It appears that China is using a few of BushCo's tactics to help maneuver its people into war against America. The difference is that they don't have to lie about the U.S. being a threat to the world.
N.Korea says US troop realignment is a war
Korea said on Friday the proposed realignment of US forces in South
Korea was a prelude to Washington's plan to launch nuclear war
against the communist country.
"The redeployment of the US forces in South Korea is a very dangerous military measure prompted by the US imperialist attempt to use nukes in the second Korean war," Rodong said in a statement.
Pyongyang has hundreds of artillery pieces deployed close to the border that can easily strike the South Korea capital, Seoul. The planned redeployment would take US troops out of range of North Korean guns. [...]
Twelve killed in rebel attack on army
Two suspected Islamic militants stormed an army camp in Kashmir killing 12 soldiers before they were slain, as India’s president wrapped up a three-day visit to the strife-torn Himalayan region.
The guerrillas attacked the army brigade headquarters in Sunjwan, on the outskirts of Jammu, by scaling the wire fence early today. They then detonated hand grenades and opened fire killing 12 soldiers and wounding another seven, army spokesman Brig. B.S. Jind told reporters
MONROVIA (Reuters) - Liberia's latest cease-fire, after two failed rebel attempts to storm the capital in 10 days, revived faint hopes for peace Saturday as cries grew ever louder for foreign intervention.
This week's sudden rebel strike for Monrovia left hundreds of people dead and forced thousands from their homes before President Charles Taylor's forces battled the insurgents back beyond the limits of the steamy city on the West African coast.
Former warlord Taylor remains under intense pressure, with two rebel factions controlling 60 percent of Liberia, an international court after him for war crimes in Sierra Leone and President Bush urging him to step down.
Taylor's commanders said they would silence their guns on Friday after the rebels ordered a cease-fire, prompting thousands of people onto Monrovia's streets to chant "We want peace, no more war." [...]
But Liberians have little faith that any of their leaders can bring the peace they crave and calls are growing ever stronger for foreign intervention.
Most eyes turn to the United States because of its historical links with a country founded more than 150 years ago by freed slaves trying to establish a haven of liberty. [...]
And for many Liberians, it is only the Americans who could do the job.
"George Bush is the president of the whole World and everyone knows that," said Martin Luther Wesseh, demonstrating outside the U.S. mission. "America owns Liberia. That is a fact. We learned it in school."
June 27, 11:50 PM
"In total, 4,000 people were arrested across the country, and 40 percent of those arrested were immediately freed," Ayatollah Abdolnabi Namazi was quoted as saying Friday by the student news agency ISNA and semi-official news agency ILNA.
"Currently there are 2,000 people who are still in prison, among whom there are not many students," the ayatollah added, giving the first official figures for the number of arrests across the country.
In Tehran -- which was the epicenter of the June 10-20 demonstrations -- he said 800 people were arrested. [...]
DUBAI - Ayman Zawahiri, right-hand man of Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden, and Suleiman Abu Ghaith, spokesman of the terror group, are among Al-Qaeda members detained in Iran, it was reported here yesterday.
One of Osama's sons is also believed to be among them, the Al-Arabiya news channel said.
Washington suspects that Iran-based Al-Qaeda members are implicated in last month's triple suicide bombings in Riyadh.
A new generation of terrorists who have not been to Afghanistan are ready to take part in suicide attacks, says UN report
By Shefali Rekhi
A THIRD generation of Al-Qaeda terrorists has taken over in many countries and could be preparing to strike, the latest United Nations terrorism committee report says.
Young Muslims who have not visited Afghanistan but have been taught an extreme form of Islam have joined the ranks of its suicide bombers, it says.
The terrorist network still poses a significant threat and could use weapons of mass destruction, it emphasised.
Comment: Osama is still under the bed. Let us recall that bin Laden started out as a CIA asset in Afghanistan to destabilize the Soviet Union. He was the justification for the invasion of Afghanistan. Then he disappears. But even if he was serving the interests of the Bush Reich, American retaliation and slaughter of innocent civilians in Afghanistan and now Iraq in their drive for oil will be turning many Arabs against the Americans. This in turn creates the conditions for the final showdown in the Middle East, the next big war to get rid of the Semitic peoples, Jewish and Arab.
state senator suggested in a flier that terrorist attacks could be
deterred if convicted Muslim extremists were buried with pig
entrails _ a proposal that angered some Muslims.
Eleven Charged in Federal Terror
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Eleven men, nine of them U.S. citizens, were charged with conspiring to join a Muslim extremist terror group that has been blamed for thousands of deaths in the disputed Kashmir territory of India and Pakistan.
[...] Although Friday's indictment does not allege any plots to stage attacks here, it does say that members were told that U.S. troops in Afghanistan were legitimate targets and that "the United States was the greatest enemy of Muslims."
Alice Fisher, chief deputy in the Justice Department's criminal division, said the indictment underscores the government's "strong commitment to disrupting terrorist activities" before an attack occurs.
Comment: The article continues that three
other US citizens were wanted...but were in Saudi
U.S. Pledges to Avoid Torture
The Bush administration pledged yesterday for the first time that the United States will not torture terrorism suspects or treat them cruelly in an attempt to extract information, a move that comes as the deaths of two Afghan prisoners in U.S. custody are being investigated as homicides.
[...] U.S. treatment of terror suspects and potential witnesses has been particularly obscure. The Bush administration typically prevents prisoners from contacting attorneys or asserting rights to fair treatment. Indeed, U.S. authorities have refused to identify the large majority of detainees or release any information about them, arguing that such data could help terrorists.
In the first 15 months after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, nearly 3,000 suspected al Qaeda members and supporters were detained worldwide, according to U.S. officials.
[...] "If you don't violate someone's human rights some of the time, you probably aren't doing your job. I don't think we want to be promoting a view of zero tolerance on this," said an official who supervised the capture of accused terrorists. Officials said painkillers were used selectively to win cooperation of Abu Zubaida, a high-ranking al Qaeda member shot in the groin during his arrest.
U.S. officials said they sometimes transfer uncooperative suspects to foreign countries where security services are known for brutality.
Comment: Bush said, "The United States is committed to the worldwide elimination of torture and we are leading this fight by example. I call on all governments to join with the United States and the community of law-abiding nations in prohibiting, investigating, and prosecuting all acts of torture and in undertaking to prevent other cruel and unusual punishment."
Law abiding nation?!? Leading by example?!? Liars!
Once the laws are made the way the Bush Reich wants them made, then of course it's time to abide by the law--The Bush Reich Law, that is. When it comes to international laws the Bush Reich doesn't like to abide by, they take care of those too. For example, insisting that the US be exempt from war crimes prosecution, and threatening Belgium with financial sanctions if they try to prosecute him or his Reich members for human rights violations they've already committed since 9-11.
As for "eliminating torture", there is a loophole. "Haynes said the definition refers to behavior considered unconstitutional in the United States." If a person is labeled an enemy combatant ("You're either with us or against us", says Bush), that person has NO constitutional rights. Such a person can be arrested by jackboot thugs and held indefinately, without so much the right to speak with an attorney, much less receive a fair and speedy trial. Such a person is then basically considered guilty, without a chance to argue for their innocence. And somehow that isn't considered torture?
BAINTON & BOB RICKARD
[...] If a plumber robs a bank, it doesn’t matter that he’s a plumber. But if a Doctor goes bad, that’s really strange and sensational. Shipman, whose death-count is currently 192 and rising, may stagger us by turning the Hippocratic oath on its head, but he is only one of many physicians who have helped seriously to undermine the notion that the march of medicine has been a civilising influence on human behaviour. Nazi Germany provides us with a frightening number of tales of doctors turned mad, bad or dangerous to know.
As the 20th century progressed, the numbers of unhinged medics seemed to rise dramatically, and by World War II we apeared to be in the mad house. [...]
By Rabbi Mordechi Weberman
There are those who ask us why we march with the Palestinians. Why do we raise the Palestinian flag? Why do we support the Palestinian cause?
“You are Jews!” they tell us. "What are you doing?"
And our response, which I'd like to share with you this afternoon, is very simple.
It is precisely because we are Jews that we march with the Palestinians and raise their flag!
is precisely because we are Jews that we demand that the
Palestinian peoples be returned to their homes and
Yes, in our Torah we are commanded to be fair. We are called upon to pursue justice. And, what could be more unjust then the century old attempt of the Zionist movement to invade an other people's land, to drive them out and steal their property?
The early Zionists proclaimed that they were a people without a land going to a land without a people.
Innocent sounding words.
But utterly and totally untrue.
Palestine was a land with a people. A people that were developing a national consciousness.
We have no doubt that would Jewish refugees, have come to Palestine not with the intention of dominating, not with the intention of making a Jewish state, not with the intention of dispossessing, not with the intention of depriving the Palestinians of their basic rights, that they would have been welcomed by the Palestinians, with the same hospitality that Islamic peoples have shown Jews throughout history. And we would have lived together as Jews and Muslims lived before in Palestine in peace and harmony.
To our Islamic and Palestinian friends around the world, please hear our message --
There are Jews around the world who support your cause. And when we support your cause we do not mean some partition scheme proposed in 1947 by a UN that had no right to offer it.
When we say support your cause we do not mean the cut off and cut up pieces of the West Bank offered by Barak at Camp David together with justice for less than 10 % of the refugees.
We do not mean anything other than returning the entire land, including to Jerusalem to Palestinian sovereignty!
At that point justice demands that the Palestinian people should decide if and how many Jews should remain in the Land.
This is the only path to true reconciliation.
we demand yet more. WE demand that in returning the land back to
its rightful owners we have not yet done enough. There should be an
apology to the Palestinian people which is clear and precise.
Zionism did you wrong. Zionism stole your homes. Zionism stole your
Comment: The Rabbi perhaps underestimates the depth and breadth of control that the "Zionists" possess. They have the US military killing machine at their beck and call, and it would appear they are not about to have their, perhaps centuries (or millenia) old plans falter now. Control and subjugation of the planet and its inhabitants - mental and physical - is their goal, and they will stop at nothing to achieve it.
"The Nations will exhort to tranquility. They will
be ready to sacrifice everything for peace, but we will not give
them peace until they openly acknowledge our International
Super-Government, and with Submissiveness."
Israel to leave Gaza; militants agree to
JERUSALEM - Israel agreed Friday to cede security control of much of the Gaza Strip to the Palestinians, and a key leader of the radical Islamic group Hamas said there soon would be a three-month halt to attacks on Israeli targets.
Should the Gaza agreement and the cease-fire hold, the developments would represent significant progress toward the so-called road map to peace promoted by President Bush.
Even as the talks proceeded among Israelis and Palestinians over Gaza and among militant Palestinian groups over the cease-fire, Israeli troops continued attacking Hamas, battling its loyalists in southern Gaza early Friday. At least three Palestinians and an Israeli soldier were killed in the gun battles, which Israel said it initiated, acting on intelligence that a Hamas member was about to stage a suicide mission.
Seattle Times and News Services
JERUSALEM -- Israel's military prosecutor has exonerated Israeli soldiers in the death of Rachel Corrie, 23, who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer in March as she protested the destruction of a Palestinian home at the Rafah refugee camp.
The death of Corrie, a student at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, sparked debate nationally and internationally on the role and methods of activists in a volatile land. [...]
"I'm outraged, but I'm not surprised," said John Reese, a Seattle member of the International Solidarity Movement who met Corrie soon before she left for Israel. "It's the military investigating itself, so it's not surprising that it always finds itself innocent."
"The big question now is what is the U.S. going to do about it," said Kristi Schaefer, 26, of Olympia, who was Corrie's best friend.
Comment: What is the U.S. going to do about it? They are going to laugh in her face...
[...] I'm here to tell you that the bar code's days are numbered. There's a new technology in town, one that at first blush might seem insignificant to security professionals, but it's a technology that is going to be a big part of our future. And how do I know this? Pin it on Wal-Mart again; they're the big push behind this new technology.
So what is it? RFID tags.
Invented in 1969 and patented in 1973, but only now becoming commercially and technologically viable, RFID tags are essentially microchips, the tinier the better. Some are only 1/3 of a millimeter across. These chips act as transponders (transmitters/responders), always listening for a radio signal sent by transceivers, or RFID readers. When a transponder receives a certain radio query, it responds by transmitting its unique ID code, perhaps a 128-bit number, back to the transceiver. Most RFID tags don't have batteries (How could they? They're 1/3 of a millimeter!). Instead, they are powered by the radio signal that wakes them up and requests an answer.
Most of these "broadcasts" are designed to be read between a few inches and several feet away, depending on the size of the antenna and the power driving the RFID tags (some are in fact powered by batteries, but due to the increased size and cost, they are not as common as the passive, non-battery-powered models). However, it is possible to increase that distance if you build a more sensitive RFID receiver.
RFID chips cost up to 50 cents, but prices are dropping. Once they get to 5 cents each, it will be cost-efficient to put RFID tags in almost anything that costs more than a dollar.
RFID is already in use all around us. Ever chipped your pet dog or cat with an ID tag? Or used an EZPass through a toll booth? Or paid for gas using ExxonMobils' SpeedPass? Then you've used RFID.
[...] Visa is combining smart cards and RFID chips so people can conduct transactions without having to use cash or coins. These smart cards can also be incorporated into cell phones and other devices. Thus, you could pay for parking, buy a newspaper, or grab a soda from a vending machine without opening your wallet. This is wonderfully convenient, but the specter of targeted personal ads popping up as I walk through the mall, a la Minority Report, does not thrill me.
[...] The European Central Bank may embed RFID chips in the euro note. Ostensibly to combat counterfeiters and money-launderers, it would also enable banks to count large amounts of cash in seconds. Unfortunately, such a move would also makes it possible for governments to track the passage of cash from individual to individual. Cash is the last truly anonymous way to buy and sell. With RFID tags, that anonymity would be gone. In addition, banks would not be the only ones who could in an instant divine how much cash you were carrying; criminals can also obtain power transceivers...
Right now, you can buy a hammer, a pair of jeans, or a razor blade with anonymity. With RFID tags, that may be a thing of the past. Some manufacturers are planning to tag just the packaging, but others will also tag their products. There is no law requiring a label indicating that an RFID chip is in a product. Once you buy your RFID-tagged jeans at The Gap with RFID-tagged money, walk out of the store wearing RFID-tagged shoes, and get into your car with its RFID-tagged tires, you could be tracked anywhere you travel. Bar codes are usually scanned at the store, but not after purchase. But RFID transponders are, in many cases, forever part of the product, and designed to respond when they receive a signal. Imagine everything you own is "numbered, identified, catalogued, and tracked." Anonymity and privacy? Gone in a hailstorm of invisible communication, betrayed by your very property.
But let's not stop there. Others are talking about placing RFID tags into all sensitive or important documents: "it will be practical to put them not only in paper money, but in drivers' licenses, passports, stock certificates, manuscripts, university diplomas, medical degrees and licenses, birth certificates, and any other sort of document you can think of where authenticity is paramount." In other words, those documents you're required to have, that you can't live without, will be forever tagged.
Consider the human body as well. Applied Digital Solutions has designed an RFID tag - called the VeriChip - for people. Only 11 mm long, it is designed to go under the skin, where it can be read from four feet away. They sell it as a great way to keep track of children, Alzheimer's patients in danger of wandering, and anyone else with a medical disability, but it gives me the creeps. The possibilities are scary. In May, delegates to the Chinese Communist Party Congress were required to wear an RFID-equipped badge at all times so their movements could be tracked and recorded. Is there any doubt that, in a few years, those badges will be replaced by VeriChip-like devices?
US Representative Ron Paul, Texas
I recently had an opportunity to hear testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan at a hearing of the Joint Economic committee. I always relish the opportunity to question Mr. Greenspan at such hearings, because I disagree so strongly with Fed policies. Mr. Greenspan is a remarkable man, with a background as a devotee of novelist Ayn Rand, a supporter of the gold standard, and a fervent advocate of capitalism. So I’m at a loss to explain his metamorphosis into a believer in fiat currency and centralized economic planning.
[...] Mr. Greenspan declined to answer my question about the tumbling value of the dollar, citing a kind of gentlemen’s agreement between him and the Treasury department not to discuss dollar policy. This is preposterous, of course, because he is unquestionably the one man on earth most responsible for the value of the U.S. dollar. If a member of Congress cannot ask the Federal Reserve Chairman a straightforward question about dollar policy, how can we expect the American public to have the faintest idea about what the Fed really does? The answer is that very few Americans pay any attention to the Fed, which has successfully insulated itself as a “nonpolitical” entity.
Boot on other foot in Nike case
THE SUPREME COURT ruled yesterday that Nike can't use the US First Amendment which gives individual the right to free speech, meaning an activist can continue a court case alleging the boot vendor uses sweatshops to make its products.
Nike had wanted the Supreme Court to say that the First Amendment covers corporate advertising. And press releases.
The foot firm had the backing of forty media giants and also the American Civil Liberties Union in its appeal.
One of the judges in the case, Justice JP Stevens, claimed that the speech Nike was seeking a ruling on was a blend of commercial speech and debate.
Nike denies it operates sweatshops and had started a media blitz of press releases and Q&As about labour conditions, claiming that those were protected by the First Amendment.
The US government in the shape of George W. Bush had hoped that Nike would win this battle, preventing corporate critics such as Marc Kasky, who made the allegations, from opening up a virtual Pandora's Box of such allegations.
Research: Teens Victimized in Boy Scouts' Police
At least a dozen teenagers assigned to work with police departments as part of the Boy Scouts' Law Enforcement Explorers (search) program have allegedly been sexually abused by officers during the past year. In the past five years, such molestations number at least 25, according to criminologists' research being released Wednesday.
Sponsors have promised reforms to the program, which attracts tens of thousands of teens annually.
[...] Almost half of the reported teenage victims of police sexual abuse in the past decade were enrolled in police Explorer programs, they found, with the rest abused during arrests, traffic stops and in other situations.
ALHAMBRA, Calif. - Los Angeles County health officials are urging anyone who ate at a Taco Bell restaurant in Alhambra a few weeks ago to get vaccinated for hepatitis A after a worker was diagnosed with the liver disease.
Comment: Anyone else have the impression that there is an attempt in the media to create hysteria on the topic of diseases?
Imagine a gun that fires a million rounds a minute -- enough to shred a target in a blink of an eye, or throw up a defensive wall against an incoming missile.
This is Metal Storm, a weapons system that forsakes old-style mechanics for the speed of electronics.
Its inventor is Mike O'Dwyer, a one-time grocer in the Australian city of Brisbane. He's spent 30 years and much of his own money to develop the technology.
Now, finally, the doors are opening for him at the Pentagon, the U.S. Defense Department's headquarters.
The great rainforest tragedy
Of all the world's great environmental tragedies it is the most compelling, and yesterday the deforestation of the Amazon was shown to be taking a huge turn for the worse.
After falling or staying steady for the past eight years, the rate at which Brazil's rainforest is disappearing has leapt by 40 per cent in a single year - and Europe's intensive farming may be a contributory cause.
Vast new tracts of virgin forest in the states of Mato Grosso and Para are being put to the chainsaw, according to figures from the Brazilian government, and turned into farmland - much of it used for growing soya beans, which end up as industrial cattle feed in Europe.
What is being destroyed is the most species-rich habitat on Earth. It provides much of the world's oxygen. It has been the subject of more green protests, and had more voices raised in its defence, than any other piece of ground on the planet. They seem to have availed it nothing. [...]
Fri June 27, 2003 12:02 PM ET
GENEVA (Reuters) - Chances of floods and typhoons from the weather phenomenon La Nina are increasing, but the latest incarnation of its alter-ego, El Nino, is finished, weather experts said on Friday.
"The El Nino of 2002-2003 is now over," the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said in a statement.
While wreaking less havoc than its 1997-98 predecessor, which caused $34 billion of damage, the latest El Nino brought droughts to Australia and southern Africa and higher temperatures to Asia. [...]
A WOMAN who stabbed a pastor in a church in Adam Road has been sentenced to a year's jail.
Private tutor Loh Mei Lan, who is a schizophrenic, admitted in a district court yesterday that she had gone to Trinity Christian Centre on March 16 with a knife and stabbed Reverend Jonathan Lee, 44, in the stomach.
Fri June 27, 2003 07:14 AM ET
HANOI (Reuters) - A Vietnamese man who used cow fat and paint to pass off a lump of iron as valuable black bronze found buyers -- but was paid $64,000 in counterfeit bills.
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