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Thursday, April 22, 2004

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New Article: Jupiter, Nostradamus, Edgar Cayce, and the Return of the Mongols - Laura Knight-Jadczyk

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Rosace à l'église d'Auvillar
©2004 Pierre-Paul Feyte

Why is the US in Iraq? What are the REAL reasons? Recently there have been reports that the famous "war for oil" will not in fact produce much of a windfall for the US or any other nation. Iraq has large debts, $100 billion to Russia, $30 billion to France to name but a few. Since the US has "appropriated" Iraq, these debts become US debts, canceling out any potential financial benefits to the US Neocons.

Recently, with the increase in attacks on US soldiers, over 100 (official) deaths in the first two weeks of April alone, the entire Iraq invasion is taking on the appearance of a very poorly thought out adventure that has already resulted in provoking the disgust of most of the citizens of the western world (at least outside the US). But as we should by now know, appearances can very often be deceptive. So what really is the US doing in Iraq and whose agenda does their presence there serve. Consider the below report on yesterday's bombings in Basra:

Al-Qaeda link as Basra bombs kill 68

Gethin Chamberlain In Southern Iraq And Colin Freeman In Basra

BRITISH military intelligence warned Army commanders in Iraq that two al-Qaeda cells were operating in the country before a series of devastating suicide bombings killed at least 68 people and injured 200 more in Basra yesterday.

Bombers hit three police stations in the British- controlled southern city and a police academy in nearby Al Zubayr, which was visited by Tony Blair, the Prime Minister, earlier this year.

The victims included ten nursery schoolchildren and six older ones whose minibuses were driving past when the bombs went off. Four British soldiers were injured in the police academy blast, two of them seriously.

In a separate attack yesterday, a car bomb in the Saudi Arabian capital Riyadh killed at least nine people and injured 60.

The Basra bombings bore the hallmarks of previous al-Qaeda attacks and both the mayor and British officials were quick to link them to Osama bin Laden’s organisation.

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Contrast the various attacks by insurgents in recent weeks which have targeted US troops, with yesterday's Basra attacks that killed almost exclusively Iraqi children or Iraqi policemen. It is clear the the perpetrators of yesterday's attack are NOT the Iraqi insurgents who rightly see the US military as their enemy. So who are they? British officials have claimed that the Basra attacks "bore the hallmarks of "al-qaeda", so who, or what, is "al-Qaeda"?...

Flashback: Mossad Exposed In Phony 'Palestinian Al Qaeda' Caper

By Michele Steinberg and Hussein Askary

The United States government has been provided with concrete evidence that the Israeli Mossad and other Israeli intelligence services have been involved in a 13-month effort to "recruit" an Israeli-run, phony "al Qaeda cell" among Palestinians, so that Israel could achieve a frontline position in the U.S. war against terrorism and get a green light for a worldwide "revenge without borders" policy. The question: Does the United States have the moral fiber to investigate?

Evidence of the Israeli dirty tricks burst onto the public scene on December 6, when Col. Rashid Abu Shbak, head of the Palestinian Preventive Security Services in the Gaza Strip, held a press conference revealing the details of the alleged plot, as his agency had put the pieces together.

The revelations undermine the "big lie" that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has used to justify new brutal attacks on Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and other occupied areas. Sharon claimed on December 4 that Israeli intelligence had "hard evidence" of al Qaeda operations in the Gaza Strip. Now, the top Palestinian leadership has shown the United States and other nations how Israeli intelligence entities were creating that al Qaeda link!

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There is much evidence pointing to the probability that Mossad or "Israeli intelligence agencies" were behind the 9/11 attacks - the official "kick off" of the "war on terror". It is also probable then that most significant "Al-qaeda" attacks are also the work of "Israeli intelligence agencies". But why would they do this? What interest does Israel have in the spread of a "war on terror".

The idea of a worldwide "war on terror" is as bogus as the idea that "Arab terrorists" were behind the 9/11 attacks. Clear evidence of this is seen in the recent reports from the 9/11 commission that, many years prior to 9/11, the central plan among US Neocons was to attack and occupy Iraq. We should note that the majority of the most influential politicians in Washington are either ardent Jewish sympathisers or Jewish themselves. Yet when we say that these people are "Jewish", we do not mean that they hold the same simple beliefs of the ordinary rank and file Jew in Israel or anywhere else. The people we speak of are in a position to talk so knowledgeably about the religious fanaticism and extremism of the so called "Arab terrorists" because they themselves possess a fanaticism of thought and belief that make a "fundamentalist Muslim" seem like a Buddhist monk.

"What should we do? Let’s ask Israel!"

Thursday, April 22, 2004
By Raff Ellis
YellowTimes.org Columnist

(YellowTimes.org) – The Tribune Company’s local newspaper has a weekly “Friday Forum” page where mail is solicited in answer to timely questions such as, “Has the U.S. stayed too long in Iraq?” The paper printed 17 responses for that one and, knowing full well that the result would hardly be scientific, I attempted to gauge current public attitudes by statistically tallying the answers.

Had I answered the call for letters, I would have simply said, “Let’s ask Israel!” After all, they have been influencing America’s shots in the Middle East for a long time and, as reported on Israeli radio, Vice President Cheney told Sharon before the war started, “We will attack Iraq first and foremost for Israel's sake.” Philip Zelikow, former member of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, now the executive director of the 9/11 commission told a crowd at the University of Virginia on Sep. 10, 2002, that the prime motive for the invasion of Iraq was to eliminate a threat to Israel, a staunch U.S. ally in the Middle East.

The Israelis and their U.S.-based claque, of course, eschew any influence or responsibility for America’s policy decisions even though PM Sharon has on many occasions bragged about Israeli and Jewish influence. As he said to Shimon Peres on October 3rd, 2001, during a Knesset debate (reported on Kol Yisrael): "Every time we do something you tell me America will do this and will do that . . . I want to tell you something very clear: Don't worry about American pressure on Israel. We, the Jewish people, control America, and the Americans know it."

The hand of Israel can be seen in many areas including America’s intelligence operations. Although the CIA and FBI are taking the heat for pre-9-11 intelligence failures, nothing is mentioned about Israel’s influence in this area. Vice President Dick Cheney was briefed by Mossad’s director-general, Efraim Halevy in March, 2002 (as reported in the intelligence newsletter Globe-Intel), that Saddam Hussein had placed squadrons of suicide pilots at “hard stand readiness,” ready for instant take-off.

Cheney was told that the aircraft were carrying biological and chemical canisters, including nerve agents designed to destroy human immune systems and that Mossad had identified no fewer than a dozen other storage sites in and around Baghdad. “We believe some of them are buried beneath mosques in the city suburbs,” Cheney was told.

Our Congress bristles at the notion that it is often called “Israeli occupied territory,” yet it routinely passes legislation drafted or suggested by American Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC) that lavishes praise and money on that foreign government. Millions in “loans” are forgiven each year. Grants, which are given to Israel in lump sum at the beginning of the year, are loaned back to the U.S. and we taxpayers not only get to foot the bill for the principal, but also for the interest -- on our own money! Pro-Israeli lobbies in America operate on a budget of more than $30 million a year, used to influence both Congress and American public opinion. Given the billions drained from the U.S. treasury over the years, I’d say it was money well spent.

There are no boundaries to Israel’s wishes and to our government’s desire to fulfill them. The TV images are still fresh from the White House of the president, walking on an appropriately blood-red carpet, side-by-side with the grinning and “courageous” war criminal Ariel Sharon. It is clear by Bush’s actions that he bases important decisions on what his hero Sharon and Israel wants.

He sent Americans to fight, bleed and die for them. He has given his blessing to Sharon’s atrocities against Palestinians and title to large portions of the West Bank, even though it wasn’t his to give. Forget about the Geneva Conventions, International Law and U.N. Resolutions, Bush has decided that Israeli support is more important than any laws, agreements or American lives. Ironic isn’t it that Bush used to be fond of saying that Saddam needed to be punished for not obeying U.N. Resolutions even though Israel is the world’s record holder for ignoring such resolutions. The same excuses, such as the violation of human rights and possession of WMDs, that were used to go to war in Iraq are forgiven for Sharon & Co.

So, if you want to know what we should do next in Iraq, let’s do as we always do — ask Israel! Are you as comfortable with that as I am?

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At this stage, it should be clear to anyone, even those that still put their faith in the controlled media, that Israel "calls the shots" in Washington and that Israel was the real force behind the Iraq invasion. But again, what do Israel, and the abovementioned fanatical "pro-Israel" Neocons in the US have to gain from war in Iraq? Well, clearly the people of Israel have nothing to gain and everything to loose from an escalating war on their borders (however illegal those borders might be). But an all out war in Israel and Palestine that will provide a solution to Sharon's "problems", seems to be high on the wish list of the US Neocons. The fact that this is so, is evidenced by the below article which shows that those "in the know" knew very well what the ultimate outcome of an invasion of Iraq would be...

Flashback: U.S. Senators Warn of Possible 'Arab-Israeli' War

Sun Sep 22, 2002
By Lori Santos

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Prominent members of the U.S. Congress warned on Sunday that a unilateral U.S. attack on Iraq could draw in Israel and lead to a wider Middle East war.

Sen. Joseph Biden, a Delaware Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said if the Israelis became involved "it becomes an Arab-Israeli war."

Biden and others appearing on Sunday television talk shows responded to a report in The New York Times that said Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon had told the Bush administration he would retaliate if Iraq attacks Israel. [...]

Sen. Richard Shelby, ranking Republican on the Senate intelligence committee, said any retaliation by the Israelis could mean "a widespread war in the Middle East."

"And also we'd be perceived, we'd be fighting side-by-side with the Israelis against all the Arab interests, and the war could spread," the Alabama senator said on "Face the Nation."

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For many years now, Israel has desired to implement a "final solution" to the annoying impediment to it's vision of a "greater Israel" that the millions of Iraqi, Egyptian, Syrian, Jordanian, and especially Palestinian, peoples present. While a border-breaching escalation of the current US invasion of Iraq would provide Israel with the justification to "take care" of Iraq's neighbours, the question remains, what to do with the Palestinians, many of whom are soon to live inside the already expanding and illegal "Israel"? To this end, Hamas and other Israel financed "Arab groups" and "leaders" have been very useful to the bloodthirsty psychopaths currently occupying the halls of Power in the US and Israel.

Israel's Targeting of Hamas Leaders Increases Public Support for Group

Kerry Sheridan
21 Apr 2004

Palestinians carry the body of the late Hamas leader Abdel Aziz Rantisi, bottom left, through the streets during his funeral in Gaza City
The militant Palestinian group Hamas has lost two of its senior leaders in less than a month. Israel says the militant group has been crippled, but Hamas spokesmen have vowed revenge, and say the group is stronger than ever. Meanwhile, there are indications Hamas wants to broaden its targets, at least rhetorically.

Israel says the Hamas leaders were directly involved in planning and funding terrorist operations. It says anyone who does that is a legitimate target, and it has pledged to continue killing militant leaders whenever it can. Israel says the killings are more than symbolic, that they have a direct impact on Hamas's ability to carry out terrorist attacks. Indeed, the head of Israeli military intelligence said the killings left Hamas in a total state of shock.

But analyst Sami Baroudi, professor of political science at American University in Lebanon, says the Israeli assassination policy is resulting in more and more popular support for radical Islamism among Palestinians. “The more they kill of the leaders, the more support there will be for the movement, and the less support there will be for the more basically secular leadership,” he said.

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If you desire to commit genocide against a given group of people, you generally need some form of justification. The most convincing form of justification is to have the group of people attack you, or appear to attack you, thus making them your "enemy". But when the same group of people have absolutely no means to fight back, you have a problem. One option is to find a way to force them to attack you, or appear to attack you.

Flashback: Sharon's Fingerprints on Latest Suicide Bombing

By STEVE NIVA
January 9, 2003

In a scathing August 2, 2002 editorial in Israel's prestigious Ha'aretz newspaper, Doron Rosenblum declared that "In short, any four-year-old child who examined this pattern of events would conclude that this government, whether consciously or not, is simply not interested in the cessation of the terrorist attacks, for they constitute its raison d'etre".

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Ultimately however, if you cannot incite them to attack you, you must simply attack yourself and blame it on your "enemy".

Flashback: Israeli Roots of Hamas Are Being Exposed

by Dean Andromidas

Speaking in Jerusalem Dec. 20, U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer made the connection between the growth of the Islamic fundamentalist groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad, and Israel's promotion of the Islamic movement as a counter to the Palestinian nationalist movement. Kurtzer's comments come very close to EIR's own presentation of the evidence of Israel's instrumental role in establishing Hamas, and its ongoing control of that organization.

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In recent weeks however, Sharon may have come up with the perfect way to use his "allies", be they conscious or unconscious of their status as such, to help him to do away, once and for all, with the "Palestinian problem" that has vexed him for so long.. (Note: The below comes from debka, a news site known to pander to the agenda of Sharon. While the authors of debka have at times been guilty of disseminating Israeli propaganda, they appear to have sources that can be starkly accurate when they want to be.)

Nasrallah Wants Gaza Settlements Overrun by One Million Hamas Marchers

April 20, 2004

Nasrallah: Why wait till 2005? Drive Israelis out of Gaza in 2004

[...] General Zeevi is on past record as predicting that Israel’s go-it-alone evacuation of the Gaza Strip will be interpreted by “the Hamas, the Jihad Islami and the Fatah-al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade as capitulation to terrorism and provide a continuing spur to violence for political gains.

Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah has produced a new master plan which he presented this week to the Hamas leadership group appointed to succeed Abdel Aziz Rantisi, the second Hamas leader Israel killed in less than a month. Their identities are a closely-kept secret on the orders of supreme Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal in Damascus. DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources have the names of the five new leaders: two well-known figures, Ismail Haniya and Mahmoud Al-Zahar, Said Siyam who recently succeeded al-Zahar as spokesman, Nazar Rayan and Yunes al-Assal.

The Lebanese Shiite Hizballah and the Palestinian Sunni Hamas have much in common. Both are internationally-certified terrorist organizations, Islamic extremists and spoiling for revenge. Eager to help the newly- bereaved Hamas, Nasrallah presented his plan this week to Khaled Mashal and Mussa Marzouk in Damascus, Imad Alami, Hamas chief of staff and operations commander and Osama Hamdan in Lebanon. Hamdan liaises for Hamas with Hizballah and al Qaeda.

Nasrallah described how, several weeks before Israel was scheduled to withdraw from Lebanon, he organized the town and village populations of the south and several thousand Shiites from Beirut into massed groups of civilians, each ordered to stage marches in different sectors. Elderly people hoisting Lebanese and Hizballah flags, women and children marched in a body on the bases of the Israeli-backed South Lebanese Army who, aware of the Israeli pullout, did not dare open fire on the advancing processions. In no time, all their bases were overrun by the motley mobs and the Hizballah flag fluttering overhead. According to Nasrallah, the departing Israeli troops had to negotiate safe passage back to the Israeli border in exchange for leaving their weapons, even tanks, behind.

The Hizballah leader showed Hamas the Gaza version of his plan. For stage one, he proposed collecting the 200,000 Palestinian mourners who followed the Yassin and Rantisi funeral processions, and dividing them into groups of 10-15,000. Each would march on a marked IDF position or camp defending Netzarim and Gush Katif.

In stage two, a million Hamas marchers would hurl themselves at Gush Katif, the largest settlement bloc of the Gaza Strip. Even Israeli tanks would not be able to arrest this human deluge, he said. The Israelis may start shooting, but the Palestinian mass will keep coming, and, like in Lebanon, it will mow down the army positions. The settlements will then crumble. Israeli troops and settlers will be stampeded into flight and the Palestinians will take over their bases and homes – not in 2005 as the Israelis offered, but next summer.

The Hamas has not yet replied formally to Nasrallah’s Gaza proposal but it is known to have aroused much enthusiasm in Damascus and Gaza.

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Who could blame the beleaguered and brutalised Palestinian people for believing that such a suicidal plan might actually succeed? For anyone that has witnessed the apparent glee and relish with which IDF soldiers murder Palestinian children, it is clear that if 1 million, or 200,000 Palestinians were to attempt to storm Israeli positions, they would surely be mowed down with the same relish and glee, making the slaughter of the Somme pale in comparison. That either Nasrallah or the leadership of Hamas would actually encourage the Palestinian people to sacrifice themselves in this way, merely adds to the already convincing case that the Palestinian people are being betrayed, not only by Sharon and Bush, but also by their own leaders - if they ever really had any in terms of the current conflict.

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3,000 feared dead in North Korea blast

Associated Press
Thursday April 22, 2004

As many as 3,000 people were killed or injured today when two trains carrying oil and liquefied petroleum gas collided and exploded in a North Korean train station, South Korean media have reported.
The North Korean leader, Kim Jong Il, was reported to have passed through the station as he returned from China hours earlier.

South Korea's all-news cable channel, YTN, reported that thousands of people could have been killed, citing unnamed sources on the China-North Korea border.

South Korea's Yonhap news agency, quoting sources in the Chinese city of Dandong, on the border with the north, said the explosion had occurred at about 1pm local time at Ryongchon.

Yonhap said Mr Kim had passed through nine hours earlier on his way back to Pyongyang.

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Undoing the Latches: Recognizing the Gates Around Us

By MICKEY Z.

In his brilliant book, The Pig Who Sang to the Moon: The Emotional World of Farm Animals, Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson writes: "I was told by some New Zealand sheep farmers that sometimes a particularly smart lamb will learn to undo the latch of a gate, evidently not an uncommon skill, and the sheep farmer then worries that the lamb might teach his less clever companions to do the same."

Masson asked a group of farmers, "What do you with sheep who can undo the latch?"

"We shoot them," came the reply, "so they can't pass on their knowledge."

"Others nodded in agreement," Masson continued. "They all had anecdotes about particularly intelligent sheep who were shot as a reward for their cleverness."

While this excerpt stands alone as a telling indictment of human behavior in general and the treatment of animals in particular, it additionally reminds one how important it is to not only undo the latches on the gates that keep our minds imprisoned...but to pass on that knowledge.

Comment: And if we're doing it to the sheep, you can bet that it is being done to us by the owners of the farm we're on. But this is the big secret that we are not supposed to know, that we live in a hyperdimensional universe that is a lot crazier than the world we learn about in the history books. We are somebody else's farm animals, and, yet, most of us don't know, and don't seem to want to know, the truth.

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And he should know....

Bush says Americans right to worry about another terror attack on U.S. soil

12:48 AM EDT Apr 22
TERENCE HUNT

WASHINGTON (AP) - President George W. Bush said Wednesday that those Americans who expect another terror attack on U.S. soil have reason for such fears. "This is a hard country to defend," he conceded.

The president was questioned about an Associated Press poll showing that two-thirds of Americans believe another attack is "somewhat likely" before the presidential election in November.

"I can understand why they think we're going to get hit again; they saw what happened in Madrid," Bush told executives of more than 1,500 Associated Press-member newspapers at the co-operative's annual meeting.

"Our intelligence is good. It's just never perfect, is the problem," Bush said.

The train bombings in Madrid occurred within a week of Spain's national elections.

Bush also acknowledged that the last few weeks in Iraq have been "really rough," but he pledged not to lessen his administration's commitment to a free and Democratic Iraq.

"The Iraqi people are looking at Americans and saying, 'Are we going to cut and run again?' We're not going to cut and run while I'm in the Oval Office."

Bush condemned terrorist attacks earlier Wednesday in Iraq and Saudi Arabia.

"They attacked today in Basra. Killed innocent Iraqis," he said. "They attacked today in Riyadh. . . . They attack all the time. They'd like to attack us again, by the way."

"We have to be effective to stop them. There are no negotiations with these terrorists. It's important we find them before they come here again."

[...] Of the election-year economy, Bush said: "We're prosperous now, which is good, particularly if you're the guy seeking the vote."

He cited low inflation and interest rates, increased industrial production and growing home ownership.

[...] Bush also defended his decision to support Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's unilateral disengagement plan, claiming Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza Strip was a major concession to the Palestinians.

"The whole world should have said, 'Thank you Ariel,' " Bush said. Instead, he said, "there was kind of silence, wasn't there."

Bush's move on Israel drew angry responses throughout the Arab world, including from moderate U.S. allies Jordan and Egypt.

Comment: A kind of silence? There was outrage. There was disbelief and stupefaction that Bush could so brazenly give Sharon everything he asked for! If Bush heard silence then perhaps it means his advisors didn't tell him the news, didn't tell him he managed to anger just about everyone on the planet that wasn't a fundamentalist Christian or Jewish.

But then Bush also thinks the US economy is in good shape. Yeah, right. And Bob Woodward said this week that Bush had a secret plan with the Saudis to lower oil prices right before the election so that he'd look good. Of course, Woodward is suspected of being a Naval Intelligence plant. Sherman Skolnick thinks that the US intelligence agencies, and a few honest and patriotic generals, are out to get Bush, to save democracy, and that they are using Woodward to start targeting Bush Jr the same way they used Woodward to get Nixon (for selling out to the commies...). We don't doubt the US intelligence agencies are out to get Bush after they took the blame for the bad intelligence about Iraq. We just doubt that there is anything noble about their intentions. A patriotic American is still a blind American, blind to America's real role in the world.

Of course, the question as to WHY Americans believe an attack before November is "somewhat likely" is not discussed in the above article, but then again, is it not obvious? What the people do not realise is that it is the responsibility of government is to provide the public with whatever the public expects. The only task for government then, is to define "reality" for the fawning public and the provide it for them.

Consider the last line of Bush's puerile babble above. Successive US governments have done such a fine job of programming the American mind to expect attack from the enemy "out there", aka "Arab terrorists", that the "democratically" elected leaders would be in severe dereliction of duty if they were not to provide the American people with that which they fully believe and expect to experience.

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House Considers How to Respond to Attack

Thursday April 22, 2004
By JIM ABRAMS
Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - On Sept. 11, 2001, the fourth hijacked plane crashed into a Pennsylvania field, the quick action of passengers possibly saving the U.S. Capitol from becoming a fireball. Now, two-and-a-half years later, Congress is readying its response.

The House on Thursday took up legislation that would require the holding of special elections within 45 days of the speaker confirming that a terrorist attack or other catastrophic event had left at least 100 seats vacant in the 435-seat body.

The bill, said Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., was "one part of a comprehensive strategy of preparing for the unthinkable.''

But House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said the measure was inadequate. At present, she said, ``we are prepared to pray very hard that nothing happens.''

Supporters, led by Judiciary Committee Chairman James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., say the legislation's approach would assure the House's rapid recovery while preserving a heritage in which every member of the House is an elected representative.

But critics argue that this could leave Congress in a political vacuum for weeks at a time of terrible crisis. Democrats say the GOP leadership has denied them the chance to discuss other alternatives, including constitutional amendments that would allow for temporary appointments before elections could be held.

They noted that within days after Sept. 11, Congress passed critical legislation, approving billions in emergency funds, compensating victims and supporting the use of military force. [...]

The constitutional approach is backed by the Continuity of Government Commission, formed in the fall of 2002 to study how to keep Congress functioning after a disaster. The commission, chaired by former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo., and Lloyd Cutler, White House counsel to presidents Carter and Clinton, included former presidents Carter and Ford and former speakers Newt Gingrich and Tom Foley.

Simpson and Cutler, in a recent letter, said not one of their members went into the task with the desire to amend the Constitution. "Nevertheless, the evidence we considered led us to conclude that, for the sake of the Constitution itself, the security of our nation and the preservation of the Congress, a constitutional amendment is necessary to provide continuity in the face of a catastrophic attack.''

Comment: Do you get it yet? It's simple. You have to give up freedoms, to have freedom. War is PEACE, remember? It is completely logical, if you first of all present yourself at your local hospital to undergo a lobotamy, and ask them to remove any vestiage of human emotion that you might have possessed.

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Rummy said, "I don't remember lying. Even if I did, it wouldn't have been a big lie. It would have only been about this big. Honest."

Pentagon deleted key comment from Rumsfeld transcript

From Jamie McIntyre
CNN Washington Bureau
Thursday, April 22, 2004 Posted: 9:31 AM EDT (1331 GMT)


WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Pentagon said Wednesday it deleted a key section from a transcript of an interview that reporter Bob Woodward conducted last year with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

That edited transcript was posted this week on the Pentagon's Web site.

But a spokesman said Rumsfeld had been unaware of the deletions when he made statements Tuesday at a Pentagon briefing that turned out to be inaccurate.

At the briefing, Rumsfeld was disputing a passage in Woodward's new book, "Plan of Attack," alleging that Saudi Prince Bandar was told by Rumsfeld two months before the invasion of Iraq that it was "going to happen," and he could "take that to the bank":

"I don't remember saying it, to be perfectly honest," Rumsfeld said.

Woodward contends he got that information directly from Rumsfeld. "Don Rumsfeld is on the record, if you look on the Pentagon Web site, saying that he said, 'This war plan, you can take it to the bank. It's going to happen,'" the reporter said in a CNN interview earlier this week.

But he was wrong. The transcript of the October 23 interview posted by the Pentagon had been edited -- and that quote had been deleted with no reference on the Web site that any deletions had been made.

As of late Wednesday, the Pentagon transcript still did not have the controversial quote on its Web site.

Aides to Rumsfeld said Wednesday that he was unaware of the deletions until he was handed a note just before the end of the briefing, and that, in the confusion of the moment, Rumsfeld misunderstood what it said.

He then stated flatly that nothing relevant had been removed:

"I can say of certain knowledge that nothing was taken out that would naysay what I just indicated in my response to the question."

"No 18-minute gap?" a reporter asked.

"And you can take that to the bank," Rumsfeld responded, eliciting laughter.

Pentagon officials said the transcript was edited by "mutual consent" with Woodward after a meeting last Friday, because, they argued, the deleted section did not directly confirm Rumsfeld spoke to Prince Bandar or when the conversation took place.

Woodward denied he agreed to the deletion, and The Washington Post published the full text of the deleted section Wednesday.

"I was surprised that it was deleted," Woodward was quoted as saying "because it obviously dealt with a critical issue."

In a CNN interview, Woodward added, "It is inconceivable that I would have agreed."

Rumsfeld's chief spokesman said that, in retrospect, it was probably a mistake to have deleted a key passage from the transcript without -- as is usually done -- including a disclaimer that some material had been put off the record.

And he admits Rumsfeld should have been advised of the deletions before he faced reporters' questions.

But he insisted Rumsfeld did not knowingly make misleading statements, and disputed the suggestion Rumsfeld said anything to indicate President Bush had decided by early January to go to war. [...]

Comment: Notice that the issue of whether or not Rumsfeld told the Saudi Prince that the invasion was a sure thing is placed on the back burner. The "controversy" surrounds the deletion from the Pentagon web site. It seems the Pentagon did delete parts of the transcript. That would tend to indicate that Rummy said something that needed to be removed. Either Rummy lied in the interview, or he is lying now.

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Pentagon: Iraq War Faces $4B Shortfall

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United States escapes scrutiny at UN human rights forum

Thu Apr 22, 6:15 AM ET

GENEVA (AFP) - Cuba decided against forcing a vote at the United Nations' human rights forum on unprecedented allegations against the United States on rights abuses at a US naval base in Guantanamo Bay.

Comment: That's it. That's the end of the article. No explanation of any details. Everything is okay, all is right with the world - please go back to sleep.

The Signs team spent the morning cutting down a tree. It was a very large tree. It was a very dead tree. We were reminded of the age old question: If a tree falls in the forest and there is no one there to hear it, does it make a sound?

Along similar lines, if an Arab is detained in Guantanamo without charge - held as an "enemy combatant" by the US to avoid the hassles of the Geneva Convention - should Americans actually be concerned that their government is illegally detaining people? If an innocent prisoner is tortured regularly just so that US soldiers can satisfy their sadistic tendencies and revel in another's suffering, and Americans don't hear the poor soul's screams of agony, did the US actually torture the prisoner?

Given recent events on the BBM, it seems that the disturbing answer that most Americans would give is an emphatic "No". The lies are now piled so high that most citizens must be regularly engaging in superhuman feats of denial. Along side the pile of lies, there rests a pile of slaughtered humanity: the lives of Afghanis, Iraqis, Americans - the women and children and men who have become the first victims of the puppet masters' new push for control; the values, morals and ethics of the "Greatest Nation on Earth", now shown to be a cruel joke; and perhaps the very souls of those who lack the courage or will to stand up and be counted among those who reject the madness and will accept nothing less than the truth.

It won't be long now.

We are reminded of another old saying: The truth shall set you free. What does it really mean to be free? We probably have no idea. We have all been enslaved for so long that the concept of freedom we cling to is shriveled and dried. We pick it up and poke it to see if there is any life left in this fragile little concept, and it crumbles in our hands. Some of us will accept any substitute - we are handed a piece of coal by our leaders and told, "This is freedom! All is not lost!" Some of us, in our desperation, will accept any answer - any substitute, to avoid having to face the awful truth.

Sooner or later, we will all have to face the facts. We will all have to realize that we will not be able to keep our eyes closed forever. Wishing will not make it so. It is entirely possible that at some point in the not-too-distant future, our eyes will be forced open. The true horror and the true terror of the situation will come crashing down upon us with all the weight of the mountain of lies we have denied, the screams we pretended not to hear, and the humanity inside and outside us that we so brazenly ignored. At that point, it will most likely be too late.

It won't be long now.

We are not speaking strictly of Americans. It is evident that many countries in the world today are standing by doing nothing to stop the push towards annihilation that is the War on Terror. Many nations have joined the US in their crusade. Many citizens of such nations have done as little as the majority of Americans to stand up against the insanity. There is nothing to be done to stop the whirlwind. In our solitude, together we face an army of darkness with resources probably beyond our wildest imaginings.

As we sow, so shall we reap. The harvest is almost upon us all.

It won't be long now.

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Pick Your Price: Your Blood Or Your Soul

Do you support our killer troops committing genocide in Iraq?

By John Kaminski
4-20-4


What would you do if your brother -- or perhaps your son, father, or husband -- was charged with murder? With deliberately taking the life of another human being.

For sure, it would be an agonizing decision -- making the choice between practicing what you preach about justice, or standing by your devastated family. A choice no one would envy -- defend your blood or obey the laws of God and society.

And then, what if it was a particularly bad murder? Say he shot an old woman in the back, and watched her die -- all the while preventing medical personnel from tending to her. Maybe she was already wounded and he finished her off. From a helicopter, even.

It sure would be tough to keep your family -- your mind, your heart -- together in that situation. Who could blame you whatever you decided.

Of course, things are different in the middle of a war, even a completly illegal war based on well-publicized lies like the situation in Iraq.

I mean, it's easy to say your were just following orders. That's what lots of Nazis did in World War II, but they still were put to death in the trials following the war.

I wonder what will happen when and if Americans find themselves in that situation in the near future.

Being in a military situation means everything is different. Innocent civilians always get killed accidentally when the military's involved. Some are accidental, some are deliberate, but mostly we never get to know the difference. Bodies get thrown in holes and are forgotten, except by some of the living who years later wake up screaming in the middle of the night.

Long after the grisly facts become known, sometimes we get a little tardy justice. Mostly we don't. Remember when former Senator Bob Kerrey tried to give back his Vietnam medals, admitting he killed women and children rather than the dangerous enemy gunmen his valor citations described. How did the public react? Hell, we didn't want to hear him. We told him to keep his medals, keep quiet, and forget about the whole thing.

Demonic demagogues like Joseph Farah, Michael Savage and Rush Limbaugh all have recently recommended killing large numbers of innocent Iraqis "to teach them a lesson." The "lesson" being it's not cool to mess with Uncle Sam and mutilate his hired killers, the highly paid mercenaries he hired to assassinate Iraqi intellectuals so when America has that tortured nation sufficiently lobotomized, there will be a minimum of intelligent people around to protest the new "democratic" prison camp that America has created.

The United States and Britain have decided to adopt the Pol Pot theory of social engineering -- kill everyone with academic credentials. And when the irate Iraqis decide to strike back at this masterpiece of Israeli-style population control, the U.S. ups the ante on its already-high atrocity level -- and bombs a totally defenseless town from the air, no matter who gets killed, and murders all the males under 45. Repeat: murders all the males under 45. That's what's going on right now, my dear American compatriots, in the inferno called Fallujah, Iraq. It's called genocide. No question about it.

This is how your American boys are behaving in a foreign country. Your sons, your husbands, your fathers.

Hey! They were just following orders. Based on lies.

This is what your country is doing to innocent people. Killing them without a second thought, without regard for who they are or what they've done, how many children they might have or how many wonderful things they've done in this life.

Hell, they don't worry about the children because they're killing them, too. Listen to that doctor, forced to set up his clinic in a filthy garage, describe a little boy with a shell of a skull missing its brains. Or the man who was brought to the clinic with burns so bad he will automatically dehydrate to death in 24 hours. How about the boy they threw in the river, and he couldn't swim so he drowned? Or when the fighting first began, the hundred teenagers hooded and kept in the sun, and then shot to death by your beloved Americans boys, one by one.

This was all done by your sons, your husbands, your fathers. Just following orders.

You know, we all ought to be very scared that these killer punks will be coming home soon, all with the taste of blood on their tongues, ready and willing to tell us all about the wonderful experiences they had in Iraq, or at least the ones who don't immediately get sick and die from the radioactive ammunition they had to handle or the poisonous vaccines they had to endure, at least they'll be able to tell us how they fought the War on Terror in Iraq by shooting defenseless women in the back and bombing residential neighborhoods and splattering body parts all over the tan brick walls of Baghdad.

They were scared. It's OK to kill people when you're scared.

This is the kind of behavior approved by Fox news every night, only they don't tell you about this stuff -- they tell you about our tough guy president saying "Bring it on", and how the folks back home are cheering about the lives they are throwing away.

Pretending to be brave and patriotic when they plant their own children in the peaceful soil, saying how proud they are that their children gave their lives for an unjust genocide that was based on lies.

America. What a country. A country gone mad.

And this isn't something new, you know. Don't pretend to be surprised. Don't tell me you didn't know this is the kind of stuff we noble Americans do on a regular basis.

It has been going on -- in Iraq, anyway, for FIFTEEN years! But hey, in Palestine it has been going on for FIFTY-FIVE years, at least officially (actually it has been much longer).

I haven't heard the phrase Geneva Conventions lately. The last time I heard it was when Rumsfeld complained about Iraqis taking photos of American POWs being a violation of the Geneva Conventions.

The U.S. uses the phrase Geneva Conventions when it's somebody else they can complain about. Americans forget to use the phrase when it pertains to U.S. behavior in Iraq, Afghanistan, Colombia, Lebanon, Palestine, the Philippines, Colombia, Lebanon, Nicaragua, Vietnam or any of a hundred other places all related to Fort Benning, Georgia, where they teach courses on how to violate the Geneva Conventions.

At the end of the first Gulf War in 1991, our famous drug czar Barry McCaffrey supervised the slaughter on the Highway of Death which killed thousands of Iraqi soldiers who had already surrendered. This was noted as an egregious violation of the Geneva Conventions -- killing soldiers who were trying to surrender.

But Americans cheered. Sons, husbands, fathers.

Then, for nearly 15 more years, the Americans and the Brits -- WITHOUT approval of the United Nations -- continued to bomb large parts of Iraq, and in direct violation of the Geneva Conventions, bombed water treatment plants, hospitals and other necessary services (all direct violations of the Geneva Conventions), resulting in the deaths of ONE MILLION Iraqi children from birth defects and childhood diseases that could have been easily cured were it not for the embargo of necessary medicines.

Now, the new Iraqi death toll (various American generals said it wasn't necessary to count Iraqi dead -- another endearing American trait) stands at more than 30,000. Ninety percent were innocent civilians.

Obliterated by America's video game weapons, by your sons, your husbands, your fathers.

Worst of all, the whole world now knows America had absolutely no reason to invade Iraq this time around (not that it did before in the era of the April Glaspie sucker punch, either). Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction (just as Scott Ritter, Hans Blix and others said) and Iraq had no connection to al-Qaida (although now reportedly the U.S. is trying to smuggle in WMDs and claim that Saddam had them hidden all the time). No legitimate reason whatsoever to go to war.

The U.S. invasion of Iraq is entirely unjustified, a massive crime against humanity, carried out by your sons, your husbands, your fathers, who murdered innocents on the cynical say-so of the lies our leaders told us, and are still telling us.

And now the opposition presidential candidate, supposedly a war hero himself who only recently found out he was Jewish, says he will continue the same policy of random murders and denial of self-determination should he win the totally-fixed elections of 2004. This means America is destined to be a soulless, killer nation indefinitely into the future. And it's only a matter of time before this kind of thing starts happening here.

Your sons, your husbands, your fathers are murderers. The Geneva Conventions state that when soldiers know their leaders are giving them illegal or immoral orders, it is their duty to disobey them. America used that argument in the post-World War II trials against the Japanese and the Germans, and the whole world damn well better use it against the Americans when it puts America on trial for its illegal genocide against the Iraqis.

Do the world a big favor and think of all these things the next time you hear the Star Spangled Banner, or listen to some pompous ass in a faux military hat say in a drunken stupor, "Support our troops!"

Tip your glass to him, and say, with all sincerity and that American killer smile, "Yes, brother, support our killer troops."

Just don't go to church afterwards. God would puke on you.

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"I Saw a Minibus of Children on Fire": When Terror Came to Basra

By PATRICK COCKBURN
Baghdad.

It was the turn of Basra's schoolchildren yesterday to suffer the horror of a suicide bombing. In what was the bloodiest attack on Iraq's largest Shia city, bombers in vehicles packed with explosives detonated them against police buildings, killing 68 people, including children burnt to death in school buses.

"I looked around and saw my leg bleeding and my neighbour lying dead on the floor, torn apart," said Amin Dinar as he lay in his hospital bed. "I saw a minibus full of children on fire."

Comment: Yay! Let's hear it for America's troops. Just doing their job, right? The anti-war movement in the US takes great pains to talk about the sad conditions of "our boys", etc.

Folks, they are killers. And they are going to be scarred for life. And if they ever get home, they're going to be dangerous, 130,000 sun-crazed madmen and women. How do you undo this programming? How many of them will come back to the US with all their prejudices about the rest of the world, and the Arabs in particular, intact and reinforced. They have been programmed to expect the Iraqis to welcome them with flowers and cheers. Now that the battle lines are being drawn, the soldiers aren't going to think that they were told lies by their generals. They are going to think the Iraqis are ungrateful SOBs.

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Rushing Toward the Rubble of History

Here in the United States, a strange phenomenon is taking place. On one hand, the blatant falsehoods and philosophical idiocy of the Bush Administration are beginning to unravel. On the other hand, support amongst the American people for the Bushites is growing stronger.

This phenomenon confirms the general loss of soul in the American people. When darkness rules a country, the erosion of character and fear in the people that made its ascendancy possible, are the very things that make it almost impossible for people to rid themselves of tyranny.

The exploitive power of America has heretofore been directed much more outside rather than inside these borders. But whereas Kissinger-era domination was epitomized by the dictum ‘ignorance is bliss,’ willful ignorance characterizes our present zeitgeist. Chomsky’s faith that Americans would throw the bums out if they only knew has been broken. They know.

It is a cosmic irony that George Bush, who says he follows the teaching and example of Jesus, wages war without a pang of conscience, as fully convinced that he is God’s messenger as is Osama bin Laden. “The terrorists are people who kill without conscience,” he intones ad nauseam, without a trace of irony, after killing thousands of Iraqi civilians rid the world of one evil only to replace it with greater evil.

The most evil men in history are those who have had no doubt about the rightness and righteousness of their actions. For them, doubt is weakness, and unyielding will is strength. “They will not break our will,” Bush says over and over, “we are resolute.” Hitler too spoke continuously of his iron will, and of the unbreakable will of the German people.

Mr. President, as Nelson Mandela said, you do not know how to think properly. You continuously bamboozle the American people with this wrongheaded notion that “the terrorists declared war on the United States of America.” But even if a stateless network could declare war, which it cannot, that did not give you the right to declare war on Iraq.

When Bob Woodward asked you how history would judge your actions, you gave that disgustingly insouciant shrug and said, “We’ll all be dead.” That is a very strange reaction for one who believes in God and hell, don’t you think?

Can the American people do the world a favor and get rid of our own “evil one’s,” while effectively dealing with the stateless “evil one’s” (and at the same time get out of Iraq)? It doesn’t look promising. After a few weeks of American-induced carnage in Iraq, and revelations about the disgusting dealings of the Bushites, Bush’s approval ratings have actually gone up!

The problem is that the vast majority of adults in America are either inwardly dead, or completely numb. The numb can wake up, but not even Jesus could bring the inwardly dead back to life. (“Let the dead bury their dead.”)

Certainly John Kerry would be a much better president, but he has played the ‘nuanced’ game of politics for so long he conforms to any convenient shape. As far as another center of genuine leadership emerging in the world, Europe is torn between Blair’s big bark and little bite in service of his master, and the rest of the EU’s disgust and desperate hope the nightmare will simply vanish. Meanwhile, China continues to act like it lives on its own planet, disconnected from the rest of the world, except economically.

No people are more enslaved than those who believe without question that they are free. But even though they have millions of walking dead marching behind them, Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld are teetering on the edge of a precipice of their own making.

Despite the best-laid plans by the powers and principalities, perhaps all it will take now is a strong gust of truth from a small percentage of good men and women to push the Bushites onto the rubble of history.

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Coalition Unsure Who's Behind Iraq Blasts

By ABBAS FAYADH, Associated Press Writer
April 22, 2004

BASRA, Iraq - Coalition officials said Thursday that it was too early to blame al-Qaida for simultaneous suicide car bombings in Basra that killed dozens of people, reviving the issue of how much of a role foreign militants have in Iraq's violence.

A spokesman for British forces responsible for the Basra area gave a death toll of 50 — 20 of them children — for Wednesday's blasts, lower than the toll of 68 reported by Basra's governor. [...]

Comment: Of course, there is no point in blaming "al-Qaeda" alone, it is much better to leave it open to interpretation and simply blame it on "foreign militants", such a term could be applied to any of Israel's neighbours.

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Poland mulls Iraq exit options

By Marcin Grajewski

WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland said on Wednesday it was reviewing its position in Iraq but would not pull its troops out suddenly or without Washington's approval. [...]

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Saudis Outraged by Riyadh Car Bombing

By Dominic Evans
April 22, 2004

RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's top cleric said on Thursday the people behind a suicide car bombing in Riyadh would "burn in hell" for killing innocent Muslims in the attack, which a militant group linked to al Qaeda said it carried out.

The group said it was responsible for Wednesday's blast that destroyed a security force headquarters and it vowed to carry out more bombings against government symbols. [...]

Saudi Arabia, a key U.S. ally and the birthplace of Islam, has been locked in a bitter conflict with militants linked to al Qaeda which has vowed to fight the United States and "ungodly" Saudi rulers it says are U.S. agents. [...]

The bombing came just days after a U.S. warning of a possible attack in the kingdom. [...]

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US warns of attacks on Asia shipping, finance hubs

www.chinaview.cn 2004-04-22 17:06:56

BEIJING, April 22 (Xinhuanet) -- US officials warned Asia on Thursday to be on guard against terror attacks in crowded sea lanes and in financial centres such as Hong Kong.

Speaking in Singapore, a top State Department official said Washington had good reason to believe that terror groups would target economically critical shipping lanes such as the Malacca and Singapore Straits.

"We have begun to focus on the potential or a disastrous maritime terrorist incident," Matthew Daley, deputy assistant secretary of state, told a security conference.

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Bird causes [third] power outage at LA airport; no flights affected

MASON STOCKSTILL, Associated Press Writer
Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Los Angeles International Airport suffered its third power outage in 10 days Wednesday when a bird landing on a power line forced the airport to switch to a backup energy supply, officials said.

No lights went out at the airport and no flights were delayed, though Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Donn Walker said the control tower was temporarily disconnected from the power grid as a precaution.

The 10-second outage at 5:53 a.m. came less than two weeks after another bird landing on the same line caused a blackout at the airport that delayed flights for up to 11/2 hours.

The Department of Water and Power said it will look into whether anything can be done to prevent bird-related outages in the future. [...]

On Tuesday, DWP officials said they had found the body of the bird believed responsible for the April 12 incident. A chef at a hotel near the airport told the Los Angeles Times he tossed the bird's carcass into a trash bin after a co-worker saw it electrocuted.

Comment: We're so relieved that the city-wide manhunt - er, birdhunt - has finally found the culprit after a nine day search. Actually, we heard via an anonymous source that there was a copy of the Koran found next to the bird in the dumpster. The Department of Homeland Security is set to announce that Al-Qaeda may be using birds to conduct terror attacks. Concerned Americans who notice any suspicious avian behavior should notify law enforcement officials immediately.

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Shhh! The FBI's listening to your keystrokes

By Declan McCullagh
CNET News.com
April 19, 2004, 4:00 AM PT


The FBI is trying to convince the government to mandate that providers of broadband, Internet telephony, and instant-messaging services build in backdoors for easy wiretapping.

That would constitute a sweeping expansion of police surveillance powers. Instead of asking Congress to approve the request, the FBI (along with the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration) are pressing the Federal Communications Commission to move forward with minimal public input.

"The importance and the urgency of this task cannot be overstated," their proposal says. "The ability of federal, state and local law enforcement to carry out critical electronic surveillance is being compromised today." [...]

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British troops in Iraq for years to come, foreign secretary says

07:06 AM EDT Apr 22

LONDON (AP) - British troops are likely to stay in Iraq for several years, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said Thursday, a day after a wave of suicide bombings in the British-controlled south of the country killed dozens of people.

Straw told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that British forces would be in Iraq for "at least for a couple of years," adding "it could be longer." Britain currently has about 8,700 troops in Iraq as part of the U.S.-led occupation force. Wednesday's attacks in and around Basra killed 68 people and wounded about 200, including five British soldiers.

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British press outraged after CBS shows photos of dying Princess Diana

07:06 AM EDT Apr 22

LONDON (AP) - British media and associates of Princess Diana expressed anger Thursday after CBS broadcast photos of the dying princess taken moments after a car accident.

The Guardian newspaper said the U.S. network had decided to "plumb new depths of prurience in the Princess Diana industry." CBS' 48 Hours program showed two black-and-white pictures taken by paparazzi at the scene of the Aug, 31, 1997 accident in Paris. Diana died hours later. Her companion, Dodi Fayed, and chauffeur Henri Paul also were killed.

The network insisted the pictures, which showed an unconscious Diana being treated by a doctor as she lay slumped in the back of a car in the Alma road tunnel, were not graphic or exploitative.

But Dodi Fayed's father, Mohamed al Fayed, said CBS had behaved in "disgraceful and insensitive" manner.

"CBS obviously don't care about the appalling effect of showing images of murder victims," said Fayed, who has long insisted that Diana and his son were murdered. A lengthy French investigation concluded the crash was an accident caused by drunk and speeding driver Paul.

Comment: US morality is an amazing thing. The press shamelessly lies to its public in order to whip up mass hysteria for an invasion of Iraq, or to promote the fear of a new "terrorist" attack, then shows pictures of Diana's death that it claims are not "graphic or exploitative." Pressed further, they might even say that the public has the right to know.

What is it about American culture that has short-circuited any real human emotions and installed, in their place, market-driven simulacra? The British press, not one known for its good taste, refused to publish the photos. CBS can do it and justify the display, like the US could justify showing the dead bodies of Saddam's sons or the body-double of Saddam getting his medical exam. Of course, they raise a cry of foul play when any other country does the same to an American.

My, my, aren't they just sooooo speshul.

But, they live in a free and democratic society. So listen to the claptrap from this journalist:

Congress should probe beyond nameless sources

April 22,2004

One of the benefits of a free society is that citizens, aided by a free press, can examine the workings of their own government. That now is happening as Americans read reports of how the Bush administration took our nation to war in Iraq. Last month saw the publication of former anti-terrorism chief Richard Clarke's "Against All Enemies."

The gist of this article is that Americans can now judge Bush for themselves. What rot! It is too late! What does it matter now that US troops are in Iraq for the long haul, that the Patriot Act has been passed, that the military budget has been boosted. Where were these people two years ago, one year ago. It was obvious then what was going on. The contender, John Kerry, is as sold out to Zionism as Bush is. What change is it going to make to replace one with the other?

It is Too Late!

But, then again, it is too late for us all. We are on a train speeding for the wall, barreling down the tracks with no breaks.

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Ariel Sharon is losing public support for Gaza withdrawal plan

07:06 AM EDT Apr 22
MARK LAVIE

JERUSALEM (AP) - Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is losing ground in his hardline Likud party less than two weeks before a key vote on his plan to pull out of Gaza Strip and West Bank areas, according to an opinion poll published Thursday.

Comment: Quick! Tell Sharon to tell his buddies in Hamas to round up half a million Palestinian civilians armed with sticks and stones and have them drive the IDF out!

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Missile defense system on schedule for launch: Pentagon

www.chinaview.cn 2004-04-22 12:54:28

WASHINGTON, April 21 (Xinhuanet) -- A top Pentagon official in charge of missile defense said Wednesday a limited missile defense system would be in place by the end of the year, meeting a key goal President George W. Bush set in this election year.

Lieutenant General Ronald Kadish, director of the Missile Defense Agency, told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee that thePentagon will have deployed eight interceptors by the end of the year, followed by 12 in the next year.

He said the initial system would provide a capability "to defeat near-term threats of greatest concern," although it will not guarantee a 100 percent defense against missiles.

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Condi's Slip

By Deborah Schoeneman
WITH SPENCER MORGAN
April 26, 2004

A pressing issue of dinner-party etiquette is vexing Washington, according to a story now making the D.C. rounds: How should you react when your guest, in this case national-security adviser Condoleezza Rice, makes a poignant faux pas? At a recent dinner party hosted by New York Times D.C. bureau chief Philip Taubman and his wife, Times reporter Felicity Barringer, and attended by Arthur Sulzberger Jr., Maureen Dowd, Steven Weisman, and Elisabeth Bumiller, Rice was reportedly overheard saying, “As I was telling my husb—” and then stopping herself abruptly, before saying, “As I was telling President Bush.” Jaws dropped, but a guest says the slip by the unmarried politician, who spends weekends with the president and his wife, seemed more psychologically telling than incriminating. Nobody thinks Bush and Rice are actually an item. A National Security Council spokesman laughed and said, “No comment.”

Comment: Don't know what is more telling about this piece, Condi's remark about her husb... or the fact that the reporters who write about these clowns would go to the same parties...

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OK, everyone, back to sleep!

Study: Huge volcano eruptions are uncommon

Chapel Hill, NC, Apr. 21 (UPI) -- A University of North Carolina study suggests gigantic volcano eruptions capable of threatening human extinction may not be as common as once thought.

"It's not hyperbole to say that the biggest eruptions could bring an end to civilization," said Allen Glazner, professor of geologic sciences at UNC. "Such eruptions are evident in the geologic record, and the classic textbook picture of volcanoes implies that huge pots of magma are brewing under most active volcanoes today."

However, Glazner said the traditional view is wrong, according to work with UNC assistant geology professors Drew Coleman and John Bartley of the University of Utah.

"Although evidence for such massive eruptions is found throughout the geologic record, our investigation of magmas frozen below long-extinct volcanoes in California's Sierra Nevada led us to conclude that the largest eruptions are significantly less likely than many people believed," Glazner said.

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But watch out 'cause just because it is isn't frequent, doesn't mean it isn't going to happen...

Scientists Size-up, Classify Meteorite That Nearly Landed In Their Backyards

University Of Chicago
2004-04-20

The meteorites that punched through roofs in Park Forest, Ill., on the evening of March 26, 2003, came from a larger mass that weighed no less than 1,980 pounds before it hit the atmosphere, according to scientific analyses led by the University of Chicago's Steven Simon, who himself also happens to live in Park Forest.

Simon, a Senior Research Associate in Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago, and seven co-authors will publish these and other findings in the April issue of the journal Meteoritics and Planetary Science. Simon holds a unique distinction among scientists: his home sits in the middle of the strewnfield, the area from which the meteorites were recovered.

"I don't know of any other time when a meteoriticist was in the middle of a strewnfield," said Lawrence Grossman, Professor in Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago and one of Simon's co-authors.

In fact, Simon actually saw the flash the meteorite created. He had the drapes closed when the rock entered the sky over Illinois, but "the whole sky lit up," he said.

Grossman, who lives in Flossmoor, not far from Park Forest, also experienced the meteorite's arrival firsthand. He was awakened by the sound of the meteorite entering the atmosphere that night. "I heard a detonation," Grossman said. "It was sharp enough to wake me up."

The team calculated the projectile's size range based on measurements of the galactic cosmic rays that it absorbed. Measurements of a radioactive form of cobalt provided the projectile's minimum size. "If the object is too small the cosmic rays will just pass through and not make 60cobalt," Simon explained.

Simon and Grossman classify the meteorite as an L5 chondrite, a type of stony meteorite, one low in iron that was heated for a long period of time inside its parent body, probably an asteroid. "It's a fairly common type of meteorite," Simon said.

The Park Forest meteorite also showed signs that it had been highly shocked, probably when it was part of a rock that was broken from a much larger asteroid following a collision. The evidence for shock includes shocked feldspar. Apollo astronauts recovered shocked specimens of the mineral from the moon, as well, Simon said. Impact shock was common in the early history of the solar system because of the large quantity of interplanetary debris then in existence.

Witnesses in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Missouri reported seeing the fireball that the meteorite produced as it broke up in the atmosphere, Simon and his colleagues report. Local residents collected hundreds of meteorite fragments totaling approximately 65 pounds from an area extending from Crete in the south to the southern end of Olympia Fields in the north. Located in Chicago's south suburbs, "This is the most densely populated region to be hit by a meteorite shower in modern times," the authors write. [...]

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'Weird' meteorite may be from Mars moon

14:02 22 April 04

Exclusive from New Scientist Print Edition. Subscribe and get 4 free issues.

A unique meteorite that fell on a Soviet military base in Yemen in 1980 may have come from one of the moons of Mars. Several meteorites from the Red Planet have been found on Earth, but this could be the only piece of Martian moon rock.

Andrei Ivanov, who is based at the Vernadsky Institute of Geochemistry and Analytical Chemistry in Moscow, Russia, spent two decades puzzling over the fist-sized Kaidun meteorite before he decided that it must be a chip off Phobos, the larger of the two Martian moons. "I can't find a better candidate," Ivanov told New Scientist.

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UPDATE: Tornado kills Illinois trailer park residents who sought shelter in bar

Apr 22

UTICA, Ill. (AP) - Searchers pulled eight bodies from the rubble of a tornado-flattened Illinois tavern Wednesday, a day after dozens of twisters tore through the U.S. Midwest.

Utica Mayor Fred Esmond said several people from a nearby trailer park fled to the basement of the Milestone Tap bar to seek refuge from the storm.

"They heard it on the radio. Some of them went to the tavern for safety and it just so happened..." Esmond said, his voice trailing off.

Coroner Jody Bernard said the dead, who were found in various locations of the bar, ranged in age from 18 to 81.

The twister cut a wide swath of destruction in the small town about 150 kilometres southwest of Chicago, turning homes and businesses into piles of brick and splintered wood. More than 10 people were taken to hospitals and at least six remained there Wednesday afternoon.

"It was like my brain wasn't comprehending what my eyes were seeing," said John Devore, who rushed his family into the basement and looked outside about 15 seconds later.

"I said: 'Well, it looks like the car's OK' and then a split-second later, 'Wait a minute. I'm not supposed to be able to see my car."

"Where the hell's my garage?"' [...]

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Drought worsens in Thailand, 6.5 million affected

Thu Apr 22, 2:54 AM ET

BANGKOK, (AFP) - Some 6.5 million people across Thailand are suffering from a serious regional drought that threatens to devastate even more of the kingdom during the dryest time of year, officials say.

The department of disaster prevention and mitigation said 14,887 villages in 59 provinces had been declared serious drought zones, mainly in northern and northeastern areas but also in the popular southern resort island of Phuket.

"The country still faces less rain which is worsening the drought, and the situation is expected to expand and get more serious," according to a statement from the department. [...]

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Is Delhi headed for a big earthquake?

Dr. Carla Jones, Center for Seismic Studies, UK

Recent plate movements show a classical stress formation and a major possible earthquake within three months in Delhi. Ranging from 1.6 to 3 on Richter scale, a series of minor tremors have rocked the capital, reminding once again Delhi ’s susceptibility to earthquakes. Six minor earthquakes in ten days sometimes is the precursor to a large one. The current local seismic behavior is very similar to the one in Gujarat few years back. The net effect can way more devastating that even a nuclear bomb in Delhi. The Chinese center for earth studies has a station in Tibet. The Tibetan monitoring systems is providing a similar reading in the Southeast of Tibet. The satellite mappings are also pointing towards some unusual seismic activities in the Delhi area. The epicenter for the small earthquakes are clustered around a series of local fault lines in Delhi. This is another major cause of worry. Normally before the big one comes, there is a dull period of no activity for a few days or even weeks. The big one normally comes in suddenly and normally is of six or higher in Richter scale.

Please note if there is a real big one coming, these small tremors can continue for many years before the catastrophic one shows up. There is something called cycle of earth quakes. We looked into India’s major cycles. Delhi is due for a big one since 1997. However, seven years in geographic scale is very minuscule. It can come anytime during next seventy years. If the small tumours subside and nothing happens for the next six months, probably nothing will happen for at least three years. However, when all evidenced are put together, it does not look very good.

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Marrs Attacks Official 'Secrecy' on Aliens

At Gaithersburg Conference, JFK Conspiracy Author Alleges Feds Hide Facts on Extraterrestrials

By Ira Weintraub
Special to the Sentinel

Hundreds of people from the United States and around the world converged on Gaithersburg last weekend for the first conference dedicated to the government's alleged suppression of data about UFOs and extraterrestrials.

The "X-Conference: the 1st Annual Exopolitics Expo" at the Gaithersburg Hilton was organized by activist and former political candidate Stephen Bassett, who finished a distant last in the 2002 election for Maryland's 8th Congressional District.

His goal for this convention was the same as for his 2002 campaign. He wants to "reform, revise and open up" the U.S. political system.

"This is not a UFO conference; it is not about lights in the sky," Bassett said. "It is about lies on the ground." [...]

According to Marrs, while John F. Kennedy was still a congressman, he was informed about alien sightings at Roswell AFB in New Mexico. As president, Kennedy visited Area 51, a military base in Nevada, to gain further information about the Roswell incidents, but was told by local Air Force officials that nothing had happened, Marrs claimed.

Other speakers, all of whom are published authors, included Dr. William J. Birnes, a best-selling author; Paul Davids, the movie producer and writer (Showtime's "Roswell"); and Richard C. Hoagland, science advisor to Walter Cronkite and CBS News. [...]

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