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."
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Thursday, August 19, 2004
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Good intentions pave the way to Hell?
If the good intentions of the U.S. government are any indication, then we are certainly headed in that direction. The bloody and destructive carnage being reaped in Iraq, the Israeli occupied territories and Afghanistan has caused more international distrust and anger towards the U.S. and its foreign policies than in any other period of history. Just read articles and op-ed pieces from a variety of foreign media sources.
The bewilderment and frustration found in many foreign news articles towards U.S. warmongering, corporate profiteering, and the condoning silence of U.S. citizens verifies a growing distrust of the U.S. by many in the international community. Even though other countries have questioned U.S. government leaders and their policies in the past, the U.S. was at least respected in the knowledge that its people would attempt to right a wrong and compel its leaders to follow suit.
The current overwhelming silence of Americans, particularly in light of the false reasoning given for the invasion of Iraq, the Abu Gharib torture scandals, the thousands of innocent Iraqi citizens who’ve been killed and maimed by U.S. occupation forces and the lack of evenhandedness pertaining to the ongoing Israeli/Palestinian conflict adds to the suspicions that U.S. citizens condone and agree with the use of military force as the main tool of foreign policy. The utilization of diplomacy is not even a consideration by the trigger-happy Bush administration to avoid the barbarity of war. No sign of good intentions here.
Seems more like a deliberate intent to encourage contempt for the U.S. therefore affecting a continual need for war based corporate services and hardware.
This wanton use of force should be a red flag warning that the intentions at work, not only by the executive branch but also by the enabling nature of the legislative branch, are anything but good. The most obvious of these intentions, no matter how hard the Bush administration tries to deny it, is the cold-blooded profiteering taking place by the military-industrial complex, corporate cronies that have symbiotic political, social and financial ties with many in this administration. There are those of both the Republican and Democratic parties in the legislative branch, as well, that share many of these identical ties with the same war based corporations.
The influence of money is the true nature of political maneuverings in Washington D.C., unfortunately at the expense of the original ideals of our nations’ founders, and the blood sacrifices of our young men and women in the armed forces, of which you’ll find few, if any, who are related to those who sent them off to kill and be killed. The apparent diminishing supply of international oil reserves, and that Iraq has the third largest known oil reserves in the world, also brings into question the true motivations and intent for the U.S. invasion of Iraq.
The refusal of this administration to hand over the taxpayer funded Energy Task Forces’ findings, which was headed by Dick Cheney, to the General Accounting Office only fortifies the suspicion that there is a likely cover-up encompassing the oil and power industry, government officials and the ever-widening rift between the demand for, and the diminishing supply of oil. The control of Iraqi oil certainly would seem to be a much more likely prime motive to remove Saddam Hussein from power rather than the self-righteous and benevolent posturing of removing him for the sake of liberating the Iraqi people in the name of freedom.
Even though the GAO was well within its mandate of attempting to account for the use of taxpayer monies that funded the Energy Task Force, somehow the stonewalling tactics of the Bush administration forced the GAO to decide to drop its lawsuit in pursuit of the ETF data. The ongoing secrecy, overt lies and lack of transparency by the Bush administration only gives credence to the suspicions that there is a draconian mindset behind their outward façade of ‘good’ intentions. The preliminary details of the fiscal shell-game that was played at Enron has all the classic earmarks of a grade A money laundering/ponzi scheme that may well be a part of the withheld Energy Task Force information, and could be very incriminating towards those in highly held government positions, past and present. Not a stretch when one recognizes the oil and power industry backgrounds of those who now hold, or have held, such positions of power.
The fact that Bush angrily walked out of a press conference after being questioned about his relationship with Ken Lay should give us a hint that the Enron scandal has far reaching and pervasive implications. Don’t hold your breath, however, expecting any major revelations. The Swiss bank UBS purchased what was left of Enron, and Swiss bankers are not known for their whistle blowing. This leaves us with a speculative quandary to ponder, about the scope of the Enron scenario; with trillions of DOD and HUD dollars unaccounted for between 1997-2001, was Enron the vehicle used to abscond with this fortune? And by whom?
Maybe it should be renamed the End-run scandal.
Possibly the worst of Bush’s ‘good’ intentions has been to create the war economy in order to mask the failures of this administration’s domestic economic policies. The outsourcing of America’s manufacturing jobs to other countries has been disastrous for the American lower and middle-income groups. The tax cuts given to the highest income brackets and corporations, which were said to be incentives for these groups to re-invest in American businesses, has in actuality fed into the furthering of their corporate greed. Corporations have increased their profits, in part; by using the tax cuts to invest in manufacturing plants abroad, where the wages they pay out are pennies on the dollar compared to the wages they would pay in America. All the while the cost of their products to consumers has remained the same, which increases their profit margin substantially.
This has been a triple whammy, however, for American lower and middle wage earners.
Our increased tax burden, essentially due to corporate tax breaks, allows these corporations to relocate their domestically based manufacturing facilities to other countries, we get to pay the same price for a product that should cost less based on the manufacturers’ lower cost per unit and we could very well lose our jobs. Add in the factors that the Federal Reserve annually pumps additional fiat money into the economy, and the unaccounted trillions of dollars by the DOD and HUD, and the long term effects of these smoke and mirrors manipulations, on the financial health of America, has dire and catastrophic consequences for the not too distant future.
The wealth-shifting war based economy, trillions of dollars in debt and the diminishing level of decent paying jobs needed to pay off that debt will lead to an updated version of feudalism; a two-tiered nation consisting of indentured servants, and of the wealthy. A once proud nation of industrious, prosperous and enterprising free people will be nothing more than a faded memory from the past. We the people will become them and us. Most assuredly, the perpetual war economy will serve the ruling elite well. From it will flow a continual stream of wealth for them and the means in which to control us, the population, both in size and with tyranny. The mega-military/industrial complex totalitarian state, under the auspices of the globalist international banker masters is enveloping around us.
The trap has been set and we have walked into it willfully by naively believing in the cunningly deceptive ‘good’ intentions of those who knew that their place in the novus ordo seclorem, formed out of chaos, would be preserved at the expense of all others.
Good intentions pave the way to Hell?
Decide for yourself.
Part II: Pitchmen, Provocateurs, and Those Who Predict the Past
Will Team Bush stage a coup d'etat?
For most Americans, even asking the question sounds absurd. The United States has enjoyed over 200 years without a single forcible overthrow of elected government, and has never cancelled a national election, not even during the Civil War. To imagine the Bush Administration extending its rule through an unconstitutional seizure of power seems a leap into loony land.
But that's where too many Americans are now leaping. Friends who should know better talk of brownshirts, Fascist playbooks, and the serious threat of a Bush coup cribbed from Hitler, Mussolini, or one the CIA's classic Third World destabilization campaigns. I see far greater danger from the way these friends insist on predicting the past. Fight the wrong battle, and even if you win, you lose.
So, no, I do not believe that Bush, Cheney, Rove, and Rumsfeld will try to seize power outside of the electoral system, not even if they think they will lose.
Though unhinged from any moral limits on their use of power, our American ubermenschen are smart enough to realize why they could never goose-step their way to full-scale dictatorship. The American military would cast the deciding vote, and too many of the brass do not exactly love their current civilian bosses, as countless leaks have shown. With any would-be plotter's mind tightly focused by the risk of hanging, only a complete lunatic would count on getting enough colonels and generals to back a coup d'etat. And if lunatics tried, they would lose.
Even those warriors who embrace Mr. Bush still draw the line. Consider Tommy Franks, the four-star general who moved on to greener pastures after leading American forces into both Afghanistan and Iraq. A personal favorite of the president, Gen. Franks has thought deeply about military coups. If terrorists managed to attack the United States and kill large numbers with chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons, he warned, we would likely discard our Constitution and turn to a military form of government.
That, he said, would be "the worst thing that could happen."
Presently, Gen. Franks leans toward endorsing Mr. Bush, whom he considers "an American hero." Yet, he pointedly refuses to demean Mr. Bush's Democratic opponent John Kerry.
"Do you think Senator Kerry is qualified to be commander in chief?" an interviewer asked.
"Absolutely," declared Gen. Franks. "I think Senator Kerry is a patriot."
So, short of a bin-Laden nuke, please do not hold your breath waiting for a Bush coup. Expect, instead, exactly what Republican pitchmen have already started to sell.
Expect an escalating campaign to terrify the public with phony Code Orange and soon Red alerts, spiced with well-timed captures of wanted terrorists and highly publicized "successes" in stopping the most horrific attacks.
Expect an increasing attempt to brand anti-Bush protestors as mini-terrorists, using police and FBI provocateurs to instigate violence, as they did so often against the Black Panthers and Vietnam Anti-War Movement.
Expect a massive effort to keep as many as three million pro-Democratic Afro- Americans, Native Americans, and non-Cuban Hispanics from voting.
And expect, as well, a few quiet attempts to rewrite computer codes on touch-screen voting systems, switching occasional Kerry votes to Mr. Bush. In a closely contested state, a handful of stolen electronic ballots could rewrite the course of history.
Activists in and out of the Democratic Party are now working hard to counter these very real threats, whether in voter registration campaigns or fights against touch-screen voting systems that lack paper ballots to allo w officials to check results. All this talk of nightmare coups only distracts these activists from the real battles they are waging. It also discourages others from doing anything at all.
Why, then, do so many otherwise sensible people continue their silly chatter?
Blame the U.S. Supreme Court. In disallowing the further recount of votes in Florida in the last presidential go-round, the Justices robbed the 2000 election of its legitimacy. They - and not the voters - picked the Pre sident.
Blame Brother Jeb Bush, the Florida Governor, who encouraged countless efforts to harass Afro-American voters and drive them away from the polls. He's still doing it.
Blame hard-shell Republicans who never accepted the legitimacy of Bill Clinton's election, and tried to use the Monica Lewinsky scandal to undo it. Unless we accept elections as final, as Al Gore did in 2000, we open th e door to chaos.
But somewhere in the blame game leave a special place for those who have so successfully sold the idea that a shadowy junta within the American government plotted and executed the horrific events of September 11, 2001, perhaps with the help of the Israeli Mossad.
Found on the Internet and in best-selling books all over the world, the conspiracy theories differ in detail, but generally share common threads. The arch-terrorist Osama bin Laden secretly works for the CIA, as he did when he helped drive the Soviets from Afghanistan. Mohammed Atta and the other "Arab hijackers" were only fall guys, while radio beacons guided the ill-fated airplanes into the twin towers of the World Trade Center. No pa ssenger jet flew into the Pentagon: the damage came from a missile or truck bomb. And, with the subsequent anti-terrorist hysteria, the plotters enhanced their own power, while steamrolling the United States into a highly profitable, never-ending war against a more-or-less fictional foe.
Clever and determined, those who tell these tales poke intriguing holes in the official account, raising questions that need to be answered. But, like so many who overdose on unproved conspiracies, they all make the same gaffes. They rely too much on tendentious, often uncorroborated evidence. They speculate too much about what could have happened rather than nail down what did. And, while they hammer the official account without mercy, they rarely apply the same skeptical questioning to their own alternative conjectures.
Who were - and who were not - in the conspiracy? What hard evidence establishes the guilt of each conspirator? How far did the plot spread? And, how did the plotters keep so many people in line without the first significant leak, before or since?
The answers remain sketchy and underwhelming. Even more bothersome, the conspiracy theorists tacitly deny the last hundred-plus years of Middle Eastern history, in which radical Islamic thinkers built their own terrorist movements, assassinated their own political leaders, and made their own history. Why does everything - good or bad - have to be "Made in the USA?"
Comment: It doesn't. The problem comes from the fact that the US has often armed and funded future terrorists and dictators. America has also conducted operations to overthrow numerous "democratic" governments in favor of pro-US dictators, all the while feeding lies to the public about spreading democracy, fighting communism, or some other such nonsense.
So, while everything - good or bad - does NOT have to be "Made in the USA", deciding that the US is never at fault - which seems to be the main opinion among Americans - is far more destructive. A public that is constantly critical and skeptical of its government is far less likely to find itself immersed in a Vietnam or an Iraq with the blood of thousands on their hands.
The simple fact of the matter is that there is enough evidence to warrant a thorough, impartial investigation of the US government and military-industrial complex regarding the events of 9/11 and the subsequent Middle East invasions. Furthermore, those who claim that "conspiracy theorists" dismiss hundreds of years of Middle Eastern history are referring to a history that is based on lies and half-truths. For example, the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict differs wildly depending on who tells the story...
So, no, I do not believe that anyone but al-Qaeda staged 9/11, and I think we would all do better fighting real dragons rather than unproved fantasies.
of the Berkeley Free Speech Movement and the New Left monthly Ramparts,
Steve Weissman lived for many years in London, working as a magazine writer
and television producer. He now lives and works in France, where he writes
for t r u t h o u t.
Opinion: Manuel Valenzuela
--- From PNAC plan entitled Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces and Resources for a New Century, endorsed by neocons in the Bush Administration, the corporate media and Washington think-tanks. Ingrained in the plan are ever-increasing levels of military spending, incessant empire building, pre-emptive invasions and, inherently, a perpetual state of war and fear.
Manna from Heaven
Like bolts of lightning sent from the gods above, airline jets appeared out of parting skies, slamming thunderously into grandeurs of human achievement, transforming towering monuments of steel and glass into blinding avalanches of ashen dust and debris that have yet to clear from the residue-filled eyes of most Americans. The omnipresent haze that remains is deeply entrenched into our primitive and mammalian brain, reawakening dormant animalistic passions and emotions that are corroding our ability to think like the human beings we claim to be.
Like a pathogen this malady exists, attaching itself to the cells of reason and analytical thinking, infecting us with fear, insecurity, paranoia, hatred, anger, vengeance and a blind, degenerative patriotism that has placed the future course of American history in the claws of a small cabal of corrupt, malevolent and warmongering few.
They are the military-industrial complex (MIC) and the Corporate Leviathan, and the gods of war and greed they are called. This powerful group of elite is comprised of profiteers of misery, purveyors of death, immoral scoundrels addicted to power and debased monsters whose faces are stained with the blood of thousands upon thousands of innocent human beings. For them, the horrors perpetrated on 9/11 were the Pearl Harbor they had long been seeking.
It was on that day that the misery of millions became the fortune of a few thousand. It was on that day that the MIC and the Corporate Leviathan wrestled ultimate control from the people of the world, usurping global power and forever altering the future of humanity. Our 9/11 became their Pearl Harbor, a moment in time needed to unleash already predetermined plans to expand power and control on a now easily manipulated and mobilized citizenry. The greatest profiteers in the history of the United States were now free to release their hounds of war, conquest, greed and violence upon the rest of civilization.
On that fateful day, particles of asbestos, computers, furniture, glass, concrete and other pathogens that would eventually kill thousands had yet to settle on the street of New York and already the gods of war and greed were busy implementing their plans for empire expansion, wars for profit and revenue, battles for control, and mobilization of a perpetual war economy. Those entities with vested interests at home and those with vested interests abroad joined forces to spawn the greatest manipulation of a population in the history of the world, one that would lie, connive, distort, deceive and condition its way towards the bloody fields of war from where the human mind rarely, if ever, escapes from.
The military-industrial complex and the Corporate Leviathan, controlling government, the media and the mind of the psychologically fragile post-9/11 American citizen, quickly unfolded designs for mobilizing the richest nation on Earth towards war. All mechanisms at its disposal were used to guide America and its people down the path of invasion, death and occupation. The engines were started, the assembly lines turned on and the conveyor belts of the war machine were soon warmed up, eager to excrete instruments of death in exchange for the benefits of the grandest pilferage of the American taxpayer in the entire history of the United States.
The neocon/Likud, MIC and Leviathan cabal's Pearl Harbor was a godsend from above, manna from heaven blessed by the gods of war and greed, the exact instrument the group of profit, greed and warmongers had been seeking for years. With the death of 3000 citizens of the world a new course of history had begun, designed years before, now being written page by page and chapter by chapter with the blood-soaked pen of those now guiding us through paths unknown inside dark and ominous forests from which humanity has never emerged out of.
Part I: The Conditioning Begins
Like all good propagandists seeking to mobilize the masses, the gods of war had unlimited means by which to brainwash an already schizophrenic population. Through their control of the televised, radio and written media the morsels of war were quickly introduced, usually with a rather apparent absence of dissent and an overflowing commentary favoring war. At a time when blind patriotism raged and misguided anger seethed, the media became an unyielding loudspeaker pushing the agenda of the gods of war. It became, in short time, the instrument spewing out the brainwashed thoughts sent into the homes of the American public. The tool of the gods of war entered every home and every mind, from cradle to grave, using television, radio and newspapers/magazines to set the nation on a war footing it has yet to escape.
The American mind had been made fragile from hours of seeing human carnage unfold and the manifest suffering it spawned. Psychologically destroyed the nation found itself in, unable to make any sense of a world gone mad or of images never seen before by human eyes, caught on tape, to be played and replayed, over and over, thereby cementing human horror upon still primitive and mammalian brains. Predictably, we did not respond well. Fear and paranoia overcame the nation; suddenly the economy halted as we ceased our ingrained consumer-driven ways. Our children suffered nightmares; millions were diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Many found religion once more, as humans tend to do when the four corners of the world come crashing down. Depression and anxiety enveloped all cities and states as our animal fear and emotions tried desperately to make sense of the horror we had all seen. What our brain was not ready to experience or digest was nonetheless forced upon it, making us vulnerable creatures existing on the fumes emanating from the remains of the World Trade Center. Through the magic of television the reality of human horror and suffering we were witness to, releasing emotions and passions the human mind is not capable of understanding.
We became the easy targets of circumstance to the gods of war and greed and the profiteers of misery. The bombs and torpedoes of Pearl Harbor had been reincarnated for the eyes of the world to see, taped and replayed, analyzed and dissected, exploited to serve the purposes of those hidden behind veils of governance and offices of high rise skyscrapers. The gods of war and greed at last had their massacre; the world now had a most ominous and violent future ahead.
Patriotic unity manifested by an entire nation draped in the red, white and blue played right into the master plan of the gods of war and greed. Like a vicious circle with no end, united patriotism fed blind patriotism, granting the cabal in power unfettered power and control. The tentacles in the media assured that the populace remain blind and unquestioning, making acquiescent servants of millions who, like Pavlovian dogs, drooled and obeyed at the first sight of Old Glory waving proudly in the corner of their television monitors.
To dissent was to be with the terrorists; to question falsity was to be unpatriotic. All objectivity ceased, all patriotism thrived, and lost in the flag-draped graphics and the bravado of freedom-loving anchors was any semblance of the truth. In a nation saturated with flags, from cars to homes to stores to clothing to everything in between, bleeding a nationalism not seen since the days of 1930's Germany and bombarded with unending brainwashing and war conditioning, to be against the propaganda and manipulation spewing from the MIC, Leviathan and government was to be a traitor, a friend of the terrorists. With an entire population in the grip of the gods of war and greed, unable and unwilling to see truth or hear reason, reality ceased to exist and the demons of distorted fiction were free to roam the confines of the great lands of the United States.
Following the footsteps of Fox News, whose deceptions and manipulations betray its warmonger, right-wing, Christian fundamentalist and pro-Bush agenda, the rest of the available media soon saw in the 9/11 tragedy the makings of a money making cash cow. When an entire population had lost its ability to reason – mutating into rabid nationalists and patriots seeking vengeance – the media, always seeking the favors of the gods of greed and profit, turned from an objective source of news into a disseminator of myopic views favoring the lies and distortions birthed by the government and the gods of war. To be against the wave of patriotism was to be foolish, after all, and, following the dictates of polls, ratings and focus groups, corporate media thus fell prey to the vicious circle created by those whose war plans were now in full swing.
To seek truth was to commit suicide; to show dissent was to risk alienation. In times of human fragility, where the blood of the state is avowed over that of the individual, where manipulation is easily achieved and subservience becomes pandemic, the only road for the media to take, under tremendous pressure from the public and its corporate parent, is that of governmental disseminator of propaganda. For profit, for ratings, for job security and popularity, journalists and editors in media collectively unbuckled their belts, bent over forwards and allowed their integrity and honor to dissolve, allowing themselves instead to be raped by the power of the flag, the gun and the drums of war.
The American public was spoon fed into war from the very beginning in an organized campaign by government and corporate interests. In coordinated efforts, television and newspapers began showcasing story after story after story implicating Saddam Hussein and Iraq with ever growing imminent dangers. False lies under cover of exclusive news reporting were introduced into the system, making Saddam and Iraq the next coming of Hitler and the Nazis. From the most respectable newspapers in the country to the most trustworthy television news anchors, the lies and fabrications that began in the Bush administration found a welcome home. No attempt was made to report opposing views or of uncovering truths; no attempt was made to give objective viewpoints or to even have a national debate on so important an issue.
On the contrary, the sole voices of the warmongers and those with vested interests in an Iraq war were given a forum, both in television and in print. To this day, the neocons in government and those in think-tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute fill the airwaves and the op-ed columns. Only the voice of the gods of war and greed made its way into our ears. Only their graphics, information, so-called intelligence and faces were allowed to grace the monitors Americans pray to on a daily basis.
And so, as days turned into months, as stories of WMDs dotted the landscape and insinuations of an Iraq, al-Qaeda connection swirled into our homes, the conditioning of the American people continued unabated. False story after false story made the headlines, helping send the nation to war as the boots of soldiers marched and the unwavering flags of support graced the neighborhoods of a citizenry that has been both bamboozled and exploited by the gods of war and greed and the profiteers of misery who used the death of 3000 innocent energies to spearhead their drive for war, death and ultimate profit and power.
Part II: The Trumpets of War Sound Out
The decimation and utter destruction of Iraq and its society by the military-industrial complex and its vast arsenal of instruments of violence commenced with stealth bombers releasing massive bombs from the dark skies above. Invisible and undetectable death rained down from the heavens as the gods of war and greed unleashed mighty fury at millions of innocent Iraqis. The campaign to destroy infrastructure, ministries, the military and the fabric of society had begun. There is no profit from unharmed structures, after all, no reconstruction contracts from that which has not been destroyed.
Like hyenas drooling and fighting at the prospect of a dead carcass, the MIC and Leviathan lined up to share in the spoils of the carnage their tentacles had just unleashed. Billions of dollars in pilfered American taxpayer money was at hand, manna from heaven sent to the entities of destruction and rape by a government subservient to the gods of war and greed. An entire nation of 25 million people was in shambles after a decade of economic genocide and two wars of imperial showmanship. And, with $200 billion available from the hard earned wages of American taxpayers, the MIC and Leviathan could only envisage the feeding frenzy that the invasion and occupation of Iraq would create.
Electricity plants were torn to shreds, sewage infrastructure was decimated. Government ministries were bombed and burned, while water treatments centers were destroyed. Bridges and roads were carpet bombed, fertile lands were poisoned by depleted uranium. Mesopotamia's history and culture was looted, allowed to be pillaged by American forces. Sanctions had eviscerated hospitals, universities and schools, making anemic healthcare and education, while Iraqi society lingered in utter indigence. Meanwhile, everything related to oil was secured, given the utmost attention and protection, so as to leave everything in working order for the great American and British petrochemical conglomerates. The Leviathan was thirsty, and needed to be fed.
A war for profit and pillage had commenced, naturally without humanity or concern for innocent human life. For the gods of war and greed and the profiteers of misery care not an ounce for humanity or the beating energy of a human body. They care nothing for the suffering their policies unearth nor the death and violence their instruments of death advance. The gods of war and greed care only about power and control; they care only about profit and revenues. Those who profit from misery breathe and feed off of human suffering and pain. They thrive only when humanity dies. It is this reason that a Pearl Harbor was desperately needed, the only mechanism that could stop the hemorrhaging of profits and power due to the drought of war created by the disappearance of the Cold War and the enemy it so ably marketed.
complex, corporate Leviathan, the neocons/Likudniks and the American government,
fused together through their ritualistic mating tango of death, have formed
a cocktail of fascism mixed with the undeniable parameters that power
and control allows. The revolving door and circular Ferris wheel that
has become the American government, where corporate executives and defense
contractor elite play a sinister game of musical chairs with top military
personnel and government officials, is transforming a government of, by
and for the people into a twisted game of corporatist and military control
where government is now nothing more than an instrument to further the
interests of both the MIC and the Leviathan.
When the gods of war and greed and profiteers of misery possess the Almighty Dollar in vast quantities, however, a government that once protected and furthered our cause now exploits and even endangers every last one of us.
Melted into this growing cabal of croniness, corruption and connivance has been the infiltration into the seats of power and policy by those furthering the interests of a foreign nation. These individuals, vested with several interests in both foreign and national defense contractors, foreign political parties and clearly pushing American foreign policy to mirror the interests of other sovereign nations, have, over the last decade, waited patiently in the wings until the day arrived, much like 9/11 under the power of George W. Bush, from which to unleash their devious plans of war by proxy.
Since 9/11, these individuals have done more to create and market the war with Iraq than any other group. From the Pentagon they concocted intelligence, manipulated truths and created lies in order to justify a war against an enemy of their client state. Inside the Bush administration they took control of foreign policy, as they perched from the top of the Pentagon and the Vice President's office, advising and consulting the President, cooking up intelligence and stove-piping distorted and fabricated material past other government institutions. The neocons this group is called, festering the halls of Washington in furtherment of Israel's interests, conning a nation blind, endangering the American people more and more with each wave of their ignorant and self-delusional ideology.
The trumpets of war have sounded out, the thundering stampede of soldier boots can be heard, marching toward a battle the MIC hopes will continue into perpetuity, lasting as long as Arab Muslim enemies can be created and the American mind manipulated. As long as 290 million citizens remain passive and submissive to the pillaging of their treasury and as long as the robbery of $200 billion dollars in taxpayer money goes unquestioned without seeking accountability the MIC and its minions will continue devastating American society. With each failure to demand questions and seek answers our way of life is eroded more and more. Without realizing and combating the arranged marriage between MIC, Leviathan and the elite in government the further decay of what America once was will persist.
Corporations and industries have usurped our safety, using fear to mobilize and freeze us at the same time. They steal us of treasure, rob us of blood, put us in the crosshairs of danger and exploit the love we have of America. They care nothing about the certain and devastating blowback we will experience due to their addicting quest for the perfect enemy and the perfect perpetual war. Thanks to MIC, the Leviathan and malfeasant government officials, our shores will be forever threatened by those who have been devastated by American foreign policy. It will be the relatives of the tens of thousands of dead and maimed Iraqis and the countless millions whose anger and hatred we have monopolized that will unleash fury at our innocent sons, daughters, mothers and fathers. It will be our progeny that will have to suffer the consequences of letting the corporatist elites dictate what is done in our name. It will be us who experience the misery of the tornadoes and hurricanes coming our way thanks to the profit making formulas of death and destruction of the few who control the direction the United States is on.
Greed has transformed the way they do business. War is once more a for-profit enterprise, a ratings and advertisement revenues bonanza where riches are made and careers cemented. It is assembly lines and conveyor belts spitting out instruments of human evil, designed to maim, kill and inflict horrendous suffering. War is the cold-blooded and carefully planned out decision to send America's poor to die and sacrifice both body and mind in order to conquer the lands of those even more indigent so that the few elite can carve up the spoils of war between themselves. War is the Almighty Dollar and the adrenalin of power and control. It is exploitation of American citizens and pilfering of their hard-earned wages. It is American evil at its worst, pre-empting, invading, conquering and occupying for geopolitical military bases, economic oil control and Israeli enemy eradication.
War is opportunity, wealth and power, destroying a nation only to rebuild it once more, helping to enrich your donors, contributors and even family in the process. War has been glamorized, enemies are dissected, deaths are whitewashed and images of war ignored. We are the good guys, the land of freedom and democracy, even if we kill tens of thousands, invade innocent lands and pilfer foreign resources. It does not matter that our armies unleash hell onto civilians, destroying the lives of ten year old girls, baby boys and young adults. It does not matter that entire families vanish thanks to our instruments of death, nor that millions suffer in perpetuity thanks to our complicity through acquiescence of a foreign policy that is debased at best and barbaric at worst.
But to Joe Six-pack, we are "bringing freedom and democracy" to the world and the beacon of liberty still shines as bright as ever. The tools of propaganda are as sinister as they are effective. [...]
With each new terror warning their profits grow. With each new Arab face shown in their media their revenues increase. The military budget is now near $420 billion, more than all industrialized nations, combined. Our healthcare, education, infrastructure, security and other social services are being demolished as a result. There is no reason to believe that the so-called war on terror will ever be allowed to stop. It is a cash cow for the few at the top. It has opened up levels of power and control once thought impossible to grasp. As long as the assembly lines of death and conveyor belts of destruction continue running at full speed, war is what the new American value will be. In ever more danger will we all be as well, living in perpetual fear and experiencing the paranoia ingrained in the coming police state.
The gods of war, the gods of greed and the profiteers of misery would not want it any other way.
Welcome to reality at the dawn of the 21st century, a world where new Pearl Harbors usher in radical tremors in human civilization along with sinister hijackings into most foreboding times.
While the Trade Deficit does not exactly fit in this category concerning tax reform, when coupled with increasing budget deficits it will have an impact on future tax rates. I hope that it obvious to all readers that the growth rate in the Trade Deficits can not continue forever.
This represents a steady transfer of wealth out of our country and into the hands of foreigners.
And to make matters worse we just expanded our NAFTA mentality to include Australia. So now a few more American companies can relocate a few more plants and facilities to Australia. According to the Bush Administration these empty plants will generate more American jobs than when they were producing products.
Next after the plants are relocated and the products are no longer made here - we will have to buy Australian products and contribute to the next record Trade Deficit. The Bush Administration says that this is good for us. Bush says that America comes out ahead.
The fact is very simple, this is not a good thing!
Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said, "We cannot depend on imported capital, that is, a current account deficit, to offset low domestic savings indefinitely."
In its August 2001 annual assessment of the world's largest economy, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said "the yawning current account deficit raised the risk of a sharp depreciation in the U.S. currency."
On 25 July 2001 former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker told the Senate Banking Committee hearing on risks of growing balance of payment deficit, "We are a debtor nation with nil personal savings and are absorbing a significant portion of other countries savings. These huge and growing external deficits are symptoms of imbalances in the national economy and the world economy that cannot be sustained."
But you do not need to be a rocket scientist to figure this out. You can not borrow your way out of debt. The Democrats have earned the title "Tax & Spend." Well the Bush Administration has been even worse, "Borrow & Spend, tax your grandchildren."
The truth is that neither the Republicans nor the Democrats are going to do anything about this problem, they are more concerned with special interests.
As a presidential candidate in 2000, George W. Bush pledged his tax cut proposals "are especially focused on low and moderate income families." Those proposals became law - but a new study by the non-partisan Congressional Budget office reveals that Bush mislead America about their distribution.
According to the CBO study, the wealthiest 1 percent of all taxpayers - whose earnings average $1.2 million - are receiving an average tax cut of $78,420 this year. Meanwhile, the middle 20 percent of taxpayers - whose earnings average $51,000 - are getting only a $1,090 cut. Those in the bottom 20% - averaging earnings of $16,620 - get just a $250 cut.
The result: "President Bush's tax cuts have shifted federal tax payments from the richest Americans to a wide swath of middle-class families."
Tax Cut with a Purpose," GeorgeWBush.com, archived from 11/2000,
WASHINGTON -- It appears American voters have little choice between the presidential candidates in the November election when it comes to the disastrous war against Iraq.
Both President Bush and his rival, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., seem to think it was worth the 932 American lives (so far) and thousands of U.S. wounded to get one man behind bars -- Saddam Hussein.
There also are the untold thousands of Iraqis dead and wounded as well. But, as one Pentagon spokesman told me, "They don't count."
Kerry has made a colossal mistake by continuing to defend his October 2002 vote authorizing President Bush's invasion of Iraq.
Last week at the Grand Canyon, Kerry said he would have "voted to give the president the authority to go to war" even if he had known there were no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction -- Bush's original justification for war on Iraq.
Kerry explained that he believes a president should have the "authority" to go to war, and he voted accordingly. But he insisted that Bush subsequently misused the authority by rushing headlong into combat based on faulty intelligence about Saddam's weapons arsenal.
Kerry is mistaken on a key point. Under the U.S. Constitution, the president does not have that sole right to declare war. Despite its mindless default, that right still belongs to Congress.
Kerry has passed up several chances to distance himself from the Iraqi debacle. But instead he has left himself wide open to Bush's ridicule. What's he got left -- stem-cell research?
Bush had a field day smirking and mocking his political rival and telling the nation that he was "right" to attack Iraq, absence of weapons notwithstanding.
Bush has sarcastically told cheering Republican rallies, "After months of questioning my motives and even my credibility, Sen. Kerry now agrees with me."
"We did the right thing," Bush bragged. "And the world is better off for it."
The senator should have called Bush's hand months ago and laid it on the line after so much official deception. How could he say he would have voted for the 2002 war resolution after he and the whole world learned the rat ionale for the war was based on falsehoods?
Does Kerry realize that the U.S. invasion of Iraq without provocation violates the U.N. Charter and the Nuremberg Tribunal principles?
Kerry has a weak fallback position-- that he would have planned things differently before going to war and would have lined up more European allies. Knowing what they know now about the Bush fiasco, France and Germany are congratulating themselves for having the good sense to stay out of Iraq.
So Kerry has blown it big time, rising to Bush's bait and throwing away his ace in the hole -- Bush's shaky credibility on the profound question of war and peace.
Bush has yet to apologize for misleading the nation or to explain why he needed a war when Saddam's regime was tightly contained with sanctions, weapons inspections and U.S. patrolling of the "no-fly" zone.
Bush has no exit strategy or timetable for a troop withdrawal even under the facade of Iraqi sovereignty.
Kerry has talked about drawing down American forces and an eventual pullout.
But he could learn something from two previous wartime Republican presidential candidates who had a better take on the public pulse and won the White House.
In 1952 during the Korean War, Dwight D. Eisenhower made a campaign promise that he would "go to Korea" and end the bloodshed. He did go to Korea and the war ended with a cease-fire standoff months after his inauguration.
In 1968, Richard Nixon said he had a "plan" to end the Vietnam War and the voters, wanting peace, bought it. Nixon -- in part forced by Congress -- reduced the U.S. troop commitment to Vietnam, but U.S. forces were still there when Nixon was forced to resign from office in 1974 because of the Watergate scandal. But the war ended the following year.
These were not triumphal solutions but they did give Americans some hope of eventual escape from the two quagmires.
In 1964, a Los Angeles Times cartoon by famed Paul Conrad showed a pollster knocking on a door. A woman sticks her head out of a window and the pollster asks her voting preference: "President Johnson or Sen. Barry Goldwater, R- Ariz.?" She replies: "Who else have you got?"
That may be the fix some Americans are in again.
Helen Thomas is a columnist for Hearst Newspapers. E-mail: email@example.com. Copyright 2004 Hearst Newspapers.
TEL AVIV — Once upon a time, an assistant to Levy Eshkol, our late prime minister, rushed up to him and cried: "Levy, a disaster! A drought has set in!"
"Where?" the prime minister asked anxiously, "in Texas?"
"No, here in Israel!" the man replied.
"Then there's nothing to worry about," Eshkol said dismissively.
Right from the beginning, the state of Israel has been critically affected by events in the United States. "If America sneezes, Israel catches cold," is the local version of the universal saying.
This is particularly true in the run-up to American elections. They can be as important for Israel as our own, since the occupant of the White House can influence the fate of Israel in many significant ways. But they have an additional significance: The months before the American elections are a kind of open season for Israel.
The basic assumption is that no candidate for the White House would dare to provoke the American Jewish voters at election times. They are an extremely well organized and highly motivated political bloc, ready to donate heaps of money, which gives them political clout well beyond their numbers.
Actually, there are now more Muslims than Jews in the United States, but they are not organized, their motivation is weak, their willingness to donate large amounts of money near zero. Their adherence to the Palestinian cause, for example, cannot match the fierce loyalty of most of the Jews to Israel. Moreover, in this the Jews are now joined by tens of millions of Christian evangelical fundamentalists.
Israeli governments naturally time their most controversial moves to coincide with the American elections. The more closely fought the elections, the more attractive it is for Israeli planners and adventurers.
The state of Israel unilaterally declared its independence in May 1948 , when Harry Truman's reelection campaign was in a critical condition. David Ben Gurion made the decision against the advice of some of his wisest colleagues, who warned him that the United States would oppose the move with all its might. He bet on the inability of the American system to do that during an election campaign.
At the time, Truman was desperately in need of money. Some Jewish millionaires provided it. To show his gratitude, and against the express advice of his Secretary of State (George Marshall) and especially his Secretary of Defense (James Forrestal), Truman immediately accorded the new state de facto recognition. (Stalin trumped him and recognized Israel de jure.)
Since then, this has been a repeating pattern. The Israeli government ordered the army to attack in 1967 (starting the Six Day War) after receiving an OK from President Lyndon Johnson, who at the time was still hoping to be reelected in 1968 .
The critical first year after that war, when America failed to induce Israel to withdraw from the territories its army had conquered, was, of course, an election year. Most of our present troubles stem from that.
Only once did the calculation fail. In 1956 Ben Gurion colluded with France and Britain against Egypt's Gamal Abdel Nasser. After conquering the Sinai peninsula, Ben Gurion declared the "Third Israeli Kingdom". He was convinced that the Americans were preoccupied with their election and would not interfere. He was wrong.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was standing for re-election, was assured of a landslide majority. He did not need the Jewish vote. He was also a man of principle. So he presented Ben Gurion with what amounted to an ultimatum: Evacuate the Sinai or else.
Four days after setting up his "kingdom" Ben Gurion announced its demise. But this was an exception.
Ariel Sharon, who considers himself a personal disciple of Ben Gurion (as does Shimon Peres), is basing his present policy on the same calculation. President George W. Bush is fighting for his political life. He will not dare to provoke a quarrel with Israel at this juncture. So from now until November, Sharon can do much as he pleases.
President Bush's famous road map is dead. (I can hear him exclaiming: "Road map? What road map? The only map I need is of the road to the White House!") His demand for a freeze on all building activity in the settlements, "even for the natural increase", is becoming a joke. Sharon has just openly flouted this by announcing plans for 600 new houses in the Ma'aleh Adumim settlement.
Emissaries of the Security Council and the State Department are practically begging Sharon on their knees to dismantle dozens of new settlements (referred to as outposts") put up since he assumed power in 2001 . Sharon has promised this to Bush many times, in return for reversals of long-standing US policy. Sharon must be hard put not to laugh in their faces.
However, Sharon does have a vital interest in Bush's re-election. He is afraid of John Kerry, even if he says exactly the same as Bush on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, and his grandfather's name was Cohen.
Experience has shown that there is no necessary correlation between what politicians say before elections and what they do after them. That is the other side of the election coin.
So Sharon may be induced to do something - anything at all - that will allow Bush to claim the credit for a "historical breakthrough" in the Middle East. Perhaps — who knows? - a week before the elections, three mobile homes may be dismantled on some godforsaken hilltop in Samaria. Wow!
Comment: Maybe this article is the answer as to why Kerry has "thrown away his ace"... A close election would allow Israel to make some major moves on the world scene. If this is indeed the case, the author's theory that Sharon is afraid of Kerry is probably incorrect.
pipe dream: getting oil from Iraq
There's an old joke Israelis like to tell on themselves: Their ancestors followed Moses around for 40 years and he led them to the only place in the Middle East without any oil.
More than three millennia later, Israel's energy outlook has barely improved. Although it is in a region awash with oil, the Jewish state must import most of its supplies from Russia because Arab oil producers refuse to deal with it.
Assuring Israel of an adequate oil supply has long been a goal not just of Israel itself, but also of pro-Israel factions in the United States. Thus emerged a controversial plan that is still kicking around even though its chief booster, Ahmad Chalabi, could soon be behind bars.
Once the Pentagon's choice to lead the "new" Iraq, Chalabi promised to reopen an old British-built pipeline from Kirkuk in northern Iraq to the Israeli port of Haifa. The plan impressed Richard Perle, Douglas Feith and other conservatives influencing Bush administration policy toward Iraq in the lead-up to last year's war.
The idea also drew enthusiastic response from Israel.
"The pipeline would be a dream," Yosef Paritzky, Israel's minister of infrastructures, said as reported by Salon.com. "We'd have an additional source of supply, and could even export some of the crude through Haifa. But we'd need a treaty with Iraq . . . to build the pipeline."
Once Chalabi assumed a position of influence in the new Iraqi government, Israel would get its treaty, the neoconservatives were assured. The pipeline was by no means the only reason for going to war, but it could well have been one reason.
After the invasion, though, Chalabi began to slide from U.S. favor when it became apparent his Iraqi National Congress provided faulty intelligence on Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction. A rival, Iyad Allawi, became Iraq's new interim prime minister, and an arrest warrant issued last week accuses Chalabi of counterfeiting Iraqi currency.
As Chalabi's bubble deflates, so has the idea of the Kirkuk-Haifa pipeline. But does a pipeline even make sense? Yes and no, experts say.
A direct pipeline from Iraq might reduce Israel's energy costs, now inflated by the cost of shipping oil from Russia. Because the pipeline might cross Jordan, that struggling country could reap lucrative transit fees. And the United States, a close ally of both Israel and Jordan, would benefit from better access to the rich Iraqi oil fields, thereby reducing U.S. dependence on Saudi Arabia.
All reasons why the pipeline is such a political hot potato.
"Even the suggestion is going to create trouble because it fuels all Iraqis' suspicion that their country was invaded for Israel's benefit," says Jeremy Binnie, Middle East editor of Jane's Sentinel.
He and other experts note Iraq already has several outlets for its oil, including terminals on the Persian Gulf and a major pipeline through Turkey. The big problem is not a shortage of outlets but protecting the ones it has.
The pipeline through Turkey is frequently sabotaged, and Iraq temporarily stopped pumping oil from its southern fields because of violence in the region.
"Until you can secure an existing pipeline it may not make sense to build another one," says Jim Burkhard, director of oil market analysis for Cambridge Energy Research Associates in Massachusetts.
Another expert questions Israel's claim it could save 20 percent on energy costs by getting oil from Iraq instead of Russia.
"Given the near-perfect price arbitrage in oil markets, this is quite implausible," economist Thomas R. Stauffer writes in the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. "Only two interpretations suggest themselves.
"First, the Russian oil mafia has succeeded in bilking the Israelis - a formidable task. Or, second, the Israelis and their allies in the Bush administration presume that they can force Iraq to sell oil into the line at a steep discount."
Even if the pipeline never materializes, Israel has an ace in the hole. Under a 1975 memorandum of understanding, the United States guarantees virtually all Israel's oil needs in the event of a crisis - even if it means reducing the amount of oil available to Americans.
Comment: Well, this article seems to shed new light on why Chalabi has fallen out of favor with the Bush clan...
14, at 9 PM, Israeli television station, Channel Ten, broke all convention
and exposed the ugliest secret of Israel's Labor Zionist founders; the
deliberate mass radiation poisoning of nearly all Sephardi youths.
"I screamed make the headache go away. Make the headache go away. Make the headache go away. But it never went away."
To watch the bearded man walk hunched down the street.
"I'm in my fifties and everyone thinks I'm in my seventies. I have to stoop when I walk so I won't fall over. They took my youth away with those x-rays."
To watch the old lady who administered the doses to thousands of children.
"They brought them in lines. First their heads were shaved and smeared in burning gel. Then a ball was put between their legs and the children were ordered not to drop it, so they wouldn't move. The children weren't protected over the rest of their bodies. There were no lead vests for them. I was told I was doing good by helping to remove ringworm. If I knew what dangers the children were facing, I would never have cooperated. Never!"
Because the whole body was exposed to the rays, the genetic makeup of the children was often altered, affecting the next generation. We watch the woman with the distorted face explain, "All three of my children have the same cancers my family suffered. Are you going to tell me that's a coincidence?"
Everyone notices that Sephardi women in their fifties today, often have sparse patchy hair, which they try to cover with henna. Most of us assumed it was just a characteristic of Sephardi women. We watch the woman on the screen wearing a baseball-style hat. She places a picture of a lovely young teenager with flowing black hair opposite the lens. "That was me before my treatment. Now look at me." She removes her hat. Even the red henna can't cover the horrifying scarred bald spots.
The majority of the victims were Moroccan because they were the most numerous of the Sephardi immigrants. The generation that was poisoned became the country's perpetual poor and criminal class. It didn't make sense. The Moroccans who fled to France became prosperous and highly educated. The common explanation was that France got the rich, thus smart ones. The real explanation is that every French Moroccan child didn't have his brain cells fried with gamma rays.
The film made it perfectly plain that this operation was no accident. The dangers of x-rays had been known for over forty years. We read the official guidelines for x-ray treatment in 1952. The maximum dose to be given a child in Israel was .5 rad. There was no mistake made. The children were deliberately poisoned.
David Deri, makes the point that only Sephardi children received the x-rays.
"I was in class and the men came to take us on a tour. They asked our names. The Ashkenazi children were told to return to their seats. The dark children were put on the bus."
The film presents a historian who first gives a potted history of the eugenics movement. In a later sound bite, he declares that the ringworm operation was a eugenics program aimed at weeding out the perceived weak strains of society. The film now quotes two noted anti-Sephardi racist Jewish leaders, Nahum Goldmann and Levi Eshkol.
Goldmann spent the Holocaust years first in Switzerland, where he made sure few Jewish refugees were given shelter, then flew to New York to become head of the World Jewish Congress headed by Samuel Bronfman. According to Canadian writer Mordecai Richler, Bronfman had cut a deal with Prime Minister Mackenzie King to prevent the immigration of European Jews to Canada.
Eshkol's role in the Holocaust was far more minister than merely not saving
lives. He was busy taking them instead. From a biography of Levi Eshkol
from the Israeli government web site:
The Moroccan lady is back on the screen. "It was a Holocaust, a Sephardi Holocaust. And what I want to know is why no one stood up to stop it."
David Deri, on film and then as a panel member, relates the frustration he encountered when trying to find his childhood medical records.
"All I wanted to know was what they did to me. I wanted to know who authorized it. I wanted to trace the chain of command. But the Health Ministry told me my records were missing."
Boaz Lev, the Health Ministry's spokesman chimes in, "Almost all the records were burned in a fire."
So let us help Mr. Deri trace the chain of command. But now I must intrude myself in the review. About six years ago, I investigated the kidnapping of some 4500, mostly Yemenite immigrant infants and children, during the early years of the state. I met the leader of the Yemenite children's movement, Rabbi Uzi Meshulum, imprisoned for trying to get the truth out. He was later returned home in a vegetative state from which he has not emerged. He told me that the kidnapped children were sent to America to die cruelly in nuclear experiments. The American government had banned human testing and needed guinea pigs. The Israeli government agreed to supply the humans in exchange for money and nuclear secrets. The initiator of Israel's nuclear program was Defence Ministry director-general Shimon Peres.
Rabbi David Sevilia of Jerusalem corroborated the crime and later, I even saw photos of the radiation scars on the few surviving children, and the cages the infants were shipped to America in.
Just over five years ago I published my belief on the internet, that Israel's Labor Zionist founders had conducted atomic experiments on Yemenite and other Sephardi children, killing thousands of them. Almost three years ago, I published the same assertion in my last book, Save Israel!. I suffered much scorn for doing so. However, I was right.
We return to the documentary. We are told that a US law in the late '40s put a stop to the human radiation experiments conducted on prisoners, the mentally feeble and the like. The American atomic program needed a new source of human lab rats and the Israeli government supplied it.
the government cabinet at the time of the ringworm atrocities:
Now, let's have a quick glance at the other plotters, starting with the Finance Minister Eliezer Kaplan. He handled the profits of the operation and was rewarded for eternity with a hospital named after him near Rehovot.
But he's not alone in this honor. The racist bigot Chaim Sheba, who ran Ringworm Incorporated, had a whole medical complex named after him. Needless to say, if there is an ounce of decency in the local medical profession, those hospital names will have to change.
Then there is Yosef Burg, who the leaders of the Yemenite Children's movement insist was the most responsible for the kidnappings of their infants. As Health Minister, he certainly played a pivotal role in the Ringworm murders. That would go a great way to explaining the peculiar behavior of his son, the peacemaker, Avraham Burg.
Let us not forget Moshe Sharrett, who had Rabbi Yoel Brand arrested in Aleppo in 1944 for proposing a practical way to save 800,000 Jews trapped in Hungary. Sharrett's most cited quote is, "If Shimon Peres ever enters this government, I will tear my clothes and start to mourn." Several Yemenite Children activists told me Sharrett was referring to the kidnapping of the Yemenite children when he made this statement.
amateur historians have told me that Levi Eshkol openly and proudly announced
his belief in the tenets of Shabtai Tzvi, but try as I have, I haven't
tracked down a citation. However, we do know of Eshkol, that during the
period of the radiations, he served first as Settlement Minister, then
took over from Kaplan as Finance Minister. From his bio:
there is Golda Meir. We don't know her role, but she was in on the secret
and rewarded for it. Note that every prime minister thereafter until 1977,
when the honorable Menachem Begin was elected, came from this cabal. And
note also, that no one from what is called the Right today, was privy
to the slaughter of the Sephardi children.
Now try and imagine it is 1952 and you are in a cabinet meeting. You will be debating whether to send the Yemenite babies to America for their final zapping, or whether to have them zapped here. That is what the Luciferian, satanic Sabbataian founders of our nation were prattling on about when they got together to discuss the affairs of state.
After the film ended, TV host Dan Margalit tried to put a better face on what he'd witnessed. Any face had to be better than what he had seen. He explained meekly, "But the state was poor. It was a matter of day to day survival." Then he stopped. He knew there was no excusing the atrocities the Sephardi children endured.
But it was the Moroccan singer who summed up the experience best. "It's going to hurt, but the truth has to be told. If not, the wounds will never heal."
There is one person alive who knows the truth and participated in the atrocities. He is Leader Of The Opposition Shimon Peres, the peacemaker. The only way to get to the truth and start the healing is to investigate him for his role in the kidnapping of 4500 Yemenite infants and the mass poisoning of over 100,000 Sephardi children and youths.
But here is why that won't happen. It is a miracle that 100,000 Radiations was broadcast at all. Clearly though, someone fought for it but had to agree to a compromise. The show was aired at the same time as the highest-rated show of the year, the final of Israel's, A Star Is Born. The next day, there was not a word about 100,000 Radiations in any paper, but the newly-born star's photo took up half the front pages. That's how the truth is buried in Israel, and somehow, these tricks work. The same methods were used to cover up the Rabin assassination.
a few hundred thousand people saw the film on their screens and they will
never forget the truth. If the Rabin assassination doesn't bury Labor
Zionism for good, then 100,000 Radiations eventually will.
I heard the director of the film interviewed on Israel Channel One TV on Feb. 16, while not catching his name. However, the interviewer's name is David Witztom and he said, "You are making claims for a horrible conspiracy," and indeed he was.The American government paid the equivalent of $50 billion in today's terms for the experiments and the cost could not have exceeded a few million dollars at most. The rest of the $50 billion is unaccounted for. Needless to ask, was the American government so concerned about ringworm in Israeli immigrant children that it paid $50 billion to treat the fungus?
The authorities are using the excuse that in 1948, x-rays were a common treatment for head ringworm and that 35,000 times the exposure was standard practise. This is nonsense. The standard treatment was ultra-violet light on the hair and the danger of x-rays was very well understood after nearly 60 years of use. The film director noted that the x-ray technicians knew the kind of blast the children were receiving and would not stay in the same room when the dose was administered.
The children were often taken out of classrooms and told they were going on a sightseeing trip. They were taken to the x-ray rooms without parental consent and given the blast of radiation at the top of their heads. Most were sickened, many died. Over 100,000 children represents literally the entire generation of Israeli Sephardi children exposed to fatal levels of radiation. Ringworm was merely the excuse, and a poor one, for a massive death ray program.
Why were the Sephardi children so victimized? For the same reason the Sabbataian Labor Zionists let the Jews of Poland perish in the Holocaust. Because they were righteous and religious. For Sabbatainism to triumph, all Jews had to be cleansed from the world but those who could be trained and indoctrinated in the anti-Judaistic evil of Shabtai Tzvi. To those believing in Shabtai Tzvi, burning the Jews of Europe and radiating those of the East was a fulfillment of their master's grand vision.
Bringing terror to Israel in the name of peace is their latest step in the annihilation of the Jews. If they have their way, all of Israel will be radiated and eradicated in the name of the devil Shabtai Tzvi and his living disciples, dwelling in the "peace" camp.
Comment from a Reader: Chamish fails to mention that it was not only Sephardim children who were exposed to this radiation in the 50's. Unsurprisingly, Palestinian children were also exposed, but Chamish does not mention this. This came to my attention 3 or 4 years ago when it became clear that there were many in the village I was living in in Galilee who were applying for compensation because of this...
Comment: To understand why Sephardic Jews are targeted for destruction now, as they were during WWII by the Zionist/Khazar Jews, read the Mongols Series...
BAGHDAD — U.S. military police shot and killed two detainees and wounded five others in an effort to put down a massive brawl that broke out today at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison facility west of the Iraqi capital.
Troubles began when several detainees attacked another inmate with rocks and tent poles in a fight that quickly escalated, drawing in 200 inmates at a tented detention camp within the sprawling prison compound, said Lt.-Col. Barry Johnson, the U.S. military's spokesman for detention operations in Iraq.
Detainees hurled rocks at U.S. soldiers, ignoring "verbal warnings" and then a volley of rubber bullets from U.S. military police, Johnson said.
The military decided to use lethal force because one detainee was at risk of being killed by fellow inmates, he said.
"A determination was made that if lethal force wasn't used, this detainee was going to be killed," Johnson said. "So lethal force was used in the form of aimed shots against those most involved in the direct violence against the individual who was being attacked."
One of the detainees was killed on the spot and a second, critically wounded, died of his wounds at a military hospital.
It was not known what caused the fight.
Abu Ghraib was at the centre of a scandal over allegations that American prison guards abused Iraqi detainees. The scandal broke in April when photographs of hooded and naked prisoners were made public, unleashing a torrent of international criticism.
U.S. authorities have released thousands of detainees from Abu Ghraib in the past several months.
Last Updated Thu, 19 Aug 2004 05:38:54 EDT
WASHINGTON - A U.S. Army investigation into the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal will lay blame on two dozen lower-level troops with none having a rank above the colonel in charge of the military unit at the facility, according to media reports.
The military report will exonerate senior officers in Baghdad and in Washington, saying they played no role in ordering or allowing the abuse, the New York Times reported on its website Wednesday.
Seven military police soldiers have been charged – and one pleaded guilty in exchange for his testimony against the others – in the abuse scandal of Iraqi prisoners that sparked international outrage.
The report will blame military intelligence personnel, civilian contractors and Central Intelligence Agency officers, the Times reported.
Comment: Washington surprises us again. Not. It has been clear from the start that the bigwigs were going to pin this abuse and torture on the grunts. The fact that it is happening not only in Iraq, but also at Guantanamo Bay might indicate to the neutral observer that replication conditions imply something more, but Bush is in an election campaign. We can also assume that the chain of command works with plausible deniability. "Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, I didn't say a thing."
killed in Fallujah
AN Iraqi freelance journalist working for Germany's ZDF television has been killed in the flashpoint city of Fallujah, the network said today.
Mahmud Hamid Abbas, 32, had gone to the city on Sunday to film when he was killed "in unexplained circumstances", it said.
The media watchdog Reporters without Borders (RSF) said the journalist was killed as he was leaving his native Fallujah for Baghdad.
"When he phoned the ZDF office in Baghdad to say he was coming he mentioned he had just filmed a house destroyed by US warplanes," RSF said, quoting ZDF's Iraq correspondent.
"About 25 minutes later, he rang again to say he had seen a second attack. During the call, he suddenly said he and others with him were being fired at. There was a dull thud, apparently an explosion, and the line was cut off, according to the ZDF correspondent in Iraq," the Paris-based rights group said in a statement."He was not far from the front line between the US and Iraqi rebel forces fighting in Fallujah but there was no evidence he had been targeted by a missile, rocket or bomb fired by them. He may have been killed by criminals active in the area."
Married with three children, Mahmud Hamid Abbas is the 20th journalist to be killed in Iraq this year and the 34th since the start of the fighting in March 2003, RSF said.
"This new death is another blow to media workers in Iraq, who have already had a very hard time," it said.
Tom Engelhardt asks hard questions at the indispensable Tomdispatch.com about journalistic language concerning the Iraq crisis. How do we characterize Muqtada al-Sadr? Our military operations in the country? What words to journalists use and how does that affect perceptions?
Meanwhile, the Associated Press expresses confusion, both its own, and that of US government officials, about what Muqtada al-Sadr's goals are.
I don't understand this confusion. Muqtada has given many sermons and interviews in the past 16 months outlining his goals exactly.
1) He wants the US troops out of the country immediately, which is to say, an end to Occuption. If there have to be foreign troops in Iraq, he wants them under a United Nations command.
2) He refuses to cooperate (he would say "collaborate") with the caretaker government of Iyad Allawi, which he sees as a puppet regime installed by the United States. He insists that no legitimate Iraqi governmental process can begin until the US is out.
3) He wants the reestablishment of a strong central Iraqi government with a strong military, but which has cut all ties with the Baathist past.
4) He wants Iraq to stay together rather than being partitioned, and has denounced Kurdish demands for loose federalism.
5) He wants Iraqi Shiism to emerge from Iran's shadow and to establish its independence from Iran. His movement is rooted in the Shiite ghettos of Iraq and is very indigenous. He is not Iran's catspaw in Iraq, quite the opposite. He is strong Iraqi nationalist.
6) He sometimes talks about "democracy" in post-American Iraq, but probably just means populism. Like Peron and Franco, his populism implies his ability to maintain and direct his own militia, who provide "order" (read puritanical morality imposed by force) to Shiite neighborhoods.
7) In the long term, he would like to see a system in Iraq similar to the regime in Iran. He wants Islamic law to be the law of the land, and he wants clerics to rule. His father studied with Ayatollah Khomeini and accepted the notion of clerical rule. So does Muqtada. That is, there may be a place for elections (as in Iran), but true power would rest in the hands of the clerics. He has admitted all this in Arabic press interviews.
So, I don't understand the widespread puzzlement reported by AP. It may not be a simple set of positions, but they aren't hidden from view or hard to understand.
By Roger Mitton
WASHINGTON - The Bush administration has failed to tap a well-spring of thoughtful, moderate democratically-elected leaders in Muslim-majority nations in South-east Asia to stem the surge of anti-Americanism across the Islamic world, according to experts here.
published 9/11 Commission Report, while noting that 'support for the United
States has plummeted' in Islamic countries, put forward many recommendations
about measures Washington should take to prevent what it called 'the continued
growth of Islamist terrorism'.
Many observers here say the US should actively seek out the views of such leaders in South-east Asia.
Said Mr Husain Haqqani, an expert on Muslim affairs at Washington's Carnegie Endowment for International Peace: 'We need to promote the moderate practices of Islam that have emerged in Asia, because of the tradition there of co-existence between Muslims and non-Muslims.'
Yet bizarrely, the Bush administration appears either ignorant of this opportunity, or is unable or unwilling to reach out to Muslim leaders in South-east Asia.
Evidence of this abounds, and it was manifest again last month during the visit of Malaysia's Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi.
Datuk Seri Abdullah is a moderate, pro-development leader, who recently won a landslide election victory in which he turned back the tide of support for the more traditionalist Parti Islam SeMalaysia.
Yet most Americans, even in the highest reaches of the administration, appear unaware of the significance of this achievement. Nor do they appreciate how Datuk Seri Abdullah would be an ideal 'thoughtful leader' whose views the US could seek as suggested by the 9/11 report.
This is especially so at the present time, since Malaysia holds the chair of the 57-member Organisation of the Islamic Conference.
Yet Datuk Seri Abdullah's visit to Washington was given a low profile by his hosts and went almost entirely unreported in the US media.
During his visit last month, he was squeezed in for barely a half-hour meeting with Mr Bush and this was squeezed between the president's lunch with his Chilean counterpart and a photo-shoot for a car race.
As a result, the US media gave his visit little coverage.
President Bush's administration talks repeatedly of trying to bring democracy to the Islamic world, but often seems to fail to realise that it already exists in South-east Asian Muslim nations.
Said Mr Muqtedar Khan, director of international studies at Adrian College in Michigan: 'The US still equates Islam with Arabs. So Indonesian, Malaysian, Bangladeshi and other models of pluralism and democracy in Muslim nations have not factored in American thinking.'
Furthermore, the US continues to harp on about the lack of progress of women in the Muslim world, by which it means the Arab world. Yet it appears to forget the progress of women in South-east Asian Muslim nations like Malaysia's Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz or Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri.
Said Mr Muqtedar: 'In Indonesia, there is a woman running for president of a Muslim nation. Americans haven't had a woman candidate in 200 years.'
Experts, however, believe that if America's relations with the Islamic world continue to plummet, Washington will finally wake up to the opportunity of drawing on the experience of regional leaders like Datuk Seri Abdullah.
Said Mr Husain: 'Abdullah would be a great person for the ideological dimension, because he's a Muslim scholar and he's a democrat to boot. But so far, it just hasn't got through to the Americans.'
Last Updated Wed, 18 Aug 2004 21:20:46 EDT
VANCOUVER - To counter potential threats from Canada, U.S. officials are beefing up security and surveillance along the U.S.-Canada border, known as the longest undefended border in the world.
In response to the Sept. 11 attacks, a new command centre, a new plane with sensor equipment, marine units and a Black Hawk helicopter will be deployed to the border between British Columbia and Washington state by the U.S. Office of Air and Marine Operations.
Gary Bracken, a spokesman for Air and Marine Operations, said U.S intelligence shows there's enough of a threat to warrant an increased presence along the border.
"Along the [Canadian] border we are also faced with the smuggling of migrants, weapons, currency in both directions, as well as the possibility of terrorists or weapons of mass destruction crossing the border using traditional smuggling routes."
Bracken said the new equipment will be based at Bellingham, Wash., just 25 kilometres south of Vancouver. It will be used to patrol an area within a 400 kilometre radius.
Bracken said U.S. planes and helicopters will not routinely enter Canadian airspace.
"Not on a normal basis, no. We will be flying along the border in U.S. airspace as part of a course of normal operations. But we will be working closely with our Canadian counterparts."
He also said the new security measures will not change the relationship with Canada or the claim about the undefended border.
RCMP spokesperson John Ward said both countries are involved in ongoing consultations about border security. He said Canadians were well aware of the redeployment of U.S. assets.
Ward said the move doesn't really change much along the border.
"It's not an increased scrutiny. These are assets we've used in the past. They've just decided to move them closer."
Another command centre will open by the end of the year in Plattsburg, N.Y. Over the next couple of years, more centres are expected to be put in place in Montana, North Dakota and Michigan.
www.chinaview.cn 2004-08-19 17:46:25
LONDON, Aug. 19 (Xinhuanet) -- A 19-year-old man was arrested Thursday in Birmingham, central England under the Terrorism Act, police said.
The man, who has not yet been named, was arrested at 0300 GMT and is currently being questioned by the police.
Police official Giovanni Lopresto, speaking by phone from the Sardinian city of Olbia, said bomb-disposal experts found and defused a device containing dynamite, a fuse and a timer close to a trash can in nearby Porto Rotondo.
News agency ANSA said the bomb was set to explode at 4:30 a.m. local time.
A caller claiming to be from the Proletarian Groups for Communism extremist group phoned in a warning to the island's Unione Sarda newspaper late Tuesday, saying the organization had planted two bombs, said Patrizia Mozzi, a journalist from the paper.
Mr. Mozzi said the caller gave the location of only one device. She said the caller told her: "We promised a summer of fire and this is the response to Berlusconi. War against war" – an apparent reference to Italy's role in the Iraq conflict, which Italian leftist groups fiercely opposed.
ANSA reported earlier that two explosive devices had been found, but Mr. Lopresto insisted that only one was discovered.
Proletarian Groups for Communism has said it was behind several attacks in the past few years, generally aimed at conservative politicians, businesses and union officials. It is one of several domestic political terror groups that have plagued Italy for decades.
Mr. Blair left Sardinia on Tuesday evening after a two-day visit at Berlusconi's villa, returning to Tuscany where his family is vacationing. Berlusconi's villa is on the northeastern coast of Sardinia, a few kilometres from the town of Porto Rotondo.
Security was tight during Mr. Blair's visit, with police stopping cars travelling on a road near the villa for document checks. Officers with sniffer dogs patrolled the outskirts of the villa.
The measures came amid high security across the country following a series of threats against Italy in the name of radical Islamic terror groups. The threats have been published on Islamic websites.
WARSAW, Aug 18 (AFP) - Police have arrested a Frenchman near a gas pumping station in western Poland suspecting he is preparing a terrorist attack, an official from the Polish security services said on Wednesday.
"Michel N., 23, is being investigated for preparing actions which can endanger human life and destroy property," Ewa Socha, the official following the matter at the public prosecutor's office in the western city of Poznan told AFP.
"We had sufficient information at our disposal to be able to arrest him for three months," she told AFP by telephone.
"All matters that can be linked to terrorist activities are a priority for internal security," Magda Stanczyk, spokeswoman for Poland's internal security agency said.
"The agency is currently verifying all the information and circumstances of this arrest. What were the motives for his stay in Poland," she added.
The suspect is of Algerian origin, according to Poland's Fakt newspaper.
He "was arrested Friday while he was cycling around the pumping station at Swarzedz and taking photos of the site," the newspaper said.
According to another newspaper, the Rzeczpospolita, he is suspected of "having prepared the ground to blow up the pumping station".
Poland, one of Washington's staunchest supporters in the Iraq war, patrols a swathe of the country south of Baghdad, heading a 6,500-strong multinational force including 2,500 Polish troops.
In July, a group claiming links with Al-Qaeda threatened an attack unless Warsaw withdraws its troops from Iraq.
Comment: We have a major terrorist target here, folks: a pumping station in Poland.
MOSCOW, Aug 18 (AFP) - German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin at his Black Sea resort residence at the end of the month, Interfax quoted the top Kremlin spokesman as saying Wednesday.
The spokesman said the three leaders, who all opposed the US-led war in Iraq, would discuss "current international affairs," Interfax reported.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
The Bush administration showed "reckless disregard" for public health after the World Trade Center collapse by failing to warn people of the health risks of breathing toxic smoke and dust at ground zero, an environmental group said Wednesday.
Hundreds of people were sickened because of mistakes made by the government during the recovery and cleanup effort following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack, the Sierra Club said in a report on the environmental and health impacts of the collapse.
"The federal government should have a duty to protect the public from the aftermath of an attack such as this," said Suzanne Mattei, the report's author. "What happened instead is that the harm was prolonged." The Environmental Protection Agency said Wednesday it was reviewing a summary of the report and declined to comment further.
According to the report, the EPA failed at least a dozen times to change its safety assurances about the air quality at ground zero, even after it became clear that people were becoming sick, and in some cases, did not even check for toxic hazards.
Last year, the EPA's internal watchdog found the agency, at the urging of White House officials, gave misleading assurances there was no health risk from the dust in the air after the towers' collapse. Seven days after the attack, the EPA announced that the air near the site was safe to breathe, but the agency did not have enough information to make such a guarantee, the EPA's report found.
Mattei accused the Bush administration of ignoring the potential health risks because of political expediency.
"They wanted to reopen the stock exchange in Lower Manhattan as quickly as possible and I think they wanted to put forth the image that everything was OK," she said. [...]
By TOM COYNE,
Associated Press Writer
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) - A liquid used to make perfume spilled from an unclaimed bag Wednesday inside the Fort Wayne International Airport, causing at least one worker to report feeling ill and prompting authorities to halt passenger service for hours.
Tests determined that the liquid was likely concentrated rose water, a mixture containing oil from rose petals, FBI agent Dan Nielsen said.
The terminal reopened Wednesday afternoon after having been closed nearly 10 hours. At least 40 flights were delayed.
Six people - four airport workers and two emergency responders - were decontaminated after the liquid was first noticed leaking from an unclaimed bag about an hour after the 1:50 a.m. arrival of an American Eagle flight from Chicago, airport officials said.
American Airlines spokeswoman Lisa Bailey said the workers noticed an odd odor after taking the bag to a secure area. They opened the bag and found a broken bottle.
"When the agent came in contact with the substance, the agent became violently ill, began vomiting," Bailey said.
The six people were treated at a hospital and released, and tests found no air contamination in the airport terminal, said Tory Richardson, the airport's executive director. [...]
PHNOM PENH - About 180 workers at a Chinese-owned garment factory collapsed after drinking water suspected to have been contaminated, police said.
Cambodian officials were investigating conditions at Cheer Wiew Textiles
Cambodia, located on the outskirts of Phnom Penh.
Yesterday, another 73 workers collapsed after reporting for duty, including some who had returned to work after recovering.
Mr Saveth said: 'We are awaiting results from a laboratory test on the drinking water from the Ministry of Health. Our team is continuing investigations.' A factory spokesman said 1,200 workers were sent home to rest and would return next week.
'Ministry of Labour doctors said nothing serious seems to have happened, but the workers maybe panicked when they saw a few of their colleagues get sick and were probably lacking vitamins,' she said.
Several such mass faintings have happened before.
Conditions at factories here are considered good by regional standards as they are monitored under a unique arrangement between the government and the International Labour Organisation aimed at building a no-sweatshop reputation.
By Robert C. Cowen
As we go on pumping carbon dioxide into the air, we might borrow a line from financial planners. Past performance is no guide to future results.
The buildup of carbon dioxide (CO2) is forcing scientists to rethink their expectations - not only about the buildup of heat on Earth but also about the implications for the natural world far beyond warming.
Take those powerful Alaskan earthquakes. We expect land to rise as the weight of glaciers melts away. Should we also adjust our assessment of earthquake risk?
Two geophysicists say "yes." Glaciers hold down earthquake action even in a seismically active region like Alaska, argue Jeanne Sauber with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., and Bruce Molnia with the US Geological Survey in Reston, Va. They use history and current data to make their case.
For example, earthquake action picked up in places where the ice masses retreated some 10,000 years ago, Dr. Sauber notes. Scandinavia had major quakes back then. Canada also had many moderate quakes as its glaciers melted.
Melting glaciers do not cause earthquakes: Quakes are created when forces within the crust build up strain in rock until something slips. Alaska is seismically active because a North Pacific crustal plate is ramming into southern Alaska, creating pressures that must be relieved at some point.
However, these pressures do push up high mountains where glaciers form - and the weight of the glaciers pushing down can stabilize the situation, if not eliminate the risk altogether. Remove that weight, and the likelihood of a quake goes up as the strain accumulates.
That's what happened with the 7.2 magnitude quake in Alaska's St. Elias region in 1979, Sauber and Dr. Molnia believe. Photographs show how glaciers in the fault area had thinned substantially during the 80 years since the previous earthquake activity.
Sauber says it now is clear that "in areas like Alaska where earthquakes occur and glaciers are changing, their relationship must be considered to better assess earthquake hazard." She adds that satellites are helping seismologists do this "by tracking the changes in extent and volume of the ice and movement of the Earth."
Another nonwarming implication of global warming is plant growth. Because plants use the carbon in CO2 to make their food and structures, they should grow faster as concentrations of the greenhouse gas go up. Many experts hope this will take some of the excess CO2 out of the air. They count on increased nitrogen fixation to supply the extra nitrogen to fertilize the plants.
Not so fast, warn Bruce Hungate at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. The experiments of Dr. Hungate and his collaborators show that this expected boon soon turns sour.
After burgeoning for a couple of years, the nitrogen fixers begin to lose their fixing ability. It looks as though molybdenum - a key nutrient - becomes less available as elevated CO2 levels change soil chemistry.
"Our results ... caution against expecting increased biological [nitrogen] fixation to fuel terrestrial [carbon] accumulation," the team warned in reporting its results in the journal Science last spring. The results also show the need for scientists to broaden their perspective when trying to foresee how Earth's ecosystems will respond to global change, the team added.
To adapt the financial guru's mantra, the way things worked in the past is an unreliable guide for expectations of how our planet will respond as humans force more unnatural change upon it.
- A powerful winter storm battered central New Zealand yesterday, ripping
a section of the roof from the capital's main airport and blocking key
highways and railroads with snow and debris, the authorities said.
Gusts of winds blowing at up to 180kmh downed several trees and power lines, said police spokesman Andre Kowalczyk.
Floods, mudslides and fallen trees created traffic snarls in Wellington, he said. On major highways in some areas, traffic was reduced to a single lane.
There were no reports of deaths.
New Zealand has been repeatedly hit by wild weather this year, with heavy snowfalls on South Island triggering avalanches last week and torrential rainfall causing devastating flooding in February and last month.
Yesterday, waves up to 14.5m high were recorded just outside Wellington's harbour, said the harbour master, Captain Mike Pryce.
The first reported injury in the storm was that of a seaman who broke a leg on a freight ferry crossing Cook Strait between North and South islands early yesterday.
Overnight winds stripped off part of the main airport terminal's roof, blowing debris across the closed runway.
Dozens of other roofs were also damaged, police said.
Storm-force winds and high tides dumped seaweed and debris on coastal roads, adding to the hazardous driving conditions.
Across southern North Island, heavy snow closed scores of highways and smaller roads, cutting access to some rural areas.
The Wairarapa farming region north of the capital was on flood alert after up to 200mm of rain fell and swollen rivers threatened to overflow.
Weather forecaster Augie Auer said the storm had virtually brought the east coast to a standstill, and it would 'be a long slow clearance...with the very strong winds easing only slowly during the day'.
August 18, 2004
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - Typhoon Megi swept across the southwestern tip of South Korea, leaving thousands of people homeless and at least one person missing, emergency officials said Thursday.
The typhoon first hit Wednesday, bringing heavy rains to the southwestern South Korea and leaving more than 2,400 people homeless, said Park Min-ju, an official at the country's disaster agency. More than 1,200 homes were flooded or destroyed.
Park said a 74-year-old man remained missing after he was apparently swept away while working on a farm in Naju, about 280 kilometres south of the capital Seoul.
Officials said they were investigating reports another man was missing in the typhoon.
More damage was predicted as the typhoon headed northeast, Park said and it was expected to complete its pass over the Korean Peninsula by later Thursday.
The heavy weather shut down seven airports and caused the cancellation of 41 domestic flights.
Earlier, heavy rain fuelled by the typhoon lashed southern Japan, leaving at least eight people dead and causing landslides and blackouts, officials said. Two people were missing.
Megi brushed the main southern islands Kyushu and Shikoku, the Japanese Meteorological Agency said.
In Kagawa state in Shikoku, a 74-year-old farmer was found dead after he fell into a swollen canal Tuesday. Three more elderly people were killed by flooding rivers, police said.
In nearby Ehime, three men and a woman were killed, one by drowning and the others in mudslides, local police said.
More than 4,700 people were ordered to evacuate their homes in Kagawa, and nearly 300 in Ehime. Japanese national broadcaster NHK reported more than 600 homes had been flooded in Shikoku.
WebPosted Aug 18 2004 06:17 PM PDT
PRINCETON, B.C. - An overnight thunderstorm has caused more than a dozen landslides that have blocked Highway 3 between Princeton and Hedley in B.C.'s Similkameen Valley.
The hardest hit area was around Princeton, where the rain fell so hard the earth just gave way – completely closing the highway.
The slides stranded dozens of people. About 20 vehicles were stranded on the highway – and a provincial campground is also cut off from road access. [...]
Yes, it is hot.
In fact, Tuesday tied the record for most days over 70 degrees in an Anchorage summer -- 43 days -- and it's only the middle of August. The last time we had so many 70-plus days was 1936.
It's also exceptionally dry in Anchorage and the rest of Southcentral.
"It's getting down to near desert conditions," National Weather Service meteorologist Sam Miller said, though the humidity rises at night. [...]
August 18, 2004
HOUSTON, Texas (AP) - A white Texas Republican legislator and his wife are seeking to retain temporary custody of their former maid's 20-month-old son, who is black, on grounds she and the child's father are unfit parents.
State Representative Talmadge Heflin and his wife, Janice, made their case Wednesday to a family court judge, accusing Mariam Katamba and Fidel Odimara, who are African immigrants, of not caring for their son or providing him with adequate medical care.
Heflin also told the judge he wants to help the child because of "the terrible problem that black male children have growing into manhood without being in prison."
Katamba and Odimara said they love their child, have never abused him and are being singled out because they are in the United States illegally. [...]
Comment: Now read the following article from the Houston Chronicle. Notice the very different headline and the absence of the comment on black males and prison:
A judge will wait until at least Friday to decide whether to award custody of a 20-month-old boy to a state lawmaker and his wife or the child's immigrant parents.
Family District Court Judge Linda Motheral heard about five hours of testimony today from state Rep. Talmadge Heflin, his wife, Janice and the boy's parents, Mariam Katamba and Fidel Odimara Sr., parents of Fidel Odimara Jr.
The Heflins recently sued the parents, seeking primary custody of Fidel Jr., who has lived at the Heflins' home for more than a year. The parents argued that the Heflins were simply "helpers" and have no reason to be awarded primary custody.
"The emotions are so strong that it is going to affect both parties, but this is not about the emotions," said Mathew Nwogu, attorney for the parents.
The case is about "what is in the best interest of the child," Nwogu added," and (the Heflins') wealth has nothing to do with it."
The parents have alleged that Heflin, who chairs the House Appropriations Committee, is using his "political position to threaten" them. After Katamba took the boy in mid-July, the Heflins got him back on July 28 after obtaining a court order that gave them custody until today's hearing. [...]
Last Updated Wed, 18 Aug 2004 21:28:30 EDT
LONDON - An international team of astronomers has described five new moons around Neptune.
The satellites may be captured asteroids, the researchers say in Thursday's issue of the journal Nature.
Planetary scientist J.J. Kavelaars of the National Research Council of Canada in Victoria, B.C., and his colleagues first announced the discovery in 2003.
Now the researchers have described the orbit of the five outer satellites.
Scientists say the moons orbiting giant planets fall into two classes:
* Large moons, orbiting close to the parent planet and in a prograde manner, meaning they follow the rotational direction of the planet.
* Irregular, often small moons, distant from the planet and orbiting in inclined, eccentric and often retrograde or opposite direction to the planet.
Neptune's largest moon, Triton, was discovered in 1846 and is as large as Pluto. Titan follows a retrograde orbit.
Nereid, discovered in 1949, is small with an eccentric orbit.
The Voyageur 2 spacecraft identified six more tiny moons in 1989.
Since then, moons were found orbiting other giant planets, but the absence of discoveries for Neptune had led scientists to theorize Triton's violent capture destroyed the planet's outer satellite system.
The addition of five new moons of Neptune may cause scientists to cast aside the theory.
"Here we report the discovery of five irregular moons of Neptune, two with prograde and three with retrograde orbits," the researchers wrote. "These exceedingly faint ... moons, with diameters of 30 to 50 km, were presumably captured by Neptune."
The researchers theorize the moons may have formed from collisions.
The team said the next step is to study the colour of the faint satellites and look for more satellites to determine the origin of the moons.
Comment: First it was two new "moons" around Saturn, and now five around Neptune...
During the first century of our modern era, most, if not all, of the adherents of the "Jesus cult" believed that the Second Coming of Christ was at hand. They didn't look upon this event as something to occur in the distant future, but within their lifetimes. The return of Christ, also called the "parousia," was believed to be imminent, and would signal the end of human history as they knew it – something those early Christians fervently wanted.
Except that nothing happened.
As the years and centuries passed, Christians had to modify their views somewhat. Eventually, as one would expect, beliefs became diversified and messy. The Second Coming was still coming, but as to the timetable, well, there might be some disagreement. Meanwhile, it was more or less agreed upon that all the saved souls would wind up in heaven, either immediately upon release from their mortal coil, or at least eventually.
As with all belief systems (and romances), the initial period is always the most interesting, and the most exciting to those involved. That's because boundaries have not yet been imposed. Anything seems possible. Eventually, reality sets in with its inevitable disappointment.
Thus, if you are to maintain your belief – or love – you have to adjust your attitude. As the older and more experienced among us like to remind us, you have to grow up.
This is true regarding the modern era of UFO belief. In the 1950s, when all this seemed to be a new thing (in retrospect, it wasn't), it was reasonable to suppose that flying saucers were piloted craft, with "men" of some sort flying them. What were they doing? Judging by what appeared to be a certain coyness on the part of the mysterious UFO pilots, several analysts opined that the aliens were probably conducting some sort of surveillance of our world, presumably in advance of establishing open contact – or invading.
It's not hard to understand how one could believe this, as long as one accepted that UFO reports were valid in the first place. Through the 1950s, certain researchers and organizations made it a point to track UFO reports , especially noting instances of what appeared to be metallic craft and the like. The great early writer of UFO books, retired Marine Corps Major Donald E. Keyhoe, believed that our civilization's interaction with UFOs wa s in a crescendo phase, and that something big was going to happen very soon.
That was then, and things are rather different today. Still, the belief hasn't quite gone away, mostly because so few people in the field have much of a sense of history. Thus, we recently (2001) experienced the build-up for the UFO "Disclosure" press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, an event that many argued would be the final bit of artillery needed to break down the wall of secrecy. In case you weren't there, th e conference didn't do it.
As we continue to live and learn, it's becoming increasingly difficult to hide the obvious: this phenomenon has been with us for a long time. It surely doesn't appear very credible to argue, as Keyhoe did, that "they" are still conducting surveillance of our planet, especially when our own technology has advanced so much in fifty years that we realize that you don't need big clunky craft to swoop near Earth's surface to get a good idea of what's down here.
Of course I'm not suggesting that we deny the phenomenon, simply because it doesn't accord with our earliest ideas. Our throw-away cultural mentality might encourage such a response, but that doesn't make it right.
No, what is necessary is to continue learning, to continue evaluating with fresh eyes and ears, and to continue to challenge oneself. And there are indeed those in the UFO research field who do this, often quietly and dil igently asking new questions.
After working on this topic for ten years, there is still a great deal I do not know. Yet, I feel confident in saying a few things:
1. UFOs are real.
2. Some are alien, and some are classified military projects.
3. There is extreme and extensive secrecy involved in this, not only from our military, but apparently from the aliens themselves.
4. The science and technology involved in alien UFOs probably exceed my wildest ideas at this point.
5. The intentions of these "aliens" are still not definitively known. They may be our space brothers, or we may be in their cookbook, or they may simply like the water here. Without true knowledge, caution is the only logical approach.
We live in serious and momentous times, and have genuine cause to worry about the future of our civilization. Within such a context, it would be surprising if the alien connection were not something of great importance.
Nevertheless, we should distrust sure fire answers. This applies not only to those who ignorantly debunk the subject, but those who, like those early Christians (and millennialists of today), tell us that they are certain of what lies just ahead.
CASTELGANDOLFO, Italy, Aug 18 (AFP) - Pope John Paul II gave thanks on Wednesday for the strength which enabled him to make a weekend pilgrimage to Lourdes, which French bishops said had made a loss for the Catholic Church of EUR 1.3 million.
[...] The Catholic Church in France was meanwhile counting the huge cost of the visit, and left pondering ways of how to make up a EUR 1.3 million shortfall after donations from the pilgrims failed to match costs.
"We are making an appeal for donations, because the Sanctuaries (at Lourdes) do not have the means to support it and if we really must, we will take out a loan," the bishop of Tarbes and Lourdes, Monsignor Jacques Perrier, told AFP.
Perrier said only EUR 200,000 had been raised by donations against the EUR 1.5 million (USD 1.8 million) cost of the visit.
"Our system of donations didn't work because we had worked on the assumption that people would head into the sanctuaries very slowly, which would have allowed more time to ask pilgrims to make donations," said Perrier. The Church had sought a EUR 10 donation from pilgrims.
"In fact, pilgrims entered very swiftly as people were in a hurry to find a good place" for John Paul II's open air mass on Sunday. "On top of that, the French reflex of 'It's the Church so it's free' also played a part," said the bishop.
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