Thursday, November 11, 2004
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New Publication! The Wave finally in book form!

The Wave: 4 Volume Set
Volume 1

by Laura Knight-Jadczyk

With a new introduction by the author and never before published, UNEDITED sessions and extensive previously unpublished details, at long last, Laura Knight-Jadczyk's vastly popular series The Wave is available as a Deluxe four book set. Each of the four volumes include all of the original illustrations and many NEW illustrations with each copy comprising approximately 300 pages.

The Wave is an exquisitely written first-person account of Laura's initiation at the hands of the Cassiopaeans and demonstrates the unique nature of the Cassiopaean Experiment.

Pre-order Volume 1 now. Available at the end of November!

In Memoriam: Yasser Arafat


Mohammed Abdel-Raouf Arafat As Qudwa al-Hussaeini was born on 24 August 1929 in Cairo**, his father a textile merchant who was a Palestinian with some Egyptian ancestry, his mother from an old Palestinian family in Jerusalem. She died when Yasir, as he was called, was five years old, and he was sent to live with his maternal uncle in Jerusalem, the capital of Palestine, then under British rule, which the Palestinians were opposing.

He has revealed little about his childhood, but one of his earliest memories is of British soldiers breaking into his uncle's house after midnight, beating members of the family and smashing furniture.

After four years in Jerusalem, his father brought him back to Cairo, where an older sister took care of him and his siblings. Arafat never mentions his father, who was not close to his children. Arafat did not attend his father's funeral in 1952.

In Cairo, before he was seventeen Arafat was smuggling arms to Palestine to be used against the British and the Jews. At nineteen, during the war between the Jews and the Arab states, Arafat left his studies at the University of Faud I (later Cairo University) to fight against the Jews in the Gaza area.

The defeat of the Arabs and the establishment of the state of Israel left him in such despair that he applied for a visa to study at the University of Texas. Recovering his spirits and retaining his dream of an independent Palestinian homeland, he returned to Faud University to major in engineering but spent most of his time as leader of the Palestinian students.

He did manage to get his degree in 1956, worked briefly in Egypt, then resettled in Kuwait, first being employed in the department of public works, next successfully running his own contracting firm. He spent all his spare time in political activities, to which he contributed most of the profits.

In 1958 he and his friends founded Al-Fatah, an underground network of secret cells, which in 1959 began to publish a magazine advocating armed struggle against Israel. At the end of 1964 Arafat left Kuwait to become a full-time revolutionary, organising Fatah raids into Israel from Jordan.

It was also in 1964 that the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) was established, under the sponsorship of the Arab League, bringing together a number of groups all working to free Palestine for the Palestinians. The Arab states favoured a more conciliatory policy than Fatah's, but after their defeat by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War, Fatah emerged from the underground as the most powerful and best organised of the groups making up the PLO, took over that organisation in 1969 when Arafat became the chairman of the PLO executive committee. The PLO was no longer to be something of a puppet organisation of the Arab states, wanting to keep the Palestinians quiet, but an independent nationalist organisation, based in Jordan.

Arafat developed the PLO into a state within the state of Jordan with its own military forces. King Hussein of Jordan, disturbed by its guerrilla attacks on Israel and other violent methods, eventually expelled the PLO from his country. Arafat sought to build a similar organisation in Lebanon, but this time was driven out by an Israeli military invasion. He kept the organization alive, however, by moving its headquarters to Tunis.

He was a survivor himself, escaping death in an airplane crash, surviving any assassination attempts by Israeli intelligence agencies, and recovering from a serious stroke. His life was one of constant travel, moving from country to country to promote the Palestinian cause, always keeping his movements secret, as he did any details about his private life. Even his marriage to Suha Tawil, a Palestinian half his age, was kept secret for some fifteen months. She had already begun significant humanitarian activities at home, especially for disabled children, but the prominent part she took in the public events in Oslo was a surprise for many Arafat-watchers. Since then, their daughter, Zahwa, named after Arafat's mother, has been born.

The period after the expulsion from Lebanon was a low time for Arafat and the PLO. Then the intifada (shaking) protest movement strengthened Arafat by directing world attention to the difficult plight of the Palestinians.

In 1988 came a change of policy. In a speech at a special United Nations session held in Geneva, Switzerland, Arafat declared that the PLO renounced terrorism and supported "the right of all parties concerned in the Middle East conflict to live in peace and security, including the state of Palestine, Israel and other neighbours".

The prospects for a peace agreement with Israel now brightened. After a setback when the PLO supported Iraq in the Persian Gulf War of 1991, the peace process began in earnest, leading to the Oslo Accords of 1993. This agreement included provision for the Palestinian elections which took place in early 1996, and Arafat was elected President of the Palestine Authority.[...]

When the right-wing government of Benjamin Netanyahu came to power in Israel in 1996, the peace process slowed down considerably. [...]

Since there is no biographical description of Yasser Arafat in Les Prix Nobel for 1994, this account was written by the editor of Nobel Lectures, Peace 1991-1995, published by World Scientific Publishing Co. From Nobel Lectures, Peace 1991-1995, Editor Irwin Abrams, World Scientific Publishing Co., Singapore, 1999

This autobiography/biography was written at the time of the award and later published in the book series Les Prix Nobel/Nobel Lectures. The information is sometimes updated with an addendum submitted by the Laureate.

** The place of Arafat's birth is disputed. Besides Cairo, other sources mention Jerusalem and Gaza as his birthplace.

Comment: For years, defamatory attacks have been launched against Yasser Arafat, generally accusing him of all kinds of evil deeds including stealing vast sums of money from the Palestinian people, moral depravity, and other crimes and misdemeanors too numerous to mention. As it is in all times, propagandists seek to blacken the names of those whose moral right threatens their greed for power and plunder.

Please notice in the above biography the comment that, even when he was in "private life," successfully running his own contracting firm, Yasser Arafat contributed most of the profits to the furtherance of the Palestinian cause.

Certainly, the Zionists, seeing Arafat as an obstacle to their hegemony over the Palestinian lands, regard Arafat as a "tool of Satan, a "hardened criminal," and want everyone to see him as a "cruel tyrant," a pestilence and certainly insane with his own drive for power.

But let us consider, for one moment, his ultimate submission to the peace process. This decision has been criticized by both sides. The Zionists say it is just a "cunning maneuver" designed to hide Arafat's true evil intentions against them. Many Palestinians saw it as proof of "feebleness" if not downright cowardice.

What seems to be true is that Arafat was not the kind of man who was attached to his own "honors" or benefits. His personal self-importance seems to have been of little concern to him. His main interests seem to have been to minimize the damage done to the Palestinian people. By seeking peace, Arafat removed himself from being the foe against whom the Zionists could rage and make war. By depriving them of their concrete objective, Arafat destroyed the main raison d'etre of the Zionist genocide of the Palestinian people.

The Zionists, not wishing to be deprived of their target, the lightning rod for their destruction of the legal owners of the land they renamed Israel, rejected outright Arafat's submission, declaring it to be a further example of his "double dealing." The Zionist propaganda machine raced into action declaring that Arafat's only motive for engaging in the peace process was to render his person and property - his vast ill-gotten gains - immune from seizure, and to provide a cloak for his nefarious schemes.

Certainly, rogue elements of the Palestinian resistance continued to attack Israelis after Arafat's orders to stand down, but for the most part, it is obvious that "suicide bombings" became a standard part of the Zionist "false-flag" approach to blackening the name of Yasser Arafat.

The fact is that Arafat's decisions were not so much due to his personal preferences than they were the necessary response to his desperate attempts to preserve the lives of his people - those people who saw that he truly had their best interests at heart.

Arafat's private character was subsumed in the public role he was obliged to play. He seems to have identified himself so closely with his people's cause that, as the symbolic representative of the Palestinians, his only life was that of servant to the NEEDS of the people.

And still, as we can see from his late attempt to have some little life of his own, marriage and a child, he was still tragically human. What is so bizarre is that even Arafat's austerity in his confinement, the fact that his wife and child were sent to safety, is criticized and seen as "shameful."

When we consider the forces against which Arafat fought, adversaries of great evil and cunning, fanaticism, overweening ambition, and just plain ignorance, Arafat committed the greatest crime of all; a crime which it was impossible to forgive: he was a tolerant man with a just grievance, who attempted to find a middle way of peace. It is by his moral rightness rather than any taint of self-interest - which would have rendered Arafat subject to being "bought off" - that brought down the fires of the Zionist Inquisition on his head.

Based on our own experiences with COINTELPRO and the "propaganda machine", we can see that the confusion surrounding the person of Arafat must be deliberate. One thing, however, is beyond doubt: by his life, by his actions, by his choices, Arafat displayed a devotion to his people and his cause seldom encountered in this world.

All evidence concerning the morality - or rather the immorality - of Yasser Arafat is worth considering carefully since it is precisely on these grounds that he is most viciously attacked and denigrated.

Since the essential value of his life's work must be judged by the effect it produces in the lives of his followers, certainly, the Zionists can hardly proclaim him to have been charitable and virtuous or that his followers were devoted and loyal. This is why they have spent so much time defaming him with charges of hypocrisy and double-dealing, why so much effort has gone into fake Palestinian suicide bombings, and other false flag operations blamed on the Palestinians, and even Arafat directly.

But as far as Arafat himself is concerned, his behavior in the face of the extreme hardships he suffered, in the face of certain death, forever frees him from any taint of hypocrisy.

In the end, it is hard to decide which element of the story of Yasser Arafat is most significant: his undeniable heroism, or the moral bankruptcy displayed by the rest of the world.

May he rest in the peace that he worked for on Earth.

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The Origin of the Palestine-Israeli Conflict

Jews for Justice in the Middle East

As the periodic bloodshed continues in the Middle East, the search for an equitable solution must come to grips with the root cause of the conflict. The conventional wisdom is that, even if both sides are at fault, the Palestinians are irrational "terrorists" who have no point of view worth listening to. Our position, however, is that the Palestinians have a real grievance: their homeland for over a thousand years was taken, without their consent and mostly by force, during the creation of the state of Israel. And all subsequent crimes - on both sides - inevitably follow from this original injustice. [...]

The standard Zionist position is that they showed up in Palestine in the late 19th century to reclaim their ancestral homeland. Jews bought land and started building up the Jewish community there. They were met with increasingly violent opposition from the Palestinian Arabs, presumably stemming from the Arabs' inherent anti-Semitism. The Zionists were then forced to defend themselves and, in one form or another, this same situation continues up to today. [...]

What really happened was that the Zionist movement, from the beginning, looked forward to a practically complete dispossession of the indigenous Arab population so that Israel could be a wholly Jewish state, or as much as was possible. Land bought by the Jewish National Fund was held in the name of the Jewish people and could never be sold or even leased back to Arabs (a situation which continues to the present).

The Arab community, as it became increasingly aware of the Zionists' intentions, strenuously opposed further Jewish immigration and land buying because it posed a real and imminent danger to the very existence of Arab society in Palestine. Because of this opposition, the entire Zionist project never could have been realized without the military backing of the British. The vast majority of the population of Palestine, by the way, had been Arabic since the seventh century A.D. (Over 1200 years)

In short, Zionism was based on a faulty, colonialist world view that the rights of the indigenous inhabitants didn't matter. The Arabs' opposition to Zionism wasn't based on anti-Semitism but rather on a totally reasonable fear of the dispossession of their people.

One further point: being Jewish ourselves, the position we present here is critical of Zionism but is in no way anti-Semitic. We do not believe that the Jews acted worse than any other group might have acted in their situation. The Zionists (who were a distinct minority of the Jewish people until after WWII) had an understandable desire to establish a place where Jews could be masters of their own fate, given the bleak history of Jewish oppression. Especially as the danger to European Jewry crystalized in the late 1930's and after, the actions of the Zionists were propelled by real desperation.

But so were the actions of the Arabs. The mythic "land without people for a people without land" was already home to 700,000 Palestinians in 1919. This is the root of the problem, as we shall see. [...]

We hear lots about Palestinian terrorism. How about the Israeli record?

"The record of Israeli terrorism goes back to the origins of the state - indeed, long before - including the massacre of 250 civilians and brutal expulsion of seventy thousand others from Lydda and Ramle in July 1948; the massacre of hundreds of others at the undefended village of Doueimah near Hebron in October 1948;...the slaughters in Quibya, Kafr Kassem, and a string of other assassinated villages; the expulsion of thousands of Bedouins from the demilitarized zones shortly after the 1948 war and thousands more from northeastern Sinai in the early 1970's, their villages destroyed, to open the region for Jewish settlement; and on, and on." Noam Chomsky, "Blaming The Victims," ed. Said and Hitchens.

"However much one laments and even wishes somehow to atone for the loss of life and suffering visited upon innocents because of Palestinian violence, there is still the need, I think, also to say that no national movement has been so unfairly penalized, defamed, and subjected to disproportionate retaliation for its sins as has the Palestinian.

The Israeli policy of punitive counterattacks (or state terrorism) seems to be to try to kill anywhere from 50 to 100 Arabs for every Jewish fatality. The devastation of Lebanese refugee camps, hospitals, schools, mosques, churches, and orphanages; the summary arrests, deportations, house destructions, maimings, and torture of Palestinians on the West Bank and Gaza. These, and the number of Palestinian fatalities, the scale of material loss, the physical, political and psychological deprivations, have tremendously exceeded the damage done by Palestinians to Israelis." Edward Said, "The Question of Palestine."

The U.S. Government and media bias on terrorism in the Middle East

"It is simply extraordinary and without precedent that Israel's history, its record - from the fact that a state built on conquest, that it has invaded surrounding countries, bombed and destroyed at will, to the fact that it currently occupies Lebanese, Syrian, and Palestinian territory against international law - is simply never cited, never subjected to scrutiny in the U.S. media or in official discourse...never addressed as playing any role at all in provoking 'Islamic terror.'" Edward Said in "The Progressive." May 30, 1996.

"Albert Einstein - "'I should much rather see reasonable agreement with the Arabs on the basis of living together in peace than the creation of a Jewish State. Apart from practical considerations, my awareness of the essential nature of Judaism resists the idea of a Jewish State,with borders, an army, and a measure of temporal power, no matter how modest. I am afraid of the inner damage Judaism will sustain'...

"Professor Erich Fromm, a noted Jewish writer and thinker, [stated]...'In general international law, the principle holds true that no citizen loses his property or his rights of citizenship; and the citizenship right is de facto a right to which the Arabs in Israel have much more legitimacy than the Jews. Just because the Arabs fled? Since when is that punishable by confiscation of property, and by being barred from returning to the land on which a people's forefathers have lived for generations? Thus, the claim of the Jews to the land of Israel cannot be a realistic claim. If all nations would suddenly claim territory in which their forefathers had lived two thousand years ago, this world would be a madhouse...I believe that, politically speaking, there is only one solution for Israel, namely, the unilateral acknowledgement of the obligation of the State towards the Arabs - not to use it as a bargaining point, but to acknowledge the complete moral obligation of the Israeli State to its former inhabitants of Palestine'...

"Nathan Chofshi - 'Only an internal revolution can have the power to heal our people of their murderous sickness of causeless hatred...It is bound to bring complete ruin upon us. Only then will the old and young in our land realize how great was our responsibility to those miserable Arab refugees in whose towns we have settled Jews who were brought here from afar; whose homes we have inherited, whose fields we now sow and harvest; the fruits of whose gardens, orchards and vineyards we gather; and in whose cities that we robbed we put up houses of education, charity, and prayer, while we babble and rave about being the "People of the Book" and the "light of the nations"'...

"In an article published in the Washington Post of 3 October 1978, Rabbi Hirsch (of Jerusalem) is reported to have declared: 'The 12th principle of our faith, I believe, is that the Messiah will gather the Jewish exiled who are dispersed throughout the nations of the world. Zionism is diametrically opposed to Judaism. Zionism wishes to define the Jewish people as a nationalistic entity. The Zionists say, in effect, 'Look here, God. We do not like exile. Take us back, and if you don't, we'll just roll up our sleeves and take ourselves back.' 'The Rabbi continues: 'This, of course, is heresy. The Jewish people are charged by Divine oath not to force themselves back to the Holy Land against the wishes of those residing there.'" Sami Hadawi, "Bitter Harvest."

"A Jewish Home in Palestine built up on bayonets and oppression [is] not worth having, even though it succeed, whereas the very attempt to build it up peacefully, cooperatively, with understanding, education, and good will, [is] worth a great deal even though the attempt should fail." Rabbi Judah L. Magnes, first president of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, quoted in "Like All The Nations?", ed. Brinner & Rischin. [...]

"Since the 1980's,.....Israeli scholars [have] concurred with their Palestinian counterparts that Zionism was...carried out as a pure colonialist act against the local population: a mixture of exploitation and expropriation...

"They were motivated to present a revisionist point of view to a large extent by the declassification of relevant archival material in Israel, Britain and the United States. [For example,]...

Challenging the Myth of Annihilation - The new historiographical picture is a fundamental challenge to the official history that says the Jewish community faced possible annihilation on the eve of the 1948 war. Archival documents expose a fragmented Arab world wrought by dismay and confusion and a Palestinian community that possessed no military ability with which to frighten the Jews...

The Jewish military advantage was translated into an act of mass expulsion of more than half of the Palestinian population. The Israeli forces, apart from rare exceptions, expelled the Palestinians from every village and town they occupied. In some cases, this expulsion was accompanied by massacres [of civilians] as was the case in Lydda, Ramleh, Dawimiyya, Sa'sa, Ein Zietun and other places. Expulsion also was accompanied by rape, looting and confiscation [of Palestinian land and property]...

The Myth of Arab Intransigence - [The U.N.] convened a peace conference in Lausanne, Switzerland in the spring of 1949. Before the conference, the U.N. General Assembly adopted a resolution that in effect replaced the November 1947 partition resolution. This new resolution, Resolution 194 of December 11, 1948, accepted [U.N. Mediator] Bernadotte's triangular basis for a comprehensive peace: an unconditional return of all the refugees to their homes, the internationalization of Jerusalem, and the partitioning of Palestine into two states.

This time, several Arab states and various representatives of the Palestinians accepted this as a basis for negotiations, as did the United States, which was running the show at Lausanne...

Prime Minister David Ben Gurion strongly opposed any peace negotiations along these lines...The only reason he was willing to allow Israel to participate in the peace conference was his fear of an angry American reaction...

The road to peace was not taken due to Israeli, not Arab, intransigence.

Conclusions - The new Israeli historians...wish to rectify what their research reveals as past evils...There was a high price exacted in creating a Jewish state in Palestine. And there were victims, the plight of whom still fuels the fire of conflict in Palestine." Israeli historian, Ilan Pappe in "The Link", January, 1998.

"It is no longer my country" "For me, this business called the state of Israel is finished...I can't bear to see it anymore, the injustice that is done to the Arabs, to the Beduins. All kinds of scum coming from America and as soon as they get off the plane taking over lands in the territories and claiming it for their own...I can't do anything to change it. I can only go away and let the whole lot go to hell without me." Israeli actress (and household name) Rivka Mitchell, quoted in Israeli peace movement periodical, "The Other Israel", August 1998. [...]

Israel has sought peace with its Arab neighbor states but has steadfastly refused to negotiate with Palestinians directly, until the last few years. Why?

"My friend, take care. When you recognize the concept of 'Palestine', you demolish your right to live in Ein Hahoresh. If this is Palestine and not the Land of Israel, then you are conquerors and not tillers of the land. You are invaders. If this is Palestine, then it belongs to a people who have lived here before you came. Only if it is the Land of Israel do you have a right to live in Ein Hahoresh and in Deganiyah B. If it is not your country, your fatherland, the country of your ancestors and of your sons, then what are you doing here? You came to another people's homeland, as they claim, you expelled them and you have taken their land." Menahem Begin, quoted in Noam Chomsky's "Peace in the Middle East?" [...]

"Why should the Arabs make peace? If I was an Arab leader, I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them? Our God is not theirs, We come from Israel, it's true, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They only see one thing: we came here and stole their country. Why should they accept that?" David Ben-Gurion, quoted in "The Jewish Paradox" by Nathan Goldman, former president of the World Jewish Congress. [...]

"Before [the Palestinians] very eyes we are possessing the land and the villages where they, and their ancestors, have lived...We are the generation of colonizers, and without the steel helmet and the gun barrel we cannot plant a tree and build a home." Israeli leader Moshe Dayan, quoted in Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi, "Original Sins: Reflections on the History of Zionism and Israel" [...]

"In June 1982 Israel again invaded Lebanon, and it used aerial bombardment to destroy entire camps of Palestinian Arab refugees, By these means Israel killed 20,000 persons, mostly civilians...Israel claimed self-defense for its invasion, but the lack of PLO attacks into Israel during the previous year made that claim dubious...The [UN] Security Council demanded 'that Israel withdraw all its military forces forthwith and unconditionally to the internationally recognized boundaries of Lebanon'... [...]

"Amnesty International also observed that, when brought to trial, most Palestinian detainees arrested for 'terrorist' offenses and tortured by the Shin Bet (General Security Services) 'have been accused of offenses such as membership in unlawful associations or throwing stones. They have also included prisoners of conscience such as people arrested solely for raising a flag.' On a related point, Haaretz columnist B. Michael noted that there wasn't a single recorded case in which the Shin Bet's use of torture was prompted by a 'ticking bomb' scenario: 'In every instance of a Palestinian lodging formal complaint about torture, the Shin Bet justified its use in order to extract a confession about something that had already happened, not about something that was about to happen.'" Norman Finkelstein, "The Rise and Fall of Palestine." [...]

"There is clearly no need to justify the Zionist dream, the desire for relief from Jewish suffering...The trouble with Zionism starts when it lands, so to speak, in Palestine. What has to be justified is the injustice to the Palestinians caused by Zionism, the dispossession and victimization of a whole people. There is clearly a wrong here, a wrong which creates the need for justification... [...]

The aim of Zionism is the restoration of a Jewish sovereignty to its status 2,000 years ago. Zionism does not advocate an overhauling of the total world situation in the same way. It does not advocate the restoration of the Roman empire...[In addition,] Palestinians have claimed descent from the ancient inhabitants of Palestine 3,000 years ago!... [...]

It was easy to make the Palestinians pay for 2,000 years of persecution. The Palestinians, who have felt the enormous power of this vengeance, were not the historical oppressors of the Jews. They did not put Jews into ghettos and force them to wear yellow stars. They did not plan holocausts. But they had one fault. They were weak and defenseless in the face of real military might, so they were the ideal victims for an abstract revenge.... [...]

Unlike the situation of Jews persecuted for being Jews, Israelis are at war with the Arab world because they have committed the sin of colonialism, not because of their Jewish identity...

Presenting the world as naturally unjust, and oppression as nature's way, has always been the first refuge of those who want to preserve their privileges...The need to justify Zionism, and the lack of other defenses, has made it part of the Israeli world view... In Israel, one common outcome is cynicism, for which Israelis have become famous...

Israelis seem to be haunted by a curse. It is the curse of the original sin against the native Arabs. How can Israel be discussed without recalling the dispossession and exclusion of non-Jews? This is the most basic fact about Israel, and no understanding of Israeli reality is possible without it. The original sin haunts and torments Israelis; it marks everything and taints everybody. Its memory poisons the blood and marks every moment of existence." Israeli author, Benjamin Beit-Hallahami, "Original Sins: Reflections on the History of Zionism and Israel." [...]

As we have seen, the root cause of the Palestine-Israel conflict is clear. During the 1948 war, 750,000 Palestinians fled in terror or were actively expelled from their ancestral homeland and turned into refugees. The state of Israel then refused to allow them to return and either destroyed their villages entirely or expropriated their land, orchards, houses, businesses and personal possessions for the use of the Jewish population. This was the birth of the state of Israel. [...]

Any criticism of Israel is traditionally seen by American Jews as harmful to the Jewish people, even if the criticism is true. But "my people, right or wrong, my people" is no different than "my country, right or wrong, my country". Once we start down the slippery slope where the ends justify the means we have left behind any claim to morality. Along with millions of other American Jews unaffiliated with the major U.S. Jewish organizations, we are outraged at the Israeli government's ongoing oppression of the Palestinians and feel that it has been the ruination of the high moral standing of the Jewish people. [...]

The persecution of the Jews for centuries in Europe was the worst of many stains on the European record, and the Zionists' desire for a place of sanctuary is certainly understandable. Like all other colonial enterprises, however, Zionism was based on the total disregard of the rights of indigenous inhabitants. As such, it is morally indefensible. And, as previously stated, all subsequent crimes - and there have been many on both sides - inevitably follow from this original injustice to the Palestinians.

Comment: In other words, Arafat's willingness to seek peace with the Zionists was a stupendous act of compromise. And just for the sake of tossing a few additional things into the pot to think about, let us quote the Cassiopaean Transcripts on the subject of Arafat:

Q: (L) What realm or area did Jesus come from before he was born into the earth in the body of Jesus of Nazareth?

A: 5th density. ...

Q: (L) Had he had any other incarnations in other human bodies on planet earth?

A: Yes. 1009.

Q: (L) Was Joshua, the right hand man of Moses an incarnation of Jesus?

A: Yes.

Q: (L) Are there any other incarnations of Jesus with which we would be familiar if you were to name them?

A: Yes. Socrates. ...

Q: (L) Are there any fifth density souls on the earth today or any of recent times we would recognize?

A: Yes. Arafat. Sadat. Pope John V. [...]

Q: (L) Were any of the descendants of Jesus famous individuals that we would know.

A: Yes. Yasser Arafat. Churchill. [...]

Q: (L) On a couple of occasions it has been mentioned that Yasser Arafat was a fifth density soul and that he was a descendant of Jesus of Nazareth. What is there about him that demonstrates these qualities or these genetics?

A: Have you not seen? Imagine what it would be like to be Yasser Arafat. Look at your perception. What is he doing now?

Q: (L) Well the pro-Jewish point of view is not favorable to him.

A: Well, what you describe as pro anything is an obsession. And, as we know, obsession blocks knowledge which in turn blocks the ability to protect oneself against negative occurrences. Not a good idea. If you were following circumstances, Yasser Arafat is now trying to take the world upon his shoulders by making peace with the Israelis who have been enemies for a very long time. And, therefore, he is now a peace maker and knowledge dispenser.

Gives new meaning to an alleged saying of Jesus:

Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! 23:38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.

Which reminds us of another exchange with the C's:

Q: (L) What is going to happen with the Middle-eastern situation; this Afghanistan or whatever?

A: Herding of population to much finer order of control.

Q: (L) What is the purpose of this control; this increasing control.

A: Preparation for war in Palestine.

Q: (L) But nobody has said anything about having a war in Palestine. They're all talking about having a war in Afghanistan. How does Palestine fit in here?

A: It is the ultimate objective of Israel.

Q: (L) Why would they want to have war in their own country? Well, aside from the fact that they've been having a war in their own country for a long time. I guess they want to bring it to a final conclusion. What is going to be the result of this plan?

A: Destruction of Jews.

Q: (L) Well obviously this is not what THEY are planning, is it?

A: No.

Which brings us to:

Revelation: 13:9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.

13:10 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

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'A towering figure in the Arab world'

Thursday November 11, 2004

"Now the road is open, and we are telling the Israelis, welcome - if you want to implement the road map, then implement it. It was the path of President Arafat, and we will go on the path of Arafat."

Nabil Shaath, Palestinian foreign minister

"The next phase will not be the same without Yasser Arafat. He was the only one who understood the importance of national unity and there will never be a Palestinian leader willing to bear the consequences of saying 'no' to the Americans and Israel."

Jibril Rajoub, Arafat aide

"Arafat was the embodiment of the Palestinian question and his absence will certainly be greatly felt. But to all those who think that his passing away will open all the doors for peace, we say that this is false and that the answers never really lay with the Palestinians as much as with the Israelis."

Hossam Zaki, spokesman for the Arab League

"Both Israelis and Palestinians, and the friends of both peoples throughout the world, must make even greater efforts to bring about the peaceful realisation of the Palestinian right of self-determination,"
Kofi Annan, United Nations secretary-general

"The values and high virtues that Arafat embodied during his struggle for the Palestinian cause will inspire the Palestinian people so that they preserve their cohesion and unity and pursue their path to win back their national, legitimate and eternal rights".

Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, Tunisian president

"Although he has not lived to see the birth of a Palestinian state, we will work with the Palestinian authorities and the international community to contribute to realising the aspirations of the Palestinian people."

Ben Bot, Dutch foreign minister, in a statement issued on behalf of the European Union

"The best tribute to President Arafat's memory will be to intensify our efforts to establish a peaceful and viable state of Palestine as foreseen by the road map. With the passing of Yasser Arafat the Palestinian people have lost their historic leader. More than any other, his life stands for the tragic and turbulent history of the Middle East. A period of grief starts for all Palestinians."

Javier Solana, European Union foreign policy chief

"Yasser Arafat strove during his lifetime to lead the Palestinians to independence and establish a sovereign, viable Palestinian state. It was not granted to Yasser Arafat to complete his life's work."

Gerhard Schröder, German chancellor

"It is with emotion that I have learned of the death of President Yasser Arafat. France, like its partners in the European Union, will maintain, firmly and with conviction, its commitment to two states ... living side by side in peace and security. The road map, approved by Yasser Arafat, opens up that prospect."

Jacques Chirac, French president

"Arafat gave hope to millions of the downtrodden and despised, by instilling in them the knowledge and consciousness that despite current difficulties, they hold the gift of freedom in their hands."
Thabo Mbeki, South African president

"Yasser Arafat spent his entire life for the Palestinian cause. We pray that his mission is completed after his death."
Junichiro Koizumi, Japanese prime minister

"The Holy See joins the pain of the Palestinian people for the passing of President Yasser Arafat. He was a leader of great charisma who loved his people and tried to guide them towards national independence. May God in His mercy receive the soul of the illustrious deceased and grant peace to the Holy Land with two independent and sovereign states in full reconciliation between them."

Joaquin Navarro-Valls, Vatican spokesman

"Could I express the British government's deepest sympathy and condolences for the death of President Arafat. He was a towering figure not only in the Palestinian world but in the Arab world, and it is difficult to imagine the Middle East without him."

Jack Straw, foreign secretary

"Throughout a lifetime in struggle, President Yasser Arafat has not only been a father to the Palestinian people, he has been an inspiration to people throughout the world as he led the struggle for a sovereign Palestinian state ... The most fitting legacy to President Arafat is for the international community to act immediately to ensure that the Israeli government removes its troops and illegal settlements from Palestinian lands and a return to the negotiating table."

Gerry Adams, Sinn Féin leader

Comment: Glowing and deserved praise, yet disingenuous given that if these same leaders had been as supportive of Arafat in life as they now seem to be in death most of the decent people of the world may not now be mourning his demise.

Yet we must be grateful for small mercies we suppose. Contrast these comments of world leaders with the words and deeds of the Israelis towards Arafat and the Palestinian people. Sharon has finally achieved his long held goal, he has liquidated Arafat and opened the door to the achievement of his other long-held goal, the destruction of the Palestinian people en masse, and with them the ordinary Jews of Israel.


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Arafat and His Three Revolutions
Uri Avnery, uri-avnery-adminATmailmanDOTsweethomeDOTcoDOTil
Wherever he may be buried when he passes away, the day will come when his remains will be reinterred by a free Palestinian government in the holy shrines in Jerusalem.

Yasser Arafat is one of the generation of great leaders who arose after World War II. The stature of a leader is not simply determined by the size of his achievements, but also by the size of the obstacles he had to overcome. In this respect, Arafat has no competitor in the world: No leader of our generation has been called upon to face such cruel tests and to cope with such adversities as he.

When he appeared on the stage of history, at the end of the 1950s, his people was close to oblivion. The name Palestine had been eradicated from the map. Israel, Jordan and Egypt had divided the country between them. The world had decided that there was no Palestinian national entity, that the Palestinian people had ceased to exist, like the American Indian nations — if, indeed, it had ever existed at all.

Almost all Palestinians lived under dictatorships, most of them in humiliating circumstances.

When Yasser Arafat, then a young engineer in Kuwait, founded the “Palestinian Liberation Movement” (whose initials in reverse spell Fatah), he meant first of all liberation from the various Arab leaders, so as to enable the Palestinian people to speak and act for itself. That was the first revolution of the man who made at least three great revolutions during his life.

It was a dangerous one. Fatah had no independent base. It had to function in the Arab countries, often under merciless persecutions.

Those years were a formative influence on Arafat’s characteristic style. He had to maneuver between the Arab leaders, play them off against each other, use tricks, half-truths and double-talk, evade traps and circumvent obstacles.

He became a world champion of manipulation. This way he saved the liberation movement from many dangers in the days of its weakness, until it could become a potent force.

Gamal Abdul Nasser, the Egyptian ruler got worried about the emerging independent Palestinian force. To choke it off in time, he created the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and put at its head a Palestinian political mercenary, Ahmed Shukeiri. But after the shameful rout of the Arab armies in 1967 and the electrifying victory of the Fatah fighters against the Israeli Army in the battle of Karameh (March 1968), Fatah took over the PLO and Arafat became the undisputed leader of the entire Palestinian struggle.

In the mid-1960s, Yasser Arafat started his second revolution: The armed struggle against Israel. The pretension was almost ludicrous: A handful of poorly armed guerrillas, not very efficient at that, against the might of the Israeli Army. And not in a country of impassable jungles and mountain ranges, but in a small, flat, densely populated stretch of land. But this struggle put the Palestinian cause on the world agenda. The PLO was recognized as the “sole representative of the Palestinian people”, and thirty years ago Yasser Arafat was invited to make his historic speech to the UN General Assembly: “In one hand I carry a gun, in the other an olive branch.”

Immediately after the October 1973 Yom Kippur, Arafat started his third revolution: He decided that the PLO must reach an agreement with Israel and be content with a Palestinian state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. That confronted him with a historic challenge: To convince the Palestinian people to give up its historic position denying the legitimacy of the State of Israel, and to be satisfied with a mere 22 percent of the territory of pre-1948 Palestine. Without being stated explicitly, it was clear that this also entails the giving up of the unlimited return of the refugees to the territory of Israel. He started to work to this end in his own characteristic way, with persistence, patience and ploys, two steps forwards, one step back.

Historic justice demands that it be clearly stated that it was Arafat who envisioned the Oslo agreement at a time when both Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres still stuck to the hopeless “Jordanian option”, the belief that one could ignore the Palestinian people and give the West Bank back to Jordan. Of the three recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize, Arafat deserved it most. From 1974 on, I was an eyewitness to the immense effort invested by Arafat in order to get his people to accept his new approach. Step by step it was adopted by the Palestinian National Council, the Parliament in exile, first by a resolution to set up a Palestinian authority “in every part of Palestine liberated from Israel”, and, in 1988, to set up a Palestinian state next to Israel.

Arafat’s (and Israeli) tragedy was that whenever he came closer to a peaceful solution, the Israeli governments withdrew from it. His minimum terms were clear and remained unchanged from 1974 on: A Palestinian state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

I respected Arafat as a Palestinian patriot, I admired him for his courage, I understood the constraints he was working under, I saw in him the partner for building a new future for our two peoples.

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Why Palestine Is So Dear to Us
Dr. Khaled M. Batarfi, kbatarfiATal-madinaDOTcom
Many Americans cannot appreciate the link between the anger of 1.5 billion Muslims and the plight of few million Palestinians on a small piece of land that makes less than one percent of the Muslim world. To them, this is a sorrowful affair, but not enough of a cause for the resultant clash of civilizations. Instead, they suggest, Palestinians could easily be absorbed in the Arab and Muslim world. Life goes on. End of story.

Just imagine if someone suggested that the destruction of a couple of towers in New York, and a single wall in the Pentagon, and the death of some 3,000 people, not all of them Americans, do not deserve the anger of 260 million Americans. There are more people killed in accidents and crimes in a day. An earthquake or a hurricane could have caused similar destruction and loss of lives.

What is the big deal? The buildings can be easily rebuilt. The families of the victims and the owners of affected buildings can be nicely compensated. Life goes on. End of story.

But no. America was rightly upset, rightly angry, and rightly resolute on punishing those responsible for mass-murdering Americans and insulting America. We do disagree on why this happened, what is the appropriate response, and who should be punished. But we certainly agree that America was attacked and insulted and must respond in kind. Punishment should match the crime.

Similarly, how could any just person suggest that the uprooting of millions from their ancestors’ homeland can be easily compensated somewhere else? I understand that in America people move around. Except for Natives, all came from other continents. In the Old World, it was different. A land where my ancestors were buried, my history was made, my culture is based can’t be easily replaced. Given the choice, an old family house in a poor village is a world better than a luxurious Manhattan apartment or a Swiss chalet.

If the Jews of the world feel the same toward a homeland they left four thousands years ago, what of the Palestinians who were kicked out only forty or fifty years ago and have no place they could call home.

But if that is the case for the Palestinians, what is the stake for Muslims and Arabs? I could ask the same question of Americans. What was in it for the West to intervene on behalf of Christians of East Timor, Sudan and the old Soviet republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania?

In Islam, we are a big family, all for one, one for all. Fellow Muslims are regarded as brothers and sisters. What affects one in Chechnya or Kashmir hurts us all.

In addition, Palestine is a holy land. Jerusalem is as holy to Muslims as it is to Christians and Jews.

For us, Palestinians, Muslims and Christians, are an extended family. Of course, we care about the schoolgirl who was shot twenty times by an Israeli solider who wasn’t justly punished for it. Surely, we feel bitter about what happened to the little boy who was targeted by Israeli soldiers and died in his father’s hands. You bet we feel the pain of hundreds of families, whose homes were destroyed in days by Israeli bulldozers as a collective punishment.

We don’t need to be Arabs or Muslims to feel sorry for them, any decent human should, as Americans, rightly, expected us to feel about the victims of 9/11. The world felt the pain of both Americans and Palestinians and demanded justice. The difference is: America is a nuclear superpower, and can take justice into its hands, never mind the UN, world law and opinion. The Palestinians can only hit back against the sophisticated, overwhelming Israeli killing machines, with stones, small fire, and human bombers.

Now that our stand, as Muslims and Arabs, is, hopefully, clear, let me explain why we blame America, more than Israel, for our pain. First, America was the first in the world to recognize Israel. It took President Truman 10 minutes to do so in 1948. On the other hand, it took generations for the US to recognize any Palestinian representative. The US was the last country in the world, other than Israel, to recognize the PLO, years after the UN recognized it as the legitimate representative of the Palestinians.

For fifty years now, the US chose to blindly support Israel against the Arabs. It vetoed tens of Security Council resolutions. It voted, mostly alone, with Israel some eighty UN resolutions. It supplied Israel with hundreds of billions of dollars in cash and sophisticated arms and guaranteed loans. In short, by providing the bloodline to an otherwise failed state, the US is more than a partner in crime. It is the mother ship.

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Vanunu arrested by Israeli police
BBC News
The Israeli former nuclear technician Mordechai Vanunu, released in April after 18 years in jail, has been re-arrested, police say.

He is being held on suspicion of passing on classified information, police sources say.

Vanunu was convicted of treason over his disclosures about Israel's nuclear weapons programme and jailed in 1986.

Strict conditions were imposed on him after release, including a ban on giving interviews to foreign media.

However, Mr Vanunu has repeatedly been in contact with journalists and was interviewed on BBC television a couple of weeks ago.

Mr Vanunu revealed details of Israel's secret nuclear facilities to a British newspaper, in the face of Israeli denials.

There have been suggestions that Mr Vanunu's detention, coming on the day of Yasser Arafat's death, may have been timed to avoid widescale media coverage, says the BBC's Richard Miron in Jerusalem.

Comment: Israel Adam Shamir also sent out the following message to his lists this morning:

This morning at 09 am local time, a group of 30 armed security men stormed the Anglican church compound in Jerusalem and arrested Mordecai Vanunu, the nuclear whistleblower, who was released after 18 years of captivity just a few months ago.

Bishop Riah told me that the Israeli security personnel disregarded sanctity of St George Cathedral, brandished their machineguns, scared the pilgrims and the clergy. The bishop demanded from them to respect the church and remove armed men, but they refused. Vanunu was taken to Petach-Tikwa for detention, the Bishop was told.

The arrest came when the attention is drawn to death of President Arafat; actually an Israeli member of Knesset Yuval Shteinitz demanded to re-arrest Vanunu who continued his demand for opening Israeli nuclear arsenal for international inspection. Vanunu gave a few interview recently, one of them is available on given to Johannes Wahlstrom, a Swedish journalist. He also gave interviews to British media, encluding a live one.

Please intervene immediately, contact the Anglican Church, the Archbishop of Canterbury, your goverments and church leaders. This breach of sanctity of the Church comes two years after the siege of Bethlehem Nativity by Israeli troops. This is the time to express solidarity with Mordecai Vanunu, to demand his immediate release from captivity!

Israel Adam Shamir Jerusalem

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One Civilian Killed and Two Children Wounded by Israeli Forces

NABLUS, Palestine, November 10, 2004 - - Israeli occupation forces killed a civilian in the city of Nablus while two children were wounded in the city of Rafah as two bodies of Palestinian resistance activists were handed over yesterday.

IPC correspondent in the city of Nablus said that dozens of Israeli military vehicles invaded deep into the city and opened heavy gunfire at civilians, killing Fayez Ashour, 24.

Eyewitnesses confirmed that Ashour was going to his home to have the fast-breaking meal when Israeli forces started shooting. The forces prevented ambulances from reaching him and evacuating him in time.

In the Gaza Strip, medical sources declared yesterday that they received two bodies of Asaad Jouda, 22, and Mohammed Matar, 21, who were killed earlier on Tuesday morning.

Security sources further mentioned that both Jouda and Matar were shot dead by Israeli forces near the Martyrs Cemetery, east of Gaza City. They are both residents of Jabalia refugee camp.

Medical sources in the city of Rafah declared yesterday night that two children were wounded by Israeli gunfire towards the city.

The sources added that Fatema Al Hashash, 8, and Asmaa Al Hashash, 9, were both wounded and evacuated to Abu Yousef Al Najjar Hospital, when Israeli forces near the illegal settlement 'Morag' opened heavy gunfire at civilians' homes nearby.

Elsewhere, Israeli tanks near the illegal settlement 'Netzarim' south of Gaza City opened heavy gunfire yesterday night towards several Palestinian security outposts, causing moderate damages in the outpost buildings.

In Hebron, medical sources in the town of Yatta south of Hebron said four civilians suffocated when Israeli troops fired gas canisters inside their homes during a house-to-house search campaign in the town.

Eyewitnesses added that an Israeli force raided the downtown mall amidst heavy gunfire and gas canister firing, pointing out that the soldiers fired their gas canisters intentionally inside the houses and shops, though they knew they were packed with customers and residents.

Early on Tuesday morning, Israeli forces arrested six civilians from the village of Marda, east of Salfeet province, after raiding and searching several houses. The arrested ones were led to an undisclosed location.

In Bethlehem province, Israeli forces arrested four civilians in the city of Bethlehem after raiding and searching their homes.

Local sources confirmed that an Israeli force stormed the Wad Maali and Wad Shaheen neighborhoods in the city and searched several houses in them, arresting four civilians and leading them to an undisclosed location.

At the same context, Israeli forces raided civilians' houses in the town of Abidiyya, east of Bethlehem, and the Ayda refugee camp, arresting two civilians after assaulting their families.

As for the Tulkarem province, Israeli forces raided civilians' homes and arrested one civilian, in addition to storming Tulkarem refugee camp amidst heavy gunfire and house search campaign.

In the meantime, local sources at the village of Deir Abu Meshaal, west of Ramallah and Al Bireh province, reported that Israeli forces closed the only entrance of the village completely, cutting it from the outside world.

The villagers of Deir Abu Meshaal said they were having difficulties moving between their homes and working places outside the village, as the entrance of the village was blockaded with sand piles, forcing them to take other bypass roads to the neighboring villages on foot.

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Bush Appoints Hager
From a Reader
President Bush has announced his plan to select Dr. W. David Hager to head up the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee. The committee has not met for more than two years, during which time its charter lapsed. As a result, the Bush Administration is tasked with filling all eleven positions with new members. This position does not require Congressional approval.

The FDA's Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee makes crucial decisions on matters relating to drugs used in the practice of obstetrics, gynecology and related specialties, including hormone therapy, contraception, treatment for infertility, and medical alternatives to surgical procedures for sterilization and pregnancy termination. Dr. Hager is the author of "As Jesus Cared for Women: Restoring Women Then and Now." The book blends biblical accounts of Christ healing women with case studies from Hager's practice. His views of reproductive health care are far outside the mainstream for reproductive technology. Dr. Hager is a practicing OB/GYN who describes himself as "pro-life" and refuses to prescribe contraceptives to unmarried women.

In the book Dr. Hager wrote with his wife, entitled "Stress and the Woman's Body," he suggests that women who suffer from premenstrual syndrome should seek help from reading the bible and praying. As an editor and contributing author of "The Reproduction Revolution: A Christian Appraisal of Sexuality Reproductive Technologies and the Family,"Dr. Hager appears to have endorsed the medically inaccurate assertion that the common birth control pill is an abortifacient. We are concerned that Dr. Hager's strong religious beliefs may color his assessment of technologies that are necessary to protect women's lives or to preserve and promote women's health.

Hager's track record of using religious beliefs to guide his medical decision-making makes him a dangerous and inappropriate candidate to serve as chair of this committee. Critical drug public policy and research must not be influenced by antiabortion politics. Members of this important panel should be appointed on the basis of science and medicine, rather than politics and religion. American women deserve no less.

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Bush selects evangelical for attorney general post

By Andrew Buncombe in Washington11 November 2004

The Newest Fundie Face of Homeland Terrorism

Alberto Gonzales, the White House counsel who advised that the Geneva Conventions and international anti-torture treaties did not apply to terrorist suspects held by the US, was yesterday selected by President George Bush as his new attorney general.

Officials said that if confirmed by the Senate, Mr Gonzales would succeed John Ashcroft, whose resignation from the post was announced on Tuesday. Mr Gonzales, 49, would be the first Hispanic to hold the position.

If the right-wing, evangelical Mr Ashcroft was among the most polarising members of the Bush cabinet, Mr Gonzales is not without considerable controversy. He was at the centre of the effort to publicly defend the administration's policy of holding prisoners captured in the so-called "war on terror" without access to lawyers or the courts, a stance opposed by the Supreme Court. He also wrote a memo in February 2002 in which the Bush administration claimed the right to ignore international treaties prohibiting torture of prisoners. Campaigners said that memo led directly to the sort of abuses that were uncovered at Abu Ghraib in Iraq and which have been alleged at Guantanamo Bay.

Comment: Excellent, just what the American people need, a "kill 'em all and let God sort them out" type of guy who does not balk at suspending international law when it is needed to deal with "enemies of the state" - a moniker that could very soon be applied to the average American citizen, if indeed it is not already so.

But the controversy surrounding Mr Gonzales dates back further, to the time when he worked as general counsel to Mr Bush when he was governor of Texas. An article last year in Atlantic Monthly examined Mr Gonzales's role in the preparation of memos to Mr Bush on 57 death penalty cases in which the governor was required to consider the granting of clemency.

The magazine's investigation found Mr Gonzales "repeatedly failed to apprise the governor of crucial issues in the cases at hand: ineffective counsel, conflict of interest, mitigating evidence, even actual evidence of innocence". The magazine said Mr Gonzales appeared to exclude factors such as "mental illness or incompetence, childhood physical or sexual abuse, remorse, rehabilitation or racial discrimination in jury selection".

Mr Bush allowed the executions to proceed in all but one of the 57 cases, including that of Terry Washington, a 33-year-old mentally retarded man with the communications skills of a seven-year-old.

Comment: How important these little insights into the nature of our leaders are. It would appear that Mr Gonzalez, in pursuing his duties of protecting the "homeland", will not be influenced by appeals for leniency or mercy from any individual indicted on "terrorist" charges, be they charges of domestic "terrorism" or international "terrorism".

Mr Gonzales had also been considered a possible candidate for the Supreme Court if an opening should emerge. In recent weeks, his name had been mentioned increasingly, with the announcement that Chief Justice William Rehnquist was suffering from thyroid cancer.

Reports suggested that in the end it was decided, somewhat ironically, that Mr Gonzales was not sufficiently conservative on certain basic issues to please right-wing Republicans looking for a zealot on the bench.

Comment: When someone like Gonzalez is deemed not "conservative enough" for the Supreme Court, we really have to wonder just what type of fanatical right wing fundie one has to be to actually make it to the highest court in the land.

Senator John Kerry, the former Democratic presidential candidate, yesterday offered a statement in which he called Mr Ashcroft "one of the most divisive faces in this administration". He said: "With the end of the era of John Ashcroft, the President now has an opportunity to heal those divisions and make good on his promise of renewed bipartisan co-operation."

But, in an early sign of the increased control held by Republicans, the Energy Secretary, Spencer Abrams, said he believed the new Congress would vote next year to permit drilling for oil in the Alaskan wildlife reserve

Comment: Another interesting tidbit about Gonzalez is the fact that, during a case against Halliburton pending before the Texas Supreme Court in 1999, Gonzalez received $3,000 in political contributions from Halliburton. Two other justices also received $1,000 each. In the end the appeal was denied, exactly what Halliburton wanted.

Added to this we have the following...

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Flashback: The man behind all the bad decisions

St Petersburg Times
Published May 30, 2004

[...] there is perhaps no figure who has his fingerprints on more short-sighted, backward and counterproductive Bush administration policies than does White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales. [...]

Gonzales has also been a fierce defender of presidential secrecy, helping to put prior presidential records and Vice President Dick Cheney's energy task force records out of reach. "He has been a major advocate of virtually untrammeled presidential prerogatives," said Elliot Mincberg, general counsel for People for the American Way, who worries about a Gonzales nomination if Bush is re-elected.

Comment: It should be noted that the "secret" Energy Task Force records more than likely contain information which, among other things, would lead to awkward questions about the Bush administration's REAL reasons for invading Iraq, which of course is the reason they are "secret". And, yes, this is simply more proof that we are all being lied to by Bush and Co.

The reports would also probably reveal the endemic corruption in the making of the US government's energy policies which favor, or rather are defined by, big business interests. Such "interests" include changing laws that protect natural reserves, facilitating the decimation of protected forests and wildlife habitat and allowing oil drilling to take place in the Alaskan Wildlife Reserve, which, coincidentally, now looks to be on the cards after Bush's recent win and Republican increase in control over Congress and the Senate.

While Gonzalez was central to keeping the Energy Task Force records out of the public domain, Cheney (who chaired the committee) decided that a days duck hunting with Justice Antonin Scalia was also in order to seal the deal. As a result of this meeting, Cheney's high court appeal to ensure that their records remained secret was upheld.

And just in case you are still unconvinced of the moral standing of the Supreme Court Justices, here are a few words from the aforementioned Antonin Scalia...

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Flashback: Orgies are the way to ease social tensions, claims US judge

Oliver Burkeman in New York
Friday October 1, 2004
The Guardian

He is the conservative bastion of the US supreme court, a favourite of President Bush, and a hunting partner of the vice-president. He has argued vociferously against abortion rights, and in favour of anti-sodomy laws.

But it turns out that there is another side to Justice Antonin Scalia: he thinks Americans ought to be having more orgies.

Challenged about his views on sexual morality, Justice Scalia surprised his audience at Harvard University, telling them: "I even take the position that sexual orgies eliminate social tensions and ought to be encouraged."

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LA Indymedia
November 9, 2004

LOS ANGELES, - At 7:50 PM armored tanks showed up at an anti-war protest in front of the federal building in Westwood.

The tanks circled the block twice, the second time parking themselves in the street and directly in front of the area where most of the protesters were gathered.

Enraged, some of the people attempted to block the tanks, but police quickly cleared the street.

The people continued to protest the presence of the tanks, but after about ten minutes the tanks drove off. It is unclear as to why the tanks were deployed to this location.

Comment: A little tester perhaps, and a little taste of what is to come for the sleeping American sheeple. To watch the video clip, click here.

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Homeland Security inspector, 6 others charged with shakedown plot

CHICAGO Authorities say they've indicted a former senior Homeland Security inspector and six others. The federal charges stem from an alleged conspiracy to get bribes in exchange for bogus immigration papers and special favors.

Robert Butman worked at the O'Hare International Airport and is accused of working through middle men to shake down illegal immigrants.

Officials arrested the senior inspector in the Department of Homeland Security's Bureau of Customs and Border Protection on June 30th. The 40-year-old Butman, of suburban Niles, is free on 50-thousand dollars bond.

Five of the six other defendants were charged for the first time in the 19-count indictment returned yesterday.

The charges in the indictment carry maximum penalties ranging from five years to 20 years in federal prison if convicted.

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Bush revives bid to legalize illegal aliens
By Bill Sammon
November 10, 2004

President Bush yesterday moved aggressively to resurrect his plan to relax rules against illegal immigration, a move bound to anger conservatives just days after they helped re-elect him.

The president met privately in the Oval Office with Sen. John McCain to discuss jump-starting a stalled White House initiative that would grant legal status to millions of immigrants who broke the law to enter the United States.

The Arizona Republican is one of the Senate's most outspoken supporters of expanding guest-worker programs and has introduced his own bill to offer a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
"We are formulating plans for the legislative agenda for next year," said White House political strategist Karl Rove. "And immigration will be on that agenda."

He added: "The president had a meeting this morning to discuss with a significant member of the Senate the prospect of immigration reform. And he's going to make it an important item."

While the president was huddling with Mr. McCain, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell was pushing the plan during a visit to Mexico City.
"The president remains committed to comprehensive immigration reform as a high priority in his second term," he told a meeting of the U.S.-Mexico Binational Commission. "We will work closely with our Congress to achieve this goal."

But key opponents in Congress said Mr. Bush's proposal isn't going anywhere.

"An amnesty by any other name is still an amnesty, regardless of what the White House wants to call it," said Rep. Tom Tancredo, Colorado Republican and chairman of the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus.

"Their amnesty plan was dead on arrival when they sent it to the Congress in January, and if they send the same pig with lipstick back to Congress next January, it will suffer the same fate," he said.

With the House and Senate already clashing over border security and deportation provisions in the pending intelligence overhaul bill, some Capitol Hill aides said it's almost impossible that Congress could agree on a broader immigration proposal.

Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), said he "suddenly went from calm to stressed out" after learning of the president's renewed push for immigration relaxation.

He predicted the plan would continue to meet vigorous opposition from House Republicans.

"If the House wouldn't deliver this bill before the guy's election, when he claimed he needed it for the Hispanic vote, why would they deliver it after the election, when their constituents overwhelmingly oppose it?" he said. "Why would House leaders follow the president over a cliff?"

White House officials insisted the move was not "payback" to Hispanic voters who supported Mr. Bush in greater numbers last week than in 2000. Although the president first proposed relaxing immigration shortly after taking office, he mothballed the idea after September 11, 2001, and downplayed it on the campaign trail.

"The president has long believed that reforming our immigration system is a high priority," White House deputy press secretary Claire Buchan said yesterday.

Mr. Stein said Mr. Bush is already a "lame duck president" whose proposal "has no credibility." He expressed astonishment that the president resurrected the plan before pushing other second-term agenda items, like tax simplification or Social Security privatization.
"There's a sense of obstinacy in the face of overwhelming evidence that it's a losing approach," he said. "I mean, the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing, expecting a different result."

Though most members of Congress agree on the need for a guest-worker program to fill unwanted jobs, House Republican leaders, including Majority Leader Tom DeLay, Texas Republican, have panned other parts of the president's proposal as an amnesty.

Mr. Bush has not sent immigration legislation to Congress, though seven bills have been introduced by members of the House and Senate, according to Numbers USA, an organization that lobbies for stricter immigration controls.

They range from a proposal to give legal status to fewer than 1 million agricultural workers to a bill that could legalize most of the estimated 10 million illegal immigrants currently living in the United States. But none of the bills has passed even one chamber.

Mr. McCain is sponsoring a bill, along with Reps. Jim Kolbe and Jeff Flake, both Arizona Republicans, that would go further than the president's principles by explicitly allowing those now here illegally to enter a guest-worker program and eventually apply for permanent residence.

White House press secretary Scott McClellan said the president wants to "provide a more humane treatment" of illegal aliens from Mexico.

"America has always been a welcoming society, and this is a program that will match willing workers with willing employers," he said. "It will promote compassion for workers who right now have no protection."
He added of Mr. Bush: "It's something that he intends to work with members on to get moving again in the second term. It's something he believes very strongly in." [...]

Comment: There are an estimated ten million illegal immigrants in the US, Bush is pushing to legalize them, and yet he downplayed the amnesty issue during his re-election campaign. So, why the push to legalize illegal aliens?

One possible answer is quite simple: cannon fodder. The Bush administration already tried tempting illegal immigrants with citizenship if they sign up for Iraq duty, and that doesn't seem to be working too well anymore. If you know you are going to wage more Holy Wars in your Righteous Crusade Against Evil, you need a bigger army. The question then becomes: How do you draft men and women if you don't even know they are in the country? You don't. You offer them citizenship, then you draft them. If they don't accept amnesty, they could be viewed as unpatriotic, or even "terrorists"...

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Census Bureau faulted for data use

Homeland Security given information on Arab Americans

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

SUITLAND, Md. -- The Census Bureau's decision to give to the Department of Homeland Security data that identified populations of Arab Americans was the modern-day equivalent of its pinpointing Japanese American communities when internment camps were opened during World War II, members of an advisory board told the agency's top officials yesterday.

"This for the Arab American community is 1942," said Barry Steinhardt, a civil liberties lawyer and member of the panel, the Decennial Census Advisory Committee. "Thousands of Arab Americans have been rounded up and deported."

The criticism came at a daylong special meeting held at the Census Bureau's headquarters to discuss the disclosure this summer that on two occasions after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the agency provided comprehensive reports to Homeland Security listing Arab American populations by city and ZIP code.

The data, from the 2000 Census, already had been made public on the agency's Internet site and did not include any individual names or addresses, information the agency is prohibited from disclosing. Further, Homeland Security officials have said the data were requested simply to help them decide at which airports they needed to post Arabic language signs, not for law enforcement purposes.

But the Census Bureau director acknowledged at the meeting that by tabulating and handing over the data to the Department of Homeland Security, even though it broke no laws, the agency had undermined public trust, potentially discouraging Arab Americans or other minority groups from filling out future census forms. [...]

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The coming war

Sunday October 31, 2004
The Observer

Terrorism, climate change and world poverty are inextricably linked. We must conquer them before they destroy us, argues broadcaster Jonathan Dimbleby

For a moment forget about the charge sheet against Messrs Bush and Blair - the alleged lies about WMD or the illegality of the invasion of Iraq - and glance at the bigger picture. Global terrorism, global poverty and global warming form a toxic trio that promise a catastrophe that will make the horrors of 9/11 look like the Boston Tea Party.

Do I exaggerate? In the Middle East untold thousands of Arabs are being slaughtered by US warplanes and artillery, supported by the British, to impose Western democracy on Iraq at the point of a gun. In Beirut, once dismembered by civil war but now at ease with itself, the young parade through the squares with grace and elegance. But listen to what they say and you discover a coruscating sense of humiliation and a deepening rage against America, startling in this most genuinely Westernised Arab state.

Aliya Saidi, a young lecturer at the American University, was discomfited to be asked about Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld: 'I don't want to say I hate them but they are terrible people.' After an embarrassed pause, she added: 'I don't know if I should say that; my husband is American.'

The resentment against the US administration (not the American people who are presumed to have been duped) crosses all classes and backgrounds. 'If the US continues to despise the Arab nation in this way,' the owner of a sportswear shop, Hadi Baalbaki, warns, 'I fear the whole Arab nation will form itself into one big al-Qaeda.'

Richard Clark, Bush's former anti-terrorism coordinator who took charge in the White House on 9/11 and who retains close contact with intelligence agencies around the world, tells me that 'by almost any measure... the war on terrorism is being lost'. He cites the rate of terrorist atrocities, more than doubled since 9/11, and insists that the number of terrorists has risen to around 100,000 active 'jihadists' around the world. Chillingly, he believes these zealots are likely to be supported 'philosophically, politically, and perhaps with money' by upwards of 700 million Muslims - roughly half the global population of the Islamic faithful.

When I was first in Lebanon, some 30 years ago, the young Palestinians in the refugee camps were taught how to use Kalashnikovs. Now, two generations on and still without any escape from their humiliation, they live in an emotional swamp of resentment and anger. Ahmad Iskandar is in his early twenties, educated and courteous and speaks as if explaining the self-evident to a backward pupil: 'I am ready to explode myself in Israel.' Ready to be a suicide bomber? 'It is not suicide, sorry. It is a martyr operation.' And what about the innocents who will die? 'Our heart is now dead. They make us forget everything. Just to go and kill them.' And he shrugs his shoulders.

Already the poison of al-Qaeda is seeping into the Palestinian camps. Munir Maqhdar, a refugee, is holed up in south Lebanon where he leads a small band of gun-toting guerrillas who swagger around him as he says 'anybody who supports the killing of Arabs and Muslim people in Afghanistan and Iraq is a legitimate target. Any Arab or Muslim organisation is entitled to take revenge if the opportunity arises... the White House has to demonstrate that the historic injustice perpetrated against Palestinians matters every bit as much as the protection of the state of Israel.' According to the UN, 60 million Arabs live on less than two dollars a day, the population is growing rapidly, and unemployment is set to double in five years. The finance director of the Central Bank of Lebanon, Youssef el-Khalil, says that young people have a choice between corruption or fundamentalism. 'Fundamentalism is very much seen as the alternative to corruption... the war on terrorism has to address the war on poverty.'

The neocons who hold sway in Washington do not flinch under this kind of fire. For them, in the words of Richard Perle: 'We are winning the war on terrorism. We have killed a significant number. We have put terrorists in many parts of the world on the defensive.'

Try telling that to the two doctors I met in Ethiopia, who told me of impoverished young Muslims in the south-east of Ethiopia who 'are being indoctrinated under the coverage of religion with the beliefs and attitudes of al-Qaeda' and who, in some cases, are already in training for future operations. Try telling it to the American diplomat in Addis Ababa who gave me an 'off the record' briefing, holed up in the US compound which, like US embassies around the world, is protected from terrorist attack by armed guards, concrete barriers and razor-wire. He showed me a list of 'wahabi' clerics and business leaders in Ethiopia suspected of allegiance to al-Qaeda and volunteered that US special forces are now operating alongside Ethiopian soldiers in an effort to break up al-Qaeda cells in the Ogaden region. And how were they doing? He shrugged: 'We have already lost the war against terrorism in Africa.'

Try telling the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, that 'we' are winning the war on terror. 'Yes,' he confirms (for the first time), US forces are indeed engaged in military operations alongside their Ethiopian counterparts but this 'police work' is only part of the solution - 'the most important part is fighting poverty'. This is not so much an issue of morality but of urgent necessity in a country stricken by familiar but excruciating indices of misery. 'There is a very frustrated population that sees no light at the end of the tunnel and therefore is susceptible to all sorts of saviours, false saviours,' he says.

Ethiopia's 70 million population divides its religious affiliations almost equally between the Orthodox Church and Islam. Traditionally this has not been a cause of strife and inter-marriage is commonplace. But you now hear rage against America on the streets of Addis Ababa just as in Baghdad or Beirut. Meles is a member of Tony Blair's Commission for Africa though he has no illusions about its potential to deliver salvation. But in a continent where thousands of children die every day from preventable diseases and where (despite the ravages of HIV) more than 300 million live on less than a dollar a day, you are bound to grasp any outstretched arm and twist it to your advantage.

As it is the grotesque distortions of the global market mean that for every dollar the West dispatches to Africa in the form of aid, two dollars are clawed back through subsidies and tariff barriers: a monumental rip-off by the rich as they instruct the poor to accept 'free' trade or else.

A growing number of Africans, especially the young (mostly unemployed), use radio, television and the internet to keep themselves disconcertingly well-informed. The hypocrisies and injustices that are inflicted on them drives Meles Zanawi to warn that Africa, no less than the Middle East, could become the source of tomorrow's 9/11. 'Whether it is people in the rural areas of Ethiopia or the centre of Manhattan, we are in the same boat,' he comments, echoing outgoing European commissioner Chris Patten, who says, 'sometimes people are very angry, when they think that fairness is denied them until the crack of doom'.

The president of the World Bank, James Wolfensohn, tells me 'it is not that someone who is poor immediately becomes a terrorist... but what are the children going to do, young people with similar values to our own, can't get a job and are frustrated in everything they try to do?'

As it is, the West can't even find the resolve to meet its UN 'Millennium Goals' - to reduce world poverty by 50 per cent by 2015. According to Wolfensohn and Gordon Brown, this target date, at the present rate of progress, will be overshot by more than 100 years. There is no excuse: as the Chancellor tells me in great frustration, 'What is lacking is the political will'.

It can be done. If every Western nation were to contribute 0.7 per cent of GDP to overseas aid, write off the debt of poorest countries, and eliminate agricultural subsidies to their own farmers, they could find in the order of $785 billion dollars annually for development aid - more than 12 times the present commitment.

Which takes us - or should take us - from global poverty to global warming. It is the greatest challenge facing humanity, to combat both at once - to deliver justice, fairness and prosperity to the poor without destroying the planet in the process. Already we are consuming the Earth's natural but finite resources faster than they can be replenished. Already Britain's chief scientific advisor, Sir David King, tells us global warming is a greater threat than global terrorism.

So what happens when the poor have their just deserts? Will we see the melting of the ice-caps, catastrophic floods that drown hundreds of thousands of people and turn millions into refugees and famished migrants? Will we all perish in some Siberian or Saharan Armageddon? Or find ourselves caught in a Malthusian end-game as we perish for lack of food and water? Or will we start to control our profligate use of carbon fuels and persuade whoever wins the American election that the resources of the planet must be more equitably shared?

As with winning the war on poverty, so with global warming: it is a matter of political will. Which is why a deeply frustrated president of the World Bank says: 'If someone came here from Mars and looked at the way we run the place, he'd get back in his spaceship and go back to Mars and say, "You don't have to worry about them, they are going to destroy themselves".' Which means, as I argue in The New World War, we had better get serious about global terrorism, global poverty, and global warming. Fast.

Comment: In the opening line of the above article the author states: "Terrorism, climate change and world poverty are inextricably linked. We must conquer them before they destroy us".

The truth of the matter is that terrorism, climate change and world poverty are inextricably linked for a very specific reason - they are deliberately created and fomented by various world leaders. As such, it is not, terrorism, climate change and world poverty that will kill us all but the people that have consciously brought us to the brink of the abyss. It is coming.

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Deja Vu Anyone?

SOTT Analysis

Is anyone having deja vu yet? Remember way back when Osama was terrorist flavor of the month and the brainwashed US Marines were running around Afghanistan trying to find him in holes in the ground? Remember we were told repeatedly that, despite the fact that the US military had bombed most of Afghanistan back to the stone age, Osama seemed always to escape just in the nick of time?

Well, it's happening again folks, but this time it's the mythical al- Zarqawi that seems to have intimate knowledge of US plans, which he repeatedly uses to evade capture.

Recent US military reports out of Fallujah are again telling us not to get our hopes up that the killing of hundreds of innocent Iraqis will in any way contribute to the achievement of the goals of the war on terror. Nope, there will be no netting of any "terrorist ringleaders", because, sadly, al-Zarqawi seems to have already fled the city, long before the assault began. What a pity, eh? Or rather, how convenient.

Well, not to worry, the NeoCons and their the US military are not the sort to let utter failure deter them, they will continue to chase al-Zarqawi, and any other "terrorist masterminds" they can dream up , around Iraq, and if need be around the entire Middle East, bombing maiming and killing as they go.

What a boon these elusive, crafty terrorists are for the NeoCons and their "War on Terror". The relationship between them converges in such a wonderfully symbiotic way, one would almost think that they were partners in some sort of grand deception of the population. Truly, if the terrorists didn't exist Bush and the Neocons would have to invent them...

But thankfully, the terrorists really do exist (at least in name) and with the incessant government terror warnings, it's enough to scare the bejeezus out of most dumbed-down fundie Americans.

Of course, the last thing the NeoCons want to see is any of their beloved "terrorists" being captured, after all, if peace ever broke out terrorists and Neocons alike might have go and find real jobs, and Cheney's just too old for flippin' burgers.

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Trade Gap Narrows on Record Exports
By Doug Palmer
Wed Nov 10, 5:41 PM ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. trade deficit narrowed sharply in September, aided by a slide in the value of the dollar, which helped push exports to record levels, a government report showed on Wednesday.

The monthly trade gap totaled $51.6 billion, down from a revised $53.5 billion in August, the Commerce Department said. Economists had forecast the September trade deficit would come in at $53.5 billion, only slightly lower than the original estimate for August of $54.0 billion.

The narrower-than-expected shortfall brightened expectations for third-quarter U.S. economic growth.

"It is pretty encouraging news and says that we will probably get an upward revision to third-quarter GDP (gross domestic product)," said David Resler, chief economist with Nomura Securities International in New York.

But it did little to ease worries about the overall trade deficit which is on track to exceed $500 billion this year.

"I don't see enough details in the report that would suggest to me that it's a structural shift" in the trade deficit, said Anthony Chan, managing director and senior economist with JPMorgan Fleming Asset Management in Columbus, Ohio. [...]

Comment: Wow! The trade gap narrowed by a whopping 3.5%!! Unfortunately, continued weakness in the dollar will have detrimental effects on the US and world economies that will far outweigh such short-term "benefits"...

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Anti-French rioters take to Abidjan streets
ABIDJAN, Nov 10 (AFP) - Thousands of protesters flush with anti-French hatred filled the streets of the main Ivory Coast city Abidjan on Wednesday, spoiling for a fight to defend President Laurent Gbagbo.

Egged on by national radio, which interrupted "hate" messages with snippets of Ivorian reggae star Alpha Blondy's anthem against the French military, they streamed through the downtown Plateau business district to "protect" the radio station.

Thousands more headed for the upmarket Cocody district, which has been ransacked by four days of looting and vandalism that sent French schools up in smoke and left long-time European residents of the west African former French colony beaten and stripped of all they owned.

Tuesday between French troops and the so-called "patriots" outside the luxury Hotel Ivoire in Cocody, just a kilometre from the presidential residence and where French tanks had taken up positions late Sunday.

Their presence around the hotel, which was stripped of its once-grand but now shabby furnishings on Tuesday, sparked a rumour - fed by state radio - that France was preparing a coup bid against Gbagbo, which French military chief General Henri Poncet moved swiftly to deny.

A senior adviser to Gbagbo told Europe 1 radio that 10 people had died in what he called a French "massacre" of Ivorian citizens.

French Defence Minister Michelle Alliot-Marie insisted that the victims had been caught in the crossfire between the patriots, many of whom were armed, and the Ivorian military that had moved in to defuse tensions between the French troops and the crowd.

Life in Abidjan, once one of Africa's most modern and sophisticated cities but now a battered symbol of the two years of conflict that has split Ivory Coast into two, was slowly returning to normal despite the unease and presence of French and Ivorian tanks in the streets.

Markets and shops around the economic capital were open and buses and shared taxis plied their regular routes, careful to avoid the mounting piles of garbage that have not been collected in days.

The latest chapter in Ivory Coast's turmoil opened Thursday with a series of government air raids on key positions in the rebel-held north, one of which hit a French military camp in the second city Bouake killing nine French troops and a US civilian.

France responded by wiping out virtually the entire Ivorian air force and seizing control of the airport, which sparked a frenzy of violence in Abidjan that has left at least 600 people injured, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross.

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Clean up begins after plant blast
Mark Stanisz
Canadian Press
Wednesday, November 10, 2004

PORT DARLINGTON, Ont. -- About 500 people were still without power Wednesday morning after a massive explosion at a southern Ontario propane plant forced hundreds from their homes.

One controlled fire continued to burn hours after blasts began rumbling from the Caledon Propane Inc. at about 8 p.m. Tuesday, but officials said Wednesday the area was safe for most residents to return. [...]

Roughly 500 people were ordered to leave the area when explosions sent debris shooting into the air and fire lit up the night sky east of Toronto.

While the municipality set up emergency shelter, police said the majority went to friends' or relatives' homes for the night.

The fire erupted only kilometres from the Clarington nuclear plant, setting in motion a series of emergency procedures to protect the facility and workers on the scene.

Police said Wednesday the fire didn't seem to pose a danger to the plant.

No injuries were reported.

The Ontario Fire Marshal's office was investigating. There was no word on how the fire began or the extent of the damages.

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Ireland reports case of human mad cow disease
Last Updated Wed, 10 Nov 2004 22:07:09 EST

DUBLIN - A patient at a hospital in Dublin is suffering from what is believed to be Ireland's first locally contracted case of the human form of mad cow disease.

The hospital, which has asked not be named, says it's ruled out almost all other possibilities except the incurable variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD).

The patient, a young male in his 20s, has never donated nor received blood and has not been infected during the course of an operation, according to doctors. This suggests he contracted the deadly brain disease from eating infected beef, they say. [...]

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Earthquake shakes Mount Rainier
Wednesday, November 10, 2004 Posted: 10:51 AM EST (1551 GMT)

SEATTLE, Washington -- Mount Rainier shook with a 3.2-magnitude earthquake, but scientists said Tuesday the quake was not related to recent rumblings at Mount St. Helens, its sister volcano 50 miles to the south.

The quake was centered one mile below the surface of Rainier's crater, said Bill Steele of the Pacific Northwest Seismograph Network at the University of Washington.

"Directly under the volcano, that's a significant size," Steele said. One other 3.2-magnitude quake has been recorded at the mountain in the past 30 years: on February 19, 2002.

Sunday's quake occurred within a cluster of 17 to 18 shallow temblors over several hours, he said.

Steele said quake activity at Rainier has increased over normal levels in recent weeks. Five quakes greater than magnitude 2.0 were recorded October 25-31, he said.

Mount Rainier, which has been volcanically active for between a million and a half years, last erupted about 150 years ago and scientists say it's likely to erupt again at some point.

Rainier calmed down Monday and has been "blessedly quiet" since, he said.

Scientists are watching for continuing earthquakes near the volcano's surface and a particular type of seismic activity that results from fluid moving through rocks. Those clues might signal an eruption, Steele said.

Despite Mount St. Helens' notoriety, Rainier is considered the most hazardous of all Cascade Range volcanoes because it is closer to more populated communities, Steele said.

Mount St. Helens rumbled back to life September 23, with shuddering seismic activity that peaked above magnitude 3 as hot magma broke through rocks in its path. Molten rock reached the surface October 11, marking resumption of dome-building activity that had stopped in 1986.

St. Helens continued Tuesday to build its lava dome, with molten rock reaching the surface at the rate of about one large dump-truck load per second.

A more explosive eruption, possibly dropping ash within a 10-mile radius of the crater, is possible at any time, scientists have said.

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Strong earthquake rocks Taiwan
November 11 2004 at 06:59AM

Taipei - An earthquake measuring 6.0 on the Richter scale rocked Taiwan on Thursday, causing high-rise buildings to sway, seismologists said.

There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

The tremor struck at 10.16am (02h16GMT) with its epicentre located 46,8 kilometres (29 miles) south-east of Suao along the north-eastern coast, 13,9 kilometres below the seabed, the seismological centre in Taipei said.

The strength of the tremor, the third major quake to hit Taiwan this week, was reduced in the sea, seismologists said.

One earthquake measuring 6.7 on the Richter scale shook the island midnight on Monday followed by a second measuring 5.5 late on Wednesday.

Taiwan's worst tremor, measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale, struck in September 1999, leaving about 2 400 people dead.

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Earthquake Map Shows 30 Years of Shaking
Bay City News

A new map released by the U.S. Geological Survey depicts Bay Area earthquake activity over the last 30 years as well as major faults in the area, the USGS announced Wednesday.

The map, Earthquakes and Faults in the San Francisco Bay Area, depicts more than 62,750 earthquakes that occurred over the last 30 years as well as the San Andreas, Hayward and Calaveras faults.

The map shows 22 quakes with magnitude 5.0 and greater and has an accompanying table that lists the time, date, depth and coordinate location of each quake.

The large-format map was created using several types of geospatial data from a variety of sources including seismic records and the survey's fault database.

"This map is intended to increase public awareness of hazards associated with Bay Area earthquakes," said U.S. Geological Survey geographer Ben Sleeter in a prepared statement.

The survey reports that earthquakes are a significant hazard in the Bay Area and to 75 million Americans in 39 states.

The map can be obtained through the USGS by calling (888) ASK-USGS or on the Internet at

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Tremor rocks Dharamshala, Chamba
IANS[ THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 2004 01:07:19 PM ]

NEW DELHI: An earthquake measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale rocked the Dharamshala and Chamba regions of the hill state of Himachal Pradesh on Thursday.

"A tremor of slight intensity with a magnitude of 4.6 occurred at 7.44 in the morning. The epicentre was Chamba district at the latitude of 32.5 and longitude of 76.3," R S Dattatrayam, director of Seismology Division, India Meteorological Department, said.

"It's not a serious one," Dattatrayam said. No causalities have been reported.

However, panic gripped the residents as the tremors lasted a few seconds. The residents, who were still sleeping enjoying a local holiday, rushed out of their houses.

The area has always been a tectonically sensitive region. In 1986 a major earthquake rocked Dharamshala. There was a major earthquake in Chamba in 1995.

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Quake Rocks Japanese Island
10:51am (UK)

A major earthquake rocked the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido today but there were no immediate reports of casualties.

The town of Kushiro-cho was closest to the centre of the 6.3 magnitude quake. Officials said there had been no reports of damage in the town, which has a population of 22,000.

“It only shook for a brief moment,” said Noriaki Okubo. “Nothing fell off our shelves.”

A magnitude 6 earthquake can inflict widespread damage in a populated area.

It comes just weeks after a magnitude 6.8 quake rocked the northern Japanese region of Niigata, killing 40 and injuring over 2,700 people.

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OSU Wave Lab poised to make national splash
From news sources
Last Updated: Wednesday, November 10, 2004 10:15 AM

November 10 - If a major earthquake triggered a deadly tsunami in the Pacific Ocean, what impact would the wave have on millions of residents living along the U.S. Pacific Coast? We'll know more on Nov. 15.

As part of a live, simulcast grand opening event of a new national earthquake engineering research network, which links 15 large-scale research facilities across the continent, researchers at Oregon State University's Tsunami Wave Basin will unleash a tidal wave on a scale model of a U.S. city on the Pacific Coast.

The program can be viewed via the Internet and Internet2 starting at 10:30 a.m. PST at this website. The OSU presentation will be one of four remote demonstrations streamed live via the Internet to Washington, D.C., where the National Science Foundation is hosting the grand opening of the George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation. The NSF created this network to give researchers tools to learn how earthquakes and tsunamis affect the buildings, bridges, utility systems and other critical components of today's society.

More than 75 million Americans in 39 states live in towns and cities at risk for earthquake devastation, and much of the Oregon and Washington coastline is susceptible to impacts from tsunamis. [...]

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Saving Earth from Imminent Impact

Wednesday, 10 November 2004, 07:00 CST

Among the proposals for diverting an asteroid collision with Earth, one involves gently pushing the incoming rock over the course of a year. This low-thrust solution has its challenges since at various stages of that perilous year, if it ever came, locations on Earth would naturally see human influences as they became the bullseye.

Astrobiology Magazine -- Russell Schweikart is the Chairman of the B612 Foundation, an advocacy group endorsing 'a gentle push' approach to asteroid risk mitigation. Schweikart was also an Apollo 9 astronaut and uses his experiences in mission planning to design a strategy for diverting incoming --and potentially life-threatening--space debris. The B612 Foundation's charter proposes a demonstration to alter the trajectory of an asteroid in a controlled manner by 2015.

The origin of the foundation's name, B612, stretches back into historical literature. B162 was the asteroidal address for The Little Prince, authored by the French writer Antoine de Saint Exupery in 1943. Their call for action is founded on four principles: asteroids have led to planet-scale disasters historically, a sea of near-earth asteroids surrounds us, an unacceptable collision this century carries a two-percent risk, and actions to avert a collision should be started now. To astrobiologists familiar with the geological record, asteroids and comets have shaped our own planet's biology, but are best preserved in the geological records among the craters on neighboring moons and planets. [...]

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Half of BBC staff face the axe
By Alexa Baracaia, Evening Standard
10 November 2004

The BBC is planning to axe as many as 50 per cent of jobs across the board, insiders revealed today.

A raft of cuts is being designed to prove the BBC is giving value for money before a review of its 10-year royal charter in 2006.

High-ranking sources say earlier rumours of 6,000 losses from 28,000 staff may turn out to be a wild underestimate.

It has also emerged that Director-General Mark Thompson is planning to announce the cuts in four weeks - at least two weeks earlier than expected. Unions have been told to set aside two dates, 6 December and 9 December, to meet management.

The new dates will fuel speculation of unprecedented job cuts that bosses want to announce as far from Christmas as they can. A source said: "They know if they wait another week or two it's going into the Christmas period."

Mr Thompson is expected to reveal the results of four wideranging reviews he launched on his first day in the job in June.

It was thought he would report on three - commercial activities, moving staff to the regions and general cost-cutting - this year. The fourth study, into production and commissioning, was seen as the most complex and unlikely to be complete until the New Year.

But sources told the Standard today they expected him to make all the announcements in one go.

Job losses would then increase dramatically, especially if the BBC chooses to pre-empt government proposals that independent companies should produce half of all programmes - not a quarter as now.

"That would have impact on a huge number of BBC staff," said

Luke Crawley, an official for broadcasting union Bectu.

Meanwhile, BBC News and Current Affairs is expected to lose at least 30 per cent of its personnel.

Among staff tipped to be moved out of London are those on BBC Five Live, sports and children's programmes - but these services are already spread around, giving rise to speculation that the regions will suffer huge individual job cuts.

The BBC says staff have been consulted in a series of forums.

But one insider said: "It's basically the BBC saying 'This is the plan, what do you think? We're moving some big departments out, is it a good idea?' But staff aren't actually being encouraged to say, 'No, actually, it's not'. The feeling is the management has already taken these big decisions."

A BBC spokeswoman insisted: "It would be wrong to say there aren't going to be job losses and redundancies [but] any figures are no more than speculation.

"There is no answer on anything until the governors meet at the end of this month. Any losses or redundancies would be phased over a period of years."

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"Boom" is Back
November 10, 2004

(Fort Wayne, Indiana) - After about a month of silence, Fort Wayne's mysterious "boom" has returned.

"You can't describe it," said Helene Lilly, who heard it almost 10 times Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. "You think you're in a war."

Newschannel 15 and the Fort Wayne Police Department have each received dozens of phone calls about the noises. This time, the loudest ones seem to have come from near Parkview Hospital on eEst State Boulevard.

The people in that neighborhood said their houses were rocked and their windows were rattled repeatedly sinceTtuesday night. According to residents, there were four loud booms between 9:30 p.m. and midnight, and another round of four between 6 a.m. And 8:15 a.m. Wednesday.

As of right now, neighbors are concerned. "I need help because I can't sleep, it scares me, and it scares my whole neighborhood and the children over there, they're upset, too. And it just isn't right you know?" Lilly said.

The Fort Wayne Police have no answers. "It's a rabbit we're still trying to chase down the hole right now," said PIO Michael Joyner. "We don't know what the source is." Joyner said the FWPD has already increased patrols of the area to try to identify the source.

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