Global Game of Survivor: America's Next Four Years
Strike Flash Presentation by a QFS member
Publication! The Wave finally in book form!
Wave: 4 Volume Set
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and extensive previously unpublished details, at long last, Laura Knight-Jadczyk's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
is an exquisitely written first-person account of Laura's initiation at
the hands of the Cassiopaeans and demonstrates the unique nature of the
Volume 1 now. Available at the end of November!
of the Day
18) -- Eyewitnesses all over the country are reporting glimpses
of something large, dark and mysterious in the skies above big cities
and busy highways. The crafts are often described as triangular
in shape, silent in their movements, and of unknown origin, and
they've been seen here in southern Nevada. It looks like these mystery
craft might be a secret military project, but if so, why are they
flying around in the open?
"Look at them, there's three or four of them." In 1997,
thousands of eyewitnesses watched in awe as a boomerang-shaped formation
of lights cruised slowly and silently over the city of Phoenix.
"They're lined up in a pattern." Witnesses first thought
these were separate lights, flying in formation, but quickly realized
the lights were all part of a single, gigantic something.
Military officials were asked about the Phoenix lights but said
they hadn't seen anything. Months later, they explained that a National
Guard unit had been training with flares near the city. The public
didn't buy it.
Eight years earlier, the airspace over Belgium was repeatedly violated
by huge unidentified black triangles. Ten thousand witnesses saw
them. Several were photographed. The Belgian Air Force dispatched
F-126s to intercept and destroy the unknown intruders, but the triangles
performed maneuvers that seem virtually impossible.
Dr. Colm Kelleher said, "They launched on several occasions
top of the line military aircraft against these things and they
were left in the dust. One minute they're overhead, and the next
they're over the horizon."
Dr. Kelleher is a research scientist who spent several years with
the National Institute for Discovery Science, or NIDS, a private
Las Vegas science organization. A four-year NIDS study of the mystery
triangles has found that these craft have been seen for decades
all over the world.
There were a daylight sightings in Russia in the
70s. In the early 80s, there were hundreds of nighttime sightings
in rural New York. Belgium was inundated in the late 80s, but more
recently, the mystery triangles have really come out of the closet
and have been seen in every state, including Nevada, flying low
and slow over cities.
Dr. Kelleher describes, "These things are huge, football field
sized. Sometimes they are stealthy; sometimes flying with very bright
lights, disco-flashing lights -- red, green, blue, some bright white
lights. They're always silent."
NIDS now has a database of more than a 1,000
black triangle reports, 17 of them from Nevada. The witnesses
often say the craft seem to float, like a blimp or airship, but
they are also capable of aeronautical magic.
"They were able to drop altitude 10,000-20,000 feet in a matter
of seconds. They went from a hovering position to several thousand
miles an hour, and this was caught on radar," said Dr. Kelleher.
"It was heading straight north. The right edge was over that
tree." Las Vegas journalist Cateland White was in the backyard
of her southeast Las Vegas home last year when she saw a dark behemoth
fly over. She drew a picture and described, "It was triangular
shaped with rectangular reflectors. No interior light at all. By
the time it got out of sight, it was 5-8 minutes. It was so slow,
I couldn't figure out how it was staying in the air."
White called the police, who connected her to Nellis
Air Force Base, which is the direction the triangle seemed headed.
"The man said, 'I don't want you to talk about this anymore,
and you're gonna forget it.' I said, 'Look buddy, I'm not drinking,
I'm not on drugs, something is headed for your base.' Then he got
real terse and said, 'Mam, I'm gonna tell you one more time and
this is the last time I'm gonna tell you. Forget what you saw and
don't tell anybody.' At that point, I was freaked," described
The frequent proximity of triangle sightings to air force bases
led NIDS to conclude two years ago that the craft must be part of
a secret military project. But in the two years since, the triangles
have become so prevalent over big cities and interstate highways
that the theory doesn't fit anymore.
Dr. Kelleher said, "Why would unacknowledged aircraft be flying
at 500 feet over populated areas? If you look at the B-2 and F-117,
prior to them being acknowledged, there was no flying over populated
areas. They flew in the desert. They flew at high altitudes."
FALLUJA -- The urban battlefield of Falluja
is disgorging its dead. Slowly.
Another truckload of bodies reached the outskirts of the city for
burial Friday in a ceremony marked by anger at U.S. troops, who
say they killed 1,200 Iraqi and foreign fighters.
With Marines scouring the largely deserted city house by house
and occasionally clashing with remnants of the insurgent force,
travel in or out is limited but the Americans have allowed local
voluntary organizations to retrieve some bodies.
Two dozen arrived on a truck at the dusty outlying village of
Saqlawiya Friday, greeted by a crowd of about 150 men who removed
the corpses from military body bags to try to identify them and
to bury them in shrouds, according to Muslim custom.
Amid the flies and stench of the blackened
and bloated bodies, apparently dead for many days, identification
was next to impossible but most appeared to be of men of
fighting age and at least one wore an ammunition vest.
U.S. commanders say they do not believe civilians
were killed during the offensive begun 11 days ago.
Some pits had been dug in expectation alongside several other
freshly covered graves bearing simple headstones on a barren stretch
of waste ground among electricity pylons.
As onlookers stood in line to hear the traditional prayers for
the dead, the preacher also called for revenge on Americans and
their Iraqi allies, who believe the assault on Falluja has "broken
the back" of the Sunni Muslim insurgency.
"We ask you God to be merciful," the preacher chanted.
"Shake the earth beneath the feet of the Americans, shake
the earth beneath the feet of the Crusaders, shake the earth beneath
the feet of the hypocrites that help them.
"God grant victory to Iraq."
Falluja, most of whose population of 300,000 fled before the assault,
has been a bastion of revolt against the U.S.-backed Iraqi interim
government. Some in the city, just west of Baghdad, fear that planned
elections will lead to them being dominated by the long-oppressed
Shi'ite Muslim majority.
BAGHDAD - An eyewitness commentary to IPS
through a U.S. raid on a Baghdad mosque Friday gives a vivid picture
of what a 'successful raid' can be like.
U.S. soldiers raided the Abu Hanifa mosque in Baghdad during
Friday prayers, killing at least four
and wounding up to 20 worshippers.
At 12:30 pm local time, just after Imam Shaikh Muayid al-Adhami
concluded his talk, about 50 U.S. soldiers with 20 Iraqi National
Guardsmen (ING) entered the mosque, a witness reported.
"Everyone was there for Friday prayers, when five Humvees
and several trucks carrying INGs entered," Abu Talat told IPS
on phone from within the mosque while the raid was in progress.
"Everyone starting yelling 'Allahu Akbar' (God is the greatest)
because they were frightened. Then the soldiers
started shooting the people praying!"
Talat said he was among a crowd of worshippers being held back
at gunpoint by U.S. soldiers. Loud chanting of 'Allahu Akbar' could
be heard in the background during his call. Women and children were
sobbing, he said.
"They have just shot and killed at least four of the people
praying," he said in a panicked voice. "At least 10 other
people are wounded now. We are on our bellies and in a very bad
Talat gave his account over short phone calls. He said he was
witnessing a horrific scene.
"We were here praying and now there are 50 here with their
guns on us," he said. "They are holding our heads to the
ground, and everyone is in chaos. This is the worst situation possible.
They cannot see me talking to you. They are roughing up a blind
man now." He evidently could talk no further then.
The soldiers later released women and children along with men
who were related to them. Abu Talat was released because a boy told
him to pretend to be his father.
Other witnesses gave similar accounts outside the mosque. "People
were praying and the Americans invaded the mosque," Abdulla
Ra'ad Aziz from the al-Adhamiya district of Baghdad told IPS. He
had been released along with his wife and children. "Why are
they killing people for praying?" He said that after the forces
entered "they went to the back doors and we heard so many bullets
of the guns -- it was a gun bigger than a Kalashnikov. There were
wounded and dead, I saw them myself."
Some of the people who had been at prayer were ordered by soldiers
to carry the dead and wounded out of the mosque, he said.
"One Iraqi National Guardsmen held his gun on people and
yelled, 'I will kill you if you don't shut up'," said Rana
Aziz, a mother who had been trapped in the mosque.. "So they
made everyone lie down, then people got quiet, and they took the
women and children out."
She said someone asked the soldiers if they would be made hostages.
A soldier used foul language and asked everyone to shut up, she
said. Suddenly, she laughed amid her tears.
"The Americans have learnt how to say shut up in Arabic, 'Inchev'."
Soldiers denied Iraqi Red Crescent ambulances
and medical teams access to the mosque. As doctors negotiated
with U.S. soldiers outside, more gunfire was heard from inside.
About 30 men were led out with hoods over their heads and their
hands tied behind them. Soldiers loaded them into a military vehicle
and took them away around 3.15 pm.
A doctor with the Iraqi Red Crescent confirmed four dead and nine
wounded worshippers. Pieces of brain were
splattered on one of the walls inside the mosque while large blood
stains covered carpets at several places.
A U.S. military spokesperson in Baghdad did not respond to requests
for information on the raid.
|"We are deeply concerned by
the devastating impact that the fighting in Iraq is having on the
people of that country."- Statement by Pierre Krähenbühl,
Director of Operations of the ICRC (International Committee for the
As hostilities continue in Falluja and elsewhere, every day seems
to bring news of yet another act of utter contempt for the most
basic tenet of humanity: the obligation to protect human life and
dignity. This week it was the killing of a wounded fighter and of
yet another hostage – humanitarian worker Margaret Hassan
– that shocked the world. Like any other armed conflict, this
one is subject to limits, and they must be respected at all times.
For the parties to this conflict, complying
with international humanitarian law is an obligation, not an option.
There is an absolute prohibition on the
killing of persons who are not taking active part in the hostilities,
or have ceased to do so. It is also prohibited to torture them or
to subject them to any form of inhuman, humiliating or degrading
treatment. Furthermore, the parties to the conflict must provide
adequate medical care for the wounded – friend or foe –
on the battlefield or allow them to be taken elsewhere for treatment.
They must do everything possible to help civilians caught up in
the fighting obtain the basics of survival such as food, water and
health care. The taking of hostages, whether Iraqi or foreign, is
forbidden in all circumstances. If these rules or any other applicable
rules of international humanitarian law are violated, the persons
responsible must be held accountable for their actions.
Regrettably, recent events have again shown just how difficult
it has become for neutral, independent and impartial humanitarian
organizations to assist and protect the victims of the conflict
in Iraq. Once again, the International Committee of the Red Cross
appeals for everything possible to be done to allow such organizations
to come to the aid of the thousands of Iraqis who are suffering."
| Poisoning Palestinian President
while under siege/imprisoned in his residence, detailed plans of assassinations
and invasions, razing houses and plants, hundreds of checkpoints to
embitter the lives of citizens, organized destruction of the economy,
deliberate shooting of school children, thousands of prisoners who
are purposely abused, stealing lands under the pretext of establishing
the segregation wall, recruiting settlers and organizing them in armed
militias to attack Palestinians, military ideology for the Israeli
army that legalizes war crimes that does not admit any peaceful solutions
and allows soldiers to desecrate people, stones, and trees, political
parties that compete over extremism and do not admit any mistakes
committed by their militarized state…
Ariel Sharon does not
see in the aforementioned any reason to provoke the other, the Palestinian,
not only to defend himself but also to incite him to reach the highest
levels of violence. He wants to monopolize violence and he wants
it as an exclusive right for Israel. As for the other, he has only
to submit and silently accept attacks and insults. The elected war
criminal Ariel Sharon is trying to put the Palestinian Authority
(PA) in front of a 'test of intentions' asking to stop media incitement
to initiate dialogue with the PA.
After Yasser Arafat's death, there are many reasons that render
Sharon unqualified to communicate with the other, simply because
he never had anything to negotiate about. Since he took power, he
has not announced any ideas that aim at establishing peace with
the Palestinians: authority, leadership, and people. On the contrary,
and his glories still provide him with the utmost popularity in
the polls, a popularity which Sharon gained with record violence,
destruction, and killing. He was originally elected to end the peace
process and return the Palestinian cause to the way it was before
1948. He was elected to unleash havoc, which he did; even his expected
successor - according to polls - is not Benjamin Netanyahu, who
looks more dovish with respect to the infamous war criminal Shaul
Stopping media provocation, which Sharon is asking for, is in sync
with a similar request that the American administration proclaims
in front all of those who oppose its occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan,
those who oppose its plans for future wars, and all of those who
want to be categorized as a "friend" of the U.S. Practically,
this only means asking regimes and governments to silence the media
and suppress freedom of expression, even when it is not available.
Thus, George W. Bush and his ally Ariel Sharon do not consider free
media of the democratic components that they claim desiring to spread
in Arab countries. Some countries submitted to the request long
ago, hence they rewrote their history and cancelled specific verses
from the Koran. After they were given a certificate of good conduct
with respect to silencing the media, it sterilized speeches in the
mosques. Still, they need to enter houses to tap its residents,
paving the way to enter their heads and monitor their thoughts,
desires, and stances concerning the offenses and insults, which
they have to accept as correct.
In the Palestinian and Iraqi cases, request to stop incitement
does not look like a simple rude hallucination, but as an order
that suits the dictators of past ages.
In Palestine, Iraq, and everywhere, no one will accept occupation
as a natural situation; however, it is a provocative one. The Americans
failed where the Israelis failed by creating "friendly"
occupation; regarding the aggressive, destructive occupation it
is impossible to complain about media "incitement" practiced
by those who oppose the occupation. Whenever pressure increased
to make occupation acceptable and desired, the resisting spirit
should increase and deepen. Moreover, it must produce extremism
and violence, taking advantage of the occupation forces' disdain
for the symbols of peace and moderation. Occupation is the first
inciting act that should be stopped, for it hides serious diseases
like the ones we witnessed in invading Fallujah, and that appeared
in invading Rafah and Jenin. Whoever has the political power to
eradicate, goes beyond his humanity and becomes disqualified to
give lessons in media incitement.
| BERLIN (AP) - Germany's finance
minister said Saturday that he and his U.S. counterpart have reached
an agreement under which Iraq's creditors would write off up to 80
per cent of the country's debt.
"I had talks with my American colleague, John Snow, which
created the basis on which the forgiveness of Iraqi debt can be
settled mutually in the Paris Club" of creditor countries,
Hans Eichel told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of ministers
from the Group of 20 major economies.
"We agreed that there should be a write-off of debts in several
stages amounting to 80 per cent in total," Eichel said.
Thirty per cent would be written off immediately, another 30 per
cent in a second stage "tied to a program of the International
Monetary Fund" and a further 20 per cent "linked to the
success of this program," he said.
"Within this framework, the necessary decisions can now be
taken in the Paris Club," Eichel said. He did not say when
the debt write-off would be formally approved or when the second
and third stages of the deal would take effect, and took no questions.
The United States has been pushing hard for a generous debt write-off
for Iraq, while other governments have questioned whether a country
rich in oil should benefit from huge debt reduction.
Iraq has said its overall foreign debt of $146 billion Cdn is hindering
Iraq owes about $50 billion Cdn in debt to the Group of Eight countries
and other rich nations who make up the Paris Club of creditor countries.
Another $96 billion is owed to various Arab governments.
Eichel was keen to stress that the planned Iraqi debt write-off
"is not a precedent for any other case."
"We only see a special situation for Iraq," he said.
| SANTIAGO, Chile (Reuters) - President
Bush on Saturday warned Iran of growing international concern over
reports that Tehran is preparing large amounts of uranium for an enrichment
process that can be used to make nuclear weapons.
"This is a very serious matter. The world knows it's a serious
matter and we're working together to solve this matter," Bush
told reporters during a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro
Koizumi in Santiago.
The two leaders were in Chile for a summit hosted by the Asia Pacific
Economic Cooperation forum.
Bush was referring to reports from diplomats that Iran was aggressively
producing uranium hexafluoride, or UF6, days before a Nov. 22 deadline
by which Tehran promised the European Union that it would freeze
enrichment and all related activities.
UF6 is the form of uranium that is fed into gas centrifuges, which
purify uranium for use as fuel in nuclear power plants or weapons.
Iran had promised France, Britain and Germany to freeze its enrichment
program in a bid to ease concerns that its nuclear plans are aimed
at producing atomic weapons and to escape a referral to the U.N.
Security Council when the International Atomic Energy Agency, or
IAEA, meets on Nov. 25.
"It's very important for the Iranian government to hear that
we are concerned about their desires," Bush said.
"We're concerned about reports that show that prior to a certain
international meeting, they're willing to speed up processing of
materials that could lead to a nuclear weapon."
Iran, which maintains that it has no ambition to attain nuclear
weapons, also denied diplomats' claims that it had ramped up UF6
IAEA chief Mohamed Elbaradei said Monday in a report on his two-year
investigation of Iran's nuclear program that Tehran had not diverted
any of its declared nuclear materials to a weapons program.
But he did not rule out the possibility that other secret atomic
A recent statement by US Secretary
of State Colin Powell regarding Iran's purported march to nuclear
armament caused a stir in Washington, especially since it concerned
intelligence that President Bush had only shared with British Prime
Minister Tony Blair.
According to the Washington Post, an American newspaper, Bush told
Blair of Iran's possible weapons development when Blair visited
the White House last week. An investigation
is underway to determine whether or not the intelligence, which
was addressed in a 1,000 page document of Iran's nuclear capability,
is genuine. The Post wrote that the intelligence concerns
warhead technology; specifically, long-range Shahab-3 missiles and
other middle-range missiles. Iranians have been able to enrich uranium
for a nuclear bomb since 2002.
A major concern in Washington is that the intelligence is immature
and may be as faulty as previous estimates regarding Iraq's capabilities.
If the intelligence estimate is confirmed however, then the information
could become "clear proof of evidence" on Iranian nuclear
Bush said Powell's statement was a "mistake"
while other officials were less gentle, and were reportedly furious
that he shared US intelligence with reporters. Powell's statement,
furthermore, distressed the three European countries who signed
an agreement to halt Iran's nuclear capacity last Sunday.
Iran denied Powell's statement, accused them of being baseless
and continued to stress its defense program did not contain weapons
of mass destruction.
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is likely to pick a neo-conservative
known for hatred of Arabs to be her deputy for Middle East affairs,
a Congress source told IslamOnline.net.
Danielle Pletka, a researcher at the American Enterprise Institute
– a major neo-conservatives’ think tank in Washington
– is the favorite choice for the post, currently occupied
by William Burns.
The post holder is the main reference for the US foreign policy
on Arab and Mideast countries.
The name of David Welch, current Ambassador to Egypt, is also being
mentioned in Washington’s circles as a possible Burns successor.
Asked on Welch’s chances, a high-profile State Department
source told IOL the seasoned diplomat would be a far better choice
than Pletka, an expert on the Middle East, South Asia, terrorism,
and weapons proliferation.
Pletka is known for her staunch support to Israeli
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Likud government and rooted hatred
of Arabs and Muslims as manifested in her speeches and seminars.
She repeatedly defended the US justifications for the invasion-turned-occupation
of Iraq as well as the so-called pre-emptive wars on other Islamic
Pletka supported the Project for the New American
Century, which was conceived by neo-conservatives and international
The PNAC is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to
a few fundamental propositions: that American leadership is good
both for America and for the world; that such leadership requires
military strength and diplomatic energy; and that too few political
leaders today are making the case for global leadership.
Pletka, a Jew, has lobbied for establishing "Watch",
a project meant to watch all non-governmental organizations opposed
to Israel's interests in the US and across the world.
She was also a senior professional staff member for Near East and
South Asia with the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, 1992-2002.
Despite that record, the State Department source expect Pletka
to win the prestigious post.
He said a wave of mass resignations in the State Department's Near
East Office is the expected reaction to Pletka’s appointment.
She is an extremist, given her positions on Arabs
and Muslims, and would fan anti-American sentiments in the Arab
region, the source added.
[...] Bush had also appointed Rice’s
deputy Stephen J. Hadley as the new national security adviser.
Hadley is also a supporter of pre-emptive strikes
and developing small nuclear weapons.
American press expected after the appointments
that the policy toward Iran and North Korea may take a new turn,
with a bigger push for sanctions rather than the diplomacy adopted
An Israeli newspaper splashed out Friday, November 19, photographs
showing Israeli soldiers abusing and posing for photographs with the
bodies of dead Palestinians.
soldier pointing his weapon at a corpse of a Palestinian while
pressing his foot into the half-naked body.
The Israeli army said it was launching an investigation to get
to the bottom of the scandal.
Mass-selling Israeli daily Yedout Ahronot carried the photos, in
which Israeli occupation soldiers were posing next to the bodies
of dead Palestinians.
In another picture, a soldier points his weapon at a corpse while
pressing his foot into the half-naked body.
A third picture shows a dead man, a cigarette allegedly stuck in
his mouth by troops.
Yedout Ahronot's investigation of the scandal includes numerous
accounts of Israeli soldiers who photographed the bodies of Palestinians
or who were themselves photographed with bodies.
“When walking by a Palestinian shot in combat, several troops
would fire into the dead body. One of them even shot four bullets,”
one soldier is quoted as saying by the Israeli newspaper.
One account, provided by a soldier serving in the Nahal Haharedi
battalion, told of the abuse of the remains of a bomber who blew
himself up at the unit's Hamra checkpoint in the Jordan Valley .
Soldiers from the unit positioned the bomber's head on a concrete
barrier and placed a cigarette in his mouth before taking photographs.
Israeli Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Moshe
Ya'alon ordered Military Police Friday to investigate the report.
Labor MK Ophir Pines-Paz submitted an urgent motion to the Knesset
concerning the abuse of dead bodies by Israeli soldiers, Israeli
daily Ha’aretz reported Friday.
According to Pines-Paz, the soldiers' actions “testify to
a moral imperviousness and there must be action taken to prevent
this from recurring.”
Meanwhile, Israeli army opened investigation into an officer accused
of shooting a 13-year-old Palestinian girl repeatedly at point-blank
range, a lawyer for the girl's family said Thursday.
Lea Tzemel, an Israeli lawyer representing the girl's family, was
quoted by The Associated Press as saying that soldiers fired at
the girl, Iman Al-Hams, while she was on her way to school.
Iman Al-Hams was riddled with 20 bullets, mostly in the upper body,
by three Israeli soldiers in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah
Al-Hams was left lying in a pool of blood because ambulances had
been denied access.
Hundreds of Palestinian children and teens have been killed by
army fire in the past four years, often in clashes between stone
throwers and Israeli troops, according to the AP.
A 10-year-old Palestinian schoolgirl died Wednesday, October 13,
of her wounds after Israeli occupation troops shot her in the chest
while sitting inside a United Nations school in a Gaza refugee camp.
The army rarely launches investigations into the incidents, the
American news agency said. [...]
JERUSALEM, Nov. 19 - The Israeli Army has
ordered an investigation into allegations that soldiers in the West
Bank photographed one another two years ago
posing with the head of a suicide bomber with a cigarette stuck
in its mouth, the chief of staff, Gen. Moshe Yaalon, said
Friday. He was responding to a report in the weekend magazine of
Yediot Aharonot, the country's largest-selling daily.
The paper also reported several incidents of abuse of corpses
of Palestinian fighters by soldiers who then took photos.
General Yaalon told the army radio that any such behavior "is
inappropriate for an Israeli and a Jewish soldier," adding,
"Our moral fortitude is no less important than our military
fortitude." He said he had ordered an investigation by the
"I intend to reach the truth," he said. "God
forbid if we are compared and likened to those against whom we are
In one of the most gruesome acts detailed in the report, soldiers
in a strictly Orthodox unit reassembled the body parts of a Palestinian
suicide bomber, sticking a cigarette in his mouth and then posing
for photographs, according to the report.
"Everyone was really excited," said a soldier identified
as Y. The newspaper quoted him saying: "I tried to tell them:
'Are you crazy? You are disgusting.' They didn't understand what
I was talking about."
The chief rabbi of the army, known as the Israel Defense Forces,
or I.D.F., Gen. Israel Weiss, also condemned the reports. "I
don't know what term of condemnation to use, as these actions are
immoral, inhuman, inappropriate to the I.D.F., un-Jewish,"
he said on the army radio. "One terrible action such as this
cuts away the I.D.F. moral ground."
"We have proved, as an army and as a nation, more than once,
that we are different, that we are other,'' he said. "We
don't rejoice when blood is spilled. We don't sing and dance in
celebration over a dead body lying at our feet, though some of our
enemies do this, with great delight."
The newspaper details soldiers' accounts of several other incidents,
including one in the Gaza Strip last year, when soldiers shot and
killed a Palestinian who was walking in a forbidden area. Although
the man turned out to be unarmed, soldiers tied his body to the
hood of an army jeep and drove him to a base, where they photographed
According to Yediot, the Israelis nicknamed the dead Palestinian
"Hefi," short for "innocent" in Hebrew. Later,
when other Palestinian dead were brought to the base, some soldiers
would joke, "He's nothing like Hefi."
In the weekend edition of another daily, Maariv, journalists describe
a short-lived sniper unit called the Ice Men, made up of six soldiers,
all trained in the Russian Army, who were professional snipers.
The unit, put together in September 2003, lasted only 10 months,
according to the paper, because the six, though regarded as highly
professional, were "light on the trigger."
"There was a gap between them and us on understanding open-fire
rules," an officer of the Givati Division told Maariv. "They
come from a different mentality and thought it was enough to have
intuition to suspect someone."
One of the snipers, identified as Dima, told the paper: "We
destroyed terrorists, those that shot at our soldiers and harmed
Israel. To this day, there has not been one complaint against us
that we fired at civilians, at children, or at farmers.''
"Soldiers told us that finally they managed to sleep at night
because there was less Palestinian shooting,'' Dima continued. "That
testifies to our professionalism. Why did they shut us down? Because
the officers above became frightened of us."
CARACAS, Venezuela — A
remote-controlled car bomb killed the state prosecutor preparing
to press charges against supporters of a short-lived 2002 coup against
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, officials said Friday.
The killing of Danilo Anderson, 38, stirred concern that a fresh
wave of violence could beset this country, the world's fifth-largest
oil exporter and the United States' biggest supplier in the Western
Anderson was traveling through the Los Chaguaramos district of
Caracas, the capital, around midnight Thursday when his sport utility
vehicle exploded. His charred body was recovered from the vehicle
and identified at the city morgue early Friday, police at the scene
The prosecutor had been compiling evidence against
nearly 400 opposition activists who signed a declaration of loyalty
to Pedro Carmona, who served two days as interim president in April
2002 before a popular revolt reinstated Chavez.
"This can only be described as terrorism,"
Interior Minister Jesse Chacon said of the slaying. He added that
forensic tests showed the bomb had been placed under Anderson's
seat and was detonated by remote control.
No arrests were made Friday, but early suspicion focused on opposition
Anti-Chavez activists were devastated when an Aug. 15 recall election
failed to unseat the populist president. They suffered further setbacks
in regional elections last month. Some observers said they feared
radical elements of the opposition might resort to violence after
failing to oust Chavez through the ballot box.
Atty. Gen. Isaias Rodriguez said those who were being investigated
by Anderson would be suspects in the slaying.
"This is a political murder whose main
objective is to intimidate the judiciary and stop the investigations
he was working on," said Information Minister Andres
Izarra. He accused unnamed "terrorists" among Cuban and
Venezuelan exiles in Florida of being behind the killing.
Venezuela has been in turmoil during Chavez's nearly six-year rule.
Business leaders say the president's policies
have benefited the poor at their expense. Chavez enjoys majority
support, as demonstrated by the 59% of voters who cast ballots against
After Anderson's killing, Chavez appeared on national television
to urge the nation to remain calm. "There will be peace in
Venezuela, but peace must be accompanied by justice," said
the president, who canceled a trip to Costa Rica where he was to
take part in an Ibero-American summit.
Anderson's coffin was taken to the attorney general's office in
downtown Caracas for a wake. National guard soldiers in riot gear
struggled to hold back an angry crowd that had gathered to denounce
Some opposition figures condemned the prosecutor's killing. "Even
though Anderson may have been an instrument of repression for this
government, a terrorist attack cannot be the answer,"
said Pompeyo Marquez, a veteran politician and member of the Democratic
Coordinator opposition alliance.
Henrique Capriles, mayor of the capital's Baruta district, spent
three months in jail this year while Anderson prepared a case against
him for his alleged involvement in the coup.
"The government and the judicial system must find those responsible
and do justice," Capriles said.
"I had many differences with Danilo Anderson, but these were
fought out in the public prosecutor's office," he said.
Anderson was widely viewed as a Chavez ally for his handling of
high-profile cases against coup plotters and opposition figures
who supported a two-month national strike last year and the recall
But in a recent interview in the Quinto Dia weekly newspaper, Anderson
denied any political favoritism, saying he had prosecuted cases
against government supporters. He said he had received death threats
from the soldiers and police accused of staging the coup and had
acquired a bodyguard while investigating those cases.
Although Chavez now has firm control of the country after Oct.
31 elections in which his allies swept 20 of 22 gubernatorial posts,
some analysts worry that the former
army colonel will crack down on opponents.
Luis Vicente Leon, director of the Datanalysis polling firm, said
it was too early to gauge the political fallout from Anderson's
"One possibility is that the president uses this to further
clamp down on the opposition," the pollster said. "However,
if he does try to squash his enemies, then he may further fuel the
radical groups that did this, and I'm not sure that would suit him."
Chavez is popular thanks to his "revolution
for the poor" in which he deployed Cuban doctors to treat slum
dwellers, sought to eradicate illiteracy and confiscated idle land
from wealthy owners to give to indigent farmers.
Relations with Washington have been strained since
the Bush administration recognized the coup leadership and openly
supported opposition groups during the strike and recall campaign.
The Bush administration has made clear its concern over the close
ties Chavez nurtures with communist Cuba, to which he ships discounted
oil in exchange for relief work by Cuban doctors, teachers and engineers.
U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela William R. Brownfield denounced the
killing of Anderson as "brutal and barbaric."
"In the civilized world, there is no place for terrorist acts,"
Brownfield said in a radio interview.
The assassination of prosecutor
Danilo Anderson has put Venezuela once again on the spotlight of
world events with all important news agencies of worldwide reach
wiring up-to-date reports on the latest spark of violence from Venezuela.
One of those news agencies in Reuters, who main correspondent in
Caracas seems to be Patrick Markey, judging from the number of reports
he has bylined on behalf of the agency.
Markey once again is covering events in Venezuela that may stir
up the political outcome in the near future in that country, so
it is of utmost that this time he assumes his role of meticulous
journalist; such a delicate issue as the assassination of a top
prosecutor who had been investigating major players in the April
11, 2002 coup deserves careful analysis and objectivity.
I read the latest report by Markey titled “Bomb
Kills Venezuela Prosecutor, Gov't Swipes at US” and I
concluded that Markey is falling in the same mistake of reducing
a complex issue into an array of tiresome clichés. He then
tries to sell to his readers the same old line of an “increasingly
authoritarian (never mind the referendum victory),” “Fidel-loving,
left-leaning Chavez” bashing out at the United States, just
for the heck of it, one is led to believe, since Markey doesn’t
bother to suggest whether there’s any substance to Chavez
and his information minister’s charges regarding a number
of Venezuelan military and civilians who have openly admitted using
US territory as a base of operations for future terrorist acts against
the Venezuelan government.
A serious journalist like Markey should have known that before
his death, Danilo Anderson was investigating two high-level military
dissidents suspected of masterminding the bombings of the Colombian
and Spanish diplomatic missions in Caracas on February 23, 2003.
The two were given asylum in the United States in violation of International
law and treaties against terrorism, despite the Venezuelan government’s
request for their extraditions and after Anderson had obtained incriminating
evidence linking them to military
rebels who favored violence through any means to overthrow President
Markey should have known that even the Wall Street Journal and
the Miami Herald, both strongly anti-Chavez, reported on a former
Venezuelan National Guard captain who had formed a “civic-military
alliance” with a
shady Cuban-exile militant group that has training camps in the
Florida Everglades and brags on its web site about blowing out tourist
and government buildings in Cuba and of baffling that country’s
security force in their incursions.
More disturbing is the fact that there isn’t a single mention
in the report about Anderson’s investigations on the US Congress-financed
National Endowment for Democracy (NED)’s role in its funding
of coup-plotting opposition organizations. Markey could have gained
much and lost nothing if he just had checked on detailed
documents on the NED’s role in Venezuela that so far have
been declassified in the United States.
With this information in mind, a paragraph could easily have been
added to balance the report a bit more. However, when Venezuela
presses charges against the US government for providing safe haven
to people who may be implicated in the prosecutor’s assassination
Markey seems disingenuous in his source-findings. To refute the
aforementioned background and the possibility of a major, non-isolated
plot, Markey only cites an unnamed US official in Caracas, who said
"The charge is ridiculous and more of a politically motivated
And that’s where it ends for Markey; the next topic of concern
in his report is whether any instability in Venezuela affects the
oil market or one should lend credibility to the opposition’s
“fears” that the prosecutor’s demise may have
resulted in Chavez’ own Reichstag (with all possibilities
open in this case; no conspiracy theory here, of course).
* Inadvertently or not, Markey is distorting the news of a major
and tragic event in Venezuela by misrepresenting or omitting crucial
I hope that Reuters and Markey find it in their own interest not
to inflame the attitudes among its readers against the country by
selling them a cheap line that oversimplifies the country’s
crises as it perpetuates clichés that do not correspond to
If integrity and credibility means anything to Markey, it’s
time he realizes that he has plenty of journalism homework ahead
Speaking at Venezuela's National Assembly (AN),
Executive Vice President Jose Vicente Rangel has said that US Ambassador
to Venezuela, William Brownfield "should provide an explanation
about the behavior of Orlando Urdaneta and the legal status that
allows him to continue to reside in the United States of America."
Rangel was commenting the former actorís broadcast statements
on a Miami-based television station in which
he advocated finding ways and means to assassinate Venezuela's President
Hugo Chavez Frias.
"Urdaneta's appearance on a television program in Miami ...
where he said Venezuelan affairs could be solved with a rifle enhanced
with a telescopic sight, deserves an explanation,î Rangel
said, referring to Urdanetaís suggestion to use a sniper
to get rid of Chavez Frias.
Asked about those responsible of such a plan, Rangel stressed
that "the order was issued. But, despite
the gravity of such irresponsible declarations, US authorities have
not said or done anything ... absolutely nothing." [...]
Quito, Ecuador - A U.S. push
to expand the war on terrorism in partnership with Latin America
is proving difficult.
Defense chiefs from Brazil, Argentina and Chile
this week balked at mobilizing armed forces in that cause.
And from mothers on the street to well-connected activists in office
suites, U.S. military overtures sparked suspicion.
The efforts U.S. officials propose are a veiled
attempt "to consolidate control" over Ecuador's water
and oil, said Gen. Rene Vargas, a former head of Ecuador's armed
forces, an ex-congressman and now a political player.
"In Latin America, there are no terrorists
- only hunger and unemployment and delinquents who turn to crime.
What are we going to do, hit you with a banana?"
U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld made a high- level pitch
for concerted action Wednesday morning at a meeting here of defense
ministers from 33 countries.
Latin American "terrorists, drug traffickers,
hostage takers and criminal gangs form an anti-social combination
that increasingly seeks to destabilize civil societies," Rumsfeld
told his counterparts.
Fueling suspicions, Navy and Coast Guard
vessels patrolling the eastern Pacific earlier this year sank at
least eight Ecuadoran boats that U.S. officials said were involved
in smuggling. Disputes over what happened have gone as high
as the Ecuadorian presidency.
"Now, I can't work," said Manual Santana, 53, who contends
his boat, blown up March 3 near the Galapagos Islands, carried "only
fishermen." Human-rights workers advocating for those who lost
boats say these incidents enraged many people.
Even U.S. humanitarian projects face suspicion.
Last year, military forces planned storage facilities for disaster
relief supplies around the country in case one of Ecuador's many
active volcanoes erupts. But charges that the facilities would be
operating bases for U.S. military forces blocked construction.
U.S. officials say they are trying to be sensitive in pushing for
a broader war on terrorism.
Flanked by palace soldiers wearing uniforms from the early 1800s
- when liberation leader Simon Bolivar's forces fought Spanish rulers
- Rumsfeld assured Ecuadorian journalists that "the role that
Ecuador should play is the role that Ecuador decides is important."
Each country here "has a different perspective," said
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Rogelio Pardo-Maurer, the
top Pentagon official for Western Hemisphere affairs. "You
cannot tell any country how to do it."
SANTIAGO : Chilean anti-riot forces cracked
down on pockets of stone-throwing youngsters but masses of people
joined a separate peaceful, samba-like protest against a major Asia-Pacific
Military-style police, with helmets and plastic shields, took
action hours before the arrival of President George W. Bush for
a weekend Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit.
They fired tear gas and water cannon as radical protesters tried
to cluster in in the sidestreets and main Alameda boulevard of the
Security forces hauled about a dozen of the protesters into buses,
a couple of whom carried what appeared to be "Molotov cocktails".
"This gathering is not authorised. Go away," a loudspeaker
blared from an armored car fitted with water cannon.
Protesters chucked stones at the police vehicles.
"No to APEC, No to Bush, No to capitalism," read one
"No to rubbish pay," read another.
A few blocks away, police let a colorful, authorized march of
about 10,000 anti-globalisation demonstrators go ahead under tight
Security forces walked along side and guarded street intersections.
Every facet of the anti-capitalist movement was on show: Scantily
clad girls dancing the samba alongside a Brazilian beating drums,
painted indigenous Mapuche people, two beauty queens, one them a
transvestite, and Amnesty International activists with the Palestinian
One group danced around an Iraqi flag, shouting curse words. A
banner read: "Resist, Fallujah."
Cyclists rode ahead of the procession, featuring an effigy of
revolutionary Che Guevara, another of Bush, people carrying the
Chilean Communist Party flag, red flags, and elderly unionists.
"No violence allowed here," read one banner.
"Bush terrorist, assassin," read another.
Four or five floats made to look like tanks rolled along.
An eagle made of plastic sheeting dragged plastic bottles behind
it, the creation of the "Interesting Patriotic Theater Group"
which said it represented the eagle of imperialism turning everything
Fifteen people walked in silence blindfolded.
Antonia, 15, said: "These are the blindfolds they put over
our eyes so we don't see the reality and exploitation."
In a straw hat and flowery shirt, 75-year-old Graciela said: "Peace
not war. Bush is bloodthirsty."
In stark contrast to the rock-throwing protests nearby, the march
was peaceful but heavy on symbolism.
Two blind people led the march chanting: "No to the dictatorship
of the market."
SANTIAGO, Chile (CP) - Prime Minister Paul
Martin is urging Canadians to remain peaceful if they want to protest
against U.S. President George W. Bush's visit next week.
The prime minister made the request while Chilean police pelted
protesters with water cannons and tear gas as the demonstrators
jeered Bush's arrival at the Asia-Pacific leaders' summit Friday.
Martin said protesters voicing their disdain for the U.S. president
or any politician is valuable - as long as it doesn't get carried
"I think that (protest) is an essential part of democracy,"
Martin said after arriving at the summit.
"As long as they're done peacefully...then I think it's an
important part of the evolution of policy in the way the world works."
Bush is scheduled to arrive in Ottawa next week for his first-ever
official visit to Canada.
At his first international summit since winning re-election Nov.
2, Bush had a taste Friday of the worldwide rage that's resulted
from his invasion of Iraq.
Police blasted water and tossed volley after volley of tear gas
into crowds of protesters galvanized by their opposition to the
U.S. president. Some of them sported anti-Bush headbands and waved
posters hurling every imaginable epithet at Bush, including murderer
A Canadian television crew spotted some burning a mock coffin,
while accusing Bush of killing world peace. [...]
WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE, N.M. - The latest
version of the U.S. Army's Patriot interceptor missile has successfully
destroyed target missiles in flight over White Sands Missile Range.
The two target missiles were downed Thursday morning by two Patriot
Advanced Capability-3 _ or PAC-3 _ missiles launched one after the
other from the range, said Pam Rogers, an Army spokeswoman in Huntsville,
"Both targets were destroyed," she said. "Both
impacted over the range."
A Storm target missile was launched from Fort Wingate near Gallup,
and the other target _ a Patriot designed to mimic a short-range
ballistic missile _ was fired from the northern end of the missile
The test was designed to demonstrate the performance of PAC-3
hardware changes that improve production and reduce missile costs,
the Army said.
The test also was intended to demonstrate the PAC-3's ability
to detect, track, engage and intercept two missile targets flying
simultaneously, the army said.
The Army on Sept. 2 conducted a similar PAC-3 test, which also
The PAC-3 was first used in combat in Iraq last year.
The missile uses kinetic energy, rather than an explosive warhead,
to destroy targets such as cruise missiles and advanced tactical
The Government is planning a
change in the law to allow police to arrest suspects without evidence,
it was claimed today.
The Law Society said it believed the new powers would be included
in the Bill which will create the new British FBI.
It warned that the cumulative effect of the Government's clampdown
on crime and terrorism would be a step towards a police state.
Janet Paraskeva, the Law Society's chief executive, said: "The
Government is in serious danger of overstating the threat to public
order and national security and bringing in draconian new laws,
which will take away centuries of hard won rights.
"If the Bill to establish the Serious Organised Crime Agency
(Soca) includes the power to arrest someone without evidence, then
solicitors could not support it.
"That would be a serious step in the direction of a police
"Anyone could be lifted from the streets or from their homes
just on the basis of suspicion."
She added: "The threat to end jury trials for terrorism cases
is another chipping away of the centuries old rights for people
to be tried before a jury of their peers, which goes back to Magna
Soca will have around 5,000 investigators to crack down on serious
crime and fraud, merging the National Crime Squad, the National
Criminal Intelligence Service and the investigating arms of customs
and the immigration service.
A Law Society spokesman said they had been told on good authority
that the new powers of arrest were being considered by ministers.
LISBON, Nov 18: The global managing
editor of British news provider Reuters said on Thursday the
US military was entirely to blame for the deaths of three of its
employees in Iraq since the start of the war there in March 2003,
an allegation disputed by the Pentagon.
"All of them were killed by the American army," Reuters
chief David Schlesinger told reporters on the sidelines of a media
conference in the southern Portuguese resort of Vilamoura, national
news agency Lusa reported.
"There is no understanding on the part of the US military
regarding the exercise of journalism," he added according to
"We can't run the risk that journalists will become targets
(in Iraq). We must learn the lessons from these tragic cases."
Two Reuters photographers and a cameraman are among the more than
60 war-related deaths of media workers recorded
The most recent death occurred in the Iraqi city of Ramadi on November
The US military says a cameraman killed there while on assignment
for Reuters died in a gunbattle between Marines and militants, but
the Iraqi man's colleagues and family have said they believe he
was shot by a US sniper.
NEW YORK -- The post-election bounce in the
stock market and the weakening of oil prices might have grabbed
attention from another story that could put U.S. financial markets
and the economy in jeopardy: the steep fall of the dollar.
The dollar has been struggling for almost two years, but in recent
weeks its slump has been exaggerated, dropping against most major
currencies and tumbling to a record low against
Should it stay on such a course, the implications extend a lot
further than just bumping up the costs of vacations in Europe. And
while the weak dollar is helping U.S. exporters and companies doing
business abroad, it might mean higher borrowing and mortgage costs
and could make everything from imported cars to toys more expensive.
The dollar hit new lows against the euro this week, when it cost
about $1.30 to buy one euro, the common currency used by 12 European
nations. On Friday, the dollar sank to a 40-year low against the
Japanese yen and flirted with a record low against the euro. The
greenback has lost 10 percent of its value against the currencies
of the major U.S. trading partners since mid-May.
There are many reasons for the decline. Most recently, pressures
are coming from investors' nervousness that President Bush and his
administration would do little to stem the dollar's slide.
U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow said Monday that the United
States would like the dollar to strengthen, but he repeated his
position that international currency markets should be left to set
Also weighing down the dollar are the huge U.S. trade and budget
deficits. Friday's slide was touched off by comments by Federal
Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan that the trade gap poses risks to
the economy. [...]
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Investors' appetite
for U.S. assets will eventually dwindle and the United States must
reduce its budget deficit to prevent major economic damage, Federal
Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said on Friday, in remarks that
hit the dollar hard.
Speaking before meetings where financial policymakers may tackle
the dollar's tumble, Greenspan also said large scale intervention
in foreign exchange rate markets to calm currency moves help somewhat,
but did not have a lasting effect.
The clarity of these warnings surprised market
analysts, even though Greenspan combined them with a call for the
U.S. administration to tackle the huge budget and current account
deficits that lie behind the dollar's drop.
"We see only limited indications that the large U.S. current
account deficit is meeting financing resistance. Yet, net claims
against residents of the United States cannot continue to increase
forever in international portfolios at their recent pace,"
Greenspan told a bankers' conference in Frankfurt.
"It seems persuasive that, given the size of the U.S. current
account deficit, a diminished appetite for adding to dollar balances
must occur at some point," he said.
After his remarks the dollar slumped to a four and a half year
low against the yen and nearly nine-year low against the Swiss franc.
The euro was up 0.8 percent at $1.3055, within sight of its all-time
peak around $1.3074. [...]
BERLIN - Finance ministers and central bank
chiefs from the world's 20 biggest economies voiced concern on Saturday
over sudden currency swings, venturing for the first time into the
territory of the more influential Group of Seven.
German Finance Minister Hans Eichel, the meeting's host, said there
was a general view that sudden changes in exchange rates or oil
prices from global imbalances were undesirable.
He also announced a tentative deal, thrashed out
with the U.S., to write off up to 80 percent of Iraq's $120 billion
in foreign debt.
Officials have been at pains to point out that
the G20 was not a forum for focusing on exchange rates but the recent
sharp falls in the dollar mean it was impossible to discuss the
economy without touching on exchange rates.
"The imbalances that exist without doubt in the world economy
should not lead to abrupt changes, either in oil prices or exchange
rates. That's a common position," Eichel told reporters during
a break in the G20 talks that end on Sunday.
The dollar sank to a multi-year low versus the yen and within a
whisker of its low against the euro on Friday after remarks from
U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan.
Policymakers faced a barrage of questions from
reporters on exchange rates and European and Japanese delegations,
worried the dollar's slide could hurt their exporters, said they
Markets are now waiting to see if Sunday's communique makes an
explicit reference to currencies.
Some G20 members were less bothered and one official said there
was no appetite among the G20 as a whole intervene to stem the slide.
But Hiroshi Watanabe, Japan's top financial diplomat, said Tokyo
viewed recent forex moves as "very rapid," said it was
watching developments closely and added it would take decisive action
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who lunched
with ministers, put the blame for the dollar's slide firmly on the
huge U.S. budget and current account deficits, a view shared by
He said the dollar's exchange rate against the euro was a source
of concern and that central banks, including the ECB, should consider
what action they could take to halt the dollar's decline.
But Brazilian Finance Minister Antonio Palocci,
speaking shortly after Eichel, said "the movement in world
currencies is not considered to be a worrying thing" and the
ministers' debate had been dominated by the potential impact of
oil prices on growth. [...]
| [..] The world's foreign exchange
markets are rife with rumours that the latest wave of $US selling
has been led by foreign governments seeking to cut their exposure
to US assets in general and the US Dollar in particular. India and
Russia have reportedly been selling US paper assets. So have petrodollar-rich
Middle East investors. China, with reserves of $US 515 Billion, is
said to be selling Dollars and buying Asian currencies, preparing
to switch the Yuan's US Dollar peg to a new currency basket arrangement.
The US government is so flat broke that it must raise its debt
ceiling by November 18 or stop many normal government functions
because they will have no cash. The Treasury has already said that
due to debt limit constraints, it does not have the capacity to
settle a four-week bill auction scheduled to be held on November
16. The lame duck Congress returns on November 16. It has two days
in which to act. [Ryan: We now know that Congress has voted to increase
the debt ceiling.] [..]
The Real US Economy:
In effect, the US economy is being artificially held up by US Treasury
borrowing, and spending that borrowed money into the US economy,
in the process "boosting" the US GDP. The Labor Department
reported that the US labour market snapped out of its summer lull
to add 337,000 new jobs in October, the biggest increase since March.
71,000 of these jobs were new jobs in all levels of government.
All the rest were in services. US Manufacturers shed 5,000 jobs
in October - and that's where it matters.
When US defence materials are subtracted, new US factory orders
dropped a full 1 percent in September.
Internal demand has dropped sharply for manufactured goods other
than defence materials, the Commerce Department reported. Overall,
US factory orders slipped by 0.4 percent, or $US 1.3 Billion, in
September to $US 368.3 Billion, following a decrease of 0.3 percent
in August that had reversed a months-long trend of increases. These
were the first back-to-back declines since November - December 2002
and the first economic indicator to be released after the November
2 election. The data shows a contracting economy. [..]
The Geo-Politics Of Isolating The US:
If the global process of selling by most foreign holders of US
Dollars and US Dollar paper assets has begun, it has inherent in
it certain economic characteristics. The first of these is that
the sum of foreign holders must not allow one of the major sellers
to bolt - to make a sudden fast dash for the exits. Such an action
could easily cause a world wide cascade of US Dollar and US paper
assets to be sold in an avalanche. To prevent that, behind the stage
these foreign sellers must have (for their own safety) some explicit/implicit
accord or agreement. For as long as that holds together (it rarely
holds for long), their selling of their US Dollar and its Dollar
denominated paper assets will take place in stages, with even longer
pauses in between waves of "orderly" selling. There is
literally not a thing the US can do about this - except to raise
its official interest rates high enough to stop the US credit expansion.
If US Dollars and paper assets are sold in stages, the US Dollar
will fall in stages. It will find trading ranges where it will wobble
around for a while before it begins to fall again. Internal US market
rates of interest will climb, in matching stages, as foreign holders
sell down their current holdings of US Treasury paper and all other
forms of US commercial paper. The US internal credit and lending
markets will see diminished total liquidity as newer loans are not
entered into by American borrowers. The US retail markets will contract,
as will US internal employment, led by the service industries. US
internal unemployment will climb, corporate US earnings will fall
and the US stock markets will break on the downside. Prices for
imports will climb to be followed by climbing internal US prices.
Then these price climbs will slow down as internal borrowing and
buying ebbs away. When that happens, most Americans will finally
realise that they are now in the long postponed real recession.
Inside Washington, and in the Fed and Treasury, they are well aware
that for at least the past three years, the entire US economy has
been held up mainly by the Asian Central Banks. They also know that
this situation will end. But instead of waiting for it to end, and
taking the resultant selling of the US Dollar, US Treasury and other
debt paper and US stocks by current foreign holders of same, the
Bush Administration is more likely to act to pre-empt the event.
They are determined to avoid leaving the control of events and the
global initiative in foreign hands. Their obvious response is PROTECTIONISM.
That would take the form of a sudden and savage barrage of tariffs,
quota restrictions, mandated selling prices etc., etc., while proclaiming
to the American people they are fighting "unfair competition"
to "protect jobs and US living standards".
The imposition of US protectionism would obviously hammer particularly
hard the Chinese, and then Japan and all the other Asians who presently
export so much to the US economy. Their export sectors would be
torn apart. These nations do have a response, held as a hammer presently
hidden behind their backs. That is to ACTUALLY START A MASSIVE SELL-OFF
OF US DOLLARS.
The Bush Administration has a classic and historic response to
that. It could initiate a FULL-SCALE FREEZE OF ASIAN FINANCIAL ASSETS
INSIDE THE US. This would say to the Asians: "You can sell,
but you cannot take your money out of here". That is what the
US did to Japan in June 1941, when it "froze" Japan's
US assets. Japan, being strangled economically, attacked the US
on December 7, 1941.
An Asian "asset freeze" would leave foreign accounts
frozen inside the US financial system. Were this to happen, all
other nations around the world would live in fear that it could
happen to them. If the US does act in this manner, the US Dollar
would promptly lose its present global reserve currency status.
Then the US would find itself in the same position as the rest of
the world. It would have to pay for imports in "foreign"
currencies, not in US Dollars.
The resultant economic recession inside the US would be massive.
But Americans would be told that it was the fault of "foreigners".
Nothing would be said about the real cause - US borrowing or credit
Do Those At The "Top" Know?:
Robert McTeer, who resigned in early November as President of the
Dallas Fed, has recently mused (only "theoretically")
that when foreign capital inflows into America dry up: "There
will be a crisis that will result in rapidly rising interest rates
and a rapidly depreciating dollar that will be very disruptive".
They Know, But What Do They Do?:
Short answer - nothing! A statement like the one above, made in
public, brings to the fore the basic and simple question of what
Mr McTeer has been doing at the top level of the Federal Reserve
when he KNOWS what the real consequences of a monetary and credit
policy which were willing followed are. As the quote makes clear,
Mr McTeer sees the consequences coming. Being at the top level of
the Fed, Mr McTeer could have pushed to put in place US monetary
and credit policies which would make the crisis he now talks about
impossible. He did just the opposite, so now, all he can offer Americans
is his version of throwing his hands up in the air. When - not if
- the foreign capital inflows into the US stop, then US interest
rates will soar and the US Dollar will do a massive dive in international
value. It's a dismal prospect, a prospect which the Fed has created
and now does NOTHING to prevent. [..]
The Canadian dollar came back to life today,
rising almost nine-10ths of a U.S. cent as the U.S. dollar sold
off after a speech by U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan.
In remarks to a banking conference in Frankfurt, Greenspan warned
the huge American trade deficit eventually could threaten the economy
at some point if foreigners lose interest in holding U.S. dollar-denominated
"What Greenspan has done is reaffirm the concerns of the
market that the U.S. dollar will slide further," said Andrew
Pyle, senior economist at Scotiabank.
"It brings up the point again that at some point in time,
foreign investors are not going to have the same appetite for providing
the funds to keep financing what is now almost a $700 billion (U.S.)
trade deficit." [...]
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. lawmakers struck
a deal late on Friday on a $388 billion package of government funding
for the current fiscal year after days of battling over foreign
aid, nuclear waste, milk subsidies and overtime.
To fit into spending limits demanded by President Bush, lawmakers
agreed to make an across-the-board cut of 0.83 percent in spending
levels backed earlier by the House and Senate.
But last minute increases were allowed for some pet White House
and Republican projects like space programs and a new foreign aid
The spending bill is expected to be one of the last pieces of legislation
lawmakers will tackle in the post-election session of the 108th
Congress set to end this weekend.
Congress only passed four of 13 spending bills before the election
break so lawmakers must wrap the remaining nine into one for the
2005 fiscal year that began Oct. 1. This bill funds more than a
dozen agencies including the departments of labor, agriculture,
treasury, state and justice.
The Bush administration had threatened to veto the massive bill
if the cost of its programs pushed spending for all 13 spending
bills above an $821.9 billion limit.
"We have resisted many requests for additions to the package
that would have busted the budget by billions of dollars,"
said House Appropriations Committee Chairman Bill Young, a Florida
In a victory for the White House, lawmakers agreed
to open up some government agency jobs to the private sector.
The bill dropped language that would have challenged new Bush rules
on overtime and travel to Cuba.
On another tricky issue, the compromise bill included $577 million
in funding for a nuclear waste site at Yucca Mountain in Nevada
but did not include language that would reclassify fees paid into
the Nuclear Waste Fund.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican said
the talks had been "very challenging." [...]
A provision that would have extended milk subsidies
for small dairy farmers was also left out as lawmakers from states
with large dairy farms are fiercely opposed to this measure.
Left in the bill was a measure requiring Mexican truckers operating
in the United States to meet the same safety standards as domestic
carriers before they cross the border, aides said.
The bill also included $403 million dollars for Sudan, including
$93 million switched from unused Iraq reconstruction funds, to support
troops and ease the humanitarian crisis in the African nation.
The bill chopped $1 billion from Bush's request for $2.5 billion
for the Millennium Challenge Account, a new program to encourage
economic and political reforms in poor countries. But this was slightly
above the numbers approved in the House and Senate versions of the
Funding to fight HIV/AIDS and other diseases around the world received
$2.9 billion but the Global Fund will see less money than advocacy
groups had hoped for.
The NASA space agency found a last minute boost
to $16.2 billion, an increase of $822 million over last year's levels.
NASA has operations in the home district of House Majority Leader
Tom DeLay, a Texan from the Houston area.
Aides also said the bill included legislation to allow satellite
companies to retransmit broadcasters' television signals so customers
in remote areas could access shows.
WASHINGTON - The Pentagon is spending more
than $5.8 billion a month on the war in Iraq, according to the military's
That is nearly a 50 percent increase above the $4 billion-a-month
benchmark the Pentagon has used to estimate the cost of the war
The Army alone is spending $4.7 million a month while the Air
Force is spending $800 million a month transporting soldiers and
flying combat missions. The Marine Corps is spending $300 million
a month, the four service chiefs told the House Armed Services Committee
Since 2003, the Pentagon has received some $160 billion for the
wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in supplemental funding -- that is,
in addition to its annual budget. It will be requesting another
multibillion-dollar supplement early next year to cover the continuing
cost of the war.
UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 19 - Faced with polarizing
division in the 191-member General Assembly, the United States on
Friday abandoned its aggressively pursued attempt to obtain a United
Nations treaty banning all human cloning, including that done in
the name of medical research.
The outcome - an agreement to come up with a nonbinding declaration
against cloning to reproduce humans - fell far short of the American
goal and represented a setback for President Bush. He called for
a worldwide ban on all cloning when he addressed the United Nations
General Assembly in August, and he made limiting stem cell and other
related research an issue in his presidential campaign.
All 191 United Nations members have agreed on the need for a treaty
to prohibit reproductive cloning. But a vote has been stalled for
three years by sharp differences over whether to broaden the ban,
as the United States wishes, to prohibit cloning to create stem
cells for research, part of a field known as therapeutic cloning.
The push for a total ban has set the Bush administration against
close allies like Britain and much of the world's scientific establishment,
who contend that it would block research on cancer, Alzheimer's
disease, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, spinal cord injuries, multiple
sclerosis and other conditions. The White House argues that enough
stem cells from human embryos exist for research and that cloning
an embryo for any reason is unethical. [...]
THE HAGUE, Netherlands -- One of the most popular
politicians in the Netherlands said Friday the country's democracy
is under threat and called for a five-year halt to non-Western immigration
in the wake of the killing of a Dutch filmmaker by a suspected Muslim
"We are a Dutch democratic society. We have our own norms
and values," right-wing lawmaker Geert Wilders told The Associated
Press in an interview. "If you chose radical Islam you can
leave, and if you don't leave voluntarily then we will send you
away. This is the only message possible."
In his first interview with the foreign media since the slaying
of filmmaker Theo van Gogh on Nov. 2, Wilders said his own life
has been repeatedly threatened. He said he has begun living under
state protection and has even had to stay away from his own home.
Wilders split with the free-market coalition partner Liberal Party
two months ago because it backed the candidacy of predominantly
Muslim Turkey for the European Union.
He formed his own conservative party, the Wilders
Group, which has one seat in the 150-member parliament. But a recent
poll suggested his anti-immigrant message was reverberating through
the electorate, and he would win 24 seats if elections were held
today -- up from 19 seats before Van Gogh's murder.
Wilders said that without swift, bold action, Islamic
fundamentalism will topple the country's democratic system.
"The Netherlands has been too tolerant to intolerant people
for too long," he said. "We should not import a retarded
political Islamic society to our country. There is nothing to be
ashamed of to say this. It's not Islam. I speak out against the
In Brussels, Belgium, European Union leaders met Friday to discuss
immigration, one of Europe's most pressing and sensitive issues.
EU justice and interior ministers agreed to demand that new immigrants
learn the language of their adopted countries and adhere to "European
values" to guide them toward better integration.
Even as the number of immigrants arriving in Europe falls due to
tougher policies, led by a sharp drop in the Netherlands, Wilders
said closing the borders isn't enough. Newcomers should be forced
"If in a mosque there is recruitment for jihad, it's not a
house of prayer, it's a house of war. If it's not a house of prayer,
it should be closed down," he said.
Wilders, known for his radical positions and peroxide-blond hair,
has been a member of parliament since 1998. He was born and educated
in the southern city Venlo, near the German border.
"I'm very tough on radical Islam. I have the toughest ideas
on beating this problem and I'm proud of it. I say nothing wrong.
I'm no racist, no anti-Islamist," he said.
Wilders and the police took the death threats
more seriously following the slaying of Van Gogh, who had produced
a television drama critical of how women are treated in some Muslim
societies. The filmmaker was shot and stabbed to death, allegedly
by a 26-year-old suspected Islamic extremist who holds Dutch and
The most recent threats were disclosed when two terror suspects,
arrested Nov. 10 after a standoff in which several policemen were
wounded by a hand grenade, were charged with threatening Wilders
and other politicians, their lawyer said.
The latest video threat broadcast on the Internet -- in Dutch,
with Arabic music in the background -- condemns Wilders for insulting
Islam and offers the reward of paradise for his beheading.
Wilders' style and cause are reminiscent of Pim
Fortuyn, a flamboyant political outsider who put immigration on
the national agenda before the 2002 elections. Fortuyn was shot
to death by an animal rights activist days before the vote, but
major parties since have largely embraced his ideas.
Wilders said he is not opposed to mainstream Islam but is concerned
by studies saying 10 percent of the Dutch Muslim population -- or
about 100,000 people -- support radical Islamic views.
He cited a report by Dutch intelligence saying recruitment for
jihad, or holy war, is taking place in as many as 20 mosques in
the Netherlands, and said they should be closed and their imams,
or preachers, arrested and deported.
"If we don't do anything ... we will lose the country that
we have known for centuries. People don't want the Netherlands to
be lost, and this is something that I get angry about and I am going
to fight for, to keep the country Dutch," he said.
Sri Lanka has stepped up security in the capital
Colombo as police launched an investigation into the slaying of
a judge and his bodyguard.
A section of a road leading to the residences of senior government
figures was declared off limits for other motorists as police sought
to identify a motive for Friday's killing of High Court judge Sarath
Ambepitiya and his police bodyguard were shot dead as they returned
to the judge's official residence in a fashionable residential quarter
"The initial suspicion is that two gunmen were involved in
the attack," a police official said. "We are working on
a few leads, but so far there is no breakthrough."
He said security had been stepped up following the slaying.
The judge was known for his tough sentencing, including a 200-year
jail term he handed in absentia to the main leader of the Tamil
Tiger rebel group, Velupillai Prabhakaran.
The judge found Prabhakaran guilty in 2002 of masterminding the
January 1996 bombing of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in which 91
people were killed and 1,400 injured.
He also handed down the death sentence to two police officers implicated
in the massacre of more than 25 Tamil youngsters in a state detention
centre and has given record jail terms to child molesters.
BELGRADE, Serbia-Montenegro - A probe into
the mysterious shooting of two soldiers has revealed the existence
beneath the Serbian capital of a secret communist-era network of
tunnels and bunkers that could have served as recent hideouts for
some of the world's most-wanted war crimes suspects.
The 2-square-mile complex — dubbed a "concrete underground
city" by the local media — was built deep inside a rocky
hill in a residential area of Belgrade in the 1960s on the orders
of communist strongman Josip Broz Tito. Until recently its existence
was known only to senior military commanders and politicians.
The secret was revealed during an investigation
this month into the deaths of two soldiers who were guarding an
entrance to the complex. Both were found fatally shot.
Official explanations of the Oct. 5 incident have failed to satisfy
the soldiers' families or a skeptical media, sparking speculation
that fugitive Bosnian officers wanted by the United Nations for
atrocities during the 1990s Balkans wars may have sought refuge
in the complex, which was originally designed to resist nuclear
"My son died because he saw some big secret," Petar Milovanovic,
the father of one of the two soldiers, said recently. "They
had to die to take the secret to the grave with them."
The army initially said the two soldiers shot each other, then
backtracked and reported that one had murdered the other before
committing suicide. An independent commission is now investigating.
The circumstances surrounding the deaths — and any link with
high-profile war crimes fugitives such as Gen. Ratko Mladic —
remain murky. But the probe has shed light on a complex that was
once so secret military men here say NATO didn't even suspect its
existence when it bombed Serbia in 1999.
Tito, who ruled Yugoslavia from World War II until he died in 1980,
ordered it built because he feared a nuclear attack by the Soviet
Union after his country's 1948 split with the Eastern European communist
bloc led by Joseph Stalin.
The entrance is hidden beneath a hilltop army
barracks in Belgrade's Topcider district, which is home to several
embassies and luxurious diplomatic residences.
According to media reports citing unnamed military sources, a 185-foot-deep
elevator shaft leads down to a six-story underground complex dug
into rock and reinforced by 10-foot-thick concrete walls.
Retired Gen. Momcilo Perisic, who was the army's chief of staff
until 1999, confirmed that the sprawling complex is intended as
a wartime command center.
The main hall is as big as a subway station and could be used to
shelter tanks and trucks, the reports by the Vecernje Novosti newspaper
and other media said.
Tunnels stretching for hundreds of yards link palaces, bunkers
and safe houses. Rooms are separated by steel vault doors 10 feet
high and a foot thick. The complex has its own power supply and
Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic is believed to have
convened his war Cabinet there in 1999 while NATO bombs fell on
his country for 78 days to punish him for cracking down on independence-seeking
ethnic Albanians in Kosovo.
The complex is so well designed that Yugoslav construction firms
were reportedly hired by deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to
build a duplicate bunker near his hometown of Tikrit in the 1980s.
SALISBURY, N.C. — A community college
instructor who was suspended for showing Fahrenheit 9/11 in class
the week before the presidential election is offering no apologies
and says he was unfairly punished.
Davis March showed the Michael Moore documentary critical of President
Bush to his film class. Administrators pulled
the plug on the movie with about 20 minutes left when March tried
to show it to English composition students.
"This story is now about academic freedom ... the movie is
ancient history," said March, who served a four-day suspension
and returned Nov. 2 to Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, about 75
kilometres northeast of Charlotte.
School officials said March disobeyed orders by refusing to meet
with administrators before showing the film, but March said no edict
to seek permission had been issued.
"If I'm wrong about this, I've been wrong my entire career,"
said March, 54, who has taught at the school for two decades. "If
I backed down, how could I go back into the classroom and face my
The school's executive vice-president, Ann Hovey, said the board
of trustees has a clear policy of nonpartisanship regarding political
issues. She said college President Richard Brownell has issued several
memos on the topic.
One dated Oct. 25 stated that college employees may not use "the
classroom or college environment as a platform to promote their
own personal, religious or political views or to advocate for specific
Hovey said March asked school officials in August if he could
send out fliers promoting a screening of Moore's movie. The school
rejected that request.
"He was insistent about wanting to show it before the election,
which implied some possible political intent," Hovey said.
She said March erred by not also presenting an opposing view to
"We are not about trying to suppress critical thinking or
academic thought," she said. "But if you are trying to
promote critical thinking, then both sides need to be presented.''
Greg Lukianoff of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education
described the school's actions as deplorable.
"It's true the university cannot endorse a candidate, but
the distinction of what a university professor can do is increasingly
getting blurred," he said.
According to the official
account, 19 Arabs hijacked four passenger planes on September 11,
2001 and crashed these planes with passengers and crew onto the
World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
Two of the aircraft belonged to American Airlines and two to United
In view of the huge losses incurred by these airlines in terms
of human lives and assets, one would have expected them to help
shed light on the criminal events.
As will be shown below, the airlines have, on the contrary, refused
to disclose crucial evidence to the families of the victims and
to the public in general and continue to do so. One of the immediate
worries of American Airlines on September 11, 2001, was how to mould
information flow to the general public and prevent "rumors"
and wrong "theories" to leak out.
A prestigious public-relations agency was put on the scene by
AA "minutes after the first crash" to help carry out that
communications task. Concurrent to such public-relations efforts,
both airlines refused and continue to refuse to disclose the most
fundamental data in their possession regarding the murderous events,
such as passenger lists and access to eye-witnesses. This evidence
suggests airlines’ complicity in covering up the truth on
THE OFFICIAL ACCOUNT
While the US administration has not issued any authoritative "official
account" (or "white book") of the events of 911,
as promised shortly after the events by Secretary of State Colin
Powell (1), the report issued by the bi-partisan Congressional Commission
of Inquiry in June 2004 (2) may be regarded as the nearest thing
to an "official account".
According to this report, 19 Arab hijackers, whose names and photographs
have been posted shortly after the attacks on the FBI website (3)(4),
perpetrated the atrocities on September 11 through a collective
suicide operation. Two AA and two UA passenger jets were, according
to this account, flown as living missiles into the named targets.
The first AA aircraft (flight AA11, tail no. N334AA) is said to
have left Logan airport in Boston at 7:59 with 92 people on board
(crew, passengers and hijackers) and crashed at 8:46 on the North
Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City. The second AA
aircraft (flight AA77, tail no. N644AA) is said to have left Dulles
airport in Washington, D.C. at 8:20 with 64 people on board and
crashed into the Pentagon at 9:37. The above departure times, incidentally,
are still disputed and in the case of AA11 (5). As of November 13,
2003, the statistical database of the Department of Transportation
(BTS) did not even mention AA11 as a flight scheduled for September
11, 2001 (6). At a later date the Department added a record for
this flight with the departure time set as zero. Checking again
the BTS database for this article on November 18, 2004, I discovered
that the DoT again amended its database by setting the scheduled
departure of AA11 to the "official time" of 7:45 (6).
It appears that the DoT had received orders to align its database
with the "official account" on the crime of 9/11. Should
this have happened, there would be grounds to charge the DoT for
falsification of official records and participation in a criminal
Hundreds of questions regarding the events of 9/11 remain unaddressed
both by the Joint Senate House Committee as well as by the 9/11
Commission of Inquiry. The present article examines only one particular
Whether American Airlines (and United Airlines) are participants
in the vast cover-up of the crimes committed on September 11,
WAS THERE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE ?
On the morning of September 11, 2001, the Dallas office of Weber
Shandwick, one of world’s largest public relations agencies,
mobilized a nationwide network of public relations professionals
to assist the American Airlines corporate communications department.
The details are reported on Weber Shandwick’s website:
"Within minutes of the first terrorist attack involving
American Airlines, Weber Shandwick put in motion a national strategic
support network, comprising more than 75 Weber Shandwick professionals,
to assist American Airlines during this unprecedented crisis situation.
Over the following week, the W.S. team worked around the clock
on site at the AA corporate headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas,
as well as in New York, Washington, D.C., Boston and Los Angeles,
providing strategic counsel and tactical support for both internal
and external communications. Additionally, the Dallas office of
W.S. was staffed 24 hours a day, monitoring breaking national
broadcast and online news. Communications specialists in crisis
management, consumer relations, internal communications, and government
affairs provided support....Externally, AA faced the difficult
challenge of controlling what was being said about the airline
by unauthorized spokespeople. Flight attendants, pilots –
and their unions - along with contracted security firms, airport
authorities, government agencies including the FBI, FAA and National
Transportation Safety Board, and local government agencies all
issued statements regarding the events. Eyewitnesses, stranded
passengers and post-September 11 travelers were also of concern.
All of these external groups has an impact on American Airlines’
communications strategy, requiring that the W.S. team ensure consistent
communications with all audiences."(7)
Timothy Doke was AA Vice President of Corporate Communications
at the time of the 9/11 events. He is now Vice President –
Corporate Communication at Freescale Semiconductor, Inc.
As a response to the present author’s inquiry, Tim Doke
responded by email on October 6, 2004:
"Dear Elias. There seems to be some confusion around the
way AA handled the crisis at the time of 9/11. We did not ‘outsource’
all our crisis communications to Weber Shandwick. We managed it
from beginning to end in-house. Because of our staffing resources
were limited and the air transportation system was shut down,
precluding us from getting our staff to key locations around the
country, we relied heavily on W.S. professionals to supplement
our PR resources at our headquarters in DFW and to provide on-site
personnel to support our people in Boston, LA and New York...Nothing
in [our crisis] plan contemplated having the FBI move into our
offices, declare an incident a criminal investigation and shut-off
any of the traditional external media communications we would
do in the case of a crash."
Tim Doke added, laconically: "Most of the people who were
involved in the crisis on 9/11 have left AA."
According to Sherri Green and Claire Murphy of PR Week USA of
November 11, 2001(5), who interviewed Tim Doke, he "immediately
called Ken Luce, president of Weber Shandwick Worldwide’s
Southwest US office. The agency sent more than 20 people to American’s
headquarters and to airports around the U.S. [according to the agency,
the figure was 75 professionals, see above – E.D.]..It seemed
like every media call raised a new issue". Doke also reportedly
said that "spokespeople subtly steered reporters away from
false rumors and leaked information. Employees from WSW and American’s
other agency, Burson-Marsteller, served as the firm’s eyes
and ears in the airports its staff couldn’t reach while planes
The above account raises various questions with far-reaching consequences:
(a) Weber Shandwick states on its website that it deployed 75
P/R professionals around the country in support of AA "within
minutes" of the crashes. The accuracy of this statement was
confirmed to a colleague of the present author by Weber Shandwick’s
Ken Luce on October 5th 2004. How could Tim Doke, let alone Ken
Luce of Weber Shandwick, know within minutes that AA aircraft
were involved in the attacks on the World Trade Center and the
Pentagon, when it is publicly claimed that neither the US President,
the US military and other security agencies, knew at the time
what was going on, let alone could know the identity of the crashed
aircraft? Is it plausible that a service agreement, detailing
the nature, scope and costs of Weber Shandwick’s P/R services
for American Airlines, could have been drafted, finalized and
negotiated within minutes of the attacks? Or were AA and Weber
Shandwick executives forewarned on the attacks, ready to act on
the spur of the moment? If so, by whom were they forewarned?
In an email of November 7, 2004 to the present author, Tim Doke
dismisses that AA or Weber Shandwick "had any premonition
of the events of 9/11. It was the furthest thing from our minds."
Regarding the promptness of Weber Shandwick’s reaction he
merely explained that "Weber Shandwick had people ready to
respond quickly to this event."
(b) What were the specific interests that prompted AA to engage
in a massive P/R efforts on the very day of the attacks? A hint
is given in the statement by Weber Shandwick that it was necessary
for AA to "ensure consistent communications with all audiences".
In his email of November 7, 2004, Tim Doke shed some light on
the term "consistent communications" by saying: "Lots
of people claimed to have knowledge or theories about what happened
that they shared with any reporter who would listen. It was important
for us to go ‘off the record’ with certain media who
were straying from the facts as we, at AA, uniquely knew them.
We did this to prevent inacurate reporting." However, in
his email he maintained that "employees who were in contact
with the terrorists on the ground were fully interviewed by the
FBI, but had no desire to speak to the media. Of course, they
could not talk to reporters anyway under the FBI's restrictions."
One may surmise that AA employees were strictly forbidden to talk
to media and the public about what they knew so that only "authorized"
individuals could describe the events in line with what the corporation
wanted the world to know. This required to "subtly steer[...]
reporters away from rumors and leaked information". AA was
apparently concerned, and seriously so, that some facts regarding
the events of 9/11 and AA’s relation to these events, would
reach the public.
PARTICIPATING IN THE COVER-UP?
As mentioned already in the previous section, part of the public
relations efforts carried out by Weber Shandwick, at the request
of American Airlines, was to "subtly steer[.,.] reporters away
from rumors and leaked information". What type of "leaked
information" was AA concerned with?
It is argued here that the information AA did not want to "leak"
to the public was the same information that AA refuses to reveal
to the families of the victims and to the public in general since
9/11. Such information includes:
(a) Names of ground personnel who saw off the passengers and
crew at the departure gate on 9/11 and could testify on what they
(b) Authentified copies of the flight manifests, which would
show the names of the alleged hijackers and of the passengers;
(c) Copies of boarding cards, which would show the names of
the alleged hijackers and of the passengers and confirm their
(d) Computer listing of the boarding times of individual passengers
(e) Positive evidence that the aircraft which left the airport
was indeed the aircraft which later crashed into the known target
(aircraft serial number, tail number, engine serial numbers, black
(f) Names and contacts of AA personnel who reportedly communicated
by cellphones with crew or passengers on the hijacked aircraft
and could publicly testify on these conversations.
The present author asked both American and United Airlines to
provide some of the above information. Both airlines declined to
provide the information and referred the author to the FBI for all
such data. The last attempt to obtain information from American
Airlines (a letter to AA spokesman Marty Heires of October 6, 2004)
did not elicit any response at all. Neither airline, however, justified
in its answer its refusal on a legal restraining order or on the
need to protect the privacy of the families of the victims or of
its personnel. The author has not come across any Justice Department
order, or any legal ruling, that prohibits airlines from releasing
the above information and airline personnel to communicate freely
with the media on matters relating to 9/11. However, Tim Doke, in
his email to the present author claimed that the FBI "limited
what we could say publicly through the media" and that "employees
who were in contact with the terrorists on the ground... could not
talk to reporters... under the FBI's restrictions."
A spokesperson of the FBI, asked why the agency has not publicized
the original flight manifests in support of its allegation against
19 named hijackers, did not maintain that the FBI or the airlines
were legally prohibited from disclosing the original flight manifest.
She simply referred the present author to the airlines for such
The airlines’ apparently uncoerced refusal to produce the
above information suggests that this refusal is prompted by their
interest to prevent their employees, the families of victims and
the public from knowing the full truth on the events of 9/11,
DID AA OFFICIALS POSITIVELY IDENTIFY THE CRASHED PLANES ?
In order to obtain insurance benefits, owners of a crashed plane
must positively identify the plane as theirs. Yet, in the case of
the reported crashes of the four planes on September 11, 2001, no
evidence could be found in the public domain that airline experts
positively identified the crashed planes from the planes’
wreckage. If such expertise did take place beyond public gaze, why
would American or United Airlines not announce such positive identification
on their website or in a press release? The Report by the Congressional
Inquiry Commission does not either, for its part, refer to any positive
forensic identification of the aircraft by the airlines or by public
According to the "official account", the aircrafts were
the weapons with which the passengers were killed. In a proper criminal
investigation, one of investigators’ first tasks is to identify
the owner of the murder weapon and find out how that weapon reached
the scene of the crime. Yet, no reference to such an investigation
could be found in the allegedly "comprehensive" report
by the Congressional Commission of Inquiry.
The lack of positive identification of the aircraft means that
the families of the dead or missing passengers cannot know with
certainty where and how their beloved ones actually died nor who
caused their deaths.
WHAT COULD THE AIRLINES BE COVERING UP ?
It might be argued that the airlines’ secrecy is prompted
by their fear of being sued for negligent security measures rather
than by charges of criminal complicity. If this were the case, what
would explain the refusal of the airlines to release the original
flight manifests or allow eyewitnesses to be questioned publicly?
It appears, therefore, that the airlines cooperate with US public
agencies in covering up the crime of 9/11.
Unless American and United Airlines show readiness to produce
the above evidence, duly authenticated, and cooperate fully with
the families of the victims and the general public to shed light
on the events of 9/11, they must be regarded as suspects in the
vast criminal conspiracy to commit a mass murder in America on September
(1) "We are hard at work bringing all the information
together--intelligence information, law enforcement information—and
I think in the near future we'll be able to put out a paper, a document,
that will describe quite clearly the evidence that we have linking
him to this attack," said Secretary of State Colin L. Powell.
Angeles Times, 24.9.2001.
(2) (1) http://www.9-11commission.gov/report/index.htm
(6) http://www.sherrigreen.com/American Airlines braces
(7) According to Gerard Holmgren’s report
dated Nov. 13, 2003 (http://members.surfeu.fi/11syyskuu/holmgren.htm
), and a display
of BTS database records of all American Airlines flights scheduled
on September 11, 2001 from Logan Airport, Boston (at ), no AA11
flight was scheduled from Logan on that day.
A BRITISH teacher lurched into
a War of the Worlds-style disaster when she
tried to motivate her pupils by telling them a meteor was about
to hit the Earth.
The teacher at the high school in Manchester, northwest England,
told about 250 pupils at St Matthew's Roman Catholic High School
she had bad news: a meteor would strike the Earth in 10 days, and
they should go home and say their final farewells.
After many of the 13 and 14-year-olds burst into tears, she swiftly
explained she was only trying to encourage them to "seize the
"Some of the children were 100 per cent convinced they were
going to die," the father of one pupil said.
"God only knows what this teacher thought she was doing."
In 1938, Orson Welles ignited panic among thousands of Americans
when his news broadcast adaptation of H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds
convinced many that the Martians were invading.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — A customer survived
a gunman's deadly rampage inside a Radio Shack store by dropping
to the ground and then prayed aloud as the moans of his victims
echoed around her, tapes of her call to 911 showed today.
Leellette D. Rutherford was inside the store buying a computer
mouse yesterday evening when Justin Cudar walked in and began firing
without warning, killing a customer and a clerk and severely wounding
another employee before turning the gun on himself.
A terrified Rutherford pleaded with the 911 operator to send help
as she prayed aloud. She grabbed the hand of one of the bloodied
clerks after he was hit in the face.
"Please God, there are people dying here," Rutherford,
55, said. "There's blood all over the place."
The tape of the dramatic emergency call was released as authorities
and families struggled to understand Cudar's motive.
Police said Cudar, 25, a psychology major at the University of
South Florida, may have undergone treatment for paranoia and was
being investigated in a road rage incident earlier in the day.
His mother last saw him several hours before the shooting when
he left their St. Petersburg home and told her he was "going
to do some target practice," police Sgt. Mike Puetz said.
There is no known connection between Cudar and the Radio Shack
store or any of the employees, police said. Cudar had purchased
the Glock .40-caliber handgun legally Nov. 5.
"It appears to be a random and senseless act at this time,''
police spokesman Bill Proffitt said.
Killed were customer Kenneth Powell, 23, and store clerk Joana
Cruz, 19. Another clerk, James Dolan, 30, was hospitalized in critical
condition Friday. Cudar shot himself to death; his body was found
in the store.
Puetz said Rutherford had dropped to the ground in the fetal position
when Cudar, who was standing behind her, started shooting. Rutherford
told reporters at her home that she doesn't know why he passed her
"Why me? Why didn't he shoot me?" she said. "I
would have given my life for the others."
Barbara Cudar did not answer her door Friday. Michelle Luciano,
a neighbour, said Justin Cudar never showed signs of trouble.
"He was a good kid," Luciano said. "It's just shocking."
Marianne Pasha, a spokesperson for the sheriff's office, said
deputies spoke with Cudar's mother after receiving a report earlier
in the day of a driver exchanging hostile glances with two people
in a pickup truck, then throwing a steering-wheel locking device
through the pickup's window. The frightened victims hid behind a
store and called for help, Pasha said.
"His mother said her son had anger-management issues,"
Pasha said Friday. "I am not sure anyone will know what set
In 2000, a police report said Cudar punched a student at a college
in an unprovoked incident, but he wasn't arrested. Earlier this
year, a woman complained that Cudar was harassing her by telephone;
police referred the matter to the telephone company.
MANILA : Three people have been killed and
1,000 others displaced as Typhoon Muifa struck the eastern Philippines.
One man drowned and an elderly man succumbed to hypothermia in
the island of Catanduanes, the first region to experience Muifa's
120 kilometer (74.4 mile) per hour winds, the civil defense office
Another man drowned off Bulan town in the Bicol peninsula near
Catanduanes, where 40 houses were destroyed or damaged.
A man was injured and more than 1,000 others were displaced in
Catanduanes and Bicol.
The civil defense office said power has been restored to these
areas, but that some roads and bridges remained closed due to landslides
Muifa hovered over the Philippine Sea just off the northeastern
town of Casiguran early Friday, the weather bureau said.
(Alaska) - No, it wasn't the furnace rumbling
or the cat jumping up on the bed.
Fairbanksans who guessed they were gently rocked from their sleep
by an earthquake early Wednesday morning guessed it right.
The Alaska Earthquake Information Center reported a minor earthquake
with preliminary magnitude of 3.8 at 2:29 a.m. Wednesday.
The earthquake was located at a depth of about 11 miles and was
centered roughly midway between Fairbanks and Manley Hot Springs.
The Information Center mapped the quake's location at about 43
miles west of Fairbanks and 44 miles east of the hot springs.
The rumbling was felt by residents in Fairbanks and surrounding
areas. No damage reports have been received, the center reported.
BERLIN - A storm accompanied by violent gusts
of wind, heavy snowfalls and chilling temperatures knifed into the
center of Europe after earlier causing major disruption in Scandinavia
Winds gusting at up to 180 kilometers (112
miles) an hour were recorded at Wendelstein in Bavaria. Fallen
trees disrupted traffic in several regions, including Stuttgart
in the southeast.
Heavy snow fell on Lower Saxony, obstructing traffic and cutting
of domestic electricity supplies. The snow was responsible for a
multi-vehicle pile up on the A3 highway near Westerwald, causing
damage estimated at 150,000 euros (196,000 dollars).
Police said a 49-year-old man was killed when his car hit a pitch
of black ice and skidded off the road in Saxony-Anhalt. Another
man died of exposure in the Sauerland.
A woman was killed in Slovakia in the Tatra mountains near the
border with Poland when the car she was driving was struck by a
falling tree, and a woman passenger was injured, police said.
Austrian authories said the driver of a small van was killed near
Vienna when a gust of wind blew his vehicle into the path of an
automobile coming from the opposite direction. The driver of the
other vehicle was reported grievously injured.
A worker was seriously injured when he was blown off scaffolding
at Styria in southern Austria, and a pedestrian was hit by a flying
tile in Salzburg.
The APA news agency said the high winds overturned
five heavy trucks, caused numerous electricity cuts and resulted
in blocked lines of traffic dozens of kilometers long.
In the Czech Republic, a 27-year-old man was crushed and killed
when the gable of his house collapsed near Brno.
Road and rail services were seriously affected and hundreds of
trees were uprooted.
The Czech-German border at Cinovec/Altenburg was closed for several
hours Friday due to heavy snowfalls, police said.
In Croatia one person was killed when high winds overturned his
camper. High winds caused widespread electricity outages.
Earlier, at least seven people including a six-month-old child
were killed in gales in Poland Thursday that widely disrupted road
traffic and left tens of thousands of homes without electricity.
The massive storm also swept across Scandinavia
on Thursday disrupting land, sea and air traffic.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- An olfactory
offense sent officials sniffing for the source of a stench that
wafted across Philadelphia.
A mysterious invisible cloud carried an odor that left sour faces
and perplexed officials in its wake Thursday.
Emergency dispatchers began receiving the first of hundreds of
911 calls about the strong smell shortly past 2 p.m., first from
the southern tip of South Philadelphia, then further north as the
scent drifted on the wind.
Transit officials, fearful of a gas leak, evacuated a subway line
in South Philadelphia for about 45 minutes.
Some people said it smelled like propane. Others said it smelled
more like sulfur.
Authorities collected air samples, phoned nearby refineries and
checked the pressure of natural gas lines, trying to determine if
there had been an industrial mishap.
"We don't know what it is. But we've gathered enough samples
to know that it's not toxic. It's just offensive," said mayoral
spokeswoman Barbara Grant.
A police spokesman said authorities were checking out theories
that the odor came from dust released as a substance was transferred
between two train cars, or that it may have originated at a refinery
in Paulsboro, N.J.
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -- A strong,
early morning earthquake Saturday jolted the Costa Rican capital,
where leaders of 21 nations were gathered for the Ibero-American
Local radio stations said there were scattered reports of collapsed
walls, shattered windows, toppled trees and landslide-blocked highways
from the quake, which hit at 2:07 a.m. local time.
Red Cross spokesman Luis Huertas said a 64-year-old woman in San
Jose died of a heart attack and that several people suffered minor
injuries. All the summit figures were reportedly unharmed.
The U.S. National Earthquake Information Center said the quake
had a magnitude of 6.2 and was centered 30 miles south-southwest
of San Jose.
Falling trees knocked out power to the area around Quepos and the
beach town of Jaco, said Rebeca Madrigal, spokeswoman for the National
Emergency Commission. Parts of the capital also briefly lost power.
The police station on the Pacific island of Damas reportedly collapsed.
Jorge Rojas, a security official at the hotel where the summit
is headquartered, said some of the leaders fled their rooms when
the quake hit. He said none had been harmed and that there was no
At another hotel nearby, some people sobbed with fear as they ran
from their rooms.
The king and queen of Spain and officials from 19 Latin American
nations were attending the summit, which formally opened Friday
night. Six heads of state had sent lower-ranking officials and some,
notably the president of Mexico, had reportedly left Friday night.
Swarms of large locusts landed on Saturday
evening near the village of Faran in the Arava region and the village
of Neot Hakikar south of the Dead Sea.
Agriculture Ministry workers have been scanning the area in order
to find the exact location of the swarms.
A fresh wave of relatively large locusts were spotted flying over
the southern town of Eilat earlier on Saturday. This was the second
wave of locusts to have hit the town in as many days.
The swarms came in from the north west and were seen at the outskirts
of a neighborhood. Agriculture Ministry officials believe more waves
could hit southern Israel before Saturday evening.
The ministry stated however that it wasn't clear whether the new
swarms of locusts would swoop down on Israel or carry on into Jordan.
The ministry said earlier on Saturday it was preparing to spray
insecticides in the event that more locusts are spotted in the region.
The ministry began spraying pesticides against locusts on Saturday
morning after swarms hit agricultural areas in the southern Negev
desert on Friday.
The locusts are not expected to advance further north, because
swarms in Egypt and Cyprus - countries the insects have already
invaded on their way north to Israel - have already been destroyed.
Five cropdusting planes began spraying Saturday morning against
locusts that have descended on agricultural areas in the Negev desert.
The planes sprayed the pesticides in riverbeds near Kadesh Barnea
on Israel's border with Egypt.
The Plant Protection and Inspection Services say thousands of locusts
have also hit Eilat and municipality workers were spraying the parks
in the city on Saturday morning. After the workers sprayed in the
city, there were no further reports of locusts spotted in Eilat.
"We are checking all the time and the planes are spraying
in areas where there is a large concentration of locusts,"
said an Agriculture Ministry official.
The substance used to destroy the locusts was authorized by the
ministry and the Plant Protection and Inspection Services have promised
they would use a diluted version of the insecticide, which won't
cause other kinds of animals to be poisoned, should they consume
the dead locusts.
Locusts were first spotted Friday afternoon in the southern neighborhoods
of Eilat and in the hotel district of the city. Many residents of
Eilat called the municipality's hotline to report the arrival of
The younger locusts cause a relatively limited amount of damage,
usually attacking gardens or vegetable patches. But one swarm, which
was spotted near kibbutz Eilot, concerned the members of the kibbutz,
since crops including vegetables and melons could be compromised,
some of which have already ripened and are ready for harvest.
Israeli officials and their counterparts in the region have been
monitoring the locusts' movement for weeks. Earlier this month,
a few individual locusts were spotted along the coastal plain and
in communities including Palmahim, Tel Aviv and Karmiel.
The Agriculture Ministry received a request from its Palestinian
counterpart to coordinate steps aimed at eliminating the locusts
if they do arrive in the area.
GIROUXVILLE - A loud humming noise breaks
the silence of night, causing Ron Cloutier's dogs to bark crazily,
and announces the arrival of Unidentified Flying Objects in the
The skin-tingling X-Files-like scene has haunted Cloutier over
the last five months, as he is awakened to watch strange lights
and shapes cutting through the darkness above his home.
The appearance of the unexplained objects has deeply shaken the
41-year-old oilfield trucker.
"It's really disturbing to witness something like this and
not know what it is," he said. "It's bothering enough
to see this once, but it happens all the time now... and it gives
me the creeps."
In hopes of having the objects identified, Cloutier has been carefully
recording their appearance with precise times and dates through
film, photos and his notebook since they began appearing in mid-July.
Thus far he has received no answers as to what they may be.
The longtime UFO nonbeliever says he has seen up to four objects
in the sky at one time, appearing from the north, and moving eastward
until they all disappear.
Approximately 150 kilometres southwest of Cloutier's home, Grande
Prairie resident Beverly Kettner admits she too has witnessed a
UFO-like object move erratically through the night's sky on at least
"Over the last couple of months I've watched what first looked
to be a star dart across the sky and stop dead in its tracks, start
up again, then stop and then finally disappear," said Kettner.
"It wasn't a plane, satellite or shooting star... it didn't
appear to be anything from this world."
Especially unsettling for Kettner is that her four-year old daughter
has recently discussed late-night conversations with alien-like
people. She says the girl describes the stereotypical short, grey
large-headed alien without having ever seen them on television or
read about them in storybooks.
The sightings reported by Cloutier and Kettner are part of a record
number of Albertans who have reported possible UFO activity in 2004.
UFOlogy Research of Manitoba numbers show Alberta has already
broken last year's UFO sighting record of 76 with more than a month
left in the year.
Canadian UFO researcher Brian Vike says a growing social acceptance
to the unexplained has made Albertans more willing to report potential
"The acceptance of UFOs into popular culture, increased media
attention, and the discovery of new planets in the galaxy have all
helped convince people it's OK to come forward with unexplainable
sightings," said Vike, who from his home in Houston, B.C.,
maintains a website tracking Canadian UFO sightings.
Vike points out Albertans have reported seeing triangular, round,
square and glowing flying objects, an unusual beam of light enveloping
an unidentified figure and claims of missing and stopped time so
far this year. Those reports come from nearly every section of the
province including metropolitan Edmonton and Calgary.
Former High Prairie resident and UFOlogist Rick MacDonald points
to a 2001 poll by Leger Marketing suggesting 40.7 per cent of Alberta
residents believe in aliens - the highest of any province - as an
example that Albertans are starting to believe.
"More people then ever before are looking at the existence
of UFOs and aliens as a real possibility," said MacDonald,
whose Disclosure Project group claims Canadian and American governments
already know of alien existence.
"After watching UFO sightings on TV and reading sighting
reports from hundreds of Albertans on the Internet, disbelief is
The increased sightings and growing acceptance of UFOs are both
positive steps towards finally unveiling proof of extraterrestrial
life, says Alberta UFO Study Group member Jim Moroney.
"There is now enough solid evidence from reputable people
in Alberta and across the globe to support the idea we are being
visited," said Moroney, who spent the last 18 years investigating
Alberta UFO sightings.
"It is now just a matter of time now before we'll be able
to prove the existence of UFOs."
ORLANDO, Fla. -- A bright streak of light
that some said turned blue and included sparks startled some Central
Floridians early Friday morning.
Hundreds of callers to Local 6 and a local Orlando radio talk
show said the light lasted about 30 seconds and was so bright that
they had to look away.
"They called up a little before 6 a.m. this morning and it
was kind of an alarmed voice and they saw a blue light near the
airport with sparks in the sky," radio morning show host Scott
McKenzie said. "As soon as the first call came through, then
the phones lit up like a Christmas tree with people backing up the
same story about how bright it was."
The light may have been caused by the annual Leonid meteor shower,
which peaked Friday morning.
"This could have been a meteorite and there was some talk
that their might have been a satellite going back through earth's
atmosphere," Local 6 meteorologist Reynolds Wolf said. "Right
now, we are thinking maybe a meteorite."
"It was bright enough to light up the patio at Florida Today,"
said employee Tom Deer, who is a former Air Force meteorologist.
Deer said at first he thought it was an explosion. "It was
a bright streak of white light," said. "The glow lasted
for about 30 seconds."
Officials at Patrick Air Force Base and the National Weather Service
office in Melbourne had no firm reports on what caused the event.
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