As Mind Control
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and extensive previously unpublished details, at long last, Laura Knight-Jadczyk's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
Every year Americans go through
the thoughtless rituals of Thanksgiving Day, without actually knowing
anything about the Pilgrims, the Mayflower Compact, or the society
the Puritans established in modern day Massachusetts. In an ironic
twist of fate, millions of Americans sit down to a turkey feast,
in order to celebrate the religious freedom of early settlers who
came to the New World precisely for the purpose of creating a Zion
in the Wilderness, a utopian place where absolutely NO religious
freedom would be allowed.
Several years before the Mayflower arrived with the first boat-load
of illegal immigrants, Puritan separatists fled England for the
Netherlands, soon deciding to relocate altogether in the Americas.
However, these Puritans did not so much seek freedom, as much as
they sought to escape what they thought was a permissive environment,
fostered by the Church of England. The migration of the Pilgrims
in 1620 was the beginning of a larger migration of Europeans to
the New World. The increasing interest in the New World as a source
of easily exploitable wealth enabled the Pilgrims to obtain financing
through the assistance of a group of investors called the London
Adventurers. The agreement was that the Adventurers would put up
the money, and the settlers would perform the labor, and they would
divide the profits equally. Needless to say, this venture -- while
historic -- was not profitable. The original decision had been to
land within the domain of the Virginia charter, but as a result
of bad weather, they wound up in what is today Massachusetts. The
Mayflower Compact, the document that was signed by those first settlers,
was not intended to imply that the settlers were agreeing upon any
new or radical democratic system of government. It was actually
a modified form of customary church covenant to meet a temporary
crisis in an unfamiliar situation. This first European state in
the New World, at Plymouth, was a theocratic dictatorship. It was
a throwback to the 1200s, with a pillory and public stockade for
those who gave in to temptation, and engaged in any disallowed activity.
The Mayflower Compact guaranteed that the colony would remain under
the iron control of the Pilgrim Fathers for the first 40 years of
After Plymouth was settled, other people started to settle in the
area around Boston Harbor. A small fishing company tried to establish
a foothold on Cape Ann, which was the forerunner of a much more
significant colonizing movement than had as yet taken place in north
America. In Europe, the social scene was restless, from religious,
political and economic causes. The Puritans came to dominate New
England, and they represented a movement of Christians within the
Anglican Church who felt that a more thorough reformation was necessary
than that provided for by the Elizabethan religious settlement.
The term "puritan" originated as an epithet of contempt,
as a pejorative. Some of the Puritans did not like the idea of waiting
for the Church of England to see the light, and reform itself, so
they struck out on their own. This was the main distinction between
the Plymouth Puritans, and the Massachusetts Bay Colony Puritans:
Plymouth being dominated by a Separatist Puritan sect, and Massachusetts
being dominated by a Non-separatist sect.
Massachusetts Bay was the strongest colony in New England, and
it had been founded in 1629, by a charter granted to, "The
Governor and Company of the Massachusetts Bay in New England."
It was clear that the intention of the Crown had been to charter
an ordinary stockholder-type commercial venture, but through shrewd
and illegal maneuvers, the benefactors of the charter transferred
the management and the charter itself to the New World, to Massachusetts
itself. This not only made it possible for the Company to exert
local control over the chartered area and its residents, but it
became the foundation for the unwarranted assumption that a mere
charter for a commercial concern was actually a grant of plenipotentiary
powers of government, with an undefinable dependence upon the legitimate
Government of the Mother Country. The settlers of Massachusetts
came to America to have freedom to worship for themselves, but they
had no intention of creating a refuge for others to look to as a
sanctuary for democratic freedom. In fact, the leaders of Massachusetts
fought religious liberty with every weapon at their disposal. Such
leaders as Winthrop, Dudley, Endecott, and the Rev. John Cotton,
were strongly opposed to democracy, were fanatical in their zealousness
to prevent any independence in religious views, and had NO trust
in the people at large. Of course, like Hitler's totalitarian regime,
there developed an underground resistance, which became known when
individuals were caught breaking the regime's "rules."
The test of any culture's level of civilization is how it treats
its criminals. "Criminals" are people who have broken
laws, but government's have been known to stretch this a bit, when
they shorten the trial process, or corrupt the charging process,
by which an individual is accused of lawlessness. The mark of an
unjust state is when it will charge people with wrongdoing without
going through the customary process of proving a case in court,
under the principles of law. This is the mark of a totalitarian
state, as that which existed under Adolf Hitler in Germany, or Mussolini
in Italy, and the Puritans in Massachusetts. The first to be banished
from the "Zion in the Wilderness", was Roger Williams,
who founded Rhode Island in 1636. Another religious dispute resulted
in the banishment of Anne Hutchinson. The leaders of the colony
were seriously criticized in England for their repressive measures,
which continued for another generation until they were halted by
the intervention of royal authority.
The Puritans believed that they were the "select," and
they intended to establish their ideal Christian paradise in the
New World, "a city set on a hill," as an example to the
rest of the world of "righteousness." In Massachusetts
they established a Bible based theocracy, in which only church members
had any political rights. Church membership, on the other hand,
was dependent upon the individual being certified as "regenerate,"
or a child of a "regenerate" who "own(s) the covenant."
Religious uniformity was fanatically enforced, dissenters being
warned that they had the "right" to stay away, or to take
up land of their own outside the boundaries of Massachusetts, in
an early version of the "Get out of Dodge at Noon," mentality.
The clergy was the driving force in the political structure of the
Puritan theocracy, but the system worked against itself, as all
fascist systems ultimately do. The banishment of Roger Williams,
and his founding of Providence, led to the development of Providence
as a safe harbor for dissidents escaping the regimented Orwellian
state of the Massachusetts Bay colony. The succeeding generation
witnessed a decline of religious zeal, and when the clergy tried
to whip it up again, in the dying gasp of the theocracy to keep
a death-grip on political power, by interpreting recurring scandals
and misfortunes as signs of divine wrath against a sinning public,
the public rejected it. The replacement of the original commercial
charter with a genuine crown charter in 1691, put to rest for the
time, the aspirations of the clergy to rule. Of course, that harshness
of rule, narrow-mindedness and self-satisfaction which was characteristic
of Massachusetts which was not attributable to the Puritan mindset,
was motivated by the desire for profit.
The mid-1600's saw a great wave of immigration from Europe into
north America, and areas like Massachusetts began to expand, as
new illegal European immigrants invaded the defenseless lands of
the native Americans. This brought on troubles with the native Americans,
who rightfully felt wronged by the pioneers who answered questions
of right with a bullet between the eyes. In 1637, a war with the
Pequots practically annihilated that tribe. (In the same year, a
synod of the clergy held in Boston, listed 82 blasphemous, erroneous
or unsafe opinions held by people in the colony).
In 1644, the good Christian folk of Massachusetts showed what they
mean't by Christian love, when they adopted laws against the Baptists,
who were treated with genuine cruelty. The Quakers were also persecuted
mercilessly, four being murdered; and many others whipped, imprisoned,
branded or banished. At the time of the English Civil War and the
Regicide, Massachusetts pretty much became a law unto itself, its
leaders arrogating to themselves almost absolute power. For the
next 30 years, London pretty much had its hands full with the Cromwellian
regime, and a European war, and Massachusetts was able to avoid
any formal sanctions through basically evasive and delaying tactics.
However, the colonists were pursuing a grasping land policy which
was causing the native American Indians increasing degrees of desperation,
as the encroaching White Man deliberately penned them in. One of
the most powerful driving forces among the white people was pure
greed, something that is justified today with the capitalist ideological-moral
that if it makes money, it is good.
King Philip's War was only one in a long string of wars between
European settlers and native Americans, and while the white people
won the war, they lost one in every 16 males of military age due
to the heavy fighting. This War, however, brought Massachusetts
to the Crown's attention, which, as a result of the colonial leader's
evasive tactics, suspended its charter in 1684, thereby freeing
the residents from the unlawful arrangements the clergy had imposed
upon them. The Puritans really had no friends anywhere, and both
Plymouth Colony and Massachusetts Bay Colony ceased to exist, with
no one in London to defend them, to be replaced with a new charter
in 1691, which incorporated Plymouth into Massachusetts, along with
Maine, under a new regime of professionals, who were sent out from
London. The English king of America put the theocracy to an end,
and provided for a stable colonial administration, showing that
the Crown is one of the most progressive and vital institutions
of government known to mankind.
It is a serious mistake to practice holidays based on a false history.
The young people find out on their own that they are involved in
a lie, and it makes them rage with fury and contempt. To watch a
whole society practice empty rituals that celebrate horrible people,
while deceiving ourselves into justifying what those horrible people
did, is an abomination. It should surprise no one that after raising
children honoring the memory of the Pilgrim fathers, that they grow
up to hate freedom as much as the Forefathers did. It should surprise
no one that a society that worships the Pilgrims -- who ruthlessly
scalped the Indians (teaching them how to do it), who indiscriminately
torched Indian villages, and murdered their women, children and
elders in the precursors of total war, and holocaust -- should produce
children who grow up to join street gangs, and who seek the experience
of murdering other human beings for kicks.
It is also true that just because some fascists were involved in
the origins of America, it does not mean that America is a captive
legacy. The flag, the symbols of national identity, they go deeper
than the memory of a few old cronies, and their corrupt and mean-spirited
domination. Indeed, Americans can salvage the Day of Thanksgiving,
as a day of personal atonement. A day when the individual looks
within, and takes stock of his or her actions, to warrant to one's
own self that one is true to one's own convictions. Ancient honor
looks within. We must summon courage, and be bold, and conceive
of something that we can do in service to the nation. It is empty
pomposity to merely celebrate some ancient myth; the very falsity
of the myth, and its very exaggeration of the motives of the protaginists,
making it almost the equal of blasphemy. Far better that Americans
celebrate the good things in America, such as the ancient customs
that guarantee them freedom, despite eras of institutional domination,
which must be checked by that ancient and venerable institution,
the crown of law.
The Pilgrims were FASCISTS
The Home Office
is suspected of being behind discredited media reports on the eve
of the Queen's Speech that an al-Qa'ida plot to fly planes into
London skyscrapers had been foiled.
Supporters of David Blunkett were accused of trying
to exploit public fears in an attempt to help the Government introduce
The Daily Mail and ITV News reported that Islamic extremists were
caught preparing to attack the financial centre of Canary Wharf,
or possibly Heathrow.
The two journalists responsible said they had been told about the
story by a "senior source" several days ago. The Mail
said the "security services" - MI5 and MI6 - had prevented
the planned attack.
Anti-terrorism sources denied the claim. One said:
"To say we were surprised at the report is an understatement
- this is the first we have heard of a plot like this." Another
said: "No one has been charged for this so- called plot which
suggests it never happened."
The source added that the fact that the
story of the 11 September-style plan came from lobby correspondents,
rather than security or crime specialists, "gives you a good
clue to where they got their information". The
journalists behind the story, Benedict Brogan, the Mail's
Whitehall editor, and Nick Robinson, the political editor of ITV
News, are known to have joint lunches with
politicians and officials.
Details of the story, which they agreed to run at the same time,
are believed to have been provided by a Home Office source several
Despite having the information for several days,
and possibly longer than a week, the newspaper and television programme
held the stories until just before the Queen's Speech, which contained
Bills to introduce an ID card, an FBI-style organised crime agency
and other anti-terrorist measures.
Barry Hugill, a spokesman for Liberty, the civil liberties organisation,
said: "The timing and contents of this
story look very, very suspicious indeed."
He added: "Ten days ago Mr Blunkett announced that the intelligence
services had thwarted a major al-Qa'ida plot, then added that that
they might not be able to convict the people involved. Now we discover
that al-Qa'ida are going to crash an aeroplane into Canary Wharf
- the whole thing appears to be very cynical
Patrick Mercer, the Conservative spokesman on homeland security,
added: "The Home Secretary is getting
his markers down now so that when the inevitable happens he can
say, 'Well I warned you, didn't I?' "
Julian Borger reports on the
shadow rightwing intelligence network set up in Washington to second-guess
the CIA and deliver a justification for toppling Saddam Hussein
As the CIA director, George Tenet, arrived at the Senate yesterday
to give secret testimony on the Niger uranium affair, it was becoming
increasingly clear in Washington that the scandal was only a small,
well-documented symptom of a complete breakdown in US intelligence
that helped steer America into war.
It represents the Bush administration's second catastrophic intelligence
failure. But the CIA and FBI's inability to prevent the September
11 attacks was largely due to internal institutional weaknesses.
This time the implications are far more damaging for the White
House, which stands accused of politicising and contaminating its
own source of intelligence.
According to former Bush officials, all defence and intelligence
sources, senior administration figures created a shadow agency of
Pentagon analysts staffed mainly by ideological amateurs to compete
with the CIA and its military counterpart, the Defence Intelligence
The agency, called the Office of Special Plans (OSP), was set up
by the defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, to second-guess CIA information
and operated under the patronage of hardline conservatives in the
top rungs of the administration, the Pentagon and at the White House,
including Vice-President Dick Cheney.
The ideologically driven network functioned
like a shadow government, much of it off the official payroll and
beyond congressional oversight. But it proved powerful enough
to prevail in a struggle with the State Department and the CIA by
establishing a justification for war.
Mr Tenet has officially taken responsibility for the president's
unsubstantiated claim in January that Saddam Hussein's regime had
been trying to buy uranium in Africa, but he also said his
agency was under pressure to justify a war that the administration
had already decided on.
How much Mr Tenet reveals of where that pressure was coming from
could have lasting political fallout for Mr Bush and his re-election
prospects, which only a few weeks ago seemed impregnable. As more
Americans die in Iraq and the reasons for the war are revealed,
his victory in 2004 no longer looks like a foregone conclusion.
The White House counter-attacked yesterday when new chief spokesman,
Scott McClellan, accused critics of "politicising the war"
and trying to "rewrite history". But the Democratic leadership
kept up its questions over the White House role.
The president's most trusted adviser, Mr Cheney, was at the shadow
network's sharp end. He made several trips to the CIA in Langley,
Virginia, to demand a more "forward-leaning" interpretation
of the threat posed by Saddam. When he was not there to make his
influence felt, his chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby,
was. Such hands-on involvement in the processing of intelligence
data was unprecedented for a vice-president in recent times, and
it put pressure on CIA officials to come up with the appropriate
Another frequent visitor was Newt Gingrich, the former Republican
party leader who resurfaced after September 11 as a Pentagon "consultant"
and a member of its unpaid defence advisory board, with influence
far beyond his official title.
An intelligence official confirmed Mr Gingrich made "a couple
of visits" but said there was nothing unusual about that.
Rick Tyler, Mr Gingrich's spokesman, said: "If he was at the
CIA he was there to listen and learn, not to persuade or influence."
Mr Gingrich visited Langley three times before the war, and according
to accounts, the political veteran sought to browbeat analysts into
toughening up their assessments of Saddam's menace.
Mr Gingrich gained access to the CIA headquarters and was listened
to because he was seen as a personal emissary of the Pentagon and,
in particular, of the OSP.
In the days after September 11, Mr Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul
Wolfowitz, mounted an attempt to include Iraq in the war against
terror. When the established agencies came up with nothing concrete
to link Iraq and al-Qaida, the OSP was given the task of looking
William Luti, a former navy officer and ex-aide to Mr Cheney, runs
the day-to-day operations, answering to Douglas Feith, a defence
undersecretary and a former Reagan official.
The OSP had access to a huge amount of raw intelligence. It came
in part from "report officers" in the CIA's directorate
of operations whose job is to sift through reports from agents around
the world, filtering out the unsubstantiated and the incredible.
Under pressure from the hawks such as Mr Cheney and Mr Gingrich,
those officers became reluctant to discard anything, no matter how
far-fetched. The OSP also sucked in countless tips from the Iraqi
National Congress and other opposition groups, which were viewed
with far more scepticism by the CIA and the state department.
There was a mountain of documentation to look through and not much
time. The administration wanted to use the momentum gained in Afghanistan
to deal with Iraq once and for all. The OSP itself had less than
10 full-time staff, so to help deal with the load, the office hired
scores of temporary "consultants". They included lawyers,
congressional staffers, and policy wonks from the numerous rightwing
thinktanks in Washington. Few had experience in intelligence.
"Most of the people they had in that office
were off the books, on personal services contracts. At one time,
there were over 100 of them," said an intelligence source.
The contracts allow a department to hire individuals, without specifying
a job description.
As John Pike, a defence analyst at the thinktank GlobalSecurity.org,
put it, the contracts "are basically a way they could pack
the room with their little friends".
"They surveyed data and picked out what they liked,"
said Gregory Thielmann, a senior official in the state department's
intelligence bureau until his retirement in September. "The
whole thing was bizarre. The secretary of defence had this huge
defence intelligence agency, and he went around it."
In fact, the OSP's activities were a complete mystery to the DIA
and the Pentagon.
"The iceberg analogy is a good one," said a senior officer
who left the Pentagon during the planning of the Iraq war. "No
one from the military staff heard, saw or discussed anything with
The civilian agencies had the same impression of the OSP sleuths.
"They were a pretty shadowy presence," Mr Thielmann said.
"Normally when you compile an intelligence document, all the
agencies get together to discuss it. The OSP was never present at
any of the meetings I attended."
Democratic congressman David Obey, who is investigating
the OSP, said: "That office was charged with collecting, vetting
and disseminating intelligence completely outside of the normal
intelligence apparatus. In fact, it appears that information collected
by this office was in some instances not even shared with established
intelligence agencies and in numerous instances was passed on to
the national security council and the president without having been
vetted with anyone other than political appointees."
The OSP was an open and largely unfiltered conduit to the White
House not only for the Iraqi opposition. It
also forged close ties to a parallel, ad hoc intelligence operation
inside Ariel Sharon's office in Israel specifically to bypass Mossad
and provide the Bush administration with more alarmist reports on
Saddam's Iraq than Mossad was prepared to authorise.
"None of the Israelis who came were cleared
into the Pentagon through normal channels," said one source
familiar with the visits. Instead, they were waved in on Mr Feith's
authority without having to fill in the usual forms.
The exchange of information continued a long-standing
relationship Mr Feith and other Washington neo-conservatives had
with Israel's Likud party.
In 1996, he
and Richard Perle - now an influential Pentagon figure -
served as advisers to the then Likud leader, Binyamin Netanyahu.
In a policy paper they wrote, entitled A Clean Break: A New Strategy
for Securing the Realm, the two advisers said
that Saddam would have to be destroyed, and Syria, Lebanon, Saudi
Arabia, and Iran would have to be overthrown or destabilised, for
Israel to be truly safe.
The Israeli influence was revealed most clearly
by a story floated by unnamed senior US officials in the American
press, suggesting the reason that no banned weapons had been found
in Iraq was that they had been smuggled into Syria. Intelligence
sources say that the story came from the office of the Israeli prime
The OSP absorbed this heady brew of raw intelligence, rumour and
plain disinformation and made it a "product", a prodigious
stream of reports with a guaranteed readership in the White House.
The primary customers were Mr Cheney, Mr Libby and their closest
ideological ally on the national security council, Stephen Hadley,
Condoleezza Rice's deputy.
In turn, they leaked some of the claims to the press, and used
others as a stick with which to beat the CIA and the state department
analysts, demanding they investigate the OSP leads.
The big question looming over Congress as Mr Tenet walked into
his closed-door session yesterday was whether this shadow intelligence
operation would survive national scrutiny and who would pay the
price for allowing it to help steer the country into war.
A former senior CIA official insisted yesterday that Mr Feith,
at least, was "finished" - but that may be wishful thinking
by a rival organisation.
As he prepares for re-election, Mr Bush may opt to tough it out,
rather than acknowledge the severity of the problem by firing loyalists.
But in that case, it will inevitably be harder to re-establish confidence
in the intelligence on which the White House is basing its decisions,
and the world's sole superpower risks stumbling onwards half-blind,
unable to distinguish real threats from phantoms.
Bushies Gear Up for Invading Iran
NEW YORK--You've heard this song before. There's this country, see,
and they hate America. They'd nuke us if they had the chance, you
bet they would. Damn Muslim religious fanatics! Guess what? They
have weapons of mass destruction! Either that or their scientists
are about to develop them. Whatever--we can't let that happen. We've
gotta hit them before they hit us! What's that? Of course we're
sure! Our intelligence says so. Huh?
No. We can't show you the proof. We'll say this much...a little
bird told us. A little exile bird that wants to run the country
after we overthrow the current regime. They wouldn't lie, and neither
would we. And while we're at it, can we borrow your son for the
next few years?
Colin Powell, disgraced by his 2003 fictional anthrax speech at
the U.N., is closing his run as Bush's poodle-in-chief with a bravura
repeat performance. His last big PR project: conning us into war
The Administration's sales pitch for "Attack on the Ayatollahs"
reads a lot like the one for "So Long, Saddam." There's
a supposed "grave and gathering threat"--a nuclear-capable,
America-hating Iran. Even as presented, the intel is sketchy. Iran,
Powell says, has "been actively working on delivery systems"--missiles
that could carry nukes. During the Cuban missile crisis, JFK went
on television to show us the satellite photos. Powell thinks we
should believe him just because. "I have seen intelligence
which would corroborate what this dissident group is saying,"
says the outgoing Secretary of Rationalization. Not that there's
much there there: "I'm talking about information that says
that they not only had these missiles, but I'm aware of information
that suggests they were working hard as to how to put the two [missiles
and nuclear weapons] together." Bombs haven't even started
falling on Tehran and the WMDs have already become WMD-related programs.
Allegations of widespread abuse by US forces
in Fallujah, including the killing of unarmed civilians and the
targeting of a hospital in an attack, have been made by people who
have escaped from the city.
They said, in interviews with The Independent, that
as well as deaths from bombs and artillery shells, a large number
of people including children were killed by American snipers.
US forces refused repeated calls for medical aid for injured civilians,
Some of the killings took place in the build-up to the assault
on the rebel stronghold, and at least in one case - that of the
death of a family of seven, including a three-month
baby - the American authorities have admitted responsibility
and offered compensation.
The refugees from Fallujah describe a situation of extreme violence
in which remaining civilians in the city, who have been told by
the Americans to leave, appeared to have been seen as complicit
in the insurgency. Men of military age were particularly vulnerable.
But there are accounts of children as young as four, and women and
old men being killed.
The American authorities have accused militant
sympathisers of spreading disinformation, and have also claimed
that people in Fallujah have exaggerated the number of casualties
and the level of damage in the air campaign that preceded the assault.
The US military, which is inquiring into last week's shooting
of an injured Iraqi fighter in Fallujah by a US marine, has said
that any claims of abuse will be investigated. They also maintain
that the dead and injured civilians may have been victims of insurgents.
The claims of abuse and killings, from
different sources, appear, however, to follow a consistent pattern.
Dr Ali Abbas, who arrived in Baghdad from Fallujah four days ago,
worked at a clinic in the city which was bombed by the Americans.
He said that at least five patients were killed.
The doctor said that the attack took place despite assurances
from American officers that they were aware of its location and
would ensure that it was spared military action.
Dr Abbas, 28, said: "We had five people under treatment and
they were killed. We do not know why the clinic was hit. Our colleagues
from the Fallujah General Hospital, which was further out in the
city, had talked to the Americans and had told us that they would
avoid attacking us.
"Afterwards myself and other members of staff went from house
to house when we could to help people who had been hurt. Many of
them died in front of us because we did not have the medicine or
the facilities to carry out operations. We contacted the doctors
at the Fallujah hospital and said how bad the situation was. We
wanted them to evacuate the more badly injured and send drugs and
more doctors. They tried to do that, but they said the Americans
"One of things we noticed the most
were the numbers of people killed by American snipers. They were
not just men but women and some children as well. The youngest one
I saw was a four-year-old boy. Almost
all these people had been shot in the head, chest or neck."
The family of Aziz Radhi Tellaib were killed before the battle
for Fallujah began. He had been driving them to Ramadi to visit
relations when the car was hit by fire from an American Humvee and
careered into a tributary of the Euphrates.
Mr Tellaib freed himself but could not save the rest of the family.
Those who died included Mr Tellaib's wife Ahlam, 26; his sons Omar,
seven, and Barat, three, and his daughter Zainab. Also killed were
his niece Rokyab, 26, her three-year-old son Fadhi, and three-month-old
Mr Tellaib, 33, a merchant, said: "We were stopped, in a
line of cars, by some Humvees which had overtaken us. One soldier
waved us forward, but as I drove up there was firing from another
Humvee. I was shot in the side of the head,
and my wife and elder son were shot in the chest. I think they must
have died then. There was blood all over my eyes. I lost control
of the car which fell into the river. I managed to get out, and
then tried to get the others out, but I could not and the car sank.
"The Americans told the police that it was
all a mistake, and I could get compensation. But what about my family?
My life has gone. They might as well have killed me as well."
Rahim Abdullah, 46, a teacher, said that anyone in the street
was regarded by the Americans as the enemy. "I was trying to
get to my uncle's house, waving a piece of white cloth as we had
been advised when they started shooting at me. I saw two men being
shot. They were just ordinary people. The
only way to stay alive was to stay inside and hope your house did
not get hit by a shell."
Nearly Double What It Was Before Invasion
BAGHDAD -- Acute malnutrition among young children in Iraq has
nearly doubled since the United States led an invasion of the country
20 months ago, according to surveys by the United Nations, aid agencies
and the interim Iraqi government.
After the rate of acute malnutrition among children younger than
5 steadily declined to 4 percent two years ago, it shot up to 7.7
percent this year, according to a study conducted by Iraq's Health
Ministry in cooperation with Norway's Institute for Applied International
Studies and the U.N. Development Program. The new figure translates
to roughly 400,000 Iraqi children suffering from "wasting,"
a condition characterized by chronic diarrhea and dangerous deficiencies
"These figures clearly indicate the downward trend,"
said Alexander Malyavin, a child health specialist with the UNICEF
mission to Iraq.
The surveys suggest the silent human cost being paid across a country
convulsed by instability and mismanagement. While attacks by insurgents
have grown more violent and more frequent, deteriorating basic services
take lives that many Iraqis said they had expected to improve under
Iraq's child malnutrition rate now roughly equals
that of Burundi, a central African nation torn by more than a decade
of war. It is far higher than rates in Uganda and Haiti.
"The people are astonished," said Khalil M. Mehdi, who
directs the Nutrition Research Institute at the Health Ministry.
The institute has been involved with nutrition surveys for more
than a decade; the latest one was conducted in April and May but
has not been publicly released.
Mehdi and other analysts attributed the increase in malnutrition
to dirty water and to unreliable supplies of the electricity needed
to make it safe by boiling. In poorer areas, where people rely on
kerosene to fuel their stoves, high prices and an economy crippled
by unemployment aggravate poor health.
"Things have been worse for me since the war," said Kasim
Said, a day laborer who was at Baghdad's main children's hospital
to visit his ailing year-old son, Abdullah. The child, lying on
a pillow with a Winnie the Pooh washcloth to keep the flies off
his head, weighs just 11 pounds.
"During the previous regime, I used to work on the government
projects. Now there are no projects," his father said.
When he finds work, he added, he can bring home $10 to $14 a day.
If his wife is fortunate enough to find a can of Isomil, the nutritional
supplement that doctors recommend, she pays $7 for it.
"But the lady in the next bed said she just paid $10,"
said Suad Ahmed, who sat cross-legged on a bed in the same ward,
trying to console her skeletal 4-month-old
granddaughter, Hiba, who suffers from chronic diarrhea.
Iraqi health officials like to surprise visitors
by pointing out that the nutrition issue facing young Iraqis a generation
ago was obesity. Malnutrition, they say, appeared in the early 1990s
with U.N. trade sanctions championed by Washington to punish the
government led by President Saddam Hussein for invading Kuwait in
International aid efforts and the U.N. oil-for-food program helped
reduce the ruinous impact of sanctions, and the rate of acute malnutrition
among the youngest Iraqis gradually dropped from a peak of 11 percent
in 1996 to 4 percent in 2002. But the invasion in March 2003 and
the widespread looting in its aftermath severely damaged the basic
structures of governance in Iraq, and persistent violence across
the country slowed the pace of reconstruction almost to a halt.
In its most recent assessment of five sectors of Iraq's reconstruction,
the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington
research group, said health care was worsening at the quickest pace.
"Believe me, we thought a magic thing would happen" with
the fall of Hussein and the start of the U.S.-led occupation, said
an administrator at Baghdad's Central Teaching Hospital for Pediatrics.
"So we're surprised that nothing has been done. And
people talk now about how the days of Saddam were very nice,"
the official said.
The administrator, who would not give his full name for publication,
cited security concerns faced by Iraqi doctors, who are widely perceived
as rich and well-connected and thus easy targets for thieves, extortionists
and the merely envious or vengeful. So many have been assassinated,
he said, that the Health Ministry recently mailed out offers to
expedite weapon permits for doctors.
Violence has also driven away international aid
agencies that brought expertise to Iraq following the U.S. invasion.
Since a truck bombing at the U.N. headquarters in Baghdad killed
more than 20 people last year, U.N. programs for Iraq have operated
from neighboring Jordan. Doctors Without Borders, a group known
for its high tolerance for risk and one of several that helped revive
Iraq's Health Ministry in the weeks after the invasion, evacuated
CARE International closed down in October after the director of
its large Iraq operation, Margaret Hassan, was kidnapped. She is
now presumed to be dead. The huge Atlanta-based charity had remained
active in Iraq through three wars, providing hospitals with supplies
and sponsoring scores of projects to offer Iraqis clean drinking
By one count, 60 percent of rural residents and
20 percent of urban dwellers have access only to contaminated water.
The country's sewer systems are in disarray.
"Even myself, I suffer from the quality of water," said
Zina Yahya, 22, a nurse in a Baghdad maternity hospital. "If
you put it in a glass, you can see it's turbid. I've heard of typhoid
The nutrition surveys indicated that conditions are worst in Iraq's
largely poor, overwhelmingly Shiite Muslim south, an area alternately
subject to neglect and persecution during Hussein's rule. But doctors
say malnutrition occurs wherever water is dirty, parents are poor
and mothers have not been taught how to avoid disease.
"I don't eat well," said Yusra Jabbar, 20, clutching
her swollen abdomen in a fly-specked ward of Baghdad's maternity
hospital. Her mother said the water in their part of Sadr City,
a Shiite slum on the capital's east side, is often contaminated.
Her brother contracted jaundice.
"They tell me I have anemia," Jabbar said. Doctors said
almost all the pregnant women in the hospital do.
"This is not surprising because since the war, there is lots
of unemployment," Yahya said. "And without work, they
don't have the money to obtain proper food.''
Iraqis say such conditions carry political implications.
Baghdad residents often point out to reporters that after the 1991
Persian Gulf War left much of the capital a shambles, Hussein's
government restored electricity and kerosene supplies in two months.
"Yes, there is a price for every war," said the official
at the teaching hospital. "Yes, there are victims. But after
"Oh God, help us build Iraq again. For our children, not for
us. For our kids," the official said.
| It has become clear that Israel
played a major role in the battle for Fallujah, despite the American
concern to conceal this fact. What news leaked of officers, soldiers,
and even rabbis of dual citizenships that took part in the battles,
some of which were killed by the resistance's bullets, is only the
tip of the iceberg. The killing of an Israeli officer in Fallujah
exposed the existence of a large number officers, snipers, and paratroopers
in Iraq. Based on Israeli press statistics, Israel currently has no
fewer than 1,000 officers and soldiers scattered around the American
units working in Iraq. In addition, 37 rabbis are operating within
the American troops, which leads to believe that the real number is
greater; since Ha'aretz admitted that others are concealing their
Jewish identities, which makes them self-driven Israeli citizens.
Currently, there is a recruitment campaign coinciding with the escalation
of the operations in Iraq, which seeks to send further assistance
there. Amongst these campaigns is the incitement of Rabbi Irving Elson
in his latest speech given in New York to allocate further "Fighting
Rabbis" and encourage them to enlist in the American forces,
in addition to another rabbi's advisory stating that those killed
in Fallujah are "martyrs."
the Israelis' experience in gang wars in order to manage the battles
in the Iraqi cities; given that two generations of its armed forces
lack this experience since the end of the Vietnam War. However,
the Israeli role is neither technical nor complementary to the American
plan. Rather, it is part of the vision established by its military
and political leadership prior to the launching of the war, which
aims at annulling any regional role for Iraq and eliminating any
threat it might cause to its future. The Israeli plan became clear
due to various headlines, most prominent of which is dispatching
Mossad operatives to establish offices and networks in the north,
south, eliminate the Iraqi scientists and intensify the real estate
purchase of property and land in the north; specifically in Arbil,
Kirkuk and Mosul. This comes as a completion of the previous project,
launched ten years prior to the fall of Baghdad, through Jewish
Israel encourages the Kurdish leaderships
to decentralize from Baghdad in administering their regions but
at the same time, it aims at having the Kurdish parties play a pivotal
role in the post-war Iraq due to the historical relations that it
had established with the Kurds. More likely, Israel has advanced
in developing the plan announced previously by the minister of infrastructure
Joseph Paritzky that aims at laying oil pipelines from Iraq to Israel
passing through Jordan; since a Turkish security report recently
published by Jumhuriyet confirmed Israel's attempts to activate
the line towards Haifa as soon as possible. Based on this vision,
the Israelis believe that the American forces are incapable of imposing
security and stability in Iraq. This obliged the Israelis to develop
their own channels with the local powers beginning at the fulcrum
point in the north and advancing in the implementation plan, which
they had prepared prior to the fall of the former regime. However,
they are now avoiding a confrontation with Turkey, which is worried
from their expansion in the north.
In this course, Israel incites the Iraqi Jews to the forefront
in order to head the bridge of organizing the relations with the
new government and specifically intensify the trade initiatives
with Iraq through Jordan. It also wants it to have a word in Iraq's
destiny through the indirect influence at the Sharm El-Sheikh summit,
which infuriated both Syria and Turkey. The
vast and unexpected expansion of the Israeli role in various fields
in Iraq, confirms that Israel is the major beneficiary in the continuity
of the war, same as it is the first beneficiary from the American
escalation with Iran regarding its nuclear file. Iraq is
not Russia, and Iran is not China, hence they cause no threat to
the U.S., nevertheless, they both represent a threat to the Hebrew
state. In conclusion, it is possible to say
that the Likudniks, who control decision-making posts in America,
are using Bush's campaign against terrorism as a cover-up to accomplish
Israel's objectives in Iraq. Hence, the purpose of the Fallujah
battle is to break the backbone of the resistance and pave the way
for the completion of the Israeli plan.
In contrast to their campaign
to crack down on crooked businessmen, lawmakers are increasingly
choosing to overlook alleged transgressions by their own colleagues.
The trend reflects the result of an unwritten detente struck five
years ago by Republican and Democratic congressional leaders, and
as a consequence several cases of questionable
conduct have led to little or no action by the House and Senate
For example, top Republicans are resisting calls to investigate
allegations of wrongdoing by Democratic Reps. Paul E. Kanjorski
(Pa.) and James P. Moran Jr. (Va.), according to lawmakers and aides.
GOP leaders backed off filing charges against Kanjorski -- for
steering government money to companies closely tied to family members
-- after a top aide to House Minority Leader Richard A. Gephardt
(D-Mo.) threatened to retaliate by going after Republicans with
ethical questions. Moran, who accepted a
$450,000 loan from MBNA Corp. shortly before intensifying his support
for legislation sought by the company, has escaped congressional
scrutiny despite calls for an investigation by a top state Democrat,
Government watchdogs, meanwhile, say the relationship that House
Majority Whip Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) has with corporate lobbyists, and
the assistance that Rep. Solomon P. Ortiz (D-Tex.) provided to a
company he is listed as president of, also
have not been scrutinized because of the undeclared accord. [...]
continued firing at a Palestinian girl killed in Gaza last month
well after she had been identified as a frightened child, a military
communications tape has revealed.
The tape is likely to be crucial in the prosecution case against
the men's company commander, who faces five charges arising from
the killing of Iman al-Hams, 13, in the southern border town of
Rafah on 6 October.
It shows that troops firing with light weapons and machine guns
on a figure moving in a "no entry zone" close to an army
outpost near the border with Egypt had swiftly discovered that she
was a girl.
In the recorded exchanges someone in the operations
room asks: "Are we talking about a girl under the age of 10?"
The observation post, housed in a watchtower, replies: "It's
a little girl. She's running defensively eastwards, a girl of about
10. She's behind the embankment, scared to death."
Not until four minutes later was it reported that
the girl had been hit and had fallen. The observation post reports:
"Receive, I think that one of the positions took her out."
... Operations room: "What, she fell?" Observation post:
"She's not moving right now."
The tape records the commander as telling his men, after firing
at the girl with an automatic weapon and declaring he has "confirmed"
the killing: "Anyone who's mobile, moving
in the zone, even if it's a three-year-old, needs to be killed."
The tape, broadcast on Israel's Channel Two TV, gives the most
graphic account of the killing after which soldiers in the company,
part of the Givati Brigade, complained that they had been "besmirched"
by the company commander's insistence on "confirming the kill".
The army admitted shortly after the shooting near the Girit outpost
that it had been a mistake. The girl was carrying a bag which the
army said that the soldiers had thought contained explosives, but
which was found to contain schoolbooks. Although the family is at
a loss to explain why she had wandered into a dangerous prohibited
zone, they say she was on her way to school at the time.
The soldiers said that the commander had fired two shots at the
girl from close range as she lay on the ground before withdrawing,
turning and "emptying his magazine" by firing some 10
bullets at her body.
This account is broadly confirmed by the terms of the indictment
issued this week. Although the family's Israeli lawyer believes
- and Palestinian witnesses said last month - that she was wounded
but alive when the commander fired his first two shots, he has not
been charged with manslaughter, apparently on the grounds that there
is no evidence that the two bullets killed the girl.
After the report that she has been hit, the tape records the company
commander as saying: "I and another soldier ... are going in
a little nearer, forward, to confirm the kill ..." After a
pause he adds: "Receive a situation report - we fired and killed
her. She was wearing pants, jeans, an undershirt, a shirt. Also,
she was wearing a keffiyah on her head. I also confirmed the kill.
The charges include obstruction of justice because of a false explanation
- which was accepted by senior commanders until soldiers came forward
with their version of events to the newspaper Yedhiot Ahronot -
that he came under fire from Palestinian gunmen 300 yards away as
he approached the girl and shot at the ground to deter the fire.
Because "confirmation of the killing" is not dealt with
under military regulations the commander - who has been named only
as Captain R - has been charged with "illegal use of a weapon"
and overstepping his authority to the extent of jeopardising human
life. He has been remanded in custody.
The al-Hams family's lawyer, Leah Tsemel, said that she was angered
by what she said was the relative lightness of the charges. "I
believe that the commanders and the soldiers who fired should all
have been charged with murder."
The family have declined an army request to exhume the body for
a post-mortem examination, because of the pain it would cause relatives.
| Millions of Israeli voters flocked to the polls
today to vote for a new Palestinian leader. Israel has taken the unusual
step of giving its voters a say in who will lead the Palestinians,
after years of Israeli ministers trying to make the decision themselves.
Israel's Interior Minister, Tommy Lapid explained, "After
the death of the terrorist leader Yasir Arafat, there is unique
opportunity for Israel to pick a new, moderate Palestinian leadership."
He added, "since Israel is the only democracy in the Middle
East, our people are the only ones qualified to make this choice."
The candidates in the election, all hand-picked
by Israel, are actually Israeli actors playing Palestinians, who
trained with Israel's notorious "Mista'aravim" death squads
who disguise themselves as Palestinians when carrying out assassinations.
The candidates are Ahmad Abu Karsh of the PFLP (Palestinians for
Likud Party), Mohammad Abu ShibShib of Fatah (Falafil, Tabouleh
and Hummus Party) and Mahmoud Abu Dishdasheh representing the DFLP
(Definitely for the Labor Party).
Ronit Sharoni, a 23-year-old social work student at Tel Aviv University,
cast her vote on her way to class. She declined to say who she voted
for but explained, "it is very important who leads the Palestinians,
since we have one day to negotiate with them, and we should know
in advance it will not be someone who will reject our generous offers.
Otherwise the peace process will fail."
Arieh Zahavi, a 36-year-old tank commander from the Jerusalem
suburb of Har Ganuv said picking a Palestinian leader is one of
the toughest decisions Israelis had to make: "on
the one hand, it is someone we can do business with, on the other,
he should look enough like a terrorist that we can turn the world
against him when we need to." Zahavi said that none
of the current candidates could fill the shoes of the late Palestinian
leader Yasir Arafat.
Still, many observers remain hopeful that the election could be
a fresh start for the region. "Maybe it will not bring peace
ever," said EU Special Representative for the Middle East Marc
Van Nauseam, "but it will revive the peace process, and that
is the important thing because we have seen a sharp deterioration
in the economic situation as a result of the escalating conflict.
Many Middle East envoys, including those from the US, EU, and the
UN have faced severe unemployment and others have seen a terrible
deterioration in their travel allowances and frequent flyer miles."
"A revived peace process may be just what they need to get
themselves back on track," added Van Nauseam, "Having
a Palestinian leader the Israelis and Americans will let us visit
is an important first step." Election results are expected
shortly after polls close at 7PM Israel time.
Al-Bassaleh and BNN are satirical
| JERUSALEM (AP) - Israel will allow
international observers to monitor upcoming elections to replace Yasser
Arafat as head of the Palestinian Authority, Israel's foreign minister
said Wednesday in another indication of easing of tensions since Arafat's
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom made the commitment, which can be
seen as a concession, before meeting visiting British Foreign Secretary
Jack Straw. Straw also offered assistance to the Palestinians.
"If the international community will want to send observers,
Israel will allow the entrance of observers," Shalom told Army
Since Arafat died on Nov. 11, Israel has scaled back military operations
in Palestinian areas, and tensions have abated. Israel accused Arafat
of promoting Palestinian terrorism and refused to deal with him.
Now the Israelis are walking a self-imposed fine line, hoping a
moderate Palestinian leadership emerges to resume negotiations,
but keeping its distance before the Jan. 9 election. [...]
Israel usually opposes an official international presence in the
Palestinian areas, rejecting a frequent Palestinian demand for observers
or peacekeepers. Israel assumes that because most of the world opposes
its policies, international teams would be hostile to Israel.
There have been exceptions. Israel agreed to a special observer
force in the West Bank city of Hebron in 1994 after a Jewish settler
massacred 29 Palestinians at a disputed holy site.
Also, observers including former U.S. president Jimmy Carter watched
the other Palestinian election, in 1996.
Shalom said the role of observers would be "to ensure that
these elections are fair and the results will be acceptable, not
only to the international community, but first and foremost to the
Palestinian people." [...]
Palestinians have also demanded Israel pull its troops out of Palestinian
cities during the campaign and allow residents of east Jerusalem
to vote in the poll.
After initial opposition, Israel said it would let residents of
east Jerusalem vote by absentee ballot. Israel captured east Jerusalem
in the 1967 Mideast war and annexed it, claiming the whole city.
The Palestinians want east Jerusalem as their capital.
Shalom would not promise to pull troops out of the West Bank for
"The elections process will not be harmed if, on the outskirts
of a certain town, soldiers are located. I think what is important
is allowing freedom of movement," Shalom said.
Weaponized Bulldozers Used to Destroy
Civilian Property and Infrastructure
(New York)--Caterpillar Inc., the U.S.-based heavy-equipment company,
should immediately suspend sales of its powerful D9 bulldozer to
the Israeli army, Human Rights Watch said today. As Human Rights
Watch documented in a recent report, the
Israeli military uses the D9 as its primary weapon to raze Palestinian
homes, destroy agriculture and shred roads in violation of the laws
Caterpillar betrays its stated values when it sells bulldozers
to Israel knowing that they are being used to illegally destroy
Palestinian homes. Until Israel stops these practices, Caterpillarís
continued sales will make the company complicit in human rights
In a letter to Caterpillarís chief executive officer and
board of directors, Human Rights Watch on October 29 called on the
company to cease all sales to the Israeli military of the D9, as
well as parts and maintenance services, so long as the military
continues to use the bulldozer to violate international human rights
and humanitarian law.
Caterpillarís CEO James Owens responded to Human Rights Watch
in a letter dated November 12 by saying the company did "not
have the practical ability or legal right to determine how our products
are used after they are sold." This head-in-the-sand approach
ignores international standards on corporate social responsibility
and the requirements of Caterpillarís own code of conduct.
Caterpillar makes the D9 to military specifications and sells the
bulldozers to Israel as weapons under the U.S. Foreign Military
Sales Program, a government-to-government program for selling U.S.-made
defense equipment. Once exported to Israel, the bulldozers are armoured
by the state-owned Israel Military Industries Ltd. Weighing roughly
64 tons, the armored D9 is more than 13 feet tall and 26 feet long
with front and rear blades.
A Human Rights Watch report released last month, "Razing Rafah,"
documented the Israel Defense Forceís (IDF) systematic use
of the D9 bulldozer in illegal demolitions throughout the occupied
Palestinian territories. The IDF has demolished
over 2,500 Palestinian homes over the past four years in the Gaza
Strip alone, most of them without the military necessity required
by international humanitarian law.
Nearly two-thirds of those homes were in Rafah, a town and refugee
camp on Gazaís southern border with Egypt. The Israeli military
has used the Caterpillar bulldozer to raze the homes of more than
10 percent of the population in Rafah. The government plan to expand
a "buffer zone" along the border would entail the destruction
of hundreds more homes. In May, the IDF destroyed more than 50 percent
of Rafahís roads and damaged more than 40 miles of water
and sewage pipes with a blade on the bulldozerís back known
as "the ripper." [...]
Behind the scenes
at the Clinton library, we saw America's future
At the dedication of the Clinton library last week in Little Rock,
Karl Rove and President Bush received separate tours of the dramatic
building, a glistening silver, suspended boxcar filled with light
and with a panoramic view of the Arkansas river. Flung across the
river stands an old railroad bridge - and to Clinton watchers, bridges
represent "the bridge to the 21st century", the former
president's re-election slogan in 1996.
The opening ceremony was biblical in its spectacle, length and
rain. For more than four hours we huddled in thin ponchos under
the downpour, awaiting four presidents. For the Democrats among
us - former advisers and cabinet secretaries, celebrity supporters
and high school friends of Bill - this was an unofficial convention,
a kind of counter-inaugural, with rueful discussions of the recent
John Kerry arrived to defiant cheering from the crowd. Then, when
the presidents were announced, Bush tried to push his way past Clinton
at the library door to be first in line, against the already accepted
protocol for the event, as though the walk to the platform was a
contest for alpha male. [...]
Offstage, beforehand, Rove and Bush had had their library tours.
According to two eyewitnesses, Rove had shown keen interest in everything
he saw, and asked questions, including about costs, obviously thinking
about a future George W Bush library and legacy. "You're
not such a scary guy," joked his guide. "Yes, I am,"
Rove replied. Walking away, he muttered deliberately and loudly:
"I change constitutions, I put churches in schools ..."
Thus he identified himself as more
than the ruthless campaign tactician; he was also the invisible
hand of power, pervasive and expansive, designing to alter the fundamental
Bush appeared distracted, and glanced repeatedly at his watch.
When he stopped to gaze at the river, where secret service agents
were stationed in boats, the guide said: "Usually, you might
see some bass fishermen out there." Bush replied: "A
submarine could take this place out."
Is it possible the people of the Ukraine love
freedom and fair play more than the people of the United States?
It sure looks that way.
“Tens of thousands of [Viktor Yushchenko’s] supporters
roamed the capital Kiev for a third day, marching past buildings
housing the presidency, government and parliament and chanting:
‘Yushchenko! Yushchenko!’ The mass protests engulfed
every corner of the city center and paralyzed all normal work. People
in apartment buildings opened their windows and waved flags of orange—the
campaign colors of Yushchenko—and cheered on supporters. Cars
drove by with orange streamers fluttering from radio aerials,”
“Ukraine’s outgoing President, Leonid Kuchma, raised
the spectre of civil war engulfing the country after election officials
declared yesterday that the Prime Minister, Viktor Yanukovych, had
won the bitterly fought presidential contest,” writes Askold
Krushelnycky for the Independent. “The danger of civil conflict
was also raised by the opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko, who
has refused to concede defeat in the face of widespread evidence
of fraud by the regime. ‘This decision puts Ukraine on the
verge of civil conflict,’ he said.”
Meanwhile, in America, the media refuses
to even address the possibility of fraud in the election, and most
Americans don’t even care, that is if they bother to pay attention.
Nothing short of merchants giving away Xboxes would motivate them
to go into the streets. Election fraud? Like, boooooooring. Politics
cannot stand up to NFL weekends and the next episode of Gilmore
Girls. Americans would rather watch West Wing than find out what
is really going on in Washington.
Let’s face it. America is not a democracy
and Americans don’t care if the president is a liar and a
cheat. Bush is taking the country down a destructive path—an
astounding deficit that will soon destroy the economy, one party
rule (once upon a time this was called totalitarianism) by a plutocracy
of multinational corporations and whack job evangelical christers
and their Israel First fellow travelers, and endless war predicated
on lies and absurd fabrications—and most people don’t
give a rat’s posterior. Far too many Americans believe it
is enough to affix a yellow “God Bless Our Troops” sticker
to the ass-end of their SUVs.
Of course, in the months ahead, when the economy bottoms out,
interest rates go through the roof, people begin to lose their jobs
and homes, and their kids are conscripted to fight Bush’s
never-ending wars, Americans will cry foul, maybe even do what the
people in Ukraine are doing now.
It will be a day late and a dollar short.
| Israel Shamir & Ihor Slissarenko
The developments in Ukraine are
very troublesome - they remind us the scenes from Tbilisi and Belgrade.
The statement of Powell is even more troublesome - just recently
the US went through the elections which appeared extremely flawed,
and already the US administration dares to find flaws in the elections
The Bankers Union of Ukraine also supports the opposition man who
lost but won't admit it. Mercedeces and Cadillacs, status symbols
for Ukraine, are serving the rebels; over a million of dead Ukrainians
somehow managed to vote for the opposition. The president-elect
is offering a reasonable solution to some of Ukraine problems, inclusing
that of Russian language recognition - over a half of Ukrainians
speak Russian, but the language is not recognised yet. Still, the
situation is not too simple.
Our friend Ihor Slissarenko wrote the following text stressing
the complexity of the picture.
PRO-WESTERN AND PRO-WESTERNER
Due the often heavily used in the mainstream media primitive cliche,
Viktor Yanukovych is the pro-Russian candidate, while Viktor Yushchenko
is his pro-Western rival. Indeed, Mr. Yanukovych found a powerful
promoter in Russian president Vladimir Putin, who came to the capital,
Kiev, for an open endorsement praising Yanukovych's governance and
offering the dual citizenship. An ordinary Russian could be shocked
with the only fact that his leader with KGB background openly associated
with a person with a criminal record, who spent two terms in jail
for robbery and hooliganism!
As to the US stance, it seems it had put eggs in different baskets
a long before the elections. Until last days before the run-off
on November 21, US ambassador to Ukraine often stated that the US
'would accept any choice made by the Ukrainian people'. Despite
the recent vocal criticism from the US about the dirty campaign,
many in Ukraine consider the US administration tolerates president
Kuchma and his clan due the over 1,700 Ukrainian soldiers stationed
in Iraq, although the overwhelming majority of the population is
against that. And Mr. Yushenko already promised the withdrawal after
his victory, as he signed an agreement with the leader of the popular
Socialist party Mr. Oleksandr Moroz in exchange for the socialists'
On the other hand, Mr.Yanukovych's envoy currently orchestrating
$1 mln PR-campaign in the US, came to Washington with the assurances
that the Ukrainian soldiers would not leave Iraq if his boss wins.
Many in Ukraine were confused with ex-congressman Bob Carr recruited
by the Mr.Yanukovych's staff as a head of ex-congressmen mission
to Ukraine's election, who after the voting day delivered the statement
that his mission had not seen anything wrong while 3 mln Ukrainians
had not been able to have voted as their names had been absent or
misspelled in the voters' list.
Or should we forget the attacks of alleged recruited criminals,
even security service agents in plain at some polling stations,
burning of ballot-papers, and death threats to the heads of local
electoral commissions if they failed to ensure the positive results
for 'the candidate of power'?
President Kuchma's son-in-law billionaire Victor Pinchuk has enjoyed
the company of George H.W. Bush, Henry Kissinger, Richard Holbrook,
Wesley Clark, who visited Kiev in last three months as 'personal
guests of Mr. Pinchuk'. Mr.Pinchuk's media (three nation-wide television
channels, the published in large tabloid, number of FM radio stations)
are the part of the current brutal smear campaign launched against
Mr.Yushchenko, and naturally, the loyal partner to Mr.Yanukovych.
Another propagandist engine against Mr.Yushchenko "1 1"
nation-wide television channel being often suited for libel, is
owned by former US ambassador Ronald Lauder. Mr.Yushchenko knows
for sure that being known either 'pro-Western' or 'pro-Russian'
is not favored by the Ukrainian voters. Thus, he has often claimed
being a 'pro-Ukrainian'. In his television ads, he appealed "not
to rely on Europe, America, or Russia".
Even as the nation's capital is recovering
from being this year's city of Grey Cup drunks, police here are
polishing their riot gear for a likely onslaught of protesters during
next week's U.S. presidential visit.
George W. Bush arrives in Ottawa next Tuesday for his first state
visit to this country, a diplomatic celebration that could quickly
turn into the great northern tear-gas festival.
Police are wisely assuming the welcoming party for the U.S. president
this time will include mobs of anti-American protesters. The short
notice of the visit -- it was announced virtually out of the blue
only last week -- has left organizers scrambling to put in place
the massive security that surrounds Bush wherever he goes.
But police are also hoping the last-minute trip to Canada caught
the protest groups equally off-guard, without time to organize mass
There is also a reasonable assumption that only true diehards
and assorted dupes would travel to Ottawa midweek for the fun of
freezing their clenched fists off in the world's coldest capital.
Monique Ackland, a spokesperson for the Ottawa police, said there
is no doubt security for the presidential visit "is going to
be big, very big.
"As far as demonstrations are concerned, every indication
is there will be some. How big, we don't know. The one thing I can
tell you is we will have enough resources to deal with anything."
The last time the RCMP and other police forces assembled "enough
resources to deal with anything" coming to the capital, a meeting
of international finance ministers here in early 2003 was protected
by enough riot police and heavy artillery to quell the outbreak
Similarly, the security cordon for the Bush visit will likely be
massive overkill (pardon the expression).
True, violent demonstrations erupted in the streets of Santiago,
Chile, as Bush arrived there for an international meeting with Paul
Martin and other leaders this week.
But in North America, at least, most protest groups worth their
face paint seem to have realized the days of free rock tossing,
rubber bullets and friendly tear gas ended with 9/11.
A good demo these days is a lot of shouting, a little shoving,
a few mandatory arrests for the cameras and plenty of riot cops
in an ugly mood, banging on their shields. That's it.
Not that the protesters are coming to Ottawa with anything but
One of the dozens of groups trying to recruit placard-wavers over
the Internet has the following modest goals for its day of anti-Bush
"A group of Canadians has come together
quickly to organize protests to 1) indict Bush for war crimes, and
should that prove difficult, 2) force the Canadian government to
stop its complicity with U.S. foreign policy.
"He expects to be treated like an emperor.
He should be treated like the criminal he is." Good
luck to that crowd.
A similar call to would-be fist-clenchers in the Toronto area
includes a wee note about Bush that begins: "In
every corner of the world, the policies of the Bush administration
are causing impoverishment and destruction.
"On Nov. 30, this war criminal is coming
to Canada. Against overwhelming odds, people across the world are
mounting fierce resistance to the empire."
Another recruiting message calls the U.S. president
"the world's foremost enemy of peace, of civil liberties, of
choice and diversity, of self-determination, of the environment."
Finally, one organization wishes to make it clear this is not
just all about George:
"The Canadian government, headed by Paul
Martin, is preparing a warm welcome for him, betraying its true
colours as a willing ally to a regime of international terrorism.
"We must make the most of an opportunity
to confront the Bush and Martin administrations on their murderous
policies, so thinly disguised as security agendas."
By the time this is all over, Carolyn "Stompin' Doll"
Parrish is going to seem like a love-struck Bush fan.
WASHINGTON (CP) - President George W. Bush
will avoid a potentially hostile reception in Parliament and travel
to Halifax next week after his first official trip to Ottawa, White
House sources said Wednesday.
Bush's side trip to thank Canadians who helped out after the Sept.
11, 2001, terrorist attacks will come after a working visit Tuesday
with Prime Minister Paul Martin and a dinner reception with hundreds
of prominent Canadians. American officials involved in planning
the trip were worried about a cranky audience on Parliament Hill,
"We didn't see the need and, frankly,
we didn't want to be booed. There are other, better venues,"
said one U.S. official.
Last week, the White House brushed off the latest anti-American
outburst of MP Carolyn Parrish, who appeared on a comedy show stomping
on a Bush doll before Martin turfed her from the Liberal caucus.
Her antics didn't directly contribute to the decision to avoid
Parliament, sources said.
But Bush wanted to avoid another embarrassing incident like the
one in Australia last year, when he was shouted down by Green party
senators while trying to address the parliament in Canberra.
And U.S. officials noted during planning discussions that Ronald
Reagan was heckled by New Democrats opposed to his missile defence
scheme during that president's 1987 state visit to Canada. [...]
LONDON, Nov. 23 - Invoking a global threat
of terrorism, the British government announced plans on Tuesday
to introduce national identity cards for the first time since the
World War II era. An opposition legislator said the government wanted
to create a "climate of fear" in advance of elections
expected next year.
The proposal was in a list of 37 draft laws outlined by Queen
Elizabeth II on behalf of the government at the ceremonial opening
of Parliament. While the queen summarizes proposed legislation,
the list is drawn up by government ministers.
The most contentious law was the plan to introduce a national
identity card in 2008, a measure the government asserts is needed
to fight terrorism and organized crime. The queen said Britons "live
in a time of global uncertainty with an increased threat from international
terrorism and organized crime."
Speaking later, Prime Minister Tony Blair said, "With terrorism,
illegal immigration and organized crime operating with so much greater
sophistication, identity cards in my judgment are long overdue."
But opposition Conservatives and Liberal Democrats
assailed the plan as an effort to raise levels of fear in Britain
in the hope of winning votes in elections that could be held next
The government announced other security-related moves on Tuesday,
including proposals for new counterterrorism legislation and for
a new police unit akin to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Britain ceased issuing national identity documents to its citizens
52 years ago.
Identity cards are commonplace in many parts of Continental Europe.
But in Britain, opponents argue that their
use will infringe on civil rights because they will be accompanied
by a national database. The cards are
expected to include names, addresses and so-called biometrics, like
computerized fingerprint records.
Outside Parliament on Tuesday, protesters accused the government
of mounting what one demonstrator, Mark Littlewood, called "an
enormous threat to privacy and liberty." They brandished a
rubber stamp in the form of a supermarket bar code, saying
the government's plans for a database were "the moral equivalent
of bar-coding the entire population." [...]
LONDON (AFP) - Twenty-three members of parliament
filed a motion to impeach Prime Minister Tony Blair on charges of
"gross misconduct" over the US-led invasion of Iraq.
However, the first such bid to impeach a prime minister in 198 years
has no chance of passing as it lacks
the official backing of the two main opposition parties, the Conservatives
and Liberal Democrats.
Analysts said the motion, filed in the House of Commons by 10
Conservatives, two Liberal Democrats as well as nine Welsh or Scottish
nationalists, was aimed more at embarassing or humiliating the prime
minister if it goes to a vote. [...]
Fruita - Hundreds of anxious parents waited
outside Fruita Middle School on Tuesday during a lockdown after
the second gun threat at the school in four days.
The threat - a penciled note on a bathroom stall reading, "I
brought a gun to school" - was deemed to be a hoax after a
90- minute search of lockers, backpacks, cubbyholes and bulky coats.
Officials announced at the end of the tense lockdown that school
would be canceled today. School officials and law-enforcement officers
will meet with parents just after school begins Monday morning.
The school of 750 students in this town of 8,000 west of Grand
Junction has been in a fearful limbo since an eighth- grader allegedly
took two handguns and clips of ammunition to school Friday.
Other students reported the guns, and Fruita police officers -
including the boy's mother, an officer on the force - found the
weapons. They also obtained a list that named 34 students and spelled
out reasons why each should be killed.
The student, 14, was taken into custody and is being held in a
youth detention center without bail. He is on probation for an earlier
gun violation and is scheduled to be formally charged today.
Four other students, who allegedly had knowledge of the plan or
helped the student obtain or hide the guns, have been suspended
Fruita Police Chief Mark Angelo said his department is still investigating
to determine whether they will be charged. Angelo said the writer
of the anonymous threat that prompted Tuesday's lockdown may also
face charges if that person can be found.
During the search, students were locked in their
classrooms with all windows covered. Some in modular outbuildings
said they had to get on the floor under their desks while officers
with guns and dogs searched around those units.
"It was a little scary," sixth- grader Cody McNeece
said as he hugged his crying mother, Brenda McNeece. [...]
QUEBEC (CP) - Police defused a potential
crisis early on Wednesday after a man showed up to a local precinct
with C-4 explosives in his coat.
The man was arrested several hours after walking into a police
station in suburban Charlesbourg just after midnight. He was carrying
C-4, a military-grade explosive, and threatened to blow himself
up, said police spokesman Andre Tanguay.
The man offered the officer on duty to trade his explosives for
a gun. The officer refused and started negotiating with him. A few
hours later, the man gave in and was arrested.
After speaking with the man's wife, a provincial police bomb squad
went to his apartment and found a large quantity of additional explosives.
Tanguay said police immediately evacuated the 24 units in the
building before they removed the explosives. [...]
WASHINGTON - Curtis Sathre said it was like
a bomb going off. His 13-year-old son Michael stood stunned, his
ears ringing, hand gushing blood and body covered in black ash.
In a split second last August, fragments from Michael's exploding
cellphone had hit him between the eyes and lodged in the ceiling
of the family's home in Oceanside, Calif.
Over the past two years, federal safety officials have received
83 reports of cellphones exploding or catching fire, usually because
of incompatible, faulty or counterfeit batteries or chargers. Burns
to the face, neck, leg and hip are among the dozens of injury reports
the agency has received.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission is providing tips for cellphone
users to avoid such accidents and has stepped up oversight of the
wireless industry. There have been three voluntary battery recalls,
and the commission is working with companies to create better battery
''[The commission] is receiving more and more reports of incidents
involving cellphones, and we're very concerned about the potential
for more serious injuries or more fires,'' said agency spokesman
Scott Wolfson. [...]
A fierce snowstorm pummeled the Midwest on
one of the busiest travel days of the year Wednesday, snarling roads
and causing long delays at airports as millions of Thanksgiving
travelers tried to make it home for the holiday weekend.
The National Weather Service said parts of Illinois got up to 8
inches of snow, while 7 inches were reported outside Kansas City
in the Midwest's first major snowfall of the season. The region
was also hit by strong thunderstorms, high winds and icy conditions
that made driving treacherous.
The snow caused dozens of flight cancellations and three-hour
delays at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, where city officials
expected more than 1.4 million travelers to pass through by Sunday
(AP) - Tornadoes whirled across the South
from Texas to Alabama, killing four people, wrecking homes and businesses
in rural areas and the New Orleans suburbs, and turning trees to
The violent weather was part of a system that had drenched Texas
for four days, pushing rivers out of their banks and forcing people
out of their homes. A line of tornadoes skipped through Alabama
early Wednesday, damaging homes and knocking down trees and power
A falling tree killed a woman in a home in Bynum, Ala., about
80 kilometres east of Birmingham, and a deputy spotted a tornado
about the same time, said Calhoun County emergency management spokeswoman
A tornado overturned mobile homes and damaged other houses at
rural Autaugaville, Ala. "The town itself is small, but the
storm concentrated in that area," said Lisa Sulkosky of the
Autauga County Emergency Management Agency. County Emergency management
director Randy Taylor said only one person was injured in the town.
Mack Clark and his wife escaped injury in Autaugaville by hiding
in a hall closet as the twister peeled the roof off their house.
"It brushed up against our back," he said.
More damage was reported in a half-dozen other Alabama counties,
and fallen trees blocked highways.
One person was killed in Olla, La., and several homes were "completely
torn up" late Tuesday, said LaSalle Parish Sheriff Carl Smith.
Olla, with a population of around 1,400, is about 65 kilometres
north of Alexandria.
"It cut a path through the middle of town," Smith said.
A twister touched down early Wednesday north of Slidell, La.,
a suburb of New Orleans, damaging as many as 50 homes and injuring
a half-dozen people, said St. Tammany Parish sheriff's spokesman
James Hartman. A tornado apparently hit the Jefferson Parish city
of Westwego, just south of New Orleans, early Wednesday, tearing
off roofs and heavily damaging several businesses, said Police Chief
In Mississippi, a tornado killed one person in a house and injured
two outside Louisville, said Clarence Kelley, the county civil defence
director. Damage also was reported in scattered communities elsewhere
across the state.
The house "was flattened. It was scattered everywhere. There
was nothing left at the site itself," Kelley said.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour declared a state of emergency Wednesday.
About a dozen tornadoes struck Texas on Tuesday afternoon and
evening. Four of them hit Hardin County, killing a woman and injuring
three other people, a sheriff's department dispatcher said.
Authorities believe three other tornadoes hit the town of Kirbyville
within minutes of one another, said Billy Ted Smith, emergency management
co-ordinator for Jasper, Newton and Sabine counties.
ROME, Nov. 25 (Xinhuanet) -- At least five
people were slightly injured and dozens of buildings were damaged
in a strong earthquake that hit northern Italy late Wednesday night,
local reports said Thursday.
One of the injured is from Milan, while the four others are from
The quake, measuring 5.2 on the Richter scale, occurred minutes
before midnight (2300 GMT), with its epicenter located near Lake
Garda, about 85 km east of Milan, the National Institute of Geophysics
said on Thursday.
The quake was felt in large parts of northern and central Italy,
including cities of Milan, Turin, Genoa, and Venice.
Hundreds of people panicked and fled their homes in Milan and
some small towns near Lake Garda.
The National Institute of Geophysics warned of aftershocks ahead
in the next few days.
Italy reported one of its worst earthquakes on Nov. 23, 1980,
which hit the south and left more than 3,000 people dead.
| AN earthquake measuring 4.4 on the Richter Scale
was felt across a 200km radius in WA this morning.
Geoscience Australia said the tremor occurred at 10.42am. It was
located 20km north of the Wheatbelt town of Koorda but was felt
within a 150-200km radius, including Wongan Hills, Burakin, Stoneville,
Upper Swan, Bickley and Perth.
The earthquake was shallow, occurring at a depth of about 5km.
Geoscience Australia seismologist Dr Mark Leonard said there were
smaller tremors last week, and the effects of today's tremor were
still being felt.
"So far we have recorded six aftershocks," Dr Leonard
said. "The Wheatbelt in WA experiences an event of this magnitude
a couple of times a year. In fact there have been a couple of smaller
events in this region in the last week."
A police spokesman said there had been no reports of damage caused
by the quake.
PINNACLES, Calif. An earthquake with a magnitude
of four-point-four has struck San Benito County.
The U-S Geological Survey considers that a light earthquake.
The earthquake, which struck at six minutes after six this evening,
was centered about halfway between Salinas and San Benito and about
six miles northwest of the town of Pinnacles.
There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries, but two
aftershocks measuring three-point-three and two-point-six followed
within minutes. [...]
POINTE-A-PITRE, Guadeloupe - Hundreds of tremors
continued to rattle Guadeloupe and Dominica yesterday, two days
after a strong earthquake killed a girl and damaged scores of buildings,
In Dominica, a group of children in the northern town of Portsmouth
ran frantically from a school building during a moderate aftershock
yesterday morning, said Cecil Shillingford, the country's national
"Whenever there is an aftershock, it makes them jumpy,"
Guadeloupe's seismological office reported more than 1,700 aftershocks
- mostly minor ones - since Sunday's main 6.3 temblor. But there
have been several major aftershocks including a 5.4, two 4.9s and
a 4.7. [...]
BEIJING, Nov. 24 (Xinhuanet) -- The drought
is worsening in Guangdong, threatening the late rice harvest, as
well as other crops.
More than 730,000 hectares of farmland were reported to have been
affected by drought Saturday, 20,000 hectares greater than the figure
reported at the end of October.
More than 36,667 hectares were barren, an increase of 2,667 hectares
compared with last month's figures.
Some 85 cities and counties in Guangdong, or more than 80 percent
of the province, have been affected by drought, according to an
official from the Guangdong Provincial Water Conservation Department.
The water level in the Dongjiang River, a major tributary of the
Pearl River, had fallen by at least 80 percent compared with last
Yellowstone County is among 34 Montana counties
that have been declared natural disaster areas because of the lingering
On Tuesday, Yellowstone County commissioners received a letter
from Secretary of Agriculture Ann M. Veneman that declares a drought
disaster through two-thirds of Montana's 56 counties. [...]
SINGAPORE : Personalising one's mobile phones
will take on another dimension when a new Korean model is introduced
It is the first mobile phone in the world equipped with fingerprint
Instead of using the usual numeric PIN code, owners will have
their fingerprints scanned to access and use the phone.
This also makes it diffcult for others to break the code.
So there is no need to worry about unauthorised access to information
when the phone is lost or stolen. [...]
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