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The most successful tyranny
is not the one that uses force to assure uniformity but the one
that removes the awareness of other possibilities, that makes it
seem inconceivable that other ways are viable, that removes the
sense that there is an outside.
It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong. --Voltaire--
Faith of consciousness is freedom
Life is religion. Life experiences reflect how one interacts with God. Those who are asleep are those of little faith in terms of their interaction with the creation. Some people think that the world exists for them to overcome or ignore or shut out. For those individuals, the worlds will cease. They will become exactly what they give to life. They will become merely a dream in the "past." People who pay strict attention to objective reality right and left, become the reality of the "Future." [Cassiopaea, 09-28-02]
IMPEACH GEORGE BUSH! - Articles of Impeachment and the FAX number of your representative. Download, print and FAX.
January 27, 2003
In Timeaus, Plato relates to us the history of events, which took place long before the Greek's first historical records were made. It was a tale of the highly developed, very wealthy, and powerful civilization of Atlantis and the subsequent war between Atlantis and Athens from which Athens emerged victorious. Apparently, Atlantis was a continent located in the Atlantic Ocean before the Pillars of Hercules (Strait of Gibraltar). In landmass it surpassed the lands of Libya and Asia combined. It was the center of extreme economic wealth and military power that sought to enslave all of Europe. The Atlanteans were quite successful in defeating many European countries; however, the great civilization of Athens repelled their attacks and eventually succeeded in driving them back out of Europe. Unfortunately, almost all records of this great achievement were lost due to a very powerful flood that wiped out most of Athens and the whole continent of Atlantis in one day and one night. Comment: America is the New Atlantis. History repeats itself. Bush and his Globalization policies may very well initiate "The Deluge."
(T)A dark star is dark because it doesn't give off light. It is
still a star, and acts like a star...
Toronto Star - There already is a global rebellion against America, separate and apart from the recent terrorist attacks on U.S. civilians and soldiers in Yemen, Pakistan and Kuwait. Governments everywhere are dreading the dawn of American imperial unilateralism. They are even more scared of their riled-up citizenries. Most Muslims are characterizing American designs on Iraq as racist. Others are calling it a colonial endeavour - the return of the Ugly American. From Europe through Africa and Asia to the Far East, public opinion is solidly ranged against America. The dissidents include the Pope, the archbishop of Canterbury and Nelson Mandela. This anti-war movement may be more potent than the one against the Vietnam War. It is worldwide and it has gelled before the war has even begun.
North American pundits have it that Bush has a small window of opportunity for war because a delay would push it into the unbearable heat of the Middle East summer. The greater truth, as seen from here, may be that his options are closing because of growing people power, even in America. The president's poll numbers are dropping. Public skepticism is rising, as is a chorus of influential voices, including those of Senator Ted Kennedy ("This is the wrong war at the wrong time"), Jimmy Carter, Gulf War veterans, stalwart Republicans, Hollywood celebrities and unions. The longer Bush delays the war, the more difficult it will be to launch it. But the only way he can go quickly is to abandon the fig leaf of the United Nations, proving that his enlisting of the U.N. was a sham all along.
But with 150,000 troops and equipment lined up and so much rhetorical capital invested, how can he not proceed? Bush is in a box of his own making. His biggest mistake has been to try to undermine the U.N. inspectors every step of the way.
But with no smoking gun, no proof of any Iraqi terrorist links, no weapons of mass destruction, Washington changed its tack. The issue was no longer weapons but Iraqi deception. (When was the last time a war was launched over a lie?) Or Saddam himself. American commentators duly obliged with essays on the benefits of bringing democracy to Iraq. But people across the Atlantic just laughed.
The harassment of Muslim Americans hasn't helped. Nor have the recent horror stories of returning Afghans, Pakistanis and Indians after spending a year in American jails on suspicions of terrorism while being guilty of no more than petty immigration violations. In promising democracy to Iraq, Bush is dealing with devalued American moral currency.
Complicating the Bush-Blair mission have been two unforeseen events since Nov. 8 — the Israeli election and the defiant nuclearization of North Korea. Bush had to bench a proposed American plan for Palestinian statehood until after the election. Blair was embarrassed by Israel PM Ariel Sharon's refusal to let Palestinians go to a peace conference in London. Meanwhile, suicide bombings and counter-measures continue, with Palestinians by far the bigger victims. Bush's conciliatory approach to North Korea raised cries of double standards. "Why is the U.S. dealing with them differently?" asked Al Sharq newspaper in Qatar, one of the more pro-American emirates and, in fact, a key staging area for an American attack on Iraq. Such is the sad backdrop of the fateful days ahead.
Should Americans fail to swing Security Council support, Bush may proceed with "a coalition of the willing" — reluctant allies who cannot afford to anger America, including Canada perhaps. What would follow is anybody's guess.
Reports out of London speak of Whitehall being inundated with cables from British missions abroad warning of widespread fury. European diplomats I spoke to talk of "long-lasting enmity in the Arab, Asian and African world against the Western model," in the words of one. And over at the staid Davos conference in Switzerland, Malaysian Prime Minister Mohammed Mahatir told the corporate and political elite of the world Thursday: "People want revenge. You kill our people, we will kill you." He was not issuing a threat.
BAGHDAD, Iraq Jan. 27 — Iraqis waited for their U.N. judgment day Monday, confident they'll get a "gray" report, a passing grade, for accepting arms inspections, but wary of U.N. complaints that could help tilt the balance between war and peace. On the eve of a crucial U.N. inspectors' report, President Saddam Hussein convened a joint meeting of his ruling Baath Party's leadership and the Revolution Command Council, Iraq's highest executive body, to discuss what official media called "political conditions." No statement was issued afterward. "It's reached the point where Iraq can only react. It can't do anything," said a senior Baghdad diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity. "It's all up to Blix."
TONY Blair has handed secret MI6 files to the United Nations to justify war against Iraq WITHOUT the discovery of weapons. The Premier said yesterday that he would back an attack on Saddam Hussein even if inspectors found no trace of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. He hinted that military strikes could start within weeks. Government sources said MI6 files were passed to UN chief weapons inspector Hans Blix during his visit to Britain 10 days ago. - Britain and America insist 350 tons of deadly nerve agent and 30,000 shells and missiles uncovered in inspections in 1998 are still unaccounted for. Mr Blair said Saddam had breached the UN resolution simply by refusing to help with inspections. "The UN mandate says Saddam must not just give access to different sites but cooperate fully with the inspectors," he said in a BBC TV interview. "If he fails to cooperate in being honest and he is pursuing a programme of concealment, that is every bit as much a breach as finding, for example, a missile or a chemical agent.
Blix: Iraq hasn't genuinely accepted disarmament; cooperating on access but not substance - "Iraq appears not to have come to a genuine acceptance, not even today, of the disarmament that was demanded of it," Blix said at the beginning of a crucial assessment on 60 days of weapons inspections. Blix, head of the U.N. Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission said it was not enough for the Iraqis to "open doors." "It would appear from our experience so far that Iraq has decided in principle to provide cooperation on process, notably access. A similar decision is indispensable to provide cooperation on substance in order to bring the disarmament task to completion, through the peaceful process of inspection, and to bring the monitoring task on a firm course." Touching on the question of how much time inspectors need, Blix said he shared "the sense of urgency" to achieve disarmament within "a reasonable period of time." Blix said three questions remain unanswered: --How much illicit weapons material might remain undeclared and intact from before the Persian Gulf War in 1991 and possible thereafter. --What, if anything was illegally procured or produced. --How the world can prevent any weapons of mass destruction be produced or procured in the future. Blix noted that Iraq's 12,000 page arms declaration contained little more than old material previously submitted to inspectors. One exception was an air force document which indicates that Iraq ha failed to account for some 6,000 chemical rockets. "The finding of the rockets show that Iraq needs to make more effort to show that its declaration is currently accurate." Blix said inspectors have also discovered a mustard gas precursor during recent inspections. "Regrettably the 12,000-page declaration, most of which is a reprint of earlier documents, does not seem to contain any new evidence that will eliminate the questions or reduce their number."
Chief U.N. weapons inspectors told the Security Council on Monday that Iraq was still resisting international efforts to ensure it disarms, but inspectors should have more time to complete their work.
Iraq might still have stockpiles of anthrax, nerve gas and Scud missiles, according to Hans Blix, the UN chief weapons inspector, in his eagerly-awaited report to the UN Security Council today. But Dr Blix concluded that proof rather than presumptions are required in order to determine whether Iraq has proscribed weapons of mass destruction. "Presumptions do not solve the problem. Evidence and full transparency may help," he said. There are "strong indications" that Iraq produced more anthrax than it admitted and might still have some stocks, Dr Blix said today.
American sources made it clear that the United States fully intended taking over Iraq’s oil fields, administering them in the long term and using Iraqi oil revenues to partly defray the costs of conducting war and maintaining a long-term military occupation of Iraq. According to DEBKAfile’s Washington sources, the war bill which, unlike Gulf War I, America will carry more or less single-handed, is estimated at $130 billion, while maintaining app. 70,000 US troops in the country to protect the oil fields and maintain Iraq’s post-war stability could run to another $10-12 billion a year. To raise this cash, the United States plans to increase Iraq’s oil output from 1.6 million to 6.5 million barrels per day, necessitating further heavy outlay for renovating the badly run down Iraqi oil production equipment. At the same time, the long-term, military-backed control over Iraq’s oil resources – on the spot rather than from outside the region – will make America the leading strategic-political-military force in the Middle East and Persian Gulf as well giving Washington a controlling interest in the global oil market.
Nobody Needs This War Now, when the USA is actively getting ready for a war against Iraq, it is not out of place to remember another war that America carried out in South Eastern Asia, in Vietnam to be exact, for several years. As is known, UN inspectors must deliver a report on Iraq’s possession of weapons of mass destruction on January 27, 2003. However, this day is also a historic date: an amicable treaty was concluded in Paris 30 years ago, that in fact meant the USA was beaten in the Vietnam war. In 1969 Richard Nixon was elected president of America. He came to power as a result of anti-war demonstrations, and consequently he couldn’t avoid mentioning the Vietnam war. By the way, Richard Nixon mentioned in one of the key items of his pre-election campaign that he had a solution for an adequate cessation of the war in Vietnam. However, Phillip Davidson in his book “Vietnam at War” says that Nixon had no plan at all. -
The defeat in the Vietnam war gave birth to a phenomenon which was later called in the USA “a Vietnamese syndrome.” The syndrome affected not only ordinary participants of the hostilities in Vietnam, but also powers-that-be in Washington. At least, there was some period within which the White House was much more cautious with use of military force; it ventured to do it only in such unprotected countries as Grenada. But the situation changed after the Desert Storm in 1991, after the operation that was rather successful. The blare of the trumpets in America gave rise to talks saying that the USA got rid of “the Vietnamese syndrome”. To all appearance, Washington politicians actually got rid of the syndrome. At least, former American president Bill Clinton and incumbent president George W. Bush have nothing to compare with, they successfully avoided military service in Vietnam. For this very reason there is no need for them to mention that 58 thousand Americans were killed in the Vietnam war, let alone one million of Vietnamese (by the way, other sources report the number of Vietnamese victims made up 3 million people). Certainly, Iraq isn’t Vietnam, a war won’t last there for more than several months. What is more, strategists from the Pentagon have already learnt some lessons and now stake at blitzkriegs. So, even if this war in Iraq will draw out (like it was in Afghanistan), we will never know this, because censorship is actually very strong. So, we once again understand that the proverb is right when it says: “History testifies that its lessons are never effective for anyone.”
With U.N. weapons inspectors about to unveil their findings on Iraq, Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged a divided U.N. Security Council on Monday to give the inspectors "a reasonable amount of time" to do their work. Annan spoke shortly before the inspectors were to deliver a crucial report that will say they have been unable to resolve key questions about Iraq's former arms programs but that will not corroborate U.S. charges that Iraq has rebuilt its arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. After two months and more than 350 inspections, the reports by inspectors Hans Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei to the U.N. Security Council are expected to fuel U.S. arguments in favor of war but prompt other nations, including France and Russia, to say, as Annan did, that inspections should go on. "If they need time, they should be given the time to do their work," Annan told reporters as he arrived at U.N. headquarters.
UN Has Found No Iraqi Nuclear Arms Program - The U.N. nuclear watchdog agency said Sunday it would tell the U.N. Security Council it has yet to prove that Iraq is secretly seeking atomic weapons. Monday, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei and chief U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blix will report to the council on progress in their two-month-old hunt for Baghdad's alleged weapons of mass destruction. "It (ElBaradei's report) won't reveal any prohibited nuclear arms program," IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Fleming told Reuters. "If we were to find a smoking gun, we wouldn't wait for an update report. We'd go straight to the Security Council."
Iraqis in the busy streets of Baghdad saw little hope Sunday that U.N. arms inspections can spare them a U.S.-led war they believe is inevitable. "Even after 100 years, the inspectors still won't be convinced that Iraq does not have weapons of mass destruction. America wants war today, not tomorrow," said Khazem Mansour, a 28-year-old engineer. "They have already set their minds on damning Iraq without evidence ... and America is thirsty for war," said Muhsen Hassan, who runs a spare-parts business in the oil sector.
French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin said on Sunday United Nations weapons inspections should continue for several weeks or a few months. Speaking on the eve of a report by U.N. inspectors on their two-month hunt in Iraq for any banned nuclear, chemical or biological weapons, Villepin told French television inspections by experts were proceeding as expected. "The extension could be for several weeks, or for a few months," Villepin said in an interview to be broadcast on France 3 television later on Sunday. He reiterated Paris's position that France opposed unilateral military action by the United States and said "for the moment, the U.N. inspections in Iraq were conforming to what was expected." The comments came after the United States said on Sunday it was ready to attack Iraq alone if its allies shied from action and Britain's Tony Blair said it should not take U.N. experts months to certify whether Iraq was cooperating with them.
The chief UN weapons inspectors prepared to deliver a crucial report to the Security Council amid mounting US threats to wage a solo war on President Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Hans Blix and Mohammed ElBaradei were scheduled to appear before the top UN body at 10:30 am (1530 GMT) for what is expected to be a progress report on their two months of work hunting down Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction. But at the start of one of the most important weeks in the showdown with Iraq, diplomats fear the meeting will be a countdown to conflict even if they predict the United States is likely to give UN inspectors extra time in Iraq. Secretary of State Colin Powell toughened the rhetoric on Sunday, insisting that Washington had a "sovereign right to take military action on Iraq alone or in a coalition of the willing" despite vocal opposition across Europe. "This is not about (UN weapons) inspectors finding smoking guns. It is about Iraq's failure to tell the inspectors where to find its weapons of mass terror," he told political and business leaders in the Swiss resort of Davos. "Today not a single nation, not one, trusts Saddam and his regime," Powell said. "Iraq attempted to conceal with volume what it lacked in veracity. It has failed the test."
Iraq Monday said it was up to Washington and London to avoid a military showdown and accused Secretary of State Colin Powell of lying when he charged Baghdad with developing banned weapons. Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri said Baghdad had done all it could to convince the world it had no banned weapons and provided "super cooperation" with U.N. weapons inspectors. "The ball is in their court. We have done everything possible to let this country and this region avoid the danger of war by the warmongers in Washington and their ally (British Prime Minister) Tony Blair," Sabri told a news conference in Baghdad. "They are fond of exporting death and destruction to other parts of the world...They are the ones escalating the situation and making a lot of threats, fabricating lies every day," He said. Sabri said worries over alleged weapons of mass destruction were only a pretext for the United States and Britain to invade Iraq. "Their sole aim is not weapons of mass destruction...The aim is their desire to control the oil of the Gulf as well as protecting the security of Israel," he said. Sabri said Powell "repeated lies that no one believes any more" over the weekend when he accused Iraq of developing weapons of mass destruction.
EU foreign ministers were to meet in Brussels hours ahead of a crucial report on Iraq, but Europe's sharp divisions on the crisis remain clear as the US said it had the sovereign right to attack Baghdad. The ministers from Britain, France, Germany and Spain have called a special separate session at the start of a full two-day meeting of the 15-member bloc's foreign ministers dominated by the Iraqi crisis. Earlier US Secretary of State Colin Powell, in a hard-hitting statement at the World Economic Forum, said Washington continues "to reserve our sovereign right to take military action on Iraq alone or in a coalition of the willing." "We will act even if others are not prepared to join us," he added, downplaying objections from European nations to launching military action on the Baghdad regime of President Saddam Hussein. Powell also accused Saddam of having clear links to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terror network, without offering evidence.
Iraq's Foreign Minister Naji Sabri Monday accused Secretary of State Colin Powell of lying and reiterated Iraq was free of any banned weapons. Sabri said Powell "repeated lies that no one believes anymore" when he accused Iraq over the weekend of developing weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Sabri hoped a report by chief U.N. weapons inspectors to the Security Council Monday would confirm Iraq was free of banned weapons and find its cooperation with inspections was "super." "We hope that they will be fair and that they would present the facts as they are on the ground that there are no banned weapons or activities...and the Iraqi authorities had cooperated effectively on a wide scale with inspection teams," Sabri told a news conference in Baghdad. Sabri also denied charges by Powell that Iraq had ties to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network and other "terrorist activities." "Powell and the U.S. administration know well that Iraq has no links to these organizations," Sabri said.
Putin: Inspectors must continue work Vladimir Putin has declared in a telephone conversation with the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, that the UNMOVIC inspection team must be allowed to continue with its work until it has visited all the sites it considers necessary. When the UNMOVIC report compiled by the team of inspectors led by Hans Blix is delivered to the UNO later this afternoon, it will not contain any evidence of a “smoking gun” and will declared that the inspection work is far from finished – in fact the team is only half-way through its initial list of objectives. The claims made by US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, that Iraq has Weapons of Mass Destruction were rejected as “lies” by Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri.
Secretary of State Colin Powell said Washington was prepared to negotiate with North Korea about dismantling Pyongyang's nuclear programme and has no intention of attacking it. "The United States is willing to talk to North Korea about how it will meet its obligations to completely dismantle its nuclear programme," Powell told global political and business leaders at the World Economic Forum. "The United States has no intention of attacking North Korea... At the same time we are keeping all our options on the table," he said Sunday.
As South Korean envoys meet North Korean officials in a bid to resolve the North's nuclear dispute, Pyongyang has hit out at the U.N. nuclear agency, saying it is in no position to address the impasse. - While North Korea had relatively pleasant words about the North-South meet, it let fly with an angry tirade towards the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency. A report on KCNA, a mouthpiece of Kim Jong Il's government, called IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei a "poor servant and mouthpiece" of the U.S. "It is, therefore, an objective reality that the secretariat of the IAEA is not in a position to discuss the DPRK's [North Korea's] issue," KCNA said.
Britain said Monday Iraq was hiding banned weapons, spying on U.N. arms inspectors and hindering their movements, stressing that non-cooperation amounted to a breach of a U.N. resolution on disarmament. Just hours before arms inspectors report to the United Nations Security Council, Britain said they did not have to come up with proof of weapons of mass destruction. "We don't have to find a 'smoking gun'," Prime Minister Tony Blair's official spokesman told a news briefing. "Non-cooperation is designed to be at the very core of (U.N. Resolution) 1441 ... we know we are not getting the cooperation that 1441 says we have to get from Iraq," he said, while adding that it was for the inspectors to decide if Iraq was in breach.
Next month, Lord Black of Crossharbour - Conrad Black, the owner of the Daily Telegraph - is giving a lecture in London entitled "Is it in Britain's national interest to be America's principal ally?" There may be no prizes for guessing his answer, but that is indeed a very interesting question, and has been for many years. The closer one looks at the relations between the two countries in terms of national interest, the more unequal they seem, though distorted by a misreading of history and a misunderstanding of motives. - In the 20th century, the two countries twice became wartime allies, but this quite wrongly led the British to suppose that they had identical interests. For one thing, the Americans entered both world wars belatedly, at very little cost in casualties, and very much on their own terms. That was especially true in the second world war, one of whose outcomes was the end of Great Britain as a great power, at the behest - and to the considerable advantage - of the US.
As Rumsfeld and President Bush himself have made clear, the inability of the inspectors thus far to find a "smoking gun" in Iraq is further proof of perfidious deception of the Baghdad regime. "So far, I haven't seen any evidence that he is disarming," Bush said of Saddam Hussein. So far, the weapons inspectors haven't found evidence that Hussein has the kind of weapons he would have to get rid of in order to be "disarming." No matter. The way Rumsfeld explained it, it is the very absence of such evidence that proves Iraqi guilt.
"The fact that the inspectors have not yet come up with new evidence of Iraq's WMD program could be evidence, in and of itself, of Iraq's noncooperation," Rumsfeld explained. "We do know that Iraq has designed its programs in a way that they can proceed in an environment of inspections and that they are skilled at denial and deception."
Well, now, there you have it, proof of Iraq's guilt either way. As loathsome and despicable as the Baghdad regime is, you have to admit the Bush administration has set up this game in a way that Iraq can't win no matter what the weapons inspectors find or do not find. If they find weapons of mass destruction, it is proof, of course, of the regime's aggressive designs. If no evidence is found, it is evidence of Iraq's "denial and deception" and its "non-cooperation" with the inspectors. It's a perfect "Catch 22."
So why bother with inspections in the first place? Why not just go to war now? To appease our allies and the United Nations, no doubt. [...]
The Bush administration's attitude toward evidence — or the lack of same — of nuclear arms in Iraq is of a piece with its insistence on the right to imprison U.S. citizens — labeled "enemy combatants" — indefinitely, without the need for charges, much less evidence of guilt.
Evidence? What evidence? "We don't need no stinkin' evidence!"
The United States plans to make public soon its evidence that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, Secretary of State Colin Powell was quoted as saying on Monday. "The United States possesses several pieces of information which come from the work of our intelligence that show Iraq maintains prohibited weapons," Powell told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera in an interview. "Once we have made sure it can be done safely, I think that in the next week or soon after we can make public a good part of this material," he told the newspaper. Washington has not yet made public the evidence it says it has that Iraq has banned weapons programs. Corriere also quoted Powell as saying that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein would be able to use the weapons soon. "We already have shown that Saddam Hussein is acting in bad faith and that his regime is not cooperating with (U.N.) inspectors, and that Iraq has no intention of dismantling its arsenal of weapons of mass destruction," Powell was quoted as saying.
As U.N. arms inspectors prepared to give the Security Council a crucial report on Iraq Monday, U.S. and British officials said they had the proof Baghdad was hiding banned weapons, laying it open to attack. Hours before the Council session in New York, due to start at 10:30 a.m., the United States made clear it would go into battle alone against Baghdad if it could not muster support among a deeply divided international community. But officials have been dropping hints that the inspectors may be given a few more weeks to pursue their work before Washington and London decide that time is up, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is not cooperating and the only option is war. "Time is running out for Saddam Hussein, he has had a lot of time, 12 years, to fully comply. We'll make decisions on exactly how much time later today in the light of the U.N. report," said British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, Washington's close ally.
Carrying peace signs and chanting "Drop Bush, not bombs," thousands of people marched through snowfall Sunday to protest a possible U.S. war with Iraq. Police estimated the crowd at more than 3,000, and rally organizers said the protest was among Pittsburgh's largest ever. "It shows that in middle America, cities like Pittsburgh can turn out thousands against war. We have shown that this war is not popular," said Tim Vining, executive director of the Thomas Merton Center, a sponsor of the event. Nuns, students, activists and Vietnam War veterans marched together as several inches of snow fell and temperatures dipped into the teens.
Tens of thousands of people took to the streets in some Arab capitals Monday to protest against a possible U.S. war on Iraq, labeling President Bush a "butcher" and his administration "arrogant." People demonstrated outside United Nations offices in Syria, Yemen and Bahrain hours before a deadline for a report by U.N. arms inspectors on Iraq's cooperation in their hunt for weapons of mass destruction. Also in India's financial capital, Bombay, about 1,000 protesters against war on Iraq shouted anti-American slogans as they marched through the crowded streets, blocking traffic. Demonstrators in Damascus gathered outside the U.N. office where they chanted slogans, calling Bush a "criminal and a butcher" and demanding he ditch his "plan" to attack Iraq. "We sacrifice our souls and blood for Iraq," chanted young demonstrators. "America wants to dominate us, it wants to weaken us and to destroy Iraq to control its oil," said student Housam Halabi, echoing a view shared by many Syrians and Arabs. In the Yemeni capital, leaders from the ruling and opposition political parties led tens of thousands of Yemenis in a protest march from a main square to the U.N. office to deliver a message demanding the world body step in to prevent the war. "'No' to an attack on Iraq. 'No' to American arrogance," one banner read.
About 1,000 Muslims chanted anti-American slogans outside the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta on Sunday saying any war against Iraq would be an attack on the entire Islamic world. While there have been only minor protests in the world's most populous Muslim country over a possible attack on Iraq, the prospect of war is increasingly worrying religious leaders who fear it could spark a backlash by Muslims. "We are against America's plans to attack Iraq -- an attack in one Muslim country means an attack on all Muslims," said Muhammad Rahmad, a rally organizer.
German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer pleaded for Germans to stay their anger at recent US barbs against their country, saying in an article that Washington remained "our most important partner". "The United States is essential for peacekeeping and stability in the world," Fischer said in an interview published Monday in the German regional daily Leipziger Volkszeitung. "It is essential at a regional and a global level, and it remains our most important partner. "I counsel (people) to calm down," he said. Ties between Washington and its European allies have been badly frayed by the crisis surrounding a possible war on Iraq, as Berlin and Paris urge caution and stress the need for UN backing for any attack on Iraq. A row broke out Wednesday when US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld derided the two EU heavyweights as "old Europe" after they took a joint stand against such a military strike. Some Europeans reacted strongly, fuelling greater antagonismsbetween the hawkish White House and hesitant EU leaders.
Kuwait is boosting already tight security to prevent further attacks on Americans by suspected Islamic militants as Washington masses forces in the oil-rich state for a possible strike on neighboring Iraq. "We are increasing policemen and undercover officers because more attacks are possible," a senior security official told Reuters. "We are trying all means to prevent any attacks." Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah said in an interview on Sunday he believed war on Iraq was imminent and raised concerns over internal security after attacks against Americans. "Military preparations and movements indicate that war is not far off. War is coming soon and we will not be exempt from its dangers," said Sheikh Sabah. "My concern is not what will happen outside Kuwait but inside it. We should not worry about what (threats) will come from outside, but about how to control matters inside," he told the pan-Arab Asharq al-Awsat daily.
The evidence against Iraq is scanty, the global opposition to an attack growing more vocal. But the Bush team’s biggest dove has now grown talons. Will war make us more—or less—secure? - Powell’s conversion is the surest sign that what once looked like a game of brinkmanship with Iraq is becoming a deadly serious preparation for war. George W. Bush always threatened to lead the world against Iraq—despite warnings that an unpopular, pre-emptive war could make America less safe by fueling anti-Americanism around the globe, and perhaps even by provoking Saddam to disperse his chemical and biological agents to terrorists. Now Bush says it’s time for the rest of the world to step onboard or step aside as the United States disarms Saddam by force. Administration officials tell NEWSWEEK their strategy is to give one last chance, not to Baghdad, but to the United Nations. That means a final diplomatic push—to win over world opinion—lasting weeks, not months.
The US intends to shatter Iraq "physically, emotionally and psychologically" by raining down on its people as many as 800 cruise missiles in two days. The Pentagon battle plan aims not only to crush Iraqi troops, but also wipe out power and water supplies in the capital, Baghdad. It is based on a strategy known as "Shock and Awe", conceived at the National Defense University in Washington, in which between 300 and 400 cruise missiles would fall on Iraq each day for two consecutive days. It would be more than twice the number of missiles launched during the entire 40 days of the 1991 GulfWar. "There will not be a safe place in Baghdad," a Pentagon official told America's CBS News after a briefing on the plan. "The sheer size of this has never been seen before, never been contemplated before." - President George Bush has been displaying increasing impatience with the pace of inspections and is eager to start the bombing. But according to UN sources he has resigned himself to the fact that the US lacks enough votes on the Security Council to wage a military campaign. Mr Bush's belligerence yesterday found a match in comments by Uday Hussein. In a rare public appearance, the son of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein said the consequences of American attack on his country would make the September 11, 2001, terrorist strike look like a picnic.
On the eve of a key report by disarmament inspectors at the United Nations, Iraq stepped up the war of words with the United States by warning of huge troop losses from any invasion. Iraq on Sunday matched the US buildup of rhetoric which has accompanied the troops pouring into the Gulf region, with a nightmare vision of piles of body bags. With the US administration awaiting the chief inspectors' report before weighing if and when to attack, the newspaper of President Saddam Hussein's eldest son Uday played on fears raised by the Vietnam war which left thousands of US soldiers dead. "The number of these bags will be so high that (US President George W.) Bush and (British Prime Minister Tony) Blair will not be able to hide it or lie about it," Babel said Sunday.
Janeane Garofalo says she knows why Fox, CNN, MSNBC and "Good Morning America" have booked her to argue against war with Iraq. - "I'm being treated like a child, and that's how I think the American people are being treated by their media," Garofalo says. "If you're an actor who is pro-war, you're a hero. If you're an actor who's against the war, you're suspect. You must have a weird angle or you just hate George Bush." The woman who once plied her trade on "The Larry Sanders Show," "Saturday Night Live" and such movies as "Reality Bites" has been all over the tube lately, arguing that the Bush administration is stampeding the country into a misguided war. And the experience has convinced her that major news organizations are unfair to liberal activists, especially of the celebrity stripe.
Experts are warning that a malicious computer code which disrupted the internet may resume its attacks on Monday. In South Korea, which was badly affected by the attack, systems engineers are racing to repair internet networks amid fears Monday would bring new outbreaks as businesses switch on their computers for the new working week. - Computer experts said the code, known as a worm, had affected nearly a quarter of a million computers worldwide on Saturday. The attack, which targets internet servers and does not infect home computers, slowed systems for several hours, affecting web browsing and e-mail delivery. The attack was detected by the FBI shortly after it was launched on Saturday, limiting the damage.
India celebrated its Republic Day on Sunday with a show of military might, including nuclear-capable missiles designed to reach neighboring Pakistan. Security was tight as authorities shut off the airspace over capital New Delhi, where the main parade to mark the 53rd anniversary of the country's founding as a republic was being held, and in the financial center Bombay on the west coast. Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, the guest of honor, sat with President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in a bullet-proof enclosure as a 21-gun salute kicked off the parade. On Saturday, Khatami and Indian Prime Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee joined a host of nations in seeking a peaceful solution under the supervision of the United Nations to the crisis in Iraq. India and Iran have long had good relations and few in India share Washington's view of Iran as a part of an axis of evil along with Iraq and North Korea. India's 1.1 million strong military was in full flow on Sunday after last year's truncated show because the bulk of the force was deployed on the border with Pakistan following an attack on Indian parliament blamed on Pakistan-based guerrillas. Both nations ended the military stand-off late last year, but tense ties were further frayed this week after they expelled each other's diplomats on grounds of spying.
The US Senate has approved a long delayed $305 million aid package for Pakistan, including a controversial provision of $50 million for purchase of military equipment. The proposal includes $200 million for debt relief, $50 million each for military purchases and social sector development, $4 million for an anti-narcotics campaign and $1 million for financing Pakistani officers' military training in the US under the International Military Training and Education (IMET) programme.
World community puts great confidence in Russia that has an opportunity to greatly contribute to the peaceful solution of the Iraqi problem, said outstanding Danish peace activist, head of the International Peace Fund Jan Oberg, at a meeting with journalists in Tokyo on Monday. Commenting on his two-week visit to Iraq this month, Oberg said that the country's people were in an extremely difficult position and any military action would only result in further aggravation of the situation. Oberg called on the USA and its allies not to authorise force in settling current problems and to make everything possible so that UN inspectors could easily and professionally continue their work in Iraq. They should work for as long as it is necessary to find out the exact situation in the country, he emphasized. Oberg believes it necessary to urgently set up a permanent international fund to solve Iraq's problem with obligatory participation of such countries as Russia, China and, maybe, Japan. Only multilateral negotiations will help find a way out of the current dangerous situation, that may lead to military action against a large state, a war that will have dramatic consequences of strategic character, he pointed out.
Russian MP: Russia and EU to Form Common European Space Russia-EU future relations will imply the formation of a common European space. This opinion was expressed by Chairman of the Federation Council's Foreign Relations Committee Mikhail Margelov participating in the Davos World economic forum in his interview with a RIA Novosti correspondent. "Both Moscow and Brussels understand it. But it is also important to have common ideas concerning the concept's contents," stressed the member of the Russian parliament's upper chamber. "While recognizing Russian economy as a market one, European officials continue to keep our enterprises at a distance by non-market methods". "A common European territory can be only created along with a common security territory," according to Margelov. "We are interested in real cooperation aimed at preventing common threats. We already have legal basis for that. We must start using current joint institutions in order to estimate the risk," the senator stated. - For this purpose, both Europe and Russia will have to overcome significant disagreements, but as partners, not as adversaries," the Russian senator stressed. No matter how many contradictions Russia and Europe might have, they still have much in common, Margelov said. He also said that Russia and Europe were in the process of intensive reforms. Economic mechanisms of Russia and the expanding Europe are going through similar difficulties in order to get adjusted to modern competitive conditions.
US Air Force authorities were investigating the crash of a US spy plane which hit a South Korean town injuring four people after the pilot ejected to safety. The 7th US Air Force said in a statement Monday that it had set up a panel to find out what had led the sophisticated U-2S reconnaissance aircraft to crash. "The investigation process began immediately with the convening of an interim safety investigation board whose purpose is to determine possible causes and prevent future mishaps," the statement said. "The investigation will take as long as needed to get right information," First Lieutenant Thomas Montgomery of the 7th US Air Force base told AFP. The plane crashed Sunday into a South Korean rural town 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the heavily fortifed border, known as the demilitarized zone (DMZ), with North Korea.
A U.S. air force pilot apologized on Monday to those injured when his U-2 spy plane crashed into a car repair shop near the South Korean capital, an apparent bid to prevent a resurgence of anti-U.S. sentiment. The aircraft crashed into a hillside in Hwasong city, south of Seoul, on Sunday when the pilot ejected after reporting engine trouble. Three people on the ground were slightly injured and the shop was badly damaged. "I am deeply sorry for injuries, damage or suffering caused by this accident for anyone on the ground," the pilot, who was not identified, said in a statement. He suffered slight injuries. "I did everything I could with the aircraft to keep it away from densely populated areas before I had to eject. When I recover from my injuries, I hope to meet with those most affected and personally let them know how sorry I am for this accident," he said.
Israel killed at least 12 Palestinians on Sunday in its deepest thrust into Gaza City in two years of fighting, adding ammunition to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's security pledges two days before a general election. Dozens of armored vehicles backed by missile-firing helicopters rumbled from three directions into the Zaitoun neighborhood of Gaza City, a stronghold of the militant Islamic group Hamas that has carried out scores of suicide attacks. "We will shed Jewish blood in Jaffa and Tel Aviv," Abdel-Aziz al-Rantisi, a top Hamas official, said in response to the Israeli raid. Israeli forces pulled within 100 meters (yards) of the main Palestine Square in the night-time incursion, the strongest and deepest operation inside Palestinian-ruled Gaza City since an uprising for statehood began in September 2000. Palestinian security officials said troops stormed homes and metal workshops and destroyed one of the biggest factories in Gaza, a plant that made garbage containers, before withdrawing.
Fear of an Israeli invasion gripped Palestinians in the Gaza Strip Monday as they cleared away the rubble left after Israel's deepest incursion into Gaza City in two years of fighting. Such concerns are never far away but were heightened by Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz, who refused Sunday to rule out reoccupying Gaza if militants continue attacks on Israelis in a 28-month-old uprising for independence. "An occupation of Gaza would mean more scenes like these, scenes of destruction and killing," Latifa Sha'ban said by the remains of her house and mechanical workshop. "What happened was a disaster. God forbid they will come back here," she said, denying allegations by the army that the workshop had been used to manufacture weapons. Elsewhere in Gaza, municipality workers cleaned streets and cleared away the rubble of blown-up buildings and demolished shops. Workers also tried to repair telephone and electricity lines cut by Israeli bulldozers. At least 12 people -- more than half of them gunmen -- were killed Sunday during fighting that erupted after armored vehicles backed by assault helicopters struck Gaza City from three directions in a raid Israel intended to weaken the Islamic militant group Hamas. Hamas has carried out dozens of suicide attacks in Israel, and fired rockets into an Israeli town near Gaza the day before the army raid. It and other militant groups threatened to retaliate for the raid. Palestinian cabinet minister Saeb Erekat quickly drew the conclusion that Israeli forces meant to reoccupy the Gaza Strip soon after Israel's general election Tuesday.
It's useful to put forth the evidence for the assertion of Israeli complicity in Bush administration planning for war with Iraq, which is voluminous, as the following recitation will show. Much of what is presented [in this article] could be classified as circumstantial, but much is from the mouths of the horses themselves, either the neo-con planners or Israeli government officials, and much of it is evidence that, even if Israel is not actively pushing for war, many Israelis expect to benefit from it, and this despite their fear that a war will bring down on Israel a shower of Iraqi missiles.
The shrinking Arctic icecap may open a fabled passage for ships between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans within a decade, transforming an icy graveyard into a short-cut trade route.
A tropical cyclone lashed remote southern islands in the Solomons chain on Monday, damaging several homes, knocking down coconut and banana trees and pounding the South Pacific archipelago with high swells. As Cyclone Beni swirled menacingly near the two main coral atolls of Rennell and Bellona province, another tropical cyclone formed southeast of Fiji and was bearing down on the island kingdom of Tonga, weather forecasters said. Cyclone Beni and Cyclone Cilla were weaker than Cyclone Zoe, whose 300 kph (186 mph) winds stripped the Solomons' easternmost islands of Tikopia, Anuta and Fatutaka of their greenery around the New Year. But their twin appearance reinforced predictions that the El Niño weather phenomenon could ensure a busy and violent cyclone season for the South Pacific this year. Officials in the Solomons said Beni was barely moving around 129 km (80 miles) south-southeast of Rennell and Bellona and sending winds of up to 60 knots gusting ashore.
Blame the chill on the stars. Or so say astrologers in this capital city of Uttar Pradesh where nearly 500 people have died apparently in the cold wave this winter. They see a play of stars and planets behind the freezing conditions in India's most populous state. "The movement of stars and planets has its effect on climatic conditions," claims Prasann Dixit, a well-known astrologer. According to him, "A change in the astronomical positions is like by January 18, following which one could expect a bright sun, thereby bringing a rise in the day temperature." Subhash Chandra, who took to astrology after retiring from the Indian Air Force, also sees logic in Dixit's explanation. "The geometrical position in which planets are currently placed is responsible for the intensity of the cold this winter," Chandra told IANS.
A rampaging pride of escaped lions killed four Malawians and then disappeared without trace, game officials said on Friday, raising fears among villagers that witchcraft may be to blame for the deaths. The lions have now killed nine people, police said. They are thought to have escaped at the beginning of the year from a national park in the center of the southern African country. Rumors among villagers in the tobacco-growing region suggested a man whose wife was kidnapped by another man was using witchcraft to induce the lions to exact revenge, a senior government official said. The beasts' disappearance, and reports that one of the lion's latest victims had indeed kidnapped another man's wife, had fueled the stories, he said. Rangers found only a leg and pools of blood after they were alerted to the latest killings, another senior government official told Reuters.
EVER since the ‘Book of Life’ that unveiled the gene numbers that make up humans was revealed by geneticists a couple of years ago, new and fascinating ‘chapters’ on the origin and future of life have been added. The latest, yet ancient, story from an Indian research institute on when and how modern humans set their foot into Asia over 100,000 years ago marks another landmark in genetic study. The years of Jurassic Park-type research by the Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular that took scientists on a voyage into the tribal heartland of the Andamans, Kerala and Gujarat has led to genetic blackboxes encrypted with fine details of a voyage from Africa to Asia. The research reveals that the descendants of biology’s Adam and Eve may still be genetically alive in two tribes — one in Kerala and the other in Gujarat.
A QUARTER of a million British men may have used their credit cards to access internet child porn, it was claimed last night. Credit card giant Visa have launched a probe to see how many of their customers have signed up to web sites featuring child abuse. Now Mastercard and American Express have told police they want to join a special investigation to see how many of their card-holders have been buying child porn.
The majority of Americans are so obsessed with wringing every available pleasure out of life that they have lost all sense of morality. The primary goal of most Americans today is to accumulate as much money as possible using any means necessary, with absolutely no compassion for anyone less fortunate. Paganism is the fastest growing belief system in western civilization. The sex slave trade is flourishing. New reports of pedophilia are reported daily. Pornography and Gambling are legal and commonplace in most areas of the country. Marriage is a failed institution. Changing partners occurs as often as changing clothes. Traditional family life is old fashioned and unusual in this day and age. Trust in neighbors and acquaintances are virtually unknown. Workplaces have been transformed into mercenary environments with a complete lack of social conscience. Darwinism is the cornerstone of the twenty-first century. Instant gratification is demanded and expected. Our political and financial ruling elites, including Bill Clinton (Monica Lewinsky) and Kenneth Lay (Enron), have displayed their true lack of moral responsibility and provide typical role models for this new era. Aleister Crowley's aphorism "Do what thou wilt" has become the guiding theme in America.
US rap singer and Grammy award winner R Kelly was arrested at a local hotel on charges of possessing child pornography, police announced. Miami-Dade county police spokesman Juan Del Castillo said on Wednesday that the rap star - whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly - faces charges of possessing 12 photographs of a nude minor with whom he allegedly had relations with. The pictures were found during a police search of the singer's house in nearby Polk county. The 36 year-old rapper - famous for his 1998 award-winning hit "I believe I can fly" - is currently out on bond and awaiting trial on 21 charges of child pornography in the state of Illinois.
A former physicist with the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre Dr M. Srinivasan and one of India's best known parapsychologist Prof K. Ramakrishna Rao have placed a proposal before the Indian Government to experiment with ''remote viewing'' for security purposes. Both scientists were part of the Science and Spirituality conference, which was held in the city a week ago. ''Since remote viewing or psychic spying has been reported in ancient Indian scriptures, it is high time India itself studied it. We have proposed to study the phenomenon and have sought the Government's assistance,'' says Chennai-based Dr Srinivasan, a former associate director of the physics group and head of the neutron physics division at BARC. The proposal placed before the Centre describes the experiments conducted in the US and proposes similar efforts to identify Indians with remote viewing capabilities, says Dr Srinivasan who has a special interest in parapsychology. ''The intelligence community in the US seems to value remote viewing data whenever it is available. They use it to compliment information gathered through other means,'' he says. During the Cold War years, two sets of the now-famous remote viewing experiments were carried out in the US. The first set involved ''remote viewers'' describing sites within the US -- where activities unknown to them were happening. Researchers have reported a high degree of accuracy in these experiments.
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