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US Air strike kills nine Afghan soldiers

Nine Afghan soldiers have been killed and four others hurt in an air strike by international forces in the eastern part of the country, officials say.

Helicopter gunships reportedly fired on an Afghan army post in Khost province.

The US said Afghan soldiers had been killed and injured in a possible case of "mistaken identity".

Sherlock

Perception Management and the Economic Spider's Web

Summary: A battle for global economic hegemony is under way. The banking bailouts have moved from the original US proposal of simply buying bad assets to substantial recapitalisation and even nationalisation of banks that just months ago were considered strong and healthy. Bank deposits are rapidly being guaranteed around the world and government guarantees for short and medium term bank debt are freely available. Just who is running these bailouts, and for who's benefit?

Behind much of the apparent debacle lie derivatives and structured assets so, as Tuesday October 21st saw the settlement of many of these instruments effected by the Lehman bankruptcy, we take a look at Credit Default Swaps and some of the myths behind them.

Fundamental changes are being affected to the way banks are required to account for their assets with the hasty dropping or limiting of "mark-to-market" or fair value accounting - what is behind these changes and who benefits?

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"I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs." Thomas Jefferson 3rd president of the US (1743-1826), Letter to the Secretary of the Treasury Albert Gallatin (1802)

Thomas Jefferson was right; he was right when in 1863/64 US agricultural loans were called in at the behest of the Rothschild bankers in London, he was right in the panic of 1906, he was right in the agricultural crisis of 1920/21, he was right in the Crash of 1929 and the Great Depression of the early 1930's and he's right today. However, not even he could foresee that it is not just the people of the US that are slaves to private banking interests but all the peoples of the world.

Chess

China extends influence into Central Asia

China has begun a multi-billion-pound scheme in the far-Western province of Xinjiang to build roads and railways that will open up Central Asia. By the end of this year, nine railway lines will be under construction, including a railway from China to Pakistan and a rail link through Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, at a total cost of over £50 billion.

MIB

Is Israel's booming high-tech industry a branch of the Mossad?

In 2006 the Check Point Software Technologies company, which specializes in protecting computer systems from hackers and data theft, wanted to acquire an American company called Sourcefire, which works in the same field. The great advantage of Sourcefire was that its clients include the American Defense Department and the National Security Agency. The U.S. administration, however, by means of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, did not approve the acquisition.

MIB

Mossad spied on far-right Austrian

The Israeli secret service spied on Jörg Haider, the right-wing Austrian populist, using one of his closest aides to gather information on his contacts with Arab dictators. Peter Sichrovsky said that he had been a Mossad informant for five years until retiring from politics in 2002.

"I wanted to help Israel and certainly did not do anything wrong," said Herr Sichrovsky who was secretary-general of Herr Haider's Freedom party and a member of the European Parliament. The Austrian state prosecutor said yesterday that he would open an investigation to determine whether Herr Sichrovsky should be prosecuted. Spying for a foreign power carries a jail sentence of up to three years in Austria.

Life Preserver

Wonderland Economics: Bailouts balloon, markets crash, the dollar strengthens and gold does nothing

Summary: In a week defined by unprecedented government bailouts and collapsing stock markets all financial logic flew out of the window as the US dollar strengthened and gold hardly budged leading many to speculate as to the extent of the rigging of the global gold market in the face of its purported safe haven status.

The announcement, Monday 13th October, that the British government is to take substantial stakes in 2 major UK banks, HBOS and Royal Bank of Scotland and the proposal in the US that the Fed is to take similar stakes in US banks while providing guarantees of bank's senior debt, caused the markets to rally. This despite the fact that it should be clear to anybody that the US is going way beyond bailing banks out and is in fact transferring the future wealth, in the form of future labour and taxation, of ordinary American's into the hands of a tiny financial elite.

Additionally, following the G7 meeting at the weekend it was announced that central banks around the world would provide unlimited US dollar funding to the markets in order to ensure sufficient liquidity is available at all times.

Amid this turmoil the auction of Lehman Brothers bonds at just 8.825 cents on the dollar, resulting in Credit Default Swap payout this coming week of 91.375 cents on the dollar by all sellers of Lehman CDS's, a devastating payout for the sellers, passed almost silently.

Nuke

German's trial over Libya nuke program nears end

Stuttgart, Germany: A German engineer has acknowledged that he helped procure parts for a centrifuge system that authorities say was meant for Libya's now-abandoned nuclear weapons program, a court said Thursday.

Gotthard Lerch went on trial in June, accused of supplying Libya with sensitive technology in the knowledge that the country was seeking atomic weapons. Prosecutors have accused him of playing a key role in the network led by Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan.

Comment: Mainstream journalism and media seem to continue spreading information that has long been cleared as lies:
The Pakistani scientist blamed for running a rogue network that sold nuclear secrets to North Korea, Iran and Libya has recanted his confession, telling ABC News the Pakistani government and President Perez Musharraf forced him to be a "scapegoat" for the "national interest."

"I don't stand by that," Dr. A.Q. Khan told ABC News in a 35-minute phone interview from his home in Islamabad, where he has been detained since "confessing" that he ran the nuclear network on his own, without the knowledge of the Pakistani government. The interview will be broadcast Friday on "World News With Charles Gibson."

It was his first interview with an American journalist in a series of telephone interviews he has granted this week, marking the 10th anniversary of Pakistan's first test of a nuclear bomb.

[...]

As to his widely publicized confession, Khan said he was told by Musharraf that it would get the United States "off our backs" and that he was promised he would be quickly pardoned. "Those people who were supposed to know knew it," Khan said about his activities.



Alarm Clock

Mossad's "Islamic Militants" Exposed In Yemen

The arrest in Yemen this week of a group of "Islamist militants" has provided more evidence that the Israeli government and its associated agencies are still hard at work fabricating "Islamic terrorism" for the enthrallment of the 'educated' masses back home and in the 'enlightened' West:
Yemen seizes 'Israel-linked' cell

Tuesday, 7 October 2008
BBC News

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has said the security forces have arrested a group of alleged Islamist militants linked to Israeli intelligence.

Mr Saleh did not say what evidence had been found to show the group's links with Israel, a regional enemy of Yemen.

The arrests were connected with an attack on the US embassy in Sanaa last month which killed at least 18 people, official sources were quoted saying.

Israel's foreign ministry has rejected the accusation as "totally ridiculous".

"A terrorist cell was arrested and will be referred to the judicial authorities for its links with the Israeli intelligence services," Mr Saleh told a gathering at al-Mukalla University in Hadramawt province.

"Details of the trial will be announced later. You will hear about what goes on in the proceedings," he added.

The 17 September attack was the second to target the US embassy since April. Militants detonated car bombs before firing rockets at the heavily fortified building.

Mr Saleh did not identify the suspects, but official sources were quoted saying it was same cell - led by a militant called Abu al-Ghaith al-Yamani - whose arrest was announced a week after the attack.

An Israeli foreign ministry spokesman said the Yemeni president's statement was without foundation.

"To believe that Israel would create Islamist cells in Yemen is really far-fetched. This is yet another victory for the proponents of conspiracy theories," Igal Palmor said in remarks reported by AFP.
Is it really "far fetched" to believe that Israel would fabricate Islamic terrorist attacks? After all, is it not true that Islamic terrorism is Israel's 'bread and butter', without which Israel would stand naked, for all the world to see, as the brutal occupier that it is? And is the same not true of the US and British governments?

Lest we forget the past, and the very recent past at that, below are a collection of mainstream news reports that leave us in little doubt that Israel (closely followed by the US and UK) has its fingers all over "Islamic terrorism" in the Middle East.

Chalkboard

The Betrayal of Adam Smith

Adam Smith on a 20 pound bill
This is an excerpt from When Corporations Rule the World, 2nd Edition, by David C. Korten.

It is ironic that corporate libertarians regularly pay homage to Adam Smith as their intellectual patron saint, since it is obvious to even the most casual reader of his epic work The Wealth of Nations that Smith would have vigorously opposed most of their claims and policy positions.

For example, corporate libertarians fervently oppose any restraint on corporate size or power. Smith, on the other hand, opposed any form of economic concentration on the ground that it distorts the market's natural ability to establish a price that provides a fair return on land, labor, and capital; to produce a satisfactory outcome for both buyers and sellers; and to optimally allocate society's resources.

Through trade agreements, corporate libertarians press governments to provide absolute protection for the intellectual property rights of corporations. Smith was strongly opposed to trade secrets as contrary to market principles and would have vigorously opposed governments enforcing a person or corporation's claim to the right to monopolize a lifesaving drug or device and to charge whatever the market would bear.

Bizarro Earth

Update: Clear and Present Danger

denver mural
© Cassiopaea.org
The one thing that's been proven is the absolute fear-mongering that's being used to drive us is false. I've seen members turn to each other and say if we don't pass this bill, we're going to have martial law in the United States. -- Rep. Brad Sherman, October 1, 2008
We've had a bad feeling these past several years, as those of you who have read these pages may know, that the Iraq disaster wasn't so much a resource grab or to encircle Iran and Russia, nor just to protect Israel, but something more sinister: training soldiers to be mindless killers so that when they're brought back home they would have no problem killing their fellow citizens when martial law is declared and the cow pies really hit the fan.