Puppet MastersS


Palestine on Hunger Strike

Khader Adnan had been arrested by Israeli authorities eight times before, but this time it'd gone too far. He was suspected of being an active part of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, which Israel sees as a terrorist group. Adnan was been detained and no charges were filed against him. In protest, Adnan went on a hunger strike. Ken O'Keefe, human rights activist, joins us to take a deeper look into Adnan's demonstration.

Star of David

Israel wants regional resistance against Tel Aviv destroyed

The Tel Aviv regime is favoring the resignation of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in line with its policy of destroying the axis of resistance against Israel in the region, a journalist tells Press TV.

Lizzie Phelan, a British reporter and broadcaster, made the comment in an interview with Press TV on Monday.

"It is not about democracy and human rights in Syria, this is very clear as the Israeli officials say themselves time and time again this is about destroying the axis of resistance to Israel."

On Monday, Israeli media reported that Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon has called for the resignation of President Assad.

"We have a situation whereby a Western-backed illegal insurrection in Syria is being portrayed as a revolution being carried out by freedom fighters, meanwhile... genuine popular uprisings in Bahrain and Yemen are being suppressed by those very same Western forces and Saudi Arabia and Qatar and others," Phelan added.


Geopolitics and The Russian Elections: Putin Wins...

Vlad's the man
Pre-election polls predicted around a 60% majority. Final results show Putin won 63.6% of the vote. He got a clear third term mandate. In 2004, he won 71%.

Five candidates contended:
  • United Russia's Vladimir Putin
  • The Communist Party's Gennady Zyuganov
  • The Liberal Democratic Party's Vladimir Zhirinovsky
  • Just Russia's Sergey Mironov
  • Independent candidate Mikhail Prokhorov (billionaire/Russia's third richest man)
With nearly all votes counted, official results were as follows:
  • Putin: 63.6%
  • Zyuganov: 17.2%
  • Prokhorov: 7.9%
  • Zhirinovsky: 6.2%
  • Mironov: 3.9%
Turnout was 63.3%. It exceeded December's parliamentary elections.


Netanyahu's Gift to Obama: Tale of a Persian Plot

Netanyahu and Obama
© Agence France-Presse
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu handed President Barack Obama a gift on Monday that spoke volumes about Israel's tensions with Iran - an ancient Hebrew tome about a Persian plot to annihilate Jews.

It's called the Scroll of Esther, a tale of palace intrigue featuring a Jewish beauty who charms a Persian king into foiling an evil adviser's genocidal plans for her people some 2,500 years ago.

"Then too, they wanted to wipe us out," Netanyahu told Obama, according to an Israeli official.

Jewish faithful gather in synagogues on Wednesday to read the parchment text, popularly known as the Megillah, on the eve of the Jewish costume holiday of Purim, a celebration of salvation and of turning the tables on one's foes.

"And the Jews smote all their enemies with the stroke of the sword, and with slaughter and destruction, and did what they would unto them that hated them," one of the verses says.


ACLU: Obama's extra-judicial killings raise 'profound legal and moral questions'

© Unknown
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is strongly objecting to a speech given Monday by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder at Northwestern University's law school, during which he offered a public acknowledgement that the Obama Administration believes it has the right to kill U.S. citizens anywhere in the world without judicial review.

Speaking to Raw Story on Monday night, Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU's national Security Project, said that Holder's explanation "raises profound legal and moral questions," and poses a grave threat to American liberties should a future president decide to seize upon the precedent for more nefarious purposes.

So far, only three American citizens have been killed by targeted drone strikes overseas, and in each instance the Administration insisted they were participating in terrorist activities and therefore were enemy combatants. Speaking to law students Monday night, Holder insisted that Congress gave the executive branch blanket authority to safeguard national security in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks - meaning they have the right to do as they see fit, with nobody to second guess them.

Bad Guys

Best of the Web: 'Exceptionalism' in America

Banner for Mitt Romney's neoconservative foreign policy white paper,
Banner for Mitt Romney's neoconservative foreign policy white paper, "An American Century"

American politicians forever talk about the nation's "exceptionalism," a special greatness that sets the U.S.A. apart from all others. But this jingoism requires whitewashing much of U.S. history and ignoring much of the present, too, says Lawrence Davidson.

Everyone wants to be exceptional, to be special, to be great at something. Parents spend a lot of time assuring their children that they are indeed exceptional, even though they often know that the their offspring will spend their working lives selling mattresses or cars.

When it comes to individuals there is a very wide range of achievements that can make you stand out. Everyone can be exceptional in some way or other. Yet it is not only individuals who need to feel themselves exceptional or great.

Bad Guys

The Saga of Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, and Wikileaks, to be put to ballad and film

"Defense lawyers say Manning was clearly a troubled young soldier whom the Army should never have deployed to Iraq or given access to classified material while he was stationed there ... They say he was in emotional turmoil, partly because he was a gay soldier at a time when homosexuals were barred from serving openly in the U.S. armed forces." (Associated Press, February 3)
It's unfortunate and disturbing that Bradley Manning's attorneys have chosen to consistently base his legal defense upon the premise that personal problems and shortcomings are what motivated the young man to turn over hundreds of thousands of classified government files to Wikileaks. They should not be presenting him that way any more than Bradley should be tried as a criminal or traitor. He should be hailed as a national hero. Yes, even when the lawyers are talking to the military mind. May as well try to penetrate that mind and find the freest and best person living there. Bradley also wears a military uniform.

Here are Manning's own words from an online chat: "If you had free reign over classified networks ... and you saw incredible things, awful things ... things that belonged in the public domain, and not on some server stored in a dark room in Washington DC ... what would you do? ... God knows what happens now. Hopefully worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms. ... I want people to see the truth ... because without information, you cannot make informed decisions as a public."

Is the world to believe that these are the words of a disturbed and irrational person? Do not the Nuremberg Tribunal and the Geneva Conventions speak of a higher duty than blind loyalty to one's government, a duty to report the war crimes of that government?

Bad Guys

Best of the Web: Murder Is Legal, Says US Attorney General Eric Holder

Eric Holder
© Jay Westcott
Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday explained why it's legal to murder people -- not to execute prisoners convicted of capital crimes, not to shoot someone in self-defense, not to fight on a battlefield in a war that is somehow legalized, but to target and kill an individual sitting on his sofa, with no charges, no arrest, no trial, no approval from a court, no approval from a legislature, no approval from we the people, and in fact no sharing of information with any institutions that are not the president. Holder's speech approached his topic in a round about manner:
"Since this country's earliest days, the American people have risen to this challenge - and all that it demands. But, as we have seen - and as President John F. Kennedy may have described best - 'In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger.'"
Holder quotes that and then immediately rejects it, claiming that our generation too should act as if it is in such a moment, even if it isn't, a moment that Holder's position suggests may last forever:
"Half a century has passed since those words were spoken, but our nation today confronts grave national security threats that demand our constant attention and steadfast commitment. It is clear that, once again, we have reached an 'hour of danger.'

"We are a nation at war. And, in this war, we face a nimble and determined enemy that cannot be underestimated."
So, if I were to estimate that Al Qaeda barely exists and is no serious threat to the Homeland formerly known as the United States, I would not be underestimating it? If I were to point out that no member of that horrifying outfit has been killed in Afghanistan this year, that fact would not contribute to an unacceptable underestimation? What fun it is to fight the most glorious of wars in the hour of maximum danger against an enemy so pitiful that it literally cannot be underestimated.


Greece Pulls Out from EU Anti-Piracy Force Due to Crisis

Athens - Greece has recalled its warship from the European Union's anti-piracy task force in the Indian Ocean to save money as it struggles to meet fiscal targets set by international lenders in return for a bailout package.

Greece, struggling with its worst economic crisis since World War Two, is cutting 400 million euros from the defense budget this year as it fights to stave off bankruptcy.

The frigate will return one month earlier than scheduled, on March 8 instead of April 4 and will not take part in the mission during the second half of the year, the Defense Ministry said on Monday.


2 British journalists accused of spying in Libya

Faraj al-Swehli
© ReutersFaraj al-Swehli, commander of the Swehli Brigade, shows a picture of one of the two British journalists arrested on suspicion of being spies in Tripoli
Reporters, employed by Iran's Press TV, detained after they were found in possession of IDF-issued medical supplies

Two British journalists working for Iran's Press TV who were detained late last month in Libya are suspected of being spies, the head of the militia which is holding them said on Sunday.

Faraj al-Swehli, commander of the Swehli brigade, said his men had found among the journalists' possessions official Libyan documents, equipment used by the Israeli military and footage of them firing weapons.

"We believe they are spies," Swehli said in Tripoli. He said it was too early to say what country they were spying for, but that this would be established by their investigation.