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Whatever Happened to Justice? Supreme Court OKs Police Tasering Pregnant Women

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." - Martin Luther King Jr.
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© unknown
The Supreme Court declined to hear a case involving the Seattle PD's use of a Taser on pregnant woman Malaika Brooks (shown here with her daugher).
Once again, the United States Supreme Court has proven Clarence Darrow, a civil liberties attorney and long-time advocate for the Constitution, correct in his assertion that "there is no such thing as justice - in or out of court." In meting out this particular miscarriage of justice, the Supreme Court recently refused to hear the case of a pregnant woman who was repeatedly tasered by Seattle police during a routine traffic stop simply because she refused to sign a speeding ticket.

Malaika Brooks, 33 years old and seven months pregnant, was driving her 11-year-old son to school on a November morning in 2004, when she was pulled over for driving 32 mph in a 20 mph school zone. Instructing her son to walk the rest of the way to school, Malaika handed over her driver's license to Officer Juan Ornelas for processing. However, when instructed to sign the speeding ticket - which the state inexplicably requires, Malaika declared that she wished to contest the charge, insisting that she had not done anything wrong and fearing that signing the ticket would signify an admission of guilt.

What happened next is a cautionary tale for anyone who still thinks that they can defy a police officer, even if it's simply to disagree about a speeding ticket. Rather than issuing a verbal warning to the clearly pregnant (and understandably emotional) woman, Officer Ornelas called for backup. Officer Donald Jones subsequently arrived and told Brooks to sign the ticket. Again she refused. The conversation became heated. The cops called in more backup. The next to arrive was Sergeant Steven Daman, who directed Brooks to sign the ticket, pointing out that if she failed to do so, she would be arrested and taken to jail. Again, Malaika refused.

Airplane

Propaganda Alert: Deputy al-Qaida leader -alibi- killed in drone strike

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© Unknown
Abu Yahya al-Libi
Deputy al-Qaida leader Abu Yahya al-Libi was killed in a drone strike in Pakistan, U.S. officials told NBC News.

A U.S. drone struck a militant compound early Monday morning in North Waziristan, part of Pakistan's northwestern tribal area. Pakistan security reports indicated the pre-dawn strike killed 15 insurgents. That brought the total killed in three attacks over the past several days to nearly 30.

Al-Libi was a leading al-Qaida operative who was viewed as one of five candidates to succeed Osama bin Laden as leader of the terrorist group when he was killed last year.

Comment: A Boo?
Yeah.
Alibi?


Eye 1

30,000 secret surveillance orders approved each year

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© Jonathan McIntosh
If the government spies on you but brings no charges, you'll never know.

A federal judge estimates that his fellow federal judges issue a total of 30,000 secret electronic surveillance orders each year - and the number is probably growing. Though such orders have judicial oversight, few emerge from any sort of adversarial proceeding and many are never unsealed at all. Those innocent of any crime are unlikely to know they have ever been the target of an electronic search.

In a new paper, called "Gagged, Sealed & Delivered" (PDF), US Magistrate Judge Stephen Smith bashes this culture of continuing secrecy. (Magistrate judges are important members of the federal judiciary; they handle many of the more routine judicial matters, such as warrant applications and initial case management.) In his work as a judge, Smith has become dismayed by the huge number of electronic surveillance orders he sees and by the secrecy that accompanies them.

When police execute a traditional search warrant, they generally bring with them a copy of that warrant and show it to the homeowner or target of the search. That's not always the case, of course; sometimes warrants remain sealed while a case is in progress so as not to tip off a suspect.

Target

Washington's Terrorists: US 'diplomats' arrested for transporting weapons in Pakistan

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© Press TV
The entrance to the Peshawar Motorway (file photo)
The Pakistani police have arrested three US diplomats in the city of Peshawar for possession of illegal arms.

Police officials told Dawn TV that the diplomats, along with three Pakistani nationals, were stopped at a routine checkpoint at the entrance to the Peshawar Motorway on Monday but they refused to allow the police to search their vehicles.

The police checked the "suspicious cars" anyway and discovered several assault rifles, pistols, and ammunition.

US Consul General Mary Richard visited the police station where the US nationals are being held for questioning and told the police they could keep the weapons but asked them to release the US diplomats.

In January 2011, Raymond Davis, a CIA agent operating under the cover of a diplomat, shot and killed two Pakistanis in Lahore, triggering a diplomatic crisis.

Pharoah

Let them eat cake! Unemployed bussed in to steward river pageant for free while British Royal Family swans down Thames

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Some of those hired as stewards had to spend the night before the pageant sleeping under London Bridge.
Coachloads of jobless people brought in to work unpaid on river pageant as part of Work Programme

A group of long-term unemployed jobseekers were bussed into London to work as unpaid stewards during the diamond jubilee celebrations and told to sleep under London Bridge before working on the river pageant.

Up to 30 jobseekers and another 50 people on apprentice wages were taken to London by coach from Bristol, Bath and Plymouth as part of the government's Work Programme.

Two jobseekers, who did not want to be identified in case they lost their benefits, said they had to camp under London Bridge the night before the pageant. They told the Guardian they had to change into security gear in public, had no access to toilets for 24 hours, and were taken to a swampy campsite outside London after working a 14-hour shift in the pouring rain on the banks of the Thames on Sunday.

Pirates

Washington's terrorists kill 80 Syrians as US pulls out of ceasefire

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© Hons/AP
Syrians look at an army tank damaged in clashes between rebels and government forces in the northern town of Ariha, in Idlib province.
Syrian rebels killed at least 80 government soldiers at the weekend, an opposition watchdog has said.

The attacks came after rebels warned they would act if Syria's president, Bashar al-Assad, failed to observe a UN-backed ceasefire.

The latest violence, and Assad's defiant speech to parliament on Sunday, raised questions about how long the UN and Arab League envoy, Kofi Annan, can realistically pursue his peace plan.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said local doctors had confirmed the names of 80 dead soldiers.

Insurgents told the British-based group they had killed more than 100 soldiers and destroyed some tanks in clashes across Syria, including in Damascus and Idlib province, in the north-west.

Light Sabers

Surprise! Washington's terrorists not committed to Annan peace plan anymore

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Terrorists, made in the USA
The terrorist Free Syrian Army (FSA) has abandoned the peace plan brokered by UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan, resuming its deadly attacks.

The terrorist group said on Monday that it has abandoned the ceasefire after the Syrian government gave no response to the rebels' deadline. The rebels had earlier threatened to abandon the ceasefire unless the army stops its operations against armed groups by Friday.

Major Sami al-Kurdi, a Free Syrian Army spokesman, said the rebels were no longer bound by the truce after their Friday deadline passed.

FSA had earlier urged Annan to issue a statement declaring his peace plan to have failed.

The announcement of rebels' abandoning the ceasefire and resuming their attacks comes as the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that Free Syrian Army has killed over 100 soldiers across the country over the weekend.

Comment: They never were 'committed' to peace. They are terrorists after all. The next stage is to try one last time to get a UN resolution, then its bombs away...


Bad Guys

America's Total War

drone
© Reuters / Gil Cohen Magen
President Obama promised change, but there's little of it in his war policies, which are harsher than those of George W. Bush.US drone bombings often target not just "terrorists" but all "military-age males in a strike zone as combatants."

"Unless there is explicit posthumous intelligence proving otherwise", that is.

As an extensive recent report in the New York Times explains, for all practical purposes Obama is applying what can best be described as a Total War Doctrine, bringing government, military and media propaganda PsyWar under one strategy.

The concept of "Total War" - war involving not just the military but all civilians irrespective of age or sex, together with the entire infrastructure of a country - became a horrible reality during the 20th century, driven for the most part by steering scientific discoveries and technological progress towards unlimited use in warfare. Total War is very much alive today and is being spearheaded by the United States and its Allies.

This is being abetted on all fronts by US, European and global mainstream media that willingly oblige. In the case of Obama's Total War Doctrine, the media go along with US official policy, and describe the murder of innocent people who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when American democracy-building drone bombs fall, as "militant combatants".

Comment: It won't stop because, as Lobaczewski wrote in Political Ponerology, "Germs are not aware that they will be burned alive or buried deep in the ground along with the human body whose death they are causing." Nothing less than a broad-spectrum shift in awareness would cause people to see the psychopaths for what they really are. For that to happen before the whole world is consumed by Total War, from where we're standing, is gonna take a miracle of some sort.


Bell

Secret Service Agents Can't Be Sued, Justices Rule

The Supreme Court on Monday unanimously ruled against a protester who said his free speech rights had been violated when Secret Service agents arrested him after he made critical remarks about the Bush administration's war policies.

The case arose from a 2006 visit by Vice President Dick Cheney to a mall in Beaver Creek, Colo. A Secret Service agent assigned to protect the vice president said he heard a man standing nearby say into a cellphone that he planned to ask Mr. Cheney "how many kids he's killed today." The man, Steven Howards, later approached Mr. Cheney and said the administration's "policies in Iraq are disgusting."

Mr. Howards also touched Mr. Cheney on the shoulder. Mr. Howards said the gesture was an openhanded pat. Secret Service agents described it as a forceful push. Writing for the court, Justice Clarence Thomas said the dispute over the manner of the touch "does not affect our analysis."

Crusader

No respite for pope as more documents leaked

pope
© Reuters
Milan, Italy - Pope Benedict got no rest on Sunday from a leaks scandal when an Italian newspaper published documents showing that his butler was not the only person in possession of confidential correspondence indicating a Vatican in disarray.

Benedict, 85, ended a weekend trip to Italy's industrial and financial capital Milan with a closing mass for an international gathering in which he praised traditional Catholic family values and re-stated his opposition to gay marriage.

But in its Sunday edition, the Rome newspaper La Repubblica published documents it said it had received anonymously after the arrest of the pope's butler on May 23.

A note received by the newspaper said there were "hundreds more" documents and that the butler, Paolo Gabriele, was just a scapegoat.