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Fri, 07 Oct 2022
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US Government Claims it has Proof of Bradley Manning Aiding the Enemy

Bradley Manning
© unknown
Pfc. Bradley Manning
Claim could seal Manning's fate on most serious charge if proven he knew enemy groups could obtain leaked files

The US government claims to have proof that Bradley Manning, the WikiLeaks suspect, knowingly passed state secrets to a location where it was bound to be obtained by enemy groups, a military court in Maryland has heard.

Captain Joe Morrow, a member of the five-strong prosecution team assigned to the case, said that the government would show at court martial that Manning had knowingly "aided the enemy" - the most serious of the 22 charges facing the soldier that carries the death penalty. Morrow said the evidence would show that Manning sent the information to a "very definite place" that he knew was used by the enemy.

He did not mention al-Qaida, though the terrorist network has been explicity named by the prosecution in previous hearings.

The insistence by the US government that it can prove Manning had actual knowledge that the WikiLeaks dump would be used by enemy groups was instantly disputed by the lead defence lawyer, David Coombs. He demanded that the government produce the evidence to which it was alluding.

"We haven't seen any evidence that the government has provided by discovery that supports any knowledge that the information would be obtained by the enemy," he said.

Manning has been in military jail for more than two years after he was arrested at the Forward Operating Base Hammer outside Baghdad. He is accused of being the source of the massive trove of secrets passed to WikiLeaks, and in turn published by the Guardian and other international newspapers, including Iraq and Afghanistan war logs and thousands of embassy cables.

Bizarro Earth

London's Militarised Olympic Games Conjures Up Orwell's 1984

London Olympics collage
© n/a
The London Olympics are fast taking on the appearance and tone of a full-scale land, sea and air military operation rather than an international sporting event.

With surface-to-air missiles stationed on top of residential apartment blocks, Royal Navy battleships on alert and Royal Air Force fighter jets and helicopters patrolling the skies over Britain's capital there is a foreboding sense of a nation at war instead of an occasion of internationalist fraternity that the ancient Games are supposed to embody.

The Games begin in just under two weeks. The latest development is the announcement by Britain's Ministry of Defence that 3,500 extra troops are to be deployed to ensure security at the 30 venues hosting sporting events. This is in addition to the 13,500 military personnel already assigned to protect members of the public and sports teams from the risk of terrorist attack.

British General Sir Nick Parker, overseeing the security arrangements, has said that one of the contingencies being planned for is dealing with a "9/11 type event".

The total troop deployment in and around London represents 7,000 more personnel than is currently on British operations in Afghanistan.

This figure is in addition to the 10,000 extra police officers and a division of 10,000 private security guards. It was the disclosure that G45, the private security firm with the Olympics contract, could not fulfill its manpower requirements to cover the Games that prompted the latest enlisting of additional soldiers.

The militarization of the Olympics was conveyed inadvertently by a spokesman for the Ministry of Defence when he said: "Many of the people whom the public will meet at the point of entry to any Olympic event will now be a serving member of the armed forces."


Pentagon Sends Carrier to the Middle East Early

© Agence France Presse/Ronald Reeves
Amid tensions over Iran and Syria, the United States has brought forward the deployment of an aircraft carrier to the Middle East to shorten the time when a sole carrier is in the region.
The Pentagon is sending the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis to sea four months ahead of schedule to ensure that there are at least two carriers in the Middle East.

The U.S. Navy has had two carriers operating in the Middle East for quite some time. It usually rotates one of the two carriers into the Persian Gulf for several weeks at a time while the other operates in the Arabian Sea, providing air support for the war in Afghanistan.

Today, Pentagon spokesman George Little confirmed that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has agreed to a recent request from U.S. Central Command to maintain a two-carrier presence in the Middle East.

In September the U.S. was going to go down to one carrier, as the USS Enterprise would not be replaced after it left the region. To prevent that from happening the Stennis has had its deployment orders changed from the Pacific to the Middle East.

Bad Guys

Libor Scandal: Was the petrol price rigged too?

petrol pump
© Alamy
Politicians and fuel campaigners last night urged the Government to expand its inquiry into the Libor scandal to see whether oil prices have also been falsely pushed up.
Motorists may have been paying too much for their petrol because banks and other traders are likely to have tried to manipulate oil prices in the same way they rigged interest rates, an official report has warned. Politicians and fuel campaigners last night urged the Government to expand its inquiry into the Libor scandal to see whether oil prices have also been falsely pushed up.

Concerns are growing about the reliability of oil prices, after a report for the G20 found the market is wide open to "manipulation or distortion".

Traders from banks, oil companies or hedge funds have an "incentive" to distort the market and are likely to try to report false prices, it said.

Brick Wall

US Jewish leaders criticise Israeli West Bank report that denies occupation

Dozens of American Jewish leaders and scholars have made a rare appeal to Isreali Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, asking him to make sure his government rejects a controversial report that denies Israel is occupying the West Bank.

In a letter to Netanyahu, more than 40 prominent Jewish figures predicted the report authored by former Supreme Court Justice Edmond Levy would tarnish Israel's image and jeopardize prospects for peace with the Palestinians.

"We recognize and regret that the Palestinian Authority has abdicated leadership by not returning to the negotiating table," they wrote in the letter, obtained today by The Associated Press. "Nonetheless, our great fear is that the Levy Report will not strengthen Israel's position in this conflict, but rather, add fuel to those who seek to delegitimize Israel's right to exist."

"The question is whether or not it is wise for Israel at this particular juncture to take a stand which would appear to most people to be the equivalent of annexing the West Bank," making Israel appear to be the obstructionist party in peace efforts, Gordis told The Associated Press.
Oh, maybe it would appear that they are annexing the West Bank because that is precisely what they are doing? Isn't the whole point of the illegal settlements to steal the land one small piece at a time until it becomes impossible for Palestinians to make any claims that can be realistically fulfilled?

Notice that the concern of these US Jewish leaders is entirely about the reputation of Israel, and has absolutely nothing to do with justice or recognizing the right of the Palestinian people to have a homeland.

Bad Guys

Paraguay 'Coup' an Outside job?

The democratically-elected leader of Paraguay was voted out of power by a mostly right-wing parliament after a brief trial. Many believe it was a coup, largely orchestrated from outside, while the president's successor is trying to validate the move.

­The ousting of President Fernando Lugo triggered domestic outrage as well as criticism from Paraguay's neighbors. Latin American free trade groups Mercosur and Unasur have suspended the country's membership, increasing its international isolation.


Former Monsanto Employee Exposes Fraud

© commondreams.org
This week the Food Nation Radio Network interviewed former Monsanto employee Kirk Azevedo about his concerns with the leading biotech company's practices, a timely interview as the battle over genetically engineered (GE) food regulation continues on a state, national, and international scale.

Azevedo graduated with a biochemistry degree from California Polytechnic State University and started working for the chemical industry doing research on Bt (or Bacillus thuringiensis) pesticides. Around 1996, he became a local market manager for Monsanto, serving as a facilitator for GE crops for the western states. He explained to Food Nation Radio how he had assumed that California cotton that was genetically engineered for herbicide resistance could be marketed as conventional California cotton (to get the California premium) since the only difference between the two, he believed, was the gene Monsanto wanted in the crop. However, one of Monsanto's Ph.D. researchers informed Azevedo that "there's actually other proteins that are being produced, not just the one we want, as a byproduct of genetic engineering process." This concerned Azevedo, who had also been studying protein diseases (including prion diseases such as mad cow disease) and knew proteins could be toxic. When he told his colleague they needed to destroy the seeds from the GE crop so that they aren't fed to cattle, the other researcher said that Monsanto isn't going to stop doing what it's been doing everywhere else.

Azevedo recalls his disillusionment:
I saw what was really the fraud associated with genetic engineering: My impression, and I think most people's impression with genetically engineered foods and crops and other things is that it's just like putting one gene in there and that one gene is expressed. If that was the case, well then that's not so bad. But in reality, the process of genetic engineering changes the cell in such a way that it's unknown what the effects are going to be.


U.S. Navy Fires on Fishing Boat Near UAE; 1 Killed

One person was killed and three others injured on Monday when a U.S. Navy ship fired at an approaching fishing boat off the United Arab Emirates, but officials did not immediately blame terrorism or cite an Iran-link to the still-murky incident.

© Reuters/MC3 Cale Hatch/US Navy/Handout
The U.S. Navy supply ship USNS Rappahannock maintains station as it prepares a replenishment at sea in this U.S. Navy photo handout photo taken in the South China Sea March 21, 2012.
Why the boat approached the U.S. refuel ling ship, the USNS Rappahannock, was still unclear, U.S. officials said. But the U.S. Navy said the small motor boat ignored repeated warnings to halt its approach before a security team fired rounds from a .50-caliber machine gun.

Even small boats dwarfed by the size of the U.S. vessel can still pose a threat. Two suicide bombers rammed an explosives-laden boat into the USS Cole in 2000, blowing a massive hole in its side and killing 17 U.S. sailors.

But the incident was also reminder of how quickly a confrontation can turn deadly in the Gulf, where tensions with Iran have triggered military buildup by the United States and its allies.

Those killed and injured in Monday's incident were not Iranians and it was unclear whether the incident may have been a mere misunderstanding. The UAE state news agency, quoting a government official, identified all of the dead and wounded as Indian nationals.

The shooting took place in the waters near the UAE port of Jebel Ali, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said in a statement.

"The U.S. crew repeatedly attempted to warn the vessel's operators to turn away from their deliberate approach," it said, adding the incident was under investigation.


Bill Gates donates £6.4m grant to British scientists for GM crops

© AP
Large investment: The Gates Foundation has donated a £6.4million grant to develop genetically modified crops in the UK.
British scientists have won a £6.4million grant from Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates to develop genetically modified crops. The Gates Foundation's donation is one of the largest single investments to the GM project in the UK.

The John Innes Centre in Norwich will use the fund to cultivate corn, wheat and rice capable of taking nitrogen from the air, meaning they need little or no fertiliser.

It is claimed the work will benefit struggling maize farmers in sub-Saharan Africa who cannot afford to treat their crops.

Comment: For a more in depth look at GM crops and how dangerous they are for our health and wellness read the following articles:

Genetically Modified Crops Cause Liver and Kidney Damage

The Public is Proved Right: GM crops are no panacea

Exposed: the great GM crops myth

GM crops 'may give lower yields'

Latest GMO Research: Decreased Fertility, Immunological Alterations and Allergies

Chinese consumers wary of GMO food: Greenpeace

The GM genocide: Thousands of Indian farmers are committing suicide after using genetically modified crops

Bad Guys

Chart Shows The Bilderberg Group's Connection To Everything In The World

The Bilderberg Group is 120-140 powerful people who meet each year to discuss policy. The meetings are closed to the public.

This graph we found on Facebook shows the members' connections to a ton of corporations, charities, policy groups and media. Everyone from Eric Schmidt to George Soros is a member. There are tons of conspiracy theories about the group, including that they control the world economy.

We took the findings with a grain of salt--after all, it's easy to trace an individual to a corporation and the graph doesn't specify what influence the member wielded.

But perhaps it's a compelling argument for why the meetings should be public.

Comment: What neither the chart nor Business Insider explain is that the vast majority of these companies and front organisations are cross-owned by the same few tiny clusters of shareholders.