MAY LOVE PREVAIL ON EARTH
May 18, 2004
The Writing on the Wall Series #27: War Criminals at "Work" - Please do not disturb...
This is most likely to be my only compilation for this week. Lots of messy, gory, despicable stuff in this one, a mere reflection of the dark violence visited upon this planet by scions of the baddies whose work is now being exposed to the glaring Light of universal Goodness and Love shone upon this world - in preparation for the coming New Age of Oneness with All That Is.
Earth Rainbow Network Coordinator
Free subscription to such compilations by sending a blank email to email@example.com
This compilation is archived http://www.earthrainbownetwork.com/Archives2004/WritingWall27.htm
"Look around and see the reality of what is happening all around us. The Government has become an organized crime ring. The pollution is to a point that's barely repairable and the President says it's ok because it simply would cost too much for his Corporate pals to legally dispose of it."
- Mark Glenn
"Even Yossi Sarid from the Yahad Party (formerly called Meretz), normally a staunch defender of the IDF, described actions in Rafah as "war crimes". My friend In'am called me from Gaza trembling with fear, and reported that the Palestinian news broadcaster broke down in tears as he spoke."
- Gila Svirsky
Worthy of Your Attention
9/11 International Citizens' Inquiry Toronto, May 25-30
Plan to attend the largest citizen inquiry into 9/11 ever held, in Toronto May 25-30. Please visit http://www.911inquiry.org for details about the program, speakers, and how to register online. The purpose of the Inquiry is to provide a forum for citizen 9/11 researchers to share the findings of their investigations with the general public. It is the most ambitious independent civic event of its kind so far and is entirely citizen-conceived, citizen-run, and citizen-funded. Organisers of each phase of the Inquiry are working closely together, and feature length video documentaries of Inquiry proceedings are already in production. Proceedings will also be published in book and web form and will be important educational resources for the future. With confidence sinking every day that the official U.S. governments Kean Commission will ask any genuine truth-revealing questions about 9/11, the work of these independent citizen Inquiries has become even more important. The 9/11 Skeptic Movement out of which they have grown, is now rapidly becoming a real hope for a better future. We hope you will want to become involved. Note: this is Phase 2 of the Inquiry. Phase 1 was held in San Francisco March 26-28, and Phase 3 is scheduled to commence in New York City on September 12, 2004. To watch video interviews from Phase 1, please visit http://www.snowshoefilms.com - Published by Emanuel Sferios, Webmaster of the 9/11 Visibility Project, in his May 13 newsletter. Subscription through http://www.septembereleventh.org - Kicking off the International Citizens' Inquiry Into 9/11, May 25 - 30 is a fabulous line-up of 9/11 related videos, live music, spoken word, and great speakers. Following is a brief synopsis of the first two days' program. Please
visit this page on our web-site for more details at http://www.911inquiry.org/May25-26schedule.htm
Check also the coming NYC May 22nd event: Stop the 9/11 Cover-up! sponsored by NY 9/11 Truth - http:/www.ny911truth.org - More on this in "Actor Ed Asner Endorses Toronto 9/11 Inquiry" below
Barrie Zwicker, Director of the International Citizens' Inquiry Into 9/11 is a guest on Vancouver's Co-op Radio, 102.7 FM
Wednesday May 19, 7:00 pm PST, (10:00 EST)
listen on-line at http://www.coopradio.org/stream.html
Also, be sure to listen in every Thursday at 11:00 am EST for 'The 9/11 Show' - CIUT FM 89.5 at http://www.ciut.fm/participate.html
"World Hydrogen Conference"
Tokyo, March 22 (Jiji Press)--Japan will host the 15th World Hydrogen Energy Conference June 28-July 1 for promoting the use of hydrogen as a new energy source and the full-fledged commercialization of vehicles running on hydrogen-based fuel cells, it was learned Monday. The conference, to he held at the Pacifico Yokohama convention center on the bay front of Yokohama, southwest of Tokyo, is likely to bring together about 1,200 people from 30 countries, according to its organizers, the Hydrogen Energy Systems Society of Japan and the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization. A total of 40 companies and organizations from around the world, including Japan, are planning to exhibit their latest hydrogen- related technologies, including hydrogen-based fuel cell vehicles. More than 500 research results will be announced at the conference, dubbed WHEC15.
The Most Important News On Earth
ACTION ALERT - ACTION ALERT - ACTION ALERT - ACTION ALERT!!!!
From: Gila Svirsky firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: May 18, 2004
Subject: Emergency right now in Gaza
We need your help.
There is an emergency situation right now in the Gaza Strip and the town of Rafah, in particular, with scenes that bring to mind Israel's invasion of Jenin and Nablus in the spring of 2002. So far today, 18 Palestinians were killed, but the action continues. Last weekend, 116 homes were destroyed, making over a thousand people homeless (http://www.btselem.org/) Hundreds more are slated for destruction. Amira Hass, filing dramatic daily reports from inside Rafah, describes the scenes of people grabbing their children and whatever comes to hand and fleeing their homes, anticipating the entry of the bulldozer-tanks (http://www.haaretzdaily.com/). Even Yossi Sarid from the Yahad Party (formerly called Meretz), normally a staunch defender of the IDF, described actions in Rafah as "war crimes". My friend In'am called me from Gaza trembling with fear, and reported that the Palestinian news broadcaster broke down in tears as he spoke.
Many -- Israelis, internationals and Palestinians -- are desperately trying to halt the bloodshed. The Israeli women's peace movement just placed an ad in Ha'aretz calling for an immediate halt to the violence and renewal of negotiations for a peace agreement that will extract us from all the occupied territories ("True and enduring solutions," we wrote, "are attained by negotiation, not destruction, revenge or humiliation"). This morning, forty women drove to Gaza to see if they could intervene physically, but they are being prevented from entering Gaza by the army. The women have set up an encampment at the Sufa checkpoint and say they will not leave until the army stops its actions there. Other peace and human rights organizations have placed newspaper ads, and many are organizing a larger delegation to join the women on Friday.
International figures have begun to speak out, but we need more, and quickly. Can you please take a moment to write a letter (email or fax) or make a phone call to any or all of the list below? A sample letter is appended.
Please take a minute to try to save someone's life or home. Imagine that you had to walk out the door of your home at this very moment, with nothing but what your arms can carry, and you would never see your home or its contents ever again. Please make a couple of calls.
Coalition of Women for Peace:
Sample letter text:
There is an emergency situation in the Gaza Strip right now. Please demand that Prime Minister Sharon halt the death and destruction wrought there by the Israeli army. The cycle of bloodshed must end.
Contact people (First try the US, European and UN officials. All the fax numbers work):
(1) President George W. Bush -- Tel (202) 456-2461; Fax (202) 456-2461.
(2) Secretary of State Colin Powell -- Tel (202) 261-8577; Fax (202) 261-8577.
(3) US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer -- Tel in Israel: (+972-3) 519-7575
(4) Your member of Congress:
Call the Capital switchboard toll-free: 1-800-839-5276 and ask to be connected to your member of Congress.
For your information, you can send a free fax by internet (to certain places only, but definitely area code 202 in the US) at http://www.tpc.int/sendfax.html. Note that this is a service provided for free, but is not to be used for bulk fax mailings because they can only handle a relatively limited number of faxes at once. [Thanks, Mike Wolfson, for this info.]
(5) UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, email@example.com
(6) Council of the European Union, firstname.lastname@example.org
(7) European Union, email@example.com
(8) Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Fax (+972 2) 670-5361
(9) Minister of Defense Shaul Mofaz, Fax (+972 3) 691-6940
(10) Minister of Justice Yosef Lapid, Fax: (+972 2) 628-5438
Thanks for doing this -- but please don't send me a copy of your letters, or I'll be flooded (I hope...).
1. Dress Red on Fridays in the US between now and election day in November
2. Bush's POW Porn
3. War, the God That Failed
4. Why the coming oil crisis will last
5. Rising oil prices become election issue
6. A Crude Shock
7. Building Democracy in Iraq and Other Absurdities
8. 45 sec. REALITY CHECK
9. Actor Ed Asner Endorses Toronto 9/11 Inquiry
10. Torture and War Crimes
11. Berg's Father and Firm Were On A Right-Wing 'Enemies' List
12. Fishy Circumstances and Flawed Timelines Surround American's Beheading
13. Evidence of U.S. Shenanigans in the Staged Beheading of Berg
14. ACLU Forced to Revise Release on Patriot Act Suit, Orwellian Secrecy Rules Cited
15. The 2003 Columbia Disaster : The "mother of all omens" for 2004 and beyond
Berg decapitation video was filmed inside the Abu Ghraib prison (MUST READ!)
Los Angeles, Alta California - May 16, 2004 - (ACN) There is now ample evidence that the video showing the decapitation of 26 year old Nicholas Berg of Philadelphia by purported Al queda members is a complete fraud. The real Nick Berg may or may not be dead, but the heavily edited video is nothing but a fake. This is the conclusion of La Voz de Aztlan after a frame by frame analysis and the conclusion of hundreds of film, medical and other experts world wide who downloaded, viewed and analyzed the video as well. Literally thousands of persons world wide requested the video, which is rapidly disappearing from the Internet, after our news service published "Nick Berg decapitation video declared a fraud by medical doctor" on Wednesday May 12 and which was linked by other independent news services on the World Wide Web. With the advent of the Internet, computers and sophisticated programs it has become increasingly difficult for governments to "pull the wool" over the eyes of their citizens. The Internet has essentially allowed freedom loving people around the world to form communication networks that can now out compete the best intelligence government agencies or special operations groups. This has certainly been the case with the hastily released and shoddy video showing five phoney Al queda members participating in the decapitation of Nicholas Berg that was intended, exclusively, to defray attention from the scandalous sexual abuses of Iraqi POW's that took place at the Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad. Evidence in fact shows that the Berg decapitation was filmed inside the walls of the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, this cursed dungeon where probably Satan himself roams its corridors. CLIP - Lots of telling pictures! SEVERAL EARLIER ARTICLES ON THIS BELOW
19 Palestinians killed in Israel sweep through Rafah, Bush "troubled" (May 18)
RAFAH, Gaza Strip : At least 19 Palestinians were killed and more than 30 wounded as dozens of Israeli tanks and hundreds of troops swept through this Gaza refugee camp in one of the bloodiest operations of the intifada. Two of the victims were children, hit by bullets as they played inside their home, while one Palestinian was killed when a bomb he was planting exploded. Advertisement Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz said that no time limit had been set for "Operation Rainbow" that was designed to smash tunnels used to smuggle in weapons from under the border with Egypt. The Palestinian Authority riposted by accusing Israel of conducting a "war of extermination" while US President George W. Bush said he was troubled by the violence.Most of the fatalities were members of the three main Palestinian armed factions -- Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. But two of the victims were named as 11-year-old Ahmed Mohammed al-Mughayer and his sister Asmaa, 15, who were hit in the head by Israeli bullets as they played in the family's home, witnesses and medical sources said. A majority of those killed were shot dead by Israeli troops in the Tel al-Sultan neighbourhood of the camp where marksmen had taken up position on rooftops. Some bodies were only recovered later when the Israeli authorities finally authorised ambulances into the zone. CLIP
Over 150,000 attend rally calling for Gaza withdrawal (May 16)
More than 150,000 people attended a left wing demonstration at Rabin Square in Tel Aviv on Saturday evening under the banner 'get out of Gaza and start talking." Event organizers assessed that some 250,000 were present, Army Radio reported.The rally opened at 8 P.M. with a minute of silence to commemorate the 13 Israel Defense Forces soldiers killed in the Gaza Strip over the past week.Amid frequent outbreaks of applause and cheering, opposition leader Shimon Peres told the crows that 80 percent of Israeli want peace and just one percent is trying to block it."We will not allow them," Peres said. "We must not support a puppet government that follows the delusional ideas of the right."Yahad Chairman Yossi Beilin said that for the past three years the peace camp has been dormant that today it finally awoke. CLIP
Israeli Court Gives Go Ahead for Gaza Demolitions (May 16, 2004)
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's Supreme Court cleared the way Sunday for the army to demolish Palestinian refugees' homes near a flashpoint Israeli-controlled corridor on the Gaza-Egypt border.Secretary of State Colin Powell said the United States opposed the demolition of homes in the Rafah refugee camp and urged an end to the cycle of violence. Around 120,000 Israelis rallied in Tel Aviv for Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's stalled Gaza pullout after militants in the area killed 13 soldiers this week, dealing the Middle East's mightiest army its worst blow in two years.Refusing to extend a stay sought by a Palestinian rights group, the court appeared to set broad terms for bulldozing homes in the "Philadelphi" buffer zone, saying the army could destroy houses for operational purposes or to protect soldiers.Israeli political sources said hundreds of homes in Rafah refugee camp, on the edge of the corridor where the army suffered seven of the 13 fatalities, could be razed to widen the area and make it safer to patrol.U.N. relief officials estimated that Israeli armored bulldozers flattened more than 80 buildings in Rafah in the past days, leaving about 1,100 Palestinians homeless. CLP
'They Tied Me Up Like a Beast and Began Kicking Me' (16 May 2004)
As America struggles to come to terms with military abuse in Iraq, similar stories are emerging from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Tarek Dergoul, a Briton released from the camp in March, talks here for the first time about his two-year ordeal. 'I was in extreme pain and so weak that I could barely stand. It was freezing cold and I was shaking like a washing machine. They questioned me at gunpoint and told me that if I confessed I could go home. 'They had already searched me and my cell twice that day, gone through my stuff, touched my Koran, felt my body around my private parts. And now they wanted to do it again, just to provoke me, but I said no, because if you submit to everything you turn into a zombie. 'I heard a guard talking into his radio, "ERF, ERF, ERF," and I knew what was coming - the Extreme Reaction Force. The five cowards, I called them - five guys running in with riot gear. They pepper-sprayed me in the face and I started vomiting; in all I must have brought up five cupfuls. They pinned me down and attacked me, poking their fingers in my eyes, and forced my head into the toilet pan and flushed. They tied me up like a beast and then they were kneeling on me, kicking and punching. Finally they dragged me out of the cell in chains, into the rec yard, and shaved my beard, my hair, my eyebrows.' Tarek Dergoul, a British citizen born and brought up in east London and released without charge after almost two years at Guantanamo Bay, was describing one of many alleged assaults he says he suffered in American custody. With the world still reeling from the photographs of prisoner abuse and torture at the Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq, Dergoul's testimony suggests that Guantanamo hides another terrible secret - proof, in the shape of hundreds of videos shot by US guards, that here, too, America's war against terror has led to wanton brutality against helpless detainees. (...) As at Abu Ghraib, Dergoul said, violence and sexual humiliation appeared to be routine. 'When I arrived, with a bag over my head, I was stripped naked and taken to a big room with 15 or 20 MPs [military police]. They started taking photos and then they did a full cavity search. As they were doing that they were taking close-ups, concentrating on my private parts.' Possibly because he was British, Dergoul said he was spared the beatings he saw being administered to others in neighbouring cages. 'Guards with guns and baseball bats would make the detainees squat for hours, and if they fell over from exhaustion, they'd beat them until they lost consciousness. They called it "beat down".' CLIP
U.S. Guards 'Filmed Beatings' at Terror Camp (16 May 2004)
Senator urges action as Briton reveals Guantanamo abuse. Dozens of videotapes of American guards allegedly engaged in brutal attacks on Guantanamo Bay detainees have been stored and catalogued at the camp, an investigation by The Observer has revealed. The disclosures, made in an interview with Tarek Dergoul, the fifth British prisoner freed last March, who has been too traumatised to speak until now, prompted demands last night by senior politicians on both sides of the Atlantic to make the videos available immediately. They say that if the contents are as shocking as Dergoul claims, they will provide final proof that brutality against detainees has become an institutionalised feature of America's war on terror. In the wake of the furore over the abuses photographed at Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq, US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has continued to insist they were the work of a few rogue soldiers, and not a systemic problem. The disclosures come as the top American commander in Iraq, Lieutenant-General Ricardo Sanchez, announced he has barred all coercive interrogation practices, including forcing prisoners into stress positions for long periods and disrupting their sleep, except in very rare circumstances. CLIP
Knowledge of Abusive Tactics May Go Higher (May 16)
(...) Although no direct links have been found between the documented abuses and orders from Washington, Pentagon officials who spoke on the condition that they not be named say that the hunt for data on these two topics was coordinated during this period by Defense Undersecretary Stephen A. Cambone, the top U.S. military intelligence official and long one of the closest aides to Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld. The coincidence in timing has in turn prompted several lawmakers to say they intend to probe more deeply in coming weeks to determine whether the specialists and sergeants handling the prison guard dogs and pulling hoods over prisoners' heads were in fact implementing policy directives instigated by Washington that may have set the stage for abuses. CLIP
Bush Administration Laid Groundwork for Torture
A US Soldier Warns: Militarism Leads to Torture
A US soldier recalls his training in 1983 to kill Salvadorans. "They wanted us to think of them as less than human·.The combination of de-humanizing the enemy and becoming subservient to the chain of command leaves many soldiers capable of torture. While many, including myself, are shocked by the pictures of the torture being conducted by our troops in Iraq, I understand why those soldiers were capable of carrying out these shocking acts."
Magazine Reports That Rumsfeld OKd Interrogation Plan (May 16)
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld authorized the use of unconventional interrogation methods in Iraq to gain intelligence about the growing insurgency, ultimately leading to the abuse of Iraqi prisoners, the New Yorker magazine reported on Saturday. The Pentagon immediately issued a strong denial. The magazine said Rumsfeld gave the green light to methods previously used in Afghanistan for gathering intelligence on members of al Qaeda, the magazine reported on its Web site. CLIP
UNICEF Alarmed by US Detention of Children (May 11, 2004)
(Report, UNICEF) -- The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is profoundly disturbed by news reports alleging that children might have been among those abused in detention centers and prisons in Iraq. "Although the news reports have not been independently substantiated, they are alarming nonetheless," UNICEF spokesman Damien Personnaz told a news briefing in Geneva. Personnaz noted that any mistreatment, sexual abuse, exploitation or torture of children in detention is a violation of international law
U.S. Soldier: 'I Killed Innocent People for Our Government'
List of Coalition Casualties (15 May 2004)
(AP) - As of Saturday, May 15, 775 U.S. service members have died since the beginning of military operations in Iraq last year, according to the Department of Defense.
Newsweek Poll: Bad Days for Bush (15 May 2004)
With news from Iraq becoming ever bleaker, the president's numbers are way down. Still, he hasn't lost ground to John Kerry. As his administration grapples with the fallout from the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, President George W. Bush's approval ratings have dropped to 42 percent, according to the latest NEWSWEEK poll, a low for his presidency. Fifty-seven percent say they disapprove of Bush's handling of the war in Iraq. And 62 percent say they are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the United States, a number that has been steadily increasing since April, 2003, when it was 41 percent. Still, when pitted in a hypothetical two-way race with Sen. John Kerry, the presumptive Democratic Party nominee, Bush holds his own. Forty-five percent of Americans say they would vote for Bush; 46 percent say they would support Kerry and 9 percent remain undecided. (...) "You are doing a superb job," Bush said in his first public comments to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld as the Abu Ghraib scandal was unfolding. "You are a strong secretary of defense, and our nation owes you a debt of gratitude." Others agree: a majority (57 percent) do not feel that Rumsfeld should be removed from his job (30 percent feel he should go). Americans are split over whether the abuse of Iraqi prisoners was a case of low-ranking soldiers acting on their own (36 percent) or authorized by higher-ups (45 percent). Nineteen percent say they don't know. CLIP
The John-John Ticket (May 17)
John Kerry wants John McCain to be his running mate. (...) As Gore Vidal tells us, there is but one party in Washington and it is the Property Party. In other words, all property worth owning shall remain in the possession of big honking corporations. Dem-Repub partisanship is merely a squabble over formula. Our citizen-politicos agree wholeheartedly with the strikebreaker Calvin Coolidge, who once said "the business of America is business." "Democrats say a bipartisan Kerry-McCain ticket, featuring two decorated Vietnam War veterans from different parties and regions of the country, would give them a powerful edge in the debate over who can best lead the nation in the war on terror. "It does not require a whole lot of reading between the lines to understand this. In order to "best lead the nation in the war on terror," Kerry and McCain -- as determined participants in an immoral war resulting in the death of 2-3 million Vietnamese and 58,000 Americans -- are remarkably qualified to finish the job in Iraq and in due course invade Syria and Iran, maybe even Saudi Arabia. Thus the Johns avidly embrace the degenerate neocon ethos -- that is to say total and "preemptive" war against the third world or "under-developed" countries bearing appreciable measures of oil, minerals, lumber, etc. -- beginning with the Arab Middle East and its uncooperative Muslim hordes. Let's call it Bush Lite minus opposition to abortion. CLIP
Global Warming Ignites Tempers, Even in a Movie (12 May 2004)
LOS ANGELES Any studio that makes a $125 million movie about global warming is courting controversy. But 20th Century Fox does not seem to have fully anticipated the political firestorm being whipped up by its film "The Day After Tomorrow." Environmental advocates are using the film's release, scheduled for May 28, as an opening to slam the Bush administration, whose global warming policies they oppose. Industry groups in Washington are lobbying on Capitol Hill to make sure the film does not help passage of a bill limiting carbon-dioxide emissions, which many scientists say contribute to global warming. Meanwhile on Tuesday Fox sparred with celebrity advocates who complained that they had been disinvited to the movie's premiere, only to be reinvited later in the day. All this is occurring as the entertainment industry is on the defensive, with television networks acknowledging they are censoring themselves to avoid being accused of promoting indecency and the Walt Disney Company distancing itself from a film critical of the administration's foreign policy. In a telephone news conference on Tuesday former Vice President Al Gore compared the exaggeration of the film's premise to the approach of the Bush administration to global warming. "There are two sets of fiction to deal with," Mr. Gore said. "One is the movie, the other is the Bush administration's presentation of global warming." He accused the White House of "trying to convince people there's no real problem, no degree of certainty from scientists about the issue." The news conference was organized by moveon.org, an Internet-based liberal advocacy group. CLIP
Arctic temperatures are warming rapidly, says polar explorer (May 18, 2004)
OTTAWA - Summer temperatures in the Arctic have risen at an incredible rate over the past three years, and large patches of what should be ice are now open water, a British polar explorer said Monday.Ben Saunders, forced by the warm weather to abandon an attempt to ski solo from northern Russia across the North Pole to Canada, said he had been amazed at how much of the ice had melted."It's obvious to me that things are changing a lot and changing very quickly," said a sunburnt Saunders less than two days after being rescued from the thinning ice sheet close to the North Pole. CLIP
The Kucinich Factor (May 13)
The progressive candidate may be the only hope for the Democratic Party. -- Dear Kerry supporters in Oregon, I have a message for you from progressives and Greens both within and outside the Democratic party. The best way you can help elect John Kerry President in November is: Vote for Dennis Kucinich in the May 18th Oregon primary. (...) If the Democratic party cannot somehow assure progressives and Greens that their concerns will be part of a Kerry presidency, it will be a disaster for all who want to see Bush gone. If the left splits off to third parties, we will be facing, again, an electorate almost equally split among the major parties that the Republicans will find all too easy to steal. If we in Oregon, a state that has often led the country in adopting environmental and progressive standards, vote strongly for Kucinich in the primary, we send a very important message -- and messenger -- to the Democratic National Convention without in any way diminishing Kerry's ability to gain the nomination.We send the message that environmental and socially progressive issues must, once again, be an important part of the Democratic Party platform that John Kerry will then be empowered to address in the remaining campaign. Kucinich could very well be the one person who can hold the left for Kerry, thus helping to do the most important thing -- get Bush and his gang of thieves out of power. CLIP
MOST EXCELLENT IDEA. PLEASE NETWORK WIDELY
Date: 15 May 2004
From: Donata firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Dress Red on Fridays in the US between now and election day in November
A friend forwarded this to me, and I thought you might be interested in it. Thank you for all your hard work! I get information from you that I don't see anywhere else.
-------- Original Message --------
My name is Nadia Jensen and I have an idea for a quiet revolution.
Please take 5 minutes to read my email and then help me if you can: Here's some history behind this idea: When Norway was occupied by Germany in 1940, No rwegian women began to knit RED caps for children as a way of letting everyone know that they did not like what was happening in their country, that they didn't like having their freedom taken away by the Nazis.
My great aunt, Karin Knudson Myrstad, was one of the women who knit red caps for her children and others. Similarly, in Denmark, women knit red-white-and blue caps (colors of the Allies) for the very same reason.
The result was that whenever Norwegians and Danes left their homes --to go to the store, to work, etc, they could see that THE MAJORITY opposed what was going on in their country. As you know, both countries organized effective Resistance efforts and changed history -- everything that happened began simply by wearing red!!!! (or the colors of the Allies, in Denmark).
I believe, as many of us do, that at the very heart of our democracy is our right to oppose certain policies of our government. Increasingly, our Government is redefining "freedom" in ways that make too many Americans perceive that it is risky to oppose his policies -- and, in particular, current inroads about individual freedoms and policies in the U.S. and abroad.
However, many of us DO oppose what our government is doing to individual rights--and I have an idea that will allow all of us to recognize each other very easily so we can see that WE ARE THE MAJORITY.
SO... I have been thinking that it's time to take action in a way that is effective and easy for all of us to do: Just wear red every Friday between now and election day.
Wear a little or a lot-- just be sure that when you leave your house to go about your day -- to work, to school, to the store, to the gas station, wherever you go in your daily routine -- that everyone who sees you will see that you are wearing red because you believe in freedom and you don't agree with our current administration's policies at home and abroad. I'm really certain that we'll see that lots of us wearing red for freedom -- because WE ARE THE MAJORITY. We just need a way to show each other who we are!!! Between now and election day, ask everyone you know to wear red for "Freedom Fridays".
I have already spread the word to friends and have had a very enthusiastic response. This email has been forwarded around the country by many who receive it - feel free to send in on to your friends and co-workers.
HIGH-OCTANE SATIRE! ASTOUNDING ARTICLE! HERE ARE SEVERAL EXCERPTS
Forwarded by NCEpanacea@aol.com
Bush's POW Porn
May 14, 2004
I was wondering when I would get a glimpse into the erotic nature of George W. Bush. Now, with the release of The Photos of the sexual torture that lurks within the bowels of Bush's cells, I'd say I've got my glimpse.Now excuse me while I barf along with the rest of civilized and uncivilized humanity. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Each of The Photos is worth a thousand new terrorists, fully loaded, strapped up and ready to blow up as many ugly Americans as possible. (...)
"Their treatment does not reflect the nature of the American people," Bush tried to spin like a dervish when The Photos were first unleashed. "That's not the way we do things in America," he said. Later he clarified on Al-Hurrah TV, "What took place in that prison does not represent the America that I know. "Of course, it's not the America Dubya knew. That's because even though he did things that would have landed other guys in the can, Poppy's friends bailed him out before he had to spend any real time in an American prison. UnCurious George also seems to have never heard of Rodney King, beaten by LAPD on tape, or Abner Louima, sodomized with the business end of a toilet plunger during an NYPD interrogation. Since the Shrub is a proud non-reader, he wouldn't know that according to U.S. corrections officials, inmates and human rights advocates, the physical and sexual abuse of prisoners, similar to what's in The Photos, takes place in American prisons every day. This is "the way" some people "do things" at many prisons in America, minus the cameras (so far). Bush should know, since he was governor of Texas, said to have some of the worst, most abusive prisons on Earth. But the only state he seems to govern with any skill is the state of Denial.
Here in LA, we have our own Twin Towers, also known as the Downtown Men's Prison. As everyone knows who's been through there, when you first get booked, they treat you with "sleep deprivation," providing no place to sit or lie down except an icy floor, giving you nothing to eat but rotten baloney on stale bread, and not letting you go to the toilet, in hopes that you'll break quickly and cop a plea. As for beatings and rapes, the guards usually get -- or just let -- other prisoners take care of that.If you ask too many questions, they put you in the "Suicide Ward," which has nothing to do with being suicidal; it's just a euphemism for torture. Here, they take away essentials such as clothes and eyeglasses with the laughable excuse that you could use these things to kill yourself. Then they make you stand naked in front of guards and other inmates for hours in the cold.
When I visited an inmate in the Twin Towers "Suicide Ward," I was astonished to see all the prisoners wearing nothing but these bizarre blue asbestos cloaks supposedly fastened with Velcro. But the Velcro was worn and couldn't fasten at all, so the cloaks kept falling apart. In other words, all these prisoners were naked in front of us visitors. And hey, this wasn't even in Texas.Military Intelligence, CIA, mercenaries working for CACI International, and maybe Wolfie and Rummy themselves seem to have directed torture like we see in the Abu Ghraib Photos. But the practices are, for the most part, an extension of the American prison system. Lane McCotter, a contractor who had resigned under pressure as director of the Utah Department of Corrections in 1997 after an inmate died while shackled naked to a restraining chair for 16 hours, was chosen by the Bushies to rebuild Abu Ghraib and train the guards there.One of the soldiers in The Photos (a segment producer for Bush's POW Porn), Staff Sgt. Ivan (Chip) Frederick, had worked for six years as a guard for the Virginia Department of Corrections, and was described by his warden as "one of the best." Scott Bobeck, a special agent in the U.S. Army's Criminal Investigation Division, testified that Sgt. Frederick and Corporal Grainer "were put in charge because they were civilian prison guards and had knowledge of how things were supposed to be run." That knowledge came from working in a U.S. prison system that now cages over two million Americans.
(...) The Photos are more than genital. They have meaning. They have mystery. In fact, they're fraught with more mysterious meanings than a Freudian dream with Reichian overtones and shades of "Strange Fruit." They show torture, of course, clearly forbidden by the basic tenets of the Geneva Convention, not to mention human decency. But they show more than that. They show sexual torture. Nakedness, leashes, penises, butts, masturbation, latex gloves, panties, grins of ecstasy, grimaces of agony. They show a dark drama, a Theater of Cruelty that Antonin Artaud only dreamt about, complete with masks and props and imaginative staging, heavy on the symbolism, daring to cross psychological and religious boundaries, daring to sodomize the Saddamites, and smile for the camera. It is the stuff of our sadomasochistic, exhibitionist-voyeuristic, hetero/homosexual, racist-colonialist nightmares.
(...) It's hard to imagine anything more offensive to Muslims than to see fellow Muslims being forced by laughing Christians to get naked and do sexual things to each other. Not that these images don't offend Christians too, resembling, as they do, some Hieronymous Boschian lower depths of Satanica. Jews might find the images horrifically reminiscent of naked Jewish men and women being put through their paces by Nazi concentration camp guards.
CLIP - Read the whole article at http://www.counterpunch.org/block05142004.html
EXACTLY MY THINKING...
Forwarded by Ken NCEpanacea@aol.com>
War, the God That Failed
by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.
May 15, 2004
Thinking back to the scandals of the Clinton years, when all of America was supposedly shocked and horrified at the thought of the president and the intern, the 1990s seem to be the Age of Innocence.
The Oval Office was relatively unstained as compared with the torture-sex scenes from a Bush administration-run prison in Iraq, documented in pictures and movies being viewed in an imperial temple by US elected officials in the imperial capital.
It is actually hard to think of a precedent for this: perhaps the Roman Empire under Caligula, whose rule combined claims of godliness with militarism, imperial marauding, political paranoia, fiscal profligacy, and extreme decadence.
We should add mass death to the list. We are right to wince and then condemn pictures of naked prisoners in dog collars; not even Paul Wolfowitz was willing to defend such practices in testimony. And yet those private groups that bother to count civilian dead point to figures that exceed 10,000 in this war alone. These figures rise by 5, 10, 20, and more per day.
These aren't deaths by injection but by machinegun bullets shot, and smart bombs dropped, by US soldiers and paid for by US taxpayers, and the US doesn't even bother to mention them much less count them. Torture is awful; but should it really be necessary to point out that the mass death of innocents is no less worse?
Why do the former strike our moral conscience while the latter seems like a bloodless number that could rise or fall a hundred or a thousand without consequence? Perhaps because these mass deaths have produced no lasting images that compare to those from Abu Ghraib.
Or maybe it is what Hollywood directors have always known. Audiences are shaken less by the image of a city being blown up than by a dinner fork slowly penetrating the cheek of a single individual. Our subjective reactions do not, however, change the objective reality.
Who are these people being imprisoned and killed? The Red Cross estimated that 9 out of 10 people being held at the prison were guilty of nothing but being in the wrong place at the wrong time -- driving while Iraqi. But just as striking is the supposed charge against that 10th person, imprisoned for resisting an invading foreign regime that has imposed brutal martial-law for longer than a year. This same regime had been the reason for crippling trade sanctions in the previous 10 years that the UN and other organizations say account for more than a million deaths.
With all this brutality, killing, and destruction (done in the name of freedom and democracy!), the attention being given to officially tolerated torture is disproportionate, to be sure, but not unwarranted. Thanks to the prison pictures, a much-needed element has been introduced into the calculus of US foreign policy: humanitarianism. In wartime, the human element does tend to get lost.
If you have seen the video clip of the US soldiers gunning down innocents from an Apache helicopter, shooting people on the ground while looking through viewfinders of the sort you see at the video arcade, you gain insight into how the Bush administration has approached foreign relations with disregard for the right to life, and how it has produced a culture of depravity and moral degradation within the US government.
But average Iraqis have many other images hitting them on a daily basis. In Karbala, just yesterday, for example, US tanks rolled around one of Islam's holiest cemeteries in one of Islam's holiest cities, firing at anything that moved. Here is a place that is home to the shrine to Mohammad's cousin Ali Ibn Abi Talib, and Shiite teaching is that people buried here immediately enter paradise.
Anyone who believes that such activities constitute "anti-terrorist" measures is a blooming idiot. In fact, such activities, and this war in general, could not have been better designed to create and inspire global terrorism. If the US government needed an enemy to replace and outdistance Communism, it is certainly doing its best to create one.
The champions of the Iraq War are in transition phase, already assuming that history will hold them accountable for an ongoing fiasco and thereby trying to put the best spin on it. The way to think about their efforts is by analogy to the early supporters of the Bolsheviks, during the period of war communism.
The revolution had gone badly, as evidenced by starvation, misery, death, and no obvious way out apart from backing away from core doctrine. This is what Lenin ultimately did, but in the meantime, the backers of the Bolsheviks had to provide an explanation for why history's great leap forward was straight into the abyss. The trick is to do it without giving up the core ideological conviction. So too with the warmongers who must concede the failure without surrendering their attachment to the warfare state.
The supporters of the Iraq War were no less fanatical than the Bolsheviks in their conviction that power could accomplish miracles at the push of a button. People like David Brooks are now saying that the embrace of power was a mistake. "We were blinded by idealism," he explains in a manner reminiscent of every apologist for a fanatical despot in the history of the world. Idealism! When your "idealism" results in military dictatorship, mass jailings and killings, rivers of blood, and the seething anger of half the world, you need to do more than confess that you might have underestimated the "response our power would have on the people we sought to liberate."
Let us state the lesson in ways that might penetrate the brains of these scribblers. When a person's "idealism" is contingent on issuing a dictate that people must obey or be killed, and on the assumption that human beings will do what they are told to do so long as the knife is at their throat, and on the further assumption that the people paying with their money and lives will believe every lie you tell, it is time to rethink your ideals. Otherwise they will end in mass suffering and devastation.
The core problem in Iraq right now is not some rogue corporals engaged in sadomasochistic torture; the problem is the "idealists" who think nothing of attempting to reconstruct an entire region of the world using bombs and bloodshed.
War is idealism in the same way that Communism and Nazism were idealism: the fanatical dream of people who insisted that the world conform to their vicious imaginings, and just so happened to get hold of the power of the state and used it to make their "ideals" happen. They are the people who give us killing fields. War too is a god that has failed.
People say that the problem is too complicated, that the mess is too extensive to be repaired. That's not true. The US could pull out today. It could stop its imperial policies. It could end the insane levels of military spending. It could seek peace with the world. The Bush administration still has time to apologize to the world. The US could seek friendship and reconciliation and trade, and genuinely mean it and stick to it. We could become again the country that the founders wanted us to be. Now that's an ideal.
Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr. is president of the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, editor of LewRockwell.com and author of Speaking of Liberty.
Why the coming oil crisis will last
By Paul Erdman
HEALDSBURG, Calif. (CBS.MW) -- Before considering the effect of surging global demand for energy on the price of crude, I would like to discuss the potential structural change in the supply of oil.
This change will have deep-seated implications beyond the cyclical supply/demand crisis we are experiencing at present.
In 1956, M. King Hubbert, an American geophysicist working at the Shell Oil research laboratory in Houston, came up with a startling prediction: Oil production in the United States would peak in the early 1970s, signaling the beginning of an irreversible decline in the domestic output of crude petroleum. This event would be merely the precursor of a peaking out of oil production on a global scale, signaling the onset of the end of the Age of Oil.
Almost every energy expert on earth rejected this thesis out of hand -- until the early 1970s when, indeed, exactly that happened. Output of crude oil in this country peaked in the year 1970, and it has been falling ever since.
This event has since become known in industry circles as "Hubbert's Peak." Despite its fundamental significance where the future of our oil-based economy was concerned, for decades it turned out to be a scientific thesis that remained generally unknown. For those who had heard of it, it was derided as just another of those crackpot "end of the world as we have come to know and love it" theories that are usually espoused by gold bugs or other doomsday prophets of the same ilk.
That has now changed. Its acceptance by the academic world is evidenced by the recent publication of two books dealing with this subject:
* "Hubbert's Peak: The Impending World Oil Shortage" by Kenneth. S. Deffeyes, professor emeritus at Princeton University and a former colleague of Hubbert at Shell.
* "Out of Gas: The End of Age of Oil" by David Goldstein, vice provost and professor of physics at the California Institute of Technology.
These scientists have applied the same methodology developed by Hubbert in his analysis of the outlook for American crude oil output to world oil production. They have come to the conclusion that global output of crude oil now also is on the verge of peaking out and that when this happens, contrary to all expectations, the amount of crude of oil flowing into the world market will most probably begin fall by somewhere between 5 and 10 percent annually.
This conclusion runs contrary to all previously held expectations, for two reasons:
1. It was assumed that rapid new discoveries of oil reserves would continue well into the 21st century, ensuring that the future supply of oil would continue to stay well ahead of demand, just as it had during the entire 20th century.
2. Aside from the impact of new discoveries, given the amount of crude petroleum known to have been in the ground when we first started to pump it -- roughly 2 trillion barrels -- were we to continue to pump oil and consume it at the rate we are doing now, we will not have pumped the last drop for at least another 40 years. And it is only at that point where the so-called supply crisis will occur.
Those who subscribe to Hubbert's theory tell us that both of these expectations are dead wrong:
1. As regards new discoveries, they point out that the last great oil field, the Ghawar field in Saudi Arabia with reserves of 87 billion barrels, was discovered 45 years ago. Since then geologists have scoured the earth searching for major new fields -- to no avail. The largest remaining unexplored area is the South China Sea, which is considered by geologists to be promising but not spectacular.
But as Goldstein points out: "Let us suppose for one euphoric moment that one more really big one is still out there to be discovered. Even if we were to stumble onto another 90-billion barrels field tomorrow (the equivalent of another Ghawar field) Hubbert's Peak would be delayed by a year or two, well within the uncertainty of the present estimates of when it will occur. It would hardly make any difference at all."
2. Regarding timing, the bell shape of the history of crude oil output dictates that the supply crisis will begin in earnest not when the last drop of oil has been pumped out of the ground sometime in the hazy future, but rather when we have used up half the oil that existed, not all of it. Once we have reached that halfway point, existing oil fields will start to become exhausted faster than the new oil fields can be tapped. The rate at which oil can be pumped out of the ground will then start to decline.
This, as Goldstein points out, is the essence of the bell-shaped curve hypothesis. There is a growing consensus that the crucial turning point in output will probably occur in the second half of this decade, in or around 2007.
The crucial remaining question is: how fast will the gap then grow between supply and demand? All other things being equal, the decline side of the curve will be a mirror image of the initial increase. But of course there will be mitigating factors, such as energy conservation measures or the development of substitutes to oil as a primary energy source, ranging from hydrogen to nuclear to solar.
But the odds seem overwhelming that none of this will happen in time to head off an energy crisis that will dwarf anything we have ever experienced.
Rising oil prices become election issue
By David Callaway
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS.MW) -- Until this week, the presidential election seemed rather easy to handicap.
With half the nation against the war in Iraq and half of it for the war, the deciding factor for the election was always going to be the economy. And since economic growth charged ahead in the first quarter, taking corporate profits and the stock market with it, President Bush seemed a lock for re-election.
Because now the disastrous war in Iraq has come home in a way that even the most isolated Americans will not be able to ignore: oil prices. With oil trading above $40 a barrel at its highest level since the last war with Iraq, and many convinced it could go even higher, the threat to our economic recovery has become very real.
I'm not talking about gasoline prices, or whether you have to pay $1.80 or $2.80 a gallon at the pump. I'm talking about a full-fledged stall in economic growth, spurred by the simultaneous impact of rising interest rates to combat oil-inspired inflation and falling corporate profits as oil prices hit bottom lines across U.S. industry.
That's why the stock market is lurching around like a mad cow this week. That's why the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDU) is down almost 300 points in the last five days, despite Wednesday's late rally.
U.S. oil inventories are falling as demand is rising, with global demand this year forecast to be the strongest since 1988, according to the International Energy Agency. Airlines in the United States and Europe are already passing fuel costs on to their customers. And the petroleum trade deficit of a record $12.5 billion in March was cited as one of the main culprits in pushing the entire U.S. trade deficit to a record that month. See full story.
CBS MarketWatch columnist Paul Erdman, currently writing a three-part series on global implications of rising oil prices, argues that we are heading into an energy crisis in the next several years that will make the 1973 oil shock seem like a tailgate party. See Erdman's latest column.
But shorter term, if they do indeed stall economic growth and paralyze financial markets over the next several months, oil prices will remove the one big club on which Bush was counting to use to bash John Kerry this November.
To be sure, there are many reasons that oil prices are higher these days. These include tighter inventories, refineries operating at maximum capacity, and unprecedented demand from China as its economy soars. But the escalating violence in the Middle East, especially the two key oil markets of Iraq and Saudi Arabia, has kept the normally hair-trigger oil markets even more volatile this year.
Iraq's oil flow is currently pretty steady, and just this week it was reported to have returned to pre-war levels. Nevertheless, the daily stream of new atrocities and acts of terror from the region has increased concern that the country's oil facilities could be a target.
Some say OPEC could step in and save the day by raising production levels by up to 2 million barrels a day when its leaders meet next week. While welcome, that would only cause a short-term drop in prices, soon offset by even more demand.
What the energy markets crave more than anything is some form of certainty about the continued flow of Middle Eastern oil. The capture of Osama bin Laden would be a huge help. A successful transition of government in Iraq this summer, followed by an announced timetable of American troop departures in the fall, would also send a message. Both are tall orders.
And so the game on Wall Street now turns from assessing earnings and interest rates to estimating what type of impact an era of $40 oil or higher will have on the U.S. economy. What businesses will be hurt the most? What impact will it have on consumer spending? And what will that mean for the bull market in stocks we've seen in the last year?
The convergence of the Iraq war and the economy issue couldn't come at a worse time for Bush. How he handles the crisis over the next six months will define his presidency in the minds of millions of Americans when they go to the polls in November.
If there was ever a time for a coherent energy policy, this is it.
Forwarded by "Mark Graffis" email@example.com>
A Crude Shock
May 14, 2004
By PAUL KRUGMAN
So far, the current world oil crunch doesn't look at all like the crises of 1973 or 1979. That's why it's so scary.
The oil crises of the 1970's began with big supply disruptions: the Arab oil embargo after the 1973 Israeli-Arab war and the 1979 Iranian revolution. This time, despite the chaos in Iraq, nothing comparable has happened - yet. Nonetheless, because of rising demand that is led by soaring Chinese consumption, the world oil market is already stretched tight as a drum, and crude oil prices are $12 a barrel higher than they were a year ago. What if something really does go wrong?
Let me put it a bit differently: the last time oil prices were this high, on the eve of the 1991 gulf war, there was a lot of spare capacity in the world, so there was room to cope with a major supply disruption if it happened. This time there isn't.
The International Energy Agency estimates the world's spare oil production capacity at about 2.5 million barrels per day, almost all of it in the Persian Gulf region. It also predicts that global oil demand in 2004 will be, on average, 2 million barrels per day higher than in 2003. Now imagine what will happen if there are more successful insurgent attacks on Iraqi pipelines, or, perish the thought, instability in Saudi Arabia. In fact, even without a supply disruption, it's hard to see where the oil will come from to meet the growing demand.
But wait: basic economics says that markets deal handily with excesses of demand over supply. Prices rise, producers have an incentive to produce more while consumers have an incentive to consume less, and the market comes back into balance. Won't that happen with oil? Yes, it will. The question is how long it will take, and how high prices will go in the meantime.
To see the problem, think about gasoline. Sustained high gasoline prices lead to more fuel-efficient cars: by 1990 the average American vehicle got 40 percent more miles per gallon than in 1973. But replacing old cars with new takes years. In their initial response to a shortfall in the gasoline supply, people must save gas by driving less, something they do only in the face of very, very high prices. So very, very high prices are what we'll get.
Increasing production capacity takes even longer than replacing old cars. Also, major new discoveries of oil have become increasingly rare (although in my last column on the subject, I forgot about two large fields in Kazakhstan, one discovered in 1979, the second in 2000). Petroleum engineers continue to squeeze more oil out of known fields, but a repeat of the post-1973 experience, in which there was a big increase in non-OPEC production, seems unlikely.
So oil prices will stay high, and may go higher even in the absence of more bad news from the Middle East. And with more bad news, we'll be looking at a real crisis - one that could do a lot of economic damage. Each $10 per barrel increase in crude prices is like a $70 billion tax increase on American consumers, levied through inflation. The spurt in producer prices last month was a taste of what will happen if prices stay high. By the way, after the 1979 Iranian revolution world prices went to about $60 per barrel in today's prices.
Could an oil shock actually lead to 1970's-style stagflation - a combination of inflation and rising unemployment? Well, there are several comfort factors, reasons we're less vulnerable now than a generation ago. Despite the rise of the S.U.V., the U.S. consumes only about half as much oil per dollar of real G.D.P. as it did in 1973. Also, in the 1970's the economy was already primed for inflation: given the prevalence of cost-of-living adjustments in labor contracts and the experience of past inflation, oil price increases rapidly fed into a wage-price spiral. That's less likely to happen today.
Still, if there is a major supply disruption, the world will have to get by with less oil, and the only way that can happen in the short run is if there is a world economic slowdown. An oil-driven recession does not look at all far-fetched.
It is, all in all, an awkward time to be pursuing a foreign policy that promises a radical transformation of the Middle East - let alone to be botching the job so completely. Bob Herbert is on vacation.
Date: 14 May 2004
Subject: Building Democracy in Iraq and Other Absurdities
Watch the Left Line Up Behind the Imperial Agenda Building Democracy in Iraq and Other Absurdities
By STEPHEN GOWANS
May 14, 2004
Who believes the following?
Foreign troops should leave Iraq immediately.
The US occupation authority, and the Iraqi Governing Council, should be disbanded just as quickly.
An interim government should be appointed, not by the UN, not by the US, not by the occupation authority, and not by the Iraqi Governing Council, but by Iraqis themselves.
Elections should follow, to be organized, run and supervised by Iraqis, not the UN, and definitely not the US.
The rebellion led by Moqtada Sadr against occupation forces is justifiable and worthy of support.
Answer: A majority of Iraqis, according to a recent poll conducted for the US occupation authority .
What's the chance Washington will listen?
Answer: Absolutely none.
Answer: Because quitting the country, and leaving Iraqis to run the place themselves, would interfere with the US project of...building democracy in Iraq.
Absurd? So what else is new?
According to the poll:
Over 80 percent of Iraqis want foreign militaries out of their country.
Eight of 10 have no confidence in the Coalition Provisional Authority.
More than four of five say that Iraqis alone should supervise the 2005 elections.
Two-thirds in Basra support the insurgency.
And less than one-tenth of one percent say the Iraqi Governing Council should appoint the interim government -- a whole lot higher than the number who think the US should, which is none.
To make matters worse, the poll was taken before photos of cocky US guards striking thumbs up poses as they humiliated Iraqi prisoners dribbled out of the notorious Abu Ghraib prison. One can only imagine how much more dead set Iraqis are now against a continued US presence.
To say the US occupation has no legitimacy in the eyes of Iraqis is to say too little. Think of the Nazis occupying France.
Most Americans will say so.
Oh sure, some will admit that under the Bush administration the US has hardly followed Dale Carnegie's advice on winning friends and influencing people, but this is an anomaly, surely.
Well, yes and no. The Democrats foreign policy would stick closely to Carnegie's text, while still screwing over other people with as much zeal as the Bush administration has. The difference would be skin deep, which, in the run-up to Election '04, has become all the difference in the world, according to those who loathe Bush with a fury and are looking for a peg to hang a vote for Kerry on.
Not that Bush isn't loathsome. When he settled into Washington I had a good deal of fun ridiculing his pack of velociraptors as they set out to "shape the international security situation in line with US interests and objectives." It was cathartic.
But I soon realized that calling the Bush cabinet a pack of velociraptors, as vicious as its members are, was a mistake. It made it seem that it was the attributes of the people in power that made US foreign policy warlike and expansionist.
If you believed this, the solution was clear: Get rid of the velociraptors, and you get rid of a bloody, vicious, imperialist foreign policy.
But US foreign policy has always been this way, no matter who was in charge, velociraptors or pacific apatosauruses. And it has never been particularly concerned with the opinions -- or fate -- of the foreign. ers who've been its victims. Iraqis are simply the last in a long line.
Starting from the Revolutionary War, the US has engaged in warlike activity somewhere in the world in three of every four years of its existence . And the prizes, for that part of the population that owns and controls the economy, have been rich indeed: land, mines, plantations, oil and energy rights, export markets, low-wage labor, and military bases -- hundreds of them in scores of countries, outposts to guarantee that more and more of the world is open to US exports and investment, whether the indigenous population likes it or not.
And how many aggressions has the US been involved in since 1999, a mere half-decade? Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iraq again.
US militarism hardly looks like a policy of a group of people in power. It looks more like something that is built in -- systemic and hoary and bound to carry on in the usual fashion no matter whose name plate sits on the desk in the Oval Office.
Which says that getting rid of the group now in power, and replacing it with another group -- as has been done time and time again in US history -- isn't going to change what makes the US go to war, or outrage the sovereignty of others.
That's all the more true, given that the presumptive Democrat contender to the White House, John Kerry, looks more like Bush on steroids than Bush-lite when it comes to foreign policy questions.
Kerry says his military will be bigger than Bush's , and that he too will use force preventively and unilaterally .
And recently he pledged that, unlike Bush, he'd get the job done in Cuba . Castro, and all his intolerable baggage -- full-employment, free health care, and free education -- would be swept away, to be replaced by the phony freedom and democracy Iraqis are so grateful the US is ramming down their throats.
Sadly, the Left will line up behind this right-wing, pro-imperialist anyway -- stupidly, desperately, unsure what do to, but to toss the dice once again, in a fixed game.
And if that's not as absurd as the US staying in Iraq over the objections of a vast majority of Iraqis, for democracy, what is?
Stephen Gowans is a writer and political activist who lives in Ottawa, Canada. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. "80% in Iraq Distrust Occupation Authority," The Washington Post, May 13, 2004.
2. Harry Magdoff, "Imperialism Without Colonies," Monthly Review Press, New York, 2003. p. 115.
3. "On foreign policy, Kerry is not far from Bush," The Globe and Mail, March 3, 2004.
4. "Kerry Condemns Bush for Failing to Back Aristide," The New York Times, March 7, 2004; John Laughland, "If it's war you want, vote Kerry," The Spectator, April 10, 2004.
5. "Bush's Failed Policies on Cuba," http://www.johnkerry.com, May 7, 2004
Kurt Vonnegut | Cold Turkey
Many years ago, I was so innocent I still considered it possible that we could become the humane and reasonable America so many members of my generation used to dream of. We dreamed of such an America during the Great Depression, when there were no jobs. And then we fought and often died for that dream during the Second World War, when there was no peace. But I know now that there is not a chance in hell of America's becoming humane and reasonable. Because power corrupts us, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Human beings are chimpanzees who get crazy drunk on power. By saying that our leaders are power-drunk chimpanzees, am I in danger of wrecking the morale of our soldiers fighting and dying in the Middle East? Their morale, like so many bodies, is already shot to pieces. They are being treated, as I never was, like toys a rich kid got for Christmas. CLIP
Date: 13 May 2004
Subject: 45 sec. REALITY CHECK
Aloha! With hundreds of thousands of U.S. troops now in 122 of the worlds 191 countries, and military or government "service" looming for all citizens, a global takeover by the New World Order elite seems almost assured (you'll recall the first President Bush spoke publicly of the NWO in the early 90's after many decades of it being planned quietly by "insiders" who are identifiable).
With the Patriot Act and other condtitioning, Americans have now been softened-up to the point they can be influenced or coerced to support Martial Law despite the Bill of Rights. All that is needed is the excuse of civil disorder, "emergency", or detonation of a WMD to suspend the Constitution and establish a Police State dictatorship by Presidential Order.
See a powerful alternative future at
Goodwill to you,
Date: 13 May 2004
Subject: Actor Ed Asner Endorses Toronto 9/11 Inquiry
You'll find this on our website too! http://www.911inquiry.org
May 13, 2004
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Actor Ed Asner Endorses Toronto 9/11 Inquiry
Actor and Peace Activist Ed Asner has expressed his support for the International Citizens Inquiry Into 9/11, to be held in Toronto May 25 - 30. The Toronto gathering is expected to be the largest citizen inquiry into 9/11 ever held.
In a letter to Inquiry Director Barrie Zwicker, Mr. Asner stated:
"The importance of asking questions about what really happened on 9/11 cannot be over-estimated. Your citizen initiative is ambitious and laudable.
Because people from more than 70 countries - including 26 Canadians - died that day, it is entirely appropriate that such an Inquiry take place on Canadian soil."
Last month Mr. Asner issued a public statement on the need for a full and fair investigation of the anomalies of 9/11.
Ed Asner won five Emmy awards for portraying the character of Lou Grant in the Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970-1977) and the spin-off series Lou Grant (1977-82). He won two more Emmies for performances in "Rich Man, Poor Man" and "Roots".
Mr. Asner's movie credits include "JFK", "Fort Apache-The Bronx" and "Skin Game".
Mr. Asner is also a well known a crusader and activist. He was National President of the Screen Actors Guild from 1981 to 1985. Asner supports many humanitarian and political causes. Committed to peace, he has expressed his strong opposition to America's invasion of Iraq.
The full text of Mr. Asner's letter in support of the 9/11 Citizens Inquiry Movement follows below.
More than 27 presenters will be attending the Toronto Inquiry, being held May 25 to 30 at the Ukrainian Community Centre and Convocation Hall in Toronto.
This week it was announced that John Gray, best-selling author of Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus will speak at the Toronto 9/11 Inquiry on Sunday, May 30th at Convocation Hall. He will join 9/11 widow Ellen Mariani and investigative journalist Michael C. Ruppert on stage to speak on the topic "What Really Happened on Sept. 11th? The Need for Truth to Heal the 9/11 Families and America".
Here follows Ed Asner's statement in full:
Mon, 26 Apr 2004
Dear Peace & Justice Leader(s),
I am Ed Asner. As you may know, I've dedicated much of my life to promoting peace & justice issues in America.
I would like to suggest to you emphatically that the 9-11 truth movement is the most pressing issue of the peace & justice movement today. Here is why. 9-11 has been used to justify "endless war" and a continual rollback in civil liberties that seems to have no end in sight.
Yet, 9-11 remains the least examined tragedy in modern American history.
Americans would have never agreed to the last two wars and the Patriot Act's disturbing policy . . . had it not been for 9-11. There are many disturbing issues around 9-11 that have yet to be examined in any meaningful way by our media, Congress, and even by the 9-11 Commission.
These include accountability for the massive breakdown of air defense and plane intercept procedures as described in FAA and DOD regulations, which were violated on 9-11... This breakdown and astounding unpreparedness by U.S.domestic defense agencies is puzzling to say the least, given the detailed reports our government had of the coming attacks that were bizarrely suppressed by key officials. For example, FBI Agent Coleen Rowley suggested that her offices' attempts to alert higher ups in the FBI of the pre 9-11 activities of Zacharias Moussaoui "seemed to have been consistently, almost DELIBERATELY thwart[ed]..."
While George Tenet, Director of the CIA, had received a memo in August of 2001 (one month before the attacks of 9-11) on this report entitled, "Islamic Extremists Learn to Fly." Yet, Tenet took no action on this memo. The FBI agents responsible for the now famous "Phoenix Memo" regarding Osama Bin Laden sending students to the U.S. to attend civil aviation schools, also struggled to get their higher ups to act on this information.
To date, no one has been held accountable for the massive defense failures on 9-11, nor for the bizarre suppression of critical warnings prior to 9-11.Furthermore, we still have no explanation for why the head of Pakistani intelligence, who was meeting with top Bush Administration officials in Washington on 9-11-2001, had wired lead hijacker Mohammed Atta $100,000.00 weeks before 9-11.
We still do not know who made the insider stock trades in weeks and days leading up to 9-11, by betting "against" United and American Airlines stocks (the aircraft used as missiles on 9-11). What we DO KNOW is that $5 million of those insider stock trade "winnings" apparently by someone who had foreknowledge of the coming attacks, were made the day before 9-11 at AB Brown Trust. AB Brown Trust was headed until his induction into the CIA by Buzzy Krongard, who is now the Executive Director of the CIA. We also know that the current head of AB Brown Trust quietly resigned his position on 9-11, with no media scrutiny nor apparently government scrutiny. Lastly, and perhaps most bizarre is the fact that $2.5 million of those stock "winnings" against these airlines made at AB Brown Trust... remain unclaimed. We deserve to know why no one has been held accountable, and who made those insider stock trades.
We also deserve to know why the Bush Administration allowed members of the Bin Laden family to quietly leave the U.S. after 9-11, with virtually no questioning by the FBI, and at a time when other Americans were not allowed to fly. There are many other profound, and bizarrely "unasked" questions around 9-11.
I urge all to read "The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 9/11" by David Ray Griffin, and endorsed by Howard Zinn, and to view "The Great Deception" documentary by acclaimed Canadian television journalist Barrie Zwicker. Peace & justice leaders and activists will find these works a great resource for getting current on the 9-11 truth issue, and can be great organizing tools to educate others.
I fear that if the underlying issues of 9-11 truth are not demanded, that Iraq may be but a flame on an ocean of gasoline that may be used to ignite war after war after war. We cannot, as a peace & justice movement only address the flames.
We must look at the fuel being used to justify the flames of war and repression at home and abroad.
We must look deeply at the events leading up to, on and since 9-11. We must demand full 9-11 truth. I encourage all local and national peace & justice activists and organizations to join Philadelphia Peace Action and other peace & justice organizations nationwide who are now beginning to work with and becoming involved with the National 9-11 Visibility Project at http://www.septembereleventh.org and to list your local efforts contact information there, so 9-11 truth activists across the nation can get involved with you to demand full 9-11 truth. The National 9-11 Visibility Project has worked with 9-11 family members, and become a media source conducting interviews and linking media with 9-11 family members, including BBC World Wide Radio Network, The O'Reilly Factor, and others. By listing your local contact information for your local 9-11 truth activities at www.septembereleventh.org media visiting the site can find your contact information as well as local activists who want to join your efforts.
Sincerely, Ed Asner
The Toronto Inquiry is open to members of the public and the news media. Anyone interested in attending can register by calling (416) 963-5562 or toll-free
1-866-234-7438, or by logging onto the Inquiry website at http://www.911inquiry.org
Phil Gillies, Co-ordinator of Fundraising and Promotion
The International Citizens Inquiry into 9/11 - Phase 2 May 25-30, 2004, Toronto, Canada 7B Pleasant Boulevard, Box 958 Toronto, ON Canada M4T 1K2 1-866-234-7438 toll free 416-963-8414 fax
International Citizens' Inquiry Into 9/11 May 25 - 30, 2004 - Toronto, Canada
7B Pleasant Boulevard, Box 958 Toronto, ON., Canada M4T 1K2 ph: 1-416-963-5562 fax: 1-416-963-8414 Toll Free North America 1-866-234-7438
Date: 13 May 2004
From: "Michel Chossudovsky" email@example.com>
Subject: Torture and War Crimes
Centre for Research on Globalisation
Centre de recherche sur la mondialisation
GLOBAL RESEARCH (CANADA) : FEATURE ARTICLES ON TORTURE AND WAR CRIMES
Bush appoints a Terrorist as US Ambassador to Iraq, Michel Chossudovsky
Crimes in Iraq: "As American as Apple Pie", Felicity Arbuthnot, 14 May
The Merciless Killing of Nicholas Berg, Marwa Elnaggar, 14 May
American army committed war crimes in Falluja on an unprecedented scale, Orit Shohat
Torture: United Kingdom, United States and Israel Kings of Pain, John Stanton
Did the US Military Target and kill the Red Cross Delegate on April 8 2003 to undermine the ICRCs activities in Iraq? Michel Chossudovsky,
God, Country and Torture, William Blum
Abu Ghraib: Enough Shame for All, Jack Random
Bertrand Russell Tribunal: Bush Cabal Plotted War on Iraq Years ago, Sara Flounders
William Rivers Pitt: 'War Crimes at Abu Ghraib'
Marjorie Cohn | War Crimes
Soldier: Superiors Gave Abuse Orders
New York Times | The Abu Ghraib Spin
General Who Made Anti-Islam Remark Tied to Torture Case
Torture Photos in Afghanistan?
Robert Scheer | Thread of Abuse Runs to the Oval Office
Pascal Bruckner | American Intervention in Iraq: The Appalling Mess
From a Strange Encounter With Iraqi Police to Fatal Capture
To subscribe to TruthOut: firstname.lastname@example.org
Recommended by Dana DR_00@webtv.net> - There are very sad pictures of his crying parents at the URL below.
Berg's Father and Firm Were On A Right-Wing 'Enemies' List
by Fintan Dunne, Editor
Research by Kathy McMahon
12th May, 2004 10amET
LIVE AUDIO INTERVIEW 12th May 3pmET
Fintan Dunne live interview with Alex Merklinger on Mysteries of the Mind discussing the latest on Nick Berg case: Duration 20 mins
The family firm of beheaded American Nick Berg, was named by a conservative website in a list of 'enemies' of the Iraq occupation. That could explain his arrest by Iraqi police --a detention which fatally delayed his planned return from Iraq and may have led directly to his death.
Nick Berg, 26 disappeared into incommunicado detention after his arrest by Iraqi police in March, 2004. He vanished again after his release 13 days later. His body was found last Saturday in Baghdad, and a video of his beheading --supposedly by a radical Islamic group-- was posted on the Internet on Tuesday.
The official story of his gruesome murder has many dubious aspects, not least the real reason why Iraqi police detained the young man at a checkpoint. New research by BreakForNews has uncovered a plausible explanation.
The FreeRepublic.com web site and forum has a reputation for right-wing views, fanatical Republicanism and relentless pro-war activism.
On 7th March, 2004, just three weeks before the first anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, an 'enemies' list of anti-war groups and individuals was posted on the Free Republic forum.
It began: "Here you are, FReepers. Here is the enemy."
The list had been copied from publicly available endorsements of a call to action for an imminent anniversary antiwar protest on 20th March, 2004. The protest was being organized under the banner of the A.N.S.W.E.R Coalition (Act Now to Stop War & End Racism).
Among those listed as having endorsed the call to action was this entry: "Michael S. Berg, Teacher, Prometheus Methods Tower Service, Inc."
That's Nick Berg's father, Michael who acts as business manager for his son in their family radio communications firm, Prometheus Methods Tower Service.
Both father and son cared deeply about Iraq. But they were on opposite sides of opinion on the occupation --though you would never know that from reading the New York Times.
Michael was ardently antiwar, whereas his Bush-supporting son was in favor of the war to the extent that he had already visited Iraq seeking to help with rebuilding efforts.
Just seven days after "Michael Berg" and "Prometheus Methods Tower Service" had come up on that Iraq war , his son Nick Berg returned to Iraq under the business name of Prometheus Methods Tower Service.
The scene was set for tragically mistaken suspicions --which were to end in the horrifying death of an honorable and blameless American. A humanitarian who had traveled several times to Third World countries --such as Ghana, to teach villagers construction techniques.
The web traffic to the Free Republic forum --and it's forum membership-- include significant numbers of serving and former US military.
Many members take their online activism very seriously. Some delight in causing mischief for those they think are identified as "enemies."
Within minutes of getting their hands on the antiwar names, one was boasting of having contacted the military about active service personnel who were on the list:
"I forwarded the list to the ISC (the command you listed), the district officer... the district legal office and the investigative services office."
"The poor moron is not going to know what hit him. Is this being mean-spirited? NO! Someone against our military does not belong in the military!"
Another was already investigating a member of the Coast Guard on the list:
"I took a look at his yahoo and he has a site which is not real fond of the war on drugs OR the war on terrorism.... That particular coastie needs some serious trouble to come his way...."
" I spoke on the phone to a senior chief yesterday in Virginia.... [who] could not believe what the guy was doing. He was both astounded and angry. I think [he] is in for some big, big trouble."
If that list could end up on an Internet forum, then it could just as readily end up with the FBI, and eventually in the hands of those in Iraq who are keen to track or harass antiwar activists entering the country.
Alternatively, the enthusiasts on Free Republic have the contacts and the clear determination to have ensured the list quickly got to the right places.
At the time the list was posted, Nick Berg had just come back from an Iraq trip lasting from late December to Feb. 1. He had reported no problems whatsoever with Iraqi police during that visit.
Yet, within two weeks of the list being posted, Nick Berg --back in Iraq on his final fatal trip-- was reportedly detained in Mosul at an Iraqi police checkpoint. The official explanation is that authorities thought his identification might have been forged and were checking his authenticity.
But a more likely reason is that by then authorities in Iraq had discovered that a 'Berg' of Prometheus Methods Tower Service was in the country, and issued a detention instruction to Iraqi police because they misidentified Nick Berg as an antiwar activist entering Iraq to work for the 'enemy'.
That could explain why he was held incommunicado for 13 days, without recourse to a lawyer; why US officialdom was singularly unheeding of his mother's pleas; why the FBI visited his family to question them; why it took a US court order secured by the family to pressure his release.
And why he was cruelly murdered soon after that release, like many others around the world who suffer such a fate at the hands of state-condoned death squads --sometimes just hours after their release from official detention.
That's the final sordid twist in this grisly story.
If the world was an uncomplicated place, then this tale would end with the mistaken arrest of Nick Berg.
We could finish by noting that Nick's father is reportedly accusing the US government of contributing to his son's death. Unable to find work in Iraq, Nick Berg's last trip was set to be a short one. He planned to return to the US on the 30th of March.
Michael Berg charges that his son's detention until 5th April, was a violation of civil rights which fatally delayed his exit from Iraq and instead left him dangerously stranded in the middle of the explosion of violence which erupted in early April, 2004.
But there are much graver aspects to all this. Another chilling perspective is best summarized by the wry cynicism of Michael Rivero at WhatReallyHappened.com
In a commentary on the beheading of Nick Berg, Rivero writes:
"How wonderfully lucky for Bush and the NeoCons that such a great piece of pro-war distract-from-the-torture-scandal event happens at this particular moment."
Rivero's world-weary realism strikes a chord with his popular website's visitors, but will undoubtedly shock unseasoned observers. However he is far from alone in questioning the official line. Others have noted the too-white hands and military at-ease stance of the hooded captors in the video.
The killing has certainly eased the international discomfiture of the US.
The problem with assumptions that al-Queda is responsible for Berg's beheading, is that Musab al-Zarqawi is mentioned in a caption on the videotape of the killing.
Al-Zarqawi came to our attention in January, 2004 when the US military claimed to have intercepted a letter of his written to the al-Queda leadership. But the content of the letter read like a US military propaganda statement on the situation in Iraq.
In the letter al-Zarqawi wrote of Iraqis coming to welcome the US presence in Iraq, and about how al-Queda was loosing ground in it's war against the US.
In February, 2004 an article "The Zarqawi Gambit," by Greg Weiher on Counterpunch was deeply skeptical of the letter:
"..if you were Karl Rove, you couldn't design a better scenario to validate the administration's slant on the war than this. That's a good reason to maintain a healthy skepticism. In fact, there are a number of good reasons to take this story with a grain of salt (maybe a three- or four-pounder)."
The US has been keen to paint the opposition to the occupation as composed of many foreign fighters tied to al-Queda. The letter was clearly fabricated for propaganda purposes, with al-Zarqawi as it's new al-Queda star.
But if al-Zarqawi is merely a flimsy propaganda creation, then what confidence can we have in the official line that al-Zarqawi and al-Queda murdered Berg?
The only plausible alternative is a covert, black operation orchestrated as part of the seedier arm of US foreign policy --which generally only come to light when candid photographs, for example, reach the public domain.
But that's an explanation which many would reject on the grounds that no force allied to the US --no matter how black its operations-- would have members so callous as to even countenance the cold-blooded beheading of a US citizen.
However, there is a mindset amplified by war passions and found among the gung-ho brutes who beat Iraqis to death; found among the thuggish mercenary death squads who roam to slay at will; and found among the cold-blooded sociopaths who have planted bombs for political strategic reasons.
It's war. And war begets a wartime mindset.
Nick Berg's detention indicates that authorities regarded him an an antiwar activist and possibly also as an 'enemy.'
That original post on Free Republic contains a telling indication of a mindset, which in the heat of war could well kill an American it regards as the "enemy."
A mindset which has now reacted to Michael Berg's loss of his son like this:
"I wonder what he thinks about his Muslim buddies now... "
A mindset displayed by the search keywords used on Free Republic to categorize the list of antiwar supporters. The keywords are:
APPEASENIKS; DAMNCOMMIES; ENEMYWITHIN; LEFTISTS; PEACENIKS; RATS; SCUMBAGS; TRAITORS; TREASONOUSSCUM; USEFULIDIOTS; WARONTERROR
Related by same author:
The Sham Saddam Scam
Copyright © 2004 BreakForNews.com
Attribute for Fair Use. Page URL:
SEE THE MANY OTHER ARTICLES LINKED AT http://www.kathymcmahon.utvinternet.com/mrn/NickBergEnemiesList.htm
"CIA did it to take the heat off the Pentagon"
by Leo Caesius
"The Berg video is a montage of two separate videos taken from two cameras. This is apparent from the time in the lower right-hand corner, which changes as the angle of the shot changes.
Additionally, the audio must have been redubbed after the film was shot; it is 7 seconds out of sync with the video.
Fishy Circumstances and Flawed Timelines Surround American's Beheading
UPDATE 12:45PM Central: This just in -- U.S. spokesman says decapitated American was never held by U.S. forces
With several news outlets reporting that Berg's family is angry from the US government over their son's violent death and revelations that "Berg was detained by Iraqi police at a checkpoint in Mosul on March 24. He was turned over to U.S. officials and detained for 13 days" (in other words, he was detained by the US military just prior to his death) -- (AP 5/11/04) we have to question what really happened and who was really behind Berg's horrific murder.
We have received several emails from listeners questioning what really happened including this one:
me and a friend were discussing recent news events and trying to piece together the information presented to us, thought you might want to look into this further, they said in the news that nicholas berg was killed 2 weeks ago (i think), however in the video the culprits who killed him said they were "avenging iraqi prisoner abuse" but those photos weren't released until last week, so my question is how is that even a possible motive if he was killed prior to the abuse photos being released?? maybe i am misinformed but thought id ask the question to someone who would look into it
And this one:
Hey Alex, I know people like me who have learned not to trust our government tend to see a conspiracy under every rock. With that said... The picture the media is now showing of the guy the terrorist beheaded as revenge for what went on in the Iraqi prisons looks odd to me. If you look at the men dressed in black, they all seem well fed. Actually most look fat. That bothers me, because these guys are fighting a war and eating on the run. They are constantly on the move and should be either very fit and trim or scrawny and malnourished because of the same reasons. One thing they should not be is fat like couch potatoes. If you look at all of the photos of the prisoners who were naked who supposedly were just plucked of the street, most of them are thin. Just an observation Alex
And this one:
1) extremely convenient "wag the dog" timing at the height of furor regarding U.S. torture of Iraqis
2) CNN poll question: "Is the Berg killing a reason for withholding any remaining Iraq prisoner abuse pictures?" Bush has been reported to be struggling with question of whether Pentagon should release additional torture photos. Given that the alleged decapitation of Berg was allegedly prompted by the first wave of torture photos, Bush could now cite "national security" issues for witholding additional materials.
3) Berg's last known whereabouts was in U.S. custody.
4) Berg shown in video wearing orange jumpsuit known to be of U.S. issue (compare with pictures at Guantanamo).
5) Berg mysteriously captured by Al-Quaeda (still wearing jumpsuit). Either he escaped from U.S. captors or U.S. let him out -- with orange suit and all -- to be immediately apprehended by Al-Quaeda (before he had a chance to change).
6) Tape obviously spliced together and heavily edited. Goes from a) Berg sitting in chair talking about family, to b) Berg sitting on floor with hooded "militants" behind, to c) blurry camera movement, to d) almost motionless Berg on floor as head cut off.
7) Audio clearly dubbed in.
8) "Arab" reader flips through pages of "statement" and keeps ending up on the same page. Perhaps doesn't even known enough Arabic to recognize what page he's on?
9) "Arabs" have lily-white hands and (other exposed) skin.
10) "Arabs" have Western-style body posture and mannerisms.
11) When Berg decapitated, there was almost no blood. If Berg were still alive at this point, with the cut starting at front of throat, blood would have been spraying everywhere. Berg's severed head, the floor, Berg's clothes, and even the hand of the "Arab" who decapitated Berg had no visible blood on it.
12) Berg's body didn't move while on the ground. Although held down, Berg would have tried to instinctively wiggle and writhe away from captor's grip.
13) Camera angle made it impossible to see if Berg's eyes were even open.
14) Alleged "scream" from Berg sounded to be that of a woman and was clearly dubbed in.
15) Berg goes to great trouble to identify himself, providing information about his family. Why? To elicit greater sympathy? Or to provide a positive ID. FBI visited Berg family in an attempt to "verify his identity". Guy in video looks very little like Berg photos provided by family.
I believe that Berg (or this lookalike character) was first killed (perhaps by lethal injection, poisoning, etc.), then decapitated after dead (explains lack of blood spraying everywhere). Berg was killed by Al-Quaeda (known to be a CIA - Mossad joint venture). Berg video released at height of furor over U.S. torture of Iraqis and just before Bush was to decide whether to release additional torture videos. Now torture videos will be witheld from public for reasons of national security. Now "patriots" everywhere will laud the virtues of U.S. torture of "enemies". Sensitivity level of public gets heightened in terms of what's acceptable treatment of prisoners. Juxtaposed with decapitation, piling naked men into pyramid is nothing. Such treatment will be considered more and more acceptable even in domestic situations. George W. Bush sleeps well tonight while Berg family lives in torture. Serves Berg's father right for opposing Bush and the war of aggression against Iraq.
Jeff Rense has compiled some important information on Berg's detainment and questioning what really happened in his article, " Why Did The US Take Custody Of Nick Berg?"
Two things are for sure:
First, Berg parents feel that their son was abandoned and betrayed by the US Government.
Second: NeoCons have already started to use Nick Berg's murder to justify torture and more war
Why Did The US Take Custody Of Nick Berg?
Berg Time Line
Nick Berg was on his way out of Iraq. He had been released from the prison where he had been held for 13 days by Iraqi police for reasons he said he did not know.
Nick Berg's Parents Say US Abandoned Him
Pa. family angry with American government over son's brutal death
Qaeda Leader Beheads U.S. Civilian in Iraq
Awful images change perception of the war
NeoCons use Nick Berg's murder to justify torture and more war
Forwarded by "Mark Graffis" email@example.com>
Sent: May 14, 2004
Subject: Evidence of U.S. Shenanigans in the Staged Beheading of Berg
>Executioner wore gold ring - forbidden by Islam: Behind the Masks -- Clues From Graphic Tape of Beheading Could Help Identify Killers (ABCNEWS.com) A close examination of the tape shows none of the five masked men is wearing gloves, so federal officials are trying to determine if there are any tell-tale tattoos on their hands. One of the clues the FBI and CIA is studying is the large gold ring Zarqawi [?!?] is wearing on his right hand, giving off a glare several times during the six-minute tape. [*As to Zarqawi:
>From the Washington Post, March 4, 2004 Alleged Berg Killer Reported Dead in March Leaflet Says Extremist Al-Zarqawi Killed (The Associated Press, Thursday, March 4, 2004; 10:10 AM) A Jordanian extremist suspected of bloody suicide attacks in Iraq was killed some time ago in U.S. bombings and a letter outlining plans for fomenting sectarian war is a forgery, a leaflet signed by a dozen alleged resistance groups said. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed in the Sulaimaniyah mountains of northern Iraq "during the American bombing there," according to the eight-page leaflet circulated this week in Fallujah, a city 30 miles west of Baghdad that is a hotbed of anti-U.S. resistance activity. ...It said al-Zarqawi was unable to escape the bombing because of his artificial leg.]
Many are talking about the whiteness of the murderers' hands, the stance [which is American (military rest) not Arab], the couch-potato girth, Berg's [American prison] orange jumpsuit, the lack of blood splattered, the English words heard in the tape background, the Berg's family company being on a freeper hitlist and Berg travelling using the company name, and more. Here's another observation:
I know a Lebanese man whose visual acumen [and ability to put two and two together] is absolutely unparalleled. The only reason he survived a childhood in Beirut, unlike 99% of his peers...
We were watching the news of "the beheading" when it broke, and he IMMEDIATELY said, "those are Americans, not Arabs." He noticed everything that we've seen mentioned, so far. But one thing we haven't.
The scarves worn, AND the manner in which they are tied, are ALWAYS related to region and "family". Each pattern, tuck, and fold is precise, and tells other Arabs where the wearer was born/raised.
My friend insists that the scarves worn in the video were donned and tied by people who have no clue. By people who believe Arabs just toss any old thing on their heads and tie it however they can get it to stay secure. And the only people he's ever seen do that were American soldiers in Beirut, and American actors in movies.
I believe Arabs beheaded Nick Berg about as much as I believe Arabs were responsible for 911. Project Northwood is going off without a hitch.
The Death Of Nick Berg In Iraq - A Muslim Perspective (May 15)
From: "Mark Graffis" firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: ACLU Forced to Revise Release on Patriot Act Suit, Orwellian Secrecy Rules Cited
Date: 13 May 2004
ACLU Was Forced to Revise Release on Patriot Act Suit Justice Dept. Cited Secrecy Rules
By Dan Eggen
Washington Post Staff Writer
May 13, 2004
When a federal judge ruled two weeks ago that the American Civil Liberties Union could finally reveal the existence of a lawsuit challenging the USA Patriot Act, the group issued a news release.
But the next day, according to new documents released yesterday, the ACLU was forced to remove two paragraphs from the release posted on its Web site, after the Justice Department complained that the group had violated court secrecy rules.
One paragraph described the type of information that FBI agents could request under the law, while another merely listed the briefing schedule in the case, according to court documents and the original news release.
The dispute set off a furious round of court filings in a case that serves as both a challenge to, and an illustration of, the far-reaching power of the Patriot Act. Approved by Congress in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the law gives the government greater latitude and secrecy in counterterrorism investigations and includes a provision allowing the FBI to secretly demand customer records from Internet providers and other businesses without a court order.
The ACLU first filed its lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of such demands, known as national security letters, on April 6, but the secrecy rules of the Patriot Act required the challenge to be filed under seal. A ruling April 28 allowed the release of a heavily censored version of the complaint, but the ACLU is still forbidden from revealing many details of the case, including the identity of another plaintiff who has joined in the lawsuit. The law forbids targets of national security letters to disclose that they have received one.
ACLU lawyer Ann Beeson said the court order also means that she "cannot confirm or deny" whether the ACLU is representing the second plaintiff. The group is the only counsel listed in court documents.
The dispute over the ACLU's April 28 news release centered on two paragraphs. The first laid out the court's schedule for receiving legal briefs and noted the name of the New York-based judge in the case, U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero.
The second paragraph read: "The provision under challenge allows an FBI agent to write a letter demanding the disclosure of the name, screen names, addresses, e-mail header information, and other sensitive information held by 'electronic communication service providers.' "
Justice lawyers said that both paragraphs violated a secrecy order and that the ACLU should be required to seek an exemption to publicize the information, court records show. Justice spokesman Charles Miller declined to comment yesterday.
"It simply never occurred to us that this information would be covered by the sealing order, because it's completely non-sensitive, generic information," Beeson said.
The dispute was partly resolved yesterday. Marrero ruled that the briefing schedule could be publicized, along with edited versions of other court filings. But the paragraph describing the information that can be sought remains absent.
Forwarded by John Kaminski email@example.com>
The 2003 Columbia Disaster : The "mother of all omens" for 2004 and beyond
by Hector Carreon
Los Angeles, Alta California - December 29, 2003 - (ACN) January 1, 2004 will mark the end of a tumultuous year for the world and the beginning of a very uncertain future for all of mankind. There was one event, very early last year, that was a sign of the horrible subsequent events that are occurring in Iraq and possibly an ominous portent for 2004 and years to come. This event occurred on the first day of the Chinese New Year, February 1, when the Space Shuttle Columbia along with 7 astronauts, one a Zionist Israeli, came raining down over the town of Palestine in Texas, the home state of President George Bush.
The belief in omens, or supernatural signs of an impending doom, is something most people in contemporary USA no longer believe in, however, many present day cultures around the world still place great reverence on certain clear and manifest synchronicities that they interpret as being warnings or signs from our "living universe" or, by some, as warnings from God. A synchronicity was defined by the renown psychologist and researcher Carl G. Jung as a "meaningful coincidence" of two or more events where something other than the probability of chance is involved. Synchronicities often happen to all of us individually but the Columbia Shuttle disaster on February 1, 2003 was a synchronicity experienced, through modern communications, by the entire world.
There is no ancient religious Scripture, be it the Bible, the Koran or any other, that does not make references to omens or synchronicities that point to a future catastrophe. All human cultures throughout history; Inca, Mayan, Aztec, Greek, or Roman, have mythical stories that tell of an omen that manifested itself just prior to a major catastrophe falling on the people.
Among ancient peoples that believed in omens, and wrote extensively on their interpretations were the Chinese. The ancient Chinese believed , and many still do, that there are patterns or fields that essentially form our living universe and that it is possible to tap into these fields to determine the direction of future events. One method established by the ancient Chinese to divine the future was outlined in the "I Ching" or "Book of Changes". The principal premise of the book is that our future reality is mostly predetermined by the patterns that emerge from a universal but hidden ground and that it is possible to predict what will happen in the future by understanding the varied synchronicities that our minds experience from time to time. The Columbia fell over Palestine on February 1, 2003, the first day of the Chinese New Year, a day held by the Chinese as full of omens.
Was the Columbia Space Shuttle disaster last year the "mother of all omens"? Was it a powerful synchronicity pointing to a major future catastrophe about to fall on the USA, Israel or possibly the entire globe? What are the synchronistic elements or meaningful coincidences in the Columbia disaster and what do they point to?
Though there are many minor synchronistic elements, let us focus on the major one. For the first time there was an Israeli military person on board a USA space shuttle mission conducting military related research and experiments. That person was the Zionist Israeli Air Force Colonel Ilan Ramon. Colonel Ilan Ramon had in the past dropped bombs on Iraq on a so called "preemptive attack" and was aboard the Columbia to conduct biological, laser and other military research for Israel to use against Palestine. As the Columbia entered the earth's atmosphere it began to disintegrate and by a great coincidence the bulk of the debris, including body parts belonging to the Israeli colonel as well as biologically contaminated junk, fell on the town of Palestine, Texas. This event was at the same time extremely coincidental and very meaningful , qualifying the event as a major synchronicity.
What did this synchronicity or omen portent? Did it signify that the USA's continued connection with and military aid to the Zionist State of Israel will ultimately bring destruction of the nation as the Columbia was destroyed? There is no question that the Zionist occupation of Palestine facilitated by billions of dollars in USA military aid has and continues to devastate the Palestinian people. The World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist attacks are consequences of the USA's unquestioned propping up of Israel at the expense of the Palestinians. Today, the USA finds itself in a desperate quagmire in Iraq, losing almost daily the lives of American soldiers, all the ultimate result of the nation's support for the apartheid state of Israel. What meaning can we assign to the destruction of the Columbia over Palestine, Texas. The one Israeli aboard the Columbia came down on Palestine like an ominous comet, but it also brought down six American astronauts. Could this be a metaphoric synchronicity of what could happen to the USA as a whole, or worse could it be a sign of the impending War of Armageddon?
God has cursed the Jews from time immemorial and they have been the curse of mankind since the beginning of written history. They are an extremely problematic group of people that have been dispersed throughout the globe never finding any genuine welcome in the nations they have settled in. Nation after nation have expelled them in almost every period of recorded history. Today, Israel is threatening the annihilation of our modern global civilization! Is the final War of Armageddon an inevitable event? Must we allow Zionist Israel to push the world towards this final end?
We live in exciting but dangerous times. It is full of possibilities, both ominous and full of promise. What the world will be depends largely on the choices we make collectively as human beings. Perhaps the Creator gives us signs from time to time in order to help us make the correct choices. Maybe, just maybe, the "comet" that streaked across the home state of President George Bush on February 1, 2003 was one of these signs!
Source: La Voz de Aztlan
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