Just Foreign Policy Iraqi Death Estimator    

Saturday, March 04, 2006

The Kilt Question!!

U.S. Plans to Modernize Nuclear Arsenal

March 4th, 2006 2:42 pm
By Walter Pincus / Washington Post

The Bush administration is developing plans to design and deploy refurbished or replacement warheads for the nuclear stockpile, and by 2030 to modernize the production complex so that, if required, it could produce new generations of weapons with different or modified capabilities.

Referring to goals established two years ago, Ambassador Linton F. Brooks, administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), told the House Armed Services subcommittee on strategic forces Wednesday that "we will revitalize our weapons design community to meet the challenge of being able to adapt an existing weapon within 18 months, and design, develop and begin production of a new design within three to four years of a decision to enter engineering development."

A study by NNSA for restructuring the aging weapons complex, which includes dealing with facilities that dismantle retired weapons, should be sent to Congress this spring, Brooks said. Although there is some updating and modernizing of the present complex, "full infrastructure changes . . . will take a couple of decades," Brooks said.

The first step in the long-range plan is focused around the Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW) program that was approved last year. That program contemplates designing new components for previously tested nuclear packages that would make the resulting bombs and warheads safer and more reliable over the long term than older stockpiled weapons that are being refurbished.

The RRW warheads would create, Brooks said, a "reduced chance we will ever need to resort to nuclear testing." In addition, he said, "Once we demonstrate we can produce warheads on a time scale in which geopolitical threats could emerge, we would no longer need to retain extra warheads to hedge against unexpected geopolitical changes."

Under current plans, the number of deployed U.S. warheads on submarines, missiles and bombers would be reduced to between 1,700 and 2,200 by 2012. There would be an additional number, said to exceed 2,000, that would remain in a strategic reserve, and it would be the latter that could be further reduced under the RRW program.

However, Brooks told the subcommittee that he believes more funds will be needed to prepare for a new multibillion-dollar facility to produce "pits," plutonium triggers for thermonuclear weapons. There is controversy over how reliable the plutonium pits are as they age because of radioactive decay. Brooks told the panel the current belief is they are reliable for 45 to 60 years, but uncertainties have developed.

A small facility at the Los Alamos National Laboratory has been established to build pits, but its capacity will be 30 to 40 pits a year beginning in 2012, which Brooks described as "insufficient to meet our assessed long-term pit production needs" created by the RRW warheads.

Brooks's description of the U.S. plan for nuclear weapons production came one day before President Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced their agreement for sharing nuclear technology, while permitting India to continue production of weapons-grade materials at one-third of their reactors. It also came one day after testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee by Lt. Gen. Michael D. Maples, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, described how India and other nations are moving forward with their own nuclear programs.

"We believe that India and Pakistan . . . continue expanding and modernizing their nuclear weapon stockpiles," Maples said, adding, "Pakistan has also developed the capability to produce plutonium for potential weapons use."

He also reported that North Korea is continuing to produce plutonium for its nuclear program, and that China "is likely" to increase the number of its nuclear-armed theater and strategic weapons and "has sufficient fissile material to support this growth."

Baghdad Burning

... I'll meet you 'round the bend my friend, where hearts can heal and souls can mend...


Things are not good in Baghdad.

There was an explosion this morning in a mosque in Samarra, a largely Sunni town. While the mosque is sacred to both Sunnis and Shia, it is considered one of the most important Shia visiting places in Iraq. Samarra is considered a sacred city by many Muslims and historians because it was made the capital of the Abassid Empire, after Baghdad, by the Abassid Caliph Al-Mu’tasim.

The name “Samarra” is actually derived from the phrase in Arabic “Sarre men ra’a” which translates to “A joy for all who see”. This is what the city was named by Al-Mu’tasim when he laid the plans for a city that was to compete with the greatest cities of the time- it was to be a joy for all who saw it. It remained the capital of the Abassid Empire for nearly sixty years and even after the capital was Baghdad once again, Samarra flourished under the care of various Caliphs.

The mosque damaged with explosives today is the “Askari Mosque” which is important because it is believed to be the burial place of two of the 12 Shia Imams- Ali Al-Hadi and Hassan Al-Askari (father and son) who lived and died in Samarra. The site of the mosque is believed to be where Ali Al-Hadi and Hassan Al-Askari lived and were buried. Many Shia believe Al-Mahdi ‘al muntadhar’ will also be resurrected or will reappear from this mosque.

I remember visiting the mosque several years ago- before the war. We visited Samarra to have a look at the famous “Malwiya” tower and someone suggested we also visit the Askari mosque. I was reluctant as I wasn’t dressed properly at the time- jeans and a t-shirt are not considered mosque garb. We stopped by a small shop in the city and purchased a few inexpensive black abbayas for us women and drove to the mosque.

We got there just as the sun was setting and I remember pausing outside the mosque to admire the golden dome and the intricate minarets. It was shimmering in the sunset and there seemed to be a million colors- orange, gold, white- it was almost glowing. The view was incredible and the environment was so peaceful and calm. There was none of the bustle and noise usually surrounding religious sites- we had come at a perfect time. The inside of the mosque didn’t disappoint either- elaborate Arabic script and more gold and this feeling of utter peace… I’m grateful we decided to visit it.

We woke up this morning to news that men wearing Iraqi security uniforms walked in and detonated explosives, damaging the mosque almost beyond repair. It’s heart-breaking and terrifying. There has been gunfire all over Baghdad since morning. The streets near our neighborhood were eerily empty and calm but there was a tension that had us all sitting on edge. We heard about problems in areas like Baladiyat where there was some rioting and vandalism, etc. and several mosques in Baghdad were attacked. I think what has everyone most disturbed is the fact that the reaction was so swift, like it was just waiting to happen.

All morning we’ve been hearing/watching both Shia and Sunni religious figures speak out against the explosions and emphasise that this is what is wanted by the enemies of Iraq- this is what they would like to achieve- divide and conquer. Extreme Shia are blaming extreme Sunnis and Iraq seems to be falling apart at the seams under foreign occupiers and local fanatics.

No one went to work today as the streets were mostly closed. The situation isn’t good at all. I don’t think I remember things being this tense- everyone is just watching and waiting quietly. There’s so much talk of civil war and yet, with the people I know- Sunnis and Shia alike- I can hardly believe it is a possibility. Educated, sophisticated Iraqis are horrified with the idea of turning against each other, and even not-so-educated Iraqis seem very aware that this is a small part of a bigger, more ominous plan…

Several mosques have been taken over by the Mahdi militia and the Badir people seem to be everywhere. Tomorrow no one is going to work or college or anywhere.

People are scared and watchful. We can only pray.

Volatile Days...

The last few days have been unsettlingly violent in spite of the curfew. We’ve been at home simply waiting it out and hoping for the best. The phone wasn’t working and the electrical situation hasn’t improved. We are at a point, however, where things like electricity, telephones and fuel seem like minor worries. Even complaining about them is a luxury Iraqis can’t afford these days.

The sounds of shooting and explosions usually begin at dawn, at least that’s when I first sense them, and they don’t really subside until well into the night. There was a small gunfight on the main road near our area the day before yesterday, but with the exception of the local mosque being fired upon, and a corpse found at dawn three streets down, things have been relatively quiet.

Some of the neighbors have been discussing the possibility of the men setting up a neighborhood watch. We did this during the war and during the chaos immediately after the war. The problem this time is that the Iraqi security forces are as much to fear as the black-clad and hooded men attacking mosques, houses and each other.

It does not feel like civil war because Sunnis and Shia have been showing solidarity these last few days in a big way. I don’t mean the clerics or the religious zealots or the politicians- but the average person. Our neighborhood is mixed and Sunnis and Shia alike have been outraged with the attacks on mosques and shrines. The telephones have been down, but we’ve agreed upon a very primitive communication arrangement. Should any house in the area come under siege, someone would fire in the air three times. If firing in the air isn’t an option, then someone inside the house would have to try to communicate trouble from the rooftop.

The mosques also have a code when they’re in trouble, i.e. under attack, the man who does the call for prayer calls out “Allahu Akbar” three times until people from the area can come help protect the mosque or someone gets involved.

Yesterday they were showing Sunni and Shia clerics praying together in a mosque and while it looked encouraging, I couldn’t help but feel angry. Why don’t they simply tell their militias to step down- to stop attacking mosques and husseiniyas- to stop terrorizing people? It’s so deceptive and empty on television- like a peaceful vision from another land. The Iraqi government is pretending dismay, but it's doing nothing to curb the violence and the bloodshed beyond a curfew. And where are the Americans in all of this? They are sitting back and letting things happen- sometimes flying a helicopter here or there- but generally not getting involved.

I’m reading, and hearing, about the possibility of civil war. The possibility. Yet I’m sitting here wondering if this is actually what civil war is like. Has it become a reality? Will we look back at this in one year, two years… ten… and say, “It began in February 2006…”? It is like a nightmare in that you don’t realise it’s a nightmare while having it- only later, after waking up with your heart throbbing, and your eyes searching the dark for a pinpoint of light, do you realise it was a nightmare…

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Exclusive: Top CIA Official Under Investigation

No. 3 Official at CIA Is Subject of Investigation Related to Bribery Probe


March 3, 2006 — A stunning investigation of bribery and corruption in Congress has spread to the CIA, ABC News has learned.

The CIA Inspector General has opened an investigation into the spy agency's executive director, Kyle "Dusty" Foggo, and his connections to two defense contractors accused of bribing a member of Congress and Pentagon officials.

The CIA released an official statement on the matter to ABC News, saying: "It is standard practice for CIA's Office of Inspector General — an aggressive, independent watchdog — to look into assertions that mention agency officers. That should in no way be seen as lending credibility to any allegation.

"Mr. Foggo has overseen many contracts in his decades of public service. He reaffirms that they were properly awarded and administered."

The CIA said Foggo, the No. 3 official at the CIA, would have no further comment. He will remain in his post at the CIA during the investigation, according to officials.

Two former CIA officials told ABC News that Foggo oversaw contracts involving at least one of the companies accused of paying bribes to Congressman Randall "Duke" Cunningham. The story was first reported by Newsweek magazine.

Friendship With Defense Contractor

The California Republican has pleaded guilty after admitting he accepted $2.4 million in bribes in exchange for arranging defense contracts. He was sentenced today to eight years and four months in prison for corruption. Federal law enforcement officials said Cunningham is cooperating and the investigation is continuing.

As executive director of the CIA, Foggo oversees the administration of the giant spy agency. He was appointed to the post by CIA Director Porter Goss after working as a midlevel procurement supervisor, according to former CIA officials.

While based in Frankfurt, Germany, he oversaw and approved contracts for CIA operations in Iraq.

Foggo is a longtime friend of Brent Wilkes, listed as unindicted co-conspirator No. 1 in government documents filed in the Cunningham investigation. The two played high school football and were in each other's weddings.

1. 2. NEXT»

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White House Pushing Dubai Firm To Find US Partner To Salvage Ports Handover ...

New York Daily News THOMAS T. DeFRANK and KENNETH R. BAZINET March 4, 2006 at 08:26 AM

The White House is quietly pushing a Dubai company to "significantly restructure" and partner up with a U.S. outfit to keep the port deal from sinking, sources told the Daily News yesterday.

"It's in the hands of the company now. ... They're going to have to significantly restructure," said a Republican source familiar with White House expectations.


FOCUS Bush Punishes Representative Who Opposes Dubai Port Deal

Representative Peter T. King's prominent opposition to a proposal to allow a Dubai company to take over some terminal operations at American ports may have earned him some punishment from the Bush administration: He has been grounded.

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FEMA critic's shirt gets him tangled up in ticket

By Laura Parker, USA TODAY
Fri Mar 3, 7:57 AM ET

Ridiculing the Federal Emergency Management Agency is high art in the Gulf Coast areas where Hurricane Katrina hit last year.

Many parade floats in New Orleans' Mardi Gras were decorated in themes that skewered the relief agency.

George Barisich, president of the United Commercial Fisherman's Association, has been selling anti-FEMA T-shirts since last fall, a reflection of his frustration with the federal government's response to the storm that left him homeless and unemployed.

But on Feb. 1, when he handed a shirt to a fellow Katrina victim as he was picking up canned goods at a charity's relief tent, Barisich found himself in trouble with the government.

He was cited by a group of Homeland Security officials for selling a T-shirt on federal property - in this case, near a FEMA center in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart in Chalmette, La.

Barisich, 49, says he didn't sell the shirt, which said: "Flooded by Katrina! Forgotten by FEMA! What's Next, Mr. Bush?" He says he gave it away.

The government is sticking to its guns. "If we ignored this violation, you could have potentially 20 to 30 people standing out in front of the (FEMA) center, obstructing things," says Dean Boyd, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) spokesman. "We've got a duty and a job under the law."

Boyd says the message on Barisich's shirt isn't the issue. Barisich says he intends to fight the $75 ticket in court.

Word of Barisich's plight is circulating around battered St. Bernard Parish, where 22,000 of the 26,000 homes were destroyed by flooding. Larry Ingargiola, the local emergency operations chief, calls it "totally ridiculous."

"I've tried to work with them," he says of the federal government. "But some of the rules they've got down here are unbelievable. For God's sake, everybody knows George. They're pushing the buttons a little bit too far."

Barisich says he was ticketed after six DHS officers gathered at his truck. Boyd says he can't confirm the number. Barisich says he was told he would be arrested if he did not take the ticket. "I said, 'Do you really want to arrest me? Am I the only one here who thinks this is asinine? You're harassing a person who just lost everything.' "

Barisich's extended family lost 14 of its 17 houses in St. Bernard. Three of his fishing boats vanished. Two other boats survived but can't get to sea because they're in a canal filled with debris and silt. And he doesn't have enough cash to rebuild his oyster beds.

He says he'll fight the ticket because "if you do something wrong, you pay for it. If you didn't, you don't ever say you did."

Army to Launch Probe Into Tillman Death

By ROBERT BURNS, AP Military Writer
1 hour, 3 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - The Army said Saturday it will launch a criminal investigation into the April 2004 death of Pat Tillman, the former professional football player who was shot to death by fellow soldiers in Afghanistan in what previous Army reviews had concluded was an accidental shooting.

Col. Joseph Curtin, an Army spokesman, said the Defense Department office of inspector general had reviewed the matter at the Army's request and concluded that a criminal probe was warranted.

Members of the Tillman family were notified on Friday, Curtin said. In the past, Tillman's father, Patrick Tillman, and other family members have criticized the Army and its investigations.

"We are obligated to answer the family's questions, as we are with all grieving families," Curtin said.

Curtin said the scope of the new investigation by the Army Criminal Investigation Command had not yet been determined in detail.

A Pentagon official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the new investigation has not been formally begun, said it would focus on possible charges of negligent homicide.

Tillman, 27, died on April 22, 2004, when he was struck by gunfire during a firefight along a canyon road near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. The Army said at the time that the barrage of bullets came from enemy fire.

A report by the Army later found that troops with Tillman knew at the time that friendly fire had killed the football star. Officers destroyed critical evidence and concealed the truth from Tillman's brother, also an Army Ranger, who was nearby, the report found.

More than three weeks after a memorial service in San Jose, Calif., the Army announced on May 29, 2004, that friendly fire rather than an enemy encounter caused Tillman's death. However, even at the time of the memorial, top Army officials were aware that the investigation showed the death had been caused by an act of "gross negligence," the report said.

In spite of the Army's findings, the officer who prepared the report, Brig. Gen. Gary M. Jones, concluded there was no official reluctance to report the truth. Army officials have acknowledged that they should have better handled the information they released on Tillman's death.

Tillman joined the Army after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks even though he had a multimillion-dollar contract to play football for the Arizona Cardinals. He and his brother completed a tour in Iraq before going to Afghanistan.

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Crowds flock to Mardi Gras

Feathers, bikes and boas at Mardi Gras

HALF a million people lined

Sydney's Oxford Street for the

gay and lesbian Mardi Gras,

putting to rest concerns that

the event had lost its relevance.

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'Oh no, he didn't. '

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Firebrand director Spike Lee has found an unlikely new target for his latest spray: the secretary of state.

Says Lee: "I dislike Condoleezza Rice more than [President] Bush. The thing about it is that she's gotten a free ride from black people."

Oh no, he didn't.

"People say, 'She's so successful' and 'Look at her position as a black woman.' She is a black woman who grew up in Birmingham, Ala., and said that she never experienced a day of racism in her life," Lee tells the April issue of Stuff magazine.

"Condi, stop smoking that crack!"

"I know you love your Ferragamo shoes, but come on. While people were drowning in New Orleans, she was going up and down Madison Ave. buying Ferragamo shoes. Then she went to see 'Spamalot.'"

You heard the man, Madame Secretary. Put down the crack pipe.


Ahhh HAHAHAHA!!!---

Bush For Boys


Go to Original

'As a teenager, I could not understand how the German people could claim to be "good Germans," unaware of what the Nazis had done in their names. I could understand if these ordinary German people had said they had known and been horrified, but were afraid to speak up. But they would then be "weak or fearful or indifferent Germans," not "good Germans." The idea that only the Nazis were responsible for the Holocaust made no sense. Whatever the Germans as a whole know about the concentration camps, they certainly knew about the systematic mistreatment of Jews that had occurred before their very eyes, and from which so many had profited. And if they were not really "good Germans," what should or could they have done, given the reality of Nazi tyranny?

The issue became personal for me in the summer of 1961, when I hitchhiked through Europe with a lovely German woman named Inge. Still in love after an idyllic summer, we visited Hyde Park the day before I was to return home. A bearded, middle-aged concentration-camp survivor was angrily attacking the German people for standing by and letting the Jews be slaughtered. I was moved beyond words. Suddenly the woman I loved began yelling angrily at him, screaming that the Germans did not know, that her father had just been a soldier and was not responsible for the Holocaust.

Our relationship essentially ended then and there. I understood intellectually that she was just defending her father and was neither an anti-Semite nor an evil person. But there it was. She on one side. The survivor on the other. A gulf between them. Whatever my head said, my heart knew that the world is divided into evil-doers, their victims, and those like Inge who do not want to know. And that I had no choice but to stand with the victims. '


FOCUS | Cunningham Receives Eight-Year Sentence

He may be a disgraced congressman, and he needs to serve his time. But, a big but He served his country, he did not go AWOL or get 5 deferrments, he did not Kill 2295, and wound 16742 of Americas Sons and Daughters, or 100000 and counting innocent Iraqi souls not including all the coalition deaths, with the stroke of a pen and a multitude of lies to the World, I ask when will justice be dealt out to the garbage that resides in the White House, when will they serve their time?

A judge rejected Randall "Duke" Cunningham's tearful bid for mercy today and sentenced the war hero, "Top Gun" instructor and disgraced former congressman to 8 years, 4 months in federal prison for bribery.

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NSA Soviet-style "Psikhushka" under investigation by Maryland professional bodies

March 3, 2006 -- NSA Security emulating East German Stasi in every respect. NSA sources report that the agency's out-of-control security directorate, in its pursuit of "leakers," is now attempting to have the families of NSA personnel to inform on them. While it is illegal to compel someone to testify against their spouse, that is not a problem with NSA Security, which has been visiting the homes of NSA employees in an attempt to persuade the spouses of NSA employees to reveal information about leaks. The visits have been intimidating, according to those who were approached by the NSA Security personnel. In addition, WMR has also learned that the psychiatric abuse committed against NSA employees by NSA psychiatrists working in concert with NSA Security is now the subject of full-blown ethics investigations by the Maryland Psychiatric Society, the Maryland Board of Physicians, and Maryland Psychological Association. The investigation may result in the loss of state licenses for NSA psychiatrists and psychologists who have engaged in abusive practices.

NSA Soviet-style "Psikhushka" under investigation by Maryland professional bodies

According to congressional Democrats, in the event that the Democrats assume control of one or both houses of Congress next year, there will be investigations of the NSA Security Directorate that could result in referrals to the Justice Department for criminal indictments against NSA and contractor personnel who have engaged in illegal surveillance and other criminal acts.

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Chertoff: Derailed major investigation of Al Qaeda weapons smuggling in New Jersey. Was he protecting Israeli involvement in Al Qaeda financing activi

March 3, 2006 -- The Israeli, Dubai, Chertoff connection -- its just the tip of the Russian-Israeli mafia and "Al Qaeda" iceberg. Michael Brown, the former head of FEMA, deserves credit for blowing the whistle on the "agenda" of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. For years, a handful of prosecutors, FBI agents, and investigative journalists have stressed the connections between Russian-Israeli mafia tycoons, weapons and diamond smugglers, and terrorist networks associated with "Al Qaeda" and affiliated organizations. Yet, it is the much-maligned Brown, a one-time GOP operative and "golden boy," who has taken the initiative to call for Chertoff's firing and a complete overhaul of the Homeland Security Department. Even in these strange times, this is an amazing turn of events and begs the question of what Brown knows about Chertoff and his connections to Dubai and covering up terrorist investigations. Brown is in the unique position of being aware of Dubai's major role in horse racing (and possibly money laundering) and being briefed on various maritime and other terrorist threats as head of FEMA. Which means that Brown may have enough information to be very dangerous to the Bush crime family.

Chertoff is a long-time GOP political hack and neo-con operative. He was the Special Counsel for the Senate "Whitewater" Committee from 1994 to 1996, a costly effort to create a political scandal for President Clinton and Hillary Clinton where there was no scandal. Hillary Clinton, to her credit, cast the lone vote against Chertoff's confirmation as a federal judge in 2003. There is one thing that Hillary Clinton and Michael Brown agree on -- they both despise Chertoff. And with good reason.

Chertoff was the head of the Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division of the Justice Department in the lead up to and aftermath of the 911 attacks. It was Chertoff who ordered the FBI not to pursue Mossad cells discovered to be operating alongside the hijacker cells in northern New Jersey. With FBI and other field law enforcement reports on suspicious Israeli office "mover" activity in the New York-New Jersey area in the months prior to 911, Chertoff failed to order an investigation of why Zim-American Israeli Shipping Company suddenly terminated its lease of offices on the 16th and 17th floors of the North Tower of the World Trade Center, forfeiting a $50,000 deposit a week prior to 911 and moving its operations to Norfolk. Zim's parent company, Zim Israel Navigation Co, is half owned by the Israeli government. Norfolk's port operations are due to come under Dubai Ports World ownership if the buy-out deal is approved.

Therefore, it is no surprise that Zim's chairman wrote to Senator Clinton offering high praise for Dubai Ports World and revealed that Zim and Dubai Ports are "strong business partners." Zim's chairman also revealed that Zim's ships use Dubai ports but under different flags other than Israeli.

Chertoff: Derailed major investigation of Al Qaeda weapons smuggling in New Jersey. Was he protecting Israeli involvement in Al Qaeda financing activities?

Chertoff also failed to investigate the presence on the 33rd floor of the North Tower of the Trade Center of the Yemen Import Company, an office that, like Zim Shipping, had been cleared of all its personnel in the weeks prior to 911, leaving only an answering machine and fax in place.

As Assistant US Attorney, Chertoff also declined to prosecute Dr. Magdy Elamir, an Egyptian-born neurologist in Jersey City who was implicated in an FBI/ATF arms trafficking investigation code named Operation Diamondback. It turned out that Elamir was a Chertoff's client in a fraud case brought against Elamir's HMO by the state of New Jersey. NBC's Dateline, on August 2, 2002, referred to a 1998 foreign intelligence report obtained by the network, "The report alleges that an H.M.O. owned by Dr. Elamir in New Jersey was 'funded by ben [sic] Laden' and that in turn Dr. Elamir was skimming money from the H.M.O. to fund 'terrorist activities.'" New Jersey investigators discovered that $15 million in funds from Elamir's HMO were unaccounted for and Dateline determined that some of the funds were transferred to off-shore bank accounts. Chertoff represented Elamir at the time the money was shifted to the off-shore bank accounts. >>>cont

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RAI TV (Italy) story on anniversary of U.S. shooting death of Italian SISMI deputy chief Nicola Calipari in Baghdad

March 3, 2006 -- Click here for RAI TV (Italy) story on anniversary of U.S. shooting death of Italian SISMI deputy chief Nicola Calipari in Baghdad. Italian intelligence officials believe shooting was no accident but a planned assassination. This editor was interviewed for the story.

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Echoing Bush, Tony Blair Says God Will Be His Judge On Iraq...

Independent Andy McSmith March 4, 2006 at 12:30 AM
READ MORE: George W. Bush, Iraq

Tony Blair has proclaimed that God will judge whether he was right to send British troops to Iraq, echoing statements from his ally George Bush.

Contradicting warnings from advisers not to mix politics and religion, the Prime Minister said that his interest in politics sprang from his Christianity and its "values and philosophy" had guided him in public life.

100000 and counting just Iraqi innocents, dead


How many American, Coalition, and Iraqi innocents, dead and injured for your oil


Sadam was not involved in 9/11, so says Bush



The Nation of Iraq a Sovereign



Email from the cuz Kev

Bill Streit quoting Isiah.

Reminders that you Shall Not Kill, Steal or Bear False Witness, really hit the mark.

Mind You -- Every charge of Bribery involves " Putting False Gods Before Me". As They have substituted Money for God.

Criminal Actions by criminal

men against the Sovereign

Nation of Iraq and its people



Shiites in Iraqi city of Basra threaten boycott of oil and goods:

The influential Shiite-Islamic Fadhila Party in the southern Iraqi port city of Basra on Friday threatened to halt the traffic of oil and other goods from southern Iraq into the centre of the country.

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Terrorist growth overtakes U.S. efforts:

Thirty new terrorist organizations have emerged since the September 11, 2001, attacks, outpacing U.S. efforts to crush the threat, said Brig. Gen. Robert L. Caslen, the Pentagon's deputy director for the war on terrorism.

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Katrina: Criminal Negligence or Manslaughter?

By Mike Wwhitney

Why aren’t we talking about Criminal Negligence?

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Guantanamo man tells of 'torture'


A Kuwaiti man being held at Guantanamo Bay has told the BBC in a rare interview that the force-feeding of hunger strikers amounts to torture. Audio and transcript.

This is a must listen

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FOCUS | Dahr Jamail: Negroponte's 'Serious Setback'

Dahr Jamail points out that while warning of the outcome of a possible civil war in Iraq, Negroponte said sectarian civil war in Iraq would be a "serious setback" to the global war on terror. Note - he did not say it would be a "serious setback" to the Iraqi people, over 1,400 of whom have been slaughtered in sectarian violence touched off by the bombing of the Golden Mosque last week in Samarra.

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Tom Engelhardt | The Precipice, the Brink, the Abyss - Iraq

Tom Engelhardt writes: Will we simply continue bumping along that potholed "road" until, six months, or a year, or three years from now, every "solution" ends up leading only to what might be dubbed George's Inferno - and the oil heartlands of the planet are ablaze?

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Mike Ferner | Fifteen Arrested at White House Protesting US Torture

Hell yeah, Lets all hear it for democracy in GEORGIES AMERICA

Fifteen people were arrested yesterday in front of the White House after winding their way for two hours through the streets of the nation's capital, demanding the US stop torturing detainees in military prisons.

At the Department of Justice, Bill Streit used passages from the Book of Isaiah to condemn the DOJ's role in torturing prisoners. "Your hands are stained with blood, your fingers with guilt; Your lips speak falsehood, and your tongue utters deceit ... Right is repelled and justice stands far off; for truth stumbles in the public square. Honesty is lacking, and the man who turns from evil is despoiled." >>>cont

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Fred Branfman | On Torture and Being 'Good Americans'

By Fred Branfman

Friday 03 March 2006

"Gestapo interrogation methods included: repeated near drownings of a prisoner in a bathtub."
-- The History Place
"The CIA officers say 9-11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed lasted the longest under water boarding, two and a half minutes, before beginning to talk, with debatable results."
-- Brian Ross, ABC World News Tonight, November 18, 2005

"When President Bush last week signed the bill outlawing the torture of detainees, he quietly reserved the right to bypass the law under his powers as commander in chief...Bush believes he can waive the restrictions, the White House and legal specialists said."
-- "Bush Could Bypass Torture Ban," Boston Globe

As a teenager, I could not understand how the German people could claim to be "good Germans," unaware of what the Nazis had done in their names. I could understand if these ordinary German people had said they had known and been horrified, but were afraid to speak up. But they would then be "weak or fearful or indifferent Germans," not "good Germans." The idea that only the Nazis were responsible for the Holocaust made no sense. Whatever the Germans as a whole know about the concentration camps, they certainly knew about the systematic mistreatment of Jews that had occurred before their very eyes, and from which so many had profited. And if they were not really "good Germans," what should or could they have done, given the reality of Nazi tyranny?

The issue became personal for me in the summer of 1961, when I hitchhiked through Europe with a lovely German woman named Inge. Still in love after an idyllic summer, we visited Hyde Park the day before I was to return home. A bearded, middle-aged concentration-camp survivor was angrily attacking the German people for standing by and letting the Jews be slaughtered. I was moved beyond words. Suddenly the woman I loved began yelling angrily at him, screaming that the Germans did not know, that her father had just been a soldier and was not responsible for the Holocaust.

Our relationship essentially ended then and there. I understood intellectually that she was just defending her father and was neither an anti-Semite nor an evil person. But there it was. She on one side. The survivor on the other. A gulf between them. Whatever my head said, my heart knew that the world is divided into evil-doers, their victims, and those like Inge who do not want to know. And that I had no choice but to stand with the victims.

I never dreamed at that moment that I, as an American, would a few years later face this same question as my government committed mass murder of civilians in Indochina in violation of the Nuremberg Principles. Or that more than four decades later I would still be struggling with what it means to be a "good American" after learning that a group of US leaders has unilaterally seized the right to torture anyone it chooses without evidence and in violation of international law, human decency, and the sacrifice of the many Americans who have died fighting autocracy and totalitarianism. >>>cont

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US Claims Torture Ban Void at Guantanamo

Bush administration lawyers, fighting a claim of torture by a Guantanamo Bay detainee, yesterday argued that the new law that bans cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of detainees in US custody does not apply to people held at the military prison.

McCain law may not apply to Cuba prison.

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Conservative Mag: Admin. Sources Say Chertoff Has "Only A Few Days Left" In Bush Cabinet...

Taegan Goddard's Political Wire March 3, 2006 at 11:14 PM
READ MORE: George W. Bush, Homeland Security

"In the aftermath of the public revelation of the presidential 'teleconference' and mounting criticism of the performance of Michael Chertoff, Administration sources told Human Events today that the secretary of Homeland Security has 'only a few days left' in the Bush Cabinet."


Find Out If The FBI Is Spying On You...

People For The American Way March 3, 2006 at 04:24 PM

Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), anyone has the right to request information from the government. Last strengthened by Congress in response to the Watergate scandal, FOIA gives citizens a way to demand transparency from the Administration -- and take the government to court if necessary.

Many Americans -- especially those with family and friends abroad -- are wondering whether government agents have been listening to their phone conversations or reading their email. If you're worried this has happened to you, you can use this site to help you find out.


Top CIA Official Under Investigation In Cunningham, Defense Contractors Bribery Case...

ABC News March 3, 2006 at 10:03 PM
READ MORE: Investigations, CIA

A stunning investigation of bribery and corruption in Congress has spread to the CIA, ABC News has learned.

The CIA Inspector General has opened an investigation into the spy agency's executive director, Kyle "Dusty" Foggo, and his connections to two defense contractors accused of bribing a member of Congress and Pentagon officials.


Hamas strength seen in State Department poll

By Jonathan S. LandayKnight Ridder NewspapersWASHINGTON - A State Department-commissioned poll taken days before January's Palestinian elections warned U.S. policymakers that the militant Islamic group Hamas was in a position to win.

Nevertheless, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said after the election that they had no advance indication of a major Hamas triumph.

The poll found that Hamas had been gaining support in previous months and was running neck-and-neck with the secular Fatah party - 30 percent vs. 32 percent - among likely voters. It was distributed within the State Department on Jan. 19, six days before the elections.

The poll found that corruption in the Palestinian Authority was the leading issue among Palestinians, and that 52 percent believed that Hamas was more qualified to clean it up, compared with 35 percent who put their faith in Fatah, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas' moderate faction.

Hamas, which is dedicated to the destruction of Israel and is considered a terrorist organization by the State Department, won a landslide victory, throwing American policy into confusion because the Bush administration had anticipated a Fatah win.

"I don't know anyone who wasn't caught off guard by its very strong showing," Rice said on Jan. 29 as she flew to London for talks on the election results with her counterparts from the European Union, Russia and the United Nations. "I think what was probably underestimated was the depth of resentment of the last, really, decade of corruption and the old guard."
Rice said that she had directed State Department officials to determine "why nobody saw it coming ... because it does say something about perhaps not having had a good enough pulse on the Palestinian population."

On Friday, State Department spokesman Adam Ereli said, "I don't think the poll and the secretary's remarks are in conflict. She didn't say we were surprised that they won.

"I think what took people by surprise was the margin of victory," Ereli said. "Nobody foresaw that huge a sweep."

The survey of 1,000 Palestinians ages 18 and over, which had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points, was conducted Jan. 13-15 by a local organization with questions written by the Office of Research, part of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, or INR.

The poll was obtained by the Project on Government Secrecy, a program run by the Federation of American Scientists, a policy research group, which provided it to Knight Ridder.

Steven Aftergood, the director of the Project on Government Secrecy, said that while the poll didn't predict Hamas' big win, it clearly showed a trend toward victory for the Islamic militants.
"Either Secretary Rice was being disingenuous or else her department has a serious information-sharing problem, because INR could not have done a much better job of assessing the Palestinian election than they did," said Aftergood. "No one else did a better job than INR.

So to profess surprise of the outcome is incomprehensible.

"This is secrecy squared," he continued. "It's one thing to keep secrets from the public. But when the bureaucracy is keeping secrets from itself, policy is compromised."

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Friday, March 03, 2006


By SETH HETTENA, Associated Press Writer
7 minutes ago

SAN DIEGO - Former Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, who collected $2.4 million in homes, yachts, antique furnishings and other bribes on a scale unparalleled in the history of Congress, was sentenced Friday to eight years and four months in prison, the longest term meted out to a congressman in decades.

Cunningham, who resigned from Congress in disgrace last year, was spared the 10-year maximum by U.S. District Judge Larry Burns but was immediately taken into custody. He also was ordered to pay $1.8 million in restitution for back taxes and forfeit $1.85 million in valuables he received.

Cunningham accepted money and gifts including a Rolls-Royce and $40,000 Persian rugs from defense contractors and others in exchange for steering government contracts their way and other favors.

Federal prosecutors sought the maximum and his attorneys asked for mercy, but Cunningham, choking up as he addressed the judge, focused on accepting blame. "Your honor I have ripped my life to shreds due to my actions, my actions that I did to myself," he said.

"I made a very wrong turn. I rationalized decisions I knew were wrong. I did that, sir," Cunningham said.

Much thinner than when he pleaded guilty in November — he said he has gone from 265 pounds to 175 pounds since June — Cunningham had asked to see his 91-year-old mother one last time before going to prison, but was denied.

The judge, while crediting Cunningham for his military service and for taking responsibility, questioned why he felt compelled to betray his constituents and his colleagues for luxuries.

"You weren't wet. You weren't cold. You weren't hungry and yet you did these things," Burns said. "I think what you've done is you've undermined the opportunity that honest politicians have to do a good job."

The staggering details of Cunningham's wrongdoing surpass anything in the history of Congress, Senate and House historians have said. "In the sheer dollar amount, he is the most corrupt," said Deputy House Historian Fred W. Beuttler.

The longest term meted out to congressmen in the past four decades had been eight years, handed to former Rep. James Traficant, D-Ohio, in 2002 for taking payoffs, and to former Rep. Mario Biaggi, D-N.Y., in 1988 for extorting nearly $2 million from a defense contractor.

Prosecutor Phil Halpern told the judge that while Cunningham was living the good life "he was squandering precious tax dollars for, among other things, systems the military didn't ask for, didn't need and frequently didn't use."

Cunningham's attorney Lee Blalack asked for six years for the former Navy "Top Gun" flight instructor and Vietnam War flying ace.

Cunningham, 64 and a congressman for 15 years, rubbed away tears while Blalack addressed the court. He appeared to be crying quietly when Blalack referred to his wartime service.

Blalack said that given Cunningham's age and history of prostate cancer, "there is a significant likelihood" he would not survive a 10-year sentence, and that he already has suffered greatly.

"This man has been humiliated beyond belief by his own hand. He is estranged from those he loves most and cares most about," Blalack said. "All his worldly possessions are gone. He will carry a crushing tax debt until the day he dies. He will go to jail until he's 70 years old."

Prosecutor Jason A. Forge said Cunningham should not get a break for committing crimes late in life, and doubted his apparent remorse, pointing out that after the allegations emerged he spent months falsely denying them.

"The fact of the matter is Mr. Cunningham went down kicking and screaming," Forge said.

The sentence reverberated in Washington, D.C.

"It is my hope that Congressman Cunningham will spend his incarceration thinking long and hard about how he broke the trust of the voters that elected him and those on Capitol Hill who served with him," House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., said in a statement.

Cunningham pleaded guilty Nov. 28 to tax evasion and a conspiracy involving four others. It is among a series of GOP scandals: Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff's guilty pleas in a corruption investigation; a campaign-finance indictment that forced Rep. Tom DeLay of Texas to step down as majority leader; a stock sale by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist that is under investigation; and the indictment of Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff in the CIA leak case.

The case against Cunningham began when authorities started investigating his sale of his Del Mar house to defense contractor Mitchell Wade for $1,675,000, a price inflated by $700,000.

Wade admitted giving Cunningham more than $1 million in gifts, including a yacht, cash, cars, antiques and meals. He pleaded guilty last month to conspiring with Cunningham, among four corruption charges that carry a maximum prison term of 20 years.

The judge recommended that Cunningham serve his sentence at a federal prison in Taft, Calif. Time off for good behavior could cut his sentence to about seven years.

A special election to fill Cunningham's seat is set for April 11. The district is heavily Republican but Democrats hope to capture it; their candidate Francine Busby is to deliver the party's weekly radio address on Saturday

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Three killed in riots sparked by Bush India visit

Death follows him like the plague, where ever he goes.

Fri Mar 3, 11:31 AM ET

LUCKNOW, India (AFP) - Three people were killed and several injured when protests in northern India against US

President George W. Bush'visit turned into street riots between Hindus and Muslims.
Police used teargas and truncheons to break up violent clashes between Hindus and Muslims in Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh state, police told AFP.

"Two of those killed are Hindus and one is a Muslim," said local government official Ghulam Abbas.

Two of the victims were shot dead, one of them a 15-year-old girl, while the a third man died in hospital after sustaining a gunshot wound, Abbas said.

Seventeen others had been admitted to hospital with injuries, he added.
Earlier police chief Ashutoch Pandey told AFP the riots had been sparked by anti-Bush protests. >>>cont

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Pentagon releases names of Gitmo inmates

Mar 3, 6:03 PM EST

Pentagon releases names of Gitmo inmates


Associated Press Writers


GUANTANAMO BAY NAVAL BASE, Cuba (AP) -- After four years of secrecy, the Pentagon released documents Friday that contain the names of hundreds of detainees held at a U.S. military prison. The release resulted from a victory by The Associated Press in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.

The Bush administration had hidden the identities, home countries and other information about the men, who were accused of taking up arms against the United States. But a federal judge rejected administration arguments that releasing the identities would violate the detainees' privacy and could endanger them and their families.

The names were scattered throughout more than 5,000 pages of transcripts of hearings in which detainees defended themselves against allegations that they were "enemy combatants." That classification, Bush administration lawyers say, deprives the detainees of Geneva Convention prisoner-of-war protections and allows them to be held indefinitely without charges.

Most of the men were captured during the 2001 U.S.-led war that drove the Taliban from power in Afghanistan and sent Osama bin Laden deeper into hiding.

Documents released last year - also because of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by the AP - had the detainees' names and nationalities blacked out.

"Some folks don't want the names to be released for security and privacy reasons. Other folks think it should be open to the world to see," Army Maj. Jeffrey Weir, a Guantanamo spokesman, said Friday outside the kitchen where prisoners' food is prepared.

The documents, transcripts from at least 317 hearings at Guantanamo Bay, should shed light on the scope of an insurgency still battling U.S. troops in Afghanistan, in part by detailing how Muslims from many countries wound up fighting alongside the Taliban there.

U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff of New York ruled in favor of the AP last week>>>cont

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The sanity assassin stays up all night stalking.The sanity assassin Picks off victims like flies. The sanity assassin Let his fingers do the walking. The sanity assassin The crack shot between your eyes. He's got you in his sights
- Bauhaus

These religious fanatics are my sannity assassins. They are litterally driving me insane, and they've got ALL of us in their sights.

Where in the hell was I when the Jesus Beam shot from the heavens and turned all of America into religious zombies? Was I in some underground club, gyrating provocatively and drinking watermelon martini's when the beam struck? Did the subteranean layout of the club protect me and my friends from the affects of the Jesus Beam? Or have I done such a good job transforming my apartment into a bunker of secular utopia that the beam couldn't penetrate the tin foil I have taped to the walls? Whatever the case I am, thankfully, unaffected.

But the Beam sure did a job on the State of Missouri. Today we learn that this great state (sic) is considering a law that would name christianity as the official religion. WHAT?? This simply CAN'T be constitutional. But then I forget that our constitution in a worthless piece of paper, kind of like a parking ticket, something we know we have but we choose to pay no attention to. What in the hell is going on in this country? Bu$h really DID sell the country and the constitution the the religious christian fanatics so he and his friends could acquire wealth beyond comprehension, didn't he?

So let's consider what Missouri is planning. They want Christianity to be recognized as the official MAJORITY religion. I'm guessing they are doing this so they can adorn their state offices with 67 foot neon crucifixes and 500 yard long nativity scenes at will. They could post religious propaganda on every street corner and basically force others to "submit" to christianity. What about Jews and Muslims and Buddhists and Atheists and Agnostics and every other religious belief or non-belief? Fuck these people, they're going to hell. Will they somehow be FORCED to convert to christianity or "suffer" some form of "punishment?" This simply cannot be legal. It can't. What if the Muslims wanted to make ISLAM the official religion in Michigan? If the Christians are 'allowed" to do so in Missouri, then why couldn't the Muslims do so in another state? But no,this would NEVER be permitted. The population would be up-in-fucking-arms if the MUSLIMS wanted to FORCE Islam on the poor, innocent populace. This kind of religious oppression is ONLY acceptable as long as it's CHRISTIANITY that is being forced down our throats.

Why do I have this nagging feeling that when this "law" makes it to the Supreme Court it will be upheld? Why do you think all these insane "laws" and "bans" are suddenly being passed NOW? How many DAYS have Alito and Roberts (homosexuals in denial. The most dangerous kind of person) been on the Court together? A relatively short time, right? And these sickening, oppressive laws just SUDDENLY seemed to drop at the same time? I bet. This was planned the second these religious fascists learned their savior BU$h would get to appoint new members to the Supreme Court. As I've been saying, WE HAVE BEEN TAKEN OVER.

In Florida, the founder of Domino's Pizza wants to create a religious, sin-free town adjacent to a new christian university he is building where ONLY people of the same moral values are permitted to live. I wonder if they have to pass some test? In this wonderful new town, there will no porn sold in the stores OR allowed on the cable network. Birth control pills and condoms won't be stocked in the pharmacies. And cages will be built in the basement of the churches to detain the pregnant women until that fetus pops out. I wonder if they'll ban alcohol? Probably not, mental patients like to drink. Will there be a curfew? Does everyone have to be indoors and reading their required Bible passages by 9:00pm? What if you need to travel THROUGH this town? Will you be required to obtain special transit papers? Will the non-believer be escorted through town so as to make sure this morally corrupt individual doesn't pollute their pure town? Will BLACKS be allowed to live there? THIS cannot be legal either. It is currently being opposed by the ACLU. It, too, will make it to the Supreme Court and it, too, will be deemed "legal."

Wanna read about THIS psychotic activity? Go here:

I have been saying that I won't leave for Canada and that I will stay here and fight, but I'm finding that plan to be more hopeless every day. We are outnumbered and outgunned. These fanatics are crawling out of every sewer and rathole. Just today I was downtown and there were these blank eyed zombies pressing "Jesus Saves" pamphlets into the hands of everyone who passed by. CHOMP CHOMP CHOMP. They were on every street corner for 15 blocks. Needless to say, I hauled ass back to my bunker, gave the special secular knock, dove through the door and immediately went to the religion-decontamination room. I'm feeling much better. Disheartened and disgusted, but once I reached the safety of my bunker and turned on a Ministry CD, I was feeling pretty much back to normal (as normal as one can feel, considering the times we've entered.)

Ya know, the Nazi's started slow too. Then one day they were everywhere. Suddenly there were swastika flags snapping in the breeze from every window, hanging from every lightpole and wrapped around the upper arm of the "truest" believers. Brownshirts were on every streetcorner, recruiting new members and looking for those they deemed a threat. Suddenly, EVERYONE was singing the praises of THEIR savior, the Fuhrer. If you dared speak out against the Nazis, you were tortured and jailed. Many were murdered. So I'm getting the hell outta here before it's too late. You can fight the military, but you can't fight a brainwashed religious fanatic. They are ALWAYS right. What was it that Hunter S. Thompson said in 'Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas?' "You can turn your back on a person, but NEVER turn your back on a drug." To these people, JESUS is their drug, and they're completely wasted. I'm outta here.
Here's the link for the Missouri story (you may have to register):


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Heck of a Job, Condi: They Knew Hamas Could Win, Did Nothing, Then Lied


I know these revelations are getting repetitive, but that's because the incompetence and lying keeps repeating itself: same shiftiness, different day. Today's item: Now we learn that Condi, who said "I don't know anyone who wasn't caught off guard by Hamas' strong showing," was in fact given information that showed Hamas in a dead heat with Fatah, with the momentum in its favor.

A Hamas victory should not have been a surprise. What was the State Department's response to this information? None, as far as we know.

After Hamas trounced Fatah in Palestine's legislative elections, Condi was the designated spokesperson to trot out the Administration's preferred excuse: the intelligence was bad. Who knew?

The problem, as the indispensable Steven Aftergood ofthe Secrecy Blogexplains, is that Condi and the Administration had perfectly good information showing that Hamas was surging in popularity and could well overtake Fatah.

AState Department report (warning: pdf) showed Fatah and Hamas running neck and neck. The report also showed that 22% of voters were likely to change their minds at the last minute, and that the changers were nearly twice as likely to move to Hamas as to Fatah.

Sounds like they pretty much nailed it. A Hamas victory was highly possible - certainly nothing to be "caught off guard" about. So why lie? Probably because telling the truth would raise the question: Why didn't you do something about it?

Not to publicly endorse Fatah, of course. That would be the kiss of death. Nor was there time left to address the issue of rampant Fatah corruption, which the intel suggested was the number one reason for Hamas' strong showing.

But there was another reason for the movement in Hamas' direction: the inability of Fatah to win any concessions at the bargaining table. Voters who watched as Israel and the U. S. rejected any possibility of discussion with Arafat had most likely assumed that these positions would change after Arafat's death.

Said the State Department report, "Likely voters who have little or no hope that there will be a peaceful resolution to the conflict clearly prefer Hamas (30%) to Fateh (12%)."

Abbas came to power with friendly words from both parties, but no concessions. An influential bloc of voters had apparently concluded that there was no hope for peaceful reconciliation, and had turned to Hamas.

Every year that passes decreases the possibilities for peaceful resolution of the Palestinian question. The fact that fewer Palestinians believe that negotiations will work has tragic implications - not just for the Palestinians themselves, but for Israeli security.

But addressing those issues will be uncomfortable and challenging, and will require us to prod not only the Palestinians but our Israeli allies too. It's easier and safer to lie and pretend we didn't know what was happened.

Memo to Condi: "Hamas Determined To Strike Inside Palestine." But then, maybe she thought it was only "historical."

A Night Light

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Taliban Rebels Still Menacing Afghan South

The New York Times CARLOTTA GALL March 3, 2006 at 11:39 AM
READ MORE: Afghanistan

When Haji Lalai Mama, the 60-year-old tribal elder in these parts, gamely tried to organize a village defense force against the Taliban recently, he had to do it with a relative handful of men and just three rifles. "We were patrolling and ready," he recalled.

A Loy Karez villager in a school that was burned out by the Taliban, which has closed down 200 schools.

But they were not ready enough. The Taliban surprised them under cover of darkness by using a side road. One villager was killed, and 10 others were wounded by a grenade. Two Taliban fighters were captured in the clash. The rest disappeared into the night.


Domino’s Founder Paying $250M To Create Catholic Town

Associated Press BRIAN SKOLOFF Posted March 2, 2006 02:18 PM

If Domino's Pizza founder Thomas S. Monaghan has his way, a new town being built in Florida will be governed according to strict Roman Catholic principles, with no place to get an abortion, pornography or birth control.

The pizza magnate is bankrolling the project with at least $250 million and calls it "God's will."

Read Whole Story

The Attorney General of Florida is named Charlie Crist.

That's a fucking riot.

Posted by: MoeLarryAndJesus on March 02, 2006 at 03:33pm

Katherine Harris Caught Up In Bribery Scandal...

Associated Press MITCH STACY March 3, 2006 at 02:28 PM

U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris said Thursday she did not knowingly do anything wrong in her associations with a defense contractor who prosecutors say illegally funneled thousands of dollars to her campaign in 2004.

Questions about the donations have arisen as Harris, the former Florida secretary of state who oversaw the 2000 presidential election recount, tries to unseat U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla.


Mike Maloy wrong caption? How about Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemmings, right on Mike

President Bush watched Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice walk through a receiving line at a state dinner in New Delhi Thursday. The president is on his first visit to India, and is to continue on to Pakistan tonight.

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Another covert deal, sans brouhaha

When President Bush announced on Friday that Americans would soon be eating India’s famed mangoes, he failed to explain why.

Alongside the more flaunted nuclear deal, the US and India have also fleshed out another, more covert deal. That of a 1000-crore project called the Indo-US Knowledge Initiative in Agricultural Research and Education.

The project, touted by Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as the “second green revolution”, was informally launched this morning when the President visited Hyderabad’s Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University, where he time in the various research labs including the pesticide and biochemical labs.

While both administrations have been extremely tight lipped about this deal, the seeds of the project were sown in July last when the PM visited the US. It was decided then to create a body that would identify collaborative scientific research, development and commercialisation, promote emerging technologies and energise trade links between the two nations over a three-year period. The board will comprise eight members from each country, representing academia, government and the private sector.

The university Bush visited, is famed for growing 302 different varieties of seeds and is recognised as pioneers in new rice growing and sustaining technologies. They have single-handedly pushed Andhra Pradesh to the forefront of seed growth and research in India.

“We showed him the cutting edge research we are doing on increasing productivity of various crops,” said Dr. M. Ganesh, principal scientist and head of the Agriculture School. “The President also spent time understanding the various types technological and natural methods we incorporate here.”

One of the chief drivers for the project in the government's eyes is that the Indian agricultural sector desperately needs a shot in the arm. There has been a sizeable imbalance in the growth of this sector, with the growth rate ranging from 5 per cent per annum in Punjab to 1 per cent in Assam.

However, some agricultural scientists believe that the Indo-US Knowledge Initiative could spell disaster for indegenous research and that the Center is taking a myopic view of things.

“There is a complete blackout at the top about what’s going wrong. This is the worst agrarian crises since Independence,” says Devinder Sharma an agricultural scientist, who is also a food policy analyst on the forum for biotechnology and food security.

Sharma says the Initiative's board is dominated by large multinationals like Walmart and Monsanto, who are all set to determine the Indian agricultural research agenda.

“The American IPR regime offers patent holders rights to life form, plants and seeds, so there is also the threat of losing rights to indigenous genetic resources. There is also the additional fear that India could become the dumping ground for all the genetically modified crops that there are no takers for in Europe and many other parts of the world,” Sharma says.

MS Swaminathan, the father of the green revolution and an honorary member of the Indo-US Knowledge Initiative, feels that no one can affect our farmers unless we are willing.

He adds that he hasn’t seen the documents of the agreement yet but says that the country is facing a real crisis.

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