August 01, 2008
ABC News’ David Wright reports: Answering a question at the Urban League about
his approach to combating crime, John McCain suggested that military strategies
currently employed by US troops in Iraq could be applied to high crime neighborhoods
here in the US.
McCain at first praised the crime-fighting efforts of Rudolph Giuliani when
he was mayor of New York City. Then he down-shifted into an approach that sounded
McCain called them tactics "somewhat like we use in the military."
"You go into neighborhoods, you clamp down, you provide a secure environment
for the people that live there, and you make sure that the known criminals are
kept under control," he said. "And you provide them with a stable
environment and then they cooperate with law enforcement."
The way he described it, his approach sounded an awful lot like the surge.
Urban League president Marc Morial countered that while New York did experience
a drop in crime under Giuliani, there were several major instances of police
In response, McCain promised aggressive prosecution of civil rights violations
and a Justice Department free from political cronyism.
"U.S. attorneys will be appointed strictly on the basis of qualifications
and not political connections," McCain said, a swipe at the Bush Administration
Justice Department under Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
ABC News’ Bret Hovell contributed to this report.
Speaking at the Campus Progress journalism conference earlier this month, Seymour Hersh — a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist for The New Yorker — revealed that Bush administration officials held a meeting recently in the Vice President’s office to discuss ways to provoke war with Iran.
In Hersh’s most recent article, he reports that this meeting occurred in the wake of the overblown incident in the Strait of Hormuz, when a U.S. carrier almost shot at a few small Iranian speedboats. The “meeting took place in the Vice-President’s office. ‘The subject was how to create a casus belli between Tehran and Washington,'” according to one of Hersh’s sources.
During the journalism conference event, I asked Hersh specifically about this meeting and if he could elaborate on what occurred. Hersh explained that, during the meeting in Cheney’s office, an idea was considered to dress up Navy Seals as Iranians, put them on fake Iranian speedboats, and shoot at them. This idea, intended to provoke an Iran war, was ultimately rejected:
… Continue reading
HERSH: There was a dozen ideas proffered about how to trigger a war. The one that interested me the most was why don’t we build — we in our shipyard — build four or five boats that look like Iranian PT boats. Put Navy seals on them with a lot of arms. And next time one of our boats goes to the Straits of Hormuz, start a shoot-up.
Might cost some lives. And it was rejected because you can’t have Americans killing Americans.
In case you couldn’t tell, I picked this song for two reasons. It’s really long. Both books are “thick as a brick,” and about as useful as one. Ha Ha. Thank you to Michael Wolsey and Justin Martell for helping me to make this video. You may have to pause on occasion. With regards to the cover-up of 9/11, there is so much information. I had to reluctantly remove a lot of clips. Almost enough to make another movie. Thanks to www.historycommons.org. Please spread this video far and wide, and vote it up at youtube. Thank you. Jon Gold
By Lori Price
30 July 2008
Abu Khabab al-Masri ‘died’ in January 2006 and again on Monday. Once again, the ‘mainstream’ media announces the re-killing of another ‘key al-Qaeda operative’ by a ‘CIA-operated unpiloted drone!’ These top al-Qaeda operatives – and their subsequent deaths – are more bountiful than poppy fields in Afghanistan or oil smuggling routes in Iraq.
The Financial Times reports:
Al-Qaeda expert killed by CIA 30 July 2008 Pakistan intelligence officials yesterday confirmed a key al-Qaeda [al-CIAduh] expert on chemical and biological weapons was killed in an attack by a CIA-operated unpiloted drone, late on Sunday. Egyptian-born Midhat Mursi al-Sayid Umar, who was also known as Abu Khabab al-Masri, was one of six Arab men who were killed in a remote region along the Afghan border, according to an intelligence official. The US had offered a $5m (€3.19m, £2.5m) reward for his capture. Western diplomats said it would be a boost to morale in the Bush administration, struggling with mounting troop casualties in Afghanistan and a revival of militant attacks in Iraq.
CBS News reports:
Officials: Al Qaeda’s Mad Scientist Killed —29 Jul 2008 — CIA Drone Targeted Chemical Weapons Expert Abu Khabab Al-Masri On Afghanistan-Pakistan Border One of al Qaeda’s top chemical and biological weapons experts was killed in an air strike by a CIA pilotless drone in a remote Pakistani border region, senior Pakistani intelligence officials told CBS News Tuesday morning. Intelligence officials investigating the early Monday missile attack confirmed… Continue reading
For Immediate Release: July 28, 2008
Contact: Carol Goldberg (202) 265-7337
EPA STAFF ORDERED TO STONEWALL INVESTIGATORS AND MEDIA — Employees
Told Not to Answer Questions or “Make Any Statements”
Washington, DC — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is ordering
its staff to “not respond to questions or make any statements” if
contacted by congressional investigators, reporters or even by its own Office
of Inspector General, according to documents released today by Public Employees
for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). The order reinforces a growing bunker
mentality within an EPA that is the subject of a growing number of probes into
political interference with agency operations.
In a June 16, 2008 e-mail distributed throughout EPA’s Office of Enforcement
and Compliance Assurance, managers were asked to “remind your staff”
to comply with “these important procedures.” These procedures forbid
staff from speaking with any reporters or representatives of the Government
Accountability Office or the EPA Inspector General (IG). If contacted, EPA employees
are not supposed to say anything but are to immediately refer the person to
a designated public affairs official.
“Inside the current EPA, candor has become the cardinal sin,” stated
PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, noting that while this directive is of questionable
legality, an agency specialist risks discipline or even termination for disregarding
a direct order. “The clear intention behind this move is to chill the
cubicles by suppressing any uncontrolled release of information.”
By way of justification, EPA’s Office of Public Affairs defends the order
as “standard operating procedures” to… Continue reading
Because of your vigilance and support for democracy, last Friday was a day
of singular importance in Washington. The House Judiciary Committee met to discuss
the Bush Administration’s abuse of executive power and for the first time the
case for Impeachment was discussed in front of a Congressional committee, in
depth, at length and with authority.
Twenty members of the Judiciary Committee attended the six hour hearing, during
which twelve witnesses, including myself and four members of Congress testified.
In this hearing I called for the Impeachment of the President for misrepresenting
a case for war.
This week I will present members of Congress with Impeachment petitions submitted
by those of you who have signed the on-line impeachment form.
I need your help. In the next few days we must redouble our efforts to get
more signatures on the online petition at kucinich.us. I’m asking each of you
to please contact at least ten of your friends to go to www.Kucinich.us now
and sign the Impeachment petition that will be delivered by me. Wednesday night
is the deadline.
Please send out an email to all your friends and family, post this link, http://kucinich.us
to your blogs and make this effort count as this is the only petition that I
Sign the petition.
Thank you so very much.
signature – Dennis J Kucinich
by Chalmers Johnson
Source URL: http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/174959/chalmers_johnson_warning_mercenaries_at_work
Most Americans have a rough idea what the term “military-industrial complex” means when they come across it in a newspaper or hear a politician mention it. President Dwight D. Eisenhower introduced the idea to the public in his farewell address of January 17, 1961. “Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime,” he said, “or indeed by the fighting men of World War II and Korea We have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions We must not fail to comprehend its grave implications We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.”
Although Eisenhower’s reference to the military-industrial complex is, by now, well-known, his warning against its “unwarranted influence” has, I believe, largely been ignored. Since 1961, there has been too little serious study of, or discussion of, the origins of the military-industrial complex, how it has changed over time, how governmental secrecy has hidden it from oversight by members of Congress or attentive citizens, and how it degrades our Constitutional structure of checks and balances.
From its origins in the early 1940s, when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was building up his “arsenal of democracy,” down to the present moment, public opinion has usually assumed that it involved more or less equitable relations — often termed a “partnership” — between the high command and civilian overlords of the United States military and… Continue reading
This week Visibility 9-11 welcomes former diplomat from the State Department’s Foreign Service J. Michael Springmann. Mr. Springmann served postings in Germany, India, Saudi Arabia, and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research in Washington D.C. He is a published author of several articles on national security themes, and is an attorney in private practice in Washington D.C.
Michael has attended several 9/11 Conferences over the years, most notably, the 9/11 Omission hearings on 9/9/2004 chaired by former Representative and current Green Party candidate for President, Cynthia McKinney, as well as the recent conference in Keene, NH.
Included in this important interview is a discussion regarding a new article by Mr. Springmann titled, THE MISTAKE DEPARTMENT: One Example of Why American Foreign Policy is a Disaster (reprinted below) that discusses the American Consulate General at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and it’s relationship to 15 of the 19 alleged September 11th hijackers. In it, he says that “the Jeddah Consulate was not a State Department post but an intelligence services operation”, “the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) routinely demanded (and got) visas for sleazy characters with no ties to either their home country or Saudi Arabia,” and “these vile people were terrorists recruited by U.S. intelligence officers along with Osama bin Laden, then a CIA asset.”
By Brent Budowsky
July 26, 2008
Consortiumnews Editor’s Note: As his presidency nears its end, George W. Bush will be faced with a tough choice: either run the risk, along with many of his top aides, of future prosecution for a variety of crimes from the “war on terror” — or fashion a mass pardon for all those involved.
In this guest essay, former Democratic congressional aide Brent Budowsky predicts that Bush will take the latter course, even outdoing his father’s lame-duck Iran-Contra pardons in 1992:
Before leaving office George W. Bush will issue a mass pardon, the largest collection of presidential pardons in American history.
Bush will pardon himself, Vice President Cheney, and a long list of officials involved in torture, eavesdropping, destruction of evidence, the CIA leak case, and a range of other potential crimes.
As George Bush signs the pardons and boards the helicopter to depart Washington as his presidency finally ends, even then he and those pardoned will worry about the statute of limitations.
There is an important point to this, often not recognized in official Washington during the Bush years: When the unthinkable became a way of life, acts were committed that defied constitutional and legal principles in ways never done by an American president.
Torture alone violates international law, domestic law, criminal statutes, and American principles that date back to George Washington.
Eavesdropping without court order violates a statute, FISA, that includes severe criminal penalties. If the courts ultimately conclude that these laws… Continue reading
July 24, 2008
by Tara Parker-Pope
New York Times “Well” Column
The head of a prominent cancer research institute has warned his faculty and staff to limit cellphone use because of a possible cancer risk, The Associated Press reports.
Dr. Ronald B. Herberman, the director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, notes that while the evidence about a cellphone-cancer link remains unclear, people should take precautions, particularly for children.
Earlier this year, three prominent brain surgeons raised similar concerns while speaking on “The Larry King Show.” Their concerns were largely based on observational studies that showed only an association between cellphone use and cancer, not a causal relationship. The most important of these studies is called Interphone, a vast research effort in 13 countries, including Canada, Israel and several in Europe.
Some of the research suggests a link between cellphone use and three types of tumors: glioma; cancer of the parotid, a salivary gland near the ear; and acoustic neuroma, a tumor that essentially occurs where the ear meets the brain. All these tumors are rare, so even if cellphone use does increase risk, the risk is still very low.
On Wednesday, Dr. Herberman sent a memo to about 3,000 faculty and staff saying that children should use cellphones only for emergencies because their brains are still developing.…Continue reading
July 24, 2008
Kucinich, Barr, Bugliosi among those testifying
The House Judiciary Committee has released a witness list for its hearing to examine “the imperial presidency” of George W. Bush.
Testifying Friday morning will be Rep. Dennis Kucinich, who has introduced several resolutions calling for President Bush’s and Vice President Dick Cheney’s impeachment; former Rep. Bob Barr, the Libertarian presidential candidate who led the charge to impeach Bill Clinton in 1998; Vincent Bugliosi, author of the just-released book The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder; and 10 other current and former members of Congress, constitutional experts and human rights activists.
The hearing, which was announced last week, seems to be the one Judiciary Chairman John Conyers promised to Kucinich after he introduced his second impeachment resolution aimed at Bush earlier this month. Any action on Kucinich’s articles of impeachment still seems unlikely, but the Ohio Democrat has previously said he just wants to be able to present his case.
Late Thursday afternoon, the committee released the full witness list, broken down into two panels.
The Honorable Dennis Kucinich, Representative from Ohio
The Honorable Maurice Hinchey, Representative from New York
The Honorable Walter Jones, Representative from North Carolina
The Honorable Brad Miller, Representative from North Carolina
The Honorable Elizabeth Holtzman, Former Representative from
The Honorable Bob Barr, Former Representative from Georgia,
2008 Libertarian Nominee for President
The Honorable Ross C. “Rocky” Anderson, Founder and President, High Roads for Human Rights
Stephen Presser, Raoul Berger Professor of Legal History, Northwestern University School of Law
Bruce Fein, Associate Deputy Attorney General, 1981-82, Chairman, American Freedom Agenda
Vincent Bugliosi, Author and former Los Angeles County Prosecutor
Click Here To Listen — http://noliesradio.org
Coming Up Friday, July 25th at: 6am Pacific – 9am Eastern – 13:00 GMT
Repeated Saturday, July 26th at 9am Pacific – 12 Noon Eastern – 16:00 GMT
Impeachment Could Be Our Last Chance for 9/11 Truth, Stopping the Iran War and
Listen to the Hearing! Then Act!
Read Rep. Kucinich’s Articles of Impeachment. Call the Judiciary Committee
and your Representative and Demand Impeachment Hearings Now. Be sure to mention
Article 17 (illegal detention), Article 18 (Torture), Article 19 (Rendition)
and Articles 33-35 regarding 9/11 Truth. Call 6 friends to do this also and
ask them to call 6 friends…and this will go viral!!! If Conyers censors the
hearing, ask for his resignation!
SPECIAL LIVE COVERAGE:
No Lies Radio will carry live the Pacifica Radio network (KPFA) broadcast of
the House Judiciary Committee hearing on the Imperial Presidency and possible
legal responses entitled “Executive Power and Its Constitutional Limitations”.
For the last several years, many progressives – including a handful of Congress
members – have called for the impeachment of President George W. Bush. But they
have been stymied by six years of Republican majority followed by a Democratic
leadership that took impeachment “off the table.” That may be changing.
This Friday, the House Judiciary Committee will take the first step to investigate
what Rep. John Conyers calls “numerous credible allegations of serious
misconduct.” While the panel of witnesses is somewhat fluid until the hearing
actually begins, the current roster of speakers includes: — Several Congress
members: Dennis Kucinich, Jane Harman, Walter Jones, Brad Miller, and Maurice
Hinchey — Several non-Congress Members: Elizabeth Holtzman, Bruce Fein, Frederick
Schwartz, John Dean, Bob Barr, Rocky Anderson, Vincent Bugliosi, Elliott Adams.…
By Jim Loney
Originally published July 22, 2008
Someone has just brought to my attention a possible interpretation of this statement different than what I had come to, so in the spirit of accurate reporting and non-sensationalism, I am adding this for your consideration. As always, we hope you carefully interpret all information coming to you, no matter what the source, (including ours, of course). My interpretation of these comments was that Stone was simply making the case (the crux of the case) that Hamdan knew the target, therefore Hamdan must have been a party to the attack. I had not considered that Stone may have been (supposedly) quoting Hamdan fully, and that Hamdan may have been the one reported as having said, “If they hadn’t shot it down…,” not Stone. Nonetheless, it seems quite odd that the US prosecution, led by military officers, would have made any reference to Flight 93 having been shot down… [End of update.]
A couple key points here from the Gitmo show trials not really being shown:
1) Defense attorney for bin Laden’s driver, Salim Hamdan, stated: “There will be no evidence that Mr. Hamdan espoused or believed or embraced any form of what you will hear about, radical Islam beliefs, extremist Muslim beliefs.” Where have we heard that before? A little like Atta and friends drinking Dewars scotch, paying for lap dances, partying it up… fundamentalist Muslims who hate Americans’ ‘freedoms’? I think not…… Continue reading
A video tribute by Jon Gold
July 24, 2008
They deserve better than this. We deserve better than this.
Please read the Family Steering Committee Review of the 9/11 Commission Report.
Tuesday July 22, 2008
Guantánamo BAY NAVAL BASE, Cuba – The judge in the first American war crimes
trial since World War II barred evidence on Monday that interrogators obtained
from Osama bin Laden’s driver following his capture in Afghanistan.
Prosecutors are considering whether to appeal the judge’s ruling — a
development that could halt the trial of Salim Hamdan that began earlier Monday
after years of delays and legal setbacks.
"We need to evaluate … to what extent it has an impact on our ability
to fully portray his criminality in this case, but also what it might set out
for future cases," said Army Col. Lawrence Morris, the tribunals’ chief
Hamdan, who was captured at a roadblock in Afghanistan in November 2001, pleaded
not guilty at the start of a trial that will be closely watched as the first
full test of the Pentagon’s system for prosecuting alleged terrorists. He faces
a maximum life sentence if convicted of conspiracy and aiding terrorism.
The judge, Navy Capt. Keith Allred, said the prosecution cannot use a series
of interrogations at the Bagram air base and Panshir, Afghanistan, because of
the "highly coercive environments and conditions under which they were
At Bagram, Hamdan says he was kept in isolation 24 hours a day with his hands
and feet restrained, and armed soldiers prompted him to talk by kneeing him
in the back. He says his captors at Panshir repeatedly tied him up, put a bag
over his… Continue reading
* 7/7 London bombings mastermind Haroon Rashid Aswat was alleged to be an informer by a counterterrorism expert in 2005, and the British authorities certainly showed a surprising lack of interest in him during his career
* Lead 7/7 London bomber Mohammad Sidique Khan was monitored by the British security services
* Details of calls by Flight 93 passenger Tom Burnett
* Vice President Cheney’s demands for alterations to 9/11 Commission report
* Progress of the Washington’s Post investigation
* Dick Cheney’s first hiring to work in the executive branch
* Nixon’s mental health, according to Barry Goldwater
* The Reagan Doctrine, its originator’s visit to a Nazi cemetery and jokes about bombing the Soviet Union
The History Commons has a new blog up. Here’s where you can find the latest about the Commons, including news on the move towards “History Commons 2.0,” fundraising, community outreach, and more. Please share your opinions with us.
A second contributors’ blog is also up and running. Here’s where you can talk about the material published at the Commons. We keep the two blogs separate because the content is separate from the History Commons itself. Please join the discussion.
by Devlin Buckley
July 21, 2008
“In the United States of America there is a hidden government about which you know nothing.”
So begins a revealing television exposeé aired by CNN in 1991. The hour-long Special Assignment presented the findings of a yearlong CNN investigation into the ultra-secretive Continuity of Government (COG) program, commonly referred to as the “doomsday government” or the “shadow government”.
The COG program was originally designed in the 1950s to ensure the survival of the federal government in the event of a nuclear attack. The highly secretive emergency plans were substantially upgraded during the 1980s and have become a focus point of the current administration, particularly since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
The COG program, which until recent years was believed to be reserved for nuclear disasters, was officially activated for the first time during the 9/11 attacks. The program, according to the most recent reports, was never completely shut down. Portions of the “shadow government” are presumably still operating to this day.
Recent efforts to reform and expand the emergency protocols, according to the best available reports, have been led by Vice President Dick Cheney, who played a major role in the COG program during the Reagan Administration.
The underground program is historically run out of the office of the Vice President through a clandestine agency, identified by CNN as the National Program Office (NPO).
In 1991, CNN found the Continuity of Government program and National Program Office to be rife with waste, fraud, and abuse.…Continue reading