Reuters North American News Service
Sep 10, 2008 08:28 EST
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Seven years after the Sept. 11 attacks, there is no
consensus outside the United States that Islamist militants from al Qaeda were
responsible, according to an international poll published Wednesday.
The survey of 16,063 people in 17 nations found majorities in only nine countries
believe al Qaeda was behind the attacks on New York and Washington that killed
about 3,000 people in 2001.
U.S. officials squarely blame al Qaeda, whose leader Osama bin Laden has boasted
of organizing the suicide attacks by his followers using hijacked commercial
On average, 46 percent of those surveyed said al Qaeda was responsible, 15
percent said the U.S. government, 7 percent said Israel and 7 percent said some
other perpetrator. One in four people said they did not know who was behind
The poll was conducted by WorldPublicOpinion.org, a collaborative project of
research centers in various countries managed by the Program on International
Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland in the United States.
In Europe, al Qaeda was cited by 56 percent of Britons and Italians, 63 percent
of French and 64 percent of Germans. The U.S. government was to blame, according
to 23 percent of Germans and 15 percent of Italians.
Respondents in the Middle East were especially likely to name a perpetrator
other than al Qaeda, the poll found.
Israel was behind the attacks, said 43 percent of people in Egypt, 31 percent
in… Continue reading
By Bernard Weiner
Co-Editor, The Crisis Papers
Each year around the anniversary of 9/11, I summarize what we ordinary citizens have learned since that awful day in 2001. This is the seventh annual look backwards, a 2008 update that contains new information and surmisings about those horrific events and what followed.
1. One 9/11 Size Fits All. What we now more fully understand is how the CheneyBush Administration utilized the murderous terrorism of 9/11 as the linchpin justification for their unfolding domestic and foreign agenda, much of it illegal, immoral and impeachable.
By and large, one can sum up that overall agenda as: Amass and control power in the U.S. and much of the world (“full-spectrum dominance”), and, in cahoots with their corporate supporters such as Halliburton and Blackwater, loot the federal treasury. All this was to be carried out secretly, with no accountability.
2. Iraq War Planning Began Before 9/11. We also know more about the nature of the lies (including forged documents) used by the Administration to sell the Iraq War, which attack already was in the planning stages well before 9/11.
The first faked document, by CIA forgers at the behest of White House officials, was a 2005 letter (back-dated 2001) supposedly coming from the then-Iraqi intelligence chief to his boss Saddam Hussein mentioning alleged “facts” that established a tie-in between 9/11, Al-Qaida and Iraq and about Saddam’s supposed purchase of uranium. The official, Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, who had been an informant for the U.S. during… Continue reading
by Luke Ryland
September 5, 2008
In last Monday’s New York Times, David Sanger and William Broad wrote
a front-page article
about the CIA’s involvement in the nuclear black market.
The article demonstrates (again) that the New York Times, Sanger &
Broad in particular, has simply become a mouthpiece for the government (see
my previous articles 1,
but they did let one fact slip through to the readership. I can only presume
that the slip was accidental, because they don’t appear to have understood the
ramifications of what they reported:
The US Government is covering up the fact that US citizens and entities are
involved in the nuclear black market.
Three members of the Tinner family in Switzerland were key suppliers to AQ
Khan’s nuclear black market ring. They were arrested in 2004 and have been awaiting
trial but the US government has been trying to sabotage the Swiss trial because
“compromising and embarrassing information about the CIA’s activities with the
Khan network” would be exposed if the trial were to proceed.
The New York Times reported that in July 2007, the Swiss Justice
Minister came to the US to discuss the case with high-level US officials, apparently
to find a mutually-acceptable arrangement regarding how to deal with the Tinner
According to an anonymous former Bush administration official:
“The State Department wanted the bomb plans destroyed as a way to stem nuclear proliferation, while the C.I.A. wanted to… Continue reading
By Kathy Sanborn
13/08/08 “ICH” — – Sanborn: When I read your article, “Marching
Off Into Tyranny,” I was impressed by how you were able to concisely sum
up one of the most important issues that we face as Americans, namely, the erosion
of our civil liberties, mostly due to fabricated terrorism such as the anthrax
scare and the attacks on 9/11. You talk about the Florida university professor,
Al-Arian, who continues to be victimized by the Feds although a jury has cleared
him of any terrorism charges. [As of August 8, 2008, the Associated Press states,
"U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema postponed the trial indefinitely,
questioning whether the government was overeager in filing charges." –KS]
What was your wake-up call, Dr. Roberts, to the fact that the current administration
was determined to take away the civil liberties of Americans?
Roberts: When they responded to 9/11 with the Patriot Act. That document was
thick, and it would have taken months and months to prepare it, yet it came
out shortly after the 9/11 attacks.
Why does combating terrorism require an assault on the Constitution and the
Bill of Rights? It was clear to me that there was an undeclared agenda there.
On the day of 9/11, I knew right away that something was wrong. I had been
an engineering student at Georgia Tech, and things just didn’t add up.
As I watched the towers fall, I could see that the buildings were blowing up
from the top, at least initially.… 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
Israel Planning a September/October Surprise?
By Ray McGovern
International Clearing House — You say you expected more rhetoric than reality from Senators Obama and McCain yesterday in their speeches on Iraq and Afghanistan? Well, that’s certainly what you got.
What I find nonetheless amazing is how they, and the pundits, have taken such little notice of the dramatic change in the political landscape occasioned by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s bombshell on July 7 — his insistence on a “timetable” for withdrawal of US troops before any accord is reached on their staying past the turn of the year.
Responding to a question at his press conference yesterday, President George W. Bush showed that he was vaguely aware that the timetable is, as Robert Dreyfuss says (in Truthout, July 7), a “big deal.” Bush even alluded haltingly to the possibility of extending the UN mandate still further.
But it is far from clear that Maliki, who is under great domestic pressure, would be able to sell that to the various factions upon which he depends for support, much less to those which he must keep at bay. As Dreyfuss points out, Maliki and his Shiite allies are also under considerable pressure from Iran, which remains the chief ally of the ruling alliance of Shiites. Most important, Maliki is by no means in control of what happens next.
Here’s where it gets sticky. No one who knows about third rails in US politics would expect the candidates or the fawning corporate media (FCM) to address how those now running Israel are likely to be looking at the implications of a large US troop withdrawal from Iraq next year.…Continue reading
by Paul Craig Roberts
July 17, 2008
National Public Radio has been spending much news time on Darfur in Western
Sudan where a great deal of human suffering and death are occurring. The military
conflict has been brought on in part by climate change, according to UN Secretary
General Ban Ki-moon. Drought is forcing nomads in search of water into areas
occupied by other claimants. No doubt the conflict is tribal and racial as well.
The entire catastrophe is overseen by a government with few resources other
Now an International Criminal Court prosecutor wants to bring charges against
Sudan’s president, Omar al-Bashir, for crimes against humanity and war
I have no sympathy for people who make others suffer. Nevertheless, I wonder
at the International Criminal Court’s pick from the assortment of war
criminals? Why al-Bashir?
Is it because Sudan is a powerless state, and the International Criminal Court
hasn’t the courage to name George W. Bush and Tony Blair as war criminals?
Bush and Blair’s crimes against humanity in Iraq and Afghanistan dwarf,
at least in the number of deaths and displaced persons, the terrible situation
in Darfur. The highest estimate of Darfur casualties is 400,000, one-third the
number of Iraqis who have died as a result of Bush’s invasion. Moreover,
the conflict in the Sudan is an internal one, whereas Bush illegally invaded
two foreign countries, war crimes under the Nuremberg Standard. Bush’s
war crimes were enabled by the political leaders of the UK, Spain, Canada,… Continue reading
July 13, 2008
By FRANK RICH
We know what a criminal White House looks like from “The Final Days”
Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s classic account of Richard Nixon’s
unraveling. The cauldron of lies, paranoia and illegal surveillance boiled over,
until it was finally every man for himself as desperate courtiers scrambled
to save their reputations and, in a few patriotic instances, their country.
“The Final Days” was published in 1976, two years after Nixon abdicated in disgrace. With the Bush presidency, no journalist (or turncoat White House memoirist) is waiting for the corpse to be carted away. The latest and perhaps most chilling example arrives this week from Jane Mayer of The New Yorker, long a relentless journalist on the war-on-terror torture beat. Her book “The Dark Side” connects the dots of her own past reporting and that of her top-tier colleagues (including James Risen and Scott Shane of The New York Times) to portray a White House that, like its prototype, savaged its enemies within almost as ferociously as it did the Constitution.
Some of “The Dark Side” seems right out of “The Final Days” minus Nixon’s operatic boozing and weeping. We learn, for instance, that in 2004 two conservative Republican Justice Department officials had become “so paranoid” that “they actually thought they might be in physical danger.” The fear of being wiretapped by their own peers drove them to speak in code.
The men were John Ashcroft’s deputy attorney general, James Comey, and an assistant… Continue reading
Who Planned the Anthrax Attacks?
It’s the $5,800,000 question
by Justin Raimondo
Antiwar.com Behind the Headlines
July 4, 2008
You remember the anthrax
attacks — or do you? It often seems, to me at least, that this important
catalyst for the invasion of Iraq and our supremely wrong-headed
post-9/11 foreign policy has been flushed down the collective memory hole. For
all the attention that’s been paid to that spooky chapter in the history of
the “war on terrorism” in the intervening years, it may as well have
never occurred. That’s why news of the former prime suspect’s ultimate vindication
— and his victory in a $5.8
million lawsuit in which he accused the feds of unfairly targeting him as
of interest” (as John Ashcroft put it) — seems like a visitation from
another time, the ghost of 9/11 past, haunting and mocking us. It sends chills
down my spine — because, you see, the real culprits are still out there.
The FBI’s non-investigation of this heinous and sinister crime was a joke from
the beginning: after all, since when do FBI probes have official names, and
why such a silly one as “Amerithrax“?
Such brazen corniness has about it an unmistakable Keystone Kops air, which
was certainly evident throughout the long-playing media circus that will evermore
be known as the persecution of Steven
Hatfill, you’ll recall, is the long-suffering victim of this horror story,
a bio-weapons expert and “insider” who was… Continue reading
On Fox News Sunday this morning, Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol said that
President Bush is more likely to attack Iran if he believes Sen. Barack Obama
(D-IL) is going to be elected.
However, “if the president thought John McCain was going to be the next
president, he would think it more appropriate to let the next president make
that decision than do it on his way out,” Kristol said, reinforcing the
fact that McCain is offering a third Bush term on Iran.
“I do wonder with Senator Obama, if President Bush thinks Senator Obama’s
going to win, does he somehow think — does he worry that Obama won’t
follow through on that policy,” Kristol added. Host Chris Wallace then
asked if Kristol was suggesting that Bush might “launch a military strike”
before or after the election:
WALLACE: So, you’re suggesting that he might in fact, if Obama’s
going to win the election, either before or after the election, launch a military
KRISTOL: I don’t know. I mean, I think he would worry about
it. On the other hand, you can’t — it’s hard to
make foreign policy based on guesses of election results. I think Israel is
worried though. I mean, what is, what signal goes to Ahmadinejad if Obama
wins on a platform of unconditional negotiations and with an obvious reluctance
to even talk about using military force.
Kristol also suggested that Obama’s election would tempt Saudi Arabia and Egypt to think, ‘maybe we can use nuclear… Continue reading
By Ray McGovern
June 19, 2008
It’s crazy, but it’s coming soon — from the same folks who brought us Iraq.
Unlike the attack on Iraq five years ago, to deal with Iran there need be no massing of troops. And, with the propaganda buildup already well under way, there need be little, if any, forewarning before shock and awe and pox — in the form of air and missile attacks — begin.
This time it will be largely the Air Force’s show, punctuated by missile and
air strikes by the Navy. Israeli-American agreement has now been reached at
the highest level; the armed forces planners, plotters and pilots are working
out the details.
Emerging from a 90-minute White House meeting with President George W. Bush on June 4, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said the two leaders were of one mind:
“We reached agreement on the need to take care of the Iranian threat. I left with a lot less question marks [than] I had entered with regarding the means, the timetable restrictions, and American resoluteness to deal with the problem. George Bush understands the severity of the Iranian threat and the need to vanquish it, and intends to act on that matter before the end of his term in the White House.”
Does that sound like a man concerned that Bush is just bluff and bluster?
A member of Olmert’s delegation noted that same day that the two countries
had agreed to cooperate in case of an attack… Continue reading
The Spy Who Loves Us
Pay no mind to the Mossad agent on the line.
by Philip Giraldi
June 2, 2008 Issue, The American Conservative
After Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1986, the U.S. negotiated an understanding with Israel—a “gentlemen’s agreement” —stipulating that neither nation would thenceforth conduct espionage operations in the other’s territory without consent. But the agreement was a sham from the beginning. The Israeli government didn’t even honor its commitments in the aftermath of the Pollard case, failing to return the estimated 360 cubic feet of stolen information to enable the U.S. to conduct a damage assessment. The United States, for its part, continued to recruit and run agents inside Israel throughout the 1980s and 1990s. And it was known within the intelligence and counterintelligence communities that Israel did the same in the United States. David Szady, the FBI’s assistant director for counterintelligence, was so dismayed by the level of Israeli spying in the late ’90s that he called in the head of the Israeli Embassy’s Central Institute for Intelligence and Special Activities (Mossad) office and told him, “Knock it off.”
Pollard’s name was in the news again on April 22, when former U.S. Army weapons engineer Ben-Ami Kadish was arrested for passing secrets to Israel. Kadish had been an agent run by Yosef Yagur, who directed Pollard. Yagur, under cover as a science attaché at the Israeli Consulate General in New York, fled the U.S. in 1985 after Pollard was… Continue reading
This story has now been updated with new information from Symposium organizers.
The New England 9/11 Symposium, held this past Saturday (5/17/08) in Keene, NH, was a tremendous success. We had a great turn out and received local and, of course, independent media coverage.
First, the morning began at 9:45 a.m. with Bob McIlvaine’s heartfelt speech, which is a reminder that, as Jon Gold put it, what we feel is nothing compared to what family members like McIlvaine feel. The part of his remarks that stuck out to me the most was when McIlvaine detailed his experiences researching 9/11 on his own and described his utter disgust with the 9/11 Commission. While speaking about the Commission he mentioned the day that Condoleeza Rice testified about the August 6th, 2001 PDB. To him it was obvious that Rice was spinning, lying, and not directly answering any questions posed to her by the Commissioners, who’s questions were light as it was. He talked of how outraged he was when, after Rice testified, family members were rushing to shake her hand. The deception was so blatant how could the others not see it? I, as well as many others, believe that Bob is very strong and very brave.
Next up was acclaimed Canadian media critic and author, Barrie Zwicker. Zwicker offered his excellent take on the media’s unwillingness to cover this issue. I had seen his presentation before in 2006 but it was watching Zwicker take the editor of The Keene Sentinel (a… Continue reading
Iceland tops list of peaceful nations, U.S. 97th
Tue May 20, 2008 5:08pm EDT
By Sue Pleming
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Iceland is the world’s most peaceful nation while the United States is ranked among the bottom third, according to a study released on Tuesday.
The “Global Peace Index,” compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit, ranked the United States 97th out of 140 countries according to how peaceful they were domestically and how they interacted with the outside world.
The United States slipped from 96th last year, but was still ahead of foe Iran which ranked 105th. It, however, lagged Belarus, Cuba, South Korea, Chile, Libya and others which were listed as more peaceful.
Iraq, which the United States invaded in 2003, leading to the toppling of Saddam Hussein, ranked lowest on the index. Afghanistan, another country invaded by the United States this decade, was also in the bottom five, along with Sudan, Somalia and Israel.
Commenting on the U.S. ranking, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said to realize a more peaceful and prosperous world, “Often times, you have to do difficult things and a lot of times, people don’t agree with them. They don’t like them.”
“A lot of times you fall down in these lists but at the end of the day it is in defense of democracy and the way of life we have enjoyed over the past several decades,” he added.
The United States has come under strong international criticism for the invasion of Iraq and… Continue reading
By Kristina Borjesson
Here we go again. President Bush goes to Israel. He talks to the Israeli Knesset
about standing "together against terror and extremism." He cites the
example of Osama bin Laden teaching that "the killing of Jews and Americans
is one of the biggest duties." The next day, yet another unauthenticated
bin Laden tape surfaces. "In a tape marking Israel’s 60th anniversary,"
reported the BBC, "the speaker pledged to continue fighting the Israelis
and not give up a ‘single inch of Palestine.’" Once again,
the lead was followed by what has now become the standard second line, "The
tape’s authenticity could not be verified." Once again, the timing
is interesting. Bin Laden’s message was just in time to help President
Bush make his point.
The BBC’s May 16, 2008 report continues with this: "The last messages
attributed to Bin Laden were aired in March." Those messages couldn’t
be verified either.
The last clear videotape of bin Laden was released to al Jazeera on December
27, 2001. The CIA released one two weeks earlier that they claimed had been
shot the month before, but the video is very fuzzy and the purported bin Laden
in the tape doesn’t altogether look like the bin Laden in authentic photos and
videos. A couple of other videos were released in 2004 and 2007, both of which
were fuzzy enough to raise questions. The 2007 video looked exactly like the
2004 video, except that the purported bin Laden’s beard was black in… Continue reading
April 30, 2008
A variety of current and former high-level officials have recently warned that the Bush administration is attempting to instill a dictatorship in America, and will itself carry out a fake terrorist attack in order to obtain one.
FBI agents, Time Magazine, Keith Olbermann and The Washington Post and Rolling Stone have all stated that the administration has issued terror alerts based on scant intelligence in order to rally people around the flag when the administration was suffering in the polls. This implies — as an initial matter only — that the administration will play fast and loose with the facts in order to instill fear for political purposes
More to the point, a former prominent republican congressman stated that the U.S. is close to becoming a totalitarian society and that the Bush administration is using fear to try to ensure that this happens.
Current U.S. Congressman Ron Paul stated, the government “is determined to have martial law”, and that the government is hoping to get the people “fearful enough that they will accept the man on the white horse”
And Daniel Ellsberg, the famous Pentagon Papers whistleblower, said “if there is another terror attack, “I believe the president will get what he wants”, which will include a dictatorship.
Terror on U.S. Citizens by American… Continue reading
Report: Netanyahu says 9/11 terror attacks good for Israel
By Haaretz Service and Reuters
The Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv on Wednesday reported that Likud leader Benjamin
Netanyahu told an audience at Bar Ilan university that the September 11, 2001
terror attacks had been beneficial for Israel.
“We are benefiting from one thing, and that is the attack on the Twin
Towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq,” Ma’ariv quoted
the former prime minister as saying. He reportedly added that these events “swung
American public opinion in our favor.”
Netanyahu reportedly made the comments during a conference at Bar-Ilan University
on the division of Jerusalem as part of a peace deal with the Palestinians.
Meanwhile, Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad cast doubt over the veracity
of the September 11 attacks Thursday, calling it a pretext to invade Afghanistan
“Four or five years ago, a suspicious event occurred in New York. A building
collapsed and they said that 3,000 people had been killed but never published
their names,” Ahmadinejad told Iranians in the holy city of Qom.
“Under this pretext, they [the U.S.] attacked Afghanistan and Iraq and
since then, a million people have been killed only in Iraq.”
Speaking Wednesday at a news conference on the Iran threat, Netanyahu compared
Ahmadinejad to Adolf Hitler and likened Tehran’s nuclear program to the threat
the Nazis posed to Europe in the late 1930s.
Netanyahu said Iran differed from the Nazis in one vital respect, explaining
that “where that [Nazi] regime embarked on a global conflict before it
developed nuclear weapons,” he said.…