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Judge Orders 17 Detainees at Guantánamo Freed

October 7, 2008
By William Glaberson

WASHINGTON — A federal judge on Tuesday ordered the Bush administration to release 17 detainees at Guantánamo Bay by the end of the week, the first such ruling in nearly seven years of legal disputes over the administration’s detention policies.

The judge, Ricardo M. Urbina of Federal District Court, ordered that the 17 men be brought to his courtroom on Friday from the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, where they have been held since 2002. He indicated that he would release the men, members of the restive Uighur Muslim minority in western China, into the care of supporters in the United States, initially in the Washington area.

“I think the moment has arrived for the court to shine the light of constitutionality on the reasons for detention,” Judge Urbina said.

Saying the men had never fought the United States and were not a security threat, he tersely rejected Bush administration claims that he lacked the power to order the men set free in the United States and government requests that he stay his order to permit an immediate appeal.

The ruling was a sharp setback for the administration, which has waged a long legal battle to defend its policies of detention at the naval base at Guantánamo Bay, arguing a broad executive power in waging war. Federal courts up to the Supreme Court have waded through detention questions and in several major cases the courts have rejected administration contentions.

The government recently conceded that… Continue reading

The Facts Speak For Themselves

by Jon Gold
9/25/2008
Latest Update 11/08/08

Thanks to www.historycommons.org, DHS, and simuvac. This is dedicated to the 9/11 Truth Movement.

Before I begin, I would like to say that theorizing about what happened on 9/11, when you’re not being given answers to your questions about that day by the people who SHOULD be able to do so, is PERFECTLY normal. As is suspecting that the reason these answers aren’t being given is “sinister” in nature. As Ray McGovern said, “for people to dismiss these questioners as “conspiratorial advocates”, or “conspiratorial theorists”… that’s completely out of line because the… The questions remain because the President who should be able to answer them, WILL NOT.” When you think about everything this Administration has done in almost 8 years, the idea that they might not be giving us the answers we seek because of something “sinister” is not crazy. In fact, it’s the most logical conclusion one can come to at this point. After seven plus years of obfuscation, spin, lies, and cover-ups regarding the 9/11 attacks, it is unavoidable to think that criminal complicity is the reason why.

That being said, we have not proven it beyond the shadow of doubt. We do not have documentation that shows they planned it. We do not have a signed confession from someone. We have pieces of the puzzle, and to most of us that have been doing this a long time, those pieces point to more than just Osama Bin Laden,… Continue reading

Islamophobia and the “War on Terror”: the Continuing Pretext for U.S. Imperial Conquest

ISLAMOPHOBIA AND THE ”WAR ON TERROR”: THE CONTINUING PRETEXT FOR U.S. IMPERIAL CONQUEST

© Diana Ralph, Ph.D.Abstract

The 9-11 attacks were the pretext which sold the myth of evil Muslim terrorists imminently threatening Americans. That tale allowed the Cheney-led members of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) to implement their 1990 DPG plan for world control. The “war on terror” has nothing to do with protecting the U.S. and world’s people from “terrorists”, and everything to do with securing the American empire abroad and muzzling democracy and human rights at home. Designed to inspire popular support for U.S. wars of world conquest, it is modeled on Islamophobic stereotypes, policies, and political structures developed by the Israeli Likkud and Bush Sr. since 1979. To defeat this plan, we must overcome our Islamophobic fear of “terrorists” and stand in solidarity with Muslims.

Editor’s Note:
Intro from Reprehensor, Editor of 911Blogger.com: Seven Stories Press of New York has published an affordable softcover version of the invaluable scholarly volume, “The Hidden History of 9-11″ (see this review) . Here is their page dedicated to this updated second edition . To promote the book, Seven Stories has allowed us to publish an online version of the chapter by Professor Diana Ralph, dealing with the historical roots of “international terrorism,” Islamophobia, and imperial aggression. This chapter is typical of the scholarly detail in “Hidden History.” If you enjoy this chapter, please consider purchasing the book.

1. Why a 9-11 Pretext?

 

…the War… Continue reading

Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Debunkers with Stewart Bradley

Debunking the ‘9/11 Debunkers’ With Stewart Bradley

by John-Michael Talboo
Debunking the Debunkers

John-Michael Talboo (JMT)-Q:

So Stewart, let’s jump right into our shared passion of debunking the so-called 9/11 debunkers shall we? You have put together some great videos on the subject including, 9/11 Debunking for Dummies,

History Exposed – Critique of History Channel’s documentary “9/11 Conspiracies- Fact or fiction”

 

 …

Continue reading

Transparency and Secret Sessions: A Tale of Two Terror Attacks

By Dave Lindorff
December 2, 2008

Before the odor of burned gunpowder has left the air of the Taj Mahal Hotel
in Mumbai, the US is lecturing India not to go off half-cocked and attack Pakistan,
simply because all of the attackers in the terrorist assaults in that city arrived
by boat, apparently from neighboring Pakistan. US officials, including Secretary
of State Condoleezza Rice, are calling on India to engage in a “transparent”
and “thorough” investigation into the attacks to establish who was
responsible.

How different this is from the American government’s response to the
9-11 attacks in the US!

Instead of a “transparent” investigation, we got secret sessions
of the Congressional intelligence committees, closed-door interviews of key
officials, including President Bush and Vice President Cheney by the 9-11 Commission,
and of course the secret round [up] of thousands of mostly Islamic people living
in the US, many of whom were held for months incommunicado and without charge,
some of whom were subjected to torture, and many other of whom were deported
to likely arrest, torture and even death.

Instead of a calm assessment of what had happened and who was responsible,
the Bush Administration rounded up Saudi members of the Bin Laden family, and
others connected to the regime in Saudi Arabia, whence came most of the people
reportedly involved in the hijacking of the four planes used in the attacks,
and, with no attempt at interrogation, flew them home to Saudi Arabia.

Then, again with only minimal evidence, the US launched an all-out war within
days upon Afghanistan, with the goal of ousting and destroying the Taliban government
of that country.…

Continue reading

Afghanistan, Another Untold Story

by Michael Parenti
December 7, 2008
GlobalResearch.com

Author’s website: www.michaelparenti.org.

Barack Obama is on record as advocating a military escalation in Afghanistan.
Before sinking any deeper into that quagmire, we might do well to learn something
about recent Afghan history and the role played by the United States.

Less than a month after the 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center
and the Pentagon, US leaders began an all-out aerial assault upon Afghanistan,
the country purportedly harboring Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda terrorist
organization. More than twenty years earlier, in 1980, the United States intervened
to stop a Soviet “invasion” of that country. Even some leading progressive
writers, who normally take a more critical view of US policy abroad, treated
the US intervention against the Soviet-supported government as “a good
thing.” The actual story is not such a good thing.

Some Real History

Since feudal times the landholding system in Afghanistan had remained unchanged,
with more than 75 percent of the land owned by big landlords who comprised only
3 percent of the rural population. In the mid-1960s, democratic revolutionary
elements coalesced to form the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). In 1973,
the king was deposed, but the government that replaced him proved to be autocratic,
corrupt, and unpopular. It in turn was forced out in 1978 after a massive demonstration
in front of the presidential palace, and after the army intervened on the side
of the demonstrators.

The military officers who took charge invited the… Continue reading

To the Anti-war Movement in the United States:

Saturday, 13 December 2008
WorldCantWait.net

“That which you do not resist and mobilize to stop
you will learn — or be forced — to accept.”

From the Call to Drive out the Bush Regime, 2005

Barack Obama is sending a surge of 20,000 troops to Afghanistan.

An anti-war movement that does not move immediately to oppose the Obama
doctrine of shifting the central front of the war on terror to Afghanistan,
no longer deserves to be called an anti-war movement.

Millions of people voted for Obama because they thought he would end the war.
Yet Obama filled his cabinet with Hillary “Obliterate Iran” Clinton,
Robert Gates, James Jones and Susan Rice (“a kettle of hawks,” said
Jeremy Scahill).

He is not only continuing an unjust war by leaving 80,000 troops and 17 permanent
bases in Iraq, and all over the region, including nuclear carrier-led task forces
with enough firepower to “annihilate” any country in the region, but
Obama is enlisting many progressive sections of society to support and be complicit
in waging a spreading war for U.S. hegemony and imperialist expansion known
as the “war on terror.”

The election of the first Black president is effectively re-branding preemptive
and illegal wars of aggression to make us feel good about them. Massive anti-war
sentiment and action is already being transformed into flag-waving patriotism,
passivity and capitulation in the face of horrors.

The U.S. military, stretched thin and full of discontent after six years of
carnage in Iraq, is now being replenished.…

Continue reading

Top 25 Censored Stories for 2009

Censored 2009 is also available at the Project Censored bookstore.

Source URL: http://www.projectcensored.org/top-stories/category/y-2009

# 24 Japan Questions 9/11 and the Global War on Terror in Top 25 Censored Stories for 2009

Source:
Rense.com and Rock Creek Free Press, January 14, 2008… Continue reading

Martial Law, the Financial Bailout, and War

by Peter Dale Scott
January 7, 2009

Paulson’s Financial Bailout

It is becoming clear that the bailout measures of late 2008 may have consequences at least as grave for an open society as the response to 9/11 in 2001. Many members of Congress felt coerced into voting against their inclinations, and the normal procedures for orderly consideration of a bill were dispensed with.

The excuse for bypassing normal legislative procedures was the existence of an emergency. But one of the most reprehensible features of the legislation, that it allowed Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson to permit bailed-out institutions to use public money for exorbitant salaries and bonuses, was inserted by Paulson after the immediate crisis had passed.

According to Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vermont) the bailout bill originally called for a cap on executive salaries, but Paulson changed the requirement at the last minute. Welch and other members of Congress were enraged by “news that banks getting taxpayer-funded bailouts are still paying exorbitant salaries, bonuses, and other benefits.”1 In addition, as AP reported in October, “Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. questioned allowing banks that accept bailout bucks to continue paying dividends on their common stock. `There are far better uses of taxpayer dollars than continuing dividend payments to shareholders,” he said.”2

Even more reprehensible is the fact that since the bailouts, Paulson and the Treasury Department have refused to provide details of the Troubled Assets Relief Program spending of hundreds of billions of dollars, while the New York Federal Reserve has… Continue reading

Obama and 9/11 2

Imagine yourself within the mind of Barack Obama, the first African American president of the United States of America. You are a man who knows how “the system” works.

Editor’s Note:
Part 1 of this blog entry was posted 1/28 here.

This knowledge has been accrued at hard struggle, and by a remarkable and unique ability to adapt to any environment because you spent a lifetime as an exotic specimen in every environment, from Kansas to Kenya–both African and American, Muslim and Christian, black and white. But you always displayed your native nobility–tribal nobility on your father’s side; nobility of spirit on your mother’s–and you were, with rare exceptions, accepted on your own terms. You were born under the sign of Leo, the lion, the natural leader; and your intelligence was honed with great discipline, under the influence of strong women.

Because your upbringing instilled in you a generosity of spirit that is natural to liberalism, and firsthand understanding from your grandfather of what motivates a man to risk his life for his country and an African father’s sense of freedom, unencumbered by Jim Crow oppression, you are a natural idealist who believes in the promise of America.

But you are also–with laser-focused intensity–a realist. A “pragmatist,” as they say. And no one knows better than you how much danger you are in.

It’s not just the racist crazies, one of whom could always, unexpectedly pop up through some weird quirk in the security system. But that’s only a… Continue reading

The War on Terror is a Hoax

Originally published at Information Clearinghouse By Paul Craig Roberts on February 04, 2009

According to US government propaganda, terrorist cells are spread throughout America, making it necessary for the government to spy on all Americans and violate most other constitutional protections. Among President Bush’s last words as he left office was the warning that America would soon be struck again by Muslim terrorists.

If America were infected with terrorists, we would not need the government to tell us. We would know it from events. As there are no events, the US government substitutes warnings in order to keep alive the fear that causes the public to accept pointless wars, the infringement of civil liberty, national ID cards, and inconveniences and harrassments when they fly.

The most obvious indication that there are no terrorist cells is that not a single neocon has been assassinated.

I do not approve of assassinations, and am ashamed of my country’s government for engaging in political assassination. The US and Israel have set a very bad example for al Qaeda to follow.

The US deals with al Qaeda and Taliban by assassinating their leaders, and Israel deals with Hamas by assassinating its leaders. It is reasonable to assume that al Qaeda would deal with the instigators and leaders of America’s wars in the Middle East in the same way.

Today every al Qaeda member is aware of the complicity of neoconservatives in the death and devastation inflicted on Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon and Gaza. Moreover,… Continue reading

Bad News From America’s Top Spy

Originally published at  Truthdig By Chris Hedges on February 17, 2009.

The Director of National Intelligence argued that Wall Street, rather than Islamic jihad, has produced our most dangerous terrorists.

We have a remarkable ability to create our own monsters. A few decades of meddling in the Middle East with our Israeli doppelganger and we get Hezbollah, Hamas, al-Qaida, the Iraqi resistance movement and a resurgent Taliban. Now we trash the world economy and destroy the ecosystem and sit back to watch our handiwork. Hints of our brave new world seeped out Thursday when Washington’s new director of national intelligence, retired Adm. Dennis Blair, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee. He warned that the deepening economic crisis posed perhaps our gravest threat to stability and national security. It could trigger, he said, a return to the “violent extremism” of the 1920s and 1930s.

It turns out that Wall Street, rather than Islamic jihad, has produced our most dangerous terrorists. We will see accelerated plant and retail closures, inflation, an epidemic of bankruptcies, new rounds of foreclosures, bread lines, unemployment surpassing the levels of the Great Depression and, as Blair fears, social upheaval.

The United Nations’ International Labor Organization estimates that some 50 million workers will lose their jobs worldwide this year. The collapse has already seen 3.6 million lost jobs in the United States. The International Monetary Fund’s prediction for global economic growth in 2009 is 0.5 percent–the worst since World War II. There are 2.3 million properties in the… Continue reading

Guantánamo: The Definitive Prisoner List

by Andy Worthington
4 March 2009
WorldCantWait.net

Andy Worthington, London-based journalist and author of “The Guantánamo
Files” (Pluto Press), has released the first definitive list of the 779
prisoners held in the US prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

The list, which is the result of three years’ research and writing about Guantánamo,
provides details of the 533 prisoners who have been released, and includes,
for the first time ever, accurate dates for their release. It also provides
details of the 241 prisoners who are still held, including the 59 prisoners
who have been cleared for release. Although some stories are still unknown,
the stories of nearly 700 prisoners are referenced either by links to Andy’s
extensive archive of articles about Guantánamo, or to the chapters in
“The Guantánamo Files” where they can be found.

Andy Worthington says:

“It is my hope that this project will provide an invaluable research
tool for those seeking to understand how it came to pass that the government
of the United States turned its back on domestic and international law, establishing
torture as official US policy, and holding men without charge or trial neither
as prisoners of war, protected by the Geneva Conventions, nor as criminal suspects
to be put forward for trial in a federal court, but as ‘illegal enemy
combatants.’

“I also hope that it provides a compelling explanation of how that same
government, under the leadership of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld,
established a prison in which the overwhelming… Continue reading

Cowardice in the Time of Torture

By Ray McGovern
April 5, 2009
ConsortiumNews.com

I used to take a certain pride by association with prominent Bronxites who have “made it.” Cancel that for Attorney General Eric Holder and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

You might think that as African-Americans, they would be especially outraged by torture, given what blacks have suffered at the hands of white torturers in this country and abroad.

Why is it that they seem to value more their admittance into a privileged white-dominated ruling class than doing the right thing? How else to explain their stunning reluctance to hold torturers accountable and thus remove the stain of torture from our nation’s soul and reputation?

One might say that Attorney General Holder is proving himself to be part of that “nation of cowards” that he called the United States in a different context, i.e. our unwillingness to address the issue of race. What about when the victims of torture are Muslims? Where’s Holder’s courage then?

Surely, I was not the only one stunned by former Vice President Dick Cheney’s public admission that he helped authorize waterboarding of detainees. But, on reflection, there seems to have been a method to his madness; and, so far at least, the method seems to be working.

Have Holder and Colin Powell forgotten from their days growing up in the Bronx the typical reaction of bullies when caught in the act? “Okay, so waddaya gonna do ’bout it!” It was an attempt at intimidation, and it was generally… Continue reading

Jury clears men of conspiring with four bombers over London 2005 explosions that killed 52

28 April 2009
by Rachel Williams
guardian.co.uk,

Three British Muslims were today cleared of helping the 7 July bombers choose their targets by carrying out a reconnaissance mission in London seven months before the attacks that killed 52 people and injured almost 1,000.

A jury at Kingston crown court unanimously found Waheed Ali, 25, Sadeer Saleem, 28, and Mohammed Shakil, 32, all from Beeston, Leeds, not guilty of conspiring with the four bombers to cause explosions, after deliberating for eight days.

They are the only people to be charged over the attacks in 2005, which prompted the biggest criminal investigation in British history — more than 18,450 statements were taken and at least 37,000 exhibits were collected.

Ali and Shakil were, however, convicted of conspiracy to attend a place used for terrorist training. They were about to board a flight to Pakistan when they were arrested in 2007. The pair will be sentenced tomorrow afternoon.

The home secretary, Jacqui Smith, welcomed those guilty verdicts, which she said “clearly demonstrated the determined stance the UK takes against those suspected of involvement in terrorism”.

As the verdicts were read out, Ali smiled broadly, Saleem wiped his eyes and Shakil leant forward, mouthing “thank you” to the jury. The trio had been retried after a jury failed to reach a verdict on the charges relating to the 7 July attacks last year after about three weeks of deliberations.

Survivors of the attacks and family members of those who died said today’s verdicts strengthened the case for an independent inquiry into the bombings.…

Continue reading

America’s Afghanistan: Heroin-ravaged State

by Prof. Peter Dale Scott
May 8, 2009
GlobalResearch.ca

One of the most frustrating features of observing American foreign policy is to see the gap between the encapsulated thinking of the national security bureaucracy and the sensible unfettered observations of the experts outside. In the case of Afghanistan, outside commentators have called for terminating current specific American policies and tactics — many reminiscent of the US in Vietnam.

Observers decry the use of air strikes to decapitate the Taliban and al Qaeda, usually resulting in the death of other civilians. They counsel against is the insertion of more and more US and other foreign troops, in an effort to secure the safety and allegiance of the population. And they regret the on-going interference in the fragile Afghan political process, in order to secure outcomes desired in Washington.1

One root source for this gap between official and outside opinion will not be addressed soon — the conduct of crucial decision-making in secrecy, not by those who know the area, but by those skilled enough in bureaucratic politics to have earned the highest security clearances. However it may be more productive to criticize the mindset shared by the decision-makers, and to point out elements of the false consciousness which frames it, and which should be corrigible by common sense.

Why One Should Think of So-Called “Failed States” as “Ravaged States”

I have in mind the bureaucratically convenient concept of Afghanistan as a failed or failing state. This epithet has been… Continue reading

The Big “Con”: Taliban take Pakistan and it’s “Another 9/11″

by Michael Collins
May 10, 2009
SmirkingChimp.com

A strange feeling of déjà vu arises while listening to the administration sell further U.S. military intervention in Pakistan (our Predator drones are already there).

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Michael Mullen claimed in late March that Pakistan’s intelligence service has “close links with al Qaeda and the Taliban network.” In fact, Mullen warned, the Pakistani intelligence service, ISI, is “offering logistical support to them (the Taliban).”

In early April, veteran foreign policy icon and special advisor to the president on Afghanistan and South Asia, Richard Holbrook, let us know what this meant. There is a fundamental difference between the Pakistan conflict and the Viet Nam war, he argued. Pakistan has nuclear weapons. Holbrook went on to say this:

“And the people who are in this area who we are fighting either pose a direct threat, having committed 9/11, having done Mumbai, having killed (Benazir) Bhutto, and they have publicly said they are going to do more of the same. That is: al Qaeda of course and their allies the Taliban.” Richard Holbrooke, May 5, 2009 (Repeating April 19, 2009 statement)

On May 9, General David Petraeus supported his superiors as he announced that Pakistan was now “the world headquarters for the al Qaeda senior leadership.”

There is even talk in the U.S. media that Pakistan is at risk of becoming a failed state controlled by Muslim extremists. Using Holbrooke’s logic, the U.S. would then be faced… Continue reading

CIA and ISI together created Taliban: Zardari

11 May 2009

Lalit K Jha
Press Trust Of India
May 11, 2009

WASHINGTON: In a new revelation, Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has said that the CIA of the United States and his country’s ISI together created the Taliban.

“I think it was part of your past and our past, and the ISI and CIA created them together,” Zardari told the NBC news channel in an interview.

In the interview, which was given to the NBC on May 7, Zardari also accused the US of supporting the military rule of Pervez Musharraf who was alleged to be taking sides of the Taliban.

He disagreed with the popular belief in the US that the Pakistan military and intelligent services still have sympathies for the Taliban.

“I think General Musharraf may have had a mindset to run head and hand with the hound but certainly not on our watch. We don’t have a tough process at all,” Zardari said.

Asked about the influential role of the Pakistan army, Zardari said he is in control of everything in the country, including the military.

“The Parliament has final say. It’s the Parliament form of government, and I am a product of the Parliament,” he said.

Earlier, Zardari in an another interview had said that India was not a “threat” to his country and that Pakistan had moved some of its forces from its Indian border to western frontier to eliminate Taliban in its tribal belt.

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