The US's occupation of Iraq will see to it that the Lion of Babylon rises again ..
سنـُبعـَث ُ من جَديد ، وإلى ضَـيـرِِهِـم
Monday, October 31, 2005
"Iraq is a nation on fire"
The following is an extract from an October 19 , 2005 public conversation sponsored by The Nation Institute at the New York Ethical Culture Society, between investigative reporter Seymour Hersh and former UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter:
"Mr. Ritter: Well, I view that Iraq is a nation that's on fire. There's a horrific problem that faces not only the people of Iraq but the United States and the entire world. And the fuel that feeds that fire is the presence of American and British troops. This is widely acknowledged by the very generals that are in charge of the military action in Iraq. So the best way to put out the fire is to separate the fuel from the flame. So I'm a big proponent of bringing the troops home as soon as possible.
Today's the best day we're going to have in Iraq. Tomorrow's going to be worse, and the day after that's going to be even worse. But we also have to recognize that one of the reasons why we didn't move to Baghdad in 1991 to take out Saddam was that there was wide recognition that if you get rid of Saddam and you don't have a good idea of what's going to take his place, that Iraq will devolve into chaos and anarchy. Well, we've done just that. We got rid of Saddam, and we have no clue what was going to take his place. And pulling the troops out is only half of the problem.
Mr. Hersh: One of the things about your book that's amazing is that it's not only about the Bush Administration, and if there are any villains in this book, they include Sandy Berger, who was Clinton's national security advisor, and Madeleine Albright.
….. Mr. Ritter: You know, there's a lot of talk today in the Democratically controlled judiciary committee about going after the Bush Administration for crimes, for lying to Congress, and etc. And I'm all in favor of that, bring on the indictments, but don't stop at the Bush Administration. If you want to have a truly bipartisan indictment, you indict Madeleine Albright, you indict Sandy Berger, you indict every person on the Clinton Administration that committed the exact same crime that the Bush Administration has committed today. Lying during the course of your official duty: That's a felony, that's a high crime and misdemeanor. That's language in the Constitution that triggers certain events like impeachment. So let's not just simply turn this into a Bush-bashing event. This is about a failure of not only the Bush Administration but of the United States of America …
…. And so that's why you have a Secretary of State like Condoleezza Rice who has the gall to stand before the American people and say that war is the only guarantor of peace and security. And now she testified before the US Congress today, and she said that not only is Iraq probably going to be another ten-year investment of time, blood, and national treasure for the American public, but that Syria and Iran may very well be the next targets of the Bush Administration. So this Administration has learned nothing, but what's worse is that Congress has learned nothing."Ritter and Seymour Hersh: Iraq Confidential
October 26, 2005Teaching
On the passing away
of Ghalib Abdul Mahdi Shubbar, I offer my deepest and most sincere condolences to his brother Adil and to Ghalib's family.
His late younger brother, Hashim, was my best friend whose memory and honorable pedestal, thirty years later, has still not faded.
Ghalib was an honorable gentleman, and I do witness that he managed to sustain his dignity, even through very difficult times, during the past two decades.
إنا لله وإنا إليه راجعون
Sunday, October 16, 2005
This New York Times picture, with its caption, and the below comment, was posted today on iraqpatrol.com. They do not need another Judith Miller, as this is truly typical and noteworthy of the corporate mass media's misinformation mindset
"Iraqi poll workers lined up Friday at an American base in Ramadi to be supplied with boxes of ballots and to be taken to voting sites".Comment by Khalid Baghdadi:"Why do they have their sleeping bags with them? Did they sleep overnight at the US army base? Or were they kicked out of their homes and afraid to return there?"Meanwhile:
"The need for the White House to produce a fantasy picture of Iraq is because it dare not admit that it has engineered one of the greatest disasters in American history. It is worse than Vietnam, because the enemy is punier and the original ambitions greater. At the time of the invasion in 2003 the US believed it could act alone, almost without allies, and win. In this it has utterly failed. About 1,950 American soldiers have been killed, 14,900 have been wounded, and its military command still has only islands of control. It is a defeat more serious than Vietnam because it is self-inflicted, like the British invasion of Egypt to overthrow Nasser in 1956. But by the time of the Suez crisis the British empire was already on its death bed. The disaster only represented the final nail in its coffin. Perhaps the better analogy is the Boer War, at the height of British imperial power, when the inability of its forces to defeat a few thousand Boer farmers damagingly exposed both Britain's real lack of military strength and its diplomatic isolation.
... Mr Blair says British and American troops will stay until the job is done, but their very presence means Iraq will never be at peace".Iraq: The state we're in
October 14, 2005PS: I will be away for two weeks. Till then.
Thursday, October 13, 2005
"Why is it so necessary to write a new constitution for Iraq now?"
This is a letter from the Brussels Tribunal to Amnesty International:
"We would like to congratulate Amnesty International on its courageous stand against the massive human rights violations inflicted upon the people of Iraq by the US-led occupation forces, as stated in the Amnesty International annual report of 2005
.“US-led forces in Iraq committed gross human rights violations, including unlawful killings and arbitrary detention, and evidence emerged of torture and ill-treatment. Thousands of Iraqi civilians were killed during armed clashes between US-led forces and Iraqi security forces on the one side, and Iraqi armed groups on the other.
Armed groups committed gross human rights abuses, including targeting civilians, hostage-taking and killing hostages. Women continued to be harassed and threatened amid the mounting daily violence. The death penalty was reinstated in August by the new interim government.”
The recommendations made by Amnesty International USA chief Mr. Schulz in the aftermath of this report were very clear:"If the US government continues to shirk its responsibility, Amnesty International calls on foreign governments to uphold their obligations under international law by investigating all senior US officials involved in the torture scandal," said Schulz, who added that violations of the torture convention, which has been ratified by the United States and some 138 other countries, can be prosecuted in any jurisdiction.”
On August 9, 2005, Amnesty International launched a “Call for a human rights based constitution
”. This action alert calls on people to write to Jaafari, asking him to make sure that the constitution is one that respects human rights. Of course, we embrace the idea that Iraqi’s human rights will be much better protected in the future than they are today. Nevertheless, everyone who cares about human rights should question the validity of a constitution that is written under the current situation
(emphasis added). A call we received from a well-know human rights activist from Baghdad, who has strong reservations against Amnesty International’s action alert, should illustrate our concern. For security reasons we can’t reveal the author’s name. We apologize for this, but in our opinion, people in a war zone should still have the right and opportunity to speak out without risking death. It also shows how grievous the situation in Iraq is, and how far the so-called ‘Salvador option’, the state-directed terror against the population, is now in action.“I hear Amnesty International is campaigning for Human Rights in the new Iraqi draft constitution? How wonderful that they are concerned about our human rights in the future... but what about now? Why doesn’t Amnesty International campaign or at least say something about the hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis who are held for months, years in the American prisons, without the least rights? The known and the unknown prisons inside and outside Iraq? Why don’t they do something about the hundreds of Iraqis, whose bodies are found every day on the garbage piles, with evidences of horrible torture on their bodies after they had been disappeared for a few days? What about the miserable life the Iraqi government is giving the Iraqis for months now, in every field? Does Amnesty International consider the rewriting of the constitution now a legal process? Obviously it does, but on what bases? The war and occupation of Iraq are illegal (even Kofi Annan said it). Who wrote the draft? A member of the writing committee admitted that a draft was sent from the US. So, how far is this legal?
I would like to ask Amnesty International one question: why is it so necessary to write a new constitution for Iraq now? All the political parties, the government, the National Assembly, the media ..etc are preoccupied with the (controversial points) in the constitution for months now, and will be for the next few months. Meanwhile, the country is full of problems: the security, the services, the economy, the environment, the corruption, the Human Rights conduct of the Iraqi government... to mention only few .."Open Letter to Amnesty International on the Iraqi Constitution
(English version)October 7, 2005
"The Shiites and Kurds have agreed that the newly elected parliament
after December 15 will reopen negotiations with the Sunni Arabs on the constitution. This step was enough to convince the Iraqi Islamic Party to drop its call for a Sunni Arab rejection fo the constitution in the October 15 referendum. This whole episode strikes me as bizarre, since Iraqis are now voting on a constitution that may be subsequently changed at will! As with the Jan. 30 parliamentary elections, in which they had no idea for whom they were voting for the most part, so in the referendum they will have no idea for what they are voting. ..."
Would you have handy any elastic band, glue or sticking tape?
This is a historic constitution, the only one of its kind.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Oil matters ... The oil proceeds were, and still are, under the total control of the occupation
"The oil proceeds were, and still are, under the total control of the occupation. The details thereof are not clearly known since they are surrounded by mystery.
The report issued by the General Accounting Office points out that contracts, amounting to billions of dollars, were spent out of the Iraqi Development Fund, without being reviewed by any independent party. The committee affiliated to the Senates' Council also stated that the 20 billion dollars of the Iraqi funds that were spent one week before the transfer of the authority to the Iraqis "were described as waste, fraud, and abuse".
After handing out the authority to the temporary Iraqi Council of Governance on 28/6/2004, it is unknown yet who is the authority the US relies on in spending the Iraqi funds, distributing and approving contracts!
(emphasis added) The official US spokesperson in Baghdad says, "resuming funds allocation has been agreed upon by the dissolved coalition authority and the Iraqi officials."!"The Economy of the Occupation… To Whom it May Concern
October 8, 2005.In the South, and after 30 months:
"The Ministry of Oil has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a well-known company to maintain the oil meters which are not working now
(emphasis added), in both Bakr Oil Terminal and Umaya Terminal.
He confirmed that current measurement is done by what he called ( engineering measurement on board the tanker ). He also confirmed that American technical teams had started the survey to repair the damaged meters and that part of the US grant money had been allocated for this purpose and a special committee headed by the deputy minister had been established for follow up."Asim Jihad, Iraqi Ministry of Oil spokesman, as reported by Al-Hayat newspaper
, October 10, 2005.
"As for any role for International Oil Companies (IOCs) and National Oil Companies (NOCs), none should be expected in the short or even medium term. It is the consensus of all concerned parties that having security and stability is by far the most serious concern and that seems to be a function of the political process and the presence as well as the role of the occupation forces. Simultaneously it is essential that dealings be handled through a permanent institution and not interim or transitional governments and parliaments, changing every few months. If the proposed draft constitution, to be put to a referendum on 15 October, is endorsed, then there will be new elections far a new parliament on 15 December. But if the draft constitution is rejected, then there will be elections for yet another interim parliament.
So in order to attract foreign companies in long-term deals there will be a need for:
· A new permanent government to be set up next February after the elections in December. This could again be another interim government if the constitution is rejected and in that case there will be a new referendum and elections around mid-2006.
· A new Hydrocarbon Law that will introduce the possibility of foreign investment and participation of IOCs and NOCs. Such a step might take quite some time, as in the case of Kuwait where Project Kuwait has been discussed for over 10 years and is still delayed by conflict between the government and parliament.
· All necessary fiscal and legal laws to guarantee foreign involvement.
· Restructuring of the Ministry of Oil and the re-establishment of Iraq National Oil Co (INOC).
· A clear oil policy that outlines the basic principles and modes to be followed for development, production-sharing, buyback, development and production, service contracts etc or possibly a combination for various fields.
· Specific priorities, with super-giant fields at the top of the list. Iraq in the past identified 33 oilfields for developments. But there will be a conflict on this issue among the proposed regions and provinces in Iraq. Iraq will certainly face a major problem of shortage of experienced technical, legal and financial staff to handle the preparation of the contracts and later their management. Iraq might need to adopt a policy of hiring consultants to assist the Ministry.
The above will depend entirely on the new constitution under discussion. The relevant articles to the oil and gas industries seem to contain the seeds for conflicts and possible fragmentation
(emphasis added), and hence a possible delay to proposed developments....."What Is Happening To Iraqi Oil?
Issam Al-Chalabi, from a paper presented at the 26th International Oil & Money Conference held in London on 20-21 September 2005, and in Arabic:
October 12, 2005
An article (in Arabic) on the status of Iraqi oil:
أ.د. خالد المختار
There are eight previous postings on this subject here, starting with:Where is the Iraqi oil money ?
.........December 13, 2004Oil-for-Food is now Oil-for-Grease
December 27, 2004On Iraqi People, Resistance and Oil versus American bases
February 5, 2005Iraqi oil (sp)oil .... and it may well get spoiled
...........................February 15, 2005Oil ? …. What oil ? … It is all about Freedom and Democracy and WMD (no, drop that last one)
March 18, 2005Oil ... and with Ahmad Chalabi as acting Oil Minister: "He trusted the cat with a piece of fat" - An Iraqi proverb
April 28, 2005Oil !! .... What oil ??
...................June 3, 2005The theft of Iraqi oil revenue
July 1, 2005The 'Metering' that will not be easily forgotten, or forgiven, by the Iraqi people
Sunday, October 09, 2005
Truth matters ... الزَبَدَ يذهب جفاءً وما ينفع الناس يمكث في الارض
This is an article (in Arabic) contrasting Iraq's Nuclear Mirage with Colin Powell's disgraceful mirage:
د. وديع بتي حنا
October 6, 2005
This is on a similar vein and which has been previously posted here:
"And the second fellow, whose name is Imad Khadduri, he was involved in the nuclear program but more as a--he collected documentation. And yes, he went to Canada. I mean, there were a lot of Iraqis who left Iraq who had more or less something to say. The fact that he said that the nuclear program had ended--you know, I don't how you would agree to that, but it does point to one of, I think, the systemic problems in the intelligence committee..." Charles Duelfer [Canadian], former deputy executive chairman, U.N. Special Commission on Iraq [UNSCOM]
"And this here is an image of a war crime ... There are more than 100,000 of them .. And there are also 2000 ....."
Friday, October 07, 2005
Destroying "rebuilt" bridges
A month ago:
"U.S. Marine jets Tuesday attacked two bridges across the Euphrates River near the Syrian border to prevent insurgents from moving foreign fighters and munitions toward Baghdad and other cities, the U.S. command said.
... A Marine statement said F/A-18 jets dropped bombs shortly after midnight on two light bridges near Karabilah, about 185 miles west of Baghdad."U.S. Marine Jets Bomb 2 Bridges in Iraq
September 6, 2005Now, they have bombed eight more bridges there:
"US-led forces have bombed eight bridges on the Euphrates River in western Iraq to stop insurgents using them, US military spokesperson Major General Rick Lynch said Thursday.
"We have been taking out portions of bridges with precision strikes," he told a news conference.Of 12 bridges between the Syrian border and Ramadi, 110km west Baghdad, "four remain under control of the coalition forces and Iraqi forces after precision strikes on the others," he said.
... "We took out portions of these bridges to deny terrorists, foreign fighters and insurgents the capability to cross north to south or south to north across the Euphrates River."US forces bomb Iraq's Euphrates bridges
October 6, 2005However, the Iraqi Resistance report that some of these bridges are 'restructured' for use within days. That is why the Americans hit them repeatedly, as in the above case. Hence, one would expect further 'precision strikes' against these same bridges soon."Why is this a big deal? Because we are actually destroying infrastructure in a country we occupy. We are saying that the military value of the bridges to the insurgency is greater than the value to us in either a military or economic/social way. This can be compared to the use of chemicals to destroy the jungle in Vietnam. Not because it caused cancer but because it was the long term destruction of some portion of the country.
As a solider I have been involved in this war in one way or another since 1990. I was in Baghdad early on when we actually thought we could rebuild the country. It was a tough decision then to cut down the trees on the airport road then but when you are getting shot at, you have to do something. Now we are blowing up bridges. For the first time I believe we have lost. For the first time as a military professional I think we have no way of winning this. We are willing to destroy the basic structures of the country to deny the enemy their use. This means we have no other way to deny them the use of these assets. We can't stop them, the Iraqi Army can't stop them, the Iraqi police can't stop them and we can't collect enough intelligence to make the enemy pay for using what should be choke points.
There is no way to sugar coat this. This is a MAJOR development. "Huge change in Iraq
October 6, 2005It would be appropriate here recalling Riverbend's early take on "rebuilding" Iraq's bridges:
"One of my cousins works in a prominent engineering company in Baghdad- we’ll call the company H. This company is well-known for designing and building bridges all over Iraq. My cousin, a structural engineer, is a bridge freak. He spends hours talking about pillars and trusses and steel structures to anyone who’ll listen.
As May was drawing to a close, his manager told him that someone from the CPA wanted the company to estimate the building costs of replacing the New Diyala Bridge on the South East end of Baghdad. He got his team together, they went out and assessed the damage, decided it wasn’t too extensive, but it would be costly. They did the necessary tests and analyses (mumblings about soil composition and water depth, expansion joints and girders) and came up with a number they tentatively put forward- $300,000. This included new plans and designs, raw materials (quite cheap in Iraq), labor, contractors, travel expenses, etc.
Let’s pretend my cousin is a dolt. Let’s pretend he hasn’t been working with bridges for over 17 years. Let’s pretend he didn’t work on replacing at least 20 of the 133 bridges damaged during the first Gulf War. Let’s pretend he’s wrong and the cost of rebuilding this bridge is four times the number they estimated- let’s pretend it will actually cost $1,200,000. Let’s just use our imagination.
A week later, the New Diyala Bridge contract was given to an American company. This particular company estimated the cost of rebuilding the bridge would be around- brace yourselves- $50,000,000 !!"The Promise and the Threat
August 28, 2003 entry'Liberating' the New Diyala Bridge, which was built 80 years ago by the British who were then 'Liberating' Iraq.
Thursday, October 06, 2005
The occupation is faltering as the unity of the Iraqi people persevers ... الإحتلال يتفتت ووحدة الشعب راسخة
The following is a statement (in Arabic) issued by the Iraqi National Foundation Congress in the UK on the above subject and citing the following references
- Iraq Index: Tracking Variables of Reconstruction & Security in Post-Saddam Iraq
(Pages 20 and 32
), THE BROOKINGS INSTITUTION, October 3, 2005 ,
- The Iraq Quagmire: The Mounting Costs of War and the Case for Bringing Home the Troops
A Study by the Institute for Policy Studies and Foreign Policy In Focus, August 31, 2005
المؤتمر التأسيسي العراقي الوطني في بريطانيا
October 6, 2005
قصيدة للشاعر معروف الرصافيClasping Hands .... لتتوحّد الأيادي
Sunday, October 02, 2005
The "ugly American" is schizophrenic
This introspection is dedicated to those remaining Americans who ask "Why do they hate us?
In 1958, two Americans wrote a book "The Ugly American
" renowned for its slashing exposé of American arrogance, incompetence, and corruption in Southeast Asia. Vietnam's bloody orgy proved their point.
A year ago, a previous posting
on this site fleetingly mentioned "The schizophrenia of the “American Way of Life”: Preach peace and democracy but rooted in genocide and violence on a subliminal level"
Not being a psychiatrist, the definition of schizophrenia is (according to www.gurunet.com
- A situation or condition that results from the coexistence of disparate or antagonistic qualities, identities, or activities: the national schizophrenia that results from carrying out an unpopular war.
- Any of a group of psychotic disorders usually characterized by withdrawal from reality, illogical patterns of thinking, delusions, and hallucinations, and accompanied in varying degrees by other emotional, behavioral, or intellectual disturbances.
Recent events have highlighted this schizophrenic behavior in the American psyche, be it the response to hurricane Katrina, the finally to be released 'more' Abu Ghraib pictures and videos, testaments of American soldiers who tortured prisoners, among other indicators.- Katrina
"The world's most over-developed military power is its most under developed nation in matters of real human security. Almost maniacally prepared for terrorist attack by material forces , it was unprepared for the terrorist attack by an immaterial Intelligent Designer . But along with the horrors of a natural disaster on America's Gulf Coast, we witnessed the unnatural disaster of our nation's disregard for some of its people.
Millions of Americans live in denial about racism , believing that social programs solved that problem . But the reality of unedited television news told a different story. Tens of thousands of black New Orleans residents could not afford to evacuate and were left in circumstances that would be pitiful in a poor nation, but are disgraceful in the richest country in the world. They were the forgotten and excluded, untouched by selective programs, identity group catch phrases or other system saving word games.
... While thousands of Americans acted in compassionate solidarity , government offered pious platitudes to cover its anti-social disregard for those left out of its upscale marketing agenda.
Poverty is the global curse of capital , but while suffering foreign masses are commonly seen in disaster TV coverage, the horrid reality of poor, displaced black Americans offered an educational experience for millions of viewers. That is, those who have not suffered permanent brain damage from watching Fox TV, or reading the thinly disguised race mongering that passes for punditry in much of our print media."The Terrorism of Race and Poverty
September 21, 2005
- American porno torture
"... Porno torture is not defined in law. However, laws do define pornography and torture separately. Pornography is visual depictions, including photograph, film, and video, of actual or simulated sexually explicit conduct, such as lascivious exhibition of the genitals, sexual acts, sadistic or masochistic abuse. Torture is the intentional infliction of severe physical or mental pain on a person for the purposes of obtaining information or a confession, punishment, or intimidation.From these definitions, porno torture may be deduced as the intentional infliction of severe physical or mental pain for interrogative, punitive, or abusive purposes by forcing a person to engage in sexually explicit behavior which is recorded, or staged before a live audience.Note that porno torture is not the same as porno conduct. What distinguishes the two is the element of consent.
Why has the US Torture Establishment invented porno torture to degrade and torment Muslim men, women, and children? There can be several believable explanations. Here are two:
The first explanation is legal. The Torture Establishment knows that the United States has not fully accepted the concept of mental torture. The Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment (1984), a universally subscribed international treaty, prohibits physical or mental torture and allows no exceptions under any circumstances. In 1994, however, the United States ratified the Convention with several reservations. One reservation narrows the scope of mental torture. No mental torture is actionable under US laws unless it causes "prolonged mental harm." Accordingly, the Torture Establishment might have foolishly concluded that porno torture may be inflicted on Muslim detainees since it presumably causes no severe physical injury or prolonged mental harm.
The second explanation is cultural-religious. The Torture Establishment interprets the war on terror as a religious war. It presumes that terrorists are Muslim fundamentalists with conservative sexual morality. The presumption is valid to the extent that Islamic culture shuns porno nudity and porno sexual acts staged for the gratification of an audience. In this sense, Islamic culture is no different from the mainstream American culture. However while a multi-billion dollars porn industry is permitted under the US laws, Muslim nations practice severe censorship to minimize the entry of porno products. This awareness of cultural difference empowers the Torture Establishment to use porno torture as an effective tool in challenging, confusing, and degrading the religious orientation of Muslim detainees. The Torture Establishment is betting that porno torture would cause severe mental pain and suffering to Muslim militants but no perpetrator will be prosecuted.
It is no surprise that the military court that convicted Lynddie England found no porno torture in the case. In fact, England was not even charged for committing any form of torture. She has been found guilty of one count of conspiracy, four counts of maltreating detainees, and one count of committing an indecent act. No Iraqi detainees were summoned as witnesses to tell their story of shame, degradation, pain and suffering that porno torture inflicted on their bodies, minds, and souls (emphasis added). Meanwhile, the Torture Establishment has buried thousands of pictures of porno torture in confidential files to avoid responsibility."
The Invention of Porno Torture September 28, 2005
".. And then there is the occupation. War is not glorious, or pure, or honorable. It is brutalizing, grotesque, beyond morality. The Americans drop bombs on houses from airplanes, killing people indiscriminately. They fire 50 caliber machine guns at cars that they think have approached them too closely, and at everyone in sight if they have been attacked. They break down doors in random searches of entire neighborhoods, destroy and loot people's property, beat and humiliate ordinary citizens. They routinely abuse and torture people they arrest, and they hold tens of thousands of prisoners, the vast majority on nothing but slight suspicions, under grim conditions. They besiege and demolish entire cities, driving their inhabitants into squalid refugee camps.
They do this even though they do not understand who they are fighting and they have no evident goal or cause. Some of them have taken to posting photographs of themselves laughing at the gory remains of Iraqis on an Internet porn site [U.S. troops trade photos of dead Iraqis with porn]. Ironically, that's about the only place Americans can see for themselves the reality of war, because the television and the newspapers won't show it to us. (emphasis added)
The whole world knows all this. But our political leaders, of both parties, and our corporate media, will not confront the truth. There is a cancer on our national soul."
The Unbridgeable Chasm September 28, 2005
- "The Murderous Maniacs"
"For the first time, American soldiers who personally tortured Iraqi prisoners have come forward to give testimony to human rights organisations about crimes they committed. Three soldiers – a captain and two sergeants – from the 82nd Airborne Division stationed at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Mercury near Fallujah in Iraq have told Human Rights Watch how prisoners were tortured both as a form of stress relief and as a way of breaking them for interrogation sessions.
The 82nd Airborne soldiers at FOB Mercury earned the nickname “The Murderous Maniacs” from local Iraqis and took the moniker as a badge of honour. The soldiers referred to their Iraqi captives as PUCs – persons under control – and used the expressions “f***ing a PUC” and “smoking a PUC” to refer respectively to torture and forced physical exertion."Torture of Iraqis was for ‘stress relief’, say US soldiers
October 2, 2005 "What is propelling this psychotic malaise in the US?
"The poverty and racism that reduce millions of Americans to lives of painful alienation is the natural outcome of an economic system, and cannot be blamed on any one person or party. The present gang of governing corporadoes may be the worst in our history, but nothing they do is out of character with the system they, and all their predecessors, have worked to maintain and protect. And this tragedy exposed that system's ugly underbelly to all but committed racists or the morally comatose."
Referring again to: The Terrorism of Race and Poverty
September 21, 2005Why isn't this alienation resulting from heightened capitalist economies affecting other Western societies in the same manner as in the US?
A brief and personal, albeit not wholesome, response is in the following incident: I was once interviewed at the end of 2002, and before the invasion of Iraq, by an American radio show host. Her final question was, “You have studied, and lived for several years, at both US and British universities. How do you feel now knowing that both these countries are intending to wage a war against Iraq shortly?” My immediate response was, “I appreciate being in Canada.” She was taken aback at this change of tact and quickly recovered: “How so?” she queried. I answered, “The American Way of Life is extracted from its Constitution which holds sacred three things, Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. In my belief, that American pursuit of happiness is expended even at the expense of others. In Canada, their Constitution embodies three similar symbols as basic tenets to the Canadians. These are Law, Order and Good Government”. Silence ensued and then a thank you. She aired the whole half hour of the interview without that last exchange.This picture speaks for itself.As for spreading Liberty, Democracy and Freedom:
"If you believe, as I do and as President Bush does, that the root cause of September 11 was the violent expression of a global extremist ideology, an ideology rooted in the oppression and despair of the modern Middle East, then we must seek to remove the very source of this terror by transforming that total region," she (Condoleezza Rice) said. "We must recognise, as we do in every other region of the world, that liberty and democracy are the only guarantees of true stability and lasting security," she said." Rice: Force necessary for democracy October 1, 2005
"In this policy [America’s new policy for the use of nuclear weapons], there is the impression of an "inhuman utilitarianism," which rejects the distinction between belligerent and non-belligerent and which, in addition, grants maximum value to the lives of one’s own people [Americans], but an Olympian scorn for the lives of all others. ". America Should Ask, 'How Many Civilians Must Die?' October 1, 2005
Saturday, October 01, 2005
Spoilt Kurdish relish ... الرسالة التي بعث بها البارزاني والطالباني إلى رئيس الوزراء
This is the exact letter (in Arabic) sent today from 'president' Talabani and Barazani (Kurdish combination) to 'prime minister' Ja'afari (Shia'a combination) bitterly complaining, in 16 points, about their estrangement and disassociation from the political process in Iraq over the past five months, with only three more months to go before a supposedly 'new government' takes over in Iraq. When this particular 'coalition' does split, may the occupiers savour the relish.
ان هذه الأمور وعديد غيرها جعلتنا نلجأ الى كتابة هذه المذكرة آملين الحلول العاجلة لكل هذه الفقرات والتي تعتبر كلها مهمة وأساسية وخروقات بالغة الضرر بمسيرة التحالف بين كتلتين وبمصالح الشعب العراقي العليا، وهي تسيء في الوقت ذاته الى الحكومة العراقية ذاتها وتعرقل عملها وتشوه ادائها، الأمر الذي ان لم يعالج مسرعاً سينعكس بشكل سلبي على تحالفنا وعملنا المشترك"ء
October 1, 2005
"Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has accused Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari of violating laws and not implementing articles of a joint charter signed between the Kurdistan alliance and the Iraqi coalition.
Talabani, a Kurd, on Friday accused al-Jaafari, a Shia, of unilaterally taking decisions in violation of accords signed by the two blocs before the setting up of the government."
Talabani wearing His Master's hat
On the recent killing "al-Zarqawi's 2nd in command"
"Does Zarqawi have an infinite supply of lieutenants/deputies/aides/associates/second-in-commands/etc., or do we just arbitrarily declare that every 100th insurgent we capture or kill is "a top aide" to Zarqawi?
Below is an almost comprehensive list (I'm sure I missed a few) of Zarqawi's "top lieutenants" we've captured, killed, or acknowledged over the last two and a half years. I count 33
."Kiss of Death
September 27, 2005Some 'Intelligence' are intelligent enough to question this abundance of "top lietenants":
"U.S. intelligence officials and counterterrorism analysts are questioning whether a slain terrorist—described by President Bush today as the “second-most-wanted Al Qaeda leader in Iraq”—was as significant a figure as the Bush administration is claiming."The 'Second' Man: The slain Abu Azzam may not have been Zarqawi’s top deputy after all
September 29, 2005Recalling that back in 2004, it was reported :
"A Jordanian extremist suspected of bloody suicide attacks in Iraq was killed some time ago in U.S. bombing and a letter outlining plans for fomenting sectarian war is a forgery, a statement allegedly from an insurgent group west of the capital said.
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed in the Sulaimaniyah mountains of northern Iraq “during the American bombing there,” according to a statement circulated in Fallujah this week and signed by the “Leadership of the Allahu Akbar Mujahedeen.”
The statement did not say when al-Zarqawi was supposedly killed, but U.S. jets bombed strongholds of the extremist Ansar al-Islam in the north last April as Saddam Hussein’s regime was collapsing.
It said al-Zarqawi was unable to escape the bombing because of his artificial leg.
Before the Iraq conflict began last March, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said al-Zarqawi received hospital treatment in Baghdad after fleeing Afghanistan. U.S. intelligence sources said he apparently was fitted with an artificial leg.
The statement said the “fabricated al-Zarqawi memo” has been used by the U.S.-run coalition “to back up their theory of a civil war” in Iraq."Iraq militants claim al-Zarqawi is dead
March 4, 2004.