Citizens for Legitimate Government, a multi-partisan activist group established to expose the Bush Coup d'Etat and oppose the Bush occupation in Citizens for Legitimate Government, a multi-partisan activist group established to expose the Bush Coup d'Etat and oppose the Bush occupation in all of its manifestations.


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Archived Hot Articles --Page 1

*Articles archived Saturday, September 18, 2004 03:00 GMT

Regarding the Torture of Others --by Susan Sontag "[The photographs] are representative of the fundamental corruptions of any foreign occupation together with the Bush adminstration's distinctive policies. The Belgians in the Congo, the French in Algeria, practiced torture and sexual humiliation on despised recalcitrant natives. Add to this generic corruption the mystifying, near-total unpreparedness of the American rulers of Iraq to deal with the complex realities of the country after its 'liberation.' And add to that the overarching, distinctive doctrines of the Bush administration, namely that the United States has embarked on an endless war and that those detained in this war are, if the president [sic] so decides, 'unlawful combatants' -- a policy enunciated by Donald Rumsfeld for Taliban and Qaeda prisoners as early as January 2002 -- and thus, as Rumsfeld said, 'technically' they 'do not have any rights under the Geneva Convention,' and you have a perfect recipe for the cruelties and crimes committed against the thousands incarcerated without charges or access to lawyers in American-run prisons that have been set up since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001."

'Spray and slay': are American troops out of control in Iraq? Fresh allegations of American abuse of prisoners continue to appall the world. But now 'The Independent on Sunday' has uncovered proof of US troops deliberately and indiscriminately shooting civilians. Here we examine new evidence that suggests the lawlessness in the American military was never confined to the prison camps and torture rooms but extended to the streets and homes of Iraq --Amid the welter of ugly pictures from Iraq last week were images worse than those of the humiliation and torture of detainees in Abu Ghraib prison. These show chunks of flesh and hanks of women's hair scattered across a scene of devastation. Among the few recognisable objects are musical instruments.

The Marine's tale: 'We killed 30 civilians in six weeks. I felt we were committing genocide' During 12 years in the US Marines, including three years putting new recruits through boot camp, Staff Sergeant Jimmy Massey hardly questioned his role. But what he saw in Iraq changed that. "In a month and a half my platoon and I killed more than 30 civilians," Mr Massey said. He saw bodies being desecrated and robbed, and wounded civilians being dumped by the roadside without medical treatment. After he told his commanding officer that he felt "we were committing genocide", he was called a "wimp".

NYPD Officers Get "Terrorism" Cards New York City police officials have issued terror prevention tips to patrol cops -- including suspecting people who "express hatred for America." Cards giving possible indicators of terrorist activity were issued last week to police officers. The cards advise them to call counter-terrorism investigators when they have suspicions over anyone who is, among other things, carrying driver's licenses from different states [?!?], videotaping utilities and tunnels or wearing fake uniforms. New York City police were also told to take note of "overtly hostile" people who "express hatred for America and advocate violence against America and/or Americans," or who "support terrorists and their goals."

US bans rights monitors from Abu Ghraib court-martial Human rights monitors have complained they will not be allowed to observe in Baghdad the first court-martial of a US soldier accused of abusing inmates at Abu Ghraib prison.

'Definitely a Cover-Up' Former Abu Ghraib Intel staffer says Army concealed involvement in abuse scandal Dozens of soldiers — other than the seven military police reservists who have been charged — were involved in the abuse at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison, and there is an effort under way in the Army to hide it, a key witness in the investigation told ABCNEWS. "There's definitely a cover-up," the witness, Sgt. Samuel Provance, said. "People are either telling themselves or being told to be quiet." Provance, 30, was part of the 302nd Military Intelligence Battalion stationed at Abu Ghraib last September. He spoke to ABCNEWS despite orders from his commanders not to.

The Gray Zone -- by Seymour M. Hersh --How a secret Pentagon program came to Abu Ghraib. "The roots of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal lie not in the criminal inclinations of a few Army reservists but in a decision, approved last year by Secretary of Defense [W-ar criminal] Donald Rumsfeld, to expand a highly secret operation, which had been focussed on the hunt for Al Qaeda, to the interrogation of prisoners in Iraq... According to interviews with several past and present American intelligence officials, the Pentagon's operation, known inside the intelligence community by several code words, including Copper Green, encouraged physical coercion and sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners in an effort to generate more intelligence about the growing insurgency in Iraq. A senior C.I.A. official, in confirming the details of this account last week, said that the operation stemmed from Rumsfeld’s long-standing desire to wrest control of America’s clandestine and paramilitary operations from the C.I.A.

America's military coup Donald Rumsfeld has a new war on his hands - the US officer corps has turned on the government --by Sidney Blumenthal "Donald Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, told George Bush in February about torture at Abu Ghraib prison. From the limited detail Rumsfeld recalled of that meeting, it can be deduced that Bush gave no orders, insisted on no responsibility, did not ask to see the already commissioned Taguba report. If there are exculpatory facts, Rumsfeld has failed to mention them... One high-level military strategist told me that Rumsfeld is 'detested', and that 'if there's a sentiment in the army it is: Support Our Troops, Impeach Rumsfeld'. The Council on Foreign Relations has been showing old movies with renewed relevance to its members. The Battle of Algiers, depicting the nature and costs of a struggle with terrorism, is the latest feature."

The Taguba Report US Army Report on Iraqi Prisoner Abuse --by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba "Complete text of Article 15-6 Investigatin of the 100th Military Police Brigade by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba" (.pdf)

The Iraqi Prisoner Abuse Hearings Tuesday, May 11, 2004 and Friday, May 7, 2004

Berg Was US Prisoner in Iraq: How did Al Qaeda get him? Berg was a prisoner of the U.S. military in Iraq. West Chester contractor missing in Iraq (May 08, 2004, Associated Press) Nick Berg was on his way out of Iraq. He had been released from the prison where he had been held for 13 days by Iraqi police for reasons he said he did not know. Nick Berg, 26, owns a business called Prometheus Methods Tower Service Inc. He first went to Iraq on Dec. 21. He stayed until Feb. 1, making contact with a company that indicated there would likely be work for him later. But he returned on March 14 and there was no work, so he began traveling. He usually called home once a day and e-mailed several times; Michael Berg is his business manager, and they needed to stay in touch... When FBI agents arrived at the Berg's West Chester home on March 31, they were relieved to know their son was alive, but in jail. The agents questioned them about various details that only they and their son would know about. Jerri Williams, spokeswoman for the Philadelphia FBI office, said the agency was "asked to interview the parents regarding Mr. Berg's purpose in Iraq." On April 5, the Bergs filed suit in federal court in Philadelphia, contending that their son was being held illegally by the U.S. military in Iraq. The next day, April 6, Nick Berg was released. Nick Berg said he would come home through Jordan, Turkey or Kuwait... The Bergs have hounded the State Department, the FBI and the International Committee of the Red Cross, seeking information. Michael Berg said the State Department sent an official to Nick Berg's hotel, where an employee told the official they had not heard of him. [Question: In the video where Nick Berg is beheaded, why is he wearing an orange jumpsuit, as US prisoners wear? -observation/news item submitted by CLG reader Johnny Asia]

Berg interrogated by FBI for two weeks (May 7, 2004 5:27 pm US/Eastern) Among those missing in Iraq is a West Chester, Pa. man who went there on his own in March to inspect damaged radio towers... 26-year-old Nick Berg didn't sign a privacy waiver when he went over there. And even though the State Department is using its one person in Iraq to help track him down, they can't tell anyone, including Berg's parents what's going on. Nick last checked in April 9th, saying he was trying to find a safe way home following two weeks of FBI interrogation, after an arrest in Mosul. He was released after his identity and intentions were confirmed.

CBS to Air U.S. Soldier's Video Diary of Iraq Abuse An American soldier's video diary showing her disdain for Iraqi detainees who died in her charge is to be broadcast by a U.S. network on Wednesday in a further escalation of the prisoner abuse scandal that has shaken the Bush dictatorship and provoked world outrage. CBS said the home video did not show scenes of abuse but included comments by the soldier, whose name was not revealed to protect her identity, that make clear her dislike for the camp and the prisoners under her control. "...We actually shot two prisoners today. One got shot in the chest for swinging a pole against our people on the feed team. One got shot in the arm. We don't know if the one we shot in the chest is dead yet.'' In her video, the soldier described the hazards of Camp Bucca. "This is a sand viper,'' she said. "One bite will kill you in six hours. We've already had two prisoners die of it, but who cares? That's two less for me to worry about.''

Halliburton [war] tab swamps Bush's estimate Spending projection: $150 billion by 2005 --With troop commitments growing, the cost of Halliburton ['the war in Iraq'] could top $150 billion through the next fiscal year — as much as three times what the White House had originally estimated. And, according to congressional researchers and outside budget experts, the war and continuing occupation could total $300 billion over the next decade, making this one of the costliest corporate welfare ['military campaigns'] in modern times. [Chart]

Top brass 'picked man who ordered torture' The torture tactics used to "soften up" Iraqi detainees at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib jail began under orders from the highest level of the US defence dictatorship, it was claimed yesterday. The creation of torture units was the consequence of orders by the Defence Department – headed by Secretary Donald Rumsfeld – to prise information out of prisoners. Unreleased images from Baghdad are reported to show: AMERICAN soldiers beating an Iraqi to a bloody pulp. A MALE US soldier having sex [Rape] with a female Iraqi inmate. SOLDIERS acting inappropriately with a dead body. A VIDEO allegedly showing Iraqi guards raping young boys.

A failure of leadership at the highest levels (ArmyTimes.com) "Around the halls of the Pentagon, a term of caustic derision has emerged for the enlisted soldiers at the heart of the furor over the Abu Ghraib prison scandal: the six morons who lost the war... But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons. ...But while responsibility begins with the six soldiers facing criminal charges, it extends all the way up the chain of command to the highest reaches of the military hierarchy and its civilian leadership. The entire affair is a failure of leadership from start to finish... This was not just a failure of leadership at the local command level. This was a failure that ran straight to the top. Accountability here is essential — even if that means relieving top leaders from duty in a time of war."

Most Iraqi detainees 'arrested by mistake' Occupation military intelligence officers believed 70-90 per cent of Iraqi detainees were "arrested by mistake", according to a leaked Red Cross report on prisoner abuse, further details of which were disclosed on Monday.

Amnesty report lists 37 'disputed' killings by UK forces Hanan Matrud, an eight-year-old girl shot dead by British troops in Basra. She is one of 37 Iraqi civilians killed in disputed circumstances by UK soldiers. Today, an independent report into all these deaths presents new problems for the allies, already reeling from allegations of torture and abuse

FBI Agent Was Prevented From Relaying Warning on 9/11 Hijackers More than a year before 9/11, CIA officials prevented an FBI agent working with the CIA from passing vital information to his agency on two suspected al CIAduh members — men who later would become Sept. 11 hijackers. The CIA maintains the information had already been passed to the FBI, and that was why the agent did not need to warn his bosses. The CIA cites a statement provided to Congress on Oct. 17, 2002. In it, CIA Director George Tenet refers to e-mails that agency officials say prove the information was provided to the FBI. FBI officials, however, told ABCNEWS they had no record of these e-mails.

Cheney Defends Rumsfeld: 'Get Off His Case' Vice pResident Dick Cheney moved to support Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld amid a firestorm over Iraqi prison abuses, with a statement that people should "get off his case" and let Rumsfeld do his job. "Don Rumsfeld is the best secretary of defense the United States has ever had," Cheney, who has sometimes taken a lead role in advancing White House positions, said in a statement issued by his office late on Saturday. "People ought to get off his case and let him do his job," Cheney said. [Yes, Rumsfeld will continue to do his job, as Adolf Eichmann did his...]

Prison-Abuse Panel Is Third in Bush's War on 'Terrorism' Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's announcement on Friday that an independent review board would examine the abuse of Iraqi prisoners means that three blue-ribbon panels will be investigating the Bush dictatorship's conduct of what it describes as the war on 'terrorism,' including the war in Iraq.

This is the new gulag Bush has created a global network of extra-legal and secret US prisons with thousands of inmates --by Sidney Blumenthal "Bush has created what is in effect a gulag. It stretches from prisons in Afghanistan to Iraq, from Guantánamo to secret CIA prisons around the world. There are perhaps 10,000 people being held in Iraq, 1,000 in Afghanistan and almost 700 in Guantánamo, but no one knows the exact numbers. The law as it applies to them is whatever the executive deems necessary. There has been nothing like this system since the fall of the Soviet Union. The US military embraced the Geneva conventions after the second world war, because applying them to prisoners of war protects American soldiers. But the Bush administration, in an internal fight, trumped its argument by designating those at Guantánamo 'enemy combatants'. Rumsfeld extended this system - 'a legal black hole', according to Human Rights Watch - to Afghanistan and then Iraq, openly rejecting the conventions." [a must read]

International Outrage Over Dictator Bush's Rape Rooms and Torture Chambers: Bush In Panic Bid to Curb Torture Scandal Dictator Bush went on Arab TV yesterday in a desperate attempt to quell the growing scandal over abuse of Iraqi prisoners. But as he condemned it as "abhorrent" and not a reflection of "the America I know", more disturbing details were emerging of savagery at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad. A captive is said to have been battered to death and then wrapped in ice and Cellophane in an apparent bid to disguise the brutality.

U.S. ignored torture allegations U.S. officials in Baghdad and Washington ignored human rights monitors' repeated pleas for official investigations of American abuse, torture and killings of Iraqi prisoners over the past year, international and Iraqi human rights officials said Friday. And human rights groups rejected Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's assertion that such abuses are "an exception," saying they are widespread in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere in the U.S. war on 'terror.'

UK forces taught torture methods The sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison was not an invention of maverick guards, but part of a system of ill-treatment and degradation used by special forces soldiers that is now being disseminated among ordinary troops and contractors who do not know what they are doing, according to British military sources. The techniques devised in the system, called R2I - resistance to interrogation - match the crude exploitation and abuse of prisoners at the Abu Ghraib jail in Baghdad.

World calls for Rumsfeld's resignation over abuse Outrage over Iraq prison photos increase pressure, condemnation of U.S. actions. --The image of a U.S. soldier holding a leash attached to a naked Iraqi prisoner brought more condemnation of the United States on Friday, and some calls for the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The picture of the soldier, Spc. Lynndie England, appeared on several front pages in Britain. "No sadistic movie could outdo the damage of this image," reporter Robert Fisk wrote in The Independent newspaper.

The war of the words --by Terry Jones "You can call people who are defending their own homes from rockets and missiles launched from helicopters and tanks 'fanatics and terrorists' only for so long. Eventually even newspaper readers will smell a rat. Similarly it's fiendishly difficult to get people to accept the label 'rebels' for those Iraqis killed by American snipers when - as in Falluja - they turn out to be pregnant women, 13-year-old boys and old men standing by their front gates. It also sounds a bit lame to call ambulance drivers 'fighters' - when they've been shot through the windscreen in the act of driving the wounded to hospital - and yet what other word can you use without making them sound like illegitimate targets? I hope you're beginning to see the problem. The key thing, I suppose, is to try to call US mercenaries 'civilians' or 'civilian contractors', while calling Iraqi civilians 'fighters' or 'insurgents'." [A must read]

Washington weighs terror's impact on presidential vote A warning to the American people --by Joseph Kay "According to [New York Times regular correspondent David] Sanger, ...the Bush administration is making its own calculations over whether a terrorist attack can 'change elections' in the US—in Bush’s favor... This concern suggests the obvious possibility that the administration could allow or facilitate an attack during a brief window of opportunity—immediately preceding the election—in order to stampede the American people behind Bush... If such an attack could not be used confidently to manipulate the results of the elections, it could be used as a justification for abrogating the elections altogether."

Kerry gathers doomsday team Sen. John Kerry’s (D-Mass.) presidential campaign is preparing for a so-called "October surprise," including Osama bin Laden’s capture and a terrorist attack in the United States, The Hill has learned.

US to keep high force levels in Iraq indefinitely: officials Faced with a mounting insurgency, the United States has decided to keep force levels in Iraq at beefed up levels of about 135,000 for the forseeable future, senior defense officials said.

Vanishing Votes --by Greg Palast "On October 29, 2002, George W. Bush signed the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). Hidden behind its apple-pie-and-motherhood name lies a nasty civil rights time bomb. First, the purges. In the months leading up to the November 2000 presidential election, Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris, in coordination with Governor Jeb Bush, ordered local election supervisors to purge 57,700 voters from the registries, supposedly ex-cons not allowed to vote in Florida. At least 90.2 percent of those on this 'scrub' list, targeted to lose their civil rights, are innocent. Notably, more than half--about 54 percent--are black or Hispanic... In the last presidential election [sic], approximately 1 million black and other minorities voted, and their ballots were thrown away. And they will be tossed again in November 2004, efficiently, by computer--because HAVA and other bogus reform measures, stressing reform through complex computerization, do not address, and in fact worsen, the racial bias of the uncounted vote." [A must read]

Vietnamese general warns US doomed in Iraq Vo Nguyen Giap, the legendary general who masterminded Vietnam's wars of independence against the French and American armies, warned the United States that it faces defeat in Iraq.

Iraqis hail Falluja victory Soldiers of the old Iraqi army led by one of Saddam Hussein's generals are patrolling Falluja, a year after George W. Bush declared the U.S. "mission accomplished" in ousting the Iraqi regime. Cries of "victory over the Americans" echoed from minarets on Saturday and resistance fighters celebrated in the streets under the green banner of Islam and Hussein-era Iraqi flags.

Torture at Abu Ghraib American soldiers brutalized Iraqis. How far up does the responsibility go? --by Seymour M. Hersh "A fifty-three-page report, obtained by The New Yorker, written by Major General Antonio M. Taguba and not meant for public release, was completed in late February. Its conclusions about the institutional failures of the Army prison system were devastating. Specifically, Taguba found that between October and December of 2003 there were numerous instances of 'sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses' at Abu Ghraib. This systematic and illegal abuse of detainees, Taguba reported, was perpetrated by soldiers of the 372nd Military Police Company, and also by members of the American intelligence community."

Diebold’s Secret Fears Lawyer memos warn that the voting-machine company may have violated state law --by Howard Blume and Robert Greene "Okay, it’s not a tale of that vaunted 'vast right-wing conspiracy,' but suddenly the case against Diebold’s electronic-voting machines is gaining momentum. Last week, an advisory panel for the California secretary of state recommended ditching the machines for the November presidential elections. That event was widely reported, including in the Los Angeles Times. What wasn’t reported locally is Exhibit A, internal documents from lawyers for Texas-based Diebold Election Systems, Inc. In these documents, the attorneys concede that the company used uncertified voting machines during elections before January 28, 2004. The memos also state that such actions would violate both California election law and, by extension, Diebold’s $12.7 million contract with Alameda County."

British troops in torture scandal Mistreatment of PoWs deepens controversy in Iraq --The controversy over the abuse of Iraqi prisoners deepened last night when photographs were released apparently showing the torture of a PoW by a British soldier. The Ministry of Defence launched an immediate investigation into the circumstances surrounding the photographs, in which a prisoner appears to be battered with rifle butts, threatened with execution and urinated on by his captors.

U.S. Marines Hand Falluja to Former Saddam Hussein General U.S. Marines handed control in Falluja to a former general in Saddam Hussein's Republican Guard on Friday but new violence showed that a month of fighting in the besieged Sunni Muslim city was not over.

Saving Ali Where US snipers fire at ambulances --by Lee Gordon in Falluja "I volunteered to ride in ambulances evacuating the wounded. Surely they don't shoot ambulances? In fact, US snipers were targeting ambulances. I learned to pick out the beams of sniper rifles. I remember the medics' anger when the hospital's last working ambulance carrying British and American volunteers returned shot to pieces, how stunned they were when American, British and Australian volunteers came under fire after declaring their nationalities to US troops.

US military in torture scandal Use of private contractors in Iraqi jail interrogations highlighted by inquiry into abuse of prisoners --Graphic photographs showing the torture and sexual abuse of Iraqi prisoners in a US-run prison outside Baghdad emerged yesterday from a military inquiry which has left six soldiers facing a possible court martial and a general under investigation. The scandal has also brought to light the growing and largely unregulated role of private contractors in the interrogation of detainees. According to lawyers for some of the soldiers, they claimed to be acting in part under the instruction of mercenary interrogators hired by the Pentagon.

Wow, here's a shocker! (sarcasm *on*) Hussein's Agents Are Behind Attacks in Iraq, Pentagon Finds A Pentagon intelligence report has concluded that many bombings against Americans and their allies in Iraq, and the more sophisticated of the resistance attacks in Falluja, are organized and often carried out by members of Saddam Hussein's secret service, who planned for the insurgency even before the fall of Baghdad. [Yes, and Bush the *Moron* did not! 'Mission Accomplished!?!' Bush should be tried for treason! He LIED to get congress to approve of his illegal, immoral occupation of Iraq, which was a ruse to feed Halliburton Hell. And, the Idiot Usurping Lying Dictatorial Weasel thinks he will be re s-elected??? Not without Diebold's vote-fraud and/or the Bush-Rove team considering a terrorist attack on Los Angeles or Chicago ('liberal' areas, kill two birds with one stone) to 'postpone' or cancel elections. We need to *remove* the Bush dictatorship from power. That is the solution.]

Snappy response #2: Hussein's Agents Are Behind Attacks in Iraq, Pentagon Finds [They are? Why, let's HIRE them!! See article summary, below!!]

Marines pull back, make way for all-Iraqi force at Fallujah U.S. marines decided Thursday to end their bloody, 3½-week siege of Fallujah, saying U.S. forces will pull back [surrender?] and allow an all-Iraqi force commanded by a former general under Saddam Hussein to take over security.

ACLU Challenges FBI's Request for ISP Records The American Civil Liberties Union is challenging the FBI's use of expanded powers to compel Internet service providers to turn over information about their customers or subscribers. A lawsuit challenging secret FBI national security letters was filed April 6 in U.S. District Court in New York but not made public until Wednesday because of its extraordinary sensitivity. The FBI can issue national security letters, or NSLs, without a judge's approval in terrorism and espionage cases. They require telephone companies, Internet service providers, banks, credit bureaus and other businesses to produce highly personal records about their customers or subscribers. People who receive the letters are prohibited by law from disclosing to anyone that they did so.

Secret Service confiscates anti-Bush drawings by 15-year-old at Prosser High A few political sketches took a 15-year-old Prosser boy from his art class to questioning by the Secret Service. On Friday, the boy was questioned by the Secret Service after his art 'teacher' [Nazi] turned in sketches by the boy featuring Dictator Bush. In one, Bush's head was on a stake.In another, he was dressed as the devil, firing off rockets. The caption on one sketch read, "End the War -- on terrorism." There were more sketches, including one of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution in flames. A family friend says the sketchbook has not been returned to the boy. Prosser police Chief Win Taylor says the boy and his sketches were seen as "a threat against the president [sic] of the United States. And we notified the Secret Service because that's their bailiwick." He sees the situation as a clear-cut case. [Note to Taylor: the artwork cannot be 'a threat against the president of the United States,' because Dictator Bush is *not* the President! Showing Dictator Bush's head on a stake is fine artwork.]

Iraq victim was top-secret apartheid killer A security contractor killed in Iraq last week was once one of South Africa's most secret covert agents, his identity guarded so closely that even the Truth and Reconciliation Commission did not discover the extent of his involvement in apartheid's silent wars. Gray Branfield, 55, admitted to being part of a death squad which gunned down Joe Gqabi, the ANC's chief representative and Umkhonto weSizwe operational head in Zimbabwe on July 31 1981. Gqabi was shot 19 times when three assassins ambushed him as he reversed down the driveway of his Harare home.

Translator alleges FBI / State Dept espionage, possible treason --by Tom Flocco "Former FBI contract linguist Sibel Dinez Edmonds did not back down regarding reported evidence she uncovered implicating espionage in the FBI and State Department when we recently asked whether she thought the explosive information would ever see the light of day. 'As you know, I cannot say much about that; but why do you think Attorney General Ashcroft asserted State Secret Privilege in my case when I decided to go public with what I had found in the translations?' she said.... The translator alluded to additional but more volatile allegations in a phone call on Friday night to Kyle Hence, cofounder of 9-11 Citizens Watch, who said in a widely distributed email that Edmonds told him 'if what she knows is revealed, it could lead to charges of treason being leveled against officials at top levels of the U.S. government.'"

Senate Hacking Inquiry Widens The Justice Department opens a criminal probe into allegations that Republican staffers downloaded and read Democratic memos. The Justice Department is opening a criminal investigation into allegations that Republican staffers on the Senate Judiciary Committee improperly accessed computerized memos by their Democratic counterparts between 2001 and 2003, Sen. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont, the committee's top Democrat, said Monday.

FBI wants to watch you type --by Declan McCullagh "The FBI is trying to convince the government to mandate that providers of broadband, Internet telephony, and instant-messaging services build in backdoors for easy wiretapping. That would constitute a sweeping expansion of police surveillance powers. Instead of asking Congress to approve the request, the FBI (along with the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration) are pressing the Federal Communications Commission to move forward with minimal public input."

Blunkett wants ID cards in three years Home Secretary David Blunkett says he plans to introduce identity cards for the first time in 50 years but will not be able to make them compulsory for at least another seven years.

Police will be able to order eye scans under ID card plan Police will have powers to stop and check people against a national biometric database under plans for a compulsory identity card scheme to be unveiled today. David Blunkett, the Home Secretary, confirmed that police would be able to compare people against national fingerprint or iris records even if they did not carry the controversial document.

Breaking Panel recommends ban on computer voting system in four counties (CA) An advisory panel unanimously recommended this morning that Secretary of State Kevin Shelley ban use of a computerized voting system in four California counties. The panel also called on state Attorney General Bill Lockyer to open a criminal investigation into the conduct of Diebold Election Systems, the Ohio-based firm that manufactured the touch-screen system.

2 fired over photo of flag-draped U.S. coffins A military contractor fired two cargo workers responsible for a photograph of flag-draped coffins of U.S. soldiers that appeared on a newspaper's front page.

In TV Coverage, Kerry Runs a Deficit Bush Airtime Is Triple His Rival's --by Howard Kurtz "When President [sic] Bush delivered a routine stump speech to a group of New Mexico homeowners on March 26, CNN and Fox News each carried his appearance for 35 minutes, and MSNBC for 33 minutes. When John Kerry gave what was billed as a major address on national security at George Washington University on March 17, he was knocked off the screen by a large explosion in Baghdad. CNN and Fox each dropped Kerry (who had been reduced to small box) after three minutes, and MSNBC never picked him up. But as the Iraq coverage continued, all three networks carried Vice President [sic] Cheney in California attacking Kerry as weak on national security -- Fox for 28 minutes, MSNBC for 23 and CNN for 13."

This Is A War Of Liberation And We Are The Enemy --John Pilger "Amnesty International reports that US-led forces have 'shot Iraqis dead during demonstrations, tortured and ill-treated prisoners, arrested people arbitrarily and held them indefinitely, demolished houses in acts of revenge and collective punishment'... It is said that British officers in Iraq now describe the 'tactics' of their American comrades as 'appalling'. No, the very nature of a colonial occupation is appalling, as the families of 13 Iraqis killed by British soldiers, who are taking the British government to court, will agree. If the British military brass understand an inkling of their own colonial past, not least the bloody British retreat from Iraq 83 years ago, they will whisper in the ear of the little Wellington-cum-Palmerston in 10 Downing Street: 'Get out now, before we are thrown out.' "

White House and Justice Officials Had Fierce Debates Over How to Treat Americans With Suspected Al Qaeda Ties: Either Lock Up Indefinitely As 'Enemy Combatants' or Let System Work 'There Have Been Some Very Intense Disagreements,' Says Official In September 2002, a group of senior Bush dictatorship officials convened for a secret videoconference to make a difficult decision: what to do with six Americans suspected of conspiring with Al Qaeda. The Yemeni-born men from Lackawanna, N.Y., were accused of training at a camp in Afghanistan, where some had met Osama bin Laden. For Vice pResident Dick Cheney and his ally, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, the answer was simple: the accused men should be locked up indefinitely as "enemy combatants," and thrown into a military brig with no right to trial or even to see a lawyer, Newsweek reports in the current issue. That's what authorities had done with two other Americans, Yaser Hamdi and Jose Padilla... Officials privately debated whether to name more Americans as enemy combatants -- including a truck driver from Ohio and a group of men from Portland. [When will the lead elements of the Bush terror team be labeled 'enemy combatants,' so that they can be locked up, indefinitely?]

Book: Bush secretly ordered Iraq plan Advisers kept in dark --Dictator Bush secretly ordered a war plan drawn up against Iraq less than two months after U.S. forces attacked Afghanistan and was so worried the decision would cause a furor he did not tell everyone on his national security team, says a new book [Plan of Attack, a behind-the-scenes account of the 16 months leading to the Iraq invasion, by Bob Woodward] on his Iraq policy.

Contingency planning Pentagon MASCAL exercise simulates scenarios in preparing for emergencies --Story and Photos by Dennis Ryan MDW News Service --Washington, D.C., Nov. 3, 2000 — "The fire and smoke from the downed passenger aircraft billows from the Pentagon courtyard. Defense Protective Services Police seal the crash sight. Army medics, nurses and doctors scramble to organize aid. An Arlington Fire Department chief dispatches his equipment to the affected areas. Don Abbott, of Command Emergency Response Training, walks over to the Pentagon and extinguishes the flames. The Pentagon was a model and the 'plane crash' was a simulated one. The Pentagon Mass Casualty Exercise, as the crash was called, was just one of several scenarios that emergency response teams were exposed to Oct. 24-26 in the Office of the Secretaries of Defense conference room."

Plane crash simulation at Pentagon,  11-00

Contingency planning --Pentagon MASCAL exercise simulates scenarios in preparing for emergencies --Photolog

Iraq echoes French experience in Algeria --by Andrew J. Bacevich "Iraq may be shaping up to be America's Algeria... In the Algerian war for independence, which began in 1954 and lasted until 1962, cities also played a central role... In their efforts to destroy the National Liberation Front, French authorities found that conventional tactics did not work. To abide by the traditional law of war was to concede to the other side an enormous advantage. So, in their frustration, the French opted to fight a 'dirty war,' employing systematic torture, extrajudicial killings and their own brand of terrorism... This process was brilliantly captured in Gillo Pontecorvo's recently re-released 1967 docudrama, 'The Battle of Algiers.' Last summer, perhaps to remind itself of the dangers of winning battles in ways that lose wars, the Pentagon screened Pontecorvo's film for Defense Department officials. But one wonders whether the lessons making their way into the field are the right ones."

Bush Was Warned of Possible Attack in U.S., Official Says Dictator Bush was told more than a month before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, that supporters of Osama bin Laden planned an attack within the United States with explosives and wanted to hijack airplanes, a government official said Friday.

Secret memo shows Bush knew about hijack plot before 9/11 Forced on to the defensive by talk of a cover-up, the White House yesterday agreed to publish a top secret memorandum which warned Dictator George W Bush a month before the September 11 attacks that terrorists might be preparing to hijack aircraft. The Aug 6, 2001 memo is a Presidential Daily Briefing (PDB) titled "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States".

9/11 Documents Show Hijacking Warnings 2 U.S. government agencies issued repeated warnings in the summer of 2001 about potential terrorist plots against the United States masterminded by Osama bin Laden, including a possible plan to hijack commercial aircraft, documents show.

Thinking Unthinkable Thoughts Theologian Charges White House Complicity in 9/11 Attack --by Nick Welsh "According to [author of The New Pearl Harbor, David Ray] Griffin, a case can be made that the Bush administration arranged the attack, or allowed it to happen... NICK WELSH: Is there a smoking gun that shows the Bush administration knew 9/11 was likely to happen and did nothing about it? DAVID RAY GRIFFIN: I think there are four. One is the fact that standard operating procedures for dealing with possibly hijacked airplanes were not followed on 9/11. Those procedures call for fighter jets to be sent out immediately upon any sign that a plane may have been hijacked. These jets typically get to the plane within no later than 15 minutes anywhere in the United States. And on that day, there were four airplanes that went for a half-hour or more after they were hijacked without jets intercepting them... And the other smoking guns? The second strongest piece of evidence I would say is the crash at the Pentagon. The physical evidence contradicts so violently the official account, that the Pentagon was hit by a Boeing 757 — Flight 77, that is. The physical evidence, photographs, and eyewitness testimony say that the Pentagon was hit by something that caused a hole no larger than 18 feet in diameter. The story the Pentagon put out, and was published by the Washington Post, was that the hole in the Pentagon was five stories high and 200 feet wide. If you look at the photographs taken by Tom Horan of the Associated Press — that’s just not the size of the hole. But if the hole was only 18 feet wide, it had to have been created by something other than a Boeing. Whatever went into the Pentagon pierced six reinforced walls. This was the west wing, the part of the Pentagon being refurbished and reinforced. These walls were extra strong, and yet whatever it was went through six walls creating a hole about seven feet in diameter in the sixth wall. This had to have been something with a very powerful head on it. A Boeing 757 has a very fragile nose, and would not have pierced through all those walls; it would have been crushed by hitting the Pentagon. And given that it only penetrated these three rings, the rest of the aircraft would have been sitting outside on the yard. And yet the photographs taken just as the fire trucks got there — very shortly after the crash — show no plane whatsoever. What do they show? They show no aircraft whatsoever. And everyone agrees on this. The official story is that the whole aircraft went inside the Pentagon. The problem with that — the firefighters in there would have seen the airplane. They would have seen the engines, they would have seen the aluminum fuselage, but they reported nothing."

'Armageddon' Plan Was Put Into Action on 9/11, Clarke Says An "Armageddon" program designed to ensure that the federal government would continue to 'function' [?!?] in the aftermath of a nuclear war was put into place during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Former counterterrorism official Richard A. Clarke told ABC's "Nightline," "Every federal agency was ordered, on the morning of 9/11, to activate an alternative command post, an alternative headquarters outside of Washington, D.C., and to staff it as soon as possible." The Washington Post reported in 2002 that as part of the plan, Bush has dispatched a shadow government of about 100 senior 'civilian managers' [?!?] to live and work secretly outside Washington.

Odigo says workers were warned of attack Odigo, the instant messaging service, says that two of its workers received messages two hours before the Twin Towers attack on September 11 predicting the attack would happen, and the company has been cooperating with Israeli and American law enforcement, including the FBI, in trying to find the original sender of the message predicting the attack. Micha Macover, CEO of the company, said the two workers received the messages and immediately after the terror attack informed the company's management, which immediately contacted the Israeli security services, which brought in the FBI. [And, we haven't heard a *single* word about this incident in the U.S. mainstream media in two and a half years. Why?]

Bush and Blair made secret pact for Iraq war · Decision came nine days after 9/11 · Ex-ambassador reveals discussion --Dictator George Bush first asked Tony Blair to support the removal of Saddam Hussein from power at a private White House dinner nine days after the terror attacks of 11 September, 2001. According to Sir Christopher Meyer, the former British Ambassador to Washington, who was at the dinner when Blair became the first foreign leader to visit America after 11 September, Blair told Bush he should not get distracted from the war on terror's initial goal - dealing with the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. Bush, claims Meyer, replied by saying: 'I agree with you, Tony. We must deal with this first. But when we have dealt with Afghanistan, we must come back to Iraq.' Regime change was already US policy.

Prosecutors Investigating Whether Bush Officials Lied About Leak of C.I.A. Agent's Name Prosecutors Are Said to Have Expanded Inquiry Into Leak of C.I.A. Officer's Name --Prosecutors investigating whether someone in the Bush administration improperly disclosed the identity of a C.I.A. officer have expanded their inquiry to examine whether White House officials lied to investigators or mishandled classified information related to the case, lawyers involved in the case and government officials say.

Bush Aides Block Clinton's Papers From 9/11 Panel The commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks said on Thursday that it was pressing the White House to explain why the Bush dictatorship had blocked thousands of pages of classified foreign policy and counterterrorism documents from former President Bill Clinton's White House files from being turned over to the panel's investigators.

'I saw papers that show US knew al-Qa'ida would attack cities with aeroplanes' Whistleblower the White House wants to silence speaks to The Independent --A former translator for the FBI with top-secret security clearance says she has provided information to the panel investigating the 11 September attacks which proves senior officials knew of al-Qa'ida's plans to attack the US with aircraft months before the strikes happened. She said the claim by the National Security Adviser, Condoleezza Rice, that there was no such information was "an outrageous lie". Sibel Edmonds said she spent more than three hours in a closed session with the commission's investigators providing information that was circulating within the FBI in the spring and summer of 2001 suggesting that an attack using aircraft was just months away and the terrorists were in place. The Bush dictatorship, meanwhile, has sought to silence her and has obtained a gagging order from a court by citing the rarely used "state secrets privilege".

4 'Civilian Contractors' Killed in Iraq Worked for N.C. Security Firm The four mercenaries ['civilian contractors'] who were killed and dragged through the streets of an Iraqi town Wednesday worked for Blackwater Security Consulting, a North Carolina subcontractor that is providing 'security' in Iraq. Privately owned Blackwater USA's range of services include providing firearms and small-groups training for Navy SEALs, police department SWAT teams and former special operations personnel.

This Isn't America --by Paul Krugman "Last week an opinion piece in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz about the killing of Sheik Ahmed Yassin said, 'This isn't America; the government did not invent intelligence material nor exaggerate the description of the threat to justify their attack.' So even in Israel, George Bush's America has become a byword for deception and abuse of power. And the administration's reaction to Richard Clarke's 'Against All Enemies' provides more evidence of something rotten in the state of our government... Where will it end?" [A must read]

Electronic Ballots May Have Altered Race Outcome Orange County registrar says incorrect electronic ballots may have altered a race's outcome, but says results will be certified today. Although some Orange County voters cast the wrong electronic ballots in the March 2 primary, potentially altering the outcome of one race for a Democratic Party post, Registrar Steve Rodermund said he will certify the results of the election today. In a report circulated late Monday to the Board of Supervisors, Rodermund acknowledged for the first time that his office's failures could have affected a race — and gave ammunition to critics of electronic voting.

The 'war president [sic]' waged a war of lies --by Eric Margolis "A cascade of embarrassing revelations and accusations are demolishing George W. Bush's slickly packaged, made-for-TV persona as a 'war president [sic]' and the scourge of Islamic terrorists. ...A group of leading American business executives ran a full-page ad in The New York Times entitled 'Have you noticed what's happened to chief executives who lie?' with a picture of an executive being led away in handcuffs. The ad described the Iraq invasion as a 'state-sponsored deception (that) already dwarfs the damage done by the worst corporate scandals,' citing 566 American dead and a cost of $125 billion US (not to mention 20,000 Iraqi deaths). The underlying message was stark: the president [sic] and his 'war cabinet' ought to face criminal charges for lying to the nation and starting an unnecessary war for domestic political reasons."

GOP donors double dipping with Nader 'Independent' presidential candidate Ralph Nader [Barf Nadir] is getting a little help from his friends – and from George W. Bush's friends. Nearly 10 percent of the Nader contributors who have given him at least $250 each have a history of supporting the Republican dictator, national GOP candidates or the party, according to computer-assisted review of financial records by The Dallas Morning News. Among the new crop of Nader donors: actor and former Nixon speechwriter Ben Stein, Florida frozen-food magnate Jeno Paulucci and Pennsylvania oil company executive Terrence Jacobs. All have strong ties to the GOP.

Elephants in the Barracks The Complete Failure of the 9-11 Commission --by Michael Kane "#1 – On the morning of September 11, 2001, NORAD was running war games involving hijacked airliners while the National Reconnaissance Offices (NRO) was running a drill for the scenario of an errant aircraft crashing into a government building at the exact same time as an identical scenario was perpetrated. The Air Force was in day two of annual drills testing all of its systems to respond to various threats. What role, if any, did Secretary [Donald] Rumsfeld, Under Secretary [Paul] Wolfowitz, and acting Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers play in any war game scenario on the morning of September 11, 2001? What briefings did they receive about these war games before, during, and after the morning in question? #2 – On October 24 through 26 of 2000 a mass emergency drill was conducted in response to an airliner being crashed into the Pentagon. What did Defense Secretary [William] Cohen tell Secretary Rumsfeld about this drill during the transition process from the Clinton to Bush administration? Now how is it possible these two questions were 'overlooked?'"

Clarke Warned of Hundreds Dead Just Before 9/11 Former counterterrorism official Richard Clarke sent a letter to national security adviser Condoleezza Rice one week before the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks urging Bush dictatorship aides to imagine how they would feel if hundreds of Americans were killed in a terrorist strike.

Clarke to 9/11 families: Your government failed you Clarke: Bush didn't see terrorism as 'urgent' --Richard Clarke, Dictator Bush's former counterterrorism chief, told an independent panel investigating the attacks of September 11, 2001, that the regime didn't consider terrorism an "urgent" priority until then.

Ex-Adviser: Terrorism Not Urgent for Bush The government's former top counterterrorism adviser testified Wednesday that the Clinton administration had "no higher priority" than combating terrorists while the Bush regime made it "an important issue but not an urgent issue."

DOJ Asked FBI Translator to Change Pre 9-11 Intercepts --by Tom Flocco "FBI translator, Sibel Edmonds, was offered a substantial raise and a full time job in order to not go public that she had been asked by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to retranslate and adjust the translations of [terrorist] subject intercepts that had been received before September 11, 2001 by the FBI and CIA. Edmonds, a ten year U.S. citizen who has passed a polygraph examination, speaks fluent Farsi and Turkish and had been working part time with the FBI for six months-- commencing in December, 2001. In a 50 reporter scrum in front of some 12 news cameras, Edmonds said 'Attorney General John Ashcroft told me 'he was invoking State Secret Privilege and National Security' when I told the FBI I wanted to go public with what I had translated from the pre 9-11 intercepts'. 'I appeared once on CBS 60 Minutes but I have been silenced by Mr. Ashcroft, the FBI follows me, and I was threatened with jail in 2002 if I went public,' Edmonds told tomflocco.com."

*****

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