April 2007 Archives, Page Two
U.S. officials exclude car bombs in touting drop in Iraq violence [That's right --in war, exclude *bombs.*] 25 Apr 2007 U.S. officials who say there has been a dramatic drop in sectarian violence in Iraq since President [sic] Bush began sending more American troops into Baghdad aren't counting one of the main killers of Iraqi civilians. Car bombs and other explosive devices have killed thousands of Iraqis in the past three years, but the administration doesn't include them in the casualty counts it has been citing as evidence that the surge of additional U.S. forces is beginning to defuse tensions between Shiite and Sunni Muslims.
72 die in violent day in Iraq 27 Apr 2007 Bombers struck an Iraqi army post northeast of Baghdad as violence across Iraq killed at least 72 people yesterday. Still, the top American military spokesman insisted the U.S. command felt "very comfortable" that it is making "steady progress" in restoring order in Baghdad. "We are seeing those initial signs of progress being made," said Maj. Gen. William C. Caldwell. [War criminal Bush is 'progressing' toward the complete destruction of Iraq.]
Ex-C.I.A. Chief, in Book, Assails Cheney on Iraq 27 Apr 2007 George J. Tenet, the former director of central intelligence, has lashed out against Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney and other Bush administration officials in a new book ["At the Center of the Storm"], saying they pushed the country to war in Iraq without ever conducting a "serious debate" about whether Saddam Hussein posed an imminent threat to the United States.
Tenet: "Slam Dunk" Comment Misused 26 Apr 2007 Ex-CIA Director George Tenet says the way the Bush administration has used his now famous "slam dunk" comment — which he admits saying in reference to making the public case for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq — is both disingenuous and dishonorable [like Bush himself]. It also ruined his reputation and his career, he tells 60 Minutes Scott Pelley in his first network television interview.
UN accuses Iraq of withholding civilian death figures 26 Apr 2007 UN officials accused Iraq yesterday of withholding civilian death figures to try to deflect attention from escalating violence and a worsening humanitarian crisis despite [because of] the US-led Baghdad security crackdown. The report took issue with tactics used against Iraqi civilians in the city -- alleging, for example, that whole families were often taken into custody at random during security sweeps. It added that "the use of torture and other inhumane treatment" in government detention centers "continues to be of utmost concern."
Petraeus Cites Difficult Times in Iraq 26 Apr 2007 Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, depicted the situation there as "exceedingly complex and very tough" Thursday and said the U.S. effort might become more difficult before it gets easier. The four-star general called the war there "the most complex and challenging I have ever seen."
More IRR activations coming this summer 26 Apr 2007 The Corps plans to involuntarily activate as many as 1,800 more Individual Ready Reserve leathernecks this summer, a top manpower officer said Thursday. The call-up, following closely on the heels of a similarly sized one in March, is based on manpower forecasts for the coming 12 to 18 months, said Col. Guy Stratton, head of planning and policy with Manpower and Reserve Affairs in Quantico, Va.
'Iran's Quds Force helped kill 5 US troops in Iraq' --Continued violence claims at least 29 lives across country 27 Apr 2007 US General David Petraeus, head of the occupation forces in Iraq, accused Iran's secretive Quds Force Thursday of helping an armed network that killed five US soldiers in January, in the Shiite shrine city of Kerbala.
Iran says will strike U.S., Israel if attacked: agency 26 Apr 2007 Iran will strike U.S. interests around the world and Israel if attacked over its disputed nuclear program, a senior official was quoted on Thursday by the official IRNA news agency as saying.
Senate Passes Iraq Withdrawal Plan; Bush Vows a Veto 26 Apr 2007 The Senate approved a war spending measure calling for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, sending it to President [sic] George W. Bush who says he'll veto it. A day after the House passed the legislation, the Senate voted 51-46 to approve it. Bush has promised to reject the $124.2 billion bill, which would require lawmakers to then draft new legislation to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that doesn't include any troop withdrawals.
Eight is enough: Prez hopefuls bash Dubya in debate 27 Apr 2007 Democratic presidential hopefuls flashed their anti-war credentials last night, robustly criticizing President [sic] Bush’s Iraq policy in an unusually early first debate of the 2008 campaign. "If this president does not get us out of Iraq, when I am president, I will," said Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, one of eight contenders on the debate stage.
Taliban Seize Afghanistan's Southern District --Raid Kills 5 People, Provincial Governor Says 27 Apr 2007 Afghan police and army reinforcements are being sent to a southern district where Taliban fighters have taken control in fierce fighting. The deputy provincial governor said the Taliban took over in a raid on the district Thursday night that killed five people, including the district chief and the head of the district police. He said the rebels set fire to several buildings and cut communications lines. An Afghan general said the district "collapsed."
7 Afghan soldiers killed in blast in eastern Afghanistan, 4 police killed in the west 25 Apr 2007 A roadside bomb attack on an Afghan military convoy in eastern Afghanistan left seven soldiers dead Wednesday, while militants killed four police officers in an ambush in the west, officials said.
Torture a fact of life in war-torn Afghanistan, suggests PM's adviser 26 Apr 2007 Torture is just part of the grinding conditions faced daily in Afghanistan's "tribal culture," [!?!] suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Mideast adviser, Wajid Khan... Published reports have chronicled disturbing allegations from Afghans who say they were whipped with electric cables and beaten by Afghan interrogators before being released.
Putin ups stakes in missile shield row 26 Apr 2007 A row between the United States and Russia over U.S. plans to build a missile shield in eastern Europe escalated on Thursday when President Vladimir Putin declared a moratorium on a key European arms control treaty.
U.S. Proposal Could Block Gun Buyers Tied to Terror 27 Apr 2007 The Justice Department proposed legislation on Thursday that would give the attorney general discretion to bar terrorism suspects from buying firearms, seeking to close a gap in federal gun laws. The measure, which was introduced by Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, Democrat of New Jersey, would give the attorney general authority to deny a firearm purchase [!] if the buyer was found "to be or have been engaged in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism."
Rice Signals Rejection of House Subpoena 26 Apr 2007 Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Thursday she has already answered the questions she has been subpoenaed to answer before a congressional committee and suggested she is not inclined to comply with the order.
Another day, another federal law broken by the Bush regime: White House Held GOP Election Briefings 26 Apr 2007 The White House acknowledged Thursday it has conducted about 20 briefings for federal employees on the election prospects of Republican candidates — the sort of meetings that have led to an investigation into administration political activity. An independent investigative unit, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, this week began a probe into a presentation by Bush aide J. Scott Jennings to political appointees at the General Services Administration. At issue is whether the January session violated the federal Hatch Act, which bars federal employees from engaging in political activities with government resources or on government time.
Bar association gives ex-U.S. attorney Lam 'prestigious' award 25 Apr 2007 Carol Lam, one of eight former U.S. attorneys across the country whose dismissals have ignited a political firestorm and calls for the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, has been named outstanding attorney of the year by the San Diego County Bar Association, the organization announced Wednesday afternoon.
Another Dubious Firing (The New York Times) 26 Apr 2007 Congressman Rick Renzi, an Arizona Republican, was locked in a close re-election battle last fall when the local United States attorney, Paul Charlton, was investigating him for corruption. The investigation appears to have been slowed before Election Day, Mr. Renzi retained his seat, and Mr. Charlton ended up out of a job — one of eight prosecutors purged by the White House and the Justice Department. The Arizona case adds a disturbing new chapter to that scandal. Congress needs to determine whether Mr. Charlton was fired for any reason other than threatening the Republican Party’s hold on a Congressional seat.
Predatory Capitalism News Alerts
Exxon Mobil Posts Record First Quarter Earnings 26 Apr 2007 As much of South Florida pays nearly $3 for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline, Exxon Mobil has reported record breaking first quarter earnings. Thursday, Exxon Mobil, the world's largest publicly traded oil company announced their net income grew 10 percent in the first quarter. The earnings of $9.3 billion were the company's highest ever for the first quarter and beat Wall Street expectations.
Exxon Mobil hits another record high 25 Apr 2007 As we look ahead to tomorrow morning's earning report from Exxon Mobil the stock has yet again set a new all time high in today's market. After opening the day at $78.84, shares of XOM hit a new all time high of $80.20 and are currently trading up 1.9% to $80.07.
After firing 3,400, Circuit City enriches CFO By Michael Rapoport 26 Apr 2007 Even as Circuit City Stores pushed 3,400 purportedly overpaid employees out the door, the company went out of its way to make the departure of its outgoing chief financial officer a lot more pleasant. What Circuit City did for Michael Foss last week says a lot about the haves-over-the-have-nots way executive compensation works... But Circuit City revised the terms of many of those options to make sure he could still exercise them after leaving the company — a move that would mean a profit of nearly $250,000 for Foss if he were to cash them in today.
Thousands of Hogs May Have Eaten Contaminated Feed --Pet Food Scraps Containing Melamine Fed to Hogs in Six States 25 Apr 2007 Thousands of hogs in the United States -- in at least six states -- may have eaten livestock feed contaminated with the chemical melamine, the Food and Drug Administration said.
Senate Democrat Moves to Expand Federal Food Safety Regulatory Powers 25 Apr 2007 Following recalls of tainted spinach, peanut butter and pet food, the second-ranking Senate Democrat will seek to bolster Food and Drug Administration food safety operations. Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin plans to offer an amendment on the Senate floor next week that may include language permitting the FDA to order mandatory recalls of tainted food products and fine companies that don’t promptly report spoiled food, according to an aide... In the House, Connecticut Democrat Rosa DeLauro, who chairs the Appropriations subcommittee that determines spending for the FDA, said she is poised to cut off salaries for the agency's top managers in the fiscal 2008 spending bill unless officials report immediately how they will improve food inspections, recalls and standards.
Wanted: Global threat analysts --Wal-Mart seeks former intelligence officers for security 24 Apr 2007 Wal-Mart Stores has been recruiting former military and government intelligence officers for a branch of its global security office aimed at identifying threats to the world's largest retailer, including from "suspect individuals and groups." Wal-Mart's interest in intelligence operatives comes at a time when the retailer is defending itself against allegations by a fired security employee that it ran surveillance operations against targets including critics, dissident shareholders, employees and suppliers.
Bush Approval Rating Falls to 28%, Lowest Level So Far, in Harris Poll 26 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush's approval rating slipped to new lows in the most recent Harris Interactive survey. Of the 1,001 American adults polled online April 20-23, only 28% had a positive view of Mr. Bush's job performance, down from 32% in February.
Fox to help pick GOP debate participants 26 Apr 2007 Faux News will have a say in deciding which Republican presidential candidates participate in the May 15 debate in South Carolina.
Police Describe Struggle to Enter Hall at Va. Tech --With Doors Chained, Access Took 5 Minutes 27 Apr 2007 Police officers desperately shot at the chains that Seung Hui Cho [?] had used to lock the entrances to Norris Hall at Virginia Tech before they shot away a deadbolt on a side door and used bolt cutters to enter the building, authorities said Thursday. Law enforcement officials reiterated Thursday that they have found no explanation for Cho's actions and no connections between him and either Emily Hilscher or Ryan Clark that would explain his decision to start his attack at the dorm.
Va. Tech gunman fired 170 rounds in 9 minutes 26 Apr 2007 The rampage lasted nine minutes - enough time for Seung-Hui Cho to unleash 170 rounds from his two pistols, or about one shot every three seconds.
Va. Tech Killer's Motives Pursued --Some Actions During Rampage Still a Mystery 26 Apr 2007 Law enforcement officials said they found 17 ammunition magazines at the scene. They said they have read reams of e-mail and cellphone records and interviewed hundreds of witnesses but have found no explanation for Cho's actions. In fact, they said, they may never know why Seung Hui Cho started at the dorm, waited more than two hours and then killed 30 more people at Norris Hall.
Cops can't link gunman to 1st Va. Tech victims 26 Apr 2007 Police said Wednesday they can find no link between the Virginia Tech gunman and his first victims [Emily Hilscher and Ryan Clark] in last week's shooting rampage, the deadliest in U.S. history.
U.S. presidential candidate's son arrested with gun at airport 26 Apr 2007 The son of a U.S. presidential candidate [Mike Huckabee (R)] was arrested an Arkansas airport Thursday with a loaded pistol in his carryon luggage — a week after his father said the Virginia Tech shooter could have been stopped if other students or teachers had been armed.
Road rage rules in Australia 27 Apr 2007 Australian drivers tend to be aggressive tailgaters, with a penchant for screaming abuse and rude hand gestures, a new survey shows.
Taliban claims bin Laden ordered bid to kill Cheney 26 Apr 2007 Mullah Dadullah said bin Laden ordered the attack at the US Bagram base during a visit by US Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney in February. "Do you remember the martyrdom operation inside the Bagram base which targeted a senior American official ... this operation was the result of blessed plans put by him," he said. Al-Jazeera said the US official Mullah Dadullah was referring to was Mr Cheney. [Well, bin laden 'serves at the pleasure of the president.' Also, wouldn't they just wait for the clots to 'step up to the plate?']
Taliban: Bin Laden plans Iraq strikes 25 Apr 2007 A Taliban military commander says Osama bin Laden helped plan the deadly suicide car bombing outside Bagram Air Base targeting a "very important American official," apparently referring to [his employer] Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney. Mullah Dadullah was interviewed by the Arab-language network al-Jazeera, which identified the official as Cheney. Dadullah said al Qaeda leader bin Laden also is involved in planning attacks in Iraq.
UN: Baghdad security operation has failed 25 Apr 2007 'Sectarian' violence continued to claim the lives of a large number of Iraqi civilians in Sunni Arab and Shiite neighbourhoods of Iraq’s capital, despite the occupation’s new Baghdad security plan, the UN said today.
'The disappearance of detainees still continues.' UN criticises Iraq for concealing casualty figures 25 Apr 2007 The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq criticised Baghdad on Wednesday for concealing the casualty figures from its 'sectarian' war and charged that many detainees have "disappeared". At least 37,641 people were being held in detention centres across Iraq as of end of March, UNAMI said, adding of these about 3,000 were detained since the Baghdad crackdown began. The US-led occupation continued to hold 17,898 people, while the rest were in the custody of Iraqi authorities.
Guantánamo defense team angry over Khadr charges 24 Apr 2007 Text of the statement from the attorneys for Omar Khadr of Canada, an enemy combatant at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, following the Defense Department's announcement that he would be tried by military commission: "We have just learned that our client, Omar Khadr, has been charged by the United States government with several offenses that are not even valid war crimes, for which he will be tried by military commission under The Military Commissions Act of 2006. This is the third set of charges laid against Omar. Yet, no matter how many times the government issues new charges, the military commissions system will continue to be an illegitimate one." [Just like the Bush regime, itself.]
Bush seals Baghdad, but not US borders By Lori Price 24 Apr 2007
House OKs Iraq bill with pullout timetable --Senate set to follow suit Thursday; Bush has promised to veto legislation 25 Apr 2007 A sharply divided House [218-208 vote] brushed aside a veto threat Wednesday and passed legislation that would order President [sic] Bush to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq by Oct. 1. The $124.2 billion bill would fund the war, among other things, but demand troop withdrawals begin on Oct. 1 or sooner if the Iraqi government does not meet certain standards.
Canada's Afghan troop withdrawal vote defeated 24 Apr 2007 Canada's House of Commons defeated a motion by opposition legislators on Tuesday to pull Canadian troops from Afghanistan on schedule in February 2009. Legislators voted 150 to 134 against a nonbinding Liberal Party motion calling for the withdrawal of the 2,500 soldiers in early 2009.
Troops in Iraq under fire for the third time 26 Apr 2007 Australian soldiers have again come under fire in southern Iraq, this time as they were recovering light armoured vehicles damaged by an earlier roadside blast... The latest incident caps a violent 24 hours - with three separate attacks on Australian forces - in which three members of the Darwin-based 2nd Cavalry Regiment were wounded.
Air Force pinched by Iraq ground war 24 Apr 2007 The Air Force's top general expressed frustration on Tuesday with the reassignment of troops under his command to ground jobs for which they were not trained, ranging from guarding prisoners to driving trucks and typing.
Army warden charged with 'aiding the enemy' --Lieutenant colonel faces multiple charges for alleged misconduct in Iraq 25 Apr 2007 NBC News has learned that the commander of Camp Cropper, the massive U.S. Army detention center in Baghdad, has been charged with aiding the enemy. The Army tells NBC News that military police arrested Lt. Col. William H. Steele several weeks ago and that he is being held at a detention facility in Kuwait.
Roadside bomb kills seven Afghan soldiers 25 Apr 2007 A roadside bomb killed seven Afghan soldiers near the border with Pakistan on Wednesday, the latest in a spate of attacks on Afghan security forces.
Report casts doubt on efficiency, safety of new nuclear weapons program 24 Apr 2007 A long awaited report from a high-level panel of scientists has raised serious questions about whether a Bush administration effort to begin building new generations of nuclear weapons -- known as the Reliable Replacement Warhead program -- can achieve its stated goals. The report concludes that the new warhead program may never achieve the cost savings claimed by the White House, that the supposed safety and reliability improvements are unlikely to be realized until later generations of the weapons are developed, and that a U.S. effort to restart nuclear bomb production could provoke an international arms race.
Israel PM facing criminal investigation 26 Apr 2007 The Israeli government's chief watchdog has recommended a criminal investigation into a deal by Ehud Olmert before he became prime minister. This further weakens the embattled Israeli leader, whose popularity has plummeted since last summer's inconclusive war in Lebanon.
Argentine court overturns "Dirty War" pardon 25 Apr 2007 A federal court on Wednesday struck down a presidential pardon and restored human rights abuse convictions for two leaders of Argentina's 1976-83 military dictatorship. The ruling forces former Gen. Jorge Videla and former Adm. Emilio Massera to serve out life sentences handed down in 1985 after they were convicted of devising a systematic plan by the military to abduct, torture and execute suspected opponents of the regime. [OK, let's get Dictator Bush and Cheney Halliburton tried and convicted for *same.*]
Unstable Israeli arrested for allegedly hijacking ambulance in U.S. 25 Apr 2007 A mentally ill 23-year-old Israeli [using the pseudonym, Meir,] was arrested two weeks ago in Kentucky for allegedly hijacking an ambulance and kidnapping the medical crew inside, Army Radio reported Wednesday. According to the report, it is unclear how the man, who had been committed to a hospital for the mentally ill in Israel, managed to leave the country, as Israel's border control has no record of his departure. It is possible that he himself was kidnapped to the United States.
Lye In Water Blamed For Burns, Rashes --Dozens of People In Spencer, Mass., Hospitalized After Water Was Treated With Too Much Lye 25 Apr 2007 Dozens of residents were taken to hospitals Wednesday with burns or rashes after the town's water supply was accidentally treated with too much corrosive lye, officials said.
Spencer Massachusetts Declares 'Mass Casualty Incident' --Residents warned not to use or touch water until further notice 25 Apr 2007 The fire chief of Spencer Massachusetts has declared a mass casualty incident and residents have been taken to St. Vincent's Hospital. Apparently, too much sodium hydroxide was released into the town of Spencer's water system causing a dozen people to be sent to the hospital Wednesday morning because of chemical burns.
Look for a lot more incidences of Bush bin Laden poisoning our water supply, as he wants the corpora-terrorists to own it: Fighting the Corporate Theft of Our Water By Tara Lohan 25 Apr 2007 All across the United States, municipal water systems are being bought up by multinational corporations, turning one of our last remaining public commons and our most vital resource into a commodity. The road to privatization is being paved by our own government. The Bush administration is actively working to loosen the hold that cities and towns have over public water, enabling corporations to own the very thing we depend on for survival.
Terror leaks: both Home Office and police implicated --Guardian told that Reid aide and senior officer involved 26 Apr 2007 The row over allegations that lives were endangered by leaks about major anti-terrorism operations deepened last night as it emerged that there were a series of disclosures about one highly sensitive investigation. As Tony Blair rejected calls for an inquiry, and Liberal Democrats called upon the police to investigate, it emerged that journalists received up to three separate briefings about an allegation that a group of men was planning to abduct and behead a Muslim British soldier. The Guardian has been told that an aide to John Reid, the home secretary, was responsible for one of those leaks, and has also learnt that there is strong suspicion among the highest-ranking police at Scotland Yard that one of their own officers also briefed the media. The controversy centres on a series of raids which led to nine arrests across Birmingham in February.... A senior Whitehall official told reporters from two tabloids that a number of Muslim soldiers had agreed to act as bait in an attempt to trap the plotters.
UK four plead guilty to terror charges 26 Apr 2007 Four men pleaded guilty in a London court on Wednesday to charges they conspired with an al-Qaeda linked operative to set off explosions.
Poll: Muslims distrust U.S. --Majority in 4 nations surveyed don't think al Qaeda was behind 9/11, say America wants to undermine Islam 25 Apr 2007 According to a new poll of four Islamic nations, published Tuesday by WorldPublicOpinion.org, skepticism and distrust of American motives remains high, and support for attacks on American troops in the region widespread -- along with continuing disbelief that al Qaeda was behind the Sept. 11 attacks. Fewer than half of respondents in each country said they were very or somewhat confident that they knew who was behind the attacks, and of those, fewer than one-third blamed al Qaeda, with others not answering the question or blaming the U.S. government, or Israel.
Obama rebukes Giuliani over terrorism comments 25 Apr 2007 Democrat Barack Obama rebuked Republican White House rival Rudy Giuliani Wednesday for suggesting the United States could face another major terrorist attack if a Democrat is elected in 2008. Obama, an Illinois senator, said the man who served as New York mayor's during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks should not be making the serious threat that faces the country into "the punchline of another political attack."
Republicans equal life; Democrats equal death? Keith Olbermann: Rudy Giuliani exploiting fear for power and personal gain 25 Apr 2007 Only in this America of the early 21st century could it be true that the man who was president during the worst attack on our nation and the man who was the mayor of the city in which that attack principally unfolded would not only be absolved of any and all blame for the unreadiness of their own governments, but, moreover, would thereafter be branded heroes of those attacks. And now, that mayor — whose most profound municipal act in the wake of that nightmare was to suggest the postponement of the election to select his own successor — has gone even a step beyond these M.C. Escher constructions of history. "if any Republican is elected president — and I think obviously I would be best at this — we will remain on offense and will anticipate what (the terrorists) will do and try to stop them before they do it." ...There is no room for this. This is terrorism itself, dressed up as counter-terrorism.
White House continues to support Wolfowitz 25 Apr 2007 The White House on Wednesday said it continued to support World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, despite calls for his resignation from the European Parliament.
House panel approves subpoena for Rice 25 Apr 2007 In rapid succession, congressional committees Wednesday ramped up their investigations of the Bush administration by approving a subpoena for Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and granting immunity to a key aide [Monica Goodling] to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
House panel approves subpoena for Gonzales aide --Goodling also gets immunity to testiLIE in investigation of prosecutors' firings 25 Apr 2007 A House committee Wednesday voted to grant immunity to Monica Goodling, a key aide to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales during the firings of eight U.S. attorneys. She had refused to testify under the Fifth Amendment. A separate vote to authorize a subpoena for Goodling passed by voice vote.
Kucinich Introduces Impeachment Articles Against Cheney 24 Apr 2007 (Transcript) Today, I have introduced House Resolution 333, Articles of Impeachment Relating to Vice President [sic] Richard B. Cheney. I do so in defense of the rights of the American people to have a government that is honest and peaceful. It became obvious to me that this vice president, who was a driving force for taking the United States into a war against Iraq under false pretenses, is once again rattling the sabers of war against Iran with the same intent to drive America into another war, again based on false pretenses.
Supporting Documents for H Res 333 By Dennis J. Kucinich (D-Ohio)
Ex - House Aide Snared in Abramoff Probe 25 Apr 2007 A former congressional aide pleaded guilty Tuesday to accepting tens of thousands of dollars in gifts from lobbyist Jack Abramoff in an influence-peddling scandal that has touched the White House, Interior Department and congressional Republicans. Mark Zachares was the 11th person to be convicted in the Justice Department probe.
Two out of three Americans say country going wrong 26 Apr 2007 Two out of three Americans think the country is on the wrong track, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Wednesday. Only 22 percent of Americans think the country is moving in the right direction, while 66 percent think it's on the wrong track, the poll of 1004 adults taken April 20-23 showed. NBC News said the poll numbers point to one compelling reason why that should be the case: the war in Iraq.
The GOP's cyber election hit squad By Steven Rosenfeld and Bob Fitrakis 22 Apr 2007 Recent revelations have documented that the Republican National Committee (RNC) ran a secret White House e-mail system for Karl Rove and dozens of White House staffers. This high-tech system used to count and report the 2004 presidential vote– from server-hosting contracts, to software-writing services, to remote-access capability, to the actual server usage logs themselves – must be added to the growing congressional investigations.
Court could toss key part of campaign finance law 25 Apr 2007 A majority of the Supreme Court's conservative bench appeared ready Wednesday to turn aside part of a sweeping campaign finance reform law with important implications for the upcoming presidential election. The question for the justices is whether "issue ads" -- which are aired mainly on television by advocacy groups, corporations, and labor unions to promote certain political or legislative causes -- can be banned 60 days before a general election, and 30 days before a primary.
Probe: Katrina contracts given to companies with poor credit histories, bad paperwork 23 Apr 2007 FEMA exposed taxpayers to significant waste — and possibly violated federal law — by awarding $3.6 billion worth of Hurricane Katrina contracts to companies with poor credit histories and bad paperwork, investigators say. In the immediate aftermath of Katrina, FEMA handed out lucrative no-bid contracts for cleanup work to large, politically connected firms such as Shaw Group Inc., Bechtel Group Inc., CH2M Hill Companies Ltd., and Fluor Corp. Among the winners was joint venture PRI-DJI, which received $400 million worth of contracts. DJI stands for Del-Jen Inc., a subsidiary of Fluor, one of the original, no-bid winners which has donated more than $930,000 to mostly GOP candidates since 2000.
EPA Relaxes Air Pollution Rules For Oil Industry --Agency Rejects Petition for Controls on North Slope and Extends Ruling Nationally (PEER) 25 Apr 2007 In a major victory for the oil industry, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has adopted looser air pollution limits for sprawling petroleum production and exploration operations, according to an agency order released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). As a result, petroleum facilities will be allowed to emit additional tons of hydrocarbons each day.
Stocks rally; Dow overtakes 13,000 on data, earnings 25 Apr 2007 U.S stocks rallied on Wednesday, allowing the Dow Jones Industrial Average to finish above the key 13,000 level for the first time, after news of better-than-expected orders for durable goods in March, a possible asset sale at Alcoa Inc. and surging profits at Amazon.com lifted spirits.
The Dow surpasses 13,000, while US citizens struggle to live on $21 per week for food: Ore. gov. starts week on food stamps 25 Apr 2007 If Gov. Ted Kulongoski (D) seems a little sluggish this week, he's got an excuse: he couldn't afford coffee. In fact, the Democratic governor couldn't afford much of anything during a trip to a Salem-area grocery store on Tuesday, where he had exactly $21 to buy a week's worth of food — the same amount that the state's average food stamp recipient spends weekly on groceries.
Rosie O'Donnell Leaving ABC's 'The View' 25 Apr 2007 Rosie O'Donnell's stormy tenure on "The View" will be a short one. The opinionated host was unable to agree on a contract with ABC, and she'll leave the show in June. O'Donnell said on the show Wednesday that she wanted to stay for one more year, and ABC wanted three.
Giuliani warns of 'new 9/11' if Dems win 24 Apr 2007 Rudy Giuliani said if a Democrat is elected president in 2008, America will be at risk for another terrorist attack on the scale of Sept. 11, 2001. But if a Republican is elected, he said, especially if it is him, terrorist attacks can be anticipated and stopped. [Well, obviously--since the GOP is (and always has been) in control of them!]
Chlorine bombs pose new terror risk 24 Apr 2007 The Homeland Security Department is warning U.S. chemical plants and bomb squads to guard against a new form of terrorism: [their] chlorine truck bombs. At least five [US] chlorine truck bombs have exploded in Iraq in recent months, killing scores of people and injuring many more after they breathed the toxic fumes. A chlorine truck blast April 6 in Ramadi killed 27 people and injured dozens more.
Governors object to expanded federal authority to deploy National Guard 24 Apr 2007 Giving the pResident more authority to mobilize the National Guard in domestic emergencies has threatened to derail state disaster planning and response, North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley (R) told U.S. senators Tuesday. Easley said he had the unanimous - and rare - support of 49 other governors in objecting to a change made last year to a 19th century law known as the Insurrection Act. The amendment expanded the ability of the president of the United States to "federalize" Guard members during [Bush's] terrorist attacks, natural disasters, disease outbreak and other conditions without consulting governors.
UK police arrest six under anti-terror law 24 Apr 2007 British anti-terrorism officers arrested six Muslim men in London in dawn raids today, on suspicion of inciting terrorism overseas and raising funds for terrorists.
Cleric who heckled Reid one of six held in raids 24 Apr 2007 Radical Muslim Abu Izzadeen, who once heckled Home Secretary John Reid, was one of six men arrested in police anti-terror raids today [!?!]... At a speech to British Muslims in Leyton, east London, Mr Reid was interrupted by Izzadeen, who called him "an enemy of Islam" and "a tyrant", accused the British Government of state terrorism and said Prime Minister Tony Blair and US President [sic] George Bush could "go to hell".
Bush Won't Accept Iraq War Timetable 24 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush, standing firmly against a timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq, said Tuesday that he will veto the latest war spending bill taking shape in Congress. House and Senate Democratic appropriators agreed Monday on a $124 billion bill that would fund the Iraq war but order troops to begin leaving by Oct. 1 with the goal of completing the pullout six months later.
Cheney Criticizes Reid Over Iraq Policy 24 Apr 2007 Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney accused Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Tuesday of pursuing a defeatist strategy in Iraq to win votes in the next 'election' - a charge Reid said did not warrant a response.
Sunnis protest against Baghdad's 'prison wall' 24 Apr 2007 Residents of a Sunni enclave of Baghdad demonstrated and shouted slogans yesterday against a newly built wall sealing off their neighbourhood from the rest of the city. About 2,000 people marched through al-Adhamiyah in east Baghdad carrying banners saying that their district was being turned into "a big prison".
Frustration Over Wall Unites Sunni and Shiite 24 Apr 2007 The unexpected outcry about the proposed construction of a wall around a Sunni Arab neighborhood has revealed the depths of Iraqi frustration with the petty humiliations created by the new security plan intended to protect them. American and some Iraqi officials were clearly taken aback by the ferocity of the opposition to the wall, and on Monday the United States was showing signs of backing away from the plan.
Iraq Blast Kills 9 GIs, Injures 20 At Outpost --Suicide Attack in Diyala Among Deadliest of War 24 Apr 2007 A suicide bomber rammed an explosives-rigged truck into a U.S. military outpost near Baqubah on Monday, killing nine soldiers and wounding 20 in one of the deadliest single ground attacks on U.S. forces since the start of the war in Iraq, military officials said early Tuesday.
Army Ranger alleges cover-up in Tillman case 24 Apr An Army Ranger who was with Pat Tillman when he died by friendly fire said Tuesday he was told by a higher-up to conceal that information from Tillman's family. "I was ordered not to tell them," U.S. Army Specialist Bryan O'Neal told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Tillman's brother accuses U.S. military of coverup --House committee opens hearing into ex-NFL player's death, Lynch rescue 24 Apr 2007 The federal government invented "sensational details and stories" about the death of Pat Tillman and the rescue of Jessica Lynch, perhaps the most famous victims of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, a House chairman charged today. "The government violated its most basic responsibility," said Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which opened a hearing into the incidents.
Tillman Brother Blasts Military 24 Apr 2007 Pat Tillman's brother accused the military Tuesday of "intentional falsehoods" and "deliberate and careful misrepresentations" in portraying the football star's death in Afghanistan as the result of heroic engagement with the enemy instead of friendly fire. "We believe this narrative was intended to deceive the family but more importantly the American public," Kevin Tillman told a hearing of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee. "Pat's death was clearly the result of fratricide," he said.
Tillman's Fictional Heroic Death: Did Bush Know? --Pentagon Refrains From Disciplining Anyone So Far Despite Mounting Evidence 24 Apr 2007 The Bush administration and the Pentagon came under fire today for creating false myths of military heroes, and the criticism came from unlikely sources -- one of the heroes, and the family of another. Former Army Ranger Kevin Tillman, who enlisted in the military along with his pro-football star brother, Pat, in 2002, charged the Pentagon with telling "deliberate and calculated lies" after his older brother was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan in April 2004. And he speculated that the facts were known by the White House long before his family learned the truth of Pat's death five weeks after it happened.
From an Angry Soldier By Anonymous 10 Apr 2007 I'm a Marine and I served my tour in Iraq. My husband, also a Marine, served several... He [her husband] should have been home a month ago but they extended his tour and now he's coming home in a box. You fuckers and that god-damn lying sack of shit they call a president are the reason my husband will never see his baby and my kid will never meet his dad... We're not fighting for our country, we're not fighting for the good of Iraq's people, we're fighting for Bush's personal agenda... Fuck you, war supporters, George W. Bush, and all the god damn mother fuckers who made the war possible. I hope you burn in hell.
Europe Approves More Sanctions Against Iran 24 Apr 2007 In the latest effort to force Iran to curb its uranium enrichment activities, European Union foreign ministers on Monday approved a second phase of United Nations sanctions. Included in the package were a ban on Iranian arms exports and the freezing of the assets of 28 additional individuals and organizations.
Canadian Guantanamo Detainee Is Charged 24 Apr 2007 The U.S. military filed murder charges Tuesday against Omar Khadr, a Canadian who was a teenager when he was captured in Afghanistan and sent to the Guantanamo Bay prison in 2002. Khadr, now 20, also was charged with providing support to terrorism, attempted murder, conspiracy and spying. He faces a military 'trial' at the prison in eastern Cuba under [unconstitutional] rules adopted last year.
Fascist America, in 10 easy steps --From Hitler to Pinochet and beyond, history shows there are certain steps that any would-be dictator must take to destroy constitutional freedoms. And, argues Naomi Wolf, George Bush and his administration seem to be taking them all. 24 Apr 2007 If you look at history, you can see that there is essentially a blueprint for turning an open society into a dictatorship... It is very difficult and arduous to create and sustain a democracy - but history shows that closing one down is much simpler. You simply have to be willing to take the 10 steps. As difficult as this is to contemplate, it is clear, if you are willing to look, that each of these 10 steps has already been initiated today in the United States by the Bush administration.
Leaked document reveals bulk water exports to be discussed at continental integration talks By Council of Canadians 23 April 2007 The leaked document [North American Future 2025 Project] of a prominent Washington-based think tank obtained by the Council of Canadians reveals that government officials and business leaders from Canada, Mexico and the United States are scheduled to discuss bulk water exports in a closed-door meeting at the end of the month as part of a larger discussion on North American integration.
Wolfowitz Hires Prominent Lawyer in Fight to Stay at World Bank 24 Apr 2007 Paul D. Wolfowitz, signaling anew that he will fight for his job as World Bank president, has enlisted a prominent lawyer [Robert S. Bennett], who defended President Bill Clinton against accusations of sexual misconduct, to help convince the bank’s board that Mr. Wolfowitz has done nothing to justify being ousted.
Security Breakdown at the White House? 23 Apr 2007 Maddy Sauer Reports: Security practices at the White House are dangerously inadequate say current and former employees of the security office there, according to a letter sent today from the House Oversight Committee to former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card, asking that he cooperate with the committee's investigation into the alleged security lapses.
Kucinich Puts Impeachment On the Table By Bob Fertik 24 Apr 2007 At long last, impeachment is on the table in Washington DC. And at long last, he pro-impeachment majority has a spokesman - Dennis Kucinich. Here are Kucinich's historic Articles of Impeachment for Dick Cheney: 1. Fabricated a threat of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction 2. Purposely manipulated the intelligence process 3. Openly threatened aggression against Iran These are serious, carefully-written Articles and they are thoroughly documented.
Cheney's Health Prompts Kucinich to Delay Impeachment Drive 24 Apr 2007 Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (D-Ohio) today put off efforts to impeach Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney, citing reports that Cheney was being treated for a blood clot in his leg.
Cheney to Have Blood Clot in Leg Checked 24 Apr 2007 Vice [sic] President Dick Cheney was taken to his doctor's office Tuesday for a checkup of the blood clot in his left leg, a spokeswoman said. On March 5, doctors discovered that Cheney had a clot, called a deep venous thrombosis, in his left lower leg.
Cheney is wrong about me, wrong about war --The 1972 presidential nominee strikes back at the vice president [sic] for comparing today's Democrats to the McGovern platform. By George S. McGovern 24 Apr 2007 Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney recently attacked my 1972 presidential platform and contended that today's Democratic Party has reverted to the views I advocated in 1972... In the war of my youth, World War II, I volunteered for military service at the age of 19 and flew 35 combat missions, winning the Distinguished Flying Cross as the pilot of a B-24 bomber. By contrast, in the war of his youth, the Vietnam War, Cheney got five deferments and has never seen a day of combat — a record matched by President [sic] Bush.
Rove Investigator Faces Own Allegations 24 Apr 2007 The senior government official [Scott J. Bloch] who says he is investigating Karl Rove for allegations he influenced government activity for partisan purposes is himself facing allegations of similar behavior. ...[G]overnment watchdogs have accused Bloch himself of similar behavior. In April 2005, they and others complained the White House appointee had allowed his office to "sit on" a complaint that then-White House National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice used government funds to travel in support of President [sic] Bush's re-s-election bid. By contrast, they said, Bloch ordered an immediate on-site investigation of a complaint that Bush's challenger for the White House, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., improperly campaigned in a government workplace, which had been filed around the same time.
Agency investigating Rove's political operation 24 Apr 2007 A small federal agency responsible for safeguarding federal employees from political coercion has launched an extensive investigation into the activities of the White House's political operation and its architect, Karl Rove. The U.S. Office of Special Counsel is looking into whether Rove -- President [sic] Bush's longtime trusted political strategist -- or other White House aides violated federal law by making political presentations to government employees in the run-up to last year's midterm elections.
'We will not leave any stone unturned.' Low-key office launches high-profile inquiry --The Office of Special Counsel will investigate U.S. attorney firings and other political activities led by Karl Rove. 24 Apr 2007 The Office of Special Counsel is preparing to jump into one of the most sensitive and potentially explosive issues in Washington, launching a broad investigation into key elements of the White House political operations that for more than six years have been headed by chief strategist Karl Rove. The new investigation, which will examine the firing of at least one U.S. attorney, missing White House e-mails, and White House efforts to keep presidential appointees attuned to Republican political priorities, could create a substantial new problem for the Bush White House.
Miers weighed Yang's firing according to Sen. Feinstein 24 Apr 2007 Former White House Counsel Harriet Miers discussed firing ex-U.S. Attorney Debra Yang, who was leading an investigation into lucrative ties between Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.) and a lobbying firm before she left her government post voluntarily last fall, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) charged in a hearing last week.
Contractor wants indictments dismissed 25 Apr 2007 Lawyers for a defense contractor [Brent Wilkes] accused of bribing a congressman and committing fraud with a top CIA official have asked a judge to dismiss charges.
U.S. Sen. Martinez violated election law in 2004 with oversized donations, audit finds 19 Apr 2007 Sen. Mel Martinez (R-FL) repeatedly violated federal election law during his 2004 campaign, including accepting donations that exceeded legal limits, a new audit shows.
Indiana Mayor Reports Riot at Corporate-Run Prison 24 Apr 2007 A "full-scale riot" broke out Tuesday at a medium-security men's prison, according to the mayor, and pictures taken from television helicopters showed at least two fires burning in the courtyard. The medium-security facility [New Castle Correctional Facility] is managed by the GEO Group Inc., based in Boca Raton, Fla., according to the Indiana Department of Corrections Web site.
Bird Flu Pandemic Could Infect 1 Billion People 24 Apr 2007 The World Health Organization has come out and stated that if a bird flu pandemic takes place it would kill up to 7 million people and infect at least 1 billion people around the world. The fear is that the virus could mutate into a form that is very easily transferable from human to human making it easier to catch. [Count on it! See: Scientists Recreate 1918 Flu and See Parallels to Bird Flu 18 Jan 2007 Scientists infected monkeys with a virus that caused the 1918-19 influenza pandemic and said in the Jan. 18 issue of the journal Nature that it caused an illness like that suffered by patients with the bird flu now spreading in Asia. Infection with a reconstructed version of the 1918 virus, known as the Spanish flu, incited a deadly chemical reaction in the laboratory animals, a group of scientists said in the magazine.]
Bird flu pandemic spells doomsday disaster 24 Apr 2007 A global bird flu pandemic could infect one billion people and kill between two and seven million of them, the World Health Organisation said on Tuesday.
U.S. examines if human food tainted 24 Apr 2007 Health officials are now looking at whether humans may have consumed food containing a chemical linked to a recall of pet foods and livestock feed, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said today.
Storm Piles 16 Inches of Snow on Colo. 24 Apr 2007 A storm system piled more than a foot of snow on the Colorado foothills on Tuesday and hit the Plains with heavy rain, hail and violent thunderstorms. Evergreen, in the foothills west of Denver, reported 16 inches of snow, and other foothills towns had up to 14 inches.
Press fury at Baghdad wall 23 Apr 2007 A controversial wall being built by US forces in a Baghdad's Sunni district on a mainly Shia east bank of Tigris has been roundly condemned by papers both in Iraq and wider region. Fears are expressed that the wall will turn the capital into "a big prison", exacerbate sectarian tensions and trigger the construction of similar barriers elsewhere in the country. A Syrian daily urges Iraqis to rise up and fight what it sees as part of wider US-Israeli efforts to isolate Arabs or "face extermination". [Citizens for Legitimate Government has saved this article on its server, in case the BBC removes it.]
As'ad Abud In Syria's Al-Thawrah 23 Apr 2007 'The wall is a real step to solidify and increase the sectarian hostility that has flourished in the US-made reality on the ground in Iraq. Such a humiliation for the Arabs ... what can you do? Either fight the siege or face extermination, so choose between dying as a resistance fighter or dying between a wall and the other.'
Iraq PM says he has ordered halt to Baghdad wall 22 Apr 2007 Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said Sunday that he had ordered a halt to a controversial wall being built by US troops around a Sunni enclave in mainly Shiite east Baghdad. "I am opposed to the building of the wall and its construction is going to stop," the premier told a joint press conference in Cairo with Arab League chief Amr Mussa. [Only Bush could make Iraqis long for the good old days of Saddam Hussein.]
Bush says he'll stand by his principles – like Lincoln did in wartime 23 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush empathized with Abraham Lincoln on Monday, saying they both stood by their principles in the face of criticism during wartime. The president took seniors and advocacy group leaders on a tour of the Oval Office after a meeting on Medicare's drug 'benefit.' He showed the group a portrait of Abraham Lincoln. He said Lincoln was unpopular during the Civil War but maintained his belief that all men are created equal. "Look what would have happened to history" if Lincoln had abandoned that principle, Bush said. [Let's hope the comparison doesn't extend to a night at the theater.]
Higher U.S. troop levels in Iraq likely beyond summer 22 Apr 2007 Remarks by senior U.S. commanders and officials and a change in Army deployment plans all suggest the higher level of American troops now building in Iraq is likely to remain for months beyond the summer. The Bush regime has avoided predicting how long it will keep the beefed-up force of about 160,000 troops ordered by the pResident in January.
US to help Iraq recruit 40,000 troops 22 Apr 2007 Iraq and the United States are to spend 14 billion dollars and recruit 40,000 new soldiers into the Iraqi armed forces in the next 18 months, a US military commander said Sunday.
Nine US soldiers killed in Iraq attack 24 Apr 2007 A suicide car bomb struck a patrol base north-east of Baghdad, killing nine US soldiers and wounding 20 in the single deadliest attack on American ground forces in more than a year, the military said today.
Suicide Bombings Around Iraq Kill 46 23 Apr 2007 A suicide car bomb struck a restaurant in Iraq on Monday, killing at least 19 people and wounding 35, police said. The attack occurred on a highway near Ramadi, a city that is 70 miles west of Baghdad, a policeman said on condition of anonymity out of concern for his own safety.
Day of carnage as 47 slaughtered in Iraq 23 Apr 2007 'Insurgents' slaughtered another 47 Iraqis on Sunday, including 23 members of a small religious minority dragged from a bus and gunned down by the roadside, security officials said.
Democrats to send Bush $124B war spending bill 24 Apr 2007 Congressional Democrats agreed Monday to ignore President [sic] Bush’s veto threat and send him a $124 billion war spending bill that orders the administration to begin pulling troops out of Iraq by Oct. 1. [Useless is as useless does.]
Intelligence Agent Killed in Afghanistan 24 Apr 2007 Assailants abducted and beheaded an Afghan intelligence service employee and struck one of the agency’s vehicles with a remote-controlled bomb in a separate attack, killing six employees and wounding three, officials said Monday. Another roadside bomb attack in the south killed two policemen, while a large car bomb was found and defused in the capital, Kabul.
Nigeria election 'worst ever seen' [The election 'worst ever seen' goes to the 2000 NON-elections (coup) in the United States.] 24 Apr 2007 Ruling party candidate Umaru Yar'Adua was declared winner of Nigeria's presidential election, but foreign observers slammed the credibility of a disputed poll that claimed at least 200 lives. The US said it was "deeply troubled" by violence and voting irregularities during both state elections on April 14 and the presidential and parliamentary polls on Saturday. [OMFG! The US is "deeply troubled" by voting irregularities.]
Blair Set to Quit On May 9 22 Apr 2007 Tony Blair will leave Downing Street before a decision is taken on charges in the cash for honours affair. The Prime Minister was yesterday said to be preparing to stand down on May 9. That will trigger a seven-week leadership election process in the Labour Party and a new PM - probably Gordon Brown - will move into 10 Downing Street at the end of June.
Al-Qaeda 'planning big British attack' 22 Apr 2007 Al-Qaeda [al-CIAduh] leaders in Iraq are planning the first "large-scale" terrorist attacks on Britain and other western targets with the help of supporters in Iran [LOL!], according to a leaked intelligence report. Spy chiefs warn that one operative had said he was planning an attack on "a par with Hiroshima and Nagasaki" in an attempt to "shake the Roman throne", a reference to the West.
Iran FM accuses US of supporting terrorism 23 Apr 2007 Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki on Monday claimed in Havana that Washington supported terrorism in various parts of the world, criticizing last week's release of a former CIA operative convicted in the deadly 1976 downing of a Cuban airliner. The Iranian diplomat, who was on a two-day visit to Cuba, decried what he called Washington's "support for terrorism in various parts of the world." His remarks followed last week's release on bail of former CIA operative Luis Posada Carriles, who is wanted in Cuba and Venezuela for a 1976 bombing that killed all 73 people aboard a Cuban passenger jet.
Plans to transport plutonium through Chicago suburbs raise concerns --DoE considering Interstates 88, 80, 294 and 74 to transport plutonium to Argonne National Laboratory and new nuclear waste facility in Morris 20 Apr 2007 Concern over the possibility that radioactive plutonium waste will be transported on area highways has prompted a meeting tonight on the subject. The meeting will take place from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Nichols Library, 200 W. Jefferson Ave., in Naperville. It was organized by the Nuclear Waste Containment Campaign, a group of citizens from throughout the western suburbs.
FDA inaction cited in contamination 23 Apr 2007 The Food and Drug Administration knew for years about contamination at a Georgia peanut butter plant and on California spinach farms that led to disease that killed three people, federal records show. But the agency took only limited steps and relied on producers to police themselves.
Ohio Congressman Wants Cheney Impeached 24 Apr 2007 Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D), a vocal critic of the Bush regime's war in Iraq, plans to introduce articles of impeachment against Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney on Tuesday.
Tortureboy says he's staying on the job 23 Apr 2007 Bolstered by a fresh show of support from President [sic] Bush, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales [aka Tortureboy] sought Monday to move beyond calls for his resignation and lingering questions about his credibility after the firings of federal prosecutors. Critics reluctantly conceded that Gonzales was likely to weather the political storm. [He should hold his job for as long as he can hold his breath while being waterboarded. --MDR]
Bush Reaffirms His Support for Tortureboy 23 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush said today that the Congressional testimony of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales [aka Tortureboy] last week, roundly panned by members of both parties, "in a way increased my confidence in his ability to do the job."
Huckabee Calls Gonzales a Distraction 24 Apr 2007 Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee on Monday called Alberto Gonzales a "major distraction" for President [sic] Bush and the GOP, and suggested the attorney general voluntarily step down.
Obama pulls even with Clinton in White House race 23 Apr 2007 On the heels of a burst of successful fund-raising, Democratic 2008 presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama has pulled even with frontrunner Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, a new poll released on Monday found.
Legislature passes bill delaying Real ID 20 Apr 2007 Georgia joins a growing number of states whose lawmakers have approved bills threatening not to comply with federal standards [the Real ID Act] for drivers' licenses.
Professor fired over Va. Tech discussion 23 Apr 2007 An adjunct professor [Nicholas Winset] was fired after leading a classroom discussion about the Virginia Tech shootings in which he pointed a marker at some students and said "pow."
Fired Emmanuel College professor fights back 23 Apr 2007 A former Emmanuel College adjunct professor [Nicholas Winset], who was fired last week after using a classroom discussion to mimic the recent tragedy at Virginia Tech, said yesterday that the college violated his rights and has tried to stifle valid discussion of a controversial topic.
Tech gunman shot victims over 100 times 22 Apr 2007 Dr. William Massello, the assistant state medical examiner based in Roanoke, said Sunday that Virginia Tech gunman Seung-Hui Cho died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his temple after firing enough shots to wound his 32 victims more than 100 times. But there was nothing unusual about Cho's autopsy, he said, and nothing that would have hinted at any psychological problems that might have led him to commit the worst shooting massacre in modern U.S. history.
MID electric customers get big shock from PG&E 21 Apr 2007 Local businesses and residents who disconnected from Pacific Gas and Electric as long as 12 years ago are in for shock -- they still owe PG&E money. Electric customers who switched their service from PG&E to Merced Irrigation District starting in 1995 will be hit with retroactive bills following a recent ruling by the California Public Utilities Commission. Statewide, residential customers will face a median total fee charge of $1,100, said Nicole Tam, a PG&E spokesperson. [Arming the Left: Is the time now? --by Charles Southwell 21 Oct 2003]
Gasoline at $4 Coming to a Pump Near You, Unfazed by Rising Tab 23 Apr 2007 Whether it's $50 to fill up your Prius or $130 for the Ford Expedition, $4-a-gallon gasoline is coming to a pump near you. "Prices will depend entirely on whether we have a couple of refineries blow up," [!?!] said Philip K. Verleger, an economist who runs a consulting firm in Newport Beach, California. [LOL, Bush bin Laden and Exxon Mobil are *counting* on it.]
Troop Surge May Be Extended in Iraq 21 Apr 2007 The Pentagon is laying the groundwork to extend the U.S. troop buildup in Iraq. At the same time, the administration is warning Iraqi leaders that the boost in forces could be reversed if political reconciliation is not evident by summer.
Top general: Iraq must live with 'sensational attacks' 22 Apr 2007 The U.S. troop buildup in Iraq has yielded modest progress but a rise in suicide bombings helps make the ultimate success of the security crackdown uncertain, the top U.S. commander in the country said in remarks published Sunday... The Washington Post cited military data showing that suicide bombings increased 30 percent over the six weeks that ended in early April. "I don't think you're ever going to get rid of all the car bombs," Gen. David Petraeus said. [Yeah, especially when you're the one having them planted.] "Iraq is going to have to learn -- as did, say, Northern Ireland -- to live with some degree of sensational attacks." He said a more realistic goal was preventing the bombings from causing "horrific damage." [What is "less" horrific damage? Some might say, if a bomb lands on Petraeus's head instead of that of an Iraqi civilian --well, that's "less" horrific damage. --LRP]
Fallujah loses 4th city council chairman to assassination 21 Apr 2007 The 65-year-old Sunni sheik was the only one who campaigned to take the helm of the Fallujah city council after three previous chairmen were gunned down by 'suspected Sunni insurgents' [US terrorists]. But Sami Abdul-Amir al-Jumaili died Saturday as his predecessors had – in a hail of bullets.
Gunmen kill 23 workers in Iraq's Mosul - sources 22 Apr 2007 [US] Gunmen killed 23 textile factory workers and seriously wounded three after forcing them out of a minibus in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on Sunday, police and hospital sources said.
2 bombs at police station kill 13 in Baghdad 22 Apr 2007 Two suicide car bombers attacked a police station Sunday in western Baghdad, police said, killing at least 13 people and turning nearby buildings into piles of rubble.
M-16s a step forward for Iraqi forces, says US 22 Apr 2007 Iraqi security forces will start replacing their AK-47 rifles this year with the M-16s and M-4s used by U.S. troops, which will help track the weapons and cut down on theft [?!?], a senior U.S. military official said.
First comes shock & awe, then comes the vaccines: MMR vaccination campaign aims to reach 3.9 million children in Iraq (IRIN) 22 Apr 2007 Despite serious ongoing violence in Iraq, the government and international aid agencies started a major immunisation drive on Sunday to avert [foment] an outbreak of measles. [OMFG! If you were an Iraqi, would you trust a vaccine provided by the US pharma-terrorists?]
Washington's $8 Billion Shadow --Mega-contractors such as Halliburton and Bechtel supply the government with brawn. But the biggest, most powerful of the "body shops"—SAIC, which employs 44,000 people and took in $8 billion last year—sells brainpower, including a lot of the "expertise" behind the Iraq war. By Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele March 2007 SAIC [Science Applications International Corporation] currently holds some 9,000 active federal contracts in all... The company's annual revenues, almost all of which come from the federal government, approached $8 billion in the 2006 fiscal year, and they are continuing to climb. SAIC's goal is to reach as much as $12 billion in revenues by 2008.
'Sieg heil Bush.' Bush denies Iraq war is lost 22 Apr 2007 President [sic] George Bush says sectarian murders have dropped by half in Baghdad since the US-Iraqi military buildup began in February, rejecting a Democratic leader's claim that the war is lost. Bush spoke at a high school in suburban Grand Rapids to about 500 students and members of the World Affairs Council of Western Michigan. Outside, dozens of protesters shouted anti-war chants and held signs that said "No blood for oil," "End imperialism now" and "Sieg heil Bush."
U.S. Congress set to defy Bush on Iraq war 22 Apr 2007 A fight between the U.S. Congress and President [sic] George W. Bush over the Iraq war is set to come to a head this week when Democrats are expected to send him $100 billion to pay for continuing combat while setting timetables for withdrawing troops.
Soldier says he was deployed with head injury 21 Apr 2007 An MRI later showed that Spc. Paul Thurman had lesions on the right parietal lobe of his brain, a condition that led to a "don’t deploy" order — which the Army violated, according to Thurman. Worse, rather than providing compassionate understanding of the symptoms associated with traumatic brain injury, he said leaders at Fort Carson, Colo., have harassed him, refused him medication and pushed for an Article 15.
Iran says UN has no right to stop enrichment plans 22 Apr 2007 Iran's foreign minister said on Saturday the U.N. Security Council, which has passed two sanctions resolutions on Iran since December, had no right to stop it enriching uranium. [Why doesn't the U.N. stop the U.S. from enriching uranium? And,while they're at it, why not force the U.S. to stop using depleted uranium in Iraq?]
Blasts kill at least 11 in Afghanistan 22 Apr 2007 At least 11 people were killed and 10 wounded in a suicide blast and two separate bomb explosions in Afghanistan on Sunday, officials said.
Israeli Troops Kill 8 Palestinians 22 Apr 2007 Israeli troops killed eight Palestinians, including a 17-year-old girl, in a two-day surge of fighting across the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Palestinian officials said Sunday.
Pilot dies in US Navy jet air show crash 22 Apr 2007 A US Navy jet crashed during an air show in Beaufort, South Carolina on Saturday, killing the pilot and plunging into a neighbourhood of small homes and trailers. At least one home was set on fire.
Blue Angels pilot dies in crash into neighborhood 22 Apr 2007 A pilot with the Navy's Blue Angels precision flying team was killed Saturday when his jet crashed into a residential neighborhood during an air show. Witnesses said six F/A-18 Hornets were flying in formation during the show at the Beaufort Marine Corps Air Station about 4 p.m. when one dropped below the trees and crashed, sending up clouds of smoke.
Pentagon Invites Kremlin to Link Missile Systems 21 Apr 2007 The Bush regime is offering Russia a new package of incentives to drop its strong opposition to American missile defense sites in Poland and the Czech Republic, including an invitation to begin linking some American and Russian antimissile systems, according to senior administration and military officials.
Have you received your gift pack? In an extract from his astonishing new book about life inside Guantanamo, human-rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith tells of the surreal world of the prison's media relations, where the only journalist with real access is one of the inmates. 22 Apr 2007 In the first 100-plus sessions, the US military never posed a question about the allegations against him [Sami al-Haj], as they were only interested in turning him into an informant against al-Jazeera... Sami learned that when he was on assignment in Afghanistan, his phone calls to his wife were monitored by the CIA. Extrapolating from the experience of a lowly cameraman like Sami, it did not seem implausible that the phone of every al-Jazeera journalist was being tapped. Meanwhile, anything Sami said to me had to go through the censors. Osama bin Laden, on the other hand, could speak to the world whenever he felt like it, without limitation.
Just Who Does the CIA's Work? By Robert Baer 20 Apr 2007 With contractors rumored to make up 50-60% of the CIA's workforce it is difficult to tell who is running the place...[From Baer's source:] Today in Baghdad a private contracting company, which I will leave unnamed, decides where CIA officers can go and whom they can see. This may sound like inside baseball to a lot of people, but what it means is the contractor is in charge, essentially determining who the CIA's sources are. And the contractor makes no bones about it: his goal is to hold on to his contract, not whether the CIA gets Iraq right or not. I keep hearing other horror stories out of the CIA... I am told that it has gotten so bad that the CIA has stopped cooperating with some parts of the military because they're involved in activities that violate statutes that govern the CIA.
Washington awaits a CIA chief's revenge 22 Apr 2007 Washington is braced for a showdown between the Central Intelligence Agency, the White House and the Pentagon when George Tenet, the former CIA chief, publishes his memoirs next week. Anxious to restore his reputation after failing to prevent the September 11 attacks and overreacting to flimsy evidence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, Tenet is said to spread the blame freely among other senior members of President [sic] George W Bush’s administration.
House Panel Weighs Subpoenas --Administration Has Ignored Oversight Requests, Chairman Says 21 Apr 2007 House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) sought yesterday to pressure the Bush administration into divulging sensitive policy information, scheduling a committee vote for Wednesday on his plan to issue four subpoenas for the information. [Look for another psy-ops shoot-up on Wednesday.]
House panel pressuring Bush loyalists 22 Apr 2007 If President [sic] Bush's former chief of staff can chat about the identifying of CIA agent Valerie Plame on a comedy show, he can talk about it to the House oversight committee, the panel's chairman said Friday. If Andrew Card refuses, the panel will vote Wednesday on whether to compel his testimony with a subpoena, said Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.). Also being considered for a subpoena on a related issue: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Criminal Referral in Reading Program 20 Apr 2007 A federal investigator looking into allegations of conflict of interest and mismanagement in a $1 billion-a-year Education Department reading program said Friday he has made criminal referrals to the Justice Department. Reading First, created by President [sic] Bush's signature No Child Left Behind law, offers intensive reading help for low-income children in the early grades. But investigators say that federal officials intervened to influence state and local decisions about what programs to use, a potential violation of the law. Some of the people who were influencing those decisions had a financial interest in the programs that were being pushed, officials said.
'That sounds like a criminal enterprise to me.' Key Initiative of 'No Child' Under Federal Investigation --Officials Profited From Reading First Program 21 Apr 2007 The Justice Department is conducting a probe of a $6 billion reading initiative at the center of President [sic] Bush's No Child Left Behind law, another blow to a program besieged by allegations of financial conflicts of interest and cronyism, people familiar with the matter said yesterday. The disclosure came as a congressional hearing revealed how people implementing the $1 billion-a-year Reading First program made at least $1 million off textbooks and tests toward which the federal government steered states. "That sounds like a criminal enterprise to me," said Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), chairman of the House education committee, which held a five-hour investigative hearing. "You don't get to override the law," he angrily told a panel of Reading First officials. "But the fact of the matter is that you did."
Justice sues 3 tech firms, cites kickbacks on federal contracts 20 Apr 2007 The Justice Department has accused Sun Microsystems, Hewlett Packard and Accenture LLP of paying and receiving what amounted to millions of dollars in kickbacks for help winning information technology contracts from federal agencies.
Two GOP senators face queries over conflict --An ethics panel meets today to consider an attorney's allegation of conflict of interest. 19 Apr 2007 Two influential Hampton Roads state senators face questions from a Senate ethics panel today over allegations they have a conflict of interest in the ongoing debate over eminent domain reform in Virginia. Sens. Kenneth Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, and Thomas K. Norment Jr., R-James City, will make separate appearances later in the day.
Gore campaign team assembles in secret 21 Apr 2007 Friends of Al Gore have secretly started assembling a campaign team in preparation for the former American president to make a fresh bid for the White House. Two members of Mr Gore's staff from his victory in 2000 say they have been approached to see if they would be available to work with him again.
Chief Justice warns vs 'mindless' scramble to end terrorism 22 Apr 2007 (Philippines) Supreme Court Chief Justice Reynato Puno has criticized the "mindless" crackdown on terrorism at the expense of civil liberties, and said a state with credibility problems could not adequately protect the rights of its citizens. In a speech during commencement exercises at the University of the East, Puno said responses to terrorism had been "more discomforting" than the act itself.
Passengers evacuated from Dallas-bound flight after bomb threat in San Antonio 22 Apr 2007 About 100 passengers were evacuated from a plane destined for Dallas on Saturday after San Antonio International Airport received a bomb threat, authorities said. The airport received several calls saying a bomb was in Terminal One, airport spokesman David Hebert said.
Tech Shooter May Have Used eBay Account 21 Apr 2007 An eBay account that investigators believe may have belonged to the Virginia Tech killer was used to buy ammunition for the type of gun used in the rampage, according to information on the auction site. The eBay account holder with the handle Blazers5505 also sold several books and tickets to Virginia Tech football games and lists Blacksburg as the account's address. A search warrant affidavit filed Friday stated that investigators wanted to search Seung-Hui Cho's e-mail accounts, including the address Blazers5505@hotmail.com.
Tech Probe Seeks Shooter's Phone Records 21 Apr 2007 Investigators pressed ahead Saturday with their search for Virginia Tech shooter Seung-Hui Cho's motives. Authorities sought Cho's cell phone records... "Seung-Hui Cho is known to have communicated by cellular telephone and may have communicated with others concerning his plans to carry out attacks on students and faculty at Virginia Tech,'' police wrote Friday in an affidavit seeking records from Verizon Wireless. [The affidavit was filed on *Friday?* Why not *Monday?*]
Cho's Name Didn’t Appear On Mentally Ill List 21 Apr 2007 Virginia authorities have submitted the names of more than 80,000 people with legally certified mental health problems to the FBI to ensure they don't buy guns. Unfortunately, the name of Cho Seung-Hui was not among them.
Clueless in the Senate (The New York Times) April 22, 2007 For a while last week it looked as if the Senate was finally going to wrestle itself into the digital age (and full public view) and require members to file their campaign fund-raising reports electronically. That is until Senator Unknown, Republican of Nowhere, put a hold on the bipartisan legislation. ...[I]t is time for senators to give up their right to block action anonymously, without having to admit their obstructionist ways. This hoary tradition, perpetrated as stealthily as a poison ring potion in the Medici era, was singled out for complaint this year in Congress’s ethics-reform debate.
U.S. Database Exposed Social Security Numbers 21 Apr 2007 The Agriculture Department for years publicly listed Social Security numbers of tens of thousands of people who received financial aid from two of its agencies, raising concerns about identity theft and other privacy violations.
Corzine May Resume Some Duties From Hospital, Spokesman Says 22 Apr 2007 New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine may be able to take on some of his gubernatorial duties before he leaves the hospital where he has been recovering from an April 12 car accident, an aide said.
Latest US solution to Iraq's civil war: a three-mile wall --Concrete barrier to encircle Sunni district --Construction under cover of night 21 Apr 2007 The US military is building a three-mile concrete wall in the centre of Baghdad along the most murderous faultline between Sunni and Shia Muslims. Work began on April 10 under cover of darkness and is due for completion by the end of the month. The highly symbolic wall has evoked comparisons to the barriers dividing Protestants and Catholics in Belfast and Israelis and Palestinians along the length of the West Bank.
Use of death penalty surges in Iraq - Amnesty 20 Apr 2007 Iraq's use of the death penalty has risen rapidly since it was reinstated in mid-2004 and it now ranks as the country with the fourth-highest rate of executions in the world, Amnesty International said on Friday. The London-based human rights group said in a report that Iraq had sentenced more than 270 people to death since sovereignty was handed back to the Iraqis by the Americans in mid-2004. [It was?]
Report On Haditha Condemns Marines --Signs of Misconduct Were Ignored, U.S. General Says 21 Apr 2007 The Marine Corps chain of command in Iraq ignored "obvious" signs of "serious misconduct" in the 2005 slayings of two dozen civilians in Haditha, and commanders fostered a climate that devalued the life of innocent Iraqis to the point that their deaths were considered an insignificant part of the war, according to an Army general's investigation.
Training Iraqi troops no longer driving force in U.S. policy 19 Apr 2007 Military planners have abandoned the idea that standing up Iraqi troops will enable American soldiers to start coming home soon and now believe that U.S. troops will have to defeat the 'insurgents' and secure control of troubled provinces. Training Iraqi troops, which had been the cornerstone of the Bush regime's Iraq policy since 2005, has dropped in priority, officials in Baghdad and Washington said.
Gates urges Iraq to pass key [oil] laws by late summer 20 Apr 2007 Washington, which has 146,000 troops in Iraq, is putting more pressure on Maliki's fractious government to speed up a law on 'sharing' [stealing] Iraq's oil wealth and rolling back a ban on members of Saddam Hussein's Baath party from office. Gates said in his meeting with Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki he expressed the hope that parliament "will not recess for the summer without passing laws on hydrocarbons, debaathification, provincial elections and other measures". Iraq's cabinet will present the oil law to parliament next week, but it faces opposition from Iraq's oil-rich northern Kurdistan region which says some details are unconstitutional.
Bush asserts progress in Iraq war, despite carnage 20 Apr 2007 President [sic] George W. Bush on Friday rebuffed a top Democrat's charge the Iraq war was lost and asserted progress despite some of the worst carnage since Bush ordered more troops to the region.
Just how many terrorists are there in Iraq? (Malaysia Sun) 20 Apr 2007 [George W. Bush's] statements imply most of the violence being carried out in Iraq is at the hands of terrorists, and more specifically by al-Qaeda, or at least by foreign fighters. This is simply not true. The bulk of insurgents in Iraq are Iraqi. Al-Qaeda, it is common ground (with the exception of the U.S. Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney), had no presence in Iraq prior to the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003.
GOP Sen. Snowe sponsoring Iraq withdrawal bill --Maine moderate is third Senate Republican to take stance despite pressure from Bush. 20 Apr 2007 In another sign of Republican unease with the president's Iraq policies, a third GOP senator expressed support Thursday for pulling U.S. forces out of Iraq under certain conditions. Sen. Olympia J. Snowe announced she would sponsor a bill to require American commanders to plan a withdrawal within 120 days of the bill's enactment, unless the Iraqi government meets a series of benchmarks.
Army clamped down after Tillman's death 20 Apr 2007 Within hours of Pat Tillman's death, the Army went into information-lockdown mode, cutting off phone and Internet connections at a base in Afghanistan, posting guards on a wounded platoon mate, and ordering a sergeant to burn Tillman's uniform. The clampdown, and the misinformation issued by the military, lie at the heart of a burgeoning congressional investigation.
Military recruiters back out of UC-Santa Cruz job fair 20 Apr 2007 UC-Santa Cruz anti-war activists are claiming victory, saying their repeated efforts to keep military recruiters off campus have paid off. Three recruitment offices announced this week they were backing out of a campus job fair set for Tuesday. [Awesome!]
Gates says Washington to sell smart bombs to Saudi Arabia 20 Apr 2007 U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said during his visit to Israel that Washington has decided to sell Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) bombs to Saudi Arabia, Haaretz has learned. A recent discussion in Washington raised the possibility that Jerusalem would ask the U.S. not to sell the satellite-guided smart bombs to the Saudis, but it was decided to reject this request.
Italian Court Revisits CIA Indictments 18 Apr 2007 A top Italian court said Wednesday it would review the indictment of 26 Americans, mostly CIA agents _ a move which could delay any start of trial for the 2003 kidnapping of a Muslim cleric.
A Terrorist Goes Free By Bernardo Álvarez Herrera 21 Apr 2007 In early 2005, Luis Posada Carriles, a Venezuelan with a long history of violent attacks in Latin America, sneaked into the United States and was soon arrested. Mr. Posada had escaped from a Venezuelan prison while awaiting trial in the bombing of a Cuban airliner in 1976 that killed 73 people... Upon Mr. Posada’s capture, the government of President Hugo Chávez demanded his extradition. But the Bush administration has refused to extradite Mr. Posada to Venezuela or Cuba, claiming that it fears he will be tortured in those countries. In fact, Washington’s reluctance is more likely linked to Mr. Posada’s history as a Central Intelligence Agency operative and a darling of extremist sectors of the powerful Cuban-American community in Florida...
Quick action! Fire Paul Wolfowitz (avaaz.org) Paul Wolfowitz -- architect of the Iraq war, president of the World Bank, and self-styled scourge of corruption -- has been caught red-handed in corruption himself, arranging a huge pay raise for his girlfriend and hiding the evidence. Wolfowitz's rigid ideology, unilateral decision-making, and domineering style demoralized the Bank's staff and undercut efforts to reduce poverty -- and this corruption scandal is the last straw... World Bank board members are deciding on his fate now. A massive global outcry could tip the balance. Sign petition.
Vermont Senate Calls for Bush Impeachment --Lawmakers Also Call for Impeachment of Cheney 20 Apr 2007 Vermont senators voted Friday to call for the impeachment of President [sic] George W. Bush and Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney, saying their actions in Iraq and the U.S. "raise serious questions of constitutionality."
Waxman Sets Hearing to Consider Batch of Subpoenas 20 Apr 2007 House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) is ginning up the subpoena mill, scheduling a meeting next week to consider subpoenas in four different investigations of the Bush administration.
DNC sues Justice Department over e-mails 19 Apr 2007 The Democratic National Committee sued the Justice Department on Thursday, demanding it turn over any e-mail traffic with the Republican Party on the U.S. attorneys controversy and criminal investigations.
Bush Rebuffs GOP Pressure For Tortureboy to Step Down --After Testimony, Attorney General Loses Lawmakers' Support 21 Apr 2007 President Bush yesterday stood by his embattled friend, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales [aka Tortureboy], defying the broad bipartisan consensus emerging in Washington after this week's Senate hearing that Gonzales has so badly damaged his own credibility that he should resign. Bush expressed "full confidence" in Gonzales through a spokeswoman and praised his "fantastic" service, in hopes of quashing speculation that the attorney general would be pushed out. But a wide array of Republicans described Gonzales with phrases such as "dead man walking," and even some White House aides privately voiced hope that he will step down on his own.
House OKs Bill Giving D.C. Voting Powers --Bush threatens veto 20 Apr 2007 The people of the District of Columbia moved a step closer Thursday to gaining voting rights denied to them for more than 200 years. But the legislation passed by the House on a 241-177 vote faced a veto threat from the White House, which said the bill was unconstitutional.
Fed Breach Leaks Social Security Numbers 21 Apr 2007 The Social Security numbers of 63,000 people who received Agriculture Department grants have been posted on a government Web site since 1996, but they were taken down last week. The security breach was only noticed last week and promptly closed, the Agriculture Department and Census Bureau announced Friday.
U.S. Embassy in Germany Warns of Terrorism Threat 20 Apr 2007 The U.S. embassy in Berlin warned Friday that Germany faced an increased threat of terrorism and that Americans in the country were particularly at risk.
Police chief points to risks of US-style focus on terrorism 20 Apr 2007 Britain's most senior police chief yesterday issued a thinly veiled warning that the country should avoid uncritically emulating US security policies. Sir Ian Blair, the Metropolitan Police commissioner in London, said a resurgence of violent crime in the US over the last two years was a consequence of law enforcement being focused on homeland security at the expense of local policing.
Arizona State Capitol reopens after bomb threat 20 Apr 2007 The state Capitol reopened at about 11 a.m. today after being shut down for nearly four hours after officials received a bomb threat about 7:20 a.m.
Two die in NASA hostage-taking 20 Apr 2007 An armed man killed a hostage, then himself, at NASA's Johnson Space Center on Friday, the latest incident to rattle the United States after the shooting massacre this week at Virginia Tech university. Another hostage, a woman who was gagged and bound, was not harmed, police said.
Jacobs Employee Identified as Space Center Gunman 20 Apr 2007 A gunman who killed a hostage and then himself inside the Johnson Space Center in Houston on Friday afternoon was an employee of Pasadena-based Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. Jacobs, one of the nation’s largest engineering and construction firm with $7.8 billion in 2006 revenues, has long had contracts with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, both at facilities at Cape Canaveral in Florida and at the Johnson Space Center.
KPRC reporter: "The only people who can go through the [NASA] gate are employees, government officials, and media personnel who have been issued credentials - not merely ID. Your name has to be on a list, and you have to pass a checkpoint. That includes everyone who works at NASA... This person [gunman] had credentials." According to Laurie Johnson of Houston Public Radio: "It's very difficult to get a gun onto the NASA campus, but that's what happened." On MSNBC, Cliff Van Zandt, FBI profiler, said: "It appears that he entered the building with specific targets." I am posting these quotations before they 'disappear.' --LRP
Montana Enacts Nation's First Flat-Out Rejection of Real ID 19 Apr 2007 The Montana legislature and Governor Brian Schweitzer has enacted the nation's first flat-out statutory rejection of the Real ID Act, which seeks to create a backdoor national identity card system by federalizing state driver's licenses. Montana's action was the latest and strongest step in an ongoing rebellion against the act in states across the nation.
Court Kills Suit Over 9/11 Air Quality 20 Apr 2007 An appeals court ruling could spell trouble for New Yorkers suing the Environmental Protection Agency and its former chief for saying that sooty Lower Manhattan air was safe to breathe after the Sept. 11 terror attacks. A three judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared this week that EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman and other agency officials can't be held constitutionally liable for making rosy declarations about air quality after the World Trade Center's destruction.
Coming Real Soon: $8 to Enter Manhattan By Car --Bloomberg Ready to Fight Albany For Congestion Fee 20 Apr 2007 A controversial new plan is about to be implemented to improve the quality of life in New York City. This weekend Mayor Michael Bloomberg is expected to introduce an $8 congestion fee for drivers who enter Manhattan below 86th Street.
Dow hits record close, nearly hits 13,000 20 Apr 2007 Wall Street bounded higher today, hurtling the Dow Jones industrial average to a record close approaching 13,000 as investors celebrated a week of surprisingly strong earnings reports.
Tainted pet food found in US livestock feed 21 Apr 2007 Pet food tainted with the chemical melamine was found in feed rations on a California hog farm and may show up on other U.S. farms, state and federal officials said on Friday.
Police, zoo dismiss death threat against Berlin's famous polar bear Knut 20 Apr 2007 While Americans enjoy the right to bear arms, maybe the Berlin Zoo should be issued the right to arm bears. Someone has made a death threat against the zoo's famous polar bear cub, Knut. A fax sent to the zoo Wednesday read, "Knut is dead. Thursday noon." Zoo officials immediately alerted police. But they dismiss the threat as a hoax.
Insurgents unveil alternative cabinet and first minister for Iraq 20 Apr 2007 An 'insurgent' coalition yesterday announced an "Islamic Cabinet" for Iraqi as it attempted to provide an alternative to the country's US-backed regime. The Islamic State of Iraq group named the head of al-Qaeda in Iraq as its "minister of war".
Iraq Qaeda group names cabinet, "war minister" 19 Apr 2007 The self-styled Islamic State in Iraq, an 'al Qaeda'-linked militant group, formed a cabinet on Thursday, naming al Qaeda's local chief as war minister, according to a message posted on the Internet. A spokesman for the Islamic State in Iraq said in a video the group's consultative body had named a 10-man cabinet with a prime minister and portfolios including war, oil, Islamic affairs, information and health.
U.S. Republicans battle charge Iraq war is lost 20 Apr 2007 President [sic] George W. Bush and fellow Republicans struggled on Thursday with comparisons between the U.S. wars in Iraq and Vietnam as the Senate's top Democrat declared the Iraq war lost. [Uh, when your adversaries are unveiling a 10-man alternative cabinet and first minister, I'd say all that's left is the surrender ceremony. --Lori Price]
Reid: Someone Tell Bush the War in Iraq is Lost 19 Apr 2007 Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday said the war in Iraq is lost militarily and "can only be won diplomatically, politically and economically" after more than four years of fighting. "Now I believe, myself, that the secretary of state, the secretary of defense and you have to make your own decision as to what the president [sic] knows: that this war is lost, that the surge is not accomplishing anything," Reid, D-Nev., told reporters.
Rove warns of threat of terrorism --Rove raises specter of attacks in U.S. if military pulls back abroad 19 Apr 2007 Presidential confidant Karl Rove painted a bleak picture Wednesday of what would happen if the United States walked away from the global war on [of] terror. "We are foolish if we think we can turn away from this threat and draw inward, and they will not come," President [sic] Bush's chief political strategist told an audience of about 400 at the Mount Union Theater. "If we lose, they [Bush] will follow," he said. [Is Bush bin Laden planning another 9/11-style terrorist attack?]
'Are we in the West Bank?' U.S. to cut off Baghdad neighborhood with wall 20 Apr 2007 A U.S. military brigade is constructing a 3-mile-long concrete [KBR-built?] wall to cut off one of the capital's most restive Sunni Arab districts from the Shiite Muslim neighborhoods that surround it, raising concern about the further Balkanization of Iraq's most populous city. Construction began April 10 and is expected to be completed by the end of the month.
US lawyer due in Fiji over Iraq killing testimony 20 Apr 2007 United States lawyers will arrive in Fiji next month to take evidence from a former Fijian soldier who claims to have witnessed American private security guards shooting Iraqi civilians for target practice. The Daily Post reports that Isireli Naucukidi is in fear of his life if he goes to America to give evidence.
Copter flaw blamed for eight British soldiers' Iraq deaths 20 Apr 2007 Eight British soldiers died on the first day of the Iraq war due to the mechanical failure of a US helicopter - not because of human error, a coroner ruled yesterday. Andrew Walker's findings directly contradicted those of US investigators, who said spatial disorientation suffered by pilots on the aircraft was to blame.
UK coroner disputes U.S. findings in Iraq crash 19 Apr 2007 A British coroner contradicted the U.S. military on Thursday over the cause of a deadly helicopter crash during the invasion of Iraq, the latest ruling to expose discord between the two battlefield allies. Washington has concluded that the crash was caused by the pilot becoming disoriented. But British coroner Andrew Walker ruled on Thursday it was a result of mechanical failure, a conclusion that could significantly alter the official account of the invasion's early hours when British troops played a crucial role.
Rocket strikes base, killing U.S soldier 20 Apr 2007 A U.S. soldier was killed and two others were wounded when a rocket struck their base in Mahmudiya, south of Baghdad, Thursday night, the U.S. military said.
3 more US soldiers killed in Iraq 19 Apr 2007 The military has announced the deaths of three more U-S soldiers near Baghdad. A military statement says they were killed in separate attacks near the Iraqi capital yesterday.
US under fire for anti-Iran tactics 19 Apr 2007 The Bush regime faces a growing dilemma over the pressure it is placing on European companies to suspend investment in Iran, with some US lawmakers dissatisfied with the effort and European allies worried about its tactics. The US Treasury and State Department [at the behest of Exxon Mobil] have sent officials across Europe, stepping up pressure on international oil and gas companies in particular not to go ahead with investment plans in Iran.
McCain Jokes About Bombing Iran 19 Apr 2007 Republican presidential contender John McCain joked about bombing Iran at a campaign appearance this week. In response to an audience question about military action against Iran, the Arizona senator briefly sang the chorus of the surf-rocker classic "Barbara Ann." "That old, eh, that old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran," he said in jest Wednesday. Then, he softly sang to the melody: "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, anyway, ah..."
US war criminals given blanket immunity: Foreign soldiers not to be prosecuted in Afghanistan 20 Apr 2007 Attorney General Abdul Jabar Sabit has said the soldiers of the foreign military accused of crimes will not be prosecuted in Afghanistan. Answering questions from members of the audit and assessment commission of the lower house of parliament, the attorney general said Afghan prosecutor could not interfere in cases pertaining to foreign military.
Iraq Qaeda kills 20 abducted soldiers, police-Web 19 Apr 2007 A group linked to al Qaeda [al CIAduh] said on Thursday it killed 20 Iraqi troops and policemen it had kidnapped, after the government failed to meet a deadline to free female prisoners, according to a Web statement.
US-led Troops kill 24 Suspected Taliban 19 Apr 2007 US-led occupation and Afghan forces clashed with Taliban fighters and called in an airstrike, leaving 24 suspected militants dead and two occupation forces wounded, a statement said.
DOJ seeks dismissal of Guantanamo habeas cases 19 Apr 2007 The US Department of Justice (DOJ) on Thursday sought the dismissal of all pending Guantanamo Bay detainee habeas corpus cases in the US District Court for the District of Columbia. The motion to dismiss was filed in response to the US Supreme Court denying petitions for certiorari earlier this month on two cases challenging the Military Commissions Act. The US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit had upheld the habeas-stripping provisions of the act in February.
Europe furious with CIA tactics 19 Apr 2007 Members of the European Parliament, who were behind a critical report on CIA anti-terrorism tactics, have been challenging Bush administration and congressional officials with their findings. On Tuesday, the delegation told a congressional panel that a CIA practice of spiriting away terrorism suspects was illegal.
CIA-backed terror suspect released on U.S. bond 19 Apr 2007 Anti-Castro terrorist suspect Luis Posada Carriles, an ex-CIA operative suspected in a Cuban airliner bombing, was released from U.S. custody Thursday and flew to Miami as he awaits trial on immigration fraud charges. Posada is wanted in his native Cuba and in Venezuela, where he is accused of plotting the 1976 bombing of a Cuban jetliner that killed 73 people.
Gonzales Rejects Call for His Ouster 19 Apr 2007 Attorney General Alberto Gonzales confronted a fresh Republican call for his resignation Thursday as he struggled to survive a withering, bipartisan Senate attack on his credibility in the case of eight fired prosecutors. "The best way to put this behind us is your resignation," Sen. Tom Coburn bluntly told Gonzales one GOP conservative to another at a daylong Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
Criticism at Gonzales Showdown 19 Apr 2007 His job in jeopardy, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales went before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday to explain his murky role in the dismissal of eight federal prosecutors last winter.
Gonzales Endures Harsh Session With Senate Panel 20 Apr 2007 Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, trying to salvage his job, endured withering questioning on Thursday from Senate Judiciary Committee members who expressed grave doubts about his truthfulness and judgment in the firing of federal prosecutors. His performance clearly exasperated the committee members, who were angered as he invoked a faulty memory more than 50 times.
In Testimony, Gonzales Says Firings Were Justified 19 Apr 2007 Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales encountered anger and skepticism from senators today as he insisted that he had nothing to hide in the dismissals of eight United States attorneys, an episode that has cast a shadow on the Justice Department and brought calls for his resignation. "Today, the Department of Justice is experiencing a crisis of leadership perhaps unrivaled during its 137-year history," said the panel’s chairman, Senator Patrick J. Leahy.
Kremlin justice in the U.S. --The U.S. attorney scandal is part of a larger Bush administration offense -- using law enforcement as a tool of the ruling party. By Jonathan Chait 19 Apr 2007 As Atty. Gen. Alberto R. Gonzales takes to Capitol Hill to testify today, it's worth keeping in mind what this whole imbroglio is really about. It's not about whether Gonzales and his minions lied to Congress and the public. (They did, repeatedly.) It's not even about whether the Justice Department improperly fired federal prosecutors. (It did, of course.) It's about whether the Bush administration sought to subvert democracy by turning the federal judicial system into a weapon of the ruling party.
'Some of his answers were merely laughable.' Gonzales v. Gonzales (The New York Times) 20 Apr 2007 [Attorney General Alberto] Gonzales came across as a dull-witted apparatchik incapable of running one of the most important departments in the executive branch. He had no trouble remembering complaints from his bosses and Republican lawmakers about federal prosecutors who were not playing ball with the Republican Party’s efforts to drum up election fraud charges against Democratic politicians and Democratic voters. But he had no idea whether any of the 93 United States attorneys working for him — let alone the ones he fired — were doing a good job prosecuting real crimes.
RCMP gather school blueprints, photos to prepare for shootings 19 Apr 2007 The RCMP is gathering aerial photographs and blueprints of thousands of schools across Canada as part of its plan for responding to school shootings, which it unveiled Thursday. Under the School Action For Emergencies (SAFE) program, the RCMP plan to map out every elementary and secondary school in the force's areas of operations by September — a total of 4,700 schools.
Seung-Hui Cho Was a Mind Controlled Assassin --Deadly accuracy, disturbing revelations suggest outside involvement in VA Massacre, cocktail of brainwashing from prozac, violent video games contributed to carnage By Paul Joseph Watson 19 Apr 2007 Charles Mesloh, Professor of Criminology at Florida Gulf Coast University, told NBC 2 News that he was shocked [Seung-Hui] Cho could have killed 32 people with two handguns absent expert training... "I'm dumbfounded by the number of people he managed to kill with these weapons," said Mesloh, "The only thing I can figure is that he got close to them and he simply executed them." Mesloh said the killer performed like a trained professional. "He had a 60% fatality rate with handguns - that's unheard of given 9 millimeters don't kill people instantly," said Mesloh...
I'll make Cho look mild: copycat 20 Apr 2007 Teachers in two northern California cities locked classroom doors, lowered blinds and kept nearly 22,000 school children inside all day today after a man threatened to go on a killing spree inspired by the mass murder at Virginia Tech. Possibly hyped on the drug ice and psychotic, he was said to have an AK-47 assault rifle, explosives and poison.
Senate votes to put brakes on private toll roads 20 Apr 2007 The Texas Senate voted unanimously Thursday for a two-year moratorium on private company toll roads — although stopping those projects won't solve the state's bulging highway needs, a leading lawmaker warned.
BlackBerry Maker Stays Mum on Outage 19 Apr 2007 Research In Motion Ltd. remained silent on Thursday regarding the cause of a massive service outage of its BlackBerry e-mail service that frustrated thousands of users across North America and initially spooked investors.
GOP Congressman Quits Panel After Raid 20 Apr 2007 Less than a week after the FBI raided the Northern Virginia home of his wife, Rep. John T. Doolittle (R-Calif.) gave up his coveted seat on the House Appropriations Committee yesterday amid concerns that he had used that post to advance the interests of convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff and other allies.
Administration tried to curb election turnout in key states --Campaign against alleged voter fraud sought to bolster the GOP 19 Apr 2007 For six years, the Bush administration, aided by Justice Department political appointees, has pursued an aggressive legal effort to restrict voter turnout in key battleground states in ways that favor Republican political candidates, according to former department lawyers and a review of written records.
FDA Asks if Pet Food Tainted on Purpose 20 Apr 2007 Imported ingredients used in recalled pet food may have been intentionally spiked with an industrial chemical [melamine] to boost their apparent protein content, federal officials said Thursday.
Australia's epic drought: The situation is grim 20 Apr 2007 Australia has warned that it will have to switch off the water supply to the continent's food bowl unless heavy rains break an epic drought - heralding what could be the first climate change-driven disaster to strike a developed nation.
Iraq link to campus killer Cho 19 Apr 2007 The sister of the gunman responsible for the deadliest shooting rampage in modern US history works as a contractor for a State Department office that oversees billions of dollars in American aid for Iraq. Sun-kyung is employed by the Iraq Reconstruction Management Office, according to US officials and a State Department staff directory that says she works from an annex near the department's headquarters in Washington.
Cho's sister works for McNeil Technologies: Administration official 17 Apr 2007 Seung-Hui Cho, the student who killed 32 people and then himself yesterday, left a long and "disturbing" note in his dorm room at Virginia Tech, say law enforcement sources... His older sister, Sun-Kyung, graduated from Princeton University in 2004. A source, who asked to be identified as a senior Administration official, said she works for McNeil Technologies, a firm contracted by the State Department to manage reconstruction efforts in Iraq. [From the McNeil Technologies website: 'Since 1985, McNeil Technologies has been a premier provider of critical professional services and reliable business solutions to the US Federal Government. We help government agencies meet some of their most complex service needs...' [Oh, I'm sure you do!] Overview of McNeil Technologies Intelligence Services: Our services and capabilities include: Intelligence Architecture Operations in support of the US Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) which supports the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and other government agencies. HUMINT (Human Intel) operations in support of DIA, or with federal counter Intel outsourcing effort...]
White House Outlines Bioterrorism Plan 19 Apr 2007 To deal with potential bioterrorism, the government will focus on buying new medicines for [its] anthrax, smallpox and acute radiation syndrome, according to a Bush regime plan. The plan said it will cost more than $100 million to acquire the anthrax and smallpox vaccines that the government seeks. The cost of medicine for acute radiation poisoning is anticipated to exceed $100 million. The plan listed as a near-term priority the development of antibiotics for [its] threats such as the plague or tularemia. [No, the money is for bioterror! See: Rare Germ Found in D.C. on Sept. 24, 25 30 Sep 2005 A relatively rare biological agent has been detected in air filters serving Washington D.C. in recent weeks, ABC News has learned -- but current evidence does not show any indication whatsoever of terrorism [?!?]. The federal government found six air filters around the nation's capital checked on Sept. 24 and 25 [during the protests in D.C.] contained "trace amounts" of tularemia, a type of bacteria.]
Iraqi Oil Law Nears Final Stage 18 Apr 2007 Iraq's 'hotly debated' [LOL, only the Bush, Cheney Halliburton, and Exxon Mobil want it] draft oil law is to be sent to parliament "We are expecting to take no more than two months to discuss it inside the parliament [They know the US will keep blowing up parliament, until the Oil Law is passed]... between one and two months it depends on the parliament," Assem Jihad told The Associated Press. The Iraqi oil legislation, which was endorsed by the cabinet last February, will open the door for the government to sign contracts for exploration and production of the country's vast untapped reserves.
Gates vows US will persevere with Baghdad crackdown 18 Apr 2007 US Defence Secretary Robert Gates said on Wednesday that Washington will persevere with a two-month-old security plan in Iraq despite an avalanche of car bombs that killed [more than] 190 people in Baghdad.
'The street was transformed into a swimming pool of blood.' Car bombs kill nearly 200 in Baghdad 18 Apr 2007 Car bombs killed nearly 200 people in Baghdad on Wednesday in the deadliest attacks in the city since US and Iraqi forces launched a 'security crackdown' aimed at halting the country's slide into civil war. One car bomb alone in the mainly Shi'ite Sadriya neighborhood killed 140 people and wounded 150, police said, making it the worst 'insurgent' bomb attack in Baghdad since the US-led invasion in 2003.
Bomb blasts mock Iraq's security plan 19 Apr 2007 Car bombs killed 140 people in Baghdad yesterday in the deadliest attacks in the city since US and Iraqi forces launched a security crackdown aimed at halting the country's slide into civil war.
Iraqi Refugees Head to EU --A new wave of Iraqis arrives in Europe to escape escalating bloodshed in their homeland 19 Apr 2007 Professor Nazar al Kaddouri had lost his brother - beheaded with a rotary saw [part of 'Operation Iraqi Freedom'] - and a nephew had been assassinated. So when he began receiving death threats, Kaddouri knew it was time to leave Iraq. Academics at Baghdad University were being targeted, and dozens of professors and students had already been killed. "So I fled, I took the road of exile," he said. "Iraq, as everybody knows [except Bush], has become unlivable."
Two Britons Are Accused of Leaking Bush, Blair Memo 18 Apr 2007 Two British men were accused by prosecutors of potentially endangering troops in Iraq [!?!] by leaking a secret memo about a 2004 meeting between U.S. President [sic] George Bush and U.K. Prime Minister [Poodle] Tony Blair. David Keogh, a former Cabinet communications officer, and political researcher Leo O'Connor, are on trial in London for allegedly breaching Britain's Official Secrets Act. [The only *people* 'potentially' (and actually) 'endangering the troops in Iraq' are Bush and Blair!]
Two on trial over Al Jazeera memo 18 Apr 2007 A government official and a former political researcher have stood trial for allegedly leaking a classified memo in which the US president [sic] reportedly referred to bombing Al Jazeera's TV station in Qatar. Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper previously had reported that the memo noted that Blair had argued against Bush's suggestion of bombing Al Jazeera's headquarters in Doha, Qatar.
U.S. Says Iranian Arms Seized in Afghanistan 18 Apr 2007 A shipment of Iranian-made weapons bound for the Taliban was recently captured by allied forces in Afghanistan, the Pentagon’s top officer said Tuesday. It was the first time that a senior American official had asserted that Iranian-made weapons were being supplied to the Taliban.
U.N. official doubts Iran nuclear claims 19 Apr 2007 Iran has doubled its capacity to enrich uranium in the past two months but remains far from the industrial-scale capabilities that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recently claimed, according to an official letter written by a senior U.N. nuclear inspector Wednesday.
U.S. Missile Deals Bypass, and Annoy, European Union 18 Apr 2007 Much of Europe is arguing over a Washington proposal to plant in Poland fewer than a dozen antimissile missiles that might not work, to guard against an Iranian threat that may not exist. The European Union is upset because Washington is negotiating bilaterally with Poland and the Czech Republic about something that affects Europe as a whole.
Vapors from underground plume could pollute Fort Lewis housing --Army balks at toxic-gas test despite EPA warnings 10 Apr 2007 Plumes of contaminated underground water could be releasing dangerous vapors into family homes at Fort Lewis. But despite years of urging from the Environmental Protection Agency, the military has not tested the housing for toxic gas, nor has it warned the hundreds of soldiers, spouses and children who have occupied the dwellings that they could be at risk.
VA report found Walter Reed problems in 2004 By Mark Benjamin 12 Apr 2007 Bush administration officials have claimed that they were unaware of problems with veterans' care at Walter Reed Army Medical Center until a flurry of media reports earlier this year brought the hospital's shortcomings to their attention. But Salon has obtained written proof -- a report prepared for a Department of Veterans Affairs task force -- that officials should have been aware of the situation as long ago as August 2004. President [sic] Bush, meanwhile, having promised to improve care at the hospital, has just announce plans to nominate the co-chair of that task force to run all of the VA's health services.
Top deputy tells Wolfowitz to step down- sources 18 Apr 2007 A deputy to Paul Wolfowitz [World Bank Managing Director, Graeme Wheeler] told the World Bank chief on Wednesday to resign in the interests of the institution during a meeting of the bank's management, sources who participated in the meeting said.
Police Prepared to Arrest 3,000 At '08 RNC 18 Apr 2007 The Ramsey County sheriff has prepared a $4.4 million budget for security during the 2008 Republican National Convention [Repugnant Nazi Convention], with a plan to handle the arrests of as many as 3,000 protesters. Sheriff Bob Fletcher's proposal includes money for a possible open-air, fenced detention facility [KBR-built?] next to the county workhouse, riot equipment and Tasers, and $1.7 million for officers' overtime. [Oh, I think they might want to be prepared to arrest a *whole lot more.* --LRP]
Plans Take Shape For 2008 RNC In St. Paul 04 Mar 2007 St. Paul Right down to the arena thermostat setting, planning for next year's Republican National Convention [Repugnant Nazi Convention] is occurring with painstaking detail and the pace of preparations is about to pick up. Expected expenses include... $4.7 million for premiums on various insurance policies, including "full terrorism coverage"...and $2.2 million for gift bags and a "GOP experience." [How about full coverage *from* their terrorism?]
Kafka, Orwell rolling in their graves: Student Arrested Over Va. Tech Remarks 18 Apr 2007 A University of Colorado student pleaded not guilty Wednesday to making comments that classmates deemed sympathetic [?] toward the gunman blamed for killing 32 students and himself at Virginia Tech, authorities said. During a class discussion Tuesday of Monday's massacre at Virginia Tech, Max Karson "made comments about understanding how someone could kill 32 people," university police Cmdr. Brad Wiesley said. [Ok, what about someone who uttered sympathetic remarks about the person who uttered sympathetic remarks? --LRP]
At Least Two Shot At University of Missouri 18 Apr 2007 The Columbia Missourian newspaper is reporting that at least two people have been shot at the University of Missouri, Columbia. Two people were apparently shot near the college's Reactor Field this afternoon.
Northrop Mall evacuated after bomb threat --Eight buildings on the Minneapolis campus were evacuated at about 1:15 p.m. and will be closed for the rest of the day. 18 Apr 2007 (University of Minnesota) Appleby, Smith, Kolthoff, Fraiser, Johnston and Morrill halls, as well as Walter Library and the Science Classrooms Building, were evacuated because of a bomb threat at about 1:15 p.m., said Dan Johnson, Powers Emergency Management Coordinator. The buildings will be closed until 10 p.m. and classes in these buildings are canceled. Police are also searching other buildings on the mall area.
WSU Vancouver evacuated due to threat; Patriot Act forum rescheduled 18 Apr 2007 The Vancouver branch of Washington State University was evacuated Tuesday night because of threatening graffiti discovered in a campus restroom shortly before an evening conference on the Patriot Act and the war on [of] terror, authorities said. University officials decided to evacuate the campus about 6:30 p.m. after the graffiti was found, according to Sgt. Mike Cooke of the Clark County sheriff's office. The threat came on the same night that Brandon Mayfield, an attorney wrongly arrested by FBI agents after the 2004 Madrid terrorist bombings, was scheduled to appear on campus as part of a forum on civil liberties titled "Casualties of the USA Patriot Act and the War on Terror." His wife, Mona Mayfield, said they drove to the campus and were told to leave. Mayfield said she was told the event would be rescheduled.
School Threats Follow Va. Tech Massacre 18 Apr 2007 Schools and campuses in at least 10 states were locked down or evacuated in the aftermath of a Virginia Tech student's shooting rampage that killed 33 people. Washington State University's branch campus in Vancouver was evacuated because of graffiti discovered in a campus restroom threatened harm likened to the Virginia slayings around 8 p.m., around the time a conference on the Patriot Act and the war on [of] terror was scheduled, authorities said. The event was to be rescheduled.
Killer sent photographs and video to broadcaster between shootings 19 Apr 2007 The man who shot dead 32 people at Virginia Tech took time out after committing the first two murders to post pictures and video to a national television network, police revealed yesterday.
Gunman contacted NBC News during massacre --Rambling communication, video being examined by FBI, network says 18 Apr 2007 Sometime after he killed two people in a Virginia university dormitory but before he slaughtered 30 more in a classroom building Monday morning, Cho Seung-Hui sent NBC News a rambling communication and videos about his grievances, the network said Wednesday. Cho, 23, a senior English major at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, killed 32 people in two attacks Monday before taking his own life. [Yes, in between shootings, he went to the US Post Office, parcel in hand, stood in line and mailed his carton to MSNBC. I wonder if he got tracking for the package?! --LRP]
University 'warned about gunman' 18 Apr 2007 A professor who taught a student whose gun rampage at Virginia Tech left 32 people dead says she warned university officials about his behaviour. Lucinda Roy said she became concerned after Cho Seung-hui wrote disturbing pieces for a creative writing class.
FBI searches Republican lawmaker's home 18 Apr 2007 The FBI searched the Virginia home of Rep. John Doolittle (R-Calif.) last Friday in its investigation into ties between the congressman and his wife, Julie, and disgraced former lobbyist Jack Abramoff, according to law enforcement and other Congressional and K Street sources.
Senate Bars Medicare Talks for Lower Drug Prices 19 Apr 2007 A pillar of the Democrats’ program tumbled on Wednesday when the Senate blocked a proposal to let Medicare negotiate lower drug prices for millions of older Americans, a practice now forbidden by law. [Arming the Left: Is the time now? --by Charles Southwell 21 Oct 2003 As long as we pose no REAL threat to the powers-that-be, to what is shaping up into [is] a dictatorship, we will continue to be ignored. Right now, we are ignored because we present no organized power to fight this onslaught of anti-democratic, totalitarian government that we are up against...]
On day of disasters: Dow Ends Above 12,800 for First Time 18 Apr 2007 The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 12,800 for the first time Wednesday, signaling Wall Street's recovery from its steep decline in February as investors rewarded companies with strong earnings.
Abortion ruling bolsters call for total ban 19 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush’s appointments to the US Supreme Court yielded fruit for conservatives yesterday as justices voted 5-4 in favour of outlawing late-term "partial birth" abortions. The ruling will encourage religious conservatives — who hope to chip away at the Roe v Wade decision in 1973 that legalised abortion across America — as well as efforts at state level to place more restrictions on the procedure.
Court Backs Ban on Abortion Procedure 18 Apr 2007 The Supreme Court upheld the nationwide ban on a controversial abortion procedure Wednesday, handing abortion opponents the long-awaited victory they expected from a more conservative bench. The 5-4 ruling said the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act that Congress passed and President [sic] Bush signed into law in 2003 does not violate a woman's constitutional right to an abortion.
E. Coli Conservatism By Rick Perlstein 18 Apr 2007 Public relations has a lot to do with the way you've been learning about the Third Worlding of America's food safety system... Last month the FDA abruptly announced new rules for fresh-cut produce... "We've never before formally recommended that the industry adopt such regulations," said a spokesman. But, oops: he's hustling you. Meat inspections are mandatory. Produce inspections will remain voluntary. George Bush's Food and Drug Administration—and our other major food-inspection arm, the U.S. Department of Agriculture—are Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan's noble words made flesh. But don't let your family get too close to the flesh. They might get sick and die.
'Fewer leaves' behind frog demise [Bush regime behind planet demise] 17 Apr 2007 A decline in the amount of leaves on the ground could be behind the rapid demise of frog species, a study of a rainforest in Costa Rica has suggested.
Secret service officer shoots two agents at White House 18 Apr 2007 Two Secret Service officers were injured after a gun held by another Secret Service officer accidentally fired inside the White House gate, according to a spokesman, Darrin Blackford. Their injuries are non-life threatening, the spokesman said.
Accidental Shooting Stirs Secret Service 17 Apr 2007 Two Secret Service officers were injured in an accidental shooting Tuesday at the White House. In a separate incident, Lafayette Park along Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House was closed because of a suspicious package, the Secret Service said. There was a security clampdown at the White House because of both incidents.
Threats Rattle Schools in 10 States 18 Apr 2007 Campus threats forced lock-downs and evacuations at universities, high schools and middle schools in at least 10 states on Tuesday, a day after a Virginia Tech student's shooting rampage killed 33 people.
Bush Allies in Congress Block Bill That Would Require Intelligence Disclosures 17 Apr 2007 The Bush administration’s allies in Congress on Monday blocked a bill that would require the White House to disclose the locations of secret prisons run by the Central Intelligence Agency and to reveal the amount spent annually by American intelligence agencies.
Guantanamo detainee's father says son tortured in secret CIA prison 17 Apr 2007 The father of a Guantanamo Bay detainee accused CIA officials of torturing his son - Pakistani terror suspect Majid Khan - after arresting him in Pakistan in March 2003, according to an affidavit released Monday.
CIA torture claims 18 Apr 2007 Top terror suspect Abu Zubaydah told a US military tribunal he was tortured while in CIA custody, and now suffered seizures. He said these affected his ability to speak and write, according to a transcript released yesterday. In a lengthy March 27 hearing before the tribunal at Guantanamo Bay, Zubaydah denied associating with al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, despite having told interrogators that he had.
UN calls on the West to help four million displaced Iraqis 18 Apr 2007 UNHCR, the United Nations' refugee agency, believes that up to two million Iraqis have sought refuge outside the country since the war started, and 1.9 million have been forced to move within Iraq in fear of their lives.
Sadr ministers walk out of Iraq government in protest at US 17 Apr 2007 The nationalist Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has ordered his ministers to leave the Iraqi government because of its refusal to set a timetable for US troop withdrawal from Iraq.
U.S. soldier on trial in Italy for Iraq killing 17 Apr 2007 A U.S. soldier [Mario Lozano] went on trial in Rome on Tuesday accused of killing an Italian intelligence agent in Iraq but was being prosecuted in absentia because Washington has ruled out handing him over.
'I cannot simply dismiss a relevant document because the US military refuses to let me see it.' Lack of US help over fatal helicopter crash in Iraq 'inexcusable', says coroner 17 Apr 2007 The coroner hearing an inquest into the deaths of eight servicemen in an American helicopter crash in Iraq has issued a list of demands for evidence he wants from the US. Oxfordshire Assistant Deputy Coroner Andrew Walker said the lack of help from America was "inexcusable" and he expected an American safety report into the incident to be on his desk tomorrow morning. Mr Walker was told by Ministry of Defence lawyer Wendy Outhwaite that the Americans had "expressly" forbidden release of the document.
Basra violence threatens Iraq's oil 17 Apr 2007 Political and sectarian [US] fighting in Iraq's oil capital, Basra, intensifies, threatening most of Iraq's oil production and all its oil exports.
Crackdown on the Secret War Against Iran By Alexis Debat Pakistani 13 Apr 2007 security sources tell ABC News that the Iranian and Pakistani governments have launched a crackdown on the Baluchi militant group Jundullah, which ABC News reported has been secretly encouraged and advised by U.S. officials to stage guerrilla [terrorist] attacks inside Iran.
Afghan blast kills five in U.N. vehicle 17 Apr 2007 A remote-controlled bomb blew up a U.N. vehicle in Afghanistan on Tuesday killing four Nepalese contractors and an Afghan driver, police and the United Nations said.
Mich. Man Accused of Spying for Iraq 18 Apr 2007 A Michigan man [Najib Shemami] spied for the Iraqi government for about a year before the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of the country, federal authorities said Tuesday.
Emergency drill in L.A. raises concerns 17 Apr 2007 Notice to Westsiders: Disregard the thwack-thwack-thwack of Black Hawk helicopter blades you might be hearing. The West Los Angeles Veterans Affairs campus is not, repeat not, under attack. The California National Guard is slated to launch a three-day training exercise today titled Operation Vector. Plans call for a Hollywood-style convergence of a simulated natural disaster and faux bio-terror attack designed to test how well Guard teams work with local emergency responders.
Lawyer outlines a broader conspiracy in search for FBI documents on Oklahoma City bombing 17 Apr 2007 A Utah attorney alleges informants gathering information on Timothy McVeigh or his associates warned the FBI about the plot to bomb the Oklahoma City federal building but the agency took no action to stop the 1995 attack. Jesse Trentadue also says there were others involved in carrying out the bombing besides McVeigh and Terry Nichols, despite investigators' conclusion that they were the only ones responsible for the crime.
NBC commentator Brian Williams is linking the Virginia Tech shootings to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in terms of 'national unity,' and declaring that President [sic] Bush is there to 'unite the nation.'
Chicago Tribune: Alleged gunman left note in dorm room [My theory on its announced contents: "I did this for Al Qaeda in Iraq. I've come to the US because the Democrat congress wants a timeline for troop withdrawal. P.S.: Rosie O'Donnell is wrong. Osama bin Laden did carry out the 9/11 terrorist attacks. If NSA wiretaps were allowed, I wouldn't have been able to do this."]
Two-Hour Delay Is Linked to Bad Lead 18 Apr 2007 New information emerged that may help explain a fateful two-hour delay by Virginia Tech officials in warning the campus of a gunman at large. According to search warrants and statements from the police, campus investigators had been busy pursuing what appears to have been a fruitless lead in the first of two shooting episodes Monday... Among the central unknowns is what prompted the gunman to move to Norris Hall, where all but the first two killings took place. The authorities said Mr. Cho’s preparations, including chaining the doors, suggested planning and premeditation, rather than a spontaneous event.
Va. Tech Gunman Writings Raised Concerns 18 Apr 2007 The gunman in the Virginia Tech massacre was a sullen loner who alarmed professors and classmates with his twisted, violence-drenched creative writing and left a rambling note raging against women and rich kids. [Gee, we better start censoring 'violence-drenched' creative writings.]
U.S. Gun Laws Draw Heat After Massacre 18 Apr 2007 The Virginia Tech shootings sparked criticism of U.S. gun control laws around the world Tuesday. Editorials lashed out at the availability of weapons, and the leader of Australia - one of America's closest allies - declared that America's gun culture was costing lives. [Yeah, so is the Bush regime.]
Gunman ID'd as student; tests tie same gun to both attacks 17 Apr 2007 A Virginia Tech senior [Cho Seung-Hui] from South Korea killed at least 30 people locked inside a classroom building in the deadliest shooting rampage in modern U.S. history, the university and police said Tuesday. Ballistics tests also found that one of the guns used in that attack was also used in a shooting two hours earlier at a dorm that left two people dead, Virginia State Police said. Cho committed suicide after the attacks, and there was no indication Tuesday of any possible motive.
Articles of Impeachment to Be Filed On Cheney By Mary Ann Akers 17 Apr 2007 Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio)... declared in a letter sent to his Democratic House colleagues this morning that he plans to file articles of impeachment against Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney... Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution gives Congress the authority to impeach the president, vice president and "all civil Officers of the United States" for "treason, bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors." Sources tell the Sleuth that in light of the mass killings at Virginia Tech Monday, Kucinich's impeachment plans have been put on hold. There will be no action this week, they say.
Immunity for Ex-Gonzales Aide Weighed --Potential Witness's Role in Firings Cited 18 Apr 2007 The confrontation between Congress and the Bush regime over the dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys escalated again yesterday as Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee said they are weighing an offer of immunity to a potential key witness in the investigation. At the same time, the Republican National Committee yesterday turned down congressional demands that it hand over e-mails related to the firings, angering Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.).
GOP Senators Misled on Prosecutor By Richard L. Fricker 18 Apr 2007 The Bush administration fed Republican senators misleading talking points that hailed the prosecutorial experience of interim Little Rock U.S. Attorney J. Timothy Griffin, although the protégé of White House political adviser Karl Rove appears never to have actually tried a criminal case.
Contractor says it was told to hire Wolfowitz's girlfriend 18 Apr 2007 The US Defence Department directed a private contractor in 2003 to hire Shaha Ali Riza, a World Bank employee and the companion of Paul Wolfowitz, then the deputy secretary of defence, to spend a month studying issues related to setting up a new 'government' in Iraq.
House to Begin Probe Into Fla. Election 17 Apr 2007 A House task force will take the first steps Tuesday in an investigation of a Florida congressional election decided by 369 votes amid complaints that 'voting' machines failed to count thousands of electronic ballots.
Rulings go against administration 17 Apr 2007 A string of federal court rulings in recent weeks has gone against Bush administration environmental policies, and critics say they are proof that the White House regularly circumvents laws designed to protect the nation's air, water, forests and endangered species. "They (courts) are finding in case after case after case that the Bush administration is violating the law," said Trip Van Noppen, vice president of litigation for Earthjustice, a public interest law firm that represents environmental groups suing the government.
New FEMA Hurricane Plan Won't Be Ready --Congress Ordered New Plan By June 1 17 Apr 2007 A federal government plan for responding to emergencies will not be ready in time for the approaching hurricane season, officials have told Congress.
Global warming may put U.S. in hot water 17 Apr 2007 As the world warms, water — either too little or too much of it — is going to be the major problem for the United States, scientists and military experts said Monday. It will be a domestic problem, with states clashing over controls of rivers, and a national security problem as water shortages and floods worsen conflicts and [US-generated] terrorism elsewhere in the world, they said.
CVS admits customer data went in Dumpster 17 Apr 2007 CVS/Caremark Corp. Tuesday acknowledged one of its Texas drugstores discarded personal records in a Dumpster, exposing customers to possible identity theft.
Knut Health Scare Over, He Was Only Teething 17 Apr 2007 Berlin Zoo has given the world-famous bear cub a clean bill of health and said he only had teething trouble on Sunday and Monday when he worried visitors by lying on the ground with his paws over his eyes.
Cheney: Threat of nuclear attack in U.S. city 'very real' [He should know --he's probably busy planning it.] 16 Apr 2007 Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney, often called upon to deliver the regime's toughest talk about the wars abroad, now says this about the threat of [US] terrorists detonating a nuclear bomb in an American city: "It's a very real threat. ... Something that we have to worry about and defeat every single day."
We want the Taliban back, say ordinary Afghans 08 Apr 2007 Faiz Mohammed Karigar, a father of two, fled Kandahar when the Taliban held power in Afghanistan because he was against their restrictions on education. Now he wants the fundamentalists back. "When the Taliban were here, I escaped to the border with Iran, but I was never worried about my family," he said. "Every single minute of the last three years I have been very worried. Maybe tonight the Americans will come to my house, molest my wife and children and arrest me." [Count on it.]
Photos of 'tortured' Iraqi's corpse released 17 Apr 2007 Photographs showing the severe beating suffered by an Iraqi civilian who died in British custody were released today as the House of Lords begins a hearing into whether human rights law should apply to British forces abroad. Phil Shiner, of Public Interest Lawyers, showed pictures and medical evidence relating to Baha Mousa, who died in 2003, and other men beaten in custody. Mr Shiner said: "We're not just talking about nuanced degrading treatment. This is torture by any definition of that word. And we're not just talking about torture, we're talking about the banned techniques ... such as hooding, sleep deprivation, stressing, food deprivation and white noise."
Qaeda group says Iraq a "university of terror" 17 Apr 2007 The leader of an al Qaeda-led group in Iraq said on Tuesday he agreed with those who say the country has become a "university of terrorism" in a growing 'insurgency' since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.
Gunmen kill college dean, professor from Mosul University 16 Apr 2007 Unknown [US] gunmen on Monday killed a college dean and a professor from Mosul University in two separate incidents in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, a source from Ninewa police department said on Monday.
70% of Iraqi schoolchildren show symptoms of trauma --16 Apr 2007 About 70% of primary school students in a Baghdad neighborhood suffer symptoms of trauma-related stress, according to a survey by the Iraqi Ministry of Health.
Five U.S. soldiers killed in attacks in Iraq 16 Apr 2007 'Insurgents' killed five American soldiers in Iraq on Monday, including three in Baghdad, the U.S. military said. Around 60 U.S. soldiers have been killed in Iraq this month, putting April on course to be one of the deadliest for U.S. forces in many months.
US navy officer relieved of command in Gulf 16 Apr 2007 A senior officer [Commander Christopher Rankin] serving with the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet in the Gulf was relieved of his command on Monday due to a 'loss of confidence' in his abilities, the US navy said.
Al-Sadr followers quit Iraq Cabinet posts --Departure of six ministers seen as blow to the al-Maliki government 16 Apr 2007 Cabinet ministers loyal to the radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr resigned Monday to protest the prime minister’s refusal to set a timetable for an American withdrawal, raising the prospect that the Mahdi Army militia could return to the streets of Baghdad.
Army to slow repairs as Congress weighs funds 17 Apr 2007 The U.S. Army will defer spending and slow repair work on any equipment not needed for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan due to Congress' failure to approve $100 billion in extra war funding, the largest branch of the armed forces said on Monday.
Poll: Americans Trust Democrats Over Bush on Iraq Policy 16 Apr 2007 A Washington Post-ABC News poll of 1,141 adults, conducted April 12-15, found that 58 percent trusted the Democrats in Congress to do a better job handling the situation in Iraq, compared to 33 percent who trusted George w. Bush.
Tenet's Tell-All Is a Slam Dunk to Provoke Invasion's Architects By Al Kamen 16 Apr 2007 The drums have begun sounding for the long-awaited book by former CIA director George Tenet, in which he gives his take on pre-9/11 days and on Saddam's huge cache of weapons of mass destruction. And the drums are saying that Tenet is not going to get too many Christmas cards from Vice President [sic] Cheney's office after they read "At the Center of the Storm."
Iran Says It Wants Bidders for 2 More Nuclear Plants 16 Apr 2007 Iran said Sunday that it was seeking international bids for building two more nuclear power plants despite international pressure over its nuclear program.
Bombing Kills 9 Police Officers in Northern Afghanistan 17 Apr 2007 A suicide bomber struck a group of police officers in the normally peaceful north of Afghanistan on Monday, killing nine policemen and wounding 25, officials said.
ABC News: Gonzales Contradicts His Own Testimony --Recently Released E-Mails Show Attorney General's Involvement in Attorney Firing Talks 16 Apr 2007 Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' assertion that he was not involved in identifying the eight U.S. attorneys who were asked to resign last year is at odds with a recently released internal Department of Justice e-mail, ABC News has learned. That e-mail said that Gonzales supported firing one federal prosecutor six months before she was asked to leave.
Gonzales hearing postponed because of Virginia Tech shootings 16 Apr 2007 The Senate Judiciary Committee postponed Tuesday's questioning of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales on the firings of eight federal prosecutors, saying the proceedings would be inappropriate in light of the Virginia Tech shootings.
Tenn. campus evacuated after bomb scare 16 Apr 2007 Several hundred students and teachers were evacuated Monday from two buildings at the University of Tennessee after a bomb scare hours after shootings at Virginia Tech, officials said
Anger mounts over response to massacre 17 Apr 2007 (Blacksburg, VA) Parents and students at the scene of the worst school shooting in US history on Monday criticised the university for waiting too long to alert people a killer may be on the loose.
Police Cite Person of Interest in Va. Tech Dorm Killing; Dead Gunman Yet to Be ID'd 16 Apr 2007 In a press conference tonight, Virginia Tech President Charles Steger gave a detailed timeline of the morning's tragic events. He said a 9-1-1 call reporting a shooting at a dormitory was made at approximately 7:15 a.m. While police were trying to assess what they first believed was a domestic dispute, they received a second 9-1-1 call, nearly two and a half hours later, that reported shootings on the opposite side of campus. According to the Virginia Police Chief Wendell Flinchum, officials have not definitively linked the two shootings. Campus police have identified a person of interest who is not currently in police custody.
Gunman may have made 3 bomb threats to test 'security response' 16 Apr 2007 Authorities were investigating whether the gunman who killed 32 people on the Virginia Tech campus in the deadliest shooting rampage in U.S. history was a Chinese man who arrived in the United States last year on a student visa. The 24-year-old man arrived in San Francisco on United Airlines on Aug. 7 on a visa issued in Shanghai, the source said. Police believe three bomb threats on the campus last week may have been attempts by the man to test the campus' security response, the source said. The exits to the buildings where the shootings occurred were chained by the shooter, the source said.
Eyewitness: '40 or 50 shots' --Massacre at Virginia Tech: 33 Confirmed Dead --Gunman's Body Disfigured; Hard to Identify 16 Apr 2007 A tranquil college campus in Virginia became a killing field Monday morning. At least 33 people are dead in the worst mass shooting in modern American history. Police at Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg, Va., said that the shootings happened at a dormitory and then at a classroom on opposite sides of the university campus. Some students are questioning why administrators did not stop classes after the first shooting, and why it took more than two hours to inform the university community via email about the shootings.
Guards Go on Strike at Nuclear Weapons Plant 17 Apr 2007 More than 500 security guards at the nation's only nuclear weapons assembly plant walked off the job just after midnight yesterday to protest what they said is a steep deterioration in job and retirement security since the government changed fitness standards for weapons-plant guards in response to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The contractor at the plant, BWXT Pantex in Carson County, Tex., replaced the striking guards with a contingency force that it says will secure the plant's weapons, nuclear materials and explosives as long as necessary. The standards require a shift from a defensive guard force to what one agency document describes as "a combat-effective protective force designed to defeat a well-armed and dedicated terrorist adversary."
CIA told of al-Qaeda hijack plot before 9/11 16 Apr 2007 French intelligence services warned their US counterparts, eight months before the attacks of September 11, 2001, that al-Qaeda was planning to hijack a US-bound plane, a media report said today. The information that Osama bin Laden's group, working with Taliban militants and Chechen rebels, had been plotting the move was passed on to Bill Murray, head of the Central Intelligence Agency's Paris bureau, Le Monde daily said.
French warned CIA of Al Qaeda hijacking plot before 9/11, report says 16 Apr 2007 A French intelligence service learned as early as January 2001 that Al Qaeda was working on a plot to hijack U.S. airliners, and it passed the information on to the CIA, a news report said today. France’s Le Monde newspaper said it had obtained 328 pages of classified documents on Osama bin Laden’s terrorism network that the French foreign intelligence service, the DGSE, had drawn up between July 2000 and October 2001.
NYC school investigated after Cuba trip 16 Apr 2007 A spring break trip to Cuba taken by students and a teacher from a New York City public high school has raised concerns about whether the group violated U.S. travel restrictions to the Communist country. "We are investigating," Mayor Michael Bloomberg told reporters Monday.
Bush seeks expansion of wiretaps --Plan allows U.S. to spy on more non-citizens, intercept messages 14 Apr 2007 The Bush regime on Friday asked Congress to make more non-citizens subject to intelligence surveillance and authorize the interception of foreign communications routed through the United States.
Bush volunteers: Tossing dissenters OK 16 Apr 2007 White House officials can exclude dissenters from taxpayer-funded appearances by President [sic] Bush without violating the protesters' rights, according to lawyers [Michael Casper and Jay Bob Klinkerman] for volunteers who helped eject three people from a hall where Bush was to speak.
2007 Pulitzer Prize: Charlie Savage, National Reporting --Stories awarded the Pulitzer Prize 16 Apr 2007 Bush challenges hundreds of laws --President cites powers of his office By Charlie Savage 30 Apr 2006 President [sic] Bush has quietly claimed the authority to disobey more than 750 laws enacted since he took office, asserting that he has the power to set aside any statute passed by Congress when it conflicts with his interpretation of the Constitution.
Rally Calls for D.C. Vote in Congress 17 Apr 2007 The mayor and members of the City Council joined demonstrators as they rallied outside the nation's Capitol on Monday to demand that the district get full representation in the U.S. House.
$2.8M Katrina Verdict Against Allstate 16 Apr 2007 Allstate Insurance Co. must pay a Louisiana man who lost his home to Hurricane Katrina more than $2.8 million in damages and penalties, a federal jury decided Monday in a case that hinged largely on whether it was wind or storm surge that wiped out his house.
Berlin's beloved polar bear cub Knut falls ill 17 Apr 2007 The Berlin zoo on Monday said Knut, the cuddly polar bear cub that has become a media superstar, had fallen ill and was being treated with antibiotics. The four-month-old bear's first public appearance of the day was cut short because he was not feeling well, said the zoo's bear curator Heiner Kloes.
MI5 adopts paedophile-tracking tactics for Muslim extremists 16 Apr 2007 MI5 is adopting tactics used by the police to keep tabs on paedophiles and other sex offenders to monitor the activities of known or suspected Islamic extremists, The Times has learnt. The 'threat' from radicalised young Muslims is growing at such a rate that MI5 has realised that it needs the help of police officers on the streets to help it keep a check on extremists in their areas. The police keep track of known paedophiles by collating sightings of them and noting whom they meet and which areas they frequent — a tactic that MI5 sees as ideal for keeping track of the movements of Islamic extremists. Thousands of police officers on the beat in areas with large Pakistani communities — such as Birmingham, Leeds and London — will be expected to keep a lookout for young Muslims known to have become radicals [!].
Government puts an end to 'War on Terror' 16 Apr 2007 The (UK) Government has stopped using the phrase "War on Terror", Hilary Benn, the International Development Secretary said last night. Mr Benn said in New York that the phrase — coined by the White House after the September 11 attacks — strengthened small groups with differing aims by making them feel part of something "bigger". [Great! Now all we need to do is end Bush's *actual* War OF Terror. --LRP]
Rove, others were warned to save e-mails 14 Apr 2007 Karl Rove and other White House employees were cautioned in employee manuals, memos and briefings to carefully save any e-mails that might discuss official matters even if those messages came from private e-mail accounts, the White House disclosed Friday. Despite these cautions, e-mails from Rove and others discussing official business may have been deleted and are now missing.
Domenici Sought Iglesias Ouster 15 Apr 2007 Former U.S. Attorney David Iglesias was fired after Sen. Pete Domenici, who had been unhappy with Iglesias for some time, made a personal appeal to the White House, the Journal has learned. Domenici had complained about Iglesias before, at one point going to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales before taking his request to the president [sic] as a last resort... In the spring of 2006, Domenici told Gonzales he wanted Iglesias out. Gonzales refused. He told Domenici he would fire Iglesias only on orders from the president.
Ex-Justice Official's Statements Contradict Gonzales on Firings 16 Apr 2007 The former Justice Department official who carried out the firings of eight U.S. attorneys last year told Congress that several of the prosecutors had no performance problems and that a memo on the firings was distributed at a Nov. 27 meeting attended by Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, a Democratic senator [Sen. Charles E. Schumer] said yesterday. The statements to House and Senate investigators by Michael A. Battle, former director of the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, represent another potential challenge to the credibility of Gonzales, who has said that he never saw any documents about the firings and that he had "lost confidence" in the prosecutors because of performance problems.
says memory of firings hazy 15 Apr 2007 Attorney General Alberto
Gonzales, fighting to save his job, said in prepared Senate testimony
Sunday he has "nothing to hide" in the firings of eight federal prosecutors
but claimed a hazy memory about his involvement in them.
Gonzales concedes missteps in attorney firings 15 Apr 2007 Embattled U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales conceded on Sunday he mishandled the dismissals of eight U.S. attorneys last year in one of several controversies swirling around President [sic] George W. Bush.
Specter Hopes for Deal on White House Testimony 15 Apr 2007 Senator Arlen Specter, the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, expressed optimism today that the White House would agree to terms for senior administration officials to meet with lawmakers to discuss the firings of eight United States attorneys, but he said aspects of the dismissals were so troubling that the attorney general should consider reinstating the eight.
Justice Department's Independence 'Shattered,' Says Former DOJ Attorney By Tony Mauro 16 Apr 2007 Since the day he arrived at the Department of Justice in February 2005, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has "shattered" the department's tradition of independence and politicized its operation more than any other attorney general in more than 30 years. So says Daniel Metcalfe, a senior attorney at the department who retired in January, before the current controversy over the firing of U.S. Attorneys erupted.
Cheney Predicts Congress Will Approve Iraq War Funding 15 Apr 2007 Vice President [sic] Cheney predicted today that the Democratic-led Congress would eventually approve funding for the Iraq war with no strings attached, although not until after a veto showdown with President [sic] Bush. "I think the Congress will pass clean legislation," Cheney said during an interview on the CBS program "Face the Nation."
Al-Sadr orders his 6 Cabinet ministers to withdraw from government 15 Apr 2007 Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has ordered his Cabinet ministers to withdraw from the government to protest arrests of Mahdi Army leaders in the ongoing Baghdad security crackdown and the prime minister's failure to back calls for a timetable for U.S. troops to leave the country, two officials in the organization said Sunday.
Attacks Surge as Iraq Militants Overshadow City 16 Apr 2007 They maneuver in squads, like the American infantrymen they try to kill... They operate in bad weather, knowing American helicopters and surveillance drones are grounded. Some carry G.P.S. receivers so mortar teams can calculate the coordinates of American armored vehicles. They kidnap and massacre police officers. The Sunni guerrillas and extremists [resistance fighters] who now overshadow this city demonstrate a sophistication and lethality born of years of confronting American military tactics.
Bombs Kill 34 in Baghdad in Spite of Crackdown 15 Apr 2007 At least 34 people were killed in Baghdad on Sunday in another day punctuated by [US] car bombings and suicide attacks on civilian targets of the kind that the two-month-old American 'security crackdown' has so far been unable to restrain.
U.S. troop deaths up 21 percent in Iraq 14 Apr 2007 Since the Feb. 14 start of the U.S.-led offensive, the sweeps have taken a heavy toll on U.S. forces: Deaths among American soldiers climbed 21 percent in Baghdad compared with the previous two months.
Two British soldiers killed in Iraq as helicopters collide 16 Apr 2007 Two British servicemen were killed and another seriously injured yesterday when the helicopters they were travelling in crashed north of Baghdad during a special forces mission. The two Pumas, helicopters flown by the RAF, collided in mid-air in the early hours of the morning south-west of Taji, 12 miles north of the capital.
Four Hired Guns in an Armored Truck, Bullets Flying, and a Pickup and a Taxi Brought to a Halt. Who Did the Shooting and Why? A Chaotic Day On Baghdad's Airport Road 15 Apr 2007 On the afternoon of July 8, 2006, four private security guards [mercenaries] rolled out of Baghdad's Green Zone in an armored SUV. The team leader, Jacob C. Washbourne, rode in the front passenger seat. "I want to kill somebody today," Washbourne said, according to the three other men in the vehicle... Before the day was over, the guards had been involved in three shooting incidents. In one, Washbourne allegedly fired into the windshield of a taxi for amusement, according to interviews and statements from the three other guards.
Webb Says McCain Is Impugning Patriotism of Iraq Debate Foes 13 Apr 2007 Democratic Senator James Webb accused Republican John McCain of questioning the patriotism of those who disagree with him on Iraq and "hiding behind the troops as political justification" for a misguided policy. "I think that John McCain has been impugning people's patriotism and I really regret that he is doing that," Webb, of Virginia, said on Bloomberg Television's "Political Capital with Al Hunt," scheduled to air today. "I'm very disappointed in him."
No 10 'knew about hostage deal' --Blair and Browne face growing pressure after top officials reveal tip-off to Downing Street 15 Apr 2007 Downing Street was told that the freed British hostages had made interview deals for money and were about to appear on television and in the press, according to senior Whitehall sources. No 10 was tipped off before the interviews appeared but made no attempt to veto them.
BBC journalist held in Gaza 'executed', claims terror group 16 Apr 2007 Concern was growing last night for the fate of Alan Johnston, the BBC's Gaza correspondent kidnapped on March 12, after a 'shadowy Palestinian Islamist group allied with al-Qa'ida' [?!?] claimed to have killed him.
Suicide attack kills 10 police in Afghanistan --More are wounded in city of Kunduz 16 Apr 2007 A suicide attacker ran onto a police training ground and blew himself up, killing up to 10 policemen and wounding dozens more Monday in northern Afghanistan, a security official said.
Labour on the rack over fake broadcast 15 Apr 2007 Labour's troubled Holyrood campaign hit a new low last night after it emerged a party official [, taking a page from the Bush playbook,] had posed as a member of the public in an election broadcast.
Chavez calls 9/11 gift for Bush 15 Apr 2007 Venezuelan President has labeled 9/11 attacks on US as "a gift for Bush," saying it enabled the US government to wage wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Hugo Chavez made the statement during a news conference to mark the fifth anniversary of his return to power two days after a 2002 US-backed coup against his rule, AP reported.
Rising Gas Prices Linked to Terrorism 15 Apr 2007 Tulsans are currently paying about $2.65 for a gallon of gas. Some say these rising prices are linked to [Bush's] terrorism. Since 9/11, the price of an oil barrel has increased by $10 to $12. The director for the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism, Don Hamilton, says if Al-Qaeda [al-CIAduh] gets its way, the price per barrel could go up another $40.
Critics have likened the facility to an "internment camp." U.S. sued over detention of immigrants --7,500 detention beds have been added to six states 10 Apr 2007 The new "catch-and-remove" initiative is under fire at the 500-bed T. Don Hutto Residential Center, a privately [KBR] run government facility that opened last May as part of a plan to triple detention space to 60,000 beds... Already, the family facility in Taylor (TX) for non-Mexican immigrants is at the center of a federal lawsuit by detainees and their attorneys... who allege that until recently, parents and their children were treated worse than prison inmates. Over the past year, 7,500 detention beds have been added in Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, New Mexico and Texas, and the average daily detainee population [!] has risen to about 28,000 from 18,000 last July, John Torres, ICE's director of the Office of Detention and Removal Operations, told Congress. [Wow! KBR is making a *killing* on their internment camps! See: KBR Awarded U.S. Department of Homeland Security Contingency Support for Emergency Support Services 24 Jan 2006 (halliburton.com)]
Perry's database of Texans concerns lawmakers --Names of more than 1 million Texans are housed database, drawn from records of state, local and, soon, federal law enforcement agencies. 14 Apr 2007 If you've had a traffic ticket recently, you likely are in the privately run database of criminals and potential terrorists being kept by Gov. Rick Perry's (R) office. The database has information ranging from intelligence on potential terrorists to standard criminal convictions to drug investigations to speeding tickets and red-light violations.
N.D. bans forced RFID chipping --Governor wants a balance between technology, privacy 12 Apr 2007 As expected, North Dakota has become the second state [after Wisconsin] in the U.S. to ban the forced implanting of radio frequency identification (RFID) chips in people. The two-sentence bill, passed by the state legislature, was signed into law by Gov. John Hoeven (R) last Wednesday.
Bird Flu School Planning Summit Stresses Hands-On Training --The May 21 summit tests resources against the toughest scenarios. Washington, DC (New-Fields) 15 Apr 2007 The second Bird Flu School Planning Summit, which will be launched on May 21 at the Hilton Garden Inn Raritan Center in New Jersey, is meant to engage school administrators, teachers, parents, and students in an intensive, hands-on training on how to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from a possible [DoD-engendered] bird flu pandemic. Organized by New-Fields Exhibitions, the summit aims to encourage all community members to engage in the fight against [sic] bird flu and to prepare for a looming flu pandemic. [Here's where Bush's quarantines, mandatory deadly vaccines and KBR-built detention centers are gonna' come in handy --just before the 2008 'elections.' --LRP]
Are mobile phones wiping out our bees? Scientists claim radiation from handsets are to blame for mysterious 'colony collapse' of bees 15 Apr 2007 It seems like the plot of a particularly far-fetched horror film. But some scientists suggest that our love of the mobile phone could cause massive food shortages, as the world's harvests fail.
E.coli cases on the rise in U.S. 14 Apr 2007 The United States has seen a steady rise in E.coli cases in the past two years, according to a new government report.
Blair and Merkel lean on Bush to join battle against climate change 15 Apr 2007 President [sic] George Bush is coming under unprecedented pressure from Tony Blair and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, to agree to tough new international measures to stop global warming accelerating out of control. The measures are contained in a strongly worded draft communiqué for June's G8 summit in Heiligendamm, Germany - obtained by The Independent on Sunday - which warns that "tackling climate change is an imperative, not a choice".
'Disappearing people is a bad, bad practice.' U.S. Holds 18,000 Prisoners in Iraq --Recent Security Crackdown in Baghdad Nets Another 1,000 15 Apr 2007 In the past month, as a new security crackdown in Baghdad began, U.S. forces arrested another 1,000 Iraqis, bringing to 18,000 the number of prisoners jailed in two U.S.-run [KBR-built] facilities in that country. On Feb. 13, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki issued a martial-law decree supporting the Baghdad security crackdown. The decree gave military commanders authority to conduct warrantless searches and arrests, monitor private communications and restrict public gatherings.
U.S. Marines Broke International Law: Report 14 Apr 2007 A U.S. Marine unit that shot its way out of a suicide attack in eastern Afghanistan last month violated international humanitarian law by using excessive force that left 12 civilians dead, a report released Saturday said. [Yeah, they break international law like every six pico-seconds.]
40 Afghan civilians killed or wounded by US marines 15 Apr 2007 The US military has determined that more than 40 Afghan civilians were killed or wounded by US marines after a suicide bombing in a village near Jalalabad last month, The Washington Post reported Sunday.
Torturing diplomats: Another international law violated by the Bush regime. CIA mock-execution of Iran diplomat 13 Apr 2007 Jalal Sharafi's psychiatrist says the diplomat is constantly reliving the trauma of his torture, including mock executions by his US and Iraqi captors. Doctors treating the second secretary of Iran's embassy in Baghdad Jalal Sharafi say the psychological and physical damage the Iranian diplomat endured are "overwhelming." Reports have emerged that former Iraqi intelligent operatives had been involved in Sharafi's torture under the aegis of CIA.
Bush says Democrats giving victory to our enemies 14 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush on Saturday said that the Democrats in Congress are "giving our enemies the victory they desperately want." "I sent Congress an emergency war spending bill that would provide the vital funds needed for our troops on the front lines," he said in his weekly radio address to the nation. "But instead of approving this funding, Democrats in Congress have spent the past 68 days pushing legislation that would undercut our troops." [The *enemy* is Bush.]
Cheney Berates Democrats on War Policies --Attacked as 'Far-Left Platform' of McGovern Era 14 Apr 2007 Vice President [sic] Cheney accused congressional Democrats today of reviving the "far-left platform" of George McGovern from the 1970s. In a sharp-edged speech, Cheney escalated the Bush administration attack on Congress for passing war spending legislation that would mandate withdrawing at least some U.S. troops from Iraq.
Car bombs in Baghdad kill 10, wound 50 15 Apr 2007 At least 10 people were killed and 50 wounded when two car bombs exploded in quick succession in a mostly Shi'ite neighbourhood in southwestern Baghdad on Sunday, police and hospital sources said.
Bombers kill dozens in Kerbala, Baghdad bridge hit 14 Apr 2007 A suicide car bomber killed at least 40 people and wounded scores at a crowded bus station near a Shi'ite shrine in the Iraqi holy city of Kerbala on Saturday, police and hospital sources said. In Baghdad, police said a [US] suicide car bomber detonated his device near a checkpoint at the southern Jadriyah bridge, killing 10 people and setting fire to cars in the second major attack on a bridge in the capital in the past three days.
37 Killed in Bomb Blast Near Iraq Shrine 14 Apr 2007 A [US] car bomb exploded Saturday near one of Shiite Islam's holiest shrines in Karbala, killing at least 37 people and wounding more than 150. At least 16 children were among the dead in the latest horrific assault away from the American-led security crackdown in Baghdad.
FM strongly condemns Karbala suicide bomb blast 14 Apr 2007 Foreign Ministry Spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini here on Saturday strongly condemned the suicide bomb blast in Karbala which claimed lives of many innocent civilians and pilgrims and wounded dozens on Saturday morning.
Iraq Qaeda says kidnaps 20 soldiers, policemen 14 Apr 2007 A group linked to al Qaeda [US terrorists] said on Saturday it abducted 20 Iraqi troops and policemen and demanded the release of all Sunni women held in Iraq's prisons, according to a Web statement.
Two U.S. helicopters crash in Iraq, 2 soldiers killed 15 Apr 2007 Two U.S. military helicopters crashed north of Baghdad on Sunday, killing two soldiers and injuring five, the U.S. military said. In a statement, the U.S. military said it appeared the incident was caused by a mid-air collision and not an 'insurgent' attack. [Yeah, right! The operative word is 'appeared.' During the next slow news cycle - likely, Friday at 5PM EDT - the lying sacks of sh*t at the Pentagon will issue a statement declaring that the helicopters were in fact shot down in an 'insurgent' attack. --LRP]
Troubled Plane Goes to Iraq --Critics say the V-22 Osprey’s limitations may make it vulnerable to attack. 14 Apr 2007 The Marine Corps said yesterday that the V-22 Osprey, a hybrid aircraft with a troubled past, will be sent to Iraq this September, where it will see combat for the first time.
Former commander backs return of military draft 14 Apr 2007 A former commander of the 1st Infantry Division in Iraq said this week it might be time for the United States to discuss bringing back the military draft. On Monday, retired Maj. Gen. John Batiste told News 10NBC in Rochester, N.Y., that in order to "win the peace" in Iraq, current troop levels there would need to be nearly doubled to 300,000, adding that to make numbers like that possible, a military draft might need to be considered.
General: U.S. Has No Plan to Attack Iran 14 Apr 2007 The American military is capable of attacking Iran but has no plans to do so, a U.S. general said Friday in the latest U.S. rejection of military action. In an interview with The Associated Press, Brig. Gen. Robert H. Holmes, deputy director of operations for the U.S. Central Command, said despite the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. military would be able to simultaneously fight Iran.
Blix: US must halt own nuke program 14 Apr 2007 The head of the UN Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission, Hans Blix, has said that the US should stop proliferating nuclear weapons. At a ceremony in Madrid for the release of his book titled "Weapons of Terror" Blix said that if the US genuinely wants to prevent the proliferation of other nation's nuclear programs, it should present itself as a role model and "completely" halt the development of its nuclear arms.
Hayden says he's plugged media leaks at CIA 13 Apr 2007 CIA Director Michael Hayden is claiming success at stopping media leaks from the spy agency under his predecessor, including revelations of secret prisons for terror suspects.
Lawyers argue Bush can eject protesters --Brief defends pair's ouster from president's talk 13 Apr 2007 Lawyers in Denver are arguing that President [sic] Bush has the right to remove from an audience people who disagree with him. The case involves two people [Leslie Weise and Alex Young] ejected from a taxpayer-funded Bush speech two years ago.
By Alberto R. Gonzales 15 Apr 2007 I am also telling our 93 U.S. attorneys
that I look forward to working with them to pursue the great goals of
our department in the weeks and months to come. During the past two
years, we have made great strides in securing our country from [*for*]
terrorism, protecting our neighborhoods from gangs and drugs, shielding
our children from predators and pedophiles, and protecting the public
trust by prosecuting public corruption. [Shield our children from
predators and pedophiles? They *are* the predators and pedophiles!!
This Gonzales editorial earns a double hurl.]
Researchers explore scrapping Internet 13 Apr 2007 Although it has already taken nearly four decades to get this far in building the Internet, some university researchers with the federal government's blessing [Of course!] want to scrap all that and start over. The idea may seem unthinkable, even absurd, but many believe a "clean slate" approach is the only way to truly address security, mobility and other challenges that have cropped up since the first exchange of meaningless test data between two machines on Sept. 2, 1969. [Yes, 'other challenges' such as the 9/11 Truth Movement and websites such as CLG.]
Australia to ban books advocating terrorism --Publishers say the move raises serious concerns about free speech 15 Apr 2007 The Australian government plans to outlaw books that advocate terrorism in a move that publishers say raises serious concerns about free speech. Federal Attorney-General Philip Ruddock announced late Friday that his state counterparts had agreed to consider legislative changes banning publications that advocate terrorism.
Britain joins chorus of condemnation over Wolfowitz 15 Apr 2007 Paul Wolfowitz's job as president of the World Bank was hanging by a thread this weekend after Hilary Benn, the Secretary of State for International Development, joined a concerted effort by European ministers to shame him into resigning.
Wolfowitz Dictated Girlfriend's Pay Deal 14 Apr 2007 World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz personally dictated the terms under which the bank gave what it called his "domestic partner" substantial pay raises and promotions in exchange for temporarily leaving her job there during his tenure, according to documents released by the bank's executive board yesterday.
Top Wolfowitz Postings Went to Iraq War Backers 13 Apr 2007 Of the top five outside international appointments made by embattled World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz during his nearly two-year tenure, three were senior political appointees of right-wing governments that provided strong backing for U.S. policy in Iraq.
Angry truckers to encircle D.C. with 'blockade' --Protesting administration plan to allow Mexican long-haulers on U.S. roads 14 Apr 2007 American truckers plan to circle the White House and state capitals in a "rolling blockade" to protest a federal government plan to allow Mexican long-haul rigs to operate throughout the U.S. Drivers who participate in "Truck-Out" also are being asked to run their rigs at the minimum speed permitted by law.
2nd Surgery Successful on N.J. Gov. 14 Apr 2007 Surgery on Gov. Jon S. Corzine's injured leg was successful Saturday and he is slowly recovering from the serious injuries he sustained in an SUV crash, doctors said.
Newsweek Hides Global Warming Denier's Financial Ties to Big Oil By Joshua Holland 12 Apr 2007. A recent Newsweek op-ed by global warming denier Richard Lindzen claims the meteorologist has no industry ties, but his bio is as misleading as his writing.
Hives left 'like Mary Celeste' as bees mysteriously vanish 14 Apr 2007 Honey bees are suffering major declines in countries around the world in a mystery which threatens the future of ecosystems which are crucial to farming. Experts say thousands have vanished in Scotland, and there are reports of the mysterious disappearance of entire hives in countries including the United States, Spain, Italy, Poland, Greece, Portugal and France.
Knut the Polar Bear Cub Overshadows the Cub Next Door 13 Apr 2007 Thousands of visitors have been filing past the bear enclosure at Berlin Zoo to see 'Knut' the little polar bear, but only a handful have been venturing around the corner to see his tropical cousin 'Ernst', a Malaysian black bear cub, according to officials at Berlin zoo on Friday. Doctor Ragnar Kuehne, Berlin Zoo Curator, told AP Television that Ernst "lives his existence in a bit of a shadow."
Iraq had intelligence of possible parliament attack-source 13 Apr 2007 Iraqi authorities had intelligence that militants were planning an attack on parliament before a suicide bombing at the building, a senior government source said on Friday. "We had prior intelligence that there would be an attack on the parliament," the source told Reuters, without specifying when or how the information had been received.
Iraq blast rocks the White House 14 Apr 2007 The suicide bombing in the Iraqi Parliament, in which eight people were killed, has shaken the Bush Administration and made it more likely that Democrats in Congress will not back down in their determination to end the war.
'Frankly yesterday was a bad day, a very bad day.' U.S. Won't Secure Iraqi Parliament 13 Apr 2007 The U.S. military will not take over security of the Iraqi parliament building in the wake of the deadly suicide bombing in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone, a top commander [Lt. Gen. Ray Odierno, the No. 2 U.S. commander in Iraq] said Friday.
Inquiry into Iraq parliament bomb 13 Apr 2007 The Iraqi government has ordered an inquiry into a bomb attack inside the parliament building in the heart of Baghdad's heavily-fortified Green Zone. Thursday's blast rocked the Iraqi parliament's cafeteria, killing at least eight people, including two MPs.
3 soldiers killed near Baghdad 13 Apr 2007 Three U.S. soldiers and two Iraqi translators were killed in two attacks south of Baghdad, the military said on Friday. Eight soldiers were wounded.
South Korea Draws Up Iraq Pullout Plan 13 Apr 2007 South Korea, one of the closest U.S. allies in Iraq, is preparing a plan to pull its 1,300 troops out of the country, a Defense Ministry official said Friday.
Clinton suffers virtual defeat in MoveOn vote on Iraq [Well, Bush suffered two *actual* defeats. --LRP] 12 Apr 2007 Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.), the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination, lagged behind her main competitors, as well as some lower-tier candidates, in a straw poll taken after a virtual town hall meeting on Iraq.
U.S. Holds Onto Iranians Seized in Iraq 13 Apr 2007 The Bush regime decided this week that it will hold onto five 'alleged Iranian intelligence agents' [diplomats] for several more weeks, at least, instead of freeing them quickly on the heels of last week's release of 15 Britons who had been seized by Iran, U.S. officials said Friday.
Iran seeks talks with US House speaker Pelosi 13 Apr 2007 A top MP said on Friday the Teheran parliament would favour talks with US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after her 'controversial' [?] visit to Iran’s ally Syria, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.
Canada offers forum for lecturer barred from U.S. --Doctor known for study that estimated Iraq's body count in the U.S.-led war in Iraq at more than half a million can't get visa 11 Apr 2007 A highly regarded Iraqi epidemiologist [Riyadh Lafta] who wants to tell Americans about an alarming rise in cancer levels among Iraqi children will come to Canada instead because he couldn't get a visa to the United States.
38 Taliban, NATO soldier killed in Afghanistan 14 Apr 2007 US and Afghan troops backed by warplanes killed more than 35 Taliban militants during a five-hour battle in a bitterly contested area of southern Afghanistan, the US-led occupation said on Friday.
US airliner 'nearly shot down' --Two Israeli F-15s and two F-16s fighter planes were scrambled to intercept a Boeing 777 11 Apr 2007 Israeli warplanes nearly shot down an American [US Continental Airlines] airliner carrying passengers from New York to Tel Aviv on Wednesday when the pilot failed to respond as the plane approached the Israeli coast, an airport authority official said.
Chavez: Troops to Escort Oil Takeovers 13 Apr 2007 President Hugo Chavez said Thursday that soldiers will accompany government officials when they take over oil projects in the Orinoco River basin next month. [Good!]
Department of Defense will put an internet router in space 13 Apr 2007 A programme to kick-start the use of internet communications in space has been announced by the US government. The Department of Defense's Iris project will put an internet router in space by the start of 2009. The Iris (Internet Router Protocol in Space) project has been given the go ahead after winning funding from the US Department of Defense, under its Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD) programme.
Libby to Appeal Conviction in Leak Case 13 Apr 2007 Former White House aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby said Friday he no longer plans to ask for a new trial in the CIA leak case but still expects to appeal his conviction. Libby, the former chief of staff to Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney, was convicted last month of lying and obstructing an investigation into the 2003 leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity.
Justice Weighed Prosecutors' Politics 14 Apr 2007 The Justice Department weighed political activism and membership in a conservative law group in evaluating the nation's federal prosecutors, documents released in the probe of fired U.S. attorney show. The political credentials were listed on a chart of all 124 U.S. attorneys nominated since 2001.
Gonzales Aide Suggested Replacements for Attorneys 13 Apr 2007 A Justice Department e-mail released today shows that the former chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales proposed replacement candidates for seven United States attorneys nearly a year before those prosecutors were fired, in contrast to testimony last month in which the aide said that no successors were considered before the firings.
Rove in new controversy over e-mails 13 Apr 2007 White House political adviser Karl Rove was embroiled in a new controversy over potentially missing e-mails on Friday, the latest twist in the firings of eight U.S. prosecutors last year. The White House disclosed the Republican National Committee in early 2006 took away Rove's ability to delete e-mails sent and received through a party e-mail account.
Senate Dems warn Gonzales: We want real answers 12 Apr 2007 The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday authorized subpoenas for documents from the White House and the Department of Justice (DoJ) relating to the firing of eight U.S. attorneys last year. Senate Democrats threatened to issue the subpoenas if Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is not forthcoming in his Tuesday testimony before the committee.
Bush Threatens a Veto Over Intel Bill 13 Apr 2007 Dictator Bush is threatening to veto a Senate intelligence bill that's laced with provisions that would force the White House and spy agencies to be more responsive to Congress. Among the provisions in the intelligence bill that the Bush administration rejects: Required reports on interrogation activities [torture] and secret prisons, which the regime says would raise "grave constitutional issues" and jeopardize sensitive information that should not be widely distributed. [The bill is S. 372.]
Feds get an overall 'C' on security; a third of agencies get 'F's --The U.S. government as a whole got a C-minus 12 Apr 2007 The federal government today got an overall grade of C-minus in an annual computer security report card that evaluates the performance of 24 individual agencies covered by the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).
Australia censors terrorism books 13 Apr 2007 The Australian government has announced plans to outlaw material that advocates terrorism - a move designed to tighten its already strict censorship rules. Books and films deemed to glorify terrorism [!?!] will be removed from shelves and barred from entering the country.
11 Brooklyn Prison Officers Accused of Beating Inmates 12 Apr 2007 Eleven federal prison guards have been arrested on charges of beating two inmates at Brooklyn's Metropolitan Detention Center. Investigators said at least one captain and three lieutenants have been charged.
Iacocca bashes Bush in new book 12 Apr 2007 Lee Iacocca, author of the original business management best-seller, is giving President [sic] Bush an "F" in leadership. In a book to be released Tuesday, the former Chrysler CEO -- who supported Bush's first campaign in 2000 but backed Sen. John Kerry four years later -- accused Bush of leading the nation to war "on a pack of lies" and lacking the basic components of good leadership.
Pressure grows on Wolfowitz in promotion scandal 13 Apr 2007 Pressure for World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz to resign grew on Friday as the bank's board wrangled behind the scenes over whether his approval of a high-paying promotion for his girlfriend bent rules.
Bank Staff Asks Wolfowitz to Resign 12 Apr 2007 World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz acknowledged Thursday that he erred in helping a close female friend get transferred to a high-paying job, and said he was sorry. His apology didn't ease concerns among the bank's staff association, which wants him to resign.
Maggots beget maggots: Tons of Food Spoiled As FEMA Ran Out of Storage Space 13 Apr 2007 As many as 6 million prepared meals stockpiled near potential victims of the 2006 hurricane season spoiled in the Gulf Coast heat last summer when the Federal Emergency Management Agency ran short of warehouse and refrigeration space, according to agency officials.
75,000 Voter Registration Cards Found in Trash Bin in Atlanta 12 Apr 2007 The Georgia Secretary of State's office [Karen Handel, R] has begun an investigation into who threw more than 75,000 Fulton County voter registration cards into a trash bin. The cards contained a voter's full name, address and Social Security number. The office says a random sampling showed many of the cards were for active voters.
Ohio County Voting Head Steps Down 12 Apr 2007 The Republican chairman of the embattled Cuyahoga County elections board [Ohio Republican Party leader Robert Bennett] resigned Wednesday, days before he was to face a removal hearing.
New Jersey's Corzine Remains on Ventilator, Sedated 13 Apr 2007 New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine remains on a ventilator and heavily sedated a day after he was critically injured in a car wreck while heading to a meeting between fired broadcaster Don Imus and the Rutgers University women's basketball team, doctors said. Corzine "significantly improved" during the night, and he may get off the ventilator in the next few days, Dr. Steven Ross, trauma director at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, said today at a press briefing.
House E-Mail "Lost" in Private Accounts --Messages
May Have Included Discussions About Firing of Eight Prosecutors
12 Apr 2007 The White House acknowledged yesterday that e-mails dealing
with official government business may
have been lost [!?!] because they were improperly
sent through private accounts intended to be used for political activities.
Administration officials said they could offer no estimate of how
many e-mails were lost but indicated that some may involve messages
from White House senior adviser Karl Rove, whose role in the firings
has been under scrutiny by congressional Democrats.
Leahy says Bush aides lied about e-mails 12 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush's aides are lying about White House e-mails sent on a Republican account that might have been lost, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said Thursday, vowing to subpoena those documents if the administration fails to cough them up. "They say they have not been preserved. I don't believe that!" Leahy shouted from the Senate floor. "You can't erase e-mails, not today. They've gone through too many servers," said Leahy, D-Vt. "Those e-mails are there, they just don't want to produce them. We'll subpoena them if necessary."
Shocking New Disclosure - White House Lost over FIVE MILLION EMAILS in Two Year Period (CREW) 12 Apr 2007 Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) today has released a report, WITHOUT A TRACE: The Missing White House Emails and the Violations of the Presidential Records Act, detailing the legal issues behind the story of the White House e-mail scandal. In a startling new revelation, CREW has also learned through two confidential sources that the Executive Office of the President (EOP) has lost over five million emails generated between March 2003 and October 2005.
Senate panel seeks missing White House records 12 Apr 2007 A U.S. congressional panel investigating the firing of eight federal prosecutors authorized subpoenas on Thursday for e-mails the White House has declared may be missing. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) challenged the White House assertion, saying, "I don't believe that." Leahy said the matter was reminiscent of the old line, "the dog ate my homework," and "the famous 18-minute gap" in the Nixon White House tapes during the Watergate scandal three decades ago.
Spy Chief Wants Surveillance Without Court Approval 11 Apr 2007 Officials told the AP that National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell's plan would give the NSA the power to monitor foreigners without seeking court approval, even if the surveillance is conducted by tapping phones and e-mail accounts in the United States. The plan also would triple the life span of a FISA warrant targeting a non-U.S. citizen from 120 days to one year, allowing the government to monitor much longer without checking back with a judge.
'This may be the first time in history people are afraid to be admitted to a hospital because they're afraid of being killed.' Iraq 2007: Hell on Earth where not even the hospitals are safe 12 Apr 2007 'Insurgents' fire mortars at the security forces and Shia militia roam the corridors looking for Sunni victims; power failures and roadblocks frequently cut it off from the outside world... The Iraqi Medical Association estimates as many as 12,000 of the 34,000 doctors registered before the US-led invasion in March 2003 have left the country in the past three years. The IMA says [US] assailants have murdered at least another 2,000 Iraqi physicians, and kidnapped roughly 250 others during that period.
Iraq Parliament Bomber Kills Eight, Including Lawmakers 12 Apr 2007 A suicide bomber killed eight people in Iraq's Parliament building, including at least two lawmakers, after penetrating the security of Baghdad's fortified Green Zone. The bomber exploded a device in a cafeteria where members of the 275-member Council of Representatives were eating lunch, state television said.
Iraq Green Zone bomber strikes 13 Apr 2007 A suicide bomber blew himself up in the Iraqi parliament canteen in Baghdad's Green Zone yesterday, killing three people in a major breach of security at the country's most heavily guarded site. The bombing, which killed at least two MPs and wounded about 20 people including MPs, occurred despite a massive US-Iraqi security crackdown launched in the capital two months ago...
Suicide bomber 'was MP's bodyguard' 12 Apr 2007 A suspected suicide bomber blew himself up in the Iraqi parliament cafeteria, killing at least eight people including three politicians, the American military said. Security officials at parliament, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to release the information, said they believed the suicide bomber was a bodyguard of a Sunni member of parliament who was not among the dead.
Parliament attack work of terrorists countering US plan: Rice 12 Apr 2007 A deadly suicide bombing inside Iraq's parliament complex Thursday was the work of "terrorists" trying to counter the new US security effort in Baghdad, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said. [No, it was likely the work of Blackwater USA, to justify their existence in Iraq.]
Truck Bomber Kills 10 In Baghdad Bridge Blast 12 Apr 2007 A suicide bomber blew up a truck on a major bridge across the Tigris River in Baghdad on Thursday, killing 10 people and sending cars plunging from the wrecked structure into the waters below.
Biden Says Bush's Iraq Policy Doomed 11 Apr 2007 Delaware Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D) said today that the Bush Administration's surge strategy in Iraq is doomed to fail and criticized Army General David Petraeus for offering what he called an overly optimistic assessment of the situation on the ground.
Army Troops Must Serve Extended Tours of Duty --Move Is Needed for Iraq Troop Increase 12 Apr 2007 Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced yesterday that all active-duty soldiers currently deployed or going to Iraq and Afghanistan will see their one-year tours extended to 15 months, acknowledging that such a strain on the war-weary Army is necessary should the ongoing troop increase be prolonged well into next year.
The Army's looking for a few good online gamers 12 Apr 2007 The U.S. Army is about to invade the online gaming community with an estimated $2 million sponsorship deal with the Global Gaming League website. Starting in June, the Army will sponsor a "national gaming" area as a way to tap into the site's 9.2 million players per month of everything from shooter games to pro baseball. It hopes to find candidates for recruitment [for Halliburton, KBR, Monsanto and Blackwater USA] among the 17- to 24-year-old males who are 80% of the gamers on the site.
No 10 in denial over Iran story row 12 Apr 2007 Downing Street has sought to distance itself further from the cash-for-stories controversy, denying it had "anything to do" with the decision to allow personnel to profit from their Iran ordeal. Number 10 also issued a flat denial that it had been involved in negotiations with media outlets interested in buying the accounts.
Browne takes blame for allowing captive sailors to sell stories 12 Apr 2007 After days of criticism from all sides, the Government was in full retreat last night over the decision to allow the sailors freed from Iran to sell their stories to the British media.
Tell us another one, Mr. Vice President --Dick Cheney is still trying to link Iraq with Al Qaeda and 9/11. By Carl Levin 12 Apr 2007 On Rush Limbaugh's radio program last week, Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney spoke about Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab Zarqawi and stated: "He went to Baghdad. He took up residence there before we ever launched into Iraq, organized the Al Qaeda operations inside Iraq…. This is Al Qaeda operating in Iraq and, as I say, they were present before we invaded Iraq." It is incredible that more than four years after the invasion, the vice president is still trying to convince the public that Saddam Hussein's regime was connected to Al Qaeda and that Zarqawi's presence in Iraq was evidence of a connection.
Two Canadian soldiers killed in Afghan blast 11 Apr 2007 Two Canadian soldiers were killed and two wounded in Afghanistan on Wednesday when a roadside bomb exploded near their vehicle, the Defense Ministry said. Canada has lost 53 soldiers since troops were sent to Afghanistan in 2002 as part of the U.S.-led war on [of] terrorism.
Swedish Teen: U.S. Troops Led Operation 12 Apr 2007 A Swedish teenager who was imprisoned for weeks with alleged terror suspects in Ethiopia said in an interview published Thursday that Americans in military uniform directed the Kenyan soldiers who took her into custody on the Somali-Kenyan border. The statements by 17-year-old Safia Benaouda were the first to describe a broader U.S. role in the detentions.
Prisoner Denies Knowing of Anti-US Plots 12 Apr 2007 A man [Ali Abd al-Aziz] U.S. authorities accuse of helping arrange financing for at least one of the Sept. 11 hijackers says he is an ordinary businessman who has family ties to alleged terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed but is not part of 'al-Qaida' or other terrorist groups. The Defense Department on Thursday released a transcript of the administrative hearing at the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, which was closed to the public and the press.
Ohio Man Indicted On Terrorism Charges 12 Apr 2007 A U.S. citizen [Christopher Paul]appeared Thursday in federal court on charges of joining al Qaeda [al-CIAduh] and conspiring to bomb European tourist resorts and U.S. government facilities and military bases overseas.
Dems Chide Bush Over Port Security Cards 12 Apr 2007 Senate Democrats accused the Bush administration on Thursday of bungling a much-needed port security program that has cost tens of millions of dollars and still isn't up and running.
US slammed for delaying Sudan sacntions over Darfur 11 Apr 2007 The Bush administration came under intense fire in Congress Wednesday after a senior official revealed the president had again delayed imposing sanctions against Sudan over its handling of the conflict in Darfur.
World Bank Chief Apologizes for Arranging Job 12 Apr 2007 Paul D. Wolfowitz, the president of the World Bank, apologized today for his role in arranging a highly paid job at the State Department for a woman with whom he has a personal relationship.
World Bank Official Wolfowitz Gets Girlfriend Double Pay (Judicial Watch) 12 Apr 2007 A high-ranking official in three different Republican administrations who currently presides over the World Bank, has admitted using his authority to get his girlfriend promotions and hefty pay rises at the institution he heads. Paul Wolfowitz, the country’s Deputy Defense Secretary until 2005, personally directed the World Bank’s head of human resources to offer his girlfriend, Shaha Riza, a huge pay increase and promotion that drew attention because it was more than double allowed under staff rules.
NYC Comptroller Wants Wal-Mart Spy Probe 11 Apr 2007 New York City's comptroller has asked the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Justice Department to investigate whether Wal-Mart Stores Inc. illegally spied on some of its shareholders.
A Dream Short-Circuited By Harold Meyerson 11 Apr 2007 On March 28, Circuit City announced that it was laying off 3,400 of its salesclerks. Not because they had poor performance records, mind you: Their performance was utterly beside the point... Their positions were not eliminated. Rather, the store announced that it would hire their replacements at the normal starting salary... It was, in short, just a normal day in contemporary American capitalism.
Governor hospitalized after auto accident; to undergo surgery (8:15 p.m. update) 12 Apr 2007 Gov. Jon Corzine (D-NJ) was injured in an auto accident on the Garden State Parkway late this afternoon and was taken by Medevac helicopter to a hospital in Camden, his spokesman said. Senate President Richard Codey said the governor suffered a broken femur, or thigh bone, and cuts to his head, and would undergo surgery.
CBS Fires Don Imus Over Racial Slur 12 Apr 2007 CBS announced Thursday its decision to cease broadcasting the Imus in the Morning radio program, effective immediately, on a permanent basis. Imus initially was suspended for two weeks for calling the Rutgers women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos" on the air last week, but outrage continued to grow and advertisers bolted from his programs.
Halliburton winds up Iran work 09 Apr 2007 US oil services giant Halliburton said Monday it had wrapped up its work commitments in Iran and was no longer conducting any projects in the Islamic republic. Halliburton carried out between 30 and 40 million dollars worth of oilfield service work in Iran, according to the firm.
U.S. launches fresh accusations at Iran over Iraq 11 Apr 2007 The U.S. military in Iraq displayed more weapons it said were made in Iran [!?!] and alleged on Wednesday militants were being taught in the Islamic Republic how to use roadside bombs. [Yup, Halliburton's done, so let the accusations fly! BTW, are those the same weapons from the last batch the US put on display --the ones with the British markings on them?]
Iranian envoy wounds 'confirmed' 11 Apr 2007 The head of the International Red Cross in Tehran says he saw wounds on an Iranian diplomat who has alleged that US forces in Iraq tortured him. Peter Stoeker said there were marks on Jalal Sharafi's feet, legs, back and nose but he was unable to say if they were the result of torture. Iranian media quoted Mr Sharafi saying the CIA tortured him "day and night".
Iranians broadcast hospital images of diplomat who alleges CIA torture 11 Apr 2007 Iranian state [as opposed to corporate] television showed hospital images Wednesday of the Iranian diplomat who has accused the CIA of torturing him during his detention in Iraq... Earlier in the week, Jalal Sharafi's doctors reported that holes had been drilled into his foot, but the TV images were not clear enough to indicate whether the small, red marks on his foot were indeed holes [?!?]. Doctors also reported earlier that he had suffered a broken nose, serious injuries to his back, bleeding in his digestive system, and damage to his ears. [Iran's captives get suits; US captives get torture. --LRP]
Iranian diplomat claims he was tortured by CIA in Iraq 11 Apr 2007 An Iranian diplomat who was kidnapped in Iraq earlier this year more than two months has claimed he was tortured by the CIA during his captivity. Jalal Sharafi was released last week, more than two months after being abducted by gunmen wearing Iraqi commando uniforms.
'People wanted help to collect bodies lining streets every morning.' Iraqis face 'immense' suffering 11 Apr 2007 The International Committee of the Red Cross says the situation for ordinary Iraqis is getting steadily worse. Four years after the [illegal] US-led invasion, the ICRC says the conflict is inflicting immense suffering, and calls for greater protection of civilians. An Iraqi woman quoted in the report said people wanted help to collect bodies lining streets every morning. The ICRC still has a presence in Iraq despite the [US] bombing of its Baghdad offices three and a half years ago.
Red Cross warns of 'ever-worsening' crisis for Iraqi civilians 11 Apr 2007 The Iraqi people face an "ever-worsening crisis," the International Committee of the Red Cross said Wednesday in a report highlighting the growing suffering of civilians four years after the US-led invasion. US President [sic] George W. Bush's "surge" strategy of sending thousands more troops to Baghdad to boost security has yet to yield any noticetable improvement for civilians, said the ICRC's director of operations, Pierre Kraehenbuehl.
Probe: Marines used excessive force 11 Apr 2007 A U.S. military commander has determined that Marines accused of killing civilians after a suicide bombing in Afghanistan last month used excessive force, and he has referred the case for possible criminal inquiry, The Associated Press has learned.
Blair accused of fuelling terrorism and undermining war on poverty 11 Apr 2007 Tony Blair is accused today of fuelling terrorism and undermining the campaign against world poverty with a series of foreign policy errors. A report by the Oxford Research Group (ORG), a think-tank, warned that the "war on [of] terror" had made the world more dangerous. A separate study by Oxfam warned that Britain's ability to prevent human rights abuses had been undermined by the invasion of Iraq and a series of other foreign policy mistakes.
'The very fundamental issue is, they don't know where the hell they're going.' Bush Seeks Overseer For Iraq, Afghanistan --3 Generals Spurn the Position of War 'Czar' 11 Apr 2007 The White House wants to appoint a high-powered czar to oversee the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with authority to issue directions to the Pentagon, the State Department and other agencies, but it has had trouble finding anyone able and willing to take the job, according to people close to the situation. At least three retired four-star generals approached by the White House in recent weeks have declined to be considered for the position, the sources said.
America extends troops' tour of duty 12 Apr 2007 The US is to extend the tour of duty for its troops in Afghanistan and Iraq from 12 to 15 months with immediate effect, to boost its capabilities in two wars which have stretched the American military close to breaking point.
Military spending to retain troops skyrockets --Bonuses [Bribes] for soldiers, Marines top $1 billion; tally keeps growing 11 Apr 2007 The struggle to entice Army soldiers and Marines to stay in the military, after four years of war in Iraq, has ballooned into a $1 billion campaign, with bonuses soaring nearly sixfold since 2003.
Two US soldiers killed in Baghdad 11 Apr 2007 Two more US soldiers have been killed in Baghdad, the US military reported Wednesday, taking its losses to 34 this month alone.
Money, Neglect Cited in Walter Reed Ills 12 Apr 2007 Money woes [privatization by the Bush regime] and Pentagon neglect are to blame for shoddy outpatient conditions and bureaucratic delays at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, an independent review has concluded.
U.S. military develops Robocop armour for soldiers 10 Apr 2007 We may have seen it all before in science-fiction films. But the bionic warrior is in fact a vision of real-life warfare in the 21st century. U.S. defence chiefs hope to have their troops kitted out in the outlandish combat gear as soon as 2020.
480 US nuclear warheads in Europe 10 Apr 2007 A documentary aired on Italian TV channel, RAI 24, has claimed that the U.S. military is keeping 480 nuclear warheads [WMDs] across Europe, 90 in Italy. Fifty of the warheads are being kept at Aviano Air Base, north-east of Italy and forty others at a military facility near Brescia. The documentary warns of possible nuclear strikes against countries in the Middle East.
Guantanamo detainees plead for US Supreme Court help 10 Apr 2007 Two inmates [Yemeni Salim Ahmed Hamdan and Canadian Omar Khadr] at the US detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, who are about to face military trial urged the Supreme Court on Tuesday to rule on their legal rights before proceedings begin. Last week, the US high court ruled that dozens of Guantanamo Bay inmates had no right to challenge their detention in federal court and that they had not exhausted all other legal options.
Virginia Senator Webb Urges Closure of Guantanamo Bay 10 Apr 2007 The United States should begin phasing out its detention center at Guantanamo Bay, where terrorist suspects are being held, freshman U.S. Sen. Jim Webb told a group of University of Virginia politics students Monday.
Hicks a better neighbour than PM - dad 11 Apr 2007 David Hicks would be a better neighbour than Prime Minister John Howard, says the "confessed" al-Qaeda-trained "terrorist's" father.
Victims Protest Cuban Militant's Release 11 Apr 2007 Tearful relatives of Cubans killed in a 1976 airline bombing blamed on 'anti-communist militant' [terrorist] Luis Posada Carriles denounced on Wednesday a U.S. court ruling allowing the jailed former U.S. operative to be released from prison on bond.
Castro: U.S. About to Release 'Monster' 11 Apr 2007 Fidel Castro denounced a U.S. court ruling allowing a jailed Cuban militant [terrorist] who was once a U.S. operative to post bond, accusing the American government of planning to free a "monster."
Reichwing calls convicted terrorist 'anti-Cuban man,' 'activist' Cuba angry as anti-Castro man freed 11 Apr 2007 Fidel Castro has used his third written article in less than two weeks to condemn the release from prison in the US of an activist [terrorist] suspected of the deadly bombing of a Cuban jet. The ailing Cuban leader said the decision by a Texas judge to let Luis Posada Carriles walk free last week was done with the knowledge of George Bush, the US president [sic]. "It was President Bush himself who ignored at all times the criminal and terrorist side of the accused," Castro wrote in an official communique published on Tuesday. Posada was initially jailed for the crime in Venezuela but subsequently escaped and later became involved with CIA operations [such as blowing up airliners] in Central America.
McConnell Seeks to Boost U.S. Spy Powers 11 Apr 2007 President [sic] Bush's spy chief is pushing to expand the government's surveillance authority at the same time the regime is under attack for stretching its domestic eavesdropping powers.
ACLU Demands Update on Status of NSA Surveillance Program As Re-Authorization Deadline Passes (ACLU) 11 Apr 2007 Following a crucial deadline for the National Security Agency’s domestic surveillance program, the American Civil Liberties Union today called on the administration to explain the status of the operation and urged Congress to fully investigate violations of the law.
Panel Said to Alter Finding on Voter Fraud 11 Apr 2007 A federal panel responsible for conducting election research played down the findings of experts who concluded last year that there was little voter fraud around the nation, according to a review of the original report obtained by The New York Times. Instead, the panel, the Election Assistance Commission, issued a report that said the pervasiveness of fraud was open to debate. The revised version echoes complaints made by Republican politicians, who have long suggested that voter fraud is widespread and justifies the voter identification laws that have been passed in at least two dozen states.
MSNBC drops simulcast of Don Imus show --Network apologizes to Rutgers women's basketball team for racial remarks 11 Apr 2007 MSNBC said Wednesday it will drop its simulcast of the "Imus in the Morning" radio program, responding to growing outrage over the radio host’s racial slur against the Rutgers women’s basketball team.
Dropped in Duke Lacrosse Case 11 Apr 2007 North Carolina Attorney
General Roy Cooper announced that all charges were dropped today at
a press conference. After the three former Duke lacrosse players were
exonerated of all charges today, the lawyer for Durham District Attorney
Mike Nifong, who first moved to prosecute, talked to ABC News. "He
pushed the case as long as he did because at that point he believed
in this case," David Freedman said, referring to Nifong.
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