October 2005 Archives, Page Two
CLG has been informed that Christopher Wolf, counsel for Ambassador and Mrs. Joseph Wilson, will be making a statement on behalf of Ambassador Wilson at 3 PM in front of the U.S. Courthouse, 333 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Office of Special Counsel Media Advisory 28 Oct 2005 "U.S. Department of Justice Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald will hold a press conference at 2:00 P.M. EDT today, Friday October 28, 2005, regarding the status of the Special Counsel's criminal investigations."
Cheney Aide Likely to Be Indicted Today; Rove Under Scrutiny 28 Oct 2005 Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby, is expected to be indicted today for making false statements to the grand jury in the C.I.A. leak case, lawyers in the case said Thursday.
Source: Rove Won't Be Indicted Today 28 Oct 2005 Karl Rove escaped indictment in the CIA leak case Friday but remained under investigation as the embattled White House braced for charges against Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney's top adviser.
White House Fears Indictment for Libby 28 Oct 2005 Working against the clock, Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald weighed criminal charges against top presidential aides at the end of a two-year investigation that put the White House in a state of high suspense Thursday night.
Aide to Cheney Appears Likely to Be Indicted in C.I.A. Leak Case 28 Oct 2005 Associates of I. Lewis Libby Jr., Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney's chief of staff, expected an indictment on Friday charging him with making false statements to the grand jury in the C.I.A. leak inquiry, lawyers in the case said Thursday. Karl Rove, President [sic] Bush's senior adviser and deputy chief of staff, will not be charged on Friday, but will remain under investigation, people briefed officially about the case said. As a result, they said, the special counsel in the case, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, was likely to extend the term of the federal grand jury beyond its scheduled expiration on Friday.
CIA leak prosecutor prepares for Friday decision 27 Oct 2005 With the fate of at least two top White House advisers hanging in the balance, special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald conferred in secret with his legal team and lawyers before an expected final decision on Friday on charges over the leaking of a covert CIA operative's identity.
Cheney, Libby Blocked Papers to Senate Intelligence Panel 27 Oct 2005 Vice President [sic] Cheney and his chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, overruling advice from some White House political staffers and lawyers, decided to withhold crucial documents from the Senate Intelligence Committee in 2004 when the panel was investigating the use of pre-war intelligence that erroneously concluded Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, according to Bush administration and congressional sources.
US troops in Iraq hit record number 27 Oct 2005 The United States has increased its forces in Iraq to the highest total of the war at 161,000 troops, and the Pentagon said on Thursday it expected a similar number in place for the December 'elections.'
Kerry Calls for Pulling 20,000 Troops 27 Oct 2005 Sen. John Kerry says pResident Bush should bring home 20,000 troops from Iraq over the Christmas holidays if the December parliamentary 'elections' there are successful. [Which they won't be, because Halliburton will keep right on blowing up that which they have perpetual no-bid contracts to rebuild.]
Three Soldiers Killed In Iraq 27 Oct 2005 Sunni Arab militants killed 14 Shiite militiamen and a policeman Thursday in a clash southeast of Baghdad — another sign of rising tensions among Iraq's rival ethnic and religious communities. The U.S. military reported three more American soldiers died in combat.
Undercover raid kills twenty-seven in Iraq 27 Oct 2005 At least 27 people, most of them police, were killed in clashes with civilians in Nahrawan township, 30 kilometres south of Baghdad, Thursday, said Iraqi army sources.
Mother of slain US soldier arrested in Iraq war protest 27 Oct 2005 US police arrested Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a US soldier killed in Iraq who has become a prominent war opponent, along with two dozen people for demonstrating without authorization in front of the White House.
US Coalition Complicity in 0.4 Million Drug Deaths By Gideon Polya 26 Oct 2005 "Since 2001, there have been about 0.4 million global drug deaths linked to US Coalition re-establishment of globally-dominant Afghan opium production (destroyed by the Taliban in 2000-2001 but 76% and 86% of global production in 2002 and 2004, respectively, after US Coalition invasion and conquest)."
Feds Investigate DC Jail Abuse Allegations 25 Oct 2005 If they're true the stories are horrible even if the victims are behind bars. Inmates are claiming they're being tortured inside the DC Jail and now the US Attorney's office is investigating. Women from "MUST" - Mothers United To Stop Torture And Abuse - testified before the city council Monday, charging that what goes on behind the DC jail's walls is not unlike the abuses in Abu Ghraib; the physical and emotional torment of prisoners.
FBI Dealt Setback on Cellular Surveillance 28 Oct 2005 The FBI may not track the locations of cell phone users without showing evidence that a crime occurred or is in progress, two federal judges ruled, saying that to do so would violate long-established privacy protections.
University presidents file lawsuit against FCC 25 Oct 2005 An alliance of university presidents filed a lawsuit Monday challenging a federal ruling that would force universities to re-engineer their networks by June 2007 to make wiretapping easier. The Federal Communications Commission ruled that universities must renovate their broadband networks to allow law enforcement officials easier access for surveillance. The American Council on Education said that the upgrades are expensive and unnecessary because a procedure already exists to install wiretaps.
School snoops (San Francisco Chronicle) 27 Oct 2005 "U.S. universities are reeling from the looming $7 billion cost of providing federal law enforcement with instant investigative access to the computer networks honeycombing every up-to-date campus... The Federal Communications Commission has ordered this costly revamping of campus computer facilities as a technological updating of a 1994 wiretap law (the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act). The freshly updated rule, however, is a spectacular example of the 'unfunded mandate' -- a government requirement for which the government does not pay."
N.J. Students Ordered to Take Down Blogs 27 Oct 2005 Roman Catholic high school has ordered its students to remove personal blogs from the Internet in the name of protecting them from cyberpredators [?!?]. Students at Pope John XXIII Regional High School in Sparta appear to be heeding a directive from the principal, the Rev. Kieran McHugh, to remove personal postings about the school or themselves from Web sites like myspace.com or xanga.com, even if they were posted from the students' home computers.
Bush's Supreme Court nominee Miers withdraws 27 Oct 2005 Dictator George W. Bush's nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, White House counsel Harriet Miers, abruptly withdrew from consideration on Thursday after mounting criticism from the right and the left about her credentials for the lifetime job.
Noe indicted in Bush money-laundering case 27 Oct 2005 A federal grand jury has indicted Tom Noe, the former Maumee coin dealer suspected of laundering money into Dictator Bush’s re-selection campaign, Mr. Noe’s attorney told The Blade today.
Shipwrecked --Bush has so thoroughly destroyed the Republican establishment that no one, not even his dad, can rescue him now. By Sidney Blumenthal "There is no one left to rescue the Republican Party from George W. Bush. He is home alone. The Republican-establishment wise men whose words were once quiet commands are shouting unheeded warnings. The Republican leaders of Congress are distracted and obsessed with their own crises of corruption."
Court Blocks Ga. Photo ID Requirement 27 Oct 2005 A federal appeals court refused Thursday to let Georgia demand photo identification from all voters at the polls. Last week, a federal judge barred the state from enforcing the new photo-ID law during local elections next month, saying it amounted to an unconstitutional poll tax that could prevent poor people, blacks and the elderly from the voting.
Cities Reserve Bus Seats to Honor Parks 27 Oct 2005 In the city where she died and the city where she sparked the civil rights movement, the front of the bus is reserved for Rosa Parks. Detroit and Montgomery, Ala., are reserving the first seats of their buses as a tribute to Parks' legacy until her funeral next week.
Senate OKs $8 bln for Rumsfeld's vaccine company to 'fight' avian flu 27 Oct 2005 The U.S. Senate, increasingly concerned with the possibility of a deadly influenza pandemic, on Thursday approved nearly $8 billion to help the government stockpile vaccines and other drugs to fight [foment] the disease.
Tamiflu Gilead Chair Was ... Rummy (FreeMarketNews.com) 21 Oct 2005 "...Donald Rumsfeld, until he resigned and joined the Bush Administration, was the chairman of something called Gilead which just happened to make something called Tamiflu. Now anyone who hasn't been on Mars for the last month or two, knows that there were only two things that were going to stop the human version of bird flu. One was a bird flu vaccine (which probably would work better if you were a bird) and the other was something called Tamiflu."
Borders would close to stop bird flu: Abbott 28 Oct 2005 Health Minister Tony Abbott says Australia would be prepared to close its borders if bird flu caused a global pandemic.
Exxon Mobil Quarterly Profit Skyrockets to Nearly $10 Billion 27 Oct 2005 Soaring energy prices sent profits and revenues gushing at Exxon Mobil Corp., which today reported record high quarterly earnings of nearly $10 billion on revenues of more than $100 billion. During the third quarter, Exxon Mobil said its third quarter profits jumped nearly 75% from year-ago results to $9.92 billion for the Irving, Texas-based company.
Exxon Mobil, Shell Post Record Profits 27 Oct 2005 High prices for oil and natural gas propelled Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell PLC to their best quarterly results ever on Thursday, with Exxon becoming the first U.S. company ever to ring up quarterly sales of $100 billion. To put Exxon's performance into perspective, its third quarter revenue was greater than the annual gross domestic product of some of the largest oil producing nations, including the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.
ConocoPhillips Profit Rises 89% to Record $3.8 Bln 26 Oct 2005 ConocoPhillips, the No. 3 U.S. oil company, said third-quarter profit jumped 89 percent to a record $3.8 billion... Net income rose to $2.68 a share from $2.01 billion, or $1.43 a share, a year earlier, the Houston-based company said today in a statement. [Where are the Iraqi 'insurgents,' when you need them?]
House Panel Approves Medicaid Cuts 28 Oct 2005 A key House committee late Thursday approved a proposal to curb Medicaid spending by about $9.5 billion by the end of the decade, advancing a plan to slow spending on the federal government's health care program for the poor and disabled. [Just use Exxon Mobil's quarterly profit to cover it.]
La. AG Subpoenas 73 in Hospital Deaths 27 Oct 2005 The Louisiana attorney general's office subpoenaed 73 employees of Memorial Hospital on Wednesday as part of its investigation of deaths at hospitals and nursing homes in the New Orleans area during and after Hurricane Katrina.
Tropical Storm Beta Forms in Caribbean Sea 27 Oct 2005 Tropical Storm Beta formed Thursday in the southwestern Caribbean Sea, extending this year's record of named storms in the Atlantic hurricane season. Beta is the season's 23rd tropical storm, the most since record keeping began in 1851.
Record heat raises climate fears 28 Oct 2005 Just four days before Hallowe'en, Britain was enjoying the warmest 27 October since records began in 1880... The 10 hottest years on record - and these are based on average global temperature - have occurred in the past 14 years. The previous four years have all been hotter than any other year except for 1998.
Vice President for Torture (The Washington Post) 26 Oct 2005 "Vice President [sic] Cheney is aggressively pursuing an initiative that may be unprecedented for an elected official of the executive branch: He is proposing that Congress legally authorize human rights abuses by Americans... In other words, this vice president has become an open advocate of torture... The CIA is holding an unknown number of prisoners in secret detention centers abroad. In violation of the Geneva Conventions, it has refused to register those detainees with the International Red Cross or to allow visits by its inspectors. Its prisoners have 'disappeared,' like the victims of some dictatorships."
The ties that bind Cheney, Halliburton 27 Oct 2005 Last year Halliburton more than doubled its defense contracts from $3.9 billion to $8 billion... In December 2001, Vice pResident Dick Cheney oversaw the awarding by the U.S. Department of Defense of a contract referred to as LOGCAPIII. The successful company: Halliburton. A little more than a year later, in March 2003, the United States, in a virtual-joint venture with Halliburton, invaded Iraq.
Grand Jury Hears Summary of Case On CIA Leak Probe 27 Oct 2005 The prosecutor in the CIA leak investigation presented a summary of his case to a federal grand jury yesterday and is expected to announce a final decision on charges in the two-year-long probe tomorrow, according to people familiar with the case. Even as Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald wrapped up his case, the legal team of White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove has been engaged in a furious effort to convince the prosecutor that Rove did not commit perjury during the course of the investigation, according to people close to the aide.
Poll: Few doubt wrongdoing in CIA leak 26 Oct 2005 Only one in 10 Americans said they believe Bush administration officials did nothing illegal or unethical in connection with the leaking of a CIA operative's identity, according to a national poll released Tuesday.
New York Times Reporter Miller Is in Talks Over Her Job Status 26 Oct 2005 New York Times reporter Judith Miller has begun discussing her future employment options with the newspaper, including the possibility of a severance package, a lawyer familiar with the matter, said yesterday.
Fabricated Links? A CIA report casts new doubt on links between Iraq and Al Qaeda. By Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball 26 Oct 2005 "A secret draft CIA report raises new questions about a principal argument used by the Bush administration to justify the war in Iraq: the claim that Saddam Hussein was 'harboring' notorious terror leader Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi prior to the American invasion... An updated CIA re-examination of the issue recently concluded that Saddam's regime may not have given Zarqawi 'safe haven' after all."
Italy denies role in fake documents on Iraq 26 Oct 2005 The Italian government denied on Wednesday reports that its secret services passed fake documents to the United States to help bolster claims about Baghdad's pre-war nuclear ambitions.
Bush at bay --Senior White House officials face indictment over CIA leak. Protests across US as military death toll in Iraq passes 2,000. Republicans may force retreat over Supreme Court nomination. 27 Oct 2005 The Bush administration and all Washington were on tenterhooks yesterday as Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor, wrapped up his inquiry into the CIA leak affair, amid suspense akin to the election of a pope.
Two US soldiers killed in Baghdad 27 Oct 2005 Two U.S. soldiers were killed when their convoy struck a roadside bomb in eastern Baghdad on Wednesday, the U.S. military said on Thursday.
Papers, Ignoring Pentagon Plea, Mark 2,000th U.S. Death in Iraq 26 Oct 2005 Going against the expressed wishes of the Pentagon, several top U.S. newspapers treated the tragic arrival of the 2,000th American military death in Iraq as a major milestone Wednesday.
US toll landmark in Iraq sets off peace rallies 26 Oct 2005 The death of the 2,000th US soldier in Iraq is expected to trigger peace rallies in Washington and across America today as anti-war campaigners use the milestone to demand that the Bush Administration withdraws US troops.
US told to give data on Guantanamo hunger strikers 26 Oct 2005 A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the U.S. government to provide medical records on Guantanamo prisoners who are being force-fed while on a hunger strike and to notify their lawyers about forced feedings.
US, Britain, France drum up support for resolution against Syria 26 Oct 2005 Western powers sought to enlist broad support from other UN Security Council members for a draft resolution demanding individual sanctions against Syrians found to have been implicated in the murder of a Lebanese ex-premier.
US military retreats over Japanese base after protests by islanders 27 Oct 2005 The United States has been forced to back down over its plan to build a large offshore military base on the southern Japanese island of Okinawa after local protests stalled construction.
Clarke signals concessions to Labour MPs over anti-terror laws 27 Oct 2005 (UK) Charles Clarke signalled concessions over the new anti[pro]-terror legislation as a procession of Labour MPs served notice they were prepared to defeat the Government on the issue.
Terrorism laws: states may prompt hold-up 27 Oct 2005 (AU) The federal government will almost certainly have to delay introducing its counter-terrorism laws, as state and territory leaders demand more time to look over the controversial measures.
CIA invests in no-fuel power generators 18 Oct 2005 The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency is reportedly investing in a power unit that can generate substantial electrical energy without using any fuel.
FEMA extends Brown's contract by 30 days 26 Oct 2005 Former FEMA Director Michael Brown said Wednesday he was asked to stay on the job another 30 days [*barf*] to help the agency complete its review of the response to Hurricane Katrina, a "completely legitimate thing to do."
Katrina Survivors Storm Capitol 25 October 2005 "I can't believe that some people in Washington think that after a category 5 hurricane the solution is to unleash a category 5 assault on working families." That was the sentiment of Hurricane Katrina survivors, brought to Washington to draw attention to mounting needs that continue to go unanswered.
New Orleans Security Opportunities --Blackwater USA has an immediate need for Security Professionals for the New Orleans area. 26 Oct 2005 Interested candidates must possess the following: Current Law Enforcement Officer (if not current, must have maintained credentials and been separated or retired within the last two years.) At least four (4) years Military Experience with duties involving carrying a weapon Ability to commit to a 30 day contract. This opportunity is for immediate deployment [?!?]. Earning potential up to $9000 a month [US taxpayers' money]. Interested, qualified candidates, contact Blackwater at 252-435-2488, ext. 360 and forward resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
No $9000 per month for them: Bush Regime Will Reinstate Prevailing Wages on Katrina Contracts 26 Oct 2005 The Bush administration will reinstate rules requiring that companies awarded federal contracts for Hurricane Katrina pay prevailing wages, usually an amount close to the pay scales in local union contracts.
Delphi's demand: Take $9 an hour 26 Oct 2005 If Delphi Corp. has its way, workers for the nation's largest auto parts supplier would be paid as little as $9 per hour under 65% wage cuts, and be hit with a tenfold increase in health-care costs, no dental and vision care and other sharp reductions in benefits, according to a proposal revealed on the Web site of a UAW local.
ConocoPhillips Profit Rises 89% to Record $3.8 Bln 26 Oct 2005 ConocoPhillips, the No. 3 U.S. oil company, said third-quarter profit jumped 89 percent to a record $3.8 billion... Net income rose to $2.68 a share from $2.01 billion, or $1.43 a share, a year earlier, the Houston-based company said today in a statement.
ConocoPhillips profit soars 89 pct, beats forecasts 26 Oct 2005 ConocoPhillips, the No. 3 U.S. oil company, on Wednesday reported quarterly profit surged 89 percent, surpassing Wall Street forecasts, driven by record oil prices and sharply higher refining margins.
Six more months of gasoline pain? 03 Oct 2005 Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said consumers can expect to see at least six months of high gasoline and heating fuel prices until energy production 'recovers' from hurricane damage. [Gee, it sure looks like ConocoPhillips has recovered from 'hurricane damage' --a record $3.8 billion quarterly profit!]
Senate Votes Down Heating Aid Increase 27 Oct 2005 The Senate decided Wednesday the money wasn't there for a substantial spending boost for the federal home heating program, deflecting arguments that soaring energy prices could force the poor to choose between heat and food this winter. [Or, force the poor to chose between arming themselves and putting an end to this illegitimate dictatorship or continuing to accept the Bush campaign to eradicate them.]
Senate panel backs $10 billion in health care cuts 26 Oct 2005 The Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday approved $10 billion in Medicaid and Medicare savings as part of a broader effort by congressional Republicans to trim spending and approve additional tax cuts.
Lawmakers vote to allow privatizing US food stamps 26 Oct 2005 House and Senate negotiators working on a $100 billion agriculture spending bill voted on Tuesday to allow states to privatize the food stamp program, which helps 25 million people put food on the table monthly.
"This process is utterly corrupt." Lawmakers Postpone Meat Origin Labels 26 Oct 2005 Grocery shoppers will have to wait two more years for labels telling where their meat comes from, under a bill moving toward approval in Congress... "This process is utterly corrupt," said Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D.
Powerful Government Accounting Office report confirms key 2004 stolen election findings By Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman October 26, 2005 "The non-partisan GAO [General Accounting Office] report has now found that, 'some of [the] concerns about electronic voting machines have been realized and have caused problems with recent elections, resulting in the loss and miscount of votes.' The United States is the only major democracy that allows private partisan corporations to secretly count and tabulate the votes with proprietary non-transparent software."
Protecting the Presidential Seal. No Joke. 24 Oct 2005 You might have thought that the White House had enough on its plate late last month, what with its search for a new Supreme Court nominee, the continuing war in Iraq and the C.I.A. leak investigation. But it found time to add another item to its agenda - stopping The Onion, the satirical newspaper, from using the presidential seal. [We want George W. Bush to stop using it, too.]
UK says two parrots had lethal flu 26 Oct 2005 The UK Government is to bring forward new regulations to combat the threat of a bird flu pandemic after it was revealed that a second parrot in quarantine probably died from the lethal strain of the disease.
Traveller may have H5N1 bird flu 26 Oct 2005 Preliminary tests conducted on a 43-year-old man who returned to the French island of Reunion after a trip to Thailand have indicated he may have the H5N1 bird flu virus, authorities have said.
Early Nor'easter Dumps Mounds of Snow 26 Oct 2005 An early nor'easter fed by Hurricane Wilma dumped heavy rain and up to 20 inches of wet snow from New England to West Virginia... The wintry blast Tuesday brought the leaf-peeping fall foliage season to an abrupt end as branches still bearing leaves broke beneath the snow's weight, pulling down power lines.
White Sox end 88-year drought, sweep Astros to win World Series 26 Oct 2005 The Chicago White Sox are World Series champions again at last, and yet another epic streak of futility is not just wiped away but swept away.
Charges in CIA Leak Probe Could Come Wednesday --White House Sidesteps Questions About Vice pResident 26 Oct 2005 With charges expected as early as Wednesday, federal officials investigating the exposure of CIA operative Valerie Plame conducted last-minute interviews with her neighbors and associates of Karl Rove and other top White House aides, lawyers said on Tuesday. White House spokesman Scott McClellan would neither confirm nor deny a New York Times report that Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis Libby, learned about Plame in a conversation with Cheney on June 12, 2003, weeks before her identity appeared in a newspaper column on July 14, 2003.
Cheney linked to leaking of CIA agent's identity 26 Oct 2005 The name of Vice-pResident Dick Cheney has surfaced unexpectedly in the inquiry into who might have leaked the identity of the undercover CIA operative Valerie Plame to journalists, increasing the pressure on the White House as the special prosecutor in the case prepares to file possible criminal charges.
Cheney Told Aide of C.I.A. Officer, Notes Show 24 Oct 2005 I. Lewis Libby Jr., Vice pResident Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, first learned about the C.I.A. officer at the heart of the leak investigation in a conversation with Mr. Cheney weeks before her identity became public in 2003, lawyers involved in the case said Monday. Notes of the previously undisclosed conversation between Mr. Libby and Mr. Cheney on June 12, 2003, appear to differ from Mr. Libby’s testimony to a federal grand jury that he initially learned about the C.I.A. officer, Valerie Wilson, from journalists, the lawyers said.
CIA Leak Linked to Dispute Over Iraq Policy --As Grand Jury Term Nears End, Officials' Critique of Administration Gains Attention 25 Oct 2005 The alleged leaking of a CIA operative's name had its roots in a clash over Iraq policy between White House insiders and their rivals in the permanent bureaucracy of Washington, especially in the State Department and the CIA.
Cheney Plan Exempts CIA From Bill Barring Abuse of Detainees 25 Oct 2005 The Bush regime has proposed exempting employees of the Central Intelligence Agency from a legislative measure endorsed earlier this month by 90 members of the Senate that would bar cruel and degrading treatment of any prisoners in U.S. custody.
U.S. Military Death Toll in Iraq Hits 2,000 26 Oct 2005 The number of U.S. troops who have died in the Iraq war hit 2,000 yesterday, a toll felt deeply at big military bases across America that active-duty soldiers and families call home, as well as in hundreds of communities where the National Guard and reservists work, live and train.
U.S. military death toll in Iraq reaches 2,000 25 Oct 2005 The U.S. military's death toll in Iraq has reached 2,000. CNN's count of U.S. fatalities reflects reports from military sources and includes deaths in Iraq, Kuwait and other units assigned to the Iraq occupation.
21 homicides among U.S. prisoners overseas 24 Oct 2005 At least 21 detainees who died while being held in U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan were killed, many during or after interrogations, according to an analysis of Defense Department data by the American Civil Liberties Union.
Autopsy reports reveal homicides of detainees in U.S. custody (Documents released by the ACLU) 24 Oct 2005
Government Documents on Torture (ACLU.org) "The ACLU filed a request on Oct. 7, 2003 under the Freedom of Information Act demanding the release of information about detainees held overseas by the United States. This page contains records the government has released under court order."
20 killed by three explosions at Baghdad hotels --Cement mixer used as bomb breaches defences --Journalists the target, says Iraqi security chief 25 Oct 2005 At least 20 people were killed and 13 injured yesterday when suicide bombers launched an orchestrated attack on one of the main bases of international journalists in Baghdad, according to the Iraqi police.
Attack goes to the heart of Baghdad 25 Oct 2005 A central Baghdad hotel used by foreign journalists and mercenaries, and guarded by American troops, has been hit by three huge suicide bombs.
The Republican Rift (The New Yorker) 24 Oct 2005 "...Jeffrey Goldberg writes about Brent Scowcroft, the national-security adviser under President [sic] George H. W. Bush—and the former President’s best friend—who has been at odds with the current Administration."
U.S., France, Britain turn up heat on Syria 25 Oct 2005 The United States, France and Britain on Tuesday demanded that Syria detain government officials suspected of involvement in the assassination of a former Lebanese prime minister and ensure their co-operation with a UN probe or face possible sanctions.
Al Franken Jokes About Execution for Treason of Rove, Libby and Bush 22 Oct 2005 "And so basically, what it looks like is going to happen is that Libby and Karl Rove are going to be executed" because "outing a CIA agent is treason," left-wing author and radio talk show host Al Franken asserted Friday night, to audience laughter, on CBS’s Late Show with David Letterman.
Security Chief Worries About D.C. Plans 25 Oct 2005 Responding to [their own] catastrophes in the nation's capital could prove more challenging than elsewhere in the country, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said Tuesday, saying he was concerned with preparedness plans in the city.
Anti-terrorism laws lack UK-style safeguards: expert 25 Oct 2005 A British legal expert says the Federal Government's proposed new anti-terrorism laws offer limited protection against human rights violations, in comparison to UK laws.
Beattie warns terrorism laws 'unconstitutional' 25 Oct 2005 Queensland Premier Peter Beattie has warned his state and territory counterparts the Federal Government's proposed new counter-terrorism laws may be unconstitutional... The ABC [AM program] understands the advice warns there is a risk High Court judges would conclude judges and magistrates should not be recruited to aid the work of police in secretly detaining people who have committed no offence.
Cornell president condemns intelligent design 21 Oct 2005 Cornell University Interim President Hunter Rawlings III on Friday condemned the teaching of intelligent design as science, calling it "a religious belief masquerading as a secular idea. Intelligent design is not valid science," Rawlings told nearly 700 trustees, faculty and other school officials attending Cornell's annual board meeting.
Land deal gets new scrutiny as Bush resists requests on Miers' work 24 Oct 2005 The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said Monday that he wanted to probe a land-condemnation proceeding in 1999 that awarded Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers more than $100,000 for a half-acre of family-owned land in Dallas.
Conservatives Escalate Opposition to Miers --Web Sites and Ad Campaign Seek Nominee's Withdrawal 25 Oct 2005 Conservative activists intensified their opposition to the Supreme Court nomination of Harriet Miers yesterday, launching two Web sites and planning radio and television advertising aimed at forcing her withdrawal.
In New Orleans, landlords to begin evicting absent tenants 24 Oct 2005 A flood of legal battles is set to be unleashed Tuesday in New Orleans when Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco lifts a post-Hurricane Katrina ban on evictions and 8,000 to 10,000 absentee tenants face the losses of their homes and possessions.
New Orleans seeks federal aid for courts, jail 25 Oct 2005 New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said on Monday he had asked for temporary federal funding for courts, a jailhouse and other critical functions in the storm-ravaged city, which he suggested was near bankruptcy.
Rosa Parks: An American hero 26 Oct 2005 All she did was to refuse to give up her seat on a bus for a white passenger. But Rosa Parks' stand was the spark that lit the fire of a nation's civil rights movement. Rupert Cornwell reports on the death of a woman who transformed American society.
Bird Flu Scam to Cost Us Plenty By John Hanchette 25 Oct 2005 "...[P]roposed legislation will strip Americans of the right to a trial by jury if they are harmed by either an experimental or licensed drug or vaccine they are forced by the government to take whenever federal health officials declare a public health emergency... "This proposed legislation," said NVIC's Fisher, "like the power and money grab by federal health officials and industry in the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and the Project Bioshield Act of 2004, is an unconstitutional attempt by some in Congress to give a taxpayer-funded handout to pharmaceutical companies for drugs and vaccines." Further, Fisher points out, the government, under this bill, "could force all citizens to use these drugs and vaccines while absolving everyone connected from any responsibility for injuries and deaths which occur" in their wake.
Urgent CLG Action!! By Pamela "Here is the list of politicians pushing for us to face forced vaccines and forced drugging with untested/experimental drugs and vaccines giving freedom from liability to drug companies. Contact them ALL. Keep this list of these traitors for your voting records. They ALL need to go! This bill is called 'The Biodefense and Pandemic Vaccine and Drug Development Act of 2005.' You will find the wording under Senate Bill 1873 [S. 1873]."
Bird flu could hit U.S. next year 25 Oct 2005 Could bird flu reach North America through migrating birds? Biologists in Alaska and Canada are keeping an eye out and say it's possible by next year.
Ministers consider bird imports ban after avian flu hits Germany 26 Oct 2005 A ban on the import of all captive birds from around the world plus a ban on all bird fairs, exhibitions and shows to protect Britain and Europe from the deadly avian flu virus is to be in place within 24 hours.
Bird flu may have been brought into UK earlier than thought 25 Oct 2005 The possibility that bird flu could already be present in Britain is being studied by Government vets who are investigating whether the potentially lethal strain contaminated a quarantine "facility" in Essex much earlier than thought.
Taiwanese slam British vets 24 Oct 2005 A top Taiwanese health official on Monday called British veterinary experts irresponsible for saying a South American parrot infected with the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu picked up the virus from Taiwanese birds in British quarantine.
The Big Melt: No Escape: Thaw Gains Momentum 25 Oct 2005 Many scientists say it has taken a long time for them to accept that global warming, partly the result of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, could shrink the Arctic's summer cloak of ice. But many of those same scientists have concluded that the momentum behind human-caused warming, combined with the region's tendency to amplify change, has put the familiar Arctic past the point of no return.
Death toll of US troops in Iraq approaches 2,000 24 Oct 2005 The number of American soldiers killed in Iraq was climbing inexorably towards 2,000 yesterday, with the announcement of the 1,996th casualty since the invasion in 2003. US forces suffered 15,220 wounded over the same period.
U.S. Marine Killed 24 Oct 2005 The number of American military men and women killed in Iraq is edging closer to the 2,000 mark. The number has reached at least 1,997, with Monday's announcement that a Marine was killed Sunday by small arms fire in the western part of the country.
2 Hotels Used by Foreigners in Baghdad Are Attacked by Rebels 24 Oct 2005 Three enormous explosions, at least one of which was a car bomb, struck near two hotels popular with foreign journalists and mercenaries this evening, causing heavy structural damage to at least one of the buildings and shattering glass throughout the neighborhood.
17 Dead as Bombs Hit Baghdad Hotel Housing Foreign Journalists 24 Oct 2005 Three enormous bombs, including a cement-mixing truck packed with explosives, blew up near an Iraqi police post outside the Palestine Hotel -- home to many foreign journalists in Iraq. Iraqi officials said 17 people were killed. A second bomb exploded inside a car not far from the police position on the northeast side of Firdous Square and more than 100 yards east of the hotel grounds.
Iraq resistance fighters step up attacks, hit oil pipelines 24 Oct 2005 Stepped-up attacks by resistance fighters over the last two days have killed at least 44 Iraqis, including 12 labourers - five of them brothers - who were gunned down at a construction site, police said on Monday. In addition, the bodies of eight Iraqis who apparently were kidnapped and killed in captivity, were found in the capital on Monday, police said.
US military denies American 'contractors' bodies were burned by mob 24 Oct 2005 The U-S military is denying a newspaper report that the bodies of four American mercenaries killed in Iraq were set on fire by a mob. A British newspaper that first reported the attack yesterday said a mob dragged the bodies from the vehicles and set them on fire.
Torture in Iraq By Human Rights Watch (The New York Review of Books) 03 Nov 2005 "The following article is an excerpt, in somewhat modified form, from 'Leadership Failure: Firsthand Accounts of Torture of Iraqi Detainees by the US Army's 82nd Airborne Division,' a report issued by Human Rights Watch on September 25, 2005." Click here for the full report.
Four U.S. soldiers injured in Afghanistan 24 Oct 2005 Four U.S. soldiers were injured after their chopper made a hard landing during a combat operation against resistance fighters in Afghanistan, a U.S. military statement said on Monday.
GOP senator links indictment, resignation 23 Oct 2005 A Republican senator said Sunday that it would be appropriate for any White House aide to step aside if indicted in the CIA leak investigation. President [sic] Bush was urged by a Senate Democrat to make clear whether a White House adviser under indictment would remain on the job.
As CIA leak probe winds up, White House "following developments" 24 Oct 2005 As the C-I-A leak probe heads toward a conclusion, the White House says it's "following developments" -- but concentrating on other matters.
Colleagues assail Times 'reporter' 23 Oct 2005 As the White House waits to see whether any of its top officials will be indicted in connection with the leaking of a CIA officer's name, The New York Times is engaged in an extraordinary dispute with one of its 'reporters' over her work on the story.
Letters Show Frist Notified of Stocks in 'Blind' Trusts --Documents Contradict Comments on Holdings 24 Oct 2005 Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) was given considerable information about his stake in his family's hospital company, according to records that are at odds with his past statements that he did not know what was in his stock holdings. Managers of the trusts that Frist once described as "totally blind," regularly informed him when they added new shares of HCA Inc. or other assets to his holdings, according to the documents.
Howard seeks compromise on shoot-to-kill 24 Oct 2005 The Prime Minister, John Howard, is considering a compromise [?!?] in the counter-terrorism legislation to allow shoot-to-kill police powers only when a suspect resists arrest. This follows the premiers' rejection of a broader shoot-to-kill provision in the proposed legislation.
County OKs Extra Security at Bengals Game 19 Oct 2005 The Cincinnati Bengals and Hamilton County officials have reached an agreement allowing the team to pat down fans entering Paul Brown Stadium for Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
US prison population continued to grow in 2004 24 Oct 2005 The U.S. prison population, already the largest in the world, grew by 1.9 percent in 2004, leaving federal jails at 40 percent over capacity, according to Justice Department figures released on Sunday.
Bush: Foreign workers needed 23 Oct 2005 Dictator Bush tried Saturday to give his temporary guest worker plan a nudge by promising strong enforcement. He highlighted the $2.3 billion it contains to help hire 1,000 new Border Patrol agents, improve technology and install barriers such as fencing and lighting; and the bill's $3.7 billion for enforcement, including expanding detention facilities by 10 percent so that fewer non-Mexican illegal immigrants are simply released.
Bush approval at 38 percent: ARG Poll 24 Oct 2005 George W. Bush's job approval ratings are unchanged from September. 65% of Americans say the national economy is getting worse. [Note: Link is to ARG Index, no permanent link available.]
Professor points to politics as Yale fails to renew contract 23 Oct 2005 By all accounts, Yale anthropology professor David Graeber is one of the brightest minds in his field... Graeber is an anarchist whose counterculture writings are nearly as popular as his academic work. So when Yale recently told Graeber not to return next year, it touched off a letter-writing campaign from professors worldwide, some of whom suggested that the Ivy League university is letting politics influence its hiring.
Get ready for Red State Nutjob Nation: Christian group wants to 'redeem' US states 23 Oct 2005 Cory Burnell wants to set up a Christian nation within the United States where abortion is illegal, gay marriage is banned, schools cannot teach evolution, children can pray to Jesus in public schools and the Ten Commandments are posted publicly. [Uh, will the Blue state taxpayers *still* have to subsidize the Red States, as we've done all along?]
Longing for Home in a Sealed New Orleans Ward 24 Oct 2005 "They're treating us like we're already dead," Willie L. Calhoun Jr. said after he was turned away at three checkpoints and took his leave of a local police officer - "All right, then, brother" - who informed him that he needed an escort from a City Council member. There were no council members present. "Where are our elected representatives?" Mr. Calhoun said. "Why are we not being addressed? They don't even have so much as a leaflet out here to tell the people of the Lower Ninth Ward what is going on."
Roche makes a killing --As panic spreads over avian flu, the Swiss pharmaceutical giant is accused of putting profits before people. 23 Oct 2005 Twenty members of the founding family control Roche, which industry analysts estimate will benefit from the Tamiflu drug thought to relieve the symptoms of avian flu, with extra profits of £500 million this year and £1bn next. And since the family owns about 10 per cent of shares and crucially 50.01 per cent of voting rights, they will ensure that no outside interests seize their company and enjoy the profits...
Dead parrot did have killer strain of bird flu 24 Oct 2005 The first case of the H5N1 strain of bird flu, which has already killed 61 people in the Far East, has been identified in Britain.
Breakup of Glaciers Raising Sea Level Concern 23 Oct 2005 The rapid structural breakdown of some important parts of the ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctica is possible, has happened in the distant past, and some "startling changes" on the margin of these ice masses has been observed in recent years -- raising disturbing concerns about sea level rise.
Record Levels of Toxic PFCs In Minnesota Fish --Bioaccumulations in Food Chain Are Building; Fish Advisory May Be Needed Washington, DC (PEER Press Release) 24 Oct 2005 "Alarmingly high levels of a new toxic chemical have been found in Minnesota fish in the Mississippi River near a 3M disposal site, according to new state figures released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). The record high levels of the chemical found in the livers of predatory fish will be magnified in the livers of mammals, including humans, who eat those fish."
Belarus Resumes Farming in Chernobyl Radiation Zone 22 Oct 2005 The winter rye is already sprouting green in the undulating fields of the state cooperative farm here. The summer's crop - rye, barley and rapeseed - amounted to 1,400 tons. Best of all, the farm's director, Vladimir I. Pryzhenkov, said, none of it tested radioactive.
Poachers Looting National Parks of Treasures 24 Oct 2005 A self-described "old-timer," Skip Wissinger has spent 32 years traversing the park's 300 square miles and identifying its natural treasures. But now many of the park's most prized resources -- its American ginseng plants, black bears and unusual butterflies -- are disappearing.
Hurricane Wilma hammers Florida, floods Keys 24 Oct 2005 Hurricane Wilma crashed into Florida on Monday, swamping the popular tourist island Key West and hammering the densely populated Miami-Fort Lauderdale area after killing 17 people in a rampage through the Caribbean. Wilma hit the state as surprisingly strong Category 3 hurricane after feeding for days over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Secret MoD poll: Iraqis support attacks on British troops 23 Oct 2005 Millions of Iraqis believe that suicide attacks against British troops are justified, a secret military poll commissioned by senior officers has revealed. The poll, undertaken for the Ministry of Defence and seen by The Sunday Telegraph, shows that up to 65 per cent of Iraqi citizens support attacks and fewer than one per cent think 'Allied military involvement' [occupation] is helping to improve security in their country.
US hurricane review focuses on military use laws 21 Oct 2005 A White House review of the slow government response to Hurricane Katrina is looking at whether U.S. laws need to be changed on the role of the military in responding to disasters, the official in charge of the review said on Friday.
'We have proof UK bombed us' 21 Oct 2005 Iran said yesterday it has proof that Britain was involved in a double bomb attack last week that killed six people and injured more than 100 in Ahvaz. "Information obtained show that Britain is the main accused in the recent events," Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki told state TV.
US, UK urge action against Syria over Hariri murder 23 Oct 2005 The United States and Britain ratcheted up pressure on Syria on Sunday, saying a U.N. probe implicating it in the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri was "very serious" and the world must act.
Blasts rattle Iraq cities as US toll rises 23 Oct 2005 At least three car bombs and several roadside bombs hit U.S. and Iraqi security forces in Baghdad and the northern city of Kirkuk on Sunday, killing at least eight people and wounding dozens more, Iraqi police said.
Seven killed in Iraqi attacks, four of them children 23 Oct 2005 Seven people, including four children, were killed and more injured on Sunday in separate attacks around Iraq.
Iraq resistance shows no signs of slowdown 23 Oct 2005 With the grim milestone of the 2,000th U.S. military death looming in Iraq, many wonder about the direction of the resistance that killed most of them. [No. Bush's *sending* the soldiers to Iraq killed them.]
Another Iraq war legacy: badly wounded U.S. troops 23 Oct 2005 The human toll for the U.S. military in the Iraq war is not limited to the nearly 2,000 troops deaths since the March 2003 invasion. More than 15,220 also have been wounded in combat, including more than 7,100 injured too badly to return to duty, the Pentagon said. Thousands more have been hurt in incidents unrelated to combat.
Colonel quits as troops are denied armoured land rovers in Iraq 23 Oct 2005 The commanding officer of a battalion serving in Iraq has resigned after failing to obtain armoured Land Rovers for his patrols.
'Mouse journalism' is the only way we can report on Iraq — Fisk 13 Oct 2005 Robert Fisk, who has previously accused colleagues of practising "hotel journalism" in Iraq, said that "mouse journalism" is now the best he can do in the country. Speaking at a bookshop in Golders Green, he said: "You cannot imagine just how bad things are in Iraq." ...He continued: "This country is nowhell — a disaster. You cannot imagine how bad it is."
Hussein trial is falling into chaos, claims barrister after defence lawyer found dead 23 Oct 2005 Defence lawyers in Saddam Hussein's trial are demanding American bodyguards after one of them was kidnapped by gunmen at his office in Baghdad and later found dead.
Fearful lawyers threaten boycott of Hussein trial 23 Oct 2005 Lawyers for Saddam Hussein and his six co-defendants announced yesterday that they would boycott their trial unless the court was moved to another country for their own safety. Their decision followed the kidnapping and murder last week of Saadoun al-Janabi, the lawyer of Awad Hamed al-Bandar.
Anti-war protester arrested in Clearwater for carrying sign that looks a lot like THIS ONE By Carol Schiffler 23 Oct 2005 (FL) "On Saturday, October 22, a peaceful demonstration at the corner of Curlew Road and U.S. 19 in Clearwater attracted no less than five squad cars due to the presence of a sign deemed 'obscene' by some anonymous motorist that phoned in a complaint. In yet another display of spectacularly heavy-handed police tactics, the protester was arrested instead of merely being asked to put down his sign." [Must see photo! The 'F*ck Bush' sign is pictured atop *police car!!*]
Release US Conscientious Objector Kevin Benderman (Letter-writing campaign from amnestyusa.org) "On July 28, a US court-martial sentenced Sergeant Kevin Benderman to 15 months' imprisonment, after he refused to return for a second tour of duty with the US army in Iraq. Amnesty International considers him to be a prisoner of conscience, imprisoned solely for his conscientious objection to the war in Iraq."
C.I.A. to Avoid Charges in Most Prisoner Deaths 23 Oct 2005 Despite indications of C.I.A. involvement in the deaths of at least four prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan, C.I.A. employees now appear likely to escape criminal charges in all but one of those incidents, according to current and former intelligence and law enforcement officials.
Police to probe US 'torture flights' landing in Scotland 23 Oct 2005 Scottish police are to launch an investigation into CIA "torture flights" which fly in and out of Glasgow and Prestwick airports, ferrying kidnapped war on [of] terror suspects around the world. The police action is a result of last week’s disturbing investigation by the Sunday Herald into the so-called "extraordinary rendition flights", which see suspects kidnapped overseas by the CIA, drugged and then flown to "friendly" states, such as Egypt, Uzbekistan and Morocco, where they are tortured on behalf of British and American intelligence.
Contractor Accused of Overbilling U.S. --Technology Company Hired After 9/11 Charged Too Much for Labor, Audit Says 23 Oct 2005 Federal auditors say the prime contractor on a $1 billion technology contract to improve the nation's transportation security system overbilled taxpayers for as much as 171,000 hours' worth of labor and overtime by charging up to $131 an hour for employees who were paid less than half that amount.
Pentagon program costing taxpayers millions in inflated prices 23 Oct 2005 The Pentagon paid $20 apiece for plastic ice cube trays that once cost it 85 cents. It paid a supplier more than $81 apiece for coffeemakers that it bought for years for just $29 from the manufacturer. That's because instead of getting competitive bids or buying directly from manufacturers like it used to, the Pentagon is using middlemen who set their own prices.
Lawyers in CIA-leak case say charges possible this week 23 Oct 2005 Federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald appears to be laying the groundwork for indictments this week over the outing of a covert CIA operative, including possible charges of perjury and obstruction of justice, lawyers involved in case said on Sunday.
NY Times, Miller Fight Over CIA Leak Probe 23 Oct 2005 In the latest fallout from the CIA leak investigation, reporter Judith Miller and The New York Times are engaging in a very public fight about her seeming lack of candor in the case.
White House List of Foiled Plots Puzzling --White House Document Mixes Half-Baked Plans With Serious Terrorist Threats 23 Oct 2005 A White House list of 10 terrorist plots disrupted by the United States has confused counterterrorism experts and officials, who say they cannot distinguish between the importance of some incidents on the list and others that were left off.
Workers at Homeland Security discouraged, survey finds 21 Oct 2005 At the Department of Homeland Security, only 12 percent of the more than 10,000 employees who returned a government questionnaire said they felt strongly that they were "encouraged to come up with new and better ways of doing things." In the agency... only 3 percent of employees said they were confident that personnel decisions in their department were "based on merit."
U.K. Police Arrest Man Under Terrorism Act in Northern England 23 Oct 2005 West Yorkshire Police's anti- terrorist unit arrested a 27-year-old man in the Dewsbury area of West Yorkshire, northern England, late yesterday, the police said in an e-mailed statement.
Three held in UK for 'terror probe' 22 Oct 2005 Three men in their 20s arrested during investigations into international terrorism were being questioned on Saturday in a London police station, police said. A statement from the London police headquarters said the arrests were not linked to the July 7 attacks on the British capital’s transport system.
Terrorism laws in place 'before Xmas' 23 Oct 2005 The federal government's proposed anti[pro]-terrorist laws have all the right balances, protections and safeguards, Prime Minister John Howard says. The prime minister on Sunday said he hoped the laws would be passed before Christmas but said he could not speculate about when they would be used.
Dean calls for end to 'culture of corruption' 23 Oct 2005 The Bush White House is the most corrupt administration in U.S. history since President Warren G. Harding's, said Howard Dean during his first visit to Maine as chairman of the Democratic National Committee. "I'm tired of the ayatollahs of the right wing," Dean said. "We're fighting for freedom in Iraq. We're going to fight for freedom in America."
Schumer: Miers Lacks Vote to Be Confirmed 23 Oct 2005 Harriet Miers does not have the votes now in the GOP-controlled Senate to be confirmed for the Supreme Court and confirmation hearings "will be make or break ... in a way they haven't been for any other nominee," a leading Democratic senator said Sunday. [Now, Bush can get *real* Nazi in, which was his goal from the outset.]
Dead parrot bird flu is H5N1 strain 23 Oct 2005 The parrot which died in quarantine in the UK has tested positive for the deadly H5N1 strain of the bird flu virus, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has said.
Warning over 'unique' spread of avian flu 22 Oct 2005 The avian flu - recently arrived in the UK - which is causing chaos around the world is "unique" because of the simultaneous way in which it is spreading, a veterinary expert has warned. [LOL, 'unique.' Looks like the Bush bioterror team is a busy little bee, poised to start the mandatory vaccines with no legal liability for the pharma-terrorists.]
Thousands of Demolitions Are Likely in New Orleans 23 Oct 2005 As crews begin inspecting thousands of rotting houses and preservationists begin efforts to save them, city and federal officials say that 30,000 to 50,000 of the city's houses will probably have to be demolished.
Alpha drenches Dominican Republic, Haiti 23 Oct 2005 The newest tropical storm, Alpha, battered Haiti and the Dominican Republic with heavy rains Sunday. Having used up all of the common names for the season's previous 21 storms, forecasters had to switch to the Greek alphabet for Alpha.
Record-breaking Tropical Storm Alpha forms in Caribbean Sea 22 Oct 2005 Tropical Storm Alpha formed Saturday in the Caribbean Sea, setting the record for the highest number of storms in an Atlantic hurricane season, forecasters said. Alpha is the season's 22nd tropical storm and marks the first time a letter from the Greek alphabet has been used because the list of storm names was exhausted. The previous record of 21 storms stood since 1933.
Did global warming cause Katrina? Some scientists say a trend toward warmer oceans is creating more-intense hurricanes 22 Oct 2005 With nearly two months to go, the 2005 hurricane season is already one of the most active - and deadly - on record. A growing number of scientists suspect nature may be getting a nudge from global warming. Two studies this summer found the destructive power of hurricanes has been increasing worldwide, in parallel with a rise in ocean and air temperatures.
Central witness to Mehlis report revealed as a paid swindler 22 Oct 2005 The most prestigious German political news-magazine, Der Spiegel, revealed today that the central witness, Zuheir al-Siddiq on whom Detlev Mehlis had relied during his investigations into the assault on Rafiq Hariri, was a dubious person with a criminal record as a convicted felon and swindler. Even the UN Commission which had submitted the Mehlis report to the UN Security Council yesterday, is raising serious doubts about the reliability and credibility of al-Siddiq's declarations, since it was revealed that the alleged former officer of the Syrian secret services had in reality been convicted more than once for penal offences related to money subtraction.
Blix says US misled itself, the world on Iraq --WMD reports, satellite photos called lacking 22 Oct 2005 Bush administration officials misled themselves on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and ''then they misled the world," Hans Blix, the former United Nations chief weapons inspector said yesterday.
US troops fighting losing battle for Sunni triangle 22 Oct 2005 Within minutes, four American contractors, all mercenaries of the Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown & Root, were dead. The jubilant crowd dragged their corpses through the street, chanting anti-US slogans... Perhaps fearful of public reaction in America, where support for the war is falling, US officials suppressed details of the Sept 20 attack, which bore a striking resemblance to the murder of four other mercenaries in Fallujah last year.
Iraqi police infiltrated by militia: journalist 22 Oct 2005 An Irish journalist who was kidnapped in Iraq while covering the trial of Saddam Hussein says the police in Baghdad have been infiltrated by militia. "We know that police moonlight as kidnappers. Now, whether the men in police uniforms who abducted me were pretending to be police or were real police who happen to be moonlighting as kidnappers, I don't know," said the freed correspondent of The Guardian, Rory Carroll.
Lawyer Representing Defendant in Hussein Trial Is Found Dead 21 Oct 2005 A lawyer representing one of Saddam Hussein's co-defendants was found dead with a bullet wound to the head in Baghdad, the Iraqi government said today. Reuters reported today that witnesses said Sa'doun Antar Nsaif Al Jana had been dragged from his office by men who identified themselves as Interior Ministry employees. He was taken into a car, and about an hour later, found dead.
Kidnapped Attorney of Hussein Codefendant Found Dead 21 Oct 2005 The body of Saadoun Sughaiyer Janabi, a defense lawyer for one of eight men accused in Saddam Hussein's mass murder trial was discovered near a Baghdad mosque one hour after gunmen kidnapped him from his office, Iraqi authorities said today.
Five U.S. Troops Killed in Three Iraq Operations 21 Oct 2005 Three Marines and a soldier assigned to a Marine expeditionary force were killed in Iraq on Oct. 20, military officials reported. A fourth Marine was killed during operations on Oct. 19.
Karzai Condemns Burning of Afghan Bodies 22 Oct 2005 President Hamid Karzai on Friday condemned the reported burning and desecration of two dead Taliban fighters by American troops in southern Afghanistan, and said he had ordered an investigation.
Syria rejects U.N. report linking it to assassination 22 Oct 2005 Syria on Friday hotly dismissed a U.N. report linking President Bashar Assad's regime to the assassination of a former Lebanese prime minister, and Damascus geared up to fight growing Western sentiment to punish it with economic sanctions.
Bush and Rice Urge Action on Syria's Ties to Lebanon Killing 21 Oct 2005 Dictator Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called today for the Security Council to take urgent action in response to a United Nations report implicating high-ranking members of the Syrian government in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri of Lebanon.
Transcript: Colonel Wilkerson on US foreign policy --The following is a partial transcript of remarks made by Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, chief of staff to former secretary of state Colin Powell, to the New America Foundation, a Washington think-tank. 20 Oct 2005 "And if something comes along that is truly serious, truly serious, something like a nuclear weapon going off in a major American city, or something like a major pandemic, you are going to see the ineptitude of this government in a way that will take you back to the Declaration of Independence. Read it some time again... Read in there what they say about the necessity of people to [inaudible] tyranny or to throw off ineptitude or to throw off that which is not doing what the people want it to do." [Yes. Then, read: Arming the Left: Is the time now? --by Charles Southwell "As long as we pose no REAL threat to the powers-that-be, to what is shaping up into 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..."]
Former Insider Lashes Out By Dan Froomkin 20 Oct 2005 "It didn't make the front page this morning, but it seems to me that it's a big deal when a former top administration official declares that a secret cabal led by the vice president has hijacked U.S. foreign policy, inveigled the president, condoned torture and crippled the ability of the government to respond to emergencies. Lawrence Wilkerson, who was chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell until both men resigned in January, unleashed his blistering attack on the Bush White House yesterday at a luncheon at a Washington think tank."
Times Editor Expresses Regrets Over Handling of Leak Case 22 Oct 2005 Bill Keller, executive editor of The New York Times, told the newspaper's staff yesterday that he had several regrets over his handling of Judith Miller, the Times 'reporter.'
Times: Miller Misled Paper About Role 22 Oct 2005 The New York Times' Judith Miller belatedly gave prosecutors her notes of a key meeting in the CIA leak probe only after being shown White House records of it, and her boss declared Friday she appeared to have misled the newspaper about her role. In a dramatic e-mail, Executive Editor Bill Keller wrote Times' employees he wished he'd more carefully interviewed Miller and had "missed what should have been significant alarm bells" that she had been the recipient of leaked information about the CIA officer at the heart of the case.
Text of N.Y. Times editor's e-mail to staff --Keller expresses regrets over handling of reporter in CIA leak case 21 Oct 2005
Fitzgerald Launches Web Site By Dan Froomkin 21 Oct 2005 "Special prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald has just launched his own brand-new Web site. Could it be that he's getting ready to release some new legal documents? Like, maybe, some indictments? It's certainly not the action of an office about to fold up its tents and go home."
Office of Special Counsel --Patrick J. Fitzgerald's (DoJ) website
Death Watch at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue By Doug Thompson 21 Oct 2005 "For all practical purposes, governing the nation has stopped at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as aides deal with an increasingly despondent President [sic], mounting scandals and defecting dissidents from the Ship of State... Aides say gallows humor has descended on the White House, where the West Wing is now referred to as 'death row' and Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, along with Vice Presidential Chief of Staff Scooter Libby, are known as 'dead men walking,' a reference to the last walk death row inmates take to the execution chamber."
DIA pressures 9/11 whistleblower 21 Oct 2005 A Republican congressman is calling for a new investigation into what he says is a "witch-hunt" by defense chiefs against a 9/11 intelligence whistleblower, and has threatened to resign from Congress if the matter is ignored. Representative Curt Weldon of Pennsylvania told the US House of Representatives on Wednesday that officials at the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) were embarked on "an attempt to prevent the American people from knowing the facts about how we could have prevented" the 11 September 2001 attacks.
80 face house arrest under new laws 22 Oct 2005 Up to 80 Australians could immediately be placed under effective house arrest under the federal government's proposed anti-terror laws. The laws mean they could be forced to wear tracking devices, or be prevented from working, or using the telephone or internet, or communicating with certain people.
Terror laws 'open to abuse' 22 Oct 2005 Encouraging ill-feeling against Prime Minister John Howard will be illegal under the federal Government's proposed anti-terror laws, Greens senator Bob Brown said. Senator Brown was addressing several hundred people gathered on the steps of Victoria's Parliament House today to rally against the anti-terror laws.
There's no place like home for the new anti-terrorism laws By Adele Horin 22 Oct 2005 "I think I can see a way under the proposed anti-terrorism laws for powerless parents to enlist the help of the Australian Federal Police and ASIO. The anti-terrorism laws may do little to prevent a hothead blowing up Town Hall station. But they offer much scope in subduing insubordinate teens who want to go clubbing at midnight instead of studying for their exams... The best bet lies in the proposed control orders, which sound like every parent's dream. Under these orders a person who has committed no crime can have severe restrictions placed on their daily lives for a year - or for those aged 16 to 18, for three months. You have to persuade the Federal Police your child may be thinking of committing a terrorist act... The police can take away most of his rights and freedoms without having to charge him with a crime. And nor must they tell him the grounds for their actions (or that you dobbed him in)."
Protest is criminalised and the huffers and puffers say nothing --The police abuse terror and harassment laws to penalise dissent while we insist civil liberties are our gift to the world. By George Monbiot 04 Oct 2005 "On Friday, six students and graduates of Lancaster University were convicted of aggravated trespass. Their crime was to have entered a lecture theatre and handed out leaflets to the audience..."
Men questioned on package near Capitol 21 Oct 2005 Police questioned two men and examined a suspicious package in their car on Friday after the men suggested the vehicle contained an explosive device, U.S. Capitol Police said.
Suspicious package shuts area near Capitol 21 Oct 2005 An unidentified man who claimed to have a suspicious device in his car was taken into custody close to the Capitol on Friday, and police cordoned off several streets as a precaution, officials said. Brian Doyle, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, said hazardous materials teams had been dispatched to the site. "We don’t know if it’s an explosive device," he said. [Hold on to your hats! Here comes a weekend filled with bogus (and real) terror threats and alerts as the Bush regime seeks to deflect attention from the CIA leak investigation.]
Homeland Security drops 'bubble' on Series 21 Oct 2005 Officials will establish a "security bubble" around U.S. Cellular Field for the World Series this weekend, dispatch thousands of police officers, search vehicles and crack down on everything from ticket scalping to illegal parking businesses.
Immigration detains Halliburton's illegal workers 20 Oct 2005 Agents detained about 100 illegal immigrants working for a Halliburton subcontractor hired to do Hurricane Katrina recovery work, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu's office said Thursday.
Authorities say 10 illegal workers found at Navy base 21 Oct 2005 Ten illegal immigrants were found in a subcontractor's work force on a Navy base but were not detained, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman said Friday. The 10 were denied access to the Belle Chasse Naval Air Station by military authorities, said Jamie Zuieback, an ICE spokeswoman in Washington, D.C.
Halliburton subcontractor hires illegal immigrants for Katrina work 21 Oct 2005 As many as 100 undocumented immigrants have been hired by a Halliburton subcontractor to clean-up areas damaged by Hurricane Katrina, a United States senator revealed.
TV Ad: "Laundromat" (cleanupcongress.org) "Washington is awash in big money. It's time to Clean Up Congress. The former House Majority Leader, Tom DeLay, has been indicted for money laundering and conspiracy. Members of Congress go on lavish overseas trips on the dimes of lobbyists..."
E-voting won't be verified until 2006 21 Oct 2005 Electronic voting systems aren't likely to be sufficiently secure even by the 2006 elections, government auditors warned Friday. Existing systems are rife with problems, the Government Accountability Office said in a 107-page document (.pdf). The list of vulnerabilities included everything from easily-guessed administrator passwords and voter-verified paper-trail design flaws, to incorrect software installation and system failures on Election Day.
Court Rules Kan. Can't Single Out Gay Sex 21 Oct 2005 The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday unanimously struck down a state law that punished underage sex more severely if it involved homosexual acts, saying "moral disapproval" of such conduct is not enough to justify the different treatment.
Young Singers Spread Racist Hate 20 Oct 2005 Thirteen-year-old twins Lamb and Lynx Gaede have one album out, another on the way, a music video, and lots of fans. They are white nationalists and use their talents to preach a message of hate... Songs like "Sacrifice" -- a tribute to Nazi Rudolf Hess, Hitler's deputy Fuhrer -- clearly show the effect of the girls' upbringing. The lyrics praise Hess as a "man of peace who wouldn't give up."
Bird flu reaches Britain 22 Oct 2005 The first case of bird flu has been found in Britain, the Government said last night. The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs said that a parrot has died from bird flu in quarantine.
Britain reports its first case of bird flu 22 Oct 2005 Britain reported its first case of bird flu on Friday night in an imported parrot being held in quarantine.
The clock ticks on economic collapse --A pandemic is a case of 'when, not if', says the WHO, and global recession could follow. 22 Oct 2005 In Washington, the US government is hurriedly upgrading its estimate of the likely damage, concluding that a full avian flu outbreak could kill 1.9m Americans and cost the US economy $450billion.
Al Gore recipient of Harvard Global Environmental Citizen Award 21 Oct 2005 President Al Gore has been chosen as the recipient of the 2005 Global Environmental Citizen Award by the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School. "Al Gore's dedication to the environment has never wavered," says Eric Chivian, MD, director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment and co-recipient of the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize.
Hurricane Watch Issued For Florida Keys --Florida Waits; Storm Has Potential For 'Catastrophic Damage' 22 Oct 2005 Hurricane Wilma, a Category 3 storm, is sitting over Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula with 115 mph winds, and forecasters say it could be there for another day or so before turning west.
Ice trucks head south from Maine 22 Oct 2005 The tons of ice brought to Portland last month that wasn't needed for victims of Hurricane Katrina is on the move again. Trucks are taking it south in anticipation of Hurricane Wilma.
Bush's leaky boat edges nearer to the rocks 21 Oct 2005 How could he [George W. Bush] not be distracted, with the House majority leader, Tom DeLay, indicted on corruption and conspiracy charges; the Senate majority leader, Bill Frist, being investigated over insider share trading; Harriet Miers, his nominee for the Supreme Court, under attack by conservatives of all stripes; and above all, the CIA leak investigation by the special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald extended to the most senior White House officials, including the Vice-President, Dick Cheney?
White House Awaits Grand Jury News 21 Oct 2005 Indictments of one or more of pResident Bush's top advisers in the CIA leak investigation could come today, next week or even not at all, CBS News reports. But the White House is acting like it's business as usual.
Bush Critic Became Target of Libby, Former Aides Say --Cheney's chief of staff reportedly sought an aggressive campaign against Wilson. 21 Oct 2005 Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff was so angry about the public statements of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, a Bush administration critic married to an undercover CIA officer, that he monitored all of Wilson's television appearances and urged the White House to mount an aggressive public campaign against him, former aides say.
Cheney aide may have contacted reporters in leak case 21 Oct 2005 The evidence prosecutors have assembled in the CIA leak case suggests Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff sought out reporters in the weeks before an undercover operative's identity was compromised in the news media, casting doubt on one of the White House's main lines of defense.
CIA Leak Queries Look at Disclosure of Classified Data 21 Oct 2005 The range of questions that Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has asked witnesses in the CIA leak case suggests he may be exploring whether to charge White House officials with leaking garden-variety classified information.
Cover-Up Issue Is Seen as Focus in Leak Inquiry 21 Oct 2005 As he weighs whether to bring criminal charges in the C.I.A. leak case, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, the special counsel, is focusing on whether Karl Rove, the senior White House adviser, and I. Lewis Libby Jr., chief of staff for Vice pResident Dick Cheney, sought to conceal their actions and mislead prosecutors, lawyers involved in the case said Thursday. Among the charges that Mr. Fitzgerald is considering are perjury, obstruction of justice and false statement - counts that suggest the prosecutor may believe the evidence presented in a 22-month grand jury inquiry shows that the two White House aides sought to cover up their actions, the lawyers said.
White House Defense Shaky in CIA Leak Case 21 Oct 2005 Even if White House aides leaked a covert CIA officer's identity, they were simply passing along information they'd already heard from the news media, the regime's supporters maintain in a defense that looks increasing shaky as new evidence accumulates.
Former ambassador Joseph Wilson blasts Bush in SoCal speech 21 Oct 2005 Former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson charged that the Bush administration's actions in Iraq have tarnished the country's reputation and that administration officials deliberately revealed the identity of his CIA-operative wife. "This is a radical administration and I fear history will judge us for Abu Ghraib," Wilson told an audience of nearly 650 people at Claremont McKenna College Wednesday night.
Key Players in the Plame Affair Compiled 20 Oct 2005 A July 14, 2003, newspaper column by Robert D. Novak sparked a two-year investigation into whether White House officials illegally leaked the identity of a covert CIA agent in retaliation for public criticisms made by the agent's husband about the Bush administration's case for invading Iraq.
Defense lawyer in Saddam Hussein trial kidnapped: police 20 Oct A defense lawyer involved in the trial of Saddam Hussein and seven others has been kidnapped by gunmen, said police and Interior Ministry sources.
Journalist 'safe and well' after kidnapping 20 Oct 2005 The journalist Rory Carroll was safe in Baghdad's Green Zone last night after being released unhurt by his captors who seized him on Wednesday in a city suburb.
Virginia oil firm admits kickbacks to Iraq 20 Oct 2005 A Virginia oil trading company pleaded guilty on Thursday to charges of scheming to pay more than $400,000 in kickbacks to Iraq for oil purchases made as part of the defunct U.N. oil-for-food program for Iraq.
Psych War in Afghanistan (Dateline transcript) 19 Oct 2005 "REPORTER, John Martinkus: At the top of the hills above the village the soldiers have taken the tactics of psychological warfare to a grotesque and disturbing extreme. US soldiers have set fire to the bodies of the two Taliban killed the night before. The burning of the corpses and the fact that they've been laid out facing Mecca is a deliberate desecration of Muslim beliefs. SOLDIER: Wow, look at the blood coming out of the mouth on that one, fucking straight death metal. REPORTER: PsyOps specialist Sergeant Jim Baker then broadcast an inflammatory message over the loudspeakers in order to taunt and bait the enemy. SGT JIM BAKER Attention, Taliban, you are all cowardly dogs. You allowed your fighters to be laid down facing west and burned. You are too scared to come down and retrieve their bodies."
Film shows US soldiers burning Taliban corpses 21 Oct 2005 The US and Afghan governments are investigating claims that American soldiers in Afghanistan burnt the corpses of two Taliban militants, then taunted other Islamic fighters about the burning, a desecration of Muslim custom.
Abuse Charges at Bad Time for White House 20 Oct 2005 Allegations that U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan burned the bodies of Taliban fighters couldn't have come at a worse time for the Bush regime, already fighting legislation in Congress that would impose standards on the Pentagon's treatment of detainees.
Chavez Warns if U.S. Invades, Oil Goes Up 20 Oct 2005 Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Thursday that his government is preparing for a possible U.S. invasion and he warned that such "aggression" would send gasoline in the United States prices soaring higher.
Security Chief Vows New Link to New York 21 Oct 2005 Michael Chertoff, the homeland security secretary, vowed Thursday to place his own representative in New York City to work with local authorities in an attempt to have city and federal agencies speak with one voice [coverup] about any potential terrorist threat.
Real ID: Huge Challenges for States 20 Oct 2005 States will be unable to get "Real ID" implemented in the time the federal government expects, and the cost will be much higher than estimated, said technology officials at a session here at the annual conference of the National Association of State Chief Information Officers.
Shot dead by police 30. Officers convicted 0 --No charges for policemen who killed man carrying table leg 21 Oct 2005 (UK) The Attorney General was accused of bowing to political pressure last night after it emerged that no police officer will be prosecuted for shooting dead a man armed with a wooden table leg.
DeLay arrives to face laundering, conspiracy charges 21 Oct 2005 Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, surrendered to authorities in Houston yesterday, the last step before his scheduled appearance today in Austin to formally hear the conspiracy and money-laundering charges leveled against him last month.
DeLay turns himself in 20 Oct 2005 U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay on Thursday turned himself in at the Harris County sheriff's bonding office, where he was photographed, fingerprinted and released on bond on state conspiracy and money laundering charges. "He posted $10,000 bond and they have left the bonding office," Lt. John Martin with the sheriff's department said.
Bush Calls Recent Woes 'Background Noise' 20 Oct 2005 Dictator Bush vowed Thursday to avoid the "background noise" of investigations and political problems to focus on the nation's needs.
Scientists attack 'intelligent design' 21 Oct 2005 A coalition of more than 70,000 Australian scientists and science educators has condemned the teaching in science classes of "intelligent design" - a creationist-like theory of the origin of life. The group says it is "gravely concerned" that intelligent design is being taught in schools as an alternative to evolution.
Embarrassing setback for Bush's nominee --Problems mount over supreme court candidate --Senate queries 'insulting' answers to questionnaire 21 Oct 205 Dictator Bush's controversial supreme court nominee, Harriet Miers, stumbled at her first formal hurdle yesterday, when the Senate asked her to rewrite answers to a questionnaire on her background and opinions.
Democrat forces US House vote on Bush wage order 20 Oct 2005 A Democratic lawmaker on Thursday moved to force a showdown in the Republican-led House of Representatives over Dictator George W. Bush's order to allow contractors to cut the wages of Hurricane Katrina clean-up workers.
Legislation would nearly double H-1B visa limit --It would allow up to 60,000 additional H-1B workers this fiscal year 20 Oct 2005 Draft legislation before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee would allow IT vendors and other companies to nearly double the number of foreign workers they bring to the U.S. by "recapturing" unused worker visas from past years.
FEMA Official Says Boss Ignored Warnings 20 Oct 2005 Federal Emergency Management Agency officials did not respond to repeated warnings about deteriorating conditions in New Orleans and the dire need for help as Hurricane Katrina struck, the first FEMA official to arrive conceded Thursday.
Excerpts from FEMA officials' e-mails 20 Oct 2005 Excerpts from e-mails among Federal Emergency Management officials during Hurricane Katrina
A Bait-and-Switch Charity: The Scandalous History of the Red Cross By Joe Allen 20 Oct 2005 "Congress incorporated the Red Cross to act under 'government supervision.' Eight of the 50 members of its board of governors are appointed by the president of the United States, who also serves as honorary chairperson. Currently, the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security are members of the board of governors. This unique, quasi-governmental status allows the Red Cross to purchase supplies from the military and use government facilities--military personnel can actually be assigned to duty with the Red Cross."
Russian MP Calls Bird Flu "American Provocation" 21 Oct 2005 A deputy of the ultranationalist Liberal Democratic faction of the Russian State Duma, Aleksei Mitrofanov, has said in a parliamentary speech that bird flu was invented by Americans who wanted to dominate the world’s poultry markets.
Congress Set to Pass Law Eliminating Liability For Vaccine Injuries 19 Oct 2005 The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) is calling the "Biodefense and Pandemic Vaccine and Drug Development Act of 2005" (S. 1873), which passed out of the U.S. Senate HELP Committee one day after it was introduced "a drug company stockholder's dream and a consumer's worst nightmare." ...The bill establishes the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Agency (BARDA), as the single point of authority within the government for the advanced research and development of drugs and vaccines in response to bioterrorism and natural disease outbreaks such as the flu. BARDA will operate in secret, exempt from the Freedom of Information Act and the Federal Advisory Committee Act, insuring that no evidence of injuries or deaths caused by drugs and vaccines labeled as "countermeasures" will become public.
Urgent CLG Action!! By Pamela "Here is the list of politicians pushing for us to face forced vaccines and forced drugging with untested/experimental drugs and vaccines giving freedom from liability to drug companies. Contact them ALL. Keep this list of these traitors for your voting records. They ALL need to go! This bill is called 'The Biodefense and Pandemic Vaccine and Drug Development Act of 2005.' You will find the wording under Senate Bill 1873 [S. 1873]."
Bird flu: HK 'may seal border' 21 Oct 2005 One of Asia's busiest borders might be sealed if the deadly H5N1 bird flu starts spreading from human to human, according to a media report.
Pigeons test positive to bird flu exposure 21 Oct 2005 One hundred and two pigeons exposed to the bird flu virus have been seized by Australian quarantine inspectors.
Arctic Map Vanishes, and Oil Area Expands 21 Oct 2005 The 1978 map of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge had been stored behind a filing cabinet in a locked room in Arlington, Va. Late in 2002, it was there. In early 2003, it disappeared... The United States Geological Survey drew up a new map. On Wednesday, the Senate Energy and Commerce Committee passed a measure based on the new map that opened to drilling 1.5 million acres of coastal plain in the refuge. The missing map did not seem to include in the coastal plain tens of thousands of acres of Native Alaskans' lands. On the new map, those lands were included, arguably making it easier to open them to energy development.
Amazon damage 'worse than feared' --Illegal logging has devastated large areas of Brazil's Amazon rainforest 21 Oct 2005 Scientists from Brazil and the US say new research suggests deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon has been underestimated by at least 60%.
Revealed: the true devastation of the rainforest 21 Oct 2005 The Amazon rainforest is being destroyed twice as quickly as previously estimated, according to a satellite survey of the region. Scientists have discovered that previous satellite photographs of the Amazon have missed a form of surreptitious logging that is equally destructive, but not as apparent from space.
Film rolls as US troops burn dead 19 Oct 2005 US soldiers in Afghanistan burnt the bodies of dead Taliban and taunted their opponents about the corpses, in an act deeply offensive to Muslims and in breach of the Geneva conventions. An investigation by SBS's Dateline program, to be aired tonight, filmed the burning of the bodies. It also filmed a US Army psychological operations unit broadcasting a message boasting of the burnt corpses into a village believed to be harbouring Taliban.
Cheney 'cabal' hijacked foreign policy 20 Oct 2005 Vice-pResident Dick Cheney and a handful of others had hijacked the government's foreign policy apparatus, deciding in secret to carry out policies that had left the US weaker and more isolated in the world, the top aide to former Secretary of State Colin Powell claimed on Wednesday.
Top Aides Talked Before Plame's Cover Revealed 20 Oct 2005 White House adviser Karl Rove told the grand jury in the CIA leak case that I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice pResident Cheney's chief of staff, may have told him that CIA operative Valerie Plame worked for the intelligence agency before her identity was revealed, a source familiar with Rove's account said yesterday. This revelation further undermines the White House's contention that neither man was involved.
AP: Rove, Libby Discussed Reporter Info 19 Oct 2005 Top White House aides Karl Rove and I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby discussed their contacts with reporters about an undercover CIA officer in the days before her identity was published, the first known intersection between two central figures in the criminal leak investigation.
Bush whacked Rove on CIA leak 19 Oct 2005 An angry President [sic] Bush rebuked chief political guru Karl Rove two years ago for his role in the Valerie Plame affair, sources told the Daily News. "He made his displeasure known to Karl," a presidential counselor told The News. "He made his life miserable about this." [Oh. I thought Bush didn't *know* who was the source of the treason (leaking CIA covert officer's name)?]
When Was the President Told? By Rep. John Conyers 19 Oct 2005 "Today’s New York Daily News reports that '[a]n angry President [sic] Bush rebuked chief political guru Karl Rove two years ago for his role in the Valerie Plame affair..' and that Rove conceded to Bush that "he had talked to the press about the Plame leak. Yet, just last year on June 11, 2004, the President responded affirmatively when asked if he would 'fire anyone found to' have leaked the agent’s name."
Rice: U.S. May Still Be in Iraq in 10 Years 19 Oct 2005 Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declined on Wednesday to rule out American forces still being needed in Iraq a decade from now. Senators warned that the Bush regime must play it straight with the public or risk losing public support for the war.
Guardian journalist missing in Iraq --Statement from the Guardian 19 Oct 2005 The Guardian today confirmed that its Baghdad correspondent Rory Carroll, an Irish citizen, is missing, believed kidnapped, in Iraq. Rory Carroll, 33, was on assignment in Baghdad earlier today when he went missing. It is believed Mr Carroll may have been taken by a group of armed men.
26 Iraqis and 5 G.I.'s Killed; Reporter Missing 20 Oct 2005 At least 26 Iraqis, 5 American soldiers and a British soldier were killed in attacks late Tuesday and Wednesday, officials reported Wednesday.
Britsh soldier killed by roadside bomb 19 Oct 2005 A British soldier died last night from injuries sustained in a roadside bomb attack in Basra, southern Iraq, the Ministry of Defence said today.
Guardsman's bomb death takes Iraq toll to 97 20 Oct 2005 A soldier in the Coldstream Guards was killed by a roadside bomb in Basra late on Tuesday night. He is the 97th member of the British armed forces to have died in Iraq since the invasion.
1 in 4 Iraq vets ailing on return 18 Oct 2005 More than one in four U.S. troops have come home from the Iraq war with health problems that require medical or mental health treatment, according to the Pentagon's first detailed screening of servicemembers leaving a war zone.
Returning US soldiers face financial, medical difficulties --Critics say government is 'turning its back' on veterans because of need for money in Iraq. 18 Oct 2005 Wounded US soldiers who have returned home are increasingly finding that they are being referred to credit agencies by the US military because of discrepancies in pay or "failure to pay" for lost equipment.
Queries over huge yes vote 19 Oct 2005 Iraqi election officials said they were investigating "unusually high" vote [sic] totals in 12 Shiite and Kurdish provinces, where as many 99 per cent of the voters were reported to have cast ballots in favour of Iraq's new constitution, raising the possibility that the results of the referendum could be called into question.
'I am the president of Iraq. I do not recognise this court' 20 Oct 2005 Combative and truculent, Iraq's former president, Saddam Hussein, argued with the judge and scuffled with security guards yesterday, when he went on trial for mass murder in a Baghdad courtroom that was as much a theatre as a forum for justice. [When will Bush's trial begin?]
Defence lawyer calls trial 'pure theatre' 20 Oct 2005 One of Saddam Hussein's lawyers called his trial in Baghdad "pure theatre" and said a 40-day adjournment to prepare a defence was not enough. "If this was a regular murder trial at the Old Bailey in London then the defence would have been granted six months to prepare," Abdel al Haq al-Ani, the lawyer coordinating the defence effort, told Reuters.
Expanding Iraq War into Syria is lunacy By Dan Simpson 19 Oct 2005 "As I suspected six months ago, and U.S. military and Bush Administration civilian officials confirmed, U.S. forces have invaded Syria and engaged in combat with Syrian forces. An unknown number of Syrians are acknowledged to have been killed; the number of Americans - if any - who have died so far has not yet been revealed by the U.S. sources, who, by the way, insist on remaining faceless and nameless."
Are we going to war with Iran? Dan Plesch evaluates the evidence pointing towards a new conflict in the Middle East 18 Oct 2005 "It appears that the UK and US have decided to raise the stakes in the confrontation with Iran. The two countries persuaded the IAEA board - including India - to overrule its inspectors, declare Iran in breach of the non-proliferation treaty (NPT) and say that Iran's activities could be examined by the UN security council."
Applause as Mugabe blames Britain and US for Zimbabwe collapse 18 Oct 2005 President Mugabe drew applause at a United Nations conference on hunger yesterday when he said Britain and the United States were to blame for his country's economic collapse. In a diversion from his scripted speech at the World Food Day event organised by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, Mr Mugabe called Tony Blair and George W Bush "the unholy alliance of the millennium".
Texas Court Issues Arrest Warrant for Tom DeLay 19 Oct 2005 A Texas court issued a warrant Wednesday for former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay to appear for booking, where he is likely to face the fingerprinting and photo mug shot he had hoped to avoid.
Key lawmakers seek more answers from Miers 19 Oct 2005 The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee's top Republican and Democrat told U.S. Supreme nominee Harriet Miers on Wednesday to elaborate on what they criticized as inadequate answers to their questionnaire.
US deports four men in tunnel threat probe 20 Oct 2005 US officials said Wednesday that four men from Mideast will be deported, as part of the probe into a terror threat targeting a highway tunnel in Baltimore, Maryland.
Sleuths Crack Tracking Code Discovered in Color Printers 19 Oct 2005 It sounds like a conspiracy theory, but it isn't. The pages coming out of your color printer may contain hidden information that could be used to track you down if you ever cross the U.S. government... The U.S. Secret Service acknowledged yesterday that the markings, which are not visible to the human eye, are there, but it played down the use for invading privacy.
Fraser labels anti-terrorism laws undemocratic 20 Oct 2005 (AU) Former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser has attacked the Federal Government's proposed anti-terrorism laws. In a major speech in Melbourne, the former Liberal Party leader said there were no real safeguards to protect rights.
Bush's Faith Plan Faces Judgment --Courts Assess Mission to Give Federal Funds to Religious Charities 20 Oct 2005 George W. Bush's big legal victory came Sept. 30 in New York, where a federal judge threw out most elements of a religious discrimination lawsuit against the Salvation Army. Eighteen employees claimed they were fired or demoted because they refused to pledge support to the Salvation Army's mission of "proclaiming Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord," disclose what church they attended or name gay co-workers..
FEMA Plan to Rebuild Religious Schools And Other Religious Facilities Is Unconstitutional, Says Americans United --Taxpayers Should Not Be Forced To Subsidize Religion, Watchdog Group Says 19 Oct 2005 A plan by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to spend taxpayer dollars to rebuild religious schools and other religious facilities violates constitutional provisions barring public support of religion, says Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
U.S. Gives Florida a Sweeping Right to Curb Medicaid 20 Oct 2005 The Bush regime approved a sweeping Medicaid plan for Florida on Wednesday that limits spending for many of the 2.2 million beneficiaries there and gives private health plans new freedom to limit benefits. The Florida program, likely to be a model for many other states, shifts from the traditional Medicaid "defined benefit" plan to a "defined contribution" plan, under which the state sets a ceiling on spending for each recipient.
Senate Panel Approves Arctic Drilling 20 Oct 2005 The Senate Energy and Commerce Committee approved a measure on Wednesday to open the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas production, moving it an important step closer to becoming official.
Alaska Refuge Drilling OK'd in Committee 19 Oct 2005 A Senate committee voted Wednesday to include drilling in an Alaska wildlife refuge in a massive budget proposal, assuring that drilling opponents won't be able to use the filibuster to thwart oil development there.
Suit Blames Navy Sonar for Beached Whales 19 Oct 2005 Environmentalists sued the Navy on Wednesday, claiming that a widely used form of sonar for detecting enemy submarines disturbs and sometimes kills whales and dolphins.
UK population to be vaccinated against pandemic flu 19 Oct 2005 Plans to vaccinate everyone in the UK against [?!?] pandemic flu once a potentially-fatal strain emerges were announced by the British government today. [How is the government *so certain* that a 'potentially-fatal strain' will emerge?]
Russia finds deadly strain of bird flu 19 Oct 2005 Preliminary tests on fowl from a region south of Moscow where hundreds of birds died suddenly detected a deadly strain of bird flu, Russia said Wednesday, bolstering signs that the dreaded virus might be spreading across Siberia to the Mediterranean.
Top scientific group warns of growing natural disasters 19 Oct 2005 The world will witness more deadly natural disasters as global warming accelerates, with unchecked population growth putting large numbers of people at risk, a top scientific group said Wednesday.
Fla. Braces for an Intense Hurricane Wilma 19 Oct 2005 Hurricane Wilma exploded briefly into a Category 5 monster with winds of 175 mph before weakening to a Category 4 Wednesday night. Forecasters warned it could smash into southwestern Florida on Saturday with towering waves, and then work its way up the East Coast with devastating effect.
Hurricane Wilma becomes strongest Atlantic storm on record 19 Oct 2005 A hurricane that has brought heavy rains to Mexico and Central America was today named as the strongest Atlantic storm since records began. Hurricane Wilma's highest sustained winds were measured at 175 mph by US air force reconnaissance planes, while its pressure readings dropped to 882 millibars - the lowest minimum pressure ever measured in a hurricane in the Atlantic basin.
Hurricane Wilma sets barometric pressure record 19 Oct 2005 Hurricane Wilma doesn't stop making history: It is the strongest, most intense Atlantic hurricane in terms of barometric pressure and the most rapidly strengthening on record. A hurricane hunter plane flying through the Category 5 storm's eye found a minimum central pressure of 882 millibars, National Hurricane Center forecasters said Wednesday.
Expectation of indictments in C.I.A. Leak Case 18 Oct 2005 The special counsel in the C.I.A. leak case has told associates he has no plans to issue a final report about the results of the investigation, heightening the expectation that he intends to bring indictments, lawyers in the case and law enforcement officials said yesterday.
Cheney resignation rumors fly 18 Oct 2005 Sparked by today's Washington Post story that suggests Vice pResident Cheney's office is involved in the Plame-CIA spy link investigation, government officials and advisers passed around rumors that the vice pResident might step aside and that President [sic] Bush would elevate Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Cheney Office Is Focus in Probe --Sources Cite Role of Feud With CIA 18 Oct 2005 As the investigation into the leak of a CIA agent's name hurtles to an apparent conclusion, special prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald has zeroed in on the role of Vice pResident Cheney's office, according to lawyers familiar with the case and government officials. The prosecutor has assembled evidence that suggests Cheney's long-standing tensions with the CIA contributed to the unmasking of operative Valerie Plame.
Joseph Wilson calls CIA leak a defamation campaign 18 Oct 2005 Former ambassador Joseph Wilson accused top Bush administration officials of orchestrating "a defamatory campaign" against he and his wife, the undercover agent at the center of the CIA leak investigation.
Plamegate: The civil war --Valerie Plame and Joseph Wilson are considering a civil suit against administration officials. If they do sue, they'd better be ready for a vicious attack by White House proxies. By Michael Scherer 18 Oct 2005 "For months now, ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife, Valerie Plame, the covert CIA agent unmasked by the White House, have been preparing to file a civil lawsuit against the Bush administration officials who disclosed her identity and scuttled her career."
Officials Press Voting Inquiry as Ballots Arrive in Baghdad 18 Oct 2005 Ballots from provinces around Iraq began arriving by helicopter and airplane into Baghdad today, as electoral officials pushed forward with an investigation into the 'voting' that took place last Saturday for a new constitution.
50 Afghan election staff dismissed for alleged fraud --Chief of UN-Afghan election commission rules out recount --Says investigation into the fraud has slowed the vote count 17 Oct 2005 A UN-backed election commission has dismissed about 50 of its staff for suspected fraud in last month’s legislative polls, officials said on Sunday, raising fears for the legitimacy of Afghanistan's final formal step toward 'democracy.' Some 680 ballot boxes, about 3 percent of the total, have been taken out of the counting process because of suspicions they were stuffed, said Richard Atwood, chief of operations for the joint UN-Afghan election commission.
US air strikes kill civilians in Iraq, say witnesses 18 Oct 2005 American air strikes have killed more than 70 people in western Iraq, including dozens of women and children, witnesses said yesterday.
Iran arrests 20 over bombing blamed on UK 18 Oct 2005 Iran said on Tuesday it had arrested more than 20 people in connection with deadly weekend bombings in southern Iran which the government has blamed on Britain.
Nearly 1,000 Connecticut National Guard Troops to Be Deployed 18 Oct 2005 The Connecticut National Guard is preparing to send nearly 1,000 troops overseas, mostly to Afghanistan, by the end of January, according to state military officials.
War in Iraq putting off recruits, says army 19 Oct 2005 (UK) The army is facing a crisis in recruitment triggered in part by its operations in Iraq, senior officers admitted yesterday. Commanders are so concerned that they are launching a campaign today - the first in a decade - to attract young officers.
Former law lord attacks 'folly' of Iraq war 19 Oct 2005 The war with Iraq has made the world a more dangerous place and London a target for terrorist attack, according to one of Britain's most senior judges. Lord Steyn, who retired last month as a judge sitting in the UK's highest court, described the invasion of Iraq as "military folly" and accused the Government of "scraping the legal barrel" in trying to justify it.
Their only redemption is to withdraw in the new year --The coalition is merely generating violence in Iraq. British ministers must save the army's reputation and pull it out By Simon Jenkins 19 Oct 2005 "Between now and elections for a new government in December there should be a semblance of political activity. As democracy it is a pastiche. Its leaders are entombed in the mightiest fortress on Earth, the Americans' Green Zone in Baghdad, while voting is not political but religious and ethnic. But it will be enough for the occupiers to claim that things are 'getting better', and therefore that they should stay... After nearly three years of American rule, Baghdad is simply the most terrifying city in the world. Not surprisingly the chief topic among the occupation forces is how to get out." [A must read]
Defense doctor corroborates torture claims in Virginia terror case 18 Oct 2005 A U.S. citizen accused of joining al-Qaida and plotting to assassinate Dictator Bush bore strong signs that he was tortured while in Saudi custody, a doctor testified Tuesday.
Navy, Marines block commercial e-mail sites --Services cite concerns that network security could be compromised [?!?] 19 Oct 2005 On Tuesday, the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps blocked all access to commercial e-mail services, such as Yahoo!, Hotmail, America Online and Google, from overseas government computers. And not just at office workstations. The block includes access to e-mail services from computers at base libraries and liberty centers that are connected to an official government network.
Venezuela's Tax Agency to Claim Back Taxes Oct 2005 Venezuela's tax agency is preparing to claim back taxes from four more private oil companies with plans to expand that claim to all firms pumping crude under contract, including large foreign producers.
U.K. ID Cards Bill Clears Parliament's Lower House After Revolt 18 Oct 2005 Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labour government won approval from the House of Commons for a bill that would implement the nation's first identity card since 1952.
Blair secures narrow win on ID cards 19 Oct 2005 Plans for controversial identity cards were a step closer last night after a tight vote that left Tony Blair's majority almost halved.
Security Passes Pulled in Threat Leak Probe 18 Oct 2005 Security clearances were taken away from two federal anti-terrorism employees as investigators look into allegations they warned family and friends about the threat against the New York City subway system three days ahead of the official announcement.
Terrorism Tip Closes Tunnels in Baltimore 19 Oct 2005 An uncorroborated tip about a terrorist plot to blow up a vehicle loaded with explosives prompted the authorities to shut down a busy tunnel under the Baltimore harbor on Tuesday and partly close another. Federal agents investigating the tip detained four men, a law enforcement official said, and others were being questioned Tuesday evening.
'Terror information' shuts Baltimore tunnel 18 Oct 2005 Maryland Transportation Authority police on Tuesday shut down the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel on Interstate 895 and surrounding thoroughfare to conduct searches as a result of "general terror information."
Source: Baltimore tunnel threat source came from Netherlands 19 Oct 2005 A federal law enforcement official says the source of information regarding a threat that shut down one of the busy tunnels underneath Baltimore's harbor was a man in custody in the Netherlands.
9/11 Panel Says Congress and White House Are Failing to Act 19 Oct 2005 The members of the Sept. 11 commission will sharply criticize the Bush administration and Congress this week in a new, privately financed report expected to single out the F.B.I. as having failed to act on many of the panel's recommendations to protect the nation from terrorist attack, members of the bipartisan panel and its staff said.
Georgia's Voter Identification Law Barred 18 Oct 2005 A federal judge Tuesday blocked Georgia from enforcing a new state law requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls. In issuing the preliminary injunction, U.S. District Judge Harold Murphy said the law amounts to an unconstitutional poll tax because the state is not doing enough to make ID cards available to those who cannot afford them.
Why was UK's Katrina aid rejected by US? The US has blocked the distribution of 357,000 British ration packs sent out to help survivors of Hurricane Katrina, amid fears they are infected with mad cow disease [Some were *vegetarian meals.*] 18 Oct 2005 In total 475,000 food packs, some of which were vegetarian, left RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire on 5 September after a request for help from the US authorities... An additional 33,000 meals from Germany, Russia, Spain and France suffered the same fate, due to US legal restrictions.
Miers Disavows Saying Constitution Protects Privacy 18 Oct 2005 U.S. Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers disavows telling a U.S. senator that she believes there's a constitutional right to privacy and that a case the high court relied on when it legalized abortion was correctly decided, the lawmaker's spokesman said in a statement.
Miers ability to practice law was briefly suspended 18 Oct 2005 U.S. Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers told the U.S. Senate on Tuesday her ability to practice law in the District of Columbia was briefly suspended this year because of nonpayment of bar association dues.
Supreme Court: Withdraw Miers (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) 19 Oct 2005 "In written answers to the Senate Judiciary Committee, [Harriet] Miers argues that litigants 'should not be able to establish social policy through court action, having failed to persuade the legislative or executive branch of the wisdom and correctness of their preferred course.' So, forget Brown v. Board of Education. Citizens cannot appeal to the judiciary when the other branches deny civil liberties? Naming a justice to the Supreme Court is a rare and profound moment. The president and the nation can, and must, do far better."
G.M. and Union in a Deal to Cut Health Benefits 18 Oct 2005 General Motors said on Monday that it had reached a tentative agreement with the United Automobile Workers union to cut $1 billion in annual health care benefits for more than 750,000 blue-collar workers, retirees and their families as part of an 'effort' to climb out of a financial crisis.
Senate Drops Food Stamp Cuts From Budget Tuesday 18 Oct 2005 Senate Republicans have dropped plans to cut the popular food stamp program as the chamber's leaders scrambled to assemble a $35 billion spending cut measure to implement the budget plan it adopted in April.
Producer prices biggest gain in 15 years 18 Oct 2005 U.S. producer prices shot up by an unexpectedly large 1.9 percent last month, the biggest gain in more than 15 years, as energy costs surged in the wake of hurricanes that devastated the U.S. Gulf Coast [energy companies' profiteering], a government report showed on Tuesday.
EU says bird flu is 'global threat' 18 Oct 2005 The European Union has declared the spread of bird flu from Asia into the EU a "global threat" requiring international co-operation, saying western Europe was ill prepared to deal with an influenza emergency.
Massachusetts city threatened by bulging dam 18 Oct 2005 Police closed off the southern Massachusetts city of Taunton on Tuesday and evacuated 2,000 people from their homes after a 100-year-old timber dam strained by record rainfall bulged and threatened to break.
Hurricane Wilma now Category 4 with 150 mph winds 19 Oct 2005 Hurricane Wilma has strengthened to an extremely dangerous Category 4 storm... The season's record-tying 21st storm, fueled by the warm waters of the northwest Caribbean Sea, strengthened rapidly as it headed into the Gulf of Mexico on a path expected to lead across storm-weary southern Florida by Saturday.
Hurricane Wilma ties storm record to worst year since 1851 19 Oct 2005 12th hurricane of the season was declared in the Caribbean yesterday - making this year only the second to experience a dozen such storms since records began in 1851.
Monitors in Iraq Review Votes Where 'Yes' Ballots Hit 90% 18 Oct 2005 Iraqi election officials said Monday that they were investigating "unusually high" vote totals in 12 Shiite and Kurdish provinces, where as many as 99 percent of the voters were reported to have cast ballots in favor of Iraq's new constitution. The investigation raised the possibility that the results of the referendum could be called into question.
Biological alarm in Washington --Did terrorists attack Washington with a deadly pathogen? By Mark Benjamin 18 Oct 2005 "Unknown to the crowd [of protesters], biological-weapons sensors, scattered for miles across Washington by the Department of Homeland Security, were quietly doing their work... Sometime between 10 a.m. on Sept. 24 and 10 a.m. on Sept. 25 , six of those machines sucked in trace amounts of deadly bacteria called Francisella tularensis... The biological-weapons detection system in Washington had never set off any alarms before... William Stanhope, associate director for special projects at the St. Louis University School of Public Health's Institute for Biosecurity, has been closely following scattered government and news reports about the incident. He's convinced it was a botched terrorist attack. "I think we were lucky and the terrorists were not good," he says."
Mugabe compares Bush and Blair to Hitler 18 Oct 2005 Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe used a United Nations gathering in Rome to compare George Bush and Tony Blair to Hitler and Mussolini. He said they were "international terrorists" bent on world domination.
Are British troops at breaking point in Iraq? Fears that British forces in Iraq are reaching "breaking point" grew last night as the first hard evidence of a crisis in morale began to emerge. 18 Oct 2005 Army sources are warning that the mood among soldiers of all ranks is at its gloomiest since the invasion in March 2003. The outlook has become darker as the war proves increasingly intractable and much more dangerous than troops had expected.
U.K. diplomat's Iraq book may be killed 17 Oct 2005 A British diplomat's insider look at the run-up to the war in Iraq seems likely to die the death of a thousand cuts at the hands of the Foreign Office.
CIA leak probe 'widening to include use of intelligence' 17 Oct 2005 Evidence is building that the probe conducted by Patrick Fitzgerald, special prosecutor, has extended beyond the leaking of a covert CIA agent's name to include questioning about the Bush regime's handling of pre-Iraq war intelligence.
'Hidden Scandal' in Miller Story, Charges Former CBS Newsman 16 Oct 2005 On Sunday, former CBS national security correspondent Bill Lynch posted his views in a long letter about it at the Romenesko site at poynter.org. 'There is one enormous journalism scandal hidden in Judith Miller's Oct. 16th first person article about the (perhaps lesser) CIA leak scandal. And that is Ms. Miller's revelation that she was granted a DoD security clearance while embedded with the WMD search team in Iraq in 2003. In an era where the Bush Administration seeks to conceal mountains of government activity under various levels of security classification, why would any self-respecting news organization or individual journalist agree to become part of such a system?'
Key CIA leak detail disputed as announcement nears 18 Oct 2005 Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff may have given New York Times 'reporter' Judith Miller inaccurate information about where the wife of Bush administration critic Joseph Wilson worked at the CIA, a former intelligence official said on Monday.
Venezuela co.: Gas leak likely sabotage 14 Oct 2005 Venezuela's state oil firm said that a leak at an inactive natural gas well has been brought under control, and was likely caused by sabotage. The main valve of an inactive natural gas well in the western Zulia state sprung a leak Thursday, state-run [non-corpora-terror-run] Petroleos de Venezuela SA, PDVSA, said in a statement.
Police defend terrorism arrest 17 Oct 2005 (UK) A police force has defended its decision to arrest a woman under terrorism laws after she trespassed on a restricted harbour path.
Grandmothers Arrested at Iraq War Protest 17 Oct 2005 Eighteen antiwar grandmothers were arrested and face disorderly conduct charges after they showed up at a military recruiting center in Times Square and said they wanted to enlist, a protest group said.
DeLay Was Offered Deal Before Indictment 17 Oct 2005 Before indicting Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas) on conspiracy and money-laundering charges, a Texas prosecutor offered the congressman a chance to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge that would have let DeLay keep his job as majority leader, the lawmaker's attorney said today.
Lawmaker's Abramoff Ties Investigated --Ohio's Ney Has Disavowed Lobbyist 18 Oct 2005 As federal officials pursue a wide-ranging investigation into the activities of Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff, his arrest on fraud charges in the purchase of a Florida casino boat company has increasingly focused attention on a little-known congressman [Robert W. Ney (R)] from rural Ohio.
Bush approval hits 39%, lowest of his presidency 17 Oct 2005 President [sic] Bush's job approval rating has slipped to 39%, the lowest measure of his presidency, according to a USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll. At the same time, job approval for Congress, which has a Republican majority, has fallen to 29%.
"This is the most outrageous example of deception and duplicity on the part of a Washington lobby in the history of the country." Drug business prescribes a novel cure for its ills By Lloyd Grove "...[T]he rich and powerful pharmaceutical lobby secretly commissioned a thriller novel whose aim was to scare the living daylights out of folks who might want to buy cheap drugs from Canada. When the project fell through in July, I'm told the drug lobby offered $100,000 to the co-authors and publisher in a vain effort to sweep it under the rug... 'This is the most outrageous example of deception and duplicity on the part of a Washington lobby in the history of the country,' said Capitol Hill denizen Jeff Weaver, chief of staff to Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a diehard foe of the pharmaceutical industry."
Mining companies still paying 19th century prices 17 Oct 2005 (CO) The nation's antiquated mining laws allowed the Bush regime to sell 155 acres of public land on the "Red Lady" to a mining company for less than $900... The sale was made possible by an 1872 mining law that lets the government sell, for just $2.50 or $5 an acre, public lands that contain minerals.
Win for tobacco as Supreme court rejects appeal 17 Oct 2005 The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday handed cigarette makers a victory, rejecting a Justice Department appeal aimed at allowing a potential $280 billion penalty in the government's landmark racketeering case against the industry.
High Court Allows Inmate's Abortion 18 Oct 2005 Issuing its first abortion-related decision under new Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., the Supreme Court refused yesterday to block the court-ordered transport of a female prison inmate to an outside clinic for an abortion.
Aid Program for Recipients of Medicare Comes to End 16 Oct 2005 About 192,000 Medicare beneficiaries with low incomes face a steep increase in costs because Congress has not renewed a program that paid their monthly premiums, the Bush regime said on Saturday.
Credit card payments to rise 17 Oct 2005 If you're one of the 7 million Americans who make minimum payments on their credit card bills each month, watch out. The smallest amount that consumers can pay on bank-backed credit card debt could double under federal guidelines that take full effect Jan. 1.
Report: Katrina spending lacked controls 17 Oct 2005 The government spent nearly $300 million for a private contractor [Landstar Express America Inc.] to hire buses, trucks and planes for hurricane relief efforts - apparently with little control or oversight, according to a Transportation Department memo released Monday.
Memo: FEMA Had Problems Before Katrina Tuesday 18 Oct 2005 FEMA struggled to locate food, ice, water and even body bags in the days following Hurricane Katrina, a frantic effort punctuated by bureaucratic chaos, infighting and concerns about media coverage, according to memos obtained Monday by The Associated Press.
New Orleans May Face Another Evacuation 17 Oct 2005 Mayor C. Ray Nagin said Monday that residents should be ready to evacuate if Tropical Storm Wilma strengthens and moves closer. He cautioned that levees would not protect the city from much more than a weak hurricane.
Experts say threat from virus is unprecedented 18 Oct 2005 The bird flu virus that has arrived in Europe poses an unprecedented threat, with experts warning that the number of human infections reported in Asia could be just a small proportion of the actual figure.
Bird flu reaches EU as Greece finds virus 17 Oct 2005 Greece said on Monday it had detected one turkey with bird flu on the eastern Aegean island of Chios, becoming the first EU country where the virus has spread to.
Warming to Cause Harsher Weather, Study Says 18 Oct 2005 Extreme weather events -- including heat waves, floods and drought -- are likely to become more common over the next century in the United States because of human-generated greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new study by Purdue University researchers.
Record-tying storm Wilma gaining strength 17 Oct 2005 A new tropical storm has formed in the Caribbean -- matching a 72-year-old record for the highest number of Atlantic storms in a single season.
Critical Windows patch may wreak PC havoc 14 Oct 2005 A Microsoft patch meant to fix critical security flaws in Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 is causing trouble for some users, the company said Friday.
Bush to Blair: First Iraq, then Saudi Arabia 16 Oct 2005 George Bush told the Prime Minister two months before the invasion of Iraq that Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea may also be dealt with over weapons of mass destruction, a top secret Downing Street memo shows. The US pResident told Tony Blair, in a secret telephone conversation in January 2003 that he "wanted to go beyond Iraq".
Cheney May Be Entangled in CIA Leak Investigation, People Say 17 Oct 2005 A special counsel is focusing on whether Vice pResident Dick Cheney played a role in leaking a covert CIA agent's name, according to people familiar with the probe that already threatens top White House aides Karl Rove and Lewis Libby.
Cheney aide a key focus in CIA leak probe: lawyers 16 Oct 2005 Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff could face obstruction and other charges over exchanges with a New York Times 'reporter' as prosecutors wind up an investigation of who leaked a covert CIA operative's identity, people close to the case said on Sunday.
Miller's Lawyer Says Aide Faces 'Problem' in CIA Probe --Attorney for Reporter Cites Possibility of Conflicting Testimony 17 Oct 2005 Vice pResident Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, has "a problem" in the investigation of the leak of a CIA operative's identity if his testimony conflicts with information given to the grand jury by New York Times 'reporter' Judith Miller, her lawyer said yesterday.
Miller forgot source of leak [?!?] 16 Oct 2005 New York Times 'reporter' Judith Miller said she doesn't remember who told her the name of a CIA agent at the center of a federal inquiry.
New Questions Arise in CIA Leak Probe 16 Oct 2005 New details about Judith Miller's decision to cooperate in the CIA leak probe are raising questions about whether Vice pResident Dick Cheney's chief of staff and his defense lawyer tried to steer the New York Times reporter's [sic] testimony.
A Contingency Plan 16 Oct 2005 Even before testifying last week for the fourth time before a grand jury probing the leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity, Bush senior adviser Karl Rove and others at the White House had concluded that if indicted, he would immediately resign or possibly go on unpaid leave, several legal and Administration sources familiar with the thinking told TIME. Resignation is the much more likely scenario, they say. The same would apply to I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, the Vice pResident's chief of staff, who also faces a possible indictment.
Government censors 'kill off' envoy's Iraq memoir 17 Oct 2005 An insider account of the Iraq war by one of Britain's most senior diplomats has been watered down by the Foreign Office to such an extent it is uncertain if it will ever be published.
Senior military investigator found dead in Iraq 17 Oct 2005 A senior British military police officer in Iraq involved in the investigation of alleged abuse of Iraqi civilians by soldiers has been found dead at a camp in Basra.
7 National Guard members jailed for abuse 16 Oct 2005 Seven members of the California National Guard have been sentenced to prison terms for using a stun gun to abuse Iraqi prisoners.
One victim's story By Neil Mackay "On each stage of his journey, as he descended further and further into the gulags and torture chambers of the war on terror, Benyam Mohammed al-Habashi was shadowed by British intelligence. The British were there in Karachi when Americans interrogated him and Pakistanis tortured him; they were feeding questions to the Moroccan torturers who took a scalpel to his penis; they stood back and watched as he was dragged to an American torture chamber in Afghanistan and then to the gulag of Guantanamo, where he languishes to this day. Al-Habashi is a perfect example of what happens to a person who has been subjected to 'extraordinary rendition'."
Bush Launches New Flack Attack --U.S. public shelled today from Iraq by weapon of mass distraction By Ward Harkavy 13 Oct 2005" The videoconference his [Bush's] handlers set up with U.S. soldiers in Iraq was staged... The soldier on the left side of the front row was actually a flack herself, though she didn't reveal it during the regime's 24-minute infomercial. Her name is Corine Lombardo, and I hope she stays safe in Iraq... I'm glad Lombardo is safe, and I mean her no harm, and it's nothing personal, but I don't believe a fucking word she says, because her job is to make the Bush regime look good."
Oops! The Faux media whores forgot to cover this one: Five U.S. soldiers killed in bombing during Iraqi referendum 16 Oct 2005 Five U.S. Army soldiers participating in a combat operation were killed by a roadside bomb west of Baghdad during Iraq's constitutional 'referendum,' the military said Sunday.
US bombs Iraq city amid fighting, 25 dead: doctor 16 Oct 2005 Heavy fighting broke out in Ramadi, a rebellious city west of Baghdad, on Sunday and U.S. planes bombed areas in the east of the city, killing 25 people, residents and a local doctor said.
Iran Accuses British Agents for Khuzestan Bomb Blasts 16 Oct 2005 Iran accused British agents for detonating two bombs yesterday in the province of Khuzestan that killed four people at the same time that the U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is in London to gather support against Iran's nuclear program.
Iran blames UK for bombs - reports 16 Oct 2005 Iranian officials have accused Britain of involvement in two bombings in an oil-rich town near Iran's border with Iraq that killed five people and wounded 95 others, according to Iranian news reports. ...Maj. Gen. Seyed Mohammad Hejazi, the commander of Iran's militia, said in a speech Sunday that the recent unrest in western Iran and the Ahvaz bombings "had an English accent" and were aimed at creating the impression that the country is lacking security.
Money for Nothing --Billions of dollars have disappeared, gone to bribe Iraqis and line contractors' pockets. By Philip Giraldi 24 Oct 2005 "The American-dominated Coalition Provisional Authority could well prove to be the most corrupt administration in history... At least $20 billion that belonged to the Iraqi people has been wasted, together with hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars. Exactly how many billions of additional dollars were squandered, stolen, given away, or simply lost will never be known because the deliberate decision by the CPA not to meter oil exports means that no one will ever know how much revenue was generated during 2003 and 2004."
Revealed: Blair's nuclear bombshell 17 Oct 2005 Tony Blair is facing a political backlash over his decision to order a new generation of nuclear weapons to replace the ageing Trident fleet at a cost of billions of pounds.
Judges liken terror laws to Nazi Germany 16 Oct 2005 A powerful coalition of judges, senior lawyers and politicians has warned that the Government is undermining freedoms citizens have taken for granted for centuries and that Britain risks drifting towards a police state. One of the country's most eminent judges has said that undermining the independence of the courts has frightening parallels with Nazi Germany.
Terror Laws Need Work: ACT 17 Oct 2005 (AU) The Federal Government is under increasing pressure from the territory leaders over what they claim is an attempt to push new anti-terrorism laws through parliament without proper debate.
Mercury 05 terror exercise today 17 Oct 2005 Thousands of police and bureaucrats will take part in a major anti-terrorist exercise today to test Australia's ability to respond to a terror attack. Mercury 05 will include 4000 people from security, emergency, law enforcement and Government agencies from five states and the ACT. It will test issues such as call-outs and deployments, critical infrastructure, media and public information. [What is there to *test* regarding 'media and public information?']
Ku Klux Klan Coming to Midland Public Television 16 Oct 2005 "The Klan," a video news program distributed by the Ku Klux Klan will be airing on MCTV in Midland, MI. The first airing of the program will be on Saturday, October 22nd at 11:30 pm. [They should have Bush as its first 'star.' Ok, I see a three options here: disabling their satellite dish, taking switcher black (or, programming an alternate source into the computer) in Master Control, or suppressing the signal in Transmission.]
Neighbors: Neo-Nazis Had No Right to March 16 Oct 2005 In the days leading up to a white supremacist march, ministers pleaded with residents to stay calm and community leaders organized peace rallies. Authorities [, working in tandem with the Nazis,] even delayed releasing the route so protesters wouldn't know where the group planned to march.
Ohio town reels over violence from Nazi event 16 Oct 2005 Police began receiving word midweek that gangs were going to descend on a neighborhood where a riot erupted over a planned march by a white supremacist group, but the resulting disturbance was worse than expected, the police chief said today.
Miers expected to be president's terror ally 15 Oct 2005 When it comes to defending the power of the president to wage the war on terror - even if that means making unpopular choices about the civil liberties of Americans and foreigners alike - conservatives think Harriet Miers, George W. Bush's nominee to the Supreme Court, will be onside.
DeLay raises more than $1.1 million in last 3 months 14 Oct 2005 Rep. Tom DeLay has been getting some serious help from his friends, raising more than $1.1 million in the last three months for campaign and legal expenses - and smashing his own formidable personal bests for both accounts.
Bush screws Blue states *once again* N.E. lawmakers rap homeland security cuts 16 Oct 2005 Dictator Bush is expected to sign homeland security legislation Tuesday that will slash federal funding to prepare police and firefighters to respond to terrorist attacks, prompting criticism from New England lawmakers who say it will leave the region less prepared for a major emergency. [Oh, but *Halliburton* received $72 million in bonuses in May 2005. ]
Privatizing Social Security Would Drive Millions Below Poverty Line - Report 14 Oct 2005 While pResident George W. Bush continues to assert that Americans would be better off with Social Security in private hands, a new study shows that privatization of the country's 70-year-old benefit program would drive millions of people into poverty.
The prison industry in the United States: Big business or a new form of slavery? 13 Oct 2005 By Vicky Pelaez Human rights organizations, as well as political and social ones, are condemning what they are calling a new form of inhumane exploitation in the United States, where they say a prison population of up to 2 million – mostly Black and Hispanic – are working for various industries for a pittance.
Administration mobilizes to prepare U.S. for possible pandemic 16 Oct 2005 The Bush regime is scrambling to prepare the nation for a possible global rampage by a new [synthesized] flu germ that it fears could kill nearly 2 million Americans, sicken tens of millions more and shatter the economy.
The Fear Contagion --A Flu Quarantine? No, Sir By Wendy Orent 16 Oct 2005 "A few scientists have suggested 'priming' people with a dose of the new vaccine against H5N1 before we even know whether a pandemic is coming... Earlier this month, he [Bush] suggested using the military to enforce a quarantine... This is an example of a cure that is as frightening as the disease. It is hard to imagine how the military would oversee a quarantined area. If a health worker, drug addict or teenager attempted to break the quarantine, what would soldiers do? Shoot on sight? ...Suppose that a government official today decided to round up exposed people and move them to a space like the Superdome in New Orleans. ...[D]epending on how densely packed people were, you could expect the flu strain trapped among them to increase in virulence. You'd be breeding a deadlier flu."
Bird flu pandemic 'will hit UK' 16 Oct 2005 A bird flu pandemic will hit Britain - but not necessarily this winter, the chief medical officer has said. Sir Liam Donaldson said a deadly outbreak would come when a strain of bird flu mutated with human flu.
Virulent strain of bird flu 'could kill 750,000' 17 Oct 2005 At least 50,000 British citizens will die in the event of an avian flu pandemic, according to Sir Liam Donaldson, the Government’s chief medical officer. He also made clear yesterday that the total deaths could reach 750,000 if the strain of the flu were virulent.
Pharmas Seek Flu Vaccine Suit Shield 15 Oct 2005 In Europe, Asia, South and North America governments clamor for bird flu vaccines - and they may have them so long as the pharmaceutical companies are indemnified against lawsuits. The U.S. Senate has already approved an amendment adding $3.9 billion to a military appropriation for preparations for the expected [generated] outbreak. That money is earmarked for stockpiling medications to combat the virus, if it does occur, and also, reportedly for "immunity from lawsuits if a vaccination causes harm," according to an article in the Washington insider publication, The Hill.
Why an exotic fruit is the world's only weapon against bird flu 15 Oct 2005 Star anise, the unusual fruit of a small oriental tree, is sold in supermarkets in the UK to consumers seeking its pungent, liquorice-like flavour. But the herb has a vital function as the source of shikimic acid from which the drug Tamiflu is made, the only defence the world currently has against the threatened flu pandemic.
Warmest September globally since beginning of reliable instruments --September warmer and drier than average across U.S. 13 Oct 2005 The United States experienced its fourth warmest September on record, while global land surface temperatures were the warmest on record for the month, according to scientists at the NOAA National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C.
Temblor hits off San Diego coast 16 Oct 2005 An underwater earthquake struck off the Southern California coast on Sunday more than 70 miles off the coast, according to the U.S. Geological Survey and the California Institute of Technology.
CIA leak prosecutor asked about any Cheney role 15 Oct 2005 A federal prosecutor questioned New York Times 'reporter' Judith Miller about whether Vice pResident Dick Cheney himself was aware or authorized her discussions with his chief of staff, Lewis Libby, about a covert CIA operative, Miller said on Saturday.
NYT: Miller Can't Recall Who Gave Her Valerie 'Flame' Name [LOL!] 16 Oct 2005 ...On Sept. 30, [Neo-con media whore] Judith Miller told the grand jury that her source was I. Lewis Libby, the vice president's chief of staff. But she said he did not reveal Ms. Plame's name. And when the prosecutor in the case asked her to explain how "Valerie Flame" [instead of Valerie Plame] appeared in the same notebook she used in interviewing Mr. Libby, Ms. Miller said she "didn't think" she heard it from him. "I said I believed the information came from another source, whom I could not recall," she wrote on Friday, recounting her testimony for an article that appears today.
Leaving New Orleans at Gunpoint By Todd Lowe 14 Oct 2005 "As soon as I opened the front door, I had about 15 guns pointed at me. There were several state police officers on the front step along with a harbor police officer, and about a dozen other officers most with rifles pointed directly at my chest and head. Several of the officers started yelling at me to get my hands up, which I did, and they got me out the door and sat me down on the front step of my house... They said that everything looked fine but that they did not think it was a safe environment for my children and therefore they were going to take my children from me if we did not immediately agree to leave. As I was not about to turn my children over to a bunch of armed thugs, I agreed to leave."
Schools to close and sport banned if bird flu hits 16 Oct 2005 The Government believes that a pandemic could kill some 700,000 people in Britain, and that it would be impossible to stop it once it reached the country. The new plans are designed merely to mitigate its worst effects and to try to stop a total breakdown of services and public order. [Can you *envision* enduring a (US-generated) bird flu pandemic, trapped in the Bush-Rumsfeld police state? The New Orleans Superdome was FEMA's little experiment. Wait until the armed terrorists from Blackwater USA start patrolling neighborhoods in tandem with federal troops to enforce the quarantines and deportations to FEMA's concentration camps... Lock & Load. --LRP.]
A Flu Hope, Or Horror? By Charles Krauthammer 14 Oct 2005 "...[R]elatively unnoticed was perhaps the most momentous event of our lifetime -- what is left of it, as I shall explain. It was announced last week that U.S. scientists have just created a living, killing copy of the 1918 'Spanish' flu. [Ok, everybody at once now... WHY???] ...Why try to steal loose nukes in Russia? A nuke can only destroy a city. The flu virus, properly evolved, is potentially a destroyer of civilizations. We might have just given it to our enemies."
U.S. Military Role in Iraqi 'Election' Far From 'Invisible' --Confusion at Polls Draws Colonel Reluctantly Into Details of Process 16 Oct 2005 Commanders had sought to play down the role of the U.S. military in the 'referendum,' portraying the vote as a critical step in the transfer of authority to Iraqi forces. But when the day finally arrived in Balad, an agricultural city about 50 miles north of Baghdad, it showed precisely the reverse: how the U.S. military remains an all-encompassing presence in Iraq's political process.
Arms smugglers seized in Kabul 15 Oct 2005 British and US citizens are among eight people arrested on suspicion of arms smuggling in the Afghan capital, Kabul, Afghan police have said. Those arrested had forged documents saying they were personnel of the International Security Assistance Force of peacekeepers, the sources said.
US 'private military contractors' already in-country to 'deal with' Chavez (vheadline.com) 15 Oct 2005 "Intelligence agencies are revealing that US private military contractors, active in Colombia 'under various contract umbrellas, including counter-narcotics and counter-insurgency' are building up to yet another attempted coup d'etat against Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez."
'Australia rushing shoot-to-kill terror laws' 16 Oct 2005 The Australian government was accused Saturday of rushing through anti[pro]-terror laws that allow police to use lethal force if they believe an attack is imminent. The shoot-to-kill prevision was revealed in confidential draft legislation leaked Friday to the annoyance of Prime Minister John Howard, who insisted the laws should be implemented quickly in the interest of national security.
Police state fears over terrorism laws 16 Oct 2005 Australia is moving towards a police state with harsh anti[pro]-terrorism laws that could be pushed through Parliament too quickly, the Law Council says. The Law Council of Australia said passing the proposed laws would push the nation closer to becoming a police state. "We're moving down that path," council president John North told the Ten Network. Under the bill, people who support insurgents can be jailed for up to seven years. Australian Federal Police will also be able to carry out what are termed preventative detention orders, effectively locking up people thought to be involved or to have knowledge of a terrorist act.
Anti-terror laws needed for years into the future: PM 16 Oct 2005 Prime Minister John Howard says Australia will be dealing with the threat of terrorism for many years to come and the Federal Government's new anti[pro]-terror laws are necessary. Mr Howard is facing criticism that the bill gives authorities arbitrary and unrestricted powers after a draft copy of the legislation was posted on the Internet.
ID card scanning system riddled with errors --Hi-tech equipment could misidentify one in 1,000 people, say experts 16 Oct 2005 One in 1,000 people could be inaccurately identified by the hi-tech scans being planned for national ID cards, experts have warned. The Government is planning to use face, iris and fingerprint scans to identify people on ID cards. But studies have found that being scanned in the wrong type of light or in shadow could lead to an inaccurate ID, because biometric technology is flawed.
Immigration services hold five 15 Oct 2005 (UK) Five of the 10 men arrested in terrorism raids last week are being held by immigration services. The other five have already been freed and none of the ten have been charged after being seized in dawn raids last week.
Patriot Act wins a round By Declan McCullagh 14 Oct 1005 "When Congress approved the Patriot Act in the frenzied legislative response to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, the FBI received new powers to send secret National Security Letters (NSLs) that demand business records (.pdf). Until that time, NSLs could be sent only when an investigation was directly related to international terrorism. Thanks to Section 505 of the Patriot Act, NSLs now can be used more broadly (.pdf), and individual FBI agents received the power to issue them. Recipients are prohibited by law from disclosing that they received an NSL, even to their attorney..."
Study Ranks Homeland Security Dept. Lowest in Morale 16 Oct 2005 At the Department of Homeland Security, only 12 percent of the more than 10,000 employees who returned a government questionnaire said they felt strongly that they were "encouraged to come up with new and better ways of doing things." Only 3 percent said they were confident that in their department, personnel decisions were "based on merit."
India warns: Google terror threat [!?!] 15 Oct 2005 Indian President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam expressed concern Saturday about a free mapping program from Google Inc., warning it could help terrorists by providing satellite photos of potential targets.
Nazi Gathering Turns Violent --Violence breaks out at white supremacy march, resulting in six arrests. 15 Oct 2005 A crowd that gathered to protest a neo-Nazi march Saturday turned violent, throwing baseball-sized rocks at police, vandalizing vehicles and stores, and setting fire to a neighborhood bar, authorities [who protected the Nazis, of course] said.
Ohio neo-Nazi march sparks violence, fire, arrests 15 Oct 2005 At least two dozen people were arrested on Saturday after a planned march by white supremacists in Toledo, Ohio, prompted a crowd to pelt police [who were protecting the Nazis] with rocks and bottles and set a fire, city officials said.
Rally condemns Katrina response 16 Oct 2005 Tens of thousands of African-Americans have been taking part in a rally in Washington to mark the 10th anniversary of the Million Man March. Many of the crowd voiced their anger at what they perceive as the unequal treatment of black people in the US.
Katrina response was criminal: Farrakhan 16 Oct 2005 Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan accused the US government of "criminal neglect" for its slow response to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, during a rally on Sunday marking the 10th anniversary of the Million Man March.
Abramoff investigation has GOP holding its breath --CIA leak probe may be getting more attention, but troubles surrounding former lobbyist worry Republicans more. 16 Oct 2005 A grand jury investigating the White House leak of a CIA agent's name is expected to wrap up its work in the next couple of weeks, but it is another investigation — of former Republican superstar lobbyist Jack Abramoff — that has the Republican political establishment holding its breath. Abramoff is at the center of ever more complicated inquiries that touch on subjects as wide-ranging as allegations of influence-peddling in Congress and the White House, a gangland-style slaying in Florida and political shenanigans in Guam.
DeLay Uses Website to Attack Prosecutor 15 Oct 2005 Stung by his recent indictment in Texas, Tom Delay is trying to turn his legal woes into a financial boon for his re-election. The former House majority leader is using his congressional campaign to distribute to voters derogatory information about the prosecutor who brought the charges against him and to solicit donations for his re-election.
Aid Program for Recipients of Medicare Comes to End 16 Oct 2005 About 192,000 Medicare beneficiaries with low incomes face a steep increase in costs because Congress has not renewed a program that paid their monthly premiums, the Bush administration said on Saturday.
Consumer prices soar --Most of biggest increase in 25 years attributed to ExxonMobil's greed ['energy costs'] 15 Oct 2005 Consumer prices surged in September at a pace unmatched in more than 25 years as Hurricanes Katrina and Rita sent energy prices soaring.
Illinois sours on Bush --Iraq, economy drive job approval down to 33%, stir fear in state GOP 15 Oct 2005 Pessimism over the war in Iraq and skepticism about the economy at home have cost President Bush support among the most reliable segments of Illinois Republicans, a Tribune/WGN-TV poll shows, and now nearly 6 out of 10 voters statewide disapprove of his job performance.
Men overcompensate when their masculinity is threatened, Cornell study shows 02 Aug 2005 Threaten a man's masculinity and he will assume more macho attitudes, according to a study by a Cornell University researcher...
Dire forecast for bird flu --Top U.S. health official: Nearly impossible to stop global [engineered] outbreak 15 Oct 2005 After wandering amid cages of birds and rabbits at an open-air market in Hanoi... and after visiting a Haiphong family sickened by bird flu, the United States’ top health official came to a grim conclusion: Preventing the start of a global flu outbreak is just about impossible.
WHO expert warns of bird flu pandemic 16 Oct 2005 The outbreak of bird flu that has now reached Europe could mutate into a human pandemic claiming millions of lives worldwide, a top influenza expert at the World Health Organisation (WHO) said.
Tests Confirm Deadly Bird Flu in Romania 15 Oct 2005 Tests have confirmed a link between the bird flu found in Romania and the deadly virus that has devastated flocks in Asia and turned up in Turkey, the European Commission said Saturday.
Romanian Bird Flu Virus Is H5N1 Type, Minister Says 15 Oct 2005 The bird flu virus found in dead poultry in eastern Romania is the H5N1 strain responsible for human deaths in Asia, Romanian Agriculture Minister Gheorghe Flutur said today.
Bird Flu Virus Resistant to Tamiflu 14 Oct 2005 Bird flu virus found in a Vietnamese girl was resistant to the main drug that's being stockpiled in case of a pandemic, a sign that it's important to keep a second drug on hand as well, a researcher said Friday.
Tropical Storm Warning Issued for Caymans 16 Oct 2005 A tropical storm warning was issued for the Cayman Islands on Saturday and residents, many of whom had not removed the hurricane shutters from earlier storms this season, began preparing for the worst. The system could become Tropical Storm Wilma on Sunday, which would make it the 21st named storm of the season, tying the record for the most storms in an Atlantic season, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said.
Terrorist laws to lock up objectors 15 Oct 2005 (AU) Supporting the resistance movement in Iraq, Afghanistan or any country where Australian troops are deployed could carry a penalty of seven years' jail under the Prime Minister's new terrorism laws. The changes also allow for control orders of unlimited duration, secret preventive detention, the monitoring of lawyers, and life imprisonment for funding terrorist organisations... New sedition offences will put big constraints on anti-war protests and come down hard on those advocating violence against any religious, national or political group. Detentions are secret but suspects are allowed to contact a family member or employers to say they are safe but, "not able to be contacted for the time being". If they disclose the detention they can be jailed for up to five years.
Bush told Blair of 'going beyond Iraq' 15 Oct 2005 George Bush told Tony Blair shortly before the invasion of Iraq that he intended to target other countries, including Saudi Arabia, which, he implied, planned to acquire weapons of mass destruction.
U.S., Syria border clashes reported 14 Oct 2005 The Bush regime is reportedly considering incursions into Syria as it tries to stem the flow of arms and fighters for the Iraqi resistance. The New York Times says U.S. and Syrian forces have already been involved in skirmishes on the border, including one this summer that left several Syrians dead.
G.I.'s and Syrians in Tense Clashes on Iraqi Border 15 Oct 2005 A series of clashes in the last year between American and Syrian troops, including a prolonged firefight this summer that killed several Syrians, has raised the prospect that cross-border military operations may become a dangerous new front in the Iraq war, according to current and former military and government officials.
U.N. food envoy says coalition [sic] breaking law in Iraq 14 Oct 2005 A United Nations human rights investigator on Friday accused U.S. and British forces in Iraq of breaching international law by depriving civilians of food and water in besieged cities as they try to flush out resistance fighters.
Ramadi's Rigged Elections: Voters said to hunt for polling sites in west Iraq 14 Oct 2005 Hours before a crucial referendum on a new constitution, voters in western Iraq, where many are expected to say "No," were asking themselves a troubling question: where are the polling stations?
Sabotage Blacks Out Baghdad On Eve of 'Election' 14 Oct 2005 Resistance fighters are being blamed for sabotage to power lines to the Iraqi capital Friday evening, knocking out electricity across the greater Baghdad area and plunging it into darkness on the eve of the country's key vote on a new constitution.
KR Reporter Files Harrowing Account After Stint With Iraqi Military 13 Oct 2005 In a remarkable report published widely Thursday, Tom Lasseter, longtime Knight Ridder correspondent in its Baghdad bureau, reveals what he learned as possibly the first American journalist to embed with an all-Iraqi military operation in the war -- and it isn't pretty.
US judge hears lawyers' petition for Guantanamo hunger strikers 14 Oct 2005 Lawyers for hunger-striking prisoners at the US detention center in Guantanamo, Cuba, appealed to a federal judge for the right to more access to their clients and their medical records.
Hussein Lawyers Plan to Challenge Tribunal 14 Oct 2005 Saddam Hussein's lawyers plan to challenge the legitimacy of the tribunal set to try him in Iraq and argue that he is immune from prosecution for alleged crimes he committed as president, one of his lawyers said.
US cannot explain suspicious Zawahri letter passage 14 Oct 2005 U.S. intelligence officials who released a letter purporting to be from an al Qaeda leader to Iraq resistance leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi this week said on Friday they could not account for a passage that has raised doubts about the document's authenticity. "My greetings to all the loved ones and please give me news of Karem and the rest of the folks I know," [ROFL!] says an unedited English 'translation' [creation] posted at www.dni.gov, the office Web site of U.S. intelligence chief John Negroponte.
Top Bush aide questioned for hours in leak probe 14 Oct 2005 U.S. Dictator George W. Bush's top political adviser, Karl Rove, testified at length on Friday for a fourth time before a grand jury investigating the leak of a covert CIA operative's identity, as prosecutors neared a decision on whether to bring charges.
Rove faces grand jury for fourth time over CIA leak 14 Oct 2005 Dictator Bush's closest political adviser appeared before a federal grand jury today as prosecutors decided whether to bring charges against him over the leaking of the name of a CIA agent to reporters.
Jitters at the White House Over the C.I.A. Leak Inquiry 14 Oct 2005 Karl Rove's first challenge on Wednesday morning came before he cleared his driveway: how to get past the five television crews and the three photographers waiting for him. He flashed his blinding high beams into the camera lenses and sped by. That is the way things are for the Bush White House these days.
Seven seized in terror swoops 15 Oct 2005 Dutch police placed a cordon around the main complex of government offices and parliament and stormed into several homes yesterday, detaining at least seven terror suspects in an operation meant to disrupt a plot to attack politicians and public buildings.
Dutch police arrest seven in anti-terror raids 14 Oct 2005 Gunshots have been heard in The Hague as police arrested seven people on suspicion of plotting attacks against politicians and government buildings. [Why haven't the *politicians* been arrested on suspicion of plotting attacks against *us?*]
Draconian anti-terrorism bill resubmitted after fire bombings 14 Oct 2005 A post-9/11 anti-terrorism bill submitted to the Swazi parliament but then suspended without passage has been tabled again in the wake of two recent fire-bombings in the capital, Mbabane. [It's important to note that If people simply marched on the capital, the bill would *not* have been resubmitted.]
Parade Magazine's Chavez Smear --Venezuelan president a terrorist funder? (fair.org) 12 Oct 2005 "On October 9, Parade magazine--the Sunday newspaper supplement with a circulation of 34.5 million, making it the country's most widely distributed magazine--published an inaccurate smear against Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez... Please call on Parade Magazine to either provide evidence for its claim that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is 'funding revolutionaries and terrorists throughout Latin America' or else issue a retraction of the unattributed charge." Contact: Personality Parade - email@example.com; Parade Magazine - Lee Kravitz, editor firstname.lastname@example.org.
TV evangelist renews Chavez attacks 10 Oct 2005 TV evangelist [Reichwing terrorist] Pat Robertson has accused Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez of giving Osama bin Laden $US1.2 million after the September 11 attacks and of trying to obtain nuclear material from Iran. Mr Robertson caused uproar in August when he called during his televised religious program for the US Government to assassinate Chavez.
Poll: Bush Presidency Judged Unsuccessful [Nah... 'ya think?] 14 Oct 2005 For the first time, more people say George W. Bush's pResidency will be judged as unsuccessful than say it will be seen as a success, a poll finds.
Downing Street Peace Camp --Cindy Sheehan tactics come to London --Stop the War Coalition (UK) Tuesday 18 - Wednesday 19 October, starts at 3 pm for 24 hours "They will be camping outside No 10 for 24 hours to directly confront Tony Blair with their case..... Please join them for however short or long a period of time."
La. Investigates Allegations of Euthanasia at Hospital --Autopsies Sought on 45 In Post-Katrina Inquiry 15 Oct 2005 Louisiana's attorney general is investigating allegations that medical staff at one New Orleans hospital euthanized some seriously ill elderly patients in the chaotic days after Hurricane Katrina, his spokeswoman confirmed Friday.
Katrina Food Aid Blocked by U.S. Rules --Meals From Britain Sit in Warehouse 14 Oct 2005 In the early days of September, as military helicopters plucked desperate New Orleanians from rooftops and Red Cross shelters swelled with the displaced, nearly 400,000 packaged meals landed on a tarmac at Little Rock Air Force Base and were whisked by tractor-trailer to Louisiana. But most of the $5.3 million worth of food never reached the victims of Hurricane Katrina.
Bush asked to explain why he won't release heating oil 14 Oct 2005 Democratic Rep. Edward Markey of Massachusetts asked the Bush regime on Friday to explain why it will not tap the government's emergency heating oil stockpile, even though federal law allowed it do so this week after heating fuel prices reached high levels.
80% of Poor Lack Civil Legal Aid, Study Says 15 Oct 2005 At least 80 percent of low-income Americans who need civil legal assistance do not receive any, in part because legal aid offices in this country are so stretched that they routinely turn away qualified prospective clients, a new study shows.
Legislators aim to put limits on uses of eminent domain 14 Oct 2005 Susette Kelo lives 304 miles from the Pennsylvania Capitol. But her failed legal battle to save her Connecticut home from government seizure is inspiring legislation to preserve property owners' rights in Pennsylvania and across the nation... Lawmakers want to ensure Pennsylvanians' properties are protected from a similar fate.
Stage 1 power alert issued for Southern California 14 Oct 2005 Authorities declared a Stage 1 power emergency for Southern California on Friday because of a potential shortfall in electrical supplies as temperatures rose into the 90s.
High Court Blocks Prison Abortion Order 15 Oct 2005 The U.S. Supreme Court late Friday temporarily blocked a federal judge‘s ruling that ordered Missouri prison officials to drive a pregnant inmate to a clinic on Saturday for an abortion.
Reconstructed 1918 killer flu similar to H5N1 strain 14 Oct 2005 The deadly H5N1 avian influenza virus is hitting bird populations at Europe's easternmost borders just as new research suggests that the virus could jump to humans more easily than was first thought. A reconstruction of the strain that caused the influenza pandemic of 1918, which killed around 50 million people, shows that it shares several characteristics with H5N1. [Right, that's because the Bush bioterror teams reconstructed it. *Duh.*]
H5N1: Killer Bird Flu Here --Killer strain of bird flu virus has reached Europe and is in danger of infecting Britain 14 Oct 2005 The deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu has hit Europe and could soon reach Britain, raising fears of a killer epidemic.
Deadly strain of Asian bird flu arrives on Europe's doorstep 14 Oct 2005 A lethal strain of bird flu that has killed 60 people in south-east Asia has appeared on the doorstep of Europe. British scientists confirmed yesterday that an outbreak of bird flu on a poultry farm in Turkey was caused by the deadly H5N1 strain of influenza.
Turkey tests 9 for bird flu as experts meet 14 Oct 2005 Turkish medical staff on Friday tested nine people for possible bird flu a day after European health officials confirmed what many had long feared -- the arrival of the deadly H5N1 strain on Europe's doorstep.
Flu Strain Isolated in Vietnamese Girl Is Resistant to Drug, Scientists Report 15 Oct 2005 Strains of avian influenza virus that are resistant to the antiflu drug Tamiflu have been isolated from a patient in Vietnam, scientists reported yesterday.
No effective vaccine for humans until first cases found 14 Oct 2005 As the experts were quick to point out yesterday, now that avian flu has arrived in Europe it is only a matter of time before bird flocks in Britain contract the virus.
And yet: Call to vaccinate a million UK children against bird flu 14 Oct 2005 Health chiefs say more than a million children in Britain must be vaccinated against [with] flu as fears grow that a deadly avian form of the disease will arrive here within weeks.
Planet sees warmest September on record 14 Oct 2005 Worldwide, it was the warmest September on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Friday.
Climate change to hit UK insurance premiums 15 Oct 2005 The cost of home insurance in Britain could soar in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, insurance companies are warning. The Association of British Insurers said its members were concerned that the hurricane was part of a pattern of global climate change in which incidents of severe weather would become more common, both at home and abroad.
Waterlogged northeastern US under flood warnings 14 Oct 2005 Flood warnings covered much of the northeastern United States on Friday as swollen rivers overflowed their banks and residents fled their water-filled homes after a week of unrelenting rain.
"They're determined to have martial law." Republican Congressman Slams Bush On Militarized Police State Preparation 12 Oct 2005 Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas) has accused the Bush administration of attempting to set in motion a militarized police state in America by enacting gun confiscation martial law provisions in the event of an avian flu pandemic... "I believe it is the President hyping this and Rumsfeld, but it has to be in combination with the people being fearful enough that they will accept the man on the white horse. My first reaction going from my political and medical background is that it's way overly hyped and to think that they have gone this far with it, without a single case in the whole country and they're willing to change the law and turn it into a military state? That is unbelievable! They're determined to have martial law."
"This is a trend. You're going to see a lot more guys like us in these situations." Blackwater Down By Jeremy Scahill 22 Sep 2005 "In an hourlong conversation I had with four Blackwater men, they characterized their work in New Orleans as 'securing neighborhoods' and 'confronting criminals.' ...When asked what authority they were operating under, one guy said, 'We're on contract with the Department of Homeland Security.' Then, pointing to one of his comrades, he said, 'He was even deputized by the governor of the state of Louisiana. We can make arrests and use lethal force if we deem it necessary.' ...With President [sic] Bush using the Katrina disaster to try to repeal Posse Comitatus (the ban on using U.S. troops in domestic law enforcement) and Blackwater and other security firms clearly initiating a push to install their paramilitaries on U.S. soil, the war is coming home in yet another ominous way."
Iraq begins security lockdown 14 Oct 2005 Checkpoints and concrete barriers were put up around polling stations Thursday as a 'vote' loomed on the draft constitution that some Sunni Arab groups steadfastly opposed despite a last-minute compromise to soothe their fears.
U.S., Iraqis Prepare to Enforce Curfew 13 Oct 2005 U.S. and Iraqi forces stepped up security across the country Thursday and prepared to impose an overnight curfew.
Straw: Stable Iraq to take 10 years 13 Oct 2005 Iraq can be expected to take five to 10 years to become a stable democracy, according to Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. Government ministers have repeatedly stated that British soldiers will remain in the country until it is stable.
Soldier Killed by IED 13 Oct 2005 A Task Force Liberty soldier died of injuries suffered when a combat patrol struck an improvised explosive device near Dujayl, Iraq, at about 1 p.m. today, military officials reported.
More U.S. Troops Die in Iraq Bombings Even as Armoring Improves 13 Oct 2005 Roadside bombs are killing more American troops in Iraq, as the frequency and sophistication of resistance attacks may be outstripping U.S. efforts to increase protection for soldiers.
For Injured U.S. Troops, 'Financial Friendly Fire' --Flaws in Pay System Lead to Dunning, Credit Trouble 14 Oct 2005 Nine months after Robert Loria was wounded in Iraq, the Army garnished his wages and then, as he prepared to leave the service, hit him with a $6,200 debt... This spring, a collection agency started calling. He owed another $646 for military housing. "I was shocked," recalled Loria, now 28 and medically retired from the Army. "After everything that went on, they still had the nerve to ask me for money."
Bush Teleconference With Soldiers Staged 13 Oct 2005 It was billed as a conversation with U.S. troops, but the questions Dictator Bush asked on a teleconference call Thursday were choreographed to match his goals for the war in Iraq and Saturday's vote on a new Iraqi constitution.
Bush accused of staging chat with troops 14 Oct 2005 The White House found itself at the centre of another public relations disaster yesterday after a Pentagon official was seen coaching a group of handpicked US troops before a live teleconference with pResident George Bush.
A Taste For Torture By S. Ebbets 13 Oct 2005 "Throughout history there have been leaders who gained reputations as notorious tortures and killers; Ivan the Terrible, Vlad the Impaler, Karimov the Boiler, friend of George W. Bush, the Texecutioner. Not only is Bush a merciless executioner, but there is more than enough evidence to send him and his entire administration to The Hague to face war crimes charges."
Court: Saddam Hussein to face murder, torture charges 13 Oct 2005 Ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein will likely face charges of premeditated murder, torture and forced expulsion and disappearances when he goes on trial next week for a 1982 massacre of Shiites, a court official said Thursday. [OMG, what about Bush??? George W. Bush has murdered and tortured *a lot* more people than Saddam Hussein! Let's get that party started (the treason trials for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove)!]
Thatcher reveals her doubts over basis for Iraq war 14 Oct 2005 Baroness Thatcher has criticised Tony Blair for taking Britain to war in Iraq on the basis of flawed evidence about Saddam Hussein's weapons. The former prime minister's embarrassing criticism emerged as Mr Blair was among the 670 guests who attended a party to mark her 80th birthday.
Bomb Destroys 8 Tankers in Afghanistan 14 Oct 2005 A bomb ripped through eight fuel tankers parked outside a U.S.-led occupation base in southern Afghanistan on Friday and injured two drivers, officials and eyewitnesses said.
Chavez kicks out U.S. evangelists for spying 12 Oct 2005 Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Wednesday ordered U.S. New Tribes evangelical missions working with indigenous groups to leave the country after accusing them of "imperialist infiltration" and spying. [New Tribes Mission: In Paraguay, the NTM acted in collusion with the dictator Stroessner, for who the policy of settlement camps and conversion fitted in nicely with his plans for opening up the forest to mining and logging interests. The NTM are also accused of killing many more people, for example the Ayoreo, also of Paraguay, by bringing western diseases into the area... NTM are based in Sanford, Florida, but have loads of bible schools, language schools, aviation centres [9/11 tie-in?] and so on all around the US and the rest of the world.]
DNI and D/CIA Announce Establishment of the National Clandestine Service (Central Intelligence Agency Press Release) 13 Oct 2005 "The Director of National Intelligence, John D. Negroponte, and the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Porter J. Goss, today announced the creation of the National Clandestine Service (NCS) at CIA."
Undercover CIA official to oversee new National Clandestine Service [Stasi] 13 Oct 2005 A top CIA manager who remains undercover will soon oversee the traditional human spying activities for the entire intelligence community, a new position created in the post-Sept. 11 intelligence 'reforms.' Publicly, he is referred to simply as "Jose," said U.S. officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the plan's full details had yet to be released. Jose, as head of the new National Clandestine Service, will coordinate operations for the FBI, Defense Department and other agencies involved in human intelligence.
The Nexus of Politics and Terror By Keith Olbermann 12 Oct 2005 "I suggested that in the last three years there had been about 13 similar coincidences - a political downturn for the administration, followed by a 'terror event' - a change in alert status, an arrest, a warning. We figured we’d better put that list of coincidences on the public record..."
Al Qaeda: Letter Is a U.S. Fake 13 Oct 2005 A posting on an Islamic Web site Thursday accused the United States of fabricating a letter in which Al Qaeda's No. 2 leader asked for money and laid out al Qaeda's plans for expanding the resistance movement in the Middle East.
Sleepwalking into Slavery? By William Bowles 13 Oct 2005 "The great British public, apparently don’t think that home secretary’s Clarke’s proposed additions to the anti-terror legislation including the 90-day detention without trial, apply to them, at least as far as we know, as nobody has actually asked them. Perhaps they need to be reminded that almost identical laws were passed by the Apartheid regime of South Africa. ...The similarities between the two are no accident nor were the original South African laws, modelled as they were on laws passed by the Nazis in 1930s, and enacted for exactly the same reason – to suppress dissent and to cover up the lies the state uses in order to justify its policies."
Terror tip for rich --E-mails warned wealthy of city attack 13 Oct 2005 The city's rich and well-connected were tipped off to last week's subway terror threat days before average New Yorkers, the Daily News has learned. At least two E-mails revealing the purported plot were sent to a select crowd of business and arts executives early last week by New Yorkers who claimed to have close connections to Homeland Security and other federal officials, authorities said.
Homeland Security starts internal probe of possible leak of terror threat 13 Oct 2005 The Homeland Security Department has launched an internal investigation into whether department officials privately tipped off relatives or friends about last week's subway terrorism threat before the public learned of the news, officials said Thursday.
Political Screening For All Park Service Managers --Mid-Level Managers Picked for Fealty to "the President's Management Agenda" (PEER Press Release) 13 Oct 2005 "The National Park Service has started using a political loyalty test for picking all its top civil service positions, according to an agency directive released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). Under the new order, all mid-level managers and above must also be approved by a Bush administration political appointee."
ACLU of Florida Challenges Pat-Down Searches at NFL Games --Suspicionless Searches Make Fans Less Free But Not Any Safer, Says ACLU (ACLU Press Release) 13 Oct 2005 "Acting on behalf of a Tampa Bay Buccaneers season ticket holder, the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida today filed a lawsuit seeking to stop officials from conducting suspicionless pat-down searches of all persons entering Raymond James Stadium to watch National Football League games."
EU says internet could fall apart 12 Oct 2005 A battle has erupted over who governs the internet, with America demanding to maintain a key role in the network it helped create and other countries demanding more control. The European commission is warning that if a deal cannot be reached at a meeting in Tunisia next month the internet will split apart. The US government, which funded the development of the internet in the 60s, said in June it intended to retain its role overseeing Icann, reneging on a pledge made during Bill Clinton's presidency.
Nuclear Plant Has Flaw Undetected for 19 Years 14 Oct 2005 A potential problem with the emergency reactor core cooling system at the nation's largest nuclear power plant went undetected from 1986, when the plant began producing electricity, until last week, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the plant operator confirmed Thursday.
Bush's ratings sink amid public pessimism 13 Oct 2005 Despite a drive by Dictator George W. Bush to rebuild support and restore public confidence, three new opinion polls show his approval ratings sinking ever deeper in a sea of political troubles and pessimism.
A Polling Free-Fall Among Blacks By Dan Froomkin 13 Oct 2005 "In what may turn out to be one of the biggest free-falls in the history of presidential polling, President [sic] Bush's job-approval rating among African Americans has dropped to 2 percent, according to a new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll. The drop among blacks drove Bush's overall job approval ratings to an all-time low of 39 percent in this poll."
Papers: DeLay Group Used $100K for Races 13 Oct 2005 Tom DeLay's political group used nearly $100,000 in corporate and unlimited donations to mail last-minute political appeals praising five congressional candidates despite rules meant to keep such money out of federal races, documents released Thursday show.
DeLay's Telephone Records Subpoenaed 14 Oct 2005 A Texas prosecutor subpoenaed telephone records for the home phone of former House majority leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) and the phone of his political campaign Thursday.
Report: DeLay car loan records subpoenaed 13 Oct 2005 Prosecutors in Texas have subpoenaed home phone records from U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, as well as those of his daughter and campaign office.
Conservatives launch TV assault on Earle --Ads running in Austin liken the Travis County DA to an attack dog 12 Oct 2005 A national conservative organization today is launching a television commercial in Austin and nationally comparing Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle to an attack dog because of his prosecution of U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay.
UK on alert for deadly virus 13 Oct 2005 Contingency plans have been put in place in the UK if the deadly avian flu virus spreads to the UK, the country's chief veterinary officer said.
Bird flu warning: give jabs to those at risk 14 Oct 2005 European Union governments were urged yesterday to stockpile anti-viral drugs and offer the winter [useless] "flu shot" to as many vulnerable people as possible, after the discovery of the H5N1 strain of bird flu in Turkey was confirmed.
Bird flu reaches fringes of Europe 13 Oct 2005 The Federal Veterinary Office on Thursday reiterated that the necessary precautions were in place to prevent the spread of bird flu in Switzerland.
Bird flu in Turkey is deadly strain 13 Oct 2005 The bird flu virus discovered in Turkish poultry is the highly-pathogenic H5N1 strain that scientists worry could mutate into a human virus and spark a global flu pandemic likely to kill millions, EU authorities confirmed today.
16th H5N1 Fatality Transferred 20 Minutes Before Death (Recombinomics Commentary) 12 Oct 2005 "...In the above case, holding the patient three days at the primary facility led to his death 20 minutes after transfer. The testing procedures in Indonesia are poorly conceived for identification of H5N1 patients. The procedures are very effective at generating false negatives."
Greenwich Ready To Evacuate Neighborhoods If River Rises 13 Oct 2005 (CT) Greenwich firefighters are prepared to evacuate two neighborhoods if a dam on the Byram River fails to hold back rising water. [Greenwich, Connecticut? It should be fascinating to compare their evacuation to the one that took place in New Orleans.]
Fair Trade Coffee Leader Questions Nestlé Entry Into Market --Equal Exchange Cites Multinational's 'Credibility Gap' (Organic Consumers Association Press Release) 13 Oct 2005 "Equal Exchange, Inc., who began importing and marketing fairly traded coffee from small farmers in 1986, expressed grave doubts about the entry of the Nestlé Corporation into the Fair Trade system, as announced earlier today."
US mulls federal troops for bird flu quarantine 12 Oct 2005 The Pentagon is looking at the possibility of using federal troops to enforce a quarantine in the event of an outbreak of pandemic bird flu in the United States, a senior official said on Wednesday. Dictator George W. Bush said last week he would consider using the military to "effect a quarantine" in response to any outbreak of avian influenza, but provided few details. [Others mull *insurrection.* We're not going to FEMA's concentration camps, folks.]
Cheney's role in outing of CIA agent under examination, sources close to prosecutor say 12 Oct 2005 Cheney's role in CIA outing not known Special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is trying to determine whether Vice President [sic] Dick Cheney had a role in the outing of covert CIA operative Valerie Plame-Wilson, individuals close to Fitzgerald have confirmed. Plame’s husband was a vocal critic of prewar intelligence used by President [sic] George W. Bush to build support for the Iraq war. [Oops! *Down* goes the Bush regime and *up* goes the quarantines!]
SEC Issues Subpoena to Frist, Sources Say --Records Sought On Sale of Stock 13 Oct 2005 Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) has been subpoenaed to turn over personal records and documents as federal authorities step up a probe of his July sales of HCA Inc. stock, according to sources familiar with the investigation.
Anti-terror laws 'could be unlawful' --QC warns over 90-day detention plans 13 Oct 2005 The government's plan to detain terror suspects for up to 90 days without charge could be struck down by the courts as a breach of human rights, its own official anti-terror watchdog warned last night.
Government publishes anti-terror bill 12 Oct 2005 (UK) The anti-terror bill is intended to make it easier for police to arrest and question suspects who may be planning an attack but do not have sufficient evidence against them to be charged... The 90-day detention period was included in the bill at the request of the police.
Blair unveils tough British anti-terrorism laws 12 Oct 2005 Britain published sweeping plans to fight [foment] terrorism on Wednesday which, if passed into law, would let police hold suspects for three months without charge, sparking anger from senior judges and civil rights groups.
Terrorism bill 2005 (Text) 12 Oct 2005
Indonesia promises terrorism review 13 Oct 2005 Canberra has persuaded Indonesia to consider toughening up its counter-terrorism laws, and will send a team to Jakarta to discuss Australia's experiences and offer assistance.
Bush gets Homeland Security funding bill 12 Oct 2005 Congress last week approved legislation that would fund the Department of Homeland Security next year, sending it to Dictator Bush for his signature. The Senate passed the $31 billion bill by a voice vote, while the House approved it 347-70.
New York subway threat was a hoax, security sources admit 12 Oct 2005 The alleged terror threat that sparked a big security alert on New York's trains and subway last week turned out to be a hoax concocted by an unreliable [but well-paid] US informant in Iraq, it emerged yesterday.
US publishes 'al-Qaeda's letter' [LOL!] 12 Oct 2005 US intelligence has published in full what it says is a letter from al-Qaeda's number two to the man said to head the movement in Iraq. US officials insist they believe it is genuine and recent. But it is impossible to check that independently.
If the 2000 election was not stolen... Al Gore: "We would not be trying to control and intimidate the news media. We would not be routinely torturing people. We would be a different country." 12 Oct 2005 President Al Gore said Wednesday he had no intention of ever running for president again, but he said the United States would be "a different country" if he had won the 2000 election, launching into a scathing attack of the Bush regime.
Torture and the "Controversial" Arc of Injustice 09 Oct 2005 "Torture. Controversial. In 2005 -- not 1505, 1705 or 1905 -- in the 21st century, in a country that claims to be at the world’s vanguard of democracy and human rights... Should the U.S. military be engaging in torture? Evidently, such questions are now controversial. That should tell us something about the news media’s current political climate in the United States of America."
CIA faults Iraq prewar plans 12 Oct 2005 A newly released report published by the CIA rebukes the Bush administration for not paying enough attention to prewar intelligence that predicted the factional rivalries now threatening to split Iraq.
Iraq stability could take 10 years: Jack Straw 13 Oct 2005 Iraqis may have to wait up to 10 years before their country becomes a stable democracy, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said.
Australian troops under fire in Iraq 13 Oct 2005 Unidentified gunmen have opened fire on Australian soldiers patrolling near Iraq's southern city of Samawah, the chief of the Australian Defence Force said today.
The death squads of Iraq By Truth_About_Iraqis 12 Oct 2005 "Don't tell me terrorists destroyed Iraq. Oh, wait, you meant the illegal invaders, the foreign occupiers. The ones wearing the stars and stripes on their sleeves, the ones wearing the union jack. Yes, they are terrorists and they have destroyed Iraq. They started destroying Iraq in 1990 and it hasn't stopped. Yes, I worry about all my people from these terrorists... You created a battleground in my front yard and a morgue in the backyard for my children, my sisters and my brothers."
U.K. Troops May Have to Go Without Equipment, Lawmakers Say 13 Oct 2005 The U.K. armed forces have to operate older, less-capable equipment as delays and cost overruns strain the defense budget, a group of British lawmakers said. The Ministry of Defence's "performance on delivering equipment to cost and to time is disappointing,'' the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee said in an e-mailed statement today.
Britain says Iran training Iraqi bombers: papers 11 Oct 2005 Britain has accused Iran of running training camps to teach militants how to carry out roadside bomb attacks on British troops in southern Iraq [?!?], according to newspaper reports on Wednesday.
Syrian interior minister 'commits suicide' 12 Oct 2005 One of the most senior members of the Syrian government has committed suicide [?!?] days before the publication of a UN report into the murder of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri, it was reported today.
Chavez kicks out U.S. evangelists for spying 12 Oct 2005 Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Wednesday ordered U.S. New Tribes evangelical missions working with indigenous groups to leave the country after accusing them of "imperialist infiltration" and spying. [We don't want them in the U.S., either.]
DARPA Autonomous Vehicle Race Proves What's Possible 12 Oct 2005 Five unmanned vehicles crossed the finish line last weekend after a 132-mile race through the Mojave Desert... The DARPA Grand Challenge was the first race of its kind in which autonomous ground vehicles used nothing but onboard sensors and navigation equipment to steer themselves along the desert course in under 10 hours.
ABC Investigation Finds Gaping Lapses in Security at Nuclear Reactors 12 Oct 2005 A four-month ABC News investigation found gaping security holes at many of the little-known nuclear research reactors operating on 25 college campuses across the country. Among the findings: unmanned guard booths, a guard who appeared to be asleep, unlocked building doors and, in a number of cases, guided tours that provided easy access to control rooms and reactor pools that hold radioactive fuel...
Professor slams intelligent design in Penn. schools 12 Oct 2005 A professor on Wednesday slammed the teaching of intelligent design as a blow to science education as he testified in a lawsuit over whether the theory should be introduced in schools as an alternative to evolution.
Contempt Finding Is Lifted in Case of Times Reporter 13 Oct 2005 A federal district judge here lifted a contempt order Wednesday against Judith Miller, a 'reporter' for The New York Times [the GOP], after she testified before a grand jury investigating the C.I.A. leak case about recently discovered notes relating to a conversation she had with a senior White House official.
Reporter testi-lies over CIA leak 12 Oct 2005 A New York Times 'reporter' has appeared for the second time before a grand jury investigating the leaking of the identity of a secret CIA agent. Bush media whore Judith Miller is reported to have found [?!?] notes about previously undisclosed talks with a vice-presidential aide.
N.Y. Times 'frustrated' by Miller story 12 Oct 2005 Now that New York Times 'reporter' Judith Miller has testified again in the investigation into the leak of a CIA operative's name, many are wondering when the newspaper will publish the detailed account it has promised on their own reporter's [sic] role in the case.
AP: Frist accumulated stock outside trusts 11 Oct 2005 Outside the blind trusts he created to avoid a conflict of interest, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist earned tens of thousands of dollars from stock in a family-founded hospital chain largely controlled by his brother, documents show.
Scalia Turns Journalists Away From Speech Wednesday 12 Oct 2005 In Washington, journalists were turned away from Supreme Court injustice Antonin Scalia's speech to life insurance executives... Scalia talked about gossip-seeking reporters during a court argument about free speech rights. A court spokeswoman said the speech should have been open to some reporters.
You're cool, court nominee told Bush in private letter 12 Oct 2005 The Guardian George Bush's already uphill struggle to put his nominee, Harriet Miers, in the supreme court got harder yesterday with the publication of personal correspondence that added weight to charges of cronyism. Notes that Ms Miers sent to Mr Bush in the late 1990s, when he was Texas governor and she was his personal lawyer and the head of the state lottery commission, range from deferential to fawning.
Bush approval dips below 40 percent --NBC-WSJ poll shows only 28 percent believe U.S. headed in right direction 12 Oct 2005 For the first time in the poll, Bush’s approval rating has sunk below 40 percent, while the percentage believing the country is heading in the right direction has dipped below 30 percent. In addition, a sizable plurality prefers a Democratic-controlled Congress, and just 29 percent think Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers is qualified to serve on the nation’s highest court.
Bush Panel May Curb Tax Breaks for Homeowners, Health 11 Oct 2005 pResident George W. Bush's tax advisory panel, rejecting a fundamental overhaul, agreed to recommend limiting tax breaks for homeowners and employer- provided health-care benefits to help pay for repealing the alternative minimum tax.
States Aim to Protect Poor From Heat Bills 13 Oct 2005 With fuel bills expected to rise sharply this winter, states are setting aside extra money for the poor, dispensing energy-conservation tips and pleading for federal aid to help Americans keep the heat on when the weather turns cold.
Great Lakes activists say Bush waffling on cleanup 13 Oct 2005 In an executive order last year, pResident Bush set in motion a state-federal effort to rid the Great Lakes of invasive species, toxic pollutants, raw sewage and other environmental threats. Now after the leak of an internal report that doused a $20 billion cleanup strategy, the administration faces a mini-tempest over the degree of Bush's commitment to saving the lakes.
Halliburton gets another Hurricane Katrina contract for $33 million 12 Oct 2005 The U.S. Navy awarded $33 million to Halliburton for 'clean-up' work at naval air stations damaged by Hurricane Katrina, the Department of Defense announced last night. The money will be added to the $12 million awarded to Halliburton on August 29, the day Katrina made landfall. Both awards, totalling $45 million, require the company to repair structures and remove debris at naval air stations in Pascagoula and Gulfport, Mississippi and in Louisiana.
Oops! 400-500 gallons of acid spills from Halliburton truck onto highway 12 Oct 2005 Authorities in Mesa County are working to clean up hundreds of gallons of acid that fell from a truck early Wednesday morning. Assistant fire chief Greg Martin says two containers carrying the acid belonging to the Halliburton Company fell off a truck on Colorado 141 about a mile-and-a-half south of Interstate 70. [Maybe they can take some of the *$33 million* and use it to clean up after *themselves,* prior to going to the Gulf Coast.]
Mobile Homes, Campers Wait at FEMA Sites 12 Oct 2005 More than 9,000 mobile homes and campers meant for the victims of Hurricane Katrina are sitting unused at government staging areas while displaced families continue to live out of tents and shelters.
FEMA to rebid four large contracts --Few deals went to minority or local businesses 12 Oct 2005 Under fire for awarding large noncompetitive hurricane recovery contracts that included few local or minority-owned businesses, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced Tuesday it will rebid four large jobs.
Katrina evacuee shot to death in Houston 12 Oct 2005 A Hurricane Katrina evacuee was found shot to death at his southwest Houston apartment this morning. Investigators found no signs of forced entry and have no suspects in the case.
Abuse, Forced Labor Rampant in New Orleans Justice System By Jessica Azulay 12 Oct 2005 The videotaped beating of a New Orleans resident offers but a small sample of the widespread brutality, deprivation and railroading that have come to characterize the city’s response to alleged crimes.
Italy police on trial for G8 abuse 12 Oct 2005 Forty-five police, prison guards and medical staff went on trial on Wednesday, accused of beating and abusing protesters detained after outbreaks of [police-generated] violence during a summit of major world leaders in Genoa in 2001.
Lawyer: Ailing Vet Deported From Canada 13 Oct 2005 An Army veteran who fled to Canada to avoid prosecution for growing marijuana to treat his chronic pain was yanked from a hospital by Canadian authorities, driven to the border with a catheter still attached, and turned over to U.S. officials, his lawyer says. "This is totally inhumane. He's been tortured for days for no reason," attorney Douglas Hiatt said.
Experts call for creating US bird flu czar 12 Oct 2005 The United States needs a top official, backed by authority and cash, to prepare for a possible bird flu pandemic, experts said on Wednesday.
Scientists warn of possibility of drug-resistant avian flu 11 Oct 2005 US scientists warn that a drug-resistant Avian flu strain could arise with unrestrained and improper use of available drugs. The warning came as governments around the world are stockpiling [useless] antiviral drugs and the H5N1 avian flu strain threatens to break out into a flu pandemic.
U.S. airlines on guard for bird flu 12 Oct 2005 The airline industry is monitoring the burgeoning threat of bird flu but plans to wait before instituting any special precautions to guard against the spread of the disease.
World temperatures keep rising --Climate data show 2005 on track to be hottest on record 13 Oct 2005 New international climate data show that 2005 is on track to be the hottest year on record, continuing a 25-year trend of rising global temperatures.
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