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Bird Man of Hudson County
Jersey City, NJ
779 posts, May 2002
posted 10-01-2002 08:11 AM
First of all I want to thank you for your astute observations of the Anti-War movement. I do believe Tony Blair's days are numbered as PM. I sure hope the USA wakes up and votes Dumbking out, because the future of the world is waiting in the balance.
I was listening to the groups "Disposable Heroes Of Hiphoprisy" and "Consolidated" on my way to work this morning. Both written in 1991, you can just substitute now and then. Same story, same named administration.
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-01-2002 05:45 PM
I wouldn't go as far as to say its a 'movement". It's just ordinary people...mothers, grandparents, teachers, high school kids, WW II Veterans, you name it, ALL of whom oppose Bush and Blair's Military Policy of invading other countries on the grounds of suspicion and assumption.There was a time Bush and Blair hid behind Sept.11th to try and keep everyone who opposes their agenda sidelined. Well guess what? Opposition is starting to grow and grow. What Bush doesn't realize is the fact that the U.S. economy is so bad right now..(going to get much worse),a lot more people are going to finally get fed-up with his rhetoric...especially when they can no longer put food on the table and make a livable wage. It's not right in my opinion to make war on a country when we support regimes that are as bad or worse than iraq...that's hypocricy at it's finest...and it's going to have an effect, down the road and the people who always pay the price are the inocent.You know there is something REALLY wrong when hundreds of thousands of people EVERYWHERE start taking their grievences to the street...only to be beaten back by a heavy-duty, militarized police state.By the way....you won't hear it on the news either.Is there a reason for that? Oh yeah.
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-01-2002 10:20 PM
The Charleston Gazette
Bush's war plans are a cover-up, Byrd says
By Paul J. Nyden
Sen. Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., said President Bush's plans to invade Iraq are a conscious effort to distract public attention from growing problems at home.
"This administration, all of a sudden, wants to go to war with Iraq," Byrd said. "The [political] polls are dropping, the domestic situation has problems.... So all of a sudden we have this war talk, war fervor, the bugles of war, drums of war, clouds of war.
"Don't tell me that things suddenly went wrong. Back in August, the president had no plans.... Then all of a sudden this country is going to war," Byrd told the Senate on Friday.
"Are politicians talking about the domestic situation, the stock market, weaknesses in the economy, jobs that are being lost, housing problems? No."
Byrd warned of another Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. Passed on Aug. 7, 1964, that resolution handed President Lyndon Johnson broad powers to escalate the war in Vietnam, a conflict that cost 58,202 American lives and millions of Asian lives.
"Congress will be putting itself on the sidelines," Byrd told the Senate. "Nothing would please this president more than having such a blank check handed to him."
Byrd said his belief in the Constitution will prevent him from voting for Bush's war resolution. "But I am finding that the Constitution is irrelevant to people of this administration."
Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., both praised Byrd after he spoke.
"It is the height of patriotism to ask such hard questions," Clinton said. "No one exemplifies that more than the senior senator from West Virginia."
Byrd said, "Before the nation is committed to war, before we send our sons and daughters to battle in faraway lands, there are critical questions that must be asked. To date, the answers from the administration have been less than satisfying."
Byrd repeatedly said Bush has failed to give members of Congress any evidence about any immediate danger from Iraq. Byrd also criticized his speech to the United Nations.
"Instead of offering compelling evidence that the Iraqi regime had taken steps to advance its weapons program, the president offered the U.N. more of a warning than an appeal for support.
"Instead of using the forum of the U.N. General Assembly to offer evidence and proof of his claims, the president basically told the nations of the world that you are either with me, or against me," Byrd said.
"We must not be hell-bent on an invasion until we have exhausted every other possible option to assess and eliminate Iraq's supposed weapons of mass destruction program. We must not act alone. We must have the support of the world."
Byrd said Congress needs solid evidence and answers to several specific questions, including:
# Does Saddam Hussein pose an imminent threat to the U.S.?
# Should the United States act alone?
# What would be the repercussions in the Middle East and around the globe?
# How many civilians would die in Iraq?
# How many American forces would be involved?
# How do we afford this war?
# Will the U.S. respond with nuclear weapons if Saddam Hussein uses chemical or biological weapons against U.S. soldiers?
# Does the U.S. have enough military and intelligence resources to fight wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, while mobilizing resources to prevent attacks on our own shores?
Byrd said the proposed resolution Bush sent Congress on Thursday would be the "broadest possible grant of war powers to any president in the history of our Republic. The resolution is a direct insult and an affront to the powers given to Congress."
Byrd also criticized Bush's request for power to carry out "pre-emptive attacks" and send troops to Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, the West Bank and anywhere else in the Middle East.
"I cannot believe the gall and the arrogance of the White House in requesting such a broad grant of war powers," Byrd said. "This is the worst kind of election-year politics."
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-01-2002 10:32 PM
The sun can't set on this empire too soon
The U.S. has no right to indulge in imperialism
It sure smells like imperialism. That's the word historians use when powerful nations grab control of desired resources, be it the gold of the New World or the oil of the Middle East.
Imperialist greed is what "regime change" in Iraq and "anticipatory self-defense" are all about, and all of the rest of the Bush administration's talk about security and democracy is a bunch of malarkey.
In the laundry list of reasons the Bush team has been trotting out in defense of a unilateral invasion of Iraq, oil is never mentioned. Is the fact that Iraq holds a huge pool of oil a piddling footnote to this debate? Is that Gulf War protest sign, "No Blood for Oil," too cynical, even passe? Perhaps we should ask National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, who served as a Chevron director and had an oil tanker named after her.
Despite her corporate connections, Rice is a scholar, and she should know her history: For 50 years, we and the British before us have assumed the same neocolonial posture vis-a-vis Iraq as we do with Saudi Arabia and its surrounding sheikdoms and Iran. The Gulf War, fought to save U.S. corporate interests in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, was only the latest example of this heavy-handed policy. Think Halliburton and Vice President Dick Cheney.
The strategy is pretty much the same as that drawn up by the Romans: Find and support local strongmen who can deliver the goods to the imperial capital, come hell or high water. How they treat their own people is not our business; we have never cared about democracy in the Mideast unless one of its dictators happened to fail to toe our line.
That is why our CIA facilitated the rise to power of Iraq's Baath party and ultimately the succession of Saddam Hussein as its current leader. The first Bush administration supported Hussein, providing him with the means to wage chemical and biological war, up to the day he invaded Kuwait, another of our client states. After his defeat, we became totally disinterested in the freedom of the people of the countries we had rescued. So much so, in fact, that Saudi Arabia was allowed to thrive as the world capital of religious hatred and the major sponsor of terrorists, producing Osama bin Laden and 15 of the 19 hijackers who gave us the Sept. 11 tragedy.
The same contempt for democracy has marked our policy toward Iran, that other member of the "axis of evil" we helped create. When Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh moved to eliminate foreign control over Iran's oil, the CIA and its British counterpart overthrew him in 1953. Despite our babbling about democracy, we had no compunction about replacing the elected Mossadegh with a guy who claimed the hereditary right to the throne as shah of all shahs.
When the shah dared to act in the interest of his people--and his own bank account--by bolstering the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries in the push for higher oil prices, we came to regard him, too, as expendable.
Even our support of Israel had less to do with the struggle of a brave people for a deserved homeland and more with the usefulness of that country as an agent of our Mideast ambitions and a reliable ally in offsetting expanding Soviet influence in the region.
With the end of the Cold War, we were at a loss for a noble rationale to justify our heavy Mideast presence, which has been enormously profitable to some American corporations and industries that are well represented in this administration. Support democracy? We do subsidize Israel, the region's only functioning democracy, but our motives look less than pure when we fawn over cooperative dictatorships such as the regime in the United Arab Emirates, which forked over $6.4 billion to Lockheed Martin for fighter jets and gives us access to its oil.
Having just fought to free themselves from one of history's great empires, this nation's founding founders fiercely and repeatedly warned of the risks of imperial ambitions. Because of this, most Americans, whether liberal or conservative, grasp the fundamental truth that foreign entanglements destabilize, backfire and cost too much in lives and dollars.
Instead of exploiting our natural patriotism to fight a nonsensical war, our government should forgo the temptations of empire.
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-01-2002 10:35 PM
IRAQ WAR COULD COST U.S. TAXPAYERS 9 to 13 BILLION A MONTH..........
By JIM ABRAMS, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - Fighting a full-scale war with Iraq would cost up to $9 billion a month, congressional budget experts said as the Senate prepared to open debate this week on a resolution authorizing President Bush to wage that war.
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld continued to press the need for tough action against Iraq, citing 67 incidents in the past two weeks of Iraq firing on U.S. and British warplanes patrolling no-fly zones in the country.
"With each missile launched at our air crews, Iraq expresses its contempt for U.N. resolutions" demanding that Iraq allow unimpeded weapons inspections and disarm, Rumsfeld said Monday.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office in a report Monday said uncertainty about the length and intensity of a war with Iraq made predicting the cost difficult.
But it estimated that deploying U.S. forces to the Persian Gulf would cost from $9 billion to $13 billion, and that the monthly cost of combat by either heavy ground or air forces would be $6 billion to $9 billion.
Another $5 billion to $7 billion would be required to bring the troops home after a war. The monthly cost of a postwar peacekeeping force — excluding humanitarian aid, reconstruction and the dismantling of weapons of mass destruction — would be $1 billion to $4 billion.
"This debate should not be driven by how much it will cost U.S. taxpayers," said Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad, D-N.D. But he said it was important to keep in mind that three months of combat with a heavy ground force and a five-year occupation by a large U.S. force could cost more than $272 billion.
[Edited 1 times, lastly by Mech on 10-01-2002]
Hoka hey! - heyokas!
Stamford, CT, USA
1750 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-02-2002 12:50 AM
Today: October 01, 2002 at 14:10:09 PDT
B-2 Bombers Would Use British Island
By SCOTT CHARTON
KNOB NOSTER, Mo.- The commander of the nation's B-2 stealth bombers said Tuesday he expects to again use a British island in the Indian Ocean as a base for the radar-evading planes if the United States attacks Iraq.
The island, Diego Garcia, was a stopover point for B-2s returning from last fall's initial wave of bombing in Afghanistan following the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Through "political channels," the U.S. military's needs "are well-articulated to the United Kingdom," Col. Doug Raaberg said of Diego Garcia's availability.
The nation's 21 B-2s are headquartered at Whiteman Air Force Base, about 60 miles southeast of Kansas City. Raaberg assumed command of the 509th Bomb Wing in April.
During the opening days of last fall's air war, the batwing bombers set a record for history's longest combat flight - 44 hours. The flights included a brief stop on Diego Garcia, the B-2 engines running constantly, to take on fresh two-man crews for the return to Missouri.
Stops at forward bases allow the $1.3 billion planes - the world's most expensive aircraft - to receive repairs and maintenance without long trips home to Missouri.
Hoka hey! - heyokas!
Stamford, CT, USA
1750 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-02-2002 08:12 PM
Today: October 02, 2002 at 12:10:16 PDT
New Mission Launched in Afghanistan
By MATT KELLEY
WASHINGTON- In the largest ground operation in Afghanistan in six months, up to 2,000 U.S. Army troops are searching the mountains of southeastern Afghanistan for Taliban and al-Qaida holdouts.
The troops from the 82nd Airborne are part of a new strategy that puts more regular soldiers into the hunt for enemy fighters while lessening the strain on special forces units that could be needed for a war in Iraq.
The Army soldiers are combing an area of Afghanistan's Paktia province that borders Pakistan and has long been a focus of U.S. efforts to rid the country of members of the terrorist network and its Taliban allies. The region has been the scene of clashes between rival warlords and scattered attacks on U.S. soldiers.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai suggested during a visit to Qatar over the weekend that deposed Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar might be hiding along the Pakistani border.
"We believe it's a target-rich environment," said Col. Martin Schweizter, the operation's commander. Army soldiers have questioned six suspects and uncovered several small caches of weapons during searches so far.
The operation, dubbed "Alamo Sweep," is the largest since Operation Anaconda in March and is expected to continue for several weeks at least.
The new operation is the most visible part of a shift in tactics for the U.S. military in Afghanistan. The large number of conventional troops replace smaller, more clandestine special forces units.
Military commanders say the show of force means larger numbers of troops can move in more quickly if Taliban or al-Qaida fighters are found. The 82nd Airborne units are using Apache helicopter gunships and Black Hawk helicopters carrying troops to swoop into remote areas where enemy activity is suspected.
Special forces units are still in Afghanistan and searching for the enemy; one such unit - acting on a tip from a local governor - uncovered more than 500,000 rounds of small-arms ammunition in central Afghanistan on Tuesday.
Top military commanders and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld met in August to discuss possible changes to special operations forces' role in the war on terrorism. Besides being the main ground force in Afghanistan, special operations units also have trained anti-terrorism forces in the Philippines, Yemen and the former Soviet republic of Georgia.
At the August meeting, Gen. Charles R. Holland of the Special Operations Command outlined his ideas to use special forces to help in the hunt for al-Qaida operatives worldwide. Having regular troops take over much of the search inside Afghanistan could free up some special forces units for duty elsewhere - or for some much-needed rest.
Special forces troops also are expected to play a prominent role in any U.S. military action against Iraq. The elite soldiers could be used for missions including finding and destroying Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and guiding U.S. bombs to the correct targets.
Defense Department: http://www.defenselink.mil
Today: October 02, 2002 at 12:10:15 PDT
Americans Ponder War Prospects
By DAVID CRARY
The young soldiers at upstate New York's Fort Drum are ready to fight in Iraq. A preacher near their base prays those orders won't come.
Out in Ohio, a man who flew 35 combat missions against Nazi Germany ponders the prospect of a new war and says, "I'd go a little bit slow."
While the ultimate decision on attacking Iraq will be made by the powerful in Washington, citizens elsewhere are engaged in a distinctively American tradition - debating in public forums and private thoughts whether going to war is wise.
On the fringes, some Americans wish a war against Saddam Hussein had already started; others oppose U.S. military action of almost any type. But in dozens of interviews conducted across the nation by Associated Press reporters, most people - like Pam Gillispie of Sioux Falls, S.D. - sensed that the choices facing their leaders are complex.
"We need to protect ourselves," said Gillispie, 52, who grew up in the Vietnam era, and has a 22-year-old son. "At the same time, I hate the thought of going to war. I just want to be ready. I would hate to see another 9-11."
In Athens, Ohio, 82-year-old John Jones, the World War II veteran, has been working hard at keeping up with Iraq-related news.
"I'd like to see the United Nations unified behind us, rather than just the United States and England," he said. "If we get the U.N. behind us, it would be all right to go into an all-out conflict. Until then, I'd go a little bit slow."
Jones said he has noted an occasional gap in the rhetoric of the Bush administration and some military commanders. "The political people are pushing, and the military are saying hold back a little," Jones said. "That gives me pause."
At Fort Drum in northern New York, some active-duty soldiers suggested war was necessary.
"The U.N. has given Saddam enough chances," said Pfc. Brent Litchard of North Umberland, Pa., who is convinced Iraq has weapons of mass destruction.
"We just can't sit around and wait for him to use them." Lindsay Forfa, a private from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., said she recently got married, "so personally I'm not looking forward to the possibility of being deployed to Iraq." "But I think the United States has to take control of the situation," she said.
"Saddam is a terrorist in every way." Sgt. Alex Meek of Red Oak, Iowa, said he was "impartial" about whether war should start, but added, "If the president tells me to do my job, I'm going to be one of the first ones to jump up and say, 'Ready!'"
In nearby Watertown, N.Y., Jehovah's Witness preacher Armand DeBardelaben suspects war is inevitable, but hopes he is wrong. "Any time you have war, people die," he said.
"I don't want anyone to die." DeAnna Tonak, 18, of Centerline, Mich., is a student at the University of Michigan's Dearborn campus and worries that some fellow students might have to fight if war breaks out.
She also fears war would raise the danger of terrorist attacks in the United States.
"This is going to be a war fought here," Tonak said. "There will be bloodshed in this country."
In South Dakota, the Iraq debate has particular resonance because of the pivotal role of native son Tom Daschle, who as leader of the Senate's Democratic majority, has sometimes differed with President Bush.
Stan Lorenz, 51, a Sioux Falls businessman, voted for Bush and will stand by him in the event of war.
"That's why we elect a president," Lorenz said. "Whatever he decides, I guess I would support it."
But Morris Oakie, an American Indian from Sioux Falls, said the United States would risk overextending itself by invading Iraq. "It's kind of dumb," said Oakie, 27. "We're already dealing with another problem on terrorism. I don't know why the president would get himself into a bigger hole than the one he's already in."
At a bar in Des Moines, Iowa, engineer Mike Hoffmann, 47, said war with Iraq was overdue.
"We should have finished it the first time," he said, referring to the Gulf War.
By contrast, Josh Armbruster, 25, a Des Moines chef, was skeptical of Bush's motives.
"It sounds more like he's trying to do what his dad didn't quite do," Armbruster said. "The president's calling anybody who doesn't support the war un-American - give me a break."
In Seattle, Chinese immigrant Pokow Chun, 73, said she lived through Japan's invasion of China in 1937, and wishes the United States would decide against invading Iraq.
"I saw the result of war," she said. "It's horrible spending all our time fighting each other."
Another immigrant, Iraq-born Ala Faik, 50, of Ann Arbor, Mich., also hopes bloodshed can be avoided, but not at all costs. Saddam, he said, "is a war criminal who needs to be removed."
Editor's Note: Associated Press reporters Doris Haugen in Sioux Falls, Miranda Leitsinger in Des Moines, William Kates at Fort Drum, Melanthia Mitchell in Seattle, and David Runk in Detroit contributed to this report.
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-02-2002 09:53 PM
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-02-2002 10:00 PM
The president's real goal in Iraq
By JAY BOOKMAN
The official story on Iraq has never made sense. The connection that the Bush administration has tried to draw between Iraq and al-Qaida has always seemed contrived and artificial. In fact, it was hard to believe that smart people in the Bush administration would start a major war based on such flimsy evidence.
CONTRIBUTORS TO 2000 REPORT
"Rebuilding America's Defenses," a 2000 report by the Project for the New American Century, listed 27 people as having attended meetings or contributed papers in preparation of the report. Among them are six who have since assumed key defense and foreign policy positions in the Bush administration. And the report seems to have become a blueprint for Bush's foreign and defense policy.
The pieces just didn't fit. Something else had to be going on; something was missing.
In recent days, those missing pieces have finally begun to fall into place. As it turns out, this is not really about Iraq. It is not about weapons of mass destruction, or terrorism, or Saddam, or U.N. resolutions.
This war, should it come, is intended to mark the official emergence of the United States as a full-fledged global empire, seizing sole responsibility and authority as planetary policeman. It would be the culmination of a plan 10 years or more in the making, carried out by those who believe the United States must seize the opportunity for global domination, even if it means becoming the "American imperialists" that our enemies always claimed we were.
Once that is understood, other mysteries solve themselves. For example, why does the administration seem unconcerned about an exit strategy from Iraq once Saddam is toppled?
Because we won't be leaving. Having conquered Iraq, the United States will create permanent military bases in that country from which to dominate the Middle East, including neighboring Iran.
In an interview Friday, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld brushed aside that suggestion, noting that the United States does not covet other nations' territory. That may be true, but 57 years after World War II ended, we still have major bases in Germany and Japan. We will do the same in Iraq.
And why has the administration dismissed the option of containing and deterring Iraq, as we had the Soviet Union for 45 years? Because even if it worked, containment and deterrence would not allow the expansion of American power. Besides, they are beneath us as an empire. Rome did not stoop to containment; it conquered. And so should we.
Among the architects of this would-be American Empire are a group of brilliant and powerful people who now hold key positions in the Bush administration: They envision the creation and enforcement of what they call a worldwide "Pax Americana," or American peace. But so far, the American people have not appreciated the true extent of that ambition.
Part of it's laid out in the National Security Strategy, a document in which each administration outlines its approach to defending the country. The Bush administration plan, released Sept. 20, marks a significant departure from previous approaches, a change that it attributes largely to the attacks of Sept. 11.
To address the terrorism threat, the president's report lays out a newly aggressive military and foreign policy, embracing pre-emptive attack against perceived enemies. It speaks in blunt terms of what it calls "American internationalism," of ignoring international opinion if that suits U.S. interests. "The best defense is a good offense," the document asserts.
It dismisses deterrence as a Cold War relic and instead talks of "convincing or compelling states to accept their sovereign responsibilities."
In essence, it lays out a plan for permanent U.S. military and economic domination of every region on the globe, unfettered by international treaty or concern. And to make that plan a reality, it envisions a stark expansion of our global military presence.
"The United States will require bases and stations within and beyond Western Europe and Northeast Asia," the document warns, "as well as temporary access arrangements for the long-distance deployment of U.S. troops."
The report's repeated references to terrorism are misleading, however, because the approach of the new National Security Strategy was clearly not inspired by the events of Sept. 11. They can be found in much the same language in a report issued in September 2000 by the Project for the New American Century, a group of conservative interventionists outraged by the thought that the United States might be forfeiting its chance at a global empire.
"At no time in history has the international security order been as conducive to American interests and ideals," the report said. stated two years ago. "The challenge of this coming century is to preserve and enhance this 'American peace.' "
Overall, that 2000 report reads like a blueprint for current Bush defense policy. Most of what it advocates, the Bush administration has tried to accomplish. For example, the project report urged the repudiation of the anti-ballistic missile treaty and a commitment to a global missile defense system. The administration has taken that course.
It recommended that to project sufficient power worldwide to enforce Pax Americana, the United States would have to increase defense spending from 3 percent of gross domestic product to as much as 3.8 percent. For next year, the Bush administration has requested a defense budget of $379 billion, almost exactly 3.8 percent of GDP.
It advocates the "transformation" of the U.S. military to meet its expanded obligations, including the cancellation of such outmoded defense programs as the Crusader artillery system. That's exactly the message being preached by Rumsfeld and others.
It urges the development of small nuclear warheads "required in targeting the very deep, underground hardened bunkers that are being built by many of our potential adversaries." This year the GOP-led U.S. House gave the Pentagon the green light to develop such a weapon, called the Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator, while the Senate has so far balked.
That close tracking of recommendation with current policy is hardly surprising, given the current positions of the people who contributed to the 2000 report.
Paul Wolfowitz is now deputy defense secretary. John Bolton is undersecretary of state. Stephen Cambone is head of the Pentagon's Office of Program, Analysis and Evaluation. Eliot Cohen and Devon Cross are members of the Defense Policy Board, which advises Rumsfeld. I. Lewis Libby is chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney. Dov Zakheim is comptroller for the Defense Department.
Because they were still just private citizens in 2000, the authors of the project report could be more frank and less diplomatic than they were in drafting the National Security Strategy. Back in 2000, they clearly identified Iran, Iraq and North Korea as primary short-term targets, well before President Bush tagged them as the Axis of Evil. In their report, they criticize the fact that in war planning against North Korea and Iraq, "past Pentagon wargames have given little or no consideration to the force requirements necessary not only to defeat an attack but to remove these regimes from power."
To preserve the Pax Americana, the report says U.S. forces will be required to perform "constabulary duties" -- the United States acting as policeman of the world -- and says that such actions "demand American political leadership rather than that of the United Nations."
To meet those responsibilities, and to ensure that no country dares to challenge the United States, the report advocates a much larger military presence spread over more of the globe, in addition to the roughly 130 nations in which U.S. troops are already deployed.
More specifically, they argue that we need permanent military bases in the Middle East, in Southeast Europe, in Latin America and in Southeast Asia, where no such bases now exist. That helps to explain another of the mysteries of our post-Sept. 11 reaction, in which the Bush administration rushed to install U.S. troops in Georgia and the Philippines, as well as our eagerness to send military advisers to assist in the civil war in Colombia.
The 2000 report directly acknowledges its debt to a still earlier document, drafted in 1992 by the Defense Department. That document had also envisioned the United States as a colossus astride the world, imposing its will and keeping world peace through military and economic power. When leaked in final draft form, however, the proposal drew so much criticism that it was hastily withdrawn and repudiated by the first President Bush.
Effect on allies
The defense secretary in 1992 was Richard Cheney; the document was drafted by Wolfowitz, who at the time was defense undersecretary for policy.
The potential implications of a Pax Americana are immense.
One is the effect on our allies. Once we assert the unilateral right to act as the world's policeman, our allies will quickly recede into the background. Eventually, we will be forced to spend American wealth and American blood protecting the peace while other nations redirect their wealth to such things as health care for their citizenry.
Donald Kagan, a professor of classical Greek history at Yale and an influential advocate of a more aggressive foreign policy -- he served as co-chairman of the 2000 New Century project -- acknowledges that likelihood.
"If [our allies] want a free ride, and they probably will, we can't stop that," he says. But he also argues that the United States, given its unique position, has no choice but to act anyway.
"You saw the movie 'High Noon'? he asks. "We're Gary Cooper."
Accepting the Cooper role would be an historic change in who we are as a nation, and in how we operate in the international arena. Candidate Bush certainly did not campaign on such a change. It is not something that he or others have dared to discuss honestly with the American people. To the contrary, in his foreign policy debate with Al Gore, Bush pointedly advocated a more humble foreign policy, a position calculated to appeal to voters leery of military intervention.
For the same reason, Kagan and others shy away from terms such as empire, understanding its connotations. But they also argue that it would be naive and dangerous to reject the role that history has thrust upon us. Kagan, for example, willingly embraces the idea that the United States would establish permanent military bases in a post-war Iraq.
"I think that's highly possible," he says. "We will probably need a major concentration of forces in the Middle East over a long period of time. That will come at a price, but think of the price of not having it. When we have economic problems, it's been caused by disruptions in our oil supply. If we have a force in Iraq, there will be no disruption in oil supplies."
Costly global commitment
Rumsfeld and Kagan believe that a successful war against Iraq will produce other benefits, such as serving an object lesson for nations such as Iran and Syria. Rumsfeld, as befits his sensitive position, puts it rather gently. If a regime change were to take place in Iraq, other nations pursuing weapons of mass destruction "would get the message that having them . . . is attracting attention that is not favorable and is not helpful," he says.
Kagan is more blunt.
"People worry a lot about how the Arab street is going to react," he notes. "Well, I see that the Arab street has gotten very, very quiet since we started blowing things up."
The cost of such a global commitment would be enormous. In 2000, we spent $281 billion on our military, which was more than the next 11 nations combined. By 2003, our expenditures will have risen to $378 billion. In other words, the increase in our defense budget from 1999-2003 will be more than the total amount spent annually by China, our next largest competitor.
The lure of empire is ancient and powerful, and over the millennia it has driven men to commit terrible crimes on its behalf. But with the end of the Cold War and the disappearance of the Soviet Union, a global empire was essentially laid at the feet of the United States. To the chagrin of some, we did not seize it at the time, in large part because the American people have never been comfortable with themselves as a New Rome.
Now, more than a decade later, the events of Sept. 11 have given those advocates of empire a new opportunity to press their case with a new president. So in debating whether to invade Iraq, we are really debating the role that the United States will play in the years and decades to come.
Are peace and security best achieved by seeking strong alliances and international consensus, led by the United States? Or is it necessary to take a more unilateral approach, accepting and enhancing the global dominance that, according to some, history has thrust upon us?
If we do decide to seize empire, we should make that decision knowingly, as a democracy. The price of maintaining an empire is always high. Kagan and others argue that the price of rejecting it would be higher still.
That's what this is about. --The Anlanta Journal-Constitution, Sept. 29, 2002
Need To Know
Bush Blueprint For World Domination? "Rebuilding America's Defenses" (PNAC, 2000)
1992 Contribution To The Above By Wolfowitz (now Deputy Sec. of Defense) And Libby (now Assistant to the President, Chief of Staff to the Vice President and Assistant to the Vice President for National Security), Sept. 10,2002
Analysis The Politics Behind The PNAC Study (Starts at paragraph 37.), Sept. 11,2002
[Edited 1 times, lastly by Mech on 10-02-2002]
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-02-2002 10:38 PM
The Sunday Times [London]
US ready for Thanksgiving strike
By Tony Allen-Mills and Stephen Grey
AMERICAN military commanders are being warned a US-led attack on Iraq could begin by the Thanksgiving holiday on November 28, according to military and diplomatic sources in Washington and other allied capitals.
The looming row at the UN over the proposed text of a new ultimatum to Iraq has heightened international concern US President George W. Bush may be engineering a breakdown in diplomatic negotiations ahead of an early strike on Baghdad.
European and other diplomats complained at the weekend that the British-US text for a tough new security council resolution on the return of weapons inspectors to Iraq was so aggressive that it was "designed to be rejected".
The draft resolution obliges Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to allow inspectors to go anywhere they liked at any time. It ends previously agreed restrictions on UN visits to presidential palaces and other sites that the Iraqis have claimed as off-limits.
One Washington source said: "It will be the equivalent of UN inspectors arriving at Buckingham Palace at 2am and inviting the Queen to show them her cellars."
The draft gives Baghdad up to 30 days to provide a "full, final and complete declaration" of Mr Hussein's weapons of mass destruction, and authorises "all necessary means" to enforce his compliance.
It effectively grants Washington permission to go to war if Mr Hussein is found to have lied or if he attempts to obstruct inspectors.
One senior official in Washington predicted weapons inspectors would never go back to Baghdad. Either the UN Security Council would try to weaken the draft to the point where it became unacceptable to Washington, the official said, or the resolution would require a degree of co-operation Mr Hussein could never accept.
Either way, war fever has intensified at the Pentagon, where planners are fine-tuning what many military experts expect to be a high-speed, high-intensity deployment of forces ready to advance on to Iraqi soil within three weeks of an order from Mr Bush.
The diplomatic struggle to persuade France, Russia and China to endorse an aggressive resolution appears to have persuaded Mr Bush's hawkish advisers that the longer the inspections issue drags on, the harder it will be to justify an attack.
"The instinctive position that the Americans are coming from is that they don't like the UN, they don't like inspections, they think Saddam has had his chance and that you can't eliminate weapons of mass destruction without eliminating Saddam," one European diplomat said.
After a series of Pentagon leaks about US troop movements and other military preparations, US officials acknowledged last week that the stealthy build-up amounted to "prudent planning" in case the President ordered an early attack.
A growing number of military experts believes the timetable points to Thanksgiving. It may take two more weeks of intensive lobbying before the UN agrees a new resolution; by mid-October, Mr Bush also should have obtained formal approval from the US Congress for action against Iraq.
If the UN resolution is approved, Mr Hussein will have seven days to accept its terms and another 23 days to identify his weapons programs. US officials seem convinced that whether or not Mr Hussein chooses to co-operate, he is certain to lie about the status of his weapons.
If he fails to list a suspect site or to declare a banned weapon, and US intelligence can provide the evidence, Washington will have a pretext to strike.
Soon after the US's mid-term elections on November 5, Mr Bush could sign an executive order declaring war on Iraq.
According to John Pike, the head of globalsecurity.org and a respected analyst, the Pentagon needs only 10 days to ready its weapons and 10 more days to airlift a preliminary strike force to the region. "The posture is to go to war by the end of November," he said.
Sunday Times UK 2002
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-03-2002 03:40 PM
Allies Drop Leaflets Warning Iraqis
Thu Oct 3, 3:32 PM ET
By PAULINE JELINEK, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - In a direct message to Iraqi troops, allied forces dropped thousands of leaflets over the southern no-fly zone in Iraq warning gunners to stop firing on U.S. and British patrol planes.
Iraqi forces responded by firing on aircraft delivering the leaflets. That led allied forces to bomb an air defense operations center, U.S. Central Command officials said.
The leaflet drop was the first known direct warning from the Pentagon to Iraq's military rank and file in the Bush administration's campaign to topple Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
Defense officials said it was not directly related to another leaflet effort in which the Pentagon plans to warn Iraqi officers against firing chemical or biological weapons in the event of U.S. military action to remove Saddam.
The allied retaliation brought to 46 the number of "strike days" reported this year by the coalition force that patrols zones set up to protect Iraqi minorities following the 1991 Gulf War. On some days, more than one area is bombed.
Defense officials said coalition aircraft dropped 120,000 leaflets depicting a jet bombing a missile launcher and a radar site with the message: "Iraqi ADA (air defense artillery) Beware! Don't track or fire on coalition aircraft!"
The back side of the leaflet had another message. "The destruction experienced by your colleagues in other air defense locations is a response to your continuing aggression toward planes of the coalition forces," leaflets written in Arabic said.
"No tracking or firing on these aircraft will be tolerated. You could be next," said an English translation released by defense officials.
"We were telling them 'Don't shoot at us or we'll shoot back,'" said Navy Commander Frank Merriman, a spokesman for Central Command in Tampa, Fla. "And they were shooting at that aircraft that was dropping the leaflets."
He said a similar leaflet drop was done in October to try to halt the firing on patrol planes. That effort was not publicly disclosed until Thursday.
Another defense official said Thursday's action was not related to any possible war with Iraq, portraying it as done periodically to remind Iraqi gunners that they target coalition planes at their peril.
Central Command said the strike came after Iraq air defenses fired anti-aircraft artillery and surface-to-air missiles at coalition aircraft.
The planes used precision-guided weapons against the operations center and air defense headquarters for the sector near Tallil, about 160 miles southeast of Baghdad, according to a Central Command statement. There was no immediate damage assessment.
Iraq considers the patrols a violation of its sovereignty and frequently shoots at the planes. In response, coalition pilots try to bomb Iraqi air defense systems.
Coalition strikes are not necessarily aimed at the place or equipment used to target them, though officials said Thursday's was. Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld disclosed recently that he has ordered that pilots attack command and communications links in Iraq's air defense network rather than the guns and radars used to target or shoot at pilots.
The goal of the new approach, more than a decade after enforcement of the no-fly zones began, is to reduce dangers to the pilots while increasing the damage to an air defense system that has grown more sophisticated.
The strike was in the southern zone, set up to protect Shiite Muslims. The northern zone was set up to protect the Kurdish population. Both groups were given protection after unsuccessfully revolting against Saddam.
[Edited 2 times, lastly by Mech on 10-03-2002]
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-03-2002 04:14 PM
How Our Government Treats it's Veterans
A Hellhole, Not A Hospital
Connecticut Now October 3, 2002
One of the stated purposes of the Department of Veterans Affairs is "to deliver a responsive system of inpatient and long-term health care and clinical support to Connecticut's veterans."
It's apparent that the Rowland administration is not taking that mission seriously. A report that was released recently by the state Department of Public Health is a stunning indictment of conditions at the Veterans Home and Hospital in Rocky Hill.
Based on three unannounced visits in July, DPH officials documented examples of health and safety code violations that would make your stomach churn: medication dispensed improperly, missing patient charts, soiled bathroom facilities and restrooms that reeked of urine, drugs stored in unlocked areas, refrigerated food that was uncovered and undated, blocked automatic sprinkler heads, insufficient fire extinguishers, cigarette butts on the floors, TVs that didn't work for months and broken-down elevators.
But that wasn't the worst of it, not by far. The most egregious problems were the inadequate numbers of physicians and nurses on hand, excessive use of restraints and the tardy reporting of illnesses. Actually, tardy is a dramatic understatement. One patient wasn't told that he had tested positive for the HIV virus for eight months, a violation of state law.
Recently, a group of veterans and nurses gathered at the Rocky Hill site to protest the awful conditions. They complained that the understaffing - which has gone on for two years - has led to overworked and exhausted nurses. Only two physicians are assigned to the hospital, just one of whom works directly with patients. The veterans home has beds for 300 patients but doesn't have any doctors on duty.
One veteran called the place "the pits." A nurse said the below-average standard of care "broke her heart." The protestors said it appears as though the Rowland administration wants to close the facility.
Veterans Affairs Commissioner Eugene Migliaro has promised that improvements will be made. Seeing is believing. This is the second time the hospital has been cited by the public health department for code violations.
Veterans deserve better.
[Edited 2 times, lastly by Mech on 10-03-2002]
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-03-2002 06:37 PM
Shots Fired Outside United Nations
UNITED NATIONS (AP) - A Korean-American protesting against the North Korean government emptied a seven-shot pistol in front of U.N. headquarters Thursday, hitting several offices but injuring no one, authorities said.
The gunman was identified as Steve Kim, a naturalized U.S. citizen working at a U.S. post office in Des Plaines, Ill. FBI spokesman Jim Margolin said Kim was born in 1945 and that agents were trying to confirm he was born in Korea.
The shooting occurred at 1:10 p.m. as the Security Council was meeting on Iraq and Secretary-General Kofi Annan was holding talks with the Cypriot leaders in his office on the 38th floor.
U.S. Secret Service agents protecting visiting Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides apprehended Kim in the compound just outside the building.
``The first people to reach this individual were U.S. secret service personnel,'' U.N. security chief Michael McCann said. The agents were assisted moments later by members of a State Department protective detail also on site as well as U.N. security.
Margolin, of the FBI, said Kim was expected to be arraigned in federal court in Manhattan for violation of the protection of foreign officials act although specific charges have yet to be determined. The protect act is a federal law that establishes protections for visiting dignitaries.
The shots, fired from a Smith & Wesson pistol, hit a women's restroom on the 18th and an American Express office on the 20th floor of the U.N. Secretariat building. McCann said several shots narrowly missed U.N. employees inside the building.
Kim, wearing a blue shirt and brown pants, entered the U.N. compound by jumping over a poorly guarded fence surrounding U.N. headquarters. He walked up to the building, shot seven times in the air and then dropped the pistol on the ground, witnesses and security officials said.
He then tossed out a stack of leaflets from a small black bag before he put his hands up against a wall and awaited capture.
The leaflets, found by reporters near the scene, were handwritten in English with many misspellings and were addressed to ``all people who love freedom and justice.''
``In a shinning and civilized 21st century, most people in the world enjoying peace and freedom. North Korea however is groaning under the weight of starvation and dictatorial suppression. They don't have even the most basic of human rights since all things body and spirit plants and plows belong to one named greatest general Kim Jong Il,'' it said.
It was signed: ``A citizen of UN, Steve Kim, Oct. 2, 2002.''
President Bush has accused North Korea of being part of an ``axis of evil.'' The communist country has been in an economic crisis since the collapse of its main benefactor, the Soviet Union, almost 11 years ago. The peak of the crisis occurred in 1996-97 when, according to some experts, as many as 2 million people starved to death.
Kim was questioned by U.S. law enforcement authorities before being transferred to FBI custody and taken out of U.N. headquarters 90 minutes after the shooting.
``He had a gun. He shot in the air. I heard about five to six shots, and then he dropped the gun,'' said U.N. spokeswoman Hua Jiang, who witnessed the incident from the window of her fourth-floor office.
Michael Hovey, the executive director of The Hague Appeal for Peace, ran into the shooter as he was leaving the U.N. building. Hovey said he saw Kim empty the pistol.
``Then he just walked over to the wall, grabbed some papers, threw them in the air and then sat down. Within a minute the security guards surrounded him,'' Hovey told The Associated Press.
The United Nations was conducting floor-to-floor searches for more bullets after the shooting.
New York City police temporarily sealed off First Avenue in front the United Nations building and cleared the street of bystanders while the United Nations sealed off the sprawling U.N. complex which houses the Security Council, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's offices and the General Assembly.
McCann, the U.N. security chief, said security was supposed to have been beefed up after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks but his office has been slow in hiring new recruits.
The U.N. headquarters overlooking Manhattan's East River was a terrorist target following the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. And in a videotaped address aired in November, Osama bin Laden accused the world body of siding with the United States and called Annan a ``criminal.''
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-04-2002 02:26 AM
Falwell Calls Muhammad 'Terrorist'
Thu Oct 3, 5:11 PM ET
By RICHARD N. OSTLING, AP Religion Writer
NEW YORK (AP) - The Rev. Jerry Falwell says "I think Muhammad was a terrorist" in an interview to be broadcast Sunday on the CBS program "60 Minutes."
The conservative Baptist minister tells correspondent Bob Simon he has concluded from reading Muslim and non-Muslim writers that Islam's prophet "was a — a violent man, a man of war."
"Jesus set the example for love, as did Moses," Falwell says. "I think Muhammad set an opposite example."
CBS released a partial transcript of the interview Thursday. Falwell's comments occur in a segment about American conservative Christians' political support for Israel.
Falwell stood by his opinion in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. He said Simon asked directly whether Falwell considered Muhammad a terrorist and he tried to reply honestly. The minister said he would never state his opinion in a sermon or book.
"I've said often and many places that most Muslims are people of peace and want peace and tranquility for their families and abhor terrorism," Falwell said. "Islam, like most faiths, has a fringe of radicals who carry on bloodshed wherever they are. They do not represent Islam."
Other conservative Protestant clergy have made sharply critical remarks about Islam and Muhammad in the past year. They include Franklin Graham, Billy Graham's son and successor, TV evangelist Pat Robertson and leaders in the Southern Baptist Convention.
In response to Falwell's remarks, Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relation in Washington, said: "Anybody is free to be a bigot if they want to. What really concerns us is the lack of reaction by mainstream religious and political leaders, who say nothing when these bigots voice these attacks."
Hooper noted that Falwell and Robertson will speak at next week's CHRISTIAN COALITIAN convention in Washington ALONGSIDE HOUSE MAJORTY WHIP TOM DeLAY and other politicians.
"How can these elected representatives legitimize this kind of hate speech by appearing on the same platform with Islamophobes and Muslim-bashers?" Hooper asked.
Falwell was widely criticized last year after he said on Robertson's TV show that pagans, abortionists, feminists, homosexuals and civil liberties groups had secularized the nation and helped the Sept. 11 attacks happen. Falwell later apologized.
IGNORANCE IS BLISS HUH JERRY?
[Edited 2 times, lastly by Mech on 10-04-2002]
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-04-2002 07:27 AM
By David Podvin
American foreign policy is revisiting the most brutal period in our history. George W. Bush has resurrected the scourge of Manifest Destiny, a depraved philosophy that states we are morally compelled by God Almighty to kill weaker people and steal their land. There is no scriptural evidence that this is the covenant of Jehovah or Jesus or Mohammad or Buddha; the God whose will is now being carried out more closely resembles Attila the Hun. The stated desire for world domination has some observers comparing Bush to Adolf Hitler. It is a comparison that is entirely inappropriate - Hitler did not pretend to love the innocent civilians he was slaughtering.
On the home front, there is also an unwelcome blast from the past. As has happened so many times in American history, conservatives are expediently detecting the scent of treason in the air. The moon is full, and the blood is rising in the wolf. Right-wingers are now working themselves into the irrational, frenzied state that precedes the hunt, lustfully anticipating the carnage they are about to inflict. Yet again, conservatives are patriotically preparing to lay waste to their natural born prey: the evil ones amongst us who endanger this sacred land by failing to conform to the Lord’s fascist agenda.
Having fostered imperialism abroad and McCarthyism at home, and with the stock market teetering on the edge of collapse, Bush is closing in on a Trifecta for the ages. Add the fact that he previously prevented blacks from voting, throw in the current discrimination against citizens who physically resemble the enemy, and Bush has delivered a reprise of the worst of twentieth century America – all deftly compressed into less than two years
The Bush record is a logical extension of what happened in 2000. The theft of that election was not just a power grab – it was a policy statement by someone who has contempt for democracy and the rule of law. The inevitable result is the introduction of the Bush Doctrine. It declares that, while the United States would prefer to behave legally, "We will not hesitate to act alone, if necessary, to exercise our right of self-defense by acting pre-emptively." The Bush Doctrine is the latest incarnation of the Manson Doctrine, which clearly states, “I reserve the right to kill you if I feel like it.”
This is not the best of America.
America at its best exports freedom and democracy, not death and destruction. One of the shining moments in our history occurred when the Marshall Plan rebuilt Europe, even the part of Europe that had just tried to kill us. After defeating our enemies, we fed them and then helped to create free societies in which they could thrive. As a result, we turned adversaries into allies. Contrast this approach with the current situation in Afghanistan, where Bush has replaced the Taliban with thugs of his own and left the peasants to fend for themselves - without food or shelter - by growing opium poppies.
America at its best allows people to read library books without having the Attorney General pass judgment on their selections, and go to museums without being monitored by FBI agents, and publicly demonstrate against government policy without being harassed.
The best of America is George Washington declining to become king because he preferred to live as an equal rather than rule as a sovereign. This stands in sharp contrast to the current George, who attempts to rule as a sovereign even though he fails to qualify as an equal.
The best of America is Abraham Lincoln imploring his countrymen to avoid war by listening to the better angels of their nature. It is quite different than imploring Congress to slash Medicare benefits for old Americans in order to help underwrite the cost of sending young Americans off to die.
The best of America is Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., risking and ultimately sacrificing his own life so that others could be free at last. Personal sacrifice is alien to the man who now insists that our country pay a huge toll in blood and treasure to satiate the greed of his campaign contributors.
And then there is the America that is led by George W. Bush. While the litany of ways in which Bush has disgraced our nation is seemingly endless, one example is especially compelling. Under Bush, self-proclaimed child of God, America is currently torturing foreign nationals who are suspected of committing terrorism. This return to the caves is cheered by the ruling class and their echoes in the mainstream media, who emphasize that our sadism is different than that of Torquemada and Idi Amin because we are the good guys. The conduct of the Bush administration must always be viewed through this prism, because merely looking at the facts as they exist would lead a moral person to some very troubling and socially unacceptable conclusions. The prevailing wisdom among America’s elite opinion makers is that torturing captured foes is an unpleasant but essential part of our noble fight against barbarism.
The dungeon also beckons indigenous enemies of the state. Bush is petitioning the courts to permit “coercive interrogations” of American citizens who are not even accused of terrorism. The current descent into totalitarian savagery qualifies as one of those many things that are questioned only by T-R-A-I-T-O-R-S.
There is an ongoing struggle between the good America and the bad. It was seen when Dalton Trumbo courageously imperiled his career by refusing to betray his friends before the House Un-American Activities Committee, while Ronald Reagan cravenly informed on law-abiding people in order to save his own skin. It is seen when Congressman Jim McDermott – who served with distinction in the United States Navy in Vietnam – desperately tries to avert an avoidable war because he doesn’t want innocent people on either side to die, while Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott – who served with distinction in the Hair Club For Men in Mississippi and a leading Hawk in the Christian Coalition – enthusiastically advocates sending other people’s children off to lose their lives for Exxon Mobil.
To Bush and his followers, dissent is indistinguishable from treason. The concept of “freedom and justice for all” never really caught on with conservatives, who have always seen more virtue in “might makes right”. Their philosophy is, ironically enough, Darwinism in its purest form. Conservatives govern on the basis that a well-ordered social structure requires the powerful to strengthen their dominance over the weak. No matter how much Bush tries to pretty up this vulgar philosophy with his mangled rhetoric, compassionate conservatism can ultimately be distilled to its essence: “You do as I say, and no one gets hurt.” This applies equally to the people in the Middle East and the people in the Middle West. America is now being governed by Corleone family values, with Fredo calling the shots.
It has always been true that, when the commander-in-chief rings the war bell, many Americans start drooling. We depend on the personal honor of our leader not to abuse this Pavlovian power. If the occupant of the White House has no honor, then the lone superpower is vulnerable to fits of megalomania. The same ignorant philosophy that insisted, “What’s Good For General Motors Is Good For America” now gives us, “What’s Good For America Is Good For The World.” The world isn’t so sure, so it’s time to lock and load.
The war against terrorism is a worthy one; a good first step would be to get a competent commander-in-chief who prioritizes increasing national security over increasing the oil depreciation allowance. In any case, our greatest struggle is not with dictators or terrorists; it is an internal battle. Will we embrace the principles we constantly claim to cherish, or succumb to the base instincts that are so easily manipulated by demagogues?
Ultimately, the American people will decide whether war is better than peace and conformity is better than freedom. Bush can insist on creating Pax Americana, but he has not consolidated enough power – yet – to act in defiance of an aroused public. If the people of this country do not yearn for a world that exists only to increase the profits of oil companies and defense contractors, then we must take a stand. If we do not want to live in a nation where opposing perpetual war is an act of sedition, then we must register that view at the ballot box.
The crucial yet unspoken issue in the upcoming election is whether Manifest Destiny and McCarthyism were disasters that are best left to the dustbin of history, or whether they are blueprints for governing the United States in the twenty-first century. The Republicans have embraced Bush’s determination to build an empire in the name of all that is holy, while disdaining Benjamin Franklin’s admonition against trading essential liberty for temporary safety. The Democrats have shown no inclination to rule the world, and this alone is enough to make them virtuous by comparison.
The events of the past two years have clearly proven that, in contemporary politics, the lesser of two evils is significantly less evil. There is definitely more than a dime’s worth of difference between the two major political parties: one of them wants the government of the United States to forcefully eradicate dissent wherever it exists, and the other doesn’t.
[Edited 3 times, lastly by Mech on 10-04-2002]
2621 posts, Jul 2000
posted 10-04-2002 09:29 AM
Subject: CNN Breaking News
Date: Fri, October 4, 2002 8:19 am
-- President Bush to make major national address on Iraq Monday night.
151 posts, Jul 2002
posted 10-04-2002 02:24 PM
From Mike Rivero:
"Now, if Bush were going to call off the war, he would announce it today, Friday, to allow the issue to fade over the weekend before the Monday Morning talk-radio shows have at it. Therefore, I conclude that Monday's address will amount to a declaration that Bush doesn't need the UN's approval to invade Iraq (thereby destroying the claim that concern for UN Resolutions was the motive for the invasion) and that the attack is already underway (which it has been, from the air, for several months now). Take time this weekend to think about what you may have to do if the US Government declares a war that you do not want, that the world condemns, that Congress has not voted for, that has no popular support among Americans, and for which your wealth and the lives of your children will be sacrificed. This nation belongs to the people, and with that ownerships comes the terrible responsibility to deal with a government gone bad. History will judge us harshly if we stand silent while mere individuals in government take the entire nation into a war of conquest."
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-04-2002 03:06 PM
Massive Nationwide protests planned this weekend.
[Edited 1 times, lastly by Mech on 10-04-2002]
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-04-2002 03:14 PM
What We're In For
By now, the remnants of the extraordinarily brief debate over whether the United States should wage war on Iraq have all but disappeared, replaced by a much narrower discussion over the means and timing by which we will do so. Although administration officials at all levels continue to repeat the absurd lie that President Bush "has not made up his mind" about whether he is going to launch a war, just as months ago they said over and over that there was no war plan "on the President's desk" (it must have been on the coffee table), there is no mistaking their intentions. Congress may wring its hands and argue over details, but within the administration the debate is over, and the war has already begun.
When Iraq told the UN it would allow weapons inspections to resume, the response from the White House could only be described as disappointed. Testifying before the House Armed Services Committee, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was asked whether the Pentagon envisioned and planned for a scenario in which Iraq was disarmed, but that did not involve full-scale war. Rumsfeld was stumped - he had obviously not considered the possibility that we wouldn't be launching a war - and after a long pause muttered something about Saddam high-tailing it out of town. Rumsfeld and the chorus of chicken hawks (Cheney, Wolfowitz, Perle et al) remind one of nothing so much as addicts waiting for a fix, palms sweaty, tapping their feet frantically, begging "C'mon, man, c'mon, drop the bombs!" Regardless of the moves the Iraqi government makes, whether inspections begin or not, whatever the UN resolves, there is no doubt that Bush will have his war.
So it might behoove us to prepare ourselves for what awaits. While events are somewhat difficult to predict, we may be reasonably certain of a few developments to come:
* Americans will die. How many depends on a number of factors, including the approach our military takes, how many friendly fire incidents there are, how long Saddam's army remains loyal, and whether it retreats to fight in the streets of Baghdad. But American soldiers will die.
* Many, many Iraqi civilians will die. After the invasion starts, Bush will aver, as his father did, that he has no argument with the Iraqi people, even as they are torn to shreds by our bombs targeting the "command and control" and "strategic targets" of the Iraqi military and civilian infrastructure, many of which are located regrettably close to civilian population centers. Whether the number of Iraqi civilian deaths numbers in the hundreds of thousands or merely tens of thousands depends on the tactics employed by our military commanders, but the prevailing American strategy of "overwhelming force" makes higher numbers more likely.
* There will be some sort of attack on Israel. While in 1991 Saddam bombed Israel in an attempt to provoke retaliation and thus draw Arab governments to his side, in this case he will do the same but for a different reason. By being so clear that he wants Saddam's head on a pike, Bush has painted the Iraqi leader into a corner. For years, whatever chemical and biological weapons Saddam has have laid waiting. Knowing his death is imminent, he will lash out with whatever weapons he has at the one target that will assure his heroic place in Arab history - the Jews.
* The likelihood of future terrorist attacks will increase. The only person more pleased than George W. Bush when the invasion begins will be Osama Bin Laden. After all, Bin Laden has tried to convince the Muslim world that what is required is a holy war in which Islam battles the west. His job recruiting disaffected young people to submit their lives to the goal of murdering Americans will only become easier as images of dead Iraqis are transmitted around the world and Arabs suffer yet another humiliation at the hands of the west.
* More Taliban-style regimes may emerge. The greatest internal threat to fragile Arab governments are home-grown fundamentalist Islamic movements. As some have pointed out, Arab humiliation after the Six-Day War in 1967 resulted in the overthrow of Arab governments and the emergence of dictators like Hafez Assad in Syria and Saddam Hussein in Iraq. The Islamist movements are waiting for their moment; the anger occasioned by the US overthrowing an Arab government may well provide it for them.
* The war will cost money - lots of it. Bush's chief economic adviser, Larry Lindsey, told the Wall Street Journal that an invasion of Iraq will cost somewhere between $100 billion and $200 billion - that means between $350 and $700 for every man, woman and child in America. You might want to start saving now.
* The United States will be occupying Iraq for years to come. Whether it will be decades or merely years is uncertain, but American soldiers will be patrolling the streets of Baghdad for a good long time. The idea popular in the Bush administration - that we'll march in, everyone will pop the champagne corks, there will be a stable democratic government installed and in a few months we'll be able to leave - is so patently ridiculous one must question the sanity of anyone who adheres to it.
So off to war we go. But with an all-volunteer army and a military organized around the principle of minimizing our casualties while maximizing those of the unfortunate peoples we are obliterating, we won't feel the consequences too deeply, at least at first. Sure, oil prices will rise and the country's economy will worsen, but all will agree that these developments should be blamed on someone other than those ruling the nation. And the mayhem and suffering in far off lands will be seen as a regrettable consequence of our noble efforts to make the world safer.
Why exactly did the administration wait until nearly two years into its tenure to begin warning that we had to attack Iraq, now now now? White House chief of staff Andrew Card explained that they had to wait until after Labor Day to start beating the war drums: "From a marketing point of view, you don't introduce new products in August." Karl Rove added that it wouldn't look right to initiate a war while the president was on one of his many lengthy vacations. That weekend, Dick Cheney declared it "reprehensible" that anyone would dare to suggest what Card and Rove had confirmed to be true, "that somehow, you know, we husbanded this and we waited." Press Secretary Ari Fleischer echoed the attack: "Even the suggestion that the timing of something so serious could be done for political reasons is reprehensible." But it is certainly convenient that Iraq has knocked off the front pages the administration's abject failure in nearly everything else it has done - the reemergence of chaos in Afghanistan, the ballooning deficit, the faltering economy, their intimate ties to corporate criminals, Bush and Cheney's own shady behavior in business, the failure to deliver on Bush's promise of prescription drug benefits, his retreat on his plan to privatize Social Security. One has to admire their political skill - after all, Bush's popularity remains high despite the fact that his presidency is little more than a string of disasters.
As David Armstrong recently detailed in Harper's, in the late days of the first Bush administration, Dick Cheney and his aides set out a blueprint for a true Pax Americana. The dryly titled Defense Planning Guidance, which was updated after the current administration brought back the old crowd, argued that the United States should use its overwhelming military power not only to deter threats but to destroy them through preemptive wars, cementing our position as global hegemon. The plan is finally coming to fruition. Had you asked Bush and Cheney a year and a half ago whether they would like terrorists to murder 3000 Americans, they would doubtless have said no, but nonetheless September 11 has been nothing but a boon for them on all fronts. In addition to all the political benefits, they managed to increase the Pentagon's budget to a mind-boggling $379 billion per year (at a time when the US already accounts for 36% of the entire world's military spending) and are proceeding with what will no doubt be only the first of a series of military adventures with barely a peep from the alleged opposition party, cowed by the invocation of the magical word "terrorism," at whose mention all questioning of our Great Leader vanishes.
By all accounts, Bush's war will begin soon, perhaps some time shortly after the first of the year. But it will not end when he leaves office. We will be picking up the pieces - both at home and in the middle east - for years to come.
Waldman Report 2002
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-04-2002 03:17 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
2 Oct. 2002
Contact Person: Gary Treece
VETERANS GROUP CALLS FOR
The American Gulf War Veterans Association (AGWVA) now calls for the resignation of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. In response to questioning by Sen. Robert C. Byrd, (D-WV), Rumsfeld denied any knowledge that the United States had shipped biological weapons to Iraq during the 1980’s. Rumsfeld was addressing the Armed Services Committee last week, when he stated that he “…had no knowledge of any such shipments and doubted that they ever occurred.”
There is no disputing the evidence that the U.S. provided bacteria and viruses as evidenced by Senate Report 103-900, “United States Dual-Use Exports To Iraq And Their Impact On the Health of The Persian Gulf War Veterans,” dated May 25,1994, chaired by Sen. Donald Riegle (D-MI) of the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. This Senate report was available to all senators and listed among other items, Bacillus Anthracis, (anthrax) Clostridium botulinum, and West Nile Fever Virus as pathogens that were shipped to Iraq in the 1980’s with the full knowledge of the Department of Commerce and the CDC.
There is no question that the Secretary of Defense must be informed and up to date with information about a potential military enemy and his military capabilities. Mr. Rumsfeld’s statements demonstrate that this is clearly not the case.
If our Secretary of Defense is unaware of the sales of biological materials to a country with which we are about to go to war, or if he is in denial over the fact that these sales occurred, the AGWVA believes that he represents a clear and present danger to the lives of our military, our country, and the American people, and should be considered a very serious threat to the national security. It is for this reason that the AGWVA calls for his resignation and removal from office.
Gulf War Vets Home Page
Hoka hey! - heyokas!
Stamford, CT, USA
1750 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-05-2002 08:34 AM
U.S. begins psychological warfare against Iraq
SPECIAL TO WORLD TRIBUNE.COM
Friday, October 4, 2002
WASHINGTON — The United States has launched a psychological warfare campaign warning Iraqi forces not to target allied troops and combat jets. It was the first such effort since 1991.
On Thursday, British and U.S. combat jets dropped 120,000 leaflets that warned Iraqi anti-aircraft forces against firing toward allied aircraft that patrol the no-fly zone in northern and southern Iraq. The leaflets, written in Arabic, threatened immediate retaliation against Iraqi forces who try to stop patrols of the no-fly zones, Middle East Newsline reported.
In a related development, the Defense Department has launched a program to train commandos from the U.S. Special Operations Command in foreign languages. Officials said the program is meant to improve the effectiveness of special operations.
"The destruction experienced by your colleagues in other air defense locations is a response to your continuing aggression toward planes of the coalition forces," the leaflet said.
"No tracking or firing on these aircraft will be tolerated. You could be next."
The allied planes dropping the leaflets were fired upon by Iraqi surface-to-air batteries. In response, allied aircraft attacked an air defense operations center in southern Iraq at Tallil.
U.S. officials said they weren't sure if the leaflets would be read. They said this was the first time since 1991 that coalition forces had dropped leaflets over Iraq.
"We just want them to get the message, 'Hey, this is why we keep striking,'" a Pentagon spokesman said.
U.S. officials said the leaflets stemmed from an assessment by London and Washington that most of the Iraqi military is prepared to flee or surrender in any war to topple the regime of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
The officials said the psychological campaign has also tracked Iraqi forces responsible for the deployment of Iraq's nonconventional weapons arsenal.
Other leaflets dropped on Iraqi forces said those who disobey Saddam's orders would be allowed to remain in their posts. The leaflets also warned that those who launch Iraqi missiles and WMD would be held accountable.
The Pentagon has awarded a $50 million award to B.I.B. Consultants to provide foreign language and immersion training in support of special operations forces around the world. B.I.B. will represent the Berlitz Language Center, based in Orlando, Fla.
U.S. officials said the work will be primarily performed within the continental United States but some of the immersion training will take abroad. They said the contract will be managed from Tampa, Fla., headquarters of the U.S. Central Command.
[Edited 1 times, lastly by Dan Rockwell on 10-05-2002]
Hoka hey! - heyokas!
Stamford, CT, USA
1750 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-06-2002 11:24 AM
Newsweek: 'This Campaign Will Be One of Life or Death for This Regime, and We Must Use Everything We Have,' Hussein Allegedly Told Military Commanders;
How not to prepare for war: Views of an active duty Marine
SPECIAL TO WORLD TRIBUNE.COM
Sunday, October 6, 2002
I am an enlisted United States Marine, a Gunnery Sergeant. The views in this article are my own and not representative of any other person or organization.
Classified leaks; senators visiting Iraq and criticizing the president in public; retired flag grade officers providing insight on how they might see forces employed for combat; what is our country doing?
I'm all for freedom of expression, but for members of the government to do any of the above should be considered criminal. It is criminal down at the military service level.
Members cannot leak info without going to prison. Members cannot bad mouth the president without repercussions as well. The fight at the highest levels of the government needs to be more discreet and behind closed doors. Let the citizens demonstrate and let the media guess, but don't give away our country's actions or intentions.
Don't bad mouth the government service members who are going to have to fight for in some capacity or another. For the general public, it's called freedom of speech; for members fighting the enemy in uniform or under some kind of cover, this kind of confusing behavior is a recipe for disaster.
Balkan and Mid-East Cultures have no respect for vacillation. There are three levels to employing forces; the Strategic, the Operational and Tactical levels. In layman terms this means the Political level; Theater Commanders (3 & 4 Star Officers) to roughly Regiment Level; and grunt level-the people carrying the guns.
Waging war from my way of understanding requires a focused effort at all levels; a solid round versus a shotgun blast. The solid round can kill an elephant, the latter a duck — if you are lucky.
Without going into detail here, let me just suggest that reading General Vo Nguyen Giap's book "How We Won The War" illustrates this point.
My point is simply this. Conflict occurs at three levels; the spiritual/moral, mental and the physical levels. Fog and Friction, AKA confusion & uncertainty, is what we try to levy upon the enemy to break his will to fight. That is the bottom line.
Conflict is not about destroying the enemy's weapons, cities, people or soldiers. It's about making an enemy realize that fighting will do him no good, so he should give up.
The fact that material damage and loss of life occurs is simply a by-product of attaining the objective of bending him to see our will through. This is an example of how fog and friction can work for us.
On the other hand, if the enemy's Fog (the unknown) is reduced via the leaking of classified information and blabbing by former senior military experts; or a schizophrenic political leadership, we give him a reason to believe that he can win the fight.
WE GIVE HIM THE WILL TO FIGHT. This is especially true if the enemy is backed into a corner. Why tell him our probable courses of action and give him the opportunity to put up the best and hardest defense for the sake of martyrdom and enlarging the conflict?
Why break Sun Tzu's dictum on maintaining the State of Formlessness by telling the enemy what we are going to do and how? Certain members of this country have convinced me that members of the armed services need to buy their spouses a hell of a lot of life insurance to carry them over if they, or their friends, die because of someone running their soup-cooler.
Where was Sun Tzu's press corps? My best guest was in the grave. I'm sure he considered them to be enemy spies.
Whether or not anyone realizes this, war has already started. War begins in the mind and heart. How U.S. citizens agree with the president, or not, needs to be handled in a more respectful manner.
A service member goes with the decision made by this government regardless of feeling. They just want to come to a home at the end of a day too.
Service members do not want to freeload or get special benefits. They will die for something to believe in, that is the Constitution and to "Defend this Country From All Enemies Foreign and Domestic." Semper Fidelis, A Marine who plans to retire in 3 years.
Resisting the NWO
3907 posts, Sep 2002
posted 10-06-2002 01:51 PM
Thu Oct 3,10:02 PM ET
By Ted Rall
The Real Link Between Bush and Hitler
NEW YORK--Herta Daeubler-Gmelin got it half-right when she compared George W. Bush's tactics to Adolf Hitler's. "Bush wants to divert attention from his domestic problems," she told Schwaebisches Tagblatt on Sept. 18. "It's a classic tactic. It's one that Hitler also used."
Shortly after Ms. Daeubler-Gmelin made her remarks, Bush flung his long knives across the Atlantic, and within days she was no longer Germany's justice minister.
Such sovereignty-busting gangsterism has its pleasures, but Bush's biggest cribbing from the Hitler playbook is "permanent revolution." Developed by socialist theorist Leon Trotsky in 1915 and applied by such totalitarian masters of control as Hitler, Stalin and Mao Tse-Tung, permanent revolution is the pinnacle of the art of mass distraction--one continually changes the subject of debate by striving for new goals that are always just beyond reach. The idea is diabolically simple: by the time people start grumbling about the problems created by your Great Leap Forward, you're causing new difficulties with your Cultural Revolution. Opposition takes time to materialize; taking the nation from one crisis to the next neutralizes your enemies by focusing them against initiatives you've already abandoned.
On the domestic front, Bush has launched so many political offensives that it's impossible for what's left of the left to launch a coordinated resistance. Fast-track signing authority for free trade, expanded tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations while running up the deficit, drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, rounding up detainees and depriving them of due process, unraveling environmental regulations, union-busting, curtailing privacy rights--any one of these full-scale assaults would require a full-court press by liberals to block or overturn.
In a blizzard of legislative and regulatory activity, virtually everything on the right-wing wish list is now being proposed. Previous presidents spaced out their initiatives in order to build popular support; Bush prefers to leave elected representatives out of the equation. The more legislation he throws at the wall, the more he'll get passed--and the more people will forget that his is an illegal regime.
Generalissimo El Busho's policy of permanent revolution has reached its zenith with his post-Sept. 11 foreign policy. Before we allow Bush's razzle-dazzle to leap us ahead to his next war, let's consider the one we've already got. Our campaign in Afghanistan news , lest we forget, continues even as thousands more troops pack for Iraq.
Operation Enduring Failure
"Dead or alive," said George W. Bush, squinting hard at Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar. If we couldn't get those two, we'd settle for any other high-ranking Al Qaeda or Taliban official we could find. A year later our highest-profile prisoner is alleged Al Qaeda senior field commander Abu Zubaydah. Zubaydah was not involved, says the U.S., in any of the major attacks--Sept. 11, our East African embassies, the U.S.S. Cole--but rather in two Y2K plots that never came off (blowing up LAX and a tourist hotel in Jordan). Hardly a big fish, he's just a little minnow--and we wouldn't even have him if the Pakistanis hadn't tossed him into our boat.
We blew it. U.S. taxpayers are spending between $500 million and $1 billion a month to occupy Afghanistan and fight its Islamist guerrillas (in the `80s we called them "freedom fighters"), yet we haven't caught any of the people we blame for Sept. 11. Al Qaeda remains operational. They're moving money, weapons and men around the Middle East and Central Asia, preparing for their next attack. Not only are you no safer than you were on Sept. 10, but you've spent billions of bucks along the way.
But wait a minute, Bush said, beginning to distance himself from Operation Enduring Failure: the Afghan war was never about finding Osama and his coconspirators. No, we actually went to Afghanistan to liberate its people.
"We've seen the pictures of joy when we liberated city after city in Afghanistan," Bush crowed on Dec. 12. "And none of us will ever forget the laughter and the music and the cheering and the clapping at a stadium that was once used for public execution. Children now fly kites and they play games. Women now come out of their homes from house arrest, able to walk the streets without chaperons."
Beautiful imagery, nicely written by a talented but sadly anonymous White House speechwriter and echoed by TV reports filed from the Kabul Intercontinental. Too bad that, except for the part about games and kites, it's a lie.
Public executions continue. Sharia law--stoning adulterers and chopping off the arms of thieves--remains in effect, enforced by the same judges who ruled under the Taliban. Judge Ahamat Ullha Zarif told Agence France Press on Dec. 28: "Public executions and amputations would continue in accordance with Sharia law but justice would be applied fairly and with mercy. `There will be some changes from the time of the Taliban,' he said. `For example, the Taliban used to hang the victim's body in public for four days. We will only hang the body for a short time, say 15 minutes.' Kabul's sports stadium, where the Taliban used to carry out public executions and amputations every Friday, would no longer be used. `The stadium is for sports. We will find a new place for public executions.'" Now that's civic improvement.
Aside from a tiny minority of the residents of Kabul, ruled by Hamid Karzai's U.S.-protected city-state, the "liberated" women of Afghanistan still wear the burqa. A May report issued by Human Rights Watch says that women are subjected to "sexual violence by armed factions and public harassment" and that gang rapes are commonplace, particularly in the north. Not one inch of road has been paved. Writing for the Lexington Herald-Tribune, Sudarsan Raghavan notes: "The fall of the Taliban has left a power vacuum in mostly ethnic-Pashtun southern Afghanistan that has been filled by scores of shuras, from provincial ones to others in small villages. Elsewhere, warlords such as Abdul Rashid Dostum in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif and Ismael Khan in the western province of Herat are now firmly in control of their fiefdoms, just as they were before the Taliban emerged in 1994. Along one stretch, the road is dotted with armed men at checkpoints controlled by tribal shuras. Often, they are nothing more than highway robbers preying on commercial trucks and taxis."
What about all the money that we promised to spend to rebuild the country we bombed into freedom? The West welched. The Karzai government is already so broke that it can't pay its employees; it's already running a budget deficit--$165 million by early next year. $2 billion has already been spent--much of it likely stolen by corrupt Afghan officials--while the lives of ordinary Afghans continue to be plagued by poverty and starvation.
It doesn't take an expert on Central Asian politics to discern the obvious: occupation by a rich country that makes poor people even poorer is a recipe for resentment. Afghans are among the world's most fiercely independent people. A self-indulgent Western superpower propping up a band of third-rate puppets isn't helping to reduce anti-Americanism there. Never doubt that similar sentiments are spreading through other Muslim countries.
Onward to Iraq
One might ask why our Generalissimo is going after Saddam Hussein's Iraq when the war in Afghanistan has worked out so poorly, but one would be missing the point: Trotsky's theory of permanent revolution is at work. It is precisely because we botched Afghanistan that we're moving on to Iraq.
167 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-06-2002 06:57 PM
"Make jobs, not war!"
Printed on Friday, October 04, 2002 @ 11:24:37 EDT http://www.yellowtimes.org/article.php?sid=749
By Yusuf Agha
YellowTimes.org Columnist (United States)
(YellowTimes.org) - At the precise moment President Bush was
admonishing the United Nations on Iraq, another of the nation's icons
was unveiling plans to disrupt the lives of thousands of Americans.
Less than twenty-five miles separate the U.N. podium from Murray Hill,
in the New Jersey home of Lucent Technologies - the nation's leading
manufacturer of communications equipment - where the layoff
announcement was being drafted. According to the New York
Times, "Analysts expect the company.to cut about 5,000 to 10,000 more
jobs, leaving the work force at 33,000 to 38,000 employees, down from
a peak of more than 123,000 two years ago."
As the American President dreamed of torrents of yellow cluster bombs
devastating thousands of Iraqi lives, he seemed totally oblivious to
the clusters of pink slips that were being prepared by the Human
Resources department at Lucent.
As world leaders harkened in stilled silence at Mr. Bush's
vituperative onslaught against the inadequacy of the U.N., thousands
of telecommunication employees waited in suspense to be herded to the
HR office for unceremonious 'exit' interviews. They had been
forewarned by newspaper reports that day that their industry planned
292,756 job cuts through November. As their country's President
repeated the phrase "if the Iraqi regime wishes peace" five times in a
single minute, thousands of American workers wished for their own
peace: peace of mind - where would their next paycheck come from?
Meanwhile, the west coast employees at Charles Schwab fared no better.
With investor confidence at a dramatic low, the San Francisco-based
brokerage firm announced plans to reduce its expenditures by
dismissing 1,800 employees within the next two months. "When those
cuts are completed," said the firm's chief financial officer,
Christopher Dodds, "Schwab will have dismissed more than 35 percent of
the 26,300 employees it had in early 2001."
With massive layoffs, business foreclosures, exhausted unemployment
benefits, a diminishing job market, shrinking 401(k) plans, non-
existent health care benefits and increasing fuel costs - there
appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel for today's unemployed
Associated Press reports that the U.S. recorded more job losses in
2001 than it did in any of the previous nine years. Citing the job
placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, the report states
that "since the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, U.S. companies have
announced 624,411 job cuts, more than the 12-month totals for every
year from 1993-1997. Through the end of November, companies had
announced close to 1.8 million job cuts in 2001, nearly three times
more than were announced in 2000."
Key sectors have been affected by the layoffs. The AFL-CIO web site
reports that, as of March this year, the hardest hit sectors have been
Manufacturing (443,993 jobs), Communications & Utilities (220,075),
Transportation (145,025), and Hospitality, Tourism & Entertainment
(140,785). Added to this is the disheartening release from the U.S.
Bureau of Labor Statistics that in July 2002 alone, there have been
2,041 "mass layoff actions" - each involving at least 50 persons from
a single establishment - resulting in 245,457 newly jobless in
Statistics are only half the story - these layoffs have affected the
people in the street, the workers one saw every morning with a
backpack slung over their shoulders, waiting at the street corner for
the light to change.
A colleague writes of the profound effect of layoffs in her
company: "Consulting Group is down to 25 percent of our employee count
from two years ago. I've been so lucky to have these past eighteen
months, since the layoffs began, to . prepare for a layoff. I have a
consultant friend in Boston who's been out of work for a year now. She
was with Ernst and Young, her second big six (or is it five). She's
found nothing yet. I really have had my cupful of this. It's
Another email is equally depressing. "My little sister was laid off in
July. She was in Connecticut. She had been looking for a job in
Connecticut for a while, but the only work she could find was in New
York. She had lived and worked in New York before and it was very
stressful. So she's moved in with me, yesterday, as a matter of fact.
She was devastated. It's her second lay-off in a little over two
As Congress debates empowering of the U.S. President with carte
blanche powers to wage an all-out war against the people of Iraq, the
stock market continues to be stifled by uncertitude. The Dow is at a
four-year low, and Wall Street is facing the "deepest bear market
since 1938." Reuters reports Anthony Chan, chief economist at Banc
One, stating that the cause of this uncertainty is not market
fundamentals, but "an overdose of uncertainty" with the Iraq
situation. War is a costly affair.
Mr. Bush's war, says Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-Oakland),
would "divert some $200 billion from our own profound domestic needs,
including health care, prescription drugs, education and homeland
security." Only this time around, a unilateralist America will not
have allies who will foot the bill as they did in the Gulf War of '91,
where Saudi Arabia alone claims to have coughed up $80 billion as
its 'share' of the battle.
Meanwhile, back in Washington, the capital is immersed in another kind
of battle - a war of words. The Democratic majority leader criticizes
the President for "the lack of attention paid to the state of economic
security.a very unfortunate, some would say even tragic economic trend
in this country." White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer returns
fire: "How can the leader of the Senate be for economic security when
the Senate has failed to act on the budget, job-creating terrorism
insurance, pension protections, welfare reform, homeland security, the
The New York Times writes of the worsening situation in the job
market: "Things are considerably worse today. In the last two years,
the official jobless rate has risen and an additional two million
people appear to have dropped out of the labor force. Today, the real
level of unemployment for men probably approaches the level of the
recession-mired early 80's."
The newspaper predicts a "dismal retail season." What else could it
be, without a fire in the hearth and no presents under the Christmas
The state that endured the attacks of 9/11 now bears the attacks of
soaring unemployment. In an Op-ed piece in the New York Times, Senator
Hilary Clinton (D-NY) writes of an unemployment rate which "has
skyrocketed to 8 percent. Across the state, 553,000 New Yorkers are
out of work, with company layoffs and plant closings happening
everywhere from Niagara Falls to Rochester. Now 135,000 New Yorkers.
have exhausted their unemployment benefits and are struggling to pay
"At this time last year," she writes, "800,000 Americans had been out
of work for six months or longer. That number has nearly doubled to
1.5 million and it is expected to increase to more than 2 million by
Here it must be noted that those who have lost hope - who have stopped
looking for employment - are no longer counted in the official
There are no White House plans on the anvil about how to deal with
this catastrophe of devastating proportions affecting mainstream
America. The single mantra emanating from its inhabitant is the need
to settle the 'family feud' with a 'pre-emptive' war that elder Bush
never finished, which will cost the nation billions of dollars.
Perhaps it is imperative for Mr. Bush to retain the image of a
President-at-arms, because of popularity ratings that rocketed after
the 9/11 attacks. In order to maintain this image, he has to maintain
the semblance of a perpetual war.
The new version of Operation Desert Storm, which President Bush is
threatening to mount against Iraq, may be just another attempt to
throw dust in our eyes, at the cost of greater unemployment, greater
budget expenditure, more taxes, less jobs, rising fuel costs, and -
heck, who cares - a few thousand Iraqi lives!
"There is much to do on the world stage," says Congressman Dennis
Kucinich (D-Ohio). "But we cannot do it by creating war when we ought
to be working for peace. Iraq is not an imminent threat. But an
unemployment rate which approaches 6 percent is an imminent threat."
This is the war Mr. Bush should be fighting - a war against
unemployment in America. Not one of squandered resources on missiles
and two-ton bombs raining like manna from hell on the hapless people
Make jobs, not war!
[Yusuf Agha is a historian who also dabbles in Information Technology.
He reads extensively and has an interest in the visual and performing
arts. He has resided in the United States for over two decades, loves
its people and the land, but is still trying to figure out whom the
Yusuf Agha encourages your comments: yagha@YellowTimes.org
Hoka hey! - heyokas!
Stamford, CT, USA
1750 posts, Dec 2001
posted 10-06-2002 08:26 PM
Saddam's inner circle is defecting, say Iraqi exiles
By Anton La Guardia, Diplomatic Editor
Saddam Hussein's power base is coming under extreme pressure, with members of his inner circle defecting to the opposition or making discreet offers of peace in the hope of being spared retribution if the Baghdad dictator is toppled, according to Iraqi exiles.
Ayad al-Awi, the head of the opposition Iraqi National Accord, said his group in recent weeks had received senior defectors from the Iraqi security services, which form the regime's nerve centre.
At the same time Kurdish groups said they had received secret approaches from military commanders offering to turn their weapons on Saddam when the war began.
They said members of the al-Majid clan, the pillar of Saddam's tribal power base, had made contact to seek assurances about their fate.
These signs of fragmentation indicate for the first time that Saddam's senior lieutenants believe that the United States and Britain are serious about toppling him.
The reports will raise the hopes of British officials who have long maintained that a credible threat of overwhelming force to bring down Saddam's regime could destroy his reign of fear and prompt senior lieutenants to seize power and avert a devastating war.
The American intelligence community harbours similar hopes. One ex-CIA senior officer told the Washington Post yesterday: "Someone will take action and cause it to happen."
American officials, including Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, have recently spoken of Iraqis eliminating Saddam themselves, either through assassination or by sending him into exile.
Last week, Ari Fleischer, the White House spokesman, said: "The cost of a one-way ticket is substantially less than [the cost of war]. The cost of one bullet, if the Iraqi people take it on themselves, is substantially less than that."
Exiled Iraqis have been reporting for weeks that members of the regime have been trying to build relations with the opposition.
Ghassan Attiyeh, a writer on Iraq, said: "This is the kind of thing I would expect.
"For example, I just found a message on my answering machine from somebody telling me he had seen lorries moving weapons into houses in a certain area of Baghdad."
Mr al-Awi said the INA, a group formed by former members of the ruling Ba'ath party, had seen a surge of interest from senior members of the regime.
"We have been getting approaches for the past two or three months, but the trend is increasing. Those contacting us come from Saddam's inner circle.
"Some have defected, while others have been asked to stay to help us from inside. We cannot say much about the defectors at the moment, but some may speak after they have been debriefed.
"Things are happening inside the regime that will hopefully mean we can get rid of this evil regime. You can speak of Saddam in the past tense."
A Kurdish source said members of Saddam's al-Majid clan had been in contact with Iraqi opposition groups, as well as Western governments.
Purported Bin Laden Tape Warns U.S.
The Associated Press
Sunday, October 6, 2002; 4:44 PM
CAIRO, Egypt –– The Arab satellite station al-Jazeera broadcast an audiotape Sunday in which a male voice attributed to Osama bin Laden said the "youths of God" are planning more attacks against the United States.
"By God, the youths of God are preparing for you things that would fill your hearts with terror and target your economic lifeline until you stop your oppression and aggression" against Muslims, said the voice in the audiotape.
It wasn't immediately clear when the tape was made. The short message was broadcast with a picture of bin Laden in the background.
Bin Laden said his message was addressed to the American people, whom he urged to "understand the message of the New York and Washington attacks which came in response to some of your previous crimes."
"But those who follow the activities of the band of criminals in the White House, the Jewish agents, who are preparing for an attack on the Muslim world ... feel that you have not understood anything from the message of the two attacks," he said.
Qatar-based al-Jazeera has become known for its broadcast of audio and videotapes of al-Qaida leaders. Last month, it aired excerpts from a videotape in which a voice said to be bin Laden's is heard naming the leaders of the 19 Sept. 11 hijackers.
Until then, bin Laden had not been heard from since shortly after the U.S.-led bombing campaign began in Afghanistan last October.
An interview al-Jazeera said one of its correspondents conducted in June with two top al-Qaida fugitives was aired to correspond with the first anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
Shortly afterward, U.S. officials announced one of the fugitives had been captured in Pakistan.
American officials have called the network biased in its coverage of the war on terrorism, the Israeli-Arab conflict and U.S. Mideast policy.
Al-Jazeera journalists say they strive to tell all sides of events from the Arab and Muslim point of view, and they have angered Arab governments as often as they have Washington.
The satellite station, initially funded by the Qatari government, began operations in November 1996. It is editorially independent of the government, which has its own official station to broadcast its point of view.
Bin Laden still alive, reveals spy satellite
A year of life on the edge
Jason Burke in Jalalabad
Sunday October 6, 2002
Osama bin Laden is alive and regularly meeting Mullah Omar, the fugitive leader of the Taliban, according to a telephone call intercepted by American spy satellites.
In the conversation, recorded less than a month ago, Omar and a senior aide were discussing the American-led hunt to track them down.
The two men, using a mobile Thuraya satellite phone, spoke about tactics for several minutes. Omar then turned to a third person who was within a few yards of him, voice analysis has revealed.
After exchanging a few words, Omar said that 'the sheikh sends his salaams [greetings]'. Senior Taliban figures habitually refer to bin Laden as 'the sheikh'.
Voice analysis appears to corroborate the identification of bin Laden. 'It shows he was alive recently at least,' said a senior Afghan intelligence officer. 'Some people might like to think he is dead, but that's just wishful thinking.'
The revelation comes amid growing speculation that bin Laden is dead. He has looked gaunt and unwell in videos released by al-Qaeda, and appeared unable to use his left arm.
There has been no public statement from bin Laden since early this year. Some analysts say this lack of communication indicates that he might be dead, but others say he is biding his time.
'He does not want to be rushed into saying something reactive. He wants to make statements on his own terms,' said Abdul Bari Atwan, editor of al-Quds newspaper in London.
Other analysts feel Omar could have been bluffing, knowing he was being listened to by the Americans.
Bin Laden's whereabouts are unknown, but it is thought he is moving between Pakistan and Afghanistan via the border between the Afghan province of Paktia and the Pakistani tribal area of Waziristan.
There were unconfirmed sightings of him in eastern Afghanistan in March and April. The only confirmed location for him was at Tora Bora, the cave complex south of Jalalabad, in December.