Tag Archives: war

Hope in 2011 – Peoples, Civil Society Stand Tall

By Ramzy Baroud
Global Research

When the Iraqi army fell before invading US and British troops in 2003, the latter’s mission seemed to be accomplished. But nearly eight years after the start of a war intended to shock and awe a whole population into submission, the Iraqi people continue to stand tall. They have confronted and rejected foreign occupations, held their own against sectarianism, and challenged random militancy and senseless acts of terrorism.

For most of us, the Iraqi people’s resolve cannot be witnessed, but rather deduced. Eight years of military strikes, raids, imprisonments, torture, humiliation and unimaginable suffering were still not enough to force the Iraqis into accepting injustice as a status quo.

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The U.N. Flotilla Report Goes Down the Media’s Black Hole

People gather to welcome home the Mavi Marmara, the flagship of the ill-fated Gaza flotilla attacked by Israel this summer, in Istanbul, Turkey, Dec. 26, 2010. The Mavi Marmara departed from Turkey in May to break the Israeli blockade on Gaza and deliver humanitarian aids. On May 31, Israel raided the ship in international waters before it could reach its destination and killed nine activists aboard. (Xinhua/Chen Ming)

The U.N. Flotilla Report Goes Down the Media’s Black Hole

By Alex Kane

The return of the Turkish Mavi Marmara to Istanbul and efforts to end the Israeli-Turkish diplomatic chill has produced a number of media reports that mention the May 31 Gaza-bound aid flotilla.  But news outlets are continuing to frame the events aboard the flotilla ambivalently, and there is a media blackout of mentioning the one independent report on the Israeli raid that has been released.

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Let It Burn?

By TheOncomingStorm

We are at that crossroads yet again, where we must make a firm, courageous decision about whether to let it all burn – or put out the flames. We as a species have been here before, many times. However, as our species’ timeline has marched on, we have grown weak and frightened of change and acts of heroism. Now, we are reaping what we have sown in past decades, and we are reaping bushels and bushels of nothing. My heart is filled with sadness at this.

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John Pilger’s ‘The War You Don’t See’ an indictment on journalists


12/22 UPDATE: Film now on YouTube (and below).

By Rady Ananda

In The War You Don’t See (2010, 95 mins), investigative journalist and filmmaker John Pilger chronicles the massive lies that keep the Western world in war on the Middle East and elsewhere. Pilger interviews key journalists involved in propagandizing the wars, along with others, like Dahr Jamail and Mark Manning, who reported independent of the military, as well as Julian Assange, whose whistleblower organization WikiLeaks has released hundreds of thousands of documents evidencing the wholesale, indiscriminate killing of entire populations.

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Take a Stand for Peace, Dec. 16, 2010 (video)

By Darren Wolfe
International Libertarian

A great example of how people of diverse views can come together to stand for peace and against the empire. This protest took place at the Whitehouse in Washington, DC.

We met several libertarians there, hopefully more will turn out for future peace rallies. Below are pictures and two videos of the event:

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Constitutional Judo

By Giordano Bruno
Neithercorp Press

In all things, there exists a ‘point of balance’; a line that, if crossed, results in the sudden and expedient loss of our self-determinism and makes us subservient to the fickle whims of social, political, and physical gravity. We are “thrown” into the air, as it were, and the landing is rarely ever pleasant. The U.S. Constitution and the civil liberties it outlines is itself one of these historic points of balance.

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Happy Birthday, CLG! History and Dedication

Citizens for Legitimate Government is ten years old. Below is the dedication and history by its founder.

By Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D.

Citizens for the Legitimate Government (CLG) was founded on December 12, 2000, by a group of activists in response to the 2000 U.S. Presidential “election” debacle. We held and continue to maintain that the “election” of George W. Bush was a fraud, and that the installation of Bush marked a fundamental breach of the formal electoral processes in the United States of America. We emphasize the purely formal character of the electoral breach because we recognize and always have recognized the highly mediated and manipulated character of the American electoral process, a condition that has only worsened since the founding of our organization.

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Economics of Slaughter: It really is us against them

By William Bowles
Information Clearinghouse

MPs fiddling expenses and leaked diplomatic cables: what connects them and is the game finally up for capitalist ‘democracy’?

“Julian Rush is on the case but it already really does look as if there is an evolving war online between the organic anarchy of the web, as represented currently on the one hand by WikiLeaks and an assorted group of internet activists, and on the other hand by both the old and new icons of the corporate capitalist order, credit card and web commerce companies.” – Channel 4 Email, 9 December, 2010

Aside from having their ‘little secrets’ exposed, British MPs just as with their compatriots in the diplomatic service have had their way for so long that they look like a force of nature. But no more. What the complicit media echoes so faithfully and fearfully, ‘we have to restore faith in the system’ reveals just how frightened they are and just how tenuous their hold on power really is. It all rests on our belief in the system and once that connection is broken the state has two choices: repression or dissolution.

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Wikileaks and the Worldwide Information War

Power, Propaganda, and the Global Political Awakening
By Andrew Gavin Marshall
Global Research

Introduction

The recent release of the 250,000 Wikileaks documents has provoked unparalleled global interest, both positive, negative, and everywhere in between. One thing that can be said with certainty: Wikileaks is changing things.

There are those who accept what the Wikileaks releases say at face value, largely due to the misrepresentation of the documents by the corporate-controlled news. There are those who see the documents as authentic and simply in need of proper interpretation and analysis. Then there are those, many of whom are in the alternative media, who approach the leaks with caution and suspicion.

There are those who simply cast the leaks aside as a ‘psy-op’ designed to target specific nations that fit into U.S. foreign policy objectives. Finally, then, there are those who deplore the leaks as ‘treason’ or threatening ‘security’. Of all the claims and notions, the last is, without a doubt, the most ridiculous. This essay aims to examine the nature of the Wikileaks releases and how they should be approached and understood. If Wikileaks is changing things, let’s hope people will make sure that it changes things in the right direction.

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Reclaiming Omelas

By Robert C. Koehler

Bob’s taking Thanksgiving week off. This column originally ran four years ago, and is one of my favorites. ~Ed.

Originally published Sept. 20, 2006

“In one corner of the little room a couple of mops, with stiff, clotted, foul-smelling heads stand near a rusty bucket. . . . In the room a child is sitting. It could be a boy or a girl. It looks about six, but actually is nearly ten. It is feeble-minded. Perhaps it was born defective, or perhaps it has become imbecile through fear, malnutrition, and neglect. It picks its nose and occasionally fumbles vaguely with its toes or genitals, as it sits hunched in the corner farthest from the bucket and the two mops. It is afraid of the mops.”

– Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas”

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Peddling War to Children

By Robert C. Koehler

In the gap between a boy’s passionate fantasies and the smell of dead bodies in a mass grave marches . . . America’s Army.

“He wonders if God is punishing him because before he joined the Army he thought of war as something fun and exciting.”

We couldn’t wage our current wars without the all-volunteer military whose recruitment goals get fed every year by idealistic young people, who continue, despite all counter-evidence bursting off the front pages, to buy into the romance and excitement of war and armed do-goodism that the recruiters, with the help of a vast “militainment” industry, peddle like so many Joe Camels.

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Lawless Nation – the Executive Branch

By Michael Collins
Part I of III

WASHINGTON – Selected to run by the powerful and wealthy, promising the public one thing and delivering another after elected, the President of the United States is the focus of a new political doctrine – the unitary executive. The office of the president has rapidly become a law unto itself over the past ten years. (Image)

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Holy War

By Robert C. Koehler

It took the U.S. secretary of defense, for God’s sake, to get a Florida preacher to cancel his plans for pyrotechnic sacrilege on Sept. 11. A few days later, CNN asked some of its blog contributors to reflect on the incident . . . “now that the crisis is over.”

We’re neck deep in two wars (excuse me, one and a half) and an imploding economy, not to mention global warming, endemic violence and hurricane season, but Terry Jones’ creepy publicity stunt has the status of a national crisis: America’s close call! We came this close to offending Muslims!

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‘U.S. troops join Baghdad battle against militants’ AP 2 hours ago

By Michael Collins

BAGHDAD —”Days after the U.S. officially ended combat operations and touted Iraq’s ability to defend itself, American troops found themselves battling heavily armed militants assaulting an Iraqi military headquarters in the center of Baghdad on Sunday. The fighting killed 12 people and wounded dozens.

“It was the first exchange of fire involving U.S. troops in Baghdad since the Aug. 31 deadline for formally ending the combat mission, and it showed that American troops remaining in the country are still being drawn into the fighting.
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Things the President Left Out of His Big Speech

Michael Collins

I just read the presidents big speech tonight and it struck me. There were some key lines left out of the speech. You may have had the same response. For the sake of clarity and fairness, I’ve tried to reconstruct the missing lines. I’m sure that the omissions were just an accident. Or maybe that Robert Gibbs may be up to his old tricks again. My insertions are in italics, following the president’s words from the official White House transcript. White House, August 31, 2010 Here goes.

THE PRESIDENT: Good evening. Tonight, I’d like to talk to you about the end of our combat mission in Iraq, the ongoing security challenges we face, and the need to rebuild our nation here at home. But before I do that, we need a moment of truth. The Iraq war was based on a deliberate lie involving the White House distorting the National intelligence estimate on Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD). The report got it wrong on WMD. There were none. But it concluded that the only way the nonexistent WMD would be used against the United States was in retaliation for a US attack on Iraq that threatened Saddam Hussein. By deleting this information, the Bush-Cheney White House justified a preemptive invasion without any basis, a crime under international law that our nation helped establish after World War II. Continue reading

Exit Strategy or Essentially Endless?

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Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
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Ray McGovern and Robert Parry on Truth Unflinching and the Price of Integrity

Michael Collins

(Washington, DC) Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern and investigative journalist Robert Parry spoke at the National Press Club in Washington, DC last night. They were guests of The McClendon Group which holds periodic meetings at the press club featuring investigative reporters and newsmakers. Parry publishes and reports at Consortium.News.com. McGovern is on the steering committee of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS).

They focused on the risks of integrity in both journalism and government service. Parry had a successful career with AP and Newsweek, where he was a leader in Iran-Contra reporting. McGovern’s career in intelligence spanned three decades and put him in front of presidents and cabinet members for daily intelligence briefings by the CIA, among other duties. Continue reading

Shadow lands: Pakistan – A nation under attack

In 2005, 216 people were reported killed in violence in Pakistan. By 2009, it was 25,000.

By Robert Frisk
Sign of the Times

American drones overhead, Taliban troops on the offensive, and the horrifying rise of child kidnapping – Pakistan is in pieces, writes Robert Fisk, in a devastating portrait of a country thwarted by violence and corruption.

THE INDEPENDENT:  Pakistan ambushes you. The midday heat is also beginning to ambush all who live in Peshawar, the capital of the North West Frontier Province. Canyons of fumes grey out the vast ramparts of the Bala Hisar fort. “Headquarters Frontier Force” is written on the ancient gateway. I notice the old British cannon on the heights – and the spanking new anti-aircraft gun beside it, barrels deflected to point at us, at all who enter this vast metropolis of pain. There are troops at every intersection, bullets draped in belts over their shoulders, machine guns on tripods erected behind piles of sandbags, the sights of AK-47s brushing impersonally across rickshaws, and rubbish trucks and buses with men clinging to the sides. There are beards that reach to the waist. The soldiers have beards, too, sometimes just as long.

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Schools in Orange Jumpsuits

Photo at pasadenaweekly.com

By Robert C. Koehler

The image that flashed into my mind was: schools in orange jumpsuits.

Something has broken apart in our society — an unspoken agreement about sanity, a truce between play and order. The authoritarian strain, always present, of course, has been ratcheting up to ever more absurd levels for a decade now.

It’s as though, as the American political class has watched its real control over the course of events slowly ebb, a collusion of desperation has broken out among them: “The time of fun and waste is over,” as the 9/11 terrorists put it. As our problems get increasingly complex, the solutions we implement get more and more simplistic. Results don’t really matter, just the appearance of holding someone accountable.

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Unitary Executive can OK mass murder: John Yoo

I have thought for some time that the role model adopted by the US government more and more resembles the Mafia.  The Insurance Industry has also followed this extortionate path. And now we hear assertions that any US president may target an American for death, and John Yoo (of torture memo fame) additionally claims that a sitting president is entitled to order massacres at will.

The City on the Hill has become the Mob.

Claudia

Yoo Called Civilian Slaughter OK

By Jason Leopold         ConsortiumNews.com February 20, 2010

Former Justice Department lawyer John Yoo argued that President George W. Bush’s commander-in-chief powers were so sweeping that he could willfully order the massacre of civilians, yet Yoo’s culpability in Bush administration abuses was deemed “poor judgment,” not a violation of “professional standards.”

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