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#1 posted: March 17, 2008, Draft edition

#2 through #? posted: March 21, 2008, Draft edition

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1) The Articles linked below were Abstracted from the sources cited. After the abstract there's analysis and commentary, links to related articles, and a link to the database with suggested search terms.

Fierce Kosovo clashes force UN pullout

Ian Traynor, Angela Balakrishnan and agencies, Monday March 17 2008

Serbian protesters clashed with western peacekeepers in northern Kosovo today in the worst unrest since the Albanian-dominated Balkan province declared independence a month ago.

As UN riot police, backed by Nato helicopters and armoured vehicles, used stun grenades and teargas to regain control of a court building occupied by Serb activists in the northern, Serb-controlled town of Mitrovica last week, Serbian rioters used automatic weapons against Nato troops.

Dozens of people were hurt in explosions and fighting after riot police stormed the building at dawn.

The UN has run the court since Kosovo became an international protectorate at the end of the Nato war with Serbia over Kosovo in 1999.

Mitrovica's 40,000 Serbs are militantly opposed to Kosovan independence and, backed by Belgrade, are bent on partitioning the province and taking over the police and judicial institutions in the north.

Around 300 Serbs occupied the court on Friday, evicting the UN employees and hoisting two Serbian flags over the building.

Talks over the weekend failed to defuse the crisis, and the UN sent in hundreds of mainly Ukrainian and Polish riot police early today.

Mayhem followed, with more than 50 Serbs arrested inside the courthouse and driven away in UN vehicles.

Serb protesters, however, blocked at least three lorries and freed the detainees. They then surrounded the courthouse, throwing stones and petrol bombs and torching UN and Nato vehicles.

The riot police were later ordered to withdraw to the Albanian-controlled south side of the River Ibar, which bisects Mitrovica and forms an ethnic border.

Today's trouble was by far the most serious since Kosovo's Albanian leadership, backed by the US and most of the EU, seceded from Serbia and declared independence a month ago.

It was the worst violence since Albanian mobs staged an anti-Serbian pogrom four years ago, killing 19 people.

Russia, an ally of Serbia, today agreed to consult on joint efforts to end "all forms of violence against Kosovo Serbs".

The move could see Serbia inviting Russian troops into northern Kosovo as peacekeepers, undermining the authority of the Nato-led mission.

The Serbian caretaker prime minister, Vojislav Kostunica, accused Nato of "implementing a policy of force against Serbia" after the violence broke out.

"We have started the necessary consultations with Russia about a necessary joint reaction in order to stop all forms of violence against Serbs," he said in a statement.

However, there are fears that Russian intervention could create potential conflict or lead to a division of the territory.

Moscow has condemned Kosovo's independence as illegal, saying it would not stand by and watch Kosovo Serbs being oppressed.

Serbia is planning to extend May's national and municipal elections to the Serb areas of Kosovo - a move Albanians and international diplomats see as a provocative attempt to partition the province.

It has not staged municipal elections in Kosovo since the UN takeover in 1999, and to do so now would breach the UN security council resolution mandating the international mission.

"The concern is that the aim is to further Serbia's links with the Serb-majority areas of Kosovo and set up parallel institutions," a senior European diplomat said.

"That would seriously undermine Kosovo statehood. Any attempt to unhinge the state of Kosovo through municipal elections is a shot being fired at [Joachim] Ruecker [the UN chief in Kosovo]."

The EU mission consists of 2,000 people, including 750 riot police in four companies, but today's trouble signals more to come. EU representatives have been unable to go to Mitrovica because of Serbian hostility.


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What's Really Going on Here??


Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008

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Also See:

serbian, central euro crop failures, 2007, bbc, july 31, 2007

Serbia Says Use of Force Is an Option in Kosovo. essay: Russia balkan conflict, nyt, 9-6-07

Putin pulls out of treaty limiting arms in Europe, wp, December 1, 2007


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2) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.

Floods sweep central U.S.

By Ros Krasny

Posted 1:03 pm EDT


CHICAGO, Mar. 21, 2008 (Reuters) — Swollen rivers flooded parts of the central United States on Friday and threatened to engulf a major interstate highway in Missouri, after violent rainstorms caused at least 16 deaths, according to reports on Friday.

Many rivers were swollen beyond their banks, leaving houses under water, from parts of Texas north to Ohio after inundating rains this week -- in some cases on the heels of record snowstorms earlier in the month that left soils saturated.

Reports across the region said some 16 people had died, either swept away by rushing waters or in traffic accidents blamed on the heavy storms.

Traffic was being held to one lane on Interstate 44 west of St Louis, as workers frantically sandbagged against advancing waters on the Meramec River in Fenton, Missouri.

"This could rival and in some places top the flood of 1982," said Jeff Ranieri, forecaster at NBC's, speaking from Fenton.

The Missouri Department of Transportation showed dozens of roads closed by floods across the southern one-third of the state. Parts of the state received upwards of 10 inches of rain this week.

Skies are expected to be mostly clear for the next few days, providing relief to parts of the region. But rivers flowing northeast toward St. Louis are not expected to peak until late on Friday or Saturday.

At Eureka, Missouri, the Meramec was forecast to crest at 42.8 feet, just below the 42.9 feet reached in 1982, according to the National Weather Service.

To the north, a heavy late-season snowstorm was hitting the upper Midwest, cutting a swathe from North Dakota southeast to Indiana and Ohio.

Southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois braced for 6 to 12 inches of snow by Saturday.

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What's Really Going on Here??

Freak Tropical Weather Floods Mid-West

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., August 29, 2007

The freakish weather that has been happening all across the country is no stranger to Californians.

During the last 10 years we have seen summer extending deep into fall, Fall ending in late December, and the Winter rains, if they even come, have been coming in Spring

The character of the seasons has been radically altered, and the environment has been devastated by these changes.

Yet the people of California seem unaware of the changes. Our “residents” seem unable to perceive either the radical changes in our environment, nor the radical deterioration of conditions in our schools, the loss of our middle class, or the massive growth of poverty in California.

They tell us, “It's always been like this.”

For those who have not been here long, know that it has not always been like this. The changes in our social, political, and economic values, like the change in our climate and environment, are the product of our unprecedented reckless growth.

The majority of our population arrived recently, and have no historical perspective on what our environment, schools, roads, and democracy were like before they got here

I'll give y'all a clue: California had enough water and few enough people to live on hydroelectric power. Now our massive population requires coal fired energy, and we don't have enough water for our present population, let alone to meet our corporate leadership's plan to somhow fit 50 million people into California by 2050.

Our schools were among the best in the world. College was free. Our roads were among the finest in the country. Our democracy reflected and defended the values of the citizens of our state.

Now, our schools are among the worse in the nation, and college is no longer accessable or affordable for our own citizens. Our roads and bridges are falling apart. Our politicians are no more that bribed errand fools of our corporate elite.

We have lost every one of these things as the population has swelled, and the climate is turning radically drier. In the Sierras, Winter snows have significantly diminished and tempertures are significantly higher. Our climate is merely responding to our massive population growth, and is changing radically in response.

These changes are invisible to those who just got here, and are ignnored by the politicians and their corporate masters who profit by pumping up the population.

Our political and corporate leaders, and their foreign minions are willing to sacrifice the welfare of the American people, our environment, and our democracy to make their money.

They tell us, “It's always been like this.”

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What's Really Going on Here??
Freak Tornadoes: Global warming Kills at least 50

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., February 6, 2008
It is time that the press and politicians begin to take account of the unprecedented rise of freak weather and change in the seasons, and the serious damage and death toll this weather is causing here in the us and around the world.

Despite the calming words of the press and politicians, it is clear that the ferocity and size of this storm was unprecedented in the records of winter tornadoes.

This storm was born in the pacific a few hundred miles to the southwest of the tip of baja california, where a massive hot spot is spewing hot moisture as the sun's northward movement is superheating the pacific's already increased tempeture.

The clear fact is that the evaporative power and heat of the equatorial regions has increased, and is now dominating the weather patterns much further north than ever in human history.

This means that we can expect more incidents such as the massive ice storm the midwest experienced in december. And the massive tropical flooding they received last august. The freak flooding, the freak ice storm, and now this massive surge of freak tornadoes shared the same source: a superheated equatorial zone that now has the energy to push massive amounts of hot moisture into the continental us during mid winter.

It's time for average americans to open their eyes, as the press, politicians, and scientists have failed to provide for our safety and welfare.

It is time to stop the massive expansion of our population and curb our consumption, no matter what the democrats and republicans say.


Also See:

Massive Tornado Storm Rips US

Global Warming Kills 54: Third time in a year:

Out of control tropical moisture sparks massive tornado storm, ap, 2-6-08

Freak Weather: Massive Ice Storm this Winter:

Deadly Ice Storm Glazes mid west, cbs, 12-11-07

Climate change destruction intensified last summer:

Freak Tropical Weather Floods Mid-West, committee, 8-29-07

gee, notice a pattern here?


environment links


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3) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.

Five years on, Bush again talks of Iraq victory

WASHINGTON, Mar. 19, 2008 (Reuters) — President George W. Bush said on Wednesday he had no regrets about the unpopular war in Iraq despite the "high cost in lives and treasure" and declared that the United States was on track for victory.

Marking the fifth anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion with a touch of the swagger he showed early in the war, Bush said in a speech at the Pentagon, "The successes we are seeing in Iraq are undeniable."

With less than 11 months left in office and his approval ratings near the lows of his presidency, Bush is trying to shore up support for the Iraq campaign, which has damaged U.S. credibility abroad and is sure to define his legacy.

But he faced the challenge of winning back the attention of war-weary Americans more preoccupied with mounting economic troubles and increasingly focused on the race to pick his successor in the November election.

"The surge has done more than turn the situation in Iraq around -- it has opened the door to a major strategic victory in the broader war on terror," Bush said, hailing increased cooperation of Iraqi Sunnis in fighting al Qaeda.

Such an assertion could come back to haunt Bush if the situation deteriorates. War critics have roundly mocked Bush for his premature declaration in May 2003 that "major combat operations" in Iraq were over as he stood on the USS Abraham Lincoln under a banner reading "Mission Accomplished."

A Washington Post-ABC News poll showed nearly two-thirds of Americans believe the war was not worth waging.

Told about the poll in an interview on ABC's "Good Morning America," Vice President Dick Cheney, in Oman after a visit to Iraq, said dismissively: "So?"

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "The cost to our national security has been immense -- our military is stretched thin and our reputation in the world is damaged."


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What's Really Going on Here??

Idiot President declares disaster is victory...

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008

Failed War-Failed State

Iraq's failure was preordained the moment we destroyed Iraq's army and assumed authority in Iraq

June 19, 2007

The fact is that no middle eastern nation will accept direct foreign leadership. Not only have the interests of Arabic nations diverged from American Interests, but the era of western backed middle eastern dictators is coming to a close.

The winds of independence and freedom are sweeping across middle eastern deserts, blowing across Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan. The United States have chosen an upwind course.

The rise of a post colonial world has been fought by the US since the end of World War II, first under the disguise of the Cold War, and now is being unwisely pursued by Bush under the cover of "the war on terror."

Bush's Iraq plan was to counter the emergence of middle eastern independence by crushing Saddam, and replacing him with an American Dictator.

This would contain Iran's expanding influence, and reinforce the wobbling tyrannies in Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia. The Iraq invasion would make up for our loss of the Shah in Iran, and restore America's declining influence and power in the middle east.

This was Bush's Opium Dream, and only existed in the minds and mouths of the neo-cons. Bush's invasion of Iraq is stoking the fires of Arabic independence, while inflaming and spreading deep hatred for America across the middle east.

Our tyrants are facing greater internal pressure to repudiate America than ever before. Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia are cracking down hard on their rising tides of internal discontent. Iraq has made Iran the most powerful country the middle east.

Iraq has become the focus point for a century of hatred against colonial rule, the fires of its destruction forging dedicated fighters against foreign interference in all the Arabic lands.

We destroyed Iraq, but in return Iraq has destroyed our power, influence and credibility in the middle east, if not the world.

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Also See:

Corruption Updates 58, 6th article, War-torn Iraq 'facing collapse'

Corruption Updates 79, 1st article, "Iraq Ranks No. 2 of Failed States"

Bush predicts Victory in Middle-east, ft, (uk) 1-6-08

Bush has little respect in Mid-East, ft, 1-9-08

Failed war, failed state, failed empire, essay, August 3, 2007

Corruption Updates 113, 1st article on the page, Poll: Americans see War as Failure

Corruption Updates 113, 2nd article on the page, Poll: Iraqis see War as Failure



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4) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.


Hamas men 'tortured by Egyptians'

The Palestinian militant movement Hamas has accused Egypt of torturing members of the group who were detained after crossing from the Gaza Strip.

BBC, 3-21-08


A Hamas spokesman said security forces had demanded to know about Hamas leaders' movements and the location of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

The questions had nothing to do with the security of Egypt, he added.

Hamas says 39 of its members are being held in Egypt, while 90 others have been released in recent weeks.

Most entered the country in January when hundreds of thousands of besieged Gazans crossed into Egypt after militants breached its border wall near Rafah.

There has been no comment about the Hamas claims from the Egyptian authorities, who have been discussing the fate of the prisoners at meetings with Hamas representatives in the Sinai town of el-Arish.

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What's Really Going on Here??

If egypt doesn't do it for US, we will do it ourselves

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008

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Also See:

Bush signs new CIA Torture authorization, LAT, July 21, 2007

Corruption Updates 99, 5th article on the page, "Bush Could Bypass new Torture Ban"

ABA Clear: Bush Policy allows Torture, AP, 8-10-07

Book: Torture Taxi reveals us system of kidnapping, secret prisons, and torture, Toward Freedom, 9-6-07

Mukasey is drawn into an old fight: Dems Ready to Confirm AG who will Protect Bush's Crimes, Los Angeles Times, September 18, 2007

Much, much more

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illegal trials

illegal detentions


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5) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.

Canadian says U.S. interrogators threatened rape

MIAMI, Mar. 20, 2008 (Reuters) — A young Canadian prisoner held at Guantanamo said in legal documents that U.S. interrogators repeatedly threatened to rape him and Canadian government visitors told him they were powerless to do anything.

The claims were part of an affidavit sworn by Omar Khadr, 21, who is charged in the Guantanamo war court with murdering a U.S. soldier with a grenade during a firefight in Afghanistan when Khadr was 15.

Khadr has long claimed he was abused by American interrogators in Bagram, Afghanistan, after his capture in July 2002 and at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval base in Cuba, where he was taken a few months later.

The previously undisclosed allegations of the rape threats were part of a nine-page affidavit released by the U.S. military on Wednesday, with some of the names and details blacked out.

"On several occasions at Bagram, interrogators threatened to have me raped, or sent to other countries like Egypt, Syria, Jordan or Israel to be raped," Khadr said in the document.

He said interrogators told him at one point that the Egyptians would send "Soldier No. 9" to rape him.

Khadr was shot twice in the back and suffered shrapnel wounds in the eye during the battle that led to his capture at a suspected al Qaeda compound. After treatment at a field hospital, he was taken to a prison in Bagram, where he was hooded, threatened him with barking dogs and had water thrown on him, he said in the document.

Khadr said he was often shackled for hours during interrogations and denied use of a bathroom, forcing him to urinate on himself.


"While my wounds were still healing, interrogators made me clean the floors on my hands and knees. They woke me up in the middle of the night after midnight and made me clean the floor with a brush and dry it with towels until dawn, carry heavy buckets of water," he said.

Later at Guantanamo, Khadr said an Afghan with a U.S. flag on his pants threatened to send him back to Afghanistan unless he cooperated, telling him: "They like small boys in Afghanistan."

Khadr said he gave "answers that made interrogators happy" to protect himself from further harm, but the information was untrue.

The U.S. military has said captives at Guantanamo are treated humanely and that claims of abuse are an al Qaeda tactic. They have confirmed that Canadian government representatives visited Khadr at Guantanamo.

During one such visit in 2003, Khadr said, he complained about his treatment and a man claiming to be a Canadian government representative told him:

"'The U.S. and Canada are like an elephant and an ant sleeping in the same bed' and there was nothing the Canadian government could do against the power of the U.S."

He was scheduled to go to trial in May in the Guantanamo tribunal created by the Bush administration to try suspected terrorists. But a judge last week postponed the trial indefinitely to allow military defense lawyers more time to receive and review evidence they accused prosecutors of withholding.

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6) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.


Can. Supreme court agrees to consider Khadr's claim that he's been unfairly treated

toronto star, March 20, 2008

Jim Brown



OTTAWA–The federal government has lost a bid to keep lawyers for accused terrorist Omar Khadr from using the top court in Canada as a forum to argue that U.S. authorities are violating his human rights.


In a ruling released today, the Supreme Court of Canada gave the go-ahead for Khadr’s counsel to explore questions of international law arising from his detention and forthcoming trial at the U.S. military base in Guantanamo, Cuba.


The matter will be argued as part of a hearing next week, at which the main issue will by a demand by Khadr for access to documents held by the Canadian government. He wants to use the material in his defence against a charge of murdering a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan.


But his lawyers also want to highlight a broader contention that the American handling of the case doesn’t meet international standards of fairness.


The federal Justice Department filed a motion trying to quash that line of argument, saying a Canadian court is the wrong place to examine U.S. actions.


The court replied today that Frater is free to make that argument, but he can’t stop the other side from presenting its case as well.


The judges also rejected a government effort to keep human rights groups from raising their own points of international law in support of Khadr.


Frater had sought an order effectively barring any further participation in the case by Human Rights Watch, the University of Toronto human rights clinic and the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association.


Nathan Whitling, an Edmonton-based lawyer representing Khadr, welcomed the preliminary rulings but also sounded a note of caution on his chances at the full hearing next Wednesday.


“At least the Supreme Court will be listening,” he said. “In terms of what impact that might ultimately have on the case, it’s just impossible to say.”


Whitling has previously accused the government of trying to block any consideration of the Guantanamo detention and trial processes because it fears “political embarrassment.”


Prime Minister Stephen Harper has turned a deaf ear to demands that he intervene and press for Khadr’s return to Canada. Other countries, including Britain and Australia, have persuaded the Americans to return their citizens from Guantanamo to be dealt with at home.


The Canadian-born Khadr, whose deceased father was a senior lieutenant to Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden, says he was mistreated by his U.S. captors and coerced into self-incriminating statements after a 2002 firefight in Afghanistan that led to the charges against him.


He also says Canadian diplomats and intelligence officers who questioned him at Guantanamo refused to help and accused him of lying.


“Rather than acting to protect the basic human rights of its young citizen, the Crown chose to take advantage of his vulnerability to advance its own interests,” Whitling states in his written brief to the Supreme Court.


It’s known that Khadr was interviewed by Foreign Affairs officials and members of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service in 2003 and that CSIS passed at least some of the results of the interviews to American authorities.


Khadr’s lawyers have obtained censored summaries of the material but are seeking more documents, including additional intelligence material and correspondence between Canadian and U.S. officials. They say Khadr has a constitutional right to the information to defend himself against the American charges.


A key element of the case is Khadr’s claim that the Foreign Affairs and CSIS interviews at Guantanamo violated the Canadian Charter of Rights — a contention that raises the wider legal issue of whether the charter “follows the flag” when government officials operate abroad.


The Supreme Court has ruled in the past that, as a general rule, Canadian officials overseas need only follow the laws of the host country. But there’s a major exception to that rule — if the foreign practices are at odds with international human rights law.


That prompted Khadr’s legal team to argue that the Guantanamo detention conditions, as well as the special military tribunal preparing to try him for murder, don’t measure up to accepted norms.


They cite violations of juvenile justice rules set out by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, noting that Khadr was 15 when he was captured. They also point to international agreements on civil and political rights and the treatment of prisoners.


The B.C. Civil Liberties Association, in its brief, denounces the ``flagrantly illegal conduct of the American government” and maintains the military tribunals set up to try Guantanamo prisoners ``do not meet the minimum standards of due process under international law.”


Human Rights Watch and the University of Toronto human rights clinic offer a similar assessment, noting that “alien” combatants brought before the tribunals don’t have the same rights as U.S. citizens.

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What's Really Going on Here??

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008

Note that the story by reuters came out on the same day as an american court determined that Khadr was being deprived of at least one of his most basic judicial rights to know the basis of the charges against him, only one of the elements of fair trial being denied to the victims of our government's criminality. But this story failed to mention the canadian supreme court's decision to hear arguments about his mistreatment and the fairness of his trial.

Both stories failed to mention the most important fact of all: the original report made by the troops involved stated that Khadr did not kill the ameican solider, and that the man that did was killed in the firefight. The battle report was altered months later to implicate Khadr.

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Also See:

Trial Watch on Khadr

Khadr defense shocker, grenade tosser dead, report said, ap 3-14-08



Detentions:U.S. Review of Decision on Detainees: Bush Pushes Criminal Tribunals, ap, 6-9-07


more kidnapping/torture links


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7) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.


Italy judge clears way for CIA "rendition" trial

Mar. 19, 2008 (Reuters)

MILAN, Mar. 19, 2008 (Reuters) — An Italian judge on Wednesday ordered the resumption of a trial against U.S. and Italian spies accused of abducting a terrorism suspect, in a blow to efforts to halt a case that Rome says violates state secrecy rules.

The trial in absentia against 26 Americans -- almost all believed to be CIA agents -- is the first anywhere over the U.S. practice of "extraordinary rendition," whereby terrorism suspects are secretly transferred to third countries.

Italian spies, including the former head of Italy's military intelligence agency Nicolo Pollari, are accused of helping the CIA team abduct Muslim cleric Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr in 2003 and fly him to Egypt. There, Nasr says he was tortured.

Judge Oscar Magi had suspended proceedings shortly after they began in June last year, saying the criminal trial should wait until Italy's highest court ruled whether prosecutors had broken state secrecy rules when building their case.

But after months of high court delays, Magi decided the trial in Milan could go forward regardless.

"The measure suspending (the trial) can be removed," Magi told the court. "It will not cause any harm to the defense."

Prosecutors say a CIA-led team grabbed Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, off a Milan street, bundled him into a van and drove him to a military base in northern Italy.

He was then flown to Egypt, where Nasr says he was tortured under interrogation with electric shocks, beatings, rape threats and genital abuse.

Nasr was freed from prison in February last year and lives in Egypt. He faces an arrest order in Italy on suspicion of terrorist activity.

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What's Really Going on Here??

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., March, 2008




The repercussions of our country's criminal behavior around the world are coming home to roost. The same American sponsored kidnapping and torture that causes little problem when employed in Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Egypt, not to mention Guatemala and etc, is scandalizing Europe, and is causing a political crisis in Italy.

The real, immediate cost to America, is a loss of faith by the world in America's stated goals in global diplomacy, as well as the methods we use to pursue our goals. The real cost is a global loss of credibility, and the loss of the moral high ground that we had occupied for so long.

As we have changed how we pursue our goals, from public diplomacy, under the rule of law, to publicly claiming the right to employ secret kidnapping, torture, and open ended ended non-judicial (illegal) “detentions,” the governments and people of the world are adjusting their goals and methods accordingly.

Governments around the world are following our example, and openly using arbitrary violence, kidnapping and torture against their own people, and anyone else by simply labeling them as a “terrorist.”

Many would argue that this is nothing new. “Things have always been like this,” say the apologists. It is indisputable that America has supported a long line of tyrannical governments in Asia, South America, Africa, and the Middle East. But we denied authorship of our crimes. We disputed that the murders by death squad, the “disappearances,” and torture even existed, let alone were done with our direct knowledge and participation in these events. Those days are over.

Today, we openly acknowledge and defend the use of kidnapping, torture, and murder. The nature and the methods used by our unsavory allies are no longer held offshore, and at arms length from direct American involvement. Where we had always disavowed torture and kidnapping, and pretended the abuses we sponsored did not exist, we now claim the right to use these illegal tools ourselves.

Now, the previous wall of artificial separation between us and our crimes has fallen: Our government is using kidnapping and torture directly, at home and in the nations of our European allies, as well as our traditional third world torturing grounds. We have dropped the use of proxies, and now use kidnapping and torture ourselves.

This should be no surprise to us. It was foolish to think we could support and use other countries to do our dirty work, without getting dirty ourselves.

It was only a matter of time before we fell into the cesspool of illegal violence, torture, and terror that we have imposed on other peoples, and have encouraged and tolerated when used by dictatorships allied with the US.

We have fostered and preserved violent, undemocratic dictatorships in the middle east for decades. Our Arabic allies in the middle east are tyrannical, arbitrary governments who use American Military, economic and political power to repress their own people, with our consent. Their power is based on the use of violence, kidnapping, torture, and long illegal detentions paid for with American tax dollars, and carried out with American weapons and technology.

And now, we kidnap and torture too. A criminal American government has brought these illegal tools home, and is publicly defending these crimes, pretending to have a legal basis to commit crimes against humanity and our Constitution.

No such basis exists.

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Also See:

Italy Seeks Indictments of C.I.A. Operatives in Egyptian’s Abduction, nyt, 12-6-07

Corruption Updates 70, 3rd article on the page, "First CIA rendition trial opens"

Corruption Updates 34, 4th article on the page, "Germany issues CIA arrest orders"

US organizing mass kidnappings in Kenya and Somalia, Reprieve, March 22, 2007


ABA Clear: Bush Policy allows Torture, AP, 8-10-07

torture, kidnapping links


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illegal trials

illegal detentions


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8) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.


Bush misstates Iran's position on desire for nuclear weapons


By Jonathan S. Landay


McClatchy Newspapers, 3-21-08

WASHINGTON — President Bush contended that Iran has "declared they want a nuclear weapon to destroy people" and that the Islamic Republic could be hiding a secret program.


Iran, however, has never publicly proclaimed a desire for nuclear weapons and has repeatedly insisted that the uranium enrichment program it is operating in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions is for civilian power plants, not warheads. Iran has repeatedly denied seeking nuclear warheads, and its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, issued a religious edict in 2005 forbidding the production, stockpiling and use of such weapons.

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What's Really Going on Here??

American "Diplomacy" Leaves a lot to be Desired

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., August , 2007

Bush is using the same approach to American international authority in "diplomacy" as he takes to his domestic police powers. Bush's grab of domestic Police State Powers have given him the power to be Judge, Jury, and Executioner in conducting American Law. Bush is claiming these same powers for himself in international diplomay.

Internationally, Bush claims the power to define the outcome of the negociations or elections before they take place. And watch out if the other party refuses to comply, or elects the wrong candidates, or god forbid, throws out our dictator.

If you have the termidity to disobey, Bush will try to use sanction to starve you into submission. Or fund death squads against your supporters. Or arm and fund the election loser to stage a coup. Or repeatedly kidnap, torture, and detain your diplomats, as Bush is doing to Iran now. The final options are to bomb Iran into the stone age, as Israel just did to Lebanon, or to invade, and break your country, as the US just did to Iraq.

But the preferred outcome is for the offending parties to obey, and maintain the pretense of democracy and freedom while supplicating to the domination of a foreign power.

Iran is not going to swallow the predigested demands of "diplomacy" we are trying to spit into their mouths. Iran is not going to elect another American Shah. They are not going to starve under our sanctions. Our death squads and terror cannot get far past their borders, and none of their generals will stage a coup as a tool of American Power.

After Bush gets done whinning and pouting, he is going to go to war with Iran, either by taking the Jewish Option, and bombing Iran into the stone age, or the American Option, and staging another disasterious invasion.

I believe Bush will take the first option, and try to bomb Iran after creating some kind of hokey pretext. This will draw us into the second option, and we will be dragged into committing ground troops to Iran.

This will lead to a regional war between Shite and Sunni across the Middle-East, and will become a critical point of realingment of the world balance of power for the rising global power of China, Russia, and India against the United States.

Enjoy the ride. We enjoyed the benefits of getting here, to our status as a thieving global empire. Lets see how we enjoy getting back to a democratic republic.

The only was to fight these corrupted politicians is at the most fundamental level. We must disenfranchise their illicit hold on political power by ending their power to purchase politicians, parties, and elections.

Our initiative will short-circut the direct hold that wealth and power have taken on our government, making the voters the basis of political power, rather than the special interests.

Check it out, and begin spreading the word that legitimate governments are elected from and by the voters, not the corporations.

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9) The Article linked below was Abstracted from the source cited.

Pentagon Cites Tapes Showing Interrogations

nyt, 3-13-08


WASHINGTON — The Defense Department is conducting an extensive review of the videotaping of interrogations at military facilities from Iraq to Guantánamo Bay, and so far it has identified nearly 50 tapes, including one that showed what a military spokesman described as the forcible gagging of a terrorism suspect.

The Pentagon review was begun in late January after the Central Intelligence Agency acknowledged that it had destroyed its own videotapes of harsh interrogations conducted by C.I.A. officers, an action that is now the subject of criminal and Congressional investigations.

The officials said it appeared that only a small fraction of the tens of thousands of interrogations worldwide since 2001 had been recorded.

The officials said the nearly 50 tapes they identified documented interrogations of two terrorism suspects, Jose Padilla and Ali al-Marri, and were made at a Navy detention site in Charleston, S.C., where the two men have been held.

The initial findings of the Pentagon review represent the first official acknowledgment that military interrogators had videotaped some sessions with detainees and could widen the controversy over the treatment of prisoners in American custody. A Pentagon spokesman, Geoff Morrell, cautioned that the review was incomplete, and a spokesman for the Defense Intelligence Agency, Don Black, said that interrogation videotapes had been routinely destroyed if they were judged to have no continuing value.

The only tape described by officials is of Mr. Marri, a citizen of Qatar who was arrested in December 2001 while in college in Illinois and moved five years ago to the jail after being designated an “enemy combatant.” Government officials say they believe he was an operative for Al Qaeda who was plotting attacks.

He said that Mr. Marri was chanting loudly, disrupting his interrogation, and that interrogators used force to put duct tape on his mouth, while Mr. Marri resisted. Mr. Black said most of the videos showing Mr. Marri’s interrogations had been destroyed. The government has never charged Mr. Marri, and whether the Pentagon is allowed to hold him indefinitely has not been settled legally.

The scale of detention and interrogation by the military, with tens of thousands of prisoners in Iraq, Afghanistan and at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, dwarfs that of the C.I.A., which has held fewer than 100 high-level Qaeda suspects. The C.I.A. has acknowledged videotaping only two terrorism suspects, in 2002, and military officials said that the review, ordered in late January by James R. Clapper, the Pentagon’s senior intelligence official, had similarly found that only a small number of detainee interrogations had been videotaped.

“This is not a widespread practice,” said Mr. Morrell, the Pentagon press secretary.

Congress imposed a ban in 2005 on all harsh interrogation methods by the military but left a loophole for the C.I.A. Last month, Congress voted to extend the ban to the C.I.A., but President Bush vetoed the bill.

Lawyers for Mr. Marri, who have challenged his imprisonment in court, sought access to any tapes or other records of his interrogations, but in 2006 a federal judge in South Carolina said the government did not have to produce any tapes. That decision is being appealed.

Jonathan Hafetz, one of the lawyers, said Mr. Marri had heard guards describe “a cabinet full of tapes” showing his interrogations, but had never had independent confirmation that such tapes existed. Mr. Marri has alleged that earlier in his imprisonment he was deprived of sleep, isolated and exposed to prolonged cold.

Mr. Hafetz said he planned to file papers in court on Thursday describing the psychological harm done to Mr. Marri. “Locking someone up for five years without charges is a disgrace and a betrayal of American and constitutional values,” he said.

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Today's Headlines


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9] Pentagon Cites Tapes Showing Interrogations (torture in plainspeak)