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Posted: feburary 19, 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.

Castro Quits, Cubans Stunned & News Agencies, 2-19-08

revolutionary leader Fidel Castro, who built a communist state on the doorstep of the US and survived many American attempts on his life, retired on Tuesday, February 19, after almost half-a-century rule, passing the torch to a younger generation.

"To my dear compatriots…I communicate to you that I will not aspire to or accept – I repeat not aspire to or accept -- the positions of president and commander-in-chief," Castro said in his retirement statement cited by Reuters.

The national assembly meets next Sunday to officially designate Cuba's executive for the next five years.

He came to power after overthrowing US-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista in an armed revolution in 1959.

After seizing power, Castro turned Cuba into a communist state.

He survived a CIA-backed invasion of Cuban exiles at the Bay of Pigs in 1961, several assassination attempts, continuing US trade embargo, and an economic crisis in the 1990s after the collapse of Soviet bloc communism.

Castro played a key role in taking the world to the brink of nuclear war in 1962 when he allowed Moscow to put ballistic missiles in Cuba, leading to a 13-day stand-off between US President John F. Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev.

The world's longest-serving head of state, barring monarchs, Castro is admired by many for standing up to the US.

His opponents dismiss him a tyrant who suppressed freedom.

Younger leaders

In his farewell-to-the-presidency statement, Castro said he would be passing the torch to a younger generation.

Most analysts still believe that his brother Raul, 76, would be the obvious choice of the National Assembly in its meeting next Sunday.

"By standing down (Castro) has paved the way for his brother Raul to officially succeed him through the Cuban electoral process," said Stephen Wilkinson, assistant director of the International Institute for the Study of Cuba in London.

Raul has raised expectations of economic reforms to improve the daily life of Cubans since standing in for his ill brother, but he has yet to deliver.

Under his leadership, Cuba's Revolutionary Armed Forces became one of the most formidable fighting forces in the Third World with combat experience in Africa, where they defeated South African forces in Angola in 1987.

Known as a good administrator, Raul downsized the army from 300,000 to 60,000 troops after the collapse of the Soviet Union threw Cuba into a severe economic crisis.

He introduced Western business practices to help make the armed forces self-sufficient, and the army has large stakes in the most dynamic sectors of the economy, including tourism.


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What's Really Going on Here??

What was Castro's real crime?

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., Feburary 19, 2008

Castro's "dictatorship" was not the problem in US-Cuban relations, despite the carping of the so-called advocates for democracy here in the US.

The facts are that we have been the main sponsor of the central and south american dictators and death squads who have been running our bannana republics and protecting our Latin American economic and political influence for over a hundred years.

Our criticism of Castro as a dictator is shameful in light of our historical and current support for dictators around the world. Today, the people of Egypt and Pakistan are suffering under American-sponsored dictatorships.

Our reason for hating Castro is not that he is a dictator, it is because he threw out our dictator.

This reveals an important fact about our foreign policy, our political structure, and our true character.

Our foreign policy is dedicated to supporting any form of government that will sacrifice its natural and human resources for the profits of American Corporate Profits.

Thus China's police state is a close partner of corporate america, despite their criminal abuses of human rights, democratic rights, labor, and the environment. Our corporate foreign policy also explains our historic abuses in Colombia, Argentina, Guatamala, and El Salvador, among many other South and Central American nations.

Our govenment's hatred of Cuba is not caused by Castro's dictatorship. Our hatred reflects the depth of our fear that Cuba marked the beginning of the end of American dictatorships in Central and South America.

Domestically, our foreign policy abuses expose the power and consequences of allowing the corporations to buy our politicians, parties, and elections lock, stock, and barrel.

I find it strange that we give massive military, political and economic support to a whole range of cruel dictatorships, kings, and authoritarian governments, while in Cuba we use the full range of our powers to overthrow a "dictator."

Our inconsistancy in extolling democracy and freedom while arming dictators who brutally suppress human rights around the world reveals the basis of our foreign policy is not democracy, freedom, or human rights.

The common thread in all of our foreign relations reveals that greed and the lust for power is our main motivation and objective underlying all of our foreign policy positions.

The villification of Castro is a smokescreen to cover our sins, not his. If we want to find the global engine of tyranny we do not have to look outside of our own borders.

We could deliver a great blow to tyranny around the world if we looked inward, at the corruption that dominates our polity and empowers dictators and tyrants around the world.

If we look closely, we will find the source of power for both Castro and Musharraf centered in the corruption of our political system.

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Central/South America Links

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

Call for Musharraf to Go After Election

Associated Press, 2-19-08

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) -- A top opposition leader called Tuesday on President Pervez Musharraf to step aside after his ruling party conceded defeat in parliamentary elections. The vote was also a slap to Islamist parties, which lost control of a province where al-Qaida and Taliban fighters have sought refuge.

With counting from Monday's election nearly complete, the two main opposition parties won a total of 154 of the 268 contested seats, according to the Election Commission.

The pro-Musharraf party trailed with 39 seats, and the group's leader acknowledged the loss.

Although final official results were not expected until Wednesday, opposition parties were confident of victory and began mapping plans for a new government and a possible showdown with Musharraf.

Nawaz Sharif, a former prime minister and leader of the opposition Pakistan Muslim League-N, recalled statements by Musharraf last year that he would step down only if he lost the support of the Pakistani people.

"He has closed his eyes. He has said before that he would go when the people want him to do so and now the people have given their verdict," Sharif told reporters in Lahore.

Bhutto's husband, Asif Ali Zardari, told reporters Tuesday he would meet soon with Sharif and other opposition leaders "to form a government of national unity." Zardari made clear he would not include politicians who had been allied with Musharraf.

But Zardari carefully avoided an unequivocal statement about whether Musharraf should remain in power. The two main opposition parties were unlikely to finish with two-thirds of the seats required to impeach the president.

But the former general is so unpopular among the Pakistani public that opposition parties are likely to find little reason to work with him - particularly since he no longer controls the powerful army.

At best, Musharraf faces the prospect of remaining in power with sharply diminished powers even if the opposition fails to muster the two-thirds support in parliament to impeach him. Constitutionally, the president is the head of state and nominally the commander in chief of the armed forces. He also has the power to dissolve parliament.

But the prime minister runs the government on a day-to-day basis. With a strong electoral mandate, the new prime minister would doubtless command greater authority than those who served under Musharraf's military rule.

Pakistani analysts said the results pointed to broad support for centrist, democratic parties at the expense of patronage politicians and Islamist movements.

The pro-Taliban Jamiat-e-Ulema party won only three seats in the national parliament. And a coalition of Islamist religious parties was poised to lose control of the regional administration in the North West Frontier Province, which it won in the 2002 elections.

Unofficial returns showed the secular Awami National Party had won 31 of the 96 contested seats in the provincial assembly, with the religious United Action Forum taking only nine seats.


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What's Really Going on Here??

US Supports Tyrants and illegal Nuclear Programs in Pakistan and India

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca. 26, June, , 2007

The situation with Pakistan is not going to end well for American interests. The main flaw in our relationship with Pakistan is we are supporting a nuclear armed military dictator. If he is toppled, the next government may deeply resent our intereference in their internal affairs. This is complicated by our support for India's illegal nuclear weapons program.

The central flaw in our foreign policy is that it is guided by no principals, only self-interest. Our toleration and support of both nation's illegal weapons programs increases regional instability to achieve our short-term goals.

In India, we pander to their illegal nuclear program to gain economic benefits from India's expansion, while simultaneously using India as a strategic counter-balance against Chinese power in the region.

In Pakistan, we have made a dirty deal with the dictator Musharraf. We silenced our objections to both the dictatorship, and its nukes, and paid him billions of dollars, in exchange for his "official" support for our Terror War.

Supporting a military dictator to fight for "freedom and democracy" exposes the lie at the center of our foreign policy.

The problem is that the Pakistani people support neither Musharraf, nor our terror war against their tribal brothers in Afghanistan. When Musharraf is deposed, the guns and money we bribed Musharraf with, as well as control of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, will fall under the control of unknown people. There is a good chance that Pakistan's next government will wholly reject American sponsored dictators, and resent us for supporting the dictator who ruled them.

India, on the other hand, may well end up becoming a better friend of China and Russia than the United States. Our economic and nuclear support for India may well backfire as China, Russia, and the Arabic nations reposition themselves, and their relationships with each other, as the world balance of power and control of middle eastern oil shifts away from American control.

Our best option was to maintain a firm rejection of both country's nuclear programs, with the goal being complete disarmament, and complete verification that both countries nuclear programs have no military component.

Combined with diplomatic efforts to defuse the situation in Kashmir, we could have lessened the tensions driving both countries to develop and evolve better nukes.

The Bush Administration's threats of unilateral military action, combined with repeated threats to use nukes in a first strike, has hardened the resolve of nations around the world to obtain a nuclear deterrent to the American Nuclear Menace.

In our dealings with both Pakistan and India, we have committed ourselves to a policy of supporting the illegal nuclear programs in both countries, ignoring Kashmir and the underlying conflict, to achieve short-term tactical advantages.

Our strategy of unconditionally supporting Musharraf's dictatorship ensures that violent domestic resistance will increase. Domestic resistance Musharraf's dictatorship has been enhanced and hardened by our support. Our support for Musharraf has hastened his rejection by his own people.

The ultimate result of our short-sighted Pakistani policy will be the emergence of an independent Pakistani government, armed with nuclear weapons, enraged by America's support for Mursharraf's dictatorship.

India, on the other hand, will take all of our military and economic support, and do whatever the hell they see as best for their country, not ours.

The full weight and power of our nation has been focused to achieve our regional goals through bribes and threats. Using bribes and threats as the basis of our relationships with India and Pakistan assures that we will have little influence when changes in political fortunes bring administrations that will not respond to bribes and threats.

Our participation in Pakistan has enraged their people, while protecting their nuclear program from outside scrutiny and international pressure. Our diplomacy with India has effectively recognized and accepted their illegal nuke program, recieving nothing in return.

Overall, our relationships with both countries have increased the ability of each to nuke the other, and has laid the groundwork for further regional, and global, instability.

Until we develop a set of basic principals to guide our foreign policy, our diplomacy of bribes and threats will continue to assure that international relations are based on greed and violence.

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Also See:


Pakistan links


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supporting dictators


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

Supreme Court rejects wiretap suit

The domestic spying case ends quietly as the justices issue a one-line order dismissing the ACLU challenge of the Bush program.
By David G. Savage
Los Angeles Times, February 19, 2008

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court today dismissed the first legal challenge to President Bush's warrantless wiretapping order, but without ruling on any of the key issues.

Since Congress is now fighting with the White House over new rules for wiretapping, the court may have chosen to stand aside from the controversy.

Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union had argued that this dispute went beyond whether the nation's spy agency could intercept international phone calls and e-mails. It raised the question of whether the president must abide by the law, they said.

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, a Cold War-era compromise, said the president could order secret wiretapping within the United States, but only with the specific approval of a special court.

But after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, President Bush issued a secret order to the National Security Agency that authorized it to intercept phone calls or e-mails coming into or going out of this country if there was a "reasonable basis" to believe there was a link to Al Qaeda. More significantly, the NSA did not need the approval of the FISA court to conduct this spying, according to the order.

When Bush's order was revealed in 2005, the president defended his decision as necessary for protecting against another attack within the United States. He also argued that the president, as commander in chief of the armed services, had the constitutional authority to act in the national interest, even if a law stood in the way.

The ACLU's lawyer urged the courts to take up the issue and rule that the law must be followed. "The president is bound by the laws that Congress enacts. He may disagree with those laws, but he may not disobey them," the ACLU said in the appeal to the Supreme Court.

Last July, however, the U.S. appeals court in Cincinnati threw out the lawsuit and ruled that these people did not have standing to sue. This 2-1 decision reversed a strongly worded ruling by a judge in Detroit who declared Bush's order unconstitutional.

The argument over standing is especially frustrating for the civil libertarians. They say secret spying is illegal without a judge's order, but they cannot challenge the policy in court because they cannot prove one of their clients has been spied on.

In October, the ACLU asked the Supreme Court to take up their appeal and to rule that the Constitution does not give the president the power to ignore the laws. Administration lawyers said the disputed program is being revised in Congress, and they urged the justices to defer any decision on how it works.

The case ended quietly today when the justices issued a one-line order turning down the case of ACLU vs. NSA.

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What's Really Going on Here??

Dem Traitors Fully Join Bush's Attack on Civil and Constitutional Rights

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

Congress has, incompentently or not, given Bush a law that confirms his claims to unlimited searching powers within the United States. The Dems are trying to portray this as some kind of oversight. This was no oversight.

Although Congress may not have intended to give away all of our Constitutional Liberties, the clearly intended to give up the core principal of the 4th Amendment, that there be no searches without an independent warrant showing proof and naming a specific location for the search.

Giving up the right itself was no oversight, but was an act of official treachery and malfeasance in office. This law is in clear violation of the Constitution, it has no legal or moral legitimacy, and is therefore void.

Lets's check this with the Constitution:

The specific words of the Fourth Amendment of The Constitution are:

...and No warrant shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Neither the President nor Congress has any legitimate authority to interfere with, or alter the Constitution's specific standard defining legal searches. Nor can the Courts strike down our Constitution.

Each branch of our government is required to remain within its Constitutional bounds, while ensuring that the other branches also keep within their limits.

All of the branches of our government are failing both these tasks.

As things stand now, Congress thinks its duty is to divide the wealth of our nation among themselves and their corporate sponsors. The President is openly consolidating and exercising the powers of a dictator. The courts have been working on a decades-long devolution of our Constitutional and civil rights.

It is way past the time when honest citizens, let alone our dishonest politicians, should have stood up against these crimes and corruptions which threaten our Constitution, the rights of our citizens, and the safety of our country.

Our corrupt Congress and our criminal President are a clear and present danger to the shredded remnants of our democracy and our few remaining civil liberties.

We voted out the last Congress, and like magic, nothing has changed. This Congress continues to feed at the trough of corruption, and the President continues to assault our Constitution. Nothing has changed.

Congress and President must be removed from office and prosecuted for openly violating our laws and betraying our Constitution.

The only solution to controlling political corruption requires that we change who funds the candidates. Any meaningful reform to our elections must make all the candidates, and the results of all of our elections, reflect power of the local voters, rather than the power and interests of the corporations who sponsor our politicians.

Local voters must be put back in charge of their representatives. This can only be done if we make the local voters the primary source of funding for local candidates.

The funding and contributions that support every candidate in every election must come only from the voters in that election.

Today, the outcome of local elections-all elections-are decided by which candidate can raise the most outside money. The dependency of candidates on vast sums of outside money assures voters that the final winner of the election will be more dependent on the corporations and special interests who bribed them, than the support of their own voters.

The reason we are suffering under a criminal Congress and President is that elections today are a function of wealth and power, not of democracy.

As deeply as our elections are corrupted by wealth and power, so too is the depth of corruption of our representatives. These corrupted politicians are only capable of emitting legislation and policy that serves the interests of their corporate sponsors.

Restoring control of our elections to the local voters is only the first step in restoring our democracy. We still face the tasks of restoring the individual rights that have been eroded in recent decades. We are faced with the task of restoring the free press from its corporate captivity. And finally, we will have to drive Congress and the President back within the bounds of our Constitution.

Pelosi's Congress just "gave" Bush a "law" that suspends the Constitution just to his tastes, while at the same time dividing up earmarks between themselves, and our national wealth between their corporate sponsors.

Rather than making Bush's warrantless wiretapping programs legal, Congress' passage of this vile law joins them to the President as enemies of our rights, and the Constitution of the United States.

Draft Articles of Impeachment

Bush has led us to war on false pretexts.

Bush has made rules for captures, which the Constitution grants exclusively to Congress.

Bush has claimed the power to practice the use of torture, a clear violation of repeatedly affirmed domestic and international laws.

Bush has created secret prisons beyond law or oversight.

Bush and Congress have, in concert, attacked habius corpus, and pretended the right to diminish the fundamental rights of all persons held under legitimate American authority.

Bush has kidnapped and unlawfully detained numerous individuals in sovereign countries far from any war, exceeding the lawful exercise of war powers by any legitimate President of the United States, violating the sovereignty of these nations, as well as the laws of war, and the rule of law itself.

Bush has claimed and exercised unlimited power to search all Americans without warrant, a clear violation of the Constitution and law of this country.

Bush and Congress have, indiviually and in concert, repeatedly attacked the right of every American to be secure in their possessions and their effects. The President has broken the law and his oath of office by ordering illegal searches, illegal detentions, torture, and executive branch trials.

Congrss has assisted these crimes by repeatedly passing laws in violation of the Constitution, allowing secret warrantless searches of American's homes, their possessions, and records, or as the Constitution defines it, their effects.

Bush has claimed the power to set aside law and the Constitution using signing statements, an innovation not named in the Constitution, in clear violation of the process for creating laws required by the Constitution.

Bush has refused the lawful oversight of Congress, claiming that national security concerns put him above and outside of the Constitutionally checked and balanced duties of the office of the President.

And Congress sits idly by, collecting their wages of bribery as its powers, and our protections are stripped away, Constitutional right by Constitutional right.

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Also See:

Bush Lets U.S. Spy on Callers Without Courts, nyt, 12-16-05

Bush Authorized d omestic Spying: Bush is a Criminal, and an Enemy of our Constitution, wp, 12-16-05

Mark Klein legal Deposition, pdf

Mark Klein, Transcript from Fronline, May 15, 2007

Frontline, homepage for Spying on the Homefront



The illegal accomodation: Congress passes illegal Domestic Spying law authorizing warrantless NSA searches within the US, Washington Post, August 5, 2007

New Illegal Domestic Spying Law goes beyond Unlimited Searching Powers, SF Chron, August 19, 2007

Corruption Updates 119, 7th article on the page, Bush Threatens to Veto new Spy Bill: Why veto it, when a signing statement will bend it to the President's will?

Corruption Updates 131, November 15, 2007, House Approves General Search Warrants

Illegal searches: links


Search the Corruption Database under

illegal searches


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Slovenia "wants apology for embassy"

22 February 2008 | 09:46 | Source: B92

LJUBLJANA -- Slovenian President Danilo Turk has written to his Serbian counterpart, asking for an "apology and reparations".

Turk sent a letter to President Boris Tadić, asking for reparations for the damages that the Slovenian embassy has incurred from attacks over the last several days, since the unilateral Kosovo independence declaration.

Turk strongly condemned the behavior which led to the destruction of the Slovenian embassy and the desecration of the nation symbols of Slovenia and symbols of the European Union.

Turk also said that with the adoption of the Slovenian government proposal for recognizing Kosovo independence, the process of recognition has begun and will head to the parliament.

Protesters Attack U.S. Embassy in Belgrade

nyt, 2-22-08

BELGRADE, Serbia — Demonstrators attacked the United States Embassy and set part of it ablaze on Thursday as tens of thousands of angry Serbs took to the streets of Belgrade to protest Kosovo’s declaration of independence. The

United States has been a strong advocate of Kosovo’s independence from Serbia and was among the first countries to recognize the new state, stoking deep resentment. Rian Harris, an embassy spokeswoman, said that a body had been found inside the building, but that all embassy staff members were accounted for.

Witnesses said that at least 100 people broke into the embassy, which was closed, and burned some of its rooms. One protester ripped the American flag from the facade of the building. An estimated 1,000 demonstrators cheered as the vandals, some wearing masks, jumped onto the building’s balcony waving a Serbian flag and chanting “Serbia, Serbia!” the witnesses said. A police convoy firing tear gas dispersed the crowd.

The Associated Press reported that the small fires at the embassy were quickly extinguished.

Serbian television reported that the Croatian Embassy had also been attacked, and the state news agency said that the Bosnian and Turkish Embassies were also targets. The police said at least 140 people had been injured in the incidents, 32 of them police officers. Security sources estimated that 150,000 people joined the protests.

Groups also broke into a McDonald’s in central Belgrade and destroyed its interior. Witnesses said vandals were attacking foreign-owned shops, including a Nike store, and were seen carrying off shoes and other goods as the Serbian police looked on.

The United States Embassy had been closed since Sunday after it was stoned.


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What's Really Going on Here??

Will the BALKANS trigger another war?

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., Feburary 22, 2008

It appears that the rising tensions between the us and russia may find real traction in serbia, a traditional fountain of ethnic and nationalist violence. You could call the balkans a nursery of war.

In this case it may be a focus point for the tensions between the us and russia over our plan to put missiles right up against the russian underbelly. These stresses could have originated with the fall of the wall, but they were accelerated by our support of the slew of western sponsored "revolutions of color," and the rapid expansion of NATO that quickly folllowed, again, right up against the soft underbelly of russia.

I hope to continue this later...(it's 5:40am)

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Also See:


Russia-China and the new world order

balkan conflict looms: US-EU vs Russia

Putin's Choice

Putin makes Decision

Who "Lost" Russia? The same people who stole our democracy

Bush provoking russia

Russia Links


Corruption Database




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U.S. Ends Protections for Wolves in 3 States

nyt, 2-22-08

DENVER — The Bush administration on Thursday announced an end to federal protection for gray wolves in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho, concluding that the wolves were reproductively robust enough to survive.

A coalition of wildlife and environmental groups dismissed the government’s claims and announced plans for a lawsuit to reverse the decision, which is to take effect next month.

Advocates for the animals said there were too few wolves to make a genetically sound population, and that state plans to manage wolf populations were underfinanced and fueled by a long-simmering animosity against wolves that could drive them back to threatened status.

“The numbers are inadequate and the state programs are, too,” said Louisa Willcox, a senior wildlife advocate at the Natural Resources Defense Council, a conservation group that is participating in the planned lawsuit.

From a base population of 66 wolves introduced into Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho in the mid-1990s, there are now nearly 1,300, with an additional 230 or so in Montana that have drifted down from Canada. State management plans allow for wolf hunting, or outright eradication in some places — including most of Wyoming — with a target population of 150 in each of the three states.

Biologists cited by the environmental and wildlife groups say that target population is too small, and suggest instead that 2,000 to 3,000 animals are the minimum needed.

Gray wolves were first protected in 1974, one of the first animals to be covered by the Endangered Species Act, which was passed a year earlier. But it turned out there were none left to protect across most of the West. That led to the idea of reintroduction, which began in 1995.

“We’re not at recovery yet,” said Doug Honnold, the managing attorney at the Northern Rockies office of Earthjustice, a nonprofit legal group based in Oakland, Calif. “We’re in the neighborhood, we’re close, but we’re not there.”

Removing federal protections now, Mr. Honnold said, would violate the language of the Endangered Species Act that requires decision makers to use the best possible science in determining a viable target population.


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What's Really Going on Here??

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., Feburary 22, 2008


Most living things around the world are suffering from the changes in the seasons that our ignorant growth and unrestrained consumption have caused. But that's not enough for us.

Not only are we failing to address the central causes behind the change in the seasons, but we are accelerating our demographic growth and consumption rate under a thin veneer of being "green" and recycling.

but bush does not even grasp for that thin reed.  Instead, like a good representative of a consumer society, bush is rushing to turn as many of our resources into profits for his bribers as he can before his term ends.

We have grown beyond our environment's capacity to maintain us, or maintain the diversity of species and resources that sustain our natural world. And yet we grow blindly forward, sacrificing our last resources to maintain record corporate profits.

And then there was bush. None of this should be a surprise to anyone.

When clinton and the democrat party swallowed the corporate trade policies of "global" free trade, and endorsed their domestic privitization scheme, clinton removed one of the last political restraints on the power of the richest corporations to run the table.

As both parties are fundamentally financed by the biggest corporate interests in the country, there is no real political resistance to the corporate consumption of the last of our already depleated natural resources.

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Also See:

bush corrupts law to kill whales

bush scams last polar bears for big oil, mcclatchy, 1-17-08

Bush climate program drags its feet, has climate research satellites stripped


Lists of recent environmental news


Environment Pages:

previous pages 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1,


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Arab Leaders Say the Two-State Proposal Is in Peril

nyt, 2-22-08

CAIRO — Arab leaders will threaten to rescind their offer of full relations with Israel in exchange for a complete Israeli withdrawal from occupied lands unless Israel gives a positive response to their initiative, indicating the Arab states’ growing disillusionment with the prospects of a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

At an Arab League meeting next month in Syria, the leaders are planning to reiterate support for their initiative, first issued in 2002. The initiative promised Israel normalization with the league’s 22 members in return for the creation of a Palestinian state on the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as the capital, and a resolution of the issue of Palestinian refugees.

But this time, “there will be a message to Israel emphasizing the need to respond to the initiative; otherwise, Arab states will reassess the previous stage of peace,” said Muhammad Sobeih, assistant secretary general of the Arab League in charge of the Palestinian issue. “They will withdraw the initiative and look for other options. It makes no sense to insist on something that Israel is rejecting.”

Many Arab leaders never warmly embraced the idea of a two-state solution to the conflict because of their distaste for Israel, but they accepted it as a means to stabilize the region and tamp down extremism. Now, however, there is a growing feeling that Israel wants to create only a rump Palestinian state that would be neither viable nor truly sovereign. And that, officials say, is not only unacceptable, but also dangerous.


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What's Really Going on Here??

Bush Wars Push Saudi Arabia out of American Axis

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., July , 2007

When Bush attacked Iraq, he also attacked the stability and credibility of the Saudi Royal Family. The Saudi royal family's position is delicately balanced on a double-edged sword. One edge of the sword faces America. The other edge of the sword faces the Arab people.The Arabs hate our support of Israel, and resent our support for the resource-rich tyrannies that ring the Gulf, and dominate middle eastern politics and economics.

When Bush attacked Iraq, the Saudi royal family's position became unbalanced between their people and our empire. The "King" has three choices: turn the sword towards America, the people, or himself.

Bush has destabilized this delicate balance, requiring the "king" to re calibrate his position between his people and American foreign policy. As the "king" depends on American power to maintain his tyrannical dictatorship, lessening his dependence on America requires broadening his appeal to his own people.

The King's people are sunnis who are seriously pissed off about Iraq. Bush's Iraq adventure has so enraged the Sunni Arabs that the "King" has been forced to take drastic action to preserve his dictatorship.

The "King" will no longer turn up oil production at our command. The "King" has declared that our occupation of Iraq is illegal. It appears that the "King" is tolerating the movement of Saudi fighters and dollars into Western Iraq to directly confront the Illegal American Occupation. The "King" has independently tried to restart negotiations with Israel. Saudi Arabia is now acting independently of American influence in the middle east.

Bush' response to this shocking change reveals the outlines of a vague plan forming in his addled brain. As the invasion of Iraq has empowered Iran, Bush is now being forced by the Saudi shift to accommodate the ex-Bathist Sunni in Western Iraq.

Bush is now arming and supporting the same Sunni insurgents we brutalized in Falluja, while simultaneously backing a Shite-dominated government. Bush has been forced down the contradictory path of arming both sides in the ongoing Iraqi civil war as a result of his inability to foresee, or understand, the complexities of Iraqi society that lay under the rule of Saddam before invading Iraq. If we write down every move Bush has made in Iraq, we see the outlines of a recipe for disaster.

This indicates that Bush has finally realized that his invasion and occupation has failed. Since American power has proven itself incapable of holding Iraq together, Bush has instead decided to pull it apart. This dramatically increases the risk that the Sunni-Shite civil war in Iraq could turn into a regional war.

Bush's anticipation of an Iraqi breakup and the associated risks is behind the 30 billion dollar arms package to the Saudis, the Sunni the gulf state emirates, and Israel.

This arms sale is a strong indication that Bush is anticipating a partition of Iraq that may ultimately spark a regional war between the Sunni and Shite. Even with billions in American arms the Saudis and Sunnis are no match for Iran, and will suffer terribly without significant direct American military support. Thus the billions in arms to the Saudis, and support for the American-killing Sunni insurgents in Iraq.

The arming of the Saudis and Sunni insurgents may well come back to shoot us in the ass. The Sunni insurgents in Iraq will most certainly turn against the occupation, and the Saudis are already charting an independent course as we arm them to the teeth.

The bottom line is that the Saudi ruling family will do what is necessary to maintain their hold on power. It is probable this will require they become completely independent of American power.

The balance of power in the middle east has already shifted out from under American control. American dominance has been diminished on two fronts. First, the location of power has shifted geographically, moving to the east towards Iran, and away from Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Even more importantly, the notion of legitimate political authority has been dramatically transformed, shifting away from foreign supported dictators and "kings" towards a notion of legitimacy based on independent local political authority.

Bush has dramatically accelerated these pre-existing trends, but decades of colonial domination of the middle east lays behind these rapid dramatic shifts.

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Also See:

Saudi Arabia Woos China and India, middle east quarterly, fall, 2006

Corruption Updates 45, 2nd article, 3-29-07; "U.S. Iraq Role Is Called Illegal by Saudi King"

The Saudi Shift: Bush wars push Saudi Arabia out of American Axis, committee, 3-29-07

96_2, NYT, July 27, 2007, Saudis’ Role in Iraq Frustrates U.S. Officials

Saudi king invites Iranian President Ahmadinejad to Mecca for hajj, reuters, 12-9-07

Bush rallies allies for Iran conflict, delivers arms to Saudi Arabia, ap, 1-14-08

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


also see: iran rising, committee, 10-07

also see: Saudi Shift, committee, 7-07

israel links


Corruption Database

Saudi arabia



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

Official apology after CIA 'torture' jets used UK base

By Colin Brown, Deputy Political Editor
Independent, Friday, 22 February 2008

The Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, had to make a humiliating apology to the Commons after it emerged that the US failed to tell British officials that two CIA rendition flights carrying suspected terrorists landed on the island of Diego Garcia in 2002. Six years on, one of the suspects is still being held by the US at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. The other has been released.

Mr Miliband denied there was a deliberate cover-up and said he believed the US had acted "in good faith". However, Gordon Brown, attending an EU summit in Brussels, expressed his "disappointment" and said Washington's failure to disclose the flights earlier was "a very serious issue".

"The US has expressed regret that it did not admit at the time to these renditions through Diego Garcia," he added. "We have to assure ourselves these procedures will never happen again."

Mr Miliband said he was "very sorry indeed" to have to correct previous statements made by the then Prime Minister Mr Blair and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw that rendition flights had not used British bases. He said the Diego Garcia cases had not come to light earlier because of an error in a previous US records search. "The House and the Government will share deep disappointment at this news and about its late emergence," he added. "That disappointment is shared by our US allies. They recognise the absolute imperative for the Government to provide accurate information to Parliament."

In future, he added, Britain would approve CIA rendition flights through British bases only if the Government was satisfied they complied with British laws and the UK's international obligations, including those under the UN Convention Against Torture.

Human rights activists voiced concern that the two cases which had been identified might only be the "tip of the iceberg". Kate Allen, of Amnesty International UK, said: "It is not enough for the Government simply to accept US assurances on correct behaviour in the war on terror. We should retain our own integrity and act accordingly."

As recently as January 2007, Mr Blair assured the Intelligence and Security Committee he was satisfied that the US had at no time since 9/11 rendered an individual though the UK or its overseas territories.


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What's Really Going on Here??

We must hope that Bush's war crimes and crimes against humanity are not tolerated outside of the US, as they are in the US: from 12-6-06;



The US has not just Lost the Moral High Ground, we have Flattened it

aw, dec 6, '06

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.

Bush = Criminal:

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Also See:

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


Corruption Updates 25, 7th article on the page, "ITALY CHIEF OF INTELLIGENCE, 25 CIA OPERATIVES INDICTED FOR KIDNAPPING"

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

Corruption Updates 84, 1st article on the page,"Pelosi: Impeachment 'off the table"

Corruption Updates 85, 1st article on the page, "Cheney: Angler, A Catalog of Cheney Crimes"


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

Liars in Congress to ban torture: They already did, and bush ignored them, NYT, December 7, 2007



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

Zardari, Nawaz agree to form coalition

By Raja Asghar & Amir Wasim
Dawn, 2-22-08

ISLAMABAD, Feb 21: Three parties that emerged as the main winners of Monday’s election said after their talks on Thursday they had agreed to form a coalition to govern at the centre and in provinces, but ticklish details of what could be a landmark combine of former political foes remained to be sorted out.

The outcome became known after Pakistan People’s Party chairman Asif Ali Zardari held separate meetings with Pakistan Muslim League-N leader Nawaz Sharif and Awami National Party president Asfandyar Wali at the start of a dialogue for what he visualises as a PPP-led “government of national consensus”.

Mr Sharif, whose party came second in the National Assembly after PPP, but topped in the Punjab legislature, said the two parties had agreed to respect each other’s mandate and would cooperate with each other in the centre as well as the provinces to complete their five-year terms in government.

Mr Wali, whose ANP has emerged as the largest group in the NWFP, said after the meeting with Mr Zardari earlier in the day that the two sides had agreed to be part of a coalition as well as to struggle jointly to realise their aims on four issues: provincial autonomy, judicial reforms, ‘war on terror’ and sovereignty of parliament.

However, the main show of the day was a joint news conference by Mr Zardari and Mr Sharif after their two-hour talks at the PPP leader’s residence, where they announced what seemed to be a meeting of minds even on some ticklish issues about the political future of President Pervez Musharraf and the independence of judiciary, including the reinstatement of about 60 judges of superior courts.

Mr Sharif said the two sides had also agreed to implement Charter of Democracy that he had signed with assassinated PPP leader Benazir Bhutto in London in 2006 “in letter and in spirit”. That will look after the major issue of restoring the constitution to its pre-Oct 12, 1999 shape.

Mr Zardari, whose party also won a simple majority in the Sindh Assembly besides coming second in Punjab, the NWFP and Balochistan assemblies after the PML-N, ANP and PML-Q, respectively, told the news conference that talks between the two parties would continue in the future to “work out modalities” of their cooperation that could not be done in their meeting on Thursday. He said: “In principle, we have decided to stay together.”

The talks, which are likely to continue until the first session of the newly elected National Assembly expected to be called next month, came while pressure began to mount on the president to step down after a humiliating defeat of his loyalists and rejection of his policies in Monday’s election.

But the discredited regime seemed to be countering with its own pressure tactics such as pressing disputed long-standing charges against Mr Zardari in a Swiss court that he had stashed millions of dollars of ill-gotten money in Swiss banks, just as a PPP-led government seemed only days away, and a show of force on Thursday against protesting lawyers.

Some figures of the defeated parties even predicted the new coalition would last only a few months and PML president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain seemed to be provoking the PML-N chief by daring him to have the sacked judges reinstated.

Even apparent courtesy calls by western diplomats on Mr Zardari and Mr Sharif have led to speculations about possible urging to them to work with President Musharraf for fear his absence from the scene could weaken Pakistan’s key role in the so-called war against terrorism.

Although Mr Zardari avoided comments about his party’s chances of having to work with Mr Musharraf, Mr Sharif, in reply to a question if any deadline would be given for the president to resign, said he would prefer the now retired army chief departed “today”, but added: “The sooner he does, the better.”

On the same issue, the PML-N leader said: “The nation has given its verdict and he (Musharraf) should accept it.”

Asked about his party’s terms for joining the coalition, he said: “We have no demands from each other. We have accepted each other’s mandate. We strongly feel that we should support each other to complete the tenure.”

In reply to a question about the possibility of associating with the formerly ruling and pro-Musharraf Pakistan Muslim League-Q, Mr Zardari said: “We are not looking at pro-Musharraf forces. We believe that pro-Musharraf forces do not exist.”

But he has said the PPP would like the MQM to join the coalition.


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What's Really Going on Here??

Musharraf Fears his own people more than US or Taliban

Alex Wierbinski, Berkeley, Ca., January 12, 2008

When musharraf was more secure with the army, isi, and his grip on civil society was firm, musharraf was our boy in pakistan, "fighting terror."

Or was he? Are we now finally seeing he real musharraf, the musharraf that supported the taliban, the musharraf who maintained peace with the mountain folk, the musharraf who gained power by crushing civil democracy in lowland pakistan?

The simple answer is yes. Bush's desire to project power blinded him to the realities in pakistan, Afghanistan, and iraq. Bush's knowingly embraced musharraf exactly because musharraf is a dictator, and bush expected his purchase of the dictator would assure compliance with american directives.

Unfortunately for bush's plans, he failed to realize that that the army and isi had long ago made deals with the taliban and mountain folk: they are partners. That's why musharraf is unwilling as well as unable to do our bidding in the mountains. That's why musharraf is finally revealing his hand, and calling for talks with his allies, the people who still run Afghanistan: the taliban.

In the meantime musharraf has seized complete power in the lowland cities where the adherents of western democracy live. The real threat to musharraf is secular civil society, and musharraf has dealt with them by clubbing and shooting them in the streets, closing the supreme court and re-opening it with his tools on the bench, and closing the free press.

Oh, and killing benizar bhutto, who was our hand-picked representative of secular corruption and american influence. Bhutto did not represent democracy by any stretch of imagination. No great loss there.

Beneath all of this is the hidden fact that we have already lost the war in Afghanistan. No great loss there, as our vision for Afghanistan could never be made to fit the "facts on the ground," as bush likes to say.

A new balance of power is rising in the middle-east and south asia, and it does not place american interests at its center. Bush has accelerated this inevitable process by discrediting our nation, which has not just discredited our regional allies, but has made enemies of average muslims across the middle-east.

The american strategic situation in the middle-east and pakistan is melting down in the streets, in the capitals, and in the hearts and minds of muslims around the region and the world.

Iran has predominate influence in Baghdad, south, and west iraq. That's the only reason we are staying in iraq. When we leave iraq, a Shiite government will quickly emerge who's #1 ally is Iran.

Afghanistan is lost. The taliban controls every area where we do not have military supremacy. Where we have no guns, we have no authority.

Pakistan does not have a stable basis of leadership, either in the "democracy" movement, nor the military. Pakistan is heading to a showdown between musharraf, the people, the mountain people, and the army. It is unlikely that the side that wins will be able or willing to remain our bitch.

Saudi arabia has a bubbling domestic revolution on its hands, who's aim is to remove the heads of leaders who serve the west.

Mubarak will die as dictator of egypt, and when he does the next regime will withdraw from their american alliance, repeal their recognition of israel, and accelerate the rise of an independent middle-east.

The new, independent middle-east is going to be very hostile to american interests. The new middle-east is going to consider american intervention in their affairs as an act of war. The new middle-east is going to use their oil as a global check to american influence.

Expect russia, china, and india to be very helpful and supportative of the new regimes that rise from the ashes of our "globalization" empire.

In short, we are observing the chaotic bloody birth of a brand-new post-colonial (post globalized also works) middle-east that is going to take its rightful place in their region and the world.

We have fought this for decades with invasions, assassinations, and dictators, but now the whole region has reached the breaking point, and the era of western control of the middle-east is over, except for another couple of bloody wars, and maybe a revolution, possibly a civil war or two.

Expect the saudis to move the crown to an independent, anti-american prince when the king dies, or face even more serious threats from their "subjects." Expect egypt to form an islamic democracy after they reject mubarak's son, gamial.

Bush knows now that his vain attempt to reassert american dominance over middle-eastern oil, and the nations that sit on top of the oil, has failed. The failure of bush's iraqi and afghani adventures has destabilized all of our regional allies, while enhancing the influence and power of Iran.

I still put the chances at 30% that bush will provoke a war with iran. If this occurs, I put the chances at 50-50 that bush will attempt to "postponed" the '08 election.

Besides inflaming the middle-east, american foreign policy has destabilized the global balance of power.

A new era of a global contest for empire is emerging out of the failed lies of our "globalization" fraud.

Apparently americans will not recognize that what we call "globalization" is no more than the economic terms of victory dictated by our imperial corporate state on weaker states.

We will maintain that lie, and our imperial power of "globalism," until we lose control of our empire, and another nation, maybe china or russia, seizes the dominant position and employs the term "globalism" to hide the reality of their thieving empire.

So don't act surprised when the world does the same thing to us that we have done to them for the last 50 years: steal our resources, our labor, our rights, and our right to form our own government, and calls it "globalism."

To do this they will have to engage and defeat the corporations who are currently stealing the resources, labor, rights, money and authority of our people, our government, and our world.

Should be a great fight, if you like fights.

If you don't like fights, you failed a long time ago.

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Also See:

Corruption Updates 31, 10th article on page,Pakistan's old new year"

Corruption Updates 44 , 3rd article on page, “American backed Dictator Attempting to Crush Pakistan's Judiciary"

Corruption Updates 68, 2nd article on the page, Pakistan Holds 2 in Pearl Killing: False, These Men Kidnapped 4 years Ago

Corruption Updates 88, 10th article on the page, As Pakistan’s Chief Looks Ahead, Army Holds the Cards


Bhutto Death: Links

Paki links: Short list

all paki Links


Corruption Database




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1] Castro retires: Will Osama last as long as Castro?

2] Musharraf soundly defeated in pakistan

3] Supreme court rejects constitution, 4th Amendment, and rule of law to protect criminal presidency

4] US, Slovenia, Croat, and Turkish embassies attacked in Serbia

5] Bush adds wolves to his kill list of natural victims

6] Arabs move away from "two-state" farce

7] US Claims to have lied to Blair, and Blair lied to UK about Torture Flights: A conspiracy of liars exposes itself

8]"Bhutto" Sharif parties form anti-musharraf coalition