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 Thursday, September 30, 2004

  The Real Israel
by
Ted Lang
Ted Lang is a political analyst and freelance writer.

"The Zionist are every bit as ruthless as the very Nazis they demonize, yet collaborated with, before and during World War II.

History does indeed repeat itself, and those who do not learn from it are the ones who ensure its recurrence"
- Ted Lang

Read here for full article by Ted Lang

Edited excerpts from Ted Lang's article:

Defenders of Zionism offer numerous Biblical passages to justify the political entity that is the state of Israel.

The state of Israel is, however, an artificial creation of Man, not God.

Narrow interpretations employing selective Christian fundamentalism sanctifying a manmade political artifact will never justify ethnic mass murder and genocide.

It will not justify apartheid.

Much has been written about the origins of the Zionist state of Israel.

Looking at the state of Israel from its actual inception in 1948 as opposed to some ecclesiastical reference dating back to Biblical times is not only tantamount to fraud, but criminally intended as justification for mass murder and war.

A more straightforward reporter's account of the political origins of Israel are in order.

Many readers are confused, and deliberately so, such that a simple approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is shrouded in the "mysteries" of two foreign religions in a faraway, strange corner of the world.

The great imperial and colonial powers of the two preceding centuries, the Ottoman Turkish Empire and the British Empire, both struggled for control of the Middle East.

Great Britain eventually won. Woodrow Wilson's failed socialist scheme of a League of Nations was reborn as the United Nations after World War II.

Writer Noel Ignatiev , writing for Counterpunch on June 17, 2004, in his piece entitled, "Zionism, Anti-Semitism and the People of Palestine," offers:


"At the time of Balfour's declaration [1917], Jews comprised less than 10% of the population and owned 2.5% of the land of Palestine.

The problem of building a Jewish society among an overwhelming Arab majority came to be known as the 'conquest of land and labor.' Land, once acquired, had to remain in Jewish hands.

The other half of this project, known as Labor Zionism, called for the exclusive use of Jewish labor on the land acquired by the Jews in Palestine.

The Labor Zionists maintained this dual exclusionism (or apartheid, as we would now call it) in order to build up purely Jewish institutions."

From its inception, Jews creating Israel intended a policy of apartheid for its subjugated Arab majority.

How was this accomplished?

Ignatiev again:


"To achieve the conquest of the land, the Zionists set up an arrangement whereby
land was acquired not by individuals, but by a corporation, known as the Jewish
National Fund (JNF). The JNF acquired land and leased it only to Jews, who were
not allowed to sublet it.

Thus land was acquired in the name of 'the Jewish people,' held for their use, and not subject to market conditions. The idea was for the JNF to gradually acquire as much land as possible as the basis for the expected Jewish state.

Naturally, in order for the land to serve this function, Arab labor had to be excluded. Leases from the JNF specifically prohibited the use of non-Jewish labor on JNF plots.

One way to achieve this goal was to lease land only to those Jews who intended to work it themselves. In some cases, when land was bought from Arab absentee landlords, the peasants who resided on and worked the land were expelled.

Jewish landholders who refused to exclude Arab labor could lose their leases or be faced with a boycott."

The foregoing is a perfect example of lawyer and politician-friendly legalistic manipulations created to emit the sweet smell of justice, while in reality reeking of tyranny and despotism.

As United Nations, British and American support continued to strengthen and legitimize the emerging totalitarian state of Israel, continued Israeli expansionism and apartheid of the Arab majorities included new and more effective tactics: terrorism and mass murder.

Yet Israel's progress in achieving total control in the area and advancing to ethnocide and increasingly brutal apartheid wasn't without difficulties.

Ignatiev writes,


"Despite these policies and even with the encouragement of the British government, in the thirty years following the Balfour Declaration, the Zionists were able to increase the Jewish-owned portion of the land of Palestine to only 7%. Moreover, the majority of the world's Jews showed no interest in settling there.

In the years between 1920 and 1932, only 118,000 Jews moved to Palestine, less than 1% of world Jewry.

Even after the rise of Hitler, Jews in Europe did not choose Israel: out of 2.5 million Jewish victims of Nazism who fled abroad between 1935 and 1943, scarcely 8.5% went to Palestine. 182,000 went to the U.S., 67,000 to Britain, and almost 2 million to the Soviet Union.

After the war, the U.S. began to encourage Jewish settlement in Palestine. Aneurin Bevin, postwar British Foreign Minister, publicly blurted out that American policy mainly arose from the fact that 'they did not want too many of them in New York.'"

Ignatiev then turns to the collaboration of Zionist Jews with Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.

Those that shout "Never again!" the loudest are the very same Zionist Jews of the Abraham Foxman ilk and their Anti-Defamation League, the same ADL that worked in conjunction with the Jewish Sulzberger family [The New York Times] against Jews in America in the 1930s as documented by Webster G. Tarpley and Anton Chaitkin in chapter two of their online book on the Bushes.

Pertaining to the collaboration of Zionist and Nazis, Ignatiev writes:


"This policy of attaching more importance to the establishment of Israel than to the survival of the Jews led the Zionists to collaborate with Nazism and even be decorated by Hitler's government.

The best-known case was that of Rudolf Kastner, who negotiated the emigration to Palestine of some of Hungary's most prominent Jews in return for his help in arranging the orderly deportation of the remainder of Hungary's Jews to the camps.

For his efforts, Kastner was praised as an 'idealist' by no less an authority than Adolf Eichmann. (The best study of Zionist-Nazi relations is Lenni Brenner, Zionism in the Age of the Dictators.)

The Zionists knew they had to rid themselves of the Arab majority in order to have a specifically Jewish state. Although 75,000 Jews moved to Israel between 1945 and
1948, Jews still constituted a minority in Palestine.

The 1948 war afforded the Zionists an excellent opportunity to rectify this; as a result of the war, more than three-quarters of a million Arabs fled their homes.

The case of Deir Yasin, in which Israeli paramilitary forces, under the command of future prime minister Menachem Begin, massacred over 250 civilians, sending a message to Palestinians that they should depart, is the most well known example of how this flight was brought about. [Emphasis added.]

In his book, The Revolt, Begin boasted that without Deir Yasin there would have been no Israel, and adds, 'The Arabs began fleeing in panic, shouting 'Deir Yasin' (quoted in Menuhin, 120).

Recent writings by Israeli revisionist historians have refuted the longtime insistence of Israeli officials that the departures were voluntary.

Some of the refugees went to neighboring Arab countries; others became refugees in their own country. Those 750,000 expelled from their homes and their descendants, who together total 2.2 million people, make up the so-called refugee problem.

Although the United Nations has repeatedly demanded they be allowed to return, the Israeli government has refused to agree.

The war ended with the Zionists in control of 80% of Palestine. In the next year, nearly 400 Arab villages were completely destroyed.

This was no accident but the result of deliberate policy, as shown in the following statement by one of the most authoritative officials of the Zionist State:

'Among ourselves it must be clear that there is no place in our country for both peoples together. The only solution is Eretz Israel, or at least the western half of Eretz Israel, without Arabs, and there is no other way but to transfer the Arabs from here to the neighboring countries, transfer all of them, not one village or tribe should remain.' Joseph Weitz, Deputy Chairman of the Board of directors of the Jewish National Fund (JNF) from 1951 to 1973, former Chairman of the Israel Land Authority (Davis, 5)." Emphasis added

This is the real Israel.

This is how it got started; effective organization, legalistic mumbo-jumbo, legislation favoring a minority, and eventually, terrorism and mass murder.

Sound familiar?

Kathleen and Bill Christison identify themselves as former CIA Analysts. Writing for Counterpunch and posted September 24th as "Random Impressions from Palestine," the article begins: "

A few weeks spent in Palestine is always an assault on the senses, on the emotions. And after three trips to the West Bank in the past eighteen months, it is impossible not to draw some conclusions.

For most Americans, the eleventh commandment of the politics of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is Thou Shalt Not Reach Conclusions; for conclusions [indicate] that Israel wants the land of Palestine without the people; that the Israeli settlements, the roads accessible only to Israelis, the land confiscations, the house demolitions, the destruction of agricultural land add up to an act of ethnocide against the Palestinian people; that Israel's occupation and Israel's land greed are the root of the conflict and the root cause of terrorism.

[These] are too pointed for most people, too embarrassingly descriptive of an ugly reality impossible to ignore.

Without conclusions, American friends of Israel can live comfortably in denial, believing that although the occupation may be misguided, ultimately Israel is good and innocent, it is only protecting its security, the whole conflict is the Palestinians' fault.

But when you are in Palestine, when you see hundred-year-old olive groves bulldozed to make way for the wall, when you see entire city blocks bulldozed and cleared of homes where thousands once lived, when you actually watch a home being demolished, when you see huge Israeli colonies and small outposts on every hilltop, when you see markets closed because the wall has separated commerce from its customers, when you see destruction all around, denial is no longer possible.

You must conclude that there is a deliberate scheme here. You must acknowledge the unthinkable, that Israel has been built from the beginning on the ruins of another nation, that Israel has all but destroyed another people in order to have a Jewish-majority state, that Israel is not moral as its friends claim, not a light unto the nations."

Considering these observations, isn't it much easier now to understand the atrocities against our land by Zionists as demonstrated by the Rosenbergs, the attack on the U.S.S. Liberty, the 26 mutinying Israeli Air Force pilots, the Jonathan Pollard spy incident, the current AIPAC spy incident, and the warmongering neoconservative PNAC cabal that led US into an unnecessary war with Iraq?

The PNACers and Israel are now making arrangements for the unauthorized, unlawful and unconstitutional invasion of Iran, probably to be led off by a sneak attack on Iranians by the Israeli Air Force.

In what is a virtual cacophony of protest from our leaders in government, it is clear that our elected representatives in Washington will arrange yet another cover-up for the current Israeli-AIPAC spy scandal.

As regards our representatives, the Christisons offer:

How ignorant they all are, these politicians who are supposed to represent us, about the realities of life under the dominion of Israel.

How ignorant they all are of the facts:

  • that Israel daily destroys or steals homes and land from Palestinians because Jews want these properties,
  • that more miles of the impenetrable, permanent barrier wall are built every day on Palestinian ,
  • that Israel killed 385 Palestinians, 40 of them children under the age of , during the five and a half months in which Israelis recently enjoyed a respite from suicide bombings.
  • Kill ratios of 385 to 29, more tha two Palestinians killed every day versus one Israeli killed every week are good for Israel, and what is good for Israel is good for U.S. politicians as well.

This also good for the media, which gets a rest from hard reporting on human . Americans have not heard anything from the mainstream media about 400 newly dead Palestinians."

It is painfully clear that the partnership of our Zionist-owned and operated media, and our unrepresentative government, will work jointly to cover up completely the embarrassment of Israeli orchestrated treason to implicate America's wealth and its military for the sole benefit of Israel.

Just as Israel succeeded in throttling the overwhelming Arab majority, so too has a tiny minority of efficiently organized pressure groups, such as AIPAC, the ADL, the ACLU, NOW, NAACP, been able to sabotage the socio-political founding philosophy of America. It is this undermining of American principles that is rapidly engulfing US in socialism and fascism.

The weekly Yiddish news and opinion journal, The Forward, which originates out of New York City said it best in their September 24th article, "Support for President, War Drops Among Jews, According to New Study. "

Clearing pointing to a widening gap between American Jews and the so-called "Jewish" organizations that represent them, the article begins,

"Support for President Bush and his handling of the Iraq war has dropped among American Jews during the past year, according to a new poll released by the American Jewish Committee.

American Jews stand well to the left of the overall American population on a broad range of domestic and foreign-policy issues, and are much more critical of the Bush administration, judging from a comparison of the AJCommittee poll and other recent surveys.

The AJCommittee poll, which has a 3% margin of error and was based on interviews with 1,000 American Jews conducted during the last two weeks of August, found that 24% of Jews would vote for Bush. An earlier survey, released by the organization in December 2003, tracked Bush's support at 31%.

During the same period, according to the latest poll, Senator Kerry's support jumped from 59% to 69%, with 2% of American Jews now backing independent candidate Ralph Nader and 5% still undecided.

Along with the decline in electoral support for Bush has come a jump in the proportion of American Jews who disapprove of the Iraq war -from 54% to 66%.

The results of the AJCommittee poll appear to undermine repeated Republican claims that Bush has made inroads with American Jews and stood to increase significantly the 19% of the Jewish vote that he captured in 2000.

In addition, the poll flies in the face of the notion that American Jews supported the Iraq invasion because the war eliminated a major regional threat to Israel."

Another sobering observation by The Forward: "

The latest AJCommittee findings also point to a gap between American Jews and Jewish organizations. Most major Jewish groups offered varying levels of support for the American military campaign to oust Saddam Hussein two years ago.

In contrast to the growing number of American Jews who disapprove of Bush's leadership on Iraq, many Jewish organizations continue to voice support for the president's foreign policy, and none are believed to have withdrawn their endorsement of the war."

The Christisons point out in their article, that increasingly, many Jews in Israel, probably a majority, seek to end the Zionist terror campaigns against their Arab neighbors. They offer,

"What is perhaps most surprising is to encounter so many people, Israelis as well as internationals, who agree with these conclusions and who speak openly and almost casually about their distaste for Zionism and the flaws inherent in the system it has generated.

For the second year running, at a work camp sponsored by the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) to rebuild a recently demolished Palestinian home in the village of Anata, just outside East Jerusalem, we encountered more people than we knew existed, from more organizations than we knew existed, working to oppose the occupation and help Palestinians oppose Israel's expansionism.

These are people who put their own personal safety at risk and their own personal comfort aside in order to help Palestinians rebuild, protect Palestinians from Israeli settlers and soldiers, bring the Palestinian message to the world, stand in solidarity with Palestinians in distress.

ICAHD itself, founded and led by Jeff Halper, is both an activist and an education organization, with a small core staff of Israeli and Palestinian experts, starting with Halper himself, who know every road in the West Bank, every settlement, the details of every Israeli expansion plan,every mile of the separation wall."

What this says is that many Jews in America, Israel, and all over the world, oppose Zionism and its political maneuvers, legalistics, terrorism, ethnocide and apartheid.

The latter practice alone in the former Union of South Africa generated such animosity against the South African government that the unified condemnation of apartheid helped to bring the government down.

It appears if there is one unmistakable trait as regards tyranny, it is the manipulative ability of a minority to impose its narrow will on an overwhelming majority.

Those who support such tyranny are the first to point out the small numbers of those who are behind the schemes and plots, deliberately downplaying the magnifying and synergistic power of government force used to carry out their immoral deeds.

As Zionists scream "Never again!" they repeat with increased brutality Man's inhumanity to his fellow Man in metrics that surpass even the very Nazis they rail against.

They continually point to "the Kristallnacht," the signifying the beginning of Jewish persecution by the Nazis.

But burning synagogues, and smashing stores is bad enough, but no comparison to the destruction of cities, homes, businesses, and the bulldozing and crushing to death of people inside their homes and destroying hundred-year-old olive groves.

This represents ultimate brutality and murder driven by intense hatred!

The Zionist are every bit as ruthless as the very Nazis they demonize, yet collaborated with, before and during World War II.

History does indeed repeat itself, and those who do not learn from it are the ones who ensure its recurrence.

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 Sunday, September 26, 2004

 

POLL: Most Americans Say Its OK Their President Is NOT Truthful About Iraq War

Read here full article by Kenneth Bazinet of Washington Daily News
25th September 2004

New polls yesterday indicated most Americans still prefer President Bush to John Kerry.

Bush retained his lead despite the fact that:

  • 55% of likely voters think the situation in Iraq is worse than Bush says

  • Only 37% believe Bush is truthful about it, according to the Time poll.

  • 51% think the country is headed in the wrong direction,

  • Only 43% say the country is headed on the right track.

  • A new Marist poll showed likely voters saying the country is headed in the wrong direction by a 51%-42% margin.

Yet Bush kept a 50%-44% lead.



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 Friday, September 24, 2004

 

WHY IRAN WANTS TO BUILD NUCLEAR WEAPONS

Read here full article by Jonathan Power "Deterring the deterrents

Edited article:

The United States, Britain and France insisting Iran to discontinue its nuclear programme is hypocritical. These Western powers have argued for decades that nuclear deterrence keeps the peace - and themselves maintain nuclear armories long after the cold war has ended.

So why shouldn't Iran, which is in one of the world's most dangerous neighborhoods, have a deterrent too?

And where is the source of the threat that makes Iran, a country that has NEVER started a war in 200 years, feel so nervous that it must now take the nuclear road?

If Saddam Hussein's Iraq, with its nuclear ambitions, used to be one reason, the other is certainly Israel.

Hard-liners in the United States are encouraging Israel to mount a pre-emptive strike against Iran's nuclear industry before it produces bombs.

The United States refuses to acknowledge formally that Israel has nuclear weapons, even though top officials will tell you privately that it has 200 of them.

Until this issue is openly acknowledged, America, Britain and France are probably wasting their time trying to persuade Iran to forgo nuclear weapons.

The supposition is that Israel lives in an even more dangerous neighborhood than Iran. It is said to be a beleaguered nation under constant threat of being eliminated by the combined muscle of its Arab opponents.

But,

  • There is NO evidence, however, that Arab states have invested the financial and human resources necessary to fight the kind of war that would be catastrophic for Israel.

  • And there is NO evidence that Israel's nuclear weapons have deterred the Arabs from more limited wars or prevented Palestinian intifadas and suicide bombers.

  • NOR have Israel's nuclear weapons influenced Arab attitudes toward making peace.

  • In the 1973 Arab war against Israel and in the 1991 Gulf war, they clearly failed in their supposed deterrent effect.

  • The Arabs knew, as the North Vietnamese knew during the Vietnam War, that their opponent would NOT dare to use its nuclear weapons.

Israelis say that they need nuclear weapons in case one day an opportunistic Egypt and Syria, sensing that Israel's guard is down, revert to their old stance of total hostility and attack Israel.

  • But, as Zeev Maoz has argued in the journal International Security, these countries keep to their treaty obligations.

  • Egypt did NOT violate its peace treaty with Israel when Israel attacked Syria and Lebanon in 1982.

  • Syria did NOT violate the May 1974 disengagement agreement with Israel even when its forces were under Israeli attack.

  • NOR did Egypt, Jordan and Syria violate their treaty commitments when the second Palestinian intifada broke out in September 2000.

  • Since its 1979 peace treaty with Israel, Egypt has reduced its defense spending from 22 percent of its gross national product in 1974 to a mere 2.75 percent in 2002.

  • Syria's has fallen from 26 percent to 6.7 percent.

  • The combined defense expenditures of Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon amount to only 58 percent of Israel's.

It is the Arabs who should be worried by Israel's might, rather than the other way round.

Israel's nuclear weapons are politically unusable and militarily irrelevant, given the real threats it faces. But they have been very effective in allowing India, Pakistan, Libya, South Africa, Brazil, Argentina, North Korea and now Iran to think that they, too, had good reason to build a nuclear deterrent.

The way to deal with Iran is to prove to its leadership that nuclear weapons will add nothing to its security, just as they add nothing to Israel's.

It would also mean America coming clean about Israel's nuclear armory and pressuring Israel to forgo its nuclear deterrent.

If Western powers want to grasp the nettle of nuclear proliferation, they need to take hold of the whole plant, not just one leaf.


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 Wednesday, September 22, 2004

  US NEOCONS Peddling Influence on Bush to Criticise Putin

Other Breaking News
  • Cat Stevens gave the world the hit song "Morning Has Broken". Now he is on the FBI official terrorist "watch list." Cat Stevens converted to Islam and called himself Yusuf Islam. Federal officials say a plane bound for Washington from London was diverted to Maine because passenger Yusuf Islam -- formerly known as pop singer Cat Stevens -- showed up on the U.S. watch list.The flight had already taken off when the match was made between the passenger and the watch list. The plane was met by federal agents at Maine's Bangor International Airport, where sources say Islam was questioned by the FBI and Immigration officials.A Homeland Security spokesman says Islam will be put on the first available flight out the country. Read here for more
  • Israel admitted yesterday that it is buying 500 "bunker-buster" bombs, which could be used to hit Iran's nuclear facilities, as Teheran paraded ballistic missiles as a warning against attack. The BLU-109 bombs, which can penetrate more than 7ft of reinforced concrete, are among "smart" munitions being sold to Israel under America's military aid programme.Read here for more
  • Iran has begun turning uranium into the gas needed for enrichment, a key step in assembling nuclear weapons, The Associated Press reported. Iranian Vice President Reza Aghazadeh announced yesterday that "tests are going on successfully" to convert raw uranium into uranium hexafluoride gas, which fuels enrichment. Iran's most recent revelation came days after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) called on the Islamic republic to suspend uranium enrichment programs. Read here for more


  • Read here full article by Pat Buchanan "Bin Laden's Useful Idiots "
    September 22, 2004


    Patrick Buchanan
    Patrick J. Buchanan was twice a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and the Reform Party’s candidate in 2000. He is also a founder and editor of the new magazine, The American Conservative. Now a commentator and columnist, he served three presidents in the White House, was a founding panelist of three national television shows, and is the author of seven books.

    Edited article:

    Ronald Reagan began his term declaring the Soviet Union an "evil empire". By the end of his tenure, he was strolling through Red Square with Mikhail Gorbachev to the cheers of the Russian people.

    That the Cold War ended without our tearing our nations to pieces, as Britain and Germany did, was a triumph, especially considering the awesome power of our weaponry.

    And since the Cold War ended, Americans have seemed to understand the importance of good and strong relations with Russia.

    The Washington-Moscow connection is among the most critical on the planet.
    Why, then, this raft of attacks on President Vladimir Putin over his efforts to consolidate power to combat his terrorist threat?

      • In late August, two Russian airliners were brought down in minutes by "Black Widow" Chechen terrorists.

      • Days later, a school of Russian children was seized by Chechen terrorists loyal to Shamil Basaev, the Osama bin Laden of the Caucasus. Hundreds were slaughtered in the most barbaric atrocity since 9/11.

      After these horrors, Putin acted to centralize power over his Balkanizing country. He called on parliament to approve a plan to let him name the governors of Russia's 89 provinces, rather than have them elected.

      Most of the governors approved.

      But Western elites are howling as though Putin were using the Beslan horror as Hitler used the Reichstag fire – to railroad his rivals to Dachau.

      In The Washington Post, Robert Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute and The Weekly Standard calls Putin's plan an "unambiguous step toward tyranny in Russia." Putin "is imposing dictatorship," rails Kagan. "Putin is not really 'with us.' ... A dictatorial Russia is at least as dangerous as a dictatorial Iraq. ... A Russian dictatorship can never be a reliable ally of the United States."

      "[T]he aspiring dictator of Russia has forced President Bush to reveal how committed he really is to the cause of democracy around the world."

      Kagan demanded that Bush denounce Putin – which Bush and Colin Powell both mildly did, infuriating Moscow – and even consider sanctions against Russia.

      Query: Have we lost our minds?

      In Russia, what is vital to us is that we have a stable, friendly government and reliable partner in combating terrorism.

      How Russia chooses its regional or provincial leaders or parliament is none of our business.

      What are Western media and politicians doing hectoring Putin and mucking around in Russia's internal affairs?

      British journalist John Laughland has looked behind the attacks on Putin and discovered the "oligarchs" – Russian billionaires who looted the privatized assets of the old Soviet Union, men like Boris Berezovsky and Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Putin has run them out of Russian or locked them up.

      And they have used their vast fortunes to buy up intellectuals in Western capitals to agitate against him.

      Also agitating against Putin is the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya, a front group of neocons such as Richard Perle, James Woolsey, Michael Ledeen and Kenneth ("Cakewalk") Adelman.

      ACPC wants Bush to cut Putin adrift in the name of democracy.

      These are the same ideologues who engineered the war to "democratize" Iraq and prevailed on Bush to declare "world democratic revolution" the overarching goal of his foreign policy.

      These neoconservatives are demanding that Putin negotiate with the Chechens rebels. Many favor a NATO presence in Chechnya along the lines of the NATO missions in Bosnia and Kosovo.

      Putin sees them as pressuring him to negotiate with child-murderers and as pursuing a devious Western strategy to further weaken and break up Russia.

      In interviews, he has expressed a growing bitterness toward the West – reacting just as Andrew Jackson would have if Czar Nicholas I had loudly demanded that Jackson sit down and start negotiating with the Cherokees.

      But the larger question is: Why is Bush still listening to these people?

      • These were the propagandists and agitators for the war in Iraq that may yet cost
        him his presidency. Nothing they promised has been delivered.

      • They constantly undercut relations with our European allies with their insults.

      • They persuaded Bush to outsource Middle East policy to Sharon, to our national detriment.

      • Now, they are pushing Bush to distance ourselves from, if not to destabilize, Saudi Arabia and Russia.

      • Why does Bush continue to heed men whose policies have radicalized the Middle East and converted much of the Islamic world into a giant recruiting station for Osama bin Laden?


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       Monday, September 20, 2004

        Attacking Racism: The Flight from London to Johannesburg

      The following anecdote was posted on Jeff Ooi's blog, Screenshots.

      Worth a thought.

      Scene took place on a BA flight between Johannesburg and London. A white woman, about 50 years old, was seated next to a black man.

      Obviously disturbed by this, she called the air hostess.

      The hostess asked,

      "Madam, what is the matter?"

      The white woman responded,

      "You obviously do not see it then? You placed me next to a black man.

      I do not agree to sit next to someone from such a repugnant group.

      Give me an alternative seat."

      The hostess then replied,

      "Be calm please. Almost all the places on this flight are taken. I will go to see if another place is available."

      The Hostess went away and then came back a few minutes later.

      " Madam, just as I thought, there are no other available seats in the economy class.

      I spoke to the captain and he informed me that there is also a seat in the business class.

      All the same, we still have one place in the first class."

      Before the woman could say anything, the hostess continued:

      "It is not usual for our company to permit someone from the economy class to sit in the first class.

      However, given the circumstances, the captain feels that it would be scandalous to make someone sit next to someone so disgusting."

      She turned to the black guy, and said,

      "Therefore, Sir, if you would like to, please collect your hand luggage, a seat awaits you in First Class."

      At that moment, the other passengers who were shocked by what they had just witnessed stood up and applauded.



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       Friday, September 17, 2004

        Scanning update......


    • CLICK HERE TO VIEW LATEST PHOTOS FROM BAGHDAD

    • The United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has told the BBC the US-led invasion of Iraq was an illegal act that contravened the UN charter.He said the decision to take action in Iraq should have been made by the Security Council, not unilaterally. Read here for more

    • The use of a single word in diplomacy can often mark a significant moment and the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's use of the word "illegal" about the war in Iraq is one such moment. He has carefully avoided the word before. His previous phrasing was to say that the war was "not in conformity with the UN Charter". Now, in a BBC interview, he has been pressed into using the word "illegal" and that is the word which will now be used everywhere to describe his position. He has not changed his position. But his language has changed and that counts. Read here for more

    • U.S. allies Britain and Australia on Thursday rejected a claim by U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan that the war in Iraq was ''illegal'' because Washington and its coalition partners never got Security Council backing for the invasion. Prime Minister Tony Blair's official spokesman reminded reporters that Britain's attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, had found before the war that Britain was acting legally, citing three U.N. resolutions he said justified the use of force against the Saddam Hussein regime. Australian Prime Minister John Howard a staunch U.S. supporter who defied widespread public anger to participate in the invasion also dismissed claims that the military action violated international law. ''There had been a series of Security Council resolutions and the advice we had (was) that it was entirely legal,'' Howard told Perth radio station 6PR. Read here for more

    • Two Americans are among three people kidnapped from a house in central Baghdad on Thursday, the U.S. Embassy said in a statement.Jack Hensley and Eugene Armstrong were seized from their house in Baghdad's upscale al-Mansour district along with a British national, the embassy said. The statement did not provide their ages or hometowns."The U.S. government is using all available means to locate them and the Iraqi government is fully assisting in the case," the statement said.The embassy said the two worked for a private company dealing in construction.Read here for more

    • Afghan President Hamid Karzai has escaped an assassination bid when a rocket was fired at his U.S. military helicopter as it was landing in the southeastern town of Gardez.The most serious challenge yet to an October 9 presidential election, for which the Taliban claimed responsibility, came as Karzai's rivals called for the vote to be delayed by at least a month, saying security worries made campaigning difficult."A rocket was fired at President Karzai as his helicopter was landing," said U.S. military spokesman Major Mark McCann. "It missed and landed about 300 metres from a school in the vicinity of the landing area."Witnesses said the rocket flew over Karzai's helicopter, and a crowd of about 400 supporters gathered to meet him at a school, as he was about to touch down, but caused no injuries.Read here for more

    • The AIPAC spy scandal has given this agenda a name, a focus, and an overarching explanation for a war strategy that seems bent on creating chaos on the Middle East. What seemed, at first, a straightforward case of a mid-level Pentagon official passing classified documents to Israel, has revealed the existence of a much larger investigation into Israeli penetration of the U.S. government. The point to be made here is that the AIPAC spy imbroglio has brought to the forefront the suspicion that U.S. foreign policy is being directed, not from Washington, but from Tel Aviv. The belief that Israel exerts undue influence on American policy in the Middle East is increasingly widespread. This has nothing to do with anti-Semitism and everything to do with the apparent inability of the United States to effectively combat a terrorist conspiracy against its very existence. Citing al-Qaeda's contention that "the close link between America and the Zionist entity is in itself a curse for America" and a strategic mistake, the brilliant (albeit anonymous) author of Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror notes that this "does not seem too far off the mark." The lack of daylight between American and Israeli policy in the Middle East "has turned the attack against America into an attack against the Zionist entity, and vice-versa," in the words of al-Qaeda's propagandists. This unites all Muslims in a supranational jihad directed against the "Crusaders and Jews," as the Ladenites would have it. Read here for more

    • Malaysia's highest court refused yesterday to hear a new appeal by former deputy premier Anwar Ibrahim against his corruption conviction, dashing his hopes for an immediate return to politics.Mr Anwar has already served his six-year sentence for corruption. But he will be barred from active politics until 2008 under regulations governing convicted criminals. Read here for more

    • Nine Palestinian militants and an 11-year-old girl were killed by Israeli IDF troops on Wednesday in separate incidents in Nablus and Jenin, the highest single-day Palestinian death toll in the West Bank for more than two years. Read here for more

    • There is something about Katharine Gun that makes her seem an unlikely candidate for whistleblowing. And yet this rather shy 30-year-old leaked details of an alleged plot to bug UN delegates before the Iraq war and was sacked from her job as a translator at GCHQ. The thing about Gun is that she seems someone who is quite quiet and conventional. Yet she says it didn't take her long to make her decision to go public. "I was under an enormous amount of time pressure at that point they were talking about this UN resolution which was going to legalise the war in Iraq and it was a gut instinct that it was wrong and the only hope of saving lives was to get it out as quick as possible. It was a matter of just a couple of days." And she insists there was nothing she could have done differently. "It didn't stop the war, however it may have had an impact on whether there was a resolution which would have legalised the war - and that would have been a very dangerous precedent." Read here for more

    • IRAQ is in anarchy and seriously risks becoming a failed state such as warlord-run Somalia, analysts say.Read here for more

    • An Afghan court sentenced Jonathan "Jack" Idema and two other Americans to lengthy prison terms Wednesday, finding them guilty of running a private prison and torturing Afghan detainees in what the defendants claimed was a legitimate operation to round up terrorists.Idema, 48, of Fayetteville, N.C., the group's leader and a former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces, was given a 10-year term, as was his younger associate Brent Bennett. A third man, Edward Caraballo, a journalist, received eight years, while four Afghan employees of the group were sentenced to between one and five years.Read here for more


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       Monday, September 13, 2004

       

      SCANNING...SCANNING.. SCANNING

      • A furious row has broken out over claims in a new book by BBC broadcaster James Naughtie that US Secretary of State Colin Powell described neo-conservatives in the Bush administration as 'fucking crazies' during the build-up to war in Iraq.
        Powell's extraordinary outburst is alleged to have taken place during a telephone conversation with Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. Read here for more

      • A visibly emotional U.S. Rep. Ken Lucas, who two years ago described a potential invasion of Iraq as being in the "interest of America and all freedom-loving people everywhere," Friday told a Northern Kentucky audience that his vote to authorize that war was the one he most regretted during his three terms in Congress.
        "I supported my commander-in-chief as president because there were supposed to be weapons of mass destruction," the Richwood Democrat, who is not seeking re-election, told about 80 politicians and businessmen at Covington's Metropolitan Club."But I have to tell you from all the stuff that we've gotten I really feel like I was misled," Lucas said, responding to a question during the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce's monthly Government Forum. Read here for more

      • US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Friday he was surprised to learn that South Korea once had clandestine programs to enrich uranium and extract plutonium but said he doubted Seoul now had any secret nuclear capability.The South Korean government revealed the secret nuclear research on key ingredients for nuclear weapons in a series of embarrassing public admissions over the past week. Read here for more

      • Militants pounded central Baghdad on Sunday with one of their most intense mortar barrages ever, targeting the Green Zone and destroying a U.S. vehicle along a major street. At least 24 people were killed and more than 100 wounded in citywide violence -- many of them when a U.S. helicopter fired at a burning vehicle surrounded by crowds.Read here for more

      • Afghanistan: Eight people are reported to have been killed and 15 wounded when Afghan police and soldiers fired on protesters who set fire to U.N. offices in the western city of Herat.The demonstrators were angry over the dismissal of local warlord Ismail Khan as the provincial governor. Some were armed with sticks and stones, which they hurled at the U.N. buildings.Read here for more








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        Robert Fisk: We should NOT have allowed 19 murderers to change our world


      "... She missed 11 September 2001 by three years and a day. But there was one thing she would, I feel sure, have agreed with me: That we should not allow 19 murderers to change our world.

      George Bush and Tony Blair are doing their best to make sure the murderers DO change our world. And that is why we are in Iraq."
      - Robert Fisk


      Transcribed from Robert Fisk's Article that appeared in The Independent UK

      11 September 2004

      So, three years after the international crimes against humanity in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania we were bombing Fallujah. Come again? Hands up those who knew the name of Fallujah on 11 September 2001. Or Samarra. Or Ramadi. Or Anbar province. Or Amarah. Or Tel Afar, the latest target in our "war on terror'' although most of us would find it hard to locate on a map (look at northern Iraq, find Mosul and go one inch to the left).

      Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive.

      Three years ago, it was all about Osama bin Laden and al-Qa'ida; then, at about the time of the Enron scandal ­ and I have a New York professor to thank for spotting the switching point ­ it was Saddam and weapons of mass destruction and 45 minutes and human rights abuses in Iraq and, well, the rest is history.

      And now, at last, the Americans admit that vast areas of Iraq are outside government control. We are going to have to "liberate" them, all over again.

      Like we reliberated Najaf and Kufa, "to kill or capture Muqtada Sadr'', according to Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt, and like we lay siege to Fallujah back in April when we claimed, or at least the US Marines did, that we were going to eliminate "terrorism'' in the city.

      In fact, its local military commander has since had his head chopped off by the insurgents and Fallujah, save for an occasional bloody air raid, remains outside all government control.

      These past two weeks, I've been learning a lot about the hatred Iraqis feel towards us.

      Trowelling back through my reporter's notebooks of the 1990s, I've found page after page of my hand-written evidence of Iraqi anger; fury at the sanctions which killed half a million children, indignation by doctors at our use of depleted uranium shells in the 1991 Gulf War (we used them again last year, but let's take these things one rage at a time) and deep, abiding resentment towards us, he West.

      One article I wrote for The Independent in 1998 asked why Iraqis do not tear us limb from limb, which is what some Iraqis did to the American mercenaries they killed in Fallujah last April.

      But we expected to be loved, welcomed, greeted, fêted, embraced by these people. First, we bombarded Stone Age Afghanistan and proclaimed it "liberated", then we invaded Iraq to "liberate" Iraqis too. Wouldn't the Shia love us? Didn't we get rid of Saddam Hussein?

      Well, history tells a different story.

      We dumped the Sunni Muslim King Feisal on the Shia Muslims in the 1920s. Then we encouraged them to rise against Saddam in 1991, and left them to die in Saddam's torture chambers. And now, we reassemble Saddam's old rascals, their torturers, and put them back in power to "fight terror'', and we lay siege to Muqtada Sadr in Najaf.

      We all have our memories of 11 September 2001.

      I was on a plane heading for America. And I remember, as the foreign desk at The Independent told me over the aircraft's satellite phone of each new massacre in the United States, how I told the captain, and how the crew and I prowled the plane to look for possible suicide pilots. I think I found about 13; alas, of course, they were all Arabs and completely innocent. But it told me of the new world in which I was supposed to live. "Them'' and "Us''.

      In my airline seat, I started to write my story for that night's paper. Then I stopped and asked the foreign desk in London ­ by this time the aircraft was dumping its fuel off Ireland before returning to Europe ­ to connect me to the newspaper's copytaker, because only by "talking" my story to her, rather than writing it, could I find the words I needed. And so I "talked" my report, of folly and betrayal and lies in the Middle East, of injustice and cruelty and war, so it had come to this.

      And in the days to come I learnt, too, what this meant.

      Merely to ask why the murderers of 11 September had done their bloody deeds was to befriend "terrorism". Merely to ask what had been in the minds of the killers was to give them support.

      Any cop, confronted by any crime, looks for a motive. But confronted by an international crime against humanity, we were not to be allowed to seek the motive.

      America's relations with the Middle East, especially the nature of its relationship with Israel, was to remain an unspoken and unquestioned subject.

      I've come to understand, in the three years since, what this means. Don't ask questions.

      Even when I was almost killed by a crowd of Afghans in December 2001 ­ furious that their relatives had been killed in B-52 strikes ­ The Wall Street Journal announced in a headline that I had "got my due" because I was a "multiculturalist". I still get letters telling me that my mother, Peggy, was Adolf Eichmann's daughter.

      Peggy was in the RAF in 1940, repairing radios on damaged Spitfires, as I recalled at her funeral in 1998.

      But I also remember, at the service in the chancel of the little stone Kentish church, that I angrily suggested that if President Bill Clinton had spent as much money on research into Parkinson's disease as he had just spent in firing cruise missiles into Afghanistan at Osama bin Laden (and it must have been the first time Bin Laden's name was uttered in the precincts of the Church of England) then my mother would not have been in the wooden box beside me.

      She missed 11 September 2001 by three years and a day. But there was one thing she would, I feel sure, have agreed with me: That we should not allow 19 murderers to change our world.

      George Bush and Tony Blair are doing their best to make sure the murderers DO change our world.

      And that is why we are in Iraq.




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       Friday, September 10, 2004

       

      AIPAC Spying Scandal: Pro Israel US Congressmen and Senators Question FBI Probe


      Other Breaking News

      JAKARTA BOMBING OF AUSTRALIAN EMBASSY:


      • The power of the Israel lobby in US politics manifests itself in NO uncertain terms.

      • Pro Israeli Lobbyists and Pro-Israel American Jewry expressed shock and surprise by the FBI probe of AIPAC caught in the spying scandal

      • These US Congressmen and Senators should ponder whether they would do the same if the "I" in AIPAC is replaced with "A" for ARAB.

      Read here full article by Ori Nir " White House Draws Fire From Congress, Officials
      Over Leak of FBI Probe "

      September 10 2004

      Below edited article:

      The White House is drawing criticism from congressmen and Jewish communal officials over the FBI investigation into allegations that officials of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (Aipac)illegally transferred secret information to Israel.

      Lawmakers and Jewish organizational leaders are questioning the motivation for the investigation and its two-year course, stressing that no indictments have emerged — only leaks from administration officials familiar with the FBI probe.

      In addition to expressing outrage over the media leaks, several Congressmen are also condemning the investigation itself, which they say has spawned unfair accusations of disloyalty against Aipac and represents an abuse of power on the part of Attorney General John Ashcroft.

      Rep. Robert Wexler, a Florida Democrat said,

      "To think that one of the leading American Jewish organizations has been investigated for two years, and the highest people at the White House were aware of it, is extremely unsettling. If there was an individual or group who broke the law, they need to be held accountable.

      But the broad-brushing of Aipac and the American Jewish community is extremely inflammatory and needs to be stopped."

      Wexler, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to Ashcroft last week demanding that the Justice Department either submit charges or "exonerate the American Israel Public Affairs Committee of this public castigation."

      Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank said that the investigation "does appear to be an effort to discredit, to get Aipac." He said:

      "I'm troubled by it. It's a very inappropriate effort to criminalize a policy debate. It's John Ashcroft, and the president and [Vice President Dick] Cheney."

      Also voicing criticism were the two Jewish Republican senators, Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania and Norm Coleman of Minnesota.

      Alen Specter told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Ashcroft should launch an investigation into the leaks.

      "I know Aipac; I know its integrity. It's a smear."

      Norm Coleman said that "the real issue here is preventing leaks — of classified materials and about ongoing investigations." TheMinnesota senator argued that "to leak details about an ongoing FBI investigation and the alleged role of Aipac is premature at best and a smear campaign at worst."

      Representative John Conyers of Michigan, was calling for a congressional investigation regarding the substance of the allegations. Conyers, the top-ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, asked the committee's Republican chairman, James Sensenbrenner of Wisconsin, to open an investigation into the claim that a "rogue element of the United States government" may have worked with a foreign government in possible contravention of foreign policy.

      In Jewish communal circles, the criticisms and calls for investigations were focused on either the media leaks or the probe itself.

      Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, suggested that the administration and media had blundered. He said,

      "There will be a lot of hard questions that will have to be answered by a lot of people when this is all over. People will have to be held to account.

      What happened? Why it happened? What was going on in the last two years?"

      Jack Rosen, president of the American Jewish Congress, echoed several other Jewish organizational leaders in demanding an investigation into the leaks.

      "Who did it and why? What's the agenda?"

      Contrary to the predictions of Aipac leaders, the controversy is not fading away.

      Anonymous sources have been leaking information to the media on a regular basis, suggesting that the probe extends beyond one Pentagon official sharing one document with Israeli diplomats or pro-Israeli lobbyists:

      • The investigation into possible wrongdoing by Aipac was launched more than two years ago, based on suspicions that Aipac employees passed secret information to Israel. One report said that the president's national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, and her top deputy, Stephen Hadley, were informed of the probe not long after Bush took office in 2001.

      • The alleged transfer of a secret White House policy brief by a Pentagon Iran analyst, Larry Franklin, to Aipac staffers last summer was seen by investigators as the "smoking gun." It advanced the investigation, particularly after Franklin agreed to cooperate with investigators.

      • FBI agents wiretapped the homes of two senior Aipac staffers, Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman, who were interviewed by FBI agents August 27, the day the story broke. Their offices were searched and the hard drive of Rosen's computer was copied, according to reports. Abbe Lowell, a criminal lawyer who specializes in white-collar criminal defense, is representing Rosen and Weissman. In the past, Lowell has defended politicians accused of ethics violations.

      • At the Pentagon, agents focused on Franklin but also interviewed other officials at the office of Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith. Feith was also interviewed, and some of these Pentagon officials, are also being investigated on suspicion that they may have told Iraqi dissident Ahmed Chalabi that the United States has broken secret Iranian communications codes . The Chalabi investigation is linked with connections between Pentagon officials and pro-Israel lobbyists.

      • Franklin was in contact not only with the political counselor at Israel's Washington embassy, Naor Gilon, but also with the intelligence attaché, a colonel who was identified by his first initial, Y. The colonel, according to the daily Ma'ariv, received information from Franklin and reported his contacts with the American analyst to his superiors at Israel's military intelligence command in Tel Aviv.

      • The FBI had reportedly been conducting surveillance of Israeli diplomat Gilon. The Aipac investigation and the surveillance of Gilon reportedly converged — and led to the Pentagon — after Franklin walked into a meeting between Gilon and the two Aipac staffers at a Washington restaurant a year ago.

      • Despite its denials, Israel still runs an aggressive spying operation in the United States, which American counterterrorism agents are surveying.

      The wave of allegations and leaks has Jewish activists worried. "The longer this story is out there without concrete facts or some conclusion, the more we will bleed," one Jewish organizational official said.

      One concern voiced by Jewish activists was that Aipac's enemies would use this opportunity to discredit the Jewish community.

      The first such salvo came from conservative pundit and former presidential hopeful Pat Buchanan last Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press."

      Alluding to Jonathan Pollard, the American Jewish Navy analyst now serving a life sentence for spying for Israel, Pat Buchanan said:

      "We also need to investigate whether there is a nest of Pollardites in the Pentagon who have been transmitting American secrets through Aipac, the Israeli lobby, over to Reno Road, the Israeli embassy, to be transferred to Mr. Sharon."

      If the allegations proved true, he said, "we are getting dangerously close to the T-word," an apparent reference to treason.

      Such attacks on Aipac will affect the whole Jewish community, communal insiders said.

      An official with one major Jewish organization worried that Aipac's aggressive lobbying tactics have alienated some lawmakers, making them more likely to move away from the organization as the scandal unfolds. "They have a crappy reputation with some members of Congress who say certain [positive] things publicly, and behind the scenes say: 'I am tired of them twisting my arm.'"

      Several Jewish activists, speaking on condition of anonymity, also cautioned against what they described as a defiant reaction on the part of some communal leaders who raised the specter of antisemitic conspiracy.

      "If every single time we get into trouble we cry antisemitism, no one is going to believe us when we confront the real problem of antisemitism," a senior official of a Jewish organization said.

      Another organizational official said: "It's ridiculous to react like that before you know what happened there. In the absence of accurate knowledge, any comment is just silly."


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       Wednesday, September 08, 2004

        U.S. Body Bags Reached a Tragic Milestone of 1,000

      Memory Refresh: President Bush stood on the US aircraft carrier a year ago and said: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! So the President had won the war.

      More sons and daughters of Americans are dying..and still dying.... in a war launched by President Bush that Saddam Hussein had WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION.

      ... Americans will vote for the next President . ..and hopefully, the next President will lead Americans to another war that will not be based on a lie or on a foreign policy that serves the interest of another sovereign nation, instead of its own.

      Other News

    • MUST READ ARTICLE!! : Neoconservatism and Espionage:AIPAC Spy Scandal by Justin Raimondo
      September 8th 2004
      "... the AIPAC affair could deliver a knockout punch to one of Washington's most powerful, and feared, lobbying groups. Not only that, it could also destroy the neoconservative wing of the Republican foreign policy establishment by demonstrating, in a court of law, the key link between neoconservatism and espionage.

      ..Attempts to minimize the damage, mostly conducted in the pages of the Jerusalem Post and the New York Times have so far downplayed the significance of the documents allegedly given to AIPAC officials by Pentagon analyst Lawrence A. Franklin, and then passed on to Israel.

      We can stop the cover-up, but only if we act now. Get on the horn and call your congressional representatives: your two Senators as well as the member of the House from your congressional district.

      Let it not be said that, when it came time to speak up, and defend the country from treason only traitors could find words to defend their co-conspirators. Call, write, and make your voice heard. And be polite.

      Simply ask WHY the investigation seems to have been hampered, not helped, by the intervention of John Ashcroft.

      And ask why is it that Israel is given the sort of leeway that no country can afford to give another – without necessarily answering your own question. Be polite, but, by all means, feel free to point out that if the "A" in AIPAC stood for Arab, one wonders if members of Congress would be so." Read here for
      more
    • "On one side of the conflict are neoconservative officials in the Pentagon who favor bold U.S. action to bring down Iran's theocratic government. On the other side, some see intelligence officials who view the neocons as too close to Israel"... Read here in Washington Post for more

    • Read here full article by JAMES HALL , Foreign Editor of "The Scotsman"

      THE United States death toll in Iraq passed the 1,000 mark yesterday, nearly 18 months after American-led forces invaded the country to topple the government of former president Saddam Hussein.

      White House spokesman Scott McClellan said the latest Pentagon figures showed that 997 US soldiers and three civilian employees of the defence department had been killed in Iraq.


      A defence official confirmed the milestone toll.

      The rising death toll includes more than a dozen US soldiers killed in fighting and attacks by insurgents since Friday. Nearly 7,000 US soldiers have also been wounded since the invasion.

      With George Bush, the president, under sharp criticism from Democrats - including the presidential candidate John Kerry - for invading Iraq without support from major allies, the milestone is expected to play a major role in debate ahead of the election in November.

      Donald Rumsfeld sought to play down the impact of the symbolic figure, telling reporters at the Pentagon that the "civilised world" had long passed the 1,000th death at the hands of terrorists.

      He cited the 3,000 deaths during the attacks on 11 September, 2001, and the hundreds who died in the school siege in southern Russia.

      But Mr Kerry called US military deaths in the Iraq conflict passing 1,000 a "tragic milestone".

      At the Pentagon, General Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, blamed the increase in US combat deaths on an insurgency that "is becoming more sophisticated in its efforts to destabilise the country".
      "Make no mistake, we will continue to pursue those who seek to disrupt progress in Iraq," Gen Myers said.

      US soldiers were again engaged in pitch battles yesterday.


      In the Baghdad slum of Sadr City, US troops battled Shiite militiamen loyal to rebel cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. Thirty-seven people were killed, including two US soldiers, and more than 200 civilians were injured. Five other Americans also died in separate incidents, mostly in the Baghdad area.

      A Sadr spokesman in Baghdad, Sheikh Raed al-Kadhimi, blamed "intrusive" US patrolling for provoking the fighting.

      "Our fighters have no choice but to return fire and to face the US forces and helicopters pounding our houses," Sheikh Kadhimi said in a statement.

      West of the capital, US warplanes flew low over the Sunni insurgent-controlled city of Fallujah, launching retaliatory strikes on suspected militant strongholds after American officials said marines came under attack.

      Tanks and artillery also fired into the city and its outskirts, where seven marines died in a car bombing on Monday.

      In Baghdad, the hostage crisis entered a new phase when armed men in olive green uniforms stormed the office of an Italian aid group and seized two Italian women and two Iraqis, one male, one female.

      It was only the second known kidnapping of foreign women since a wave of hostage-takings began earlier this year.

      About 15 men drove up to the house used by the aid organisation A Bridge to Baghdad, witnesses said.

      The men claimed to work for the office of the interim prime minister, Ayad Allawi.

      Two of them pushed their way into the office, put guns to the heads of the aid group’s guards and grabbed the four workers, Jean-Dominique Bunel of the NGO co-ordination committee in Iraq, said.

      The Iraqi woman resisted, but they dragged her by her head-scarf, threw her into a car and sped away, witnesses said.

      "They have been taken hostage," Mr Bunel said. "We have contacted religious authorities and we have informed their families. We are working for their release."

      The two Italian women were named as Simona Pari and Simona Torretta, both 29. They had been working on water and school projects. The two Iraqis were identified as Raad Ali Aziz and Mahnaz Bassam. Ms Torretta, who is the head of the organisation’s Iraqi operation, has been in the country since before the war started. Ms Pari arrived in Iraq in June 2003, to work on a school project in the capital.

      Mr Bunel said he knew of no plans by other private aid organisations to evacuate the country because of the kidnapping. A car bombing last year at the offices of the international Red Cross prompted many aid groups to flee the country.



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       Tuesday, September 07, 2004

        U.S. Rep. Artur Davis (D-Birmingham) - Biggest Beneficiary of AIPAC's Political Campaign Contribution

      Read here FULL article, "Rep. Davis helped by group tied to spy case" by Eric Fleischauer, staff writer for The Decatur Daily News

      5th September 2004

      The major beneficiary of pro-Israel campaign contributions in this state (Alabama) has been U.S. Rep. Artur Davis, D-Birmingham.

      According to an estimate by the nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics, Davis received $206,595 in pro-Israel contributions in advance of the 2002 election.

      This despite the fact he was NOT an incumbent, and despite the fact his five-term incumbent opponent, Earl Hilliard, was also a Democrat.

      Even under the conservative CRP estimate, Davis' 2002 pro-Israel receipts were more than double his total contributions from his previous try at Hilliard's seat, in 2000.

      Seventy-six percent (76 %) of Davis' contributions during the 2002 election cycle came from outside Alabama, most from New York City.

      "I received a lot of money from the Jewish community. I agree with that," Davis said.

      The contributions to Davis were higher than pro-Israel contributions to any other candidate for the House in 2002, according to the CRP.

      Steve Weiss, head of the CRP, said the organization's methodology in calculating pro-Israel contributions tends to underreport them.

      This is the case because it must largely ignore individual contributions.

      Davis' filings with the Federal Elections Commission suggest the pro-Israel contributions are much higher than CRP estimated.

      As of March 31, 2002, according to the FEC, Davis had reported $92,100 in political contributions. At that point, Davis' receipts were about one-fourth of Hilliard's receipts.

      In mid-April of 2002, Davis attended a series of fundraisers, coordinated by AIPAC members, in New York City and Washington D.C.

      Davis' receipts skyrocketed.

      By May 15, 2002, Davis was up to $446,821.

      Of the 517 individual contributions to Davis in the weeks surrounding the fundraisers, only four came from Alabamians.

      After beating Hilliard in the primary, Davis' only opposition in the general election was a little-known Libertarian. Davis, nonetheless, had collected receipts totaling $1.6 million by the end of the 2002 election cycle.

      Earl Hilliard, from Birmingham, who lost to Davis, knocked heads with the pro-Israel lobby in 2001 when he and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus took pro-Arab positions on several issues.

      He said Tuesday he believes pro-Israel money won Davis the 2002 election.

      Hilliard said his main concern is that pro-Israel money tends to crowd out the voice of Arab countries, a result he said could eventually lead to more wars in the Middle East.

      "We are being embroiled in a 3,000-year-old conflict," Hilliard said. "Israel's influence is tremendous."

      Davis actively courted AIPAC and the pro-Israel vote BEFORE the 2002 election.

      He spoke at FIVE fund-raisers sponsored by AIPAC members in New York City.

      This year, he had one fund-raiser sponsored by an AIPAC member in New York City and another one sponsored by a Birmingham AIPAC member.

      Two weeks after the 2002 election, an AIPAC publication explained why he received strong Jewish support.

      "Davis has met with AIPAC activists and staff and has close ties to members of the local and national pro-Israel community."
      A pro-Israel PAC, To Protect Our Heritage, said in a newsletter that it contributed money to Davis' 2002 campaign because "Hilliard has one of the most dismal records in Congress in Israel-related issues."

      The issue is to some extent the chicken-or-egg dilemma.

      Did Davis become pro-Israel to get Jewish contributions, or did the Jewish community support him because he was pro-Israel?

      Davis said whatever AIPAC's involvement in alleged espionage, he had no relationship with the committee.

      Davis said,
      "I have never accepted money from AIPAC. My relationship has been with donors who are members of AIPAC."
      Despite its name, AIPAC is not a political action committee. It cannot legally contribute to candidates, but it can — and does — recommend that its members make contributions.

      The Fiscal Year 2005 Defense Appropriations bill, approved by the Senate, included more than $300 million for joint U.S.-Israel weapons programs.

      It also included $2.22 billion in military aid to Israel.

      In 2004, Israel received $2.16 billion in military aid.

      Hilliard said these numbers indicate the power of AIPAC.

      Hilliard said:

      "Everyone (in Congress) is scared of it. They are afraid the same thing that happened to me will happen to them."

      Davis said the allegations against Franklin may suggest illegal activity, but not anti-American activity.

      Davis said,

      "At its height, the allegation would simply be that the information was used to make the Israeli government aware of Iran's nuclear program.

      There is no suggestion that this intelligence was designed to harm American interests or to compromise American safety."

      U.S. Rep. Bud Cramer, D-Huntsville, said the allegations against AIPAC disturbed him. Cramer received $50,400 in pro-Israel contributions since 1996.

      U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Haleyville, has received $36,500 from pro-Israel groups and individuals since 1996. Aderholt said he accepts pro-Israel contributions and supports Israel legislatively, in part, because it is the only democracy in the Middle East. Aderholt said,

      "When I go into churches in the 4th District. There are only two countries I pray for: Israel and the United States."


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       Sunday, September 05, 2004

        AIPAC: The Israeli Front in Washington for Spying on the US

      CLICK HERE on the list of names of TOP TEN US CONGRESSMEN who received contributions from AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) in 2002

      TOTAL for 2001-2002 Election Cycle
      $ 3,015,086

      TOTAL 1978-2002 Funds to Congressional Candidates
      $37,622,268

      TOTAL No. of Recipient Candidates, 1978-2002
      1,865

      Don't expect these funded-Congressmen, the elected representatives of citizens of the United States to speak out against AIPAC as a negative influence on United States' national interest, least of all for spying on the US.

      Read here article by Thomas B. Edsall and Molly Moore in Washington Post " AIPAC Is Embroiled in Investigation of Pentagon Leaks"

      On May 18, President George W. Bush stood before the annual conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington and spoke effusively to its members :

      "AIPAC is doing important work. In Washington and beyond, AIPAC is calling attention to the great security challenges of our time.

      You've always understood and warned against the evil ambition of terrorism and their networks. In a dangerous new century, your work is more vital than ever."

      Just over three months later, the most powerful pro-Israel lobbying organization in the United States is embroiled in an FBI probe into whether Pentagon officials gave AIPAC representatives classified material and whether they in turn passed it to the Israeli government.

      For AIPAC, the allegations are potentially devastating to its credibility and large influence in Washington.

      "What really is troubling is the issue of dual loyalties," said Rep. Robert T. Matsui (D-Calif.), one of many senior members of the House who have defended AIPAC.

      Israel was established in 1948, and AIPAC was set up six years later. It now has 85,000 members, an annual budget of $33.4 million and a staff of 165, with offices in Washington, 10 states and Israel.

      In 2003, the organization reported spending $1.28 million on lobbying.

      Read here article by Nathan Guttman " FBI probes Jewish sway on Bush government"

      The FBI investigation into the Pentagon mole affair has expanded beyond data analyst Larry Franklin's immediate circle to encompass the entire issue of Jewish influence on the neoconservative part of the administration.

      The FBI queries have recently been focusing on a number of officials, all from the neoconservative wing, who had access to the debates on Iranian affairs, the Washington Post reported yesterday.

      The officials include

      • Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz;
      • Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith;
      • Pentagon adviser Richard Perle;
      • adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney, David Wormser;
      • and Iran specialist Harold Rhode, (all of them Jews)

      The L.A. Times reported on Friday that the American administration does NOT believe Israel's contention that it does not spy on America and that U.S. government officials say Israel secretly maintains a large and active intelligence-gathering operation in the U.S.

      The officials said the FBI and other bodies spy on Israeli diplomats in Washington and New York as a matter of routine. The report said that Israel has long attempted to recruit U.S. officials as spies and to procure classified documents, according to the Times.

      OTHER RELATED ARTICLES.....

      For many years we have read that Israel separately receives $1.8 billion in military aid and $1.2 billion in economic aid. Both these figures are accurate, but since they are never combined with indirect funding and are often quoted separately, it gives a false impression of the total annual US aid to Israel.

      The only members of the American Congress who are aware of the true figures or even suspect the total of US funding to Israel, are the Congress members who sit on the committees that allocate these funds.

      These committees have mainly Jewish members. Often these committee members have received huge campaign donations from Israel’s Washington lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

      AIPAC draws on the support and resources of the Conference of Presidents of major American Jewish Organisations, an umbrella group set up solely to co-ordinate some 52 national Jewish organisations throughout America.

      Among them are Hadassah, the Zionist women’s organisation, which arranges a steady stream of American Jewish visitors to Israel and the American Jewish Congress, which mobilises support for Israel among members of the traditionally moderate left-of-centre Jewish mainstream.

      The American Jewish Committee plays the same role with the centre and right-of-centre Jewish community. It also publishers ‘Commentary,’ one of the lobby’s principal national publications.

      The most controversial lobbying group is the B’nai B’riths Anti-Defamation League (ADL). Its original pupose was to protect the civil rights of American Jews.

      The last 20 years have seen the ADL regress into a conspiratorial and well funded (US$45 million a year) hate group.

      An example of the ADL’s fund raising style, were two letters sent out in the 1980’s warning Jewish parents against the alleged negative influences on their children, arising from the increase of Arabs at American universities. It also keeps secret files on individuals in Arab-American, African-American and peace and justice groups.Read here for more

      The pro-Israel lobby, whose principal Jewish component is the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), became a significant force in shaping public opinion and US Middle East policy after the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

      Its power was simultaneously enabled and enhanced by Israel's emergence as a regional surrogate for US military power in the Middle East in the terms outlined by the 1969 Nixon Doctrine.

      In the 1970s and 1980s, the lobby was able to unseat representatives and senators who could not be counted on to support Israel without qualification, such as Sen. Charles Percy (R-IL), Rep. Paul Findley (R-OH) and Rep. Pete McCloskey (R-CA).

      In 2002, the pro-Israel lobby successfully targeted African-American representatives Earl Hilliard (D-AL) and Cynthia McKinney (D-GA) for defeat in Democratic primaries.

      Hilliard and McKinney were both vulnerable for reasons unrelated to Israel.

      McKinney, for instance, was defeated in part because the open primary allowed Republicans angered over her comments about the September 11 attacks to cross over and vote against her in the Democratic primary. Nonetheless, their defeat enhanced the impression that the pro-Israel lobby wields great power in electoral politics.

      The establishment of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) in 1985 greatly expanded the lobby's influence over policy as well. WINEP's founding director, Martin Indyk (former Jewish Australian), previously been research director of AIPAC which, then as now, focuses much of its efforts on Congress.

      Indyk developed WINEP into a highly effective think tank devoted to maintaining and strengthening the US-Israel alliance through advocacy in the media and lobbying the executive branch.

      When Israel became serious about attempting to reach an agreement with the Palestinians, it circumvented the US-sponsored negotiations in Washington (and the pro-Israel lobby) and spoke directly to representatives of the PLO in Oslo. The result was the 1993 Oslo Declaration of Principles.

      Thus, the adoption of WINEP's policy recommendation to "resist pressures for a procedural breakthrough" by both the Bush and Clinton administrations delayed the start of meaningful Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, contributed to the demonization of the PLO and multiplied the casualty rate of the first Palestinian intifada.

      Read here for more


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