12/3/7 Chavez: "Narrow Defeat" by "Operation Pliers"; ."We're Misunderstood": AFRICOM & "Save Darfur"; Annapolis & U.S. A

Operation Pliers succeeds...
Venezuela Hands Narrow Defeat to Chávez Plan
By SIMON ROMERO
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/03/world/americas/03venezuela.html?hp=&pa...
... It was the first major electoral defeat in the nine years of his presidency. Voters rejected the 69 proposed amendments 51 to 49 percent....The outcome is a stunning development in a country where Mr. Chávez and his supporters control nearly all of the levers of power. Almost immediately after the results were broadcast on state television, Mr. Chávez conceded defeat... “I congratulate my adversaries for this victory,” he said. “For now, we could not do it.”
The defeat slows Mr. Chávez’s socialist-inspired transformation of the country. Venezuela, once a staunch ally of the United States, has become a leading opponent of the Bush administration’s policies in the developing world. It has also taken the most profound leftward turn of any large Latin American nation in decades... The voting seemed to unfold largely without irregularities, though there were isolated reports of fraud and violence in parts of the country. Recounts are allowed under Venezuelan law, but would have to be approved by the Supreme Court, which is controlled by Mr. Chávez’s supporters.
In recent weeks, Mr. Chávez has adopted an increasingly confrontational tone with critics abroad, who have been multiplying even in friendly countries with moderate leftist governments like Brazil and Chile. In the days before the referendum, Mr. Chávez recalled his ambassador from Colombia and threatened to nationalize the Venezuelan operations of Spanish banks after Spain’s king told him to shut up during a meeting. Mr. Chávez said he would cut off oil exports to the United States in the event of American interference in the vote.

The United States remains the largest buyer of Venezuela’s oil, despite deteriorating political ties, but that long commercial relationship is starting to change as Mr. Chávez increases exports of oil to China and other countries while gradually selling off the oil refineries owned by Venezuela’s government in the United States... Uncertainty over Mr. Chávez’s reforms, meanwhile, has led to accelerating capital flight as rich Venezuelans and private companies rush to buy assets abroad denominated in dollars or euros. The currency, the bolívar, currently trades at about 6,100 to the dollar in street trading, compared with an official rate of 2,150.

Venezuela’s state-controlled oil industry is also showing signs of strain, grappling with a purge of opposition management by Mr. Chávez and a retooling of the state oil company to focus on social welfare projects while aging oil fields need maintenance. Petróleos de Venezuela, the state oil company, says it produces 3.3 million barrels a day, but OPEC places its output at just 2.4 million barrels. And private economists estimate that a third of oil production goes to meet domestic consumption, which is surging because of a subsidy that keeps gasoline prices at about seven cents a gallon.
Still, Mr. Chávez already has unprecedented discretionary control over Venezuela’s oil revenues, valued at more than $60 billion a year. “Because of its oil, Venezuela has global reach in OPEC and the rest of Latin America,” said Kenneth R. Maxwell, a professor of Latin American history at Harvard University.[...]

CIA Operation Tenaza /Operation "Pliers" in Venezuela
Psyop aims to destabilize Venezuela and overthrow President Chavez
by Eva Golinger
The plan, titled "OPERATION PLIERS" was authored by CIA Officer Michael Middleton Steere and was addressed to CIA Director General Michael Hayden in Washington. references the "Advances of the Final Stage of Operation Pliers", and confirms that the operation is coordinated by the team of Human Intelligence (HUMINT) in Venezuela. The memo summarizes the different scenarios that the CIA has been working on in Venezuela for the upcoming referendum vote on December 2nd. The Electoral Scenario, as it's phrased, confirms that the voting tendencies will not change substantially before Sunday, December 2nd, and that the SI (YES) vote in favor of the constitutional reform has an advantage of about 10-13 points over the NO vote. The CIA estimates abstention around 60% and states in the memo that this voting tendency is irreversible before the elections.

Officer Steere emphasizes the importance and success of the public relations and propaganda campaign that the CIA has been funding with more than $8 million during the past month - funds that the CIA confirms are transfered through the USAID contracted company, Development Alternatives, Inc., which set up operations in June 2002 to run the USAID Office for Transition Initiatives that funds and advises opposition NGOs and political parties in Venezuela. The CIA memo specifically refers to these propaganda initiatives as "psychological operations" (PSYOPS), that include contracting polling companies to create fraudulent polls that show the NO vote with an advantage over the SI vote, which is false. The CIA also confirms in the memo that it is working with international press agencies to distort the data and information about the referendum, and that it coordinates in Venezuela with a team of journalists and media organized and directed by the President of Globovision, Alberto Federico Ravell.

CIA Officer Michael Steere recommends to General Michael Hayden two different strategies to work simultaneously: Impede the referendum and refuse to recognize the results once the SI vote wins. Though these strategies appear contradictory, Steere claims that they must be implemented together precisely to encourage activities that aim toward impeding the referendum and at the same time prepare the conditions for a rejection of the results.

How is this to be done? In the memo, the CIA proposes the following tactics and actions:

* Take the streets and protest with violent, disruptive actions across the nation
* Generate a climate of ungovernability
* Provoke a general uprising in a substantial part of the population
* Engage in a "plan to implode" the voting centers on election day by encouraging opposition voters to "VOTE and REMAIN" in their centers to agitate others
* Start to release data during the early hours of the afternoon on Sunday that favor the NO vote (in clear violation of election regulations)
* Coordinate these activities with Ravell & Globovision and international press agencies
* Coordinate with ex-militar officers and coupsters Pena Esclusa and Guyon Cellis - this will be done by the Military Attache for Defense and Army at the US Embassy in Caracas, Office of Defense, Attack and Operations (DAO)

To encourage rejection of the results, the CIA proposes:

* Creating an acceptance in the public opinion that the NO vote will win for sure
* Using polling companies contracted by the CIA
* Criticize and discredit the National Elections Council
* Generate a sensation of fraud
* Use a team of experts from the universities that will talk about how the data from the Electoral Registry has been manipulated and will build distrust in the voting system

The CIA memo also talks about:

* Isolating Chavez in the international community
* Trying to achieve unity amongst the opposition
* Seek an aliance between those abstentionists and those who will vote "NO"
* Sustain firmly the propaganda against Chavez
* Execute military actions to support the opposition mobilizations and propagandistic occupations
* Finalize the operative preparations on the US military bases in Curacao and Colombia to provide support to actions in Venezuela
* Control a part of the country during the next 72-120 hours
* Encourage a military rebellion inside the National Guard forces and other components

involved in these actions as detailed in the CIA memo are:

* The CIA Office in Venezuela - Office of Regional Affairs, and Officer Michael Steere
* US Embassy in Venezuela, Ambassador Patrick Duddy
* Office of Defense, Attack and Operations (DAO) at the US Embassy in Caracas and Military Attache Richard Nazario [...]
The original document in English will be available in the public sphere soon for viewing and authenticating purposes. And it also contains more information than has been revealed here.
For the full text in Spanish, see: Operación Tenaza: Informe confidencial de la CIA devela plan de saboteo al referéndum del 2 de diciembre

No oil for US if it meddles: Chavez:
"If ‘yes’ wins on Sunday and the Venezuelan oligarchy, the violent Venezuelans, the ones who play the (US) empire’s game, unleash violence with the tale that there was fraud ... minister, that very Monday you order a halt to the shipments of oil to the United States," Mr Chavez said
http://snipurl.com/1uhk1

VICTORY TO THE PALESTINIAN INTIFADA!
Olmert: "the state of Israel is finished'' if a Palestinian state is not created.
http://www.presstv.com/detail.aspx?id=33112&sectionid=351020202 Israeli PM Ehud Olmert warned that "the state of Israel is finished'' if a Palestinian state is not created. He said the alternative is a South African-style apartheid sruggle. Olmert said the failure to negotiate a two-state solution with the Palestinians could threaten Israel's long-term survival. "If the day comes when the two-state solution collapses and we face a South African-style struggle for equal voting rights ... then, as soon as that happens, the state of Israel is finished" Olmert said. For 40 years, Israel has occupied the West Bank and Gaza Strip, home to 4 million Arabs. However, to annex the territory and its people would, Israeli leaders say, undermine what they call the Jewish nature of Israel, which has a population now of 7 million immigrants brought together in Palestine. Olmert said Israel, which believes Arabs would in time outnumber Jews if it incorporated the land captured in the 1967 Middle East war, had little choice about peace if it wanted to survive as a so called Jewish state. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/5339295.html

All options open against Israel after "peace" meet: Hamas:
"All options are open to answer any crime, expecially after the Annapolis conference, which gave the Zionists a green light to commit more and more crimes against our people," said a statement from the Ezzedine Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas's armed wing.
http://snipurl.com/1ueby

Middle East Peace Through Anxiety
By MICHAEL B. OREN
...the Annapolis conference must be deemed a triumph -- not of peacemaking, but of girding the Middle East for conflict...Last week’s multi-national summit meeting here was about many things, the least of which, perhaps, was the pursuit of Israeli-Palestinian peace... the paramount question of power — who in the region wields it and who in the region wants it... Annapolis ...effectively drew lines in the sand between those nations siding with America and the West and those allied with Iran. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/02/opinion/02oren.html?th&emc=th

Another U.S.-Israeli Annapolis Genocidal "Peace" Scam
ON "TWO STATE SOLUTION"
Israeli and U.S. policymakers quietly intend anointing a Palestinian “virtual state” – it would have passports and a full seat at the UN, internet identity and a telephone country code all its own. But it would be made up of Gaza and less than 50% of the West Bank in the form of a set of non-contiguous bantustans linked by Israeli-controlled roads and bridges, with Israel remaining in control of borders, airspace, military and security capacity, and more...
from Myths of Annapolis, Phyllis Bennis, http://canadiandimension.com/articles/2007/12/01/1457/

“when liberty takes root on the Iraqi soil of the West Bank and Gaza, it will inspire millions across the Middle East who want their societies built on freedom and peace and hope.” [not a misprint]

The United States will help Palestinian leaders build these free institutions. And the United States will keep its commitment to the security of Israel as a Jewish state and homeland for the Jewish people.
GWB
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2007/11/27/d8t6685...

U.S. pulls U.N. Middle East draft resolution
...Asked in Washington about the resolution, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said, "You know, you take time to consider things, and you take a look at all the positive effects that have come out of Annapolis, and I'm not sure that we saw the need to add anything else to the conversation."
The brief draft resolution, made available to journalists, would have endorsed actions agreed at Annapolis and called on all states to support them as well as well as to aid the struggling Palestinian economy....Although Israel apparently had no problems with the uncontroversial text, analysts suggested it worried a formal resolution would get the United Nations too involved in Middle East peace efforts. Israel and the United States often complain of bias in the world body against the Jewish state... Abbas told a news conference in Tunis on Friday that the U.S. draft was "among the signals about the U.S. seriousness" to help forge a Middle East deal, although he said he had no details of the draft. Israeli and Palestinian officials indicated they had not seen the text before the United States circulated it to the other 14 members of the council, who do not include either Israel or the Palestinian Authority. http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071130/wl_nm/palestinians_israel_un_dc

Annapolis: US prepares Palestinian civil war and rallies Arab support against Iran
By Chris Marsden
http://www.wsws.org/articles/2007/nov2007/anna-n29.shtml
...The real timetable on which both are operating is based on the recognition that Iran must be neutralized if US hegemony over the oil riches of the Middle East is to be secured. To this end, Bush has tried to cast himself as an honest broker between Israel and Palestine, relying on the readiness of the media and the Arab regimes to forget the fact that Israel is the foremost client state of the US. The Annapolis “declaration”—all 437 words of it—in fact confirms the pattern in which the US continues to place no demands that Israel would find unacceptable, while insisting that the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority crush all resistance to Israel as a precondition for any settlement...as the New York Times pointed out, “While the two sides said their talks would be aimed at concluding a treaty that deals with all ‘core issues,’ they couldn’t agree on naming them and how they might be addressed.”

What the statement does say is that “implementation of the future peace treaty will be subject to the implementation of the road map, as judged by the United States.” This passage assigns to Washington the sole right to decide whether the provisions of the road map are being met, ending the pretence that the “Quartet,” which includes the US, the United Nations, Russia and the European Union, are equal partners in seeking peace.
The central demand contained in the road map upon which Abbas will be judged to have been successful is his ensuring the “security of Israel” by dismantling “terrorist organizations.” In effect, Abbas has again been placed on notice that he must crush all resistance to Israel amongst the Palestinians, beginning by taking back control of the Gaza Strip from Hamas. Abbas is in a weak position from which to take on Hamas, which organised a demonstration of tens of thousands in Gaza denouncing him as a “collaborator” and “traitor” for attending Annapolis. Even in the West Bank stronghold of Fatah, smaller demonstrations took place....

The Jerusalem Post noted even as Annapolis was concluding, “the defense establishment began gearing up for the possibility that Defense Minister Ehud Barak, upon his return from the United States, will order a large-scale military operation into the Gaza Strip.” It cited a defence official stating, “Israel held back from launching such an operation ahead of the summit since it didn’t want to be blamed for ruining the summit. Once that the summit is over, there is an opportunity to go into Gaza and strike back at Hamas.”... “A large operation in Gaza would require the IDF to call up large numbers of reservists and to mobilize almost two divisions from the Infantry, Armored and Engineering Corps,” it concluded.
The Los Angeles Times credited Abbas with having tried to “demonstrate to Israel that he’s serious about asserting control, starting in the West Bank. He has deployed hundreds of extra police officers to the unruly city of Nablus. He has closed dozens of Hamas charities, fired Hamas preachers, arrested hundreds of Hamas activists, including many gunmen, confiscated weapons and issued a decree aimed at drying up millions of dollars in donations to Hamas from abroad.” But this is not enough for Israel. Abbas is faced with nothing less than a demand that he launch a full-scale civil war, which could precipitate his own downfall as a result of popular opposition. A Hamas official warned, “Abbas would be a fool to return to the Gaza Strip aboard an Israeli tank. Any Palestinian who enters the Gaza Strip with Israel’s assistance will be treated as an enemy.”...

The real measure of success for Bush was the participation of the Arab regimes in the Annapolis charade and its endorsement by the European powers and Russia. When Bush declared in his speech that “a battle is under way for the future of the Middle East and we must not cede victory to the extremists,” the assembled delegates were clear that he was not merely targeting Hamas. The most honest appraisal of Annapolis in the US media was made by Steven Erlanger in the New York Times, who wrote, “The Middle East peace conference here on Tuesday was officially about ending the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. But there was an unspoken goal just below the surface: stopping the rising regional influence of Iran and Islamic radicalism.”
An adviser to the Palestinian negotiating team... told Erlanger, “The Arabs have come here not because they love the Jews or even the Palestinians. They came because they need a strategic alliance with the United States against Iran.”
Dan Gillerman, Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, added that the Arab regimes were in attendance because of “their fear of Islamic extremism and Iran, which they call the Persian threat. This is what brought them here.” The Jerusalem Post was also candid stating that Olmert’s meeting with Bush following Annapolis would “try to translate the summit’s momentum into a more effective effort to thwart Teheran’s nuclear drive.” It was pleased that “Along with the Arab states, vital potential partners of the US and Israel in the bid to thwart Iran were notably present at Annapolis, with France, Britain, Germany, Italy, China and Russia all represented at the level of foreign minister.” China and Russia, described as the “two key holdouts against intensified sanctions,” have said they would “reassess their positions” following next month’s United Nations Security Council discussions centering on “the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) of its scope and of the degree of Iranian compliance with inspection requirements,” the Post noted with satisfaction. Iran was clear that it was the target of the manoeuvres by Washington at Annapolis. Tehran responded by announcing on the same day as the meeting that it had developed a new Ashura missile system, which has a range of 1,200 miles and is capable of hitting Israel and American bases in the Middle East.
See Also: Annapolis talks: A cover for fomenting Palestinian civil war and preparing assault on Iran [26 November 2007]

imperialism's zionist creation remains the lynchpin of its M.E., and thus global domination
sinister plan for the region
As'ad Abdul Rahman, Special to Gulf News
Zionist thinking based on the establishment of "Greater Israel", a state with a clear Jewish identity that should always be the regional superpower...requires "reshaping" of the Arab world. The Zionist attitude towards "Arab unity" emanates from Israel's belief that such unity threatens its very existence and continuity. Hence the unwavering Zionist support for all sorts of plans aimed at the region's disintegration into new ethnic and sectarian structures. This vision was the brainchild of Theodor Herzl, founder of political Zionism who, in 1904, openly declared: "We have discussed the issue, and agreed that we want a state from the Nile to the Euphrates. What we need is not a united, but a weak, fragmented and divided Arab Peninsula void of any potential to unite against us." (...) by separating Arab countries in the east from those in the west; including Israel in the new Levant; excluding Iraq from the Arab system and merging it into a regional security system of the Gulf that could include Iran and the former Soviet Muslim states; integrating Arab states of the western flank (in North Africa) into the Mediterranean domain; and marginalising and isolating peripheral Arab countries such as Sudan, Somalia and Yemen with a view to including them in African and Horn of Africa blocs. Hence, the "absolute security" of the Zionist state requires the destruction of the region's civilisational identity, and subsequently a change in its socio- political structure... In June 2003, the US Defence Department's journal, the Executive Intelligent Research Project, republished well-known American Zionist historian Bernard Lewis's thesis on partitioning the Middle East into more than 30 ethnic and sectarian states. This plan also includes the fragmentation of Iraq into three mini-states...that would be crippled by ethnic and sectarian differences, and overcome by the struggle for oil, water resources, borders and power - all of which would ensure Israel's supremacy for the next 50 years at least. Therefore, whatever plans these two countries come up with are eventually intended to remake the region through the framework of the "new Middle East" structure into a sectarian, regional and local mosaic where the Zionist state emerges as the strongest sectarian entity.... .. Under these circumstances, the United States will play the decisive political, economic and security role... preserving American economic and strategic interests, consolidating Israel's dominance in the region. Therefore, whatever plans these two countries come up with are eventually intended to remake the region through the framework of the "new Middle East". http://www.uruknet.de/?p=38787

IRAQ
“The 2003 US invasion of Iraq was the culmination and intensification of a consistent US policy of destroying Iraq as a national and state entity.” ...around 1.5 million people, most them children and women, died because of the 13-year UN-led embargo on Iraq, which was enforced as a result of heavy pressure from the US... the number of people killed in the war since 2003 has exceeded 1 million.... the United States responsible for the killing of a total 2.5 million people in Iraq -- apart from the cultural, social and economic destruction it has inflicted on the country... Implementing genocide in Iraq. The US has sought to: 1) destroy Iraq physically and culturally, and principally militarily, so that it can never re-emerge as an economic, political or military power; and 2) break Iraq as a state and a nation, substituting the state with three or more conflicting and weak entities based on ethnic and sectarian affiliations that presage the destruction of Iraq’s Muslim Arab identity. These two objectives, if achieved, would allow for the plunder of Iraq’s resource riches, control of its median position in order to attain global pre-eminence and serve in the protection of the US’s offensive regional instrument and proxy, Israel. The international community not only failed to prevent the illegal US invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq, but also supported what from 1990 has been a gathering US-led genocide in Iraq. This is a catastrophic betrayal for the Iraqi people and an injury to us all”

“The Iraqi people have the legal right to resist occupation, colonialism and genocide by all available means, including armed struggle... “The national popular resistance in Iraq is combating genocide directly where international law as a preventative and protective mechanism has failed...In defense of civilization, people all over the world should rise up in support of the national liberation struggle of Iraqi people. In defense of international law, jurists and law associations should work to bring the charge of genocide against the US, its leaders and its allies.”

Dr. Ian Douglas, teaches political science at an-Najah International University and is a member of the Brussells Tribunal committee
http://www.todayszaman.com/tz-web/yazarDetay.do?haberno=128088

'Peace' in Al-Anbar
Inter Press Service
By Ali al-Fadhily*
RAMADI, Iraq, Nov 29 (IPS) - A semblance of calm belies an undercurrent of violence, detentions and fear across Iraq’s volatile al-Anbar province.
The province -- which occupies one-third of Iraq’s geographic area -- has been a bane to authorities since the beginning of the occupation.
"The Americans talked about our province as the deadliest enemy, and suddenly they are marketing us as their best friends," Sa’doon Khalifa, an independent politician in the capital city of al-Anbar Province, Ramadi -- 110 km west of Baghdad -- told IPS. "They were lying to their people and to the world in both cases as we were never terrorists nor their friends now," he stressed.... fighters in al-Anbar did fight occupation forces, but now they are standing down from launching new attacks against U.S. forces... due in large part to U.S. military payments to collaborating tribal sheikhs -- already totalling over 17 million dollars. The money funds tribal fighters who are paid 300 dollars per month to patrol their areas, particularly against foreign fighters. The military refers to these men as "Concerned Local Citizens," "Awakening Force," or simply "volunteers," even though it is well known that most of them used to carry out attacks against the occupation forces.
"Those Americans thought they would decrease the resistance attacks by separating the people of Iraq into sects and tribes," a 32-year-old man from Ramadi -- speaking on terms of anonymity -- told IPS, "They know they are going deeper into the moving sand, but the collaborators are fooling the Americans right now, and will in the end use this strategy against them."
As of Wednesday, the U.S. military counts 77,000 of these fighters. It plans to add another 10,000. Eighty-two percent of the fighters are Sunni. In spite of this mass recruitment, sporadic attacks are continuing against U.S. forces in the province. "It is true that hundreds of fighters were killed or detained by the so-called Awakening Forces, but there are thousands who will never quit fighting until this occupation is ended," Ali Khamees, a former major of the Iraqi army told IPS in Ramadi. Khamees believes that the de-escalation is a "new technique by the resistance to reduce the suffering of people in al-Anbar and move somewhere else to fight. Attacks against U.S. forces have increased in other Iraqi provinces -- like Diyala, Saladin and Mosul.
Iraqis across the province are complaining about harsh tactics being meted out by the new "Awakening Forces" supported by the U.S. "We will behead anyone who carries a gun in this province," Wussam Hardan, a senior leader of the Awakening Forces in Ramadi told sources very close to IPS in the city. "No court, no lawyers, no nothing. We have our own ways to get those criminals to confess," Hardan said. The people of the province fear the recent developments, despite the relative improvement in the security situation. "It is quieter because the Americans stopped many of their activities in al- Anbar," Shakir Mahmood, a human rights activist in Ramadi told IPS -- on condition that his false name be used. "There were so many arrests by U.S. forces, police and the Awakening during the past month and we cannot even talk about it because we feel threatened by all three of them," he said."So many of the detainees are well known to be innocent people taken into custody according to false information by others who have a personal feud with them or their families," Mahmood added, "It is the same old story being repeated and God knows what is going to happen next." Arrests are being made after individuals are accused of being al-Qaeda members or of having links with Iran. Thousands have been detained for a year or more without any court procedures, while the police and the Awakening militias have executed many others.[...]

AFRICOM: "CONSOLIDATING U.S. COMMANDS"
We're Misunderstood, Says U.S.
This Day (Lagos)
By Damilola Oyedele
Abuja
United States of America said its decision to situate US Africom an African Military Command in the West African region of the continent is not out of a desire to be close to the oil rich African states, but a desire to help Africa establish its own security and support its leadership efforts. At a press briefing jointly addressed by Deputy to the Commander for military operations, US AFRICOM, Vice Admiral Robert T. Moeller and Ambassador Mary Carlin Yates, Deputy to the Commander for Civil- Military Activities, at the US Embassy in Abuja, the duo stated that they are in Nigeria to hold consultations with top Nigerian military officials and Foreign Affairs Minister, Ojo Maduekwe, to get their perspective and clarify the misconceptions that have been generated over the establishment... fielding questions from newsmen, Yates said a number of African countries, including Liberia, have expressed a desire to have AFRICOM situated in their country, but she stated that Nigeria has not shown any interest...

Moeller said the U.S. intends to consolidate its three commands: US Europe, US Central and US Pacific, into one command, "to allow US Department of Defence to view all of Africa through a single lens and build upon the significant foundation that the three geographic commands and their components have built."It is intended to bring on board other US agencies, so as to create more sensitivity to Africa's needs. Meanwhile, n 11-day Exercise DEGGO XXVII, to test the deployment and sustenance capabilities of the ECOWAS Task Force and strategic relationship with partners in the field of logistics and support, kicked-off yesterday in Thies, Senegal. http://allafrica.com/stories/200711300536.html

Pentagon War-Gaming Blueprint to Seize Pakistan's Nuclear Arsenal
By Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark, The Guardian
Architect of Iraq surge draws up takeover options: US fears army's Islamists might grab weapons.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article18813.htm

"UNGOVERNED SPACES" TO U.S. PREDATORS
Top Ten Reasons to Suspect "Save Darfur" is a PR Scam to Justify US Military Intervention in African
by BAR Managing Editor Bruce Dixon
http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&...
The star-studded hue and cry to "Save Darfur" and "stop the genocide" has gained enormous traction in U.S. media along with bipartisan support in Congress and the White House. But the Congo, with ten to twenty times as many African dead over the same period is not called a "genocide" and passes almost unnoticed. Sudan sits atop lakes of oil. It has large supplies of uranium, and other minerals, significant water resources, and a strategic location near still more African oil and resources. The unasked question is whether the nation's Republican and Democratic foreign policy elite are using claims of genocide, and appeals for "humanitarian intervention" to grease the way for the next oil and resource wars on the African continent.

The regular manufacture and the constant maintenance of false realities in the service of American empire is a core function of the public relations profession and the corporate news media. Whether it's fake news stories about wonder drugs and how toxic chemicals are good for you, bribed commentators and journalists discoursing on the benefits of No Child Left Behind, Hollywood stars advocating military intervention to save African orphans, or slick propaganda campaigns employing viral marketing techniques to reach out to college students, bloggers, churches and ordinary citizens, it pays to take a close look behind the facade.

Among the latest false realities being pushed upon the American people are the simplistic pictures of Black vs. Arab genocide in Darfur, and the proposed solution: a robust US-backed or US-led military intervention in Western Sudan. Increasing scrutiny is being focused upon the "Save Darfur" lobby and the Save Darfur Coalition; upon its founders, its finances, its methods and motivations and its truthfulness. In the spirit of furthering that examination we here present ten reasons to suspect that the "Save Darfur" campaign is a PR scam to justify US intervention in Africa. ...

Chris Taylor, head of strategy for Blackwater, says his company has a database of thousands of former police and military officers for security assignments. He says Blackwater personnel could set up perimeters and guard Darfurian villages and refugee camp in support of the U.N. Blackwater officials say it would not take many men to fend off the Janjaweed, a militia that is supported by the Sudanese government and attacks villages on camelback. Apparently Blackwater doesn't need to come to the Congo, where hunger and malnutrition, depopulation, mass rape and the disappearance of schools, hospitals and civil society into vast law free zones ruled by an ever-changing cast of African proxies (like the son of the late and unlamented Idi Amin), all under a veil of complicit media silence already constitute the perfect business-friendly environment for siphoning off the vast wealth of that country at minimal cost.
Look for the adoption of the Congolese model across the wide areas of Africa that U.S. strategic planners call "ungoverned spaces". Just don't expect to see details on the evening news, or hear about them from Oprah, George Clooney or Angelina Jolie.

RUSSIAN CAPITALISM THREATENS U.S. GLOBAL DOMINATION AGENDA
irony lost on NYT propagandists: soviet imperialism followed socialism's death under Stalin
Putin's Last Realm to Conquer: Russian Culture
By MICHAEL KIMMELMAN
A Kremlin that has gained authority over business and government may be setting its sights on artistic freedom.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/01/arts/01abroad.html?th&emc=th

AGENT KASPAROV APPRECIATION...
Kasparov Warns of ‘Chaos’ in Russia
Mr. Kasparov said his coalition, Other Russia, would continue its protests against the Kremlin in order to spotlight what he described as a government that has grown increasingly repressive. “We’ve entered a very dangerous period because we don’t know where this is going to stop,” he said at an impromptu news conference outside his home in Moscow shortly after being freed. The failure of the government to abide by its own laws and Constitution, he said, “could result in a catastrophe for the whole country.” [irony unintended] President Bush and other Western leaders had expressed alarm about Mr. Kasparov’s arrest, but the Kremlin dismissed their concerns, saying that Mr. Kasparov had violated the law by holding an unauthorized march [...] http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/30/world/europe/30russia.html?_r=1&th&emc...

but if Putin plays by U.S. rules he can again be on U.S. gangsters team...
A partner for dealing with Iran? (excerpt re: Russia's geostrategic role)
By Zbigniew Brzezinski
Special to The Washington Post

The effort to resolve by negotiations North Korea's defiance of the global nonproliferation regime may yet prove successful. If so, does that experience offer a guide for coping with the challenge posed by Iran's expanding nuclear program? Would a comprehensive dialogue on this issue between America and China be useful? ...
Russia's uncertain role should be noted. Russia has been in talks with Iran and professes strongly that it desires a peaceful solution. These affirmations should not be dismissed out of hand. A conflict in the Persian Gulf might adversely affect Russia's interests, but its negative effects on Russia are inherently speculative. Any serious conflict will have international ripple effects, and Russian leaders have to assess that eventuality with prudence. Nonetheless, Russia is an increasingly revisionist state, more and more openly positioning itself to attempt at least a partial reversal of the geopolitical losses it suffered in the early 1990s. Cutting off direct U.S. access to Caspian and Central Asian oil is high on the Kremlin's list. Moreover, longer-term geopolitical threats are seen by Moscow's elite as involving potential Chinese encroachments on Russia's empty but mineral-rich eastern areas and American political encroachments on the populated western areas of Russia's recently lost imperial domain. In that context, the outbreak of a political conflict in the Persian Gulf may not be viewed by all Moscow strategists as a one-sided evil. The dramatic spike in oil prices would harm China and America while unleashing a further wave of anti-American hostility. In that context, Europe might distance itself from America while both Europe and China would become more dependent on Russia's energy supplies. Russia would clearly be the financial and geopolitical beneficiary.
The stakes of a serious crisis in the Persian Gulf are thus far-reaching. They could cause a more dramatic shift in the global distribution of power than even the one that occurred after the Cold War ended. Given this, a comprehensive, strategic dialogue between the United States and China regarding the relevance of their shared experience dealing with North Korea to the potential crisis with Iran could be timely and historically expedient.
http://www.sltrib.com/opinion/ci_7603923

Zbigniew Brzezinski, national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter

digest note: Brzezinski, leading imperialist architect & strategist for U.S. supremacy, in the following seminal analyses:
THE GRAND CHESSBOARD: American Primacy and its Geostrategic Imperatives
Zbigniew Brzezinski, NYC, New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1997
"...To put it in a terminology that harkens back to the more brutal age of
ancient empires, the three grand imperatives of imperial geostrategy are to
prevent collusion and maintain security dependence among the vassals, to
keep tributaries pliant and protected, and to keep the barbarians from
coming together." (p.40)
"Henceforth, the United States may have to determine how to cope with
regional coalitions that seek to push America out of Eurasia, thereby
threatening America's status as a global power." (p.55) [...]
"In fact, an Islamic revival - already abetted from the outside not only by
Iran but also by Saudi Arabia - is likely to become the mobilizing impulse
for the increasingly pervasive new nationalisms, determined to oppose any
reintegration under Russian - and hence infidel - control." (p. 133)...
"America is now the only global superpower, and Eurasia is the globe's
central arena. Hence, what happens to the distribution of power on the
Eurasian continent will be of decisive importance to America's global
primacy and to America's historical legacy."æ (p.194)...
"With warning signs on the horizon across Europe and Asia, any successful
American policy must focus on Eurasia as a whole and be guided by a
Geostrategic design." (p.197)
"That puts a premium on maneuver and manipulation in order to prevent the
emergence of a hostile coalition that could eventually seek to challenge
America's primacy..." (p. 198)
"In the long run, global politics are bound to become increasingly
uncongenial to the concentration of hegemonic power in the hands of a single
state. Hence, America is not only the first, as well as the only, truly
global superpower, but it is also likely to be the very last." (p.209)
"Moreover, as America becomes an increasingly multi-cultural society, it may
find it more difficult to fashion a consensus on foreign policy issues,
except in the circumstance of a truly massive and widely perceived direct
external threat." (p. 211) ...

1997 A geostrategy for Eurasia
by Zbigniew Brzezinski
Foreign Affairs,76:5, September/October 1997 Council on Foreign Relations Inc.
http://www.comw.org/pda/fulltext/9709brzezinski.html

the american left should get over the delusion that any enemy of my enemy is my friend...Putin is a shrewd capitalist not an 'anti-imperialist'
Vladamir Putin: “The world's most popular leader”?
By Mike Whitney
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article18817.htm
According to a recent survey conducted by the Wall Street Journal, Putin's personal approval rating in November 2007 was 85% making him the most popular head of state in the world today.... Russia is no longer “up for grabs” like it was after the fall of the Soviet Union.... a real departure from the 1990s, when the drunken Yeltsin steered Russia into economic disaster by following Washington's neoliberal edicts ...the Bush administration has encircled Russia with military bases, toppled neighboring regimes with its comical “color-coded” revolutions, (which were organized by US NGOs and intelligence services) intervened in Russian elections, and (threatened) to deploy a nuclear weapons system in Eastern Europe. Russia is seen as a potential rival to US imperial ambitions and must be contained or destroyed. In the early years of his presidency, it was believed that Putin would comply with western demands and accept a subordinate role in the US-EU-Israel centric system. But it hasn't worked out that way...
The most powerful of the Washington think tanks, the Council on Foreign relations...decided that US policy towards Russia had to be reworked entirely. John Edwards and Jack Kemp were appointed to lead a CFR task force which concocted the basic pretext for an all-out assault on the Putin. This is where the idea that Putin is “rolling back democracy” began. In their article “Russia’s Wrong Direction”, Edwards and Kemp state that a “strategic partnership” with Russia is no longer possible. They note that the government has become increasingly “authoritarian” and that the society is growing less “open and pluralistic”. Kemp and Edwards provided the ideological foundation upon which the entire public relations campaign against Putin has been built. And it is quite an impressive campaign. A Google News search shows roughly 1,400 articles from the various news services on Putin. Virtually all of them contain exactly the same rhetoric, the same buzzwords, the same spurious claims, the same slanders. It is impossible to find even one article out of 1,400 that diverges the slightest bit from the talking points which originated at the Council on foreign Relations. ... Its interesting to see to what extent the media is nothing more than a propaganda bullhorn for the national security state. Putin's personal approval ratings already confirm his enormous popularity, (85%) but the media continues to treat him like he's a tyrant... Putin is disparaged as “anti democratic”; a charge never leveled at the Saudi Royal family even though women are forbidden to drive, they must by fully-covered at all times, and can be stoned to death if they are found to be unfaithful. Also, in Saudi Arabia, beheading is still the punishment of choice for capital crimes. When Saudi King Abdullah visits the US, he is not heaped with scorn for his regimes' repressive treatment of his people. Instead he's rewarded with flattering photos of he and George Bush strolling arm-n-arm through the Crawford sage.

... interruption for news from democracy-loving- amerika's biggest oil source and best Arab ally, fascist Saudi Arabia...
Saudis Defend Rape Victim's Jail Sentence
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/21/world/printable3529940.shtml
The Saudi judiciary on Tuesday defended a court verdict that sentenced a 19-year-old victim of a gang rape to six months in jail and 200 lashes because she was with an unrelated male when they were attacked...the woman had initially been sentenced to 90 lashes after being convicted of violating Saudi Arabia's rigid Islamic law requiring segregation of the sexes. But in considering her appeal of the verdict [digest: note vile U.S. state dept. & media wording] the Saudi General Court increased the punishment... The ministry implied the victim's sentence was increased because she spoke out to the press. "For whoever has an objection on verdicts issued, the system allows an appeal without resorting to the media," said the statement, which was carried on the official Saudi Press Agency.... State Department spokesman Sean McCormack avoided directly criticizing the Saudi judiciary over the case, but said the verdict "causes a fair degree of surprise and astonishment." [...]

missing from u.s. media -- as were any 'objections' from U.S. sponsor
King Abdullah last month approved a new body of laws regulating the judicial system in Saudi Arabia, which rules on the basis of Shariah. http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/Display_news.asp?section=World_News&mon...

back to Russia/Putin...
Why is Putin blasted for “rolling back democracy” when American stooge, Mikhail Saakashvili, arbitrarily declares martial law and deploys his truncheon wielding Robo-cops to beat protesters senseless before dragging them off to the Georgia gulag? The pictures of Saakashvili's bloody crackdown appeared In the foreign press, but not in the US where the media had all its camera lenses focused on Garry Kasparov (contributing editor to the Wall Street Journal and right-wing loony) as he was led off to the Moscow hoosegow in handcuffs for protesting without a permit. Poor, abused Garry... Has Putin repealed habeas corpus, due process and the presumption of innocence? Has Putin abducted innocent suspects from the streets of foreign capitals and taken them to black sites where they've been tortured, water-boarded and sometimes killed? Has Putin initiated war's of aggression on defenseless countries killing and maiming a million or so civilians on “a pack of lies”? Has Putin created 4 million refugees and a humanitarian crisis which is likely to erupt into a region-wide conflagration? Those aren't Vladamir Putin's Daisy Cutters and cluster bombs falling on Samara, Falluja and Tal Afar. That isn't Putin's armada in the Gulf off the coast of Iran. Those aren't Putin's intelligence agents and mercenaries executing covert operations in Mogadishu, Beirut and Islamabad.

Putin's crime is that he rejects Washington's “unipolar” world As he said in Munich: “The unipolar world refers to a world in which there is one master, one sovereign; one center of authority, one center of force, one center of decision-making. At the end of the day this is pernicious not only for all those within this system, but also for the sovereign itself because it destroys itself from within.… What is even more important is that the model itself is flawed because at its basis there is and can be no moral foundations for modern civilization.” He added: "We are seeing a greater and greater disdain for the basic principles of international law....We are witnessing an almost uncontained hyper use of force – military force – in international relations, force that is plunging the world into an abyss of permanent conflicts. I am convinced that we have reached that decisive moment when we must seriously think about the architecture of global security.”

IMPERIAL MASTER PLAYS INNOCENT
US military says no reports of Turkish invasion of Iraq:
Asked if the US military would know if Turkish troops had crossed the border, he replied, "I can't answer that. I don't know if we would."
http://www.turkishpress.com/news.asp?id=204890

U.S. JUSTICE: MANUFACTURING "TERRORISTS" TO WAGE A STATE TERRORIST WAR: " IF YOU AREN'T WITH U.S. YOU'RE WITH THE TERRORISTS"
(editor: periods added in U.S. to convey real political meaning)

no rebuttal possible to classified evidence...
Witness Names to Be Withheld From Detainee
Defense lawyers preparing for the war crimes trial of a 21-year-old Guantánamo detainee have been ordered by a military judge not to tell their client — or anyone else — the identity of witnesses against him, newly released documents show. The case of the detainee, Omar Ahmed Khadr, is being closely watched because it may be the first Guantánamo prosecution to go to trial, perhaps as soon as May. Defense lawyers say military prosecutors have sought similar orders to keep the names of witnesses secret in other military commission cases, which have been a centerpiece of the Bush administration’s policies for detainees at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. In an interview, Brig. Gen. Thomas W. Hartmann, a senior official in the Pentagon’s Office of Military Commissions, said that the commission system was open to scrutiny from news organizations and human rights groups and that the order was necessary to protect the lives of witnesses. “The system is designed to be open,” General Hartmann said. “But there are certain things that simply must be protected.” ... Mr. Khadr, the only Canadian detainee at Guantánamo, is charged with killing an American soldier, giving material support for terrorism and other offenses...Most witnesses in Mr. Khadr’s case are expected to be military personnel who took part in a 2002 firefight in Afghanistan when an American special forces soldier, Sgt. First Class Christopher James Speer, 28, was fatally wounded. Mr. Khadr, who was 15 at the time, was badly injured.
Lawyers for a Guantánamo detainee have been ordered not to tell their client -- or anyone else -- the identity of witnesses against him. Mr. Khadr’s military defense lawyer, Lt. Cmdr. William C. Kuebler of the Navy, said that while he has been given a list of prosecution witnesses, the judge’s decision requires him to keep secrets from his client and that he would ask Colonel Brownback to revoke the order. He said it treated Mr. Khadr as if he had already been convicted and deprived him of a trial at which the public could assess the evidence against him. “Instead of a presumption of innocence and of a public trial,” Commander Kuebler said, “we start with a presumption of guilt and of a secret trial.” Commander Kuebler’s e-mail messages were filled with assertions that his client’s rights were being violated and with arguments that Mr. Khadr should be afforded the lenient treatment that has been accorded child fighters in some other wars. He ridiculed “the absurdity of characterizing an alleged former child soldier” as a dangerous terrorist and said the prosecution was ignoring rules assuring that detainees charged with war crimes are entitled to public trials... Joshua L. Dratel, a lawyer in New York who represented another detainee prosecuted for war crimes, described such orders as an Orwellian effort to hamstring defense lawyers while making it appear that detainees are rigorously represented. “It is ‘1984,’” Mr. Dratel said. “No system in the United States would operate this way.” Some legal experts said while identities of witnesses were shielded on rare occasions in American courts, an order applying to all witnesses in a case... “would be very, very unusual” in a civilian court... http://www.afp.com/english/news/stories/071201061802.bti9kby7.html

Closing Arguments Begin in Trial of Men Charged in Plot to Destroy the Sears Tower
MIAMI, Nov. 29 — A group of Miami men led by an impoverished construction worker tried to form an alliance with Al Qaeda and start a homegrown religious insurrection against the American government that would include spectacular attacks “just as good or greater than 9/11,” a federal prosecutor said Thursday in closing arguments in the trial of the group.
Jacqueline Arango, an assistant United States attorney, said that the seven men took oaths to Al Qaeda in a ceremony caught on a hidden camera, and that they sought $50,000, weapons and other equipment from the terrorist organization to conduct their jihad, which included a plan to level the Sears Tower in Chicago and to blow up federal office buildings. But lawyers for the seven defendants said the men were not terrorists but rather hapless indigents who, in an effort to raise money, were merely going along with the supposed Qaeda intermediaries. The intermediaries turned out to be undercover informants for the F.B.I. Ana M. Jhones, the lawyer for Narseal Batiste, who is accused of being the ringleader, said her client was entrapped by the informants. She suggested that in one meeting, her client was nearly driven to tears as one of the informants persuaded him to take surveillance photographs of federal buildings around Miami. ...When the men were arrested in June 2006, American officials trumpeted the case as a demonstration of a need for pre-emptive prosecutions in the era after 9/11 and as an illustration of the urgency for greater vigilance against domestic insurgents... While American officials at the time acknowledged that the men never acquired weapons or equipment and posed “no immediate threat,” Alberto R. Gonzales, then the attorney general, argued that homegrown terrorists “may prove to be as dangerous as groups like Al Qaeda.”
The men each face up to 70 years in prison if convicted of the four charges against them. They include conspiracy to provide material support to Al Qaeda, conspiracy to destroy federal buildings and conspiracy to wage war against the United States... The men belonged to the Moorish Science Temple, which blends Islam, Christianity and Judaism and does not recognize the authority of the United States government. Their lawyers have argued that their mission is philanthropy, to minister to their community by helping the poor and teaching religion.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/30/us/nationalspecial3/30liberty.html?th&...

Thousands Illegally Rendered By Bush Administration for Interrogation
In violation of international and U.S. law, “thousands” of alleged terrorists have been victims of “extraordinary rendition” by the Bush Administration since 9/11, two legal scholars say. Since 9/11, the scholars wrote, renditions have been used not to obtain jurisdiction over the suspects in order to prosecute “but instead to get an individual to talk.” Previous renditions that required approval by an inter-agency group that included the Departments of Justice and State, were now placed in the hands of the CIA, which could render suspects “without consultation.” [...]
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=7480 http://www.uruknet.de/?p=38786

beyond rhetoric: the reality is severely tightening state's fascist infrastructure...
The Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act: A Tutorial in Orwellian Newspeak
by Robert Weitzel
H.R 1955: the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 recently passed by the House-a companion bill is in the Senate-is barely one sentence old before its Orwellian moment: It begins, “AN ACT - To prevent homegrown terrorism, and for other purposes.”... Future “other purposes” will undoubtedly be justified by the Act’s use of the term “violent radicalization,” which it defines as “the process of adopting or promoting an extremist belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence . . .” or by the folksy, Lake Wobegonesque “homegrown terrorism,” defined as “the use, planned use, or threatened use, of force or violence by a group or individual born [or] raised . . . within the United States . . . to intimidate or coerce the United States, the civilian population . . . or any segment thereof . . ..”
In the service of some self-serving “other purposes,” will “extremist beliefs” become any belief the temporary occupants of the White House consider antithetical and threatening to their political agenda. Will “ideologically based violence” or the use of “force” become little more than the mayhem resulting after a peaceful protest, daring to move beyond the barbed wire of the free speech zone, is attacked by a truncheon-wielding riot squad armed with tear gas, German Shepard dogs and water cannons? Will the unarmed, constitutionally protected dissenters who are fending off blows or dog bites, or who are striking back in self-defense become “homegrown terrorists” and suffer draconian sentences for their attempt to “intimidate or coerce” the state with free thought and free speech?
A clue to future “other purposes” may lie in the Act’s parentage. The proud House “mother” of the Patriot Act’s evil twin is Rep. Jane Harmon (D-CA), chair of the Homeland Security Intelligence Subcommittee. Rep. Harmon has admitted to a long and productive relationship with the RAND Corporation, a California based think-tank with close ties to the military-industrial-intelligence complex. RAND’s 2005 study, “Trends in Terrorism,” contains a chapter titled, “Homegrown Terrorist Threats to the United States.” RAND maintains that “homegrown terrorism” will not be the result of jihadist sleeper cells. Rather, it will result from anti-globalists and radical environmentalists who “challenge the intrinsic qualities of capitalism, charging that in the insatiable quest for growth and profit, the philosophy is serving to destroy the world’s ecology, indigenous cultures, and individual welfare.”
Further, RAND claims that anti-globalists and radical environmentalists “exist in much the same operational environment as al Qaida” and pose “a clear threat to private-sector corporate interests, especially large multinational business.” Therein lies the real “other purposes.” [...]
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/12/01/5551/

US Roman Catholic Bishop: 9/11 was inside job
By Matt C. Abbott
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=7482
Bishop Richard Williamson, seemingly the most outspoken and controversial bishop of the Society of St. Pius X, asserted in a recent talk that the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were committed "to get the American public to accept the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq," according to a news item by Jack Kenny in the Nov. 15, 2007 issue of The Wanderer. Bishop Williamson, whose talk was held Nov. 4, 2007 in Bedford, Mass., is quoted as saying: "Without 9-11, it would have been impossible to attack Afghanistan or Iraq. The forces inside the United States government and driving the United States government absolutely wanted to attack and destroy Iraq. The destruction wrought upon Iraq is unspeakable. And now the same forces want to do the same thing to Iran . . . They may well be plotting another 9-11."
The news item continues: "Heat from the burning fuel of the planes that flew into the twin towers of the World Trade Center could not have melted the 47 steel columns in each tower, causing them to collapse, he claimed. And a commercial airliner could not have penetrated six of the ten walls that were breached by 'whatever hit the Pentagon,' he said." What did hit the Pentagon, according to Bishop Williamson? "It was a missile that hit the Pentagon. It was a missile that could only have been fired by the American military."

"Military men are just dumb stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy"
Henry Kissinger
http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Military

Army charges Iraq vet over self-inflicted gun wound
By Dana Priest and Anne Hull
Despite years of exemplary service, Lt. Elizabeth Whiteside, right, could face prison over a mental breakdown in Iraq... at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1st Lt. Elizabeth Whiteside listened last week as an Army prosecutor outlined the criminal case against her. The charges: attempting suicide and endangering the life of another soldier while serving in Iraq.... Maj. Stefan Wolfe, the prosecutor, argued that Whiteside, now a psychiatric outpatient at Walter Reed, should be court-martialed. After seven years of exemplary service, the Army reservist faces the possibility of life in prison if she is tried and convicted. Military psychiatrists at Walter Reed who examined Whiteside, 25, after she recovered from her self-inflicted gun wound diagnosed her with a severe mental disorder, possibly triggered by the stresses of a war zone. But Whiteside's superiors considered her mental illness "an excuse" for criminal conduct, according to documents obtained by The Washington Post.

u.s. history: one long series of racist "mistakes" starting with genocide and slavery that continues today globally
Army Pays $725 in Set-Aside World War II Case
Samuel Snow received a check for back pay a month after the Army said it made a mistake when it court-martialed him and 27 other black soldiers in World War II. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/01/us/01lawton.html?th&emc=th

Suicide Epidemic Among Veterans
A CBS News Investigation Uncovers A Suicide Rate For Veterans Twice That Of Other Americans
CBS News’ investigative unit wanted the numbers, so it submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to the Department of Defense asking for the numbers of suicides among all service members for the past 12 years. Four months later, they sent CBS News a document, showing that between 1995 and 2007, there were almost 2,200 suicides. That’s 188 last year alone. But these numbers included only “active duty” soldiers.... n 2005, for example, in just 45 states, there were at least 6,256 suicides among those who served in the armed forces. That’s 120 each and every week, in just one year... One age group stood out. Veterans aged 20 through 24, those who have served during the war on terror [SIC]. They had the highest suicide rate among all veterans, estimated between two and four times higher than civilians the same age. (The suicide rate for non-veterans is 8.3 per 100,000, the rate for veterans between 22.9 and 31.9 per 100,000.) [...] http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/13/cbsnews_investigates/main34964...

new gunfodder desperately needed
A New Push to Roll Back 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'
Twenty-eight retired generals and admirals plan to release a letter on Friday urging Congress to repeal a law that allows gay men and lesbians to serve in the military only if they keep their orientation secret. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/30/us/30military.html?th&emc=th

"Flaws" = doing its job to protect capital
Advisers Say F.D.A.'s Flaws Put Lives at Risk
Desperate financing shortages at the agency have left the nation's food supply at risk and its drugs potentially dangerous, according to an alarming report. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/01/washington/01fda.html?th&emc=th

imagine Eisenberg was not a white man ... "suspected terrorist" come to mind?
Standoff Ends Peacefully at a Clinton Field Office
ROCHESTER, N.H., Nov. 30 — A man who claimed to have a bomb walked into Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign field office here Friday and took three campaign workers hostage for hours before surrendering to the police. A standoff lasted six hours in Rochester, N.H....
Nobody was hurt, and after the man, identified as Leeland Eisenberg of nearby Somersworth, was taken into custody, the police said he had nothing more than road flares taped to his chest. They would not discuss Mr. Eisenberg’s motive or mental state, but said he could face federal as well as state charges once the investigation was complete....Chief David Dubois of the Rochester Police Department said Mr. Eisenberg had entered Mrs. Clinton’s office around lunchtime, encountering three members of the campaign staff, one volunteer and a child. He soon released the child and the volunteer, who immediately notified the police. A second woman escaped a few hours later. Mr. Eisenberg, 47, was scheduled to attend a hearing at Strafford County Superior Court on Friday afternoon regarding domestic violence charges that his wife had filed against him [...]

States Take Child Support
Many states use fathers' payments to recoup welfare costs and pass on none of the money to the children forcing mothers to skimp [SIC]
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/01/us/01child.html?th&emc=th