1/17 to give up illusions about current state of affairs, give up state of affairs that needs illusions...

LOOKING BACK TO THE PRESENT & ENDING WITH NOURISHMENT FOR OUR FUTURE

Jan. 16, 1991, the White House announced the start of Operation Desert Storm to drive Iraqi forces out of Kuwait.
http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/20080116.html
...Mr. Bush said his goal "is not the conquest of Iraq, it is the liberation of Kuwait." But he also said, "We are determined to knock out Saddam Hussein's nuclear bomb potential. We will also destroy his chemical weapons facilities." ...

Defense Secretary Dick Cheney and Gen. Colin L. Powell, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at the Pentagon Wednesday night that those targets had been among those assigned to the first wave of American F-117 Stealth fighter-bombers, F-15 fighter-bombers, British Tornado attack planes and Saudi and Kuwaiti F-15's that raided Iraqi military targets about 3 A.M. local time Thursday (7 P. M. Wednesday Eastern Standard time.) Administration officials also said United States navy ships in the waters off the Arabian Peninsula had fired ground-hugging cruise missiles at targets that had been programmed into their guidance systems for months. The officials said the ships fired a total of 50 Tomahawk missiles in an assault on Iraqi command and communications centers.

Seeking to Avoid Civilians
Mr. Cheney said the initial targets were spread throughout Iraq Kuwait and were chosen to "do everything possible to avoid injury to civilians."...

[Number Of Iraqis Slaughtered Since The U.S. Invaded Iraq 1,168,058 http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/iraq/iraqdeaths.html]
U.S. Boosts Use of Airstrikes In Iraq, WP, 1/17/8 The U.S. military conducted more than five times as many airstrikes in Iraq last year as it did in 2006,

Mr. Cheney said that the war was just beginning and that "it is likely to run for a long period of time."...

Saudi officials said Secretary of State James A. baker 3d called in the Saudi Ambassador, Prince Bandar bin sultan, and told him that American forces would attack Iraq. Code Word to King Fahd of Saudi Arabia, using a prearranged code word, the informants said. The King then repeated back a code word that constituted the final acknowledgment that the offensive would begin....Reports from members of the news pool stationed in Saudi Arabia with American forces said two squadrons F-15E fighter-bombers loaded with bombs and air-to-air missiles took off at 12:50 A. M. local time today from the largest American military base, in central Saudi Arabia...A steady stream of F-15E's were taking off from central and eastern Saudi Arabia, part of an international air force that includes the deadliest, fastest and most technologically advanced warplanes in the world. The United States alone has about 1,800 warplanes in the Persian Gulf region, based at military installations in Saudi Arabia and abroad six aircraft carriers plying the gulf, the Red Sea, and the Arabian Sea.[...]

u.s. client fascist sheiks sit on brewing powderkeg
12% of Saudis view Bush positively - less than Iran's president and al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden - more think warmly toward Iran than America.
http://www.adn.com/24hour/world/story/264508.html

U.S. to sell Saudis smart bombs to help keep Iran in check
U.S. weapons sale to include 900 of the precision-guided bomb kits, worth $123 million, that would give Saudi forces highly accurate targeting abilities... trying to bolster defenses against threats from U.S. adversary Iran and muster support in this oil-rich kingdom for a long-stalled Mideast peace agreement. Some lawmakers fear the systems could be used against Israel, but Congress appears unlikely to block the deal because of Saudi Arabia's cooperation in the war on terror and in deterring aggression from Iran. The United States already has notified Congress of five other packages to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, including Patriot missiles. Democrats eager to challenge Bush's handling of foreign policy. At the same time, they see Saudi Arabia's cooperation as crucial to the war on terror and in deterring aggression from Iran.
The United States already has notified Congress of five other packages to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, including Patriot missiles. The total amount of eventual sales as part of the Gulf Security Dialogue is estimated at $20 billion, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2008/0... http://tinyurl.com/2rfnr5

u.s. methods are extremely convincing ...
Admiral: Pakistan OKs Bigger U.S. Role
By ROBERT BURNS. AP Military Writer
http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,,-7231318,00.html
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Pakistan is taking a more welcoming view of U.S. suggestions for using American troops to train and advise its own forces in the fight against anti-government extremists, the commander of U.S. forces in that region said Wednesday. Navy Adm. William J. Fallon, commander of U.S. Central Command, said he believes increased violence inside Pakistan in recent months has led Pakistani leaders to conclude that they must focus more intensively on extremist al-Qaida hideouts near the border with Afghanistan. He called this an important change from Pakistan's traditional focus on India as the main threat to its security, and it meshes with Defense Secretary Robert Gates' recent comment that al-Qaida terrorists hiding in the border area are increasingly aiming their campaign of violence at targets inside Pakistan. ``They see they've got real problems internally,'' Fallon said in a 20-minute interview with three reporters accompanying Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, at a private conference here of military chiefs from Middle Eastern countries, hosted by Fallon. Pakistan was not attending.

Afghan Prison: "Bagram appears to be just as bad, if not worse, than Guantanamo"
William Fisher
As the world marked the sixth anniversary of the arrival of the first orange-jumpsuit-clad prisoners at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, human rights groups are attempting to focus public and congressional scrutiny on what some are calling "the other Gitmo". It is a prison located on the U.S. military base at base in the ancient city of Bagram near Charikar in Parvan, Afghanistan. The detention centre was set up by the U.S. military as a temporary screening site after the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan overthrew the Taliban. It currently houses some 630 prisoners -- close to three times as many as are still held at Guantanamo. In 2005, following well-documented accounts of detainee deaths, torture, and "disappeared" prisoners... there may be prisoners in Afghanistan who are not "Department of Defence detainees", as one Pentagon official has referred to them, but are instead held by the CIA or another civilian agency.
"We know that the CIA was holding "ghost prisoners" -- prisoners held in secret, hidden from the Red Cross -- at a secret facility called the 'Salt Pit' in Afghanistan," ... the administration has never renounced the CIA's illegal secret detention and interrogation programme that President Bush revealed in September 2006... Special Operations forces may not be following Department of Defence directives on the registration of prisoners...
The situation at Bagram has been largely overshadowed by the continuing controversy surrounding Guantanamo. Just last week, a U.S. appeals court ruled that four former Guantanamo prisoners, all British citizens, have no right to sue top Pentagon officials and military officers for torture, abuse and violations of their religious rights... The appeals court cited a lack of jurisdiction over the lawsuit, ruled the defendants enjoyed qualified immunity for acts taken within the scope of their government jobs and held the religious right law did not apply to the detainees.[...] http://www.ipsnews.net/fotos/Bagram_prisoner_abuse_final.jpg

AS IF THIS ISN'T THE PURPOSE OF 'CONTRACTED' KILLERS: NYT'S COMPLICITY IN ITS MASTERS' CRIMES
Blackwater Case Faces Obstacles, Justice Dept. Says
By JAMES RISEN and DAVID JOHNSTON
Legal gaps and immunity may prevent Blackwater guards involved in a shooting in Iraq from being tried.
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/16/washington/16blackwater.html?th&emc=th

ONLY THE ARMED IRAQI NATIONAL LIBERATION STRUGGLE CAN SAVE IRAQ FROM THE BARBARIANS
Protecting Mesopotamian riches from U.S. ’mobs and Humvees’
Ali Sudani, Azzaman
...wide coverage of the tragic state of the remnants of ancient civilizations that once flourished on the plains between Tigris and Euphrates rivers... point the finger at U.S. occupiers and their actions which have not only devastated a modern state but also ravaged its wonderful ancient cultures. A case in point is the ancient city of Babylon where the occupiers have opted to have one of their largest military bases. U.S. commanders shamelessly claim their heavy tanks, helicopter pads and barracks are based in Babylon in order to protect this crown of Mesopotamian capitals. "This is exactly how thieves think," according to Zainab al-Bahrani, professor of archaeology and arts history at U.S.’s Colombia University. Bahrani says the damage U.S. troops have inflicted on Babylon is "irreparable.".... She says the troops have been shoveling the city with their heavy machines. "The occupation has inflicted massive damage to (Mesopotamian) history, much bigger than the damage it incurred on the museums and libraries that were pillaged and looted shortly after the fall of Baghdad. http://www.uruknet.de/?p=40115

CHAVEZ REVEALS REAL AGENDA: U.S. REWARDS 'LEFTISTS' WHO HELP DESTROY THE ARMED STRUGGLE NECESSARY FOR LIBERATION FROM IMPERIALISM
Social Democrat Capitalist Chavez: "Doesn't Agree with the Armed Struggle"
http://www.wcbs880.com/topic/ap_news.php?story=AP/APTV/National/a/i/Vene...
Venezuela (AP) Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Sunday he would try to persuade Colombian guerrillas to lay down their weapons if Colombia's U.S.-backed government allows him to meet with the rebels' commander. "I don't agree with the armed struggle, and that's one of the things I want to discuss with (rebel leader Manuel) Marulanda,'' Chavez said on his weekly TV program.

Israel Defense Forces Tuesday killed at least 19 Palestinians in ground and air operations on the Gaza Strip.
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/944967.html

Gaza - Inhuman Crime Against The World
Mary Sparrowdancer, rense.com
Bush recently visited Israel... he was "thanked" by Olmert for the $30 Billion US funds promised to Israel...
The world's current political warlords lord themselves over us while openly demonstrating they have no regard for our opinions, our choices, our votes or our protests. They speak convincingly through their propaganda media machines about "freedoms" when in fact, liberty is their enemy and they are working hard in a futile attempt to destroy it. They do not realize, however, that liberty belongs to us, and it is not theirs to destroy. They speak of lawfulness, while swaggering in utter defiance of all laws of civility. They speak of terrorists and point fingers elsewhere, when they are the actual terrorists who have murdered and displaced millions of civilians since 2001. They speak of their humanitarian treatment of prisoners, when in fact they are consumed and entertained by violence and torture that would put Ancient Rome to shame. Nowhere are prisoners more shamefully treated than in the Gaza Strip, and this treatment is being funded and made possible by US dollars....
For almost two years, the Israeli military forces have completely surrounded Gaza. Israel has built tall, ugly walls around the borders of Gaza, including the border between Gaza and Egypt. The Israeli military forces patrol and attack the civilians of Gaza from the air with US helicopters, F-16s, and with drones. Israeli/ US tanks and bulldozers attack from the ground, storming through Gaza villages and refugee camps, destroying homes and killing more Palestinian victims. Israeli gunboats sit poised in the once peaceful waters off Gaza's shore, intent upon shelling unarmed fishing boats and massacring families daring to enjoy picnics on the beach. With all Gaza borders tightly closed, and with no way out by land, sea or air, approximately 1.5 million Palestinians are trapped in Gaza making it the largest and most inhumane prison on earth.

In September of 2007, after sealing all of the borders, Israel declared the civilian population imprisoned in the Gaza Strip a "hostile entity," ... the civilians trapped within Gaza, most of them refugees, await their fate at the hands of the Israeli military force...a military force that is funded by the US...

... the 1.5 million people trapped in Gaza have little or no access to clean water. Building supplies to repair water pumps and homes that have been bombed, shelled and bulldozed by Israeli forces are denied passage through the closed borders. Electricity is denied. Free trade beyond the borders is blocked. Transfer of emergency relief funds into Gaza is denied. Cement is denied, leaving Gazans unable to even properly bury those already murdered by Israeli forces. Soap is denied. Postal service is denied. Bottled water is denied. Medications are denied. The sick are denied access to medical care across the blocked borders... During the past three months, 70 of the desperately ill and innocent waiting for "permission" from Israel to cross the border for medical care have died. In 2007 alone, Israeli forces slaughtered 290 people in Gaza, including children (this does not include those slaughtered in the West Bank)... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=40123

Shin Bet boasts of 1,000 assassinations, included 150 children
Sabbah's blog
Including 5 year old children… The West close their eyes to this Israeli method of "justice"… No one asks why, if Israel knows where these people are, it cannot ARREST them and put them on trial?? The West accept assassination by Israel as a democratic method, and of course, take its word when it calls the dead "terrorists", apparently even if they are 5 and 8 year old children, and certainly if they are "civilians". And if they are elected politicians, all the better… even Palestinians can’t vote for a dead man! WHITE colonialism rules… http://www.uruknet.de/?p=40124

Hamas: Israeli threats against Palestinian leaders fruits of Bush's visit
Palestinian Information Center
Fawzi Barhoum, the spokesman Hamas Movement held the United States fully responsible for any future Israeli military aggressions on Gaza Strip after it gave the green light to the Israeli occupation government to target Hamas political leaders: "Israeli threats of committing more massacres in Gaza Strip and of targeting Hamas's political leaders reflect the criminal and terrorist mentality of the Israeli occupier that aims at subjugating the Palestinian people". Barhoum asserted that the insistence of US president George W. Bush tagging Hamas as "extremist" group affirms his visit to the region was to instigate against Hamas and to encourage targeting its political leaders.... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=40108

1974 CIA Estimate: Israel Already Had Nuclear Stockpile
For more information contact:
William Burr - 202/994-7032
http://www.nsarchive.org
Interestingly, twenty years ago, the CIA released an excised version of the "Summary and Conclusions" of this document in response to a FOIA request by the Natural Resources Defense Council. It became the subject of a front-page story in The New York Times on 26 January 1978, under the headline, "C.I.A. Said in 1974 Israel had A-Bombs." In response to press queries, the CIA stated that the release was a mistake because it included some classified details. Visit the Web site of the National Security Archive for more information about today's posting. http://www.nsarchive.org

The Ravaging of Africa, Part 2 -- Economic War
Africa - US Imperialism in Africa
Wednesday, 16 January 2008
Written by Asad Ismi and produced by Kristin Schwartz
http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&...
The Ravaging of Africa is a four part audio documentary series about the destructive impact of US imperialism on the continent.
The ravaging of Africa has been enriching Europe and North America for more than 500 years. The second of four episodes of this audio documentary focuses on the role of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Through these institutions structural adjustment polices have been imposed upon African nations forcing them to end free education, to curtail health services, and sell the national wealth to privatizers at bargain basement rates, resulting in pandemics of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
The destruction of health and educational infrastructure caused by these "reforms" has led to 21 million deaths from preventable disease and malnutrition since the mid 1980s. More than 200 million Africans have absolutely no access to health care services. Forty percent of Africa's children are out of school and more than 140 million young Africans are illiterate, all thanks to "structural adjustment".
To listen to the entire 30 minutes of "Economic War on Africa" click the flash player below.
Broadcast-quality copies of all four episodes of The Ravaging of Africa can be downloaded from www.radio4all.net, where a large and constantly updated library of free, broadcast quality audio is maintained. Click here to download this and the episodes of this documentary.

Kenya: Let Us Not Find Revolutionaries Where There are None
Wednesday, 16 January 2008
by Mukoma Wa Ngugi
http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&...
Just as Washington is constantly in search of enemies to crush, many on the Left imagine revolutionaries behind every movement opposed to Washington's client governments in the world. Not necessarily so, writes the author - certainly not in Kenya, wracked by violence in the wake of an apparently rigged election. "Not all opposition parties are anti-imperialist or opposed to the move by global capital to consolidate the world." Kenya's opposition "Movement for Democratic Change [ODM] is a neo-liberal party" whose members move "fluidly" from government to opposition "as they position and reposition themselves, eyes on the national cake." The ODM is not a true "people's power" movement, and "can only rile up discontentment by pointing to one ethnicity rather than organizing the whole country against elite exploitation."
Kenya: Let Us Not Find Revolutionaries Where There are None

"terrorists attacks" as usual serve u.s. global agenda
Secret contacts to speed up the building of an American military base in Morocco
Roads to Iraq
Reported on alkhaleej newspaper: After the attack on the French tourists in Mauritania, American intelligence had intensive contacts with Moroccan intelligence to speed up the secret ongoing negotiations between the both sides to move their military base from Stuttgart in Germany to an American military base in south Morocco.... to obtain the Moroccan authorities approval, carried to sign a deal selling F-16 aircraft, purchased by Morocco weeks ago. The Moroccan side offered a place called "Cap Daraa" in Tanttan province in the Moroccan Sahara, an American intelligence Service delegation and a group of technicians visited the area and took aerial-photographs of the area to determine the exact location of the military base to their final report to the Pentagon. The Americans preferred a Military base with free access to the sea so they can control the flow of arms to their base, Mauritania refused to host an American military base over the territory. www.uruknet.info?p=40122
www.roadstoiraq.com/2008/01/15/secret-contacts-to-speed-up-the-building-...

LIBERAL IMPERIALISM CALLS U.S. GEOSTRATEGIC DESIGN "SHORTSIGHTED MISCALCULATIONS" AND "MISTAKES"
US State Department's 5 Strategic Mistakes in the Horn of Africa Continue
By Sophia Tesfamariam
http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/49079
January 16, 2008

"…I know we've made tactical errors - thousands of them, I'm sure…But when you look back in history, what will be judged is did you make the right strategic decisions…I believe strongly that it was the right strategic decision… no-one should doubt America's commitment to justice and the rule of law…" [Ms. Rice said]. I cannot begin to imagine what Ms. Rice considers "tactical errors" and "right strategic decisions", but as a victim of a past US mistake and one that knows only too well what these mistakes entail, allow me to illustrate to Condoleeza Rice and the US State Department where US policy for Horn is heading…United States´ strategic mistakes in the Horn of Africa and their human and material costs are a matter of public record. US integrity, credibility and the confidence of the people of the area in the US´ ability to forge international peace and security is at an all time low. US it seems, is not Africa´s friend, but rather its destroyer. From Nigeria in the West to Ethiopia in the East, US´ anchors have become not the stabilizing forces, but rather the destabilizing factors in their respective regions leaving observers to question the coherency of US policy for Africa. ...
These shortsighted policies of the US Administrations coupled with a string of political miscalculations threaten to destabilize the entire region and engulf in a dangerously intractable crisis. A dire economic crisis is in the making, affecting neighboring countries such as Uganda and Rwanda, which will no doubt aggravate and compound existing economic and social tensions in those countries. The situation in Kenya is dangerous and unless sober, studied and coherent policies are promoted, the US will loose not just its foothold in the region, but also its credibility and integrity in other parts of Africa.
Ms. Condoleezza Rice was once quoted in the National Review magazine of 30 August 1999 as saying the following: "…the United States is the critical actor in international politics and has no choice but to be involved in the world. We're going to play a role one way or another. And we can either play it consciously and smartly, with a design, or we can sit back and pretend we're not playing a role, and play one by our absence…"

So what is the design for the Horn of Africa? Death? Destructions? Displacement? Humiliation? Seems US´ "staunch allies" in the "global war on terror" are playing their mercenary roles as instructed.
US strategic mistakes in the Horn of Africa have had severe consequences: They have given way to chaos, instability, and genocide in Ethiopia, created the largest humanitarian disaster and emergency in the history of Somalia, violence and ethnic cleansing in Kenya, and Eritrea´s peace, security, stability, sovereignty and territorial integrity have all been compromised. [...]

How the Pentagon Planted a False Hormuz Story
Analysis by Gareth Porter*
http://ipsnews.net/print.asp?idnews=40801
WASHINGTON, Jan 15 (IPS) - Senior Pentagon officials, evidently reflecting a broader administration policy decision, used an off-the-record Pentagon briefing to turn the Jan. 6 U.S.-Iranian incident in the Strait of Hormuz into a sensational story demonstrating Iran's military aggressiveness, a reconstruction of the events following the incident shows. The initial press stories on the incident, all of which can be traced to a briefing by deputy assistant secretary of defence for public affairs in charge of media operations Bryan Whitman, contained similar information that has since been repudiated by the Navy itself. Then the Navy disseminated a short video into which was spliced the audio of a phone call warning that U.S. warships would "explode" in "a few seconds". Although it was ostensibly a Navy production, IPS has learned that the ultimate decision on its content was made by top officials of the Defence Department. [...]

the finance capital swamp
Citigroup, Merrill Receive $21 Billion From Investors:
Wall Street banks have now raised $59 billion, mostly from investors in the Middle East and Asia, to shore up balance sheets battered by more than $100 billion of writedowns from the declining values of mortgage-related assets
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=ao63QB4Pr8HQ&refer=h...

electoral politics & media concensus: "defense" & "intelligence" expenditures are not related to u.s. "economic downturn" calculus or "fiscal fixes"
Dow Industrial Average Plunges 306.95 Points on Grim Outlook as investors confronted new chapters of a well-worn story: the economy is in trouble.
http://www.nytimes.com/?emc=na

Two Views in the White House on an Economic Fix
A debate has broken out inside the White House over how hard to push Congress to make President Bush's tax cuts permanent.
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/17/us/17bush.html?th&emc=th

* Merrill Won’t Sell Bloomberg, BlackRock Stakes

* Housing Starts at 16-Year Low

Bloomberg Warns of Spending Cuts on the Horizon

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg also called for DNA samples to be taken from every person arrested in New York City.

wolves will 'investigate' chicken-coop invasion...
What Else Was On Those CIA Tapes?
By Margie Burns
...would the depiction of torture have been enough to impel the destruction of the videotapes? After all, numerous photographs showing the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere were not destroyed...In other words, the question remains — what else was on the videotapes, besides torture? ... No one is talking about the Cole investigation now. But it looks as though the mysteriously destroyed videotapes connect with the Cole and Limburg cases at several points... the Justice Department will investigate the destruction of CIA videotapes of torture interrogations.
http://www.populist.com/08.02.burns.html

Spychief to Tap Into Cyberspace
Siobhan Gorman
Political Insight and Analysis From The Wall Street Journal’s Capital Bureau
http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2008/01/13/dancing-spychief-wants-to-tap-i...
January 13, 2008
Spychief Mike McConnell is drafting a plan to protect America’s cyberspace that will raise privacy issues and make the current debate over surveillance law look like “a walk in the park,” McConnell tells The New Yorker in the issue set to hit newsstands Monday. “This is going to be a goat rope on the Hill. My prediction is that we’re going to screw around with this until something horrendous happens.” At issue, McConnell acknowledges, is that in order to accomplish his plan, the government must have the ability to read all the information crossing the Internet in the United States in order to protect it from abuse...
In a series of interviews that began in July, McConnell also weighs in on the hunt for Osama bin Laden. In the past six years, McConnell says, U.S. intelligence agencies have stopped “many, many” terrorist attacks.... McConnell says that while bin Laden is believed to be in the tribal region of Pakistan, the U.S. will not invade the country to chase him down. You cannot indiscriminately attack a sovereign nation” [...]

United States of Atrocities next...
Prisoners 'to be chipped like dogs'
Brian Brady, Whitehall Editor, Independent
Ministers are planning to implant "machine-readable" microchips under the skin of thousands of offenders as part of an expansion of the electronic tagging scheme that would create more space in British jails. Amid concerns about the security of existing tagging systems and prison overcrowding, the Ministry of Justice is investigating the use of satellite and radio-wave technology to monitor criminals...

Obama and America's Problem With "Race Fatigue"
by Mel Reeves
George F. Will, perhaps the smuggest, most self-assured racist in the pundit pantheon, says (white) America is suffering from "race fatigue" - the "I don't want to hear about it" disease. Whites find comfort and solace in Barack Obama, who understands "the unbearable boredom occasioned by today's stale politics generally and the perfunctory politics theatrics of race especially." Tired of hearing complaints about injustices that, Will maintains, don't exist? Take an Obama pill - it'll absolve you, says Will. Believing he is presenting a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of "race neutrality," George F. Will actually provides insider testimony on what is behind mass white enthusiasm for Obama.
Read more...

====

FINALLY, NOURISHING FOOD FOR THOUGHT ...AND ACTION

"...A rejection of comfort and ease as a life goal is to choose truth over lie. It is to choose the way of extremism, of opposition to the lie..."
Gaither Stewart {excerpt}
...To achieve their ends amoral leaders infantilize the people, keeping the majority content in a shell of comfort and ease. Their weapons are ignorance and blindness, misinformation and lies, censorship and euphemisms … and the assurance of comfort and ease. But even the minor goal of comfort and ease is a lie... contentment is at the most transient.

If you stop and think about it, you have to find expressions such as “our values” and “the superiority of the American way of life” deplorable. How can I rely on those who have never been outside the shell of comfort and ease where exist four-fifths of the world? How can I trust those who do not know the meaning of social solidarity? How can I trust those who have never veered from the straight path of Interstate 95 and have never suffered physical pain or mental anguish for something greater than themselves?...

Comfort and ease is a golden cage. Retreat into the beguiling cocoon of comfort and ease erases the possibility of communication with the rest of mankind. It is a rejection of the reality of the world and man’s [SIC] place in it.

A rejection of comfort and ease as a life goal is to choose truth over lie. It is to choose the way of extremism, of opposition to the lie. There are periods when truth exists more easily. There are other periods, mendacious and ugly periods, when truth rings seditious, subversive, revolutionary, when it however shines in its extremism.... For to live life, you have to accept and live with reality—in the desperation and despair it provokes. You have to learn to live without illusions. That is unpleasant at first. Uncomfortable. Uneasy. But, we can learn.
Gaither Stewart is a contributing editor with Cyrano’s Journal Online. http://www.bestcyrano.org/THOMASPAINE/?p=555

“People who shut their eyes to reality simply invite their own destruction, and anyone who insists on remaining in a state of innocence long after that innocence is dead turns himself into a monster.”
James Baldwin, Biography

Do not worry over the charge of treason to your masters, but be concerned about the treason that involves yourselves. Be true to yourself and you cannot be a traitor to any good cause on Earth.
Eugene V. Debs, Speech, June 16, 1918

Nothing is more despicable than respect based on fear
Albert Camus

One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We're no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It is simply too painful to acknowledge -- even to ourselves -- that we've been so credulous
Carl Sagan

Don't be taken in when they paternally pat you on the shoulder and say that there's no inequality worth speaking of and no more reason to fight because if you believe them they will be completely in charge in their marble homes and granite banks from which they rob the people of the world under the pretence of bringing them culture. Watch out, for as soon as it pleases them they'll send you out to protect their gold in wars whose weapons, rapidly developed by servile scientists, will become more and more deadly until they can with a flick of the finger tear a million of you to pieces:
Jean-Paul Marat (May 24, 1743– July 13, 1793), Swiss-born scientist and physician

The "civilized" have created the wretched, quite coldly and deliberately, and do not intend to change the status quo; are responsible for their slaughter and enslavement; rain down bombs on defenseless children whenever and wherever they decide that their "vital interests" are menaced, and think nothing of torturing a man to death: these people are not to be taken seriously when they speak of the "sanctity" of human life, or the "conscience" of the civilized world.
James Baldwin COLLECTED ESSAYS (1998), ch. one "The Devil Finds Work" (orig. pub. 1976)

He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, science for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, deplorable love-of-country stance, how violently I hate all this, how despicable an ignorable war is; I would rather be torn to
shreds than be a part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder."
Albert Einstein http://snipurl.com/1s4qd

The same rebellion, the same impatience, the same anger that exists in the hearts of the dark people in Africa and Asia is existing in the hearts and minds of 20 million black people in this country who have been just as thoroughly colonized as the people in Africa and Asia...
Why here in America the seeds of racism are so deeply rooted in the white people collectively, their belief that they are ‘superior’ in some way is so deeply rooted, that these things are in the national white sub consciousness. Many whites are even actually unaware of their own racism until they face some test then their racism emerges in one form or another... we are not speaking of any individual white man. We are speaking of the collective 'white' man’s historical record. We are speaking of the collective 'white' man’s cruelties, and evils, and greeds that have seen him act like a devil toward the 'non-white' man. Any intelligent, honest, objective person cannot fail to realize that ...
Malcolm X

When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.
Sinclair Lewis

Religious distress is at the same time the expression of real distress and protest against real distress. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up illusions about the existing state of affairs is the demand to give up a state of affairs which needs illusions.
Karl Marx, Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Law.