9/15 Haitian "Unrest" Feared; 8 million Pakistanis to Fight US; Latin America Rising Against U.S.Bolivia Coup Moves

Digest note: the explosive intensification of the U.S. capital crisis spreading across the world is still in its early stage. Despite wishful delusions and demagogic lies, the 'policy' bandaids recommended by all parties are part of the problem, not the solution.

This crisis will not lead to reduced spending for the global imperialist war, but to the only possible means of survival for u.s. capital: expanding its base for maximizing accumulation globally, despite failures and blowback so far that have deepened the crisis. There will be further military aggression, with tactical changes, to do what's essential: eliminate the major capitalist rivals and the mass resistance preventing a temporary resolution of this crisis by expanding u.s. hegemony.

This war around however, the unrivalled u.s. domination secured through WW2, is under fierce attack worldwide, the fascist GWOT reviled for what it is and resisted everywhere but the 'homeland'. The u.s. plan to maintain supremacy under the guise of 'power sharing' with other major rivals is seen for what it is -- a desperate move on the part of a dying, strategically weak empire -- and an opportunity for other capitalist states to assert their own independence from the u.s. and their growing collaboration with each other, as with Russia, China and Latin America.

Opposition by these rivals, any and all defeats for our common enemy and their weakening of u.s. imperialism-zionism, world enemy #1, is indeed welcome. But it is nevertheless capitalism uniting against the masses for its own good, necessarily at the peoples' expense. For fundamental, systemic change, we must unite against capitalist rule because in any language, in any country, capitalism, based on exploitation and oppression, is the root source of the horrors destroying humanity and the planet.

“All this talk about first we are going to do Afghanistan, then we will do Iraq... this is entirely the wrong way to go about it. If we just let our vision of the world go forth, and we embrace it entirely and we don't try to piece together clever diplomacy, but just wage a total war... our children will sing great songs about us years from now.”
Richard Perle

U.S. Arms Sales Sales to foreign governments have risen to more than $32 billion, up from $12 billion in 2005.

“We will export death and violence to the four corners of the earth in defense of this great country and rid the world of evil.”
quoted in Bob Woodward’s Bush at War, Simon & Schuster 2002

We have pacified some thousands of the islanders and buried them; destroyed their fields; burned their villages, and turned their widows and orphans out-of-doors; furnished heartbreak by exile to some dozens of disagreeable patriots; subjugated the remaining ten millions by Benevolent Assimilation, which is the pious new name of the musket; we have acquired property in the three hundred concubines and other slaves of our business partner Sultan of Sulu, and hoisted our protecting flag over that swag. And so, by the Providences of God – and the phrase is the government's, not mine – we are a World Power
Mark Twain http://www.wilsonsalmanac.com/mark_twain_war_prayer.html

he forgot to add: "a strong israel is a strong america"
"A strong America is a strong Israel"

state terrorist partners: u.s. supplies strategy, weapons and $, zionist attack dog provides military expertise
Coinciding with 9/11, U.S. Law Enforcement Officers Learn Counterterrorism Strategies From Israeli Counterpart
New York, NY, September 10, 2008 Coinciding with the seventh anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, a group of U.S. law enforcement professionals is in Israel, where they are learning advanced counterterrorism strategies from their Israeli counterparts. The delegation of more than a dozen chiefs of police from major cities across the United States is visiting Israel as part of weeklong mission organized by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The program brings the U.S. law enforcement officers into contact with Israeli law enforcement and security officers and terrorism experts to learn about Israel's strategies to prevent terror attacks. They see firsthand how Israeli emergency officials and responders prepare for terrorist attacks in a nation that can never let down its guard. "There is a lot to learn from Israel's approach to countering terrorism, and we believe that it is a wonderful opportunity for police chiefs from the United States to understand how Israel stands up to the threat everyday," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director....
ADL has trained thousands of law enforcement professionals about hate crimes, extremism and domestic and international terrorism at conferences and seminars throughout the U.S. Also, a number of top Israeli National Police commanders have traveled to the U.S. during the past years to share their expertise as part of ADL's training program.The following cities have representatives on the ADL's Nation Counter-Terrorism Seminar in Israel: Bethesda, MD; Durham, NC; Green Bay, WI; Lexington, KY; Madison, WI; Mesa, AZ; Miami, FL; Mobile, AL; Omaha, NE; Philadelphia, PA; Salt Lake City, UT; Scottsdale, AZ; Tucker, GA; and Virginia Beach, VA.

President Talabani Praises Bush as Liberator of Iraq
"We will never forget what you have done," President Talabani said to Bush.
White House Press Office
American Forces Press Service

1,255,026 Iraqis Liberated to death since U.S. invasion, occupation and destruction of Iraq

Pope: Accept death "at the hour chosen by God'
Pope Benedict XVI told ailing pilgrims Monday in an anti-euthanasia message at Lourdes, the shrine that draws the desperate, sick and dying.

U.S. 'security' fails to 'pacify' the unbeatable Iraqi resistance, blames it on "ethnic tensions"
Bombings kill at least 32 in Iraq
The blasts came as Defense Secretary Robert Gates arrived in Baghdad to meet with Iraqi officials and preside over Tuesday's handover ceremony to mark the transition of command of U.S. forces in Iraq... Bombings in Baghdad and northeast of the capital killed at least 32 people Monday, Iraqi officials said, the latest in an apparent bid by insurgents to chip away at growing public confidence in recent security gains....
At a farewell dinner for Petraeus, Gates presented the general with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal and gave Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, the Pentagon's highest award for a civilian, the Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service. Gates praised them for working effectively together. "Under your leadership," he told the two, "Iraq has been utterly transformed."...
Gates said he is focusing heavily now on expanding the use and effectiveness of intelligence and surveillance programs that have played an important part in eroding the insurgency in Iraq. Sandstorms prevented Gates' aircraft from stopping as planned at Camp Speicher, near the northern city of Tikrit, to receive a briefing on a once-secret program, known as Task Force Odin. The program has innovatively linked a variety of surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft - drones as well as manned planes - with new sensor technologies to hunt down insurgent cells. Those assets also are linked to attack helicopters and other planes capable of striking at discreet targets on short notice, day and night. One of the keys has been expanding the availability of full-motion video cameras aboard aircraft that can transmit live images to other aircraft and to ground stations, enabling quick action. "We have a lot more plans under way" for expanding that program, Gates said.
He told Congress last week that he wants to replicate Task Force Odin in Afghanistan as soon as possible. Lt. Gen. Richard Zahner, the deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence, traveling with Gates, told reporters during a stop at Incirlik air base in Turkey on Monday that he is pushing a plan to expand the uses of similar intelligence and surveillance operations in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Zahner said, for example, that the number of 24-hour-a-day "orbits" - nonstop air patrols over a particular area using remotely piloted Predators and other drones, teamed with specially equipped manned intelligence aircraft - in Iraq and Afghanistan combined has climbed from 12 in June 2007 to 27 today. It is due to rise to 28 next month and he hopes to push it to about 55 by the end of 2009.

Series of Iraqi attacks kills 18
The Associated Press
Gunmen on Saturday abducted and killed four employees of an Iraqi television station who were filming a program about the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, one of a series of attacks in Iraq that left at least 18 people dead... Northeast of the capital, eight Kurdish soldiers died in a roadside bombing that reflected how ethnic tensions remain dangerously high. The attacks underscored the persistent threat in Iraq despite significant security gains since last year.
Al-Sharqiya television said its employees were seized at noon in the northern city of Mosul... which broadcasts to Iraq from Dubai by satellite, blamed the killings on "dark forces that are destabilizing the security in Iraq, silencing the voices of freedom and attacking the national independent media."...Insurgents remain active in Mosul despite a U.S.-Iraqi offensive against them and setbacks in urban centers elsewhere in Iraq. Al-Sharqiya is owned by a former chief of radio and TV for Saddam Hussein and has been accused of being sympathetic to the former Baathists who once ruled Iraq. Prominent employees of Al-Sharqiya have fallen victim to Iraq's violence in the past. Those slain include correspondent Ahmed al-Rasheed and Walid Hassan, a comedian who performed in a series that mocked coalition forces and Iraqi governments after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003...
The dead in the bombing in eastern Baghdad included three Iraqi police commandos and a member of a U.S.-funded armed Sunni group that has turned against al-Qaida in Iraq, police and medics said on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media....Diyala is critical to Baghdad's security because of its strategic importance as a conduit for the smuggling of weapons and fighters. Its proximity to Iran is also a concern, with U.S. officials accusing Tehran of supporting Shiite militias in Iraq.

Iraqi, Iranian officials oppose US deal
Iraqi Vice-President and Iranian Majlis speaker have opposed a controversial security deal possibly to be adopted by Iraq under US pressure, PressTV reported. The US-Iraqi security deal has many negative points, including immunity from legal prosecution for American forces in Iraq, Adil Abdul-Mahdi said during a Tuesday meeting with Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani in Tehran... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=4713

No End In Sight
A damning film on the American war criminals' occupation of Iraq
Imad Khadduri, Free Iraq
(1 hour 42 minutes), if you have the time.

US a step closer to Iran blockade
By Kaveh L Afrasiabi
Sept. 13, 2008
The United States government has imposed new sanctions on Iran, this time targeting its shipping industry, by blacklisting the main shipping line and 18 subsidiaries, accusing the maritime carrier of being engaged in contraband nuclear material, a charge vehemently denied by Iran. While the economic impact of the measures against Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) will be minimal in light of the near absence of any connection between the shipping company and US businesses, this latest US initiative against Iran sends a strong signal about the US's intention to escalate pressure on Iran, even unilaterally if need be. And, perhaps, it is a prelude for more serious and dangerous actions in the near future, above all a naval blockade of Iran to choke off its access to, among other things, imported fuel.
The outgoing George W Bush administration is slowly but surely taking strident actions that will effectively tie the hands of the next US president...Should the new sanctions prove as catalysts for more aggressive US actions against Iran in international waters or the Persian Gulf, as called for by some members of US Congress seeking the interdiction of Iranian cargo ships, then by the time Bush's successor takes over at the Oval Office next January, the climate in US-Iran hostility may have degenerated to such depths that it would take a monumental effort to undo what appears to be Bush's last hurrah....
With the new tensions with Russia over Georgia lessening the prospects for fresh "multilateral" Iran diplomacy at the United Nations this autumn, the White House has now begun a new chapter in coercive, unilateral action against Iran that may well be part of a comprehensive "package approach". This could include the interdiction of Iranian ships on the high seas and even incremental steps toward imposing a regime of "smart blockade" aimed at denying Iran access to badly needed imported fuel.The purpose of the latter would be to in effect target the Iranian population by applying tangible pain that could dissipate the popular support for the government's nuclear policy, that is, its insistence that it has the right under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to enrich uranium. Doubtless, this is playing with fire and things could get nasty and rather quickly, spiralling out of control in the event of a stern Iranian reaction....
Washington hawks increasingly smell a late opportunity to defang Iran. They will surely have made their own threat analysis and estimates of risks. Should their calculations prove incorrect, it could prove disastrous with incalculable, monstrous new headaches for the US government for years to come....
Again, any such action by the US is bound to have both intended and unintended consequences, and it would be foolhardy for Washington hawks to pretend to know the full scope of the ramifications, which could be dramatic in terms of heating up a new cold war and outright militarizing the Iran nuclear crisis....
In conclusion, as tough new decisions on Iran are being plotted in Washington and Tel Aviv, the fate of peace and stability in the volatile oil region of the Persian Gulf seems once again on the verge of being compromised in the drive towards open confrontation with Iran.

From Afghanistan to Africa: The Return of U. S. Death Squads
Cnn Hallinan
Private contractors in Iraq—190,000 strong...
United Nations officials charge that secret "international intelligence services" are conducting raids to kill Afghan civilians, then hiding the perpetuators behind an "impenetrable" wall of bureaucracy... that "heavily armed internationals" leading local militias have killed scores of Afghan civilians. Coalition forces have killed more than 200 Afghan civilians since January....
the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), led such teams into Afghanistan during the 1990s in an attempt to capture or kill Osama bin Ladin, and again during the 2001 invasion.
According to Alston, the shadow units work out of two bases: U.S. Camp Ghecko near Kandahar, and a base in the province of Nangarhar. ... In his latest book, "The War Within," Bob Woodward writes that the U.S. military has a program to "locate, target and kill key individuals in extremist groups." Last month U.S. Special Forces killed the son and nephew of the governor of Salahuddin Province north of Baghdad. Unlike the shootings at roadblocks by U.S. troops, a common occurrence, Iraqi investigators say the two men were essentially executed. A U.S. spokesman said the raid was conducted to capture a "suspected Al Qaeda in Iraq operative," and that the man was injured when he "charged" the American troops. The other "suspected terrorist" was wounded and arrested. "Both men were armed and presented hostile intent," the spokesman said. But according to a spokesman for Governor Hamed al-Qaisi, U.S. troops broke into the house at 3 AM and shot the governor’s 17-year old son to death while he slept. The nephew, hearing the commotion, tried to enter the room and was gunned down as well.
The killings are similar to one near Karbala in June, where a cousin of current Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki was killed. In both cases, Iraqi authorities were kept in the dark about the impending raids.... are Special Forces in Iraq and CIA units in Afghanistan carrying out clandestine hits? In most places in the world, those groups are called "death squads."
Mercenaries are on a roll. Last month’s Associated Press story that the infamous mercenary firm Blackwater Worldwide was getting out of the private army business was a mistake. A company spokesman said the reporter had misunderstood him. Indeed, as the Iraq war winds down, firms like Blackwater, Triple Canopy and DynCorp are finding new markets to exploit, many of them in Africa.
As conservative military analyst David Isenberg points out in his column, "Dogs of War," mercenaries are, in a sense, returning to their modern roots. "The progenitor for many of today’s private security firms was the South-Africa-based Executive Outcomes, which fought in Angola and Sierra Leone," says Isenberg. Executive Outcomes and the South African Army were routed by Angolan and Cuban troops during Angola’s long and bloody civil war, a conflict that was fueled in large part by apartheid Pretoria and the US, along with help from Zaire and the People’s Republic of China....
Cold War conflicts created a growth market, and, coupled with the Reagan Administration’s passion for privatization, mercenary organizations like the U.S. Military Professional Resources Inc. (MPRI) and DynCorp became players in Latin America and the Balkans conflict. While Ronald Reagan’s and George W. Bush’s administrations generally get the credit for this privatization drive, as Tim Shorrock points out in his book, "Spies for Hire: The Secret World of Intelligence Outsourcing," it was Bill Clinton who really brought private enterprise into the business of gathering intelligence and fighting wars. (emphases added) The right-wing Heritage Foundation, a major force in the current Bush Administration, called Clinton’s 1996 budget the "boldest privatization agenda put forth by any president to date." According to Shorrock, Clinton "picked up the cudgel where the conservative Reagan left off," and by the end of his last term, had cut 360,000 federal jobs, while spending on private contractors had jumped 44 percent over 1993.
(digest: another illustration of fact u.s. ruling class and state is bipartisan)

Now the mercenaries are returning to their old haunts in Africa to train "peacekeepers."... An examination of training programs by the U.S. Army’s Strategic Studies Institute found that "Every armed group that plundered Liberia over the past 25 years had at its core" U.S. trained soldiers.... MPRI is training militaries in Benin, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Malawi, Nigeria, Rwanda and Senegal. DynCorp is doing the same in Darfur and Somalia. While the cover story is fighting terrorism and ensuring stability, U.S. military intervention—direct and through mercenaries and its client state, Ethiopia—has thoroughly destabilized Somalia, creating a crisis that rivals Darfur. While the malnutrition rate in Darfur is 13 percent, in some areas of Somalia it is 19 percent. The UN considers 15 percent to be the "emergency threshold.

"The situation in Somalia is the worst on the continent," says the UN’s top official in Somalia, Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah. According to Eric Laroche, the head of the UN’s humanitarian services (digest: part of u.s. 'soft power' domination strategy) in Somalia, conditions were much better under the Islamic Courts Union that the U.S-sponsored invasion overthrew. "It was much more peaceful and much easier for us to work. The Islamist s didn’t cause us any problems," he said.

In spite of Blackwater’s reputation as trigger-happy cowboys who gunned down 17 unarmed Iraqi civilians last year, the company may soon see action in the Sudan. Actress and Darfur activist Mia Farrow recently met with the corporation’s owner, Erik Prince, to discuss using the company in a military role in the western Sudan.

According to a 2007 study by the industrial College of the Armed Forces, "Africa may do for the [mercenary] industry in the next 20 years what Iraq has done in the past four years, provide a significant growth engine." Behind that growth, says Nicole Lee of TransAfrica, "is nothing short of a sovereignty and resource grab." The National Energy Policy Development Group estimates that by 2015, a quarter of U.S. oil imports will come from Africa. Most of these will come from the Gulf of Guinea and the western regions of North Africa, but Sudan has the second largest reserves on the continent.

The U.S. has established a military command for the region—Africom—but no nation has agreed to host it yet. While suspicions about U.S. goals in Africa run high, those doubts apparently don’t extend to U.S.-based mercenary organizations. While countries are holding Africom at arm’s length, those same countries are embracing Blackwater, DynCorp. Triple Canopy, and MPRI...

Israel has begun privatizing its security checkpoints using the Israeli mercenary company Modiin Ezrahi According to a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense, "By the end of the year all the people [guards] at the checkpoints will be civilians."... Daniel Levy, a former advisor to current Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak, says the real reason is that it walls off the Israeli population from the burdens of trying to control 2.5 million Palestinians. "It separates [the occupation] from Israeli society," he told the Financial Times, "these guys [mercenaries] don’t go home and tell their mothers what they are doing."

Elders: Eight million Pakistani tribesmen vow to fight US
14 Sep 2008 Tribal elders in North Waziristan on Saturday vowed to defend the country’s frontiers by fighting alongside security forces against any 'possible American attack'. The elders welcomed Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani’s statement, adding that it was the voice of eight million tribesmen. They said that their tribal brethren living on the Afghan side would also join the fight, as the foreign troops were subjecting them to gross injustices.

Pakistan order to kill US invaders
13 Sep 2008 Key corps commanders of Pakistan's 600,000-strong army issued orders last night to retaliate against "invading" US forces that enter the country to attack militant targets. The move has plunged relations between Islamabad and Washington into deep crisis over how to deal with al-Qa'ida [al-CIAduh] and the Taliban What amounts to a dramatic order to "kill the invaders", as one senior officer put it last night, was disclosed after the commanders - who control the army's deployments at divisional level - met at their headquarters in the garrison city of Rawalpindi under the chairmanship of army chief and former ISI spy agency boss Ashfaq Kayani.

Pakistan troops fire shots to warn off Americans
15 Sep 2008 Pakistani troops have fired shots to warn US troops not to cross into the South Waziristan region of Pakistan. Reports from the border say seven US helicopters landed on the Afghan side of the line before US troops attempted to cross the border. The incident has come amid growing anger in Pakistan over US attacks along the border region.

You Can Put Lipstick on a War Criminal, But He's Still a War Criminal
Arthur Silber
...Meanwhile, Barack Obama has repeatedly told us that Afghanistan and Pakistan is where the real action ought to be. He's restated the identical program many times over the last year and more. In August 2007, Obama said: When I am President, we will wage the war that has to be won, with a comprehensive strategy with five elements: getting out of Iraq and on to the right battlefield in Afghanistan and Pakistan; developing the capabiliti es and partnerships we need to take out the terrorists and the world's most deadly weapons; engaging the world to dry up support for terror and extremism; restoring our values; and securing a more resilient homeland.The first step must be getting off the wrong battlefield in Iraq, and taking the fight to the terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Given recent developments, Obama should be feeling as mindlessly blissful as a pig in shit. Oh, my. Did I say that? Why, yes. Yes, I did. "Taking the fight" to Afghanistan and Pakistan is the "good" war. Contemplate only one of the unending horrors of the "good" war...

Afghan Massacre - The Convoy of Death
Video 50 min -Jamie Doran
Produced and directed by Irish filmmaker and former BBC producer Jamie Doran, the film tells the story of thousands of prisoners who surrendered to the US military's Afghan allies after the siege of Kunduz. According to the film, some three thousand of the prisoners were forced into sealed containers and loaded onto trucks for transport to Sheberghan prison. When the prisoners began shouting for air, U.S.-allied Afghan soldiers fired directly into the truck, killing many of them.

Bolivia: U.S. Coup in the Making
One indication of the seriousness of the situation is that Morales just announced that US ambassador Philip Goldberg is no longer welcome in Bolivia and will be asked officially to leave the country in the coming hours. Morales accused Goldberg of meeting with the oppositional prefects (governors) of the five departments in rebellion, to help coordinate what has become a full-scale destabilization campaign. The campaign is being led by the Consejo Nacional Democrático (National Democratic Council, CONALDE), which brings together the prefectures and civic committees of Santa Cruz, Beni, Pando, Tarija, and Sucre, under the banner of “departmental autonomy.” These prefectures and civic committees in turn represent the agro-industrial, petroleum, and financial elite of these departments. While they are led by the bourgeoisie, the autonomists have won over substantial sectors of the popular classes by manipulating real democratic desires for decentralized “autonomous” self-governance, as opposed to alienating central state control. If the civic committees and prefects are the pretty face of autonomism, a growing network of proto-fascist youth groups linked to them are the clenched fist in the streets.... On national television, Bolivians watched as racist teenagers wielded clubs, whips, and two-by-fours against unarmed indigenous workers and peasants. Images of men and women with broken noses and shirts literally drenched in blood quickly made their way to You Tube, private and national state media, and the front pages of the local newspapers. These are the “democracy supporters” supported by imperialism against the “dictatorship” of Evo Morales. But where were the cops? Where was the military? The MAS government refused to act, calling instead for negotiations. And in the following weeks things intensified further, such that in the last two days Bolivia has been perched on a precipice, below which lies the defeat of left-indigenous power – on the rise since the wave of insurrections between 2000 and 2005 – and the conquest of power by imperialism and the rich and the white-mestizo elite who have long-ruled the country, and who retain control of economic power despite Morales’ electoral victory.http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article20736.htm

Bolivia tells US envoy to leave:
"The ambassador of the United States is conspiring against democracy and wants Bolivia to break apart," Mr Morales said, in a speech at the presidential palace in La Paz.

US: Bolivia's ousting of US envoy, ‘grave error’:
"President (Evo) Morales' action is a grave error that has seriously damaged the bilateral relationship," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said

At least 8 killed as Bolivia anti-govt. protests deepen, tensions with U.S. rise:
Violent anti-government protests mounted in Bolivia on Thursday, creating havoc with its key natural gas industry and increasing tensions with the U.S... Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who leads a bloc of left-wing presidents in Latin America, vowed to come to the Bolivian president's aid... "If the oligarchy, the Yankee stooges directed (and) financed by the empire (United States), topple any government we would have the green light to initiate whatever operation was needed to restore power to the people," he said...Bolivian Finance Minister Luis Arce said the army was sending more troops to natural gas fields and border crossings with Brazil after protesters vandalized pipelines and stormed a pumping station, cutting natural gas imports to Argentina and temporarily halving exports to Brazil. Bolivia is the poorest country in South America and its economy is heavily dependent on natural gas. Brazil is Bolivia's biggest foreign investor and half of its natural gas needs are met by Bolivian imports...http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080911/pl_nm/bolivia_dc

Russia ships to join Venezuela naval exercises in Caribbean
By Chris Kraul, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
The Venezuelan government announced today that four Russian naval vessels will participate in joint exercises in the Caribbean .. Venezuela's naval intelligence chief, Adm. Salbatore Cammarata Bastidas, said a task force including four Russian naval vessels and 1,000 Russian military personnel would take part in mid-November exercises with Venezuelan frigates, patrol boats, submarines and aircraft... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=47039

US demands Russia leave Georgia

'Who the f*** are you to lecture me?'
David Miliband, Foreign Secretary received the undiplomatic tongue-lashing over the telephone from Sergei Lavrov his Russian counterpart at the height of the Georgia crisis after expressing the EU's anger with the Kremlin...

The Voice of War and Oil
By Rand Clifford
...Back in the early 1990s, the world’s most promising new source of oil was the Caspian Sea basin. Big Oil rushed in and had little trouble coaxing former Soviet Republics in the region to sign contracts. (MAP) The big trouble was logistical—how to move all the billions of barrels of proven reserves from the landlocked Caspian to Western markets, without involving Russia, which all existing pipelines passed through.
By the mid 1990s, the Clinton administration devised a plan to convert newly-independent Georgia into an "energy corridor." America poured military aid and training into Georgia, and built a first pipeline to move oil from Azerbaijan to a Georgian port on the Black Sea. Then, in 2006, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline was completed, running 1000 miles from Azerbaijan, through Georgia, and on to a Mediterranean port in Turkey. (MAP)

Russia had been weakened, and was obviously alarmed by such surging American presence in their backyard. But since then, Vladimir Putin has helped drive the resurgence of Russia as a world power. Russia is now asserting itself more like America always does. In fact, many have noted that Russia’s reaction in Georgia signaled the end of an era where America has maintained a virtual monopoly on the use of military force....After years of America recruiting former Soviet Republics as client states, raking in vast profits from their militarization, and profiting on oil considerations, Russia has finally drawn the line. Russia still dominates Eurasia and its vast fossil fuel deposits. America intends to control the region—but Russia is powerful and can’t be intimidated like the others. America is in a dangerous game to provoke Russia and pad the profits of our industrial-military-congressional complex.... without pushing the Bear too far, too soon. Russia basically prefers diplomacy to conflict; America is bent on conquest. After partly surrounding Russia with military bases in former Soviet Republics...the next step of installing missiles on Russia’s borders is too much. Russia has said simply that they will not allow deployment of American missiles along their borders—missiles supposedly for defense—but clearly intended to neutralize Russia’s nuclear arsenal, if not for simple attack. How might America react to Russia installing missiles along our borders with Canada and Mexico?...

Is it the 1930s all over again?
William Bowles
The parallels with the situation in Europe prior to the outbreak of WWII surely cannot be avoided, for not only do we have an economic crisis that closely resembles the '29 Crash in its magnitude, the US-engineered invasion of South Ossetia could very well be a prelude to more dangerous provocations on the part of the US, in much the same way that German support for the fascist coup in Spain served as a testing ground not only for Hitler’s military machine but also to sew cha os and to test the reactions of two of the leading imperialist powers of the time, Britain and France. For what they all shared was a hatred of Bolshevism and ultimately, that’s what WWII was really all about, the destruction of the Soviet Union. So is history repeating itself, perhaps not as farce but as an even greater tragedy? There are of course fundamental differences not only within Europe but in the world at large...

"Medvedev: I would not call this a full-scale crisis of the likes of what existed during the Soviet period, but there is tension today. We certainly did not want this tension. It is the result of the not entirely reasonable policy the United States has pursued in Georgia. At some point they gave the Georgian leader the impression that he could do as he pleased with impunity. He seemed to think he’d received carte-blanche to take any action he wished, and we can all see now where this has led. I think there is a certain amount of frustration now in the United States at the failure of this virtual project, 'Free Georgia’. The leader has bankrupted himself, the regime is on the brink of crisis, and the situation is tense. The sooner our American partners sort out this issue the better it will be for Russian-American relations. We are ready to restore the best possible relations and develop our ties in full with the United States." 'Interview with Russian President Medvedev, On Euronews, Is it the 1930s all over again? William Bowles http://www.creative-i.info/?cat= http://www.uruknet.de/?p=47054

Cheney Warns Russia to Reverse Its Course
Dick Cheney denounced the Georgia war as evidence of a pattern of "troublesome and unhelpful actions."

US to establish naval base in Georgia:
The US is negotiating with Georgia and Turkey to establish a naval base at one of the two key Georgian ports of Batumi or Poti, reports say.

Cheney Fails to Garner Azeri Support on Nabucco Pipeline
The Moscow Times
U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney failed to win Azerbaijan's support for the construction of a new gas pipeline from the Caspian that would bypass Russia. Azeri President Ilham Aliyev indicated to Cheney during talks in Baku on Wednesday that he did not want to anger Russia in the wake of its invasion of neighboring Georgia, [SIC] Kommersant reported... Cheney was so disappointed [SIC] that he did not attend an official dinner in his honor.www.themoscowtimes.com/article/1009/42/370729.htm

U.S. Intelligence finally confesses
American intelligence confirms the latest military actions in South Ossetia were started by Georgia-- Russia’s position in the conflict was correct, says Republican California Congressman Dana Rohrabacher..."The Russians are right! We're wrong! Georgia started it, the Russians ended it," Rohrabacher said at a hearing in the House of Representatives...
he said the situation reminded him of the Bay of Tonkin incident which the U.S. used as a pretext for beginning the war in Vietnam.

Russia warns Poland on missile pact
We cannot fail to see the risks emerging as a result of U.S. strategic forces coming close to our borders,"... Dismissing U.S. insistence that the missile shield will be deployed to counter threats from such countries as Iran, Lavrov reiterated: "We are certain this system in Europe can have no other target for a long time to come but Russia's strategic forces."...
General Nikolai Solovtsov, head of strategic missile forces, warned Poland on Wednesday, the eve of Lavrov's visit to Warsaw, that U.S. missile shield sites in Europe could become "designated targets. Before Lavrov started his talks in Poland, he told the daily newspaper Polska that by agreeing to host the U.S. missile defense system, "Poland appears not to have understood that it has become a party to a very dangerous game."

A top North Korean official denied on Wednesday reports that the country's leader, Kim Jong-il, has fallen gravely ill, and said the rumors are part of a conspiracy to weaken the country's leadership. South Korean and U.S. intelligence officials said the communist state's leader may have collapsed or suffered a stroke. Kim notably failed to appear at a military parade in Pyongyang marking the country's 60th anniversary on Tuesday... the North's number two leader told Japan's Kyodo agency that there are "no problems" with Kim Jong-il's health. "We see such reports as not only worthless, but rather as a conspiracy plot," Kim Yong-nam told the agency. Seoul's Yonhap news agency said on Wednesday that the South Korean government is considering measures to be taken if Kim Jong-il's health deteriorates.... http://en.rian.ru/world/20080910/116667401.html

North Korea denies rumours of Kim Jong-il's illness
...His condition is of particular concern internationally given that there is no clear line of succession and Pyongyang recently resumed its nuclear programme, blaming the United States for leaving it on a terrorism blacklist despite an agreement of better relations in exchange for disarmament. The deal was hammered out with the US, China, Japan, South Korea and Russia, but Washington said North Korea would have to agree to an inspection system before it could be removed from the list.... South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak, convened an emergency meeting in Seoul today to discuss the situation with senior aides, an official said. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/sep/10/korea1

Kim Jong-Il's Eldest Son Returns to North Korea After Years Abroad
August 27, 2007
SEOUL, South Korea — http://www.foxnews.com/printer_friendly_story/0,3566,294732,00.html
The eldest son of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il has returned home after spending years abroad in a move that could be linked to the ruler's plans to choose an heir, a man close to Kim's son said Monday. Kim Jong Nam, 36, traveled from China to Pyongyang in late June, and his return "has decisive relations to the power transfer," the man told The Associated Press by telephone from the U.S. He spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the sensitivity of the issue.South Korea's top spy agency, the National Intelligence Service, declined to confirm the son's return....The South's spy agency had said in a report earlier this year that another father-to-son succession appears highly likely in the North. However, it indicated that there is also the possibility of a collective leadership in case of Kim Jong Il's sudden death. The elder Kim is said to be suffering from heart disease and diabetes, but the National Intelligence Service also has said his health is not believed to be as bad as some media reported in recent months. The agency said there was no sign that chronic diseases are affecting his public activities.
The junior Kim "has played a key role in North Korea," and his return means "he will proceed to the next step" in plans outlined for him, said the man in the U.S., who said he has developed a close business relationship with the leader's son and has been in contact with him. Those plans involve South Korea's aid to the North, the North's relations with the U.S. and the replacement of a cease-fire that ended the 1950-53 Korean War with a peace treaty, the man said, without giving further details.
The junior Kim has long been believed to have fallen out of favor after embarrassing his father in 2001, when he was caught trying to enter Japan on a fake passport, saying he wanted to visit Tokyo Disneyland. But the man said the allegation was made by South Korea to discredit the junior Kim as a possible successor....

did the new puppet know the costs?
Pakistan’s sovereignty, territorial integrity to be defended at all cost: Gen Ashfaq Kayani
“There is no question of any agreement or understanding with the Coalition Forces whereby they are allowed to conduct operations on our side of the border”

Missiles stir Pakistani fury at US 'invaders'... grave violation of our sovereignty".
A senior Pakistani air force official said he was awaiting orders from the Government to launch operations against "these invaders". http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24314547-25837,00.htm...
VIDEO images that have forced Pentagon's rare U-turn. Until yesterday U.S. insisted only seven civilians were killed in Nawabad on the night of August 21.

America's Plan to break up Pakistan cited in Senate
Pakistan Daily
30 August 2008 05:25 www.daily.pk
Senator Nisar A. Memon of the Pakistan Muslim League-Q alleged in the upper house on Friday that the Americans harboured the designs of breaking up Pakistan...according to a research report by Prof Michel Chossudovsky of the Global Research Canada which said the recent regime change would be followed by a 'deliberate’ political impasse, part of an evolving US foreign policy agenda which favoured disruption and disarray in the structure of the state. "Indirect rule by the Pakistani military and intelligence apparatus is to be replaced by more direct forms of US interference, including an expanded US military presence inside Pakistan," it says.
An earlier report by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had predicted a "Yugoslavia-like fate for Pakistan in a decade with civil war, bloodshed and inter-provincial rivalries as seen in Balochsitan". "Nascent democratic reforms will produce little change in the face of opposition from entrenched political elite and radical Islamic parties. In a climate of continuing domestic turmoil, the central government’s control probably will be reduced to the Punjabi heartland," the report said. Senator Memon quoted the report as saying that chaos and anarchy would be created through economic disruption, as result of which the International Monetary Fund would take Pakistan in its grip.The report alleged that British intelligence agencies were providing covert support to Balochistan’s terrorist separatists....that the ongoing turmoil in Balochistan was part of a strategy to separate the province as 'Greater Balochistan’. www.uruknet.info?p=4683 www.daily.pk/national/nationalnews/6892-americas-plan-to-breaking-up-pak...

US welcomes Zardari win in Pakistan:
Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, has welcomed the election of Asif Ali Zardari as Pakistan's president and praised what she said is his emphasis on fighting "terrorism".

Zardari... widower of the former prime minister Benazir Bhutto will have to reconcile the domestic unpopularity of the country's alliance with the west in the "war against terror" with international [read U.S.]demands that Islamabad must do more to rein in extremists based in Pakistan's tribal territory, who threaten Nato's mission in Afghanistan. US attacks in the tribal area, especially an unprecedented ground assault last week, have raised angry demands that the country abandon "America's war".

their boy buys in...
Pakistan has reopened a vital supply route to NATO forces in Afghanistan after receiving a payment of $365 million from the US.

u.s. puppet's first overseas geostrategic assignment
Asif Ali Zardari, the president-elect of Pakistan, will visit China next week to negotiate a nuclear deal similar to the one between India and the US, an official said on Monday 0/8/8

HRW [part of the George Soros NGO empire supported by u.s. govt.--- see previous digest issues] REVEALS ITS ROLE AS U.S. IMPERIALIST AGENT
US to review deadly Afghan raid
The US-led coalition has rejected the civilian tolls from the August 22 strikes on the western village of Azizabad, in Shindand district, saying only five to seven civilians were killed along with 30 to 35 fighters.... General David McKiernan, who heads the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (Isaf), said in a statement late on Sunday there was "emerging evidence" about the incident in Herat province....[ed. note: like massive protests against u.s. 'invaders' plus cell phone picture evidence of its 'collateral damage']
... HRW said the Taliban were guilty of causing civilian deaths by using ordinary people as "human shields" against troops, including by deploying into villages.Tom Porteous, HRW's director in London, told Al Jazeera that in the past Nato and the US have tended to react to reports of large numbers of civilian casualties after air strikes by denying them...."While we have have found evidence that the Taliban on some occasions deliberately used civilians as human shields - and that is entirely reprehensible and against the law - that is not a valid defence for the very high number of civilian casualties that Nato and the US are causing," he said. The international forces, and the US military in particular, needed to "end the mistakes that are killing so many civilians", said Brad Adams, HRW's Asia director, in a statement accompanying the report. "Mistakes by the US and Nato have dramatically decreased public support for the Afghan government and the presence of international forces providing security to Afghans," he said. "Civilian deaths from air strikes act as a recruiting tool for the Taliban and risk fatally undermining the international effort to provide basic security to the people of Afghanistan."...

"Afghans have never surrendered to foreign interference and have always united against the infidel invasions and have defeated the invaders unitedly," it said.
Afghanistan's insurgent Taliban movement said Thursday the United States was at the "edge of historical defeat" in Afghanistan seven years after invading following the 9/11 attacks....a statement released to mark the September 11, 2001 suicide attacks on the United States reiterated its rhetoric that the West was leading a "crusade" in Afghanistan.

Fox News Reporter...Oliver North and U.S. Afghanistan Massacre Cover-up
...Perhaps the most amazing political news surrounding the Nawabad massacre is that the Pentagon says it relied for its account, in part, on corroborative evidence by the embedded journalist on the scene: Fox News "reporter" Oliver North! The Times portrays North as coming "to prominence in the 1980s Iran-Contra affair." Actually, North was convicted for three felonies in regards to his activities during the Iran-Contra scandal. He escaped a suspended prison sentence and $150,000 in fines because, as his Wikipedia bio describes it, an "appeals court found that witnesses in his trial might have been impermissibly affected by his immunized congressional testimony." North had been deputy director for political-military affairs for the National Security Council under Reagan, until the scandal brought his career to a halt... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=4709

Afghans say will open graves to show civilian deaths
Sharafuddin Sharafiyaar, Reuters North American News Service
Relatives of Afghans killed in a U.S.-led coalition raid in western Herat province offered on Tuesday to dig up graves to support claims of large-scale civilian deaths. But they said the U.S.-led forces must leave Afghanistan "in shame" if proven that an American account of Aug. 22 air strike that most of the victims were Taliban fighters was wrong. The incident has outraged Afghans and opened a rift between coalition forces on one hand and the Afghan government and the U.N. on the other, which both say more than 90 civilians were killed...

US air power triples deaths of Afghan civilians, says report
Richard Norton-Taylor, The Guardian,
Civilian deaths in Afghanistan from US and Nato air strikes have nearly tripled over the past year, with the onslaught continuing in 2008 and fuelling a public backlash, a leading human rights group says today... "In response to increased insurgent activity, twice as many tons of bombs were dropped in 2007 than in 2006," the report says. "In 2008, the pace has increased: in the months of June and July alone the US dropped approximately as much as it did in all of 2006...

...Proud and tumultuous Gonaives is where Haiti declared independence from France in 1804 as the world's first black republic. Bloody 1985 protests led to the downfall of the father-son Duvalier dictatorship and in 2004 a deadly march fomented the ouster of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Fears that unrest is simmering here has led U.N. officials to distribute food at night under Argentine soldiers' guard...

Children of Prometheus
John Maxwell
Common Sense
September 14, 2008
The modern world was invented in the Caribbean.
Two hundred years ago the Haitians defeated the armies of Europe's major powers, Napoleon's France (twice), Britain and Spain, destroying slavery and precipitating the birth of capitalism, destroying European empire in the Western hemisphere and helping launch the United States as a world power. And they promulgated, for the first time on Earth, the reality of universal human rights. The Haitians have been paying for their temerity ever since.
Fifty years ago, the Cubans threw off the neo-colonial yoke...and successfully asserted the right of any country, no matter how small, to choose its own path to development. In the process the Cubans reordered George Canning's boast that he had brought a new world into being to redress the balance of the old...
For their sins the Cubans and Haitians continue to be punished, the Haitians by slow-motion genocide, by compound interest and by state terrorism, by armed banditry in support of criminal monopolists and by the kidnapping of their elected leader. The Cubans... by terrorism, by invasion, by biological warfare and by a brutal and illegal economic blockade.
The two peoples nearest us - to whom most of the hemisphere owe their freedom - are punished as Prometheus was for stealing divine fire and giving it to ordinary mortals. Zeus punished Prometheus when he finally caught up with him, by having him chained to a rock - perhaps in South Ossetia!, where a vulture would come to feast on Prometheus' liver, magically regenerated overnight.

Nature has dealt the Haitians and Cubans some serious blows. These blows are so numerous and so devastating that some people have begun to question whether what is happening is entirely natural. Does someone 'own' the weather?...

"The need is enormous. After 25 years spent working in Haiti and having grown up in Florida, I can honestly say that I have never seen anything as painful as what I just witnessed in Gonaïves-except in that very same city, four years ago. Again, you know that 2004 was an especially brutal year, and those who work with PIH know why: the coup in Haiti and what would become Hurricane Jeanne. Everyone knows that Katrina killed 1,500 in New Orleans and on the Gulf Coast, but very few outside of our circles know that what was then Tropical Storm Jeanne, which did not even make landfall in Haiti, killed an estimated 2,000 in Gonaïves alone."

Paul Farmer thought he would have found organisations and institutions working on disaster relief. Instead, Farmer's health care organisation - Partners in Health (Zanmi Lasante in Haitian) have been forced into the front line. PIH is a network of locally directed organisations working in 10 countries to attack poverty and inequality and bring the fruits of modernity - health care, education, etcetera - to people marginalised by adverse social forces....". we saw not a single first-aid station or proper temporary shelter. We saw, rather, people stranded on the tops of their houses or wading through waist-deep water; we saw thousands in an on-foot exodus south toward Saint-Marc. Farmer is appealing desperately for help against a background of official ignorance and failure. "A speedy, determined relief effort could save the lives of tens of thousands of Haitians in Gonaïves and all along the flooded coast. The people of that city and others have been stranded without food or water or shelter for three days and it's simply not true that they cannot be reached. When I called to say as much to friends working with the US government and with disaster-relief organisations based in Port-au-Prince, it became clear that, as of yesterday, there's not a lot of accurate information leaving Gonaïves, although estimates of hundreds of deaths are not hyperbolic."

... the American-managed coup against President Aristide was a coup against democratic community organisations as well. The Haiti Democracy Project, USAID...calculated that they would fatally undermine Aristide by destroying the grassroots organisations. What they did was to destroy the Haitians' capacity to help themselves....We need to organise to help as many people as possible survive the effects of the hurricanes. We need to organise funds for Haiti and food for Cuba...

Humanitarian crisis worsens in Haiti
By Naomi Spencer
12 September 2008
The death toll in Haiti continues to rise following a series of devastating hurricanes in the Caribbean. Official government figures have placed the number dead between 600 and 1,000, with more than 800,000 people—half of them children—in need of emergency aid throughout the country. Some 60,000 people in the hard-hit port city of Gonaives remain in temporary shelters. Haiti has been struck by four powerful storms in the span of three weeks. On Sunday, Hurricane Ike, then a Category 4 storm, dumped a foot of rain on Hispaniola. Much of Haiti remained flooded from Tropical Storm Fay, Hurricane Gustav, and Hurricane Hanna, which made landfall September 1.
The country faces a crisis of staggering proportions. A huge segment of the population—800,000 people in a country of 8.7 million—is now in desperate need of basic humanitarian assistance, according to international aid agency UNICEF. If this proportion were extrapolated to the United States, with a population of some 300 million, the number of people in need of aid would be greater than the combined populations of the Los Angeles and New York City metropolitan areas, or the entire combined state populations of Michigan, Illinois and Indiana.

Before the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season, many Haitians were already facing the threat of starvation because of spiraling food inflation in the past year. Because the vast majority of the population lives on less than $2 a day, and the devastation of crops has pushed food prices sharply higher, an even greater humanitarian catastrophe now looms.
Other countries in the Caribbean, including Cuba, the Bahamas, and Jamaica, have also sustained widespread damage to housing and infrastructure. However, Haiti has suffered losses on a level several magnitudes higher than its regional neighbors. The disparity is a reflection of the social anarchy to which the population has been subjected over a number of decades at the hands of US imperialism. The US has invaded Haiti twice in the last decade, and has for many years pursued a campaign of destabilization against the country. The US, along with the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, succeeded in keeping Haiti economically crippled over the past three decades via trade restrictions and other predatory policies. In 2004, the US, France, Canada and the UN backed the overthrow of the country’s first democratically elected president and installed a right-wing junta. Immense popular opposition was brutally put down by both foreign troops, including US Marines, and privately funded paramilitary death squads.

Much of the destruction in the country is concentrated in Gonaives, inundated with mudslides and flooding last week. The city is situated on the coast of the Artibonite valley, Haiti’s low-lying and wet agricultural region where much of the rice upon which the country depends is grown and where thousands of families subsistence farm. Because of its location in the floodplain of mountain rivers, Gonaives is particularly vulnerable to repeated floods. Surrounding hillsides—long ago deforested by former colonial occupiers—have remained largely naked by the desperately poor to make charcoal, which is commonly used in cooking in the absence of fuels and electricity.

Haitian Environment Minister Jean-Marie Claude Germain told Agence France-Presse that the country’s plant cover was currently estimated at less than 2 percent. “In neighboring Dominican Republic, plant cover is estimated at 30 percent and the army looks after the environment sector, contrary to Haiti where there’s no environment policy,” Germain told the news agency. Without groundcover, the hillsides are prone to massive mudslides and flash floods during hurricane season. As a result, valleys are inundated with mudflows. Haiti’s slums and shantytowns—comprised mainly of perennially damaged buildings, shacks built of scrap metal and plywood, and very little in the way of physical infrastructure—are overwhelmed. When Tropical Storm Jeanne struck Haiti in 2003, more than 3,000 people were killed by flooding, the majority in Gonaives.
The flooding triggered by Hurricane Hanna collapsed crumbling bridges and roads leading into the city last week. Gonaives residents, who had received little government forewarning and no assistance in evacuating, were trapped on rooftops or forced to flee into the mountains. At this writing, some 250,000 people remain stranded in the city and tens of thousands in surrounding towns are similarly cut off from aid shipments. According to the aid agency Doctors Without Borders, floodwaters in the region have receded enough for survivors to begin making their way to emergency clinics. Hundreds have arrived to be treated for starvation or jungle rot from walking for days in fetid water.

In contrast, it is worth noting that the Cuban government undertook a massive preventive evacuation of 2.6 million people in anticipation of Hurricane Ike—nearly a quarter of the country’s population. The state housed some 400,000 evacuees in more than 2,300 government shelters. Although the country was hit directly, only five deaths were attributed to the storm. Indeed, according to an Associated Press report September 10, fewer than two dozen Cubans have been killed by hurricanes in the past decade. The petty-bourgeois nationalist character of the Castro regime notwithstanding, these figures are attributable to Cuba’s central planning of essential safety measures and state control of emergency supply lines and materials. http://www.wsws.org/articles/2008/sep2008/hait-s12_prn.shtml

Cuba Rejects American Offer of Hurricane Aid
MEXICO CITY — The Cuban government turned down Washington’s offer of hurricane assistance Saturday...Cuba said that the trade embargo costs the island yearly damages that exceed the billions of dollars in destruction that it attributes to Hurricane Gustav. Cuba has accepted hurricane assistance from Russia, Venezuela and other allies. Such aid has frequently taken on a political dimension between Cuba and the United States over the years[SIC] . “The only correct and ethical action,” Cuba’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement, would be to end “the ruthless and cruel economic, commercial and financial blockage imposed against our Motherland for almost half a century.” saying the best way for the United States to help Cuban victims of Hurricane Gustav would be for it to lift the economic embargo on the island...
Cuba said it had its own experts on the job while rejecting the State Department offer to send disaster specialists to assess the damages to the western Pinar del Rio Province and the Island of Youth.... Thomas A. Shannon Jr., assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere Affairs, told the Cuban Interests Section in Washington that the United States would aid Cuban victims with $100,000 in immediate aid and more once the extent of the need was known. The aid, State Department officials said, would be sent through non-governmental organizations and not to the Cuban government... http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/07/world/americas/cubaforweb.html?ref=ame...

bye bye U.S./CIA/ NGO spies and agents aka ambassadors
Ecuador, Honduras support Bolivia, Venezuela in expulsion of U.S. envoys
Lima -- Ecuador and Honduras on Friday voiced support for Bolivia and Venezuela's decision to expel U.S. ambassadors in their countries in protest of Washington's intervention in their domestic affairs.... Bolivian Ambassador to Venezuela Jorge Alvarado said he appreciates Venezuela's sympathy with La Paz, describing the words of President Chavez as a honor and an incentive for the Bolivian people...."The Bolivians, Venezuelans and the Latin Americans should feel proud because our governments are dignifying us," Alvarado said. Alvarado said Latin American nations could not react to the U.S. intervention before, because they lived with alleged help from it. "But we are now showing that we can expel a U.S. ambassador"...Bolivian President Evo Morales on Wednesday requested U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia Philip Goldberg to leave the country immediately, accusing him of "heading the division" inside Boliviaby encouraging, together with the opposition, the protests against this government.http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-09/13/content_9961571.htm

Coup Plot Against Chavez Disclosed on Venezuelan TV
Mérida, September 11, 2008 (venezuelanalysis.com)-- On Wednesday night Mario Silva, on the program "La Hojilla" (The Razorblade) showed a recording from an unidentified source in which various military personnel, some retired and some active, were planning a coup against Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez... The coup plan aimed to take the Miraflores Palace, the headquarters of the government and the president's office. Among the participants in the recording were vice admiral Carlos Alberto Millan Millan, who was also inspector general of the National Armed Forces, general of the National Guard Wilfredo Barroso Herrera, brigade general of Aviation, and Eduardo Baez Torrealba, who was involved in the April 2002 coup attempt. In what was the possibly the last episode of "La Hojilla," a clip was shown with a recording of various phone conversations where the speakers reveal a series of movements and people who are "with them" inside various organizations and available to assist with the plan...
[Chavez] said that many such conspiracies have been prevented thanks to the Venezuelan Intelligence and that there have been plans to bomb the Miraflores."We've infiltrated the most radical and fascist movements...we've known for a long time that they are looking for land and air rockets and sophisticated equipment to blow up the presidential plane."
Chavez emphasized that if there is a coup, "the counter-coup would be overwhelming." He also linked the plot with US plans to assassinate him, "The empire is desperate and the Yankee-sympathizers here are helping them attack me." He outlined the US strategy to use Venezuelan flags on foreign or US planes in order to make it look like a local rebellion.
"The North American government is using whatever weapons it can in order to attack the leaders that have been consolidated in Latin America."

President Evo Morales on Saturday accused an opposition governor of using foreign thugs against government supporters in violence that has claimed at least 18 lives and prompted him to declare martial law in a breakaway province.

The "massacre" of peasants in the rebellious province of Pando justified the imposition of martial law, Bolivian President Evo Morales said Saturday.

Morales told indigenous union leaders his "democratic revolution" redefining land holdings and redistributing national wealth had to be seen through, they should "die for the country" in the attempt.

The Argentine government said leaders of the Union of South American Nations will hold an emergency meeting Monday to help solve the political crisis in Bolivia.

The situation in Bolivia: confrontation between the oligarchy, backed by U.S. imperialism, and the masses who support the Evo Morales government

Venezuelan military holds anti-invasion exercises:
Saturday's maneuvers in southern Bolivar state featured Russian-made Sukhoi fighter jets, ground troops, patrol boats and helicopters that fired rockets at targets.

Two Chevron Lawyers Indicted in Ecuador:
Ecuadorean government accuses in-house lawyer and outside counsel of helping to fraudulently certify predecessor company's environmental cleanup

9/11/08: on the 35th anniversary of the September 11, 1973, CIA-backed military coup in Chile, phone transcripts that Kissinger made of his talks with President Nixon and the CIA chief among other top government officials reveal in the most candid of language the... plot to overthrow democratically elected President of Chile Salvador Allende

kosher killing
Iowa meat co. fights unionization at NY warehouse
A spokesman for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, Scott Frotman, said the company's only interest is preventing its workers from organizing and demanding better pay."This is another example of how this company uses a broken immigration system to drive down wages and working conditions at its facilities," Frotman said.
Agriprocessors made headlines in May when 400 of its workers were detained during a raid on its slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa. Tuesday, Agriprocessors owner Abraham Aaron Rubashkin, his son Sholom Rubashkin and other managers at the company were charged with hiring minors to work at the Iowa slaughterhouse, including some children younger than 16 who handled saws and meat grinders.Though misdemeanors, they were the first criminal charges brought against the plant operators and could carry jail time. The company denied the allegations.After the charges were filed, the Orthodox Union, one of the largest kosher certifiers in the country, said it would suspend kosher supervision of the plant unless the company hires a new chief executive officer within "several weeks. Labor groups have long argued that if workplace protections weren't extended to illegal immigrants, a company could feel free to ignore labor standards with impunity and retaliate against any employees who complained.

snapshots: fascist 'homeland' in decline
Today's stock market developments reflect the finance capital behemoth's gangster global rule ... and great decline
Dow falls over 500 points http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3683270/> --Investors react to Lehman Brothers bankruptcy and Merrill Lynch sale 15 Sep 2008 A dramatic makeover of Wall Street sent stocks falling precipitously Monday, with the Dow Jones industrials sliding 500 points in their worst point drop since the September 2001 terrorist attacks. Investors reacted badly to a shakeup of the financial industry that took out two storied names: Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Merrill Lynch & Co.

Lehman Brothers files for Chapter 11 protection 15 Sep 2008 Lehman Brothers, a 158-year-old investment bank choked by the credit crisis and falling real estate values, filed for Chapter 11 protection in the biggest bankruptcy filing ever on Monday and said it was trying to sell off key business units.

WaMu Rating Lowered to Junk by S&P on Mortgage Losses 15 Sep 2008 Washington Mutual Inc., the biggest U.S. savings and loan, had its credit rating cut to junk by Standard & Poor's

Bank of America to Acquire Merrill as Crisis Deepens 15 Sep 2008 Bank of America Corp., the biggest U.S. consumer bank, to acquire Merrill Lynch & Co. for about $50 billion as credit crisis claimed another of America's oldest financial companies.

A.I.G. request for $40 Billion in Fed Aid to Survive rejected

Wilbur Ross: Possibly a Thousand Banks Will Close 15 Sep 2008 In an exclusive interview with CNBC.com, Wilbur Ross, chairman and CEO of WL Ross & Co., says he sees possibly as many as a thousand bank closures in the coming months. And this will create opportunities for investors.

US in 'once-in-a-century' financial crisis : Greenspan 14 Sep 2008 The United States is mired in a "once-in-a century" financial crisis which is now more than likely to spark a recession, former Federal Reserve chief Alan Greenspan said Sunday. The talismanic ex-central banker said that the crisis was the worst he had seen in his career, still had a long way to go

...The recent rise of gasoline prices contrasts sharply with the drop of oil prices on the international market...
The recent rise of gasoline prices contrasts sharply with the drop of oil prices [ed: almost $50 barrel] on the international market in recent weeks to just over $100 a barrel.... Some gas station owners in the Houston area must now pay $5 a gallon for gasoline, well over $2 more than earlier in the week... Gasoline prices rose Saturday by an average of five cents a gallon from the day before across the country as the oil industry anticipated disruptions at several refineries along the Texas coast because of Hurricane Ike... Tom Kloza, an analyst at Oil Price Information Service, said he thought most of the gasoline price increases would be over by Monday or Tuesday because oil companies would be careful not to outrage the public during a national election campaign.“The oil companies have an image and reputation to protect,” he said....

state capitalism / national socialism
United States that preached right and left the benefits of free markets and free private enterprise.

Today instead the US has performed the greatest nationalization in the history of humanity. By nationalizing Fannie and Freddie the US has increased its public assets by almost $6 trillion and has increased its public debt/liabilities by another $6 trillion. The US has also turned itself into the largest government-owned hedge fund in the world: by injecting a likely $200 billion of capital into Fannie and Freddie and taking on almost $6 trillion of liabilities of such GSEs the US has also undertaken the biggest and most levered LBO (“leveraged buy-out”) in human history that has a debt to equity ratio of 30 ($6,000 billion of debt against $200 billion of equity)....A socialism where profits are privatized and losses are socialized with the US tax-payer being charged the bill of $300 billion.

This biggest bailout and nationalization in human history comes from the most fanatically and ideologically zealot free-market laissez-faire administration in US history. These are the folks who for years spewed the rhetoric of free markets and cutting down government intervention in economic affairs. But they were so fanatically ideological about free markets that they did not realize that financial and other markets without proper rules, supervision and regulation are like a jungle where greed – untempered by fear of loss or of punishment – leads to credit bubbles and asset bubbles and manias and eventual bust and panics.

The ideologue “regulators” who literally held a chain saw at a public event to smash “unnecessary regulations” are now communists nationalizing private firms and socializing their losses: the bailout of the Bear Stearns creditors, the bailout of Fannie and Freddie, the use of the Fed balance sheet (hundreds of billions of safe US Treasuries swapped for junk toxic illiquid private securities), the use of the other GSEs (the Federal Home Loan Bank system) to provide hundreds of billions of dollars of “liquidity” to distressed, illiquid and insolvent mortgage lenders, the use of the SEC to manipulate the stock market (restrictions on short sales), the use of the US Treasury to manipulate the mortgage market (Treasury will now for the first time outright buy agency MBS to manipulate and prop up this market), the creation of a whole host of new bailout facilities (TAF, TSLF, PDCF) to prop and rescue banks and, for the first time since the Great Depression,to bail out non-bank financial institutions, and a whole range of other executive and legislative actions (including the recent bill to provide a public guarantee to mortgage for banks willing to reduce their face value).

Markets soar after US bail-out
The US government took control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on Sunday [EPA]. US stocks futures and Asian and European share markets have soared after the US government took control of mortgage finance firms Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Analysts, however, cautioned that the move was more a sign of the perilous state of the global financial system than of an imminent recovery....
The US government on Sunday seized control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which own or guarantee half of all US mortgages, ending weeks of speculation after regulators judged the companies' shrinking capital position left them too vulnerable. As part of the plan, the treasury is taking an equity stake in the companies and promised to purchase mortgage-backed securities they issue and provide however much liquidity is necessary to keep them afloat - actions that could cost $200bn....
Citigroup analysts said that the longer Washington increases its debt to essentially restructure the housing market, the more the dollar and US assets in general would be seen in a negative light. Financial firms have posted over $500 billion in credit losses and write-downs since credit markets seized up a year ago after defaults on U.S. home loans...
"We find it difficult to see how it is bullish that the heavy hand of government is needed to such an extent," David Rosenberg, a Merrill Lynch economist said on Monday. "In our view, the takeover of Fannie and Freddie is actually a testament to how broken the financial system is at this time."
The most likely long-term beneficiaries of the costliest US bailout ever would be holders of the Freddie and Fannie bonds, which were trading a full percentage point above US Treasuries on Friday. On Monday, they were effectively as safe as US government debt....

Fannie, Freddie aftershocks: More bank woes
Federal seizure of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac likely to cause big problems for hundreds of community banks nationwide, possibly new round of bank failures.

Loan Giant Overstated the Size of Its Capital Base
[A] Few Stand to Gain on This Bailout, and Many Lose
Over the years, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac showered riches on many winners: their executives, Wall Street bankers and Washington lobbyists. Now the foundering mortgage giants are leaving some losers in their wake, notably their shareholders, rank-and-file employees and, in the worst case, American taxpayers.
But even after the government seized the mortgage finance companies on Sunday and dismissed their chief executives, the companies’ outgoing leaders could see big paydays — a prospect that angers many investors, particularly because ordinary stockholders could be virtually wiped out. Under the terms of his employment contract, Daniel H. Mudd, the departing head of Fannie Mae, stands to collect $9.3 million in severance pay, retirement benefits and deferred compensation, provided his dismissal is deemed to be “without cause,” according to an analysis by the consulting firm James F. Reda & Associates. Mr. Mudd has already taken home $12.4 million in cash compensation and stock option gains since becoming chief executive in 2004, according to an analysis by Equilar, an executive pay research firm.
Richard F. Syron, the departing chief executive of Freddie Mac, could receive an exit package of at least $14.1 million, largely because of a clause added to his employment contract in November of last year as his company’s troubles deepened. He has taken home $17.1 million in pay and stock option gains since becoming chief executive in 2003...
“This is completely outrageous,” said Richard C. Ferlauto, the director of corporate governance and investment for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, a large pension fund. “It is really a slap in the face to shareholders and homeowners whose loans are at risk and taxpayers footing the bill for a bailout.”...

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have enriched their top executives for years. Mr. Mudd’s predecessor at Fannie Mae, Franklin D. Raines, took home more than $52 million while he was chief executive from 1999 to 2004, according to Equilar data. Mr. Raines later agreed to forfeit several million dollars’ worth of stock and options to resolve personal claims over allegations that Fannie Mae had inflated its earnings to raise executive bonuses. Even though Fannie Mae was forced to restate its earnings, Mr. Raines walked away with at least $25 million in pension benefits, as well as stock options he did not cash in — many of which are now worthless. Mr. Syron’s predecessor at Freddie Mac, Leland C. Brendsel, took home more than $28.4 million from 1993 to 2003, the only part of his pay package that was publicly disclosed during his 13-year tenure as chief executive.
The shareholders of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, including many employees, will not be so lucky. The companies’ share prices have plunged about 90 percent this year, wiping out about $70 billion of shareholder value. The shares are likely to be worth little or nothing under the government’s rescue plan....
Members of the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rank-and-file were big shareholders, too. Stock and options could make up a fifth of employees’ total pay. While those who bought the companies’ shares lost, short-sellers who bet against Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac won. So-called short interest in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac stock soared in recent months as the companies’ troubles deepened. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/08/business/08scorecard.html?th&emc=th

How many corporate bailouts are too many?
September 8, 2008
NEW YORK: Is the definition of what's too big to fail getting broader? ... in the wake of the help for the mortgage giants and the rescue of the investment house Bear Stearns in March by the U.S. Treasury Department and Federal Reserve, there's already talk among economists, Wall Streeters and politicians about which companies or industries will be the next to belly up to the bar. And experts are looking at the possibility that Lehman Brothers, the troubled Wall Street investment firm, or Detroit automakers will seek assistance from Washington to deal with their problems... In Washington, the ink on the plan to save Fannie and Freddie may not be dry, but already there are signs that other industries might soon seek government help. In recent months, doubts about the financial health of the automakers have been rising, and both presidential candidates, the Republican John McCain and the Democrat Barack Obama, have voiced support for providing billions in loan guarantees to Detroit.... Over the past decade, Washington has thrown a lifeline to everything from Long-Term Capital Management, a troubled hedge fund, to the airline and insurance industries after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001. Now Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage finance companies whose rescue plan was announced Sunday, are the latest to join the club....

... says Jonathan Koppell, director of the Millstein Center for Corporate Governance and Performance at Yale. "Do we live in a market economy or not? If we do, it seems companies have to be allowed to fail. If we say companies can't fail because they're too big or the consequences are too great, we have something else."'
...in the wake of the help for the mortgage giants and the rescue of the investment house Bear Stearns in March by the U.S. Treasury Department and Federal Reserve, there's already talk among economists, Wall Streeters and politicians about which companies or industries will be the next to belly up to the bar. And experts are looking at the possibility that Lehman Brothers, the troubled Wall Street investment firm, or Detroit automakers will seek assistance from Washington to deal with their problems.

US auto industry pushes for $50b loan:
Auto industry allies hope to secure up to $US50 billion ($A61.69 billion) in US government loans this month

U.S. Gives Banks Urgent Warning to Solve Crisis
September 12, 2008
As Lehman Brothers teetered Friday evening, Federal Reserve officials summoned the heads of major Wall Street firms to a meeting in Lower Manhattan and insisted they rescue the stricken investment bank and develop plans to stabilize the financial markets.... Timothy F. Geithner, the president of the New York Federal Reserve... told the banks this was about fixing the system and preventing the crisis from worsening...
By the time Lehman’s shares went into a spiral this week, Fed and Treasury officials were convinced that Lehman posed far fewer real risks than Bear Stearns had back in March. The confidence by Washington officials stemmed from the fact that, after the Bear Stearns collapse, they obtained stronger regulatory powers that gave them the ability to peer into the activities and risk exposures of institutions on Wall Street. Fed officials, for example, are now embedded at each of the big Wall Street investment banks and have at least some capacity gauge the firms’ exposure to hedge funds and other big players, as well as their positions in financial derivatives and other opaque markets. Fed and Treasury officials have also been taking the daily pulse of executives and traders on Wall Street for months, and much of that discussion has been about Lehman.... the government has no plans to put taxpayer money on the line... taxpayers could still end up on the hook for at least as much money as they were in the case of Bear Stearns. Lehman’s successor will still be able to borrow from the Fed’s new lending program for major investment banks, which the Fed created in response to the collapse of Bear Stearns in March. If Lehman were to borrow money and then default on its loans, the Fed’s losses would reduce the amount of money it turns over to the Treasury...

FBI wants new tools in terrorism assessments
WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration proposed guidelines Friday that would give the FBI more tools to assess national security and foreign intelligence threats. Agents would be permitted to use tactics only allowed in criminal cases: physical surveillance, recruitment of sources and "pretext interviews" - where the real purpose would not be revealed.
Commenting on the decision to leave the 2003 guidelines on race, religion and ethnicity unchanged, Justice Department spokesman Brian Roehrkasse said, apart from the briefing, "It is simply not responsible to say that race may never be taken into account when conducting an investigation. The reality is that a number of criminal and terror groups have very strong ethnic associations."...Existing guidelines do not allow an investigation based on factors like race alone; there must be some other evidence of a threat or crime, the senior officials said at the briefing. The officials said they want the guidelines to take effect Oct. 1.
They described a threat assessment as an information-gathering tool - usually based on a tip or a news story - to determine whether a problem exists. An example would be learning whether Iranian agents are operating in a U.S. location to obtain technology secrets.... the threat assessment could trigger a formal investigation of Americans in foreign intelligence and national security matters.... they would be able to work on the assessment - such as conducting Internet searches - without high-level approval from supervisors.

Down on the sea wall, Robert Shumake laughed when asked why he had not left the island. Walking with the American flag on a four-foot pole, Mr. Shumake said he had not broken his routine in seven years and, “by golly,” he was not going to deviate now. Since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, he said, he has not missed a day of his morning ritual of walking along the shore carrying the flag. "This is nature meets the proud United States of America, and my US of A is going to win."
- ROBERT SHUMAKE, of Galveston, Tex., on the approach of Hurricane Ike. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/13/us/13galveston.html?th&emc=th

A Murderous Theater of the Absurd
John Pilger
...Those paid to keep the record straight have strained to present a spectacle of choice. Barack Obama, the man of "change," wants to "build a 21st-century military... to stay on the offensive everywhere." Here comes the new Cold War, with promises of more bombs, more of the militarized society with its 730 bases worldwide, on which Americans spend 42 cents of every tax dollar. At home, Obama offers no authentic measure that might ease America's grotesque inequality, such as basic health care. John McCain, his Republican opponent, may well be a media cartoon figure – the fake "war hero" now joined with a Shakespeare-banning, gun-loving, religious fanatic – yet his true significance is that he and Obama share essentially the same dangerous prescriptions. Thousands of decent Americans came to the two nominating conventions to express the dissenting opinion of millions of their compatriots who believe, with good cause, that their democracy is evaporating. They were intimidated, arrested, beaten, pepper-gassed; and they were patronized or ignored by those paid to keep the record straight.... http://www.uruknet.de/?s1=1&p=47167&s2=12

...neither candidate will change the U.S. direction of the quest for world domination....Obama, the "anti-war" darling of the left, advocated military action in Pakistan long before a Republican candidate had the nerve to venture such a dimwitted strategy. The losers are the people of the countries [where] the U.S....uses weapons of mass destruction.. http://www.malcomlagauche.com/id1.html

911 and the "American Inquisition"
..."Millions of people have been misled regarding the causes and consequences of September 11. Across the land, the image of an "outside enemy" is instilled in the consciousness of Americans. Al Qaeda is threatening America and the world. The repeal of democracy under the Patriot legislation is portrayed as a means to providing "domestic security" and upholding civil liberties. When people across the US and around the World find out that Al Qaeda is not an outside enemy but a creation of US foreign policy and the CIA, the legitimacy of the bipartisan war agenda will tumble like a deck of cards... Michel Chossudovsky, Globalresearch

9/11: All In One Chunk
9/11 Basic Questions + WRH 9/11 Index + Questions for Michael Moore
Michael Rivero, What Really Happened
1. Why didn't jets intercept the airliners since they had numerous warnings of terrorist attacks? 2. Why did Ashcroft stop flying commercial airlines, citing an unidentified "threat" in July 2001? 3. Why did FEMA lie about their presence in New York on 9/11? 4. Why didn't the Secret Service hustle Dubya out of the classroom?... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=47147

VIDEO: ZERO: An Investigation Into 9/11
ZERO: An Investigation into 9/11, has one central thesis - that the official version of the events surrounding the attacks on 9/11 can not be true. This brand new feature documentary from Italian production company Telemaco explores the latest scientific evidence and reveals dramatic new witness testimony, which directly conflicts with the US Government's account. Click to view http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article20731.htm

9/11 Truth Film To Be Broadcast On Prime Time Russian TV
Who was involved in 9/11? Documentary reveals shocking facts
Russia Today
On the anniversary of 9/11, an Italian-produced documentary called ZERO, investigating the tragedy, is opening in Russia. The authors believe that the U.S. official version of events surrounding the attacks can't be true. U.S. networks have rejected the film.

The Army's Totally Serious Mind-Control Project
By Mark Thompson / Washington
Soldiers barking orders at each other is so 20th Century. That's why the U.S. Army has just awarded a $4 million contract to begin developing "thought helmets" that would harness silent brain waves for secure communication among troops. Ultimately, the Army hopes the project will "lead to direct mental control of military systems by thought alone."... improvements in computing power and a better understanding of how the brain works have scientists busy hunting for the distinctive neural fingerprints that flash through a brain when a person is talking to himself. The Army's initial goal is to capture those brain waves with incredibly sophisticated software that then translates the waves into audible radio messages for other troops in the field. "It'd be radio without a microphone, " says Dr. Elmar Schmeisser, the Army neuroscientist overseeing the program. "Because soldiers are already trained to talk in clean, clear and formulaic ways, it would be a very small step to have them think that way."
B-movie buffs may recall that Clint Eastwood used similar "brain-computer interface" technology in 1982's Firefox, named for the Soviet fighter plane whose weapons were controlled by the pilot's thoughts. (Clint was sent to steal the plane, natch.) Yet it's not as far-fetched as you might think: video gamers are eagerly awaiting a crude commercial version of brain wave technology — a $299 headset from San Francisco-based Emotiv Systems — in summer 2009...
The five-year contract it awarded last month to a coalition of scientists from the University of California at Irvine, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of Maryland, seeks to "decode the activity in brain networks" so that a soldier could radio commands to one or many comrades by thinking of the message he wanted to relay and who should get it. Initially, the recipients would most likely hear transmissions rendered by a robotic voice via earphones. But scientists eventually hope to deliver a version in which commands are rendered in the speaker's voice and indicate the speaker's distance and direction from the listener....
"Having a soldier gain the ability to communicate without any overt movement would be invaluable both in the battlefield as well as in combat casualty care," the Army said in last year's contract solicitation. "It would provide a revolutionary technology for silent communication and orientation that is inherently immune to external environmental sound and light."
And don't overlook potential civilian benefits. "How often have you been annoyed by people screaming into their cell phones?" Schmeisser asks. "What if instead of their Bluetooth earpiece it was a Bluetooth headpiece and their mouth is shut and there's blessed silence all around you?"...
* http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1841108,00.html