9-1 U.S.'Victory' Demands Iraq Proxy 'Partner' in 'Race for Iran'; Regional Obstacles Increase

Iraq to spend $13B on U.S. arms, equipment that U.S. officials say shows Iraqi - U.S. military ties will be tight for years to come
The sales will make Iraq among the world's biggest customers for American military arms and equipment. "It helps to build their capabilities, first and foremost; and second, it builds our strategic relationship for the future," said Army Lt. Gen. Michael Barbero, the ranking U.S. officer responsible for training and advising Iraq forces...Military sales, which often include lengthy maintenance and training contracts, are part of U.S. efforts to maintain a relationship with Iraq...Iraqi forces saw firsthand the effectiveness of America's M-1 tank during the Persian Gulf War in 1991, when the U.S. Army obliterated the slower and less sophisticated Iraqi tanks...In addition to the $13 billion purchase, the Iraqis have requested 18 F-16 Falcon fighter jets as part of a $3 billion program that also includes aircraft training and maintenance. If approved by Congress, the first aircraft could arrive in spring 2013. Under the plan, the first 10 pilots would be trained in the U.S. Iraq's conventional weaponry came largely from the Soviet Union and was ravaged by Saddam Hussein's [ed: U.S. supported] war with Iran in the 1980s and the Gulf War led by the US. The Iraqi air force was practically wiped out in the wars. Later, United Nations sanctions after the Gulf War prevented Saddam from maintaining his military.

U.S. Withdrawal from Iraq Fiction
It was perversely hilarious to observe the corporate media, last week, as they collectively celebrated an event that never happened. "Last combat soldiers leave Baghdad" read the Washington Post headline, with variations on the same fantasy theme in Newsweek, UPI, Reuters...virtually everywhere. Stryker units are now "Advise and Assist Brigades." National Guard infantry brigades left behind in Iraq... are no longer "combat" units, but "security" forces. There are also 4,500 Special Forces troops in Iraq, who are prepared to train other soldiers in the daytime and kill all night long. One had to turn to the Army Times newspaper for an accurate headline:"Combat Brigades in Iraq Under Different Name."
The New York Times and its sister publications seem to think their readers will believe anything, no matter how ridiculous on its face. For example, The Times adopted the new practice of calling U.S. bases in Iraq "fortified compounds." Combat soldiers, you see, live on bases. Personnel involved in advising and assisting Iraqis live in fortified compounds.
"Powerful figures in the Obama administration say they are confident they can talk the Iraqis into allowing 10,000 uniformed American troops to stay in the country after the deadline."
In addition to the fantasy reporting, American military and civilian authorities are conducting fantasy arguments behind closed doors about whether the U.S. is going to withdraw all of its military forces, regardless of the nomenclature, by the end 0f 2011 - as required by solemn agreement with the Iraqis. One faction favors deploying a force of up to 10,000 mercenaries, complete with their own armored trucks, air force and missile-firing drones. But powerful figures in the Obama administration say they are confident they can talk the Iraqis into allowing 10,000 uniformed American troops to stay in the country after the deadline. Certainly, billions of dollars in bribes can sometimes work wonders - but U.S. plans for an eternity in Iraq have repeatedly been thwarted by the Iraqi people, themselves.
One thing is perfectly clear: the United States is an empire that has never voluntarily withdrawn from any of its bases or "fortified compounds." The Americans are playing word games. They will leave Iraq only when they are forced to do so. For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Glen Ford. On the web, go to www.BlackAgendaReport.com.

NYT CALLS IT 'THE PERCEPTION IT HELPED CREATE: U.S. 'strategic communications' attempted to 'justify' attacking Iraq again in 2001 before Saddam's WMDs destroyed amerika. 'News' brought to you courtesy of state-controlled U.S. media
Obama announces end to American combat mission in Iraq.
"“Operation Iraqi Freedom is over and the Iraqi people now have lead responsibility for the security of their country...Through this remarkable chapter in the history of the United States and Iraq, we have met our responsibility. Now, it’s time to turn the page."...Under an agreement between Iraq and the United States, the remaining troops are to leave by the end of 2011, though some Iraqi and American officials say they think that the agreement may be renegotiated to allow for a longer American military presence...
This was no iconic end-of-war moment with photos of soldiers kissing nurses in Times Square or victory parades down America’s Main Streets.
Instead, in the days leading to the Tuesday night deadline for the withdrawal of American combat troops, it has appeared as if administration officials and the American military were the only ones marking the end of this country’s combat foray into Iraq. Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., and Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, are all in Baghdad for the official ceremony on Wednesday.
The very sight of Mr. Obama addressing Americans from the Oval Office [just redecorated for him]— from the same desk where Mr. Bush announced the beginning of the conflict — shows the distance traveled since the Iraq war began. On the night of March 20, 2003, when the Army’s Third Infantry Division first rolled over the border from Kuwait into Iraq, Mr. Obama was a state senator in Illinois.
Mr. Bush was at the height of his popularity, and the perception [SIC] at home and in many places abroad was that America could achieve its national security goals primarily through military power. One of the biggest fears among the American troops in the convoy pouring into Iraq that night — every one of them suited in gas masks and wearing biohazard suits — was that the man they came to topple might unleash a chemical weapons attack. Seven years and five months later, the biggest fears of American soldiers revolve around the primitive, basic, homemade bombs and old explosives in Afghanistan left over from the Soviet invasion [silence about U.S created & armed mujahadeen to displace/replace Russian invaders, now fighting and defeating U.S.].
In Iraq, what was perceived [SIC!!!] as a threat from a powerful dictator, Saddam Hussein, has dissolved into the worry that as United States troops pull out [NB: in keeping with amerika's great white savior myth it is the imperialist destroyers' departure, not their destruction, that creates 'instability' ,which requires their continuing 'humanitarian development and good governance aid' to ward off 'foreign intervention' and secure US domination] they are leaving behind an unstable and weak government that could be influenced by Iran... “A war to disarm a state became a fight against an insurgency ['insurgency' to suggest puppet govt. is actual legitimate Iraq govt., vs. reality --- nationalist resistance to invaders/occupiers]. Terrorism and sectarian warfare [made-in-usa] threatened to tear Iraq apart. Thousands of Americans gave their lives; tens of thousands have been wounded Mr. Obama said.

American officials had hoped to have a new government in place long before the Tuesday deadline, “The longer that takes, the more frustrated they might get with the process itself,” General Odierno said. “What I don’t want is for them to lose faith in the system, the democratic system, and that’s the long-term risk, do they lose faith in the process...“If we get the government formed, I think we’re O.K.,” General Odierno said. “If we don’t, I don’t know.””... end of combat operations has largely gone unnoticed by Iraqis..[not by the resistance and its broad support who intensified national liberation war against traitors] American officials have conceded they were dealt a blow last week by a wave of car bombings, roadside mines and hit-and-run attacks that insurgents unleashed in at least 13 towns and cities across Iraq. The attacks were “not unexpected,” General Odierno said. “What I would tell you surprised me a little bit was that they were able to do it over the country with some coordination.”... Critics of a conflict that killed an estimated 100,000 Iraqis [over 1,366,000 Iraqis Slaughtered in U.S. Invasion & Occupation of Iraq www.justforeignpolicy.org/iraq/iraqdeaths.html] perhaps far more, and more than 4,700 American soldiers might see the acknowledgment as evidence of the war’s folly.Asked if the US had made the country’s divisions worse, General Odierno said, “I don’t know.” “There’s all these issues [NOT the invasion -occupation but how US 'managed/ it] that we didn’t understand and that we had to work our way through...And did maybe that cause it to get worse? Maybe.” http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/30/world/middleeast/30iraq.html?fta=y

Operation Iraqi Freedom Picture Album Depicts Reality of US Liberation

Afghan puppets are the democratic future for Afghanistan. Afghans who resist the occupation and fight for its liberation from imperialist conquest are terrorists hunted down like animals and killed by the tens of thousands by 150,000 foreign 'liberator' troops.
CIA pays many in Karzai administration: report
8-27-10 Reuters -- The CIA is making payments to a significant number of officials in Afghan President Hamid Karzai's administration, The Washington Post reported Friday. Citing current and former U.S. officials, the paper said the payments were long-standing in many cases and intended to help the agency maintain a source of information within the Afghan government. Some Karzai aides were CIA informants and others received payments to ensure their accessibility, citing a U.S. official who spoke on condition of anonymity.. http://www.uruknet.de/?p=69245

American Soldiers Brainwashed with "Positive Thinking"
By Bruce E. Levine, AlterNet
Posted on July 28, 2010, Printed on July 30, 2010
The U.S. Army is planning to require that all 1.1 million of its soldiers take intensive training in positive psychology and emotional resiliency. Army Research Psychologist Capt. Paul Lester, who leads the assessment of the program, told the National Psychologist (“Army to Train its Own in Positive Psychology,” July/August 2010), “As far as I can tell this is the largest, deliberate, psychological intervention in human history. . . . We don’t know when the global war on terrorism is going to end so we’re preparing to have to be engaged for a long period of time.” Lester said the program would develop “communication skills, cognitive reforming skills and help soldiers not to catastrophize -- don’t think of the worse case scenario about every potential problem.” The program also teaches soldiers to focus on “expressing appreciation” and “correcting negative views of ambiguous events.”

Leaving as Heroes?
By William Blum
September 01, 2010 "Information Clearing House" -- "They're leaving as heroes. I want them to walk home with pride in their hearts," declared Col. John Norris, the head of a US Army brigade in Iraq...no American should be allowed to forget that the nation of Iraq, the society of Iraq, have been destroyed, ruined, a failed state. The Americans, beginning 1991, bombed for 12 years, with one excuse or another; then invaded, then occupied, overthrew the government, killed wantonly, tortured ... the people of that land have lost everything — their homes, their schools, their electricity, their clean water, their environment, their neighborhoods, their mosques, their archaeology, their jobs, their careers, their professionals, their state-run enterprises, their physical health, their mental health, their health care, their welfare state, their women's rights, their religious tolerance, their safety, their security, their children, their parents, their past, their present, their future, their lives ... More than half the population either dead, wounded, traumatized, in prison, internally displaced, or in foreign exile ... The air, soil, water, blood and genes drenched with depleted uranium ... the most awful birth defects ... unexploded cluster bombs lie in wait for children to pick them up ... an army of young Islamic men went to Iraq to fight the American invaders [ed: all resisters are the heroes]; they left the country more militant, hardened by war, to spread across the Middle East, Europe and Central Asia ... a river of blood runs alongside the Euphrates and Tigris ... through a country that may never be put back together again...
"Unhappy the land that has no heroes ...
No. Unhappy the land that needs heroes."
– Bertolt Brecht, Life of Galileo
William Blum,once a low-level State Dept. employee disillusioned by Vietnam War, is the author of:
Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War 2; Rogue State: Guide to the World's Only Superpower; Freeing the World to Death: Essays on the American Empire;
Portions of the books can be read at www.killinghope.org

Taliban footprint 'spreading': Petraeus
21 US killed fighting the Taliban in the last four days soldiers in the east of Afghanistan...Petraeus acknowledged the spread of Taliban influence... expanding their footprint across the country as foreign forces close in on their traditional southern strongholds... but said the campaign to counter the insurgency was nearing its final stages with the number of US and NATO troops set to peak at 150,000 in the coming days....President Obama's surge of an extra 30,000 troops is aimed at flooding the Taliban hotspots of Kandahar and Helmand and adding pressure on the insurgents, he said. ... http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100831/wl_sthasia_afp/afghanistanunrestnat...

Afghanistan war 'lost cause': Ex-Pakistan spy chief:
The U.S.-led war in Afghanistan is a "lost cause," said a former Pakistani intelligence chief, and the United States needs to negotiate peace with Taliban leader Mullah Omar. "You have to talk to him, and I'm sure it will work out very well," Lt. Gen. Hamid Gul told CNN's Fareed Zakaria in an interview to air Sunday. U.S. intelligence documents published last week by WikiLeaks cited Gul and implicated Pakistani intelligence as supporting al Qaeda. Gul has denied the allegations. "I'm quite a convenient scapegoat," he said. "I don't support any one faction in Afghanistan. I support the Afghan nation."The career military officer, who supported the U.S.-backed Taliban resistance against Soviet occupation during the 1980s, called the U.S. occupation of Afghanistan "unjust" and said he sees legitimacy in the Afghan insurgency against Western forces. "This is a national resistance movement. It should be recognized as such," he said. "They are Mujahedeen of Afghanistan as they were during the occupation of Afghanistan by the Soviet Union." The attacks of September 11 were a pretext to a war already under consideration, Gul said. "I think some of the neocons, who were very close to President [George W.] Bush, they wanted that he could embark on a universal adventure of Pax Americana, and they thought that the world was lying prostrate in front of them," he said. The 2001 terrorist attacks helped win the public support for the neocon plans, he said.
There was no legitimate reason for the United States to attack Afghanistan, Gul said, because the FBI had no solid evidence that Osama bin Laden was involved in the attacks on New York and Washington. "Why has not a single individual connected to 9/11 been caught in America so far, and why hasn't Osama bin Laden been charged?" With no evidence anyone in Afghanistan was involved, there is no way to legitimize the U.S. occupation, Gul said.

Taliban dismiss Time cover as 'desperate propaganda'
(AFP) WASHINGTON — The Taliban dismissed the use of a mutilated Afghan woman on a Time magazine cover as "desperate propaganda" and denied being the culprits, a US monitoring group said Monday. "This desperate propaganda by Time magazine has shown the whole world the lengths which the world media will go to please America, even at the cost of their journalistic integrity," a Taliban spokesman said on the website of the group, which calls itself the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
The statement accused the Americans of "publishing these lies to divert attention of the people from their clear and disgraceful defeat. "This picture published by Time magazine and the barbaric story wrongly attached to Islamic Emirate is not only false, but publishing these images are against the morals and ethics of professional journalism" A lot of journalists worldwide condemned this act of Time magazine and called it a crime against journalism.As far as the story of Aisha is concerned, Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan condemned this barbaric, inhumane and un-Islamic act and declares that this case has never been forwarded to any court or persons of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan."

US fires on civilian Bagram protest
by Tom Mellen August 24, 2010
US troops fired on thousands of Afghan civilians as they protested the arrest of a religious teacher suspected of taking part in a rocket attack on occupation forces outside the massive US military base at Bagram on Monday. Parwan province deputy police chief General Faqir Ahmad was adamant one civilian had been killed...enraging the crowd, which he put at about 2,000 people...but NATO asserted no civilians had been killed or injured... that soldiers had only fired "warning shots" to disperse residents after they surrounded a military patrol and attacked vehicles outside the sprawling facility with rocks and iron bars...Monday's clash between locals and occupation forces outside the Bagram base is the second such incident in 10 days. August 15 hundreds of residents participated in a militant protest demonstration at the construction of military facilities on land owned by villagers. Protesters threw "baseball-size rocks" at troops as they escorted a mercenary to the base, according to NATO....
Also Monday, officials and residents of Baghlan province in the north of the country accused NATO troops of killing eight civilians during a pre-dawn raid. Mohammed Ismail, the governor of the Talah wa Barfak District, said that foreign troops broke into a district house at 2am and killed eight civilians, injured 12 and took nine prisoners. The province's governor Munchi Abdul Majid confirmed the attack...NATO spokesman Major Michael Johnson said he was unaware of such an attack. Meanwhile Taliban attacked and torched a NATO convoy carrying fuel and materiel to US troops in the south.Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi claimed responsibility for the attack on the lorries destined for Helmand and alleged the assault forced US to evacuate their military base in Sangin.

The gangs of Kandahar - the real power
The surprising thing is that the real power in the city seems to lie not with the Taliban but, say locals, with a series of different armed groups. Like some mafia capital, the real decisions here, say locals, are made by powerful "warlords", commanders of armed bands, and dominant tribes said by all to have grown rich from the swelling contracts to work with NATO troops, in particular US forces....I saw one tribal elder bravely tell President Hamid Karzai, when the Afghan president visited, "it's too easy to blame the Taliban for everything."...The word that Kandaharis use is "militia" – a term for irregular forces that sums up gunmen who may appear here in the uniforms of private security companies, as members of the police or other government force, or out of uniform as thugs-for-hire to extort or intimidate. Most disturbing was the frequent suggestion that the reason for the power exerted by these groups was their close relationship with both the US military and other parts of the coalition, including intelligence agencies. Although the US coalition officially condemn any form of "militias", insisting they work only with groups approved and licensed by the Afghan government, in reality many of the gunmen who "belong" to the powerful warlord clans of the city have been enlisted for help by NATO. Armed militias may be found as guards at coalition gates or as guards that protect Nato supply convoys, in the guise of interpreters and other staff at coalition bases, and as special units attached to coalition special forces and intelligence teams. Two powerful warlords, for instance, seized most of the "government" property in the city used by NATO. One controls construction projects. Another has powerful influence on who gets employed at the huge Kandahar airbase. According to those I interviewed, most of the power held by the militia leaders stems not from their links to the Afghan government but from the hundreds of millions of pounds of contracts awarded by the military and Western civilian agencies...

Afghan resistance statement regarding Petraeus’s latest remarks
Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, August 24, 2010
The commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan, David Patraeus, in a BBC radio interview said the Taliban momentum has been reversed in the south of the country and capital Kabul and if his strategy is implemented more forcefully, they would see a much bigger chance of success in Afghanistan. We believe pressure from Washington, the heavy workload inherited from previous generals and his strategy’s complete failure force him to turn to the media to portray defeat as a success...http://www.uruknet.de/?p=69123

puppet parrot performance
8-27-10 Karzai: Obama's 2011 Pullout Timetable 'Boosting Enemy Morale'
The chief of the U.S. Marine Corps, General James Conway, made a similar comment earlier this week, telling a news conference Mr. Obama's pullout date "is probably giving our enemy sustenance,"... But, Conway also said Taliban militants in Afghanistan will be in for a surprise when they realize American troops will continue fighting them.

Marine Corps commandant Gen. James Conway said Thursday that the administration's plan to begin U.S. troop withdrawals from Afghanistan in July 2011 is probably giving the Taliban "sustenance" and a "morale boost" (AJE, NYT, AP, FT, Times, Tel, Post). Gen. Conway,scheduled to retire this fall, followed up by commenting that the ongoing U.S. presence after July 2011 could be a blow to the "enemy's psyche" and could force insurgent commanders to explain themselves to their footsoldiers after the deadline passes.

US: $1.3 billion more on Afghanistan bases
By Bill Van Auken, Aug.24,2010
The Pentagon is embarking on a major base construction effort in Afghanistan as Obama administration and military officials make it clear the US "surge" will last well past the July 11 deadline for beginning a drawdown of US troops. The Washington Post reported Monday the US Congress is preparing to pass legislation providing "$1.3 billion in additional fiscal 2011 funds for multiyear construction of military facilities in Afghanistan". These funds would cover, in part, $100 million expansions for each of three major US air bases in different parts of the country....indicative of plans "to support increased US military operations well into the future."...http://www.uruknet.de/?p=69126

US security detain Pakistani CENTCOM Delegation at WA’s Dulles airport on complaint by passenger who did not feel safe sharing the flight with them
The brigadier and others in this eight-member Pakistan delegation were removed from the United Airlines flight and detained after they disembarked. They were later released. The delegation included senior officials from all three services, the army, the navy and the air force. United Airline officials informed the Transport Security Administration who detained the brigadier and later other officials as well. The leader of the Pakistani delegation showed TSA officials an invitation letter from the Centcom, confirming that they were going to Tampa for a meeting. He also showed them all the passports that identified the delegation as senior military officers.
He then requested to talk to a senior TSA official or the person in-charge of security at the airport but his request was turned down. ““The delegation was detained for two hours, telling them nothing, not allowing them to talk to anyone, They did not let them speak and treated them like terrorists...“They received no response even when they showed them their passports and the Centcom letter,” said a Pakistani official. The dispute became a major diplomatic row as the delegation, offended by this treatment, decided to cancel an important meeting at the headquarters of the US Central Command in Tampa, Florida, on Tuesday, and return home...
In Islamabad, the Inter Services Public Relations said: “A Pakistani military delegation on a visit to US (on US invitation to attend a meeting at Centcom) was subjected to unwarranted security checks at Washington airport by US Transport Security Agency. Later, the delegation was cleared and US defence officials regretted the incident. However, as a result of these checks, military authorities in Pakistan decided to cancel the visit and call the delegation back.”

Terrorism claims 81 lives in week in northwest Pakistan
2010-08-31 http://english.news.cn/
ISLAMABAD, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- The continuing spate of terrorism killed at least 81 lives, including civilians and militants, during the past week in northwest Pakistan's tribal areas bordering Afghanistan, intelligence reports suggested...Aug. 23 was the worst day as terrorists were at loose retaliating against closing down of their flood relief camps providing cooked food and other essentials to flood victims in the northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Local analysts believe the "preemptive" crackdown was initiated by Pakistani law enforcers at the behest of concerns expressed by U.S. Senator John Kerry. A large number of civilians had to pay a heavy toll of lives as a result of this hush-hush affair, further igniting the spewing front in a situation which demands focus on flood rescue and relief operations. The chairman of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee who visited Pakistan last week thought insurgent militants might exploit the flood disaster situation to their advantage in the " image building" struggle...At least 53 people have lost lives in three major incidents in northwest Pakistan and a caravan of NATO trucks was torched in eastern Punjab province Aug. 23, the day Pakistani law enforcers closed down 16 relief camps run by disbanded organizations...
A U.S. drone strike killed 13 militants and seven civilians in Dandey Darpakhel, 5 km from Miranshah in North Waziristan on the same day. A second U.S. drone attacked four disbanded Tehrik-e- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militants in Kurram tribal area Friday....

4 NATO oil tankers destroyed in Pakistan
2010-08-29 http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2010-08/29/c_13468331.htm
ISLAMABAD,(Xinhua) -- At least four NATO supply oil tankers were completely destroyed Sunday in an attack near Torkham, Pakistan-Afghanistan border area in northwest of Pakistan, local media reported. Militants attacked NATO tankers supply caravan in with rockets turning the four tankers into ashes in Khyber Agency tribal area of Pakistan, local sources told DAWN. However, no casualties were reported. Attacks on NATO supply truck have been accelerated this year where almost a hundred of trucks and oil tanker carrying supplies to 140,000 U.S. and multinational troops fighting insurgency in Afghanistan were frequently attacked and destroyed in southern Balochistan and troubled northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.However, the U.S Embassy in a clarifying statement on Friday denied news reports that the continuing devastating floods in Pakistan have disrupted supply to NATO forces in Afghanistan through Pakistan.Some 70 percent of NATO supplies and 40 percent of its fuel are being shipped through trucks into the landlocked Afghanistan from the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi. Shipment of arms and ammunition to NATO troops fighting Taliban in Afghanistan through land routes had also been resented in Pakistan.

[the new youth-oriented NGOs PYA & YCP mentioned below have no customary search functions, links to customary 'partners', etc. or working 'contact' links]
From the floods, Pakistan's next generation emerges
The floods, which have killed 1,600 people and made millions homeless, have exposed the Pakistani state's shortcomings to withering criticism. But while the destruction vividly shows what is wrong with Pakistan, the reaction to it demonstrates where the country's eventual salvation might lie. Pakistan is beset by a serious lack of good governance. Analysts such as the scholars at the Pak Institute of Peace Studies have argued for some time that this absence is a driving force behind whatever support extremists in Pakistan can claim. In recent weeks, the Air Blue crash in Islamabad and the government's poor reaction to the floods have drawn more attention to this fracture at the heart of the country. No matter how much aid flows into Pakistan from the outside, Pakistanis themselves must ultimately ensure the formation of governments that serve the people they claim to represent. And possibly the one positive thing to emerge from the floods is growing evidence that young Pakistanis - the educated sons and daughters of well-off families - are willing and able to show that collective action for the public good is not something only possible in other countries... Pakistanis in their 20s and 30s began mobilizing their networks of friends and colleagues for the relief effort, often utilizing social media such as Facebook and Twitter...In some way or another, all the groups I spoke to are utilizing social networking technology to help their efforts...One previously-established NGO Pakistan Youth Alliance (PYA) ...(and)
NGO Youth Catalyst Pakistan, created just before the floods to work on issues related to Pakistan's young, pivoted to delivering aid and arranged for volunteer doctors to set up medical camps in afflicted areas...PYA, which boasts 18,000 members, was founded in 2007 during Gen. Pervez Musharraf's rule. The group's general aim is to increase political participation amongst the population. After the military man left office, the group started working on social development issues and organized relief to the displaced people of Swat who had fled Taliban violence.
Those abroad with family ties to Pakistan have also gotten involved as well. American Pakistani NGOs, for instance, created Relief4Pakistan, a donation campaign raising money for Mercy Corps' work in Pakistan.
The international media has given much attention to organizations with political aims using the floods to garner support. Many reported that Jamaat-ud-Dawa, a front group for the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba implicated in the Mumbai attacks, has been administering aid. Even the Pakistani army is suspected to be using the floods to gain popularity at the expense of the civilian government. In contrast, the young Pakistanis organizing tents, food and medical treatment have shown no political ambition beyond wanting to do good for their country are stirring the social and political waters in Pakistani cities - where their volunteers live -and rural areas - where they come into contact with the flood's victims....A new generation of Pakistanis less beholden to the dictates of traditional politics practiced by their fathers and grandfathers are willing and able to prove their commitment to the future of their country. Out of floods, earthquakes and political catastrophes, these young people are changing the rules in Pakistan.
Amil Khan works in Pakistan for Radical Middle Way and writes as Londonstani on the Abu Muqawama blog. His book about the development of extremism, The Long Struggle, will be published by Zero Books in September.

[*NB: Sidney Harman, husband of Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA), chair of the House Intelligence Committee, to buy Newsweek from The Washington Post www.alternet.org/ rss/ breaking_news/ 250307/. According to Paid Content's David Kaplan it was sold for $1 and an agreement to transfer its financial liabilities, which Kaplan noted are estimated to be $70 million.

October 23, 2007, the House passed HR1955 the "Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act, sponsored by California Democratic congresswoman Jane Harman to overturn rights to free expression, association, and assembly... "When HR 1955 becomes law, it will create a commission tasked with identifying extremist people, groups, and ideas." The commission will hold hearings around the country, taking testimony and compiling a list of dangerous people and beliefs....
Who will be on the "extremist beliefs" list who will be the inmates of the detention centers being built in the US by Halliburton under government contract? ...critics of Israel, 9/11 skeptics, critics of U.S. wars and foreign policies, kidnapping, rendition, torture and violation of the Geneva Conventions, and critics of spying on Americans.... The "Extremist Beliefs Commission" is the mechanism for identifying Americans who pose "a threat to domestic security" and a threat of "homegrown terrorism"...

Call for Religious Rebirth
August 29, 2010 "NYT" -- WASHINGTON — An enormous and impassioned crowd rallied at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial this weekend, summoned by Glenn Beck, a conservative broadcaster who called for a religious rebirth in America “Something beyond man is happening,” Mr. Beck told the crowd, in what was part religious revival and part history lecture. “America today begins to turn back to God.”... Mr. Beck denied any political motivation...was followed on stage by Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate and former Alaska governor said she was asked not to focus on politics but did say... “We must not fundamentally transform America as some would want; we must restore America and restore her honor.”...People in the crowd echoed Mr. Beck’s ideas that “progressives” were moving the United States toward socialism and that entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid must be ended....http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article26265.htm

Short of, or Following, General War: Perspectives on the Use of Military Power in the 21st Century
Edited by Dr. Harry R Yarger. April 19, 2010.
Book 290 pages, ISBN 1-58487-431-7 free download
At the end of the first decade of the 21st century, the United States is involved in two ongoing wars, faces a significant international terrorist threat, and is witnessing an escalation of international resistance to its leadership of the global world order. Looking out to 2025, many see the potential for a prolonged period of instability as a result of competing economic models, demographics, the rise of new international actors and the resurgence old ones, climate change, and the scarcity of resources. The range of stability challenges will stretch the capabilities of any military force structure and require innovative thinking on the part of policymakers and military professionals alike on the appropriate development and use of the military element of power....what kind of wars will you be confronted with in terms of the motives and situations that give rise to them? This has been articulated by referring to the 21st century as being a century characterized by irregular warfare as opposed to traditional warfare. Traditional war is defined as war between nation states or coalitions/alliances of nation-states. “Traditional war typically involves small-scale to large-scale, force-on-force military operations in which adversaries employ a variety of conventional military capabilities against each other in the air, land, maritime, and space physical domains and the information environment (which includes cyberspace).”11 Irregular warfare is defined as “a violent struggle among state and non-state actors for legitimacy and influence over the relevant population(s).” 12 Irregular warfare is typically conducted when “a less powerful adversary seeks to disrupt or negate the military capabilities and advantages of a more powerful, conventionally armed military force, which often represents the nation’s established regime.”13
*United States Joint Forces Command, “The JOE 2008, Joint Operating Environment: Challenges and Implications for Future Joint Force,” November 21, 2008, www.jfcom.mil/newslink/ storyarchive/2008/JOE2008.pdf.
*Joint Publication, (JP) 1, Doctrine for Armed Forces of the United States: Joint Chiefs of Staff, May 2, 2007; w/change 1, March 20, 2009, www.dtic.mil/doctrine/jel/ new_pubs/jp1.pdf.
* U.S. Army Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Homepage, “Mission Brief,” https://pksoi.army.mil/PKSOI_Blogs.cfm.
* Field Manual (FM) 3-24, Counterinsurgency, Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Army, December 2006.
* Field Manual (FM) 3-07, Stability Operations: U.S. Department of the Army, October 2008, p. vi. also Joint Publication (JP) 3-0, Joint Operations, Washington, DC: U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff
September 17, 2006; w/change 1, February 13, 2008, p. GL 25, available from www.dtic.mil/doctrine/jel/ new_pubs/jp3_0.pdf.

America’s Secret Prisons
by Stephen Lendman
January 28 Anand Gopal's " Obama’s Secret Prisons: Night Raids, Hidden Detention Centers, the “Black Jail and the Dogs of War in Afghanistan" was headlined in TomDispatch.com, recounting unreported US media stories about killings, abductions, detentions, interrogations, and torture in “a series of prisons on US military bases around the country.” Bagram prison, for example, is “a facility with a notorious reputation for abusive behavior,” including brutalizing torture and cold-blooded murder...“Sometimes we detain people, then, when the 96 hours are up, we transfer them to the Afghans...They rough them up a bit for us and then send them back to us for another 96 hours. This keeps going until we get what we want.” A simpler way of dancing around the rules is to call in the U.S. Special Operations Forces -- the Navy SEALS, Green Berets, and others - not under NATO command and so not bound by the stricter rules of engagement.... the “Black Jail,” a facility consisting of individual windowless concrete cells with bright 24-hour lighting, described by one former detainee as “the most dangerous and fearful place” in which prisoners endure appalling treatment.
The pattern is predictable. US/NATO convoys are attacked or reports of Taliban forces are received. Americans respond accordingly, rounding up suspects, mostly innocent civilians, and detaining them for interrogations, torture, abuse and degrading treatment – not just in Afghanistan but in secret 'black sites' globally, according to a January 26 UN Human Rights Council (HRC) report detailing practices engaged in by various countries including America, by far the world’s worst offender in its war on terror — waged against humanity for unchallengeable power and total global dominance.
Besides Guantanamo, Afghanistan and Iraq, HRC said the CIA runs scores of offshore secret prisons in over 66 countries worldwide for dissidents and alleged terrorists — in Egypt, Algeria, Jordan, Morocco, Syria, Libya, Tunisia, India, Pakistan, Russia, Uzbekistan, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Ethopia, Djibouti, Kenya, Poland, Romania, Bosnia, Kosovo, Thailand, Diego Garcia, and elsewhere.
Post-9/11, “the United States embarked on a process of reducing and removing various human rights and other protection mechanisms” through numerous laws and administrative acts including:
– the September 18, 2001 joint House-Senate Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) for “the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the recent attacks launched against the United States”;
– the October 2001 USA Patriot Act (just renewed) that shredded civil liberty protections, including due process, freedom of association, and the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures;
– the October 2002 House-Senate “Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of the United States Armed Forces Against Iraq,” even though the country (and Afghanistan) posed no threat to America, had no ability or intention to strike, or did so on 9/11 or any other time;
– the November 2001 Military Order Number 1 authorizing the president to capture, kidnap or otherwise arrest non-citizens (and later citizens) anywhere in the world for any reason and hold them indefinitely without charge, evidence, or due process and judicial fairness protections in a civil court;
– numerous presidential Executive Orders, memorandums, findings, National and Homeland Security Presidential Directives, and other documents authorizing the abduction, detention, torture, and killing of alleged terrorists;
– National Presidential Directive 51 granting the president dictatorial power to declare a national emergency, followed by martial law without congressional approval;
– the February 2002, a presidential memorandum declaring Geneva’s Common Article 3 (prohibiting torture and other lawless acts) and Third Geneva, pertaining to prisoners of war, null and void for “al-Qaeda or Taliban detainees;”
– the November 2002 Homeland Security Act creating a national Gestapo;
– the 2005 Detainee Treatment Act denying detainees habeas rights and authorizing the use of cruel, abusive, inhumane or degrading treatment in the interests of national security;
– the 2006 Military Commissions Act, known as “the torture authorization act,” granted the executive sweeping unconstitutional powers to detain, interrogate and prosecute alleged terror suspects and collaborators (including US citizens), imprison them indefinitely in military prisons without proof of guilt, and deny them habeas and judicial fairness protections; and
– various other actions subverting the letter and spirit of international and US laws to pursue a global war on terror, including worldwide detention centers, claiming human rights laws there don’t apply...
America’s “unlawful enemy combatant” designation has no legitimacy in international law under any conditions or circumstances....

America’s Secret Gulag...
Afghanistan holds hundreds of detainees in numerous facilities, including three well-known ones at Bagram airbase (called “The Hanger), and two others near Kabul — the “Dark Prison” (with no lights, heating or decoration) and the “Salt Pit.” Another is in the Panjshir valley, north of Kabul, and three others are called Rissat, Rissat 2, and “Prison Number Three.”

In all US and black site facilities, former detainees (ones lucky to be released) describe nightmarish treatment, including:
-being hooded or blindfolded;
-painfully shackled for extended periods;
-exposed to extreme heat and cold;
-kept naked;
-waterboarded numerous times;
-held in isolation or tiny cells with other prisoners where sleeping must occur in shifts;
-severe physical and psychological treatment creating permanent trauma for many;
-continuous blaring noises or music;
24-hour bright light or total darkness;
-sleep deprivation for days;
-painful stress positions for extended periods;
-being sodomized;
-denied food, too little, or inedible;
-painful force-feeding for hunger strikers;
-denied medical care;
-coerced to confess to offenses they never committed;
-hung from steel bars in their cells or from metal hooks in interrogation rooms for extended periods;
-kept in tubs of ice water creating hypothermia;
threatened with or attacked by dogs;
-given electro-shocks; and other cruel, abusive and degrading treatment.
In Iraq, the same practices occurred, exposed at Abu Ghraib, but at other facilities as well throughout the country, including at Forward Operating Base Tiger in Al-Anbar Province, a base outside Mosul, a temporary holding camp near Nasiriyah, a Tikrit Forward Operating Base, and others.
In 2005, it was learned that America secretly captured, transferred and detained alleged terrorists at its own sites, sending many to secret ones in other states.
After the 2001 Afghan invasion, the CIA was involved straightaway in US and foreign black site detentions and torture, yet in its January 13, 2006 report to the Committee Against Torture, the Bush administration claimed: The United States does not transfer persons to countries where (it’s believed) it is ‘more likely than not’ that they will be tortured. The United States obtains assurances, as appropriate, from a foreign government to which a detainee is transferred that it will not torture the individual being transferred. Clear evidence shows otherwise that prisoners were subjected to cruel, inhumane, abusive and degrading treatment at US and foreign sites, contrary to Bush administration assurances and later from the equally culpable Obama administration. After promising to respect human rights and close Guantanamo and other detention facilities as expeditiously as possible, and refrain from operating new ones, it’s kept them open, endorsed preventive detentions without charges, continues extraordinary renditions to black sites, and embraces torture as official US policy like the Bush administration. America’s torture prisons still flourish as secretly and abusively as under George Bush despite promises of more humane practices, quickly broken to pursue America’s imperial agenda for unchallengeable power and total global dominance.

Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal “Ground Zero Mosque” financier is Fox News co-owner
Fox News... at the forefront of whipping up hysteria about the so-called “Ground Zero Mosque”... is actually quite a turnaround for them, considering Fox previously interviewed both Imam Rauf (the head of the Cordoba Initiative) and his wife Daisy Khan, and its attitudes towards them and their efforts were very positive... Park51/Cordoba House was explicitly discussed with Daisy Khan during an interview in December 2009, and the Fox anchor at the time stated “I can’t find many people who really have a problem with it….I like what you’re trying to do.”... Fox News began taking a stridently hostile view towards the building in May 2010... Pamela Geller of “Stop the Islamization of America”...a particularly vociferous opponent ...provided considerable public exposure by Fox News - allied with racist white supremacists in South Africa - has openly praised the English Defence League/EDL... also apparently believes US President Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim.