11/9/7 U.S.-Israel Psy-War or Next War Move? Democracy-Martial law Duet; Waterboarding: American Slavery Tradition

Israel plans nuclear strike on Iran
Uzi Mahnaimi, New York and Sarah Baxter, Washington
...Israeli and American officials have met several times to consider military action...
ISRAEL has drawn up secret plans to destroy Iran’s uranium enrichment facilities with tactical nuclear weapons. Two Israeli air force squadrons are training to blow up an Iranian facility using low-yield nuclear “bunker-busters”, according to several Israeli military sources.
The attack would be the first with nuclear weapons since 1945, when the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Israeli weapons would each have a force equivalent to one-fifteenth of the Hiroshima bomb.
Under the plans, conventional laser-guided bombs would open “tunnels” into the targets. “Mini-nukes” would then immediately be fired into a plant at Natanz, exploding deep underground to reduce the risk of radioactive fallout. “As soon as the green light is given, it will be one mission, one strike and the Iranian nuclear project will be demolished,” said one of the sources.

The plans, disclosed to The Sunday Times last week, have been prompted in part by the Israeli intelligence service Mossad’s assessment that Iran is on the verge of producing enough enriched uranium to make nuclear weapons within two years. Israeli military commanders believe conventional strikes may no longer be enough to annihilate increasingly well-defended enrichment facilities. Several have been built beneath at least 70ft of concrete and rock. However, the nuclear-tipped bunker-busters would be used only if a conventional attack was ruled out and if the United States declined to intervene, senior sources said. Israel has identified three prime targets south of Tehran which are believed to be involved in Iran’s nuclear programme. ..Israeli and American officials have met several times to consider military action.
Military analysts said the disclosure of the plans could be intended to put pressure on Tehran to halt enrichment, cajole America into action or soften up world opinion in advance of an Israeli attack.
Some analysts warned that Iranian retaliation for such a strike could range from disruption of oil supplies to the West to terrorist attacks against Jewish targets around the world. [emphasis added: Iranian 'retaliation' = 'terrorism' not US-Israel nuclear attack]

taking us for faithful fools...

US fears Israeli strike against Iran over latest nuclear claim
Tom Baldwin in Washington, James Hider in Jerusalem and Francis Elliott, Deputy Political Editor
A claim by President Ahmadinejad that Iran has 3,000 working uranium-enriching centrifuges sent a tremor across the world yesterday amid fears that Israel would respond by bombing the country’s nuclear facilities. Military sources in Washington said that the existence of such a large number could be a “tipping point”, triggering an Israeli air strike. The Pentagon is reluctant to take military action against Iran, but officials say that Israel is a “different matter”.... Even before President Ahmadinejad’s announcement, a US defence official told The Times yesterday: “Israel could do something when they get to around 3,000 working centrifuges. The Pentagon is minded to wait a little longer.”

Israel, US third Strategic Dialogue meeting on Middle East strategy:
The US and Israeli teams discussed Iran’s "destabilizing" regional impact. They shared their latest assessments of Iran’s nuclear program and replacing Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Mohamed ElBaradei... The US is currently having a difficult time convincing UN Security Council veto-holders Russia and China to support additional sanctions on Iran. ElBaradei has claimed that it is not at all clear that Iran has nuclear weapons ambitions although the US and Israel are convinced that the Iranians do intend to procure a nuclear arsenal.

U.S. Congress approves $155 million weapons package for Israel
Saed Bannoura - IMEMC
The U.S. Senate voted Wednesday to approve $155 million worth of weapons for Israel, in an addendum to a $460 billion military spending bill that was approved on October 1st in the U.S. Congress. The gift of more weapons to the U.S. ally comes at a moment when tensions are high and diplomacy is delicate between Israel and the Palestinians, and analysts point out that the gift of additional weapons to Israel at this particular moment could have an effect on the Summit planned for the end of November between Israel and the Palestinian Authority...

U.S. Says Attack Plans for Iran Ready
AP November 08, 2007
WASHINGTON - U.S. defense officials have signaled that up-to-date attack plans are available if needed in the escalating crisis over Iran's nuclear aims, although no strike appears imminent. The Army and Marine Corps are under enormous strain from years of heavy ground fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Still, the United States has ample air and naval power to strike Iran if President Bush decided to target nuclear sites or to retaliate for alleged Iranian meddling in neighboring Iraq. Among the possible targets, in addition to nuclear installations like the centrifuge plant at Natanz: Iran's ballistic missile sites, Republican Guard bases, and naval warfare assets that Tehran could use in a retaliatory closure of the Straits of Hormuz, a vital artery for the flow of Gulf oil.
The Navy has an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf area with about 60 fighters and other aircraft that likely would feature prominently in a bombing campaign. And a contingent of about 2,200 Marines are on a standard deployment to the Gulf region aboard ships led by the USS Kearsarge, an amphibious assault ship. Air Force fighters and bombers are available elsewhere in the Gulf area, including a variety of warplanes in Iraq and at a regional air operations center in Qatar.
But there has been no new buildup of U.S. firepower in the region. In fact there has been some shrinkage in recent months. After adding a second aircraft carrier in the Gulf early this year - a move that Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said was designed to underscore U.S. long-term stakes in the region - the Navy has quietly returned to a one-carrier presence.
Talk of a possible U.S. attack on Iran has surfaced frequently this year, prompted in some cases by hard-line statements by White House officials. Vice President Dick Cheney, for example, stated on Oct. 21 that the United States would "not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon," and that Iran would face "serious consequences" if it continued in that direction. Gates, on the other hand, has emphasized diplomacy. Bush suggested on Oct. 17 that Iran's continued pursuit of nuclear arms could lead to "World War III." Yet on Wednesday, in discussing Iran at a joint press conference with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Bush made no reference to the military option...
Iran's conventional military forces are generally viewed as limited, not among the strongest in the Middle East. But a leading expert on the subject, Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, says it would be a mistake to view the Islamic republic as a military weakling. "Its strengths in overt conflict are more defensive than offensive, but Iran has already shown it has great capability to resist outside pressure and any form of invasion and done so under far more adverse and divisive conditions than exist in Iran today," Cordesman wrote earlier this year....

At the moment, there are few indications of U.S. military leaders either advising offensive action against Iran or taking new steps to prepare for that possibility. Gates has repeatedly emphasized that while military action cannot be ruled out, the focus is on diplomacy and tougher economic sanctions. Asked in late October whether war planning had been ramped up or was simply undergoing routine updates, Gates replied, "I would characterize it as routine." His description of new U.S. sanctions announced on Oct. 25 suggested they are not a harbinger of war, but an alternative.
A long-standing responsibility of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is to maintain and update what are called contingency plans for potential military action that a president might order against any conceivable foe. The secret plans, with a range of timelines and troop numbers, are based on a variety of potential scenarios - from an all-out invasion like the March 2003 march on Baghdad to less demanding missions.

Another military option for Washington would be limited, clandestine action by U.S. special operations commandos, such as Delta Force soldiers, against a small number of key nuclear installations.

The man whose responsibility it would be to design any conventional military action against Iran - and execute it if ordered by Bush - is Adm. William Fallon, the Central Command chief. He is playing down prospects of conflict, saying in a late September interview that there is too much talk of war.
"This constant drumbeat of conflict is what strikes me, which is not helpful and not useful," Fallon told Al-Jazeera television, adding that he does not expect a war against Iran. During a recent tour of the Gulf region, Fallon made a point of telling U.S. allies that Iran is not as strong as it portrays itself. "Not militarily, economically or politically," he said. Fallon's immediate predecessor, retired Army Gen. John Abizaid, raised eyebrows in September when he suggested that initiating a war against Iran would be a mistake. He urged vigorous efforts to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, but failing that, he said, "There are ways to live with a nuclear Iran." He also said he believed Iran's leaders could be dissuaded from using nuclear arms, once acquired.
The possibility of U.S. military action raises many tough questions, beginning perhaps with the practical issue of whether the United States knows enough about Iran's network of nuclear sites - declared sites as well as possible clandestine ones - to sufficiently set back or destroy their program.
Among other unknowns: Iran's capacity to retaliate by unleashing terrorist strikes against U.S. targets...[note: retaliation not nuclear attack called 'terrorism']

Transparent Scheme: playing the Bhutto 'opposition' democracy card to offset support to key U.S. client state
Bhutto house arrest order lifted
Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto has been released from house arrest in the capital, Islamabad.

US proposes 845 million dollar-aid for Pakistan in FY 2008

U.S. intensifying efforts politically & economically against Latin American social democrat U.S. opposition bloc
Venezuela's Chavez condemns opposition :
Portraying his political foes as anti-democratic right-wingers, Chavez accused opponents of seeking help from Washington and Venezuela's military.

Pressure mounting on Bolivia's Morales:
Opponents have paralyzed his efforts to ''re-found'' Bolivia -- and reward the country's indigenous majority -- by winning approval of a new Constitution. http://www.miamiherald.com/942/story/301311.html

Imperialist "Security" Companies
Sarah Meyer, Index Research
Digest note: this huge, global privatized military arm of the U.S.-Israeli fascist state infrastructure is critical to its state-terrorist imperialist war for global domination, not isolated 'rogue' corporations that have accidentally escaped U.S./DoD government control : in case you missed it, the following article on Blackwater makes this context clear:

The Working Group, presents a report to the UN General Assembly in New York today. Relief Web says: "Though heavily armed, the "private security guards" the companies employ are neither civilians nor combatants, the Group notes...they represent a new form of mercenarism, similar to "irregular combatants"... warning that States that employ these services may be responsible for violations of internationally recognized human rights committed by the personnel of such companies. Following is some available information about the security companies in Afghanistan: Aegis, Armorgroup, Blackwater, Dyncorp, Gardaworld, Global Strategies, Khawar, Olive, Mallat, Olympus, Paul Grimes, Saladin, SOC-SMG, SIG, USPI, Watan and Caps.... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=37961

Total Intelligence Solutions
The spies who came in for the gold [U.S. global political agenda. not 'gold' ]
By Dana Hedgpeth
The Washington Post
First it became a brand name in security for its work in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now it's taking on intelligence. The Prince Group, the holding company that owns Blackwater Worldwide, has been building an operation that will sniff out intelligence about natural disasters, business-friendly governments, overseas regulations and global political developments for clients in industry and government. The operation has assembled a roster of former spooks — high-ranking figures from agencies such as the CIA and defense intelligence — that mirrors the slate of former military officials who run Blackwater. Its chairman is famed spy Cofer Black, the former head of counterterrorism at the CIA known for his leading role in many of the agency's more controversial programs, including the rendition and interrogation of al-Qaida suspects and the detention of some of them in secret prisons overseas.
Its chief executive: Robert Richer, a former CIA associate deputy director of operations who was heavily involved in running the agency's role in the Iraq war. Total Intelligence Solutions, which, like Blackwater, is part of the Prince Group, is one of a growing number of companies that offer intelligence services such as risk analysis to companies and governments. Because of its roster and its ties to owner Erik Prince, the multimillionaire former Navy SEAL, the company's thrust into this world highlights the blurring of lines between government, industry and activities formerly reserved for agents operating in the shadows. Richer, for instance, once served as the chief of the CIA's Near East division and is said to have ties with the king of Jordan. The CIA had spent millions helping train Jordan's intelligence service in exchange for information. Now Jordan has hired Blackwater to train its special forces. "Cofer can open doors," said Richer, who served more than two decades at the CIA. "I can open doors. We can generally get in to see who we need to see. We don't help pay bribes. We do everything within the law, but we can deal with the right minister or person."

Total Intel, as the company is known, is bringing "the skills traditionally honed by CIA operatives directly to the board room," Black said. Black had a 28-year career with the CIA. "They have the skills and background to do anything anyone wants," said R.J. Hillhouse, who writes a national-security blog called The Spy Who Billed Me. "There's no oversight. They're an independent company offering freelance espionage services. They're rent-a-spies." The heart of Total Intel operations is a suite on the ninth floor of a tower in Arlington, Va., patterned after the CIA counterterrorist center Black once ran, with analysts sitting at cubicles in the center of the room and glass offices of senior executives on the perimeter. A handful of analysts in their 20s or 30s sit hunched over Macintosh computers, scanning Web sites, databases, newspapers and chat rooms. The lights are dimmed. Three large-screen TVs play in the background, one showing Al-Jazeera. The room, called the Global Fusion Center, is manned 24/7, as analysts search for warnings on everything from terrorist plots on radical Islamic Web sites to possible political upheavals in Asia, labor strikes in South America and Europe, and economic upheavals that could affect a company's business. "We're not a private detective," Black said. "We provide intelligence to our clients. It's not about taking pictures. It's business intelligence. We collect all information that's publicly available. This is a completely legal enterprise. We break no laws. We don't go anywhere near breaking laws. We don't have to."

Total Intel was launched in February by Prince, who a decade ago opened a law enforcement training center in Moyock, N.C., that has since grown into a half-billion-dollar business called Blackwater Worldwide. Prince has nine other companies and subsidiaries in his Prince Group empire, offering a broad range of security and training services. (One, Blackwater Security Consulting, is under scrutiny because of a Sept. 16 shooting incident that involved some of its armed guards in Iraq, in which 17 Iraqi civilians were killed.)

Prince built Total Intel by buying two companies owned by Matt Devost, the Terrorism Research Center and Technical Defense Inc., and merging them with Black's consulting group, called the Black Group. Devost, a cyber security and risk-management expert, is now president of Total Intel....
The company won't reveal its earnings, the names of its customers or other details of its work. Even looking at the screen of an analyst at its Global Fusion Center wasn't allowed.... In their conference room overlooking the Global Fusion Center, Total Intel executives fired off a list of some of their work. Are some recent bombings at major cities in India isolated incidents or should you pull your personnel out? What are the political developments in Pakistan going to mean for your business? Is your company popping up on jihadist Web sites? There's been crime recently in the ports of Mexico, possibly by rogue police officers. Is the government going to be able to ensure safety?
Since 2000, the Terrorism Research Center portion of the company has done $1.5 million worth of contracts with the government, mainly from agencies like the Army, Navy, Air Force, U.S. Customs and the U.S. Special Operations Command ...

Systemic Rape of female detainees in the New Iraqi Democracy
On Monday, a responsible from the Office of Human Rights in Diwaniyah stated that 7 female detainees were raped in the prisons and detention centers of Diwaniyah whilst under torture. The responsible who spoke on condition of anonymity affirmed that huge human rights violations are taking place the Diwaniyah prisons and in particular in the Anti Crime Bureau., the Directorate of Prisons, and the Deportation Bureau. He said that arrested women are systematically raped and that one of them died under torture. He added that these women are raped and tortured in the most hideous of ways by the Police force. There are confirmed reports that at least 7 of these women awaiting interrogation/investigations have been raped and one woman has died from torture....

"...'quagmire' is an interesting word. If you lived in Iraq and had lived under a tyranny, you’d be saying, god, I love freedom- because that’s what’s happened.... there are killers and radicals and murderers who kill the innocent to stop the advance of freedom. But freedom is happening in Iraq..."
GWB at 11/7/7 joint press conference with French President Sarkozy

"There is no telling how many wars it will take to secure freedom in the homeland."
GWB speech August 7, 2002

U.S.- imposed democratic sovereignty eradicated Iraq as one sovereign nation, the first step in its war to control M.E. oil/energy resources essential to securing U.S. hegemonic leverage over its allies as well as enemies for global supremacy. NYT, leading state media organ, "analyzes" this imperialist world war by pretending 'high priced oil' is behind a global "power scramble" and this, not U.S. war, "has redrawn the economic and political map of the world' ... implying that U.S. role is necessary leadership for a benign solution because .." Managing this new order is fast becoming a central problem of global politics
Iraq Kurds sign seven new oil contracts
Jay Deshmukh, AFP
The autonomous Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) said in a statement posted on its Web site that Iraq's Kurdish region has signed seven new foreign oil deals in a move sure to anger Baghdad, which opposes the unilateral sell-off of crude blocks in the absence of a national oil law.
In September, the Kurdish government signed a contract with Texas-based Hunt Oil Company, the first major contract awarded by any Iraqi authority to a foreign company since UN sanctions were imposed on Iraq in 1990... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=37944

High-Priced Oil Adds Volatility to Power Scramble
The prospect of triple-digit oil prices has redrawn the economic and political map of the world
The prospect of triple-digit oil prices has redrawn the economic and political map of the world, challenging some old notions of power. Oil-rich nations are enjoying historic gains and opportunities, while major importers — including China and India, home to a third of the world’s population — confront rising economic and social costs. Managing this new order is fast becoming a central problem of global politics. Countries that need oil are clawing at each other to lock up scarce supplies, and are willing to deal with any government, no matter how unsavory, to do it. In many poor nations with oil, the proceeds are being lost to corruption, depriving these countries of their best hope for development. And oil is fueling gargantuan investment funds run by foreign governments, which some in the West see as a new threat...

More Pontification, More Propaganda on Iraq
Dissecting the Disinformation on Western Secret Strategy in the New Middle East Wars
Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed
... American planners always envisaged that in the long-term Iraq would be divided up to facilitate the Anglo-American military occupation. Fragments of a plan to fracture Iraq along ethnic and religious lines to facilitate control of the oil reserves and allow population control emerged in September 2002. Richard Perle, who then chaired the prominent Pentagon advisory group, the Defense Policy Board, issued a briefing for Pentagon officials that month. Ha’aretz reported from a "top official in the Israeli security services" that Perle "showed two slides to the Pentagon officials. The first was a depiction of the three goals in the war on terror and the democratisation of the Middle East: Iraq — a tactical goal, Saudi Arabia — a strategic goal, and Egypt - the great prize. The triangle in the next slide was no less interesting: Palestine is Israel, Jordan is Palestine, and Iraq is the Hashemite Kingdom."13 ... a fundamental reconfiguration of power across the Middle East, with a number of highly dubious parameters, including a greatly expanded Israel fully encompassing the Occupied Territories; the expulsion of the Palestinians to Jordan; and the incorporation of the Sunni areas of Iraq with Jordan to form a wider pro-US Sunni Arab Hashemite Kingdom....
American investigative journalist Greg Palast, who has reported for BBC Newsnight, the Observer and the Guardian, obtained a State Department document, “Moving the Iraqi Economy from Recovery to Growth,” in February 2003. In 101-pages, the document detailed the Bush administration’s plans for a complete rewrite of Iraq’s “policies, laws and regulations”, based on low taxes on big business, and quick sales of Iraq’s banks and bridges, “all state enterprises” to foreign investors. Among other things, the document stipulates that Iraq would have to “privatize” its “oil and supporting industries.” Annex D of the document set out, Palast reports, “a strict 360-day schedule for the free-market makeover of Iraq.” Under the tutelage of Paul Bremer, the Coalition Provisional Authority imposed in the aftermath of the invasion issued “exactly 100 orders that remade Iraq in the image of the Economy Plan.” Palast lists several major examples... According to the private American intelligence firm, Stratfor, the United States was “working on a plan to merge Iraq and Jordan into a unitary kingdom to be ruled by the Hashemite dynasty headed by King Abdullah of Jordan.” The plan was “authored by US Vice President Dick Cheney” as well as “Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz”, and was first discussed at “an unusual meeting between Crown Prince Hassan of Jordan and pro-US Iraqi Sunni opposition members in London in July” that year. Now under this plan, Stratfor reported, Iraq would be de facto ethnically partitioned into three autonomous cantons: The central and largest part of Iraq that is populated by the Sunni Arabs would be joined with Jordan, and would include Baghdad, which would no longer be the capital. The Kurdish region of northern and northwestern Iraq, including Mosul and the vast Kirkuk oilfields, would become its own autonomous state. The Shia Region in southwestern Iraq, including Basra, would make up the third state, or more likely it would be joined with Kuwait. Why did Cheney and Wolfowitz, the architects of this postwar plan for Iraq in the Bush Cabinet, think this sort of partition would be a good idea? And did their plans have anything to do with facilitating Iraq’s emergence as a democratic sovereign state? Not according to Stratfor, who outlined the advantages for the US as follows:
“First, the creation of a new pro-US kingdom under the half-British Abdullah [king of Jordan] would shift the balance of forces in the region heavily in the US favor. After eliminating Iraq as a sovereign state, there would be no fear that one day an anti-American government would come to power in Baghdad, as the capital would be in Amman [Jordan]. Current and potential US geopolitical foes Iran, Saudi Arabia and Syria would be isolated from each other, with big chunks of land between them under control of the pro-US forces.
“Equally important, Washington would be able to justify its long-term and heavy military presence in the region as necessary for the defense of a young new state asking for US protection — and to secure the stability of oil markets and supplies. That in turn would help the United States gain direct control of Iraqi oil and replace Saudi oil in case of conflict with Riyadh.”14...
It is not a coincidence, of course, that a few years later a large number of American politicians security experts began popping out of the woodwork, seemingly at random, all advocating that the best way forward for Iraq was to undergo partition. When this happened, the public was led to believe that the partition proposal was a radically new idea that could solve Iraq’s entrenched problems. But we know that the partition lobby didn’t come out of the blue at all. It was inspired directly by the original architects of the 2002 postwar plan, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Richard Perle.

There is no way that tripartite partitioning of an entire country could be achieved peacefully. Violence, conflict, civil war, along sectarian lines, would be inevitable if this was to be achieved. The task of “eliminating Iraq as a sovereign state” by fracturing the country along ethnic and religious lines, in other words, was precisely the postwar strategy being explored by Dick Cheney as the most effective means of securing American control over the country, and the wider region.... not Anglo-American stupidity.

Fostering Internal Conflict in Iraq[...]


Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed is the author of The London Bombings: An Independent Inquiry (Overlook, 2006) and The War on Truth: 9/11, Disinformation and the Anatomy of Terrorism (Olive Branch, 2005), among other books. He teaches international relations at the University of Sussex, and directs the Institute for Policy Research & Development in London. Read other articles by Nafeez, or visit Nafeez's website.

America, Ankara and the Kurds
Galal Nassar, Al-Ahram Weekly
It was the US that gave the main two Kurdish Parties -- The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) of Masoud Barzani, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) of Jalal Talabani -- permission to harbour members of the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK). The latter established offices and training camps in northern Iraq in full view of the US occupation forces. Which raises these two questions: why did the US administration encourage dissident Kurds to spring to action? And why did it change its position when the Turkish government decided to go into Iraq?... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=38011

Bush's Turkey shoot
Pepe Escobar
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan knew even before he set foot in Washington on Monday that President George W Bush could not possibly have anything tangible to offer him on the explosive Turkey vs Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) dossier, apart from Pentagon aerial intelligence passed on to Turkish generals.... he got a sound bite from Bush, who upgraded the PKK to the status of an enemy of America. Bush told Erdogan, "The PKK is a terrorist organization. They're an enemy of Turkey, they're an enemy of Iraq and they're an enemy of the United States."
Pity the US president could not possibly follow his own logic and add that the Party for Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK - the PKK's Iran arm - is an enemy of Iran, an enemy of Iraq but a friend of the United States - which is arming and financing its fighters... If Bush did nothing about it, Erdogan said, "we will do our own job", which is what Turkish generals are really itching for: a search-and-destroy-the-PKK invasion of Iraqi Kurdistan. In other words: a new Iraq war. Even after the "Mr Erdogan goes to Washington" mini-movie, the chances of Turkey "doing its own job" remain high.
Bush could not offer anything substantial because he would have had to admit his administration's impotence at securing any of its neo-imperial possessions' borders; this is what led the PKK to use Iraqi Kurdistan in the first place to coordinate its attacks in Turkey.

Iran also was not expecting that Bush would deliver anything to Erdogan. But then there are always the "unknown unknowns" in the bigger picture. Nobody knows whether Bush and Erdogan have discussed the fine print in a World War III (according to Bush) or World War IV (according to deranged neo-cons) scenario, which is being sold by the White House as caused by Tehran. Way beyond Turkey's troubles with the PKK, it all comes back to the stark fact that Turkey simply cannot accept a virtually independent Iraqi Kurdistan in its southeast border - exactly the outcome sought by the US-Israeli axis.

Bush and his inner circle have bought time to calculate the odds on whom to double-cross. Will it be North Atlantic Treaty Orgaization ally Turkey, with its handy Incirlik base, anti-US public opinion and no oil; or pro-US Iraqi Kurds, with lots of oil and their Israeli-trained peshmerga (armed forces)? Tough call. A poker player familiar with Bush administration methods would bet on a double double-cross, complete with a "blame it on Iran" sequel and a "bomb Iran" grand finale....

Ankara's logic remain flawless, at least from a "war on terror" angle. If Washington invaded both Afghanistan and Iraq to fight "terrorists", Ankara has the same rights to invade its terrorist-harboring neighbor, which just happens to be an American neo-colony. The irony is obviously lost on the Bush administration....

Pick your terrorist
At a meeting in Istanbul this past weekend of foreign ministers of all Iraq's neighbors, plus the permanent members of the UN Security Council and selected G8 members, it emerged that a solution for the unholy mess was coming from Iran. Embattled Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki had met with Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki in Baghdad last Wednesday, and "urged Iran to help defuse the border crisis". Tehran duly provided Baghdad with intelligence on the PKK, according to Iranian sources. But Baghdad did nothing - because the Bush administration blocked its every move. Why? Simple. Tehran intelligence revealed that the PKK - anticipating a Turkish military attack - was now trading Iraqi Kurdistan for northwest Iran. That's what Osman Ocalan, brother of jailed-for-life PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, and a founding member of the PKK, told The Independent's Patrick Cockburn in Irbil.

As Asia Times Online has reported, the CIA has armed and financed the Iranian arm of the PKK, the PJAK, in its attack against the Iranian government. Not only does Tehran share the same plight with Ankara, it would also expect Baghdad's cooperation on the issue. No wonder the Bush administration - for which the PKK are "terrorists" and PJAK are not - had to squash the initiative. But with 15 million Kurds in eastern Turkey, 5 million in Iraqi Kurdistan, 4 million in northwest Iran and 1 million in Syria, "the partition of Kurdistan works in our interests", Ocalan said, referring to PKK's extreme mobility. The Bush administration for its part is not exactly dispirited by the PKK's ability to "destabilize" Iran or Syria.

Erdogan's priorities, on the other hand, as revealed once again this Monday in an interview with Claudio Gallo from Italian daily La Stampa, are admission to the European Union, Turkey's territorial integrity ("if only Baghdad had the will do dismantle the terrorist bases in the north") and the Turkish public's feelings about it. So between Bush and a hard place, he'd rather choose the latter, in the form of a strategic alliance with both Iran and Syria to combat what Ankara sees as dangerous Kurdish separatism. Turkey and Iran - commercially and now politically - are getting closer and closer.

Washington is more the loser because virtually no one in Turkey is shedding tears for what happens to their 57-year-old alliance. According to the June 2007 Pew Global Attitudes Project, no less than 83% of Turkey's public opinion had an "unfavorable view" of the US, ahead of Egypt and Jordan (both at 78%) and Pakistan (68%).

All of these governments - but not their populations - are US allies. It's fair to assume these numbers are rising.

Russia for its part cannot but applaud the newfound Turkish-Persian entente. Non-stop Bush administration heavy handedness is actually fast erasing historical grievances and paving the way towards a new Eurasian configuration, with Turkey-Iran getting closer to Russia-China.

Bush's invasion and occupation of Iraq opened a Pandora's box that only now starts to be seen for its true incendiary potential. Turkey threatening to strike Iraq to protect its national security is a carbon copy of Bush invading Iraq in 2003. Moreover, "Iraq" is actually no more; it's been smashed into three virtually independent statelets - exactly what Israel wanted in the first place. Israel is so keen on an independent Iraqi Kurdistan because this is the way towards a new Kirkuk-Haifa oil pipeline (the old one was shut down in 1948) - which will pass though three American bases and cross US-friendly Jordan. A complicating factor is that at the same time Tel Aviv avidly coddles racist, Kurd-hating Turkish generals.

Turkey badly needs oil, as much as Israel. Turkey most of all cannot stand an independent Iraqi Kurdistan because it is focused on Mosul and Kirkuk's oil wealth. For any Turk with an Ottoman Empire memory, Mosul's oil fields, only 120km from the border, should belong to Turkey; after all they were stolen by the British Empire as it drew the artificial borders of Iraq in the early 1920s. Both the treaties of Sevres (1920) and Lausanne (1923) did everything to exclude Mosul and Kirkuk - both with a Turkman majority - from Turkey, so the new republic would be deprived of oil. It's not hard to imagine Turkish generals dreaming of a modern Turkey swimming in oil wealth as a certified regional superpower, spreading its wings over the Middle East, the Balkans, the Caucasus and as far as Central Asia. The equation is inescapable: if Washington could invade Iraq to grab its oil, why not neighbor Turkey, who owned the oil in the first place?

Bye bye Washington
The astute Erdogan knew even before setting foot in Washington that the solution to the Turkey-PKK crisis lay in a frank Washington-Tehran dialogue.
But for that to happen, he knew Bush and the neo-cons would have to drop their faithful ally the KRG and their useful destabilizing force, the PKK/PJAK. And they would also have to abandon the pretence that Iraq is "stabilized" while at the same time threatening to attack Iran, which is a regional power not interested in any destabilization... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=37914
Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007). He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com.

No to Africom
by Danny Glover and Nicole C. Lee

"Africom is a dangerous continuation of US military expansion around the globe."
The US militarization of Africa... rationalized by claims that Africom "will enhance our efforts to bring peace and security to the people of Africa" and promote the "goals of development, health, education, democracy and economic growth." ... fails to mention that securing and controlling African wealth and natural resources is key to US trade interests, which face growing competition from China. Transnational corporations rely on Africa for petroleum, uranium and diamonds - to name some of the continent's bounty. West Africa currently provides 15 percent of crude oil imports to the United States, and that figure is expected to rise to 25 percent by 2015... the legacy of US intervention in Africa. During the cold war, African nations were used as pawns in postcolonial proxy wars, an experience that had a devastating impact on African democracy, peace and development. In the past Washington has aided reactionary African factions that have carried out atrocities against civilians. An increased US military presence in Africa will likely follow this pattern of extracting resources while aiding factions in some of their bloodiest conflicts, thus further destabilizing the region.

state terrrorist martial law ok for US & 'friends'
Saakashvili's State of Emergency Extended
TBILISI, Georgia -- The U.S.-backed leader of Georgia appears to have faced down the worst crisis of his presidency: defusing a standoff with the opposition by calling an early election while maintaining a state of emergency that has silenced dissent. (Updated 12:49 p.m. PT) State of Emergency continues in ex-Soviet Georgia
Lawmakers who back President Mikhail Saakashvili unanimously voted Friday to endorse his 15-day state of emergency, an indication the pro-Western leader may not go through with a pledge to end it swiftly. (Updated 9:00 a.m. PT) http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/apeurope.asp

...Waterboarding is torture. It has been understood to be torture since the sixteenth century. Waterboarding was used to torture Black slaves in America before the Civil War. American prosecutors have indicted and tried criminal defendants for torture in connection with the use of waterboarding—bringing and succeeding in cases against both Americans and others. Judge Wallach’s excellent law review article, "Drop by Drop," covers this well...-documented history which the Administration insists that all its lawyers forget. Wallach’s op-ed summarizing his conclusions can be found here...
It is criminal depravity... "Political language. . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable," George Orwell reminded us in "Politics and the English Language." In the waterboarding debate, Orwell’s warning has found its most literal application.

Mukasey Wins Vote in Senate, Despite Democrats' Doubts

The agonizing truth about CIA renditions
The fate of prisoners secreted away under the Bush administration is in ways worse than even Hollywood has portrayed.
Stephen Grey, Salon
At 3:44 p.m. on Jan. 24, 2004, a luxury Boeing 737 business jet operated by the Central Intelligence Agency landed at Kabul Airport in Afghanistan. Onboard were its flight crew, eight members of a CIA rendition team and a blindfolded prisoner who was shackled by his wrists and feet. The behavior of the prisoner, a German citizen named Khaled el-Masri, concerned the CIA team leader onboard. According to an agency insider, the leader sent word to Washington that "there was something strange about el-Masri. He didn't behave like the others they'd captured. He was asking: Is he the right guy?" Within days it emerged that el-Masri was indeed the wrong man. It was a "100 percent case of mistaken identity," said another former agency official. Yet, despite this discovery, el-Masri spent 18 weeks in solitary confinement in a CIA "black site," or secret prison used by the United States in its war on terror. He is still waiting for an apology or an explanation.... http://www.uruknet.de/?p=3793

Why the Pentagon Doesn't Want Me to Testify About Abu Ghraib
A witness to the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib says that the US military imposed a gag order on him and reduced his rank so that he would remain silent about the abuse. Sam Provance, an intelligence analyst at the prison in 2003, saw detainees dragged into interrogation rooms. He says that investigations into the abuse failed to account for senior officers who ordered the interrogation techniques and instead singled out and blamed soldiers at the bottom of the chain of command. (AlterNet)

The deceit of Reporters Without Borders
Salim Lamrani, Global Research,

On October 16, 2007, the Paris based organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) published its "Worldwide Press Freedoms Index 2007." RSF claims to be neutral, objective and solely interested in press freedoms. But this claim does not hold up to scrutiny. In reality the 2007 index, laden with contradictions, is nothing more than a fraud and demonstrates, to the contrary, that the association directed by Robert Ménard since 1985 defends a very specific interest and political agenda. (1)
To establish their 2007 index, which covers the period between September 1, 2006 and September 1, 2007, RSF uses 50 criterion divided into 7 categories, listed in order of importance. Under the first category "PHYSICAL ATTACKS, IMPRISONMENT AND DIRECT THREATS," the number of journalists and media assistants murdered, imprisoned, tortured or ill-treated, kidnapped or disappeared, attacked or injured, and threatened is given the highest priority. The presence of Armed militias or secret organizations targeting journalists," as well as whether or not journalists had to be accompanied by bodyguards or use security measures (bullet-proof jackets, armoured vehicles etc) while doing their work is also deemed of utmost concern.(2)
The next category RSF considered was "INDIRECT THREATS AND ACCESS TO INFORMATION" and defines this as attacks on or threats against press freedom activists, surveillance of journalists, problems of access to public or official information, restricted physical or reporting access to any regions of the country and problems getting journalist visas for foreign media. (3)
The French organization then listed "LEGAL SITUATION AND UNJUSTIFIED PROSECUTION," which was outlined as unjustified legal actions against journalists, cases of violating the privacy of journalistic sources, as well as failure to prosecute those responsible for seriously violating press freedom. Censorship and self censorship, state monopoly of media, free access to Internet, and economic and administrative pressure are also included in the classifications. (4)

Using these standards, RSF establishes their annual index that includes 169 countries. According to the organization’s figures, 105 journalists were murdered over the year. Iraq were at least 62 were killed was the most dangerous place, followed by Mexico (8), Somalia (7), Pakistan (4), Afghanistan (4), Sri Lanka (2) y Eritrea (2). It would be no surprise if these countries ended up with the lowest scores. However, with the exception of Eritrea ranking 169th, this is not the case. In the end, Robert Ménard’s political and ideological criterion overshadowed the rest. (5)
How is it that Eritrea, where only two journalists were murdered, ended up ranked below Iraq (157), Mexico (136), Somalia (159), Pakistan (152), Afghanistan (142) and Sri Lanka (156)? Perhaps because that nation is on Washington’s black list and RSF receives funding from the CIA front National Endowment for Democracy, NED? (7)

Likewise what is the explanation for Cuba ranking 165 when not one journalist has been killed there since 1959? Why is this nation ranked below Iraq, Mexico, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Brazil (84), China (163), United States (48), Haiti (75), Nepal (137), Paraguay (90), Peru (117), Democratic Republic of the Congo (133), Turkey (101) and Zimbabwe (149), where at least one journalist has been killed? RSF explains that Cuba’s poor ranking is due to journalists being imprisoned. Just supposing the organization is correct on this point –which is actually far from being the case-, wouldn’t killing journalists still be more serious than imprisoning them? (8) RSF is so obsessed with Cuba that it does not hesitate in blatantly contradicting itself.
For example RSF considers China –where one journalist was killed - to be "largest journalist prison in the world" with 33 media professionals in detention and 50 "cyber dissidents" imprisoned, all figures according to the organization, is ranked above Cuba. How can RSF expect to be taken seriously? Perhaps this malice could be explained by the fact that RSF receives financial support from the extreme right Cuban organization Center for a Free Cuba (which itself is abundantly financed by Washington) whose president, Frank Calzón, is a former leader of the terrorist organization Cuban American National Foundation. (9)

In addition, how can Venezuela’s rank of 114 be explained? Even though not one journalist was killed there, Venezuela ranks below Brazil, United States, Haiti, Paraguay and Turkey where at least one journalist did lose their life. How can this rank be justified when in Venezuela the press enjoys a freedom that would not be tolerated in even the largest western democracy (some private media have openly called for the assassination of President Chávez on various occasions)? Perhaps it is just part of RSF’s propaganda war against President Hugo Chávez, the U.S.’s central target in Latin America. (10)
What has happened in Bolivia to cause this nation to fall from 16th in 2006 to 68 a year later? Where journalist killed? Where private media sources closed? Nothing of the sort. But President Evo Morales, who has launched spectacular economic and social reforms, is now in Washington’s sites. RSF, faithful to its principals, follows the lead of its sponsors and vilifies all the progressive and popular governments of Latin America. (11)
Likewise, how can the classification of Iran (166), where not one journalist was killed, be explained except by the fact that this country is part of the axis of evil designated by Bush? Why is the U.S. (48 and 111) separated into two categories (national territory and extra-territorial)? What other reason could RSF have to make this distinction other than the obvious objective of exonerating the U.S. for violations committed in territories it occupies? (12).
As one can easily see, Reporters Without Borders is not a reliable source. Its hidden political agenda has become all too evident and its malice toward certain nations that are on the U.S. blacklist is hardly a matter of coincidence. The generous contributions received from the NED explain RSF’s alignment with the White House. Robert Menard does not direct an organization that defends press freedoms, but instead a propaganda office financed by economic and financial conglomerates at the service of the world’s powerful.
Article in french,¨La supercherie Reporters sans frontières¨, October 30th 2007. Translated by Dawn Gable.

Notes [...]

Going public with "Homeland security" practice to whip up racist terror and patriotic support
The LAPD's counterterrorism bureau plans to identify Muslim enclaves in order to determine which might be likely to become susceptible to "violent, ideologically based extremism," said Deputy Chief of LAPD Michael P. Downing on Thursday.... There are an estimated 500,000 Muslims in Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside counties.

No Hate Crimes No Peace
BAR columnist Lizz Brown
The kidnapping, rape and torture of 20 year-old Megan Williams by two families of white West Virginians shocked the human sensibilities of all who learned of the ghastly crimes - with the exception of the local prosecutor. Despite the self-evident nature of their depraved, multi-day assaults on Ms. Williams' body and spirit - "this is what we do to Niggers" - the prosecutor refuses to charge the fiends with hate crimes, claiming he couldn't get a conviction. Hundreds rallied at the state capital to demand that racist predators be treated as such. Apparently, incandescent race hatred has so blinded prosecutors and the white public, they can't recognize race crimes even when committed in front of their eyes - and in their own hearts.
Read more... http://www.blackagendareport.com/

ATT & Other Telecom Surveillance Partnership with US Government
the government has warrantless access to a Internet traffic... As information is traded between users it flows also into a locked, secret room on the sixth floor of AT&T's San Francisco offices and other rooms around the country -- where the U.S. government can sift through and find the information it wants, former AT&T employee Mark Klein alleged Wednesday at a press conference on Capitol Hill.... Congress is considering a proposal to grant retroactive, blanket immunity for telecom companies for their cooperation with the government as part of a bill that would revamp the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and give government spy agencies more latitude in their information gathering.
Read the full article / Leggi l'articolo completo: http://www.uruknet.de/?p=38016

US debt tops $9 trillion for first time-Treasury:
The U.S. Treasury Department said on Wednesday publicly held U.S. debt breached $9 trillion this week for the first time ever, just five weeks after Congress had raised the statutory borrowing limit.

Federal Liabilities Now Equal $175,000 for Every American:
Deficit spending and promised benefits for federal entitlement programs have put every man, woman, and child in the United States on the hook for $175,000, says a new report by David Walker, comptroller general of the United States.

Card Debt a $915 Billion Disaster :
Think the estimated subprime debt load carried by the big international banks is big, at $1 trillion? How about this: Americans now owe nearly as much - a record $915 billion - on their credit cards alone.

Foreclosures up nearly 100%: :
The number of homes entering some stage of foreclosure jumped almost 100% in the third quarter from the same time a year ago and 30% from last quarter

New $2.6 billion Army chopper overheats
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The Army is spending $2.6 billion each for hundreds of helicopters for homeland security and disaster relief that turn out to have a crucial flaw: They aren't safe to fly on hot days, according to an internal report obtained by The Associated Press.

Rulers of the World
A documentary film by John Pilger
'Global economy' is a modern Orwellian term. On the surface, it is instant financial trading, mobile phones, McDonald's, Starbucks, holidays booked on the net. Beneath this gloss, it is the globalisation of poverty, a world where most human beings never make a phone call and live on less than two dollars a day, where 6,000 children die every day from diarrhea because most have no access to clean water.

The Shocking Disaster of Capitalism
Book Review by Susan Rosenthal
Naomi Klein plowing through her research notes while writing The Shock Doctrine, an important book, but one that, as our reviewer shows, is marred in some significant respects. Klein, in the manner of so many liberals (”left-liberal” in her case)–is a far better diagnostician of the horrors and cynicism of capitalism than a therapist. Her curative recommendations fall way short of what needs to be donehttp://www.bestcyrano.org/cyrano/?p=254