Saturday, October 23, 2010

Wikileaks' Iraq War Logs: Secret Files Show How US Ignored Torture

Wikileaks' Iraq War Logs: Secret Files Show How US Ignored Torture By Nick Davies and Jonathan Steele and David Leigh

"A grim picture of the US and Britain's legacy in Iraq has been revealed in a massive leak of American military documents that detail torture, summary executions and war crime"

The good news is that information wants to be free, and this is clearly another of history's finest examples of this truth. If we survive the current holocaust, we should never again forget this lesson.

The bad news is that our enemies will hold this information as further proof of what they've been saying: that their cause is just, and ours is not. This will add gravitas to their argument that they are just and we are not. This will attract still more people to support and even join their cause.

How long do you think it will be before that embassy in Iraq goes up in flames? Maybe this year, maybe longer to prolong the agony of it all. Let's make no mistake about some things: the Iraqi's have hated the occupier since day 1, the Green Zone is a giant symbol of that occupation, and it's either going down or the trigger happy Neocons still in power will start using our Big Guns. Our troops will not go back into Iraq, so when that embassy does come under siege, we're either going to accept that the utter failure this event will signify, or we're going to watch the trigger-happy Neocons escalate.

Afghanistan, the parking lot for some quarter million soldiers and mercenaries. How long do you think our kids want to continue killing, dying, maiming and destroying once it becomes clear they are fighting for no reason with no goal whatsoever?

Israel and it's enemies are gearing up for the Next Big Action as we speak. Despite the MSM filters we do have enough information to see this writing on the wall. Hatred for us is growing, and seemingly more justifiable. Factories around the world churn out more and more armaments, and while it's anyone's guess how many reach the Middle East, even the most conservative would see it's a net increase. Now combine hatred, terrible weapons, religious fever and righteousness and you've got a formula for disaster.

America has been suckered into an impossible position: an all-out military invasion of the Middle East, an area that we cannot conquer.

The Neocons still control the MSM and Congress (Google "neocon video" for all the evidence you might need, presented in video format. If you prefer writing, there's even more material to read ... we're years down their road by now, and a lot of really smart people have reporting on them, but their work doesn't exist in the MSM, so you'll need to turn to alternative sources - and cross check them).

If people continue to be guided by the MSM, then we can be assured the direction is towards escalation and not a peaceful solution. In fact, we know by now that the words "peaceful solution" aren't even in their lexicon. They are absolutely committed to securing military authority in the Middle East, let us not make the mistake of underestimating the truth and significance of this fact.

I believe we can avoid the calamity that awaits us by doing something dramatically peaceful. If we put the criminals who duped Bush, Congress and America into that invasion on trial for war crimes, and we do everything in our power to make amends for their crimes, we have a shot at stopping what they've set in motion. If we do nothing or let play out, it will be with very bad consequences for America.

By "very bad consequences", consider:

1. Our enemies have amply demonstrated their ability to use suicide bombers, and the fact that they use them so casually clearly indicates there is no shortage of supply.

2. Science has created NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) weapons the likes of which we never want to see used on people again, and there are many, many thousands of them all around the world, and undoubtedly some have reached the black market.

3. The guy who tried to blow up a van in midtown NYC: he was on a mission to deliver a message. While the van didn't blow up as planned, he did demonstrate how easy it is to infiltrate a free society. Now suppose he was a suicide bomber armed with enough vials of some terrible biological weapon to kill huge numbers of people. Perhaps you may wonder, as I do, why this hasn't happened. The volunteers are there, the weapons are there, our society can be infiltrated, and we're at war.

This is more of a fait accompli then a perfect storm.

It's amazed me for a decade now that our enemies haven't used a suicide bomber + a terrible weapon in America. Sometimes I think they are actually enjoying their jihad. As weird as that may sound, our enemies have lived with war, terror and fear for so long that they are as accustomed to that as a way of life as we are to ours. I can imagine no other reason why they haven't use that simple formula to perform a terrible attack here.

The only reason I can see for this not being common knowledge is the power of the MSM propaganda machine. For a current example of how easy it is to spin things, take a look at the NY Times reporting on this Wikileaks dump: they are spinning it into an anti-Iran story, which buries the real significance, which is the psychological effect of the dump on our enemies.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Who is more deserving of contempt?

Obama's Cynicism by Mark Shea
“ Who is more deserving of contempt? The commander-in-chief who sends young Americans to die for a cause, however misguided, in which he sincerely believes? Or the commander-in-chief who sends young Americans to die for a cause in which he manifestly does not believe and yet refuses to forsake?”


“When they stand up, we’ll stand down.” 2011 draw down. New boss, same old lies. Bush, at any rate, was a sincere believer in the messianic mission to save the world at American gunpoint. But Obama’s excuse is what?

When Banks Are the Robbers By Amy Goodman

"The big banks that caused the collapse of the global finance market, and received tens of billions of dollars in taxpayer-funded bailouts, have likely been engaging in wholesale fraud against homeowners and the courts."

Corruption runs deep.

Here's the real kick in the ass: when the TV propagandists talk about economic problems, you'll notice they NEVER say A SINGLE WORD about the causes of the problems. Last night PBS (which I'm getting disgusted with, but there isn't any other channel to turn to!) had a story about the British austerity measures being enacted to deal with the economic problems. Not ONCE during the story was any mention made of the CAUSE of the economic problem.

Why not? Because to talk about it will lead to more talk, and eventually the need to put people on trial will get involved. So, to preempt that whole path to begin with, we don't talk about it. It's just like American's so-called devotion to Israel. If people were asked on a level playing field if our country should be on the line for that country, I have absolutely no doubt the American people would vote against any further support until they clean up their act. Maybe they wouldn't, but that isn't an American problem.

This isn't a Jewish problem because it's not all Jews causing these problems for America, but it's also true that a large percentage of those behind the problems are Jewish. Look at the signatures on the PNAC Statement of Principles, and look at media ownership and influence (now including PBS, the last bastion which died when Bill Moyers retired). I suppose many are Zionists, but I think that word misrepresents the gang somewhat as the majority who voted the Zionists in and support them may not be Zionists themselves. Anyway, I came up with the term "Soldiers of Israel", and to this day I can't come up with a better one. Too bad there needs to be a label, but the gang has to be called something, otherwise it's not real. Our plight today is very real, and if we want to set things right, we have to understand the root causes. So does England, BTW.

I want to say one thing very clearly: my problem isn't with people. I like all people. The problem I'm addressing has to do with philosophy. The Soldiers of Israel practice a philosophy that is completely unacceptable to me, yet was the driving force behind the American military invasion of the Middle East and the horror and suffering that resulted in for countless people. Media complicity in getting the invasion launched clear by so many facts, including the fact that the invasion of the Middle East has been called everything else but that. The invasion was never about Iraq or Afghanistan, it was to change the whole Middle East and insure it's countries are subordinate to America and our "ally" Israel. Finally, the treatment of the Palestinians is as barbaric as is the notion of preemptive war. These people do not deserve power, but they've seized it anyway. Now we have to take that power back, and time is of the essence.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Big problems, clear solutions. It's up to you

Proposition: Fix our election process and our information supply, and the rest will follow. 

Problem: Control of our government has been seized by special interests, and has grown so far removed from the concept of by/for/of the people that virtually everyone sees it, but since every major organization has been bought out (PBS being just one more perfect example!), we lack the organization to do anything. There are likely bunches of qualified leaders out there - we just don't know about them (think Ron Paul and how the machine dealt with during the so-called "debates")

Solution: Each and every one of us 300 million people need to do SOMETHING. I don't care if it's talking to a neighbor, writing a blog, challenging the propaganda machine, or any other thing you can come up with. It wouldn't be the weight of your effort that changes anything, it will be the combined weight of millions of people. If we all just jumped on one foot at the same time, we'd probably knock the Earth of our orbit, or certainly be felt around the world. If you're not doing anything at all today, start with just one thing.

With so many people talking, writing and communicating, SOMETHING will come into existence that will help us get to the next stage of organization, and then we can be - at long last - a truly democratic state with a gov't of/by/for the people.

Problem: Our information supply, the so-called mainstream media, is a giant propaganda machine, under editorial control of a handful of people who get to 'snuff' and 'puff' the issues, which results in a completely biased ("right wing") point of view that's been eating our country and way of life.

You know why Europe has a different attitude then America? It's all about information and who controls the editorial content. 

Solution: read alternate websites like  alternet, truthdig, counterpunch, antiwar, commondreams and others (and pass around links to these websites to your family and friends!)


Monday, October 18, 2010

American Warscapes

American Warscapes by Tom Engelhardt

Tom Engelhardt stands back and takes a look at the big picture of what's become of America. It's not a pretty sight. It's ugly, in fact, but it's true - and we tolerate it at our enormous peril.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

How Neo-Cons Became Honorary Christians

How Neo-Cons Became Honorary Christians By LAWRENCE SWAIM

The Middle East is a ticking bomb. "Oh," someone will say "how could it be a ticking bomb when we're already at war?".

True, we have invaded and occupy two countries so far, but it's not YET a real war because most people in America aren't personally affected by it. It's only a very tiny percentage of families who have kin engaged in the war who are actually feeling it, the rest of America is more concerned with jobs, the economy and whatever "major news" stories of the day break out.

But this status quo will change. The dogs are out, and while they are still contained "over there", the underlying, driving forces have taken a life of their own, as happens with war.

It's very clear that too few of us remember what war actually is, and far too many are willing to put up with and even romanticize it. Be that as it may, the dogs are out and they're running all over the Middle East. It is only a matter of time before things get worse, far worse, first "over there" and eventually - nobody knows when - the devastating consequences of war come home with the chickens to roost.

As anyone who has given any serious thought to the invasion of the Middle East knows, it was fueled and sparked by the Neocons and their sympathizers, especially and particularly in our information supply, the people who frame our national narrative. If you've read anything I've written on the subject in the last decade or so, you'll know that I'm completely and totally against this gang, and as you might guess been stuck with the anti-semite sword as a consequence. Fine. I don't care. I care about America and the world at large. I care about peace and building, and I see mankind's future in space exploration, not to mention repairing our own planet. Everything I see and want is negated by the onslaught of this gang's mind-numbing activities.

The following is from another excellent article on the subject. I'm very pleased to see such intellectual heavyweights gaining momentum if only on alternate websites today. The power of their truth cannot be stifled by Neocon filters over our information supply.

"The neo-con approach to problem-solving is no longer rational, or based on enlightened or even informed self-interest, but has become an apocalyptic movement based on identification with the Holocaust, driven by an almost complete internalization of its trauma and an ever-present and semi-hysterical death worship of the six million. The basic neo-conservative idea is that both America and Israel must exist in a state of permanent war, an idea that neo-cons first expressed in their public letter to Netayahu in 1996 pleading against a peace deal with the Palestinians. But what country can remain in a state of permanent war? Why is that better than peace? Permanent war is an abomination, and people who believe in it are insane.

The apocalyptic, victimology-driven Jewish neo-cons who want permanent war do not flinch for a moment at the potential loss of Jewish lives; indeed, they have lived for years in a moral and emotional universe in which it is assumed as self-evident that the world hates the Jews, everybody is against them, and a new Holocaust is on the way. In fact it is so self-evident and so necessary to their weltanschauung that the neo-cons that believe in it will do almost anything to make it happen.

The more Jews that die: the more children murdered: the more the neo-cons can trumpet to the world that everybody really does hate them. Their solution is an apocalyptic one, borrowed from the most hysterical and blood-obsessed form of Christianity, but going the Christians one step better—to the neo-cons the objective is not to win the Final Battle, but to lose it, thereby acting out to ecstatic completion the total authenticity of their victim status. The apocalyptic solution is, at bottom, a dangerous, narcissistic form of public suicide that seeks the destruction of the world as its answer to the paradoxes of the human dilemma."


Saturday, October 16, 2010

The War On Terror

The War On Terror by Paul Craig Roberts

"Are Americans aware that the same neoconservatives who made these fantastic mistakes, or told these fabulous lies, are still in control of the government in Washington?


The US government creates terrorists by invading Muslim countries, wrecking infrastructure and killing vast numbers of civilians. The US also creates terrorists by installing puppet governments to rule over Muslims and by using the puppet governments to murder and persecute citizens as is occurring on a vast scale in Pakistan today.

Neoconservatives used 9/11 to launch their plan for US world hegemony. Their plan fit with the interests of America’s ruling oligarchies. Wars are good for the profits of the military/security complex, about which President Eisenhower warned us in vain a half century ago. American hegemony is good for the oil industry’s control over resources and resource flows. The transformation of the Middle East into a vast American puppet state serves well the Israel Lobby’s Zionist aspirations for Israeli territorial expansion."

Alert -- The Same Neocons Who Peddled the Al Qaeda-Iraq Connection Are Setting Their Sights on Iran By Ali Gharib

"They lied us into one war, and now they're trying to get the U.S. into another. "


Friday, October 15, 2010

Publish or Perish

Publish or Perish Getting a Read on American War By Nick Turse and Tom Engelhardt

"Quick — name the five most important, influential, and best known books on the Afghan War. Okay, name three. Okay, I’ll settle for two. How about one?"

Recently, I've wondered about something very similar: the fact that there isn't a single anti-war song being played anywhere. I'm not seeing any anti-war movies either, but it seems to me the missing songs are the more important. You do remember John Lennon, right? Remember "Age of Destruction", which could have been written today.

Is it possible there is no passion out there? Am I, and the writers at the anti-war sites I visit regularly, the only ones that feel a sense of passion over what's happened to America? Are film and song writers not among us - at all?

Or is there a deeper, darker, more insidious truth? Is it possible that the channels of distribution for songs and movies are controlled by the same people who control the mainstream media's editorial content?

On the subject of poignant anti-war writing, a reader comment to this article submitted by Jeff Davis quotes from "Johnny got his gun"

""Of course a lot of guys were ashamed. Somebody said let's go out and fight for liberty and so they went out and got killed without ever once thinking of liberty. And what kind of liberty were they fighting for anyway? How much liberty and whose kind of liberty? Were they fighting for the liberty of eating free ice cream cones all their lives or for the liberty of robbing anybody they pleased whenever they wanted to or what? You tell a man he can't rob and you take away some of his liberty. You've got to. What the hell does liberty mean anyhow? It's a word like house or table or any other word. Only it's a special kind of word. A guy says house and he can point to a house to prove it. But a guy says come on let's fight for liberty and he can't show you liberty. He can't prove the thing he's talking about so how in the hell can he be telling you to fight for it? No sir anybody who went out and got into the front line trenches to fight for liberty was a goddamn fool and the guy who got him there was a liar."

"Was it freedom from another country? Freedom from work or disease or death? Freedom from your mother-in-law? Please mister give us a bill of sale on this freedom before we go out and get killed. Give us a bill of sale drawn up plainly in advance what we're getting killed for... so we can be sure after we've won your war that we've got the same kind of freedom we bargained for."

— Dalton Trumbo (Johnny Got His Gun) "


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Why Germany Has It So Good -- and Why America Is Going Down the Drain

Why Germany Has It So Good -- and Why America Is Going Down the Drain By Terrence McNally

"... Germany has somehow managed to create a high-wage, unionized economy without shipping all its jobs abroad or creating a massive trade deficit, or any trade deficit at all. And even as the Germans outsell the United States, they manage to take six weeks of vacation every year. They're beating us with one hand tied behind their back."

"My second proposal is simply the most effective way to move ultimately to a single payer healthcare system, which I think we have to do. I would say that even if I didn't think single payer were a better system. You have to have one consistent system of payment to get control of healthcare costs. All the European countries do. It doesn't have to be single payer, but it has to be a consistent system. You can't have a mix of private market and single payer."
You may recall the health care "debate" and how it was framed by the media as a comparison between the American and the Canadian and British health care systems, but not a single word about the German system. While this article touches on this subject, it's far more then that.

"You point out that as globalization grew, the US chose to compete on the basis of cheap labor by outsourcing. We kept the marketing and executives here and moved the manufacturing elsewhere. We've been playing that game for 20-30 years now. Germany chose to play the opposite game."

The article ends with:

"McNally: Let me finish with a quote of yours that really struck me: Without an industrial base a democracy dies.

Geoghegan: My own favorite ending line would be: Countries like Germany do both capitalism and socialism better than we do."


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Our Country Is Lost Believing in What It Sees on Screens, and We Are Going to Pay a Nasty Price for It

Our Country Is Lost Believing in What It Sees on Screens, and We Are Going to Pay a Nasty Price for It By Chris Hedges

"We do not shake ourselves awake quickly from our electronic hallucinations and defy the elites who are ruining the country and trashing the planet."

Chris Hedges has a remarkable way with words. Every time I read his writing, I relate completely to what he's saying and only wish I could express myself as well. Right on, Chris, as usual.

Helen Thomas Cries, Denies Anti-Semitism, Calls President Obama 'Reprehensible'

See excellent reader comments.


Monday, October 11, 2010

Why defense spending won't go down much

Why defense spending won't go down much Posted By Stephen M. Walt

"Although it is mind-boggling to realize that five percent of the world's population (the United States) now spends more on defense than the other 95 percent put together, this situation is hard to avoid when you see threats emerging virtually everywhere and when you think all of them are best met by an ambitious and highly interventionst foreign policy."

Cutting the Fuse The Explosion of Global Suicide Terrorism and How to Stop It by Robert A. Pape and James K. Feldman

"Since 2004, the number of suicide attacks—whether within a country or transnational—has grown with shocking speed. Through a close analysis of suicide campaigns by Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Israel, Chechnya, and Sri Lanka, the authors provide powerful new evidence that, contrary to popular and dangerously mistaken belief, only a tiny minority of these attacks are motivated solely by religion. Instead, the root cause is foreign military occupation, which triggers secular and religious people alike to carry out suicide attacks."

Surprise -- The Very Dark Side of U.S. History By Peter Dale Scott and Robert Parry

"What is clear from these experiences in Indonesia, Vietnam, Central America and elsewhere is that the United States, for generations, has sustained two parallel but opposed states of mind about military atrocities and human rights: one of U.S. benevolence, generally held by the public, and the other of ends-justify-the-means brutality embraced by counterinsurgency specialists."

Israel Invokes a Loyalty Oath for Non-Jews

Reader comments say it all.


Sunday, October 10, 2010

Israel and US Media

Israel and US Media

This brief video, on a sparsely viewed website, goes right to the core of America's greatest problem: the manipulation of our information supply.

Sure, it's ostensibly about Israel, but in fact it goes much deeper, right into the heart of America's core values. This is because not only is the image of Israel distorted by the "filters" described, but there is a wholesale distortion of other values as well. Consider that not a single person has been put on trial for war crimes in Iraq, and the massive taxpayer robbery called the "bailout".

How is that possible? This country routinely and regularly jails people for a huge assortment of petty offenses, yet can't find it in it's spine to put people on trial for serious crimes?

This speaks of manipulation of our information supply, the so-called mass media. Just how deeply affected is this system by these 'filters'? Do most people spend hours on the Internet learning, of do they watch the "news" on TV and read the newspapers? While there is shift underway, it's obviously too slight and unorganized to make any difference at all.

Here's hoping the TV merges into the computer, and this happens before filters are applied to the Internet. Nothing less then our future is at stake.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Overcoming AIPAC is Not Enough

Overcoming AIPAC is Not Enough By LAWRENCE DAVIDSON

"So you see that as we move ahead we must meld the liberation of the United States from AIPAC's wholly negative influence with the revival of U.S. national interests in the broader Middle East and Muslim world, and that in turn with the viable future of Palestine. All three must be promoted as an interlinked package. If they are not, Washington will certainly some day be free of AIPAC, but Palestine will left under the pernicious shadow of Israel. For this we will always be blamed and our interests will always suffer."

Peace Process to Nowhere By FRANKLIN C. SPINNEY

"Now we are again faced with the depressing spectacle of humiliation. President Obama, like his predecessors (Ike excepted), is allowing Israel to play him and the United States for the fool. But this time, the humiliation ought to be particularly galling to those of us who think of themselves as being proud to be Americans.

Why? Because the President of the United States is prostrating himself before the Israeli altar for nothing, I repeat, nothing -- except, perhaps, an ephemeral advantage in his own domestic politics. "


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Today's picks

These articles caught my attention today:

Who Really Thinks We’ll Win in Afghanistan? By Eugene Robinson

The Real Democratic Whiners By David Sirota

'Born Illegal' -- Exploring the Powerful Advanced Psychedelics Invented by the Father of Ecstasy By Charles Shaw

Bob Woodward's Dark Side -- Famed Reporter Carries Water for the Pentagon
By Russ Baker

Congress Has Plans for an Internet Blacklist in the Works -- Let's Stop This Now By David Segal and Aaron Swarz


When you consider Carl Jung's description of human nature, essentially based on the "opposites", and you look back at historical accounts of the wars and conflicts that support this truth, and then you look at today's - and tomorrows - incredibly powerful weapons of destruction, you can't help but get the sense that either we learn to tame ourselves or we're destined to make war on a scale never seen before - and then we'll do it. Why not now?