Thursday, February 11, 2010

Obama Continuing Bush Policies: Torture, Indefinite Detentions, Secret Prisons, Killer Drones -Collateral Damage Who Cares? & The War On Journalist

Chris Hedges on Terrorism:
The Terror-Industrial Complex by Chris Hedges February 8, 2010 by
Terrorism, however, is a very good business. The number of extremists who are planning to carry out terrorist attacks is minuscule, but there are vast departments and legions of ambitious intelligence and military officers who desperately need to strike a tangible blow against terrorism, real or imagined, to promote their careers as well as justify obscene expenditures and a flagrant abuse of power. All this will not make us safer. It will not protect us from terrorist strikes.

The more we dispatch brutal forms of power to the Islamic world the more enraged Muslims and terrorists we propel into the ranks of those who oppose us. The same perverted logic saw the Argentine military, when I lived in Buenos Aires, “disappear” 30,000 of the nation’s citizens, the vast majority of whom were innocent. Such logic also fed the drive to root out terrorists in El Salvador, where, when I arrived in 1983, the death squads were killing between 800 and 1,000 people a month. Once you build secret archipelagos of prisons, once you commit huge sums of money and invest your political capital in a ruthless war against subversion, once you empower a network of clandestine killers, operatives and torturers, you fuel the very insecurity and violence you seek to contain.
Photo Binyam Muhammed's "...cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment by the United States authorities" says UK Judges who decided to publish secret documents " for the public good" For some Brits i guess there is still a trace of human decency & the sense that everyone must be treated fairly and justly which America is not interested in.

*Chris Hedges  War On Terror is a big business a cash cow for Gov. agencie
*Obama Like Bush & Co. Wants Torture of Detainees Kept Secret
*He is in favor of indefinite detention
*Journalists still targets
*Binyam Muhammed case
*Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui case
 *Ibrahim Jassam Mohammed
*Obama defends US arrest & detention of Journalist ?
*NATO ie The United States tells Afghans to "keep their heads down " during US/NATO military attacks -yeah its their fault for daring to live in their own country-
U.K Govt and U.S.Torture of Binyam Mohamed- Intelligence Sharing of Britain and C.I.A Part 1 of 2

Part 1 of 2. Detailing the case of Binyam Mohamed held by the U.S ,the C.I.A information on Mr Mohamed's treatment and legal procedures to get the information made public.

The Terror-Industrial Complex by Chris Hedges February 8, 2010 by
The conviction of the Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui in New York last week of trying to kill American military officers and FBI agents illustrates that the greatest danger to our security does not come from al-Qaida but the thousands of shadowy mercenaries, kidnappers, killers and torturers our government employs around the globe.

The bizarre story surrounding Siddiqui, 37, who received an undergraduate degree from MIT and a doctorate in neuroscience from Brandeis University, often defies belief. Siddiqui, who could spend 50 years in prison on seven charges when she is sentenced in May, was by her own account abducted in 2003 from her hometown of Karachi, Pakistan, with her three children—two of whom remain missing—and spirited to a secret U.S. prison where she was allegedly tortured and mistreated for five years. The American government has no comment, either about the alleged clandestine detention or the missing children.

...“Justice was not served,” Tina Foster, executive director of the International Justice Network and the spokesperson for Aafia Siddiqui’s family, told me. “

...“It is difficult to get a fair trial in this country if the government wants to accuse you of terrorism,” said Foster. “It is difficult to get a fair trial on any types of charges. The government is allowed to tell the jury you are a terrorist before you have to put on any evidence. The fear factor that has emerged since 9/11 has permeated into the U.S. court system in a profoundly disturbing way. It embraces the idea that we can compromise core principles, for example the presumption of innocence, based on perceived threats that may or may not come to light. We, as a society, have chosen to cave on fear.”

I spent more than a year covering al-Qaida for The New York Times in Europe and the Middle East. The threat posed by Islamic extremists, while real, is also wildly overblown, used to foster a climate of fear and political passivity, as well as pump billions of dollars into the hands of the military, private contractors, intelligence agencies and repressive client governments including that of Pakistan. The leader of one FBI counterterrorism squad told The New York Times that of the 5,500 terrorism-related leads its 21 agents had pursued over the past five years, just 5 percent were credible and not one had foiled an actual terrorist plot. These statistics strike me as emblematic of the entire war on terror.

Finally some judges who are more concerned about treating even prisoners in a fair and just manner and that they not be abused or mistreated or humiliated or beaten or be put though "sleep Deprivation" stress positions and all the other tricks of the trade as practiced for decades by the US & the Death Squads they have trained and assisted. Conservatives have convinced Americans and others that abuse of detainees is sanctioned by God as is killing all non-believers and to this they add that all Afghans, Iraqis ,Iranians, Syrians, all Arabs and Pashtu and other peoples etc. are a backwards people who have no history of a great or unique culture but are rather Barbarians-as the Romans before them called those outside Rome Barbarians but many of these peoples were far from being Barbarians and they did not spring up out of the earth like demons or Trolls or the Jinn they were flesh and blood human beings. Like the Romans the US gov't, media etc. have demonized all of these people so it matters little if they die or are slaughtered.
They would know better for instance if Americans in their schools learned more about the histories of countries outside the US and even outside of Europe. There grand Empires which existed before the Spanish Empire and even before The Roman Empire. it appears their only source of any ancient history is the Bible because as they argue all other books all other bits of knowledge

"British court acknowledges CIA tortured terror suspect if held under British law " By John Byrne at Raw, February 10th, 2010

A former Guantanamo Bay inmate was effectively tortured by US authorities while in CIA custody in Pakistan, according to intelligence notes released Wednesday by a British court.

The court forced the UK government to release 2002 US intelligence notes conveyed to Britain on the treatment of Binyam Mohamed, who was shackled and warned he would "disappear" if he refused to cooperate with US interrogators. He was also subjected to long-term sleep deprivation, the notes said.

The British government published seven paragraphs concerning the treatment of Binyam Mohamed after Foreign Secretary David Miliband lost his appeal court bid to prevent senior judges disclosing the previously secret information.

Britain has repeatedly warned that the release of the information could endanger its intelligence-sharing work with the US authorities and has fought for months to block its disclosure.

...But two judges ruled there was "overwhelming" public interest in publishing the material and that the risk to national security was "not a serious one."

And, the judges wrote, "Although it is not necessary for us to categorise the treatment reported, it could readily be contended to be at the very least cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment by the United States authorities."

"If it had been administered on behalf of the United Kingdom," the judges added, it would have breached agreements the British made in 1972 not to use torture techniques to assist in interrogations.

The information covers "interviews" carried out with Mohamed in 2002, and also discloses that he was exposed to sleep deprivation.

One paragraph reads: "It was reported that at some stage during that further interview process by the United States authorities, BM had been intentionally subjected to continuous sleep deprivation.

"The effects of the sleep deprivation were carefully observed.

"It was reported that combined with the sleep deprivation, threats and inducements were made to him. His fears of being removed from United States custody and 'disappearing' were played upon."
and: US: British disclosure may affect intelligence sharing

WASHINGTON — The White House warned Wednesday that a British court's order releasing once-secret details of the harsh interrogation of a terrorism suspect could affect US-British intelligence sharing.

"We're deeply disappointed with the court's judgment today, because we shared this information in confidence and with certain expectations," said Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for President Barack Obama.

The ruling led to the disclosure of a seven-paragraph summary that called the questioning of Binyam Mohamed, a former Guantanamo Bay inmate, by US interrogators "at the very least cruel, inhuman and degrading."

Sage or Cynical advice given Afghan Civilians -The US military's indifference to the deaths of innocent Afghan Civilians during US forces attacks is astounding and yet no one is surprised and many Americans see nothing wrong with this attitude towards the very people they claim they want to protect More BS from the Brass and the White House.

So America and its off-shoot Nato want to win in Aghanistan and if that means the deaths of a few thousand Afghan citizens then that's the price these Western Colonialist are willing to pay. A suggestion why not just drop a couple of Nukes on Afghanistanand Pakistan and be done with it

NATO assault force to Afghan villagers: ‘Keep heads down’ By Reuters Tuesday, February 9th, 2010

KABUL (Reuters) - Afghan villagers should stay inside and "keep their heads down" when thousands of U.S. Marines launch a massive assault on a densely-populated district in coming days, NATO's civilian representative to Afghanistan said Tuesday.

U.S.-led NATO forces are planning one of the 8-year-old war's biggest offensives to seize Marjah, a patchwork of desert canals and opium fields that is now the last large Taliban-held bastion in Helmand, Afghanistan's most violent province.

The assault, the first since U.S. President Barack Obama ordered 30,000 extra troops to Afghanistan in December, is the start of a campaign to impose government control on rebel-held areas this year, before U.S. forces start to draw down in 2011.
US War On Journalist and Free Speech

This has been going on since at least the early days of the Iraq Invasion and occupation. The US has been accused time and again for its reluctance to provide security for Journalist while embedding others to ensure positive reporting. Other journalist have died under suspicious circumstances as in the attack on the hotel holding journalists in the first days of the Iraqi invasion-they just happened to hit the floor in the hotel where members of Al Jazeera were staying in Afghanistan again they fired on various journalist including Al Jazeera. Obama has done nothing to improve the situation .
The issue probably has more to do with a journalist reporting what was or is really going on Iraq -since the narrative is that America has not done anything wrong and any reporter who suggest it should take heed given what happened to several journalist such as Ibrahim Jassam Mohammed.

US frees Iraqi photographer held for 17 months By Raw Story, February 10th, 2010

BAGHDAD — The US military in Iraq freed an Iraqi freelance journalist working for the Thomson Reuters media group on Wednesday after holding him for 17 months without charge, the company said.

"How can I describe my feelings? This is like being born again," Reuters quoted 33-year-old Ibrahim Jassam Mohammed as saying by telephone, adding that he was greeted emotionally by his family.

The journalist told AFP he was "very happy" to be free.

Mohammed, a freelance photographer and video cameraman for Reuters, was arrested after US and Iraqi forces broke into his home in Mahmudiya, south of Baghdad, in September 2008.

IRAQ BLACKWATER Former Employees told to leave -a step in the right direction if Iraq's government is going to be more than just another U.S. Puppet Regime. Hopefully no one in Obama's administration will block the Iraqi government in this move. And yet the US government under Obama is still handing out lucrative contracts to Blackwater/XE Services and other mercenaries. The right and even the neo-liberals will probably get upset since they believe War should be privatized as much as possible while still using regular military personnel where needed as cannon fodder at a subsistence wage with poor health-care if they are wounded or suffer psychological damage due to having been in a gruesome conflict and if wounded they will be asked to return or forfeit their bonus money for signing up - and once back in civilian life they can expect the worst treatment possible by the VA USA which is more interested in cutting cost by refusing to treat patients properly while the top bureaucrats at VA can live like Fat Cats. But isn't that what true capitalism is all about increasing profits and lowering basic cost . It doesn't matter to these clowns whether the product is a bar of soap, a widget, a VA patient or an inmate in a privatized prison. The wonders of 19th century capitalism still kicking in the 21st century.

Besides according to Conservative Media stars like Glenn Beck he is all for the Troops but not in giving them better wages, healthcare or pensions even equipment is not guaranteed because the cost. Though spending never affect spending billions on new improved and unnecessary armaments of one sort or another. The US government even while supposedly being in a financial crisis is still not considering closing down or even down scaling the 750 major US military basis world wide. Glenn Beck and the Conservative Movement and even Neo-liberals who are part of Obama's administration are die hard Hawks who just happen to paraphrase Robert Duval's character in the film Apocalypse Now "Love the smell of Napalm & burning human flesh in the morning"- "It smells like victory".

Iraq orders former Blackwater security guards out By QASSIM ABDUL-ZAHRA AP

BAGHDAD—Iraq has ordered hundreds of private security guards linked to Blackwater Worldwide to leave the country within seven days or face possible arrest on visa violations, the interior minister said Wednesday.

The order comes in the wake of a U.S. judge's dismissal of criminal charges against five Blackwater guards who were accused in the September 2007 shooting deaths of 17 Iraqis in Baghdad.

It applies to about 250 security contractors who worked for Blackwater in Iraq at the time of the incident, Interior Minister Jawad al-Bolani told The Associated Press.

Some of the guards now work for other security firms in Iraq, while others work for a Blackwater subsidiary, al-Bolani said. He said all "concerned parties" were notified of the order three days ago and now have four days left before they must leave. He did not name the companies.

Blackwater security contractors were protecting U.S. diplomats when the guards opened fire in Nisoor Square, a busy Baghdad intersection, on Sept. 16, 2007. Seventeen people were killed, including women and children, in a shooting that inflamed anti-American sentiment in Iraq.

"We want to turn the page," al-Bolani said. "It was a painful experience, and we would like to go forward."

Backlash from the Blackwater shooting has been felt hardest by private security contractors, who typically provide protection for diplomats, journalists and aid workers. Iraqi security forces have routinely stopped security details at checkpoints to conduct searches and question guards.

and so it goes,

No comments: