Dec 082013
 

Lest We Forget
Nelson Mandela Condemns George W. Bush and War With Iraq, January 30th, 2003

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article37046.htm

“What I am condemning is that one power, with a president who has no foresight, who cannot think properly, is now wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust. … If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care.” — Nelson Mandela

Posted December 07, 2013

Aug 242013
 

By Global Research News

Global Research, August 22, 2013

By Inder Comar

In court papers filed today (PDF), the United States Department of Justice requested that George W. Bush, Richard Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice and Paul Wolfowitz be granted procedural immunity in a case alleging that they planned and waged the Iraq War in violation of international law.

Plaintiff Sundus Shaker Saleh, an Iraqi single mother and refugee now living in Jordan, filed a complaint in March 2013 in San Francisco federal court alleging that the planning and waging of the war constituted a “crime of aggression” against Iraq, a legal theory that was used by the Nuremberg Tribunal to convict Nazi war criminals after World War II.

“The DOJ claims that in planning and waging the Iraq War, ex-President Bush and key members of his Administration were acting within the legitimate scope of their employment and are thus immune from suit,” chief counsel Inder Comar of Comar Law said.

The “Westfall Act certification,” submitted pursuant to the Westfall Act of 1988, permits the Attorney General, at his or her discretion, to substitute the United States as the defendant and essentially grant absolute immunity to government employees for actions taken within the scope of their employment.

Read full article here

Aug 242013
 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/bradley-manning-wrongfully-sentenced-35-years-longest-ever-punishment-for-leaking-government-information/5346584

By Stephen Lendman

Global Research, August 22, 2013

On July 30, he was wrongfully convicted on 20 of 22 charges. They included multiple Espionage Act violations. It’s a WW I relic.

It belongs in history’s dustbin. It’s unrelated to exposing serious government wrongdoing.

Manning revealed what everyone needs to know. He disclosed grave war crimes. Perpetrators are free to kill again. Doing the right thing got Manning convicted.

Judge Col. Denise Lind sentenced him to 35 years. It’s by far the longest ever punishment for leaking government information.

Manning will be 26 years old in December. He’ll be eligible for parole in around eight years. Chances appear slim to none. His conviction and sentencing sent a message. It warns other potential whistleblowers not to reveal what Washington wants suppressed.

Manning will serve hard time. Initially he’s heading for Fort Leavenworth, KS incarceration. He faces potential Supermax harshness.

They’re maximum security prisons. Authorities say they’re for society’s most incorrigible. They’re for “the worst of the worst.” Hyperbole substitutes for reality.

Inmates endure horrific conditions. Punishment substitutes for justice. They’re isolated longterm. They monitored round-the-clock. It’s done visually and by closed-circuit TV.

They’re confined in windowless single cells. They’re about 8 x 10 feet. They remain there 23 hours a day. Fluorescent lights stay on round-the-clock. Prisoners lack constructive activity. Visits are rare. Direct contact’s denied.

Food’s delivered twice daily through cell door slots. Central control booth guards control things. One prisoner at a time’s permitted to shower.

Supermax confinement’s the closest thing to hell on earth. It replicates some of the worst Guantanamo practices.

Torture is commonplace in many US prisons. Inmates are savaged by dogs, brutally shocked with cattle prods, burned by toxic chemicals, harmed by stun guns, beaten, stripped naked and abused in various other ways.

It’s standard practice. Manning’s vulnerable. He may never again see the light of day. If so, he’ll never be the same.

Judge Lind reduced Manning in rank. He went from private first class to E1. It’s the lowest military status. He’ll forfeit all pay, allowances and benefits. He’ll be dishonorably discharged.

Manning stood while Lind read her sentence. He did so expressionless. Lawyer David Coombs represents him. He’s submitting a presidential pardon application. He’ll appeal. He’ll do so up to the Supreme Court.

Chances of success are slim to none. Obama wanted his head. He pronounced guilt by accusation. He did so before proceedings began. Compassion isn’t his long suit.

After pronouncing sentence, Lind left. Military guards escorted Manning out of court. Supporters shouted encouragement, saying:

“We’ll keep fighting for you Bradley.” “You are a hero.” “We love you.”

Manning’s a 2013 Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Over 100,000 people support him. He stands no chance of winning.

Nobel Committee members reserve their award for notorious war criminals. Peace advocates have no chance. It’s a Nobel tradition.

Manning’s sentence is automatically reviewed. Major General Jeffrey Buchanan heads Washington’s Military District. He’s responsible for doing it. He can reduce Manning’s sentence. He can’t increase it.

His case automatically goes to the Army Court of Appeals. The entire process takes time. A full transcript of proceedings must be produced. Defense counsel, prosecutors and Judge Lind must approve it.

On August 21, the Bradley Manning Support Network headlined “Press conference: Bradley Manning’s lawyer to address 35 year sentence,” saying:

David Coombs represents him. He’ll discuss legal avenues for redress. He’ll take reporters’ questions. He’ll do so for the first time.

A “crowd-funded college trust is being established.” It’s to help Manning attend college on release.

His supporters held an early morning vigil. They’ll rally tonight outside the White House. They’ll do it again and again and again.

“The Bradley Manning Support Network will continue to be responsible for 100% of Manning’s legal fees, as well as international education efforts.”

“Funded by over 22,000 individuals, the Support Network has mustered $1.4 million in Manning’s defense.”

Manning was confined for 1,294 days. They included 112 day sentencing credit. Judge Lind ordered it.

She said Manning was subjected to lawless pretrial harshness. Credit reduces his sentence to around thirty-one and a half years.

Coombs will petition General Buchanan for clemency. An Army clemency parole board can review his case after a year.

Coombs can petition for clemency annually. Manning must serve a third of his sentence for parole eligibility.

Good behavior credit’s possible. Whether it holds for Manning remains to be seen. Thirty-five years hard time for doing the right thing suggests not.

If granted, sentencing can be reduced as many as ten days for each month’s confinement.

On August 19, prosecutors argued for harshness. They said:

“There is value in deterrence, Your Honor. This court must send a message to any soldier contemplating stealing classified information.”

“National security crimes that undermine the entire system must be taken seriously. Punish Pfc. Manning’s actions, Your Honor.”

They urged 60 years. Chief prosecutor Capt. Joe Morrow said “(h)e’s been convicted of serious crimes.”

He “betrayed the United States and for that betrayal he deserves to spend the majority of his remaining life in confinement.”

David Coombs called Manning “a young man capable of being redeemed. We should not throw this man out for 60 years. We should not rob him of his youth.”

“The appropriate sentence would be (one) that takes into account all facts and circumstances that you’re aware of. (T)hat it gives Pfc. Manning an opportunity to be restored to a productive place in society.”

That would give him “the opportunity, perhaps, to live the life he wants in the way that he would like, perhaps find love, maybe get married, maybe have children, to watch his children grow and perhaps have a relationship with his children’s children.”

He’s at the mercy of dark US forces. They want a message sent. They want Manning destroyed. They already administered cruel and unreasonable punishment.

Longterm hard time compounds it. Doing so sends a clear message. Whistleblowers aren’t tolerated. Obama targeted more than all his predecessors combined.

Potential ones are warned. Revealing what Washington wants suppressed risks replicating harsh Manning treatment.

Doing the right thing’s criminalized. War criminals go unpunished. US-style justice is none at all. Rogue states operate that way.

A Final Comment

The Government Accountability Project (GAP) calls itself “the nation’s leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization.”

In response to Manning’s sentencing it headlined “Manning’s 35-Year Sentence Intended to be a Message to All Whistleblowers.” In part it said:

“It is the position of the Government Accountability Project (GAP) that this sentence, though not the 60+ year sentence that the prosecution had requested, is intended to be a message to all whistleblowers, present and future.”

“Further, the sentence is excessive and unjust for the following reasons:

“It has never been proven that Manning’s conduct did harm to the US.”

“Manning informed the public of clear wrongdoing.”

He “suffered egregious and unlawful pretrial detention.

“No individuals have been punished as a result of Manning’s revelations despite clear atrocities.”

“This was a show trial done largely in secret,” said GAP National Security & Human Rights Counsel Kathleen McClellan.

“This case is of public interest, but the public has been kept in the dark through severely limited media access. America is better than secret courts.”

“GAP champions government and corporate accountability and transparency by advancing occupational free speech, defending whistleblowers, and empowering citizen activists.”

“Since its founding in 1977, GAP has fought to make large bureaucratic institutions accountable through the effective exercise of conscience.”

America today represents heart of darkness harshness. It’s a hair’s breadth from full-blown tyranny. Manning’s fate can be anyone’s.

Dissent’s an endangered species. Freedom’s fast eroding. It’s disappearing in plain sight.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book is titled “Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

May 012013
 

Did Muslims Attack America on 9/11?
By Ibn e Abdul Haq

April 309, 2013 “Information Clearing House” -”PTV” – Almost 12 years and many a million deaths later, the US and its NATO allies have made public their plan to start withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014. The war in Afghanistan has been an abject failure, orphaned both on the military and the public relations fronts, with the loss of life, property, and infrastructure being colossal.

More importantly, contrary to initial claims, the global war on terror has not made the world a safer place. Instances of terrorism have continuously been on a rise, engulfing one after another the countries neighboring Afghanistan. Lest we forget, almost all subsequent wars waged by US and NATO have had their genesis in the war that was thrust onto Afghanistan after 9/11.

Much of America’s foreign policy since 9/11 has been based on the assumption that it was attacked by Muslims on that day. This assumption was used, most prominently, to justify the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. In fact every war fought by US and its allies during the first decade of the third millennium has been founded in the post-9/11 doctrine of preemption.

It is now widely agreed that the use of 9/11 as a basis for attacking Iraq was illegitimate: none of the hijackers were Iraqis, there was no working relation between Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden, and Iraq was not behind the anthrax attacks. But it is still widely believed that the US attack on Afghanistan was justified. For more than a decade now, the corporate media around the world has consistently been forcing this fantastic narrative as an undisputable fact. It seems likely that the indoctrination will increase to new levels as spin-doctors try to justify the Afghanistan withdrawal plan and prove that the ‘war on terror’ has been a success unmatched in human history.

The stage has been set for a massive ploy of psychological and media war to be unleashed on the unsuspecting minds of the masses. For example, as recently as in 2011, the New York Times while referring to the US attack on Iraq as a “war of choice,” called the battle in Afghanistan a “war of necessity.” Time magazine dubbed it “the right war.” And in 2009, Barack Obama was reported to have said ‘one reason to wind down our involvement in Iraq is to have the troops and resources to “go after the people in Afghanistan who actually attacked us on 9/11.”

Read essay here

Mar 262013
 

To: George W. Bush and Dick Cheney
From: Tomas Young

I write this letter on the 10th anniversary of the Iraq War on behalf of my fellow Iraq War veterans. I write this letter on behalf of the 4,488 soldiers and Marines who died in Iraq. I write this letter on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of veterans who have been wounded and on behalf of those whose wounds, physical and psychological, have destroyed their lives. I am one of those gravely wounded. I was paralyzed in an insurgent ambush in 2004 in Sadr City. My life is coming to an end. I am living under hospice care.

I write this letter on behalf of husbands and wives who have lost spouses, on behalf of children who have lost a parent, on behalf of the fathers and mothers who have lost sons and daughters and on behalf of those who care for the many thousands of my fellow veterans who have brain injuries.

I write this letter on behalf of those veterans whose trauma and self-revulsion for what they have witnessed, endured and done in Iraq have led to suicide and on behalf of the active-duty soldiers and Marines who commit, on average, a suicide a day.

I write this letter on behalf of the some 1 million Iraqi dead and on behalf of the countless Iraqi wounded.

I write this letter on behalf of us all—the human detritus your war has left behind, those who will spend their lives in unending pain and grief.

You may evade justice but in our eyes you are each guilty of egregious war crimes, of plunder and, finally, of murder, including the murder of thousands of young Americans—my fellow veterans—whose future you stole.

I write this letter, my last letter, to you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney.

I write not because I think you grasp the terrible human and moral consequences of your lies, manipulation and thirst for wealth and power.

I write this letter because, before my own death, I want to make it clear that I, and hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans, along with millions of my fellow citizens, along with hundreds of millions more in Iraq and the Middle East, know fully who you are and what you have done.

You may evade justice but in our eyes you are each guilty of egregious war crimes, of plunder and, finally, of murder, including the murder of thousands of young Americans—my fellow veterans—whose future you stole.

Read full letter here

Mar 242013
 

By Susan Lindauer

http://extremeprejudiceusa.wordpress.com/2013/03/24/iraq-peace-option-classified-and-damning/

Most of you know I was the Chief U.S. Asset covering the Iraqi Embassy at the United Nations for 7 years before the War. You know I was subsequently arrested on the Patriot Act, locked up on Carswell Air Force Base, and threatened with forcible drugging to silence me, when the Bush cabal decided to blame Pre-War Intelligence for their catastrophic decision to go to War.

On the 10 year anniversary of the start of the War, it’s worth examining the comprehensive peace option hammered out in the two year run up to the invasion. I was traveling in Minnesota this week for speaking engagements. In a television interview, I discussed the peace option at length.

I hope it will persuade the world to give diplomacy a chance to forestall confrontation with Iran in the months ahead. It’s never so hopeless as you might think.

Mar 212013
 

On the eve of the tenth anniversary of the Iraq War, Panorama reveals how key aspects of the secret intelligence used to justify the invasion were based on fabrication and lies. The CIA and M16 knew that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. We went to war in Iraq on a lie.

Mar 212013
 

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/

Cheney Caught In Another Major Lie

Everyone knew that Iraq did not possess weapons of mass destruction (update here).

Dick Cheney admits that he lied about 9/11.

MSNBC recently noted that these two facts are intertwined:

Mark Rossini, was then an FBI counter-terrorism agent detailed to the CIA. He was assigned the task of evaluating a Czech intelligence report that Mohammed Atta, the lead 9/11 hijacker, had met with an Iraqi intelligence agent in Prague before the attack on the World Trade Towers.

Cheney repeatedly invoked the report as evidence of Iraqi involvement in 9/11. “It’s been pretty well confirmed that he [Atta] did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April,” Cheney said on Meet the Press on Dec. 9, 2001.

But the evidence used to support the claim–a supposed photograph of Atta in Prague the day of the alleged meeting—had already been debunked by Rossini. He analyzed the photo and immediately saw it was bogus: the picture of the Czech “Atta” looked nothing like the real terrorist. It was a conclusion he relayed up the chain, assuming he had put the matter to rest.

Then he heard Cheney endorsing the discredited report on national television. “I remember looking at the TV screen and saying, ‘What did I just hear?’ And I–first time in my life, I actually threw something at the television because I couldn’t believe what I just heard,” Rossini says.

Rossini gave MSNBC an example in an interview for the documentary Hubris:

Mohammed Atta was a sleight guy … barely 5’5 or 5’6, and skinny. The guy in the photograph was muscular, thick, and had a neck like the size of two of my necks. And I thought, “that’s not Mohammed Atta in the photograph!” But I sent it to the lab anyway, knowing that would put it to rest.

Read article here

Feb 232013
 

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article34069.htm

Posted February 22, 2013
Must watch video

Authority & Expectations

Smart and provocative young veteran, Wray Harris, unlocks the sufferings served by the Iraq war.

“. . . deeply moving. This close up of PTSD is something every American should see. Mr. Harris impresses me as an intelligent and thoughtful person going through hell yet willing to help others understand the evils of war.” – - Veterans for Peace Chapter 1011