x
poetrywolf
#


"9/11(/01) WAS AN INSIDE JOB!"


Click here to go to the ImpeachForPeace.org website for information on impeachment!
Please go to the ImpeachForPeace website for info on impeachment!


Click here to cast your vote now to impeach George W. Bush and company!
Vote to impeach the biggest terrorist!
(Over a million signed already!)



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Know all of your rights and stand up for them!


Click here to go to the Center for Constitutional Rights website for more information!
Please assist the Center for Constitutional Rights in preserving our civil liberties!


Click here to go to The Committee to Protect Bloggers website for more information!
Know all of your rights and stand up for them!


Also become a card-carrying member of the NLG today!
Join the top U.S. legal advocates organization in fighting for True Liberty!

 

 

 

 

AND  NOW  THE  APOCALYPSE!

Living In A World Full Of Lies




(The "Red, White and Blue" in "Black and White")

 

 

 

 

International A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
Click Here to A.ct N.ow and Ask
Click here to go to International A.N.S.W.E.R. (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) Coalitions website!
S.top W.ar and E.nd R.acism!





"Dissent is the  ESSENTIAL

aspect of patriotism"!

--Thomas Jefferson







[PLEASE TAKE NOTICE: All entries are in descending order by the date(s) they were posted, and in some cases in ascending order by the date(s) written.]







 

 

FABLED


ENEMIES


"Excellent documentary giving a great
deal of the evidence that 9-11 was
an 'inside job' perpetrated by the
U.S. government itself through its
'intelligence' and/or 'national
security' agencies, branches of
the U.S. military, and others"

VERY important that you watch now!
(View for FREE below)

Posted on 7 December 2009
by S. Wolf Britain
"And Now The Apocalypse!"
http://www.wolfbritain.com/

[Copyright (c) 2009-2012 in the U.S.A.
and Internationally by
Jason Bermas and "Alex Jones Productions",
"InfoWars.com: Because There Is A War On
For Your Mind (And Soul)"
, and
"FabledEnemies.com".
All rights reserved.]


 


 

Proof of the FEMA concentration camps
all over the U.S., in every state
including Alaska and Hawaii:

http://www.campfema.com/

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index
.php?context=va&aid=7763

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&gl=
us&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=
118135173934136151745.00045
bc25ee928a8872d0&z=3

Now please watch next video, as follows....

 

 

No replies - reply
 
#

 

 

 

FALL OF THE


REPUBLIC


Excellent documentary on the grave
situation that now faces us in the
United States and the World

VERY important that you watch now!
(View for FREE below)

Posted on 14 November 2009
by S. Wolf Britain
"And Now The Apocalypse!"
http://www.wolfbritain.com/

[Copyright (c) 2009-2012 in the U.S.A.
and Internationally by
"Alex Jones Productions", "InfoWars.com:
Because There Is A War On For
Your Mind (And Soul)"
, and
"FallOfTheRepublic.com".
All rights reserved.]


 


 

Proof of the FEMA concentration camps
all over the U.S., in every state
including Alaska and Hawaii:

http://www.campfema.com/

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index
.php?context=va&aid=7763

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&gl=
us&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=
118135173934136151745.00045
bc25ee928a8872d0&z=3

Now please watch next video, as follows....

 

 

 

THE OBAMA


DECEPTION


Excellent documentary on the grave
situation that now faces us in the
United States and the World

VERY important that you watch now!
(View for FREE below)

Posted on 14 November 2009
by S. Wolf Britain
"And Now The Apocalypse!"
http://www.wolfbritain.com/

[Copyright (c) 2008-2012 in the U.S.A.
and Internationally by
"Alex Jones Productions", "InfoWars.com:
Because There Is A War On For
Your Mind (And Soul)"
, and
"ObamaDeception.net".
All rights reserved.]


 


 

Proof of the FEMA concentration camps
all over the U.S., in every state
including Alaska and Hawaii:

http://www.campfema.com/

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index
.php?context=va&aid=7763

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&gl=
us&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=
118135173934136151745.00045
bc25ee928a8872d0&z=3

Now please watch next video, as follows....

 

 

 

ENDGAME:


BLUEPRINT FOR


GLOBAL


ENSLAVEMENT


Excellent documentary on the grave
situation that now faces us in the
United States and the World

VERY important that you watch now!
(View for FREE below)

Posted on 14 November 2009
by S. Wolf Britain
"And Now The Apocalypse!"
http://www.wolfbritain.com/

[Copyright (c) 2007-2012 in the U.S.A.
and Internationally by
"Alex Jones Productions", "InfoWars.com:
Because There Is A War On For
Your Mind (And Soul)"
, and
"EndgameTheMovie.com".
All rights reserved.]


 


 

Proof of the FEMA concentration camps
all over the U.S., in every state
including Alaska and Hawaii:

http://www.campfema.com/

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index
.php?context=va&aid=7763

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&gl=
us&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=
118135173934136151745.00045
bc25ee928a8872d0&z=3

Now please check out my other posts, as follows....

 

 

 

No replies - reply
 
#

 

 

The American flag, the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights have now been torn to shreads. "Rest In Peace (RIP)", Freedom and Liberty. RIP, "the experiment in democracy".

 

We have watched in dumb amazement (those of us who have realized what is really going on, that is) as for the past five years the Bill of Rights, the U.S. Constitution, liberty, and freedom have been step by step, systematically eviscerated, first with the so-called "USA P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act (those who criticize it supposedly aren't patriots)", and then with the latest afront on domestic freedom and liberty, the "Military Commissions Act of 2006," also known among other names as the "Detainee Bill", passed by an almost completely cowed Senate in the dead of night on Friday, the 29th day of September, 2006.

 

Now NONE OF US is safe. Not civil libertarians, not dissenters, not protesters of even the mildest variety (as virtually everything is now considered "terrorism"), and not even those blind worshippers of the U.S. government or its agents; because, if someone decides they don't like you, or gets jealous or resentful of you, all they need do is CLAIM you criticized the government, defended "rights", felt that certain force used against someone was excessive, or committed some other equally innocent "perceived threatening conduct" (some of the federal government's favorite wording that they now use for those who exercise their inalienable, immutable, inviolable First Amendment rights of Freedom of Speech, Belief and Dissent to disagree with their government), and you will very likely be "disappeared" into custody, stripped of U.S. citizenship, and be interro(r)gated, intimidated, humiliated, terrorized, tortured, and/or very possibly murdered, all without "Due Process of Law" under the Fifth and Fourteen Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, or a fair, unbiased hearing, access to an impartial lawyer, court, judge, or jury; and, if you live through this process, you could be kept secretly imprisoned forever without access to ANYONE important to you. This is NO exageration WHATSOVER; and, if "We, The People" don't repeal this horrific law, or the U.S. Supreme court doesn't overturn it, this is the END of our Republic, of Democracy, and of ALL Liberty and Freedom in "the land of the free, and the home of the brave", and THE END OF ALL protection(s) from a capricious, out of control, dictatorial government.

 

So, you see, the inviolable freedoms and liberties that we have so taken for granted, and that most Americans now have so little understanding of the supreme importance of, much to our grave detriment, were not overturned by "Islamo-Fascist terrorists", nor by protesting, dissenting U.S. citizens, nor journalists critical of the government, nor any other equally illusory, contrived, manufactured, engineered, and/or U.S.-government-created, state-sponsored "enemy(ies)", agents, assets, patsies, bogeymen, infiltra(i)tors, disinfo-agents, detractors, distractors, naysayers, actors, shills, trolls, hackers, informers, spies, entrappers, and/or agents provocateur, etc., but this act of true terrorism was carried out by the very people in our own government who are literally sworn to uphold and protect the U.S. Constitution "from all enemies, foreign AND DOMESTIC", including from THEMSELVES and other tyrannical, 'absolutely despotic' (to loosely quote the Declaration of Independence) forces in that very government; and the vast majority of them have COMPLETELY failed us and thrown EVERY SINGLE PERSON in this great country OF OURS into limitless danger and threat(s) by that government to the very safety of EACH AND EVERY ONE OF OUR LIVES.

 

The following is very likely the best article on this subject that has thus far been written, at least as far as I am aware; and, therefore, I share it with you at this time to further clarify just how truly catastrophic, life-threatening and consequential the situation we are now in actually is for every single man, woman, child, and little baby in this entire country, and ultimately in this entire world. The world-renowned True Journalist who wrote this great article, Chris Floyd, is also a True Hero and an exceedingly courageous human being for writing such an accurate article of warning to world-citizens planet-wide, and such an accurate portrayal of the extremely dire situation the U.S. and the world are in as a direct result of the subject matter it covers, as follows:

 

 

  Print This Story   E-mail This Story

 

Read more of Chris Floyd's columns.

 

Go to Original.

 

 

Click here to go to Chris Floyd's blog, 'Empire Burlesque'!    FATAL VISION: THE DEEPER EVIL
    BEHIND THE DETAINEE BILL
    ("Big Brother" Government
    Is Now Here In The U.S.)
    By Chris Floyd, T.O. UK Reporter
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Tuesday, 3 October 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org),
    Empire Burlesque (Chris' blog)
    and/or Chris Floyd.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

Click here to go buy Chris Floyd's book, 'Empire Burlesque: High Crimes and Low Comedy in the Bush Imperium'!

    (This is a slightly revised version of a piece that first appeared on the Oct. 2nd edition of Truthout.org .)

    There is no week nor day nor hour when tyranny may not enter upon this country -- if the people lose their confidence in themselves -- and lose their roughness and spirit of defiance.

--- Walt Whitman

 

    I.

 

    It was a dark hour indeed (on Friday, September 29th, 2006) when the United States Senate voted to end the constitutional republic and transform the country into a "Leader-State," giving the president and his agents the power to capture, torture and imprison forever anyone -- American citizens included -- whom they arbitrarily decide is an "enemy combatant." This also includes those who merely give "terrorism" some kind of "support," defined so vaguely that many experts say it could encompass legal advice, innocent gifts to charities or even political opposition to US government policy within its draconian strictures.

 

 

    All of this is bad enough -- a sickening and cowardly surrender of liberty not seen in a major Western democracy since the Enabling Act passed by the German Reichstag in March 1933. But it is by no means the full extent of our degradation. In reality, the darkness is deeper, and more foul, than most people imagine. For in addition to the dictatorial powers of seizure and torment given by Congress on Thursday to George W. Bush -- powers he had already seized and exercised for five years anyway, even without this fig leaf of sham legality -- there is a far more sinister imperial right that Bush has claimed -- and used -- openly, without any demur or debate from Congress at all: ordering the "extrajudicial killing" of anyone on earth that he and his deputies decide -- arbitrarily, without charges, court hearing, formal evidence, or appeal -- is an "enemy combatant."

 

    That's right; from the earliest days of the Terror War -- September 17, 2001, to be exact -- Bush has claimed the peremptory power of life and death over the entire world. If he says you're an enemy of America, you are. If he wants to imprison you and torture you, he can. And if he decides you should die, he'll kill you. This is not hyperbole, liberal paranoia, or "conspiracy theory": it's simply a fact, reported by the mainstream media, attested by senior administration figures, recorded in official government documents -- and boasted about by the president himself, in front of Congress and a national television audience.

 

    And although the Republic-snuffing act just passed by Congress does not directly address Bush's royal prerogative of murder, it nonetheless strengthens it and enshrines it in law. For the measure sets forth clearly that the designation of an "enemy combatant" is left solely to the executive branch; neither Congress nor the courts have any say in the matter. When this new law is coupled with the existing "Executive Orders" authorizing "lethal force" against arbitrarily designated "enemy combatants," it becomes, quite literally, a license to kill -- with the seal of Congressional approval.

 

    How arbitrary is this process by which all our lives and liberties are now governed? Dave Niewert at Orcinus has unearthed a remarkable admission of its totally capricious nature. In an December 2002 story in the Washington Post, then-Solicitor General Ted Olson described the anarchy at the heart of the process with admirable frankness:

 

    "[There is no] requirement that the executive branch spell out its criteria for determining who qualifies as an enemy combatant," Olson argues.

 

    "'There won't be 10 rules that trigger this or 10 rules that end this,' Olson said in the interview. 'There will be judgments and instincts and evaluations and implementations that have to be made by the executive that are probably going to be different from day to day, depending on the circumstances.'"

 

    In other words, what is safe to do or say today might imperil your freedom or your life tomorrow. You can never know if you are on the right side of the law, because the "law" is merely the whim of the Leader and his minions: their "instincts" determine your guilt or innocence, and these flutterings in the gut can change from day to day. This radical uncertainty is the very essence of despotism -- and it is now, formally and officially, the guiding principle of the United States government.

 

    And underlying this edifice of tyranny is the prerogative of presidential murder. Perhaps the enormity of this monstrous perversion of law and morality has kept it from being fully comprehended. It sounds unbelievable to most people: a president ordering hits like a Mafia don? But that is our reality, and has been for five years. To overcome what seems to be a widespread cognitive dissonance over this concept, we need only examine the record -- a record, by the way, taken entirely from publicly available sources in the mass media. There's nothing secret or contentious about it, nothing that any ordinary citizen could not know -- if they choose to know it.


 

    II.

 

    Six days after the 9/11 attacks, George W. Bush signed a "presidential finding" authorizing the CIA to kill those individuals whom he had marked for death as terrorists. This in itself was not an entirely radical innovation; Bill Clinton's White House legal team had drawn up memos asserting the president's right to issue "an order to kill an individual enemy of the United States in self-defense," despite the legal prohibitions against assassination, the Washington Post reported in October 2001. The Clinton team based this ruling on the "inherent powers" of the "Commander in Chief" -- that mythical, ever-elastic construct that Bush has evoked over and over to defend his own unconstitutional usurpations.

 

    The practice of "targeted killing" was apparently never used by Clinton, however; despite the pro-assassination memos, Clinton followed the traditional presidential practice of bombing the hell out of a bunch of civilians whenever he wanted to lash out at some recalcitrant leader or international outlaw -- as in his bombing of the Sudanese pharmaceutical factory in 1998, or the two massive strikes he launched against Iraq in 1993 and 1998, or indeed the death and ruin that was deliberately inflicted on civilian infrastructure in Serbia during that nation's collective punishment for the crimes of Slobodan Milosevic. Here, was following the example set by George H.W. Bush, who killed hundreds, perhaps thousands, of Panamanian civilians in his illegal arrest of Manuel Noriega in 1988, and Ronald Reagan, who killed Moamar Gadafy's adopted 2-year-old daughter and 100 other civilians in a punitive strike on Libya in 1986.

 

    Junior Bush, of course, was about to outdo all those blunderbuss strokes with his massive air attacks on Afghanistan, which killed thousands of civilians, and the later orgy of death and destruction in Iraq. But he also wanted the power to kill individuals at will. At first, the assassination program was restricted to direct orders from the president aimed at specific targets, as suggested by the Clinton memos. But soon the arbitrary power of life and death was delegated to agents in the field, after Bush signed orders allowing CIA assassins to kill targets without seeking presidential approval for each attack, the Washington Post reported in December 2002. Nor was it necessary any longer for the president to approve each new name added to the target list; the "security organs" could designate "enemy combatants" and kill them as they saw fit. However, Bush was always keen to get the details about the agency's wetwork, administration officials assured the Post.

 

    The first officially confirmed use of this power was the killing of an American citizen, along with several foreign nationals, by a CIA drone missile in Yemen on November 3, 2002. A similar strike occurred on December 4, 2005, when a CIA missile destroyed a house and purportedly killed Abu Hamza Rabia, a suspected al-Qaeda figure. But the only bodies found at the site were those of two children, the houseowner's son and nephew, Reuters reports. The grieving father denied any connection to terrorism. An earlier CIA strike on another house missed Rabia but killed his wife and children, Pakistani officials reported.

 

    However, there is simply no way of knowing at this point how many people have been killed by American agents operating outside all judicial process. Most of the assassinations are carried out in secret: quietly, professionally. As a Pentagon document uncovered by the New Yorker in December 2002 revealed, the death squads must be "small and agile," and "able to operate clandestinely, using a full range of official and non-official cover arrangements to ... enter countries surreptitiously."

 

    What's more, there are strong indications that the Bush administration has outsourced some of the contracts to outside operators. In the original Post story about the assassinations -- in those first heady weeks after 9/11, when administration officials were much more open about "going to the dark side," as Cheney boasted on national television -- Bush insiders told the paper that "it is also possible that the instrument of targeted killings will be foreign agents, the CIA's term for nonemployees who act on its behalf.

 

    Here we find a deadly echo of the "rendition" program that has sent so many captives to torture pits in Syria, Egypt and elsewhere -- including many whose innocence has been officially established, such as the Canadian businessman Maher Arar, German national Khalid El-Masri, UK native Mozzam Begg and many others. They had been subjected to imprisonment and torture despite their innocence, because of intelligence "mistakes." How many have fallen victim to Bush's hit squads on similar shaky grounds?

 

    So here we are. Congress has just entrenched the principle of Bush's "unitary executive" dictatorship into law; and it is this principle that undergirds the assassination program. As I wrote in December, it's hard to believe that any genuine democracy would accept a claim by its leader that he could have anyone killed simply by labeling them an "enemy." It's hard to believe that any adult with even the slightest knowledge of history or human nature could countenance such unlimited, arbitrary power, knowing the evil it is bound to produce. Yet this is exactly what the great and good in America have done.

 

    But this should come as no surprise. They have known about it all along, and have not only countenanced Bush's death squad, but even celebrated it. I'll end with one more passage from that December article, which sadly is even more apt for our degraded reality today. It was a depiction of the one of the most revolting scenes in recent American history: Bush's state of the Union address in January 2003, delivered live to the nation during the final warmongering frenzy before the rape of Iraq:

 

    Trumpeting his successes in the Terror War, Bush claimed that "more than 3,000 suspected terrorists" had been arrested worldwide -- "and many others have met a different fate." His face then took on the characteristic leer, the strange, sickly half-smile it acquires whenever he speaks of killing people: "Let's put it this way. They are no longer a problem."

 

    In other words, the suspects -- and even Bush acknowledged they were only suspects -- had been murdered. Lynched. Killed by agents operating unsupervised in that shadow world where intelligence, terrorism, politics, finance and organized crime meld together in one amorphous, impenetrable mass. Killed on the word of a dubious informer, perhaps: a tortured captive willing to say anything to end his torment, a business rival, a personal foe, a bureaucrat looking to impress his superiors, a paid snitch in need of cash, a zealous crank pursuing ethnic, tribal or religious hatreds -- or any other purveyor of the garbage data that is coin of the realm in the shadow world.

 

    Bush proudly held up this hideous system as an example of what he called "the meaning of American justice." And the assembled legislators ... applauded. Oh, how they applauded! They roared with glee at the leering little man's bloodthirsty, B-movie machismo. They shared his sneering contempt for law -- our only shield, however imperfect, against the blind, brute, ignorant, ape-like force of raw power. Not a single voice among them was raised in protest against this tyrannical machtpolitik: not that night, not the next day, not ever.

 

    And now, in September 2006, we know they will never raise that protest. Oh, a few Democrats stood up at the last minute on Thursday to posture nobly about the dangers of the detainee bill -- but only when they knew that it was certain to pass, when they had already given up their one weapon against it, the filibuster, in exchange for permission from their Republican masters to offer amendments that they also knew would fail. Had they been offering such speeches since October 2001, when the lineaments of Bush's presidential tyranny were already clear -- or at any other point during the systematic dismantling of America's liberties over the past five years -- these fine words might have had some effect.

 

    Now the killing will go on. The tyranny that has entered upon the country will grow stronger, more brazen; the darkness will deepen. Whitman, thou should'st be living at this hour; America has need of thee. (Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)

 



 

    Chris Floyd is an American journalist residing in the UK. His work has appeared in print and online in venues all over the world, including The Nation, Counterpunch, Columbia Journalism Review, the Christian Science Monitor, Il Manifesto, the Moscow Times, and many others. He is the author of Empire Burlesque: High Crimes and Low Comedy in the Bush Imperium , and is co-founder and editor of the "Empire Burlesque" political blog.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

  Print This Story   E-mail This Story

 

 

 

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#
'TERRORSTORM' DELUXE HIGH QUALITY VIDEO, by Alex Jones





"9/11(/01) WAS AN INSIDE JOB!"


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TERRORSTORM


Written and Directed
by
Alex Jones


[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by
InfoWars Productions ,
PrisonPlanet.com , and/or Alex Jones .
All rights are reserved.]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No replies - reply
 
#
'IMPEACH BUSH NOW!' DO-IT-YOURSELF IMPEACHMENT ACTION, by Impeach For Peace (.org)




 

 

DO-IT-YOURSELF IMPEACHMENT

 

 

 

Impeach Bush Yourself!Impeach for Peace, a Minnesota-based impeachment group, has researched a method for impeaching the president using a little known and rarely used part of the Rules of the House of Representatives ("Jefferson’s Manual"). This document actually empowers individual citizens to initiate the impeachment process themselves.

 

"Jefferson's Manual" is an interpretive guide to parliamentary procedure, and is included (along with the Constitution) in the bound volumes of the Rules of the House of Representatives. The section covering impeachment lists the acceptable vehicles for bringing impeachment motions to the floor of the House.

 

Before the House Judiciary Committee can put together the Articles of Impeachment, someone must initiate the impeachment procedure. Most often, this occurs when members of the House pass a resolution. Another method outlined in the manual, however, is for individual citizens to submit a memorial for impeachment.

 

After learning this information, Minnesotan and Impeach for Peace member (Jodin Morey) found precedent in an 1826 memorial by Luke Edward Lawless which had been successful in initiating the impeachment of Federal Judge James H. Peck. Impeach for Peace then used this as a template for their "Do-It-Yourself Impeachment." Now any citizen can download the DIY Impeachment Memorial and submit it, making it possible for Americans to do what our representatives have been unwilling to do. The idea is for so many people to submit the Memorial that it cannot be ignored.

 

Feel free to download it, print out TWO copies, fill in your relevant information in the blanks (name, State, etc.), and send in two letters today (One to the head of the Judiciary, and the other to John Conyers lead Democrat in the House Judiciary). There's also extra credit for sending a DIY Impeachment to your own representative.

 

 

Hold on to the other copy of the two letters until October 12th when we're having everyone send them in.


 

That's right — to make a big impact, we're having everyone send it in on the same date (Over 30,000 downloads so far). We hope to flood the Judiciary Committee and John Conyers office with sacks of mail and cause a newsworthy event to further pressure the Congress to act on the memorials. Although, it's important to keep in mind that in the 1826 precedent, impeachment resulted as a result of a single memorial. Yours might be the one.

 

 

Get the (form) to send in, and DIRECTLY initiate the impeachment of Bush:


 

•Regular Version [pdf] •(html version)

 

•Extra Credit (your representative) [pdf] •(html version)

 

•For folks in District of Columbia [pdf] •(html version)

 

•District of Columbia Extra Credit!! [pdf] •(html version)

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers


 

Impeach Bush Yourself!

 

Questions from a supporter:


 

"Why are you waiting until October 12th? That’s too late to force an impeachment before the elections."

 

Actually, we’re asking people to send in the Do-It-Yourself Impeachment Memorials twice — once immediately, and again in October. Originally we were asking people to send the petitions in October only, but we realized that the situation is just too urgent to wait. We also wanted the time to get the word out about DIY Impeachment, however, so we thought this was the best compromise.


 

"Why did you choose October?"

 

October was chosen because of its potential effect on the elections. With a Republican Congress, impeachment seems unlikely, so we're hoping to influence the vote. If we have sacks of mail all arriving at once, we hope it will hit the news in a big way, reminding people of all the corruption and crime in Bush’s administration and the rest of the Republican Party. We want people walking into the polls with these facts on their minds. This also is a few days after an October 5th national protest across the nation. We're planning on marketing this idea during those protests to get hoards more people to send it in.


 

"Won't the new irradiation process (due to the anthrax scare) delay your mailings past election time?"

 

According to the USPS's website, “U. S. Mail is still being irradiated, [causing] a two day delay [in] the process from start to finish. The mail is irradiated for all government mail for zip codes in 202- 205 areas." This covers the zip code for Conyers and Sensenbrenner listed on the Memorial.

 

We also called Betty McCullum (one of our organizer's Representatives), and she told us it takes 1-2 weeks for her to receive U.S. Mail.


 

"Why didn't you include Cheney and Rice? They’ll become president if Bush is found guilty?"

 

Cheney and Rice were deliberately not included because we need a focused message. Adding more people to the initiation of the impeachment process complicates the issue. Some people may not agree on impeaching Cheney or Rice because their crimes are less reported than Bush’s, but we want all the help we can get. However, Cheney and Rice will be impeached along with Bush when the investigation reveals their crimes.


 

"Who finances Impeach For Peace?"

 

We receive donations from our organizers, and from our supportive friends. We also receive some online donations.


 

"Why did you change the address to which we're sending the memorials?"

 

We discovered some potential procedural problems with having the memorial(s) go exclusively to Conyers. While we haven’t yet completely cleared this up, our current system of sending it to both Sensenbrenner and to Conyers will solve the issue one way or the other. We don't wish to send it exclusively to Sensenbrenner, as his agenda opposes ours, and he may never even acknowledge having received them. Conyers, however, is actively pursuing impeachment, and he’s a member of the Judiciary (the body which will need to eventually act on impeachment). It’s important that he know how many letters have been sent so that he can fight for us.


 

"I find no mention -- or means of locating -- the form for requesting a waiver so that I may file in forma pauperis."

 

"IN FORMA PAUPERIS -- Someone who is without the funds to pursue the normal costs of a lawsuit or criminal defense (and the process by which they request a waiver of court fees and costs). Upon the court's granting of this status the person is entitled to waiver of normal (court fees and) costs, and/or appointment of counsel [but (the latter) seldom in other than a criminal case]."

 

(The) impeachment process isn't carried out in a normal court room, indeed, it is not even a legal indictment, but a political process. The "trial," if you will, would be carried out in the Senate. The memorialist (i.e., you and me), would not be prosecuting a "case." Rather, we are "praying" that our representatives take up the matter on our behalf on the floor of the House and Senate. Feel free to read the precedents on the "DIY Impeachment" page (etc.) for historical examples. The costs for the running of the House of Representatives, and any matter they wish to discuss/act upon are taken from our taxes.

 

We are petitioning our government, we can not be sued or fined for this. This is not the same process (requiring the same expense) as suing the government.


 

"Is there a way to gather signatures and have a single filing done in the names of ALL of the signatories?"

 

Maybe. Feel free to research it and start one. However we are having each citizen do it individually. Why? Merely because that is the historical precedent, and therefore we know this method has been effective in the past. It is also more empowering.


 

"On a federal form with a place for a notary's signature, why do you emphasize that it isn't necessary? Surely you realize that ANY excuse will be used here, or could be (to not process these memorials accordingly). I would think that any base(s) that can be covered should be."

 

The form is not a "federal form." It is one we developed based upon another individual citizen's memorial to congress. That historical memorial was not notarized. The inclusion of the notary section was initially placed there over confusion as to whether it was necessary due to more recent developments. According to the lead parliamentarian of the House of Representatives, there is no such need for the notary. However, we still think it's a good idea. So, we left it on and encourage people to do it. However, we wish for people to send their memorial in even if they're not going to go to that effort.

 

 

(Do you have additional) concerns over the strategy of pushing for impeachment in this way? See the 'Arguments Against Impeachment' at the bottom of the main page.

 

 

Audio, provided with permission from the "Mike Malloy Show".

 

 

EMAIL ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS ABOUT THIS!!

 

 

We would especially like to thank ImpeachBush.tv for their support, and whose charges related to impeachment we used in the creation of this document.

 

 

Also, if you're interested:


 

Information regarding the Impeachment procedure.

 

Precedent: Judge Peck's Impeachment supplied by the U.S. House of Representatives and PolicyReview.org.

 

House rules that allow for the submission of the memorial.

 

 

 

 

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#
'CALL (FOR) ACTION' ON SEPTEMBER 1ST FOR IMPEACHMENT, by Impeachnet.net




 

 

 

CALL TO ACTION

 

Starting at noon on September 1 2006, participating websites and blogs will replace their front pages with the single word “Impeach” in simple white text on a black background. (See this page for an example.) For 24 hours, web surfers and blog readers will see that word first when they visit their favorite sites. In this way, we hope to get the public talking about the one tool guaranteed by the Founders to restore our Constitutional Democracy.

 



 

About

 

What can I do? If you run a website or blog, then on September 1 2006, replace your home page with the single word “Impeach” in bold Times New Roman white text on a black background. Feel free to help yourself to the code here (getting a single word to display in the center of a page in all browsers is a little trickier than you might think). Back up your existing home page first (often index.html) and display this new one for 24 hours, from noon September 1 to noon September 2. If you use the provided code , we have made the "period" a link which you can customize to allow visitors to enter the rest of your web page.

 

If you don’t have your own webpage or blog but still think that this is a good idea, then please send this information to your favorite sites and convince them to participate ( click here for a sample message ). Additionally, please feel free to leave a comment here and/or on the Impeachnet.net blog . Just as important as replacing your home page for one day is letting your website visitors know why, so please publicize this both beforehand and afterward. Also, let us know that you plan to participate and we will include a link to your site in our blogroll.

 

For additional impeachment resources, visit AfterDowningStreet.org ; and/or, ImpeachForPeace.org/ .

 



 

Frequently Unasked Questions

 

Why just the one word? It is the word. Everyone who sees it will know exactly who and what we are talking about. And it is the one word that most of our elected leaders are afraid to utter.

 

Doesn’t talk of impeachment just play into the Republican Party’s hands? That’s what they want us to think. Nancy Pelosi, for one, seems to have bought that argument. We don’t. We think that many thoughtful Republicans are looking at the abridgements of Constitutional Democracy perpetrated by this administration against the citizens and the Congress of the United States and understand that impeachment is a very real solution, and they are scared.

 

Could Bush really be impeached? Yes, and we have a moral obligation to carry this through. It is not necessary for us to list here all of the High Crimes and Misdemeanors committed by this White House. You know them all. The most critical point is this: as bad as this administration is, if we don’t stop them now, then the bar will be set even lower for the next group of criminals that takes over the White House. This is not a partisan issue. This is a citizen’s issue.

 

But do we really want a President Cheney? Well, no, he’s next. But we would rather have a Cheney who is afraid of us than the other way around.

 

Why September 1? It’s good timing. It gives us enough weeks to get this proposal off the ground and to reach out to webmasters and bloggers across the globe. September 1 is an easy date to remember. It is also a Friday, a good day to plan a large event in time for the weekend news cycle. We need the press and the public to be talking about this for at least a week before the White House takes over the airwaves with their fifth anniversary 9/11 celebrations commemorations.

 



 

This project was inspired by The Freeway Blogger , the great "outlaw" artist who has posted over 2500 freeway signs protesting the war and inspired a legion of followers, and The Center for Constitutional Rights . Both entities have worked tirelessly to bring the word “impeach” back into the public lexicon.

 

 

 

 

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#
THE VERY IMPORTANT LAST FIVE TRUTHOUT (.ORG) ARTICLES OF MARJORIE COHN




 

 

 

      In honor of Marjorie Cohn, Professor of Law at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California, and her TruthOut (.org) articles which she has been absent from writing and posting for the past two months, I hereby post the following series of her last five excellent and very important articles leading up to that absence, as her at-least-weekly articles of truth have been very much missed on TruthOut and by this blogger:

 

 

 

 

  Print This Story   E-mail This Story

 

What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

Read more of Marjorie Cohn's columns.

 

For background, see:
Marjorie Cohn | Big Brother Bush Is Listening
Marjorie Cohn | Bush Mouthpiece Defends Illegal Spying

 

 

Click here to go to t r u t h o u t ' s 'Marjorie Cohn' Page!    THE HAYDEN CHARADE
    ("Big Brother" is Watching
    All of Us to See Who is a
    "Good Citizen" or "Not")
    By Marjorie Cohn
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Monday, 22 May 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org)
    and/or Marjorie Cohn.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

    In his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday, General Michael Hayden promised to promote autonomy and objectivity in the CIA if confirmed as its new director. Hayden assured the senators he would provide "hard-edged assessments" and be tolerant of dissenting views on intelligence matters. "When it comes to speaking truth to power," Hayden declared, "I will lead CIA analysts by example. I will... always give our nation's leaders the best analytic judgment."

 

    The evidence, however, suggests precisely the opposite. As head of the National Security Agency, this 4-star general walked in lockstep with his commander in chief, George W. Bush. Hayden helped designed the illegal program of spying on our telephone calls and emails and then repeatedly defended it when interrogated by the senators at his hearing, citing "legal" opinions of Bush's hired guns in the Justice Department.

 

    Rather than providing the White House with a neutral assessment of Iran's nuclear capabilities, we can expect Hayden to give Bush the "intelligence" the president seeks to justify his war on Iran. Things did not run as smoothly as Bush would have wished under the last two CIA directors. He had to dispatch Dick Cheney to the CIA several times to furnish the "intelligence" he needed to rationalize his war on Iraq.

 

    Senator Carl Levin (D-Mich.) asked Hayden if he was "comfortable" with under secretary of defense for policy Douglas Feith's personal intelligence-analysis cell, which hyped a link between Iraq and Al Qaeda. Hayden said he wasn't comfortable with it and protested that he wasn't aware of a lot of the activity going on leading up to the Iraq war.

 

    But when questioned about Colin Powell's use of false WMD information to support his infamous appearance before the United Nations in the run-up the war, Hayden made a telling admission.

 

    In response to Levin's question about the legal standard for declassifying information in the public interest, Hayden said, "We used that in Powell's speech. George [Tenet] had to call me for three tapes." Hayden was right in the middle of the preparation for Powell's disingenuous presentation.

 

    Hayden, who will be the third director of the CIA in two years, will salute and march to Bush's agenda. The nation's chief spook will shape the "intelligence" to fit Bush's policy of regime change in Iran.

 

    Hayden vowed to "reaffirm CIA's proud culture of risk-taking and excellence." Not one of the senators, from either party, interrogated Hayden about the CIA's checkered past.

 

    There was no mention of the CIA's 1953 coup that ousted Iran's democratically-elected president Mohammed Mosadeq and replaced him with the US-friendly tyrant, the Shah Reza Pahlavi. The 1979 Iranian revolution lead to the overthrow of the Shah's regime and the rise of Islamic fascism under the leadership of the Ayatollah Khomeini, providing a model of theocracy for much of the Muslim world.

 

    Absent was any reference in the hearing to the CIA's support for Osama bin Laden in his fight against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. The defeat of the USSR there, and the rise of the Mujahedin, enabled the Taliban to come to power....

 

    Today we are reaping what the CIA sowed in Iran and Afghanistan.

 

    None of the senators asked Hayden about the CIA's torture manuals, which have been utilized by myriad Latin American dictators to repress their people.

 

    Much of the CIA's risk-taking is nothing to be proud of. There is no indication that Hayden will bring new integrity to the CIA.

 

    Hayden's defense of the NSA's warrantless surveillance program was incredible. When questioned about the Fourth Amendment's standard for searches and seizures, Hayden assured the senators that he had consulted with his relatives who are in law school for legal advice.

 

    The Fourth Amendment says the people shall be secure from unreasonable searches and seizures, and that no warrant shall issue but upon probable cause. For more than a century, the Supreme Court has held that in order to be reasonable, a search or seizure must be supported by a search warrant based on probable cause and issued by a judge. Only when certain narrowly-defined exceptions apply can the government dispense with a warrant.

 

    Hayden and his law student relatives have reversed that presumption. He told the senators that only reasonableness, not a warrant, is necessary to intercept our private communications. Hayden said the NSA uses a probable cause standard. But the Supreme Court has consistently declared that a judge must determine whether probable cause exists.

 

    When confronted with USA Today's report that the NSA is collecting data on tens of millions of Americans, monitoring the calls we make and receive, Hayden refused to confirm or deny it.

 

    Two of the long-distance companies named in that article, Verizon Communications and BellSouth, both facing lawsuits for invasion of privacy, have denied giving the government these records. AT&T has refused comment.

 

    Interestingly, Bush issued an executive order on May 5 that allows Director of Intelligence John Negroponte - Michael Hayden's boss - to authorize a company to conceal activities related to "national security." Thus, we cannot trust the denials by Verizon and BellSouth.

 

    Like Bush's warrantless eavesdropping on calls where one party is abroad, the NSA's massive data collection is illegal.

 

    Both of these programs violate the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, which clearly requires a warrant issued by a FISA court judge.

 

    It is illegal for the NSA to collect phone numbers from phone companies unless the FISA court authorizes it.

 

    Telephone records that show what numbers have called a specific telephone are captured by a "trap and trace" device. A "pen register" shows what number a specific telephone has called.

 

    The law on pen registers and trap and trace devices requires that a court order be obtained either under FISA or Title III, the criminal wiretap law.

 

    In order to intercept communications, the NSA would have to demonstrate to the court that the person whose calls are being targeted is an agent of a foreign power or that the information is relevant to an ongoing terrorism investigation.

 

    The Patriot Act allows the FBI to use a national security letter - a kind of administrative subpoena - to obtain these records. But Congress specifically withheld this subpoena power from the NSA, which must convince the FISA court that the information is relevant.

 

    There is no evidence that NSA has obtained court orders before obtaining the phone records of millions of Americans.

 

    There is evidence, however, that the FBI is using national security letters to go after journalists critical of the administration. Brian Ross from ABC News told Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! that the government's methods are changing the way he operates. It makes his work "very, very difficult," he said. "And, you know, you sort of have to start thinking, I guess, like some sort of Mafia capo," Ross noted. "You make your phone calls with bags of quarters at pay phones, if you can find them anymore. It's chilling to say the least." So much for a free press.

 

    Last year, the FBI issued a total of 9,254 national security letters, targeting 3,500 citizens and legal residents.

 

    In October 2002, while serving as NSA director, Hayden misled Congress about the extent of the NSA's warrantless domestic surveillance. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) told Hayden at the hearing, "I now have a difficult time with your credibility."

 

    Earlier this year, Hayden made more misleading statements in an appearance before the National Press Club. He said, "The intrusion into privacy is also limited: only international calls." In fact, the NSA is collecting data on millions of purely domestic calls.

 

    Hayden ducked several questions, deferring his answers to the closed session that followed the public hearing on Thursday. Senators who hear his secret testimony are forbidden to publicize it. Hayden refused to publicly answer seven questions posed by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) about whether the NSA has sought FISA warrants for pen register and trap and trace devices; whether terror suspects in secret CIA prisons are likely to remain incommunicado until the war on terror ends; whether there is periodic review of what useful intelligence can be gathered by interrogations of terrorists held for years with no contact with Al Qaeda; whether "water boarding," recently classified as torture by the UN, is acceptable; whether the CIA will obey laws and treaties in light of the Detainee Treatment Act; whether Hayden agreed with the CIA inspector general's conclusion that certain interrogation techniques constitute cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment prohibited by the Convention Against Torture; whether Hayden agreed with estimates that Iran is some years away from nuclear weapons capability; and whether the CIA has received new guidance from the Justice Department about acceptable interrogation techniques since the passage of the Detainee Treatment Act.

 

    Although Hayden pledged objectivity in his opening statement, he let slip his real intention under questioning by Levin. Hayden said the war on terror "is fundamentally a war of ideas. And we have to skew our intelligence to support the other elements of national power as well." Hayden admitted he will skew the intelligence to fit Bush's agenda.

 

    During the hearing, Wyden nailed it. He asked Hayden, "Where is the independent check, General, the independent check that can be verified on these programs that the newspapers are reporting on?"

 

    James Madison wrote in 1822: "A popular Government without popular information or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance. And a people who mean to be their own Governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

 

    General Michael Hayden as CIA director will see to it that we continue to be kept in the dark about how our liberties are swiftly vanishing. The future of our democracy is at stake. (Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)

 



 

    Marjorie Cohn is a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, President-elect of the National Lawyers Guild, and the US representative to the executive committee of the American Association of Jurists. She writes a weekly column for the great and powerful t r u t h o u t website.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

Read more of Marjorie Cohn's columns.

 

For background, see:
Marjorie Cohn | Setting the Conditions for War Crimes

 

 

Click here to go to t r u t h o u t ' s 'Marjorie Cohn' Page!    THE HADITHA MASSACRE
    (The U.S. Government Is Now
    Habitually Initiating and
    Perpetrating War Crimes)
    By Marjorie Cohn
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Tuesday, 30 May 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org)
    and/or Marjorie Cohn.
    All rights reserved.]

 

    They ranged from little babies to adult males and females. I'll never be able to get that out of my head. I can still smell the blood. This left something in my head and heart.
--- Observations of Lance Cpl. Roel Ryan Briones after the Haditha Massacre

 

    On November 19, 2005, Marines from Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division based at Camp Pendleton allegedly killed 24 unarmed civilians in Haditha, Iraq, in a three to five hour rampage. One victim was a 76-year-old amputee in a wheelchair holding a Koran. A mother and child bent over as if in prayer were also among the fallen. "I pretended that I was dead when my brother's body fell on me, and he was bleeding like a faucet," said Safa Younis Salim, a 13-year-old girl who survived by faking her death.

 

    Other victims included girls and boys ages 14, 10, 5, 4, 3 and 1. The Washington Post reported, "Most of the shots ... were fired at such close range that they went through the bodies of the family members and plowed into walls or the floor, doctors at Haditha's hospital said."

 

    The executions of 24 unarmed civilians were conducted in apparent retaliation for the death of Lance Cpl. Miguel Terrazas when a small Marine convoy hit a roadside bomb earlier that day.

 

    A statement issued by a US Marine Corps spokesman the next day claimed: "A US Marine and 15 civilians were killed yesterday from the blast of a roadside bomb in Haditha. Immediately following the bombing, gunmen attacked the convoy with small-arms fire. Iraqi army soldiers and Marines returned fire, killing eight insurgents and wounding another."

 

    A subsequent Marine version of the events said the victims were killed inadvertently in a running gun battle with insurgents.

 

    Both of these stories were false and the Marines knew it. They were blatant attempts to cover up the atrocity, disguised as "collateral damage."

 

    The Marine Corps paid $38,000 in compensation to relatives of the victims, according to a report in the Denver Post. These types of payments are made only to compensate for accidental deaths inflicted by US troops. This was a relatively large amount, indicating the Marines knew something was not right during that operation, according to Mike Coffman, the Colorado state treasurer who served in Iraq recently as a Marine reservist.

 

    Congressman John Murtha, D-Pa., a former Marine, was briefed on the Haditha investigation by Marine Corps Commandant Michael Hagee. Murtha said Sunday, "The reports I have from the highest level: No firing at all. No interaction. No military action at all in this particular incident. It was an explosive device, which killed a Marine. From then on, it was purely shooting people."

 

    The Haditha massacre did not become public until Time Magazine ran a story about it in March of this year. Time had turned over the results of its investigation, including a videotape, to the US military in January. Only then did the military launch an investigation.

 

    These Marines "suffered a total breakdown in morality and leadership, with tragic results," a US official told the Los Angeles Times.

 

    "Marines over-reacted because of the pressure on them, and they killed innocent civilians in cold blood," Murtha said.

 

    Murtha's statement both indicts and exonerates the Marines of the crime of murder.

 

    Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought. Premeditation and deliberation -- cold-blooded planning -- are required for first degree murder. Complete self-defense can be demonstrated by an honest and reasonable belief in the need to defend oneself against death or great bodily injury. The Marines might be able to show that, in the wake of the killing of their buddy Terrazas by an improvised explosive device, they acted in an honest belief that they might be killed in this hostile area. But the belief that unarmed civilians inside their homes posed a deadly threat to the Marines would be unreasonable. An honest but unreasonable belief in the need to defend constitutes imperfect self-defense, which negates the malice required for murder, and reduces murder to manslaughter.

 

    An honest but unreasonable belief in the need to defend constitutes imperfect self-defense, which negates the malice required for murder, and reduces murder to manslaughter.

 

    Many of our troops suffer from post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Lance Cpl. Roel Ryan Briones, a Marine in Kilo Company, did not participate in the Haditha massacre. TJ Terrazas was his best friend. Briones, who was 20 years old at the time, saw Terrazas after he was killed. "He had a giant hole in his chin. His eyes were rolled back up in his skull," Briones said of his buddy.

 

    "A lot of people were mad," Briones said. "Everyone had just a [terrible] feeling about what had happened to TJ."

 

    After the massacre, Briones was ordered to take photographs of the victims and help carry their bodies out of their homes. He is still haunted by what he had to do that day. Briones picked up a young girl who was shot in the head. "I held her out like this," he said, extending his arms, "but her head was bobbing up and down and the insides fell on my legs."

 

    "I used to be one of those Marines who said that post-traumatic stress is a bunch of bull," said Briones, who has gotten into serious trouble since he returned home. "But all this stuff that keeps going through my head is eating me up. I need immediate help."

 

    A key quote from a Marine officer could be used to show premeditation -- and thus malice -- in support of a possible murder charge against the shooters. An article in yesterday's San Diego Union-Tribune which is reprinted from the New York Times News Service, cites a report by "one Marine officer" that "inspectors suspected at least part of the motive for the killings was to send a message to local residents that they would 'pay a price' for failing to warn the Marines about insurgent activity in the area."

 

    Curiously, that paragraph is missing from the same story in both the print and online editions of yesterday's New York Times. For some reason, the Times had second thoughts about that paragraph, and removed it, after the copy had been sent to other papers over the wire.

 

    Regardless of how those who may ultimately be charged with murder fare in court, a more significant question is whether George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld will be charged with war crimes on a theory of command responsibility.

 

    Willful killing is considered a war crime under the US War Crimes Act. People who commit war crimes can be punished by life in prison, or even the death penalty if the victim dies. Under the doctrine of command responsibility, a commander can be held liable if he knew or should have known his inferiors were committing war crimes and he failed to stop or prevent it.

 

    Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld are knowingly prosecuting a war of aggression in Iraq. Under the United Nations Charter, a country cannot invade another country unless it is acting in self-defense or it has permission from the Security Council. Iraq had invaded no country for 11 years before "Operation Iraqi Freedom," and the council never authorized the invasion.

 

    A war that violates the UN Charter is a war of aggression.

 

    Under the Nuremberg Tribunal, aggressive war is the supreme international crime.

 

    Hagee flew from Washington to Iraq last week to brief US forces on the Geneva Conventions, the international laws of armed conflict and the US military's own rules of engagement. He is reportedly telling the troops they should use deadly force "only when justified, proportional and, most importantly, lawful." This creates a strong inference that our leaders had not adequately briefed our troops on how to behave in this war.

 

    This, combined with the evidence that US forces are committing torture based on policies from the highest levels of government, as well as reports of war crimes committed in places such as Fallujah, served to put Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld on notice that Marines would likely commit war crimes in places such as Haditha. Our highest leaders thus should have known this would happen, and they should be prosecuted under the War Crimes Act.

 

    Murtha told ABC there was "no question" the US military tried to "cover up" the Haditha incident, which Murtha called "worse than Abu Ghraib." Murtha's high-level briefings indicated, "There was an investigation right afterward, but then it was stifled," he said.

 

    "Who covered it up, why did they cover it up, why did they wait so long?" Murtha asked on "This Week" on ABC. "We don't know how far it goes. It goes right up the chain of command."

 

    Murtha said the decision to pay compensation to families of the victims is strong evidence that officers up the chain of command knew what had happened in Haditha. "That doesn't happen at the lowest level. That happens at the highest level before they make a decision to make payments to the families."

 

    Haditha is likely the tip of the iceberg in Bush's illegal war of aggression in Iraq.

 

    "We have a Haditha every day," declared Muhanned Jasim, an Iraqi merchant. "Were [those killed in Haditha] the first ... Iraqis to be killed for no reason?" asked pharmacist Ghasan Jayih. "We're used to being killed. It's normal now to hear 25 Iraqis are killed in one day."

 

    "We have a Fallujah and Karbala every day," Jasim added, referring to the 2004 slaughter by US forces in Fallujah and bombings by resistance fighters in the Shiite city of Karbala.

 

    In Fallujah, US soldiers opened fire on houses, and US helicopters fired on and killed women, old men and young children, according to Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein.

 

    "What we're seeing more of now, and these incidents will increase monthly, is the end result of fuzzy, imprecise national direction combined with situational ethics at the highest levels of this government," said retired Air Force Col. Mike Turner, a former planner at the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

 

    Senator John Warner, R-Va., head of the Armed Services Committee, pledged to hold hearings on the Haditha killings at the conclusion of the military investigation. "I'll do exactly what we did with Abu Ghraib," he told ABC News.

 

    Warner's pledge provides little solace to those who seek justice. Congress has yet to hold our leaders to account for the torture by US forces at Abu Ghraib prison. Only a few low-ranking soldiers have been prosecuted. The Bush administration has swept the scandal under the rug.

 

    During the Vietnam War, the US military spoke of winning the hearts and minds of the Vietnamese people. But in 1968, US soldiers massacred about 400 unarmed elderly men, women and children in the small village of My Lai. A cover-up ensued, and it wasn't until Seymour Hersh broke the story that it became public.

 

    "America in the view of many Iraqis has no credibility. We do not believe what they say is correct," said Sheik Sattar al-Aasaaf, a tribal leader in Anbar province, which includes Haditha. "US troops are very well-trained and when they shoot, it isn't random but due to an order to kill Iraqis. People say they are the killers."

 

    Graffiti on one of the Haditha victims' houses reads, "Democracy assassinated the family that was here."

 

    So much for winning the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people.

 

    We must pull our troops out of Iraq immediately, and insist that our leaders be held to account for the war crimes committed there. (Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)

 



 

    Marjorie Cohn is a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, President-elect of the National Lawyers Guild, and the US representative to the executive committee of the American Association of Jurists. She writes a weekly column for the great and powerful t r u t h o u t website.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

  Print This Story   E-mail This Story

 

 

 

 

  Print This Story   E-mail This Story

 

What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

Read more of Marjorie Cohn's columns.

 

For background, see:
Marjorie Cohn | Bush Setting Up Attack on Iran
Marjorie Cohn | Aggressive War: Supreme International Crime

 

 

Click here to go to t r u t h o u t ' s 'Marjorie Cohn' Page!    STOP THE BEAST(!)
    (The U.S. Government's Military-
    Industrial "Death Machine" is
    Completely Out of Control ! )
    By Marjorie Cohn
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Monday, 5 June 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org)
    and/or Marjorie Cohn.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

    To date, the Iraq War represents the fullest and most relentless application of the Bush Agenda. The "freer and safer world" envisioned by Bush and his administration is ultimately one of an ever-expanding American empire driven forward by the growing powers of the nation's largest multinational corporations and unrivaled military.
--- Antonia Juhasz,
The Bu$h Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time

 

    In an annual security conference on Saturday, Donald Rumsfeld assured the audience, "We don't intend to occupy [Iraq] for any period of time. Our troops would like to go home and they will go home."

 

    Why, then, would the United States be building an enormous embassy in Baghdad and a base so large it eclipses Kosovo's Camp Bondsteel, which had been the largest foreign US military base built since Vietnam?

 

    The new embassy, which occupies a space two-thirds the area of the national mall in Washington DC, comprises 21 buildings that will house over 8,000 government officials. It has a huge pool, gym, theater, beauty salon, school, and six apartment buildings.

 

    The gargantuan military base, Camp Anaconda, occupies 15 square miles of Iraqi soil near Balad. The base is home to 20,000 soldiers and thousands of "contractors," or mercenaries. The aircraft runway at Anaconda is the second busiest in the world, behind only Chicago's O'Hare airport. And, depending on which report you read, between six and fourteen more US military bases are under construction in Iraq. It doesn't appear we'll be leaving anytime soon -- or anytime, really.

 

    Bush's trumped-up war on Iraq has claimed nearly 2,500 US military lives and tens of thousands of Iraqi lives. Thousands of US soldiers suffer in military hospitals, most with head injuries, many missing limbs. Thousands more have PTSD. Our economy is in shambles from the war and Bush's tax-cuts-for-the-rich. And America's moral standing in the world continues to plummet.

 

    So, with all the construction activity in Iraq, and with an overextended military and an under funded budget, how could the Bush administration possibly consider expanding the fight and attacking Iran? Logic and reason say it couldn't happen and shouldn't happen. But this administration has rarely paid much heed to logic and reason.

 

    The plan to attack Iran has long been in the works. Bush gave us a preview in January 2002 when he inaugurated it into his "axis of evil." His 2006 National Military Strategy says, "We may face no greater challenge from a single country than from Iran." On Saturday, Donald Rumsfeld called Iran the world's leading terrorist nation. Does any of this have a familiar ring to it?

 

    To understand why the US may attack Iran, one must consider the underlying motive of US militarism. The recent US strategy is calculated to maintain economic, political and military hegemony over oil-rich areas of the world. A 1992 draft of the Pentagon Defense Planning Guidance on post Cold War Strategy that was leaked to the New York Times said, "Our overall objective is to remain the predominant outside power in [the Middle East and Southwest Asia to] preserve US and Western access to the region's oil."

 

    Truthout writer Dahr Jamail, an independent journalist who spent eight months in occupied Iraq, told a gathering at Thomas Jefferson School of Law on Friday that the US has been conducting ongoing special operations inside Iran. He cited unmanned surveillance drones flying over Iran. Jamail predicts Bush will invade Iran before the November election.

 

    Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern agrees with Jamail's prediction, but thinks it will happen in June or July. "There is already one carrier task force there in the Gulf, two are steaming toward it at the last report I have at least -- they will be there in another week or so," McGovern said on the Alex Jones Show.

 

    Team Bush is following the same game plan used in the run-up to Iraq -- hyping a threat that doesn't exist and going through the motions of diplomacy.

 

    Bush & Co. are not motivated by rationality. They act in the interests of the huge corporations, at the expense of humanity. During the Bush years, oil companies have earned record profits. Dick Cheney's Halliburton has landed many of the juiciest contracts in Iraq. New Iraqi laws that US ambassador Paul Bremer put in place lock in significant advantages for US corporations in Iraq, including corporate control of Iraq's oil.

 

    Neoconservative Thomas Friedman, in a March 1999 New York Times article illustrated by an American flag on a fist, accurately summed up US foreign policy:

 

    For globalism to work, America can't be afraid to act like the almighty superpower that it is ... The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist -- McDonald's cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the designer of the F-15. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley's technologies is called the United States Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.

 

    As long as we allow our government to pursue this strategy, Abu Ghraibs and Hadithas will continue to emerge, our soldiers and thousands of people in other countries will continue to die, and our economy will continue toward bankruptcy. It is up to us to stop the beast -- now! (Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)

 



 

    Marjorie Cohn is a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, President-elect of the National Lawyers Guild, and the US representative to the executive committee of the American Association of Jurists. She writes a weekly column for the great and powerful t r u t h o u t website.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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Read more of Marjorie Cohn's columns.

 

For background, see:
Marjorie Cohn | Navy Judge Finds War Protest Reasonable

 

 

Click here to go to t r u t h o u t ' s 'Marjorie Cohn' Page!    FIRST (COMMISSIONED) OFFICER
    PUBLICLY RESISTS WAR
    (Totally Justified Refusal
    to Serve in Illegal Wars
    is Growing Very Rapidly)
    By Marjorie Cohn
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Thursday, 8 June 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org)
    and/or Marjorie Cohn.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

    Yesterday, US Army First Lieutenant Ehren Watada became the first officer to publicly state his refusal to obey an order to deploy to Iraq. Lieutenant Watada said at a press conference in Tacoma, Washington, "The war in Iraq is in fact illegal. It is my obligation and my duty to refuse any orders to participate in this war." He stated, "An order to take part in an illegal war is unlawful in itself. So my obligation is not to follow the order to go to Iraq."

 

    Citing "deception and manipulation ... and willful misconduct by the highest levels of my chain of command," Lt. Watada declared there is "no greater betrayal to the American people" than the Iraq war.

 

    The "turning point" for Lt. Watada came when he "saw the pain and suffering of so many soldiers and their families, and innocent Iraqis." He said, "I best serve my soldiers by speaking out against unlawful orders of the highest levels of my chain of command, and making sure our leaders are held accountable." Lt. Watada felt he "had the obligation to step up and do whatever it takes," even if that means facing court-martial and imprisonment.

 

    Lt. Watada asked me to speak about the legality of the war at his press conference.

 

    I cited the Nuremberg Charter, which set forth the three most serious crimes: crimes against the peace, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. The US Army Field Manual 27-10, art. 28, incorporates the prohibition against these three crimes. The United States is committing a crime against the peace, war crimes, and crimes against humanity in Iraq.

 

    The United States Is Committing a Crime Against the Peace in Iraq

 

    The Nuremberg Tribunal called the waging of aggressive war "essentially an evil thing ... to initiate a war of aggression ... is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole."

 

    A war of aggression, prosecuted in violation of international treaties, is a crime against the peace. The war in Iraq violates the Charter of the United Nations, which prohibits the use of force. There are only two exceptions to that prohibition: self-defense and approval by the Security Council. A pre-emptive or preventive war is not allowed under the Charter.

 

    Bush's war in Iraq was not undertaken in self-defense. Iraq had not attacked the US, or any other country, for 12 years. And Saddam Hussein's military capability had been effectively neutered by the Gulf War, 12 years of punishing sanctions, and nearly daily bombing by the US and UK over the "no-fly-zones."

 

    Bush tried mightily to get the Security Council to sanction his war on Iraq. But the Council refused to give its stamp of approval. Bush then cobbled together prior Council resolutions, none of which, individually or collectively, authorized the use of force in Iraq. Although Bush claimed to be enforcing Security Council resolutions, the Charter empowers only the Council to enforce its resolutions.

 

    Moreover, the Constitution gives only Congress, not the President, the authority to declare war. Congress cannot delegate that authority to the President. Even if Congress could delegate the war power to the President, it cannot authorize the President to execute an aggressive war.

 

    The United States Is Committing War Crimes in Iraq

 

    Violations of the laws of war, memorialized in the Hague and Geneva Conventions, constitute war crimes.

 

    All four Geneva Conventions have the same article 3, frequently referred to as Article 3 Common. Its terms apply to everyone, not just prisoners of war. It prohibits violence to life and person, murder, mutilation, cruel treatment, torture, and outrages upon personal dignity, particularly humiliating and degrading treatment. These prohibitions are memorialized in the Army Field Manual 27-10, art. 506. The Pentagon is trying to remove Article 3 Common from the newly revised instructions that go with the Manual. The implication is that the Defense Department intends to treat prisoners inhumanely.

 

    Grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions constitute war crimes, for which individuals can be punished under the US War Crimes Act. Willful killing, torture or inhuman treatment, and willfully causing great suffering or great bodily harm are grave breaches.

 

    The torture and inhuman treatment of prisoners in US custody at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere in Iraq are grave breaches of Geneva, and therefore, war crimes. The execution of unarmed civilians at Haditha and in other Iraqi cities are war crimes. <

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#
C-SPAN FIRESTORM: 9/11 Truth Symposium Gains Momentum, by Paul Joseph Watson




 

C-Span Firestorm: 9/11 Truth Symposium
Gains Momentum

Scholars symposium to re-air again on Tuesday

 

Paul Joseph Watson/Prison Planet.com | July 31 2006

 

Judging by the reaction on the web to C-Span's airing of the American Scholars Symposium, the 9/11 truth movement has been afforded another jolt of momentum in its quest to bring criminal proceedings against those complicit in the attack and its subsequent cover-up.

 

C-Span repeated the show Sunday and set to re-air it again Tuesday at 6:10PM EST, 5:10 CST.

 

The show is currently archived on C-Span's website and you can watch it for free here.

 

Webster Tarpley, one of the keynote speakers and panel members at the symposium, today calls for a concerted effort to use the C-Span broadcast to discredit phony left-right gatekeepers who have resolved to blindly accept the government's version of what happened on 9/11.

 

 

"Let us mobilize to organize the biggest audience ever by an incessant and sustained intervention in radio and television call-in talk shows, by blast emails, by direct personal contact alerts, by public signs, leaflets, and by every other means at our disposal," Tarpley wrote.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

See extended highlights of the conference with full speaker presentations, subscribe, download and share with your friends!

Click here to subscribe!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

"Let us overwhelm Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, Jerry Doyle, Glenn Beck, and the other fascist parrots of the airwaves with the announcement of the Tuesday broadcast. Let us confront Ed Shultz and the other Air America gatekeepers with reality of the Tuesday show. Please do the same in the rest of the world."

 

Before its initial screening on Saturday evening, many were concerned that the conference was so unrelenting in its hardcore stance on 9/11, that C-Span would be pressured into canning the show. This proved not to be the case and multiple repeats of the conference within days at peak times prove the program has received very favorable ratings.

 

 

This is another hammer blow to the establishment kingpins who had hoped questions about 9/11 would evaporate as we approach the 5th anniversary of the attack.

 

The 9/11 Blogger website is coordinating numerous activism campaigns in alliance with the C-Span coverage, including encouraging UN members to view the broadcast, targeting left and right radio and TV gatekeepers, and also a flyer campaign.

 

We implore everyone to get onboard with these campaigns and help spread 9/11 truth to the four corners of the world via the exemplary platform of the American Scholars Symposium.

 

 

Prison Planet.tv: The Premier Multimedia Subscription Package: Download and Share the Truth!

 

 

 

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#
REALITY IN LEBANON, Another Great 'ADE' Video Production by Kurt Nimmo




 

 

Reality in Lebanon

Produced and Directed
by Kurt Nimmo

[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by Another Day in
the Empire (kurtnimmo.com),
and/or Kurt Nimmo.
All rights reserved.]

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#
PATRIOTISM AND THE FOURTH OF JULY, by Howard Zinn




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What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

Also see below:
Jim Lobe | "Decent Respect" Might Help Image Woes Abroad

 

    Go to Original.

 

 

Click here to go to the HowardZinn.org website!    PATRIOTISM AND THE
    FOURTH OF JULY
    (True Patriotism Versus
    False Nationalism)
    By Howard Zinn
    AlterNet.org
    Tuesday, 4 July 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by AlterNet(.org)
    and/or Howard Zinn.
    All rights reserved.]

 

Click here to go buy Howard Zinn's book, 'A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES'!    The Declaration of Independence gives us the true meaning of a patriot, someone who supports a country's ideals, not necessarily its government.

 

    In celebration of the Fourth of July there will be many speeches about the young people who "died for their country." But those who gave their lives did not, as they were led to believe, die for their country; they died for their government. The distinction between country and government is at the heart of the Declaration of Independence, which will be referred to again and again on July 4, but without attention to its meaning.

    The Declaration of Independence is the fundamental document of democracy. It says governments are artificial creations, established by the people, "deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed," and charged by the people to ensure the equal right of all to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Furthermore, as the Declaration says, "whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it." It is the country that is primary---the people, the ideals of the sanctity of human life and the promotion of liberty.

 

    When a government recklessly expends the lives of its young for crass motives of profit and power, while claiming that its motives are pure and moral, ("Operation Just Cause" was the invasion of Panama and "Operation Iraqi Freedom" in the present instance), it is violating its promise to the country. War is almost always a breaking of that promise. It does not enable the pursuit of happiness but brings despair and grief.

 

    Mark Twain, having been called a "traitor" for criticizing the U.S. invasion of the Philippines, derided what he called "monarchical patriotism." He said: "The gospel of the monarchical patriotism is: 'The King can do no wrong.' We have adopted it with all its servility, with an unimportant change in the wording: 'Our country, right or wrong!' We have thrown away the most valuable asset we had -- the individual's right to oppose both flag and country when he believed them to be in the wrong. We have thrown it away; and with it, all that was really respectable about that grotesque and laughable word, Patriotism."

 

    If patriotism in the best sense (not in the monarchical sense) is loyalty to the principles of democracy, then who was the true patriot? Theodore Roosevelt, who applauded a massacre by American soldiers of 600 Filipino men, women and children on a remote Philippine island, or Mark Twain, who denounced it? Today, U.S. soldiers who are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan are not dying for their country; they are dying for Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld. They are dying for the greed of the oil cartels, for the expansion of the American empire, for the political ambitions of the president. They are dying to cover up the theft of the nation's wealth to pay for the machines of death. As of July 4, 2006, more than 2,500 U.S. soldiers have been killed in Iraq, more than 8,500 maimed or injured. With the war in Iraq long declared a "Mission Accomplished," shall we revel in American military power and insist that the American empire will be beneficent?

 

    Our own history is enough to make one wary. Empire begins with what was called, in our high school history classes, "westward expansion,"a euphemism for the annihilation or expulsion of the Indian tribes inhabiting the continent, in the name of "progress" and "civilization." It continues with the expansion of American power into the Caribbean at the turn of the 20th century, then into the Philippines, and then repeated Marine invasions of Central America and long military occupations of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. After World War II, Henry Luce, owner of Time, LIFE, and Fortune, spoke of "the American Century," in which this country would organize the world "as we see fit." Indeed, the expansion of American power continued, too often supporting military dictatorships in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, because they were friendly to American corporations and the American government. The record does not justify confidence in Bush's boast that the United States will bring democracy to Iraq.

 

    Should Americans welcome the expansion of the nation's power, with the anger this has generated among so many people in the world? Should we welcome the huge growth of the military budget at the expense of health, education, the needs of children, one fifth of whom grow up in poverty? Instead of being feared for our military prowess, we should want to be respected for our dedication to human rights. I suggest that a patriotic American who cares for her or his country might act on behalf of a different vision. Should we not begin to redefine patriotism? We need to expand it beyond that narrow nationalism that has caused so much death and suffering. If national boundaries should not be obstacles to trade---some call it "globalization"---should they also not be obstacles to compassion and generosity? Should we not begin to consider all children, everywhere, as our own? In that case, war, which in our time is always an assault on children, would be unacceptable as a solution to the problems of the world. Human ingenuity would have to search for other ways. [(Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 


 

    Howard Zinn is a veteran of World War II and author of the bestselling book, A People's History of the United States. The preceding essay is an excerpt from Zinn's forthcoming book, A Power Governments Cannot Suppress.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

    Go to Original.

 

 

Click here to go to the HowardZinn.org website!    "DECENT RESPECT" MIGHT
    HELP IMAGE WOES ABROAD
    (International Multilateralism
    Versus National Unilateralism)
    By Jim Lobe
    Inter Press Service
    (IPSNews.net)
    Tuesday, 4 July 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. & Internationally
    by Inter Press Service
    (IPSNews.net),
    and/or Jim Lobe.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

    Washington -- It was in 1776 that a group of British colonists living along the Atlantic seaboard of North America felt compelled to offer a public justification for their "Declaration of Independence" from their mother country out of "a decent Respect to the Opinions of Mankind".

 

    That justification, a bill of particulars against King George II for a host of offences, including violations of what would come to be called human rights, was designed to rally British and European public opinion behind the colonists' cause.

 

    As the nation marks that occasion exactly 230 years ago Tuesday, a series of surveys from around the world over the past three years makes clear that contemporary "Mankind" believes that the United States no longer accords its opinions the "decent respect" that those who founded the country believe was its due.

 

    Those surveys suggest that the image of the U.S. as a benign hegemon that takes account of the interests and opinions of the peoples of other nations -- consciously cultivated by Washington for more than a century -- has been effectively shattered by the unilateralism of the administration of President George W. Bush and particularly its invasion of Iraq.

 

    "One of the reasons that people around the world are so upset with the U.S. is the perception that in the post-World War II era, the U.S. was the champion and leader of an international order based on international law and mutual constraints, when it could have created a form of great-power domination," said Steven Kull, director of the University of Marylands Programme on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA).

 

    "As the leader and promoter of such a system, the U.S. was expected to set the example for all the rest, but Washington is now perceived as violating the same rules it did so much to establish," according to Kull, who cited Bush's decisions to ignore the United Nations in going to war and the Geneva Conventions in treating detainees in its "global war on terror" as key moves that both defied and outraged public opinion abroad.

 

    Even after 16 months of vigorous efforts by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to reassure U.S. allies and potential rivals, such as Russia and China, that Washington cares about their views and is committed to multilateralism, public opinion abroad has remained stubbornly sceptical, according to former Foreign Affairs editor, Fareed Zakaria.

 

    Rice, he wrote in a Newsweek column coincidentally entitled "Why We Don't Get No Respect", has "engineered a broad shift in American diplomacy over the last year, moving policy toward greater multilateralism, cooperation, and common sense on Iran, North Korea and Iraq, and several other issues."

 

    "And yet it hasn't produced a change in attitudes towards the United States," he went on, citing surveys by the Pew Global Attitudes Project and the Financial Times (FT) released just last month.

 

    The FT poll found that the U.S. under Bush is considered by European public opinion to be more dangerous than either North Korea or Iran.

 

    The Pew survey of 14 foreign countries found that strong pluralities or majorities in all but two nations said that the Iraq war had made the world "more dangerous" and that the U.S. presence in Iraq was "more dangerous" to world peace than the alleged nuclear-arms ambitions of North Korea and Iran.

 

    These findings were broadly consistent with previous surveys, including a Globescan-PIPA poll of 35 countries released in February, and a Pew poll released in June 2005 that found a sharp drop in the belief by respondents in Europe and the Islamic world that Washington took into account the interests of their countries in making its foreign policy decisions compared to the period before the Iraq war.

 

    In yet another poll Globescan-PIPA poll released in January 2005, large pluralities and majorities of respondents in 18 of 21 countries said they believed Bush's re-election to office would have a negative impact on global peace and security.

 

    What was particularly surprising about the latest Pew poll was the degree to which Washington's image, particularly in Europe and the Middle East, had slipped since the year before, when Rice's campaign to put diplomacy and consultation first had just gotten underway.

 

    In May 2005, Pew had found a rebound in foreign attitudes toward the U.S. compared to its findings in surveys conducted in the year following the Iraq war when foreign views of Washington, and particularly Bush, plunged to the lowest level ever recorded. Most analysts had expected continued, if modest, improvement between 2005 and 2006.

 

    In fact, however, U.S. favourability ratings, as well as support for Washington's "global war on terror", resumed their post-Iraq war decline in both Western Europe and the Islamic world, with particularly steep declines found in Spain, Russia, Indonesia, Jordan, and Turkey.

    Zakaria blamed this on a number of factors, including a lag between the general public, particularly in Europe, and governments which, he insisted, have been very appreciative of Rice's -- and Bush's -- efforts.

 

    Other important factors, he noted, included the continuing presence in the administration of arch-hawks, including Vice President Dick Cheney and Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld, who may be able to constrain Rice's flexibility, especially on Iran and North Korea.

 

    Moreoever, according to Zakaria, U.N. Amb. John Bolton's confrontational style has been particularly destructive and has contributed to the perception that the administration remains deeply divided and that its new emphasis on diplomacy and multilateralism has been dictated more by necessity than conviction. "In five minutes of posturing in front of a microphone, Bolton undoes five months of careful work by his boss, the secretary of State," he wrote.

 

    In fact, however, the problem lies much deeper---in the belief that the U.S., especially under Bush, still does not accord a decent respect to the views and opinions of other nations, whether it involves the invasion of Iraq and the refusal to apply the Geneva Conventions in the "war on terror" -- for which Bush remains unapologetic -- or global warming, the International Criminal Court, or the administration's doctrine of pre-emption.

 

    "An America that does not understand -- and makes little effort to understand -- why it has become so unpopular abroad is almost certain to find itself both disliked and ineffective in many parts of the world," noted political commentator David Rieff in a reflection on the latest Pew poll and U.S. "exceptionalism" that appeared in the New York Times Sunday Magazine this weekend. [(Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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#
....READ 'THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE FOR IMPEACHMENT', by David Swanson




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Click here to go to the AfterDowningStreet.org website!    ON THE FOURTH OF JULY, READ "THE
    DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE
    FOR IMPEACHMENT" OF BUSH & CO.
    By David Swanson
    AfterDowningStreet.org
    Sunday, 02 July 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by AfterDowningStreet(.org)
    and/or David Swanson.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

 

    Veterans for Peace has drafted a Declaration of Impeachment using nothing but excerpts from the Declaration of Independence (plus a few words in parentheses). It reads as follows, and should be read at picnics and protests on the Fourth of July:

 

    "... (W)henever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends ['... that all (people) are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these (Rights) are Life, LIBERTY and the pursuit of Happiness..., (and that) Governments are instituted among (the People), deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed ...'], it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their [Liberty,] Safety and Happiness ...

 

    "... (A)ll experience hath shewn, that (hu)mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations ... design(s) to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their DUTY, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security ...

 

    "The history of the present King (George)... is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States [and the world]. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

 

  • ["He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for public good (and Liberty). He has forbidden his (more independent Lawmakers) to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to (obey) them (or to give his Assent that he must obey them) ...]

     

  • "He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance ...

     

  • "He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

     

  • ["He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our Constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of (false and fraudulent) Legislation: For quartering large bodies of armed troops (and domestic mercenaries) among us: For protecting them... from punishment for any Murders which they... commit on the Inhabitants of these States ...]

     

  • "(He has) ... deprive(ed) us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury ... transport(ed) us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences ... [taking away (recognition and observance of) our Charters (Treaties and International Laws), abolishing (or refusing to obey countless numbers of) our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Form(s) of our Government(s) ...]

     

  • "He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us ...

     

  • "He is at this time transporting large Armies ... to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

     

  • "He has constrained our fellow Citizens ... to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren [abroad], or to fall themselves by their Hands ... [and excited (and provoked) domestic insurrections amongst us ...]

 

    "[In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress (of Grievances under the First Amendment of the Constitution, and Article Three of the Bill of Rights, of these United States) in the most humble terms. Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury(ies).] A (President), whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people. [Nor have We been wanting in attention to (the Bush administration). We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their ("Republican"/"Conservative") legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our (Freedom and Liberty) here (in this country). We have appealed to ... justice ... and we have (sought to influence) them by the ties of (Liberty and Freedom) to disavow these usurpations (of Freedom and Liberty), which would inevitably (destroy) our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and consanguin(u)ity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of (hu)mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.]

 

    "WE, THEREFORE, [the (People) of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA] ... do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People [of these United States], solemnly publish and declare, That these ... FREE AND INDEPENDENT (PEOPLE) ... are Absolved from all Allegiance to the (Bush administration), and that all political connection between them and (this administration), is and ought to be totally dissolved ... AND for the support of this Declaration, [with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence,] we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor." [Emphasis, words in brackets ("[ ]"), mostly from the Declaration of Independence itself, which David Swanson left out (incorrectly in my opinion), and/or editing of the title, added by Wolf Britain.]

 


 

    David Swanson is creator of MeetWithCindy(Sheehan).org, co-founder of the AfterDowningStreet.org coalition, a writer and activist, and the Washington Director of Democrats.com. He is a board member of Progressive Democrats of America, and serves on the Executive Council of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, TNG-CWA. He has worked as a newspaper reporter and as a communications director, with jobs including Press Secretary for Dennis Kucinich's 2004 presidential campaign, Media Coordinator for the International Labor Communications Association, and three years as Communications Coordinator for ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Swanson obtained a Master's degree in philosophy from the University of Virginia in 1997. His website is DavidSwanson.org.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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#
INDEPENDENCE DAY, A Poem by S. Wolf Britain

POETRY WOLF








Click Here to Act Now and
Click here to go to my personal website!
Go to My Personal Website!







Selected Verse
of
Wolf Britain







"Dissent is the essential aspect of patriotism"!
--Thomas Jefferson







(PLEASE TAKE NOTICE: All entries are in descending order by the dates they were posted, and are almost all completely out of order by the dates they were written.)







[All of the following poems are copyrighted (c) 1991-2010 in the U.S.A. and Internationally by S. Wolf Britain. All rights reserved.]








 

 

Click here to go to my new MySpace blog!

 

 

INDEPENDENCE DAY

For The Slaughtered Innocents

Written on July 4th, 2004
By S. Wolf Britain
( And Now The Apocalypse
http://www.wolfbritain.com/ )

[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by And Now The
Apocalypse! (wolfbritain.com),
and/or S. Wolf Britain.
All rights reserved.]

 

 

Are we really independent,
Or are we blindly believing
The lies being told us by warmongers
Lusting after death and destruction?

 

Is there autonomy between
What the lying politicians say
And the important truths we're hopefully
Coming to learn about war versus peace?

 

Are we choosing life rather than death
Or are we ignorantly condoning murder,
Blindness not making us any less guilty
For our complicity in the endless slaughter?

 

Is there the seeking of separation
From the senseless, inhumane carnage,
And only standing for blessed peacemaking,
That mercy which glorifies humankind?

 

Are we the merciful who are the only ones'
God will have mercy upon in the very near future,
Instead of the unmerciful who will be condemned
As they themselves condemned the weak and innocent?

 

Where lay our true days of independence?

 

 

 

 

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#
RALPH SCHOENMAN: THE CATEGORY OF TERROR; by Kurt Nimmo



AND  NOW  THE  APOCALYPSE!

Living In A World Full Of Lies




International A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
Click Here to A.ct N.ow and Ask
Click here to go to International A.N.S.W.E.R. (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) Coalitions website!
S.top W.ar and E.nd R.acism!




"Dissent is the essential aspect of patriotism"!
--Thomas Jefferson






[PLEASE TAKE NOTICE: All entries are in descending order by the date(s) they were posted, and in most cases in ascending order by the date(s) they were written.]







BLOGGERS AGAINST TORTURE

Click here to go to the 'Torture Awareness Month' website!

Join Bloggers Against
Torture by Clicking
on this Text Link!

 

 

Ralph Schoenman: The

Category of Terror

Produced and Directed
by Kurt Nimmo

[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by Another Day in
the Empire (kurtnimmo.com),
Kurt Nimmo, and/or
Ralph Schoenman.
All rights reserved.]

 

 




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#
A SERIES OF VERY IMPORTANT RECENT ARTICLES, by Various Authors




BLOGGERS AGAINST TORTURE

 

Click here to go to the 'Torture Awareness Month' website!

 

Join Bloggers Against
Torture by Clicking
on this Text Link!

 

 

 

      A Series of Very Important Recent Articles (most I've been meaning to post since they were issued, now posted in order of when they were issued), Particularly on Torture, in this month of June 2006, designated as Torture Awareness Month (http://www.tortureawareness.org/) [and that link's associated blogroll, "Bloggers Against Torture" (http://blogagainsttorture
.blogspot.com/)
{please join both, especially the latter, in the struggle against torture}].

 

 

 

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What do you think? The t r u t h o u t Town Meeting is in progress. Join the debate!

 

Read more of William Rivers Pitt's columns.

 

 

Click here to go buy the book, 'The Greatest Sedition Is Silence'! Click here to go buy the book, 'War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know'!

 

Click here to go to t r u t h o u t ' s 'William Rivers Pitt' Page!    HOW CRAZY ARE THEY?
    (Crazy Enough to Carry Out
    Systematic Terrorism, etc.)

    By William Rivers Pitt
    t r u t h o u t | Perspective
    Tuesday, 11 April 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. and Internationally
    by t r u t h o u t (.org)
    and/or William Rivers
    Pitt. All rights reserved.]

 

 

    I had a debate with my boss last night about Sy Hersh's terrifying New Yorker article describing Bush administration plans to attack Iran, potentially with nuclear weapons. After reading the Hersh piece, my boss was understandably worried, describing his reaction to the article in road-to-Damascus-revelation terms. They're going to do this, he said.

 

    I told my boss that I couldn't believe it was possible the Bush administration would do this. I ran through all the reasons why an attack on Iran, especially with any kind of nuclear weaponry, would be the height of folly.

 

    Iran, unlike Iraq, has a formidable military. They own the high ground over the Persian Gulf and have deployed missile batteries all throughout the mountains along the shore. Those missile batteries, I told him, include the Sunburn missile, which can travel in excess of Mach 2 and can spoof Aegis radar systems. Every American warship in the Gulf, including the carrier group currently deployed there, would be ducks on the pond.

 

    The blowback in Iraq would be immediate and catastrophic, I reminded him. The Shi'ite majority that enjoys an alliance with Iran would go indiscriminately crazy and attack anyone and anything flying the stars and stripes.

 

    Syria, which has inked a mutual defense pact with Iran and is believed to have significant chemical and biological weapons capabilities, would get into the game.

 

    China, which has recently established a multi-billion dollar petroleum relationship with Iran, might step into the fray if it sees its new oil source at risk.

 

    Russia, which has stapled itself to the idea that Iran's nuclear ambitions are for peaceful purposes, would likewise get pulled in.

 

    Blair and Britain want nothing to do with an attack on Iran, Berlusconi appears to have lost his job in Italy, and Spain's Aznar is already gone. If the Bush administration does this, I told my boss, they'd instantly find themselves in a cold and lonely place.

 

    The nuclear option, I told my boss, brings even more nightmarish possibilities. The reaction to an attack on Iran with conventional weapons would be bad enough. If we drop a nuke, that reaction will be worse by orders of magnitude and puts on the table the ultimate nightmare scenario: a region-wide conflagration that would reach all the way to Pakistan, where Pervez Musharraf is fending off the fundamentalists with both hands. If the US drops a nuke on Iran, it is possible that the Taliban-allied fundamentalists in Pakistan would rise up and overthrow Musharraf, thus gaining control of Pakistan's own arsenal of nuclear weapons. All of a sudden, those nukes would be loose, and India would lose its collective mind.

 

    It was a cogent argument I made, filled with common sense. My boss seemed mollified, and we bid each other goodnight. Ten minutes later, I had an email from my boss in my Inbox. He'd sent me Paul Krugman's latest editorial from the New York Times, titled "Yes He Would." Krugman's piece opens this way:

    "But he wouldn't do that." That sentiment is what made it possible for President Bush to stampede America into the Iraq war and to fend off hard questions about the reasons for that war until after the 2004 election. Many people just didn't want to believe that an American president would deliberately mislead the nation on matters of war and peace. "But he wouldn't do that," say people who think they're being sensible. Given what we now know about the origins of the Iraq war, however, discounting the possibility that Mr. Bush will start another ill-conceived and unnecessary war isn't sensible. It's wishful thinking.

 

    Great.

 

    Things have come to a pretty pass in the United States of America when the first question you have to ask yourself on matters of war and death is, "Just how crazy are these people?" Every cogent estimate sees Iran's nuclear capabilities not becoming any kind of reality for another ten years, leaving open a dozen diplomatic and economic options for dealing with the situation. There is no good reason for attacking that country, but there are a few bad reasons to be found.

 

    The worst of the bad reasons, of course, is that an attack on Iran would change the conversation in Washington as the 2006 midterm elections loom. Bush and his congressional allies are about as popular as scabies right now, according to every available poll. If the current trend is not altered or disrupted, January 2007 may come with Democratic Rep. John Conyers Jr. sitting as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee with subpoena powers in hand.

 

    "As Joseph Cirincione of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace recently pointed out," continued Krugman in his editorial, "the administration seems to be following exactly the same script on Iran that it used on Iraq: 'The vice president of the United States gives a major speech focused on the threat from an oil-rich nation in the Middle East. The US secretary of state tells Congress that the same nation is our most serious global challenge. The secretary of defense calls that nation the leading supporter of global terrorism. The president blames it for attacks on US troops.'"

 

    For the moment, one significant departure from the Iraq script has been the Bush administration vehemently denying that an attack on Iran, particularly with nuclear weapons, is an option being considered at this time. Bush himself called the Hersh article "wild speculation," and White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan bluntly stated that the US is committed to diplomacy. Gary Sick, an Iran expert quoted by columnist Jim Lobe in a recent article, seems to think the reputation for irrational and dangerous actions enjoyed by the Bush administration is being used as a psychological lever. "That is their record," said Sick, "so they have no need to invent it. If they can use that reputation to keep Iran -- and everybody else -- off balance, so much the better."

 

    Then why this cold feeling in the pit of my stomach? Julian Borger, writing for the UK Guardian, has some added insight. "Vincent Cannistraro," writes Borger, "a former CIA counter-terrorism operations chief, said Mr. Bush had not yet made up his mind about the use of direct military action against Iran. 'There is a battle for Bush's soul over that,' he said, adding that Karl Rove, the president's chief political adviser is adamantly opposed to a war. However, Mr. Cannistraro said covert military action, in the form of special forces troops identifying targets and aiding dissident groups, is already under way. 'It's been authorized, and it's going on to the extent that there is some lethality to it. Some people have been killed.'"

 

    A battle for Bush's soul? Some people have been killed? It's a wild day here in Bizarro World when I find myself in total agreement with Karl Rove. It is the uncertainty in all this that makes the situation truly terrifying. No sane person would undertake an action so fraught with peril, but if we have learned anything in the last few years, it is that sanity takes a back seat in this administration's hayride.

 

    I bought a coffee this morning at the excellent cafe around the corner, which is run by a wonderful Iranian woman. I asked her point-blank what would happen in her home country if we did attack. She dismissed the possibility out of hand. "I read that Krugman article," she said, "but there's no way they would do this. They'd have to be crazy."

 

    Indeed. Too bad that hasn't stopped them yet. [(Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 



 

    William Rivers Pitt is a New York Times and internationally bestselling author of two books: War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know and The Greatest Sedition Is Silence.

 

  ________

 

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Go to Original

 

 

Click here to go to Jim Hightowers website!    BUSH'S IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY
    [The Country "Not Like Its
    Enemies", Becoming More and
    More Like Its Enemies! (Part 1)]

    By Jim Hightower
    The Hightower Lowdown
    Alternet.org
    Sunday, 30 April 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. & Internationally
    by Alternet (.org),
    HightowerLowdown (.org)
    and/or Jim Hightower.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

Click here to go buy Jim Hightower's book, 'THIEVES IN HIGH PLACES'!     The Bush administration has pushed hard for limitless powers to spy on, imprison and torture American citizens in the name of 'security.' Is this really what America stands for?

 

    A fellow from a town just outside of Austin (Texas) wrote a four-sentence letter to the editor of our local daily that astonished me: "I want the government to please, please listen in on my phone calls. I have nothing to hide. It is also welcome to check my emails and give me a national identification card, which I will be proud to show when asked by people in authority. What's with all you people who need so much privacy?"

 

    Well, gee where to start? How about with the founders? Many of the colonists who rose in support of the rebellion of '76 did so because their government kept snooping on them and invading their privacy. Especially offensive was the widespread use of "writs of assistance," which were sweeping warrants authorizing government agents to enter and search people's homes and businesses -- including those of people who had nothing to hide. The founders had a strong sense of the old English maxim "A man's house is his castle." They hated the government's "knock at the door," the forced intrusion into their private spheres, the arrogant abrogation of their personal liberty. So they fought a war to stop it. Once free of that government, they created a new one based on laws to protect liberty -- and this time they were determined to put a short, tight leash on government's inherently abusive search powers.

 

    Hence, the Fourth Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

 

    Periodically in American history, presidents have tried to annul our basic right to be left alone. John Adams imposed the infamous Alien and Sedition Acts. Lincoln suspended habeas corpus during the Civil War. Woodrow Wilson conducted the Palmer Raids. FDR interned Japanese-Americans and others. And LBJ and Nixon used the COINTEL program to spy on war protestors and civil rights activists, including Martin Luther King Jr.

 

    In each case, however, the abuses were temporary. Americans rebelled and gradually brought the government back in line with our country's belief that privacy, a basic human right, is a cornerstone of democracy.

 

    Bush's Push

 

    Now comes the Bush-Cheney regime, pushing the most massive and rapid expansion of presidential might America has ever known. "I believe in a strong, robust executive authority," growled Dick "Buckshot" Cheney, architect of the power grab. He added, "The president of the United States needs to have his constitutional powers unimpaired, if you will." I wouldn't, but they're nonetheless asserting an imperious view of unlimited executive power that is foreign to our Constitution, demolishes the founders' ingenious system of checks and balances (key to the functioning of our democratic republic), and transforms America's government into a de facto presidential autocracy.

 

    Their push includes a White House program of domestic spying so sweeping that it would make Nixon blush; an audacious claim of a unilateral executive right to suspend treaties and ignore U.S. laws; an insistence that a president can seize U.S. citizens with no due process of law and imprison them in CIA "black sites" or send them to foreign regimes to be tortured; a series of new plans for military spying on the American people; the repression of both internal dissenters and outside protestors; an all-out assault on the public's right to know; and well, way too much more.

 

    The rise of a supreme executive is such a fundamental threat to our constitutional form of government -- and to who we are as a people -- that the Lowdown will devote both this issue and next month's to it. The media barons have covered this rise only sporadically and disjointedly, but it's important for We The People to see the frightening whole of it and launch the rebellion of '06.

 

    National Security Agency

 

    Richard Nixon is the godfather of the Bush-Cheney philosophy of executive supremacy. "Well, when the president does it, that means it is not illegal," Tricky Dick explained to us some 30 years ago. This plenipotentiary view of the American presidency (which would send shivers through the founders) is behind the unilateral, secret and illegal directive issued by Bush in 2001, ordering the NSA to spy on ordinary Americans. It's now conceded that untold thousands of citizens who have no connection at all to terrorism have had their phone conversations and emails swept up and monitored during the past four years by NSA agents.

 

    This is against the law. First, Bush's directive blatantly violates the Fourth Amendment, for it sends his agents stealing into our lives to search our private communications without probable cause and without a warrant. Second, it goes against the very law creating NSA, which prohibited the agency from domestic spying without court supervision. Third, it bypasses 1978's Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which set up a special FISA court specifically to issue secret warrants so a president could snoop on Americans suspected of being connected to terrorists. Going around this law is a felony, punishable by five years in prison. Yes: George W. Bush broke the law. He's a criminal.

 

    When this sweeping program of presidential eavesdropping was revealed last December by a leak to the New York Times, Bush first tried lying, scoffing that the news report was mere media "speculation." Didn't work. So then he turned defiant, belligerently declaring that damned right he was tapping phones. "If you're talking to a member of al-Qaida," he announced, "we want to know why."

 

    Of course, George, if you have reason to believe that a particular American is talking to al-Qaida, you should scoot over to FISA pronto and get a spy warrant. We don't have time to wait for no stinking court order, he shouts, we gotta jump on these traitors quicker than a gator on a poodle. The FISA system is "too cumbersome" -- we need "agility."

 

    Yeah, well, democracy is supposed to be a little cumbersome, so guys like you don't run amok. Fact is, FISA judges can act PDQ and are hardly restrictive. Of the 5,645 times Bush has requested surveillance warrants, how many did the court reject or defer? Only six! Besides, FISA lets presidents go a-snooping all they want, the instant they want, then come back to court three days later to get the warrant. How cumbersome is that? Even GOP lawmakers didn't buy the agility line, so Bush next tried claiming that Congress had actually given him the go-ahead to bypass the law. On Sept. 14, 2001, he said Congress passed the "authorization for use of military force," empowering him to use all necessary force against the 9/11 terrorists. Yet none of the 518 lawmakers who voted for this say that it included permission for Bush to spy illegally on our people. In fact, George W. specifically asked congressional leaders to give him this permission but was turned down. Finally, Bush has resorted to spouting Nixon's maxim that a president's official actions are inherently legal. Even though he broke the law knowingly and repeatedly, the Bushites assert that it's OK, citing a dangerous and thoroughly un-American defense that, as commander-in-chief, he has the constitutional right to break any law in the interest of national security. In matters of war and foreign policy, he, Cheney, and Alberto "See No Evil" Gonzales claim that the president's authority cannot be checked by Congress or the judiciary -- indeed, they don't even have to be informed.

 

    Nonsense. He's commander-in-chief of the military -- not of the country. He's president, not king. And as president, he's the head of only one of the three co-equal branches. Yet bizarrely and pathetically, Congress has rolled over and even cheered this gross usurpation of its clear constitutional responsibilities -- including its power to declare war, control the public purse, regulate the military, ratify treaties, make laws "necessary and proper" for the conduct of all government, provide oversight of executive actions and generally serve the public as a check and balance against presidential abuses. As Sen. Russ Feingold, the truly fine defender of our rights and liberties, wrote in a February blog: "I cannot describe the feeling I had, sitting on the House floor during Tuesday's State of the Union speech, listening to the president assert that his executive power is, basically, absolute, and watching several members of Congress stand up and cheer him on. It was surreal and disrespectful to our system of government and to the oath that as elected officials we have all sworn to uphold. Cheering? Clapping? Applause? All for violating the law?" The breathtaking notion that Bush can, on his own say-so, thumb his nose at the due process of law and even be a serial lawbreaker has astounded not only Feingold but also a slew of leading right-wing thinkers:

 

    Paul Weyerich of Free Congress Foundation: "My criteria for judging this stuff is, what would a President Hillary do with these same powers?"

 

    George Will, columnist: "[Executive] powers do not include deciding that a law -- FISA, for example -- is somehow exempted from the presidential duty to 'take care that the laws be faithfully executed.'"

 

    David Keene of the American Conservative Union: "The American system was set up on the assumption that you can't rely on the good will of people with power."

 

    Ironically, this Bush push to place himself above the law is centered on a failed program. The agents who are having to sift through piles of our calls and emails say that nearly all of the sifting is worthless, finding fewer than 10 citizens a year who even warrant further checking. In fact, the Bushites can point to only two "successes." They brag that the spying uncovered a plot to detonate fertilizer bombs in London -- but British officials deny that NSA spying helped uncover the plot. Their other "success" is ludicrous -- they claim to have found a guy who was going to cut down the Brooklyn Bridge. His weapon? A blowtorch. In response to Bush's illegal spying, Congress has been almost comical. After huffing and puffing about doing a deep investigation into the criminality of the program, Senate Republicans abruptly cancelled their plans for public hearings and ran to the White House waving surrender hankies. Last month, they announced that they had negotiated with Cheney, who graciously gave the Senate a grand oversight role. What did they get, specifically? A new subcommittee. TAH-DAH! Now seven senators will be allowed an occasional peek at whatever documents the White House is willing to send to them. In turn, Congress will sanction Bush's secret spying on Americans, letting him snoop on someone for 45 days without having to bother getting a warrant from that pesky FISA court. You can just hear Cheney guffawing back in his cave. Bush's assertion of extraordinary authority has nothing to do with terrorism and everything to do with his and Cheney's mad intent to enthrone the American presidency with "plenary" power -- i.e., unqualified, absolute power.

 

    March of Autocracy

 

    It would be distressing enough if the Bush-Cheney NSA power play was their only assertion of authoritarian government, but it is just one item on an astoundingly long list. Here are two particularly brash examples:

 

    IMPRISONMENT. Bush maintains that, as "a war president," he has the inherent power (never claimed by any predecessor) to seize and imprison any American citizen suspected by his administration of having even the vaguest connection to terrorists. He declares that he can throw citizens in federal jails in perpetuity on his own authority, without consulting a judge or getting an arrest warrant. The hapless innocent suspects who wail that a nightmarish mistake is being made are out of luck. Bush says that his executive prisoners can be taken in secret (without even notifying their families), do not have to be told of any specific charges against them, have no right to lawyers and can be held without trial.

 

    They might be shipped to secret CIA prisons around the world, which were authorized not by Congress, but by a classified executive order signed by Bush on Sept. 17, 2001. Yes, the order creating the secret prisons was itself secret. These CIA "black sites," as they are called in Bush's bureaucratic netherworld, are not subject to congressional oversight. Last December, after members of Congress learned about these facilities, both chambers voted to get reports on where the CIA's prisons are and what goes on inside them. But at the behest of the White House, GOP leaders quietly took this provision behind closed doors and killed it -- the majority vote be damned.

 

    Accused citizens might also be secretly turned over to repressive foreign governments for interrogation -- an unpleasant, illegal and morally bankrupt practice known as "extraordinary rendition." Consider Maher Arar's case. Returning home from a family vacation in 2002, this Canadian software engineer was "detained" by the feds at Kennedy Airport, thrown into solitary confinement in Brooklyn, denied proper legal counsel, grilled and then "rendered" by the Bushites to a Syrian prison. He was held there for 10 months in a rat-infested dungeon and brutally tortured. Finally, finding that he had no connection to terrorism, the Syrians released him.

 

    Arar sued the U.S. government for knowingly sending him to a torture chamber. In February, a federal judge blocked Arar's case without even hearing it. Caving in to Bush's claim of supreme executive power, the judge ruled that extraordinary rendition is a foreign-policy matter that the courts cannot review.

 

    TORTURE. "We do not torture," says George W. in yet another bald-faced lie. Actually, he and his henchmen have bent themselves into contortions trying to assert that the commander-in-chief does, indeed, have the inherent right to torture suspects in U.S. custody. In 2002, when he learned that Afghan detainees were being abused in violation of the Geneva Conventions and our own War Crimes Act, Bush did not order the mistreatment to stop. Instead, he signed an order stating, "I have the authority under the Constitution to suspend Geneva." He might as well have shouted, "I am the king!"

 

    A year later, a White House memo tried to redefine torture, imperiously declaring that only gross brutality that causes "organ failure, impairment of bodily function or even death" can be called torture. John Yoo, the lawyer who has crafted many of Bush's claims of expansive executive authority, even argues that it would not be unlawful torture for a president to order that the testicles of a detainee's child be crushed. "I think it depends on why the president thinks he needs to do that," says Yoo.

 

    Human-rights groups report that more than 100 captives have died while being tortured by executive-branch interrogators. "We do not torture?" Then why did Bush and Cheney fight so ferociously last year to kill Sen. John McCain's bill that would ban our government from using torture? The White House pleaded, threatened, cajoled and demanded that Congress at least exempt the CIA. Only when the ban passed both houses by veto-proof margins did Bush appear to give in, even publicly hugging McCain in a gesture of concession.

 

    But when he signed the bill on Dec. 30, with Congress and the media out of town on holiday, Bush quietly added a "signing statement," augustly proclaiming that he retains the right to ignore the ban whenever he thinks it conflicts with his inherent authority as commander-in-chief. The Constitution clearly says that Congress -- and only Congress -- is empowered "to make all laws." Yet this president, who whines that "liberal" judges keep stretching the Constitution beyond the strict words of the founders, says that he can rewrite America's laws by interpreting them to mean what he wants them to mean.

 

    If Bush can spy illegally, arrest citizens and throw away the key, sanction torture, lie, make his own laws and not be held accountable, then what can't he do? More next month (below). [(Subtitle and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 



 

    From The Hightower Lowdown, edited by Jim Hightower and Phillip Frazer, April 2006.

 

    Jim Hightower is the author of THIEVES IN HIGH PLACES: They've Stolen Our Country And It's Time To Take It Back(!) . To purchase the book, go to Amazon.com . He publishes the monthly Hightower Lowdown. For more information about Jim, visit JimHightower.com.

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

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Click here to go to Jim Hightowers website!    INSIDE DONNIE RUMSFELD'S
    ORWELLIAN PENTAGON
    [The Country "Not Like Its
    Enemies", Becoming More and
    More Like Its Enemies! (Part 2)]

    By Jim Hightower
    The Hightower Lowdown
    Alternet.org
    Wednesday, 24 May 2006
    [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
    U.S.A. & Internationally
    by Alternet (.org),
    HightowerLowdown (.org)
    and/or Jim Hightower.
    All rights reserved.]

 

 

Click here to go buy Jim Hightower's book, 'THIEVES IN HIGH PLACES'!     While claiming that they must "secure'" America for a post-9/11 world, the BushCheney zealots are taking us back to a pre-1776 world.

 

    In 1928, Justice Louis Brandeis wrote that the real threat to American freedom was not from an outside assault, but from the devious manipulations of our own misguided leaders. "The greatest dangers to liberty," he observed, "lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning, but without understanding."

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#
NSA SNOOP PROGRAM: ALL ABOUT THE NEOCON ENEMIES LIST, by Kurt Nimmo




NSA Snoop Program: All About
The Neocon Enemies List

Written by Kurt Nimmo
[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by Another Day in
the Empire (kurtnimmo.com),
and/or Kurt Nimmo.
All rights reserved.]

 

 

Click here to go buy Kurt's book, 'Another Day in the Empire'!      National Review Online, the home of many a Straussian neocon, has posted an excerpt from William Arkin on its Media Blog page. Arkin, who writes a column for the CIA’s favorite newspaper, the Washington Post (the editors over there like to call Arkin’s Early Warning a blog), declared on May 16, in regard to the massive NSA snoop program, “there is no enemies list” and the “Bush administration has been arrogant and incompetent in communicating to the American public. It has cynically split the country into red and blue in order to give itself greater power to pursue a wrong-headed national security strategy that it claims is red, white and blue…. The Congress has also utterly failed in five months to get to the bottom of the NSA’s warantless surveillance program and thereby resolve its legality and assuage public anxiety.” In other words, it is simply more partisan politics and splenetic political manipulation la mode de Karl Rove. Nothing to see here, except a bit of unresolved legality. Please move along.

 

If you believe that Bush and the neocons in the White House and the Pentagon, as Arkin suggests, have not drawn up a comprehensive list of domestic enemies, and are not snooping them right now, I have a chartreuse pony to sell you.

 

It’s no mistake Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden was breezily selected, as predicted, by a large number of senators (78-15 in his favor) earlier today. Hayden will merge CIA and Pentagon covert and snoop operations and scant little of the work will concentrate on Osama’s cartoonish cave dwellers and the spurious boogieman known as “al-Qaeda.” William Arkin may trust his government to employ a colossal snoop program in a myopic effort to gain short term political gain, but those of us who take a look at not too distant history understand otherwise.

 

Verne Lyon, a former CIA undercover operative, wrote for Covert Action Information Bulletin, Summer 1990, that with “the DCS, the DOD [Domestic Operations Division], the old boy network, and the CIA Office of Security operating without congressional oversight or public knowledge, all that was needed to bring [Operation Chaos] together was a perceived threat to the national security and a presidential directive unleashing the dogs. That happened in 1965 when President Johnson instructed [John] McCone to provide an independent analysis of the growing problem of student protest against the war in Vietnam. Prior to this, Johnson had to rely on information provided by the FBI, intelligence that he perceived to be slanted by Hoover’s personal views, which often ignored the facts.” In order to “achieve the intelligence being asked for by the President, the CIA’s Office of Security, the Counter-Intelligence division, and the newly created DOD turned to the old boy network for help.” Lyon continues:

 

As campus anti-war protest activity spread across the nation, the CIA reacted by implementing two new domestic operations. The first, Project RESISTANCE, was designed to provide security to CIA recruiters on college campuses. Under this program, the CIA sought active cooperation from college administrators, campus security, and local police to help identify anti-war activists, political dissidents, and “radicals.” Eventually information was provided to all government recruiters on college campuses and directly to the super-secret DOD on thousands of students and dozens of groups. The CIA’s Office of Security also created Project MERRIMAC, to provide warnings about demonstrations being carried out against CIA facilities or personnel in the Washington area.

 

All of this should be familiar, as the Pentagon’s Counterintelligence Field Activity (CIFA) kept a database on “a motley group of about 10 peace activists [who] showed up outside the Houston headquarters of Halliburton” in 2004, according to Michael Isikoff of Newsweek, in order to protest the corporation’s “supposed” war profiteering. “A Defense document shows that Army analysts wrote a report on the Halliburton protest and stored it in CIFA’s database. It’s not clear why the Pentagon considered the protest worthy of attention,” muses the clueless Isikoff, about as tuned in to domestic spook operations (in the case of the CIA, quite illegal under its charter) as his colleague, William Arkin, who should know better. The CIFA’s activity in regard to Haliburton is reminiscent of Project RESISTANCE, a domestic espionage operation coordinated under the DOD, a fact discovered with a simple Wikipedia search (obviously, writers working for Newsweek and the Washington Post cannot be bothered with online encyclopedias).

 

Under Operation Chaos and Project MERRIMAC, the CIA went about violating the strictures of the Bill of Rights with customary zeal. The CIA “infiltrated agents into domestic groups of all types and activities. It used its contacts with local police departments and their intelligence units to pick up its 'police skills' and began in earnest to pull off burglaries, illegal entries, use of explosives, criminal frame-ups, shared interrogations, and disinformation. CIA teams purchased sophisticated equipment for many starved police departments and in return got to see arrest records, suspect lists, and intelligence reports. Many large police departments, in conjunction with the CIA, carried out illegal, warrantless searches of private properties, to provide intelligence for a report requested by President Johnson,” writes Lyon.

 

After Johnson left office, Nixon continued the programs. “In June 1970 Nixon met with Hoover, [Richard] Helms, NSA Director Admiral Noel Gaylor, and Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) representative Lt. Gen. Donald V. Bennett and told them he wanted a coordinated and concentrated effort against domestic dissenters. To do that, he was creating the Interagency Committee on Intelligence (ICI), chaired by Hoover. The first ICI report, in late June, recommended new efforts in ‘black bag operations,’ wiretapping, and a mail-opening program. In late July 1970... the members of the ICI [were told] that their recommendations had been accepted by the White House.”

 

If not for the Church Committee (the United States Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, a Senate committee chaired by Senator Frank Church in 1975), the extent of crimes committed by the CIA, FBI, and the Pentagon would have likely remained secret. According to revelations brought forth by the committee (see the Church Committee’s supplementary detailed staff report on Operation Chaos), during “the life of Operation CHAOS, the CIA had compiled personality files on over 13,000 individuals including more than 7,000 U.S. citizens as well as files on over 1,000 domestic groups. The CIA had shared information on more than 300,000 persons with different law enforcement agencies including the DIA and FBI. It had spied on, burglarized, intimidated, misinformed, lied to, deceived, and carried out criminal acts against thousands of citizens of the United States. It had placed itself above the law, above the Constitution, and in contempt of international diplomacy and the United States Congress. It had violated its charter and had contributed either directly or indirectly to the resignation of a President of the United States [Nixon]. It had tainted itself beyond hope.”

 

Of all this, the CIA’s blatant contempt for the rights of individuals was the worst. This record of deceit and illegality, implored Congress as well as the President to take extreme measures to control the Agency’s activities. However, except for a few cosmetic changes made for public consumption such as the Congressional intelligence oversight committee nothing has been done to control the CIA. In fact, subsequent administrations have chosen to use the CIA for domestic operations as well. These renewed domestic operations began with Gerald Ford, were briefly limited by Jimmy Carter, and then extended dramatically by Ronald Reagan.

 

According to the corporate media and the standard gaggle of neocon pundits, we have nothing to fear now that Hayden has won over the Senate. After all, as the neocons assure us, the CIA and spook operations emanating out of the Pentagon (and the NSA) focus on “al-Qaeda,” a shadowy group with unestablished and undocumented ties within the United States, and those of us worried about the return of Operation Chaos, Project MERRIMAC, and the FBI’s COINTELPRO are simply paranoid tinfoil hatters or worse.

 

Never mind the superabundance of material demonstrating beyond a shadow of a doubt consistent government complicity in not only denying American citizens the right to dissent and seek redress of grievances, but also employing harassment and violence against them. It appears William Arkin simply does not bother to read history and is woefully ignorant of government subversion and desecration of the Constitution. His assertion that the Bush administration and the neocons at [their] core are not interested in “enemies list” a' la Nixon is, on its face, absurd and should be discarded as a dangerous fallacy.

 

Addendum

 

Allan Uthman writes for the Buffalo Beast (Top 10 Signs of the Impending U.S. Police State):

 

If Bush’s nominee for CIA chief, Air Force General Michael Hayden, is confirmed, that will put every spy program in Washington under military control. Hayden, who oversaw the NSA warrantless wiretapping program... is clearly down with the program. [W]hat program? To weaken and dismantle or at least neuter the CIA. Despite its best efforts to blame the CIA for “intelligence errors” leading to the Iraq war, the picture has clearly emerged — through extensive CIA leaks — that the White House’s analysis of Saddam’s destructive capacity was not shared by the Agency. This has proved to be a real pain in the ass for Bush and the gang.

 

Who’d have thought that career spooks would have moral qualms about deceiving the American people? And what is a president to do about it? Simple: make the critical agents leave, and fill their slots with Bush/Cheney loyalists. Then again, why not simply replace the entire organization? That is essentially what both Rumsfeld at the DoD [Department of Defense, aka "Department of War"] and newly minted Director of National Intelligence John [Negroponte] are doing — they want to move intelligence analysis into the hands of people that they can control, so the next time they lie about an “imminent threat” nobody’s going to tell. And the press is applauding the move as a “necessary reform.”

 

Remember the good old days, when the CIA were the bad guys?

 

It should be noted, regardless of the witless declarations of William Arkin and his ilk, the military is busy at work ferreting out and monitoring "terrorists", that is to say American citizens who have nothing to do with the CIA asset Osama bin Laden or the phantom “al-Qaeda,” the database.

 

“NBC investigative correspondent Lisa Myers reported that NBC News had obtained a secret 400-page Defense Department document listing more than 1,500 ’suspicious incidents’ across the country over a recent ten-month period,” Barry Grey wrote last December. “One of the items listed as a "threat" was a meeting held by a group of activists a year ago at a Quaker Meeting House in Lake Worth, Florida to plan a protest against military recruiting at local high schools. Myers said the Defense Department data base obtained by NBC News included nearly four dozen anti-war meetings or protests. Among them was an anti-war protest held last March in Los Angeles, a planned protest against military recruiters last December in Boston, and a planned protest last April in Fort Lauderdale, Florida…. A separate press report noted that the Pentagon data base also mentioned weekly protests at an Atlanta, Georgia military recruiting station and an anti-war protest at the University of California in Santa Cruz.”

 

These limited revelations in and of themselves reveal that the Bush administration and the Pentagon, with the collusion of congressional Democrats as well as Republicans, have pushed aside limits on military domestic spying that were imposed following congressional hearings in the 1970s on Pentagon spying against civil rights organizations and opponents of the Vietnam War.

 

In addition to the creation of CIFA, mentioned above, a “second major effort to expand the military's domestic spying operations involves legislation being pushed by the Pentagon on Capitol Hill that would establish an exception to the Privacy Act, allowing the FBI and others to share information about US citizens with the Pentagon, the CIA and other agencies, as long as it was deemed that the information was related to foreign intelligence…. In addition, each of the military services has launched its own program to collect domestic intelligence. The Post quotes a Marine Corps order approved in April of 2004 that states the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity will be ‘increasingly required to perform domestic missions,’ and as a result ‘there will be increased instances whereby Marine intelligence activities may come across information regarding US persons.’”

 

Of course, since there is zero oversight, there really is no need to make the fraudulent claim these operations will be conducted only if “related to foreign intelligence.” As the above indicates, the government is primarily interested in snooping and subverting its own citizens, who are more of a threat to their stranglehold on power than any number of phony “al-Qaeda” groups or other contrived Freddy Kruger scarecrows.

 

[Privacy and the Constitution are systematically being done away with; and if "We, the People" continue to allow this to happen, very soon freedom and liberty will become a memory of something exceedingly important that no longer exists, and everyone will supposedly have to do what they're told "or else". But we must not capitulate to any of this. We must be truly courageous, and non-violently and peaceably stand up against all of these inroads of an authoritarian and totalitarian fascist police state, where liberty and freedom no longer exist, taking over the United States and the world. We must stand up against it with little or no concern(s) for what befalls us as a result of this which is doing nothing but standing up for what's right, true and in the interests of freedom and liberty, the principles upon which this country was monumentally, immutably and inalienably founded, and no less than our duty and responsibility to stand up for the preservation of, no matter what is inflicted upon us for doing so. LONG LIVE FREEDOM! (Subtitle, words in brackets ("[ ]") and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 





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#
BIG BROTHER'S HISTORY, by John Prados




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                              BIG BROTHER'S HISTORY
                              (It Appears that the U.S. Constitution
                              Supposedly Doesn't Matter Anymore)
                              By John Prados
                              TomPaine.com
                              Thursday, 25 May 2006

 

                              [Copyright (c) 2006 in the
                              U.S.A. and Internationally
                              by TomPaine (.com)
                              and/or John Prados.
                              All rights reserved.]

 

 

Click here to go to the ACLUs website!    The National Security Agency's [illegal] warrantless domestic wiretaps and its logs of Americans' phone calls are the most controversial, but by no means the only, surveillance initiative underway that has chilling implications for all Americans. American history is littered with examples of similar instances of security programs gone awry. It is three decades now since the Church Committee concluded, "The tendency of intelligence activities expanding beyond their initial scope is a theme which runs through every aspect of our investigative findings."

 

    In the 20th century, this history of misuse of security programs begins with World War I. A government-sponsored volunteer (read: vigilante) group, the American Protective League, was created to assist the Justice Department and military intelligence, resulting in nearly 2,000 prosecutions for allegedly "disloyal" utterances by Americans.

 

    Immediately after the war, the "Palmer Raids," named for then-Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer, rounded up 10,000 persons for supposed anarchist or revolutionary views. These became a milestone in the creation of the FBI and the career of its first director (and Palmer's chief assistant) J. Edgar Hoover. Hoover went on to keep books on all manner of Americans; he used the information collected to exert political pressure at various times.

 

    Domestic intelligence programs were revived in 1936 and steadily increased in intrusiveness, impelled first by World War II, then by the Cold War. These began with the intention of monitoring foreign influence on American politics and ended up investigating "loyalty." We hardly need mention the internment of over 120,000 Japanese-Americans on hysterical suspicions of contact with the enemy in World War II.

 

    Though the two statutes are far different in detail, both the Internal Security Act of 1950 and today's Patriot Act represent encroachments on constitutionally guaranteed rights.Title II of the Internal Security Act actually permitted the detention of any person suspected of sabotage or espionage during invasion or insurrection and half a dozen holding camps were prepared. The Truman and Eisenhower administrations initiated "loyalty oaths" with boards to review the records of several million government employees-estimates of those fired or forced to resign range from about 2,500 to roughly 7,000. Although it never came to pass, the list of Americans to be rounded up under the Internal Security Act in the event of a national emergency numbered 26,000 persons in 1954.The inquiries carried out under the loyalty program were FBI-controlled. By 1960 it had opened approximately 432,000 files on groups or individual Americans, under guidelines that permitted investigation based on suspicion of "anarchistic or revolutionary beliefs" even if membership in any group had "not been proven" and in the absence of evidence of any current "activity of a subversive nature."

 

    The depredations of the House Un-American Activities Committee and the effects of Senator Joe McCarthy's charges of communist infiltration had disastrous impacts on Americans' lives, but they served merely as backdrop for more intrusive programs. In 1952 the U.S. Post Office began to record mail sent from the U.S. to Russia, a project taken over by the CIA counterintelligence staff in 1955 and called HT/Lingual. Aimed at identifying Russian spies, in the 1960s Lingual was diverted to spying on Vietnam war protesters. The mail program ended in 1973 when the post office stopped cooperating, but in its last year alone the CIA handled 4.3 million pieces of mail, photographed the envelopes of about 33,000, and opened and copied 8,700 letters-some 60 percent of them on the basis of FBI watch lists.

 

    The FBI, meanwhile, began an effort to infiltrate and destabilize the American communist party in 1956. Called COINTELPRO (Counterintelligence Project), the effort soon expanded. In the guise of preventing communist influence on community groups, in 1960 the FBI was authorized to include "legitimate mass organizations, such as Parent-Teacher Associations, civil organizations, and racial and religious groups." Only a year later was COINTELPRO applied to the Socialist Workers Party. Before long it extended to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the NAACP, the Ku Klux Klan, the women's liberation movement and a host of Vietnam antiwar groups.

 

    The campaign included planted news items, derogatory rumors spread inside groups, bogus hate mail, entrapment, wiretaps, deliberately aimed leaks and more. The FBI campaign against Martin Luther King, Jr. is a well-known example but only a tiny fraction of the overall effort. In creating its target lists the FBI developed a "Rabble Rouser/Agitator Index" it applied to individuals-"key agitators" and "key black extremists." There were a half million FBI files on citizens.

 

    The rest of the government was not far behind. Military intelligence agencies opened over 100,000 files on Americans from 1965 to 1971. The IRS compiled 11,000 "intelligence" files between 1969 and 1973 and opened tax investigations for political reasons. The CIA had another 10,000 files on Americans, and a computerized index of 300,000. Its Projects Chaos, Merrimack and Resistance were all aimed at American antiwar activists. Under Project Mudhen, the CIA, which is prohibited by law from actions inside the United States, followed journalist Jack Anderson and four colleagues in an effort to discover their sources.

 

    Today's Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act-the very law at issue in Bush's domestic wiretapping scandal-is the direct result of National Security Agency actions of that time. Then, too, there was an Air Force general, Lew Allen, Jr., who was obliged to admit the NSA had monitored international conversations of Americans without warrant, prohibited by the Omnibus Crime Control Act of 1968. Upwards of 1,600 Americans were on the NSA watch list, with an average of about 800 at any given time. Operation Shamrock, it was revealed, had begun in 1947 as an effort to intercept Soviet messages by examining the texts of telegrams handed over by the cable companies (illegal under the Communications Act of 1934). In October 1967, by Allen's account, the anti-Soviet program spilled over into domestic politics when the NSA began monitoring people on its watch list, averaging about two reports a day.

 

    There is an eerie convergence between then and now. The government made the same claims of how its efforts were tightly controlled. General Allen also asserted that the interception program was protecting against terrorism and drug running. The Ford administration made strenuous efforts to minimize the application of existing statutes and case law, that held that "a warrant must be obtained before a wiretap is installed on a domestic organization [in this case the Jewish Defense League] that is neither the agent of nor acting in collaboration with a foreign power, even if the surveillance is installed under Presidential directive in the name of foreign intelligence gathering for the protection of the national security." In February 1975, when a House committee headed by Bella Abzug issued subpoenas to further examine Operation Shamrock, the Ford administration claimed executive privilege. The author of the Justice Department memo recommending that course was Antonin Scalia.

 

    Ford was unable to shield the executives of the cable companies, who were eventually forced to divulge the extent of their cooperation with the NSA, which was shown to be massive. Various proposals for a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act followed, eventually resulting in the passage of the existing law. It is highly significant that while the administration considered this a "problem," the Ford Justice Department agreed to a provision in the 1976 version of the act that specified: "Nothing in this [law] shall be deemed to limit the authority of this Select Committee of Intelligence of the U.S. Senate to obtain such information as it may need to carry out its duties."

 

    Like these older cases, today's government surveillance issue features apparatus created for national security reaching beyond original purposes. Besides the NSA issue there is the Pentagon's "Talon" program, intended for base security, that has collected data on antiwar individuals and groups, and then failed to purge the information from its files. The FBI has monitored mosques, supposedly to watch for nuclear material. The Justice Department has engaged in runaway prosecutions of trumped-up terrorism charges in Detroit and other places. Local police forces-and the FBI, again-have infiltrated meetings, taken pictures of protests, and asked employers about individuals expressing political views protected by the First Amendment. They gained resources to execute these programs from federal grants intended to counter terrorism.

 

    What needs to happen before Americans understand that government surveillance is about more than protection against terrorism?

 

[Remember freedom and the Constitution, and that we have a duty to stand up against all of the modern-day versions of these incursions against, and violations of, liberty and the Constitution, even if they are supposedly legalized, as with the so-called "U.S.A. Patriot Act", and to stand up for freedom and the Constitution no matter what the cost(s). (Subtitle, words in brackets ("[ ]") and/or emphasis added by Wolf Britain.)]

 



 

    John Prados is a senior fellow of the National Security Archive in Washington, D.C., and author of Hoodwinked: The Documents that Reveal How Bush Sold Us a War (The New Press).

 

  ________

 

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

 

"Go to Original" links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted on TO may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the "Go to Original" links.

 

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THE THOUGHT POLICE, by S. Wolf Britain

POETRY WOLF





Click Here to Act Now and
Click here to go to my personal website!
Go to My Personal Website!





Selected Verse
of
Wolf Britain







"Dissent is the essential aspect of patriotism"!
--Thomas Jefferson







(PLEASE TAKE NOTICE: All entries are in descending order by the dates they were posted, and are almost all completely out of order by the dates they were written.)







[All of the following poems are copyrighted (c) 1991-2010 in the U.S.A. and Internationally by S. Wolf Britain. All rights reserved.]









I thought it was about time, well past time actually, to return to my poems and post at least one of them on my blog(s):

 

 

 

Click here to go to my new MySpace blog!


THE THOUGHT POLICE

With many thanks to George Orwell
Who warned us about what's coming

Written on 11 November 2003
By S. Wolf Britain
( And Now The Apocalypse
http://www.wolfbritain.com/ )

[Copyright (c) 2006 in the U.S.A. and
Internationally by And Now The
Apocalypse! (wolfbritain.com),
and/or S. Wolf Britain.
All rights reserved.]

 

 

The U.S. government is not a benevolent caretaker
But is rather despotic, malevolent and capricious
While going about fascistically deceiving, colonizing
Serving military-industrial "America" over humans
That don't profit from insanity, bombing and death
Unlike the many self-serving Machiavellian killers
Who run the corporate murder-for-money machinery
Which gains the whole world but has none of soul's
Love and mercy for humanity needing to predominate
Over their greed and hate that are compassionless

 

These "Big Brothers" want to control our thoughts
Leaving us without any True Liberties or Freedoms
And silence our "check and balance" on their aims
Of totally enslaving, dominating and mastering us
While making us absolutely subservient automatons
That do nothing but what we're told by sociopaths
Seeking to be our completely evil gods and rulers
Who care for nothing and no one except their profits
In the process of sacrificing the freedom of thoughts
For True Liberty and Mastery ONLY over ourselves

 

Beware the thought police!


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