Sunday, 19 December 2010

Afghanistan: Wheels Within Wheels?

By Gwynne Dyer

The simplistic mythology about al-Qaeda's motives that was disseminated by the Bush administration - "they are Islamic crazies who attack us because they hate our values" - has taken such deep root in the American population that Obama cannot argue with it in public. Continue

Cover-ups, Coups, and Drones
A Holiday Sampler of What Wikileaks Reveals about the US

By Bill Quigley

The US claims broad authority to secretly snoop on the lives of individuals inside and outside of the US. It also works tirelessly to prevent citizens from knowing what is going on by expansively naming basic government information "state secrets." The government says it has to have the right to keep things secret in order to prevent crime. Continue

US Offers Bradley Manning Plea Bargain If He Names Julian Assange

By Kim Sengupta and David Usborne in New York

Accused soldier offered plea bargain if he names WikiLeaks founder. Continue

A Typical Day for PFC Bradley Manning

By David E. Coombs

PFC Manning is held in his cell for approximately 23 hours a day. The guards are required to check on PFC Manning every five minutes by asking him if he is okay. At night, if the guards cannot see PFC Manning clearly, because he has a blanket over his head or is curled up towards the wall, they will wake him in order to ensure he is okay. Continue

10 days in Sweden:
The Full Allegations Against Julian Assange

By Nick Davies

Unseen police documents provide the first complete account of the allegations against the WikiLeaks founder. Continue

Assange Furore Deepens as New Details Emerge of Sex Crime Allegations

By Tracy McVeigh and Mark Townsend

Bitter divisions open up between supporters and critics of WikiLeaks leader in wake of fresh claims by Swedish women. Continue

¡Viva WikiLeaks!
SiCKO Was Not Banned in Cuba

By Michael Moore

WikiLeaks did an amazing thing and released a classified State Department cable that dealt, in part, with me and my film, 'Sicko.' Continue

The Delusions of the Peace Process

By Richard Falk

In effect, a habitual armed robber was being asked to stop robbing a few banks for three months in exchange for a huge financial payoff. Such an arrangement qualifies as a transparently shameless embrace of Israeli lawlessness on behalf of a peace process that has no prospect of producing peace, much less justice. Continue

More Hypocrisy
U.S. Gov't "Responds" to Questions About Imprisoned Palestinian Protest Organizer Abu Rahmah


As the case of nonviolent Palestinian organizer Abdallah Abu Rahmah  has gained attention globally with statements from the European Union, The Elders (including former US President Jimmy Carter), Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and others, at least one reporter poses the question of Abu Rahmah's fate to the United States Undersecretary of State PJ Crowley. Continue

Money Is Still the Name of the Game

By Michael Parenti

According to a Public Citizen report on the 2010 midterm elections, in 58 of the 74 contests in which power changed hands, the winning candidates rode enormous waves of cash, outspending their opponents with funds from “shadowy front groups, giant corporations and the super rich.” Continue

Corporate America's Plan to Loot Our Pensions
Latest Battle in Decades-Long Assault on the Middle Class

By Arun Gupta

While the safety net is being withered by attrition, record corporate profits are deemed off-limits for discussion about closing the budget gap. Continue

18 killed in two Afghan attacks: Taliban suicide attackers killed 13 Afghan soldiers and police in two cities Sunday, and five rebels died, officials said.
NATO kills 20 "insurgents" in eastern Afghanistan: The "gunbattle" between NATO forces and insurgents took place in the Tagab district of Kapisa province, where coalition forces called in air support after their patrol came under fire, NATO said.
Nato confirms airstrike killed 4 Afghan soldiers: Nato confirmed Saturday that four Afghan soldiers were killed accidentally in an airstrike in a Taliban flashpoint in southern Afghanistan this week.
NATO occupation force soldier killed by roadside bomb in Afghanistan: A member of the NATO-led force in Afghanistan was killed on Sunday, taking the total number of foreign troops killed in 2010 to 700, by far the deadliest year of the war since the Taliban were toppled in 2001 .
Pakistan denies unmasking US spy: The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) on Saturday denied helping to unmask the US spy
America's New Mercenaries: Obama is hiring military contractors at a rate that would make Bush blush.
Israeli attack kills five people in Gaza: At least five people have been killed by an Israeli airstrike on a town in the central Gaza Strip, according to a Press TV correspondent in Gaza.
Palestinian PM: Plan to declare statehood by 2011 remains on track : Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad said Saturday that his plan to establish a Palestinian state by August 2011 remains on course.
New York-based rabbi: Letter forbidding rental to Arabs endangers Jews abroad: U.S. Rabbi Yoshiyahu Pinto says letter might increae racism against Jews, who 'won't be able to live in New York or anywhere else in the world.'
Israel is on its way to becoming Jerusalem. A religious, anti-democratic demographic majority with an external nuclear threat will drive anyone who can leave out of the country. And that is in the best case, if the apocalypse does not come first.
Israel can't defeat Hezbollah - Israeli expert: Israel cannot defeat Hezbollah in a direct engagement and the Lebanese guerrilla group would inflict heavy damage on the Israeli home front if war broke out, a former Israeli national security adviser said Thursday
Manufacturing Consent For Attack On Iran : U.S. military chief: We are 'very ready' to counter Iran: During visit to Bahrain, Admiral Mike Mullen says that Iran is still trying to build a nuclear bomb.
Iran-P5+1 talks to continue in Brazil: “I hope in talks in Istanbul, then in Brazil and then Tehran we could reach a framework of cooperation… this is to everyone's benefit,” Ahmadinejad said in an interview with IRIB on Saturday.
UN: Reports of abductions in Ivory Coast grow: The United Nations said Sunday it has received hundreds of reports of people being abducted from their homes at night by armed assailants in military uniform and that there is growing evidence of "massive violations of human rights" since Ivory Coast's disputed election.
Nigeria drops charges against Cheney as Halliburton to pay fines bribe of $250 million: Nigeria's anti-corruption agency said on Friday it had dropped bribery charges against former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney and oil services company Halliburton after the company agreed to pay a fine.
US seeks legal pursuit of WikiLeaks founder: Biden: The US Justice Department is exploring a legal pursuit of Julian Assange, said Vice President Joe Biden, who described the WikiLeaks founder as a dangerous "hi-tech terrorist."
US Embassy Cables: : US tapped Delhi Police officers: According to a diplomatic cable sent from the US Embassy in New Delhi in April 2006, American embassy officials had tapped an anti-terror Special Cell official of Delhi Police to gather information regarding investigations into terrorism related cases, bypassing the official route.
US Embassy Cables: Sudanese president 'stashed $9bn in UK banks': Omar al-Bashir, the Sudanese president, has siphoned as much as $9bn out of his impoverished country, and much of it may be stashed in London banks, according to secret US diplomatic cablest
US Embassy Cables: : UN offered Robert Mugabe a lucrative retirement overseas: Source in the MDC told American officials that Zimbabwe president rejected the offer from Kofi Annan
Need a laugh? US Lectures On Hunan Rights and Censorship: US Embassy Cables: : Cuba's 'best friends forever' ignore human rights: Australia, Canada and several European countries have stopped pressuring Cuba over human rights in the hope of winning commercial favours from Havana, according to confidential US diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks.
Officials: CIA gave waterboarders $5M legal shield: When the CIA decided to waterboard suspected terror detainees in overseas prisons, the agency turned to a pair of contractors. The men designed the CIA's interrogation program and also personally took part in the waterboarding sessions.
Britain 'will act on torture intelligence': The Foreign Office said last night that it would have to accept information gained from waterboarding if it could stop an imminent terrorist attack.
US Embassy Cables detail Fidel Castro's doomed love for Obama: Dispatches chart Cuban leader's obsession with US president, from admiration to eventual sense of betrayal
Bank of America says it won't process payments intended for WikiLeaks: Speculation erupted last month that Charlotte-based Bank of America could be WikiLeaks' next target. Assange told Forbes magazine that he planned to release information on a major bank early next year
Two States Sue Bank of America Over Mortgages: The attorneys general of Arizona and Nevada on Friday filed a lawsuit against Bank of America, accusing it of engaging in “widespread fraud” by misleading customers with “false promises” about their eligibility for modifications on their home mortgages.
Payrolls Drop in 28 U.S. States, Joblessness Rises in 21 in Labor Setback: After Nevada, the jobless rate was highest in California and Michigan at 12.4 percent
Regulators close banks in Ga., Fla., Ark., Minn.: Regulators on Friday shuttered three small banks in Georgia and one each in Florida, Arkansas and Minnesota, raising to 157 the number of U.S. banks brought down this year by the struggling economy and soured loans.
Your Apps Are Watching You: A WSJ Investigation finds that iPhone and Android apps are breaching the privacy of smartphone users

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