Monthly Archives: September 2008

rep dennis kucinich quote

“The $700b bailout bill is being driven by fear, not fact. This is too much money, in too short a time, going to too few people, while too many questions remain unanswered. Why aren’t we having hearings? Why aren’t we considering any other alternatives, other than giving $700b to Wall Street? Why aren’t we passing new laws to stop the speculation which triggered this? Why aren’t we putting up new regulatory structures to protect the investors? Why aren’t we directly helping homeowners with their debt burdens? Why aren’t we helping American families faced with bankruptcy? Isn’t time for fundamental change to our debt-based monetary system, so we can free ourselves from the manipulation of the Federal Reserve and the banks? Is this the US Congress or the Board of Directors of Goldman Sachs?

yet more disinfo about the damascus bomb

Syria resumes covert nuclear projects
in partnership with North Korea

DEBKAfile, Sep 28 2008

DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources report that it took Damascus a year to recover from the demolition of its plutonium project at El Kibar in northern Syria, but already the nuclear scientists and technicians who were to have been employed there have been hired for new projects. This time the installations are scattered in different parts of the country. North Korean nuclear experts are back too. Our military sources describe rising tension between Syria and Israel in the wake of the car bomb explosion Saturday Sep 27, which killed 17 people and injured 14 outside a Syrian security installation at Sidi Kadad on the highway to Damascus airport. The victims were not officially identified. Various Arab sources report that one was a Syrian brigadier who was not named. After the attack, DEBKAfile’s sources raised the possibility that it might have targeted people involved in Iranian/Syrian nuclear activity. Damascus has been wary of accusing Israel of engineering the blast, but unofficial Syrian intelligence sources have indirectly pointed the finger at Israel, claiming it was an attempt to spoil Syria’s improving relations with the West. Western intelligence sources note that Syria has been hit in the past year with attacks associated with its clandestine nuclear activities. The El Kibar reactor was knocked out on Sep 6 2007 while it was under construction. On Aug 2 2008, Gen. Muhammad Suleiman was shot dead by a sniper in Latakia. He was a key man in the Syrian nuclear program and acted as liaison officer for Damascus with Iran and North Korea. If Saturday’s blast did indeed cause the death of a high Syrian officer involved in the program, it would have been the third consecutive operation against Damascus’ revived application to clandestine nuclear projects.

i have been saying this for 2 years now

Money talks
Comment by qvh to http://www.iraq-war.ru/article/176855

When the US goes bankrupt, it will not have money to pay for Pax Americana. The nations around the globe are reassessing the relationship with America. States like South Korea are shifting their alliances so that they are not clients of a failed pauperized nation like the US. The Gulf States are also starting to see their continuing alliance with the US as an albatross. They don’t want to be dragged down with the US as its economy collapses. In fact, these states are acting far too late. They should have dissociated from the US a long time ago as it was evident as long as a decade ago that the US’s economic situation was not a viable one. Malaysia was one of the nations that recognized that an early break with the US was beneficial. Under Mahathir, they made their move just before the Asian financial crisis of the 90s started to break out. As a result, the Malaysians were insulated from the worst part of it although they did not entirely escape the suffering.

Nevertheless, it’s better to act now then never and these states are now making the effort to break away and establish new relationships with up and coming superpowers. They see the future in places like Russia, China and India. Unfortunately, so do the Zionists. For the last couple of decades, the Zionists have been laying the groundwork in Russia and the former SU nations for their relocation from the US to Russia. Little is the world aware of it, but the catchcry in Zionist circles has been “Divorce America, marry Russia.” This is what all this nonsense promoted recently in the media about the rediscovery of Khazaria, the ancient homeland of the Jews, is about. It is about facilitating the move of the American Jews from America to Russia, via Israel. Israeli Jews can travel very easily from Israel to Russia. Visa restrictions have been lifted and travel is virtually visa-free. So the Jews are shifting from the rotting carcass of America to newly prosperous Russia.

another delightful smidgeon of disinfo

An officer believed to be linked to the 2005 assassination of then Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri was the target of Syria’s blast on Saturday, an Italian report said Tuesday. Syrian opposition sources told the Italian news agency Adnkronos International that last Saturday’s explosion in Damascus targeted the deputy director of the Palestinian Branch of Syrian Intelligence, officer Abdul Karim Abbas. The sources said that the Independent International Investigation Committee charged with investigating the assassination of Hariri, had previously heard testimony from Abbas. […] – DPA

intellectual bankruptcy of usa illustrated

– from CBS News

A month ago, Sally and Chuck Heath’s third child, Sarah Palin, was thrust into the national spotlight when John McCain picked her to be his running mate. In an exclusive interview at their home in Wasilla, Alaska, the Heaths told Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith their daughter is, indeed, ready to occupy the Oval Office at a moment’s notice. When asked by Smith about rumblings that Palin isn’t ready to be vice president and a heartbeat away from the presidency, Chuck replied,

She’s ready to do anything she wants to be. And she perseveres, she works so hard, she learns so fast. Yeah, she — I — I don’t worry about that at all. That’s what I’ll tell ’em. Yeah. … You want some honesty, yeah — yeah, not a typical politician, get her. Yeah. Yeah.

Sally added,

She’s got that ability to relate to people. She’s diplomatic. She can get her point across.

As for assertions from Republicans that Palin’s being treated unfairly by the media, Chuck said,

That’s what I feel. Someone said, ‘Well they have to get to know Sarah Palin,’ but Sarah Palin — there’s a good side of Sarah Palin. They’re digging and digging for the bad side, and there is no real bad side. They’re fabricating a lot of things that I don’t want to go into.

What’s it like, now that Palin has become a household name? Sally observed,

I hope the world gets to know the real person, because she is a remarkable girl.

In her acceptance speech at the GOP convention in St. Paul, Palin paid tribute to Chuck and Sally, saying,

My mom and dad both worked at the elementary school in our small town. And among the many things I owe them is a simple lesson that I’ve learned: that this is America, and every woman can walk through every door of opportunity. And my parents are here tonight…

Chuck admitted to Smith that,

We were very nervous, ’cause there was a lot riding on that speech. And as we sat in the audience — I said something, and I usually don’t get nervous before she talks. And Sally says, ‘Remember, she has never let us down yet.’

Chuck recalled that, of their four kids, Sarah was the one who always had a mind of her own.

I could bend my other kids and have them do things, and, if she knew she was right, I had a hard time convincing her there was another way of doing it. But she was usually always right, and could justify what — what — she wanted to do, you know. Very strong willed and very hard-working.

Palin won the title of Miss Wasilla in 1984, and Chuck says,

She won a few dollars for that. I wasn’t really into the pageant thing, but she convinced me it was worth a little money, and it was.

What part of her personality, or her upbringing, is going to serve her best in all of this? Replied Chuck,

Hard-working, perseverance, honesty. Yeah, honesty. She won’t fabricate things or exaggerate things. She’ll tell it the way it is.

more from the jesus morons

Mayor ‘just curious’ if Obama is antichrist
Stuart Watson, Charlotte Observer, Sep 28 2008

FORT MILL, S.C. — Fort Mill Mayor Danny Funderburk says he was “just curious” when he forwarded a chain e-mail suggesting Democratic Presidential Candidate Barack Obama is the biblical antichrist. “I was just curious if there was any validity to it,” Funderburk said in a telephone interview. “I was trying to get documentation if there was any scripture to back it up.” Funderburk apparently sent the e-mail from his business account at Gastonia Sheet Metal where he works as a business agent. The e-mail, which has circulated in the last six months since Obama secured the Democratic nomination, claims the biblical book of Revelation says the antichrist will be in his 40s and of Muslim ancestry. There is no such scripture. And Obama is not a Muslim. But that hasn’t stopped the e-mail. The urban legend Web site Snopes.com first exploded the myth in March. Funderburk forwarded the e-mail this month. When asked if he believed Obama was the antichrist, Funderburk replied, “I’ve got absolutely no way of knowing that.” Funderburk said it “probably does give that impression” that he believed the e-mail was true “but that was not my intent.” The mayor said it was a mistake not to include a subject line when he forwarded the chain e-mail. “I am curious about current events and their connection to the Bible,” he said.

Errant e-mail costs GOP chief post
Jenny Lee-Adrian, Poughkeepsie Journal, Sep 29 2008

Dutchess County Republican Committee Chairwoman Corinne Weber has resigned over a chain e-mail she forwarded to party members, some of whom were offended by its content. Weber forwarded an e-mail to more than two dozen Republicans on Friday night that makes a veiled reference to Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and suggests he is the Antichrist. The note, a bit of Internet flotsam that has floated around for months, inaccurately summarizes passages from the Book of Revelation. In fact, it refers to Chapter 13 of the Book of Revelations (sic). The e-mail contends the “anti-Christ” will be a man in his 40s who is of Muslim descent and has a massive Christ-like appeal, but will destroy everything when he is in power. The e-mail asks the reader, “Do we recognize this description?” It also asks readers to post the message as many times “as you can,” including to media outlets. “I refuse to take a chance on this unknown candidate who came out of nowhere,” the e-mail said.

Though the version forwarded by Weber did not mention Obama by name, earlier incarnations do. Obama is Christian. The Book of Revelation was written before the prophet Muhammad founded the Islamic religion. Weber deferred comment Monday to Vice Chairman Michael McCormack. McCormack said he received a letter of resignation from Weber and he read it aloud at the Dutchess County GOP summit on Saturday. “Her resignation is based on Corinne’s feeling that she is doing what is right for the Republican Party in Dutchess County,” McCormack said. “The contents of the forwarded e-mail did not reflect the sentiment of the Dutchess County Republican Committee or Corinne Weber.” The entire committee rejects the content in the e-mail, McCormack said. Weber will submit her resignation to the Executive Committee tonight. McCormack will become interim committee chairman.

Former City of Poughkeepsie Councilman Erik Haight, a member of the city’s GOP committee, said he heard McCormack read Weber’s letter on Saturday. “It said that she had inadvertently sent out an offensive e-mail,” Haight said. Weber also e-mailed a message to members of the county committee that read, “I inadvertently forwarded an e-mail last evening that I hadn’t read and that contained content that I disagree with and find offensive.” Some found the forwarded e-mail to be very offensive. County Clerk Brad Kendall said, “It was inappropriate. It didn’t reflect the views of the Republican Party I know.” He said he responded to Weber and felt she should resign. State Sen. Steve Saland, R-Poughkeepsie, said, “My reaction was I found it grossly inappropriate. I thought it had no place in politics or any other community. I immediately asked that the chair resign.” Assemblyman Marc Molinaro, R-Tivoli, also had the same reaction. He said he called Weber and asked for her resignation. “I will say the content of that e-mail does not reflect my beliefs or the beliefs of the party,” Molinaro said.

famous last words

AP – European Union trade commissioner Peter Mandelson defended the global capital markets structure, warning that drastic change might hurt prosperity. Mandelson said,

The capital market system, fundamentally, is not flawed. We are not looking for some alternative, and I hope that people in the emerging markets, in China for example, are not looking for an alternative to properly functioning capital markets.

a little deliberate gaffe

Germany recalls Iran ambassador for questioning

BERLIN, Sept 28 (Reuters) – Germany’s foreign minister has recalled its ambassador to Iran after a German diplomat attended a military parade in Tehran, a ministry spokeswoman said on Sunday. “I can confirm that the ambassador has been called back to Berlin for consultations,” the spokeswoman said. Weekly magazine Der Spiegel reported that Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier was “very annoyed” that Germany’s defence attaché in Tehran attended the parade despite the advice of the European Union ambassador to stay away. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gave a speech at the parade at which weapons were on display as well as a banner reading “Israel should be erased from the world”, Spiegel said. Steinmeier ordered the German ambassador, Herbert Honsowitz, to return to Berlin on Monday to clarify whether he had given the attaché any clear instructions with regard to attending the parade, the magazine said.

bin laden and me, by eric margolis

Tall and thin, there stood the Saudi mujahid in the same room
Eric Margolis, Toronto Sun, 28 Sep 2008

The headquarters and international nerve centre of what was to become the world’s most dangerous terrorist organization was a tiny storefront in a dilapidated, two-storey building in the teeming bazaar of Peshawar, Pakistan. Known as the Mujahedin Service Bureau, I was told by my Pakistani hosts, with more than a touch of sarcasm, it was the official voice of the Afghan resistance, or mujahedin, charged with telling the outside world of the then little-known struggle being waged against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. The year was 1986. At one end of the crowded room was a flimsy desk, behind which sat a small, scholarly-looking middle-aged man in a tattered sweater. He rose as I came in, introduced himself as Abdullah Azzam — one of the leading advocates of unrelenting jihad to liberate the Muslim world. Azzam had assigned himself two daunting missions: To tell an uncaring, heedless world the story of the bloody struggle to liberate Afghanistan, and to keep track of the growing numbers of men coming to Peshawar from the four corners of the Muslim world who were seeking to go north and fight the Soviets in the Great Jihad. Azzam also ran a dingy little rooming house next to his office for Muslim mujahedin headed for Afghanistan that came to be known as “the base” or “the centre,” and in Arabic, “al-Qaida.” Rarely in history has an international revolutionary movement sprung from such modest origins.

I vividly recall the moment when Azzam stood, paused, took a deep breath, pointed at a large school map on the office wall, and then said slowly, and with the deepest certitude, “We the mujahedin are going to defeat the godless Soviet Communists and their Afghan Communist dogs.” His next statement stunned me. “When we have finished driving the Soviet imperialists from Afghanistan, we mujahedin will then go and drive the American imperialists from Arabia, and then liberate Palestine.” Such epic ambitions from a little man armed only with some ballpoint pens and mimeographed pamphlets seemed preposterous. At the end of the Afghan war, Abdullah Azzam was killed near Peshawar by a car bomb. Azzam’s quixotic cause appeared to have been buried with him. But no. Among the tens of thousands of young men of the Muslim International Brigades who came to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan — the Communists branded them Islamic terrorists — was a young engineer from one of Saudi Arabia’s wealthiest families, the bin Ladens. Unlike his youthful contemporaries who went off to Europe to drink, whore, and squander their princely allowances, Osama bin Laden, who had always been a serious, intense young man, went to wage the Great Jihad in Afghanistan.

Bin Laden joined the mujahedin in their fight against the Soviets and puppet Afghan Communist army. Bin Laden was wounded six times in combat, earning wide renown and deep admiration in Afghanistan and Pakistan for his courage, tenacity, and Islamic modesty. It was during this period of combat that bin Laden developed what was to become one of his hallmarks, emulation of the ansar. The tall, thin Saudi multimillionaire earned respect for his virtuous, ascetic lifestyle that included subsisting on beans and bread, sleeping on the ground or in insect-infested caves, and deporting himself with genuine modesty, self-restraint, and respect for his companions. Bin Laden spent much of his personal fortune importing bulldozers and Arab engineers into Afghanistan. His men and machines dug deep caves for the mujahedin and their supplies that sheltered them from incessant Soviet air strikes. Bin Laden’s “cave war” played an important role in the final Islamic victory. The young Saudi’s renown soared as a sort of new Arab, the antithesis of the image of the timid, debauched, lazy Saudis whom Bin Laden and his men sneeringly dismissed as “fat women.” In the late 1980s, bin Laden fell under Abdullah Azzam’s spell, and became one of his most ardent disciples. It was from Sheik Abdullah that Osama bin Laden adopted his strategy and world view of a trans-national jihad to drive American and British influence from the Muslim world. The dreamer and the engineer joined forces, turning a rundown guesthouse into an organization that would come to profoundly challenge the might of the United States and its allies.

I crossed paths once with bin Laden. It was during fighting outside Jalalabad, the Afghan city that commands the route from Peshawar to Kabul. I had been in battle with mujahedin against Afghan Communist troops, backed by armour and artillery. As is the Afghan custom, the battle ended before dusk and all sides repaired to their homes or camps. I was taken to the sprawling, mud-walled compound of my host, local warlord Hadji Abdul Qadeer, who later became vice-president of US-occupied Afghanistan and was assassinated in Kabul in 2002. We were about 20 men in a long, rectangular room covered in colourful Persian and Afghan carpets, reclining on round bolsters set against the wall. After about 30 minutes of smoking, drinking tea, and chatting, we all rose and prepared to go our various ways. I later recalled one man from the group because he was much taller than the others, remarkably thin, even gaunt, and did not look Afghan. He exuded an aura of profound calm and dignity, as well as an almost religious solemnity. The warrior smiled at me gently. He offered me traditional greetings in Arabic and I replied in the same tongue. I asked one of my companions who he was. “Ah, Mr. Eric, he is a Saudi mujahid who has come from far away to perform his jihad with us, Allah be praised.” At the time, I took no further notice of him and soon left the group. Why should I have? He was then only one of tens of thousands of foreign mujahedin who had come to fight the Communists. At that time, these Islamic militants were hailed by the Reagan administration and the western media as freedom fighters. It was only when Osama bin Laden and other veteran mujahedin freedom fighters undertook Sheik Abdullah Azzam’s goal of liberating Arabia, Palestine, and North Africa from western domination that they came to be reviled by the West as terrorists.

ap succumbs to the disinfo tendency

Syria could be paying a price for moderating
Syria bomb may be sign it is paying a price
for moderating as it tries to end isolation

BASSEM MROUE, AP News, Sep 28, 2008 16:50 EST

A rare bombing in Damascus over the weekend could be sign that Syria is paying a price for moderating its hard-line policies as it tries to boost its international standing. No one has claimed responsibility for Saturday’s car bombing outside a state security complex which killed 17 people and wounded 14. The Syrians have not directly accused anyone but state-run newspapers suggested foreign involvement — a veiled reference to northern Lebanon which has become a hotbed for extremist Sunni Muslims. The Sunni militants, sometimes called Salafists, have been blamed for a string of smaller bombings and attacks against the Syrian government and diplomatic missions in recent years. The main group accused is an offshoot of al-Qaida. The Sunni extremists are angry over the tightening of security along Syria’s border with Iraq, which cuts off their routes to the fight against US forces in Iraq. They also oppose the government’s alliance with Shiite Iran and the strict secular nature of the state. “Once you have Salafists and Jihadis in your country and when you stop their flow to Iraq and their transit in and out from Lebanon, it is not surprising that such bombings” occur, said Andrew Tabler, a Syria analyst and consulting editor at the English-language Syria Today magazine.

Syria has long been viewed by the US as a destabilizing force in the Mideast. An ally of Iran and Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon, it has also provided a home for some radical Palestinian groups. But the country is now trying to emerge from years of international isolation, opening up to Europe and engaging in indirect negotiations with archenemy Israel, even while still professing steadfast support for Lebanese and Palestinian militants. In recent months, Syria has agreed to establish diplomatic ties with Lebanon for the first time since both countries became independent and has tightened its border with Iraq to control the movement of people and goods. A goal of European rapprochement is to drive Damascus away from its regional ally Iran. The weekend car bombing could also be a sign of the weakening grip President Bashar Assad’s regime on security and of an emerging power struggle between the regime’s security agencies, analysts said. Writing Sunday in the independent conservative Beirut daily al-Anwar, Editor-in-Chief Rafik Khoury linked the bombing to “the dangerous scenarios pertaining to the ‘crossroads’ of changes in the region.” An Israeli Cabinet minister said the bombing may be linked to Syria’s indirect negotiations with Israel. “There are elements who want to derail this process, mostly Tehran which feels that Syria might be moving toward a peace coalition in the region,” said Isaac Herzog.

Assad’s secular regime has been battling Sunni Muslim extremists for years. In September 2006, Islamic militants tried to storm the US Embassy in Damascus and three months earlier, a battle near the Defense Ministry left four militants and a police officer dead. Officials blamed these attacks on Jund al-Sham, which means Soldiers of Syria, an al-Qaida offshoot that was established in Afghanistan. Militants often denounce Assad’s regime and have at times called for its overthrow, especially since Syria began cracking down on those crossing the border to reach Iraq. Despite hosting radical anti-Israeli Palestinian groups, Syria insists it has an interest in fighting Islamic extremist groups such as al-Qaida and in the 1980s, it cracked down heavily on the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood. Syria is also on poor terms with regional heavyweight Saudi Arabia, which in the past has supported conservative Sunni groups in the region and takes a dim view of Syria’s alliance with Iran. Another motive for the bombing could be the rising Sunni-Shiite tensions in the region. The bomb was placed at a highway intersection a few miles from a Shiite shrine frequented by pilgrims from Lebanon, Iraq and Iran. The bombing, last month’s assassination of a top intelligence general in mysterious circumstances and the February bombing in Damascus that killed Imad Mughniyeh, a top Hezbollah commander and one of America’s most wanted terrorists, feeds suspicions carried by opposition media that it could all be part of an internal power struggle between the regime’s security agencies.