By DAVID STOUT, New York Times
WASHINGTON, March 9 — Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told senators today that the United States would count on Iraqi security forces to quell an all-out civil war in their country, but that America's paramount goal is to prevent such a conflict in the first place.
Mr. Rumsfeld testified at a sometimes tense hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee, whose ranking Democrat, Senator Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia, questioned him closely about the administration's request for more money.
By Akron Beacon Journal
Summit County Progressive Democrats will present a summit from 1 to 5 p.m. March 26 at the Akron-Summit County Public Library, 60 S. High St.
The summit will include a presentation by John Green of the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron, plus breakout sessions on grass-roots organizing, minority outreach and issues.
A panel discussion will feature Tim Carpenter, national director of the Progressive Democrats of America; Chris Redfern, chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party, and others.
By John Nichols, The Nation
The most powerful antiwar actions of the spring are not likely to occur in Washington. National antiwar groups will mount marches, lobbying days and other traditional initiatives. But it would take a monumental push to change the thinking of Republican majorities in the House and Senate, which are not yet ready to break with the Bush Administration on Iraq issues, or to convince an overly cautious Democratic opposition to press for withdrawal. And divisions over strategy and focus will continue to make it hard for a national antiwar movement that has struggled to communicate the depth and breadth of frustration with the war to do so in the brief period before the capital city becomes fully obsessed with this fall's Congressional elections.
By Ervin Dyer, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Local anti-war activists, saying three years of war in Iraq are too many, yesterday kicked off three weeks of peace protests with a noon rally at the William S. Moorhead Federal Building, Downtown.
The protests, supported by groups such as the Thomas Merton Center, Black Voices for Peace and Code Pink, will also include a three-mile march through three neighborhoods as the United States approaches the third anniversary of the war.
By TOM ROEDER, THE GAZETTE, CO
Peace activists in Colorado Springs on Wednesday called for stiffer sentences for soldiers who abuse prisoners and said blame for abuse should be pinned on the Bush administration.
The activists who represented anti-war groups from around the state also called for an immediate withdrawal from Iraq and accused top administration officials of war crimes. The activists gathered in Colorado Springs to protest the sentence handed down in January to a Fort Carson soldier convicted of negligent homicide in the interrogation death of an Iraqi major general.
From Tomdispatch today: Michael Schwartz, "A Government with No Military and No Territory, Iraq's Sovereignty Vacuum (Part 1)" http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=66969
In one of the understatements of our moment, U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad offered the following summary of the situation in Iraq in an LA Times interview, "Right now there's a vacuum of authority, and there's a lot of distrust." He should know. He's the one in Baghdad's Green Zone scuttling between near-warring parties in the vague hope that "once a national unity government is formed, the effort to provoke a civil war will face a huge obstacle."
Zangana, a former prisoner under the Baathist regime in Iraq, speaks out against the occupation and increasing violence in Iraq. She also warns that hundreds of Iraqi academics have been assassinated since the war began.
By William E. Odom, Nieman Watchdog
Those who say Iraq is nothing like Vietnam have another guess coming, says retired Gen. William Odom. He lists striking similarities and asserts that only after it pulls out of Iraq can the U.S. hope for international support to deal with anti-Western forces.
The Vietnam War experience can't tell us anything about the war in Iraq - or so it is said. If you believe that, trying looking through this lens, and you may change your mind.
'They Tried to Attach Themselves to His Virtue; Then They Wiped Their Feet With Him.' - Mary Tillman
By Robert Scheer, Truthdig
Mary Tillman has been a model of patience and fortitude as she doggedly pursues the facts concerning her son Pat's death in Afghanistan two years ago. In that spirit, she welcomed as positive the news that the Pentagonís inspector general has asked the Army to launch an investigation into whether criminal negligence was involved in the "friendly fire" incident that resulted in the death of her football-star son who turned soldier.
By Rupert Cornwell, The Independent UK
It has taken more than three years, tens of thousands of Iraqi and American lives, and $200bn (£115bn) of treasure - all to achieve a chaos verging on open civil war. But, finally, the neo-conservatives who sold the United States on this disastrous war are starting to utter three small words. We were wrong.
The second thoughts have spread across the conservative spectrum, from William Buckley, venerable editor of The National Review to Andrew Sullivan, once editor of the New Republic, now an influential commentator and blogmeister. The patrician conservative columnist George Will was gently sceptical from the outset. He now glumly concludes that all three members of the original "axis of evil" - not only Iran and North Korea but also Iraq - "are more dangerous than when that term was coined in 2002".
By Associated Press
Seattle - Former President Jimmy Carter criticized the war in Iraq on Wednesday, urging a troop drawdown as the United States enters its fourth year of conflict in Iraq.
"It was a completely unnecessary war. It was an unjust war," said Carter, the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize winner. "It was initiated on the basis of false pretenses. All of those are true, but we can't just pre-emptively withdraw."
By TERI FIGUEROA, http://www.nctimes.com
VISTA ---- A San Diego County woman is suing her former employer, accusing her manager of firing her on the spot when she saw the woman's car had a bumper sticker advertising a progressive talk radio station.
The suit also alleges that, after seeing the sticker, the employer commented that the woman could be a member of al-Qaida.
In a civil suit filed at the county courthouse in Vista, Linda Laroca is targeting both her former manager, Beverly Fath, and the company she briefly worked for last year, Advantage Sales and Marketing, Inc.
Rally for Impeachment wrapup
By Jake Thorn, http://www.studentsforimpeachment.blogspot.com
Thursday’s Rally for Impeachment went great! We had over 200 people show up for speeches, music, and activism. We also got media coverage in the Nexus (who also printed pro-impeachment opinion articles on Thursday and Monday) and the Santa Barbara News-Press. The band was great, it didn’t rain, and we distributed a lot of information. We gathered around 80 signatures for our petition to Senator Feinstein. We also took pictures of people holding signs that said things like “Get a warrant, Mr. President. Warrantless wiretaps are illegal
WASHINGTON, DC - Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA), a senior member of the Energy and Commerce and Homeland Security Committees and Representative Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), a member of the Government Reform Committee, today introduced the "Paul Revere Freedom to Warn Act," a comprehensive bill to provide protections to government and private sector employees who are retaliated against for reporting flaws in national or homeland security, public health and safety, or waste, fraud and mismanagement of public funds. The protections offered in the legislation are modeled upon those provided by Congress in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to employees of companies who report accounting fraud.
By Niranjan Ramakrishnan, www.Countercurrents.org
Consider these news items from the past month:
Thousands of people took part in huge and emotional demonstrations in various Arab countries, and others with large Muslim populations, from Morocco to Indonesia, to protest the cartoons in a Danish paper, Jyllands-Posten, and sundry European publications.
Huge protests greeted President George W. Bush during his visit to India, People marched in New Delhi and Hyderabad, cities he visited, but also in other major cities including Madras, Calcutta, Bombay and Bangalore.
By ANDREW TAYLOR, Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) - Facing a Republican mutiny in Congress, the White House said Thursday that President Bush is open to compromise but would not retreat from a threatened veto of legislation that would block a Dubai-owned company from taking control of some U.S. port operations.
By a 62-2 margin, the GOP-dominated House Appropriations Committee voted to bar DP World, which is run by the government of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, from holding leases or contracts at U.S. ports. In the Senate, Democrats demanded a vote to stop the transaction.
By Voices for Creative Nonviolence
Washington, D.C. - March 8 - Two activists were arrested today after
disrupting the hearing of the House Appropriations Committee. The
Committee is considering approving nearly $65 billion in supplemental
spending to fund the war in Iraq. The two activists were arrested
after they read the names of Iraqi citizens and U.S. soldiers who have
died in this war. The action was part of the "Winter of Our
March 9 -12, 2006
ALLEN, BARBOUR, BROWNBACK, FRIST, HUCKABEE, McCAIN and ROMNEY in
Memphis, TN: The Southern Republican Leadership Conference will take
place at The Peabody Hotel. [www.srlc.org]
Thursday, March 9, 2006
NEW* BUSH in Washington, DC: POTUS participates in signing of H.R.
3199, USA PATRIOT and Terrorism Prevention Reauthorization Act of 2005
at 2:40 PM. [White House Press Release]
Antiwar Students Who Heckled Former President Clinton at Pace University Might Be Expelled
Two students were detained and questioned by Secret Service for almost
an hour after calling former President Clinton a war criminal during
his recent visit to speak at Pace University in New York City. In
addition, police also questioned several other antiwar students and
collected their I.D.'s. The two students who were detained are
By Scott Shane and David D. Kirkpatrick, New York Times
Washington - The plan by Senate Republicans to step up oversight of the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance program would also give legislative sanction for the first time to long-term eavesdropping on Americans without a court warrant, legal experts said on Wednesday.
Civil liberties advocates called the proposed oversight inadequate and the licensing of eavesdropping without warrants unnecessary and unwise. But the Republican senators who drafted the proposal said it represented a hard-wrung compromise with the White House, which strongly opposed any Congressional interference in the eavesdropping program.
(Xinhua) China Daily
China issued Thursday the Human Rights Record of the United States in 2005 (read full text) in response to the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2005 issued by the U.S. State Department on Wednesday.
Released by the Information Office of China's State Council, the Chinese report listed a multitude of cases to show the serious violations of human rights both in and outside the United States.
By Associated Press
BEIJING -- China on Thursday lashed out against U.S. criticism of its human rights record, saying that racial discrimination and crime were still rife in America.
The State Council, China's Cabinet, denounced the United States for what it said was rampant violence and widespread discrimination against minorities -- especially blacks -- in its annual response to the U.S. State Department's report on human rights worldwide.
WE SAY NO TO BUSH AND HIS AGENDA!
THURS., MARCH 9 4:00â?"6:30
GEORGIA CONVENTION CENTER
2000 Convention Center Concourse, Atlanta 30337
Near the airport; just off Camp Creek Parkway
TWO EASY WAYS TO GET THERE "JUST 15 MIN. FROM TOWN:
1) Carpool from the Candler Park MARTA Station
Be there and ready to go at 3:30 pm.
2) Drive directly to the Convention Center:
Take I 85 South;
By Robert Sutcliffe, Yorkshire Post, UK
A MOTHER who lost a son in the Iraq conflict is calling on Yorkshire people to join a protest in London which will demand British troops are brought home.
Pauline Hickey, whose 30-year-old son Christian was killed by a roadside bomb in October last year, is furious that the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has declined to meet families who have lost sons in Iraq since hostilities began in 2003.
By Pete Perry
Today more than a dozen peace activists lined up outside the hearing room for the House Appropriations Committee in the Rayburn Building. Four of us were with the D.C. Anti-War Network (DAWN), and we were near the front of the line, but we were soon joined by those who are fasting as part of Voices for Creative Nonviolence's Winter of Our Discontent Campaign, Code Pink and Dorothy Day Catholic Workers.
By New York Times
The wrenching debate in the 1970's over the abuse of presidential power produced two groundbreaking reforms aimed at preventing a president from using war or broader claims of national security to trample Americans' rights.
One was the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which struck the proper balance between national security and bedrock civil liberties, and the other was the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, a symbol of bipartisan leadership. They endured for a quarter of a century — until George W. Bush and Dick Cheney left FISA in tatters and the Senate Select Committee on its deathbed in just five years.
By Mike Hersh, Progressive Democrats of America,
Karen Bradley, Democracy Cell Project
March 8 2006 - Washington, DC: Five women from Iraq discussed their experiences and explained the situation in Occupied Iraq at a press conference facilitated by Code Pink and Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson. Dr Entisar Mohammad Ariabi delivered their conclusion: "The central cause of tragedy in Iraq is the occupation." Noting that the event promoted a Women's Call for Peace on International Women's Day, Dr. Ariabi described the current conditions: "Iraqi women are looking for their children under rubble, and looking for their husbands in prison. Pregnant women cannot find sufficient care. No hospital or delivery room. Ambulances are shot."