Published on Thursday, April 27, 2006 by the Los Angeles Times
Some leaders worry that the Americans' surprise trip could hurt talks on forming a government. Analysts see an effort to shore up U.S. opinion.
by Louise Roug and Paul Richter
BAGHDAD — Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld paid a surprise visit to Baghdad on Wednesday to express support for Iraq's new leaders, but drew criticism from Iraqi politicians who said they feared the unannounced visit might do more harm than good.
Published on Thursday, April 27, 2006 by Knight Ridder
By Drew Brown
WASHINGTON - Three human rights groups said Wednesday that they had found credible evidence that U.S. troops and government civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, had abused, tortured or killed at least 460 detainees.
The researchers said they had found 330 cases of abuse and that only about half of them had been fully investigated, and one-third never were investigated or remained unresolved. The findings are in a report by New York University's Center for Human Rights and Global Justice, Human Rights First and Human Rights Watch.
By Alan Lopez, CONTRA COSTA TIMES
With little fanfare, the Berkeley City Council at its Tuesday meeting joined three other California cities in calling for the impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.
In a resolution that will be sent to U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., the Berkeley council accused the president and vice president of, among other things: defrauding the country and Congress regarding the Iraq war; authorizing torture in violation of the Geneva Conventions; ordering secret surveillance of U.S. citizens; and failing to quickly respond to the Gulf Coast hurricane.
By VOA News
Italy's center-left leader Romano Prodi faced calls from some of his allies to speed up a withdrawal of Italian troops from Iraq. The calls followed a bomb blast on an Italian convoy in southern Iraq, which killed 3 Italian soldiers.
Italian Margherita (Daisy) party's Arturo Parisi, right, with center-left coalition leader Romano Prodi at a meeting in Rome
Italy's prime minister in waiting Romano Prodi insisted that the bombing in Iraq, which killed three Italian soldiers would not make him speed up plans to withdraw Italian troops.
Schroeder said he feels the lives lost in Iraq, including his son's, have been wasted. But as to whether his son and the others have died in vain, he said, ``they did not die in vain if Americans remain strong enough to tell our leaders don't ever do this again.''
Loss, urgency surround war in Iraq
By Jim Carney, Akron Beacon Journal staff writer
CLEVELAND - Rosemary Palmer and Paul Schroeder watch the last video their son sent home from Iraq before he was killed.
By Judy Fahys, The Salt Lake Tribune
Add Gov. Jon M. Huntsman to the list of Utahns with suspicions about a huge upcoming explosion at the Nevada Test Site.
Speaking Thursday at his monthly news conference, the Republican governor shared a demand voiced this week by Utah members of Congress: that the Pentagon and the Energy Department must do more to prove the June 2 "Divine Strake" won't harm Utahns.
Pentagon apparently looks for an optimal size of a 'bunker buster'
by Robert Gehrke, Salt Lake Tribune
Washington - A powerful blast scheduled at the Nevada Test Site in June is designed to help war planners figure out the smallest nuclear weapon able to destroy underground targets. And it has caused a concern that it signals a renewed push toward tactical nuclear weapons.
The detonation, called Divine Strake, is intended to "develop a planning tool to improve the warfighter's confidence in selecting the smallest proper nuclear yield necessary to destroy underground facilities while minimizing collateral damage," according to Defense Department budget documents.
By Greg Palast
For the past two years, I've nearly disappeared from BBC Television screens and from newspapers so my team could focus on our most important investigation yet. I've put it in a book: Armed Madhouse. The book travels from Beijing to New Orleans to Caracas to Baghdad to New Mexico ... a five-part investigation of global economic piggery so deep, dark and devious you just have to scream or cry -- or laugh.
Rep. Maxine Waters
Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-35), the Chair and Founder of the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus, issued the following statement on the announcement that the House of Representatives will hold a debate on the Iraq war:
"I was pleased to see the article in The Hill announcing that Majority Leader Boehner will finally permit the House of Representatives to debate the war in Iraq. This debate is long overdue.
By Ellen Barfield
I was greatly honored to be able to represent Veterans
for Peace at the first public event of the new peace
organization Combatants for Peace, Palestinian and
Israeli former fighters who have renounced violence and
now work together for peace and justice. They have met in
secret for a year, their membership growing to 120 brave
enough to meet former enemies and describe their previous
Breaking the Last Taboo: The United States of Israel?
By ROBERT FISK, http://counterpunch.org/fisk04272006.html
Stephen Walt towers over me as we walk in the Harvard sunshine past Eliot Street, a big man who needs to be big right now (he's one of two authors of an academic paper on the influence of America's Jewish lobby) but whose fame, or notoriety, depending on your point of view, is of no interest to him. "John and I have deliberately avoided the television shows because we don't think we can discuss these important issues in 10 minutes. It would become 'J' and 'S', the personalities who wrote about the lobby - and we want to open the way to serious discussion about this, to encourage a broader discussion of the forces shaping US foreign policy in the Middle East."
Can anyone be surprised any longer when FEMA reneges on its promise of a year's free housing to Hurricane Katrina evacuees? Or that, in once can-do America, the devastated southeastern coast from which those residents fled in such confusion remains almost singularly unreconstructed as the next hurricane season approaches? Or that the only ones likely to receive relief at the gas pump this summer are the oil companies? Or that the Bush administration is incapable of running a new Medicare drug program as anything other than an experience in chaos? Or that so many functions that once made civil government seem in any way civil are simply disappearing and others are being rebuilt on a military model? Typically, a Senate report on dismantling FEMA suggests replacing it with
Nixon White House Counsel John Dean and Pentagon Papers Leaker Daniel Ellsberg on Watergate and the Abuse of Presidential Power from Nixon to Bush
In a Democracy Now! broadcast exclusive we are joined by two figures who
played central roles in the fall of President Richard Nixon and the
Watergate scandal of a generation ago, John Dean and Daniel Ellsberg. Dean
served as President Nixon's chief counsel. He exposed the
Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Joe Biden (D-DE), senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, introduced an amendment to the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations bill that would put the Senate on record as opposing permanent military bases in Iraq and U.S. control of the country’s natural resources.
According to Biden, although American military and political leadership in Baghdad have said that the United States does not have plans for permanent bases, “the Iraqi people remain suspicious of our intentions and are growing increasingly impatient.”
The President and Congress run up a debt of $8,365,893,627,847.88 as of 03:23:02 PM GMT, 28 April 2006 (Debt Clock at www.brillig.com/debt_clock) and they send collection agencies after the wounded and the dead of this appalling war. Congress voted for it. Bush started it. And now, they are both enabling it. So, just who does support the troops really? 03:23:02 PM GMT, 28 April 2006 is about
Video to be posted soon.
At 9:00 a.m. ET this morning Ellen Tenney of Rockingham, Vermont, and Julia DeWalt of Newfane, Vt., presented to the staff of Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert petitions from three towns in Vermont (their own two towns plus Marlboro) calling for the impeachment of President Bush. The towns had each passed resolutions to send the petitions.
By Hany Khalil, www.CommonDreams.org
Three years into the Iraq war, the U.S. peace movement faces new opportunities to grow and wield influence. Retired generals contend that the United States cannot win in Iraq. George Bush's approval rating has plummeted to 32 percent, a new low. According to a Zogby poll, a majority of active-duty soldiers in Iraq thinks that the United States should withdraw its forces by the end of 2006, and a Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times study found that 58 percent of Americans believe the war was not worth fighting.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman rebuffs attempts to interview Administration officials in pre-war Iraq probe
By John Byrne, www.rawstory.com
Powell's former chief of staff says he'll 'wait and see'
WASHINGTON – The Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has denied Democratic attempts to interview Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former CIA Director George Tenet and two former senior aides to erstwhile Secretary of State Colin Powell, RAW STORY has learned.
Intelligence Vice Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) sought to interview Rice, Tenet and Powell's aides as part of a Senate inquiry into whether public statements by Administration officials about Iraq were corroborated by intelligence information. Recent reports – including one last Sunday from a former CIA chief in Europe – suggest that the Bush Administration was warned that Iraq did not have substantive weapons of mass destruction.
The president doesn't care that he is reviled. He is a martyr, and someday all will see his glory. Meanwhile, he's got Karl doing his dirty work.
By Sidney Blumenthal, http://www.salon.com
Apr. 27, 2006 | The urgent dispatch of Karl Rove to the business of maintaining one-party rule in the midterm elections is the Bush White House's belated startle reflex to its endangerment. Besieged by crises of his own making, plummeting to ever lower depths in the polls week after week, Bush has assigned his political general to muster dwindling forces for a heroic offensive to break out of the closing ring. If the Democrats gain control of the House or Senate they will launch a thousand subpoenas to establish the oversight that has been abdicated by the Republican Congress.
By Robert Scheer
Robert Scheer is a contributing editor to The Nation, and editor of Truthdig.com.
Confession time: In fall 2004, during a crucial presidential election campaign, I made the mistake of playing by corporate media rules that amount to self-censorship.
Specifically, I joined other journalists in denying the public the right to learn of a definitive investigative report by CBS' 60 Minutes on President George W. Bush's disregard for the truth concerning the weapons of mass destruction threat allegedly posed to the United States by Iraq. Having received an advance copy of the devastating segment, I honored CBS' proprietary request not to write about the news it carried until after it aired.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
BUSH in Gulf Coast, LA & MS: President Bush participates in a National
Volunteer Week Service Project at 12:50 PM and 3:15 PM. [White House
NEW* BERNANKE in Washington DC: Federal Reserve Chair, Ben Bernanke
will testify about the US economic outlook before Congress' Joint
Economic Committee at 10 AM. [MSNBC.com, 4/27/06]
NEW* CHERTOFF in Fairfax, VA: George Mason University holds a 1:30 pm
By Council for a Livable World
Majority Leader Frist (R-TN) may offer a cloture motion this week to choke off some of the many amendments that are expected to be offered. Even so, consideration of the bill is likely to extend into next week. Much of the time is being spent on amendments dealing with the high price of gasoline.
In the meantime, President Bush has threatened to veto the bill unless the price tag, now about $106 billion in the Senate, is brought closer to the original $92 billion request (although he requested an additional $2.2 billion to rebuild the hurricane protection system in New Orleans). Thirty five Republican Senators signed a letter pledging to uphold the veto.
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Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Russ Feingold is introducing an amendment to the emergency supplemental appropriations bill that requires the redeployment of U.S. forces from Iraq by December 31st, 2006. Last August, Feingold was the first Senator to announce a target date for withdrawal when he suggested U.S. troops leave Iraq by the end of 2006. The emergency supplemental, which is currently being considered in the Senate, includes funding for ongoing military operations in Iraq.
“How can we have a nuclear program when we actively discourage (other countries’) nuclear programs?”
By RYANN RASMUSSEN,
Southern Utah University Journal
The U.S. Department of Energy will detonate a 700-ton non-nuclear bomb on June 2 at the Nevada Test Site, but some Iron County residents and officials are concerned.
They are afraid the expected 10,000-foot debris cloud will have a negative effect on public health.
By Joe Piasecki, Pasadena Weekly
Illinois to compel Congress to consider impeachment proceedings against President Bush are coinciding with recent calls by Neil Young and David Crosby for the same thing.
“Yes, I want to impeach the sonofabitch,” Crosby, perhaps one of the most visible and vocal artists against the war in Vietnam, wrote in an email to the Weekly. “Do you know about Neil’s new record yet?”
Rome - A bomb attack on a foreign troop convoy in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah killed three Italian and one Romanian soldier Thursday, Italian military officials said.
A fourth Italian soldier was also seriously wounded and was being treated in a nearby Italian military hospital.
Military sources said the attack took place around 8.50 a.m. near the Italian headquarters in Nasiriyah, where Italy has more than 2,000 troops stationed.
By Terry Friel
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Gunmen killed a sister of one of Iraq's vice presidents on Thursday, the latest high level assassination, as Washington's top diplomatic and defense officials visited to underscore support for a new government.
Meysoun al-Hashemi, sister of Sunni Arab Vice-President Tareq al-Hashemi, was gunned down in her car. Hashemi's brother was killed on April 13 and the brother of another leading Sunni politician was also kidnapped and killed this month.