There can be no doubt that today we are in a constitutional crisis that threatens the system of checks and balances that has preserved our fundamental freedoms for more than 200 years. There is no better illustration of that crisis than the fact that the president is openly violating our nation's laws by authorizing the NSA to engage in warrantless surveillance of U.S. citizens.
Democrats Abroad France initiates a call for impeachment proceedings, a first-time action taken by any grassroots group of Americans:
The Executive Committee of Democrats Abroad France, in a special meeting on January 15, unanimously passed a resolution calling upon Congress to determine whether impeachable offenses have been committed by the Bush/Cheney Administration and if necessary to immediately begin impeachment proceedings against President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard Cheney.
January 19 – 21, 2006
REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE in Washington, DC: The RNC will hold its annual winter meeting. This year’s theme is “You Make the Difference: A Roadmap to Making History.
By Nicholas Riccardi, Los Angeles Times
Ft. Carson, Colo. - It was dubbed the "sleeping bag technique."
Interrogators at a makeshift prison in western Iraq, desperate to break suspected insurgents, would stuff them face-first into a sleeping bag with a small hole cut in the bottom for air.
ANTIWAR ACTIVISTS ARRESTED AT WHITE HOUSE AWAIT THEIR FATE AS FEDERAL COURT JUDGE IN D.C. NEEDS TIME TO STUDY THE LAW
By Max Obuszewski
“…we must see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men [and women] rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood [and sisterhood]
1) IS IRAN NEXT?
2) PEACE CONFERENCE DVD
3) TONY BENN OPEN LETTER:
HAVE YOU SIGNED?
4) GUANTANAMO BAY DEMONSTRATION
5) REMEMBERING JEAN CHARLES
6) SCHOOL STUDENTS AGAINST WAR:
NATIONAL CONFERENCE 28 JANUARY
By British Army Brigadier Nigel Aylwin-Foster. Published in the U.S. Army journal, Military Review. Here are some excerpts:
Few could fail to be impressed by the speed and style of the U.S.-dominated coalition victory over Saddam's forces in spring 2003. At the time, it appeared, to skeptics and supporters alike, that the most ambitious military action in the post-Cold War era had paid off, and there was an air of heady expectation of things to come.
In contrast, two years later, notwithstanding ostensible campaign successes such as the elections of January 2005, Iraq is in the grip of a vicious and tenacious insurgency. Few would suggest Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) has followed the path intended by President Bush when he committed U.S. forces.
Vancouver , B.C., Canada – The Canadian-based legal group Lawyers Against the War--LAW filed appeal papers this week challenging the dismissal of torture charges against American President George W. Bush. The case will be heard in the British Columbia Court of Appeal later this year.
By John Byrne, www.rawstory.com
In a detailed 42-page legal memorandum set for release this evening the Bush Justice Department will defend the President's warrantless wiretap program as legal. A copy of the document was leaked to RAW STORY.
UPCOMING EVENTS TO END THE WAR AND HOLD WARMAKERS ACCOUNTABLE
Put these in your calendar!
By MARIE COCCO
CLINTON DID IT. That is the first refuge of the right. The most rabid of Bill Clinton's detractors never recovered from the two elections that brought him to the White House. They still mine what they believe to be a trove of irresponsibility unparalleled in presidential history.
Iraq's Oil and Port Workers and their Unions
Photographs by David Bacon
Following the fall of Saddam Hussein, oil workers in Basra reorganized one of Iraq's oldest unions, and faced the occupation's prohibition on collective bargaining in the public sector. Oil workers forced US contractor KBR to leave the oil districts, and defended Iraq's oil against the threat of privatization. They helped dockers organize in the ports, and together forced Stevedoring Services of America and the Maersk Corporation to give up their privatized concessions. Workers in power generation and other industries have organized as well. This photodocumentary project shows people at work on the rigs in the refineries and the ports, their unions and leaders, and their life at home with their families.
Progressive Democrats of America, AfterDowningStreet & Clothing of the American Mind present an ‘Out of Iraq’ Forum...
David Swanson – Founder, AfterDowningStreet.org / Board Member, Progressive Democrats of America
Ann Wright – US Diplomat; Resigned in March 2003 in opposition to the war in Iraq / US Army Reserves Colonel, Retired
FORMER ABU GHRAIB COMMANDER JANIS KARPINSKI, EX-UK AMBASSADOR CRAIG MURRAY, TOP EXPERTS, AND FORMER OFFICIALS TO TESTIFY AT COMMISSION OF INQUIRY ON BUSH WAR CRIMES
Harry Belafonte to Will Also Speak at Bush Crimes Commission
Friday, January 20, 5-9pm, Riverside Church, 490 Riverside Drive
Saturday, January 21, 10am-6pm, Riverside Church, 490 Riverside Drive
Sunday, January 22, 1-5pm, Columbia University Law School, 116th & Amsterdam Avenue
By Agence France-Presse
The British government appeared to be uncertain about the number of US "rendition" flights through British airspace, according to a leaked document.
A Foreign Office memo to Downing Street - obtained by the New Statesman magazine - suggests the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) may have operated more flights than the two already confirmed by London.
Italy will withdraw 1,000 of its 2,600 troops in Iraq by June and aims to finish its mission there by the end of this year.
Defense Minister Antonio Martino has told a parliamentary committee Italy will "gradually end" its military presence and phase into a new type of presence he said would be "substantially civilian in nature".
By Lisa Sorg, San Antonio Current
See, it’s not so hard to say
While we’re observing milestones — this year marks the Current’s 20th anniversary — let’s remember this week in 1998 when the Express-News called for President Bill Clinton’s resignation over the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal. It seems quaint, the country getting all lathered up over fibbing about fellatio, in light of President Bush’s extensive rap sheet, which includes expanding his presidential powers to near fascist proportions.
By Eric Alterman, Huffington Post
I’m getting more than a little tired of writing this, as I’m sure you are of reading it. But I persist, boring even myself, because I feel strongly that deliberately misleading a democratic nation into war is not just wrong, but a crime—an act of evil that taints everyone whom it touches.
If the Democrats Really Want to Stop Bush, They Need New Leadership
By SAM HUSSEINI, www.counterpunch.org
On Monday Al Gore gave a speech on the NSA spying and other issues filled with accurate accusations about the Bush administration. On Tuesday, this was defused by the White House pointing to the "hypocrisy" of someone from the Clinton-Gore administration, which had a very poor record on civil liberties, being a spokesperson on the issue. There was actually some substance to the charge, though the Bush administration hardly has standing on the issue.
WHAT? The Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party and US Tour of Duty will present a panel of distinguished speakers from the fields of politics, foreign policy, journalism, and defense, as well as citizen activists, to discuss the immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. The Progressive Caucus hopes to fuel a dialogue within the Democratic Party regarding an immediate end to the occupation of Iraq. The audience participation format of the event is designed to equip attendees with information and action plans that will allow average citizens to facilitate an immediate end to the Iraq conflict.
In front of the Supreme Court
East of the Capitol on 1st St. NE, Washington DC
Friday, January 20th, 10 A.M.
You don’t have to be resigned to what seems like Alito’s inevitable confirmation. Whether you have lobbied your hearts out, written anguished letters, or silently fumed at the newspapers and television reports, now is the time to take to the streets. We have all had enough of watching as the confirmation of Samuel Alito go unchallenged in the Senate. Samuel Alito is a man who never met a wire tap he didn’t love. This is a man who has been working to get rid of a woman’s reproductive choice for twenty years. This is a man who believes the president’s word is law which includes torture, endless war, and spying on innocent people. A confirmation like this is not an isolated incident. Many are waiting for the pendulum to swing back to the left. However, think about what it means when high ranking Democrat, Al Gore, says in a speech on Monday, "If the pattern of practice begun by this administration is not challenged, it may well become a permanent part of the American system." Many groups and individuals are calling for impeachment, but the confirmation of Samuel Alito will slam shut the impeachment door permanently.
The AFL-CIO's convention finally voted last summer to oppose the war. But the AFL has done almost nothing more than acknowledge that the vote occured. In fact - scratch that - they never even announced that.
TODAY'S DEMOCRACY NOW!
* EXCLUSIVE: Ex-British Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray on Why He
Defied UK Foreign Office by Posting Classified Memos Blasting U.S., British
Support of Torture by Uzbek Regime *
By Patrick Doherty, www.tompaine.com
The first time I met Richard Clarke, I was role-playing the president of the United States during a weekend war game hosted by the Security Studies Program at the Fletcher School. That game, held annually and dubbed "SIMULEX," is staffed by members of the nation's military graduate schools, such as the National War College and the Arm War College. This particular year, 1997, Clarke was observing the progress of the game, as he had a special interest in the scenario.
On Wednesday, January 18 th, Cindy Sheehan was hosted by the Rome Province in their Sala della Pace. Sheehan is on tour in Italy with her organization, Gold Star Families for Peace, calling for the removal of troops from Iraq. At the same time, she is sharing her personal story about the loss of her son Casey in the war and her subsequent efforts to speak with President George W. Bush at his ranch in Crawford, Texas in August 2005. READ MORE
By Dan Eggen, The Washington Post
The Bush administration appears to have violated the National Security Act by limiting its briefings about a warrantless domestic eavesdropping program to congressional leaders, according to a memo from Congress's research arm released yesterday.
Larry Wilkerson Attacked the Iraq War. In the Process, He Lost the Friendship of Colin Powell.
By Richard Leiby, Washington Post
In an overheated old schoolroom in Washington, Larry Wilkerson, a retired Army colonel, is doing his best to impose military discipline on 25 pupils as they prepare to attack a mountain of pizza, cupcakes and cookies. It is the year-end party for Macfarland Middle School's Colin L. Powell Leadership Club, a tutoring and mentoring program that Wilkerson oversees as a volunteer. Striding before his charges in smart burgundy suspenders, the colonel -- everybody here calls him the colonel -- makes a point about duty:
Tony Blair is facing calls to make a full statement on how much he knew about the US using UK airports to transport terror suspects.
Downing Street says all such cases have now been made public after a leaked memo said "there could be more".
ANTIWAR ACTIVISTS ARRESTED AT THE WHITE HOUSE WILL CONTINUE THEIR TRIAL ON THURSDAY IN FEDERAL COURT IN WASHINGTON, D.C.
By Max Obuszewski
Some twenty antiwar activists held a demonstration on a rainy Wednesday morning outside U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia at 3rd & Constitution Ave. The demonstration preceded the third trial resulting from more than 370 arrests at the White House on September 26, 2005, when activists gathered to seek a meeting to discuss an end to the war in Iraq.