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Today I stood with 200 activists at the gates of Quantico Marine Base to protest the imprisonment and torture of a young patriot, Bradley Manning, who has not been convicted of any crime. It was the right way to spend the day set aside to remember Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Manning, 23, is alleged to have provided Wikileaks with documents that expose war crimes and other unethical behaviors being committed by the United States. He reportedly first went to his commanding officer when he saw that Iraqis were being imprisoned and tortured at the behest of the US military for simply publishing a document which questioned where the money went in Iraq. He was told to get back to work. Apparently when he saw more evidence of war crimes, he felt that the American public must know what is being done in its name. Manning is said to have joined the military because he believed in his country.
My blog entry for 26 November 2006 was entitled Hate Mail, Vandalism and Other Matches and advised readers to complain loudly and officially if they became the victims of hate mail, vandalism and threats. I’m not sure how convincing I was. The recent shootings in Tucson, the Pentagon, the Holocaust Museum, in Wichita, Knoxville, Pittsburgh, Brockton, and Okaloosa County, Florida show an escalation in the seriousness and magnitude of the problems.
One remedy might be recourse to the Law. In Minnesota making a Terroristic Threat is a misdemeanor and is punishable by ”imprisonment for not more than five years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.” Similar laws may exist in other states. Offenses to civil discourse may have to be taken up in the criminal courts as well as in civil courts. The Southern Poverty Law Center seems to have success using lawsuits against hate groups of all sorts.
Just a suggestion. Here are some links that cover the statute and how it is used.
There won't be even a whimper out of the press here. Just as there hasn't been for these 20yrs., about "Gulf War Syndrome" or much about the Gulf War, oh wait NBC said they were going to have daddy bush and company on their broadcasts, again though silence on the Veterans of, the Country doesn't want to hear!
Veteran Kerry Fuller: "It would have been far better to be killed in action"
Since his deployment to the Gulf ahead of the war, Kerry has suffered recurring ill health
16 January 2011 - Every week, Kerry Fuller counts out his medication into a plastic pill box.
By Linn Washington Jr.
Outdoors enthusiast Sarah Palin, who sees sport in blasting wolves with assault rifles from helicopters, surely knows the practical message of iconic fictional character Smokey The Bear: “Only you can prevent forest fires.”
Whether Momma Grizzly can really see Russia from her home in Alaska, as she once claimed, she certainly can see the clear meaning of Alaska Statute Section 41.15.110 titled “Uncontrolled Spread of Fire; Leaving Fire Unattended.”
Under a provision in that statue section, a person is guilty of a misdemeanor if they neglect “to make every effort possible” to extinguish a fire they’ve knowingly set.
Now former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin is not guilty of literally starting wildfires in the forests around her beloved Wasilla home. But she is complicit in figuratively firing up the dry tinder in America’s forests of political discontent with incendiary rhetoric delivered with the clear intent to inflame.
By Jess Guh
It's all too appropriate that on the day that we celebrate the birthday of one of history’s most notable civil rights leaders, Arizona is in the national news spotlight. Arizona,one of the last states to recognize Martin Luther King Jr's birthday as a federal holiday only began doing in 1992. Ironically, Arizona’s Attorney General Tom Horne, a supporter of the states tough new immigration laws, and author of a new ban on ethnic studies in the state’s public schools, continually cites his participation in MLK's marches as proof that he's not a racist.
Updates on Two Political Prisoners - by Stephen Lendman
Earlier articles addressed them, accessed through the following links:
Pakistani Canadians Mahboob Khawaja, his son Momin, and family were wrongfully targeted for alleged involvement in terrorism. Mahboob is an "academic specializing in Strategic Studies with special interests in Western-Islamic Civilizations, Change and Conflict Resolution."
While working in Saudi Arabia, dozens of Royal Canadian Mounted police arrested his family at gunpoint in Ottawa. They blew open his door, then searched his home lawlessly with no warrant and found nothing. At the same time, Mahboob was arrested in Saudi Arabia, jailed for two weeks, then released. The affair ruined his academic career as a professor of global politics, and Momin's as a software developer and free man.
Banking in Venezuela - by Stephen Lendman
The Banco Central de Venezuela's web site (Venezuela's Central Bank) relates BCV history from its September 8, 1939 inception. At the time, conservative forces feared monetary instability under uncontrolled Central Bank spending. As a result, opponents (unsuccessfully) said giving it exclusive money creation power was unconstitutional.
Thereafter BCV reforms occurred in 1943, 1960, 1974, 1983, 1984, 1987, 1992, 2001, and most recently making banking a "public service" in 2010. More on that below.
In 1992, legislation established "administrative autonomy," in part transforming the bank into a "public legal entity. Until then, (it was solely) corporate in nature." Thereafter, Venezuela's president appointed "a collegiate body of seven members, a president and six directors," requiring two-thirds Senate approval for a six-year term. Its mandate is "monetary stability, economic balance and well-ordered economic development."
The Pentagon sank to a new low this week in their attempt to sell the Afghanistan War to the American people. At their Martin Luther King, Jr., Day observance, a Pentagon official actually claimed that if King were alive today, he might support the war.
This is simply not true. As shown in our new video, Dr. King could not have been more clear in his 1967 speech denouncing the Vietnam War:
Panel recalls former PM to answer 'grave doubts' about the veracity of his original evidence
AFP/Getty Images: An Iraq inquiry source said of Blair: 'There is a feeling... he wilfully misrepresented the facts'
16 January 2011 - Tony Blair will face allegations that he has "misled" members of the Iraq inquiry when he returns to give evidence to the panel this week.
Turmoil in Lebanon - by Stephen Lendman
Reportedly, 19th century Mexican dictator Porfirio Diaz once remarked: "Poor Mexico, So far from God, So close to the United States." His proximity comment applies to Lebanon. Bordering Israel, it experienced decades of belligerent interventions as early as 1954 when Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion proposed supporting the establishment of a Maronite-dominated Christian mini-state.
In 1978, Israel attacked Lebanon and occupied the country up to the Litani River before withdrawing under US pressure, letting UN Blue Helmets (UNIFIL) replace its own forces.
Earlier, during Lebanon's 1975-76 civil war, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin reportedly spent $150 million equipping and training right-wing Maronite Phalange fighters. In September 1982, during Israel's invasion, they massacred thousands of Palestinian Sabra and Shatila camp residents, an appalling atrocity Israeli forces permitted when Ariel Sharon was defense minister.
On Saturday, January 8, 2011, a Tucson Safeway became harm’s way.
For many. Someone’s wife. Someone’s mother. Daughter. Sister. Friend. Someone’s husband. Someone’s father. Son. Someone.
Witnesses to the rampage forever will be changed.
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords remains in critical condition, a bullet to the head, fired by a 22-year-old gunman with a Glock. Six people were killed, including nine-year-young Christina Green.
The day after the massacre, members of the House participated in a conference call to discuss vigilance and informing local police of their whereabouts. Both Republicans and Democrats are calling for civility and have put on hold repeal of the healthcare law while they craft a resolution to commemorate the victims.
And discuss how to protect THEMSELVES.
This from Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee:
We ought to cool it, tone it down, treat each other
with respect, respect each other’s ideas and even
This report was aired on the PBS News Hour last night.
AIR DATE: Jan. 14, 2011
SUMMARY Members of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' staff have kept her office open, even as the Congresswoman fights to recover from a gunman's attack. Tom Bearden reports from Tucson. Transcript
A couple of cuts from the shows transcript:
Netanyahu's Government: Israel's Worst Ever - by Stephen Lendman
Numerous previous articles explained Israel's extremism, notably under Netanyahu exceeding the worst of Ariel Sharon. Both men, of course, are war criminals by any standard. So are complicit Knesset members - roguish, racist and hard-line, comprising a voting majority that co-opt a weak-kneed opposition going along most often to get along.
Access several relevant previous articles through these links:
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyep Recep Erdogan agrees. On January 13, Haaretz Service headlined, "Turkey PM: Netanyahu has worst government in history of Israel," saying:
America Replicating Japan - by Stephen Lendman
An except from Franck Biancheri's new book titled, "World Crisis: The Path to the World Afterwards" states:
"The (current) financial and economic crisis....marks the end of the world order established after 1945." In 1991, the Soviet Union dissolved, and since fall 2007, we've "witness(ed) the accelerated decomposition of the 'Western pillar' with" America advancing disintegration.
After decades "spent living in the myth of an 'ended history' in which" Western ideology was triumphant, "it is almost impossible to imagine 'a world after' " without Washington/Wall Street dominance, "where 'Anglo-American' would not necessarily mean 'modern,' and where the dollar would no longer be king."
By David Swanson
There are conflicting accounts of exactly how Bradley Manning, the alleged whistleblower on countless U.S. government crimes, has been illegally punished for 8 months so far, pre-trial. There's no denying that this young man who allegedly sought to make his government's actions known for the public good and did not seek to profit thereby has been denied a speedy trial. The question is to what extent he has already been punished, and even cruelly and unusually punished, without having been convicted of any crime. But the accounts differ less than it at first appears. And there is one sure way to find out the facts.
And who controls the drug trade, not those street corner sellers nor the ones they work for, it's controlled by wealthy suits around this planet and more lucrative then running corporations or playing craps on wall street!
Jan. 14, 2011 - The government of Afghanistan is fighting a losing battle against drugs because of soaring street prices for heroin and opium derivatives , a minister said.
Mohammed Azhar, deputy minister for counter-narcotics, told The Washington Post despite the 10-year occupation by NATO troops fighting the Muslim extremist Taliban and al-Qaida factions, peasant farmers are still growing poppies to feed the drug market.
And this says what about this Country and Society,
Security was tight Friday morning as the hearse entered the church
parking lot and U.S. marshals checked the IDs of everyone entering the
lot. Four big coach buses brought dozens of judges who knew Roll over
One Hell Of Allot!!
By David Swanson
According to the Pentagon's lawyer, Martin Luther King Jr., if alive today, would view the US war on Afghanistan as both the act of a Good Samaritan and as necessary self-defense.
Jeh C. Johnson, the "Defense" Department's general counsel, said, on the one hand:
"I believe that if Dr. King were alive today, he would recognize that we live in a complicated world, and that our nation's military should not and cannot lay down its arms and leave the American people vulnerable to terrorist attack."
On the other hand, he also said this:
Salam Fayyad: Israel's Man in Palestine - by Stephen Lendman
His resume includes a University of Texas economics Ph.D., a teaching position at Jordan's Yarmouk University, and economic research at the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank. From 1987 - 1995, he also served as a World Bank and IMF official, and until 2001, was IMF's man in Palestine, serving as Yasser Arafat's finance minister.
In Palestine's 2006 legislative elections, his Third Way party got 2.4% of the votes, a clear renunciation. Yet after Fatah's coup d'etat co-opted the PLO, PA and West Bank, President Mahmoud Abbas illegitimately appointed him prime minister.
Obama in Tucson: Shame, Hypocrisy and Deceit - by Stephen Lendman
Like all politicians, Obama shills for power, plays to the crowd, and hides ugly truths the public has a right to know. His Tucson remarks were no different, displaying intellectual bankruptcy by invoking scripture, heroism, and patriotism, while avoiding what most needed saying - the real cause of January 8th's violence. A previous article discussed it, accessed through the following link:
America's longstanding culture of violence deserves blame. A deranged gunman is merely systematic of a society off the rails, malignant from imperial wars, extremist politicians, demagogic media hosts and pundits, the proliferation of guns, a faux democracy, and deep-seated lawlessness and corruption too far gone to fix.
Not on January 12 for Wall Street Journal editorial writers headlining, "Consolation in Tucson," saying:
By Charles M. Young
The Anti-American Manifesto
(Seven Stories Press)
by Ted Rall
Lots of books collect all the low-hanging fruit in the abundant orchard of corporate state crime and arrange it into a more or less digestible feast, and then they all conclude with a ringing exhortation to elect more Democrats to Congress, or build a third party, or challenge the legality of war through the courts, or write well-reasoned letters of protest to The New York Times, or impeach whoever is president, or go to more demonstrations, or drip more snark on the ruling class.
The reader sits alone at night with the question, “Is that all there is?”
Ted Rall seeks to answer that question in The Anti-American Manifesto. At the beginning of chapter one (“Kill the Zombie Empire”), he quotes the U.S Criminal Code that advocating the overthrow of the government by violence is unlawful, and then he advocates the overthrow of the government by violence.
By David Swanson
Fifty years ago this Monday, President Dwight Eisenhower gave a farewell address in which he famously warned of the dangers of influence on our government by the "military industrial complex." Our current Secretary of War, Robert Gates, has proposed to retire this year and has recommended that his successors stop increasing the military budget. But Eisenhower didn't just bring this up on his way out the door. It was seven years earlier that he had remarked: