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Obama's Libya Defense Makes Bush's Lawyers Look Smart

The arguments made to "legalize" war, torture, warrantless spying, and other crimes by John Yoo and Jay Bybee and their gang are looking rational, well-reasoned, and impeccably researched in comparison with Obama's latest "legalization" of the Libya War.

Here's the key section from Wednesday's report to Congress:

Interview - Andy Thayer of Gay Liberation Network @ Rally for Bradley Manning, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Andy Thayer of Gay Liberation Network spoke with us during the "Rally for Bradley Manning" at Ft. Leavenworth, KS, Saturday, June 4, 2011. Pfc. Bradley Manning of Oklahoma has been in US military custody without formal charges for over a year. Manning allegedly leaked US secret diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. For more information on the Gay Liberation Network, visit http://www.gayliberation.net/.

Interview - William Stewart-Starks of Iraq Veterans Against The War @ Rally for Bradley Manning

William Stewart-Starks of Iraq Veterans Against The War (IVAW) spoke with us during the "Rally for Bradley Manning" at Ft. Leavenworth, KS, Saturday, June 4, 2011. Pfc. Bradley Manning of Oklahoma has been in US military custody without formal charges for over a year. Manning allegedly leaked US secret diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. For more information on IVAW and Operation Recovery, visit http://www.ivaw.org/.

Interview - Jeff Paterson of Courage To Resist @ Rally for Bradley Manning, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Jeff Paterson of Courage To Resist spoke with us during the "Rally for Bradley Manning" at Ft. Leavenworth, KS, Saturday, June 4, 2011. Pfc. Bradley Manning of Oklahoma has been in US military custody without formal charges for over a year. Manning allegedly leaked US secret diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. For more information on Courage To Resist, visit http://www.couragetoresist.org/.

Interview - Jacob George of A Ride Till The End @ Rally for Bradley Manning, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Jacob George of A Ride Till The End spoke with us at the "Rally for Bradley" at Ft. Leavenworth, KS on June 4, 2011. Pfc. Bradley Manning of Oklahoma has been in US military custody without formal charges for over a year. Manning allegedly leaked US secret diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. For more information on A Ride Till The End, visit http://www.operationawareness.org/.

Interview - Leah Bolger of Veterans for Peace @ Rally for Bradley Manning, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Leah Bolger of Veterans for Peace spoke with us during the "Rally for Bradley Manning" at Ft. Leavenworth, KS on June 4, 2011. Pfc. Bradley Manning of Oklahoma has been in US military custody without formal charges for over a year. Manning allegedly leaked US secret diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. For more information on Veterans for Peace, visit http://www.veteransforpeace.org/.

House Bill Would Block the Use of Funds to Prepare Signing Statements

Bill text.

"In addition, the bill eliminates the 'Youth Media Campaign,' prohibits funds for the EOP to prepare “signing statements,” which has been used in the past to undermine or circumvent laws passed by Congress, and requires reports on the costs and regulatory burdens caused by the flawed Dodd-Frank financial legislation."

The FBI Loosens Up

By John Grant

Some years ago, I was photographing a constitutional law professor for a magazine article on his book, and while I composed my shots I employed the usual half-minded topical banter to keep things on course. The professor was pretty progressive and knew I was a veteran antiwar activist. I was muttering something about constitutional rights.

In the lens, I noticed him chuckling at something, so I pulled my eye away from the camera and looked at him. He was grinning now.

“John, you know they abrogated the Constitution long ago,” he said, his tone a bit patronizing but also mixed with camaraderie and humor.

“Oh, yeh!” I said. “I forgot about that.” We both laughed, and I went on with the shoot.
I couldn’t help thinking about that conversation as I read the story in The New York Times about the new powers being given to individual FBI agents to snoop on citizens they subjectively deem dangerous.

Congress Members Sue Obama to End Libya War

On Wednesday in federal court, 10 members of the U.S. Congress sued President Obama in an attempt to end U.S. involvement in a war in Libya.

These are the plaintiffs: Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), Walter Jones (R-NC), Howard Coble (R-NC), John Duncan (R-TN), Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), John Conyers (D-MI), Ron Paul (R-TX), Michael Capuano (D-MA), Tim Johnson (R-IL), and Dan Burton (R-IN).

According to a statement from Congressman Kucinich:

Wisconsin Supreme Court Reinstates Anti-Union Law

Wisconsin Supreme Court Reinstates Anti-Union Law - by Stephen Lendman

At the state and federal levels, pro-business/anti-worker rulings are nothing new. US Supreme Court history is rife with them since the 19th century, and no wonder.

From inception, America was always ruled by men, not laws, who lie, connive, misinterpret, and pretty much do what they please for their own self-interest.

In 1787 in Philadelphia, "the people" who mattered most were elitists. America's revolution substituted new management for old. Everything changed but stayed the same under a system establishing illusory democracy at the federal, state and local levels.

Today, all three branches of government prove it's more corrupt, ruthless, and indifferent to fundamental freedoms and human needs than ever, including worker rights to bargain collectively with management on equal terms. Forget it. They're going, going, gone.

Just Some of 'Lessons of War' Not Learned!!

And now we're over a decade of oh so many lessons not learned and in not one but two theaters of with a third front being bombed and invaded right next door to one of the two and joined with NATO in bombing another that the previous administration had brought the leader of back into the fold after years of calling him a terrorists supporter and supporting terrorists criminal acts!

As we were coming out of Vietnam, especially in the end of, the Country with almost one voice said they'd "never forget the lessons of!" that lasted oh probably five minutes or, even without cable then, a couple of news cycles as we've seen during this whole past decade. The War Hawk Neo-Cons thought they had the lessons, not the real lessons of wars of choice, needed to occupy and control an invaded country, well a decade plus later DeJa-Vu all over again.

2010 State Department Human Rights Report on Bahrain

2010 US State Department Human Rights Report on Bahrain - by Stephen Lendman

In April, 19 human rights organizations condemned Bahrain as one of the world's leading terror states, the Al Khalifa monarchy having lost all legitimacy.

In a joint press release, they said:

The undersigned "severely condemn the authorities' crackdown on prominent human rights defenders Abdulhadi Al Khawaja and Nabeel Rajab in Bahrain. We are gravely concerned for the safety and well-being of both human rights defenders who are being targeted for their human rights work."

Both were lawlessly arrested, beaten, detained, and brutally tortured as were hundreds of others for supporting democracy, human rights and equal justice.

Libyan war: Just another bailout for the banking class

Four days before President Obama made the unilateral decision for war with Libya, under the innocuous banner of a humanitarian NATO action to prevent civilian deaths, the African Union met in Ethiopia to discuss Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi’s proposal to unite the African continent with Arab states in a confederation called the United States of Africa. Both our president and the lapdog U.S. press failed to inform the American people why this just might be of interest to them.

Gaddafi’s plan calls for a common African currency. The Libyan dinar would become the African dinar with more than one billion people and many of the top oil producing countries using it. Libya, with 143.8 tons of gold worth $6.5 billion and the world’s ninth ranked oil reserves, just may have the resources to pull this off.

Read the rest at: http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/2152

Remote Control Killing Like Sport

Remote Control Killing Like Sport - by Stephen Lendman

Defense contractor giants like Boeing, Lockeed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and others, as well as smaller rivals compete for growing demand for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). They include remote control operated killer drones, also called unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs).

It's America's newest sport. From distant command centers, far from target sights, sounds, and smells, operators dismissively ignore human carnage showing up as computer screen blips little different from video game images. The difference, of course, is people die, mostly noncombatants. More on that below.

On March 10, 2010, Der Spiegel writer Marc Pitzke headlined, "How Drone Pilots Wage War," saying:

They "sit in air-conditioned rooms far away from (America's wars). They guide their weapons with joysticks and monitors. The remote warriors work with a high degree of precision - at a fraction of the cost of a fighter jet," but just as deadly.

Washington Post Wants Endless War

The Pentagon Washington Post has yet to mention Section 1034 of the Defense Authorization Act of 2012, but you can expect it -- if it passes the Senate -- to show up in many a future editorial, as it will give presidents the "legal" (although unconstitutional) power to launch and continue wars, something the Washington Post adores.  A Post editorial on Monday demanded that no withdrawal of troops be made from Afghanistan.  Never mind these promises:

"After 18 months, our troops will begin to come home … [O]ur troop commitment in Afghanistan cannot be open-ended – because the nation that I'm most interested in building is our own." – President Barack Obama, 1 December 2009

Dear John Pistole, Administrator of Transportation Searches and Abuse

I ran into some of your employees, John, at Boston Logan airport, believe it or not. In fact, I had no choice but to run into them or I couldn't get home.

Now, I had just flown from London to Boston without blowing up the airplane, and in fact the Heathrow coppers have their own Insecurity Theater similar to yours. But that didn't matter. I couldn't continue on to our nation's corporate headquarters on the Potomac without being further treated as a mass-murderer, as all my compatriots so happily submit to. One has to wonder if some people actually take it as a sick compliment in some sort of dark fantasy.

Mountaintop Removal: Environmental and Human Destruction for Profit

Mountaintop Removal: Environmental and Human Destruction for Profit - by Stephen Lendman

Activists call it "strip mining on steroids." So did John Mitchell in his March 2006 National Geographic article titled, "Mining the Summits: When Mountains Move," saying:

Julia 'Judy' Bonds, "(a) coal miner's daughter....no longer (could) tolerate the blasting that rattled her windows, the coal soot that she suspected was clotting her grandson's lungs, and the blackwater spills that bellied-up fish in a nearby stream."

As a result, she moved downstream and joined Coal River Mountain Watch (CRMW), an activist group against mountaintop removal.

CRMW is an initiative "to stop the destruction of our communities and environment by mountaintop removal, to improve the quality of life in our area, and to help rebuild sustainable communities."

Access its web site through the following link:

http://www.crmw.net/crmw/

War News Radio: Civilian Perspectives

Civilian Perspectives

 

June 10th, 2011 - First, we talk to an author about his new book concerning Muslim public opinion toward the United States. Then, we hear about Afghan tourism and its potential for bridge-building, literally and figuratively. Finally, we discuss the dangers of conflict reporting, and how journalists prepare for the battlefield. But first, a roundup of this week’s news.

 

Obama's Slipping Popularity

Obama's Sinking Popularity - by Stephen Lendman

Except for bankers, war profiteers, other corporate favorites, and America's super-rich, it's hard imagining why anyone supports a president backing policies harming so many at home and abroad.

The good news perhaps is that growing numbers are awakening, the latest June 7 - 9 Zogby International poll showing recent lows in Obama's popularity:

-- 56% disapprove of his job as president; 43% approve;

-- 39% say he deserves reelection; 52% want change;

-- congressional approval also dropped to 17%, a testimony to mass public disdain; and

-- given America's direction, waging multiple imperial wars at the expense of vital homeland needs, expect an angrier public reaction ahead as pain levels rise.

What If Britain Drops Out of All US Wars?

LONDON -- Before long public pressure might just lead Britain to drop out of participation in US wars, a move that would seriously damage future pretenses of acting as an international coalition.

I've spent the past few days here in London talking with leaders of the Stop the War Coalition, sitting in on a weekly planning meeting, and attending a day-long conference on building opposition to the Afghanistan and Libya wars. This movement is strong, smart, well-organized, and eager to work with other peace movements around the world.

A Call to Arms, Legs Hearts and Minds

Friends,
2011 is our year for mobilization to make sure that Vermont Yankee closes down as scheduled. We hope that the federal courts don't usurp Vermont's right to govern what happens in our state. But if they do, we must be ready to respond by March 21 2012, the day VY's license expires.
Please consider joining us in supporting non-violent civil disobedience that will be employed to ensure that the plant shuts down.
Please join us on September 17, for the Positively Charged Music Festival in Windham county, where we will be enlisting volunteers for the struggle while we raise some money and hear great bands from Burlington, Montpelier, Windham County and Northampton MA, all playing for free to help the cause.
(visit www.ReplaceVY.org for concert info and to contact organizers)
And please send this message to everyone you know, both in and out of New England. This is a struggle that we can win if we can motivate those who are with us to come and stand with us.
Thanks,

The Antiwar Movement 10 Years On

Remarks from a plenary at the Stop the War Coalition's June 11, 2011, conference in London on "Afghanistan and the War on Terror: 10 Years On."

I want to thank the Stop the War Coalition and Lindsey German in particular for having invited me here, and for having invited me to a similar conference five years ago. Maybe in 2016 we can meet under better circumstances. I'm especially glad to have come back to Europe because George W. Bush can no longer do so. He recently canceled a trip to Switzerland because an indictment for torture awaited him there.

It is an honor to speak together with Tony Benn, Lindsey German, Sanasino Al-Yemen, Mohammed Kozbar, and George Galloway, whose wonderful TV show I was on yesterday.

Imperialism in the 21st Century

Remarks from a session at the Stop the War Coalition's June 11, 2011, conference in London on "Afghanistan and the War on Terror: 10 Years On."

I want to thank the Stop the War Coalition and Lindsey German in particular for having invited me here. And it is an honor to speak together with Steve Bell and Kevin Ovenden, and I'm sorry Joe Glenton was unable to be here. Kevin and I will be on "The Real Deal" with George Galloway tomorrow, so please watch.

Afghanistan was supposed to be the campaign promise that President Barack Obama actually kept. He said he would escalate that war and enlarge the military and strike into Pakistan, and sure enough he did. But he made another promise since the election that we actually want him to keep, and he's going to violate it before the next election. Clearly we need an activist force apart from elections to address this.

"Veterans Unplugged" WIMS Radio AM 1420

From a VVAW, Vietnam Veterans Against the War, mailing we get the announcement of a new radio show by and for veterans, and everyone else, that everyone out of the listening area can stream online live or listen to in the archives. This is the send out received:

 

Three former Marines--Vince Emanuele, Jason Lewis and Mark Strudas, each Iraq war veterans--have now established a weekly two-hour radio show called "Veterans Unplugged" on radio station WIMS, AM-1420 in Michigan City, Indiana, on the south shore of Lake Michigan. The show can be heard live on Tuesday nights between 6-8 pm, Central time. The web site is WIMS Radio.

This is a show that can be heard live-streamed over the internet, plus they archive each show in the station's "audio vault," which can be listened to at your leisure--and is organized by date.

The Obama Doctrine: Lawless Imperial Aggression (Part II)

The Obama Doctrine: Lawless Imperial Aggression (Part II) - by Stephen Lendman

Previous articles discussed America's permanent war agenda, culture of violence, imperial lawlessness, daily atrocities, blood-drenched history, glorification of killing in the name of peace, and support for the world's worst despots, as well as contempt for democratic values, rule of law principles, and human and civil rights abroad and at home.

Obama continues the odious tradition, governing repressively while waging global imperial wars, brazenly claiming humanitarian intentions he doesn't give a damn about, never did, and won't tolerate.

Americans foot the bill and pay the price. Global millions suffer. Earlier articles addressed America's wars against Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as proxy ones in Africa, Asia, Central and South America, and at home against Muslims, Latino immigrants, and working households.

Vote for the America YOU want!

There is finally a solid proposal in Washington for a budget that defunds the wars, cuts the base Pentagon budget, taxes corporations, creates jobs and saves services people need. It’s called the People’s Budget.

On June 5 the New Priorities Network launched a summer campaign to shift our nation’s priorities from war to jobs and human needs. The campaign has two legs:

An online poll where people can choose between the GOP budget, Obama’s budget, and the People’s Budget. Poll results by state and congressional district will go to Congresspeople, Senators, and the media.
Town Hall Meetings on the People’s Budget Budget in our congressional districts over the summer.

Take the poll and vote for the America YOU want!
https://FederalBudgetPoll.questionpro.com/

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