Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Time For Rounding Up The Bush Administration For Arrest And Prosecution Is Long Over Due. Let’s Stop Being “Politically Correct” About That Fact

The Time For Rounding Up The Bush Administration For Arrest And Prosecution Is Long Over Due. Let’s Stop Being “Politically Correct” About That Fact…ACT!!!





“If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude
than the animating contest of freedom, — go from us in peace. We ask
not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed
you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget
that ye were our countrymen!”

-Sam Adams-


"It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace-- but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!”
- Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775


Heating Up For Prosecutions And Marching On March 21, 2009



Seymour Hersh: "Executive Assassination Ring" Answered to Cheney, Had No Congressional Oversight
By Eric Black,
Investigative journalist Sy Hersh dropped a bombshell revelation on Monday about international killings ordered under Bush. Read more »


Bush Boasted about Tortured Captive
In late 2002, as President George W. Bush boasted of capturing a Saudi national named al-Nashiri, the alleged USS Cole plotter was being waterboarded, a document reveals, reports Jason Leopold.


Yoo Defends His Legal Memos
Former Justice Department lawyer John Yoo refuses to back down on his assertion that President George W. Bush possessed virtually unlimited power to fight the "war on terror," reports Jason Leopold.


Yoo's Memos Gave Retroactive Cover
A draft Justice Department report criticizes former Bush lawyer John Yoo for taking legal shortcuts in coming up with memos that justified harsh interrogation of detainees, reports Jason Leopold. 


First, Jail All Bush's Lawyers
Attorney General Eric Holder might start fulfilling his pledge to "support and defend the Constitution" by squeezing George W. Bush's lawyers who justified torture and other crimes, writes Robert Parry. 


 Prosecution for Bush War Crimes
The collapse of George W. Bush's torture defense -- that the lawyers okayed it -- is confronting the Obama administration with a stark choice on the rule of law, writes Marjorie Cohn. 


New Details on Torture Deaths
The Pentagon released documents on how several prisoners in Afghanistan died under brutal interrogation as the Bush administration was toughening its methods in 2002, reports Jason Leopold. 


War Crimes and Double Standards
U.S. journalists are cheering war crimes charges against Sudan President Bashir for the Darfur atrocities, but the story is the opposite when it comes to George W. Bush's abuses, writes Robert Parry.


Canadian Lawyers Seek to Bar Bush from Their Country -- Not ...d

Impeach the President: The Case Against Bush and Cheney," edited by Dennis Loo and Peter Phillips, with an introduction by Howard Zinn, a wonderfully well written collection of essays organized around a list of 12 grounds for ... - Bush-Cheney... -


Right-Wingers Aren't Stupid - They're Just Betting That You're Ignorant
By Joshua Holland, AlterNet
But some simple marketing may be their biggest problem. Read more »


Public Outcry Quickly Kills Connecticut Bill to Strip Catholic ...



The Neocons Strike Back
The neoconservatives have flexed their continuing muscle in Washington by beating back the appointment of a veteran diplomat who criticized Israel's treatment of Palestinians, Robert Parry reports. March 11, 2009


Neocons Wage War on a 'Realist'
President Obama's choice of former Ambassador Chas Freeman to oversee U.S. intelligence estimates has touched off a jihad by neocons against a person they decry as a "realist," writes Robert Parry. March 6, 2009


Oh, What a Lovely Class War!
Despite evidence that America's rich are winning the class war against everyone else, the Right trots out the "class warfare" lament when there's talk of rolling back tax cuts, Michael Winship says.


Hightower: Conservatives Are Blind, Deaf and Dumb to Class Warfare
By Jim Hightower, Creators Syndicate
Are right-wingers really claiming that the U.S. has never been riven by class resentment? Get out your history books.Read more


PMA Lobbyist, Relatives Gave Lawmakers $1.5 Million

A defense lobbyist and his family made $1.5 million in political contributions from 2000 through 2008 as the lobbyist's now-embattled firm helped clients win billions of dollars in federal contracts. A sizable chunk of those campaign dollars went to the House members who control Pentagon spending. Read More


Spy Masters: It's the Economy, Intelligence

On the list of U.S. intelligence failures, missing the threat of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and overhyping Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities are the freshest. But these days, intelligence professionals have increasing cause to ponder a cautionary tale from 18 years ago: the unanticipated collapse of the Soviet system because of its economy. Read More


The Financial Crisis Pushes Europe to the Brink of Disaster
By Danny Schechter, AlterNet
What is happening there will make things worse for us here. Read more 

Balance of Power

After Dissing Bush's Signing Statements, Obama Issues His Own: On March 9, President Obama ordered federal agencies to consult with the Justice Department before they rely on President George W. Bush's "signing statements" and outlined the circumstances under which he would issue such declarations, which assert limits on Congress' power over the executive branch. Read More 


Finally, Putting Country First
Despite America's grave financial crisis, many key players in Washington and on Wall Street remain stuck in their self-interests, unwilling to do what's best for the country, writes Brent Budowsky. March 10, 2009


The Threat to Obama's Presidency
The U.S. news media -- with its continued tilt to the Right -- has become the most dangerous threat to Barack Obama's presidency and its reformist goals, writes Robert Parry. March 9, 2009


The GOP's Anti-Obama Propaganda
Facing broad public support for Barack Obama and his agenda, Republicans have turned to Newt Gingrich's old strategies of destruction to find a route back to power, writes Robert Parry. February 25, 2009


Can You Trust the Republicans?
Republicans insist their opposition to Barack Obama's program is motivated by principle, not politics, but they have amassed a long record of lying to the American people, reports Robert Parry. February 27, 2009


House Dems say no new stimulus in the works (Just Admit It And Get On With It! (Ed.) 
On Tuesday House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested more stimulus spending might be needed. The pushback came a day after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested ...
See all stories on this topic


UN experts to investigate secret U.S. jails 11 Mar 2009 Two UN human rights experts said on Tuesday that they would conduct a global investigation of secret detention centers used by the United States and other countries in their 'counter'-terrorism efforts. The yearlong investigation is aimed not only to clarify facts, but also to ensure that such secret jails would not be used in the future, according to Manfred Nowak, UN envoy for torture, and Martin Scheinin, UN envoy for human rights and counter-terrorism.


Terrorist watch list hits 1 million 11 Mar 2009 The government's terrorist watch list has hit 1 million entries, up 32% since 2007. Federal data show the rise comes despite the removal of 33,000 entries last year by the FBI's Terrorist Screening Center. The remaining million entries represent about 400,000 individuals, according to the center. "It's always going to be a work in progress," says Timothy Edgar, a civil liberties officer at the intelligence director's office. [Yes, and apparently under Obama, it's *progressing* nicely. --LRP]


U.S. cybersecurity head quits, citing growing role of spy agencies 11 Mar 2009 The official in charge of coordinating the U.S. government's cybersecurity operations has quit, saying the expanding control of the National Security Agency over the nation's computer security efforts poses "threats to our democratic processes." "Even from a security standpoint," Rod Beckstrom, the head of the Department of Homeland Security's National Cyber Security Center, told United Press International, "it is unwise to hand over the security of all government networks to a single organization."


NFL, others win exemption from terrorism lawsuits --Many beneficiaries of legal protection are large government contractors that sell equipment such as airport X-ray machines and chemical sensors. [In other words, taxpayers are funding corpora-terrorist cronies to be absof*ckinglutely useless - with impunity.] 10 Mar 2009 The National Football League and dozens of other companies and organizations have won exemption from lawsuits under a post-9/11 law that prohibits them from being sued if terrorists attack a site they are protecting. The law, called the SAFETY Act (Support Anti-terrorism by Fostering Effective Technologies), aims to help security providers by guaranteeing they will not pay any claims that terror victims might file after an attack.


Brown rejects judge-led inquiry into UK spies 11 Mar 2009 British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Wednesday declined a request by opposition parties to authorize a judge-led inquiry into the conduct of U.K. intelligence agencies in supporting the U.S. government's pursuit of terror suspects since 2001. Lawmakers in Britain, the U.S. and Europe have raised concerns over the extent to which the U.K. and other allies of Washington have been complicit in the extraordinary rendition kidnapping, secret detention imprisonment and alleged mistreatment torture of suspected terrorists.


Judge 'should head torture probe' 11 Mar 2009 Allegations that British intelligence agencies were complicit in torture should be fully investigated by a judge-led inquiry, say the Tories. The claims by a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner [Binyam Mohamed] have been referred to the attorney general but David Cameron said that did not go far enough. He said it would only look at whether a crime was committed not whether "our moral authority has been maintained".


Italy high court to rule on CIA kidnap case 10 Mar 2009 Lawyers for the Italian state began arguments to the Constitutional Court Tuesday to try to get a case against U.S. and Italian spies accused of kidnapping a terrorism suspect thrown out. Twenty-six Americans and seven Italians are accused of grabbing a Muslim imam off the streets of Milan and flying him to Egypt in 2003. Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, says he was tortured and held for years without charge.


U.S. military transfers "enemy combatant" to civilian custody 11 Mar 2009 The U.S. military on Tuesday transferred an "enemy combatant" to civilian custody, the Justice Department said. The man, Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri, a Qatari national, is now in the custody of U.S. Marshals Service after being released from the Naval Consolidated Brig in South Carolina, the department said in a written statement.


Domestic terror threat growing, Senate committee warns 11 Mar 2009 There is an increasing threat of homegrown terror stemming from segments of a deeply isolated and alienated Somali-American community, a U.S. Senate committee hearing concluded Wednesday. The hearing, conducted by the Senate Homeland and Governmental Affairs Committee, focused on the attempted recruitment of young Somali-American men by al-Shabaab, "a violent and brutal extremist (Somali) group" with significant ties to al Qaeda [al-CIAduh], according to the U.S. State Department.


U.S., Israel Disagree on Iran Arms Threat --Senate Panel Told Tehran Has Not Made Decision to Pursue Nuclear Weapons 11 Mar 2009 Iran has not produced the highly enriched uranium necessary for a nuclear weapon and has not decided to do so, U.S. intelligence officials told Congress yesterday, an assessment that contrasts with a stark Israeli warning days earlier that Iran has crossed the "technological threshold" in its pursuit of the bomb.


Intel Chiefs: Iran Can't Build Nukes Yet 11 Mar 2009 Iran does not yet have any highly enriched uranium, the fuel needed to make a nuclear warhead, two top U.S. intelligence officials told Congress Tuesday,disputing a claim by an Israeli official. U.S. National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair and Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Michael Maples said Tuesday that Iran has only low-enriched uranium - which would need to be refined into highly enriched uranium before it can fuel a warhead. Neither official said there were indications that refining has occurred.


Iran lacks nuclear bomb fuel: US officials 10 Mar 2009 Iran has yet to decide whether to build a nuclear bomb and currently lacks the weapons-grade highly enriched uranium needed to do so, top US intelligence officials told lawmakers on Tuesday. But [LOL! I knew that was coming] Tehran is enriching uranium in defiance of global sanctions and is "mastering" the know-how to build long-range missiles that can carry nuclear bombs to their targets oceans away, said director of intelligence Dennis Blair.


Chas Freeman Slams "Israel Lobby" 10 Mar 2009 Chas Freeman's full statement following his decision not to serve as National Intelligence Council chairman... 'The tactics of the Israel Lobby plumb the depths of dishonor and indecency and include character assassination, selective misquotation, the willful distortion of the record, the fabrication of falsehoods, and an utter disregard for the truth. The aim of this Lobby is control of the policy process through the exercise of a veto over the appointment of people who dispute the wisdom of its views, the substitution of political correctness for analysis, and the exclusion of any and all options for decision by Americans and our government other than those that it favors.'


Tariq Aziz, Saddam-era official, gets 15-year term 11 Mar 2009 Saddam Hussein's former foreign minister, Tariq Aziz, was convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison Wednesday for his role in the 1992 execution of 42 merchants accused of price gouging while Iraq was under U.N. sanctions. The conviction was the first against Aziz, who for years was the former regime's public face to the West.


Iraq Suicide Bombing in Western Baghdad Kills 30 10 Mar 2009 A suicide bomber blew himself up among a group of tribal leaders on the western outskirts of Baghdad, killing at least 30 people and wounding 50. The explosion happened today in the Abu Ghraib municipality, 15 miles (24 kilometers) from the center of the Iraqi capital, President Jalal Talabani’s Patriotic Union of Kurdistan party said on its Web site.


DPRK blasts U.S. on its human rights 11 Mar 2009 The United States was the No. 1 human rights abuser in the world, the official KCNA news agency of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) said on Wednesday. The KCNA issued an article enumerating the human rights abuses in the U.S., saying it was not qualified to talk about other countries' human rights. The KCNA said the working people in the U.S. were deprived of clothing, food and housing and the election serves only the rich.


Congress mulls elections to fill Senate vacancies --Lawmakers debate changing Constitution so voters can pick replacements 11 Mar 2009 Following tumultuous [?!?] turnovers in Illinois and New York, lawmakers on Wednesday asked whether it was time to change the Constitution so that voters, and not state governors, fill Senate vacancies.


Obama issues signing statement on spending bill 11 Mar 2009 Two days after criticizing his predecessor for issuing guidelines on how to put legislation into practice, President Barack Obama issued such a directive himself. He also issued a "signing statement" in which he objected to provisions of the bill that he said the Justice Department had advised "raise constitutional concerns." Among them are provisions that Obama said would "unduly interfere" with his authority in the foreign affairs arena by directing him how to proceed, or not to, in negotiations and discussions with international organizations and foreign governments. Another provision, Obama said, would limit his discretion to choose who performs specific functions in military missions.


Obama Signs Spending Bill, Calls for Earmark Guidelines 11 Mar 2009 President Obama today signed what he called an "imperfect" spending bill to keep the government running even though it contains thousands of lawmakers' pet projects, but he called for more rigorous review of future projects, known as earmarks, that are designated by individual legislators for their states or districts.


Mega barf alert! Administration to Ask Congress to Expand Funds Available to IMF 11 Mar 2009 The Obama administration is planning to ask Congress to expand the United States' primary line of credit to the International Monetary Fund from about $10 billion to $100 billion to boost emergency support for struggling economies around the world, Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner said today.


AIG's Small London Office May Have Lost $500B --Feds, Brits Probe AIG's London Office on $500B Losses 10 Mar 2009 Ground zero for AIG's spectacular implosion, which has soaked up more federal bailout money than any other entity, appears to have been a small London branch office that may have lost nearly half a trillion dollars in bad deals. The disastrous deals were built up in a decade and, when the crisis hit, the man who ran the unit for the last eight years retired after making $280 million for himself and leaving with a $1 million-a-month consulting contract.


Freddie Mac seeks $30.8B in US aid after 4Q loss 11 Mar 2009 Freddie Mac said Wednesday it will ask the government for nearly $31 billion in additional aid after posting a gargantuan loss of more than $50 billion last year as the U.S. housing market worsened. The mortgage finance company posted a loss of $23.9 billion, or $7.37 per share, in the fourth quarter of 2008.


Minnesota Bank Asks Why It Pays for Wall Street Greed 06 Mar 2009 TCF Financial Corp., the Wayzata, Minnesota-based bank that never made a subprime loan and hasn’t lost money since 1995, is asking why it should help clean up the mess made by Wall Street. "I’m kind of bitter," said William Cooper, chief executive officer of the 448-branch bank, adding that over the years TCF has invested about $1 billion in the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.'s fund that guarantees bank deposits. "We pay for the excesses of our competitor over and over again."


US: Congressional Democrats balk at rescinding tax cuts for the rich By Bill Van Auken 11 Mar 2009 Elements of the Obama administration's $3.55 trillion 2010 budget proposal are facing stiff opposition from leading congressional Democrats who are balking at attempts to rescind tax cuts for the top 1 percent of the population and other measures seen as impinging on corporate profits.


Fast-growing Western U.S. cities face water crisis 10 Mar 2009 Built in the Mojave Desert, Las Vegas leads Western U.S. cities scrambling to slash water consumption, increase recycling and squeeze more from underground aquifers as long-reliable surface water sources dry up. From handing out fines for leaky sprinklers to charging homeowners high rates for high use, water officials in the U.S. West are chasing down squandered water one gallon at a time. [See: Drought 'Oddities'.]


Sea levels rising twice as fast as predicted --Melting ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica force UN scientists to issue dramatic warning 11 Mar 2009 Sea levels are predicted to rise twice as fast as was forecast by the United Nations only two years ago, threatening hundreds of millions of people with catastrophe, scientists said yesterday in a dramatic new warning about climate change. Rapidly melting ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are likely to push up sea levels by a metre or more by 2100, swamping coastal cities and obliterating the living space of 600 million people who live in deltas, low-lying areas and small island states.


 Guantanamo cases proceed despite Obama freeze --Military lawyers are still filing legal documents in other cases in anticipation that the Guantanamo 'trials' will resume as soon as Obama's freeze order expires on May 20. 10 Mar 2009 The Guantanamo war crimes trials remain officially frozen while U.S. President Barack Obama weighs how to proceed with the terrorism prosecutions but several of the cases are still very much in motion. The chief judge in the Guantanamo court, Army Col. Stephen Henley, ordered the public release on Tuesday of a document in which five defendants boastfully repeated their claims of guilt in plotting the [Bush-Cheney] September 11, 2001 attacks.


US army brass prepare for quick getaway from Iraq 10 Mar 2009 US Military officials in Iraq have said they want a speedy withdrawal of most American troops by President Barack Obama's deadline at the end of August 2010. The second-ranking US military commander in Iraq, Lieutenant General Lloyd Austin, has said he expects to keep about 130,000 American troops in the country through the end of this year, when Iraq has a series of 'elections' planned, but then wants to make a quick exit.


Interpol examining case for arrest of 25 Israelis 10 Mar 2009 Interpol has confirmed that Iran has asked it for help in tracking down 25 senior Israeli officials involved in the recent war on Gaza. Tehran Chief Prosecutor Saeed Mortazavi announced earlier that Iran had asked Interpol to issue international arrest warrants for 25 Israelis charged with committing war crimes during Tel Aviv's Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip.


Bush 'executive assassination ring' reported directly to Cheney office: Seymour Hersh 11 Mar 2009 At a "Great Conversations" event at the University of Minnesota last night, investigative reporter Seymour Hersh talked about new alleged instances of domestic spying by the CIA, and about an ongoing covert military operation that he called an "executive assassination ring." Moderator U of M Political Scientist Larry Jacobs asked Hersh if presidents [get] drawn into improper covert actions that exceed their constitutional powers. Hersh replied, "Yuh. After 9/11... the Central Intelligence Agency was very deeply involved in domestic activities against people they thought to be enemies of the state. Without any legal authority for it... the Joint Special Operations Command -- JSOC it’s called. It is a special wing of our special operations community that is set up independently. They do not report to anybody, except in the Bush-Cheney days, they reported directly to the Cheney office. They did not report to the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff or to Mr. [Robert] Gates, the secretary of defense. They reported directly to him. ... Congress has no oversight of it. It's an executive assassination ring essentially, and it's been going on and on and on... Under President [sic] Bush's authority, they've been going into countries, not talking to the ambassador or the CIA station chief, and finding people on a list and executing them and leaving. That’s been going on, in the name of all of us. It's complicated because the guys doing it are not murderers, and yet they are committing what we would normally call murder."




Conservatives Love Porn -- Surprised? You Shouldn't Be
By Amanda Marcotte, RH Reality Check
Lots of porn dovetails nicely with the conservative view on sex: that good girls dislike sex and bad girls who get down don't deserve respect. Read more »


America Is a Dangerous Vigilante, Heroes Are Sociopaths: The Not-So-Mythical World of 'Watchmen'
By Michael Dudley, AlterNet
"Watchmen" depicts what happens when an individual or a nation assumes unwarranted and unlimited powers. Read more




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