Thursday, May 21, 2009

Today’s Obama Followed By Cheney Speech Takes On A Lodge (v) Wilson Cast.

Today’s Obama Followed By Cheney Speech Takes On A Lodge (v) Wilson Cast.


If Woodrow Wilson had one implacable political foe, it was the Senator from Massachusetts, Henry Cabot Lodge. Lodge, heir to a shipping fortune, was a son of two wealthy Boston families - the Cabots and the Lodges. He was a blue-blooded Republican, conservative, not fond of immigrants, and determined to protect the sovereignty of the United States by defeating the League of Nations.

Nothing but waging a two front war in Iraq and Afghanistan, standing prepared to strike Iran and the acceptance of every act of torture and the continuation of such practices fully immunized from the force of law will satisfy him.  He will wage a singular battle against all else until he draws his last breath!

The battle between Lodge and Wilson literally took the lives of both men.


Judge Says US Can Hold Detainees Indefinitely | By Nedra Pickler


WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge says the United States can continue to hold some prisoners at Guantanamo Bay indefinitely without any charges.

U.S. District Judge John Bates' opinion issued Tuesday night limited the Obama administration's definition of who can be held. But he said Congress in the days after Sept. 11, 2001 gave the president the authority to hold anyone involved in planning, aiding or carrying out the terrorist attacks.

Bates' opinion comes amid increasing debate over whether President Barack Obama is going to release anyone from Guantanamo. Obama has promised to close the prison by January, but Senate Democrats say they will block the move until he comes up with a plan for the detainees.

Bates' opinion came in the case of several Guantanamo prisoners who are challenging their detention. ACLU attorney Jonathan Hafetz said the opinion "flouts the Constitution's prohibition against indefinite detention without charge."

"The decision wrongly concludes that terrorism suspects at Guantanamo may continue to languish in military detention rather than being prosecuted in our civilian courts," Hafetz said. "Like the president's recent decision to revive military commissions, this ruling perpetuates rather than ends the failed experiment in lawlessness that is Guantanamo."

Earlier this year, Bates ordered the Obama administration to give its definition of whom the United States can continue to hold at Guantanamo. The administration responded with a definition that was largely similar to the Bush administration's, drawing criticism from human rights advocates.

In his opinion, Bates said he agreed with the Obama administration that "the president has the authority to detain persons that the president determines planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, and persons who harbored those responsible for those attacks.

"The president also has the authority to detain persons who are or were part of Taliban or al-Qaida forces or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed (i.e., directly participated in) a belligerent act in aid of such enemy armed forces," Bates wrote.

But he said the Obama administration went beyond the law of war by including in its definition those who "supported" enemy forces.

"The court can find no authority in domestic law or the law of war, nor can the government point to any, to justify the concept of 'support' as a valid ground for detention," Bates wrote.

Last month, Bates ruled that prisoners at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan can challenge their detention, for the first time extending rights given to Guantanamo Bay detainees elsewhere in the world.


NBC: 4 arrested in plot to bomb NYC targets --Suspects were under heavy surveillance, authorities say 20 May 2009 Four men have been arrested in a plot to attack several targets in the New York City area, including synagogues, federal and local authorities told NBC News Wednesday. Authorities said the four men have long been under investigation and there was little danger they could actually have carried out their plan, NBC reported.


Investigators say the four, described as Black Muslims from the Bronx, had planned to place bombs at various targets. But New York city police and federal agents got wind of the plot and kept the men under careful surveillance.

NY Bomb Suspects Said to Have No Connections to Terror Groups

Bloomberg –

By Chris Dolmetsch and Edvard Pettersson May 21 (Bloomberg) -- The four men arrested last night on allegations they plotted to bomb a New York City synagogue and shoot down military planes were homegrown criminals with no connections to global terror ...


NYC Police: Terror Suspects Wanted To Commit Jihad


NEW YORK – Four men arrested after planting what they thought were explosives near two synagogues and plotting to shoot down a military plane were bent on carrying out a holy war against America, authorities said Thursday.


The suspects were arrested Wednesday night, shortly after planting a 37-pound mock explosive device in the trunk of a car outside the Riverdale Temple and two mock bombs in the backseat of a car outside the Riverdale Jewish Center, another synagogue a few blocks away, authorities said.


Police blocked their escape with an 18-wheel truck, smashing their tinted SUV windows and apprehending the unarmed suspects.


At a news conference outside the Riverdale Jewish Center in the Bronx, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly quoted one of the men as saying, "If Jews were killed in this attack ... that would be all right."


James Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams and Laguerre Payen, all of Newburgh, were charged with conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction within the United States and conspiracy to acquire and use anti-aircraft missiles, the U.S. attorney's office said.


"They stated that they wanted to commit jihad," Kelly said. "They were disturbed about what happened in Afghanistan and Pakistan, that Muslims were being killed."


Kelly said he believed the men knew each other through prison. They had long rap sheets for charges including drug possession and assault.


An official told The Associated Press that three of the men are converts to Islam. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss details of the investigation. Three of the defendants are U.S. citizens and one is of Haitian descent, officials said.


Payen occasionally attended a Newburgh mosque. His statements on Islam often had to be corrected, according to Assistant Imam Hamin Rashada, who met Payen through a program that helps prisoners re-enter society.


The defendants are due in federal court Thursday in suburban White Plains.

Acting U.S. Attorney Lev L. Dassin said the defendants planned to detonate a car with plastic explosives to destroy the synagogues.


They also planned to shoot Stinger surface-to-air guided missiles at planes at the Air National Guard base inNewburgh, about 70 miles north of New York City.


The FBI and other agencies monitored the men and provided an inactive missile and inert C-4 to an informant for the defendants.


The confidential informant who broke the case told Cromitie that he was involved with Jaish-e-Mohammed, a Pakistani terrorist group. It is one of several militant groups suspected of having links to Pakistani intelligence. Jaish set up training camps in Afghanistan under the Taliban and several senior operatives were close toOsama bin Laden.


Cromitie expressed interest in joining the group to "do jihad," according to a criminal complaint.


According to state Department of Correctional Services records, Payen was released on parole in August 2005 after serving just more than a year in prison for attempted assault in Rockland County.


Onta Williams served just more than a year in state prison for attempted criminal possession of a controlled substance in Orange County. He was released on parole in August 2003.


Cromitie, 44, has been in prison at least three times under three different names, prison records show.


He served two years on a drug sale conviction and was released on parole in 1991. Then, under the name ofDavid Anderson, he spent 2 1/2 years in prison for selling drugs in New York City before being paroled in 1996. Under the name James Crometie, he was convicted of selling drugs in a school zone in 2000 and spent almost four years in prison before being released on parole in 2004.


Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Kelly met privately with congregants inside the Riverdale Jewish Center Thursday.


"The shock and being floored was followed by relief," David Winter, executive director of the Riverdale Jewish Center, said afterward.


Bloomberg warned against stereotypes, emphasizing that the temple is open to people of all faiths, including a Muslim girl who sometimes prays there.


Kelly said the temple may have been chosen because of "convenience" — it is near a highway. He said the suspects had scouted the location twice before.


Kelly said the uniformed officers who flooded the neighborhood were there to improve residents' "comfort level," even though "No one was at risk. This was a very tightly controlled operation."


"It's a little scary being so close to home, but you have to just move on sometimes," said Maria Patuhas, 18, a senior at the Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy, across the street from the temple.


Nancy Harris Rouemy was alarmed when she learned the news from a neighbor, thinking: "Oh my God, that's my kid's school."


"I definitely paused" before taking her 4-year-old to the Riverdale Jewish Center. "However, the assurance is that the perps were caught and my son wouldn't be in danger," she said.


"It is so upsetting," agreed her husband, Isaac. "If it was an actual bomb, it would be a disaster. It's not just a synagogue. It's a school and there are senior citizens who come here too."


The arrests came after a nearly yearlong undercover operation that began in Newburgh. The defendants bought a digital camera at Wal-Mart to take pictures of targets, they spoke in code, and they expressed their hatred of Jews on several occasions, according to a criminal complaint.


The defendants, in their efforts to acquire weapons, dealt with the informant who was acting under law enforcement supervision, authorities said.


In June 2008, the informant met Cromitie in Newburgh and Cromitie complained that his parents had lived in Afghanistan and he was upset about the war there and that many Muslim people were being killed in Afghanistan and Pakistan by U.S. military forces, officials said.


Cromitie also expressed an interest in doing "something to America," they said in the complaint.


In October 2008, the informant began meeting with the defendants at a Newburgh house equipped with concealed video and audio equipment, the complaint said.

Beginning in April 2009, the four men selected the synagogues they intended to hit, it said. They also conducted surveillance of military planes at the Air National Guard Base, it said.


Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, issued a statement praising law enforcers "for their efforts in helping to prevent any harm to either Jewish institutions or to our nation's military."


"We repeat the American Muslim community's repudiation of bias-motivated crimes and of anyone who would falsely claim religious justification for violent actions," the statement said.


Rep. Peter King, the senior Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, was briefed on the case following the arrests.


"This was a long, well-planned investigation, and it shows how real the threat is from homegrown terrorists," said King, of New York.


The defendants were jailed Wednesday night. Reporters yelled questions at three of the four men — Cromitie and David and Onta Williams — as they were taken in handcuffs into the Metropolitan Correctional Center, but the men didn't respond.


Republican Ad: Nancy Pelosi (v) The CIA

On The View, Goldberg Calls Beck "Lying Sack Of Dog Mess" After He Admits He "Mischaracteriz[Ed]" Story


An Open Apology To Dkos Blogger Publicv

by snafubar

Wed May 20, 2009 at 08:13:08 PM PDT

I look back on my previous diary, and the comment that inspired it, and the thread that I so tenaciously unleashed my angst and I'm not really proud of it.

Well, I am proud of what I wrote; in the spirit of Jack Ryan at the end of Tom Clancy's "Clear and Present Danger" when he tells the president he will bring matters to the senate oversight committee:

"It gives me no pleasure to do it, sir"

But I want, I need - no I am begging - for you to realize what the Republican party is actually asking of this country, what they have been "angling" (per the Angler) for since 9/11:

Your country, as it was on September 10, 2001 and every day since, just wasn't up to the task.

There's no way the Republican platform can be seen any other way, and why we can't nail them to the wall with this and restore the honor and integrity that we once had for the right reasons, is the tragedy here.

Oh, yeah, the apology: below the fold, please.

snafubar's diary

This is a forum; it's a place where I can find eyeballs and brains to absorb and respond to what I think. I can't get that near my home. I made a choice at a very young age, for reasons that are too complex to explain here, that when everyone around me is not doing something that I believe should be done then, since I'm already an outcast and a loner, I'm the perfect person to lead the charge.

After all, if I already have few friends, who am I going to lose by fighting for a cause I believe in, or against one I abhorr? (the title of my manuscript is "Building Broken People", it's a story of how you take a white male from a middle-class family, give him everything that so many others will never have, and he still can't find a reason to wake up in the morning because he has no self confidence at all)

The Republican party wants you to believe that we are the greatest country in the history of mankind. One of the things that made us so great was our system of laws, based on a democratically ratified Constitution, which told the world who we were and what we stood for.

But if we had to subvert that Constitution to fight a war, what is it that we're standing on that makes us so great again? If you said, "Our Constitution", you failed, because we betrayed that already. And on the issue of war crimes, we subverted both the Geneva Convention common article V, and the Convention Against Torture.

And Dick Cheney and Republicans want you to believe we had "reasons".

(I'll save for another diary the question of how many other countries that Dick could feels should not be prosecuted or attacked for torturing US citizens or soldiers, as long as they can establish "reasons" or change the definitions of what "torture" means...)

Now follow me here, this is a wicked sharp turn into circle:

Cheney is afraid of setting a precedent that the POTUS can't be God during wartime, but he's not afraid that the United States will set precedent by throwing both middle fingers to the entire world that we, and we alone, can decide when we can violate the treaties we signed, and change the meaning of torture at will.

Cheney's got no problem with setting a precedent there.  

That sick bastard wants you to think that the real fear here is that by holding investigations, future presidents might not get "unvarnished advice" from their advisors; but he sees no conflict that he himself has set a precedent to the entire world that no law prevents anything. Worse still, we know by now that whether it was statistics on abstinence or CIA analysis on Iran or Iraq they didn't listen anyway if it wasn't what hey wanted to hear.

And so when publicv put up a diary that suggested we move on, it wasn't meant to be a personal attack on him/her as a person, as it was an overt, over-the-top declaration THAT THIS IS THE ISSUE OF OUR TIME. This country has prided itself for ever two centuries that we were the role model for all that is just and noble and sublime.

And now we're playing word games that would make George Orwell feel inadequate.

After all, if you can just cleverly parse a few key definitions, then "torture" becomes "enhanced interrogation techniques", "citizen" become "unlawful enemy combatant", and "Habeas Corpus" means not a goddamn thing.

Have you ever followed the circular logic in Cheney's latest arguments? He is afraid of "setting a precedent" that the President (Commander in Chief) can be second-guessed in wartime, or that his aides and advisors might be influenced by the 'chilling effect' of investigations and therefore not give the President their honest advice.

Next, we have the idea that "freedom" is what we're fighting for; "freedom" is what we were supposedly giving to the Iraqi's. And yet here at home, habeas corpus - The Great Writ, a stable of Western Civilization since the Magna Carta of 1215 - was suspended, and an American Citizen was held at Gitmo for years without privileges supposedly granted by the Bill of Rights, simply because the President declared him an "unlawful enemy combatant".

Well, hey, as I have gone many rounds with my neighbor to explain, if the only thing it takes to turn you from an American citizen with rights to a person who can be held without charge indefinitely is a fiat from the POTUS based on nothing more than his own capricious whim, then the thing that makes being a US citizen so special has just been "loopholed" to the point it's meaningless.

If that doesn't scare you, if that doesn't enrage you, if you think we can "get past" that , then I cannot fathom for what purpose you would have ever joined this website.

If I say I want George W. Bush and Dick Cheney to be executed for war crimes (after a trial, which ironically they never granted to any of the people they are being charged for committing war crimes against), then all the president has to do is read this blog, trace my IP address, and I can be disappeared. Suddenly I wake up one morning in a place that may or may not be in the US, and I am an "unlawful enemy combatant".

So after all that I've written here at Kos, am I a little worried?

At times. And it was in that spirit that I unloaded on publicv.

My excessive and obnoxious indignation on that day was not meant to be personal, but principled. We watched our most sacred and noble ideals be torn asunder for almost a decade, and it took this long for the fear to wear off and those who succumbed to it to find their conscience again.

And now we're going to give it back?

So that feeds on itself and I rant more.

Gerald Ford did not spare the United States from "it's Long national nightmare", he merely set a precedent that we would again someday suffer through one much worse. We cannot, we must not, follow that path again.

On the topic of War Crimes. Here's where the circular argument spins so fast you might get your hair caught in it, and where I unloaded so viciously on publicv.

There are at least three bodies of law; one that belongs to us, the other two are international treaties that we have signed, which defines war crimes. The only argument the United States seems to be making in it's defense of Dick Cheney and George W Bush and the rest of their administration is to haggle over semantics.

Semantics - what does a word actually mean?

Well if you're Frank Luntz (or Joseph Goebbels) it means whatever you want it to mean, as long as you can convince enough people to agree on your definition. And that's where my tagline comes from. Frank Luntz is a minister of propaganda, just like Joseph Goebbels, and simply because Goebbels was trying to sell his people on "the final solution" and Luntz is merely trying to get the Republican agenda to fly under the radar of single-issue voters who don't want any other issues to dissuade them from the party which backs the issue they like, there is no difference.

Subversion and distraction are both means to an end; so to say that Goebbels is a monster and Luntz is not because their goals are different is one thing, but none of that changes the surreal similarities in their tactics.  

If you're being honest, you don't need to be sneaky with definitions.

Case in point: Republicans want to to believe that Bill Clinton was a bad man and worthy of impeachment (but an impeachment with no consequences, if you noticed) because Clinton was so "slick" that he dared to suggest his guilt "depends on the definition of the word 'is'"

But the Republicans have been massaging the word "all" with equal duplicity.

"..all men are created equal, endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness".

Well, "All Men" did not mean "all", obviously, since it was legal to hold slaves until after the Civil War. Of course, we still legally treated  those same people like animals legally until 1965, and even today you will find people who believe skin color is a measure of a person.

All "Men" also literally meant women were excluded from such basic rights as holdng property and entering into contracts and voting until 1920; there were still laws on the books to define women differently than men until much later, and like skin color, you will still find people whose mindset has never changed.

So, at the risk of drawing attention to myself and having Kos declare that my MF'ing mouth is not doing his website any favors, I'll try to make my mom more proud of me by toning it down; and I'll try to help publicv feel comfortable turning off the lights at night by asking for his/her forgiveness:

I meant no harm. I apologize, and I was out of line to make it so personal.

However, in my defense, we're talking about the big issues now; this is torture, this is the Constitution and international treaties, and while we we stand in the face of a party who forgets the reason Abraham Lincoln is lauded is because he kept the country together while they fight to tear it apart, now is not the time to think we can right this ship by being polite.

Our opponent in these matters has taken their gloves off. It's time we realize that if we leave ours on, we may win the battle and lose the war. We have to take our gloves off and prove to the world again that America does indeed stand for the ideals that we constantly brag makes us so much better than they are.

And that means being honest with what was done in our name, and to stop falling for this idea that changing the name of something actually changes the something.

If Republicans think that "enhanced interrogation techniques" somehow means that torture was not torture, does that mean that Bill Clinton could have avoided his impeachment if he just called a blowjob "a very affectionate and long kiss by two lips that normally don't belong that far south"...???


In closing, I'm going to leave the following quote in as many places that the electrons will stick:

"When considering cruelties committed in the name of a free society, some are guilty, but all are responsible."

- Abraham Joshua Heschel 1907-1972

I'm sorry for my outburst, publicv, but this must be the issue of our age. I should not have made it personal.

White House Authorized Earliest Detainee Abuse, CIA Log Says

It is clear that increasingly abusive interrogation techniques were used on Abu Zubaydah, the first high-value detainee, in the months between his capture and the first Justice Department memo authorizing harsh interrogations. But the legal guidance that authorized those early interrogations remains shrouded in secrecy.

Dick Cheney Is Living Proof Of NWO Conspiracy

Posted on May 21, 2009 by garypatrickgarry

A headline caught my eye the other day coming from over in the thinly veiled illusion that most people still buy into as political “reality.” It was something about Dick Cheney and the new CEO of America, Inc. Mr. Obama squaring off in “dueling speeches” concerning what they like to call “terrorism.” (For the record, Cheney has done my country way more harm that anyone in the Middle East and is responsible for more American deaths than bin Laden, if he was even alive when 911 went down.)

My first thought was this: Cheney should be in prison, not afforded a stage by the media that is parallel to that of the newly elected, um, “president.” That he is a free man and still a significant voice on the political stage proves the fact that there is an international cabal of wealthy global elites who select the people who populate the world’s governments. They are not elected–they are selected.

If you aren’t too brainwashed, stupid or frightened to think straight, it is clear that Cheney is a treasonous mass murderer and a war criminal. He orchestrated the invasion of Iraq, based on lies, and made sure that Halliburton was a major beneficiary. Please remember that a hundred thousand innocent people have died over theredue to the decisions that Cheney and Bush embodied. This is incredibly heinous; don’t allow yourself to become desensitized to the value of human life. He approved torture, which is a war crime. His office outed the CIA agent Plame, and his Chief of Staff was convicted of a felony in the matter. He also conspired with the oil industry to shape U.S. energy policy.

Charles Manson has been in prison for a long time, but you know what? He was convicted of orchestrating the Tate-LaBianca killings–he wasn’t even there. Dick Cheney has orchestrated the deaths of over 100,000 human beings, but he is running around smugly challenging the present figurehead and undermining his modest objectives (like not torturing people) while looking forward to hanging out with Bob Weir and Mickey Hart at Bohemian Grove.

How can he get away with it? He is a good ol’ boy from the oil patch, Papa Bush’s Secretary of Defense, a Bohemian Grove brother and a member of the Trilateral Commission. He is one of the guys that makes the decisions that dictate terms to rest of the world.

I felt a ping from a guy spreading my post about Weir and Hart hanging out with guys like Donald Rumsfeld, the Bushes, and Cheney at Bohemian Grove. He was posting something to the effect of “I love conspiracy theories like the Bilderberg Group, but…” This is the problem. The Bilderberg Group and the Trilateral Commission are not “theories.” Their members shape policies and select the “leaders” of the world’s governments. These people are untouchable. A “made guy” like Cheney doesn’t even have to lay low. He can give the plebe Obama the finger in public and the “savior” can’t do shit about it.

Ask yourself how it is that the attendees of these meetings are the people who have been “making the news” all of your life, and before it for many of us? How naive can people be? How can anyone actually believe that we live in a free market, sovereign, free country whose leadership is democratically elected?

Dennis Kucinich, who is one a tiny handful of outsiders whose congressional district is smart enough to elect a real person, introduced Articles of Impeachment against Cheney in 2007. Numbers vary, but it looks like at least half of Americans wanted Cheney impeached. Impeachment is bad for the national image, you say? Um…I think Cheney was pretty happy to see Clinton impeached over quite a bit less.

Yet, the House Majority Leader, a Democrat, Ms. Pelosi, squashed Kucinich’s patriotic attempt instantly. Pelosi and Cheney serve the same masters.

It doesn’t matter that most Americans wanted impeachment and that the opposition party controlled both the House and the Senate. Cheney and Bush were following orders, and those who would be charged with oversight take their orders from the same people.

Every single person who talks politics in the media knows the truth. It is a great big charade, and I’m sure that people get a big laugh about it out at the Grove. Cheney is above the law and above Obama on the Illuminati pyramid. Isn’t it time that you took the red pill?

Obama says US prisons tough enough for detainees

Houston Chronicle 

By STEVEN R. HURST AP Writer © 2009 The Associated Press WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama forcefully defended his decision to close the Guantanamo detention camp Thursday and said some of the terror suspects held there would be brought to ...

Obama Defends Plans to Close Guantanamo Prison Washington Post

Obama 'to clear Guantanamo mess' BBC News

Voice of America - The Associated Press - Bloomberg -

all 4,420 news articles »


New York Times

Cheney sharply criticizes Obama on terrorism


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former Vice President Dick Cheney on Thursday sharply criticized President Barack Obama's handling of terrorism policy and defended harsh interrogation methods that Obama has labeled torture.

Cheney defends Bush's national security policies The Associated Press

RAW DATA: Text of Dick Cheney's National Security Speech at AEI FOXNews

NECN - Human Rights First - USA Today -

all 891 news articles »


New Terror Policy Approach

President Obama criticizes how the war on terror was conducted and proposes new tactics. » A 'mess'

Obama vs. Cheney's terror views (Video +)


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