Saturday, March 08, 2003
Bush’s wake-up call a snooze alarm HAVE EVER a people been led more listlessly into war?
Friday, March 07, 2003
What will happen after the war?
Both Iraq and the UN Security Council are under attack. "On the basis of the information publicly available, there is no justification under international law for the use of military force against Iraq," write sixteen leading professors of international law in an open letter to Tony Blair, published today in the Guardian. [...]
The way the "Great Powers" all too often put a stranglehold on less powerful nations to get UN resolutions accepted, rejected or to get a resolution text changed to their liking, can make people sceptical about the proper functioning of the UN. Not only the debate about whether or not to attack Iraq, also the rather confusing debate about whether or not the international community is applying double standards - "using" the UN against Iraq but not against Israel - makes this all too clear. (Concerning double standards and Iraq-Israel: the question is not only to which chapters the concerned Security Council resolutions refer, the question is also how those resolutions were originally conceived.)
Thursday, March 06, 2003
2 articles on the neocon warhawk cabal behind Bush:
Right takes centre stage
The American Enterprise Institute is the most important rightwing thinktank in the US and, with assets of almost $36m (£23m) and an annual income of around $24m from (mainly anonymous) benefactors, it is probably the wealthiest, too. Among other things, it has been highly influential in promoting the "zap Iraq" policy.
Foremost among the great AEI minds tapped by Mr Bush is Richard Perle, chairman of the defence policy board at the Pentagon and chief architect of the "creative destruction" project to reshape the Middle East, starting with the $90bn invasion of Iraq.
Mr Peril's project for transforming the Middle East dates back to 1996, and a paper entitled "A clean break: a new strategy for securing the realm".
Intended as a political blueprint for the incoming government of Binyamin Netanyahu, it examined various ways in which Israel could "shape its strategic environment", beginning with the removal of Saddam Hussein and the installation of a monarchy in Baghdad.
Analysis: Power Americana
It is worth going back to a project called the New American Century set up in 1997.
Founded by two commentators - William Kristol and Robert Kagan - it laid the philosophical groundwork for what was to come.
A number of its sympathisers later joined the Bush administration, including two of the leading hawks, Paul Wolfowitz and John Bolton.
In a book called "The War over Iraq: Saddam's Tyranny and America's Mission", William Kristol, joined this time by Lawrence F Kaplan, stated: "The complacent assumptions of the post-Cold War era were destroyed on September 11.
"If America does not shape this new epoch, we can be sure that others will shape it for us - in ways that neither further our interests nor reflect our ideas."
The strange story of Sheikh Khalid Muhammad
It is said that Khalid was the chief/key planner of 9/11 attacks? But wasn't that attributed to Osama Bin Laden? But wait! It was not too long ago that it was claimed that "key planner of the attacks on World Trade Centre and the Pentagon, Ramzi Bin al-Shibh" was arrested.
A more troubling problem is that it was reported by both American and Pakistani authorities back in September 2002 that Sheikh Khalid Muhammad was killed in a raid. The reason we remember him vividly was the way his death was dramatized. He was reported as writing words on a wall with his own blood as he was dying.
So, maybe all this very confusing to an average buch of people like us, but perhaps someone can tell us who the real Sheikh Khalid Muhammad is? How can Sheikh Khalid Muhammad be in America, Pakistan and Kuwait at the same time? If he died in the gun battle on Sept 15, 2002 in Karachi, who has been raided and arrested on March 3, 2003?
Richard Dawkins has strong views on many topics here is his take on Bush and the upcoming war.
"In that post-war climate of seething hostility, are we, in Britain, going to let ourselves be identified, throughout the world, with this uncouth fundamentalist redneck?"...
"This is George Bush's war. His motives and his timing have an internal American rationale. Bush is so unswerving in his thirst for war that Saddam has even less incentive to disarm than Blair's paradox would suggest. Cowboy Bush is saying, in effect, "Stick your hands up, drop your weapons, and I'll shoot you anyway."
This is a great read don't miss it.
Of all the images associated with the occupied Palestinian territories of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, extreme hunger is not the first to leap to mind. It is more likely to be the usual television pictures of tanks and guns, angry crowds and stone-throwing youths.
But according to UN figures, children in Gaza are today as seriously malnourished as children in Congo and Zimbabwe. Malnourishment in the occupied Palestinian territories is getting worse, and it is an entirely man-made problem.
Bush will face media Thursday night
Also see: BUSH MAKES THE CALL
President Bush will have a White House news conference Thursday night at a crucial junction of the war on terror and a showdown with Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
Privacy Activist Takes on Delta
Also see: Lawyer Arrested While Using Internet
Hell, no, Bill won't go. And he doesn't want anyone else to go either, if their travel plans involve Delta Airlines.
ABC's Nightline exposes PNAC's plans for a New World Order
Anybody watch a little show called Nightline tonight? There was a segment entitled "The Plan" in which exposed a small group of elites (PNAC) dictating foreign policy in a quest for global domination.
"The Project for the New American Century. Never heard of it? Well, don't feel bad. Few have. But have you heard of Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld or Paul Wolfowitz? Back in 1997, those three out-of-office politicians and several other like-minded, mostly conservatives, were frustrated with American foreign policy. So they formed this new organization and a year later wrote a letter to then-President Bill Clinton calling for a "comprehensive political and military strategy for bringing down Saddam and his regime."Incredible. Ted Kopel said: "This story has all the makings of a conspiracy theory, except that it's true and real and happening right now."
My impression was that this program was simultaneously an exposé and a sales presentation. They now appear to want this all out in the open, so the blame for any potential failures will be taken off of the president.
Wednesday, March 05, 2003
Dear Mr. President,
Please bomb Seattle.
Doing this would give all Americans a far healthier respect for the new American empire that you are embarking upon. You see, the problem with obliterating Baghdad and its five million people is that they're just too far away. For most Americans, the handiwork of your genius is simply too abstract to fully appreciate. However, take out a place like Seattle - and it becomes much more real... (via)
Very groovy when an academic literary critic of stucturalist-post-modernist ilk gets to the point-and really nails it. As with Terry Eagleton in the Guardian on the linguistics and politics of fundamentalist literalism, "theirs" and ours. (thanks to Wood s lot)
American Embassador resignation letter:
What follows is a letter of resignation written by John Brady Kiesling, a member of Bush's Foreign Service Corps and Political Counselor to the American embassy in reece. Kiesling has been a diplomat for twenty years, a civil servant to four Presidents. The letter below, delivered to Secretary of State Colin Powell, is quite possibly the most eloquent statement of dissent thus far put forth regarding the issue of Iraq. The New York Times story which reports on this remarkable event can be found after Kiesling's letter.
Dear Mr. Secretary:
I am writing you to submit my resignation from the Foreign Service of
the United States and from my position as Political Counselor in U.S. Embassy
Athens, effective March 7. I do so with a heavy heart. The baggage of my
upbringing included a felt obligation to give something back to my country.
Service as a U.S. diplomat was a dream job. I was paid to understand foreign
languages and cultures, to seek out diplomats, politicians, scholars and
journalists, and to persuade them that U.S. interests and theirs
fundamentally coincided. My faith in my country and its values was the most
powerful weapon in my diplomatic arsenal.
It is inevitable that during twenty years with the State Department I
would become more sophisticated and cynical about the narrow and selfish
bureaucratic motives that sometimes shaped our policies. Human nature is what
it is, and I was rewarded and promoted for understanding human nature. But
until this Administration it had been possible to believe that by upholding
the policies of my president I was also upholding the interests of the
American people and the world. I believe it no longer.
The policies we are now asked to advance are incompatible not only with
American values but also with American interests. Our fervent pursuit of war
with Iraq is driving us to squander the international legitimacy that has
been America’s most potent weapon of both offense and defense since the days
of Woodrow Wilson. We have begun to dismantle the largest and most effective
web of international relationships the world has ever known. Our current
course will bring instability and danger, not security.
The sacrifice of global interests to domestic politics and to
bureaucratic self-interest is nothing new, and it is certainly not a uniquely
American problem. Still, we have not seen such systematic distortion of
intelligence, such systematic manipulation of American opinion, since the war
in Vietnam. The September 11 tragedy left us stronger than before, rallying
around us a vast international coalition to cooperate for the first time in a
systematic way against the threat of terrorism. But rather than take credit
for those successes and build on them, this Administration has chosen to make
terrorism a domestic political tool, enlisting a scattered and largely
defeated Al Qaeda as its bureaucratic ally. We spread disproportionate terror
and confusion in the public mind, arbitrarily linking the unrelated problems
of terrorism and Iraq. The result, and perhaps the motive, is to justify a
vast misallocation of shrinking public wealth to the military and to weaken
the safeguards that protect American citizens from the heavy hand of
government. September 11 did not do as much damage to the fabric of American
society as we seem determined to so to ourselves. Is the Russia of the late
Romanovs really our model, a selfish, superstitious empire thrashing toward
self-destruction in the name of a doomed status quo?
We should ask ourselves why we have failed to persuade more of the world
that a war with Iraq is necessary. We have over the past two years done too
much to assert to our world partners that narrow and mercenary U.S. interests
override the cherished values of our partners. Even where our aims were not
in question, our consistency is at issue. The model of Afghanistan is little
comfort to allies wondering on what basis we plan to rebuild the Middle East,
and in whose image and interests. Have we indeed become blind, as Russia is
blind in Chechnya, as Israel is blind in the Occupied Territories, to our own
advice, that overwhelming military power is not the answer to terrorism?
After the shambles of post-war Iraq joins the shambles in Grozny and
Ramallah, it will be a brave foreigner who forms ranks with Micronesia to
follow where we lead.
We have a coalition still, a good one. The loyalty of many of our
friends is impressive, a tribute to American moral capital built up over a
century. But our closest allies are persuaded less that war is justified than
that it would be perilous to allow the U.S. to drift into complete solipsism.
Loyalty should be reciprocal. Why does our President condone the swaggering
and contemptuous approach to our friends and allies this Administration is
fostering, including among its most senior officials. Has “oderint dum
metuant” really become our motto?
I urge you to listen to America’s friends around the world. Even here in
Greece, purported hotbed of European anti-Americanism, we have more and
closer friends than the American newspaper reader can possibly imagine. Even
when they complain about American arrogance, Greeks know that the world is a
difficult and dangerous place, and they want a strong international system,
with the U.S. and EU in close partnership. When our friends are afraid of us
rather than for us, it is time to worry. And now they are afraid. Who will
tell them convincingly that the United States is as it was, a beacon of
liberty, security, and justice for the planet?
Mr. Secretary, I have enormous respect for your character and ability.
You have preserved more international credibility for us than our policy
deserves, and salvaged something positive from the excesses of an ideological
and self-serving Administration. But your loyalty to the President goes too
far. We are straining beyond its limits an international system we built with
such toil and treasure, a web of laws, treaties, organizations, and shared
values that sets limits on our foes far more effectively than it ever
constrained America’s ability to defend its interests.
I am resigning because I have tried and failed to reconcile my
conscience with my ability to represent the current U.S. Administration. I
have confidence that our democratic process is ultimately self-correcting,
and hope that in a small way I can contribute from outside to shaping
policies that better serve the security and prosperity of the American people
and the world we share.
John Brady Kiesling
NEW YORK TIMES, Thursday 27 February 2003
UNITED NATIONS — A career diplomat who has served in United States
embassies from Tel Aviv to Casablanca to Yerevan resigned this week in
protest against the country's policies on Iraq.
The diplomat, John Brady Kiesling, the political counselor at the United
States Embassy in Athens, said in his resignation letter, "Our fervent
pursuit of war with Iraq is driving us to squander the international
legitimacy that has been America's most potent weapon of both offense and
defense since the days of Woodrow Wilson."
Mr. Kiesling, 45, who has been a diplomat for about 20 years, said in a
telephone interview tonight that he faxed the letter to Secretary of State
Colin L, Powell on Monday after informing Thomas Miller, the ambassador in
Athens, of his decision.
He said he had acted alone, but "I've been comforted by the expressions
of support I've gotten afterward" from colleagues.
"No one has any illusions that the policy will be changed," he said.
"Too much has been invested in the war."
Louis Fintor, a State Department spokesman, said he had no information
on Mr. Kiesling's decision and it was department policy not to comment on
In his letter, a copy of which was provided to The New York Times by a
friend of Mr. Kiesling's, the diplomat wrote Mr. Powell: "We should ask
ourselves why we have failed to persuade more of the world that a war with
Iraq is necessary. We have over the past two years done too much to assert to
our world partners that narrow and mercenary U.S. interests override the
cherished values of our partners."
His letter continued: "Even where our aims were not in question, our
consistency is at issue. The model of Afghanistan is little comfort to allies
wondering on what basis we plan to rebuild the Middle East, and in whose
image and interests."
It is rare but not unheard-of for a diplomat, immersed in the State
Department's culture of public support for policy, regardless of private
feelings, to resign with this kind of public blast. From 1992 to 1994, five
State Department officials quit out of frustration with the Clinton
administration's Balkans policy.
Asked if his views were widely shared among his diplomatic colleagues,
Mr. Kiesling said: "No one of my colleagues is comfortable with our policy.
Everyone is moving ahead with it as good and loyal. The State Department is
loaded with people who want to play the team game — we have a very strong
premium on loyalty."
Roma....Guerra, il Papa invita al digiuno.... By the Pope's request, today is A Day Of Fasting. Of course, being Ash Wednesday, it is also a Catholic tradition. But today in particular, the Pope has asked people not to eat as a means of protesting against the war in Iraq. I don't know how fasting can help stop the war but I do believe that going one day without food can help one reflect on how it must be to go without food on a daily basis not out of choice but simply because there's no food.
Digiuno, pacifisti con il Papa fiaccolate in tutt'Italia
related: Mormons believe that fasting and prayer together make them more receptive to God's influence and helps them to focus on spiritual things--The institution of fasting in Islam came after the institution of prayer--The Miracles of Fasting--Ramadan The month of fasting--Healing through Fasting --SENSE OF FASTING (Spiritual aspects) --THE WISDOM BEHIND FASTING--
Tuesday, March 04, 2003
Report: Iraq war in 10 days
'It will be soon, it will be swift and it will be short'
The Heritage Foundation: Research: Understanding Islam and the Radicals
This is a well-researched and well-written article from the Heritage Foundation that attempts to explain Islamic history for a Western audience, and addresses the major issues in current and past Islamic thinking.
Monday, March 03, 2003
Israeli Forces Storm Gaza Refugee Camp; 8 Killed
a 33-year-old pregnant woman was killed by falling debris when the army blew up a militant's house, and gunfire killed a 13-year-old boy. At least 40 Palestinians were wounded in the operation, which began when undercover troops infiltrated the camp and was followed by a tank incursion. The raid ended after dawn, with at least a dozen families made homeless as their homes were destroyed without warning.
For on the ground reporting on this topic, turn to MidEast log-- the daily reports of an American in Gaza.
Announcing the debut of the New World Disorder Magazine!
Using such filters as interviews, theory, investigative articles and art, New World Disorder Magazine will document, decode and create the fissures and cracks in what passes for consensus reality as it fragments deliriously speeding towards whatever singularity or apocalypse awaits at the end of time.
Confusion is Next: An Interview with R. U. Sirius
Cyber-visionary and altered-statesman R. U. Sirius discusses weird drug trips, radical politics, his new book Counterculture Through the Ages: From Abraham to Acid House and answers the eternal question: “What do you like better? Hot dogs or hamburgers?”
Room 55, the Hotel van Onna, Amsterdam
Wisdom’s Maw author Todd Brendan Fahey recounts an incredible night in Amsterdam in which he encounters the Great Cosmic Overmind and its infinite wisdom and grace.
The Pope of Chaos Magick’s Address: An Interview with Peter Carroll
Chaos mage and writer Peter J. Carroll ruminates on such topics as sigil casting, Saddam, the new dark age, artificial intelligence, aliens and how the hell does a wizard earn a living and maintain individuality in this age of materialism and mass conformity?
Manifesto in Hypertext
Radical writer and blogger Dr. Menlo’s revolutionary manifesto about the perpetual struggle from liberation and tyranny … in the age of the internet.
Psychedelic Spirituality, the Manchurian Candidate and Electromagnetic Terror: An Interview with Todd Brendan Fahey
Far-right operative and gonzo journalist Todd Brendan Fahey raps with NWD about psychedelics and their relationship to religion, spirituality and personal change, how he was possibly electromagnetically zapped for revealing that John McCain may be the Manchurian Candidate and mind-bending strangeness at the Moonie-owned New Yorker Hotel during the disinfo.com convention.
Krishna, Oppenheimer, the bomb, the illusory nature of matter and a conflicted 20-something intertwine in Chris Eaket’s play about a writer’s quest for self-actualization.
Generation U and Lifestyles of the Cloned and (In)famous
New World Disorder editor Jason Lubyk rants about the new youth culture that will be created in this time of war and societal/political/economic chaos and investigates the crackpots who want to clone (in)famous persona such as Saddam, Lady Di, Hitler, Lenin and Dracula, who in the age of Rael may just succeed …
(and big thanks to Dr. Menlo for designing the site)
Sunday, March 02, 2003
If It Happened Here
Except for the tolling of church bells, the city is quiet, and the streets are empty of everything but occasional emergency vehicles and the carcasses of dead birds. Most people huddle behind windows and doors sealed tight with duct tape, watching continuous news coverage on television or listening to "America the Beautiful" and "Amazing Grace" endlessly replayed on the radio. A cable channel plays nothing but prayer services for Los Angeles, broadcast from cathedrals and temples around the world. (via)
Bretton Barber, a high school junior in Dearborn Heights, Mich., was sent home from school on Feb. 17 for wearing a T- shirt with a picture of President Bush and the words "International Terrorist." But Barber, well versed in civil liberty laws, is fighting the decision.
Segway Creator Unveils Hope For Millions: Premieres Portable Water Purifier
. . . Last year, a World Health Organization report said more than 1 billion people, mostly in Africa and Asia, lack access to safe water.
Revealed: US dirty tricks to win vote on Iraq war
Secret document details American plan to bug phones and emails of key Security Council members
The United States is conducting a secret 'dirty tricks' campaign against UN Security Council delegations in New York as part of its battle to win votes in favour of war against Iraq.