American Samizdat Guernica
Saturday, July 26, 2003
. . . and he won't be appearing on Fox with Alan Colmes, either . . .
The Bush Wahabis demand arms money from a fucking Quaker! Un-fucking-believable.

A new low-water mark, for sure!
Friday, July 25, 2003
A Christian lobbying group fighting the proposed importation of low-cost prescription drugs has received behind-the-scenes help from the drug industry, the latest example of pharmaceutical companies trying to influence Congress clandestinely.

The Traditional Values Coalition, which bills itself as a Christian advocacy group representing 43,000 churches, has mailed to the districts of several conservative House Republicans this sharply disputed warning: Legislation to allow the importation of U.S.-made pharmaceuticals from Canada and Europe might make RU-486, called the "abortion pill," as easy to get as aspirin.

The Traditional Values Coalition (TVC) portrays its campaign as a moral fight for the "sanctity of life." Documents provided to The Washington Post, however, show that drug lobbyists played a key role in crafting its argument and in disseminating the information to lawmakers. Pharmaceutical companies oppose the legislation -- which would legalize the reimportation of U.S.-made prescription drugs that sell for less in Canada than in the United States -- not over abortion but because it would erode their profits.


A recent TVC letter sent to Congress was signed by the coalition's executive director, Andrea Sheldon Lafferty. It was originally drafted, however, by Tony Rudy, a lobbyist for pharmaceutical companies and a former top aide to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.), computer records show. Lafferty also circulated a memo -- linking the legislation to RU-486's availability -- that was drafted by Bruce Kuhlik, a senior vice president at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), a trade group funded by the nation's biggest pharmaceutical firms.
Thursday, July 24, 2003
Qais al-Salman is just the sort of guy the US ambassador Paul Bremer and his dead-end assistants need now. He hated Saddam, fled Iraq in 1976, then returned after the "liberation" with a briefcase literally full of plans to help in the restoration of his country's infrastructure and water purification system.

He's an engineer who has worked in Africa, Asia and Europe. He is a Danish citizen. He speaks good English. He even likes America. Or did until 6 June this year.

That day he was travelling in Abu Nawas Street when his car came under American fire. He says he never saw a checkpoint. Bullets hit the tyres and his driver and another passenger ran for their lives. Qais al-Salman stood meekly beside the vehicle. He was carrying his Danish passport, Danish driving licence and medical records.

He was put in Tent B, a vast canvas room containing up to 130 prisoners. "There were different classes of people there," Qais al-Salman says. "There were people of high culture, doctors and university people, and there were the most dirty, animal people, thieves and criminals the like of which I never saw before.

"In the morning, I was taken for interrogation before an American military intelligence officer. I showed him letters involving me in US aid projects . He pinned a label on my shirt. It read, Suspected Assassin'."

Qais Al-Salman was given no water to wash in, and after trying to explain his innocence to a second interrogator, he went on hunger strike. No formal charges were made against him. There were no rules for the American jailers.

"Some soldiers drove me back to Baghdad after 33 days in that camp," Qais al-Salman says. "They dropped me in Rashid Street and gave me back my documents and Danish passport and they said, Sorry'."
Congressional joint inquiry report on 9/11 now available
Via the FAS Project on Government Secrecy:

A declassified version of the congressional joint inquiry report on the September 11 terrorist attacks was released this afternoon following an arduous seven-month declassification process.

A copy of the 858 page document (in a large 6.5 MB PDF file) is posted here:

Of particular interest to Secrecy News readers may be the final Appendix on "Access Limitations Encountered by the Joint Inquiry."

It describes a number of documents or topical areas to which congressional investigators were denied access. These included the President's Daily Brief, reports on foreign liaison relationships, information on intelligence budget requests, and more. On other crucial topics, congressional access was limited or delayed. This Appendix appears at pages 834-858 of the report.

Another item of special interest is a newly released General Accounting Office (GAO) analysis of the October 2001 anthrax attacks. The December 2002 GAO assessment had been restricted as "Limited Official Use Only." It is now published at pages 808-822 of the report.
The report can also be downloaded here, in different sections.
WASHINGTON, July 23 (UPI) -- The report of the joint congressional inquiry into the suicide hijackings on Sept. 11, 2001, to be published Thursday, reveals U.S. intelligence had no evidence that the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein was involved in the attacks, or that it had supported al-Qaida, United Press International has learned.

"The report shows there is no link between Iraq and 9-11," said a government official who has seen the report.

Former Democratic Georgia Sen. Max Cleland, who was a member of the joint congressional committee that produced the report, confirmed the official's statement.
Compare this to Dr. Hitchens holding forth on CNBC on July 23 [italics mine]:
Mr. HITCHENS: Actually, I have to correct you ...(unintelligible), David [Shaw, who mentioned the Administration's link of "al-Qaida and Saddam Hussein in the September 11th attack "], I'm sorry. The administration never said Saddam Hussein or the Ba'ath Party was behind the September 11th attack. There's been a long-standing...

Mr. SHAW: Oh, come on. Talked about the meeting, the alleged meeting in Prague?

Mr. HITCHENS: They never did say that. Just they said there was, as there has been, a long-standing relationship between al-Qaida and Saddam's intelligence sources.


Mr. HITCHENS: Oh, no, I couldn't agree with you more. I mean, I'll phrase it as if I disagree with David. I mean, there are other bad regimes in the world, but there aren't ones that have violated the Genocide Convention against their own people twice, with the Marsh Arabs and the Kurds, invaded two neighboring countries, fooled around with the non-proliferation treaty, to put it no higher and, I mean, a regular harbor for every terrorist group in the area, including al-Qaida.
The Rumsfield-Cheney axis has self-destructed right in front of our eyes, along with the once-proud Perle-Wolfowitz bund that is turning to wax. They somehow managed to blow it all, like a gang of kids on a looting spree, between January and July, or even less. It is genuinely incredible. The U.S. Treasury is empty, we are losing that stupid, fraudulent chickencrap War in Iraq, and every country in the world except a handful of Corrupt Brits despises us. We are losers, and that is the one unforgiveable sin in America.

Beyond that, we have lost the respect of the world and lost two disastrous wars in three years. Afghanistan is lost, Iraq is a permanent war Zone, our national Economy is crashing all around us, the Pentagon's "war strategy" has failed miserably, nobody has any money to spend, and our once-mighty U.S. America is paralyzed by Mutinies in Iraq and even Fort Bragg.

The American nation is in the worst condition I can remember in my lifetime, and our prospects for the immediate future are even worse. I am surprised and embarrassed to be a part of the first American generation to leave the country in far worse shape than it was when we first came into it. Our highway system is crumbling, our police are dishonest, our children are poor, our vaunted Social Security, once the envy of the world, has been looted and neglected and destroyed by the same gang of ignorant greed-crazed bastards who brought us Vietnam, Afghanistan, the disastrous Gaza Strip and ignominious defeat all over the world. [more]

via NWD
Amnesty has said thousands are held in prisons run by U.S. troops. They include Abu Ghraib, one the most feared jails under Saddam, and Camp Cropper near Baghdad's airport.

The human rights group said it had received several reports of cases of detainees who have died in custody, "mostly as a result of shooting by members of the coalition forces." [more]
"We found some stunning, stunning flaws," said Aviel D. Rubin, technical director of the Information Security Institute at Johns Hopkins University, who led a team that examined the software from Diebold Election Systems, which has about 33,000 voting machines operating in the United States.

The systems, in which voters are given computer-chip-bearing smart cards to operate the machines, could be tricked by anyone with $100 worth of computer equipment, said Adam Stubblefield, a co-author of the paper.

"With what we found, practically anyone in the country from a teenager on up could produce these smart cards that could allow someone to vote as many times as they like," Mr. Stubblefield said. [more]

id = drmenlo
password = samizdat
Wednesday, July 23, 2003
Many people have gotten involved in hacking together different .htaccess files and some include variants of the one we provided. As a result, there are areas all over with addresses and files, and also questions from users on how to restrict access.

We'd like to offer this area as a place where people can work together to develop legal methods that allow you the ability to restrict access from fair-use-infringing networks.
So the Bush admin gets revenge on Wilson by blowing his wife's cover--a treasonous offense if ever there was one, soldiers in Iraq who speak out about how much they can't stand 'Rummy' et. al are going to have their careers ended, yet UK scientist David Kelly who asserted that the Blair government had 'sexed up' it's Iraq dossier 'killed himself.' Here's a man who's in his fifties or sixties?, has been to Iraq before as a weapons inspector and allegedly was so good that Saddam hated him, and yet when he is asked questions by a panel of his own countrymen, he has a complete breakdown, walks into a nearby forest and slashes one wrist? Uh, no. Not buying it.

Going back to the Novak case, this is only further proof that we're dealing with a handful of people within the Bush admin who will stop at nothing, absolutely nothing to get what they want, and 'antiquated' ideals like democracy and freedom are nothing to them but handy buzzwords with which to mask their true intent. Truly despicable. They aren't fit to lead a Barbie tea party. Perhaps when we send 'em all to the Hague we can give them each a set of Legos in their cell and tell 'em to build themselves a new empire. Then the world would truly be a safer place. Even better, we could set up a cam in their cells and watch from all over the world as Monkeyboy throws temper tantrums, "Did you call my Daddy! Daddy always gets me out of these spots!" and Cheney rocks back and forth muttering to himself under his breath, while Rumsfeld paces and plots. Karl Rove sits on his bunk eating Mars bars, expressionless. Ashcroft hits his head against the wall for having 'thoughts' about that tight-assed guard who he is sure must work out.

Can you picture it?

The whole world would dance and sing. Visualize World Peace = Visualize the Cheney Gang Locked Up.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

As Matt Welch puts it: To what lengths will venal U.S. politicians go to subsidize American farmers, punish consumers, and keep poor Third World countries poor? Why, they will redefine the word "catfish," just for starters.
Monday, July 21, 2003
David Kelly was about to lead the British hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and had contacted former UN inspectors as recently as two weeks ago to sound them out about a new mission.

He was acting as the senior British scientific adviser to the Iraq Survey Group, the body set up by the US Government at the end of May to replace the United Nations weapons inspection regime.
Just 16 little words, eh? What about the rest of the SOTU?

John Dean takes a closer look and finds that the Niger fiasco "is merely indicative of larger problems, and troubling questions of potential and widespread criminality when taking the nation to war. It appears that not only the Niger uranium hoax, but most everything else that Bush said about Saddam Hussein's weapons was false, fabricated, exaggerated, or phony."
Last fall, the administration repeatedly warned in public of the danger that an unprovoked Iraqi President Saddam Hussein might give chemical or biological weapons to terrorists.

"Iraq could decide on any given day to provide a biological or chemical weapon to a terrorist group or individual terrorists," President Bush said in Cincinnati on Oct. 7. "Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints."

But declassified portions of a still-secret National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) released Friday by the White House show that at the time of the president's speech the U.S. intelligence community judged that possibility to be unlikely. In fact, the NIE, which began circulating Oct. 2, shows the intelligence services were much more worried that Hussein might give weapons to al Qaeda terrorists if he were facing death or capture and his government was collapsing after a military attack by the United States.


The declassified sections of the NIE were offered by the White House to rebut allegations that the administration had twisted prewar intelligence on Iraq's nuclear weapons program. The result, however, could be to raise more questions about whether the administration misrepresented the judgments of the intelligence services on another basis for going to war: the threat posed by Hussein as a source of weapons for terrorists.

The NIE's findings also raise concerns about the dangers posed by Hussein, who is believed to be in hiding, and the failure to find any of his alleged stocks of chemical and biological weapons. If such stocks exist, a hotly debated proposition, this is precisely the kind of dangerous situation the CIA and other intelligence services warned about last fall, administration officials said. A senior administration official said yesterday that the U.S. intelligence community does not know either "the extent to which Saddam Hussein has access or control" over the groups that are attacking U.S. forces, or the location of any possible hidden chemical or biological agents or weapons. Asked whether the former Iraqi leader would today use any chemical or biological weapons if he controlled them, the senior official said, "We would not put that past him to do whatever makes our lives miserable."

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