American Samizdat Guernica
Saturday, October 11, 2003
In a shocking announcement, Rush Limbaugh admitted that he is addicted to government issue pills that cause him to be an arrogant, racist, truth-distorting, lying, hate-spewing shill for the state. He then checked himself into a rehab center to be de-programmed. Thousands of his loyal sheep bahhhhed, crushed their beer cans over their heads, cursed the wretched liberal media, cited a vast left-wing conspiracy, rubbed their Ann Coulter posters and turned over to the Fox Network for validation of their moral superiority.

President Bush praised Mr. Limbaugh for avoiding the military and leading the propaganda machine. ‘You know we live in a great country. A very forgiving country. A country that loves to see ignorant, arrogant, talentless, overrated, scrupleless, silver-spooned white men succeed. Look at me and my buddies! Anybody can succeed. Anybody can become president or CEO or mouth of the airwaves! It’s the greatest country in the world. We love you, Rush!’

Sean Hannity said: ‘Rush is an honorable man. It takes a lot of guts to admit you’ve made a mistake. You know we’re only human. We’re not gods.’

Bill O’Reilly replied: ‘Speak for yourself, Sean. I most certainly am. We don’t need no stupid pills to know the absolute truth. I’ve known the absolute truth since I was 7 years old. Just give me a Bible, a flag, a shotgun and an illegal maid…ummm…scratch that last remark.’

Neal Boortz bent over and replied: ‘Whatever Sean said. He has a bigger market.’

After several obscure references to ancient Roman masturbation techniques, Dennis Miller said: ‘I’ve tried those non-government issued drugs. All they did was make me wanna get laid and speak longingly of world peace. Kid’s stuff! Especially compared to this stuff Rush is taking. Man, now that’s good shit. Give me a good power trip any day!’

The recently jailed Tommy Chong replied: ‘Fuck. Looks like I’ve been taking the wrong shit.’

The Bush administration is proposing far-reaching changes to conservation policies that would allow hunters, circuses and the pet industry to kill, capture and import animals on the brink of extinction in other countries.

Giving Americans access to endangered animals, officials said, would feed the gigantic U.S. demand for live animals, skins, parts and trophies, and generate profits that would allow poor nations to pay for conservation of the remaining animals and their habitat. [more]
Now that the U.S. government's chief weapons inspector in Iraq has, in effect, confirmed an obvious truth -- that President George W. Bush and his closest advisers promoted a non-existent nuclear and chemical weapons threat from Iraq to justify a war -- an obvious question presents itself: Why aren't Americans talking seriously about impeachment?

After all, Mr. Bush now stands plausibly accused of the lofty crime of subverting the Constitution of the United States -- that is, lying to Congress about an imminent danger to the American people in order to collect enough votes to authorize his corporate/imperial project in Iraq. Yet, outside of a few brave remarks from Senator Robert Graham, and the considered opinion of Watergate stool pigeon John W. Dean, almost nobody dares speak the "I" word...[more]
Letters from hometown soldiers describing their successes rebuilding Iraq have been appearing in newspapers across the country as U.S. public opinion on the mission sours.

And all the letters are the same.

A Gannett News Service search found identical letters from different soldiers with the 2nd Battalion of the 503rd Airborne Infantry Regiment, also known as "The Rock," in 11 newspapers, including Snohomish, Wash.

...The five-paragraph letter talks about the soldiers' efforts to re-establish police and fire departments, and build water and sewer plants in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, where the unit is based.

"The quality of life and security for the citizens has been largely restored, and we are a large part of why that has happened," the letter reads.

It describes people waving at passing troops and children running up to shake their hands and say thank you.

It's not clear who wrote the letter or organized sending it to soldiers' hometown papers.
More on the story over at Counterspin Central. You can get a glimpse of a few of the letters by Googling up the phrase "I have been serving in Iraq for over five months now."
Friday, October 10, 2003
My writings here on the past may seem as though I'm anti-Israel (at least that's what some Israelis who have written to me tell me), but in reality, I actually hold Israel in high esteem as a state. It's just that I expect more from them than I do from their neighbors because they have an educated populace and live in a liberal democracy.

The book confirms that Israel's basic level of decency as a nation far exceeds that of its enemies, a fact that escapes partisans against Israel. The Israeli government and individual citizens of Israel have committed barbaric and cruel acts, but they treat their enemies (and friends) with far more respect than do their Arab neighbors. Based on my reading of the book, Israel's greatest sin at the time was a desire for territorial expansion. The great sin of the Arabs was being driven by a perverse hatred of Jews and Israel.
Thursday, October 09, 2003
A sort of mini-index of war profiteers. Again, for an online magazine Salon leaves something to be desired in the "creating resources that actually utilize the web" department, but the information is good.

The also discuss New Bridge Strategies, a company whose founding was met with some fanfare recently:

Late in September, the Washington newspaper The Hill reported that some of the president's closest political allies had created a new firm, New Bridge Strategies, whose main goal is to help corporations "evaluate and take advantage of business opportunities in the Middle East following the conclusion of the U.S.-led war in Iraq." The company, which is headed by Joe Allbaugh, Bush's chief of staff in Texas and his campaign manager in 2000, was not exactly hard to find -- it has a Web site that boasts of its intimate ties to government officials: "New Bridge Strategies principals have years of public policy experience," the site says. The company's directors "have held positions in the Reagan Administration and both Bush Administrations and are particularly well suited to working with international agencies in the executive branch, Department of Defense and the U.S. Agency for International Development, the American rebuilding apparatus and establishing early links to Congress." Other New Bridge partners include Ed Rogers, vice chairman of the lobbying firm Barbour Griffith & Rogers, and a close political aide to George H.W. Bush; and Lanny Griffith, also at Barbour Griffith, who served in several positions in Bush senior's White House, including as Southern political director in the 1988 campaign.

I find the honesty with which these guys are exploiting bloodshed and bandying about their crony connections to be refreshing, though it is does elicit the rather rare urge to see Dwight Eisenhower come back to life and kick some Miltary Insustrial Complex ass.
As the White House launches its latest PR blitz to convince Americans that all is going well in Iraq -- no matter what the media say -- along comes "Frontline" to spoil things. PBS's eminent investigative series kicks off its new season tonight with a devastating documentary on how the Bush administration sold the war and got rid of Saddam Hussein (well, almost) but seems to have overlooked the need for a plan after declaring victory.

"Truth, War and Consequences" (check local listings) paints administration officials as dissemblers as well as arrogant conquerors who paid no heed to warnings about the collapse of security after the Iraq war. Whatever your politics and opinions about the war, this documentary is must viewing for those who seek to understand why the early scenes of liberation have given way to nearly daily reports of attacks against occupying troops.

The 90-minute program, reported by Martin Smith, essentially concludes this was a war in search of a reason. The terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, delivered one. In Smith's telling, a secretive unit in the Pentagon slanted the intelligence on Hussein's alleged weapons of destruction, relying on less-than-objective reports from Ahmed Chalabi's exile group, the Iraqi National Congress, which has been agitating to overthrow Hussein's government for more than a decade.
Wednesday, October 08, 2003
A billion here, a billion there. Pretty soon it starts to add up to some real money. $87 billion is an impossibly high number for anyone to visualize. Let's have a look....
What is History?
"Columbus Day" is coming up. Ol' Christopher did a lot more in 1492 than "sail the oceans blue". Read an account by noted historian Howard Zinn of Columbus. A story not often told of slaves gold and genocide.
Who " decides just "what is" history?
A babysitter for the family of Marvin Bush was found dead Monday night outside the family's Fairfax County home, and police said that she had been crushed when her car rolled into her, pinning her between the vehicle and an outbuilding on the property.

[ . . . ]

The vehicle had been in gear, police said, and appeared to have rolled in her direction when Champagne was in front of it. [more]

George W. Bush's grandfather helped finance the Nazi Party. Karl Rove's grandfather allegedly helped run the Nazi Party, and helped build the Birkenau Death Camp. Arnold Schwarzenegger's Austrian father volunteered for the infamous Nazi SA and became a ranking officer.

Together, they have destabilized California and are on the brink of bringing it a new Reich. With the Schwarzenegger candidacy they have laid siege to America's largest state, lining it up for the 2004 election. [more]

via NWD
Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Large sections of Baghdad were in turmoil. There was an explosion inside the Foreign Ministry compound about a half mile from the confrontation outside the U.S.-led occupation headquarters. Across the city, U.S. solders were met with a demonstration by Shiite Muslims after closing a mosque and allegedly arresting the imam. Late in the afternoon, U.S. troops fired concussion grenades and shots in the air to disperse the crowd, which grew by the hour.

By nightfall, an estimated 200 American troops backed by helicopters and at least six M1A2 tanks had sealed off the area, and more Americans and Iraqi protesters converged on the scene. As the midnight curfew approached, however, the standoff eased, with the Americans pulling back most of their forces. Shortly afterward, the protesters began leaving the area, too.

L. Paul Bremer, the U.S. administrator for Iraq (news - web sites), said the trouble in the capital did not reflect a turn for the worse.

"The situation is certainly not getting worse, that is nonsense"

Dana Millbank's piece from today's Post has me wondering exactly where one draws the line between two events being analogous or being part of pattern:

Let's review: Syndicated columnist Robert D. Novak gets a leak of classified information from foreign-policy hardliners. The column he writes causes a huge embarrassment for the Republican White House and moderates throughout the administration. Capitol Hill erupts with protests about the leak.

Sound familiar? Actually, this occurred in December 1975. Novak, with his late partner Rowland Evans, got the classified leak -- that President Gerald R. Ford and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger were ready to make concessions to the Soviet Union to save the SALT II treaty. Donald H. Rumsfeld, then, as now, the secretary of defense, intervened to block Kissinger.

The main leak suspect: Richard Perle, then an influential aide to Sen. Henry "Scoop" Jackson (D-Wash.) and now a member of the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board and a confidant of neoconservatives in the Bush administration. The account was described in a 1977 article in The Washington Post, noting Perle's "special access" to Evans and Novak.

Millbank does go on to note that there is nothing to suggest that Perle is connected to the current leak fiasco, but we can be sure that a couple of his homeboys are.
Monday, October 06, 2003
Sunday, October 05, 2003
Asked by reporters if he still believes weapons of mass destruction will be found, Donald Rumsfeld said: "It's not clear that it [the pre-war "intelligence"] was off by a little bit, or a mile, at this stage. If it is off by a lot, that will be unfortunate and then we'll know that."

Yeah, it will be real "unfortunate" for the tens of thousands of Iraqis who lost their lives, along with hundreds of U.S. and British soldiers, not to mention the thousands of soldiers and Iraqis who have lost eyes, legs, or arms. It's "unfortunate" if I'm trying to get a letter in the mail and I miss the postman. When tens of thousands of people are killed or maimed, it's a tragedy of major proportions. And that tragedy will be further compounded if, as is likely, Rumsfeld and his ilk get off scot-free from a tragedy which was entirely of their making.

And by the way, does anyone believe it is remotely possible that the pre-war claims were just off by "a little bit"? How would that be possible, exactly?

Left I on the News

Bush says he needs $600 million to continue the search for "WMD." There are no WMD in Iraq (and haven't been for years), and even if some minute traces are found, Bush himself has already admitted that (can't find the exact quote) the U.S. is no longer threatened (as if we ever were) by these WMD since Saddam Hussein is no longer in power in Iraq. And, even if there were "active WMD programs" in Iraq on the day before the invasion, those programs no longer threaten the U.S. for the same reason. So what is the purpose of continuing the search? The real reason, of course, is to postpone the full admission of the truth until after the next election. But since Bush can't admit that, the only other reason must be to provide post-facto "vindication" (at least in Bush's eyes) of Bush's decision to invade. But that's strictly a political question, not a question of national security. The only reason to provide such a "vindication" is to ensure Bush's reelection. Therefore, the conclusion is obvious - the money for continuing the search for WMD in Iraq should come from George Bush's re-election campaign funds, and not from the American taxpayers.

From Left I on the News

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Oh my, lump in the bed
How I've missed you.
Roses are redder
Bluer am I
Seeing you kissed by that charming French guy.
The dogs and the cat, they missed you too
Barney's still mad you dropped him, he ate your shoe
The distance, my dear, has been such a barrier
Next time you want an adventure, just land on a carrier.
Titties And Asses
A candidate named Arnold said please
I've gropped some it's true I'm a tease
Herr Hitler I admire
It's he lights my fire
Not the titties and asses I squeeze
"At least 19 people were killed and 45 wounded when a woman suicide bomber blew herself up in a restaurant in the northern city of Haifa at around 2:15 P.M. on Saturday. Among the dozens of injured people who are still in hospital, five are reported to be in serious condition."

Haifa is a city where Jews and Arabs live peacefully with each other. The Maxim restaurant is co-owned by a Jew and and Arab. Among the murdered, one can clearly identify names of non-Jews. Matanes Karachbi, one of the murdered, was the scurity guard of the restaurant. A whole family, Zer-Aviv, was wiped out in a single moment. Here are the names of those who were murdered when enjoing themselves over lunch in a sunny Sutarday.

Irena Sofrin, Kiryat Bialik
Nir Regev, 25, Netanya
Bruria Zer-Aviv, 49, Kibbutz Yagur
Bezalel Zer-Aviv, 30, , Kibbutz Yagur
Keren, Zer-Aviv 29, Kibbutz Yagur
Liran Zer-Aviv, 4, Kibbutz Yagur
Noya Zer-Aviv, 14 months, Kibbutz Yagur
Mark Biano, 30, Hafia
Naomi Biano; 30, Haifa
Osama Najar, 28, Haifa
Matanes Karachbi, Haifa
Sherbel Matar, 23, Fassouta
Hana Francis, 39, Fassouta
Ze’ev Almog, 71, Haifa
Ruth Almog, 70, Haifa
Moshe Almog, 43, Haifa
Tomer Almog, 9, Haifa
Asaf Staier, 11, Haifa
Zvi Bahat, Haifa

Let the web remember them and let them all rest in Peace.

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