War Crimes: The Posse Gathers - Torture Degrades Us All

Peace & Justice News

International Relations Center (IRC)

Introducing the latest policy analysis from International Relations Center

War Crimes: The Posse Gathers
By Jeremy Brecher and Brendan Smith

Diverse forces are assembling to bring Bush administration officials to account for war crimes. Cindy Sheehan, Gold Star Mother for Peace, insists: “We cannot have these people pardoned. They need to be tried on war crimes and go to jail.” Paul Craig Roberts, Hoover Institution senior fellow and assistant secretary of the treasury under Ronald Reagan, charges Bush with “lies and an illegal war of aggression, with outing CIA agents, with war crimes against Iraqi civilians, with the horrors of the Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo torture centers” and calls for the president’s impeachment. Anne-Marie Slaughter, dean of the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton and former president of the American Society of International Law, declares: “These policies make a mockery of our claim to stand for the rule of law. [Americans] should be marching on Washington to reject inhumane techniques carried out in our name.”

Can such disparate forces as the peace movement, conservative advocates of the rule of law, and human rights advocates join to halt high government officials demonstrably engaged in criminal enterprise? Can they reach out and appeal to the deep but vacillating commitment of the American people to the national and international rule of law? Or will the Bush administration divide the posse and retain for itself the mantle of defender of international law and the U.S. Constitution?

Jeremy Brecher and Brendan Smith, with Jill Cutler, are the co-editors of In the Name of Democracy: American War Crimes in Iraq and Beyond (New York: Metropolitan/Holt, 2005) http://www.americanempireproject.com and co-founders of War Crimes Watch. They are frequent contributors to Foreign Policy In Focus ( http://www.fpif.org ).

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Torture Degrades Us All
By Ben Saul

In recent times, it has become fashionable to regurgitate old arguments in favor of torture, without fully thinking through the human implications of making such statements. Not only lawyers for the U.S. government, but academics from Harvard Law School and Deakin Law School in my own country of Australia have argued for torture.

Torture is as old as law itself; it was used in ancient Rome as in medieval Europe, French Algeria, and Northern Ireland, and now still in over 100 countries. It is not surprising that arguments for torture have reappeared in a time of crisis (or perceived crisis) for western countries, when some people instinctively reach for more legal powers, seemingly blind to the history of past emergencies where torture was deemed unnecessary.

For those who think we live in an age of terror, it is intuitively appealing to believe that torturing one person to save many is the right thing to do. Discussion of torture should not be taboo, but arguments for it must withstand moral scrutiny. The legal meaning of “torture” was drafted by human hands; it is therefore fallible and cannot merely be accepted as divine truth – particularly if the definition of torture is too weak.

Terrorism does not demand that we torture to defend ourselves. To the contrary, the threat of terrorism reminds us of the importance of protecting human dignity, even of terrorists. Law necessarily draws moral lines in the sand which cannot be crossed; the inevitability of torturing the innocent is a price too high to pay to save the lives of others.

Arguments against torture are not based on alarmism, moral absolutism, or rhetoric. The consequences of forcibly violating the body and the mind are profound and signal an unnecessary return to the blunt techniques of medieval justice. Torture irreparably damages human dignity, devalues human life, and corrupts the institutions of our democracy.

Ben Saul ( http://www.law.unsw.edu.au/staff/SaulB/ ) is a lecturer in the Faculty of Law ( http://www.law.unsw.edu.au/ ) at the University of New South Wales, the director of the Bills of Rights Project
http://www.gtcentre.unsw.edu.au/projects_partners/projects/bor/index.asp at the Gilbert & Tobin Centre of Public Law, and a regular contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus ( http://www.fpif.org ).

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Iraq Strategy: Still AWOL, Still Costly
By Col. Daniel Smith, U.S. Army (Ret.)

Some of Bush’s November 30 speech at Annapolis seemed as old as Vietnam. Johnson, appearing before a friendly audience, tried to explain the nature of the Vietnam War, why the United States was there, and the war’s objectives, ending with a vision of Vietnam’s economic development within a larger world order. Johnson said he regretted the “waste of war,” noting however that often it had to precede “the works of peace.” By that April 7, 1965, just 400 U.S. troops had died in Vietnam.

Bush, under growing criticism across the political spectrum, also chose a friendly audience at the Naval Academy for his latest attempt to define and defend what the White House terms its “stay the course” strategy in Iraq. Unfortunately, maintaining the status quo is not and never has been a strategy. Moreover, as is evident from what Bush doesn’t say, he seems to be disconnected from the real world of real war and real politics in Iraq today – and hence somehow not responsible.

Accusing the terrorists of making Iraq the “central front in their war against humanity,” he calls Iraq “the central front in the war on terror.” Nowhere does he acknowledge that before March 20, 2003, no al-Qaida or other non-Iraqis were fighting in Iraq.

Dan Smith is a military affairs analyst for Foreign Policy In Focus (online at http://www.fpif.org ), a retired U.S. Army colonel, and a senior fellow on military affairs at the Friends Committee on National Legislation.

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From ufpj-news


The Posse Gathers: Bush War Crimes:

The task is now upon us all to better understand the criminality of our government's aggression and, as citizens, to act accordingly to demand that our government adheres to international law."


President's Claims Today Are Mindboggling

Rep. Henry A. Waxman lays down the key facts about the reconstruction which he describes as "an enormous boondoggle" - not an example of "quiet, steady progress." Senator Russ Feingold's statement follows with equal criticism of the president's speech, pointing out that "the president does not understand that his Iraq policies are preventing us from succeeding in our larger campaign against global terrorists."


Urgent Climate Action Alert

Leaders from around the world are meeting right now in Montreal on new steps to cut the pollution that is causing global warming. They are beginning the crucial discussion about how the Kyoto Protocol will work in the next phase of its implementation, beyond the year 2012.

Unfortunately, the Bush Administration is not only keeping the US from joining in these negotiations, it is also actively working to undermine talks among other nations, halting global progress on post-2012 plans. Instead of joining with the world to build a solution, the US is blocking the Montreal negotiations. The US needs to lead the world, not obstruct progress on this important issue.

The negotiator’s official actions run counter to the needs and desires of the American people. Governors, mayors and corporate leaders are taking action to protect public health, create new jobs and cut global warming pollution. Faith leaders, workers and farmers are demanding more action from the administration and Congress. Even in Washington a bipartisan majority of the Senate passed a resolution last June calling for mandatory legislation to “slow, stop and reverse” the growth of dangerous heat-trapping pollution. Americans are already taking action to stop climate change, and we need our administration to join in the process.

It’s time for the U.S to join the world in recognizing the promise of clean energy solutions. We need real leadership from our representatives in Washington. It is time for the Bush Administration to quit stonewalling and for the US Senate to pass legislation that will place real limits on global warming pollution.

We appreciate your help in this call to action.

Sincerely yours,

Ted Glick and Tom Stokes

Climate Crisis Coalition

== What to do ==

Contact your Senators right away and urge them to speak out publicly to support positive U.S. action in Montreal and for mandatory action to slow, stop and reverse global warming pollution in the U.S. Ask them to send a message to the White House to let the Kyoto Protocol move forward and to stop blocking negotiations for global action in Kyoto’s next phase after 2012.

With the assistance of Working Assets we have provided you a quick and easy way to do this. If you go to
http://www.workingforchange.com/activism/action.cfm?itemid=20026&afccode=climate, you will find a quick and easy way to email your U.S. Senators, with copies going to your Congressperson, Senate Majority Leader Frist, Senate Minority Leader Reid, and President Bush. The Working Assets site will also provide you with appropriate emails for letters to the editor in your area. If you could adapt the letter to your Senators (copied below) to a letter to the editor this would also be much appreciated.

These letters will not only draw much-needed attention to what is happening at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Montreal, but they will also help advance the process of making the climate crisis a decisive issue in next year’s Congressional races.

Sample Letter to Your Senators

Dear Senator:

I am writing to urge you to take action to engage the United States in the important climate negotiations in Montreal. Action at the local, state, national and international levels is needed to address this, one of the single greatest challenges of our generation. I am outraged that the Bush Administration is blocking progress on international action to reduce global warming pollution. Please lead our country in the right direction:

1. Speak out publicly to support positive US action in Montreal. Please hold a press conference, make a Floor statement, and sign on to Congressional statements in recognition of this issue’s importance.

2. Support legislation for mandatory action to slow, stop and reverse global warming pollution in the US.

3. Call on the White House to let the Kyoto Protocol move forward and to stop blocking negotiations for global action in Kyoto’s next phase after 2012.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the National Academy of Sciences have concluded that the continued buildup of global warming pollution in the atmosphere threatens the stability of the global climate, threatening the economy, public health and the environment of the United States and the world.

I’m counting on you to protect American families by supporting global progress on this critical issue.

It’s time that the U.S. to take the lead. Engage the USA now.

Thank you and best regards,


From ufpj-news

Diebold May Face Class Action Law Suit



Documents and comments provided by Company Insiders suggest Diebold could be the next Enron as All-New Legal Troubles Mount for Voting Machine Giant...

Additional Individual, Union Owners of Diebold Stock, Mutual Funds Sought for Addition to Plaintiff Class

The BRAD BLOG has received exclusive detailed information about a developing potential class action securities litigation against Diebold, Inc. (stock symbol: DBD). The class for the suit will involve shareholders who purchased or owned stock in the Ohio-based company any time from October 22, 2003 though September 21, 2005.

Though we are not at liberty at this time to discuss the specifics of the potential litigation and the causes of action in the complaint being compiled, The BRAD BLOG has learned that the class action lawsuit, currently being drawn up, will involve securities fraud violations and other troubling matters for the controversial company, its CEO as well as current and former members of its Board of Directors.

VelvetRevolution.us http://www.VelvetRevolution.us/ (an organization co-founded by BRAD BLOG managing editor, Brad Friedman) is seeking additional individuals and groups who may qualify as plaintiffs in the specified class. Those who owned or purchased Diebold stock, or mutual funds which carried Diebold during the period mentioned, are asked to contact
LawSuit@VelvetRevolution.us where information submitted may be turned over to attorneys for possible addition to the plaintiff class.

Union groups who own or owned shares of Diebold or mutual funds which invest in the company are specifically urged to contact VR about joining the class action.

The mutual funds which are most heavily invested in Diebold are listed here http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mh?s=DBD . Information on "Insider Transactions" is listed here.

Diebold, Inc. is the controversial Voting Machine and ATM manufacturer who was recently compared to Enron by an anonymous company insider The BRAD BLOG dubbed "DIEB-THROAT" in a series of exclusive reports http://www.BradBlog.com/Diebold.htm . The Internet news site, RAW STORY ran a new exclusive interview with DIEB-THROAT yesterday

http://rawstory.com/news/2005/Diebold_insider__alleges_company_plagued_1206.html revealing additional details on the inner-workings of the company and potential legal issues they may face.

Shortly after our first report on DIEB-THROAT
http://www.bradblog.com/archives/00001838.htm , Diebold's stock price plummeted some 15.5%. The company attributed their troubles at the time to shortfalls in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and on the same day announced the resignation of their chief operating officer (COO) and President, Eric C. Evans. Our source, DIEB-THROAT, challenged the company's response to the falling stock prices in the wake of lower than expected earnings by suggestion that "Using Hurricane Katrina is a poor excuse for bad products - the last time this kind of deception occurred it was called Enron."

Diebold CEO Walden O'Dell has come under harsh criticism for his statement to Republican fundraisers that Diebold was committed to delivering the electoral vote of the state of Ohio to George W. Bush prior to the 2004 Presidential Election. O'Dell was part of Bush's "Rangers and Pioneers," a group of individuals who had raised at least $100,000 each for Bush/Cheney's 2004 re-election campaign.

As well, the company has been facing other mounting troubles, legal and in the court of public opinion, over their implementation of software, hardware and various Elections Systems contracts around the United States as has been reported in have charged the company may be in violation of a court order stemming from that agreement. In North Carolina, Diebold recently lost an attempt in the court system to receive exemption from parts of a state law requiring the escrow of their voting system's software source code. They were certified anyway the next day in North Carolina, and some activists have questioned whether or not the certification was done according to state law and whether or not new legal proceedings may be launched there. And in California, a debate rages on concerning the possible re-certification of Diebold's touch-screen voting machines here after some 20% of their machines failed in a recent mock election test.

According to internal "Privileged and Confidential" documents of "Attorney Work Product" originally obtained and reported by Ian Hoffman of The Oakland Tribune in 2004, an estimate of legal costs in California for the Voting Machine giant was pegged by their attorneys at $535,000 - $925,000 for just a single two month period in order to fight mounting legal troubles in the state. Diebold's law firm, Jones Day fought in Los Angeles County Superior Court to keep those leaked memos from being further circulated.

The document estimating legal expenses
http://media.mnginteractive.com/media/paper190/ActionandBudget.pdf lists costs in regard to the Qui Tam Action filed (and eventually settled) by election watchdogs at BlackBoxVoting.org, the costs for fighting "Criminal Exposure" such as "legal analysis of potential criminal violations" and "White collar criminal law attorney pre-grand jury investigative advice" and even costs to the firm to "Monitor selected Web sites to gain key intelligence."

Concerning the potential of a new lawsuit against the company, DIEB-THROAT is not surprised, and expressed hopes to The BRAD BLOG in a recent email that some good may come from the possibilities of upcoming litigation:

"The denial of every documented problem with Diebold's voting system was bound to unravel sooner or later. I am not surprised that such a lawsuit has developed [as] the company consistently offered Wall Street deceptive information. Perhaps with the help of few patriotic plaintiffs our nation will be saved from Diebold's corporate takeover of our right to vote - and have that vote counted free from corporate and political influence."

The BRAD BLOG will, of course, continue to follow this story as it develops...

Informant: NHNE



Informant: NHNE

Suit Decries New Secrecy in Government

Breaking a tradition of openness that began in 1816, the Bush administration has without explanation withheld the names and work locations of about 900,000 of its civilian workers, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday.


From Information Clearing House

Ex-GOP Official Faces Conspiracy Charge

James Tobin, President Bush's onetime New England campaign chairman, is being tried on one federal count of conspiring against voters' rights and several counts involving telephone harassment. He could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted.


From Information Clearing House

Jailed for fighting terror

The hypocrisy of the US war on terrorism is revealed by its treatment of my husband.


Rice's answers on secret CIA flights "unsatisfactory"

Dutch Foreign Minister Ben Bot has said the comments by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice about secret CIA flights and detention centers for terrorist suspects outside the United States were "unsatisfactory," Dutch news agency ANP reported Tuesday.


From Information Clearing House

Abuse 'widespread' in Iraqi prisons

Major R. John Stukey, a US Army doctor who served in Baghdad from January to June, says he personally treated about a dozen men who had been tortured and observed an environment of overcrowding and neglect.


From Information Clearing House

Iraqi oil industry in crisis

An official of the Oil Ministry in Baghdad said: “We do not know the exact quantity of oil we are exporting, we do not exactly know the prices we are selling it for, and we do not know where the oil revenue is going to.”


From Information Clearing House

Ex-president doubts U-S military will ever leave Iraq

Former President Jimmy Carter says he doubts whether the US military will ever completely pull out of Iraq, despite what the Bush administration says about a possible withdrawal beginning next year.


Keepers at the Gate: He Who Controls Television Controls the Masses

By Manuel Valenzuela

With Americans watching so much television on a weekly basis, discarding books of enlightenment for monitors of idiocy, preferring the drug of fantasy over the sobering realm of reality, no longer capable of analytical, logical thought, choosing to incorporate as their own the views, beliefs and opinions of corporate media, the keepers at the gate are free to do as they please, disseminating lies, distortions, manipulations, propaganda and fictions into our homes and the minds of our family, young and old, never discriminating and always flowing in the interest of the Establishment.


Torture Is an American Value

Reality vs. the Rhetoric

By S. Brian Willson

Instead of the recent euphemism "illegal combatants," the United State in Vietnam claimed prisoners were "criminal" and therefore exempt from Geneva Convention protections. The use of torture as a function of terror, or its equivalent in sadistic behavior, has been historic de facto U.S. policy.


An act of blatant state terrorism

By Harold Pinter

Video and text of his Nobel Prize acceptance speech

The 2,000 American dead are an embarrassment. They are transported to their graves in the dark. Funerals are unobtrusive, out of harm's way. The mutilated rot in their beds, some for the rest of their lives. So the dead and the mutilated both rot, in different kinds of graves.


Tamiflu Is 'Useless' for Avian Flu


A Vietnamese doctor with experience in treating avian flu says Tamiflu, the drug being stockpiled for treatment of avian flu, is useless against the virus.


Stop Serving Junk-Food Ads to Kids

The nation's premier science organization urged Congress on Tuesday to consider restricting the marketing of junk food to children since food companies appear unwilling to do it themselves, thereby upping the stakes in the national obesity debate.


Americans Take Local Road to Kyoto

While Bush refuses to accept the Kyoto Protocol to cut greenhouse gas emissions, at least 40 million Americans will find themselves bound to the international treaty to curb global warming. Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels has convinced 192 cities to agree to cut emissions 7 percent from 1990 levels by 2012.


Planetary Doom Prediction by Global Warming Scientist

Dr. James Hanson, the scientist who first raised the alarm about global warming, says the planet will be irrevocably damaged within a decade if greenhouse gases continue to be produced at current levels. The US, which is not a signatory to the Kyoto global warming protocol, has blocked moves towards limits on carbon emissions.


Dringender Hilferuf aus dem Irak: Holt uns hier raus!

Wir von der 1. Kavalleriedivision im Irak richten diese Botschaft an unsere Familien, an Senatoren, Kongressabgeordnete und an alle Personen mit Lebenserfahrung in der Heimat. Es gibt keine Worte für das, was wir hier erleben. Wir haben viele unserer liebsten Freunde und Kameraden verloren, und wir verlieren sie weiterhin. Es ist, als kämpften wir hier gegen Geister, und es gibt keine Aussichten auf einen Sieg. Die Lage wird nur immer schlimmer!

Bedenkt, dass wir gegen Menschen kämpfen, die den Tod nicht fürchten! Sie glauben, wir tun ihnen einen Gefallen, denn der Tod verkürzt den Abstand zwischen ihnen und dem Paradies. Zusätzlich sinkt unsere Moral von Tag zu Tag, denn wir sind Zeugen der wachsenden Zahl von Toten und Verwundeten. Die veröffentlichten Zahlen sind viel niedriger als in Wahrheit. Unnötig zu erwähnen, dass wir unter der Reduzierung von Gütern zur Grundversorgung leiden: Gas, Wasser, Nahrung, Hygienebedarf. Wir traten zwar freiwillig in die Armee ein, doch niemals kam uns die besondere Gefahr in den Sinn, die wir hier erleben. Das würde uns nichts ausmachen, wenn dieser Krieg einem guten und gerechten Zweck diente. Doch wir wissen jetzt, dass dieser Krieg nur deshalb angefangen wurde, um die Gier einiger weniger Leute zu befriedigen, die ihre Kinder niemals hierher gesandt hätten, um das zu erleben, was wir erleben. Wir senden euch diese Botschaft, und wir vertrauen nicht darauf, dass wir bald eine neue schreiben können. Wir fühlen, dass der Tod hinter jeder Ecke auf uns wartet.

Unser Feind ist da draußen und wartet darauf, uns zu jagen. Wir erhielten sogar Drohbotschaften über unser inneres E-Mail-Netzwerk. Gerade gestern erhielten wir die folgenden: (Aufzählung von Web-Links). O Gott, hilf uns, hier herauszukommen! Wir fordern euch auf, diese Botschaft auf allen Ebenen zu verbreiten, und wir hoffen, in einem Stück heimzukehren und nicht in einem Leichensack.


Eure Söhne und Töchter

G.Wendebourg / metainfo hamburg

Link zum Beitrag / Hintergrundinfo oder Pressehinweis:
http://www.hh-online.com?lid=23136 und

Infopool / metainfo hamburg www.hh-online.com

Feds shrink potential salamander habitat

Sonoma County land considered for protection cut by two-thirds; final decision due Dec. 1

Friday, November 18, 2005



In a partial victory for development interests, federal officials said Thursday they are reducing by two-thirds the parts of Sonoma County that could fall under federal protections for the tiger salamander.


Related: Searched for 'salamander' Results 1 - 10 of about 10.


Feds shrink potential salamander habitat

... Feds shrink potential salamander habitat. Sonoma County land considered for protection cut by two-thirds; final decision due Dec.
1. Friday, November 18, 2005. ... County OKs plan to protect salamander

... County OKs plan to protect salamander. Proposal ... Dec. 1 on how much land in Sonoma County to designate as critical habitat for the salamander. ...

Letters to the Editor

... 26 article, "Price tag to save tiger salamander," the population counts suggest that the California tiger salamander is but a subset of the region's salamander ... Letters to the Editor

... 26 article, "Price tag to save tiger salamander," the population counts suggest that the California tiger salamander is but a subset of the region's salamander ... Residential building starts to rebound

... higher. Then there is the California tiger salamander. ... years. Still, the plan hinges on setting aside areas elsewhere for salamander habitat. ... Letters to the Editor

... I found a copy of The Press Democrat, which I use to keep me warm, and was relieved to know that it would cost $336 million to save the tiger salamander. ... Letters to the Editor

... has only marginally improved with builders citing as primary obstacles less and more costly land and continued delays related to the California tiger salamander ... What a difference a year makes

... development in southwest Santa Rosa -- the biggest in 10 years -- and a compromise possible on protecting the development-stopping tiger salamander, there may ... Interchange work may start in '06

... or three years, Akkawi said. Remaining hurdles include protecting the tiger salamander habitat, he added.

Informant: STRIDER

Torture: What are the U.S. Obligations to Prevent?

From: Kathy Guthrie
kathyguthrie@fcnl.org [FCNL]

The Bush administration this week publicly attempted to narrow the definition of torture and limit the responsibility of individuals working for the U.S. government to prevent torture from taking place. But U.S. military leaders and many members of Congress from both parties are refusing to stand aside while fundamental rights are eroded.

Behind-the-scenes arguments came dramatically into public view recently when Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld argued that military personnel have no obligation to intervene when they personally witness torture taking place by officials of other, sovereign governments. Standing next to Rumsfeld at a press conference last week, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Peter Pace, responded: "It is absolutely the responsibility of every U.S. service member, if they see inhumane treatment being conducted, to intervene to stop it.”

But the secretary of defense didn’t agree: “I don’t think you mean they have an obligation to physically stop it.” In a rare, direct, public confrontation, Gen. Pace stood his ground: “If they [U.S. soldiers] are physically present when inhumane treatment is taking place, sir, they have an obligation to try to stop it," Pace told the secretary of defense.

Following this exchange, The Washington Post reported that the secretary of defense has asked the Pentagon to review guidelines for soldiers operating in these conditions. Read a letter from FCNL’s Col. Dan Smith (USA Ret.) to Gen. Pace supporting Pace’s position at

This public debate within the executive branch on appropriate responses to torture comes as the U.S. government has come under new scrutiny by European governments. The European Union expressed concern about public reports that the U.S. is holding some prisoners in secret prisons in Eastern Europe without granting them access to legal counsel or the International Committee of the Red Cross.

The secret detention facilities in Eastern Europe and other areas of the world are part of a shadowy network of detention and interrogation facilities set up by the U.S. government to circumvent legal restrictions on interrogation, torture, and due process of law, according to reports from Human Rights Watch and some press accounts. Read a Human Rights Watch report on government treatment of detainees at

But the public disclosure of these facilities and the acknowledgment by Secretary of State Condolezza Rice that these facilities have been used in Europe have persuaded some European governments to call for the shut down of these secret prisons.

The public debate on interrogation, torture, and secret detention facilities has persuaded many members of Congress to support legislation offered by Sen. John McCain (AZ) that would establish clear guidelines for interrogation that prohibit torture. The New York Times reported December 7 that the White House has “all but abandoned its effort to persuade Sen. McCain to exempt Central Intelligence Agency employees from legislation barring inhumane or degrading treatment of prisoners in American custody.” If true, that is a victory on which we can and must build.

Although we citizens should be able to take for granted that our government opposes and strenuously prohibits torture, we cannot. Our government officials are engaged in an intense debate whether some agents of the U.S. government should be able to engage in some types of torture of certain kinds of suspects. Now the White House is seeking to limit the penalties imposed on U.S. government personnel who engage in torture.

The public outcry against torture is strengthening the hand of those within the U.S. government who oppose torture and want to prohibit its use.We want to encourage all our FCNL constituents to back them up with informed comment and with encouragement to sustain government advocates of a world free from the threat of torture. Read more about these issues at


The Next Step for Iraq: Join FCNL's Iraq Campaign

Contact Congress and the Administration:

Informant: Martin Greenhut

Emission FR2

Exprimez-vous, c'est une émission nationale en directe ! Pour "c'est au programme" de FR2 sur les Portables et le antennes relais, ce 9 décembre à 9h30 vous pouvez appeler actuellement le 0 826 00 7000 (015€ la minute soit 1Fr).

Citez dans vos interventions les noms des principales associations, Priartem, Robin des toits, Teslabel (belgique) et Next-up. Soutenez le projet de loi qui est déposé à l'Assemblée Nationale, celui-ci ne remet pas en cause la téléphonie mobile, mais il est conforme à une vraie politique de salubrité publique. Dites qu'il existe des études officielles du Parlement Européen, co-financées par l'Etat Français, comme par exemple l'étude REFLEX qui démontre la rupture d'ADN (page168 à 171 et suivantes du rapport) dont on ne parle pas, etc.

Bien à vous tous.


Congressional Black Caucus to Oppose Alito

Most of Congress's black lawmakers will oppose the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito, officials said Wednesday.


Art, Truth and Politics


Rice Engulfed in Criticism for Torture

Rice has been engulfed by criticism over reports that CIA planes used airports in Europe as stopovers while transporting prisoners to secret interrogation sites.


Prisoners Transferred to Be Tortured

Although Bush administration officials have denied that they transfer terrorism suspects to countries where they are likely to be abused, a classified memorandum described in a court case indicates that the Pentagon has considered sending a captured militant abroad to be interrogated under threat of torture.


CIA-Geheimgefängnisse in Marokko

Wie von der Süddeutschen Zeitung mitgeteilt, wurden die europäischen Gefängnisse der CIA kurz vor dem Besuch von Außenministerin Rice geräumt. Nach Angaben aus Washingtoner Geheimdienstkreisen sind diese Häftlinge und andere Insassen außer ihnen, die Verhör und Folter erwarten, nun in marokkanischen Geheimgefängnissen untergebracht.

Die marokkanischen Geheimgefängnisse der CIA wurden offensichtlich eingerichtet als Ergebnis eine Deals, der der marokkanischen Regierung die amerikanische Unterstützung bei der Aufrechterhaltung der illegalen Besatzung der früheren Kolonie spanisch Sahara. Als Gegenleistung erreichte die amerikanische Regierung anscheinend die Überlassung von ehemaligen Gefängnissen, in denen Koenig Hassan II seine Gefangenen folterte. Diese Folterverliese sind vermutlich unzugänglich im Atlas-Gebirge lokalisiert, wo sie nur per Hubschrauber erreicht werden können. Die frühere spanische Kolonie der westlichen Sahara ist reich an Bodenschätzen und deshalb verständlicherweise von bedeutendem Interesse für Marokkos Koenig Mohammed IV. Die geheimdienstliche Zusammenarbeit mit den USA war seit langer Zeit einvernehmlich und von beiderseitigem Vorteil der Regierungen geprägt.

G.Wendebourg / metainfo hamburg

Link zum Beitrag / Hintergrundinfo oder Pressehinweis: http://www.hh-online.com?lid=23148 und

Infopool / metainfo hamburg www.hh-online.com

Menschrechtsorganisationen fordern Kreditstopp für Goldabbau

Gegen Referendum: Menschrechtsorganisationen fordern Kreditstopp für Goldabbau (08.12.05)

Die entwicklungspolitischen Organisationen FIAN, MISEREOR und Urgewald fordern die deutsche Bundesregierung auf, ihre Unterstützung für Weltbank-Projekte an die Einhaltung von Menschenrechtsstandards zu binden. Aktuell bedrohten Goldprojekte in Guatemala und Ghana die Menschenrechte auf Nahrung, Wasser, Gesundheit und saubere Umwelt von über 10.000 Menschen, schreiben die Organisationen. Grundsätzlich solle sich die Regierung dafür einsetzen, dass die Weltbank keine neuen Kredite für Goldminen vergibt.

Die ganze Nachricht im Internet:

Outsourcing von Folter

"Outsourcing von Folter": Rice spricht mit Freunden über CIA-Einsätze (08.12.05)

US-Außenministerin Condoleezza Rice erwartet Verständnis von den europäischen Partnern für das Vorgehen des US-Geheimdienstes CIA "im Kampf gegen den Terrorismus". Rice betonte am Donnerstag bei einem Besuch in Brüssel, sie und ihre EU-Amtskollegen hätten "als Freunde" über den umstrittenen "Umgang mit Häftlingen" geredet. Bei dem gemeinsamen Essen am Mittwochabend habe man sich Zeit für eine ausführliche Diskussion genommen. FDP-Chef Guido Westerwelle bezichtigte die ehemaligen Bundesminister Schily und Fischer einer strafbaren Handlung wegen der Nichtanzeige einer Verschleppung und somit eines Verbrechens.

Die ganze Nachricht im Internet:

Wie wir lernen, das Kleine zu lieben

Steuern rauf, Leistungen runter - die große "Koalition der neuen Möglichkeiten" und ihre Politik.


North Ayrshire community's campaign to prevent a phone mast being built next door to an award winning primary school

Action Scotland
BBC Radio Scotland
Date: Friday 16th December 2005
Time: 11:05 AM to 11:30 AM
Duration: 25 minutes.

Series highlighting campaigns and issues in Scotland. This week Phil Goodland follows a North Ayrshire community's campaign to prevent a phone mast being built next door to an award winning primary school.

Repeated 6:00AM Saturday 17th December 2005

Programme Webpage:

Listen Again link (available after broadcast)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/radioscotland_aod.shtml?scotland/feature1_sat or rtsp://rmv8.bbc.net.uk/scotland/radioscotland/demand/dailyfeature/rs_feature1_sat.rm

(bypasses BBC's dreadful player, and uses Real Audio Player if already installed on your PC).

Next-up Diffusion

Reportage JT 19/20 FR3 LIMOUSIN du 06 décembre 2005

Emission "on a tout essayé" FR2 19h 08 décembre 2005

Iraq and the Democrats

We can win nothing in Iraq. We can only hope to survive the incredible disaster that has been foisted upon us. Rejecting the premise of "winning" is the first step toward that survival. Rejecting wrong-headed, deliberately misleading GOP talking points would be a good idea as well. Getting out of Iraq is the only sane, sensible, responsible course of action. Any Democrats who hope to be president should heed this. They are ten steps behind the rest of the country, and when they buy into the nonsense, they only ensure their electoral doom.


Class Warfare With Taxes

by Robert Reich, TomPaine.com

There's a fight in Congress between the upper-middle class and the super-rich.



Class Warfare with Taxes

Tax bills now wending their way through the House and Senate would cut about $60 billion in taxes next year and allow a two-year extension on stock dividends and capital gains.


MAST plan gets bad reception

THE CHAIR OF governors at a Bromsgrove school is urging residents to come forward and show their displeasure at proposed plans to add three more phone antennas to a mobile phone mast site near to the school.

Nigel Marns, governor at St John’s School, Watt Close and Revd at St John’s church spoke to The Standard the morning after a governors’ meeting held to discuss the antennas that Vodafone plan to put on the site.

Mr Marns said he believed the site at Perryfields Telephone Exchange on Hanover Street had already got too many masts and any more would cause a health risk to the children.

He said: “Enough is enough and we should oppose this proposal.”
Coun Rita Dent said she wanted more residents to come forward and show their feelings.

“As yet we are not aware of the health implications of these masts and we do not think they should be adding anymore masts on the sites.”

A Vodafone spokesperson said he understood developments of this kind sometimes caused concern, and added that base stations and masts operated well within the strict safety guidelines endorsed by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Omega read "Base Stations, operating within strict national and international Guidelines, do not present a Health Risk?" under: http://omega.twoday.net/stories/771911/

“Local residents who might be interested in this development should contact our Community Relations Team by phone on 0845 601 4815 or by emailing: community.relations@ngridwireless.com .”


Reject Court Stripping Amendment

From: Ricardo Ocampo

*LuxWeb* Iberamerican Web of Light Free New Info Selection Services Anahuak Radiant Centre

From: Jose Medhina Awad
Date: Wed, 07 Dec 2005 03:26:48 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Urgent Action Today: Reject Court Stripping Amendment!

Please write your representatives and the members of the House and Senate Armed Services and Judiciary Committees to tell them to strip the Graham-Levin Amendment from the Military Authorization Bill and preserve the right to habeas corpus and judicial oversight. They will be ironing out the differences in the Senate and House versions of the bill tomorrow, Wednesday, December 7, 2005. PLEASE WRITE NOW!

This will be the third action alert we’ve sent you about this disastrous Amendment that would strip the courts of the right to hear habeas corpus petitions from the detainees at Guantánamo. And we may send a fourth. It’s difficult to make habeas corpus sound sexy, but it is perhaps the most fundamental right we have and the basis for our entire system of justice, dating back 800 years. Simply put, it’s what keeps the government from being able to lock people up and throw away the key. It guarantees the right to know the charges against you and to challenge your detention in a court of law. It is the basis of the separation of powers and the system of checks and balances enshrined in our Constitution.

If we do not stop the Graham Levin amendment now, what starts with foreign detainees at Guantánamo will carry over to the rest of us and our rights here at home. There is already additional legislation in committee that seeks to curtail habeas rights for domestic criminal prisoners. In addition, any ground gained by the McCain Amendment forbidding the use of torture becomes meaningless if the detainees have no access to an attorney and no way to protest their abuse in court.

Last year the Supreme Court rejected the government's position that it can maintain a law-free zone at the Guantánamo Naval Base. The habeas corpus petitions on behalf of the men imprisoned in Guantánamo seek the most basic relief: a fair hearing with due process in federal court to challenge the factual and legal basis of their detention. Our system of justice is founded upon the notion that the Executive may not detain any individual without these fundamental protections. We are asking you to write your representatives to demand that they not to undo the work of the Supreme Court and that they uphold the rule of law and reject the Graham-Levin Amendment to the Military Authorization Bill.

You can also call your representatives through the US Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121

Senator Graham offered his amendment in the Senate very late in this session, and a vote was held with no hearings and very little debate. After the vote, a firestorm of criticism forced Senator Graham to accept a compromise--negotiated with Democratic Senator Carl Levin--that allows captives very limited recourse to federal appeals courts. But Republican Senator Arlen Specter, chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, described the compromise as "a sophisticated, blatant attempt at court-stripping."

The Bush Administration is now negotiating with Graham and others to make the legislation even more restrictive. A Justice Department spokesperson says Attorney General Gonzales has stated that he is "particularly focused on thwarting some of the 160 habeas lawsuits filed by Guantánamo detainees." Graham and the Bush Administration oppose rights for the Guantanamo detainees in part because they refuse to face the fact that innocent people have been caught up in the system--a fact acknowledged by the military's own commanders at Guantánamo. According to the Wall Street Journal: "American commanders acknowledge that many prisoners shouldn't have been locked up here in the first place because they weren't dangerous and didn't know anything of value. 'Sometimes, we just didn't get the right folks,' says Brig. Gen. Jay Hood, Guantánamo’s current commander."

Your voice is urgently needed to preserve habeas corpus -- the most critical safeguard against torture and unchecked Executive power.

Ron Daniels
Executive Director,
Center for Constitutional Rights

Informant: Martin Greenhut

Right's Claim to Moral High Ground Exposed as Fraud


US Coming Around To The Truth


Records Show Burns' Abramoff Meetings


Does Anyone Believe Condoleezza Rice?


Nuke over U.S. could unleash electromagnetic tsunami


Informant: beefree

Empire of Debt: The Rise Of An Epic Financial Crisis


Help stopping wasteful fishing in Europe’s waters

Published by: Passport administrator, WWF-International,

Send an e-mail

A quarter of all animals caught in fishing gear, about 20 million metric tonnes of marine life, are wasted each year, thrown back dead into the sea.

© Press Association
Children from across Europe present a petition to the Chair of the Fisheries Council

The incidental capture, or bycatch, of fish, sea-birds, cetaceans, turtles, sharks and numerous other species is one of the greatest threats to the marine environment. This includes edible fish species that cannot be landed - because they are immature, undersize or have gone rotten in nets.

Urgent action is needed to stop wasteful practices and bad management. This December, the future of Europe’s marine environment is once again in European Union (EU) Fisheries Ministers’ hands.

Take action now to help stop wasteful fishing in Europe’s waters

The Price of Bush


Informant: Lew Rockwell

The National Strategy for Victory in Iraq


On the dollar vs. money


Congress to Bush: Stop Under-Counting Casualties


Next-up News 8 December 2005


Veröffentlichungspflicht für Politiker-Nebeneinkünfte in Gefahr

----- Original Message -----
From: Mehr Demokratie e.V. Berlin-Brandenburg
Sent: Thursday, December 08, 2005 12:28 PM
Subject: Dringende Aktion: Veröffentlichungspflicht für Politiker-Nebeneinkünfte in Gefahr!

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,

kurz vor Ende der letzten Legislaturperiode wurde im Bundestag eine Veröffentlichungspflicht für die Nebeneinkünfte von Abgeordneten beschlossen. Dass es dazu kam, dazu hatte auch eine Kampagne der Online-Plattform Campact beigetragen, an der Mehr Demokratie sich beteiligt hatte. Jetzt, nach der Bundestagswahl, steht das bereits Erreichte erneut auf dem Spiel…

Bitte helfen Sie mit, dass die verschärfte Transparenzpflicht nicht wieder kassiert wird, beteiligen Sie sich an der Protest-Aktion von Campact!

Mit freundlichen Grüße,
Christian Posselt
Pressesprecher Mehr Demokratie e.V.

* Bundestagspräsident Lammert will Veröffentlichung von Politiker-Nebeneinkünften auf Sankt Nimmerleinstag verschieben!

Schicken Sie ihm eine Protest-E-Mail unter http://www.campact.de Rufen Sie ihn in Berlin (030 - 227 77645) und in seinem Wahlkreis Bochum (02327 - 964 315 / 02327 - 964 312) an.

"Von wem erhalten Bundestagsabgeordnete eigentlich sonst noch wie viel Geld?" Eine Antwort soll die Veröffentlichung von Politiker-Nebeneinkünften geben, wie sie vom Bundestag beschlossen wurde. Doch Bundestagspräsident Norbert Lammert (CDU) will die verschärfte Transparenzpflicht jetzt noch verhindern: In einem Brief an die Fraktionsvorsitzenden schlägt er vor, die gesetzliche Neuregelung 'einer weiteren Beratung zu unterziehen' und bis zum Abschluss aller notwendigen vorbereitenden Arbeiten auszusetzen. Im Klartext: Lammert will die Transparenzpflicht auf den Sankt Nimmerleinstag verschieben. Die Fraktionen haben drei Wochen Zeit auf den Brief zu antworten, dann soll im Bundestag entschieden werden. (Weitere Infos:
http://www.campact.de/nebenekft/infos/5min )

Nach monatelangen Beratungen im Vorfeld des Bundestagsbeschlusses ist das eine kaum zu überbietende Frechheit! Wir fragen Herrn Lammert: Warum decken Sie die Dunkelmänner im Parlament?

Mit unserem gemeinsamen Protest wollen wir Herrn Lammert klar machen, dass wir Bürgerinnen und Bürger uns nicht an der Nase herum führen lassen:

Schicken Sie ihm eine Protest-E-Mail: http://www.campact.de Rufen Sie ihn in Berlin (030 - 227 77645) und in seinem Wahlkreis Bochum (02327 - 964 315 / 02327 - 964 312) an.

Leiten Sie diese Mobilisierungs-E-Mail am 8. und am 9.12.2005 an möglichst viele Freunde und Bekannte weiter.

C.R.E.S.T.: We The People Coalition Carter & By-laws draft


Washington infected with a culture of corruption

Joe Conason
The New York Observer

California's 'Duke' heads to the pokey Washington infected with a culture of corruption

For a crude bully who used to bray about lining up Democrats and anti-war protesters to be “shot,” Randy (Duke) Cunningham cried like a little baby the other day when he finally admitted taking millions in bribes from defense contractors.

Forced to resign his office immediately as part of his plea bargain with federal prosecutors, the once-powerful California Congressman, whose leverage derived from his chairmanship of an important defense subcommittee, was a dominant type in the Republican Party of this era.

During his career on Capitol Hill, Mr. Cunningham's style was loud, mindlessly reactionary and full of flag-waving bluster. He once described Bill Clinton as a “traitor” and compared Senator John Kerry to Jane Fonda on the House floor.

This hyper-patriotic scoundrel also turned out to be avaricious, deceptive and as eager to sell himself as a male escort. He misused his authority to steer federal contracts to the contractors who bribed him, and he doesn't seem to have hesitated to damage the national interest if his personal interests were served.

Among the items acquired by Mr. Cunningham, thanks to the illicit generosity of his friends in the defense industry, were a hillside mansion with pool in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.; a yacht called “The Dukestir”; a Rolls-Royce sedan, plus repairs; a 17th-century Louis-Philippe commode, along with assorted other antiques and Oriental carpets; and roughly $1.8 million in cash considerations, plus hundreds of thousands in the usual campaign contributions. He also avoided paying federal income taxes, as most crooks tend to do.

In short, he peddled his principles and his patriotism rather cheaply.

Yet while the disgraced Duke may be the most ostentatiously greedy member of the House, his sleazy story is but a single episode in the expanding saga of Republican scandal. As he pondered his next term-which he will serve in a federal correctional institution-another high-rolling crook on Capitol Hill confessed to corrupting Congress.

That would be Michael Scanlon, the former communications director for former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, who pleaded guilty to felony fraud for his role in helping super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff to relieve several Indian tribes of about $80 million while lobbying to improve their gambling businesses. The cooperation provided by Mr. Scanlon to the Justice Department is expected to embroil no fewer than a half-dozen other members of Congress and a squad of current and former staffers like him.

Many more politicians may ultimately be implicated in Mr. Abramoff's influence-peddling scam, however, with the slime rising to the top of the leadership both inside and outside the Congress. Former Christian Coalition director Ralph Reed profited handsomely from the Abramoff gambling boodle, as did Grover Norquist, the conservative strategist, lobbyist and unofficial aide to White House political boss Karl Rove. House Speaker Dennis Hastert performed favors for Abramoff clients and collected more than $100,000 in campaign contributions from the lobbyist's firm and clients since 2001.

On a single June evening two years ago, according to the Associated Press, the Speaker's Keep Our Majority political-action committee took in more than $20,000 from the Abramoff network at a fund-raiser in a Washington restaurant owned by the lobbyist. A week later, Mr. Hastert and several of his top deputies sent a letter to the Secretary of the Interior, asking her to disapprove a gambling license sought by a tribe competing with one of Mr. Abramoff's clients. While the Speaker's spokesman insists there was no connection between his actions and the money steered into his accounts, such indignant assertions now provoke knowing smiles even among Republicans.

Indeed, thoughtful Republicans are well aware that the typical complaints and excuses proffered by their leaders and pundits sound utterly false these days. This swelling tsunami of scandal cannot be attributed to partisan enemies or the “liberal media.”

The Abramoff schemes were aired in public hearings chaired by Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican. The Cunningham scams came to light in a brilliant investigation by the conservative Copley News Service, whose featured columnists include Jack Kemp and Phyllis Schlafly. The criminal prosecutions of Mr. Scanlon, Mr. Cunningham and many others yet to be indicted are the work of prosecutors answerable to a Republican Attorney General.

Has the capital been infected by a “culture of corruption”? That culture has existed for well over a century, in both parties, at least since Mark Twain described Congress as America's only native criminal class. Before the Republicans won control of the House in 1994, its Democratic overlords had certainly proved capable of self-dealing and misconduct. A few of them went to jail, too.

What has happened since then seems unprecedented, however — at least during the postwar era. The sale of influence has been institutionalized in ways that earlier generations of politicians never imagined. Friends of Newt Gingrich — not a morally squeamish man — say he is dismayed. Members of the generation he brought to power are not revolutionaries but grifters, who have made a bad situation much worse.

Joe Conason writes for the New York Observer and Salon.com, and is the author of Big Lies: The Right- Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth.

Informant: Alan Dicey

Neuer Mobilfunkflyer vom Kinderbüro Graz


Nachricht von Ulrich Weiner


Kinder und Mobilfunk

Mobilfunk in der Schule

Schule und Mobilfunk

Gibt es schon "strahlenarme" DECT-Schnurlostelefone?

Die namhaften europäischen Hersteller haben sich bisher geweigert, DECT-Schnurlostelefone so zu modifizieren, dass die Basisstation im Stand-By-Betrieb nicht strahlt. Auch die ausdrückliche Forderung des Bundesamts für Strahlenschutz an die Industrie, schnurlose DECT-Telefone mit geregelter Sendeleistung und Strahlungsfreiheit im Stand-By-Betrieb zu entwickeln, blieb bisher ungehört. Der richtige Zeitpunkt für einen chinesischen Hersteller, die Nachfrage nach verträglicheren Geräten nun zu befriedigen. Näheres unter der ergänzten Rubrik „Fragen&Antworten“:


Gibt es schon "strahlenarme" DECT-Schnurlostelefone?

Ja, inzwischen sind modifizierte DECT-Schnurlostelefone erhältlich, bei denen die Basisstation abschaltet, kurz nachdem das Mobilteil in die Ladeschale gelegt wird. Auch das Bundesamt für Strahlenschutz fordert die Industrie seit Juni 2005 auf, schnurlose DECT-Telefone mit bedarfsgerechter Leistungsregelung und Strahlungsfreiheit im Stand-By-Betrieb zu entwickeln. Die namhaften europäischen Hersteller haben sich lange gegen die Einführung entsprechender Geräte gewehrt und dem chinesischen Hersteller Orchid den Vortritt gelassen. Dessen Telefone Orchid LR108 und Orchid LR128TAM (mit eingeb. Anrufbeantworter) haben zwar keine Regelung der Sendeleistung, sie sind aber im Stand-By-Betrieb strahlungsfrei. Diese Geräte werden derzeit nur von wenigen Händlern angeboten:

ESnord ® Technologies

A. H. Communication


Kommentar der Bürgerwelle e.V.

Nun gibt es DECT-Telefone, die im Standby nicht mehr strahlen, wenn der Hörer in der Ladeschale liegt. Liegt der Hörer wie üblich in der Wohnung, strahlt die Basisstation also munter weiter. Damit besteht kein Unterschied zu den bisherigen DECT -Telefonen. Würde der Hörer nämlich im Standby in der Ladestation liegen, ginge ja auch ein Schnurtelefon. Man muss davon ausgehen, dass der Hörer nur selten in der Ladeschale liegt. Also besteht weiterhin das Problem. Weiterhin sind während des Telefonates der Telefonierer und die Personen im nahen Umkreis um den Hörer und natürlich der Basisstation Strahlungsleistungen ausgesetzt, die z.B. die Blut-Hirn-Schranke öffnen usw. Dies gilt aber auch für CT 1+ Telefone. Auch die analoge Strahlung öffnet die Blut-Hirn-Schranke. CT 1+ hat eben den Vorteil, das nach Beendigung des Gespräches die Basisstation nicht mehr sendet, egal wo sich der Hörer befindet.

Schlussfolgerung: Wenn jemanden etwas an seiner Gesundheit und der seiner Menschen im Umfeld liegt, gibt es nur eine Empfehlung. Ein ganz normales Schnur-Telefon. Sollte jemand unbedingt ab und zu schnurlos telefonieren müssen, z.B. im Garten usw., geben wir die Empfehlung ein Schurtelefon und ein CT 1+ Telefon. Nur wenn es am Schnurtelefon nicht möglich ist zu telefonieren, so kurz wie es geht das CT 1+ Telefon benützen. Beugen Sie damit der vorzeitigen Demenz vor. Ihr Gehirn wird es Ihnen danken!


Gen-Pflanzen außer Kontrolle: Koexistenz Gentechnik/Genfrei nicht möglich


The totalitarian impulse

Strike the Root
by David MacGregor


The welfare state turns us all into busybody brother's keepers. This impulse to interfere in the lives of others is then translated to the ballot box -- leading to the election of governments who propose more and more draconian legislation in the attempt to impose standards of 'public health'...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Government forces outsourcing of local jobs - The freedom to move

Hawaii Reporter
by Don Newman


When people complain about the 'outsourcing' of American manufacturing jobs they rarely take into account that it is government policies that often drive companies away. Nowhere is this clearer than in the case of Clark Foam Co., which was forced to close its doors recently due to harassment by the EPA and local county fire officials. This is a perfect example of government regulation run amuck...


The freedom to move

Foundation for Economic Education
by Oscar W. Cooley and Paul L. Poirot

posted 12/07/05

Can we hope to explain the blessings of freedom to foreign people while we deny them the freedom to cross our boundaries? Freedom of movement underlies the concept of private property rights. A person has the right to exclusive possession and use of that which he has assembled and improved without trespass against others -- the right to the product of his own labor. Any move of a man might be deemed proper and beneficial when he acts to assemble, transport, or otherwise convert the free gifts of Nature so that they may satisfy human needs more readily. This involves no infringement on the equal right of others. It would seem to be the kind of movement that should not be discouraged by man or by government...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Pompeii on the Mississippi


Report from the ninth ward

Common Dreams
by Mary Beth Appell


The residents of the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans were finally allowed to return home on December 1, 2005. The neighborhood is home to nearly 20,000 African-American citizens and was devastated by the flooding during and after Katrina. This was the very first time they were legally permitted to visit their homes. ... Everywhere else in New Orleans you can see people fixing roofs, clearing debris, working hard to reclaim their homes. But not in the Lower Ninth Ward which has been officially closed for three months and guarded by heavily armed army and police. Three months after the floods and hurricane, all the shelters are closed. People are coming back home and have nowhere to go. I heard that at most one quarter of the residents are here, the rest are spread out across the south and the country. I write because the Red Cross has been saying to potential volunteers, 'We don't need you in New Orleans. Go to Pakistan.' My experiences in New Orleans say otherwise...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Democracy for sale

The Nation
by Robert Scheer


Call it Tonto's revenge: The outrageous rip-off of Native American tribes by a top Republican lobbyist is leading inexorably to a reckoning for the allegedly morally superior religious and political right. 'I don't think we have had something of this scope, arrogance and sheer venality in our lifetimes,' Norman J. Ornstein, of the conservative American Enterprise Institute, wrote in Roll Call. 'It is building to an explosion, one that could create immense collateral damage within Congress and in coming elections.' Selling firewater to the natives -- or in this case charging them $82 million for government breaks on slot machine and other gaming licenses -- is not exactly what the high-minded prophets of the Republican revolution promised. And to see behind the scenes as Christian right superstar Ralph Reed, bought off by top Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, dupes his grassroots 'pro-family' followers into unwittingly supporting casino-rich Indian tribes under the guise of anti-gambling initiatives, is to glimpse moral corruption of biblical proportions...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Senate must reject cybercrime treaty

Human Events
by James Plummer


Originally conceived as a tool to facilitate international cooperation in the pursuit of computer hackers and the like, the Cybercrime Treaty evolved during 15 years of negotiations to encompass any criminal offense that involves electronic evidence -- which in the 21st century is essentially limitless. As written, it could require more surveillance on Americans who have been accused of violating the laws of foreign countries -- even if they haven't violated U.S. law. Treaty cheerleaders paint menacing pictures of hackers and child pornographers. But in reality the Convention is drafted so broadly that it encompasses virtually every area of law where the possibility exists of computerized evidence. That could affect thousands of innocent people, including not only political dissidents, but also the politically incorrect...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Beyond spin

by Jacob Weisberg


George W. Bush arrived in Washington avowing an end to all that. He promised he would never parse, shade, or play nice with the truth the way that Clinton had. But if Bush has shunned spinning, it has been in favor of something far more insidious. If the Clintonites were inveterate spinners, the Bushies have proved themselves to be thoroughgoing propagandists...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Suicide before dishonour in occupied Iraq

by Gary Leupp


'I cannot support a mission that leads to corruption, human rights abuse, and liars. I am sullied. I came to serve honorably and feel dishonored. Death before being dishonored any more.' Having written a last note, and placed it by his bed in his trailer on a U.S. military base near Baghdad, on the afternoon of June 5, 2005 Colonel Ted S. Westhusing put his 9-mm. service pistol to his head and blew his brains out. He was 44, survived by a wife and three young children. ... What's special about this case is that Westhusing was a specialist on ethics, a West Point graduate who had taken seriously its code that 'a cadet will not lie, cheat or steal -- or tolerate those who do,' who had received his Ph.D. in philosophy from Emory University for a dissertation on the meaning of honor, and returned to West Point to teach philosophy and English. He didn't kill himself because of battle stress or feelings of guilt following his role in a specific firefight. Looks like he put a bullet through his head because he felt the mission itself -- the war -- was dishonorable...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Show your hand, not your ID

The Chronicle


At many colleges, students flash a photo ID at a food-service worker to get into a dining hall. Things work differently at the University of Georgia, where Gavin Beck, a senior, places his hand on a sensor that determines if the person waiting to eat really is Gavin Beck. The process, which measures the size and shape of the hand, takes only a few seconds. 'No system is foolproof, but this is far more efficient for us than a photo-based system,' says J. Michael Floyd, director of food services at Georgia. The university is among the first to use the biometric technology widely, having relied on it in one form or another in its dining halls since 1974. Hand scanners, electronic fingerprint readers, even retina scanners are not just for super-spies in Hollywood movies anymore. The technology is increasingly being used by colleges to allow students, professors, and staff members to gain access to dining halls, laboratories, gyms, and other facilities on their campuses...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Secret ID law to get hearing

Wired News


Although John Gilmore lives just five blocks from San Francisco's Department of Motor Vehicles, his driver's license is expired. On purpose.The outspoken, techno-hippie, wealthy civil libertarian doesn't want to give his Social Security number to the DMV. Neither will he show his driver's license at airports, or submit to routine security searches. This refusal to obey the rules led him to file suit against the Bush administration (Gilmore v. Gonzales) after being rebuffed at two different airports on July 4, 2002, when he tried to fly without showing identification. One airline offered to let Gilmore fly without showing ID, but only if he underwent more intensive security screening, which he declined. On Thursday, Gilmore and his lawyers will get 20 minutes in front of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to make their argument against identification requirements and government secrecy, in a case that time and shifting public opinion has transformed from a quirky millionaire's indignant protest into a closely watched test of the limitations of executive branch power...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Thousands mistakenly end up on terrorist watch list

Consumer Affairs


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) mistakenly put thousands of unsuspecting airline passengers on a 'terrorist watch' list, according to one agency official. The individuals were 'selectees,' meaning they were singled out for additional screening and verification before boarding an airplane. CNET News reported that Jim Kennedy, TSA's director of 'redress,' revealed the error at a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) 'privacy and integrity' committee meeting on Dec. 6th. Kennedy said that 30,000 people were categorized as 'selectees' for various reasons, including 'fitting a certain profile, flying on a one-way ticket, or being selected randomly by a computer'...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Tell it to the judge, war opponents

Independent [UK]


In three different British courtrooms yesterday, three ordinary people stood accused of three very different crimes, but all based simply on their opposition to the war in Iraq. In the first case of its kind, a woman received a criminal conviction for standing outside Downing Street and reading aloud the names of the 97 British soldiers who have died in the Iraq conflict. At the same time as Maya Evans, 25, appeared in court yesterday to become the first person to be found guilty under the legislation designed to create an exclusion zone around Parliament Square, Douglas Barker, 72, a retired businessman from Wiltshire, was told by a magistrate that he faces jail for withholding part of his income tax on his investments, also in protest over Iraq. In a third courtroom in Aldershot, a military judge heard that Flight Lieutenant Malcolm Kendall-Smith, 37, an RAF medical officer based in Scotland, faced a court martial for refusing to serve in Iraq on the basis that the war was illegal...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Deutsche Firmen vernachlässigen WLAN-Sicherheit


Deutsche Unternehmen vernachlässigen die Sicherheit ihrer Funknetzwerke


Strahlend ins Internet - WLAN

Church mast gets go-ahead

West Midlands & Stafford Express and Star

Dec 7, 2005

Religious leaders have rejected concerns about the health of Black Country schoolchildren to allow a mobile phone mast to be set up.

The Ancient Arches Court of Canterbury has overturned a ruling that blocked plans by Emmanuel Church, Walsall, to allow a mast to be installed in its tower.

It is believed the church will earn around £6,000 a year in rent by allowing communication companies to place masts in or on its tower. The ruling follows a near 18-month campaign by nearby schools King Charles Primary and Bentley West Primary.

Staff and parents objected on the grounds the mast could damage the health of youngsters.

The case for and against was put to the country's top ecclesiastical court at a one-day hearing in September.

The decision has just been revealed.


Churches and Cell Towers

Nearly 200 objections to mobile phone mast

This is the North East


ALMOST 200 people have objected to plans for a 52ft mobile phone mast at the entrance to a town.

Objectors say the controversial plan has galvanised residents into action because it would ruin an attractive view of Masham, near Ripon.

Mobile phone company Airwave MM02 has applied to Harrogate Borough Council for planning permission for the mast.

A decision will be made by the council's head of planning services, Tim Richards, and planning committee chairman Councillor Nigel Simms, who represents Masham on the council.

The decision will be made on December 19 and the deadline for objections is tomorrow. Nearly 200 objections have been received by Masham Community Office, which is co-ordinating responses and sending them to the borough council.

Masham Parish Council vice-chairwoman Flo Grainger said: "I am very pleased and surprised by the numbers of objections.

"The mast plan has brought so many objections because it would have a widespread impact and ruin the view of Masham."

The company, which said the mast was needed to improve police communications, plans to site it on a grass verge near Low Burton Hall, at the junction of the B6267 and A6108, from Bedale and Ripon.

Councillor Grainger said campaigners against the mast had been boosted by news that the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Beauty administration plans to object.

Apart from the mast's impact, residents are also concerned that the planned site is at an accident blackspot and on a gateway to the Yorkshire Dales.

Masham Parish Council has tabled a strong protest.

Its chairman, Councillor Andy Burrell, said: "This is not the place for a mobile phone mast.

"We could not object more strongly to this unwanted plan."


This is yet another TETRA addition after O2 Airwave's V-P declared early this year that no more masts were needed (for police or any other service user yet to take it up) in support of the Firelink bid.

One objection to this mast might be to prove that it is needed, in the light of O2 Airwave's public statement that it would not be needed.



Thanks for this Andy.

Next question: what happens to the much-publicised high-security encryption claimed for Airwave - so that people can't eavesdrop on confidential police communications?

This article makes it very clear that highly confidential information from the Police National Computer, as well as confidential emails, will be going over the ordinary public network. So what about all that concern for security that made Airwave so essential???

The whole thing is an utter (black) farce. If the Airwave contract had been awarded by a private company, rather than an arm of government, heads would be rolling at the very highest level in the boardrooms of that company. But since in this case we, the public, are the 'shareholders' of UK PLC, who's going to care?

I think it would be naive to rule out some sort of hidden agenda - there are more surprises in store yet (for those of us who haven't gone beyond being surprised by anything about this fiasco).



And what's more, reviewing what Rohill is saying about TETRA in Germany, Spain and Netherlands, they are waiting for TETRA standard 2 in order to provide end-to-end encryption. Either they are wrong, or Airwave is not fully end-to-end as stated and believed by our police forces.



... And I recall reading in an earlier 'Computing' article that many (probably most) of the handsets currently in use will not support TETRA Standard 2, and will therefore need replacing. And I doubt that Airwave handsets are given away free with the coco-pops.

The beat goes on ...


Phone company’s application for mast extension

The Comet 08.12.05

A CONTROVERSIAL phone mast originally installed without planning permission and then allowed to remain temporarily could end up staying where it is for over 18 months.

The mast, situated by the terraces at Hitchin Town football ground in Fishponds Road, was installed by Vodafone in October last year.

The company then applied for permission and was told it could keep the mast there until April 2005.

But the mast has remained at the site since this deadline passed and Vodafone is now asking to be allowed to keep it there for another six months.

The company claims the site is needed to give coverage to west Hitchin and Ickleford until it finds a permanent solution.

If the new planning permission is granted the mast could remain at the football ground until either May or June next year, a move which is likely to prove unpopular with residents of nearby roads.

One resident, of Lancaster Avenue, has already written to North Herts District Council to object to the plan.

The resident insists the mast should have been removed and complains that it is visible from her sitting room and that it is not built on a brownfield site but on common land used for sport.

The matter is due to be discussed by the Hitchin Committee of NHDC next Tuesday.

Councillor Martin Stears, who represents Hitchin Bearton ward on the council, told The Comet: "It's a matter of concern that unless things have changed that we should not see it as a backdoor for something permanent when that's not appropriate.

"We have to look at the whole application from both sides and make a proper judgement on the night."

The Comet contacted Vodafone for a comment but they had not responded by the time the paper went to press.

Condi's Trail of Lies

Sidney Blumenthal asserts that Condoleezza Rice's contradictory, misleading and outright false statements about the US and torture have taken America's moral standing - and her own - to new depths.



The Citizen, Gloucester

09:30 - 08 December 2005

City planners have been urged to make a stand against the number of phone masts being set up in Gloucester.

Two applications were put forward at a meeting of the city council's planning committee on Tuesday evening. Both were submitted by telecommunications giant O2 (UK) Ltd, to erect 15 metre tall structures in Painswick Road.

The council can only turn down plans if it can prove the siting and appearance of the mast is unreasonable.

No health issues can be considered in any application and, if the council rejects a proposal, it could face large costs if the decision is overturned on appeal.

The first planned mast, on a grass verge outside Saintbridge RFC in Matson, was granted permission after councillors admitted they could not find a planning reason to reject the proposals.

However, the plans for the second mast, on a grass verge on land between Painswick Road and Briar Lane in Abbeydale, met with more opposition.

City actress Jean Carlin, who lives near the proposed site, spoke against the plans.

She said: "Soon people will not even be able to talk to each other, before too long everyone will just walk around speaking into these stupid little machines.

"This is a serious matter and I believe it is up to people like you to get the ball rolling and to say enough is enough."

Coun Andrew Gravells, who represents the Abbeydale area on the city council, also spoke against the plans.

He said: "I am upset by this application. The site slopes quite significantly and the impact of placing a 15 metre tall mast here would be massive upon many people in Abbeydale."

Coun Gravells added that he believed a more suitable site away from nearby houses could be found for the mast.

Coun Mary Smith, a member of the committee, agreed, saying: "We need to send a clear message that putting a mast in the middle of a residential area is not acceptable when just 100 yards up the road the houses are far more scattered."

The committee decided to refuse planning permission on the grounds that the mast would spoil the amenity of the surrounding area and would be situated on one of the main approaches to the city.

A Forgotten Post–9/11 Hoax


On "Duke" Cunningham and the war elite

The Worst and Dumbest

Rice statement on torture 'carefully lawyered'


Informant: jensenmk

From ufpj-news



WHO Survey: How healthy is your world?


I have received this - I think we should all contact WHO and let them know just what we think of them!




WHO, EMF, Electromagnetic Radiation and Mobile Phones

Ständig unter Spannung

Beobachter 25/05

Text: Thomas Grether
Bild: Igor Kravarik

Haben Sie Schlafprobleme? Ist Ihr Mann ein extremer Schnarcher? Elektrosmog in den eigenen vier Wänden könnte schuld daran sein.
Nicht nur Handys und Mobilfunkantennen verursachen Elektrosmog. Auch Haarföhn, Fernseher, Radios, Lampen und Stromkabel bauen in der Wohnung elektrische und magnetische Wechselfelder auf. Die Menschen nehmen diese elektrischen Felder wie eine Antenne auf und stehen deswegen buchstäblich unter Spannung.

«Das ist besonders dann der Fall, wenn die Menschen keinen Kontakt zum Boden haben, zum Beispiel im Bett», sagt Elektrosmog-Spezialist Josef Peter von der Firma MPA Engineering in Effretikon ZH. Peter misst und saniert seit Jahren mit Elektrosmog belastete Wohnungen. «Wir prüfen neben der Stärke des elektrischen Felds immer auch die Körperspannung.»

Im Körper bewirken die Felder künstliche Wirbelströme, Stromflüsse sowie Zell- und Nervenreize. «Der Elektrosmog greift in biologische Prozesse ein und verändert sie», sagt Peter. Das bekam auch Elisabeth Kiefer aus Volketswil ZH zu spüren: «Ich hatte massive Schlafprobleme. Zudem litt ich unter hohem Blutdruck und musste dagegen Medikamente nehmen», sagt sie.

In Kiefers Schlafzimmer mass Peter eine elektrische Feldstärke von 7 Volt pro Meter; der von Baubiologen und Medizinern empfohlene Höchstwert liegt bei 0,1 Volt. Kiefers Körper stand mit über 7000 Millivolt unter Spannung – 350fach über dem Richtwert von 20 Millivolt.

Die Auswirkungen sind anerkannt

Die Europäische Union stellte bereits 1997 fest, dass Menschen auf Elektrosmog mit verschiedensten Symptomen reagieren: unter anderem mit Schlafproblemen, Hautausschlägen, Hormon- und Nervenstörungen, Verdauungs- und Herz-Kreislauf-Beschwerden sowie Augen- und Ohrenproblemen. Und die Weltgesundheitsorganisation schrieb im Februar 2003: «Das Phänomen der Elektrosensibilität ist klar anerkannt.»

Bewusst wahrnehmen können Menschen indes nur einen kleinen Bereich des elektromagnetischen Spektrums: Wärme und Licht. Handys und Schnurlostelefone senden mit digitalen elektromagnetischen Wellen. Zu Hause gilt es auch zu unterscheiden zwischen elektrischen Feldern, die als Folge der elektrischen Spannung von Geräten entstehen, und magnetischen Feldern infolge fliessenden Stroms.

Wenn der Handwerker nicht erdet

Elektrische Felder sind in der Lage, sich meterweit auszudehnen. Laut Elektrosmog-Spezialist Josef Peter sind die Verursacher oft versteckt. Die Felder entstehen wegen der elektrischen Spannung von Kabeln in Wänden, Leitungen und Steckdosen. «Und zwar auch dann, wenn Geräte eingesteckt, aber ausgeschaltet sind. Ich habe Häuser untersucht, in denen ganze Böden unter Spannung standen», sagt Peter. Ursache seien Geräte und Leitungen, die von Hand- oder Heimwerkern falsch installiert oder nicht geerdet worden sind.

Elisabeth Kiefer entfernte auf Rat von Experte Peter den Radiowecker und das digitale DECT-Schnurlostelefon aus dem Schlafzimmer.

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