En student fra Princeton University som påsto at to maskerte liberalere angrep ham for hans konservative politiske syn, tilstår nå å ha funnet på hele greia. Fra NYT:
A Princeton University junior who claimed to have been beaten by two men in black ski caps for his conservative views admitted on Monday that he made up the attack, according to Princeton Township police officials.
Francisco Nava, 23, told police that he was attacked on Friday evening, two days after he and three other students belonging to a conservative group, the Anscombe Society, had received threatening e-mail messages, according to the university. The society opposes premarital sex and advocates for a return to more traditional morality in society. A politics professor who serves as an unofficial adviser to the group, Robert P. George, also received e-mail threats.
Mr. Nava initially told police that one of the men approached him a few miles away from campus and asked him to go with him to help someone who was hurt. Mr. Nava said that when he walked toward the man, he was grabbed by a second man and pinned against a brick wall in a field. He said that both men hit him in the face before running away.
But on Monday, when confronted by police officials about inconsistencies in his story, Mr. Nava admitted that he had inflicted scratches and bruises on his own face because of “underlying personal issues” and that he had not received any threatening e-mail messages, said Detective Sgt. Ernie Silagyi, who interviewed Mr. Nava.
En britisk fange som ble arrestert i Pakistan i 2002, sendt til Marokko via CIAs 'rendition'-program og som har sittet i den menneskrettsstidige fangeleiren Guantanamo Bay siden, er nå suicidal og har blitt gal etter mange års tortur. Binyam Mohameds skjebne beskrives slik i the Independent:
The report concludes that Binyam Mohamed, from Kensington, west London, is at the end of his "psychological tether" after guards at the US naval base in Cuba switched off the water supply to his cell when he began spreading his own faeces over the walls. Mr Mohamed is one of at least seven detainees being held at Guantanamo Bay who claim British residency. Three of the men are expected to be reunited with their families before Christmas after the Government successfully negotiated their release. But the Americans have made it clear that Mr Mohamed must remain in detention to face a military tribunal on charges of terrorism.
Bildet er fra Abu Ghraib-fengselet i Irak og viser torturmetoder brukt på fangene i 'krigen mot terror'.
For most of the past 16 years the truly elected leader of Burma, Aung San Suu Kyi, has been held under house arrest by a brutal military dictatorship that suppresses all opposition through a policy of rape, forced labour and systematic killings. This is a country unique in failing all five crucial tests by which the UN measures human rights, yet until now the world has all but ignored. Finally, the UN Security Council is beginning to debate how to deal with this renegade nation, in which Britain is the second biggest investor.
Journalist Evan Williams goes undercover for Dispatches deep inside Burma on a highly dangerous journey to witness new levels of violence by the regime against its own people. Evan documents atrocities committed against the Karen people, and follows up by illegally entering Burma again - this time as a tourist. He meets dissidents willing to sacrifice their freedom so that people on the outside should know what is going on. Despite Aung San Suu Kyi’s plea for an end to foreign investment in Burma, Evan discovers that – thanks to the tax loophole of a British Protectorate – Britain remains the second biggest investor in this systematically brutal dictatorship.
Et av tegnene på Bush' fallende oppslutning er tilhengere som nå har skiftet side og tar avstand fra tidligere aktivitet. En av dem er Andrea S. fra Florida, som i mai 2003 ble en av brikkene i spillet mot country-bandet Dixie Chicks, som tidlig tok avstand fra Bush' invasjon i Irak. Dette skaffet dem solide problemer - mange arrangører avlyste konserter med jentene og det hele utviklet seg til en McCarthyistisk hat-fest. Andrea lærte sin to år gamle sønn å si 'Screw the Dixie Chicks' og trampet på Dixie Chicks-cder. Fra MSNBC:
On the afternoon of May 5, 2003, Andrea S. was stomping on Dixie Chicks CDs and instructing her 2-year-old son to say, “Screw the Chicks!”
Unbeknownst to her at the time, her life changed forever at that moment — and so did the lives of the Dixie Chicks.
Four years ago, the latest U.S. invasion of Iraq had begun, and Natalie Maines was an oft-reviled target for, “while on foreign soil,” criticizing our commander in chief. One of Andrea’s friends ran a local talk-radio program in Tampa and encouraged her to participate in an anti-Dixie Chicks protest outside the St. Pete Times Forum, the next stop in the Chicks’ “Top of the World” tour.
With her 2-year-old son, Connor, in tow, Andrea pondered whether to attend the protest. Given that it was to take place close to her home, she decided to go, mainly to satisfy her curiosity. That said, she was not particularly fond of Natalie’s comments, which she considered a betrayal to the troops. But she never hated the Dixie Chicks.
Andrea chose to honor her friend’s request to attend because she was acting like, in her own words, a “sheep.” At the time, she followed and mimicked others like a lemming. She didn’t identify with any political ideology or party; in fact, she hardly knew the difference between a Republican and a Democrat. (...) The two are still exercising their fundamental right to free speech. She told me they’ve been to many protests because they “like to open their mouths.” Only this time, they aren’t trashing the Dixie Chicks.
In January, Andrea and Connor proudly marched in Washington, D.C., to call for an end to the war.
On their way to and from the march, Andrea and Connor blasted their car stereo and sang along to the songs of the Dixie Chicks.
Den amerikanske kongressen vil etterforske CIAs ødeleggelse av video-opptak av avhørs-sesjoner, tross Bush-administrasjonens pålegg om å droppe saken. Det er ABC News som melder dette:
House Will Continue Investigation Despite White House Request to Drop It
House Intelligence Committee chairman Silvestre Reyes told ABC News today that he will ignore the Bush administration's request to drop its investigation of why CIA interrogation tapes were destroyed.
"This is an administration that frankly does not have a good track record of policing itself," Reyes said. "We intend to go forward and issue subpoenas next week because we are a whole equal branch of government."
After telling Congress to get out of the way, the Justice Department took the highly unusual step of telling the same thing to a federal judge.
In 2005, Judge Henry Kennedy ordered the government not to destroy any evidence of mistreatment or torture at the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The Administration says that because the destroyed tapes were interrogations of two suspects in secret CIA prisons, not at Guantanamo, the judge should not interfere.
"This is becoming increasingly bizarre," said Jonathan Turley, a professor at George Washington University Law School. "The Justice Department insists it will essentially investigate itself and then tells the court that because it is investigating itself it won't turn over evidence of its possible criminal misconduct. It's so circular, it's maddening."
Mer enn fem millioner barn har blitt foreldreløse i Irak på grunn av den pågående krigen, melder det uavhengige nyhetsbyrået Voices of Iraq (VOI).
Baghdad, Dec 15, (VOI) – Iraq's anti-corruption board revealed on Saturday that there were five million Iraqi orphans as reported by official government statistics, urging the government, parliament, and NGOs to be in constant contact with Iraq's parentless children. "The government should set up an institutional or legislative program to help the Iraqi orphans. Iraqi is an oil-rich country and it is not acceptable that its orphans remain groaning in this tragedy," the anti-corruption board chief, Moussa Faraj, said during a conference in Baghdad dedicated to orphans in Iraq. "The board on its own cannot meet the Iraqi orphans' needs, but there should be an organization or even a ministry to provide care for orphans," he said.
BILL MOYERS: Welcome to the journal. We have a lot of ground to cover in this hour - from journalism and media merger mania to politics and race. First, despite the clutter and conglomeration in commercial broadcasting a new voice occasionally emerges that proves the exception to the rule. The rule is either echo right-wing ideology or bow your knee to the god of "objectivity," meaning you simply counter a pound of official propaganda with an ounce of counter spin. Jon Stewart broke this mold with his daily show on comedy central. And now MSNBC's Keith Olbermann has done the same for cable news.
Justisminister i USA, Michael Mukasey, blokkerer ethvert forsøk på å komme til bunns i saken om opptakene fra CIAs avhør av fanger i 'krigen mot terror' under påskudd av at slike granskinger vil få det til å se ut som om Justisdepartementet er 'mottagelig for politisk innflytelse'. Saken om de ødelagte CIA-tapene, som etter sigende skal vise brutal tortur av fanger i såkalte 'black sites' (fengsler i land som tillater tortur) som en del av CIAs rendition program.
Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey today sharply rebuffed congressional demands for details about the Justice Department's inquiry into the destruction of CIA interrogation tapes, saying that providing such information would make it appear that the department was "subject to political influence."
In letters to the leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee and others, Mukasey also reiterated his opposition to appointing a special prosecutor to the tapes investigation, saying he was "aware of no facts at present" that would require such a step.
En bipartisan komité som er opprettet for å granske saken er sjokkert over justisministerens inngripen og har publisert en uttalelse som fordømmer Mukasey:
"Just two days ago, CIA Director Michael Hayden appeared before our Committee to address the CIA's destruction of videotapes. In that hearing, he committed to providing materials relevant to our investigation. Earlier today, our staff was notified that the Department of Justice has advised CIA not cooperate with our investigation.
"We are stunned that the Justice Department would move to block our investigation. Parallel investigations occur all of the time, and there is no basis upon which the Attorney General can stand in the way of our work.
"We strongly urge General Hayden to comply with our Committee's bipartisan request to produce documents and to make available John Rizzo and Jose Rodriguez for testimony next week. We will use all the tools available to Congress, including subpoenas, to obtain this information and this testimony.
"It's clear that there's more to this story than we have been told, and it is unfortunate that we are being prevented from learning the facts. The Executive Branch can't be trusted to oversee itself. Congress must conduct its own investigation."
Saken er også - etter sigende, det finnes mange forskjellige 'sannheter' her - brukt til å inkriminere Demokratenes fremste kongressrepresentant, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, som i en tidligere artikkel i WaPo blir fremstilt som å ha godkjent torturprogrammet i 2002. Dette er et politisk spill av dimensjoner, en 'høk over høk'-situasjon der denne saken kan ha blitt lekket nå av forskjellige grunner. Om lag en uke før saken ble kjent, ble det mye omtalte National Intelligence Estimate deklassifisert, som viser at Bush-administrasjonens aggressive retorikk mot Iran er bogus; Iran oppga sitt atomvåpenprogram i 2003 i følge NIE, og har siden ikke hatt ambisjoner i den retningen (noe som igjen kan være en sofistikert metode for å 'plassere' propaganda om Irans nukleære ambisjoner; dette er det eneste dokument som bekrefter at Iran noensinne har hatt slike ambisjoner). Til sakskomplekset hører også den tidligere etterretningsagenten Valerie Plame Wilson og hennes mann diplomaten Joe Wilson, som fikk smellen av tidligere Bush-rådgiver Karl Rove da Plame Wilson ble 'outet' som CIA-agent i 2003 fordi Wilson ikke ville samarbeide i propaganda-oppbyggingen til Irak-invasjonen. Plame Wilson jobbet etter sigende med å kartlegge Irans atomprogram da hun ble avslørt. Sist, men ikke minst: Da torturbeskyldningene mot Pelosi og andre Demokrater gikk som høyest sist uke var Demokraten Al Gore i Norge for å motta Nobels fredspris og John Kerry var på Bali som representant for Demokratene (og representerte der en ganske annen linje enn Bush-administrasjonen). Dette er en dobbeltbunnet story med så mange lag at det er vanskelig å gjøre seg opp en endelig mening.
If my mother is listening, mother, I should have listened to you: Always chew your pretzels before you swallow.
Nå kommer det frem i en ny bok av den tidligere britiske utenriksminister Lord Owen, The Hubris Syndrome: Bush, Blair, and the Intoxication of Power, at legene fant alkohol i blodet da Bush ble undersøkt på sykehuset. Fra Vanity Fair:
I wouldn’t want to draw conclusions as to the cause of this recent spate of malapropisms, but a new book by former British foreign secretary Lord Owen may supply a clue. In The Hubris Syndrome: Bush, Blair, and the Intoxication of Power, Owen recalls the time in 2002 when the commander in chief collapsed while sitting on a sofa watching a football game. (Official cause: he’d choked on a pretzel.) The presidential head hit a table on the way to the floor, he suffered an abrasion on the left side of his face, and a blood sample was rushed to Johns Hopkins, in Baltimore. Owen says he was told by a British doctor who had visited Johns Hopkins that lab technicians there found that the blood contained significant amounts of alcohol—this in the body of a man who claims he hasn’t had a drop in more than 20 years.
"I doubt I'd be standing here if I hadn't quit drinking whiskey, and beer and wine and all that," the president disclosed Tuesday to ABC News' Martha Raddatz during an exclusive tour of the White House residence.
"I had too much to drink one night, and the next day I didn't have any," Bush said. "The next day I decided to quit and I haven't had a drink since 1986."
Personell ved den rettsstridige fangeleiren Guantanamo Bayer fersket i å endre wiki for Fidel Castro, som ble omredigert til å være en transseksuell. Også wiki for fangeleiren ble pyntet på og kritikk redigert bort. Fangenumre i wikiene til tre Guantanamo-fanger ble også fjernet, i følge gruppen Wikileaks.
US military personnel at Guantanamo Bay called Fidel Castro a transsexual and defended the prison for terrorism suspects in anonymous web postings, an internet group that publishes government documents said today.
The group, Wikileaks, tracked web activity by service members with Guantanamo email addresses and also found they deleted prisoner identification numbers from three detainee profiles on Wikipedia, the popular online encyclopedia that allows anyone to change articles.
Julian Assange, who led the research effort, said the postings amount to propaganda and deception.
"This is the American government speaking to the American people and to the world through Wikipedia, not identifying itself and often speaking about itself in the third person," Assange said in a telephone interview from Paris.
Army Lt Col Ed Bush, a Guantanamo spokesman, said there is no official attempt to alter information posted elsewhere but said the military seeks to correct what it believes is incorrect or outdated information about the prison.
Bush declined to answer questions about the Castro posting.
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