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June 29-30

Sons of a Laboring God: Getting Down and Dumb at Burt's Tavern
by Joe Bageant

My home town is one of those slowly rotting East Coast burgs that makes passers-through think to themselves: "What the hell is this? Mayberry USA on crack?"  The town's 250-year old core is a blighted clot of ramshackle houses carved into apartments and cheesy businesses. Its outer rim of slurb is the typical ugly gash of commercial hell, an assortment of mindlessly jammed-together tire dealers, grim asphalt, slurp and burps, and car dealerships of the type that make the U.S. one of the ugliest nations on earth. A sign in the median strip of this gash proclaims Winchester an official U.S. "All-American Town." To its credit however, the town does have that special kind of seediness found only in the American South. It might even be considered weirdly colorful in an America Studies sort of way, with its hard-faced characters straight out of Grapes of Wrath and spooky and well-scrubbed Bible thumpers. Beauty being in the eye of the beholder, our local Chamber of Commerce calls it "Historic Winchester, Virginia."  But many of us who grew up here call it Dickville; if you were born and raised here you were probably dicked from the beginning....(full article)

A Fantastic Tale: Turkey, Drugs, Faustian Alliances & Sibel Edmonds

by John Stanton

Taking Turkey as the focal point and with a start date of 1998, it is easy to speculate why Sibel Edmonds indicated that there was a convergence of US and foreign counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism and US national security and economic interests all of which were too preoccupied to surface critical information warning Americans of the attacks of September 11, 2001. After all, who would have believed drug runners operating in Central Asia? And besides, President Clinton was promoting Turkey, one of the world’s top drug transit points, as a model for Muslim-Western cooperation and a country necessary to reshape the Middle East. The FBI’s Office of International Operations, in conjunction with the CIA and the US State Department counter-narcotics section, the United Kingdom’s MI6, Israel’s Mossad, Pakistan’s ISI, the US DEA, Turkey’s MIT, and the governments and intelligence agencies of dozens of nations, were in one way or another involved in the illicit drug trade either trying to stop it or benefit from it. What can be surmised from the public record is that from 1998 to September 10, 2001, the War on Drugs kept bumping into the nascent War on Terror and new directions in US foreign policy....(full article)

Father's Day Remembrance: A Californian Honors His Fallen Son

by Paul Rockwell

On March 20, the first anniversary of the Iraq war, Bill Mitchell, a devoted father, joined the worldwide protest in San Luis Obispo, Calif. He carried a big photo of his son that read, “Bring my son home now.” A week later, his son, Sgt. Michael Mitchell was killed attempting to rescue a platoon of U.S. soldiers in Sadr City --killed in an occupation his father tried to end. All tragedies are unique. Last week, I reached Bill Mitchell in Atascadero. We talked about his grief, his son’s courage in battle, the fire in his soul and his campaign to halt the U.S. occupation of Iraq. Mitchell is a new member of Military Families Speak Out -- more than 1,500 soldiers, veterans and relatives opposed to war in Iraq....(full interview)

“Fahrenheit 9/11” or “Farce and Hype 7-11”

by Ivan Eland

The debut of Michael Moore’s film “Fahrenheit 9/11” juxtaposed with the turnover of power to the Iraqis by the coalition authority in Baghdad represent the reality and the fiction of the Iraq War. But which is which?
(full article)

Abrogating Their Responsibility
by Walter and Rosemary Brasch

Much of the establishment press has been especially critical of Michael Moore. In the past few days, it has questioned every word he has said, every line in his third documentary, “Fahrenheit 9/11.” The film attacks President George W. Bush, the Bush Administration, corporate America, and the media. It has been called propaganda and manipulative; Moore has been called obnoxious, arrogant, and detestable....(full article)

Fahrenheit 9/11: An Authoritarian View of American Fascism
by Chuck Richardson

Everyone knows that Michael Moore is against George Bush, but after watching “Fahrenheit 9/11” last Friday I was left wondering what he’s for. Is he for peace, or is Moore just against Dubya? (full article)

Truth and Freedom, Slip-Sliding Away
by Sheila Samples

So, what's up with the New York Times? Looks like being publicly ridiculed for dumping the WMD crap too close to the house and then tracking it in on the rug in those critical months before attacking Iraq would have taught it something. It's a new experience for those of us who once revered the Times as the epitome of solid journalism to read it now with a grain of salt, and even then we can't keep the truth from slip-sliding away. Does this country's "newspaper of record" not have fact checkers?  Editors?  Considering that nobody seems to care about the truth anymore, figuring out if Times reporters are liars or ignorant -- or both -- is getting to be a real head-scratcher....(full article)

Shameless in Iraq
by Naomi Klein

Good news out of Baghdad: the Program Management Office, which oversees the $18.4 billion in US reconstruction funds, has finally set a goal it can meet. Sure, electricity is below prewar levels, the streets are rivers of sewage and more Iraqis have been fired than hired. But now the PMO has contracted with British mercenary firm Aegis to protect its employees from "assassination, kidnapping, injury and" -- get this -- "embarrassment." I don't know whether Aegis will succeed in protecting PMO employees from violent attack, but embarrassment? I'd say mission already accomplished. The people in charge of rebuilding Iraq can't be embarrassed, because, clearly, they have no shame....(full article)

The Crumbling of Apple Pie
by Baruch Kimmerling

Baruch Kimmerling reviews American conservative guru Samuel Huntington's new book, Who We Are?: The Challenges to America's National Identity. Huntington claims that alongside its immigrant nature, the American nation was, and remains, a white, religious, Puritan-Protestant nation that absorbed human elements, especially from (white) Europe, along with ideas from the European Enlightenment and the Age of Reason. It became an immense melting pot in which people and ideas were subjected to a blunt process of Americanization. As long as the mechanisms of Americanization functioned properly (while also carefully selecting who would be allowed to join the nation), the US became the fulfillment of prosperous humanity's most advanced dreams, and it marched vigorously on toward a world hegemony. But like all other hegemonic empires in human history, it, too, began to crumble from within as it reached its zenith. And that is exactly where the US stands today. Huntington believes that unless appropriate measures are taken soon, the US will implode and come to resemble the countries of South America. Such a prospect fills the heart of any "real" American with deep dread....(full article)

F--k this, Dick!
by Peter Kurth

"Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!" I’m not talking about the “end of occupation” or the farcical “transfer of power” in Iraq. Nor do I mock the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, which Dr. King himself borrowed from an old Negro spiritual for his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. No, I’m celebrating freedom as only the freed can -- the precious gift granted to all Americans last week, when Vice President Dick Cheney, “during a photo session in the usually decorous Senate chamber,” exploded in “colorful profanity,” according to the Washington Post, and told Vermont’s Senator Patrick Leahy to “f—k” himself....(full article)

Obscenity, A Sign of the Times and the Post

by Harold Williamson

A chance meeting on the Senate floor during a photo session on June 22 between Vice President Dick Cheney and Senator Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., turned into an argument about Cheney's questionable ties to Halliburton Co., and it ended when Cheney offered this crass advice to Leahy: "Fuck yourself." Since that is a physical impossibility, Cheney's remark should not be interpreted in its literal sense; however, the Washington Post printed it verbatim as they have been wont to do with anything emanating from the aura of the Bush administration. "For nearly three years, murky speculation, innuendo and inaccurate information have kept a connection between Saddam Hussein and the terrorist attacks of Sept.11 alive in the American mind," said The New York Times....(full article)

Dick Tourette Cheney Renders Great Moments in American History

by Gary Corseri

Dick Cheney on great f***en moments in American history....
(full f***en article)

Weary of Those Stubborn Indigenous Resistance Stains?
Pretend They're Not There...

by toni solo

toni solo in Central America reports on widespread popular protests and resistance throughout Latin America to US economic aggression and imperialism, which the US mainstream media fails to cover....(full article)

Why I Changed My Voter Registration Today
by Norman Solomon

This morning I mailed a form changing my party registration from “decline to state” to the Green Party. It’s a tiny individual step in response to a hugely important collective action – the party’s decision at its national convention to nominate David Cobb for president....(full article)

Green and Growing
by Ted Glick

The Green Party of the United States took a huge step forward on Saturday, June 26th in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. And it wasn't because the assembled delegates nominated someone, David Cobb, for President. It was because of HOW it was done....(full article)

You Call It Freedom: Talking Back to a Corporate, Big City Columnist

by Paul Street

Recently had the misfortune of belatedly happening upon a Ronald Reagan commemoration penned by the Chicago Tribune’s John Kass, who holds down the page-2 column space formerly claimed by legendary Chicago journalist Mike Royko. Like Royko, Kass does an often-good job of criticizing the reigning local Richard Daley administration (Richard J. in Royko’s day and Richard M. in Kass’s day). When he’s not usefully pricking Daley II, however, Kass often goes off the reactionary deep-end. In past articles, I have shown him slandering the global justice movement and idiotically embracing the senseless waste of American lives in Iraq. Kass’s right-wing crap was really flying in a June 11th column he titled “Reagan Taught Us To Stand Tall as Americans.” Below I present the entire column, but I have broken it up with rudely interjected anti-authoritarian commentary. Reading Kass’s column closely, I was taken aback at its practically fascist implications and its relentless stupidity. I know many people who can think and write circles around the certainly well-paid John Kass and who struggle to make ends meet. But there’s no amount of money that could get them to produce the sort of atrocious nonsense that Kass gets away with on a fairly regular basis....(full article)

June 27-28

Exit Emperor Bremer  

by Ahmed Amr

At the end of June, Paul Bremer will don a silk suit and his trademark combat boots and take one last short drive to Baghdad International Airport. On the last five-mile stretch leading to the terminal, he will hold his breath and pray the Iraqi insurgents won’t take one final shot at his convoy. Accompanying Bremer will be a well-armed contingent of former Navy Seals prepared to take on all comers. Behind him, he will leave a legacy of chaos and abject failure. The only part of Iraq that Emperor Bremer will leave with a semblance of normality will be a fiefdom known as the Green Zone....(full article)

Tipping Point in Iraq  

by Dilip Hiro

If the Abu Ghraib prisoner scandal was a moral tipping point -- the final step in transforming Iraq's foreign liberators into its oppressors -- it came in-between two military tipping points in the ongoing struggle between armed insurgents and the US-led occupation forces; in-between, that is, the battle for Falluja in the Sunni triangle and the battle for Najaf in the Shia heartland. In combination, these put George W. Bush in a listening mode during his meeting with French President Jacques Chirac in early June and led to a series of redrafts of the Anglo-American resolution on Iraq at the UN Security Council....(full article)

Where Children Laugh at Bombs 

by Dahr Jamail

Baghdad: How much worse does it need to get here before the occupiers consider changing their policy? 100 dead every day? In light of what happened here yesterday, it appears as though we're heading in that direction. For those of you who think June 30 will signify a decrease in the number and magnitude of attacks against the occupation forces after the "transfer of sovereignty" -- think again....(full article)

Bush's War on the Truth 
by Joel Wendland

Bush and Cheney have in recent days flip-flopped on the their claims about an imagined link between Al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. Last September Bush said, “We've had no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved in Sept. 11.” Three days earlier on Meet the Press, Dick Cheney was less emphatic, “We don’t know. We’ve learned some things.” Now, as the 9-11 Commission’s staff report states that they found no evidence of “a collaborative relationship” between Al-Qaeda and Saddam’s regime, let alone a link between Saddam and 9-11, Bush and Cheney have reasserted their belief that Al-Qaeda and Saddam had “ties” or "contacts" -- depending on their moods apparently....(full article)

9/11 Commission Misses FBI's Embarrassing Al Qaeda Dealings  

by Peter Dale Scott

It is clear that important new evidence about al Qaeda has been gathered and released by the 9/11 Commission. But it is also clear that the commission did nothing when a Justice Department official, in commission testimony last week, brazenly covered up the embarrassing relationship of the FBI to a senior al Qaeda operative, Ali Mohamed. By telling the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to release Mohamed in 1993, the FBI may have contributed to the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kenya five years later....(full article)

The Moral Repugnance of the Propaganda State 

by Gregory Stephens

In his book Weapons of Mass Persuasion, University of Toronto history professor Paul Rutherford takes a cultural studies approach to “Marketing the War Against Iraq.” This was a “War by Disney,” as one of his informants commented. The representation of this war “bore the signature of some of the most successful products of…made-in-America popular culture.” In an interview cited by Antonia Zerbisias in the Toronto Star just before the book’s release, Rutherford seemed to lay out his own point of view clearly: "For a brief time the United States ceased to be a democracy and became a propaganda state."....(full article)

Lessons Not Learned 

by Kim Petersen

Kim Petersen on Bush's recent decision to defy international law and approve Israel's ethnic cleansing and annexation of territory seized in the war of 1967, and Congress's overwhelming support for Bush's move....(full article)

Standing Against the Claws of the Wall

by Tanya Reinhart

Along the route of the separation barrier in the West Bank, a new culture is springing up: on one side, soldiers and bulldozers; on the other, Israelis and Palestinians embracing the land and the trees, trying to save them both. Last week, Ariel Sharon decided he was secure enough in the role of man of peace to start pushing the wall towards the settlements of Ariel and Kedumim, deep in the West Bank, about 20 kilometres from Israel. And since then the Israelis and Palestinians have also been there....(full article)

Good for Business, Bad for the People 

by Daniel Patrick Welch

Daniel Patrick Welch on Michael Moore's new film, Fahrenheit 9-11, and the potential impact it may have in galvanizing an apathetic and mislead American public into action....(full article)

Condom Wars

by Doug Ireland

Lethal new regulations from President Bush’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, quietly issued with no fanfare last week, complete the right-wing Republicans’ goal of gutting HIV-prevention education in the United States. In place of effective, disease-preventing safe-sex education, little will soon remain except failed programs that denounce condom use, while teaching abstinence as the only way to prevent the spread of AIDS. And those abstinence-only programs, researchers say, actually increase the risk of contracting AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)....(full article)

Snapshots at Abu Ghraib 

by Robert Leverant

When tourists view a famous and oft-photographed vista site, they often say, “Pretty as a picture.” After hearing this exact statement and similar others, many times at tourist sites, I’ve come to understand this strange statement to mean that the actual vista is there to corroborate a mind/memory photograph. Its origin is a photograph seen in the print or electronic media, downloaded and stored in the viewer’s mind. Though artificial, this mind/memory photograph is the real vista site rather than the vista itself....(full article)

On Strangers’ Kindness 

by Seth Sandronsky

News about financial markets is 24/7. Coverage of this or that stock price moving up and down comes fast and hard. Earth’s orbit would appear to be dependent on what the Federal Reserve Bank does or does not do to interest rates. The inquiring minds of investors want to know that, and more. Constantly, they search for a crystal ball to tell them what tomorrow may bring for their investments. Such knowledge is a precious thing to them, indeed. What is assumed here needs to be explained. Namely, why is it that investment capital flows into financial markets in the first place? Why not invest in producing things that people make/grow, sell, buy and use?
(full article)

Democracy Now? An Open Letter to the People of Iraq  

by Mickey Z.

Dear Future Democrats:
Many of you must wonder what lies ahead once the benevolent forces of freedom have succeeded in creating an American-style democracy in Iraq. Allow me, if you will, to offer you a glimpse into the future....(full article)

Shrugging Off the Shackles of Propaganda 

by Mark Hand

Mark Hand reviews Mickey Z.'s latest book, The Seven Deadly Spins: Exposing the Lies Behind War Propaganda: What if every American were handed a toolkit that could be used to break down the lies of the war planners in Washington? Would it be enough to cleanse our minds of the diet of myths we’ve been fed our entire lives about the righteousness of our military and its foreign interventions? (full review)

US to North Korea: Trust Us, We'd Never Lie  

by Stephen Gowans

Picture this: Al-Qaeda offers Washington a "provisional" guarantee not to attack the country or seek to target US interests abroad in return for the US dismantling its military. The agreement would depend on the US giving international inspectors access to US military sites and meeting a series of deadlines for disabling and dismantling its military facilities, and then shipping them out of the country. Would Washington agree? Never. No country would deliberately leave itself defenseless, simply because an enemy promised not to attack, and then only provisionally. Yet absurd as the proposal is, this is what Washington is offering North Korea....(full article)

Newsworthy and Non-Newsworthy Massacres 

by Garry Leech

On June 15, guerrillas from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) massacred 34 coca farmers in Norte de Santander. The rebels woke the victims in the middle of the night, tied their hands and feet, and then executed them with automatic weapons. Most U.S. mainstream media outlets immediately broadcast the news of this brutal act. While the FARC were rightfully condemned in the media for this slaughter of civilians, coverage of two recent large-scale paramilitary massacres was virtually non-existent. Following a long established pattern, the mainstream media continues to emphasize human rights abuses by leftist guerrillas, while often ignoring those perpetrated by right-wing paramilitaries allied with the Colombian military....(full article)

Sex, Lies and Bill Clinton’s Book  

by Alan Maass

My Life is an extraordinary book that should be read and reread by every socialist. Of course, we mean My Life by the Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky. My Life by Bill Clinton, on the other hand, is pompous piece of junk -- lies and distortions served up with Clinton’s teary-eyed smile, rather than trademark snarl that we’re used to from George Bush....(full article)

We Just Don't Talk Anymore: Bush's Communication Problem with Women 

by Heather Wokusch

Despite the president's campaign pledge that "W stands for Woman," Bush tends to bomb out with the fairer sex. Unsurprisingly, a recent poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press has registered women voters favoring Kerry over Bush by a full 12 percentage point. So it's no wonder that the Bush campaign is working overtime to nab critical female voters, enlisting wife Laura and various female administration members to carry Bush's message from the Oval Office to the powder room. But Bush just doesn't seem to get it. "What women want" is to be heard, not to receive a message. Women want to be asked questions and to be given honest answers -- and that's precisely the area over which Bush is losing female voters....(full article)

The News Media’s Political “F” Word 

by Norman Solomon

When a federal judge compares George W. Bush to Benito Mussolini, is that newsworthy? (full article)

The Church, Abortion & the Bush-Cheney Gang  

by William Hughes

The Roman Catholic Church is making the "abortion" issue its main concern in the upcoming 2004 election, just as it did when Ronald Reagan first captured the White House back in 1980. It calls abortion "the greatest social issue of all time," and it's doing everything it can to back anti-abortion candidates, without regard to critically important social and geopolitical matters, such as the evil of perpetual wars....(full article)

Americans' Right to Know
by John Chuckman

In a number of states and in the American Congress, legislation is being advanced, usually under the deliberately misleading heading of the "consumer's right to know," to restrict the ability of companies and government agencies to use call centers abroad. The legislation is nothing less than the kind of non-tariff barrier so castigated by the same American legislators when one appears in another land. The legislation dangerously plays to the considerable xenophobia found in America....(full article)

Thinking Anew: A Do-It-Yourself Project 

by Harold Williamson

We are in the midst of a global crisis.  Political and economic theories further divide and inflame a world fervid from centuries of national, racial, cultural, and religious intolerance.  Technology has enabled us to view the universe from new perspectives, and the results have been chaotic: Old answers of how the universe works have been discarded and new answers have replaced them.  The structure of religion has ultimately depended on and interacted with prevailing worldviews, and with every increase in scientific knowledge of natural forces there has been less need for divine intervention in earthly affairs.  But a moral compass is not to be found in the contingency of a physical world where one cannot prove that a particular path is the correct one to take.  Time passes, paths split, and the world is changed forever in the flash of an unexpected event.  It cannot be said with certainty that there does not exist in the physical universe a principle that unites design and purpose with phenomenal reality; it can only be said that as yet there is no science that can unite them....(full article)

Pretentious Innocence Unmasked 
by Tracy McLellan

Tracy McLellan review international law specialist Francis Boyle's latest book, Destroying World Order: U.S. Imperialism in the Middle East Before and After September 11....(full review)

June 23-26

Bush Continues the “Big Lie” in the Face of Mountains of Contrary Evidence by Ivan Eland

Incredible as it may seem, despite the 9/11 commission’s conclusion that Al Qaeda and the regime of Saddam Hussein had no “collaborative relationship,” President Bush and Vice President Cheney continue to insist that there was a “relationship.”...(full article)

America Wrestles With Rupture, Renormalization and Reimagining 

by T. Patrick Donovan

It is an exquisitely delicate and dangerous time in America and in the world. Equally, it is a time of great confusion and disorientation and, perhaps too, a time of potential change so vast and deep as to still be unimaginable, hidden as it is just below the lip of tomorrow’s horizon. As counterintuitive as it may seem, it is on President George W. Bush’s watch that America finds itself awash in liminal space. We are in the midst of a great rupture of the American Mythos that is political, social, cultural and psychological in its scope. It is a rupture that is still unfolding and expanding, wherein the dust has yet to settle....(full article)

The Verala Project and the CIA  

by Thomas Riggins

There is an amazing attack on John Kerry in Saturday’s (6/19) New York Times, authored by one of the Times’ newly appointed columnists recruited from the ultra-right fringe. David Brooks, whose articles would be right at home in the Washington Times, has attacked Senator Kerry for saying the CIA funded and directed Varela Project to destabilize the Cuban government was "counterproductive." Unlike his opposite number at USA Today (DeWayne Wickham) who two years ago recognized that the "Varela Project is a nonstarter" with Cubans, Brooks is trying to peddle the line that this CIA scheme is actually a homegrown popular Cuban initiative for "democracy...(full article)

One Million Black Votes Did Not Count 

by Greg Palast

In the 2000 presidential election, 1.9 million Americans cast ballots that no one counted. "Spoiled votes" is the technical term. The pile of ballots left to rot has a distinctly dark hue: About 1 million of them -- half of the rejected ballots -- were cast by African Americans although black voters make up only 12 percent of the electorate. This year, it could get worse....(full article)

The Problem is War, Not Warriors 

by Frank Scott

Photos showing an affirmative action group of Americans treating their Iraqi captives as inhuman sex toys have shocked some, leading to angry charges and countercharges. This wartime prison porn has been deemed intolerable by our leaders, and many well-intentioned followers, while the serial killings of “normal” warfare remain unquestioned by both groups. Low level scapegoats will be punished, but the high level murderers most responsible are likely to be untouched by the sound and fury this incident creates....(full article)

Will the 9/11 Commissioners Cave? 

by Ray McGovern

Will the Sept. 11 Commission follow the example set by Congress and the Intelligence Community and let itself be intimidated by Vice President Dick Cheney? Now that the commission’s staff report has pulled the rug out from under the notion so successfully fostered by the administration that Iraq played a role in the attacks of 9/11, no one should be surprised if the commissioners pull the rug out from under the staff. There are disquieting signs that this has already begun to happen....(full article)

US in Search of Allies in Afghanistan 

by Jim Lobe

While more than 140,000 US troops in Iraq continue trying to impose security in advance of the June 30 handover of limited sovereignty to the new Iraqi administration, the security situation in nearby Afghanistan continues to deteriorate....(full article)

The Judgment of Solomon

by Gary Corseri

Gary Corseri critiques DV contributing writer Norman Solomon's critical articles on presidential candidate Ralph Nader....(full article)

by Ted Glick

What an emotional rollercoaster the Green Party Presidential nomination contest has been! What a fascinating development, Independent Ralph Nader choosing Peter Camejo, the 2002-03 Green Party California gubernatorial candidate and, as the AP reported, who "ran for president as the Socialist Workers Party nominee in 1976," as his Vice-Presidential running mate, doing so despite his often-expressed and carried-through on plans to reach out to disaffected Republicans, conservative independents and what's left of the Reform Party! It is clear to me that a primary reason Nader did so was because he realized that there is a very real possibility that he will not be endorsed in Milwaukee this coming Saturday. Even more, he probably came to realize that he overestimated what he could do without the Green Party and decided that he needed to reach out to an organization that, right now, collectively, is at best lukewarm to his candidacy....(full article)

The Anti-war Vote: What is it? Where is it?

by Kevin Spidel

Hundreds of thousands of protestors took to the streets before the invasion of Iraq. During the Democratic primaries, thousands more came out to listen to Howard Dean and Dennis Kucinich speak against the US policies of preemptive strike. The media quickly began to tag Howard Dean as the “Anti-war Candidate” and Dennis Kucinich as the “Peace Candidate”. Carol Mosely Braun, Al Sharpton, Wesley Clark, and many others went on the road to discuss Bush’s “Iraq quagmire”. Protest was heated! Debate was energized! “Anti-war” sentiment was strong! But where are these anti-war voices now? (full article)

Rape of Nanking Reloaded
by Reza Fiyouzat

The deeper reasons for the participation of the Japanese imperialists in the looting games of Uncle Sam may in fact go far beyond what appears on the surface as the promise of the contracts and/or the future acquisitions to be had, although these do form the more crass requisites. The Rape of Nanking is a good place to start for a glimpse of the urges driving the military-financial-industrial captains in Japan....(full article)

Bill O'Reilly's Final Solution: Bomb the Living Daylights Out of Them 

by Thomas Wheeler

There he goes again. Here's what Bill O'Reilly had to say on his June 17 broadcast of The Radio Factor: "Because look ... when 2 percent of the population feels that you're doing them a favor, just forget it, you're not going to win. You're not going to win. And I don't have any respect by and large for the Iraqi people at all. I have no respect for them. I think that they're a prehistoric group that is -- yeah, there's excuses. Sure, they're terrorized, they've never known freedom, all of that. There's excuses. I understand. But I don't have to respect them because you know when you have Americans dying trying to you know institute some kind of democracy there, and 2 percent of the people appreciate it, you know, it's time to -- time to wise up. And this teaches us a big lesson, that we cannot intervene in the Muslim world ever again. What we can do is bomb the living daylights out of them, just like we did in the Balkans. Just as we did in the Balkans. Bomb the living daylights out of them. But no more ground troops, no more hearts and minds, ain't going to work."....(full article)

From Saddam, with Love  

by Kurt Nimmo

Saddam Hussein has sent a letter to his family, according to Newsweek. Most of if was redacted by military censors. No telling what Saddam attempted to write in those squelched lines. Maybe he urged the Fedayeen to kill more US soldiers. Or gave solace to the bitter and dead-enders. Is it possible he said something about those weapons of mass destruction Dubya’s daddy and Reagan sold him oh-so long ago? (full article)

June 21-22

Justice Elusive for Cassey Auguste
by Justin Felux

When journalist Daniel Pearl was murdered in Pakistan, George W. Bush vowed to "rid the world of these agents of terror."  When Nicholas Berg was beheaded in Iraq, Bush offered his condolences to the Berg family.  When Cassey Auguste, a 22-year-old American citizen, was brutally gunned down in Haiti on March third, Bush said nothing.  The U.S. embassy in Haiti turned a deaf ear to his sister's desperate pleas for help, saying there is nothing they could do about it.  They advised her to file a report with the Haitian National Police (PNH) instead.  Since when is it the sole responsibility of the PNH (who were probably complicit in the murder) to investigate the murder of a U.S. citizen?  The U.S. didn't tell Daniel Pearl's wife to send her complaints to the authorities in Pakistan.  Likewise for Berg's family. Why is the U.S. government stonewalling this family's search for justice? (full article)

A Crusade of Torture
by Joel Wendland

On June 18th, the Associated Press reported that UN Secretary General Kofi Annan delivered a letter to members of the UN Security Council urging the opposition to a resolution extending exemption from war crimes prosecution for US military personnel and officials. According to the story, Annan’s letter cited the Abu Ghraib atrocities as a central concern. Annan doubted if the exemption was legal and described passage of such a resolution as an "unfortunate signal" to send "particularly at this time." All signs indicated that the exemption would not be granted. Scrutiny of how the atrocities at Abu Ghraib became, in the words of a confidential January 2004 report by the International Committee of the Red Cross, "a practice tolerated by the CF [coalition forces]" rather than "exceptional" reveals how the Bush administration conducted an American crusade of torture....(full article)

“Our Lives Are Worse Now”: Yanar Mohammed Talks About the Impact of the US Occupation on the Lives of Iraqi Women
by Lucinda Marshall

Ms. Yanar Mohammed, a long time activist, working against the Baathist regime as well as for women's rights, was born in Baghdad in 1960.  Finding that she could no longer make a living with the economic sanctions against Iraq in the 1990s, she moved to Canada and continued her activism from there.  Last spring she returned to Iraq for four months to work directly with women during the U.S. occupation of Iraq.  We spoke recently about her trip, the current the situation for women in Iraq, and what she was able to accomplish while she was there....(full article)

George Bush, Destroyer of the Faith
by Zbignew Zingh

Ironically, the President who touts faith-based initiatives as the salvation of America is himself the Destroyer of the Faith. It is not religious faith that Mr. Bush destroys – although he has certainly undermined that, too – but the faith in the myth and systems that form the foundation of American power. The bedrock of that power is 1) a belief in unlimited, inexpensive access to natural resources, 2) faith in our economy and the robustness of the dollar, 3) confidence in our institutions, and 4) unshakable faith in our security systems....(full article)

“Failed States” at Home and Abroad: Balancing Weakness and Insanity
by Paul Street

Last week an interesting article appeared in the New York Times under the title “Report Says Aid to Weak States is Inadequate” (June 9, 2004, p. A3).  The story, written by Elizabeth Becker, notes that a bipartisan federal “Commission on Weak States and U.S. National Security” has issued a report recommending that the U.S. do more to “improve societies” that are being badly governed by “failed states.” “Failed states,” as everyone knows, are “breeding grounds for terrorists.” According to Becker, “failed states” are “those that generally cannot provide security for their citizens, or their territory, and that are corrupt and illegitimate in the eyes of their citizens.”  So where does that place the United States? (full article)

Did Ashcroft "Behead" an Innocent Man in an Ohio Election-Terror Scam?
by Harvey Wasserman and Bob Fitrakis

While the major media screams about the latest beheading in the Middle East, John Ashcroft's destruction of a man in the middle west -- likely for political purposes -- has gone unnoticed.   The ghastly court appearance here in Columbus, Ohio, of Nuradin Abdi has underscored the high likelihood that the Bush Administration used variations of torture to break this impoverished Somali immigrant. And his dubious indictment may well have been used to overshadow a campaign visit here by John Kerry.  No Republican has ever won the White House without carrying Ohio....(full article)

Quagmire of Blood, Oil, Sweat and Deceit
by Matthew Maavak

The grand plan is panning out well indeed. The US will transfer “sovereignty” to the Iraqis in nine days time amidst a worsening security situation. It’s time to rejoice as Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz has promised Enduring Occupation for the Iraqis, like in Afghanistan, even after the “handover of power.” The “Iraqi security forces” he claims, are just “not ready to assume their job.”  The bombings, kidnappings and killings have gone up. Worse still, CNN’s Paula Zahn is fading, and might need another “offending” zipper promo to disprove her ex-boss's confident prediction that “a dead raccoon could get higher ratings.” We like a drama where Nielson’s and newscasters’ figures are more captivating than a couple of dead things -- soldiers, raccoons or otherwise. It can’t be news we are watching. Certain things are unraveling fast, as tantalizing as a zip being drawn down....
(full article)

Freedom, Incorporated
by William Rivers Pitt

The June 30 deadline for the delivery of "sovereignty" to the people of Iraq is right around the corner. If the talk coming out of the administration is to believed, this will be an historic moment: The United States of America will deliver freedom to a people long oppressed by a brutal dictator. After seventeen car bombings in seventeen days, with whole sections of Iraq beyond the control of American forces, and with 840 American soldiers dead, it appears that the Iraqi people are not so sanguine about this proffered American liberty. Many here on the home front cannot understand why these people would bite the hand that is trying to feed them. After all, who would not want our brand of freedom? (full article)

War on What?
by Bill Berkowitz

Despite admitting to having no "coherent approach," Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld says US is considering new fronts in the "war against terrorism."....
(full article)

Presidential Campaigns and Media Charades
by Norman Solomon

Political myth-making goes into overdrive every four years. With presidential campaigns fixated mostly on media, an array of nonstop spin takes its toll while illogic often takes hold: When heroes are absent, they’re invented. When convenient claims are untrue, they’re defended. Many supporters come to function as enablers -- staying silent or mimicking their candidate’s contorted explanations to try to finesse the gaping contradiction. Fast talk substitutes for straight talk. A kind of “covering fire” across media battlefields makes it easier for the candidate to just keep on dissembling....(full article)

America's Blind Faith in Government
by Harold Williamson

It was Alexis de Tocqueville who said that despotism can govern without faith, but liberty cannot.  For Americans it has always been a matter of faith that their government's intentions were noble.  But recent history has twice proven this to be delusional....(full article)

Forging Alliances: A Quick Look at How
Democrats Helped Bush Rape Mother Nature

by Josh Frank

George W. Bush’s environmental record can be dummied down to one simple word: devastating. And yet Bush's pillage has been given a big assist by the Democrats....(full article)

Should Sean Hannity Be Denied Communion?
by William Hughes

There is a brouhaha simmering, within the American Catholic Church, over the issue of whether to give or deny communion to Catholic politicians who support abortions rights. A right wing cleric, Bishop Raymond L. Burke of St. Louis, has gone out of his way to publicly target Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA), who is pro-choice on the issue. Burke has boasted, like a medieval clerical tyrant, that he would not give the Massachusetts senator the sacrament, the communion wafer, if Kerry, who is running for president on the Democratic ticket, showed up at a church in his diocese. Bishop Burke must think he’s a soul reader, too, able to look inside Kerry’s spiritual life. He must have as yet an undivulged distant surveillance device, which lets him see that the senator isn’t in a state of grace which would allow him to take communion. I wonder, how does Bishop Burke feel about politically reactionary Catholics, such as that raving egomaniac, Sean Hannity, the radio, cable and TV windbag for Fox News? (full article)

Deadly Sinful Bush is No Christian
by Allen Snyder

We constantly hear that George W. Bush is a born-again Christian, having at the tender age of 40, foresworn the youthful indiscretions of binge-boozing and coke-snorting for a life of compassionately conservative public service doing God’s work here on Earth (and in Texas).  Here in East Tennessee, people openly tout Bush’s alleged adherence to and promotion of Biblical Christian principles and values as a selling point for his re-installment bid. Rampant religious ignorance is commonplace among Southern Christians, so let’s set the record straight once and for all.  Ready?  George W. Bush is no Christian - not even close – and here’s just one reason why.  He’s committed every one of the Seven Deadly Sins, commits them regularly, and seems genuinely proud of it (or at least indifferent).  To review, the seven deadly sins are pride, greed or avarice, gluttony, sloth, envy, anger or wrath, and lust.  Persistent unrepentant violators are guaranteed a hellacious hot-seat....(full article)

June 17-20

Putting Conservatives on the Couch:
Transactional Analysis and the Torture Apologists

by Lila Rajiva

In the 60s best-seller, The Games People Play, popular psychologist Eric Berne, creator of transactional analysis, described four types of transactions or exchanges between people, depending on whether their ego states felt positive or negative. I'm OK You're Not OK people are prone to anger and hostility and feel smug and superior. They tend to be high achievers with the self-confidence  and ruthlessness to get what they want.. While they can at best be do-gooders patronizingly rescuing others, they usually belittle those Not OK others as incompetent and untrustworthy. Often competitive, power-hungry, and paranoid, at worst they’re killers and warmongers. A pattern has emerged in commentary on the Abu Ghraib torture scandal....(full diagnosis)

Jesus and George Abu Ghraib Bush
by Ahmed Amr

If torture were made legal under American and international law, would an avowed God fearing Christian consider it moral? After all, abortion is legal but George considers it immoral. So, one has to assume that even Dumbya can make the distinction between morality and legality. How would Jesus treat Abu Ghraib inmates or Afghan “illegal combatants”? Are American values consistent with torturing inmates to death? Did George Abu Ghraib Bush abandon his values when he approved twenty-eight “kinder gentler” forms of torture?  (full article)

128,000 Reasons to Defeat Bush
by Thomas Riggins

Buried inside the pages of a recent edition (6/10) of the newspaper of record, The New York Times, a headline at the bottom of the page catches the eye: "Study Ranks Bush Plan to Cut Air Pollution as Weakest of 3." It seems, as we shall soon see, that death comes from our friends the capitalists in many forms. The Bushites, it turns out, have been exposed by a report on air pollution from a commission they themselves authorized to study the effects of their anti-pollution proposals....(full article)

The Cheney Connection: Tracing the Halliburton Money Trail to Nigeria
by Doug Ireland

Was Halliburton, the oil conglomerate once headed by Dick Cheney, involved in a massive $180 million bribery scheme in Nigeria on Cheney’s watch? Hopes that the veil may finally be lifted on yet another odoriferous Halliburton scandal were raised last Friday, when it was announced that the Securities and Exchange Commission has finally opened a formal investigation into the alleged bribery — which French authorities have been probing for a year. In Paris, official documents revealing that Cheney might be among those indicted on corruption charges as a result of the French investigation made front-page news there last Christmas — but not here....(full article)

Attack of the Terrorist Fax
by Pattrice Jones

Pattrice Jones on what progressives can learn from the animal rights movement, and the case of the Shac 7 -- activists facing domestic "terrorism" charges under the PATRIOT ACT, and how you can support them....(full article)

A Tale of Two Ethnic Cleansings
by Kim Petersen

Kim Petersen examines contrasting US reactions to ethnic cleansing in Sudan and the Palestinian territories....(full article)

Reagan: Visions of the Damned (Part Two)
by Media Lens

In Part 1 of this Media Alert we described some of the horrific reality of the Reagan years for the people of Central America. The United States did not impose this vast terror out of a sadistic love of torturing people but out of a pragmatic determination to protect “good investment climates.” It is a simple matter for readers to compare the version of events we have presented ­ not just the terror, but the logic of the terror (see below) ­ with media retrospectives of the Reagan presidency. How many times have we been told about Saddam Hussein’s alleged responsibility for the deliberate gassing of 5,000 civilians at Halabja? The name Halabja, like the footage of gassed bodies in dusty streets, is seared into our memories. And how many times have we been told of Ronald Reagan’s training, arming and funding of the mass murderers and torturers of hundreds of thousands of people in Central America in the 1980s? (full article)

Be “Part of Something”: Sign Up With The American Empire Project
by Paul Street

According to imperial United States doctrine, rational and progressive “America” is engaged in a life and death struggle with nihilism. The U.S. “war on terrorism” is infused with great and powerful meaning: the advancement of freedom, democracy, and civilization. The mysterious, vaguely Muslim enemy represents regression and dumb, medieval nothingness. “We” are light, and “they” are dark. “We” are modern enlightened purpose. “They” are primitive, sub-human meaninglessness. Among many stories that unintentionally challenge this sickly narcissistic national narrative (the horrors of American behavior and policy at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay for example), one appeared on the front page of Monday's New York Times (June 14, 2004) under the title “Recruiters Try New Tactics to Sell Wartime Army.” This article tells the not-so inspiring tales of James Nelson (19) and Katherine Jordan (18), both from Kansas. Nelson is seeking admission to the U.S. Army on the advice of a curious mentor – his probation officer....
(full article)

These Colors Don't Run
by John Chuckman

Given its strutting brownshirt quality, here is a slogan that might well have been coined by America's most articulate political thug, Pat Buchanan. But the slogan, with little waving-flag pictures, is being used for bumper stickers selling John Kerry. Good marketers know that you want an offering for every niche, so here's Kerry for the belly-over-the-belt, beer-belching, walrus-mustache set. Niche marketing also explains goofy pieces about Kerry's military service versus that of Republican chicken hawks (for those unfamiliar, "chicken hawks" is an informal American political term for men who never fought yet advocate sending others off to war, a group largely, but not exclusively, consisting of Republicans). Never mind the moral obtuseness of opposing an armchair-psychopath like Bush with arguments in favor of a man who did his own killing, there's a weird market niche out there to be reached. They sell everything in America....(full article)

Learning to Walk before We Run: Social Movements and Electoral Politics
by Andrew Lichterman

The Democrats have chosen their presidential candidate. We are confronted again with a three way race between a frightening Republican, a Democrat with not much of an agenda beyond not being the frightening Republican, and a progressive candidate viewed by many as a “spoiler.” Like many, I believe that the Nader candidacy is not a good thing. However, my main worry is not that a Nader will take votes from the Democrats. Rather, I am concerned that marginal progressive third-party efforts in general elections, and similar campaigns in Democratic Party primaries, take money and organizing resources away from long-term grassroots work for a more peaceful, fair, and ecologically sustainable world, without expanding the capacity of progressive movements in the long term. I am not arguing that either a determined effort to take back the Democratic party or a third-party campaign is intrinsically bad (and which of the two offers more promise for significant social transformation is a different debate). My contention is that national electoral campaigns of either sort are premature. Under current conditions, such campaigns take far more away from efforts to develop alternative institutions that would constitute the foundation for any genuinely progressive political alternative on the national level than they put back....
(full article)

Think Tanks and the Brainwashing of America
by Harold Williamson

More than 60 American scientists, including 20 Nobel laureates, signed a statement that accused the Bush administration of suppressing or manipulating scientific evidence in order to promote their right-wing political agenda. The statement was issued in February along with a full report by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), and it can be viewed at their web site. The UCS substantiated their claims with internal government documents and interviews with current and former government officials. They found a "well established pattern of suppression and distortion of scientific findings by high-ranking Bush administration political appointees across numerous federal agencies." . . . The UCS concluded: "There is significant evidence that the scope and scale of the manipulation, suppression, and misrepresentation of science by the Bush administration is unprecedented." All this may be unprecedented in American history, but it is not without precedent in world history....(full article)

Reagan Idiosis
by Peter Kurth

Last week, I dreamed I was buying drugs from Nancy Reagan in my Maidenform Bra. Well, all right – I wasn’t wearing a bra.  But it was Nancy Reagan, and I was buying drugs from her.  All kinds of pills, poppers and unlawful paraphernalia, which she kept in a Galanos handbag and doled out to me, one by one, as we sat downtown drinking shots of whiskey on New Year’s Eve, in a kind of reverse, anti-“First Night,” where only drinking and drugging were allowed.  Dream-wise, you had to be blotto to be part of this scene, but you had to be that anyway in order to get through the Reagan obsequies last week without throwing yourself under a car....(full article)

On Not Being American
by Naomi Klein

So it's wrenching being back in Canada confronting the prospect of Stephen Harper as our next prime minister. This is a man who so longed to join George W. Bush's coalition of the willing that he called former defense minister John McCallum an "idiot" in the House of Commons, declaring we should be in Iraq with the United States, "doing everything necessary to win." This is a man who was so eager to "support the war effort" that he went on Fox and claimed that "the silent majority of Canadians is strongly supportive" of the invasion, defying the findings of every credible opinion poll. If the Conservatives are given the chance to turn Canada into more of a card-carrying combatant in Mr. Bush's disastrous war on terrorism than we are already, the little bit of grace I encountered in Iraq will quickly disappear. When I go back, showing my passport to the ad hoc inspectors could well have a very different effect....(full article)

Report from Baghdad: How the US Occupation Went Wrong
by Mark Juergensmeyer

Iraq’s new interim government has no time to lose. Though it was welcome news when the new Prime Minister, Iyad Allawi, announced that the militias of nine major political parties would disband and join the government’s security forces by January 2005, this is only one of the monumental tasks and formidable obstacles that the new government faces. As I discovered in a recent visit to Baghdad, Iraq is in dire need of reconstruction -- not only from the miseries of Saddam Hussein’s long dictatorship, but also from the failed policies of the one-year occupation by America’s Coalition administration, which has left demoralization, humiliation, and a weak security and economic infrastructure in its wake....(full article)

Kaloogian's Hooligans: Going After Moore and the First Amendment
by Kurt Nimmo

Now that Move America Forward has changed hands, it is time to look at the new owner. WHOIS reports the new registrant and administrator as Howard Kaloogian. So, who is Howard Kaloogian? Kaloogian is a lawyer who previously "served" three terms in the California state legislature. He is off to the right of Bush, if that is possible. Kooky Kaloogian is perfect for the job of denying Americans the right to see Michael Moore's latest film, "Fahrenheit 9-11." He has plenty of experience....(full article)

June 14

Torture Incorporated: Oliver North Joins the Party
by John Stanton and Wayne Madsen

The U.S. Army has employed as many as 27 contractors to run its interrogation operations, according to media reports. But while CACI and Titan are getting all the mainstream media play, it appears that far more than 27 contract employees were involved in recruiting and placing interrogators in various locations. Some of the firms involved in the Bush administration’s “TortureGate” include an odd assortment of telecommunications companies and executive placement firms that have jumped into the lucrative torture business in Guantanamo Bay, Afghanistan, Iraq and at secret locations throughout Central Asia and North Africa....(full article)

What's Wrong With Kansas?
A Conversation With Thomas Frank

Editor's Note: DV considers Thomas Frank one of the finest and wittiest writers on politics and culture today. He is a founding editor of The Baffler magazine, and author of the must-read books One Market Under God: Extreme Capitalism, Market Populism, and the End of Economic Democracy and The Conquest of Cool: Business Culture, Counterculture, and the Rise of Hip Consumerism. His latest book is What's the Matter With Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America (Metropolitan Books, 2004). By far the best and most insightful book I've read in a couple of years. Frank uses Kansas as a metaphor for the rest of the country in order to examine why so many working and middle-class Americans consistently act against their own self-interests. The following is an interview with Thomas Frank....
(full interview)

Atrocities Abroad, Violence at Home
by Bill Berkowitz

What will be done to prevent a swell of domestic violence when tens of thousands of soldiers return home from Iraq and Afghanistan? (full article)

The Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited
by Neve Gordon

Jerusalem: The bulldozers have been working around the clock building the separation barrier, and it is now clear that the end is at hand. The residents’ expulsion is imminent; they will soon be forced to move from their homes and ancestral land. This, at least, is the impression I had after leaving the small village Nu’eman....(full article)

Republicans are Behind the Effort to Censor Fahrenheit 9/11
by Kurt Nimmo

So desperate are Bush Republicans to kill Michael Moore's latest film, Fahrenheit 9/11, they have hired a public relations firm to set up a web site attacking Moore. The site, MoveAmericaForward.com, claims to be "non-partisan," but a glance at the "About" page of the site reveals the director and staff of Move America Forward are all diehard Republicans, anti-tax activists, and former legislative staffers. The PR firm is Russo Marsh & Rogers....(full article)

Republican Leadership Ready to Attack Our Civil Liberties Again
by Wayne A. Lewis

Last year, during the 1st session of the 108th Congress, the Republican leadership slipped a provision into the Intelligence Authorization Act of 2004 (which mainly appropriates the funds to the intelligence organizations.) This was done behind closed doors. Who on the House Judiciary Committee would vote against this nonpartisan bill? This bill was needed to pass as it has every year. What wasn’t needed was a provision taken from the leaked draft of Ashcroft’s Domestic Security Enhancement Act (DSEA.) This provision expanded the already far-reaching USA PATRIOT Act by easing the FBI’s ability to acquire "financial" records with nothing more than an easily drafted National Security Letter (NSL.) It also broadened the definition of "financial institution" to include insurance companies, real estate agencies, stockbrokers, car dealerships, pawnbrokers and more. This had the effect of further eroding what was left of our civil liberties after the passage of the USA PATRIOT Act. So there it was -- Ashcroft’s dream – a portion of the ill-fated DSEA brought to fruition. Now, it is happening again....(full article)

Stepford America
by Carolyn Baker

Next month, Americans will flock to theaters nationwide to be amused by the performances of Nicole Kidman, Bette Midler and Matthew Broderick in a remake of “The Stepford Wives.” I hope to see it myself. While I hasten to add that in these times, humor is essential to our survival, and that I do not wish to suggest that we all need to wear “American Gothic” faces, I find curious the timing of this Hollywood redux....(full article)

24/7 and Your Dreams: An Interview with Barbara Mor
by Adam Engel

A wide ranging interview with Barbara Mor. Mor, born and surreally programmed in Southern California, has since lived in the desert Southwest and Pacific Northwest.  She was involved in feminism when the first Women’s Studies program in the U.S. began at San Diego State University (1969), and is the author of The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth. Despite its dumb title (which makes her cringe; her manuscript’s working title was The First God), the book has remained in print 17 years, thanks solely to smart readers. Topics covered include religion, marriage, What's Left?, war, and imagining the Cosmos as a gigantic Clitoris...
(full interview)

"This is Imperial Arrogance"
by Eric Ruder

The Bush administration is still spouting the same old lies about its invasion and occupation of Iraq. But every few days brings new evidence of the complete disarray of Washington’s occupation--and exposes the war makers claims about "liberation" and "democracy." Here, Dave Cline and Lou Plummer talked to Socialist Worker’s Eric Ruder about developments in Iraq. Dave Cline is a disabled Vietnam veteran and national president of Veterans for Peace. He is also active in Military Families Speak Out and Vietnam Veterans Against the War. Lou Plummer lives in Fayetteville, N.C., which is home to Fort Bragg, one of the biggest Army bases in the country, with many of its soldiers on active duty in Iraq. Lou is also an Army veteran and worked for several years as a prison guard in North Carolina. He has a son currently on duty in Iraq and is active in Military Families Speak Out....
(full interview)

Beyond the Tipping Point: Mass Radicalization Draws Near
by Dennis Rahkonen

The most psychologically difficult thing for anyone to admit is that they’ve been living a lie. As hard as it is to acknowledge that reality in the personal realm, it’s much worse to accept that our beloved country has been fundamentally wrong, even objectively evil. Folks will resort to amazing mental gymnastics to try to avoid that very painful conclusion. But ultimately most of them relent. It simply becomes impossible to deny mounting horrors, as the eventual mass radicalization of the Vietnam era plainly demonstrated. Once again, in connection with Iraq, we’re at a similar juncture....(full article)

Bully for the Bush Doctrine: A Natural History Perspective
by Harold Williamson

During an interview on CBS's "60 Minutes," Richard Clarke, the top adviser on counter-terrorism to President Bush, said that immediately after the attacks of 9/11, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld wanted to bomb Iraq. Even after he was told that Al Qaeda was in Afghanistan, Rumsfeld still insisted that bombing Iraq was a better idea: "There aren't any good targets in Afghanistan, and there are lots of good targets in Iraq," he told Clarke. Rumsfeld's response was obviously irrational, and if the subject weren't so serious, even comical. Clarke said this would have been akin to Franklin Roosevelt wanting to attack Mexico after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor. But giving Rumsfeld the benefit of the doubt, he was probably still in shock from the enormity of this unprecedented terrorist attack. But what compels seemingly intelligent men to react this irresponsibly? (full article)

The Bush-Kerry Conundrum: Our Only Choice is the War Party
by Kurt Nimmo

Russian President Vladimir Putin has a point. Democrats have "no moral right" to criticize Bush for invading Iraq. Why? Because they were gung-ho about invading Yugoslavia. Putin made the comment at the G8 neolib feast on Sea Island, Georgia.
Democrats, of course, are attacking Bush because they want John Kerry in the White House next year. Kerry says he will continue Bush's failed policy in Iraq with the notable exception that he would "internationalize" the mess and ask Europeans to help out in the murder of Iraqi freedom fighters and innocent civilians. Turn Democrats upside down and they look like Republicans. Most of them voted for Bush's invasion. Most of them believe killing Iraqis will return the sort of results the neocons had in mind when they lied their way into the invasion. Most of them are responsible for war crimes. Most of them should be standing alongside Bush and his neocons rabble in the docket at the Hague....(full article)

How Ray Charles Got Over
by Seth Sandronsky

Ray Charles, the superb African American musician who died on June 10, got over in more ways than one. He appealed to Americans of all ages and backgrounds. For five decades, they enjoyed Charles’ music. He expressed his people’s efforts to transcend the racial lines of America, a struggle recognized around the world....
(full article)

NRA Opens Office in Baghdad
Satire by James Boyne

The National Rifle Association announced today that it would open up a field office in downtown Baghdad, one of four Iraq offices it hopes to establish before years end. Other offices are slated for Fallujah, Najaf, Basra and Tikrit (Saddam's former hometown and stronghold)....(full article)

June 11-13

GOOD RIDDANCE: Ronald Reagan (1911-2004)
The Dissident Voice Reagan Memorial Shrine
An Antidote to the Media Canonization of a Scoundrel

Reagan: Visions of the Damned (Part One)
by Media Lens

The intensity of the patriotic focus surrounding D-Day, and also the death of Ronald Reagan, suggests a state-corporate system desperately trying to reassert its credibility after a catastrophic failure of propaganda over Iraq....(full article)

Two American Lives
by Marty Jezer

Two quintessential American political leaders of the so-called “greatest generation” -- polar opposites in almost every way -- died in the past few weeks: Ronald Reagan, fortieth president of the United States and Dave Dellinger, an anti-war activist who went to jail for his pacifist beliefs. Both suffered from Alzheimer’s disease at the time of their death....(full article)

Remembering Reagan
by Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman

Ronald Reagan was a paradigm shifter. He was what Charles Derber in his new book, Regime Change Begins at Home, calls a "regime-changer," moving decisively to end the flagging New Deal era and launching the modern period of corporate rule....(full article)

Ronald Reagan Kicked Out of Hell!
Satan Says, “He's Too Dumb.” Reagan Sighs: “I’ve No Place to Go.”

Reported by Gary Corseri, from the Ninth

Things couldn’t get much worse for the late President: first Alzheimer's, then dying, then, the worst ignominy: getting kicked out of hell....(full report)

Good Mourning, America: Reagan, Radicals, and Repetitive Reactions
by Mickey Z.

When I heard Ronnie Raygun had finally kicked off, I said aloud: "One less war criminal in the world." When President (sic) Bush heard the same news, he declared Friday, June 11, a "day of national mourning" for the dead prez. I see Dubya and raise him this: I declare Friday, June 11 a national day of mourning for Raygun's victims....(full article)

A Decent Person
by Walter Brasch

I never voted for Ronald Reagan. Not the first time he ran for governor in 1966, nor for his re-election in 1970. I didn’t vote for him for president in 1980 or 1984. But, it was Mr. Reagan who was responsible for me becoming involved in my first political race....(full article)

Hijacking History: Grover Norquist's Reagan Legacy Project
Has its Eyes on Many Prizes
by Bill Berkowitz

Will his face replace Alexander Hamilton, America's first treasury secretary, on the $10 bill? Or will it share half the dimes in circulation with President Franklin D. Roosevelt? Will his birthday become a national holiday? Will his likeness appear on Mt. Rushmore, alongside George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt? Will every county in every state rename some public facility after him? If Grover Norquist has his way, within the next decade the image of President Ronald Wilson Reagan will be permanently stamped upon America's landscape....(full article)

In Reagan We Trust? Keep That Man Off My Money
by Ahmed Amr

I write this, a state funeral is being held for Ronald Reagan. Which is fine by me. They can bury that man any way they want to. It’s their body and no one should speak ill of the dead during burial ceremonies. But there are some Reagan partisans who want to go a little further and print his image on my ten-dollar bill. They propose replacing Alexander Hamilton, the father of our financial system, with the apostle of voodoo economics. That’s where I draw the line and start protesting. Please, keep that man off my money....
(full article)

Reagan Succumbs To Alzheimer's, Free Press Gets Amnesia
by Gene Hashmi

It seems big media's "long journey has finally taken it to a distant place where we can no longer reach it." At the time Reagan was president, I was too young (around ten, I think) and too naive (hell, it was the Eighties) to completely understand the true extent of the damage this man's work had wrought upon the world. Okay, so that's my excuse. But what explains the grating and unctuous paeans spewing forth from our heads of state and the "free" press that dutifully and shamelessly reports on them? Paeans to a man who -- if there were any justice in this world -- would have been tried for crimes against humanity several times over? What's the excuse? Ten-year-olds growing up in the Eighties? (full article)

Media Mourning in America
by Norman Solomon

If journalism is history’s first draft, the death of Ronald Reagan has caused a step-up in the mass production of falsified history. It’s mourning in America....(full article)


Bush's Anti-Union Record
by Joel Wendland

A recently released AFL-CIO report on the Bush administration’s record titled "Bush Watch" shows the White House occupant to be a dismal failure as well as decidedly anti-working-class. Not a big surprise, right? Let’s look at the record....(full article)

Jobs, Jobs Everywhere and Not a Job to Find
by Norma Sherry

If you’ve listened to Conservative Radio or Fox News lately then you already know the good news. There are jobs aplenty! In fact, according to Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and President Bush, we are in the midst of a huge boom! According to the spin, more than 650,000 American workers found employment in the last two months. Mighty spectacular, wouldn’t you say? The problem with the numbers, however, is what’s wrong with nearly every pronouncement from this administration. It’s clothed in a semblance of truth, but it disguises the real facts....(full article)

The B Team Gets Ready: Why Kerry and the Democrats
Promote US Military Power

by Elizabeth Schulte

When it comes to the U.S. war on Iraq, the Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry has very little disagreement with the Bush administration -- except that they messed up. As he told Rolling Stone magazine last year, "When I voted for the war, I voted for what I thought was best for the country...Did I expect George Bush to fuck it up as badly as he did? I don't think anybody did." The same goes for Bush’s "war on terrorism." "I do not fault George Bush for doing too much in the war on terror," Kerry likes to say. "I believe he's done too little." Despite all this, many people who oppose the war and occupation of Iraq will vote for Kerry because they believe that, even if he isn’t an "antiwar" candidate, at least he’s better than Bush. They hope that a Democrat -- coming from a party with a supposed tradition of standing for peace -- will be better, even if ever so slightly, than a Republican, from a party committed to war. But this is to misunderstand something crucial about the U.S. political system....(full article)

Japan’s Organized Labor Mobilizes against War
by Reza Fiyouzat

The Japanese government is fully determined to expand its role in the regional wars conducted by the US. The rewards for such support may yet prove to be more lucrative opportunities for the expansion of Japan’s own realm. We should not underestimate the will of the Japanese right wing establishment....(full article)

Going After Qaddafi (Again)
by Kurt Nimmo

Remember when the Bush Ministry of Disinformation made such a big deal out of Qaddafi's reported deal to stop working on nuclear weapons? Mu'ammar's so-called "renunciation" had neocons and Bush warmongers strutting around declaring the invasion of Iraq -- and the murder of 11,000 innocent Iraqis -- was a good and righteous thing because it scared the heck out of Arab dictators and will force them to the table to negotiate their emasculation. Of course, since al-Qaddafi will always be an Arab -- and neocons instinctively loathe Arabs and want to destroy them (neocons love Israel more than anything, even their own country) -- it stands to reason Mu'ammar will backslide on his agreement, so far as the neocons are concerned. "So long as Qaddafi alone determines what are Libya's policies, we can never be certain whether he will stick with his renunciation of WMD or change his mind tomorrow. In other words, the key threat to the Libya WMD agreement is that Qaddafi will renounce it," warns Patrick Clawson, deputy director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a neocon operation where the Islamophove Daniel Pipes is an adjunct scholar. The neocons really don't want Mu'ammar's cooperation. Instead, they want to bomb Libya like the now dead Reagan did in 1986, killing the adopted daughter of Qaddafi and 37 civilians....(full article)

Just DU It: Depleted Uranium and the Real Costs of Conquest
by Mickey Z.

Roughly 100,000 misguided souls lined up to catch a glimpse of Ronnie Raygun's coffin. I wish I could've stood just past his corpse and shown all those mourners these photos: http://www.einswine.com/atrocities/du/ This is the other side of Raygun's American morning, his optimism...the end result of U.S. foreign policy as practiced by our two-party (sic) system....
(full article)

Weak States Are “Sleeping Giants” for US Security
by Jim Lobe

Almost three years after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and the Pentagon, the United States is still falling short in its ability to deal with weak, failing or failed states, which increasingly threaten U.S. national security, says a major report released here Tuesday by a bipartisan commission. . . . It appeared designed to re-frame the debate over how best to carry out the "war on terrorism" in ways that encourage policy makers to stress the importance of economic development as opposed to the almost exclusively military and security approach taken by the administration of President George W. Bush....(full article)

Why the CIA Always Will Be a Costly Flop
by John Chuckman

The resignation of both the director and an important deputy director of any large organization is noteworthy, but when that organization is the CIA we have an event of global interest. Several official, and likely-embarrassing, reports concerning CIA activities - including one dealing with the Agency's generous estimates of Iraq's non-existent weapons - are expected to appear soon. The timing of the resignations may well reflect these coming reports. You might think the men who resigned, Director George Tenet and Deputy Director for Operations James Parvitt, should have been fired long ago. Never mind the nonexistent weapons in Iraq or phony invoices for uranium, the Agency's failure around the events leading to 9/11 was stunning, but the intelligence business is one of the few where job performance is almost unconnected with keeping your job....(full article)

Another Type of Hero
by Lou Plummer

In January, a paratrooper from the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, Jeremy Hinzman, loaded his wife, son and a few possessions into their small car and drove from Ft. Bragg to Toronto, Canada. In a journey reminiscent of one taken by another generation of soldiers, Jeremy committed a felony punishable by death to avoid serving in a controversial war....(full article)

Tenet Now, Rummy and Wolfie Soon
by Ivan Eland

The resignation of CIA Director George Tenet comes on the eve of a Senate committee’s release of a very critical report on intelligence gathering surrounding Iraq’s pre-war “weapons of mass destruction.” Tenet was a very political CIA director, who was eager to skew intelligence to the policy predilections of both Democratic and Republican administrations, and deserves to go. But Tenet’s failures, although great, pale in comparison to those at the high levels of the Pentagon....(full article)

Fasters Win Historic Victory in Struggle for Educational Equality
by Dan Bacher

After 26 days of fasting, the two remaining activists in the Fast 4 Education, Cesar Cruz and Israel Haros-Lopez, ended their fast on June 4 after Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill that would help poor school districts that have taken out major loans....(full article)

The Liberal Warriors And Airbrushers
by John Pilger

The D-Day anniversary and the election campaign have been a rich time for the kind of propaganda that marks the limits of mainstream liberal debate in Britain....(full article)

June 9, 2004

The Freedom Crusade (Part Three): Home of the Not-So-Free
by Kim Petersen

Freedom and fear are at war,” enunciated President George Bush. It is a preposterous piece of rhetoric: two abstractions doing battle. It is an obfuscation of the reality that humans kill each other for supposed ideals. The purported cause of freedom has served well as a violent bellwether for imperialism. Bush’s crusade has manipulated the levers of fear in the guise of protecting American freedoms. It is a galling hypocrisy to defend freedom by using its enemy. Bush pushed a fifth freedom not identified in Roosevelt’s famous “Four Freedoms” speech. Bush declared, “They hate … our freedom to vote and assemble and disagree with each other.” In other words “they” hate the American so-called democracy. Yet Bush represents the bathos of US democracy. The Supreme Court, after all, installed him despite his losing the popular vote in the election of 2000....(full article)

Congratulations, Mr. Bush: You Have Not Presided Over
the Final Collapse of Capitalism

by Paul Street 

Paul Street takes a look at what lies behind the recent and much ballyhooed job growth figures....(full article)

(Israel-Palestine) The Address for Protest is Labor's Headquarters
by Tanya Reinhart

How can we explain the conjurer's trick by which Ariel Sharon has turned into the darling of the Israeli peace camp? (full article)

Nothing New Under the Israeli Sun
by Ahmed Bouzid

In a world where the declarations of politicians are taken with a healthy grain of salt, where the past, recent and remote, is kept in mind and the lessons it patiently insists on teaching us remembered, the latest maneuvers by Ariel Sharon would be viewed for precisely what they are: dramatic maneuvers called for during a time of crisis, but not in any way deviations from the one plan towards which execution Ariel Sharon and his supporters have been brutally pushing towards for more than at least thirty seven years.....
(full article)

“In Our Hearts and in Our Work”
The Continuing Influence of Rachel Corrie in Olympia
by candio

One year after the murder of activist Rachel Corrie by the Israelis in Gaza, her local community has not forgotten her.  Ms. Corrie continues to inspire and lead in Olympia, it may even be possible that she has become more powerful in death than in life.  There is some solace in this ability to effect change postmortem, to have truly achieved martyr status, but it is an aching solace tinged with loss. At the same time, there is this harsh and parallel realization that Olympia has lost but one life to the Occupation.  It is sobering and hard to truly imagine the sorrow of the Palestinians who have lost so many and so much.  Each new report from Rafah breaks hearts here. For some in Olympia, Rachel and Rafah are forever entwined, inherent in thinking about and remembering Rachel is thinking about and remembering Rafah....(full article)

Reform at Wal-Mart?
by Nico Pitney

It was a vast and shameless annual meeting worthy of the vast and shameless corporation that hosted it. With blue and white concert lights flickering and Patti LaBelle belting out "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," more than 15,000 store employees, shareholders, and executives filled up the University of Arkansas' basketball arena last Friday to "cheer and wave flags" and celebrate the worker-exploiting, taxpayer-gouging, sprawl-inducing, sweatshop-abusing behemoth known as Wal-Mart...."Any criticism of the company," Reuters added, "seemed a million miles away." Except that it wasn't -- in fact, it was just down the road. A coalition of Arkansas social justice activists called Against the Wal organized a convergence in Fayetteville to protest the shareholders' meeting, and will be leading a roadshow with musical performances and Wal-Mart teach-ins through the mid-south next month. The embedded Reuters reporter just didn't bother to look....(full article)

June 7

Iraq: The Case for Immediate US Withdrawal
by Joanne Landy

It's hard to see how the Bush administration is going to win the war in Iraq. Despite all the official bravado, a cloud of doom is descending on the White House, and with good reason: international outrage is mounting at U.S. behavior at Abu Ghraib prison and throughout Iraq, more and more Americans are concluding that the war is going badly, and Iraq is proving uncontrollable with reports, in May, that only 35 percent of Iraqis want U.S. forces to stay....Will Congress continue to serve as a handmaiden to the war effort, and will the American people permit this war to continue? (full article)

(Exclusive) New Documents Suggest Enron’s Lay, Skilling, Washington Lobbyist Knew About Company’s Trading Schemes In California
by Jason Leopold

Federal energy regulators have just released more than 400 pages of documents that suggest former Enron chairman Ken Lay and former chief executive Jeff Skilling were aware that Enron's west coast traders may have broken the law by using manipulative trading tactics in California to boost Enron’s profits during the height of that state's power crisis. Moreover, one of Enron's most powerful Washington, D.C. lobbyists, who met with several members of the Bush administration in the spring of 2001 about Enron's opposition to price controls on electricity sales in California, was told by Tim Belden, the mastermind behind Enron's notorious trading scams, less than a year earlier that Belden and other traders working at the company's West Coast trading desk in Portland, Oregon spent the better part of 2000 and 2001 breaking the rules governing California's power market “when opportunities presented themselves to make money.” ....(full article)

The Freedom Crusade (Part Two): The Four Freedoms
by Kim Petersen

With WWII raging, President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed the Congress with his “Four Freedoms” speech. It is difficult for most people to be opposed to freedom and if you are a politician then the fight for freedom is something that should bring near unanimous support. In the intervening years freedom has continued to be a leitmotif of the US. President George W. Bush has carried on the tradition in his endorsement of the crusade for freedom. In April Bush spoke to Americans, "So long as I’m the President, I will press for freedom. I believe so strongly in the power of freedom. … I also have this belief, strong belief, that freedom is not this country’s gift to the world; freedom is the Almighty’s gift to every man and woman in this world. And as the greatest power on the face of the Earth, we have an obligation to help the spread of freedom." Bush realizes what Peter Parker tragically came to realize: with great power comes great responsibility. While Parker, as his alter ego Spiderman, wields his power responsibly by protecting the weak from evil, Bush excoriates the comic-book titled Axis-of-Evil but wields his power as Commander-in-Chief to wreak havoc upon weaker nations. It is then interesting to analyze to what extent Bush has wielded responsibility in the cause of freedom....(full article)

American Idol: The Soundtrack to a Torture
by Leilla Matsui

For the non-white contestants of “American Idol,” survival in an increasingly outsourced job market means singing for your supper -- literally. And singing what America wants to hear: rousingly soulless anthems which play on familiar themes of self-empowerment, the power of love to conquer everything, but mostly, just lung power. The soaring and soulless power ballad, the vocal equivalent of hardcore porn's slow motion, in-your-face ejaculations have become the standard for “American Idol,” and American popular entertainment in general....(full article)

This is What Murdochracy Looks Like
by Ahmed Amr

Awhile back CNN ran one of those non-scientific polls asking its viewers if they were “concerned that a small number of companies own all cable, TV, radio and web properties.” 96% of the viewers responded “yes”. There was genuine astonishment in Lou Dobb’s voice as he reported the figures to his viewers.  He said something to the effect that it was the most lop sided poll results in CNN history.  In the last two decades an epic revolution has transformed America’s political landscape. A combination of two separate mega forces has morphed into a monster that has steadily eroded the very foundations of democracy in America. Cable TV and a few high caliber think tanks have combined forces to seize the reigns of power in Washington....(full article)

Voting With Your Fork in a Fast Food World
A movie review of Morgan Spurlock’s “Super Size Me”
by Benjamin Dangl

In this critical documentary about the world’s largest fast food chain, Morgan Spurlock sets out on what he describes as “every eight year old’s dream”: a month long, three-meal-a-day binge at McDonald’s fast food restaurants. In this rollicking experiment Spurlock is the guinea pig, and the results are unsettling. In one month he eats the same amount of McDonald’s food that nutritionists recommend eating over the course of eight years and gains nearly twenty-five pounds in the process....(full article)

On the Death of Ronald Reagan
by The Glorious Revolutionary Federation of Fortune 500 Killers

The Glorious Revolutionary Federation of Fortune 500 Killers celebrates the death of Ronald Reagan, a foul specimen whose demise, had it come two decades sooner, might have spared the world much subsequent decline....(full article)

The Real Reagan
by Philip A Farruggio

May his spirit rest in peace now, and may the "Spirit" of this great nation take heed. Ronald Reagan is going to be tributed with being the great optimist who took America forward. For whom? For what? (full article)

June 5

The Freedom Crusade (Part One): Bush’s Mission
by Kim Petersen

Nine days following the terror attacks of 9-11, President George Bush gave an address to a joint session of Congress and the American people that was widely lauded in the corporate media. Bush said the US had been “called to defend freedom … [against] a collection of loosely affiliated terrorist organizations known as al Qaeda.” Two-and-a-half years later when deeds are compared to rhetoric, the inescapable conclusion is that Bush’s mission to defend freedom was a cruel hoax....(full article)

Palestinian Misery in Perspective

by Paul de Rooij

The media usually focuses on the latest casualty and quickly forgets those who died even a few days before. The American media in particular has a Dracula-like predilection for warm bodies, and no interest in cases where blood has already dried. Unfortunately this ahistoric focus on the last victim hides the scale of mass crimes and the responsibility of various perpetrators. Whether in Iraq, Palestine, Colombia, or Haiti, it is necessary to locate human rights abuses in a wider context to appreciate the scale of what is occurring on the ground. In the case of Palestinian casualties, it is all too evident that CNN, BBC, and most other major media are mostly interested in today's casualties: they seem to studiously ignore precedents, and above all, they will not refer to the pattern of killings as systematic in nature. Of course, admitting that such killings are systematic would imply that Israel is committing “crimes against humanity”, a precursor to genocide. When the media seeks to whitewash “friendly” mass crimes, there is a tendency to fixate on specific instances to the exclusion of broad patterns. Even when a pattern of killings and other abuses is chronic and systematic, the BBC/CNN will tend to focus on specific cases without reference to broader trends. When referring to Palestinian conditions, what we find is that reports of casualties, house demolitions, and dispossession in these media outlets pertain to specific cases and not to general patterns....(full article)

Torture is Merely the Symptom
by M. Junaid Alam

Our politicians and pundits have all viewed the latest batch of photographs and videos depicting US soldiers cruelly humiliating, beating, and torturing their Iraqi prisoners. Their purported -- perhaps even genuine -- outrage and revulsion has been duly noted and conveyed time and again to the whole world; domestically the same professed horror has been repeated endlessly in the press, mostly at the expense of thoughts from the victims themselves. Yet even as our elite line up to express their outrage at soldiers grinning next to leashed and chained detainees, their own criticism is leashed and chained to an extremely narrow ideological spectrum, one in which deeper questions about the torture scandal are safely locked away in the dark corners of that Abu-Ghraib-like entity known as “mainstream” debate....(full article)

King George Has Gone Insane
by Kurt Nimmo

It's described as "erratic behavior" by Capitol Hill Blue. Bush has "wide mood swings," he rants and raves against "enemies" both domestic and foreign, and quotes the Bible like a deranged Southern preacher. It's like the Nixon days is how a worried GOP political consultant describes it. Only Bush, unlike Nixon, will not resign and fly off into the sunset. Nixon knew to get out while the getting was good...."In interviews with a number of White House staffers who were willing to talk off the record, a picture of an administration under siege has emerged, led by a man who declares his decisions to be 'God's will' and then tells aides to 'fuck over' anyone they consider to be an opponent of the administration"....(full article)

The Facts You Need to Know About June 30:
What the US Has in Store for Iraq

by Lee Sustar

The US is maneuvering in Iraq and in the United Nations Security Council to cobble together an interim government by June 30 in time for the supposed "handover" of power. What is the Bush administration up to? Lee Sustar explains the factors involved as the June 30 deadline approaches....
(full article)

Bush Sr., Clinton, Bush Jr. and the War Crimes Left Behind
by Heather Wokusch

Given repercussions over Abu Ghraib, it isn't surprising that Washington recently asked the UN Security Council for another one-year extension on its war crimes exemption for peace-keepers. The prison abuse scandal is just the iceberg's tip of Geneva Convention violations by the United States, and closer inspection could send Bush Jr., Bush Sr., not to mention Bill Clinton, straight to the courtroom docks....(full article)

Down Goes Tenet
by William Rivers Pitt


The news over the last week or so has been grim for the White House. Ahmad Chalabi, Bush's favorite Iraqi, has been accused of passing high-level intelligence secrets to Iran. Questions as to who could have coughed up those secrets have been auguring towards Defense Department officials Douglas Feith and William Luti, the two men who ran the secretive Office of Special Plans (OSP). . . . Late Wednesday night, a wire report appeared stating that George W. Bush was seeking legal advice on how to protect himself from the looming investigation into who in the White House outed the name of CIA agent Valerie Plame. According to the report, Bush was "ready to cooperate" with the investigation -- an interesting comment, considering the fact that the investigation has been going on for months, and that his people have been stonewalling the investigation across the board. When the President needs a lawyer, it is usually a sign that there is blood in the water. Then, on Thursday, CIA Director George Tenet resigned his position....
(full article)

More Imperial Intrigue as CIA Director Resigns
by Jim Lobe

The abrupt resignation of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director George Tenet adds new grist to Washington's rumor mills, already churning at warp speed due to the ongoing prisoner-abuse scandal in Iraq and reports that the Bush administration's favorite in Baghdad turned over critical information to Iran. Whether Tenet, who also served for seven years as the director of central intelligence (DCI) – a post that theoretically oversees all of Washington's 16 intelligence agencies – was pushed or decided to resign of his own accord is the question of the day. And, if he was pushed, why now, just five months before the presidential election? (full article)

Venezuela 2004: Nicaragua's Contra War Revisited
by Toni Solo

Toni Solo on the government/media campaign against the Chavez government in Venezuela and the disturbing similarities between this campaign and the murderous US-backed Contra war against the Sandinista government in Nicaragua during the 1980s....(full article)

Insanity in America
by John Chuckman

It's always satisfying to have a pet theory supported by new data. A large and authoritative study, just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, confirms a favorite hypothesis of mine, that there is more mental illness and insanity, far more, in America than you find in other advanced societies. The study, led by a Harvard Medical School researcher, found evidence of mental problems in 26.4% of people in the United States, versus, for example, 8.2% of people in Italy. The researchers were concerned with matters such as lack of access to treatment and under-treatment, but for those concerned about a safe and decent world, I think the salient finding is simply America's high percentage. The world is being led by a nation where more than one-quarter of the people have genuine mental problems. The finding is strangely both comforting and disturbing....
(full article)

Bush's Neo-Con Praetorian Guards
by Ahmed Amr

A few weeks ago, on April 14th, George Bush decided to void the Palestinians' right to return to their homeland. The President also took the occasion to make illegal Jewish settlements a permanent "fact on the ground." In a single press conference with Ariel Sharon, he managed to truncate the size of a Palestinian state and assault the fundamental human rights of refugees around the world. One has to assume that Bush has now assumed the right to decide which other group of refugees can forget about ever returning to their native lands....(full article)

Nader and the Green Party’s Presidential Choice for 2004
by Norman Solomon

This year, Ralph Nader’s presidential campaign has two trains running that will collide at an unfortunate intersection -- the Green Party’s national convention in Milwaukee. The collision course is bad news for all concerned....(full article)

The Progressive Paradox: Defining Viability
by Kim Petersen

So anathema is Republican President George Bush to many Americans that an Anybody-But-Bush (ABB) movement arose to replace him. The ABB movement has coalesced behind the candidate it identifies as the only “viable” option to Bush. To the extent that removing Bush is the one-and-only priority the ABB strategy is rational. If there are other priorities of importance then the logic behind the ABB movement is questionable....
(full article)

It’s Armageddon Time
by Sandi Magathan Droubay M.A

Bush and his loyal Christian fundamentalists want you to have a front row seat! (Whether you want one or not)....(full article)

The Rev. Moon's Last Stand?
by Bill Berkowitz

Better financed than George W. Bush and more visible than Dick Cheney, the Rev. Sun Myung Moon is hoping to rock the UN....(full article)

An Open Letter to Peter Jennings About Gangs & the LAPD
by Davey D

Hip Hop historian, journalist and radio deejay Davey D's critical letter to ABC News anchor Peter Jennings in response to a Prime Time TV special on gangs and the LA Police Department....(full letter)

June 2

Will the NY Times Pay For Its Crimes?
by Ahmed Amr

Ahmed Amr argues that NY Times reporter Judith Miller and her editor should do time for misleading the American public by disseminating Iraq WMD propaganda...(full article)

Military Court Martial Sentences Camilo Mejia to One Year in Prison
by Dan Bacher

A special court-martial at the Fort Stewart Army Base, Georgia, on May 19-21 sentenced Staff Sergeant Camilo Mejia, the son of Nicaraguan singer/songwriter Carlos Mejia Godoy, to the maximum of one year in prison for refusing to participate in the Bush regime’s illegal war and occupation in Iraq....(full article)

Courting Disaster: Bush’s Real Strategy in Iraq
by Ivan Eland

President Bush’s strategy in Iraq is now clear. And I don’t mean the five-point rehash of existing platitudes found in his recent “major” speech at the Army War College. I’m talking about the real, behind-the-scenes plan. In the battles for the Sunni town of Falluja and the Shiite cities south of Baghdad, the Bush administration has essentially capitulated—hoping to reduce, until the U.S. election is over, images of fighting, mayhem and U.S. blood streaming to the American public....(full article)

Neocon Collapse in Washington and Baghdad
by Jim Lobe

Fourteen months after reaching the zenith of their influence on U.S. foreign policy with the invasion of Iraq, neoconservatives appear to have fallen entirely out of favor, both within the administration of President George W. Bush and in Baghdad itself....(full article)

Chickenhawk Chic
by Peter Kurth

Sunnis and Ba'athists and Shi'ites – oh my!  Let's talk about something funny for a change, like George W. Bush and the spoils of war. Have you heard about Dubya’s new handgun?  No?  It was Saddam Hussein's personal pistol, make unspecified, which the Iraqi dictator reportedly had on him when he was “rousted from his spider hole” last December near Tikrit.  According to Time magazine, Saddam’s little power-packer has now found its way to the White House....(full article)

The Anybody But Bush Offensive: Don't Back Down
by Josh Frank

 May 3rd the Village Voice stooped to a new low and published an article by Harry G. Levine, titled, “Ralph Nader, Suicide Bomber.” The title itself, in its racist conjecture (Nader is an Arab-American), exemplifies the fear beating in hearts of many Americans regarding the upcoming election. The majority of these liberals are willing to sideline any progressive tendencies in order to solidify George W. Bush’s defeat in November. Some even go as far as attacking Ralph Nader’s character, as they believe he is the largest hurdle to a Kerry triumph....(full article)

Poli-Sci-Ops. Or, Where Did That Speech By Al Gore Come From?
by T. Patrick Donovan

Was that really Al Gore at the podium last Wednesday (May 28), thundering damnation at the Bush Administration? What possessed him? What does it mean when a former Vice President (and Democratic Presidential nominee during the election of 2000) comes out swinging against the current Administration? And in the midst of a war no less!...(full article)

Time for the Peace Movement to Flex Its Muscles
Tell Kerry and Bush 'Staying the Course' is Unacceptable
by Kevin Zeese

Kevin Zeese on the meeting between John Kerry and Ralph Nader, and what progressives can do to pressure the leading presidential candidates to end the occupation of Iraq....(full article)

Empire of Denial
by George Monbiot

The US is Choosing to Ignore the Fact that it is to Blame for the Stifling of Global Democracy....(full article)

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