Posted by: quiscus | June 17, 2010

June 17, 2010

1.  “Wikileak Case Echoes Pentagon Papers

The Fourth Estate needs to go back to work battling the undue secrecy and covert perception management which will ultimately be used against them all and the U.S. citizenry. (Those who would have you believe that what you don’t know can’t hurt you must like the BP oil executives downplaying their oil spill.)

It’s quite possible that the future of accountable government is teetering on the brink with the arrest of the 22-year-old Army intelligence specialist and the fugitive manhunt for the WikiLeaks founder. History does repeat itself, but not necessarily with the same positive ending. This time, it could go either way.

The choice now is whether to move toward more militarism (and the secrecy that protects it) or toward more openness and honesty – and possibly a more democratic future.”

2.  “Barack Obama: No Radicalism to Be Found

A portion of the American people believe that President Barack Obama is a left-wing radical bent on transforming U.S. society in his image. There’s an easy way to dispel that misconception: Look at what he does and what he says.

In domestic affairs Obama has stayed within the narrow establishment zone. The health-care “debate,” for example, has featured no radical ideas but only an internecine dispute between the two factions of the ruling elite, which Auburn University political philosopher Roderick Long calls the plutocrats (those who want business to be the dominant partner) and the statocrats (those who want the politicians and bureaucrats to hold that position).

It is easy to become distracted by the relatively minor disagreements and overlook the broad accord that a government-corporate partnership should be in command, with the rest of us taking what they give us. Want evidence? Insurance-company stock prices rose as the Senate bill headed toward a vote.

But perhaps we should look to foreign and military policy. Here we were hoping for a little radicalism in the form of a rejection of the power elite’s commitment to U.S. global hegemony and American exceptionalism. But, alas, it was not to be.”

3.  ” From Kabul to Kingston

Army tactics in Jamaica resemble those used in Afghanistan – and it’s no mere coincidence

For two weeks, the Jamaican army and police have fought gun battles in Kingston. The many allegations of human rights abuses committed by the security forces – including extrajudicial killings and the disposal of bodies – have received almost no international attention. Nor have the linkages between the Jamaican crisis, the security establishments in the US, Britain and Canada, and the mutations of the “war on terror”.

But strategy and tactics deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan are being applied in Jamaica. Drones fly over Kingston, and were used in the 24 May assault to select targets. On 7 June, Tivoli residents discovered that to enter or leave the area they had to produce “passes” issued by the police (revised, after protests, to restrictions on movement after dark). There is blanket surveillance of electronic communications in breach of Jamaican privacy protections – indeed, it was the illegal provenance of some of the evidence against Christopher “Dudus” Coke that initially held up extradition proceedings.

Propaganda “information operations” are at full tilt: while the army guides the Jamaican press on tours in which soldiers pat the heads of children, and in which criminal “torture chambers” are revealed, abroad we are told this is just about breaking drug gangs.”

4.  Unbelievable:

“Obama Admin: Don’t Question Torturers’ Sincerity”

5.  What an evil man:

“Congressman wants Americans on Gaza flotilla prosecuted”

6.  Blackmail:

Members of the US Congress attacked Turkey on Wednesday for voting against the UN Security Council resolution imposing further sanctions on Iran, and for its heavy criticism of the Israeli blockade of Gaza. Rep. Mike Pence (R-Indiana) said, “There will be a cost if Turkey stays on its present heading of growing closer to Iran and more antagonistic to the state of Israel.” Pence said he was reconsidering whether to vote for a resolution condemning Turkey for the WW I era Armenian genocide.

The Israel lobbies, after defending Turkey from Armenian complaints for decades, have all of a sudden discovered the Armenian holocaust now that Turkey is criticizing Israel. This change is important because passage of a congressional recognition of the genocide would open Turkey to lawsuits, whereby Armenian political groups could capture Turkish assets in the United States.

Congress should be careful not to over-reach in this intervention against Turkey on behalf of the Israel lobbies. Some 70 percent of resupply of US troops in Iraq is carried out through Incirlik Base in Turkey, and Turkey is part of the NATO force in Afghanistan. In the absence of good relations with Turkey, the United States would face significant logistical problems in the region.

Erdogan’s shelving of the bilateral agreements, and the potential cancellation of billiions in joint military equipment ventures, raise the question of whether Turkey is still a military ally of Israel. Until the blockade of Gaza is lifted and Israel apologizes to Turkey for the flotilla raid and the loss of Turkish life, Israel will become more isolated than ever before. While that isolation may suit the cult-like Likud Party, since it thrives on xenophobism and insularity, as well as on naked aggression, it cannot be good for Israel as a whole.”

7.  “Did the BP Oil Well Really Blow Out in February, Instead of April?

In other words, not only is it possible that the well casing has been unstable since February, but BP apparently ignored standard drilling practices by failing to abandon the well when the natural gas began surging too violently.

Sure, the rig didn’t actually catch fire and sink until April, but cracks in the well and dangerous natural gas surges may mean that the well actually started blowing out much earlier.”

8.  Not only selfish, but terrible economics:

BP’s Largest Shareholder says Oil Spill Good for the Economy

9.  “Documents, Employees Reveal BP’s Alaska Oilfield Plagued By Major Safety Issues”

10.  “It is becoming clear even to very slow learners that a European settler-colonialist society based on ethnocentric identity, established in the middle of the 20th Century no less, in the midst of people with whom they have little or nothing in common, aggressively alienating their new neighbors through the establishment of an Apartheid state based on blatant racism, and carving out ever more territory for itself through ethnic cleansing and remorseless genocide, never really had much of a future.

The only reason that this bizarre “State” has lasted so long, six decades and counting, has been the financial, military and political support that Israel has been receiving from the West. This support, in turn, has been the result of intense pressure brought to bear by a relatively small number of wealthy and powerful Zionist Jews, the Israel Lobby, particularly in the English speaking democracies. This support seems to be on the verge of weakening, while the political elites are finally beginning to comprehend the insupportable costs to their countries, in lives, wealth, international support and moral standing, of succumbing to such blackmail.”

11.  Pretty convincing:

Is the BP Gusher Unstoppable?”

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