Friday, 25 July 2008

Condoleezza Rice: girl power?

Witness list: Bush-Cheney Administration continues along its destructive path-in documented violation of national and international law. Democracy Now!

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice today told enthralled schoolgirls how she loves shopping - and has no presidential ambitions.

On a visit to Perth’s exclusive Mercedes College this morning, Rice told the schoolgirls she has no ambition to be US president and prefers mountain holidays to lying on the beach.

[Rice will always have a job with the Bush family (she served the father, too) or with Chevron-Texaco Oil (where she worked between Bushes). Rice’s selfless renderings to the white and wealthy have earned her a lifetime of…more of the same. Should she crack under the weight of her own and her masters’ lies – as sometimes seems imminent – there is a commodious attic in one of the Bush domiciles where “Condi” can be safely stored.]

Rice, who is on a flying visit to Perth at the personal invitation of Foreign Minister Stephen Smith, met Mr Smith’s daughter Maddie, 14, a student at the school, before speaking to about 500 students.

She told the girls they should follow their passions and not worry about what career path they should take.

“Finding your passion is the most important thing you can do in the next few years,” Rice said.

She said she had always wanted to be a concert pianist but it was only after realising she would end up playing “in some piano bar somewhere” and not Carnegie Hall, that she discovered an interest in international politics and the Soviet Union in particular.

“My passion turned out to be the study of the Soviet Union,” she said.

Asked by Year 12 student Patrice when she got to go shopping, Rice said she had to rely on friends to shop for her, but hoped to have more time for shopping when she stepped down from her post in January next year.

“It’s a great pastime, shopping, I love it,” she said.

[However, Rice did not bargain or seek her own space, but settled into the very fabric of Bushness. In so doing, however, Rice lost all power of personal agency. Having surrendered everything to the Bushes, her Blackness gradually lost its value as a cloak for her patrons’ racism. The affirmative action opinions of a loyal Black servant carry little weight. That’s when the talk of high office, stopped.]

She said President George W. Bush was a great boss “because be has a great sense of humour” but she had no ambition to be president and would happily resume her career as an academic at the end of her tenure.

[Rice’s rich white admirers hugged and squeezed her too tightly – until there was nothing left but them all over her. It is common in African American circles to speak of “lost” Black souls, but in Rice’s case it is almost literally true that she doesn’t know where she stands and to whom she is speaking.]


Rice greeted by protesters in Perth
United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been forced to enter a dinner hosted in Perth in her honour through a back entrance, because of a group of anti-war protesters camped outside.

Impeachment will be heard Friday

A message from US Congressman Dennis Kucinich......

While the Bush-Cheney Administration continues along its destructive path-in documented violation of national and international law - the Democratic leadership of the United States has failed to assume its Constitutional authority and mandate as a co-equal branch of government to hold the Executive Branch of the United States accountable for failing to preserve, protect and defend the rights of the American people.

Thanks to you, impeachment will be heard Friday.

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Who Will Hold the War Criminals Accountable?

A year after hundreds of people marched on John Conyer's office demanding impeachment;

15 months after impeachment advocates gathered outside Congress to demand it start, supporting Dennis Kucinich's articles of impeachment on VP "Dick" Cheney;

30 months after illegal spying by the Bush regime became public;

4+ years after the whole world learned about the torture of detainees at Abu Ghraib;

5+ years after Iraq was invaded on the basis of lies, leading to the deaths of more than one million people;

6+ years after Guantanamo opened; and almost 7 years after the Bush Justice Department's USA PATRIOT Act made a mockery of Constitutional protections for the people....

...there will be a two hour hearing tomorrow in the House Judiciary Committee on Kucinich's latest article of impeachment against George Bush for lying about Iraq.

While you have to say to yourself that after 7 years, it's about time for a big fight over the crimes of the Bush regime, I'm not impressed, nor do I think we should be congratulating ourselves.

In the New York Times today, in a story about pardons Bush may issue: "As the administration wrestles with the cascade of petitions, some lawyers and law professors are raising a related question: Will Mr. Bush grant pre-emptive pardons to officials involved in controversial counterterrorism programs?"

As passionate as the arguments of impeachment advocates in and out of Congress, any openings this provides will come to something only with a determined movement of the people who reject the whole direction under the Bush regime.

So, let's keep going out among the people living in this country with truth about this criminal regime. Real hope comes in resisting, and through that resistance, forcing the powers that be to accede to our just demands.

Call in to talk shows, write your newspapers, talk to everyone you know. Hell yes, Bush & Cheney should be impeached, tried, and held to account for the crimes their administration carried out in our names.

TODAY a billboard goes up on University Avenue in Berkeley, near Boalt Hall Law School where John Yoo teaches constitutional law. Fittingly, it says "SILENCE + TORTURE + COMPLICITY". We hope it is hugely controversial, and that members of the university community are challenged to reject the torture state and its apologist, John Yoo, in their midst. Photos soon!

Gen. Taguba: Bush Administration Committed War Crimes

The Army general who first investigated the abuse at Abu Ghraib has accused the Bush administration of committing war crimes. Retired Major General Antonio Taguba made the comment in a new report about US torture practices. Taguba wrote, “The commander in chief and those under him authorized a systematic regime of torture.” Taguba went on to say, “The only question that remains to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account.”

Congressional Hearings Shed New Light on Government's Endorsement of Torture; Maj. Gen. Taguba Accuses Bush Administration of War Crimes On Tuesday, the Senate Armed Services Committee held an eight-hour hearing that exposed the role of top Bush administration officials in authorizing the use of harsh interrogation techniques. Meanwhile, Retired Major General Antonio Taguba, the Army general who first investigated the abuse at Abu Ghraib, has accused the Bush administration of committing war crimes. “The commander in chief and those under him authorized a systematic regime of torture,” Taguba said.

As Senate Confirms Psychologists Helped Devise Military Interrogation Techniques, APA Presidential Candidate Steven Reisner Condemns Role of Psychologists in Torture The Senate investigation confirmed the Pentagon sought the help of military psychologists as early as 2002 to devise so-called aggressive interrogation techniques. Dr. Steven Reisner is a psychoanalyst and a leading critic of the American Psychological Association’s policy governing the role of psychologists in interrogations. He is running for president of the APA and has received more nominating votes than any other candidate.

“Broken Laws, Broken Lives”: Medical Study Confirms Prisoners in US Custody Were Physically & Mentally Tortured A new report by the Physicians for Human Rights has, for the first time, found medical evidence corroborating the claims of former prisoners who say they were tortured while in US custody. Teams of medical specialists conducted physical and psychological tests on the former prisoners, including exams intended to assess if they were lying. We speak to Dr. Allen Keller.

McClatchy Interviews 66 Fmr. Prisoners Held by US, Finds Widespread Abuse and Wrongful Imprisonments McClatchy Newspapers has conducted an extensive eight-month investigation of the US detention system created after 9/11. Based on interviews with sixty-six former prisoners, the investigation found that the US imprisoned innocent men, subjected them to abuse, stripped them of their legal rights and allowed Islamic militants to turn the prison camp at Guantanamo Bay into a school for jihad.

With Crises in Fuel, Food, Housing and Banking, What Gvt. Policies Are Being Pushed Through? Naomi Klein Reexamines “The Shock Doctrine” As the country and the world reel from crises ranging from skyrocketing oil prices and global food shortages to housing and climate change, how best to understand the government policies being pushed through? We spend the hour with Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. Klein also discusses Barack Obama’s economic advisory team, whom she calls “Obama’s Chicago Boys”; why she’s suing the US government for spying on journalists like her; as well as her recent trip to China, where she says the government is building a high-tech police state with the help of US military contractors.

The Forgotten War: Sonali Kolhatkar on Why Afghanistan is "Just as Bad as Iraq"

Coming on the heels of Barack Obama’s highly publicized visit to Afghanistan—what he calls a central front in the so-called war on terror—we play an address by Pacifica radio host Sonali Kolhatkar, one of this country’s leading voices against the occupation of Afghanistan and co-author of the book Bleeding Afghanistan: Washington, Warlords and the Propaganda of Silence. She spoke last month at the National Conference for Media Reform in Minneapolis about what she called widespread misconceptions about the occupation of Afghanistan.

Afghanistan is just as much a failure as Iraq, OK? We are using the same tactics. We are rounding people up, detaining them, bombing civilians. Associated Press did a count earlier in the year of how many civilians the Taliban had claimed to kill versus how many officially killed by NATO. Guess what? NATO was winning that count. NATO had killed actually more civilians than the Taliban. And we have not heard about that. Afghanistan, just as much a failure as Iraq.

International warships gather off Darwin
The Defence [Military] Department says international warships are sailing into waters around Darwin in preparation for major maritime wargames next week. The Australian Defence [Military] Force is hosting the offshore simulated war exercise, dubbed Kakadu IX.

Australian SAS soldier 'killed' in Afghanistan
Casualties: SAS special forces, killers and thieves in Afghanistan digging holes to bury their dead with reports that one Australian soldier has been killed. The reported death of the soldier in Afghanistan would be the second loss Australia has experienced in the attack on the sovereign nation state this year, and brings the nation's death toll from the war to six.

No combat deaths for the quiet imperialists
DESPITE a five-year commitment that has involved almost 14,000 soldiers, Australia will end its war in Iraq without a combat fatality. In contrast, the Americans have lost more than 4000 soldiers; the British have lost almost 180. In Vietnam, about 50,000 Australians served and 520 died; in Afghanistan, where about 8000 soldiers have served, five have been killed.

Iraq oil output, exports hit post-war high

Oil production has climbed to a post-war high of more than 2.5 million barrels-per-day.

Iraq has raised oil exports to a post-war high, earning billions of dollars to fund reconstruction after Baghdad cracked down on sabotage of its strategic pipelines, Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani says he expects 2008 oil revenues to reach $70 billion if oil prices stay high and there are no output disruptions. Mr Shahristani was optimistic Iraqi forces would be able to sustain tight security at oil facilities. That could raise the confidence of [foreign] investors who have been discouraged by [resistance to; the pre-emptive strikes on Iraq by the coalition of the killing, false flag operations by them, to encourage civil war, sectarian violence, Al Qaeda and powerful Shiite militants who had a tight grip on Basra, home to Iraq's biggest oilfields.

"In May, we have exceeded for the first time 2 million barrels-per-day (bpd) as an export rate," Mr Shahristani said. Production had also climbed to a post-war high of more than 2.5 million bpd, he said. Mr Shahristani was confident Iraq could pump up to 2.9 million bpd by the end of 2008. He declined to comment on export levels for June, but senior Iraqi oil officials said last month shipments would run slightly higher because of extra Kirkuk sales from the north.

Unknown News
"News that's not known, or not known enough."

-- IN IRAQ --

and 90,000 SERIOUSLY INJURED Aug. 2003

and 1,414,723 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007

and 50,677 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007

and 861 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007

and 288 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007

and 452 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007


and 25,761 SERIOUSLY INJURED July 2004

and 6,273 SERIOUSLY INJURED July 2004

and 1,026 SERIOUSLY INJURED Jan. 2007

and 834 SERIOUSLY INJURED June 2007


Army chief admits morale concerns over lack of combat
Lieutenant General Leahy was responding to public criticism from two infantry officers who have written in the Australian Army Journal. The officers claim that some soldiers are sometimes ashamed to wear the Australian uniform and have been treated with "near contempt" by allies in Iraq and Afghanistan because they are involved in such low-risk missions.

Memorial Day Special…Winter Soldier on the Hill: War Vets Testify Before Congress War veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan came to Capitol Hill this month to testify before Congress and give an eyewitness account about the horrors of war. Like the Winter Soldier hearings in March, when more than 200 service members gathered for four days in Silver Spring, Maryland to give their eyewitness accounts of the injustices occurring in Iraq and Afghanistan, “Winter Soldier on the Hill” was designed to drive home the human cost of the war and occupation—this time, to the very people in charge of doing something about it. The name, Winter Soldier, comes from a similar event in 1971, when hundreds of Vietnam veterans gathered in Detroit, and is derived from the opening line of Thomas Paine’s pamphlet, “The Crisis,” published in 1776: “These are the times that try men’s souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” In a packed public hearing this month, the soldiers testified before a panel of lawmakers from the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Today we spend the hour hearing their testimony.

US dockers strike over Iraq war
Union officials say about 10,000 longshore workers who handle cargo along the west coast of the United States have stayed away from work in a one-day protest against the war in Iraq.

Thousands take part in anti-war protests
Thousands of anti-war protesters have marched in Britain and the United States to mark the fifth anniversary of the start of the war in Iraq.

'Charge Howard with war crimes'
FORMER Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad has called for ex-prime minister John Howard and other Western leaders to be charged with war crimes over the conflict in Iraq.

In 1998, Dick Cheney, now US vice-president but then chief executive of a major oil services company, remarked: "I cannot think of a time when we have had a region emerge as suddenly to become as strategically significant as the Caspian." But the oil and gas there is worthless until it is moved. The only route which makes both political and economic sense is through Afghanistan.

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