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Posts uit december 3, 2006 weergeven

Wijsheid 9

'It does not require many words to speak the truth.' Chief Joseph. Nez Perce.

The Empire 82

Feiten uit the land of the free, home of the brave: 'Report Finds Rampant Censorship at American Colleges and Universities.
December 6, 2006
FIRE Press Release
PHILADELPHIA, December 6, 2006—A report released today by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) reveals that burdensome restrictions on speech are commonplace at America’s colleges and universities. The report, entitled Spotlight on Speech Codes 2006: The State of Free Speech on Our Nation’s Campuses, surveyed more than 330 schools and found that an overwhelming majority of them explicitly prohibit speech that, outside the borders of campus, is protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

“There is a common misconception that ‘speech codes’ are a thing of the past—a relic of the heyday of political correctness of the 1980s and 90s—but the public needs to know that speech codes are perhaps more pervasive and restrictive than ever,” FIRE President Greg Lukianoff said.

FIRE’s report is the most comp…

The Empire 81

Afgaande op cijfers van het begin van dit jaar is er niets wezenlijks veranderd in de VS sinds de jaren dertig van de vorige eeuw. Ondertussen bezit 1 procent van de allerrijksten in dat land 40 procent van alle rijkdom.'A family of three must have earned less than $15,577 in 2005 to be considered poor.37 million people in America live below the poverty line, about the entire population of California.43 percent of the poor live in "deep poverty" half the poverty line. The highest percentage living in "deep poverty" since the Census Department began recording this data in 1975. 35 million Americans went without food in 2005. This year, the USDA changed the official classification of this growing population from "food insecure with hunger" to "very low food security." The number of hungry Americans is nearly equal in size to the combined populations of Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshir…

Nederland en Afghanistan 114

De Los Angeles Times:

'Afghanistan War Nears "Tipping Point."

Government support is flagging, NATO is split on strategy, and Taliban fighters are revitalized.
Kabul, Afghanistan - The conflict in Afghanistan has entered a dangerous phase, and the next three to six months could prove crucial in determining whether the United States and its NATO partners can suppress a revitalized enemy - or will be dragged into another drawn- out and costly fight with an Islamic insurgency, according to senior military and security officials and diplomats.
"I think we are approaching a tipping point, perhaps early in the new year," said a Western diplomat in the region, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the situation publicly.
Popular support for the central government is faltering, and Western military allies are deeply divided over how best to combat the insurgency.
On the other side of the fight, the Taliban has regained the strength to dom…

Irak 131

De oorlog mag dan wel verloren zijn, toch probeert de Amerikaanse economische elite het zwarte goud veilig te stellen. Want daar ging het allemaal om. Tevergeefs, zoals de toekomst zal aantonen, maar toch.

'It's Still About Oil in Iraq.

A centerpiece of the Iraq Study Group's report is its advocacy for securing foreign companies' long-term access to Iraqi oil fields.
While the Bush administration, the media and nearly all the Democrats still refuse to explain the war in Iraq in terms of oil, the ever- pragmatic members of the Iraq Study Group share no such reticence.
Page 1, Chapter 1 of the Iraq Study Group report lays out Iraq's importance to its region, the U.S. and the world with this reminder: "It has the world's second-largest known oil reserves." The group then proceeds to give very specific and radical recommendations as to what the United States should do to secure those reserves. If the proposals are followed, Iraq's national oil in…

The Empire 79

De Guardian:

'The neocons have finished what the Vietcong started.
Vietnam traumatised the US but left its power intact; Iraq, however, will be far more serious for the superpower.

Just a month after the American electorate delivered a resounding rebuff to the Bush Iraq policy, the great and the good - in the guise of the Iraq Study Group (ISG) - have subjected that policy to a withering critique. The administration has had the political equivalent of a car crash. George Bush is being routinely condemned as one of the worst presidents ever, and his Iraq policy no longer enjoys the support of a large swath of the American establishment. The neoconservatives suddenly find themselves isolated and embattled: Rumsfeld has been sacked, Cheney has gone quiet, the likes of Richard Perle are confined to the sidelines. The president is on his own and it is difficult to see how Bush can avoid moving towards the ISG position. The political map is being redrawn with extraordinary alacrity.
Before …

Robert Fisk 18

Robert Fisk schrijft:

'The Empire Is Falling.

The Roman Empire is falling. That, in a phrase, is what the Baker report says. The legions cannot impose their rule on Mesopotamia.
Just as Crassus lost his legions' banners in the deserts of Syria-Iraq, so has George W Bush. There is no Mark Antony to retrieve the honour of the empire. The policy "is not working". "Collapse" and "catastrophe" - words heard in the Roman senate many a time - were embedded in the text of the Baker report. Et tu, James?
This is also the language of the Arab world, always waiting for the collapse of empire, for the destruction of the safe Western world which has provided it with money, weapons, political support. First, the Arabs trusted the British Empire and Winston Churchill, and then they trusted the American Empire and Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the Truman and Eisenhower administrations and all the other men who would give guns to the Israelis and billions to the Arabs…

De Israelische Terreur 129

Zoals altijd werkt de Israelische terreur contraproductief voor de 'joodse natie' zelf en voor het Westen, dat het Israelisch terrorisme steunt.

'Analysts: US at Root of Effort to Topple Lebanese Government.

Beirut, Lebanon - American political leaders watched with alarm during the past week as the Hezbollah militia laid siege to the U.S.-backed Lebanese government, but few would acknowledge publicly what most analysts and politicians here say is obvious: American policy may bear much of the blame.
Many in Beirut say that U.S. failure to stop Israel's onslaught against Hezbollah last summer crippled the Lebanese government - a U.S. ally - while strengthening Hezbollah - a U.S. enemy. That created an environment in which the Shiite Muslim militia could call for overthrowing Sunni Muslim Prime Minister Fuad Saniora and his Cabinet.
"Hezbollah has more support in the population now because they are the `victorious resistance,'" Cabinet memb…

The Empire 78

'We Don’t Need Them.I’ve never understood the idea of speaking truth to power. The truth, surely, is that in almost all countries of the world, political and economic systems are designed to benefit only the rich and powerful, at the expense of those with less money and power. This is how the world works, and I see no reason to think that the powerful don’t already understand that. After all, they designed it; they maintain it.
They steal our money, sacrifice our children in their wars, send the poorest and most victimized among us off to jail for petty mistakes, and crush those of us who might present a real threat to the arrangement. They know we don’t like it. They don’t care. They don’t need to care. They also control most of our avenues of dissent. It’s a very simple, very elegant design.
Meanwhile, we get angry and toddle off to tell the truth to the powerful. We have been telling them the truth for centuries. We travel to their great palaces by the hundreds of thousands, to…

Gods Schepping 2

In The Man Made of Words schrijft de Indiaanse schrijver Scott Momaday: 'I believe that what most threatens the American Indian is sacrilege, the theft of the sacred. Inexorably the Indian people have been, and are being, deprived of the spiritual nourishment that has sustained them for many thousands of years. This is a subtle holocaust, and it is ongoing. It is imperative that the Indian defines himself, that he finds the strength to do so, that he refuses to let others define him. Children are at greatest risk. We, Native Americans in particular, but all of us, need to restore the sacred to our children. It is a matter of the greatest importance.'Ik moest daarbij onmiddellijk denken aan onze Turkse- en Marokkaanse Nederlanders en aan mijn eigen kinderen. Ik denk dat Momaday gelijk heeft, een ontheiligde wereld vernietigt zichzelf omdat uiteindelijk niets meer een waarde van zichzelf heeft, niets spreekt dan meer in zijn of haar eigen termen met ons.

De Bush Bende 31

Tom Engelhardt schrijft:'Greenberg, In a Confessing State of Mind.
An early impulse of Bush administration officials after the attacks of September 11, 2001 was to take off "the gloves," or, as CIA Director George Tenet put it (so Ron Suskind tell us in his book, The One Percent Doctrine), "the shackles." Those were the "shackles" that they believed had been placed on the imperial presidency after Richard Nixon came so close to committing the constitutional coup d'état that we have come to call Watergate, but that involved an illegal war (in Cambodia), illegal wiretapping, illegal break-ins, robberies, black-bag jobs and so many other crossing-the-line events. That was the moment that Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and all the Bush administration advocates of a "unitary executive theory" wanted to return us to -- the impeachable moment.
The neocons and their patrons, especially our Vice President, wanted to unchain executive power, but that…

De Miljonair Fair

Degenen die het bavianenhok van Artis een leuke verpozing vinden, hadden gisteren bij de opening van de Miljonair Fair een geweldige avond. U ziet hier onze neoliberale elite. Ordinair volk? Ik ben het met u eens: alles is een kwestie van smaak. In elk geval voor en door dit soort luitjes groeit de kloof tussen arm en rijk. Voor meer aapjes kijken:

Irak 130

Paul Craig Roberts , was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider's Account of Policymaking in Washington ; Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice

Information Clearing House:

'Catastrophe Still Awaits.
By Paul Craig Roberts.

"The real difficulty in changing any enterprise lies not in
developing new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones." - John
Maynard Keynes

12/07/06 "Information Clearing House" -- -- A ray of realism appeared
in the confirmation hearings for Secretary of Defense nominee Robert
Gates before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Gates himself said
that the U.S. was not winning in Iraq, a statement with which
everyone agreed except the White House.

The U.S., howev…

Irak 129

De Washington Post bericht:

'Panel: U.S. Underreported Iraq Violence.
WASHINGTON -- U.S. military and intelligence officials have systematically underreported the violence in Iraq in order to suit the Bush administration's policy goals, the bipartisan Iraq Study Group said.
In its report on ways to improve the U.S. approach to stabilizing Iraq, the group recommended Wednesday that the director of national intelligence and the secretary of defense make changes in the collection of data about violence to provide a more accurate picture.
The panel pointed to one day last July when U.S. officials reported 93 attacks or significant acts of violence. "Yet a careful review of the reports for that single day brought to light 1,100 acts of violence," it said.
"The standard for recording attacks acts as a filter to keep events out of reports and databases." It said, for example, that a murder of an Iraqi is not necessarily counted as an attack, and a roadside bomb or a ro…

De Pro-Israel Lobby 17

De pro-Israel lobby heeft het druk de laatste tijd. Alle bekende retoriek wordt weer ingezet om de terreur van Israel te verdoezelen. Dit maal is de voormalige president van de VS, Jimmy Carter, het doelwit. De Washington Post bericht: 'Carter Book on Israel 'Apartheid' Sparks Bitter Debate.
Scholar Resigns From Ga. Center.
A veteran Middle East scholar affiliated with the Carter Center in Atlanta resigned his position there Monday in an escalating controversy over former president Jimmy Carter's bestselling book on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The book, "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid," traces the ups and downs of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process beginning with Carter's 1977-1980 presidency and the historic peace accord he negotiated between Israel and Egypt and continuing to the present. Although it apportions blame to Israel, the Palestinians and outside parties -- including the United States -- for the failure of decades of peace efforts, it is …

De Bush Bende 30

De pro-Israel lobby en de huidige collega's van Hirsi Magan/Ali van the American Enterprise Institute, de extremistische denktank die de uitzichtloze politieke doctrine van president de Bush bedacht, zijn in grote moeilijkheden gekomen.

Common Dreams bericht: 'Neo-Cons Move to Preempt Baker Report.

WASHINGTON - To have read the neo-conservative press here over the past month, one would think that former Secretary of State James Baker poses the biggest threat to the United States and Israel since Saddam Hussein. As the ur-realist of U.S. Middle East policy who once had the temerity to threaten to withhold U.S. aid guarantees from Israel if former right-wing Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir failed to show up at the 1991 Madrid Conference, Baker has long been seen by neo-conservatives, as well as the Christian Right, as close to the devil himself. But his role as co-chairman and presumed eminence grise of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group (ISG), whose long-awaited recommendations on how…

De Bush Bende 29

'Oil in Iraq.

Iraq has the world’s second largest proven oil reserves. According to oil industry experts, new exploration will probably raise Iraq’s reserves to 200+ billion barrels of high-grade crude, extraordinarily cheap to produce. The four giant firms located in the US and the UK have been keen to get back into Iraq, from which they were excluded with the nationalization of 1972. During the final years of the Saddam era, they envied companies from France, Russia, China, and elsewhere, who had obtained major contracts. But UN sanctions (kept in place by the US and the UK) kept those contracts inoperable. Since the invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003, everything has changed and the companies have been scrambling to grab their share of the spoils. In the new setting, with Washington running the show, "friendly" companies expect to gain most of the lucrative oil deals that will be worth hundreds of billions of dollars in profits in the coming decades. The new Iraqi …

De Commerciele Massamedia 17

Drie jaar geleden besteedde ik in het tijdschrift de Humanist en op de VPRO radio uitgebreid aaandacht aan de belangrijkste reden van de Amerikaanse inval in Irak, namelijk olie. De commerciele massamedia besteedden toen aan deze reden nagenoeg geen aandacht, maar wel uitgebreid aandacht aan de beweringen van die Westerse regeringen die beweerden dat Saddam over massavernietigingswapens beschikte en daarom uit de weg moest worden geruimd. Ik baseerde mij als onafhankelijk journalist op publiekelijk toegankelijke bronnen die al veel eerder duidelijk aantoonden dat het allemaal ging om olie, de strategisch meest vitale grondstof ter wereld. Die - vaak overheidsbronnen - hadden ook de andere Nederlandse journalisten kunnen raadplegen maar dat deden ze niet, gezagsgetrouw als ze doorgaans zijn.Alternet bericht: 'Oil for Sale: Iraq Study Group Recommends Privatization
By Antonia Juhasz, AlterNet. Posted December 7, 2006.
The Iraq Study Group may not have a solution for how to end the war…

Gods Schepping

'Are We Changing Planet Earth.
BBC Documentary.
David Attenborough explores just how much climate change is altering our planet. He looks ahead to find out what needs to be done to save Planet Earth from the worst impact of global warming and discovers what could happen to the planet once a 'tipping point' of carbon emissions is reached. He also discusses the solutions we can all adopt to prevent catastrophic change.'

David Attenborough's programma's zijn bijna allen kleine meesterwerken. En toch zou ik willen dat hij een stapje verder gaat. Dat hij zich buigt over de vraag: waar komt de westerse minachting voor de natuur uit voort? Ik bedoel: de veronderstelling dat de mens de natuur aan zich kan onderwerpen, de natuur kan beheersen, kan verkrachten als het nodig is voor de materiele vooruitgang? Waar berust die vernietigende gedachte precies op? Als we dat zouden weten, zouden we werkelijk een andere…

Israelisch Expansionisme 33

De Guardian: 'There has to be equality.
If Britons can join the Israeli army, those who fight for Palestine can't be treated as terrorists.

The Arab-Israeli conflict is unlike any other regional conflict. As the UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, put it: "No other conflict carries such a powerful symbolic and emotional charge among people far removed from the battlefield." Not surprisingly, this has had its impact on multicultural Britain, with different communities aligning themselves to varying degrees with the Israeli and Palestinian causes.Everyone in a democracy has the right to argue for their views and engage in public debate. But there is no equality when it comes to how the British government treats those who want to give physical support to Israel and those who want to do the same for the Palestinians. Such double standards feed resentment in Britain's Muslim community at the government's failure to recognise its legitimate grievances, as highlighted i…

De Bush Bende 28

'The Rumsfeld Memo: “I was just about to change everything….Really!?!”
By Mike Whitney.

By now, everyone has heard about Rumsfeld’s memo. It was leaked to the New York Times supposedly without Rumsfeld’s knowledge. It makes the case that Rumsfeld was just about to make major changes in Iraq because he could see that the strategy was failing and had created a disaster. Everything about the memo reeks of deception. In fact, the Times even admits that, “Rumsfeld may have been trying to shape the coming discussion and present himself as open to ‘change’”. Why? Because, according to the article, “President Bush interviewed Texas A&M University President Robert Gates as a potential successor to Rumsfeld a day before the midterm elections.” Do you think that Rummy, who controls 80% of the US intelligence budget and listens in to the conversations of Quakers, antiwar protestors, and other unsuspecting citizens knew that he was going to be canned? You bet he did. And now he’s rewriting h…

Mohammed R. Jabri 5

Mohammed Jabri schrijft het volgende:

'De viering van genocide (over Thanksgiving).

Het is een jaarlijkse sport voor Amerikanen geworden om zichzelf net zo vol te proppen tijdens de nationale feestdag ‘Thanksgiving’ als dat ze hun kalkoenen op diezelfde dag vullen. Thanksgiving is een typisch Amerikaanse feestdag. Sterker nog, het is niet alleen een feestdag maar, zoals de ethymologie al impliceert, één van de heilige dagen die bijna universeel gevierd wordt door de Amerikanen. Binnen de kaders van die heilige dag komen hele families en gezinnen in feite bijeen om – al dan niet bewust – de ene genocide te vieren (de genocide tegen de Indianen) door de andere genocide uit te voeren (die tegen de kalkoenen). Kunnen de Amerikanen dit in goed geloof en bij volledig bewustzijn van het geheel vieren?
Ik stel mezelf even voor dat ik een Amerikaan ben:
Op Thanksgiving zijn we dankbaar. We zijn dankbaar voor het feit dat we een invasie hebben uitgevoerd en de plaatselijke bevolkingsgroepen (al…

Nederland en Afghanistan 113

Terwijl de Nederlandse pers en politiek doorsnurken, bericht Der Spiegel:

'The Taliban Gets Closer to Kabul.
A report from the German military, the Bundeswehr, warns that the Taliban is approaching Kabul and that attacks on the capital city are likely to increase. Security in nearby districts is already deteriorating.
The regeneration of the Taliban -- which has retaken control of parts of southern Afghanistan -- is no longer fresh news to anyone. But are the insurgent forces preparing to launch a series of attacks on the capital city of Kabul, which is home to peacekeeping troops, the Afghan government and non-government organizations that are helping to rebuild the war-torn country?
The leadership of Germany's military, the Bundeswehr, fear that Taliban attacks on the Afganistan capital of Kabul will likely increase in the coming months. According to a classified report on the state of Afghanistan obtained by SPIEGEL, "militant opposition forces" have made it clear tha…

Nederland en Afghanistan 112

Zoals te verwachten was begint de Taliban nu robuust op te treden tegen de bezettende NAVO-macht. De strijd in Irak is definitief verloren. Nu maar eens kijken hoelang de NAVO troepen beseffen dat ze verloren hebben.

Reuters bericht:

'Taliban repel British assault in south Afghanistan.
GARMSER, Afghanistan (Reuters) - British Marines attacked a Taliban-held valley in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday but withdrew after a ferocious counterattack that withstood air strikes and artillery fire, witnesses said.
One Royal Marine was killed and a second wounded during the battle, the UK Helmand Task Force (UKTF) said.
Scores of soldiers ran across a bridge over the Helmand River under a full moon shortly before daybreak and began sweeping south through wheatfields in the south of the province, the opium center of the world's major producer.
A Reuters cameraman said the Marines initially faced only sporadic resistance but when they advanced, Taliban fighters launched a ferocious, organized ri…

Het Olierijke Venezuela 3

Vroeger vloeiden de petrodollars van Venezuela onmiddellijk terug naar VS, om ermee te speculeren in aandelen of onroerend goed, zoals dat nog steeds gebeurt met de petrodollars uit de arabische olieproducerende landen. Maar nu gebruikt de Venezolaanse president de oliedollars voor financiele steun aan arme Latijnsamerikaanse landen en de ongeveer 40 miljoen mensen in de VS, die onder de armoedegrens leven. Dat maakt Chavez buitengewoon gehaat bij de westerse politieke en economische elite.

'Chavez uses petro-dollars to help the poor - in America.

CARACAS, Venezuela - Hugo Chavez coasted to another six-year term as Venezuela's president on the strength of petro-dollars and promises to spread more of his country's oil wealth to the poor.
But as Chavez struggles to alleviate poverty for eight million of his own citizens, the 52-year-old leftist leader is using his oil riches in an unlikely way - by paying the winter heating bills for hundreds of thousands of underprivileged Am…

The Empire 77

Een beeld van The Land of the Free, Home of the Brave.

'This still photo from a video obtained by The New York Times shows Jose Padilla’s forced isolation and sensory deprivation, including the use of blinders and sound dampeners as he is moved from his cell.

Becoming What We Despise.
By Robert Scheer

Jose Padilla, a U.S. citizen, has been tortured by his own government for the better part of three-and-one-half years, suffering years of systematic sensory deprivation documented in his attorneys' filings and supported by photos of the prisoner published this week by the New York Times.
In that time, Padilla, who has been judged by professionals as mentally ill as a consequence of his brutal treatment, has been denied his Constitutional right to a fair and speedy trial and was permitted no legal representation for 21 months. The Bush administration's excuse for this betrayal of our legal system was that Padilla was a dangerous al Qaeda agent, a big fi…

De Commerciele Massamedia 16

'Media Sham for Iraq War - It's Happening Again.By Norman Solomon t r u t h o u t Guest Contributer
Wednesday 06 December 2006
The lead-up to the invasion of Iraq has become notorious in the annals of American journalism. Even many reporters, editors and commentators who fueled the drive to war in 2002 and early 2003 now acknowledge that major media routinely tossed real journalism out the window in favor of boosting war.
But it's happening again.
The current media travesty is a drumbeat for the idea that the US war effort must keep going. And again, in its news coverage, the New York Times is a bellwether for the latest media parade to the cadence of the warfare state.
During the run-up to the invasion, news stories repeatedly told about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, while the Times and other key media outlets insisted that their coverage was factually reliable. Now the same media outlets insist that their coverage is analytically reliable.
Instead of authoritative media i…

Irak 128

De Washington Post bericht:'Iraq Panel Calls Conditions ''Grave and Deteriorating.'' Conditions in Iraq are "grave and deteriorating," with the prospect that a "slide toward chaos" could topple the U.S.-backed government and trigger a regional war unless the United States changes course and seeks a broader diplomatic and political solution involving all of Iraq's neighbors, according to a bipartisan panel that gave its recommendations to President Bush and Congress today.
In what amounts to the most extensive independent assessment of the nearly four-year-old conflict that has claimed the lives of more than 2,800 Americans and tens of thousands of Iraqis, the Iraq Study Group bluntly warns that "current U.S. policy is not working." Citing rising violence and the Iraqi government's failure to advance national reconciliation, the panel paints a grim picture of a nation that Bush has repeatedly vowed to transform into a beacon of f…

11 September 2001 (17)

Uitgeverij Lemniscaat heeft een interessante scheurkalender gepubliceerd voor het jaar 2007:

'Scheuren in de officiële 11 september-verklaring.

We wisten in 1912 binnen 14 dagen meer over wat zich bij de ramp met de Titanic afspeelde dan we na een jaar weten van de omstandigheden waaronder bijna 3.000 mensen op klaarlichte dag in hartje Manhattan de dood vonden.
Zo verzuchtte The New York Times op 11 september 2002. Sindsdien is er weinig veranderd.
De gebeurtenissen van 11 september, die onze wereldgeschiedenis bepaalden, zijn nog steeds met raadselen omgeven. Niet alleen doen de meest bizarre theorieën de ronde over wat er zich die dag afspeelde; nog merkwaardiger zijn de geverifieerde feiten, de uitspraken van regeringsfunctionarissen, de gegevens uit officiële rapporten...
Dit alles vertelt een heel eigen verhaal, een verhaal dat voor zichzelf spreekt.
Een verhaal dat je moet lezen om het te kunnen geloven, dag in dag uit.

Daarom presenteren wij deze kalender – zodat u een jaar lang …