September 02, 2011
Some Things To Read And Open Thread
- All 251,287 U.S. cables obtained by Wikileaks are now available at its website. New finds get published at WL Central and a good search engine for the cables, though not yet current, is available at CableSearch.org
- The CIA believes that the situation in Afghanistan is in a stalemate.
- Movies and documentaries by Afghans about Afghanistan: The Fruit of Our Labor – Afghan Perspectives in Film (scroll down)
- The Washington Post has a lengthy piece about the CIA's paramilitary killer force, the Counterterrorism Center. With such an unaccountable organization not bound by law one thing is always assured. It will end in a huge failure and a widely damaging scandal (see: Pigs, Bay of).
- UN Report on the Flotilla Incident (pdf)
Five of those killed had bullet wounds indicating they had been shot from behind: Cengiz Akyüz, Çetin Topçuoğlu, Necdet Yıldırım, Furkan Doğan and İbrahim Bilgen. This last group included three with bullet wounds to the back of the head: Cengiz Akyüz, Çetin Topçuoğlu and Furkan Doğan. İbrahim Bilgen was killed by a shot to the right temple.
Civil-military relations under Gates were more dysfunctional than any time since the early days of the Civil War. Though it may seem hyperbolic to some, the reality is that the accumulated transgressions of civil-military norms by senior military leaders far outstrip the misconduct of Gen. Douglas MacArthur during the Korean War.
During the Gates years, senior military leaders intervened in domestic politics; actively lobbied for policy preferences; waged sophisticated information operations against the American public; blocked the development of alternative options requested by the president and sought to punish those in uniform who were willing to respond to presidential requests; and created command environments in which contempt for civilian leaders was widespread. And Gates was either absent or an accomplice in most of these transgressions.
Posted by b on September 2, 2011 at 11:57 AM | Permalink
On the subject of Wikileaks, there's currently a brief Libya background article by William Blum at CounterPunch.
What makes it unusually interesting are the links in the last par to a longer article in a similar vein by I Hosein-sadeh and to a 2007 WikiLeaks cable with the title GROWTH OF RESOURCE NATIONALISM IN LIBYA - which reads like the precursor to what is taking place right now in Libya.
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 2, 2011 12:36:09 PM | 1
Although it's yet to dawn on Bibi & Peres, the attack on the Mavi Marmara will prove to be an important nail in the coffin of the Parasite State and Zion's most unfunny joke - the Piece Process.
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 2, 2011 12:53:40 PM | 2
Look at this from the tin-hat angle:
David Leigh/Guardian is working in the interest of CIA/MI6 and looking not to collaborate with WikiLeaks, but to ensnare him for prosecution.
Clue: DL Insisting on seeing the actual files
Clue: DL Pressing for the GPG passphrase
Clue: DL Publishing the ENTIRE proceeding and passphrase in a book
Dumbshit-Borg is either a long-time mole or was "turned"
Clue: D-B had full access to all unredacted material
Clue: D-B acrimoniously split with Assange/WikiLeaks over ego-boundary shit and speculative "risk" issues
Clue: D-B in his schism is part of the probable exposure of these cables - portrayed as an "accident", while he was unilaterally and admittedly sabotaging WikiLeaks
Clue: D-B can now say "I told you so" over this exposure of sources - pointing to this as evidence, rather than a situation he perpetrated
The US Army Counterintelligence Agency said in 2008 that WikiLeaks was"a potential force protection, counterintelligence, OPSEC, and INFOSEC threat to the US Army" and PLANNED OPERATIONS to neutralise/discredit WikiLeaks:
"The identification, exposure, or termination of employment of or legal actions against current or former insiders, leakers, or whistleblowers could damage or destroy this center of gravity and deter others from using Wikileaks.org to make such information public."
Question: Do you think that the Agency makes these declarations in vain, for their entertainment value?
Question: Do you think they are alone, and that there are not equivalent planned and current operations by the CIA, etc.?
Question: Are the combined actions of DL and D-B implausible as the intended outcome of a counter-WikiLeaks strategy, set in motion by one or more intelligence agencies, including US Army Counterintelligence?
Think about it. Once they set this down IN PRINT, internally, and don't have a "positive" outcome? Sombody goes through the ringer.
This is likely all a setup. One with a scenario that is similar to the one indicated here, if not completely identical. It is one where where David Leigh and Dumbshit-Borg are either pathetic and self-serving dupes, or sickening quislings.
Either way, this is a noose fabricated of intentional actions with plausible deniability. Identify WikiLeaks with Assange's personality, and attack the personality. Attack the credibility of WikiLeaks methodology while distracting from their effectiveness and success in exposing filth, corruption and illegal government action.
I know the will get Assange one way or another. They just created the circumstance to have him charged in Australia - their one sure bet. But watch out, DL and D-B.
When your mysterious, untimely deaths occur, I will look at it as confirmation of these speculations.
And proudly burnish my tin-hat...
Posted by: Jeremiah | Sep 2, 2011 8:38:41 PM | 5
david leigh has just proven what i have long said & believe - journalists are vermin
Posted by: remembereringgiap | Sep 2, 2011 8:53:35 PM | 6
Re: Jeremiah at #5.
I know the will get Assange one way or another. They just created the circumstance to have him charged in Australia - their one sure bet.
This is very likely. If there's one thing Oz politicians do well, it's letting Yankees walk all over them and then licking their boots in gratitude. It's just one of the more obvious pitfalls of having a very high (circa $11,000 in Oz) 'threshold of disclosure' for political donations. The Australian Howard (Liberal) govt shamelessly abandoned Oz citizens, David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib (despite admitting that neither had broken any Australian laws), to years of torture at the hands US 'interrogators' and refused to speak out against Hicks' trial by a so-called Military Tribunal.
The present (Labor) govt has 'frozen' the royalties on Hicks' Guantanamo memoirs - so much for political diversity...
The acquiescence of the current govt regarding Assange was broadcast on the TV news a day or so ago. Assange, never lost for words, responded to the govt position by suggesting that AG McClelland "cancel his own passport and deport himself."
Speaking of licking Yankee boots, there's a better than excellent 2007 analysis of what is going wrong with 'democracy' in the West on Asia Times website. It's called Germany, the Re-engineered Ally by Axel Brot, the pseudonym of a German defense analyst and former intel officer.
It's very long (110k of text) and very detailed. Although it is aimed at the political black hole in Germany, most of its contents will resonate loudly with citizens of any concerned resident of a "Western Democracy."
Part 1 - Readiness for endless war
Part 2 - Everything is broken
Part 3 - Hail to the Chief, or else
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 3, 2011 1:25:22 AM | 8
‘Top Secret America’: A look at the military’s Joint Special Operations Command
In Iraq and Afghanistan, lethal action against al-Qaeda was granted without additional approval. In the other countries — among them Algeria, Iran, Malaysia, Mali, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia and Syria — JSOC forces needed the tacit approval from the country involved or at least a sign-off from higher up on the American chain of command.
JSOC’s success in targeting the right homes, businesses and individuals was only ever about 50 percent, according to two senior commanders. They considered this rate a good one.
Mexico is at the top of its wish list. So far the Mexican government, whose constitution limits contact with the U.S. military, is relying on the other federal agencies — the CIA, the Department of Homeland Security, the Drug Enforcement Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement — for intelligence collection and other help.
But JSOC’s National Capital task force is not just sitting idly by, waiting to be useful to its southern neighbors. It is creating targeting packages for U.S. domestic agencies that have sought its help, including the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, the second-largest federal law enforcement agency and the latest to make a big play for a larger U.S. counterterrorism role.
Posted by: b | Sep 3, 2011 2:19:40 AM | 9
No good links again, I'm afraid, but I have questions.
Does anyone know what reporting restrictions there are in Libya right now? No reports I can find out of Zlitan, Az Zawiyah.
Is Tripoli now safe in the evening?
Are all areas accessible to journalists?
Are rebel checkpoints gone now?
Can journalist units travel freely inside Tripoli and outside?
Sorry, can only offer some music
Posted by: ahji | Sep 3, 2011 5:40:36 AM | 12
The march to turn the U.S. into a Third World Toxic Wasteland continues. Now we see the purpose of William Daley, as if we didn't already know.
Obama Asks EPA to Withdraw Ozone Rules
President Barack Obama quashed proposed rules on ozone from the Environmental Protection Agency, agreeing with Republicans and industry to withdraw the costliest regulation being considered by the administration.
Obama said he is seeking to reduce regulatory burdens as the economy recovers, and said the EPA would weigh tighter standards on ozone, which causes smog, in two years.
“Ultimately, I did not support asking state and local governments to begin implementing a new standard that will soon be reconsidered,” Obama said today in a statement.
The EPA’s proposed regulations for ground-level ozone would have revised rules issued during President George W. Bush’s administration in 2008. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has said those rules wouldn’t stand up to legal scrutiny. The EPA’s proposal would have cost $19 billion to $90 billion, according to the White House.
The EPA will revisit the ozone standard in 2013 as required by law, Jackson said today in a statement. Business groups, which joined Republicans to protest that environmental and other U.S. rules under consideration would further weaken the economy, applauded Obama’s decision, as health and environmental groups derided it as capitulating to business.
“The Obama administration is caving to big polluters at the expense of protecting the air we breathe,” Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, an environmental group, said today in an e-mailed statement. “This is a huge win for corporate polluters and a huge loss for public health.”
Business group representatives had met Aug. 16 with White House Chief of Staff William Daley to push their case for scrapping the ozone changes. They said the costs would be much greater than the administration estimated.
“The signal today was that message is being heard” by the White House, Jack Gerard, president of the American Petroleum Institute in Washington, which represents companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp., said in an interview. “These are the kinds of signals that the economy and business needs to begin pulling money off the sidelines and start investing.”
This comes at a time when Ozone is increasing exponentially.....and it's killing the trees and affecting crop yields. This blog covers that catastrophe adequately. Notice Gail's dismissed pleas to all the major scientists. They're not funded to study such nuisances, so they marginalize it and dismiss it.
Posted by: Morocco Bama | Sep 3, 2011 9:52:00 AM | 14
MB @ 14: Obama continues to show himself for the corporate hack he really is. I can hardly wait for the jobs speech. The " good cop, bad cop" formula is working fine.
Posted by: ben | Sep 3, 2011 10:08:00 PM | 16
Reaction to a part of the video posted by vbo, linked below.
(Not discussing its general message. The devil is in the details.)
The so-called ‘staged affair’ of men on camels and horseback with swords etc. attacking the demonstrating crowds in Egypt - spectacular video that was broadcast all over the world - was not staged, it was real, if provoked by particular circumstances.
It may have demonstrated that Egypt was in a state of chaos, as the vid says. True, in a way.
During the ‘revolution‘ tourists left or stayed away.
Camel owners had no cash to buy feed for their animals and more than half died. In agony, bleating and screaming and then silent, with their owners weeping, both for the animals and their livelihood. Horses employed in the tourist trade faced the same.
There were valiant efforts to gather monies to help, by animal associations, one American woman went all out, but they were not successful enough (attention was elsewhere), it seemed like nothing could be done.
Then the Mubarak goons stepped in and offered payment for a sortie to the capital and a big show.
But the animal owners had no choice at all, they were paid cash upfront (huge amounts) saved a lot of animals, and risked their own lives, for the animals, their family and their business.
Posted by: Noirette | Sep 4, 2011 11:01:04 AM | 17
For its anniversary: C.J. Chivers reportage on The School
On the first day of school in 2004, a Chechen terrorist group struck the Russian town of Beslan. Targeting children, they took more than eleven hundred hostages. The attack represented a horrifying innovation in human brutality. Here, an extraordinary accounting of the experience of terror in the age of terrorism.
Posted by: b | Sep 4, 2011 12:29:43 PM | 18
now that the german budenswehr's report on peak oil has been translated into english by the bundeswehr, and made public, would you like to discuss the report, b?
Posted by: lead.and.lag | Sep 5, 2011 10:29:57 AM | 19
@lead.and.lag - any link?
Posted by: b | Sep 5, 2011 1:13:18 PM | 20
Israel's top-brass fears a winter of radical Islam, an increase in the chance of a multi-front war, and notes Hamas using a new advanced rocket:
The Israelis are holding massive demonstrations against the cost of living in their country and the Palestinians will soon be at the UN demanding statehood.
How better to head off these problems for the Zionist oligarchs than a nice multi-front war! Distract the citizens, bomb the crap out of the Palestinians and probably get more money from the U.S.
Posted by: Cynthia | Sep 5, 2011 8:14:45 PM | 22
Debt, Slavery and our Idea of Freedom (Part 1) by David Graeber, Jamie Stern-Weiner
... there is an irony in thinking of a promise made by a state to pay a debt as something absolutely sacred. After all, a debt is just a promise, and politicians make all sorts of different promises. They break most of them. So why are these promises the only ones that they can’t break? It is considered completely normal for someone like Nick Clegg to say, ‘well of course we promised not to raise school fees. But that’s unrealistic.’ ‘Unrealistic’ here means ‘obviously there’s no possibility of breaking my promises to bankers, even those linked to banks we bailed out and in some cases effectively own’. It’s striking that no-one ever points that out. Why is a promise made by a politician to the people who elected him considered made to be broken – it isn’t “sacred” in any way – whereas a promise the same politician makes to a financier is considered the “honour of our nation”? Why isn’t the “honour of our nation” in any way entailed in keeping our promises to people to provide healthcare and education? And why does everyone just seem to accept that, that this is just “reality”? And why do you think that is?
Because the latter promises are not typically framed in the language of ‘debt’. The language of debt is not an economic one; it’s a language of morality. It has been used for thousands of years by people in situations of vast inequalities of power. If you have a situation of complete inequality, particularly violent inequality – if you’ve conquered someone, or if you’re a mafioso extracting protection money – then framing the relationship in terms of debt makes it seem as though the extractors are magnanimous and the victims are to blame. “Well, you owe me, but I’ll be a nice guy and let you off the hook this month…” Before long the victims come to seem almost generically morally at fault by the very terms of their existence. And that logic sticks in people’s minds – it’s incredibly effective. Not universally effective, because it’s also true that the vast majority of revolts, insurrections, populist conspiracies and rebellions in world history have been about debts. When it backfires, it blows up in a big way. But nonetheless, that’s what people almost invariably do when they’re imposing a situation of complete inequality.
The irony of course is that when dealing with each other, rich and powerful people know that debts aren’t “sacred”, and they rearrange things all the time. They are often incredibly forgiving and generous when dealing with each other. The idea of the sacredness of debt is chiefly applied when we are talking about different sorts of people. Just as rich people will come to the aid of other rich people, so poor people also will bail each other out – they’ll make ‘loans’ that are really gifts, and so on. But when you’re dealing with debts owed by people without power to people with power, suddenly the debt becomes sacred and you can’t even question it....(more)
Posted by: Uncle $cam | Sep 5, 2011 11:55:00 PM | 23
@lead.and.lag - I read parts of the reports and the conclusion. IMHO nothing new or even interesting in there. Peak oil is a given. We are preparing for the consequences.
Posted by: b | Sep 6, 2011 7:16:49 AM | 24
part of our "preparation" is bombing country after country that has oil or oil transporation routes.
do you agree?
from the document's conclusion, page 91...
"Gaining an illustrative picture of a subject is very much a matter of habit. When
considering the consequences of peak oil, no everyday experiences and only few historical
parallels are at hand. It is therefore difficult to imagine how significant the effects of being
gradually deprived of one of our civilisation’s most important energy sources will be.
Psychological barriers cause indisputable facts to be blanked out and lead to almost
instinctively refusing to look into this difficult subject in detail.
"Peak oil, however, is unavoidable. This study shows the existence of a very serious risk
that a global transformation of economic and social structures, triggered by a long-term
shortage of important raw materials, will not take place without frictions regarding
security policy. The disintegration of complex economic systems and their interdependent
infrastructures has immediate and in some cases profound effects on many areas of life,
particularly in industrialised countries."
Posted by: lead.and.lag | Sep 6, 2011 7:52:53 AM | 25
of course, when the US is the muscle and israel is the brains behind this operation, it all becomes more understandable, doesnt it?
...especially when we white people are confronted with massive threats from the yellow peril, which might not bow down so readily to ashkenazi supremacism.
Posted by: lead.and.lag | Sep 6, 2011 8:04:04 AM | 26
It seems like the Emir of Qatar was injured in an assassination attempt today.
Hmmm - Gaddhafi stretching his legs?
Posted by: b | Sep 7, 2011 2:42:59 PM | 27
An update on that site says it's a baseless rumour and an example of what being on the other wrong side of media (AJA) means.
Posted by: ThePaper | Sep 7, 2011 3:05:04 PM | 28