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URUK Net 28 June, 2009

Last updated: Sunday, July 5, 2009 8:53

CIA Crucified Captive In Abu Ghraib Prison
By Sherwood Ross
The Central Intelligence Agency crucified a prisoner in Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad, according to a report published in The New Yorker magazine. “A forensic examiner found that he (the prisoner) had essentially been crucified; he died from asphyxiation after having been hung by his arms, in a hood, and suffering broken ribs,” the magazine’s Jane Mayer writes in the magazine’s June 22nd issue. “Military pathologists classified the case a homicide.” The date of the murder was not given. “No criminal charges have ever been brought against any C.I.A. officer involved in the torture program, despite the fact that at least three prisoners interrogated by agency personnel died as a result of mistreatment,” Mayer notes…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55547

A Street in Baghdad…
Layla Anwar, An Arab Woman Blues
…Those of you out there who are familiar with Baghdad’s streets and neighborhoods, and who are of my generation, this is not quite applicable to those born during the sanction years or just a little before, because they would have no recollection whatsoever…and of course this is not applicable to those who never visited Baghdad, or only landed there in 2003 or later… Those who knew Baghdad of before, will attest to the excellent urban planning, the mapping of the city, the architecture of the houses, the buildings…actually Baghdad was known to have one the best school of Architecture and Urban Planning in the Middle East. Some even called this city, the Paris of the Middle East. I recall my daily walks by the river’s bank…usually in the late afternoon. Stretches of walking paths along the river, adorned with red flowers, trees…am talking of the 80's here. The streets were clean, well kept, but most importantly safe…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55540

Israeli soldiers poisoned well in West Bank village, say local officials
Ma’an News
Israeli soldiers poured dirt, stones and toxic chemicals in the only well in the hamlet of Khirbat Makehl near the village of Ya’bad in the northern West Bank overnight on Saturday, according to Palestinians in the community. The village’s official representative, Walid Hamdan, said soldiers riding in three military jeeps entered the community overnight and sabotaged the well. The chemicals caused the water to change color and taste, he said. The 80 cubic-meter well is the only source of water for the village of 70 to 80 families, Hamdan said..

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55548

US states’ budget crisis sets stage for new attack on the working class
By Tom Eley
By Tuesday, many US state governments must pass budgets for the coming fiscal year. The state capitals are now the scene of bitter feuding among governors and legislators over how the deficits will be met. But there is unanimity that the working class must foot the bill. Forty-six states confront significant deficits, and their collective shortfall for 2010 stands at more than $130 billion. This comes after a $104 billion deficit in 2009, for a two-year total of $234 billion in red ink—$91 billion more than President Barack Obama’s stimulus package allocated to all municipalities and the 50 states for the next two years…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55537

Thousands of Pakistanis hold anti-US rally
‘Go America Go’ rally demands end to US interference
Regional Times
A mammoth ‘Go America Go’ rally organized here on Sunday by Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) Karachi chapter lambasted the USA for interference into Pakistani affairs and asked local rulers to shun toeing the US agenda and keep supreme the interests of Pakistani nation and country. In a resolution, passed at the end of the Go America Go rally, the participants demanded immediate end to the US interference in the internal affairs of Pakistan. They said the root cause of all the problems facing Pakistan is this unwanted US meddling. The US has even violated the sanctity of territories of Pakistan and killed thousands of innocent men, women and children in drone and missile attacks, but the rulers instead of raising voice against this hegemony are playing role of silent spectator…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55551

An Iraqi Charade…
Layla Anwar, An Arab Woman Blues
It’s well past midnight here and I am very tired…but I feel this urgency to write this post as I think it is very important. At first I was torn between writing this post on the Iraqi charade that is due to take place on the 30th of June 09, torn between that and that of writing an equally important post on the current Iranian charade… But I have learned to get my priorities right and since both are very much interlinked, I will start with the most important one – Iraq. There are HUGE misconceptions surrounding U.S troop withdrawal on the 30th of June…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55545

FREE AHMAD SA’ADAT AND ALL PALESTINIAN PRISONERS!
A Letter to Ban Ki-Moon
The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat
We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, call upon you to immediately take action in defense of the lives, health and rights of the over 11,000 Palestinian political prisoners held inside Israeli occupation jails. This number includes numerous elected members of Palestinian Legislative Council, among them Ahmad Sa’adat, General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine; Marwan al-Barghouthi, Fateh leader; Abdel-Aziz Dweik, Hamas leader and President of the Council, just freed after three years in prison, and dozens of other elected political leaders, in addition to thousands of other Palestinian activists, union members, community organizers, fathers, mothers, sons and daughters…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55549

Video: Calm ends in Iran; protesters gather again in streets
AP
Several thousand protesters — some chanting “Where is my vote?” — clashed with riot police in Tehran on Sunday as Iran detained local employees of the British Embassy, escalating the regime’s standoff with the West and earning it a stinging rebuke from the European Union. Witnesses said riot police used tear gas and clubs to break up a crowd of up to 3,000 protesters who had gathered near north Tehran’s Ghoba Mosque in the country’s first major post-election unrest in four days…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55544

Selling Iran: Ahmadinejad, Privatization and a Bus Driver Who Said No
by Billy Wharton
A creeping assumption lies just beneath the surface of arguments concerning the disputed election in Iran. Incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is cast as an anti-US populist crusader resisting the materialistic advances of the West. His opponent, Mir-Hossein Mousavi, as his foil — a Western-backed liberal intent on implementing free-market policies. Violent street battles have been presented as a re-enforcement of the Western disposition to see the two idealized positions as the limit of what is politically imaginable. Such arguments conveniently avoid a third force — the people of Iran, whose street politics threaten to move well beyond the confines of the electoral campaigns. Questions remain. Is Ahmadinejad really a populist — the only force preventing a wave of pro-market policies in Iran? Does Mousavi’s campaign mark the limits of the reform movement? Since his election in 2005, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, under the guidance of the Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, has overseen a regime dedicated to the privatization of state-controlled industries…

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East Africa: Is Obama Following in the Disliked Footsteps of Bush in East Africa?
Africom to Continue Under Obama
With the Obama administration set to oversee significant increases in US security assistance programmes for African countries, Daniel Volman examines the US government’s plans for its military operations on the African continent over the coming financial year. Stressing that the US president is essentially continuing the policies outlined under his predecessor George W. Bush, the author considers the proposed funding increases for initiatives like the Foreign Military Financing programme and the International Military Education and Training (IMET) programme. Pointing out that the administration is yet to offer any public explanation of its policy, Volman concludes that it would be a mistake to assume that there will be no US military action if the situation in Somalia deteriorates…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55554

Video: Israeli incursion in Faraheen
International Solidarity Movement
Israeli forces have entered the village of Faraheen this morning and are still currently there using bulldozers to destroy farmland. According to local villagers there are now 2 graders, 4 tanks, 2 tanks armored with canons, 2 tractors and 4 bulldozers on the farmland. The army has also ignited a fire…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55550

Deal on Gaza Makes Headway
Analysis by Jerrold Kessel and Pierre Klochendler
Under a complex twin-pronged initiative from the U.S. and Egypt, Israel’s hard- line government is moving towards backtracking on two major planks of its policy in the occupied territories – resisting demands for a blanket freeze on all settlement building in the West Bank, and acquiescing in the end of its tight siege of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. As a result, several pieces in an elaborate diplomatic puzzle that seeks to resolve both a long stand-off in Israeli-Palestinian relations and a three-year showdown in Palestinian-Palestinian relations since Hamas won the Palestinian elections, are beginning to fall into place…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55541

Video: Gaza war victims testify before UN panel
Aljaeera.net
Though it is a story he has told several times before, Wael Samouni does not mind retelling what he says Israeli soldiers did to his family during the Gaza war. To highlight his story, Samouni is prepared to present photos of the 27 members of his family who were killed in the war to a UN hearing set up to investigate allegations of human rights violations during the conflict…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55542

The scramble for Iraq’s ‘sweet oil’
By Nicole Johnston, Al Jazeera correspondent
With proven oil reserves of around 112 billion barrels and up to another 150 billion barrels of probable reserves, Iraq is the greatest untapped prize for international oil companies. To put that in context, if Iraq does turn out to have around 300 billion barrels of oil, it will rival the world’s biggest producer Saudi Arabia – which has around 160 billion barrels of proven reserves. So it is little wonder that giant international oil companies are lining up to get back into Iraq after the industry was nationalised in the 1970s and the oil majors were kicked out. On June 30 major companies – including Exxon, Shell, BP and Total – will gather at Iraq’s oil ministry in Baghdad for a two-day meeting to take part in the first bidding round for oil service contracts…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55553

The Obama Wars: Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Chic
Ashley Sanders
As we all know by now, both the House and the Senate have passed a $106 billion bill to fund the escalation of the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, and, while they were at it, the IMF and Mexico’s war on drugs. But since you already know that, let’s talk about what we don’t know, or at least what we claim we didn’t. For example, that Obama is pro-war. Because progressives everywhere have their hands over their mouth in shock. We talk of betrayal and defection. Joshua Frank summed up the progressive problem pithily: “These are Obama’s wars now.” The only real problem with this statement is that they have always been Obama’s wars: His opposition to the Iraq war, despite the flowers trailing from it and the flowers we wove onto those, was merely tactical; in his support for the ‘good war’ in Afghanistan he didn’t even bother with flowers — it was so much ‘bring it on.’ As for the broader picture, Obama’s so-called noble rhetoric is of the ‘kinder, gentler imperialism’ strain; nowhere does he fundamentally question the right of the United States to rule the world economy, practice abject self-interestedness, and maintain a global military presence. His “peace” rhetoric is tinkering rhetoric, oiled with calls for diplomacy and schlocky hope-hope-hurrah expressly employed to make us feel good about doing what we have always done…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55536

Obama’s Ludicrous Declaration on Torture Day
James Bovard
President Obama issued his statement on the United Nations International Day in Support of Torture Victims. I wonder if Obama’s ghostwriter was wearing hip boots when this statement was put together. The opening of his statement could have been recycled from the George W. Bush years: “Torture is contrary to the founding documents of our country, and the fundamental values of our people.”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55538

Will Iran Election Turmoil Affect Hezbollah?
By Franklin Lamb
…Assuming that there is to be a serious ongoing power struggle between an Ahmaddinejad/Khameni group and a Mousavi/Rafsanjani faction, and one prevails over the other, rather than the more likely dialogue, some reshuffling of portfolios, and surface accommodation and slow transformation, many Hezbollah officials doubt it will affect the Party or its agenda partly because support for such groups as Hezbollah and Hamas is ingrained in Iran’s ideology…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55539

[Video Free Gaza] Determined to go, 27th June 2009
Free Gaza Movement
Boats still in Cyprus, determined to sail to Gaza.

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55534

More Palestinian lands annexed for settlement construction
Saed Bannoura – IMEMC
The Al Quds newspaper reported that the Lands Registration Department at the Maaleh Adumin settlement in East Jerusalem published advertisements in Israeli papers declaring intentions to annex nearly 139.000 Dunams claimed to be ‘unregistered’. The announcement stated that the officials at the so-called State Lands Department submitted a request register the 139.000 Dunams in the Dead Sea area under ‘abandoned lands’ registry in preparation to assume control over them and use them for settlement construction…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55546

THE BEEB INVESTIGATES BAGRAM
“Even Guantánamo Bay is better than this”
By William Fisher
An investigation by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has revealed that former detainees at the U.S. Bagram airbase in Afghanistan were beaten, deprived of sleep, and threatened with dogs. The BBC’s conclusions are based on interviews with 27 former detainees who were held at Bagram between 2002 and 2006. None of these men were ever charged with a crime. Hundreds of detainees are still being held in U.S. custody at the Afghan prison without charge or trial…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55531

Iran detains British embassy staff
Aljaeera.net
Iranian authorities have detained eight employees of the British embassy in Tehran, accusing them of involvement in post-election unrest in the Islamic Republic, the semi-official Fars news agency has reported. “Eight local employees at the British embassy who had a considerable role in recent unrest were taken into custody,” Fars said on Sunday, without giving a source. “This group played an active role in provoking recent unrest.”..

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=55535

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