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URUK Net 8 October, 2009

Last updated: Friday, October 9, 2009 12:45

Vile Bodies: Reagan Revenants Return to Enforce Empire’s Agenda
Chris Floyd
October 8, 2009 – … If Obama and crew actually had an agenda – as the hyper-militarist Dick Cheney had, when he and his front-man seized power in 2000 – then they could have pushed through any number of genuine, substantive reforms, with strong public support. But it should be clear to anyone by now that Obama, like Clinton before him, has no real idea of what he wants to do in government, or what he wants government to do: he just wants to enjoy the props and perks of power for awhile, to play the role of president, like Michael Douglas or Martin Sheen in a Aaron Sorkin fantasy, then bask in celebrityhood the rest of his days. The only real agenda of the Obama Administration is keeping Democrats in office, as Joe Biden revealed the other day, and winning a second term for the Prez. And then? Big book contracts, lucrative speaking engagements, corporate directorships, some charity PR….whatever. The main thing is not to upset the golden applecart of the Empire and its Establishment. Thus the appearance of “weakness” consistently shown by the Administration is not due (or not solely due) to its own pusillanimousness; rather it comes from the inherent disconnect between the vague rhetoric of reform that it was forced to adopt to win popular support, and its real business: servicing the most powerful elements of a militarized, oligarchic state…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58690

Code Pink rethinks Afghan withdrawal
Scott Horton
October 8, 2009 – … Imagine my shock at seeing this story in the Christian Science Monitor describing the new, post-trip-to-Afghanistan-position of Code Pink’s co-founder and most famous leader, Medea Benjamin. “’We would leave with the same parameters of an exit strategy but we might perhaps be more flexible about a timeline,’ says Benjamin. ‘That’s where we have opened ourselves, being here, to some other possibilities. We have been feeling a sense of fear of the people of the return of the Taliban. So many people are saying that, ‘If the U.S. troops left the country, would collapse. We’d go into civil war.’ A palpable sense of fear that is making us start to reconsider that.’”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58688

Spending Bill Includes Provision to Block Release of Abuse Photos
Jason Leopold
October 8, 2009 – Congressional lawmakers moved a step closer Wednesday toward banning the Department of Defense from releasing photographs depicting US Soldiers abusing detainees held in prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan. Conferees on the Senate and House Appropriations Committees released a Homeland Security spending bill summary, which includes a provision that would allow President Obama to authorize “the Secretary of Defense to bar the release of detainee photos,” essentially exempting the images from Freedom of Information Act requests…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58696

Informed sources: Abbas advised not to return to Ramallah
Palestinian Information Center
October 8, 2009 – Informed Palestinian sources revealed on condition of anonymity that Mahmoud Abbas was advised by some of his aides to delay this return to Ramallah in the West Bank until the popular anger and the scandal he caused by his position regarding Goldstone’s report subside. According to Quds Press, the sources said that political and security advisors to Abbas asked him not to return to Ramallah and continue with his regional and European trip through setting a long program of visits until the popular fury is absorbed…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58700

President Abbas to the Junkyard of the History
Kawther Salam
October 8, 2009 – The usurper “President” Mahmoud Abbas, whose presidential term is over since January 2009, is actively involved in urging the UN to postpone their vote on the report of Richard Goldstone, which President Abbasaccuses Israel of committing war crimes against Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip. Yesterday, Yasser Abed Rabbo, secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization leadership said: “it was a mistake to suspend action on the UN report on Israeli war crimes in Gaza; we have the courage to admit that there was a mistake, but the mistake can be repaired”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58706

Afghans on the road to liberation
By Carsten Kofoed, Free Afghanistan Blog of Denmark
On October 7, eight years have passed since the USA attacked Afghanistan. The “War on terror” had begun. Osama bin Laden and Afghanistan, with its strategic location in oil and gas rich Central Asia and with borders with both Iran and China, had been proclaimed the perpetrators of September 11. The USA shouted for “retaliation”, but Afghanistan’s Taliban government had neither attacked the USA nor supported others in doing so. Therefore, the US aggression against Afghanistan is an illegal war of aggression violating the UN Charter. Nor has the UN Security Council endorsed it. Afghanistan was and is not a center of terrorism. The White House is….

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58707

“Anticipate deployments to Iraq as far off as 2012"
The Common Ills
October 8, 2009 – Testifying at a congressional hearing last week, the commander of U.S. forces in Iraq said that the withdrawal was going “a bit faster than we originally planned.” But Gen. Ray Odierno declined to say that victory was near. After all, up to 50,000 U.S. service members are expected to remain in Iraq until the end of 2011. And some Utah units have been told to anticipate deployments to Iraq as far off as 2012. The above is from Matthew D. LaPlante’s “As thousands leave Iraq, Utah air units moving in: Iraqi assets limited, so U.S. helicopter units likely to see action in Iraq for years to come” (Salt Lake Tribune). Hmmm. “And some Utah units have been told to anticipate deployments to Iraq as far off as 2012"? Some Utah units are being told that the may be doing tours of duty in Iraq beginning in 2012? B-b-b-but the illegal war is ending, right?…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58704

After Goldstone, Hamas faces fateful choice
Ali Abunimah
October 8, 2009 – The uproar over the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) collaboration with Israel to bury the Goldstone report, calling for trials of Israeli leaders for war crimes in Gaza, is a political earthquake. The whole political order in place since the 1993 Oslo accords were signed is crumbling. As the initial tremors begin to fade, the same old political structures may appear still to be in place, but they are hollowed out. This unprecedented crisis threatens to topple the US-backed PA leader Mahmoud Abbas, but it also leaves Hamas, the main Palestinian resistance faction, struggling with fateful choices…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58703

Afghanistan: Taliban Attacks on NATO Convoys Increase
By TIM MCGIRK
October 8, 2009 – To supply nearly 100,000 troops in Afghanistan, the U.S. and its Western allies rely on road convoys with dozens of trucks to carry in everything from jet fuel to frozen pizza. But increasingly these convoys are coming under savage attack by the Taliban. And experts say that if the ambushes get worse, it could impair NATO’s efforts to keep a supply lifeline running to its troops in forts and camps scattered across the mountainous country…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58701

Iran activist sentenced to death for election protests
Robert Tait
October 8, 2009 – An Iranian man has been sentenced to death on charges of organising mass protests against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s re-election as president, according to reformist websites. Mohammad-Reza Ali-Zamani, 37, is the first person understood to be facing execution over the unrest. Ali-Zamani had confessed to plotting against Iran’s Islamic system and belonging to the previously little-known Iran Monarchy Committee (IMC), which the regime regards as a terrorist group. Supporters say he was forced into his confession, which was made at a public trial of prominent political activists in August…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58698

A convicted torturer appointed as commander of Basij (Iran’s paramilitary force)
Neo-resistance
October 8, 2009 – …In 2000 Naghdi and a group of his “plain clothes” associates formed a group (Band-e Kabir, Great Gang) to “prevent social corruption” (read civic liberties). Breaking the law and accused of torture and condemned by court to 3 months of jail—a term he never served. Naghdi is alleged to have participated (together with Mohseni Ejei—Ahmadinejad’s minister of Intelligence) in suspicious death of the judge who handled the Mayor’s case (suffered cardiac arrest after Air-injection!)…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58709

Textbook injustice in Gaza
Mohammed Omer
October 8, 2009 – As the 456,000 schoolchildren in the Gaza Strip start their academic year, they face chronic shortages of everything from paper, textbooks and ink cartridges to school uniforms, school bags and computers, the result of the Israeli blockade. At the same time, severely overcrowded classrooms are having to accommodate students whose schools were destroyed or damaged in the last siege, early this year. The only supplies on the market are smuggled in through tunnels from Egypt. Yet even when materials are available, many cannot afford them: 80 per cent of Gaza’s 1.5 million people live below the poverty line. The ministry of education has instructed teachers not to expect pupils to have “too many textbooks”, but Ahmed Abdelhameed, who has eight school-age children, says that “teachers still ask for the full quota of school supplies, as if we were living in Sweden”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58694

About anti-Semitism
Nahida IZZAT
October 8, 2009 – Talking about anti-Semitism, and the accusation of anti-Semitism, is to many people a very sensitive issue, nevertheless, I feel the need to highlight some points: As a Palestinian and as a Muslim, with first hand experience of racism, whether here in UK or in occupied Palestine, I do understand what it means to be subjugated to it; thus, I deeply empathise with those who suffer from the menace of racism and discrimination, those who are abused verbally, physically, emotionally, or otherwise for no other reason than the fact that they are “different”. And I also do understand the awful feeling and dreadful sensation of being subjugated to subtle racist looks or remarks, only felt by you and not the people around you. However, I do see a huge difference between a racist remark directed at a person or a group for their beliefs, race, or whatever that which makes them different, and between a snarl, a sneer or sarcasm against an occupying criminal entity called “israel” and its people for their CRIMES…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58693

Official: US will not support action on Goldstone report at UNSC
Ma’an News
October 8, 2009 – Washington will not support any potential action by the UN Security Council on the Goldstone report on war crimes in Gaza, Former US Permanent Representative to the United Nations Alejandro Wolff has declared. Wolff said the US believes that the appropriate platform to discuss the report is the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. The announcement came after a closed-door meeting Wednesday, where the UN Security Council decided to push up their next meeting from 20 to 14 October so a discussion on the Goldstone report can be held, UN officials said…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58692

US Troops Disillusioned With Afghan War
IslamOnline.net
October 8, 2009 – Losing their lives in a futile war that has no obvious purpose, US troops in Afghanistan are growing depressed and deeply disillusioned with the eight-year conflict. “The many soldiers who come to see us have a sense of futility and anger about being here,” Captain Jeff Masengale, of the 10th Mountain Division’s 2-87 Infantry Battalion, told The Times on Thursday, October 8. “They are really in a state of depression and despair and just want to get back to their families.”..

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58691

Obama rules out troop drawdown in Afghanistan
Patrick Martin
8 October 2009 – President Barack Obama will not consider any reduction in the US military commitment in Afghanistan, White House and congressional officials declared after a three-hour meeting at the White House Tuesday between Obama and more than 30 congressmen and senators, both Republicans and Democrats. The meeting included proponents of an escalation of the ground war in Afghanistan, such as Senator John McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential candidate, and Democratic congressman Ike Skelton, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. Also attending were those like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator John Kerry who have been more skeptical about the prospects for a military.. victory.

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58687

PA’s Goldstone block linked to tape
Aljazeera.net
October 8, 2009 – A videotape is behind the decision by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to delay the vote on a UN report accusing Israel of war crimes during its offensive on the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian news agency has reported. Quoting what it called reliable sources, Shahab news agency said on Tuesday that PA representatives at a meeting in Washington had initially rejected Israel’s request not to endorse the report and were determined to stick to this position. But, the agency added, Brigadier Eli Avraham played a videotape showing a meeting between Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, and Ehud Barak, the Israeli defence minister. The meeting was also attended by Tzipi Livni, Israel’s former foreign minister…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58686

Mystery over missing Iran scientist
Aljazeera.net
October 8, 2009 – The mystery surrounding the disappearance of an Iranian scientist, said to be involved in Tehran’s nuclear programme, has deepened with speculation that he may have defected to the US. Washington has denied any involvement, with reports on Thursday quoting Ian Kelly, the US state department spokesman, as saying the US had no information on Shahram Amiri. “We saw that wire story, and we looked into it. We just basically don’t have any information on this individual,” he said…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58697

Afghan blast targets Indian embassy
Aljazeera.net
October 8, 2009 – An explosion in Kabul, the Afghan capital, has killed at least 17 people and wounded another 63. The blast on Thursday occured close to the Indian embassy just after 8.30am (04:00GMT). Two policemen were among those dead, with 13 others wounded. A senior Indian embassy diplomat said that the bomb targeted the Indian embassy. “It was a suicide car bomb attack. There are civilian and police casualties,” Zemarai Bashary, an Afghan interior ministry spokesman, said…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58689

Fatah seeks joint action with Hamas over Gaza report
AFP
October 8, 2009 — The Palestinian Fatah movement urged its Hamas rivals on Thursday to join forces to press for international action against Israel over a damning UN report on the Gaza war. The move comes after the Islamist movement slammed Palestinian president and Fatah leader Mahmud Abbas for agreeing to delay a vote on the report at the UN Human Rights Council following Israeli and US pressure. Senior Fatah official and Abbas ally Jibril Rajub told reporters that the secular movement supports using the report to bring Israeli officials to trial “for crimes against the Palestinian people”.

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58695

Gaza Love Story
The Bride Who Crawled Through a Tunnel
By Ulrike Putz in Nuseirat, the Gaza Strip
October 8, 2009 – He lived in the Gaza Strip, she in the West Bank. It seemed as though the Israeli blockade would prevent their marriage. Then May risked her life to crawl through a smugglers’ tunnel into Gaza and join Mohammed. Now they face an uncertain future together. When Mohammed Warda first took his bride in his arms she looked “as if she had just stepped out of a grave that was filled with earth.” He had spent an hour sitting nervously by a big hole in the ground in the Gaza Strip, while May crawled backwards through the tunnel, keeping her eyes closed because of the sand that trickled from the roof. Her groom had to pay $1,500 (€1,021) for her to be smuggled through a tunnel from the Egyptian side of the border to the Gaza Strip. And 23-year-old May knew the whole time that the risky undertaking could cost her her life…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=58702

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