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URUK Net 9 May, 2009

Last updated: Sunday, May 10, 2009 12:10

Thoughts On The War Between The USA And Pakistan
Winter Patriot
Signs and omens, suddenly everywhere, tell us war between the USA and Pakistan is imminent… The signs are misleading. War between the US and Pakistan is not imminent. It’s ongoing. So far the US has made more than 60 airstrikes against Pakistan using unmanned aircraft, and one commando raid using ground troops and attack helicopters. These attacks have killed more than 700 people, and even the most “optimistic” government reports count only 14 al Qaeda leaders among the dead…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54094

UN’s Ban Ki Moon comes to the defence of Israel
By Jean Shaoul
A United Nations inquiry concluded that Israel’s military forces carried out direct and intentional strikes on its premises during the assault on Gaza earlier this year. Israel was therefore responsible for the deaths and injuries of UN personnel and civilians, as well as extensive damage to its property. The inquiry, led by Ian Martin, a former secretary general of Amnesty International, found that the Israel Defence Force (IDF) was “involved in varying degrees of negligence or recklessness with regard to United Nations premises and to the safety of United Nations staff and other civilians within those premises, with consequent deaths, injuries, and extensive physical damage and loss of property.”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54108

Barghouthi on Netanyahu: Israelis looking to procrastinate for another twenty years
PNN
Benjamin Netanyahu says that the principle of two states for two peoples is “non-viable in the foreseeable future.” This is a significant risk, comments Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi of the Palestinian National Initiative and Legislative Council. Israeli settlement expansion, despite its illegality under international law, is on the rise, particularly in East Jerusalem. The Israeli government is working quickly and has expressed its “concern” over the lack of communication with the new US administration, meaning that the Obama government is not offering the full green-light. However, the Israelis have used the last period of Palestinian internal struggle and the adjustment in the US to quickly impose more facts on the ground. By the time two-states are “viable” in Netanyahu’s eyes, the notion will be an impossible one, exactly what he is looking for…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54107

An aspect of the misfortune to which Kerkuk region is exposed: Satellite Maps of 2002 is compared with maps of 2007
Iraqi Turkmen Human Rights Research Foundation
In the early morning of Thursday 15 April 2009, the inhabitants of the oldest Kerkuk neighborhood, Musalla, were awakened by the sound of bulldozers destroying the wall and graves of the Seyyid Kz part of the large Musalla Turkmen graveyard. The Musalla graveyard is the oldest graveyard in Kerkuk and comprises thousands of graves including those of many celebrated Turkmen. Inhabitants flocked to the area, stopping the demolition before complaining to the police office. Nevertheless, about 15 graves were destroyed. After investigation, it was found that an official contract was given by the chief of the Investment Commission of Endowments directorate of Kerkuk, a Kurd from Kerkuk, for the building of a commercial complex in that part of the graveyard…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54110

Pelosi, Democrats & Torture
Booman Tribune
Last night on the Rachel Maddow Show the issue of the briefings Nancy Pelosi and other senior Democrats received on the Bush administration’s “enhanced interrogation techniques was a major topic of the program. Pelosi has previously admitted she had received a briefing on the enhanced interrogation techniques torture practices the CIA and the military “might use” which had been declared as legal by the Bush administration’s Office of Legal Counsel, but that she was never told that torture had been, or ever would be, actually being used on terrorist suspects or other detainees. Well, yesterday, the Washington Post printed a story citing documents they received from anonymous “Intelligence Officials” claiming that Pelosi was briefed in 2002 on the torture tactics that CIA interrogators were then using against “high value” Al Qaeda prisoners…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54111

Hamas and Fatah are poles apart
Phil Sands
Efforts to form a unified Palestinian government look set to collapse this week, with apparently irreconcilable differences still separating Hamas from Fatah. Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas, who remains president of the Palestinian Authority despite his term of office having expired, is reportedly planning to ask his prime minister, Salam Fayyad, to form a new administration in the coming days. If this happens it will exclude Hamas, the Islamic resistance movement that controls the Gaza Strip, and effectively undermine upcoming talks designed to bring about a coalition government…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54105

Video: Deepening crisis in Pakistan’s Swat
AljaeeraEnglish
Pakistan’s army has launched a major offensive to root out Taliban fighters holed up in Swat Valley. Tens of thousands of civilians have been made homeless by the conflict. Al Jazeera’s Sohail Rahman reports on the desperate situation in Swat…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54104

Mass evacuation ordered in Swat
Aljaeera.net
Tens of thousands of people have been ordered to evacuate Swat valley by Pakistan’s military as it battles Taliban fighters in the Northwest Frontier Province (NWFP). The order was “unprecendented” and a “refugee disaster is now feared”, said Kamal Hyder, Al Jazeera’s correspondent in Peshawar, the capital of the NWFP, on Saturday. The military said it would lift a curfew in the Swat region for five hours on Sunday to allow trapped civilians to leave. Hyder said: “A big catastrophe is unfolding in the Northwest Frontier Province – I have never seen anything on this scale. “Within the next few hours there is going to be a mass movement of people…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54103

Obama Readies Troops as Afghans Pile Up Body Parts
Jeremy Scahill
…In her earlier statement regarding the bombing, Clinton told Hamid Karzai “there will be a joint investigation by your government and ours.” But before that investigation began, the Pentagon was already using its unnamed officials to blame the Taliban. It also bears remembering that the US track record of thoroughly “investigating” US massacres is pathetic. The UN said there was convincing evidence that last year’s US attack on the village of Azizabad in western Afghanistan killed 90 civilians, but the military only acknowledged 30 civilian deaths. Standing between Hamid Karzai and Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday, Obama said the US would “make every effort” to avoid civilian deaths in both countries (which are regularly bombed by the US). ..

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54101

Netanyahu: “We will never cede the Golan Heights”
Saed Bannoura – IMEMC
Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, stated that Israel will never withdraw from the Golan Heights as the area is considered a “strategic advantage” in case of a military conflict with Syria, Israeli online daily, Haaretz, reported. The statements of Netanyahu came in an interview with Russian-language reporters on Thursday, and his statements were published by several Israeli Russian-language websites. Haaretz added that Netanyahu said he is now ready to stand up to the American President, Barack Obama, to tell him that Israel would not give up on “matters that affect Israel’s security”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54106

At least 8 killed, 7 injured as US drone fired four missiles in South Waziristan
Nation
At least eight persons were killed and seven injured in U.S. drone missile attacks at Sararogha area in South Waziristan Agency (SWA). Sources said that the U.S. drones fired four missiles on one house and madrassa at Sararogha area of South Waziristan, which left at least eight killed and seven wounded. The local people helping themselves recovered eight bodies from under the debris, while seven persons were wounded, sources said. A suspected US drone fired missiles at a compound used by militants in a northwestern Pakistan tribal area bordering Afghanistan Saturday, causing casualties, officials said. The missiles hit a compound at Tabbi Langar Khel village in restive South Waziristan tribal district bordering Afghanistan, two security officials said…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54109

US Afghan Strike so Bloody, Karzai Begs for Mercy; Pakistan Joins the Act.
KABOBfest
Actually, a better headline would be ‘Karzai plays leader, pretends to confront the United States.’ He was unhappy his master’s attacks have killed so many civilians. In one bombing spree this week, an estimated 147 civilians from two nearby villages lost their lives. Pakistan is following suit with civilian-terrorizing campaigns on its own territory. Karzai is demanding a halt to American air strikes. Nod and wink. He announced this at a meeting Wednesday in Washington with his overlord. In most countries, a leader would never hold a friendly summit with the leader of the country that just killed so many of his civilians. The Afghan puppet version is an empty demand, followed by President Obama’s “sorrow.”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54100

Coalition for Jerusalem’s letter to Pope Benedict XVI
Coalition for Jerusalem
His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, Your visit to the Holy Land your Holiness comes, at a time when the indigenous people of this land, both Muslims and Christians are suffering under an extremely brutal military occupation. A great injustice has smothered this land over sixty years and the people, the victims, are Still suffering its ramifications today. Israel’s continuing military occupation of Palestinian territories Since1967, has furthered this injustice by separating and isolating, discriminating against, killing, incarcerating, prohibiting the movement and access to the Holy places for prayer, blockading, starving and denying medical treatment of millions of Palestinians. Over 3.5 million Palestinians are still living in refugee camps, waiting with patient desperation for the implementation of their human, ethical and moral right to return to their homes…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54099

General Sees a Longer Stay in Iraq Cities for U.S. Troops
By ELISABETH BUMILLER
The top American general in Iraq said Friday that one-fifth of American combat troops would stay behind in Iraqi cities even after the June 30 deadline that the United States and Iraq had set for the departure. The estimate by Gen. Ray Odierno, at a Pentagon briefing, was the most specific yet for the extension of American combat operations in Baghdad and Mosul. American combat troops have largely moved out of most other urban areas in Iraq, General Odierno said…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54098

Gaza: pursuit of the laws of war
If the UN fails to further investigate crimes committed during the conflict it will ensure stalemate, and more suffering for civilians
Tom Porteous
The Israeli government and its supporters have lashed out at the report of the UN board of inquiry into Israeli attacks on UN installations during Israel’s latest offensive in Gaza. The report, they say, is biased, tendentious and inaccurate. According to Robbie Sabel, writing in Comment is Free, the “unbalanced report” does “little to bring understanding or justice to the conflict in Gaza”. The full report has not been published, but there’s little in the summary that UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon sent to the security council on Tuesday to support such claims. On the contrary, it provides careful but compelling evidence that Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) violated the laws of war during their military operations around UN installations in Gaza…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54112

4 British troops killed in Afghanistan
Reuters
Four British soldiers have been killed in a single day while on patrol in southern Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence said today. It was the armed forces’ worst loss of life in one day since June 2008. The four died in three incidents on Thursday in Helmand, one of the most violent areas in the country and a heartland of the Taliban movement. One of the deaths was already announced on Thursday. The latest deaths bring the number of British soldiers to have been killed in action in the country this year to 20…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54096

War without Context: Fatah, Hamas and Flawed Language
Ramzy Baroud
…it’s typical to read such deceptive news reports as that of Ibrahim Barzak of the Associated Press: “Hundreds of Palestinian patients have been trapped in the Gaza Strip, unable to travel abroad for crucial treatment for cancer and other diseases, because of political infighting between Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers and their Palestinian rivals.”… Barzak makes no mention of the Israeli factor in the decried Palestinian rivalries, and the only reference to the US in his report was that of the “U.S.-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, which controls the West Bank.” Is Barzak serious? Even if we willingly overlook the fact that Palestinian rivalry has little influence on Israel’s decision to block the Gaza borders, thus subjugate its inhabitants, and purposely disregarded the US-led international campaign to isolate Gaza and its government, how can one allow such a misreading of so obvious a fact: since when does Abbas “control” the West Bank? What should one make of the Israeli military occupation of several decades, the hundreds of illegal Jewish settlements, the countless checkpoints, ‘bypass roads’, numerous ‘military zones’ and the giant Israeli wall, an entire matrix of control, in fact, which has been described by many leading international observers as “apartheid”?…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54095

Iraq: Stop Executing Prisoners
Human Rights Watch
Iraq should institute an immediate moratorium on the death penalty in the aftermath of a large number of executions on May 3, 2009, Human Rights Watch said today. According to United Nations officials in Baghdad, the Iraqi government hanged 12 people in Baghdad on May 3 who had been convicted of criminal offenses. The UN officials said they believed that another 115 prisoners could face execution in the near future… Human Rights Watch said it was particularly concerned that Iraq continues to admit into judicial proceedings confessions obtained under duress. The organization called on the Iraqi government to disclose all information regarding the identities and status of prisoners on death row, the crimes for which they have been convicted, the manner in which they were charged, tried, and sentenced, the prisons in which they are detained, and details of any impending executions…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54097

Villagers list 147 dead in Afghan strike
Reuters
Residents of two villages hit earlier this week by U.S. air strikes have prepared lists with the names of 147 people killed in the attacks, the deputy governor of the province where the strikes took place said. Farah Province deputy governor Yunus Rasooli told Reuters residents of the village of Geraani had provided 90 names and residents of neighbouring Ganj Abad village another 57. The two villages were struck by U.S. warplanes during a battle in another nearby village on Monday and Tuesday…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54093

The Arabs and the US
Galal Nassar
…If the Arabs are to hone their potential effectively and up their esteem in others’ eyes they must first settle their internal differences, starting with reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. How can we possibly enter into a dialogue with our enemies when we cannot even speak with each other? How can we effectively negotiate with strangers when we are unable to reach agreement within our own ranks, leaving the field wide open for the enemy to play one of our factions off against the other? Who are those who might ally themselves with “our” cause supposed to aid and support? The advocates of peace talks or the advocates of resistance? The “moderates” or the “extremists?” To make matters worse, the Palestinian-Palestinian rift is spreading. Instead of a synthesis in Palestine, we have deepening contradictions in the rest of the Arab world, to the extent that they threaten to solidify into unbridgeable divides…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54092

Obama Aide Puts Israel’s Nukes in the Diplomatic Mix
Analysis by Helena Cobban*
Last month in Prague, President Barack Obama vowed that he would seek a world without nuclear weapons. On Tuesday, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Rose Gottemoeller spelled out that this policy would apply to Israel, as well. Speaking at a conference on the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Gottemoeller said that “Universal adherence to the NPT itself, including by India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea … remains a fundamental objective of the United States.” Israel is judged to have between 100 and 200 advanced nuclear weapons either ready to deploy, or only a few minutes away from being so…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=54114

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