zaterdag 11 maart 2006


De Bush-gang heeft een nieuw slachtoffer op het oog: Venezuela, en laat dat nu ook toevallig een olieland zijn. Al eerder heeft Washington via een militare coup de democratisch gekozen president Chavez proberen kalt te stellen, maar dat mislukte omdat niet alleen de meerderheid van de bevolking achter hem bleef staan, maar ook een deel van het leger. Maar de gangsters geven het niet op. De Los Angeles Times bericht: 'US More Intent on Blocking Chavez . Venezuela's leader seeks to rally opposition to Washington as elections near in the region. Washington - The Bush administration is stepping up efforts to counter leftist Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as he builds opposition to U.S. influence in Latin America. U.S. diplomats have sought in recent years to mute their conflicts with Chavez, fearing that a war of words with the flamboyant populist could raise his stature at home and abroad. But in recent months, as Chavez has sharpened his attacks - and touched American nerves by increasing ties with Iran - American officials have become more outspoken about their intention to isolate him. Signaling the shift, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told Congress last month that the United States was actively organizing other countries to carry out an "inoculation strategy" against what it sees as meddling by Chavez. U.S. officials believe Chavez uses his oil wealth to reward governments that share his anti-American views and to foment change in those that don't. "We are working with other countries to make certain that there is a united front against some of the things that Venezuela gets involved in," said Rice, who called Venezuela a "sidekick" of Iran. Rice leaves today on an eight-day trip to Latin America, Indonesia and Australia, including a stop in Chile for the inauguration of President-elect Michelle Bachelet. Rice said pointedly Thursday that she did not plan to see Chavez, who is expected to attend the inauguration Saturday. As part of the administration's new view of Venezuela, U.S. defense and intelligence officials have revised their assessment of the security threat Venezuela poses to the region. They say they believe Venezuela will have growing military and diplomatic relationships with North Korea and Iran, and point with concern to its arms buildup. Of equal worry to them is Venezuela's overhaul of its military doctrine, which now emphasizes "asymmetric warfare" - a strategy of sabotage and hit-and-run attacks against a greater military power, much like that used by Iraqi insurgents.' Lees verder:,0,2226304.story?coll=la-home-headlines Of: Onafhankelijke berichtgeving over de achtergronden van dit conflict geven de Nederlandse commerciele media nauwelijks. Misschien kan bijvoorbeeld de NRC beter zijn geld in een goede verslaggeving investeren dan in een nieuw krantje voor jongeren.

Israelisch Expansionisme 6

Palestijnse humor versus de Israelische Apartheids Muur, waarbij nog meer land van de Palestijnen wordt gestolen. De BBC bericht: 'Hamas attacks Israel border plan. A senior Hamas leader has described as a declaration of war an Israeli plan to set new borders unilaterally by annexing Palestinian land. The militant group's political leader in exile, Khaled Meshaal, told the AFP news agency the plan was intended to meet only Israel's security needs. Mr Meshaal said the plan would not bring about peace. Acting Israeli PM Ehud Olmert said he planned to set permanent borders for Israel within four years. But he said he would give Hamas time to reform, disarm and embrace past interim peace agreements before pursuing a unilateral solution.' Lees verder: Over de extremistische reden waarom Israel pas 62 jaar na de stichting van de staat gaat bepalen waar zijn grenzen liggen, kunt u hier lezen: Het zal duidelijk zijn dat het Israelisch expansionisme en het etnisch zuiveren van Palestijns land de ware redenen zijn van het verzet van de Palestijnen.

Noam Chomsky 4

Terwijl de Verenigde Staten zijn oorlogen voert, verandert de geopolitieke situatie in de wereld razendsnel. Noam Chomsky schrijft: 'New world relationships. THE prospect that Europe and Asia might move toward greater independence has troubled US planners since World War II. The concerns have only risen as the ‘tripolar order’ — Europe, North America and Asia — has continued to evolve. Every day, Latin America, too, is becoming more independent. Now Asia and the Americas are strengthening their ties while the reigning superpower, the odd man out, consumes itself in misadventures in the Middle East. Regional integration in Asia and Latin America is a crucial and increasingly important issue that, from Washington's perspective, betokens a defiant world gone out of control. Energy, of course, remains a defining factor — the object of contention — everywhere. China, unlike Europe, refuses to be intimidated by Washington, a primary reason for the fear of China by US planners, which presents a dilemma: Steps towards confrontation are inhibited by US corporate reliance on China as an export platform and growing market, as well as China's financial reserves, reported to be approaching Japan's in scale.' Lees verder:§ion=opinion&col= Of:

De Oorlogsstaat 29

Charles Sullivan schrijft in Information Clearing House: 'Externalizing the Cost of War. It must seem odd to the world that while our nation is coming apart at the seams, and every last shred of decency is being severed from the cloth of conscience, all we can do is watch American Idol and Survivor. According to author Mike Green (The Whole Truth about the U.S. War on Terror), there are one hundred and ninety-two recognized nations on earth, and the U.S. has troops stationed in one hundred and thirty-five of them. In total, we have in excess of four hundred thousand troops occupying a substantial majority of the world. The nation with the second largest number of troops deployed is Great Britain with thirty-five thousand, followed by France with twenty-three thousand. Apparently, bringing democracy to the world requires an extensive presence and lots of weapons. If only that were what this is about. It is really about hegemony, domination, global empire. Perhaps America’s insatiable demand for entertainment is in fact a form of self medication whose delivery mechanism is television, rather than the hypodermic needle. Mind-numbing, irrelevant, sensory-depriving entertainment is a method to kill the pain of a truth that laves ceaselessly upon the shores of our eroded conscience—a truth so painful that we must suppress it at all cost. It is American Idol, a program whose mass appeal I have never understood, that keeps the white noise of reality at bay and allows so many to ignore the world’s pain and misery. Reality television does many things. But one thing I am quite certain that it does not do is portray reality. Cheap and shallow entertainment only dulls the senses, like imbibing alcohol in excess to keep us comfortably numb, safely insulated from the reality that our nation is foisting upon the world. For many of the world’s people, America has reduced their reality to piles of broken rubble; lonely hours of endless terror called Shock and Awe; the filth and stench of secret gulags where torture is implemented on a scale known only to the CIA. The disquieting loss of life and its impact upon families is beyond the pale of comprehension. Genocide and ethnic cleansing are not democracy and they never will be.' Lees verder:

Propaganda 13

In Information Clearing House schrijft Mike Whitney: 'The 48 Hour Media-blitz for War with Iran. In the last 48 hours all the major players in the Bush administration have issued statements warning of the impending danger of Iran. Cheney blasted the Islamic regime saying there would be “meaningful consequences” if it refuses to comply with international demands to stop its nuclear program. Condoleezza Rice said, “We face no greater challenge from a single country than Iran… This is a country that seems determined, it seems, to develop a nuclear weapon in defiance of the international community that is determined that they should not get one.” Donald Rumsfeld warned at a press conference on Wednesday, “I will say this about Iran. They are currently putting people into Iraq to do things that are harmful to the future of Iraq. We know it, and it is something that they, I think, will look back on as having been an error in judgment.” Bush chimed in too, “Iran must not have a nuclear weapon. The most destabilizing thing that can happen in this region and in the world is for Iran to have a nuclear weapon.” And then there was Bolton, the most vehement of all, saying that the Security Council should issue a “vigorous response” to Iran’s nuclear ambitions or the United States might have to consider other steps. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns said, “It’s going to be incumbent on our allies around the world to show that they are willing to act.” Congress also added their support led by Rep. Tom Lantos (D-CA) “Iran’s quest for nuclear arms requires us to do two things: squeeze Iran’s economy as much as possible and do so without delay.” Lantos claims that more than 300 lawmakers will support sanctions. Israel’s Defense Minister joined the chorus as well,” If the UN Security Council is incapable of taking action to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, Israel will have no choice but to defend itself.” Bush, Cheney, Bolton, Rice, Rumsfeld, Burns, Congress, and Israel. Whoa! That’s quite a line-up. All in the last 48 hours!' Lees verder: En nu opletten wie van de Nederlandse commerciele massamedia deze propaganda overneemt. De inzender met het antwoord krijgt een prijs. Bovenaan de voorlopige lijst staan al Trouw en NRC. De laatste krant nam gisteren de propaganda klakkeloos over zonder het in een groter perspectief te plaatsen. Uit het feit dat de kop van het artikel niet tussen aanhalingstekens staat, mag de lezer concluderen dat Iran inderdaad het grootste gevaar voor de VS is. Dat zit dus wel goed met de krant die de nuance zoekt. De komende maanden zal de buitenland-redactie de handen vol hebben met het overtuigen van de lezers dat er nu toch eindelijk gewelddadig moet worden ingegrepen. Leest u zelf maar: Rice: 'Iran is het grootste gevaar voor VS. WASHINGTON, 10 MAART. Iran vormt nu al waarschijnlijk de grootste bedreiging voor de Verenigde Staten, en zou in het bezit van kernwapens nog honderden malen zo gevaarlijk zijn. Dat heeft de Amerikaanse minister van Buitenlandse Zaken, Condoleezza Rice, gisteren gezegd tijdens een hoorzitting in het Congres. Haar uitspraken kwamen aan het begin van pogingen van de internationale gemeenschap tot een consensus te komen over eventuele maatregelen om Iran te dwingen alle uraniumverrijkingsactiviteit te staken. De Veiligheidsraad van de Verenigde Naties buigt zich daar volgende week over. Rice zei dat Iran vastbesloten is kernwapens te ontwikkelen. Iran zelf ontkent dat, terwijl het laatste rapport van het Internationaal Atoomenergie Agentschap (IAEA) meldt noch het een noch het ander te kunnen bevestigen.' Lees verder:

Nieuw Guinea

John Pilger bericht: 'An estimated 100,000 Papuans, or 10 per cent of the population, have been killed by the Indonesian military. This is a fraction of the true figure, according to refugees. In January, 43 West Papuans reached Australia's north coast after a hazardous six-week journey in a dugout. They had no food, and had dribbled their last fresh water into their children's mouths. "We knew," said Herman Wainggai, the leader, "that if the Indonesian military had caught us, most of us would have died. They treat West Papuans like animals. They kill us like animals. They have created militias and jihadis to do just that. It is the same as East Timor."For over a year, an estimated 6,000 people have been hiding in dense jungle after their villages and crops were destroyed by Indonesian special forces. Raising the West Papuan flag is "treason". Two men are serving 15 and ten-year sentences for merely trying. Following an attack on one village, a man was presented as an "example" and petrol poured over him and his hair set alight.When the Netherlands gave Indonesia its independence in 1949, it argued that West Papua was a separate geographic and ethnic entity with a distinctive national character. A report published last November by the Institute of Netherlands History in The Hague revealed that the Dutch had secretly recognised the "unmistakable beginning of the formation of a Papuan state", but were bullied by the administration of John F Kennedy to accept "temporary" Indonesian control over what a White House adviser called "a few thousand miles of cannibal land".The West Papuans were conned. The Dutch, Americans, British and Australians backed an "Act of Free Choice" ostensibly run by the UN. The movements of a UN monitoring team of 25 were restricted by the Indonesian military and they were denied interpreters. In 1969, out of a population of 800,000, some 1,000 West Papuans "voted". All were selected by the Indonesians. At gunpoint, they "agreed" to remain under the rule of General Suharto - who had seized power in 1965 in what the CIA later described as "one of the worst mass murders of the late 20th century". In 1981, the Tribunal on Human Rights in West Papua, held in exile, heard from Eliezer Bonay, Indonesia's first governor of the province, that approximately 30,000 West Papuans had been murdered during 1963-69. Little of this was reported in the west.' Lees verder:

Saul Landau

Saul Landau is al jaren 1 van de helderste commentatoren die ik ken. In Znet schrijft hij: 'The Country's Going to Hell at Home and Abroad. "If the country's on the road to Hell, just claim that it's Heaven." I don't meet many Republicans, but those few I do talk to agree that the world and the country are going to hell. That oft spouted cliché - has taken on new meaning given recent and very dire environmental news. The worsening of global warming may have brought about natural catastrophes - hurricanes. The almost comical incompetence by Bush's imperial managers compounded the disasters experienced by poor people. Yet, Bush's panorama in his State of the Union address and subsequent speeches reflected only optimism. Bush's rosy picture contradicts certain economic facts. He attributed to tax cuts and free trade policies the news that "The Dow Jones rose above 11,000 in February on the basis of good economic news." An NPR reporter explained that "mild January weather spurred home starts." I don't know what "above 11,000" means, but why didn’t the Dow react to the nearly $730 billion US trade deficit? This all-time record was dwarfed, however, by the $8.2 trillion national debt. The supposedly conservative Republicans spend like addicts hooked on wasting the public's money. Nothing succeeds like failure, I suppose. Outgoing Fed chairman, Alan "The Enigmatic" Greenspan, in various farewell speeches lauded free-trade as a solid basis for the economy. Did Greenspan mean the Chinese economy? In 2005, the US reported a $200+ billion trade deficit with China, an amount that grows every year. In addition, the United States ran record deficits with Japan, Europe and Canada; the US even ended 2005 minus $50 billion with Mexico. Bush (41), Clinton and Bush (43) promised that NAFTA would buoy the US trade balance. It would also help create enough jobs in Mexico to cut back illegal border crossings. Promise 'em anything! Despite the maquila jobs created by NAFTA, Mexicans have not significantly raised their standard of living. Some 60 million of the 100 million people there live under the poverty line. After Congress approved the trade treaty in 1993, US companies raced faster than ever to Mexico to take advantage of low wage labor, the absence of environmental and work place regulation, and no taxes. Clinton was right about increasing US jobs, however. The $35 an hour skilled auto worker lost his job to a Mexican who made one tenth the amount. After losing his job, the auto worker might have begun bagging groceries in Safeway for $12 an hour; so did his wife, who used to stay home with the kids. Compare their combined $24 an hour with his previous $35. But thanks to NAFTA, the family had two jobs instead of one. And, a third job arose from this new economic agreement: the couple hired a baby sitter for $7 an hour.' Lees verder: Of: Zie ook:

Milieu Catastrofe

De Independent bericht: 'China's Boom is Killing Sea That Gives It Life, Warn Scientists. China's spectacular economic boom will mean the death of its major economic and maritime hub, the Bohai sea, unless action is taken to stop industrial pollution of its waters, environmental advisers said yesterday. The warnings, yet another example of the crisis gripping the world's fastest-growing major economy, come as China tries to balance its desire for economic growth with the need to avoid environmental catastrophe. "Almost no river that flows into the Bohai sea is clean," Liu Quanfang, an adviser to the annual National People's Congress, told the Xinhua news agency, adding that the sea could be "dead" within 12 years if urgent action is not taken to clean its waters.' Lees verder: Of:

Klimaatverandering 23

De klimaatverandering, als gevolg van de uitstoot van broeikasgassen, begint ingrijpende gevolgen te krijgen ook voor Phoenix in Arizona waar stofstormen de luchtvervuiling verergeren. De New York Times bericht: 'In Phoenix, Even Cactuses Wilt in Clutches of Record Drought. Thursday began like the 141 days before it, sunny and crisp, dust settling everywhere except on the record - set again - for the number of days without rain. Phoenix knows all about dry weather. It is a place where children are drilled throughout elementary school to conserve water, where hotels boast of covered parking areas not to protect from rain, but to offer a bit of shade. Grown men spread lotion all over their bodies every morning. Noses bleed. Newcomers watch in horror as their hands seem to age right in front of them. But even the desert suffers droughts, and this winter has brought a strong one, the fickle air currents pushing approaching storm clouds to the east. Until this year, the record for days without recorded rainfall was set in 2000, a measly 101 days. The recording instrument for rainfall is at the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, referred to as "the bucket" by meteorologists, and drier than a Sunday morning during Prohibition. "People are sort of losing their grip," said Gary Woodard, who, as associate director of the University of Arizona Center for Sustainability of Semi-Arid Hydrology and Riparian Areas, is an expert on the region's water. " 'Did you hear it's going to rain tomorrow?' Well, actually, there's an 80 percent chance it's not going to rain. People are getting very excited about very slim chances of rain." The drought has wreaked havoc on wildlife, which depend on the scant seven inches of rain that Phoenix gets in an average year, most of it in the three or four winter months. "We have cactus dying from lack of water," Mr. Woodard said. "We have well-established mesquite trees that are in a lot of trouble." Small animals are too dried out to do what comes naturally. "None of the animals, none of the birds are having offspring this spring. No baby quail, no baby bunnies," Mr. Woodard said. An alarming result of the drought is the condition of the air. On Thursday, Arizona's Department of Environmental Quality posted its 25th pollution advisory of the winter, a remarkable number. Last winter - the opposite of this one, with abundant rainfall - there were no such days. There is no rain to knock the dust and particles out of the air and wash them away.' Lees verder: Of: Ondanks de klimaatverandering konden we tijdens de raadsverkiezingen in Nederland de VVD en het CDA horen pleiten voor economische groei. Why not.

De Oorlogsstaat 28

Cindy Sheehan, moeder van een in Irak gesneuvelde militair, is in de VS bekend geworden vanwege haar acties tegen de Amerikaanse agressie in het Midden Oosten. Op een video van Information Clearing House kunt u zien hoe ze voor het gebouw van de Verenigde Naties aangehouden wordt wanneer ze probeert een petitie aan de VN te overhandigen. Het is een tijdsbeeld van de Verenigde Staten, het imperium dat claimt de grootste democratie op aarde te zijn, maar waar de Amerikanen zelf het recht niet hebben om bij de VN te protesteren tegen een zinloze oorlog. 'On Monday, March 6th, Cindy Sheehan and three others were arrested while attempting to deliver a petition to the US Mission at the UN. t r u t h o u t's Rebecca MacNeice was on the ground and filmed the arrests.' Zie:

vrijdag 10 maart 2006

De Dollar Hegemonie 5

Gisteren verklaarde de Amerikaans ambassadeur bij de Verenigde Naties, John Bolton, tegenover de BBC World Service dat de militaire optie tegen Iran niet van tafel was. Desondanks draait het christelijke dagblad Trouw vandaag de werkelijkheid weer eens 180 graden om en herhaalt de Amerikaanse propaganda over Iran en nucleaire wapens onder de kop: 'Nucleaire crisis / Iran bedreigt VS in Wenen tijdens vergadering IAEA.' Information Clearing House geeft achtergrond informatie die een volstrekt ander licht werpt op Washington's ware motieven: 'Challenging the mighty dollar. If major nations trade on Iran's oil bourse, it may start a 'dollar flight' effect It's becoming increasingly obvious that there is a looming crisis brewing over Iran. The true 'whys' and 'what's' of the issue, however, are clouded to the American public due to our modern press and to the nature of the underlying stakes involved. What people read is that there is a growing threat of a nuclear Iran that will threaten the safety of the West. Yet, that's essentially all that is said or written on the issue. However, to critically thinking people who turn to the internet and to foreign press for their news, the brewing crisis most likely has to do with intricate issues involving our incessant dependencies, not just on oil for our transportation and industrial needs, but more importantly for the means by which our modern economic system operates in the US, UK and much of the rest of the industrialized western world (strong hint: It's not a truly "free market").You see, control over global oil trading and pricing standards essentially underwrites the sanctity of the US dollar as a fiat (i.e. government mandated) currency for trade and investments. Were anything to threaten that delicate arrangement between control over oil pricing in particular, and our economic system in general, then there would be tectonic shifts in global finance to the detriment of the banks and energy companies that essentially dictate the means and mores of modern US-dominated geopolitics, trade and wealth creation around the world. I use the term "detriment" because of the conspicuously Himalayan-sized US trade and fiscal deficits that are not being reconciled by our government with the nations of the world that lend their savings to the US. Meanwhile, these nations are simultaneously being forced to buy and sell oil using our weakening dollar. Something's gotta give.Those that sense this issue is either a bit too simplistic, archaic or even far-fetched should consider that the only two oil trading systems in the world right now -- the International Petroleum Exchange (IPE) in London and the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) -- are owned by large global banks based in either the US or UK (Goldman Sachs, et al.). It should come as no coincidence that the ownership of the oil exchanges that set the West Texas Intermediate (in the US) and the North Sea Brent Crude (in the UK) oil markers -- two markers which, in turn, determine the price of oil per barrel globally -- is in the hands of Wall Street's largest investment banks.What does all of this have to do with Iran? In 2004, Iran decided to do what Iraq did before it -- start the process of eventually selling its oil and natural gas in euros instead of the globally mandated US dollar. Yet, Iran is 'one-upping' Iraq by starting its own energy exchange, labeled the Iran Oil Bourse, which would rival the aforementioned exchanges in London and New York.[It's interesting to note here that, in a particularly instructive scene in the movie "Syriana", the Saudi Prince Nasir played by Alexander Liddig retorts to Matt Damon's character 'Bryan' that, indeed, Nasir wishes to set up his own national oil exchange, along with other progressive steps necessary to improve the infrastructure of his nation. Prince Nasir's fate in the film is also understandable, in light of such ambitious yet noble yearnings.]This oil bourse is set to float in Tehran in March 2006. Although scoffed at as wildly implausible by market analysts in the US and UK, the bourse has also been seen as potentially very lucrative for investors and nations' central banks that wish to diversify their currency holdings and energy trading reserves away from the US dollar. Upon prudent observation, and on par, the input of the latter crew outweigh the scoffings of the former (just do a Google search using the words "oil", "Iran", "bourse" and for extra kicks, "NYMEX").' Lees verder:

Irak 43

Common Dreams bericht: 'Fuse Lit for Total War in Mideast: U.S. EnvoyWarns against pulling troops out of Iraq too soon Country `really vulnerable' to an all-out civil war. BAGHDAD - The toppling of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003 opened a "Pandora's box" of ethnic and sectarian tensions that could engulf the region in all-out war and disrupt the global economy if U.S. forces were to leave the country too soon, says the top American diplomat in Iraq. In remarks that were among the frankest and bleakest public assessments of the situation by a high-level American official, U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad said the "potential is there" for sectarian violence to become all-out civil war, but that Iraq for now had pulled back from that prospect after the wave of sectarian reprisals for the Feb. 22 bombing of a Shiite shrine in Samarra. "If another incident (occurs), Iraq is really vulnerable to it at this time," Khalilzad said in an interview. Abandoning Iraq in the way the U.S. disengaged from civil wars in Lebanon, Afghanistan and Somalia could have dramatic global repercussions, he said. "We have opened the Pandora's Box and the question is, what is the way forward? The way forward, in my view, is an effort to build bridges across these communities."
Khalilzad's comments came as Britain's most senior officer in Iraq said his country plans to pull out nearly all its soldiers from Iraq by the summer of 2008, with the first withdrawals within weeks. Lieut.-Gen. Nick Houghton, outlined a phased two-year withdrawal plan in an interview published yesterday in the Daily Telegraph newspaper. Britain, America's biggest partner in the Iraq campaign, has 8,000 troops in Iraq, based in and around the southern port of Basra.
U.S. military officials must decide this month whether to cancel scheduled deployments of several army combat brigades — a decision that would lead to a reduction in the total number of U.S. troops by mid-year from about 130,000 to about 100,000. On Sunday, U.S. Marine Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a televised interview that things in Iraq are "going very, very well, from everything you look at."' Lees verder:

Iran 15

Dit is het resultaat van een oorlog die namens ons gevoerd wordt. Desondanks blijven net als voorafgaand aan de Irak-invasie de commerciele massamedia in Nederland de propaganda van de Amerikaanse regering ongeclausuleerd doorgeven en ongekaderd napraten. Het draaiboek voor geweld tegen Iran lijkt tot in de details op het draaiboek dat de oorlog tegen Irak moest rechtvaardigen. Toch slikken de Westerse media de propaganda als zoete koek. De NRC bericht: 'Iran vormt nu al waarschijnlijk de grootste bedreiging voor de Verenigde Staten, en zou in het bezit van kernwapens nog honderden malen zo gevaarlijk zijn. Dat heeft de Amerikaanse minister van Buitenlandse Zaken, Condoleezza Rice, gisteren gezegd tijdens een hoorzitting in het Congres. Haar uitspraken kwamen aan het begin van pogingen van de internationale gemeenschap tot een consensus te komen over eventuele maatregelen om Iran te dwingen alle uraniumverrijkingsactiviteit te staken. De Veiligheidsraad van de Verenigde Naties buigt zich daar volgende week over. Rice zei dat Iran vastbesloten is kernwapens te ontwikkelen. Iran zelf ontkent dat, terwijl het laatste rapport van het Internationaal Atoomenergie Agentschap (IAEA) meldt noch het een noch het ander te kunnen bevestigen. Rice brandmerkte Iran verder als de „centrale bankier voor terrorisme” in het Midden-Oosten. Volgens haar hindert, en in sommige gevallen verhindert, de Iraanse steun voor terrorisme – Rice noemde in dit verband Irak, de Palestijnse gebieden en Libanon – „de groei van democratische en stabiele regeringen” in het gebied. De Iraanse politiek, zei ze „is gericht op ontwikkeling van een Midden-Oosten dat 180 graden anders is dan het Midden-Oosten dat wij graag zien ontstaan”. Zie: Intussen weten we dat Europese landen in de jaren zestig Israel aan nucleaire wapens hielp. Democracy Now bericht: 'Former Labour MP Tony Benn on how Britain Secretly Helped Israel Build Its Nuclear Arsenal. BBC News revealed Thursday the British government secretly supplied Israel with hundreds of chemical shipments in the 1960’s, despite fears the chemicals could be used to develop nuclear weapons. Analysts say the shipments, which included plutonium, helped speed up Israel’s acquisition of an atomic bomb. All told, the BBC reported the British chemicals could have been used to produce bombs 20 times as powerful as those dropped on Hiroshima. The deals were made in violation of strict government policy. According to de-classified government documents, a British government official named Michael Michaels oversaw the shipments behind the backs of his superiors. One of these superiors is our guest today. Tony Benn was Britain’s Minister of Technology at the time. That post was one of many that have come in the career of one of Britain’s most distinguished politicians. Tony Benn served in the British Parliament for over half a century. He is the longest serving MP in the history of the Labour party, which he joined in 1942. In May 2001, Benn retired from House of Commons to, in his words, “devote more time to politics.” While many politicians take on corporate or lobby positions when they leave office, Benn became one of the harshest and most vocal critics of the Iraq war. He is a prominent leader of the Stop the War Coalition in Britain.' Lees verder: Of bekijk de uitzending met Tony Benn:

De Vogelgriep

Van mijn buurman: de vogelliefhebber Henk Suichies.

Martelen 27

Olivia Rousset van de Australische omroep SBS blijft de Abu Ghraib martelingen volgen. Een Amerikaanse militaire politieman vertelt haar hoe Amerikaanse militairen onbewapende Irakese gevangenen in Abu Ghraib doodschoten. Een andere militair vertelt haar dat alleen al de naam Abu Ghraib hem pijn doet. 'Het is als een wond die niet wil genezen.' Bij Information Clearing House kunt u de documentaire bekijken. 'The latest chapter in reporter Olivia Rousset's Abu Ghraib revelations. Three weeks ago on Dateline, Olivia revealed new evidence of horrific abuse at Abu Ghraib. On a recent trip to the US, Olivia managed to track down two former Abu Ghraib guards - one who served time for committing abuses against Iraqi detainees and another who witnessed those shocking events. It's no small irony that both of these former US military policemen now see themselves as being among the victims of Abu Ghraib. Here's Olivia's story. And, as you would expect with this sort of report, be warned - some of what you're about to see is not exactly pretty and could even offend. Broadcast - -Dateline - SBS Australia 03/08/06 Lees verder:

Israelisch Expansionisme 5

Links: Palestijnen die met humor de aanval hebben ingezet op de Apartheids Muur, waarmee Israelische extremisten nog meer land van de Palestijnen proberen te stelen. De Volkskrant berichtte vanochtend: 'Israël zal uiterlijk in 2010 de definitieve grenzen van de joodse staat vaststellen tenzij Hamas Israël erkent en afziet van geweld. Dat heeft waarnemend premier Ehud Olmert donderdag gezegd in een interview met The Jerusalem Post. Het is voor het eerst dat Israël een deadline noemt voor het vaststellen van de definitieve grenzen.' Zie: Kennelijk gaat de Volkskrant ervan uit dat haar lezers zo onnozel zijn dat ze zich niet zullen afvragen waarom een land dat sinds 1948 bestaat pas over vier jaar laat weten waar zijn grenzen liggen, dus 62 jaar na dato. Om de Volkskrant-redactie al vast een beetje op weg te helpen: 'In 1938, Ben-Gurion made it clear of his support for the establishment of a Jewish state on parts of Palestine ONLY as an intermediary stage, he wrote: "[I am] satisfied with part of the country, but on the basis of the assumption that after we build up a strong force following the establishment of the state--we will abolish the partition of the country and we will expand to the whole Land of Israel." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 107, One Palestine Complete, p. 403) Ben-Gurion emphasized that the acceptance of the Peel Commission would not imply static borders for the future "Jewish state". In a letter Ben-Gurion sent to his son in 1937, he wrote: "No Zionist can forgo the smallest portion of the Land Of Israel. [A] Jewish state in part [of Palestine] is not an end, but a beginning ..... Our possession is important not only for itself ... through this we increase our power, and every increase in power facilitates getting hold of the country in its entirety. Establishing a [small] state .... will serve as a very potent lever in our historical effort to redeem the whole country." (Righteous Victims, p. 138) In August 1937, the 20th Zionist Congress rejected the Peel Commission proposed partition plan because the area allotted to the "Jewish state" was smaller than expected. On the other hand, the concept of partitioning Palestine into two states was accepted as a launching pad for future Zionist expansions, and to secure unlimited Jewish immigrations. In September 1938, Ben-Gurion explained why he advocated partitioning the country NOW, and to accept the Peel Commission's proposal: "The ONLY reason that we agreed to discuss the [Peel commission proposed] partition plan," Ben-Gurion wrote Moshe Sharett, "is mass immigration. Not in the future, and not according to abstract formula, but large immigration now." (Shabtai Teveth, p. 184) And in October 1938, he wrote to his children that : "I don't regard a state in part of Palestine as the final aim of Zionism, but as a mean toward that aim." (Shabtai Teveth, p. 188)
In September 1937, he stated to a group of American Jewish labor leaders in New York:
"the borders [of the Jewish state] will not be fixed for eternity." (Shabtai Teveth, p. 188)… Soon after the U.N. Proposed Partitioning Palestinian in November 1947, Ben-Gurion urged his party to accept the partition because it will never be final, "not with regard to the regime, not with regard to borders, and not with regard to international agreements." (Simha Flapan, p. 32)
Similarly, even most left wing parties reaffirmed their commitment to the complete redemption of Biblical "Eretz Yisrael," the United Hebrew Labor (Ahdut Haavodah) stated:
"partition is the best or shortest way of realizing greater Zionism" and declared that its members would "not cease to strive for the integrity of the homeland." (Simha Flapan, p. 33)
When Pinhas Rozen, who became Israel's first Israeli Justice, demanded that Israel's Declaration of Independence should cite the COUNTRY'S BORDERS, Ben-Gurion objected, and both exchanged the following points: ROZEN: "There's the question of the borders, and it CANNOT BE IGNORED."BEN-GURION: "Anything is possible. If we decide here that there's to be no mention of borders, then we won't mention them. Nothing is a priori [imperative]."ROZEN: "It's not a priori, but it is a legal issue."BEN-GURION: "The law is whatever people determine it to be." (1949, The First Israelis, p. xviii) Ben-Gurion clearly never believed in static borders, but dynamic ones as described in the Bible. He stated during a discussion with his aides: "Before the founding of the state, on the eve of its creation, our main interests was self-defense. To a large extent, the creation of the state was an act of self-defense. . . . Many think that we're still at the same stage. But now the issue at hand is conquest, not self-defense. As for setting the borders--- it's an open-ended matter. In the Bible as well as in our history, there all kinds of definitions of the country's borders, so there's no real limit. Bo border is absolute. If it's a desert--- it could just as well be the other side. If it's sea, it could also be across the sea. The world has always been this way. Only the terms have changed. If they should find a way of reaching other stars, well then, perhaps the whole earth will no longer suffice." (1949, The First Israelis, p. 6) It has been customary among all Zionists leaders to use the Bible to justify perpetrating WAR CRIMES. Regardless of the methods used to build the "Jewish state", the quote above is a classical example how the Bible is used to achieve political objectives. During the course of the 1948 war, Yigal Allon submitted a detailed plan to Ben-Gurion for the military conquest of the West Bank, arguing that the Jordan River would provide the best strategic border. He believed that a substantial part of the Palestinian population would flee east because of the military operations, he stated: "Our offensive has to leave the way open for the army and the refugees to retreat. We shall easily find the reason or, to be more accurate, the pretexts, to justify our offensive, as we did up to now" (emphasis added). (Simha Flapan, p. 114) When Israel signed the armistice agreements with Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon, Ben-Gurion stated: "The November 29[, 1947 U.N.] decision had given the Jewish state 14,920,000 dunums; now we have 20,662,000 dunums in our control. While the UN has not yet recognized our borders, Egypt, Transjordan, Syria, and Lebanon have done so." (Simha Flapan, p. 49) In other words, Israel managed to expand its borders 38% more than the area allotted to the "Jewish state" by 1947 UN GA partition plan. It should be noted that 60% of the Israelis soldiers were killed in action, were killed in offensive actions in the areas conquered beyond areas allotted by the UN to the "Jewish state." (Simha Flapan, p. 198-199).' Lees verder: Vooral ook het boek van de Israelische auteur en vredesactivist Simha Flapan is onthullend. Het heet 'The Birth of Israel. Myths and Realities.' Warm aanbevolen voor mijn immer wakkere collega's van de Volkskrant. Zijn boek verklaart ook het feit waarom Israel geen grondwet heeft. In een grondwet moet namelijk staan waar de grenzen precies liggen waarbinnen de constitutie van kracht is. Bovendien wordt duidelijk waarom ook in de ontafhankelijkheidsverklaring met geen woord wordt gerept over de grenzen. Naar een zo groot mogelijk Israel streeft al meer dan een halve eeuw zowel de Israelische linkse Arbeiderspartij als het rechtse Likoed. In hun beleid gingen en gaan ze nog steeds uit van het adagium 'dunam for dunam' oftewel hectare voor hectare totdat uiteindelijk het ideaal van het Eretz-Israel op gestolen Palestijns gebied is bereikt. Een dergelijke politiek is natuurlijk extremistisch en stuit onvermijdelijk op gewapend verzet. Dat spreekt voor zich, maar de Westerse commerciele media zwijgen hierover. In hun ogen is Hamas alleen maar een extremistische organisatie en Israel niet. Het interesseert ze niet dat dit pure propaganda is. Een serieuze journalist zou zich moeten afvragen wie de afgelopen halve eeuw de ware extremisten zijn geweest.

Martelen 26

De Independent bericht over onze bondgenoot in de 'war on terror': 'US to close down Abu Ghraib prison. Abu Ghraib, the Iraqi prison that became a byword for torture first under Saddam Hussein and later under the American occupation, is to close. Its 4,500 prisoners will be moved to other jails inside Iraq, a US military spokesman said. The prison on the outskirts of western Baghdad was infamous under Saddam as a place where political prisoners and other inmates were tortured and executed. But after the US took control it gained worldwide notoriety with the emergence of thousands of graphic photographs showing US troops abusing, torturing, and in some cases apparently killing Iraqi prisoners, leaving a permanent black mark on the reputation of America.' Lees verder:

Martelen 25

De Indenpendent bericht: 'Stop force-feeding inmates, doctors tell US. The United States authorities are facing demands by doctors from around the world to abandon the barbaric method of force-feeding hunger strikers at Guantanamo Bay. More than 250 medical experts are launching a protest today against the practice - which involves strapping inmates to "restraint chairs" and pushing tubes into the stomach through the nose. They say it breaches the right of prisoners to refuse treatment. The United Nations has demanded the immediate closure of the US detention camp in Cuba after concluding that treatment such as force-feeding and prolonged solitary confinement could amount to torture. Doctors from seven countries, including the best-selling author Oliver Sacks, call for disciplinary action against their US counterparts who force-feed detainees. About 80 prisoners are understood to be refusing food, including a UK resident, Shaker Aamer, a Saudi national who is married to a British woman and has four children.' Lees verder:

Een Royaal Gebaar 3

Via de stichting ´Een Royaal Gebaar´ ontving ik dit verhaal over wat namens ons bij ons gebeurt. ´Zelf bekommer ik me een beetje om een Afghaans gezinnetje, ze zijn vorige week op straat gezet, uit Zestienhoven, nadat ze in Maastricht een kort geding hadden gewonnen over het feit dat ze gevangen zaten met hun 2 dochtertjes van 1- en 2 jaar. De dag na de rechtszitting kwam er een politie-agent hun cel in en hij zei: "Er is een brief voor jullie gekomen, jullie zijn vrij !!". B zei: "Waarheen?" Toen zei de politie: "Gewoon de straat op!" Ze zijn gewoon de straat op gesmeten in de avond, met twee kinderen, zonder vervoer. Ze wisten niet waar ze naar toe moesten. B zei nog dat hij geen onderdak had en kreeg als antwoord van de politie dat het niet hun zaak was. Als ze hen nu nog maar een nacht hadden laten blijven, maar ze werden in de regen op straat gezet, moeder heeft zware astma en de jongste is ziek. Ik vind de overwinning zeer twijfelachtig.Ze winnen een rechtszaak, ondersteund door DCI ( Defence for Children International ), en de keerzijde van de medaille is dat ze op straat staan, letterlijk.!Ook deze Afghaanse familie moest tekenen dat ze het land binnen 24 uur zouden verlaten. Ook zij hebben geen geld en papieren. De moeder Zarifa, heeft ook nog een tumor in haar buik en moet dringend behandeld worden. Ze zijn in de avond met de trein naar Heerlen gegaan en logeren nu een week bij een Afghaans gastgezin, morgen worden zij door dat gezin op straat gezet.Daar komt nog bij dat de moeder zwaar astma heeft. Iemand van Maatschappelijk werk in mijn buurt zei, ze kunnen in een bushokje overnachten, wat een beetje afgeschermd is. Dat gaat dus nu gebeuren. Dit moet toch openbaar worden gemaakt. Wilt u dit vertellen aan de pastor dan hebben jullie weer een feit waar heel Nederland zich voor kan schamen en waar maar weinig mensen van af weten.Misschien kan ik via de pastor enige adressen krijgen, zodat ze morgenavond een bed hebben om op te slapen. De familie is 6 jaar in Nederland en volledig ingeburgerd, spreken heel goed Nederlands.´ Zie

donderdag 9 maart 2006

Martelen 25

Dit is het resultaat van de oorlog die door de neoconservatieven werd gestart uit naam van de democratie, maar die in werkelijkheid om de beheersing van de olie wordt gevoerd. De Guardian bericht: 'Annan Says Coalition May Be Violating LawUnited Nations - U.S.-led coalition forces and Iraq's authorities may be violating international law by arbitrarily detaining thousands of people, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in a report published Tuesday. The report, which studied the situation in Iraq over the last three months, said Iraq's prison system remains a major concern and lamented that an investigation into allegations of torture in Iraqi Interior Ministry jails had not yet been made public as promised. Annan's criticism of Multinational Forces and the Iraqi authorities in responding to violence was among the strongest he has made, although many of his claims were not new. He said the detainment of thousands of Iraqis ``constitutes de facto arbitrary detention." "The extent of such practices is not consistent with provisions of international law governing internment on imperative reasons of security," the report said. While Annan praised Iraq's December elections, he also noted a rise in sectarian strife and said attacks against places of worship were higher than ever. Baghdad's Forensic Institute alone received 787 bodies, 479 of which had gunshot wounds, since early December. "Repeated bombings against civilians, mosques and more recently against churches are creating fear, animosity and feelings of revenge," Annan wrote. Annan also demanded that Iraqi and coalition forces release the results of an investigation into allegations of torture at an Interior Ministry detention center in Baghdad's Jadiriyah district. He said the results were supposed to have been published at the end of November. The results of a separate inquiry into detention conditions in Iraq have also not been published, he said. The U.S. Mission to the United Nations refused comment on the report.' Lees verder:,,-5669834,00.html Of:

Irak 42

Steeds dieper zakt Iraq weg in een moeras van geweld. Maar het einde is nog lang niet in zicht. 'Harkin calls for pullout, says Iraq is now 'quagmire.' Sen. Tom Harkin said in Iowa Friday that Iraq has deteriorated into "civil war," declaring it no longer manageable by U.S. forces.Harkin's comments make the Iowa Democrat among the first members of Congress to declare publicly that Iraq had slipped into war between Muslim factions. They come as polls show President Bush's approval at managing the situation at an all-time low."I'm firmly convinced now, after all this time, that it really is a civil war," Harkin said.The senator, an opponent of the war, said the only solution to the surge of sectarian violence is to begin withdrawing U.S. forces."You keep hoping for the best," Harkin said. "And then after a while you say, wait a minute, this isn't working. This isn't working."About 500 Iraqis have been killed in the violence unleashed by the Feb. 22 bombing of a revered Shiite shrine in central Iraq and reprisal attacks against Sunni mosques. The dramatic wave of violence has complicated negotiations for a new government after December parliamentary elections.' Lees verder:

De Corporatistische Staat

De onafhankelijke Amerikaanse journalist Dahr Jamail schrijft in Truthout: 'Halliburton and its subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR) have been making hay in the burning Iraqi sun for years now. It is, of course, no coincidence that the man sitting as vice president played a key role with his influence in obtaining the lion's share of contracts in Iraq for the company he was CEO of prior to his self-appointed position. Yet none of this is news. What is news, however, is that the ties that bind Cheney to Halliburton also link him to groups with even broader interests in the Middle East, which are causing civilians on the ground there, as well as in the US, to pay the price. Cheney had much more at stake than pure altruism in making sure Halliburton/KBR obtained so many no-bid contracts in occupied Iraq. Despite his claims of not having any financial ties to Halliburton, the fact is that in both 2001 and 2002 he earned twice as much from a deferred salary from his "old" company as when he was CEO. But that wasn't the beginning. When Cheney was US Secretary of Defense in the early 1990's under Big Bush, Halliburton was awarded the job of studying, then implementing, the privatization of routine army functions such as cleaning and cooking meals. Following this study, when Cheney was finished with his job at the Pentagon, he scored the job as CEO of Halliburton, which he held until nominating himself for the position of Little Bush's running mate in 2000. Remember, it was Cheney who was given the task of finding a running mate for Bush. After searching far and wide across the US, Cheney ended up generously offering his own services for the job. As if Cheney didn't already have enough conflicts of interest, it is important to note that he assisted in founding the neo-conservative think tank, the "Project for the New American Century (PNAC)," whose goal is to "promote American global leadership," which entails acquiring Iraqi oil. Complimenting this, Cheney was also part of the board of advisers to the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) along with John Bolton, Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz (all PNAC members) before becoming vice president. JINSA, self-described as a "nonsectarian educational organization," does things like nominate John Bolton for the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize and works to "explain the role Israel can ... play in bolstering ... the link between American defense policy and the security of Israel."' Lees verder:

James Lovelock

Begin vorige maand verscheen bij de Britse uitgeverij uitgeverij Penguin 'The Revenge of Gaia,' van professor James Gaia die wereldnaam verwierf met zijn these dat de aarde een levend zichzelf regulerend systeem is. In een artikel in de Independent vatte Lovelock de inhoud van zijn nieuwe boek als volgt samen: 'Our planet has kept itself healthy and fit for life, just like an animal does, for most of the more than three billion years of its existence. It was ill luck that we started polluting at a time when the sun is too hot for comfort. We have given Gaia a fever and soon her condition will worsen to a state like a coma. She has been there before and recovered, but it took more than 100,000 years. We are responsible and will suffer the consequences: as the century progresses, the temperature will rise 8 degrees centigrade in temperate regions and 5 degrees in the tropics. Much of the tropical land mass will become scrub and desert, and will no longer serve for regulation; this adds to the 40 per cent of the Earth's surface we have depleted to feed ourselves. Curiously, aerosol pollution of the northern hemisphere reduces global warming by reflecting sunlight back to space. This "global dimming" is transient and could disappear in a few days like the smoke that it is, leaving us fully exposed to the heat of the global greenhouse. We are in a fool's climate, accidentally kept cool by smoke, and before this century is over billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable…Had it been known then that life and the environment are closely coupled, Darwin would have seen that evolution involved not just the organisms, but the whole planetary surface. We might then have looked upon the Earth as if it were alive, and known that we cannot pollute the air or use the Earth's skin - its forest and ocean ecosystems - as a mere source of products to feed ourselves and furnish our homes. We would have felt instinctively that those ecosystems must be left untouched because they were part of the living Earth…We should be the heart and mind of the Earth, not its malady. So let us be brave and cease thinking of human needs and rights alone, and see that we have harmed the living Earth and need to make our peace with Gaia. We must do it while we are still strong enough to negotiate, and not a broken rabble led by brutal war lords. Most of all, we should remember that we are a part of it, and it is indeed our home.' Lees verder: Zie ook: Gisteren interviewde ik James Lovelock over zijn sombere toekomstvisie. Dat gesprek kunt u hier beluisteren: onder interviews.

Zaid Atiya

Ik zat vanochtend een bijeenkomst voor waarbij scholieren van de het Regiocollege Zaanstreek-Waterland raadsleden kritisch ondervroegen over het overheidsbeleid. De politici beaamden dat er voor jongeren in de parlementaire democratie Nederland te weinig werk en te weinig woningen waren. Waarom dat zo is, bleef onduidelijk. De Verkiezing Beste Debater werd gewonnen door de 16-jarige Zaid Atiya die in Bagdad werd geboren.
Tijdens de pauze rapten Zaid en zijn medescholieren in het fietsenhok. De jongen met zijn handen voor de mond zorgde voor het ondersteunend ritme. Soms ging er gejuich of gelach op wanneer een rapper een gevatte rapregel zong. Na de jamsessie omarmden ze elkaar. In de gang van het Regio College hangen prachtige tekeningen van scholieren, die uit alle delen van de wereld komen.

De Neo Conservatieven

De Independent bericht: 'NeoCon allies desert Bush over Iraq. These are the right-wing intellectuals who demanded George Bush invade Iraq. Now they admit they got it wrong. Are you listening, Mr President? William Buckley Jnr: INFLUENTIAL CONSERVATIVE COLUMNIST AND TV PUNDIT. 'One can't doubt the objective in Iraq has failed ... Iraqi animosities have proved uncontainable by an army of 130,000 Americans. Different plans have to be made. And the kernel here is the acknowledgement of defeat.'
'By invading Iraq, the Bush administration created a self-fulfilling prophecy: Iraq has now replaced Afghanistan as a magnet, a training ground and an operational base for jihadists, with plenty of American targets to shoot at.' Richard Perle: ARCH-WARMONGER AND PIVOTAL REPUBLICAN HAWK. 'The military campaign and its political aftermath were both passionately debated within the Bush administration. It got the war right and the aftermath wrong We should have understood that we needed Iraqi partners.' Andrew Sullivan: PROMINENT COMMENTATOR AND INFLUENTIAL BLOGGER. 'The world has learnt a tough lesson, and it has been a lot tougher for those tens of thousands of dead, innocent Iraqis ... than for a few humiliated pundits. The correct response is not more spin but a sense of shame and sorrow.'
'Almost three years after the invasion, it is still not certain whether, or in what sense, Iraq is a nation. And after two elections and a referendum on the constitution, Iraq barely has a government.' Lees verder:

woensdag 8 maart 2006

De Oorlogsstaat 27

Terwijl de mensheid aan de vooravond staat van de desastreuze gevolgen van de klimaatverandering, zoals professor James Lovelock mij vanmiddag uitlegde, gaan de machtigen gewoon door met hun oorlogsvoorbereidingen. Tom Dispatch bericht: 'Tomgram: Weaponizing the Shark and Other Pentagon Dreams.
Shark and Awe. From the Annals of Full-Spectrum Dominance We already have "stealth" aircraft, but what about a little of the stealth that only nature can provide? Navy Seals, move over -- here come the Navy sharks. According to the latest New Scientist magazine, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency or DARPA, the blue-sky wing of the Pentagon, has set yet another group of American scientists loose to create the basis for future red-in-tooth-and-maw Discovery Channel programs. In this case, they are planning to put neural implants into the brains of sharks in hopes, one day, of "controlling the animal's movements, and perhaps even decoding what it is feeling." In their dreams at least, DARPA'S far-out funders hope to "exploit sharks' natural ability to glide quietly through the water, sense delicate electrical gradients and follow chemical trails. By remotely guiding the sharks' movements, they hope to transform the animals into stealth spies, perhaps capable of following vessels without being spotted." So far they've only made it to the poor dogfish, "steered" in captivity via electrodes keyed to "phantom odors." As it happens though, DARPA-sponsored plans are a good deal lustier than that: Next stop, the blue shark, which reaches a length of 13 feet. Project engineer Walter Gomes of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport, Rhode Island claims a team will soon be putting neural implants "into blue sharks and releas[ing] them into the ocean off the coast of Florida." To transmit signals to the sharks, the team will need nothing less than a network of signaling towers in the area. This has "anti-ballistic shark system" written all over it.' Lees verder:

Irak 41

Terwijl de chaos in Irak totaal is, draait de Amerikaanse propaganda over Iran op volle toeren. De Guardian bericht: 'US envoy to Iraq: 'We have opened the Pandora's box' · 80% of Americans think civil war likely · Rumsfeld accuses Tehran of fomenting conflictThe US ambassador to Baghdad conceded yesterday that the Iraq invasion had opened a Pandora's box of sectarian conflicts which could lead to a regional war and the rise of religious extremists who "would make Taliban Afghanistan look like child's play". Zalmay Khalilzad broke with the Bush administration's generally upbeat orthodoxy to present a stark profile of a volatile situation in danger of sliding into chaos. Mr Khalilzad told the Los Angeles Times Iraq had been pulled back from the brink of civil war after the February 22 bombing of a Shia shrine in Samarra. However, another similar incident would leave Iraq "really vulnerable" to that happening, he said. "We have opened the Pandora's box and the question is, what is the way forward?" He added that the best approach was to build bridges between religious and ethnic communities. An opinion poll published by the Washington Post and ABC News yesterday suggested that most Americans agreed with Mr Khalilzad - with 80% saying civil war in Iraq was likely, and more than a third that it was very likely. More than half thought the US should start withdrawing its troops, although only one in six wanted all troops to be withdrawn immediately. Hours after Mr Khalilzad made his remarks, the US defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld accused Iran of dispatching elements of its Revolutionary Guard to stir trouble inside Iraq.' Lees verder:,,1725996,00.html

Lord Acton

Op deze sombere regenachtige dag een vrolijk tussendoortje van de Britse historicus Lord Acton (1834-1902), die waarschuwde voor het feit dat politieke macht de grootste bedreiging vormt van de vrijheid. "Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end...liberty is the only object which benefits all alike, and provokes no sincere opposition...The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to to govern. Every class is unfit to govern...Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Tijdens zijn inaugurale hoorcollege op de Universiteit van Cambridge zei hij tegen zijn studenten: "I exhort you never to debase the moral currency or to lower the standard of rectitude, but to try others by the final maxim that governs your own lives, and to suffer no man and no cause to escape the undying penalty which history has the power to inflict on wrong." Als dat geen vrolijke opsteker is weet ik het ook niet meer.

Gore Vidal 2

In een recent interview voor Truthdig zegt de inmiddels 80 jaar oude Gore Vidal: 'I wish the word terrorist would be erased from our language. All meaning has been pumped out of it by our rulers and their media who wish to demonize everyone or thing they dislike starting with Us The People. Certainly under the name of fighting terrorism we are conducting wars with everyone on Earth, shifting feverishly from old loyal employees like Noriega and Saddam Hussein to new servants to be abandoned in due course. We are treacherous friends. Meanwhile, thanks to all this maneuvering, more and more of our freedoms are being erased.
So you would be comfortable using the word fascism to describe the direction we are heading in now?
No, most uncomfortable. After all, the original fascist Mussolini could never explain just what fascism was in his native Italy. Let’s say arbitrary, dictatorial government that says any law may be ignored if the leadership dislikes it in the interest of fighting terrorism which is… whatever the controlled media tells us that morning. Although the 9/11 bombings released all sorts of fascistic measures, as I listed in my “President Jonah" piece, the detonating trigger was not 9/11 but Oklahoma City. When the federal building was struck, the Clinton administration came up with an anti-terrorist Bill of Wrongs which is still at the heart of the USA Patriot Act and other curtailments of our liberties. And it is also clear that there is no terrorist army supported by an evil empire out there. Angry Muslims who have nothing to lose will always do some suicide bombing, to blow up our buildings and so forth, but with decent intelligence and a moderately competent government we can anticipate them and thwart them. If I had been in charge of things at the time of 9/11, I would have called the police. You don’t declare war on an innocent – two innocent countries – Afghanistan and Iraq that had nothing to do with September 11th. A bunch of crazy religious zealots from Saudi Arabia did it all, and I would go to Interpol. I’d say, “Arrest these guys,” out of religious frenzy, they’ve just blown up a part of New York, a part of Washington. Arrest them, try them, do whatever you like with them, but get them. Unfortunately we were waiting for an excuse to attack Iraq and Afghanistan, and establish American bases up and down the Middle East, for all sorts of nefarious purposes, starting, dare I say?, with oil.' Lees verder:

Iran 14

Bent u al enthousiast gemaakt voor het bombarderen van het Iraanse volk? Zo ja, lees dan nog even dit artikel van de Amerikaanse fysicus James Gordon Prather: 'ElBaradei's swan song? (...) Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei has spent more than a year investigating neo-crazy charges that Iran has conducted nuclear activities in furtherance of some military purpose at various Iranian military sites, including Lavizan, Parchin and Kolahduz. On Jan. 27, ElBaradei's deputy even confronted the Iranians with what he characterized as "information" provided him about a military plan to construct a small facility to convert uranium-oxide into uranium-tetrafluoride. The CIA claims they gleaned this "intelligence" from what they suspect is a "stolen" Iranian military laptop computer. However, ElBaradei has yet to find any "indication" of that or any other use of source or special nuclear materials in furtherance of a military purpose. And, according to the Iranians, so says ElBaradei's most recent – and final – report, which was circulated last week to the 35 members of the IAEA Board. Needless to say, that isn't what U.S. officials say, echoed by domestic and international neo-crazy media sycophants.' Lees verder: Of:


De Amerikaanse fotograaf en journalist Charles Sullivan uit West Virginia schrijft: 'Whatever Happened to Courage? For me, one of the most valuable lessons taught by history is that from time to time people rise up and fight back against horrible tyranny and against impossible odds. There are many examples: Shay’s Rebellion, the battle of Matewan, and the battle of Blair Mountain, the Ludlow Massacre, the Haymarket Strike and, more recently, the race wars that culminated in the 1960s. Many of these struggles, conspicuously absent from our history texts, are connected to labor disputes, when workers were forced to organize and to strike for more humane working conditions, including the eight hour work day. Massive strikes have played a significant role in the economic and social history of the U.S. Thus it is no coincidence that America has the bloodiest labor history of any industrialized nation. How a people react to oppression and injustice says much about what kind of people and, indeed, what kind of nation they are. In those responses is revealed the national character. Throughout much of our history, so inhumane and utterly deplorable were working conditions that workers frequently had to resort to the strike—a strategy that remains labor’s most effective and underutilized tool to this day. In the past, companies routinely hired armed thugs to prevent workers from meeting and organizing unions. Despite the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, workers did not have the legal right to form unions until Roosevelt’s ‘New Deal.’ Belonging to a union could cost you everything. Not belonging to a union assured one’s fate as an indentured servant of the company. The notorious Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency has a long history of terrorizing workers on behalf of the company bosses. Intimidation, threats, beatings, lynchings and shootings were commonplace during the industrial revolution. Those who demanded the eight hour work day, better wages and the right to form unions faced grave and palpable danger. Organizers often lived short but intense lives. It required courage to stand up to the company thugs and to fight for justice. Those who did were called reds and communists by their capitalist oppressors.' Lees verder:

Zbigniew Brezezinski

Zbigniew Brezezinski was onder president Jimmy Carter de National Security Adviseur. Hij is een geschoold geopolitiek denker, bekend ook van het fascinerende 'The Grand Chessboard,' waarin hij de strategische belangen van de Verenigde Staten beschrijft. Geen poldermodeldenken, maar de gedachtenwereld van een beleidsmaker in een imperium. Information Clearing House heeft een recent essay van hem overgenomen: 'The Dilemma Of The Last Sovereign. America needs to face squarely a centrally important new global reality: that the world’s population is experiencing a political awakening unprecedented in scope and intensity, with the result that the politics of populism are transforming the politics of power... merica’s military action against Iraq and its less dramatic but also largely solitary stance on the International Criminal Court and the Kyoto Treaty were striking assertions of the unique status of the United States as the last truly sovereign state. These steps and others like them reflect, especially after 9/11, the deep conviction of the Bush Administration that to protect America’s national interest the United States must have a free hand: The sovereign Gulliver must not be tied down by feckless Lilliputians. America’s post-9/11 political rhetoric and the related strategic reorientation involve a sharp break with five decades of bipartisanship in the shaping of U.S. global policy. Though a few leading Democrats were outspoken in their criticisms of the Administration’s formulations, the predominant inclination in the Democratic foreign policy establishment has been to tacitly accept the new strategic premises of the Bush worldview, and some Democratic leaders initially even acted as its cheerleaders. As a result, most Democratic foreign policy prescriptions acquired a “Bush lite” taste.' Lees verder:

dinsdag 7 maart 2006

Arend Jan Heerma van Voss

Arend Jan Heerma van Voss die tot 1 maart dit jaar hoofdredacteur radio van de VPRO was leest hier een afscheidspeech voor. Niet zijn eigen, maar die van een programmamaker.

Vandaag ontving ik een uitnodigingskaartje van de VPRO voor het afscheid van Arend Jan Heerma van Voss (1942) die de afgelopen tien jaar lang onopvallend voor hoofdredacteur radio heeft gespeeld. De VPRO-radiomakers leerden Heerma van Voss vooral kennen als een man met een missie, wiens eerste echte beleidsdaad was het afschaffen van het befaamde radioprogramma 'Welingelichte Kringen' en het wegwerken van presentator Joop van Tijn, omdat Joop zowel als de Kringen in zijn ogen te duur waren. Met het aantreden van AJ begonnen de magere jaren van de omroep en het verbaasde dan ook niemand dat zijn laatste beleidsdaad een bezuinigingsmaatregel betrof die dermate drastisch was dat een gerenommeerde journalist als Ton van der Graaf zijn vertrek aankondigde. AJ's hart en ziel gingen tien jaar lang uit naar het grondig schrappen, afslanken, en wegwerken van wat men in Hilversum 'overtollig vet' noemt. Zonder overdrijven kunnen we de uitgeklede omroep een bekroning noemen van AJ's devote toewijding. Het bezuinigen was voor hem een dagtaak die hij met zo'n overgave uitvoerde dat hij geen tijd meer overhield om met nieuwe inspirerende voorstellen te kunnen komen. Ondertussen dwong zijn inzet voor de goede zaak in beleidskringen alom bewondering af. (Natuurlijk in de allereerste plaats ook van zijn trouwe assistente Wil van Rijnswou, maar dit terzijde) Hoewel menigeen verbaast zal opkijken als ik zeg dat Heerma van Voss een op en top workaholic was, durf ik deze stelling toch aan. Sterker nog: hij ging zo in zijn werk op dat hij er geen afscheid van kon nemen. Werd iedere VPRO-programmamaker op zijn zestigste jaar onverwijld door hem de laan uitgestuurd, AJ zelf bleef tot zijn 63ste zitten om zijn beleid tot het bittere eind onvervaard ten uitvoer te kunnen brengen. Een gewone sterveling zou van deze zware taak grijze haren hebben gekregen, zo niet Heerma van Voss, nooit ontsnapte er ook maar 1 klacht aan zijn lippen. En als het aan hem had gelegen was hij tot zijn 65ste bij de omroep blijven plakken, niet vanwege zijn pensioensopbouw zoals kwade tongen beweren, maar om als het ware als laatste in Hilversum het licht uit te kunnen doen nadat zijn werk was voltooid. Helaas stond de VPRO-directie een langer verblijf niet toe, waardoor nu toch echt een definitief eind is gekomen aan het eruitwerken van free-lancers, het afschaffen van programma's en aan dat eeuwige vergaderen. Er zijn sceptici die zeggen dat hij een kleurloze man was. En het is waar dat sommige mensen op een bepaalde leeftijd gewoon ophouden te bestaan. Maar daar staat tegenover dat Heerma van Voss al die jaren met bewonderenswaardige moed de afbraak heeft uitgevoerd, tot volle tevredenheid van zijn opdrachtgevers. In de wandelgangen werd hij 'de divan' genoemd, een verwijzing naar het feit dat alleen degene die hem het laatst sprak een afdruk achterliet, en die bijnaam heeft hij met eer gedragen, terwijl hij stijl- en eervol zijn onmogelijke taak uitvoerde. Maar al te snel wordt vergeten dat 'de divan' een man was die een in wezen eenzame en tragische rol met verve vervulde. Nu hij op de drempel van een wel verdient pensioen staat kan hij met trots terugkijken op een tienjarige loopbaan die met recht vruchtbaar kan worden genoemd nu de VPRO-radio geheel conform het format-denken in niets meer nog verschilt van het geluid van alle andere omroepen. Daardoor is het voortbestaan van de VPRO een extra vijf, misschien wel tien jaar opgerekt. Het enige minpuntje is wellicht de hinderlijke drukfout die in de uitnodiging staat. 'Echte radio wordt bevolkt door buitenstaanders, die men ongestraft vergeten kan, zonder dat zij verdwijnen.' Het klopt dat AJ maar niet verdween, maar ik denk toch dat de tekst natuurlijk had moeten zijn: 'Echte radio werd bevolkt door betrokken mensen, die men ongestraft kan laten verdwijnen.' Met deze zin zou zijn optreden bij de VPRO kort en krachtig zijn getypeerd. Enfin, op het feest waarvoor ik uitgenodigd ben, kan deze fout alsnog nog worden rechtgezet. Want een feest wordt het. Was er voor het vertrek van echte programmamakers nauwelijks of geen geld en al helemaal niet voor een keurig gedrukt kaartje, dankzij de dankbare VPRO-directie is er voor Arend Jan's vertrek genoeg geld uitgetrokken. Op het uitnodigingskaartje staat - met die kenmerkende humor van AJ - 'Sprekers & attracties: ja, maar ook weer niet te veel.' Daarom bij deze Arend Jan en ik denk dat ik namens alle programmamakers spreek: 'It takes a lot to laugh, it takes a train to cry.'


Ik heb gestemd. Op een stemmachine. Wie controleert of die stemmen ook daadwerkelijk geteld worden, kon niemand mij vertellen. In de Verenigde Staten heeft de fabrikant van de stemmachines grote bedragen in het herverkiezingsfonds van Bush gestort. Het sterke vermoeden bestaat dat onder andere in Ohio geknoeid is met dat electronisch stemmen. Kijken wie in Nederland aandacht gaat besteden aan die machines.
Na gestemd te hebben werd ik vriendelijk uitgewuifd door de stemcontroleurs van De Brakke Grond. Leuke mensen, vriendelijk, voorkomend, blij dat ik kwam stemmen en gaarne bereid mij te vertellen op wie ik moest stemmen, toen ik daar om vroeg. Wat wil de parlementaire democratie nog meer. Nu maar hopen dat wethouder Aboutaleb, (helaas van de PVDA) fors gaat winnen en Hansje Kalt (die vertrekt) van Amsterdam Anders/De Groenen.

De Oorlogsstaat 26

Kern van een gemilitariseerde maatschappij is dat er overal recruten geronseld kunnen worden, totaan de universiteiten toe. Zo niet dan loopt het imperium gevaar. De Amerikaanse geleerde Chalmers Johnson schreef in 'The Sorrows of Empire': 'In 2000, President Clinton signed a new law promoted by the Pentagon that gave military recruiters the same access to high schools granted to college and business recruiters... in 2001 the Pentagon engineered an amendment to a new law intended to help disadvanteged students. This amended law, which President Bush called (without apparent irony) his No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, states: "Any secondary school that receives federal funds under this Act shall permit regular United States Armed Services recruitment activities on school grounds, in an manner reasonably accessible to all students of such schools." [...] As Representative John Shimkus (R-Illinois) said triumphantly, "No recruiters, no money."' Want de oorlogsstaat heeft kanonnenvoer nodig, anders kan het geen oorlogsstaat zijn. Het persbureau Associated Press bericht: 'Court upholds campus military recruiting. WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that the government can force colleges to open their campuses to military recruiters despite university objections to the Pentagon's "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays. Justices rejected a free-speech challenge from law schools and professors who claimed they should not have to associate with military recruiters or promote their campus appearances. The decision was a setback for universities that had become the latest battleground over the military policy allowing gay men and women to serve only if they keep their sexual orientation to themselves. The ruling does not, however, answer broader questions about the policy itself. Challenges are pending in courts in Boston and Los Angeles that could eventually reach the high court. Justices seemed swayed by the Bush administration's arguments that after the terrorist attacks, and during the war in Iraq, the government had a responsibility to bolster its recruitment. Chief Justice John Roberts said that campus visits are an effective recruiting tool. And, he said, "a military recruiter's mere presence on campus does not violate a law school's right to associate, regardless of how repugnant the law school considers the recruiter's message." The 8-0 decision upheld a federal law that says universities must give the military the same access as other recruiters or forfeit federal money.' Lees verder: Of:

Terminator Technologie

De neoliberale ideologie is onverzadigbaar zodra het om geld gaat. De Independent bericht: 'UK Ministers Back 'Terminator' GM CropsWebsite reveals plan to scrap prohibition on seeds that threaten Third World farmers with hunger. Ministers are trying to scrap an international agreement banning the world's most controversial genetic modification of crops, grimly nicknamed "terminator technology", a move which threatens to increase hunger in the Third World… The Government is to push for terminator crops to be considered for approval on a "case-by-case basis" at two meetings this month; its position closely mirrors the stance of the United States and other GM-promoting countries. Terminator technology, so abominated even Monsanto will not develop it, would stop hundreds of millions of poor farmers from saving seeds from their crops for resowing for the following harvest, forcing them to buy new ones from biotech companies every year. More than 1.4 billion poor Third World farmers and their families pursue the age-old practice. The technique is officially known as genetic use restriction technology (Gurt), making crops produce sterile seeds. It could be applied to any crop, including maize and rice, widely grown in developing countries. The UK working group on terminator technology, a coalition of 10 British environment and development groups, says: "It could destroy traditional farming methods, damage farmers' livelihoods and threaten food security, particularly in developing countries…" Yet ministers have refused to meet environmental groups to discuss their policy and failed publicise their position, posted two weeks ago on the website of the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). Britain will be pushing for this approach first at a meeting of EU ministers on Thursday, then at a meeting of the convention in Brazil in two weeks. Mr Meacher said: "For the first time in the history of the world, farmers would be stopped from using their own seeds. This would undermine food production and cause starvation."' Lees verder: Of:

Klimaatverandering 22

De Guardian bericht: 'Oops, we helped ruin the planet · Guide owners join to discourage 'casual flying'· Books to carry warnings on global warming. They are the gurus of globetrotting, the men who built publishing empires from their adventures and wrote guidebooks encouraging millions to venture further afield than ever before. Now the founders of the Rough Guides and Lonely Planet books, troubled that they have helped spread a casual attitude towards air travel that could trigger devastating climate change, are uniting to urge tourists to fly less. Mark Ellingham, the founder of Rough Guides, and Tony Wheeler, who created Lonely Planet after taking the hippie trail across Asia, want fellow travellers to "fly less and stay longer" and donate money to carbon offsetting schemes. From next month, warnings will appear in all new editions of their guides about the impact of flying on global warming alongside alternative ways of reaching certain destinations.' Lees verder:,,1723120,00.html Of:


  S.L. Kanthan @Kanthan2030 Western politicians are absolute clowns, but they have no self-awareness. “Iran’s actions are reckless!” Surpr...