Friday, September 30, 2011

Police Violence Wins Day for Occupy Wall Street

A bit after 10 p.m. on Saturday night in occupied Liberty Plaza, there was a celebration around the media tables. Photocopied facsimiles of Sunday’s New York Daily News were being passed around and photographed. After having held the plaza with hundreds of protesters at any given time for a week, and having kept the blocks surrounding the Stock Exchange barricaded by police all the while, the protest was finally getting serious news coverage.
“The Daily News!” I heard someone say on the plaza. “It’s because this is a sustained occupation.”
Exclaimed one of those doing media relations, “We’ve already won!”
Just a few hours earlier, it seemed certain that a full-on police dispersal would come that night. Contingency plans were being discussed by the protesters’ General Assembly. But now the Daily News cover and the presence of TV vans seemed like guardian angels, ensuring that they’d make it until morning.
So what occasioned the media’s sudden interest? To what do these protesters, who purport to represent “the 99 percent” of Americans disenfranchised by a corrupt corporate and political elite, owe these headlines?
Police violence, of course.

BRICs Begin to Crumble


Brazil central bank cuts 2011 growth forecast to 3.5% ... Brazil's central bank has lowered its forecast for economic growth to less than half of last year's, partly blaming the slowing global economy. The central bank lowered its prediction for growth in 2011 to 3.5%, from 4% that it expected in June. Brazil has boomed as other countries have stalled, growing 7.5% last year. The bank pointed to "the deterioration in the international outlook" for the downgrade, and also to spending cuts enacted by President Dilma Rousseff. – BBC News
Dominant Social Theme: The world has troubles, but things will be fine. The BRICs are solid enough for the rest of us to build on.
Free-Market Analysis: In India, the government believes it's OK for up to 70 percent of the country to live on fifty cents (US) a day; in Brazil, growth is slowing markedly (see article excerpt above); and China continues to struggle with unrest and growing doubts about its ongoing industrial boom.
The world is focused mostly on Europe's problems and to a lesser extent America's, but it's the BRICs' struggles that may ultimately prove the most damaging to what's left of the world's economy. With half of Europe unraveling and America sliding further into recession, the BRICs have seemingly proven to be a bedrock of stability, but it may be an illusory one.
We've often pointed out that the whole narrative regarding the BRICs is somewhat phony – a dominant social theme purveyed by the Anglosphere power elite that wants the world to believe "capitalism" is effective in reducing poverty and providing people hope.


Bollivia Indigenous Rights and Forest Focus: Amazon.

This post is part of our special coverage Indigenous Rights and Forest Focus: Amazon.
It has been more than a month since a group of indigenous protesters from the Indigenous Territory and National Park Isiboro Sécure (TIPNIS in Spanish) started their 500km march with the goal of reaching the seat of government in La Paz to express their opposition to the planned highway construction through their land.
For several days, the march had been halted by a group of pro-government colonizers, who had blocked the road in Yucumo insisting that the protesters stop and resume dialogue with the government of Evo Morales.
Police intervention
TIPNIS march. Image by Fernando Miranda, copyright Demotix (26/09/2011).
TIPNIS march. Image by Fernando Miranda, copyright Demotix (26/09/2011).
The police also reinforced this blockade saying that it wanted to prevent any confrontation between the marchers and those blockading the road. This stoppage also prevented supplies, such as food, water, and medicine donated by thousands of residents from the cities, from reaching the protests. Tension between the sides continued to climb, and there was a sense that there would be an impending intervention by the security forces.
A little after 5 pm local time on September 25, 2011, right when the protesters were eating a meal, it was reported that approximately 500 uniformed police officers began to use tear gas to disperse the protesters with the goal of rounding them up on buses. The Fundación Tierra (Land Foundation) maintained a live blog, where it published the early actions reported by their communications team on the ground [es].
17:18 GASIFICACIÓN. En este momento comenzó la gasificación policial a los indígenas en el campamento en el que se encuentran desde ayer.
17:25 RUMBO A LA PAZ. Se informa que en este momento la policía obliga a subir a las mujeres y niños indígenas en camionetas rumbo hacia Yucumo.
17:28 DESESPERACIÓN. En medio de la desesperación los niños lloran y las madres buscan no separarse de sus hijos mientras los efectivos policiales antimotines ingresan en el campamento indígena para desalojará a los marchistas y obligarlos a subir a camionetas que llegan desde San Borja.
[…]
17:49 ESTAMOS EN EL LUGAR. Hacemos todo lo posible para actualizar con toda la información posible pero como comprenederán no es una tarea facil y las comunicaciones son intermitentes.
17:18 GASIFICATION. Right now the police have begun tear gassing the indigenous [marchers] in the camp where they have been since yesterday.
17:25 DESTINATION: LA PAZ. It is being reported that the police are forcing indigenous women and children to board trucks towards Yucumo.
17:28 DESPERATION. In the middle of the desperation, children cry and the mothers try not to be separated from their children, while the anti-riot police enter the indigenous camp to remove the marchers and force them to board trucks that arrive from San Borja.
[…]
17:49 WE ARE ON LOCATION. We will do everything possible to update with all the possible information, but please understand that it is not an easy task and communication is intermittent.
Soon after the police repression started, information began to be reported by the media on location, even though there were reports of the police confiscating cameras and cell phones from journalists. There are conflicting reports of the number of casualties, but the television channel Red Uno reported that a 3 month-old baby died [es] apparently from the fumes from the tear gas used by the police.
Media outlet Erbol reported that at least 45 people were being treated in area hospitals, and that the Director of the San Borja hospital. Javier Jiménez, said that police had handcuffed doctors and prevented them from treating the indigenous marchers [es].
The blog TIPNIS Resiste (TIPNIS Resisting) collected a personal testimony from indigenous representative Esther Argollo, who was present at the time of the police intervention [es]. She said:
Había una mujer que estaba con tres bebés, llorando en el camino y estaba entregando sus pequeños y a mí me dijo por favor mi bebé, mi bebé y yo le tuve que socorrer a un niño de tres años que estaba llorando y que rostro estaba lastimado de repente por una caída que ha tenido. Escapamos al monte porque los policías estaban tirando gases por todos lados, no han respetado a nadie, han rodeado el campamento, han tirado las cosas, han agredido a las personas, hay gente que ha sido golpeada.
… Había muchos niños perdidos, las mamás estaban buscando a sus hijos, no se sabe cuántas personas están todavía en el monte porque han corrido, estaban de miedo. Han corrido peladitos, sin nada. […] Todos están dolidos hay mamás que han perdido a sus bebés no se sabe dónde están, hay niños desaparecidos, está oscuro, no se sabe más de la gente, están perdidos, regados por todos lados.
There was a woman that was with three babies, who was crying in the road and she was handing over the small children and told me, please, my baby, my baby, and I had to help a three year-old child that was crying and had injured his face probably by a fall. We escaped to the bush because the police was launching gas everywhere, they did not respect anyone, they surrounded the camp, threw things, and attacked people, there are people that were hit.
… There were many lost children, the mothers were looking for their children, it is not known how many people are still in the bush because they ran out of fear. They ran naked, without anything […] Everyone is hurting, there are mothers that lost their children and they don't know where they are, there are children that disappeared, it is dark, and they haven't heard from them, they are lost, scattered everywhere.
This post is part of our special coverage Indigenous Rights and Forest Focus: Amazon.
Written by Eduardo Avila

Nation of Suspects

by: Nancy Murray and Kade Crockford, Truthout and ACLU Massachusetts | Special Feature
Ten Years Later: Surveillance in the "Homeland" is a collaborative project with Truthout and ACLU Massachusetts.
In the wake of COINTELPRO and the Watergate scandal, Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas sent a letter to a group of young lawyers at the Washington State Bar Association. "As nightfall does not come all at once," he wrote, "neither does oppression. In both instances there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air - however slight - lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness."[1]
The recent dramatic expansion of intelligence collection at the federal, state and local level raises profound civil liberties concerns regarding freedoms and protections we have long taken for granted. If people generally appear unaware of "change in the air," a large part of the reason is the unparalleled resort to secrecy used by the government to keep its actions from public scrutiny. According to the new American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) report, "Drastic Measures Required," under President Obama (who had vowed to create "an unprecedented level of openness in Government" when he first took office), there were no fewer than 76,795,945 decisions made to classify information in 2010 - eight times the number made in 2001. 
There are layers of secrecy that cannot even be penetrated by most members of Congress. In the recent debate over the re-authorization of three sections of the USA Patriot Act with sunset provisions, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), who is a member of the Joint Intelligence Committee, declared in the Senate in May 2011 that there was a secret interpretation of Patriot Act powers that he could not even tell them about without disclosing classified information. [2] "When the American people find out how their government has secretly interpreted the Patriot Act, they will be stunned and they will be angry," said Wyden. The determination of the Obama administration to imitate its predecessor and maintain a wall of secrecy around anything that could be connected (however tenuously) with "national security" is evident in the zeal with which it has pursued whistleblowers and its use of the state secrets privilege in judicial proceedings, including in the recent court challenge to the FBI use of the informant Craig Monteilh to spy on mosques in Orange County, California.
During a decade of relentless fearmongering about the terrorist threat, most Americans appear to have accommodated themselves to the visible signs of change without questioning their broad implications.  If searches on the subway, body scans at the airport and a Special Operations military drill targeting a Boston neighborhood are presented as necessary to keep the nation safe, they are for them.
But what would they make of the largely invisible architecture of surveillance that treats everyone as a potential suspect? Anyone who has a bank account and makes a financial transaction, or uses a phone or a computer to send emails or browse web sites, or visits a library, books a rental car, or purchases a airline ticket is within the surveillance net. The profiles that have been compiled on individuals by commercial data brokers might well have found their way into government databases, errors and all. A database error at El Paso Intelligence Center was responsible for John and Martha King being detained at gunpoint when they flew a single-engine plane into Santa Barbara airport. The plane had been wrongly reported as stolen. Or government errors might be imported into commercial databases. Take the case of Tom Kubbany of Humboldt County, California.  He was denied a mortgage after a credit report flagged him as being on the Treasury Department's terrorism watch list. As far-fetched as it seems, he appears to have been so designated because his middle name, Hassan, matched an alias used by one of the sons of Saddam Hussein. 
In addition to the harms perpetrated by database mistakes, databases containing sensitive information have been improperly accessed for a range of purposes. Erroll Southers, a former FBI agent who had been nominated by the White House to head the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), admitted in a letter to key senators that he had committed a "grave error in judgment" when he accessed criminal records to get information about his estranged wife's new boyfriend and passed it on to the police. In Massachusetts, police across the state were discovered to have repeatedly tapped into the state's criminal records system to gather information on celebrities and high-profile citizens, such as actor Matt Damon, singer James Taylor and football star Tom Brady. Politicians make an irresistible target, including presidential candidates whose private passport files were peeked into in 2008 by private contractors working for the federal government.
Some people may feel that the risk of data being wrong or misused is still a price worth paying in these fearful times, and that, anyway, they have nothing to hide since they haven't done anything wrong. It is unlikely that eight-year-old Mikey Hicks has done anything to earn government suspicion, but he has endured extra screening at airports since he was a toddler. Babies have been kept from boarding planes. The late senator Edward Kennedy, Rep. John Lewis (D-Georgia) and people with the names Robert Johnson and Gary Smith have struggled to get off terrorism watch lists. Former US assistant attorney general Jim Robinson - once the Justice Department's chief criminal prosecutor - has been delayed and interrogated at airports despite holding top secret security clearance. Former Marines with honorable discharges are also among those who are on the "no-fly" list and are not permitted to board planes.
We don't know much about the process used to add people to watch lists, or about what constitutes a "credible tip." We do know that the use of data mining to assemble a chain of associations and digital linkages could have serious consequences for anyone flagged by an algorithm primed to detect suspicious behavior.
In November 2006, the Federal Register disclosed the existence of the Automated Targeting System, which relies on a 5.3 billion-record government database to assign a numerical "terrorism risk rating" to each traveler who leaves and enters the US by air, train or land - the higher the score, the higher the risk. The risk assessment data mining is carried out by analysts at the National Targeting Center run by Customs and Border Protection, and the risk profiles of individuals will be retained for 15 years (reduced from 40). An individual cannot see or challenge his or her rating, but that data can be shared with state, local and foreign governments and used in hiring and contracting decisions. One traveler who did manage to see the records collected on him through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request discovered in his file a note from a Border Patrol officer about the book he was carrying with him at the airport, "Drugs and Your Rights."
What is next for the right to freedom of movement? TSA head John Pistole, a former FBI agent, wants to expand from 25 to 37 the number of its Visible Intermodal Prevention Response (VIPR) task forces. These teams of TSA agents, federal air marshals, behavior detection and canine officers conducted some 8,000 searches of ports, ferries, subways, railway and bus stations, bridges, and private cars and trucks over the past year, including the warrantless search of all the passengers who were getting off an Amtrak train in Savannah, Georgia.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is meanwhile testing Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST), which purportedly would expose criminal intentions by using sensors to measure flicking eyes and rapid blinks and scan for elevated blood pressure. Detecting "malintent" to fight terrorism is the theme of many of the programs in which the DHS is pouring millions of dollars, from the Insider Threat Detection Project, which derives and validates "observable indicators of potential insider threats before the insider commits a hostile act," to the Violent Intent Modeling and Simulation project, which assists analysts in "determining whether radical groups are likely to engage in political violence."
It is not just the First Amendment rights to freedom of expression, assembly and religion and Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches and seizures that are endangered by the emerging surveillance state. When algorithms detect "pre-crime" in a world in which we are all potential suspects, we have sacrificed such core values as the presumption of innocence and the right to privacy.[3]
The more the United States is transformed into a nation of citizen spies, the greater the risk to personal privacy - the "right to be let alone," in former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis' words. This risk was well recognized in 2002, when a public outcry greeted then-attorney general John Ashcroft's Operation Terrorism Information and Prevention System (TIPS), which was intended to recruit workers with access to private homes to be the government's "eyes and ears" to gather information to be deposited in law- enforcement databases. The intensity of the opposition led Congress to explicitly cancel the program later that year, but, like the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Total Information Awareness program, it has lived on in subsequent operations involving various kinds of "terrorism liaison officers." For instance, firefighters in major cities have been trained by the DHS "to be alert for a person who is hostile, uncooperative or expressing hate or discontent with the United States" or to be on the lookout for people who have "little or no furniture other than a bed or mattress." It is not just the nation's police forces that have been trained to compile Suspicious Activity Reports (now the subject of FOIA litigation). School bus drivers are being enlisted in the fight against terrorism, and 20,000 mall security guards are being recruited to spot terrorists among shoppers, while the DHS' "If you see something, say something" campaign is being expanded from transport systems to Walmart stores, the Mall of America, hotels and the sports industry.
Along with human eyes, the nation's inhabitants are increasingly likely to be watched by high-tech surveillance camera networks erected through lavish DHS grants. Lower Manhattan has 3,000 in place as part of its "Ring of Steel" - which includes radiation detectors and automatic license plate readers to track cars.
Modern cameras are not just extremely powerful. They have the potential to be fitted with facial recognition software, eye scans, X-ray vision, radio frequency identification tags and 3-D tracking devices. The digital information they record can be immediately fed to fusion center and law enforcement databases to enhance a target's personal profile. And they are ripe for abuse: in April 2009, two FBI workers in an FBI satellite control room used surveillance cameras to spy on teenage girls as they were trying on prom gowns in a West Virginia mall.
As evidence grows of the harmful impact of surveillance technologies on personal lives and our notion of ourselves as a people, will communities organize to roll back the surveillance state? Or are "we the people" destined to become "unwitting victims of the darkness"? In our final post, we will turn to the potential for resistance.

1. September 10, 1976.
2. There is speculation that the Obama administration is using Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act for a "classified-collection program" under which it collects phone location data. See Time Magazine, June 24, 2011.
3. We have entered the territory of the 2002 film "Minority Report," which features a specialized "Department of Pre-Crime'" where psychic "precogs" discern which "criminals" to pursue before they commit crimes.

Thom Hartmann on the News - September 29, 2011

Austerity Pushes Europe to the Brink

One of the good ideas in a now-essential recent paper by Paul De Grauwe, a professor of economics at the University of Leuven in Belgium and a research fellow at the Center for European Policy Studies, was to do a head-to-head comparison of Spain and Britain to illustrate the problems the euro faces.
Here’s an update.
First, see the fiscal outlook for Spain and Britain, illustrated by the graphic on this page (using the most recent data and projections from the International Monetary Fund).
Spain started off with low debt, and despite the severity of its slump is expected to have, if anything, less increase in debt than Britain.
Yet markets are acting as if Spain is highly risky, while treating British bonds as a safe haven, like American or German bonds.
To some extent this may reflect the reality that British growth prospects are better because of the depreciated pound, and also the fact that Britain won’t have to deflate the way Spain will, thanks to Spain’s adopting the euro. But I believe that Mr. De Grauwe is right that the most important factor is that Britain, which can turn to the Bank of England for financing if necessary, doesn’t face the risk of a run by creditors the way Spain does.
What’s needed, clearly, is for Europe — and, ultimately, that probably means the European Central Bank — to provide for Spain and Italy the kind of backstop countries with their own currencies can provide for themselves. Without that, the whole euro system is at risk of unraveling, not over the course of years, but over the course of a few weeks.
Oh, and Britain should give thanks to Gordon Brown, the former chancellor and prime minister, who kept the nation out of the euro zone.
Stimulus Spending And Double Standards
Just a quick thought: in much of the discussion about economic policy these days, the presumption is that stimulus had its chance, it failed, and that’s that. Never mind those of us who say that we actually didn’t do nearly enough — and were saying that from the beginning, not as an after-the-fact rationalization. It’s one strike and you’re out.
Meanwhile, the pain caucus keeps telling us that austerity is the way to restore confidence, and confidence keeps not being restored. Ireland, for example, has imposed savage austerity, yet the interest rate on its 10-year bonds is still 6.7 percentage points higher than Germany’s, down from recent peaks but still far above its level when the austerity program began.
Yet somehow nobody in the pain caucus says “Hey, this was supposed to work but it didn’t, so our theory is all wrong.” Instead, they just insist that we double down, continuing the beatings until morale improves.
Just saying.
Truthout, Paul Krugman

European Union May Become Part of Universal Caliphate

"Let me be clear: the United States strongly supports Turkey's bid to become a member of the European Union," Obama pledged in a speech at the Turkish parliament.
More of Obama's anti-American, anti-freeedom foreign policy. Insane. Should the increasingly devout Muslim country ever gain entry into the EU under current membership regulations, it would,
due to its high population, put it in a similar position in the decision making process as the leading countries in Europe. It would be represented in all European institutions at the same level as Germany, the United Kingdom and France, and would take up a dominant position in institutions and decision making processes.
In other words, the European Union would be part of the universal caliphate. Turkey has reverted (no pun intended), and dreams Ottoman domination and Islamic imperialism.
Pamela Geller

"Something Has Started": Michael Moore on Occupy Wall St. Protests That ...

The Best Among Us

There are no excuses left. Either you join the revolt taking place on Wall Street and in the financial districts of other cities across the country or you stand on the wrong side of history. Either you obstruct, in the only form left to us, which is civil disobedience, the plundering by the criminal class on Wall Street and accelerated destruction of the ecosystem that sustains the human species, or become the passive enabler of a monstrous evil. Either you taste, feel and smell the intoxication of freedom and revolt or sink into the miasma of despair and apathy. Either you are a rebel or a slave.
To be declared innocent in a country where the rule of law means nothing, where we have undergone a corporate coup, where the poor and working men and women are reduced to joblessness and hunger, where war, financial speculation and internal surveillance are the only real business of the state, where even habeas corpus no longer exists, where you, as a citizen, are nothing more than a commodity to corporate systems of power, one to be used and discarded, is to be complicit in this radical evil. To stand on the sidelines and say “I am innocent” is to bear the mark of Cain; it is to do nothing to reach out and help the weak, the oppressed and the suffering, to save the planet. To be innocent in times like these is to be a criminal. Ask Tim DeChristopher
Choose. But choose fast. The state and corporate forces are determined to crush this. They are not going to wait for you. They are terrified this will spread. They have their long phalanxes of police on motorcycles, their rows of white paddy wagons, their foot soldiers hunting for you on the streets with pepper spray and orange plastic nets. They have their metal barricades set up on every single street leading into the New York financial district, where the mandarins in Brooks Brothers suits use your money, money they stole from you, to gamble and speculate and gorge themselves while one in four children outside those barricades depend on food stamps to eat. Speculation in the 17th century was a crime. Speculators were hanged. Today they run the state and the financial markets. They disseminate the lies that pollute our airwaves. They know, even better than you, how pervasive the corruption and theft have become, how gamed the system is against you, how corporations have cemented into place a thin oligarchic class and an obsequious cadre of politicians, judges and journalists who live in their little gated Versailles while 6 million Americans are thrown out of their homes, a number soon to rise to 10 million, where a million people a year go bankrupt because they cannot pay their medical bills and 45,000 die from lack of proper care, where real joblessness is spiraling to over 20 percent, where the citizens, including students, spend lives toiling in debt peonage, working dead-end jobs, when they have jobs, a world devoid of hope, a world of masters and serfs.
The only word these corporations know is more. They are disemboweling every last social service program funded by the taxpayers, from education to Social Security, because they want that money themselves. Let the sick die. Let the poor go hungry. Let families be tossed in the street. Let the unemployed rot. Let children in the inner city or rural wastelands learn nothing and live in misery and fear. Let the students finish school with no jobs and no prospects of jobs. Let the prison system, the largest in the industrial world, expand to swallow up all potential dissenters. Let torture continue. Let teachers, police, firefighters, postal employees and social workers join the ranks of the unemployed. Let the roads, bridges, dams, levees, power grids, rail lines, subways, bus services, schools and libraries crumble or close. Let the rising temperatures of the planet, the freak weather patterns, the hurricanes, the droughts, the flooding, the tornadoes, the melting polar ice caps, the poisoned water systems, the polluted air increase until the species dies. 
Who the hell cares? If the stocks of ExxonMobil or the coal industry or Goldman Sachs are high, life is good. Profit. Profit. Profit. That is what they chant behind those metal barricades. They have their fangs deep into your necks. If you do not shake them off very, very soon they will kill you. And they will kill the ecosystem, dooming your children and your children’s children. They are too stupid and too blind to see that they will perish with the rest of us. So either you rise up and supplant them, either you dismantle the corporate state, for a world of sanity, a world where we no longer kneel before the absurd idea that the demands of financial markets should govern human behavior, or we are frog-marched toward self-annihilation. 

Those on the streets around Wall Street are the physical embodiment of hope. They know that hope has a cost, that it is not easy or comfortable, that it requires self-sacrifice and discomfort and finally faith. They sleep on concrete every night. Their clothes are soiled. They have eaten more bagels and peanut butter than they ever thought possible. They have tasted fear, been beaten, gone to jail, been blinded by pepper spray, cried, hugged each other, laughed, sung, talked too long in general assemblies, seen their chants drift upward to the office towers above them, wondered if it is worth it, if anyone cares, if they will win. But as long as they remain steadfast they point the way out of the corporate labyrinth. This is what it means to be alive. They are the best among us.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

US Navy Surrenders Atlantic Seaboard to Iran

Iran to Send Warships into US Waters

"The Navy of the Iranian Army will have a powerful presence near the United States borders"
More of Obama's brilliant! sagacious! hope! change! post-American foreign policy. The man is a disaster. And America is in trouble.
Iran navy
Our enemies know they have a friend in the White House. He will do nothing in response to this unequivocal act of Islamic imperialsim and aggression.
Iran planning to send ships near U.S. waters CNN International
(CNN) -- Iran plans to send ships near the Atlantic coast of the United States, state-run Islamic Republic News Agency reported Tuesday, quoting a commander.
"The Navy of the Iranian Army will have a powerful presence near the United States borders," read the headline of the story, in Farsi.
"Commander of the Navy of the Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran broke the news about the plans for the presence of this force in the Atlantic Ocean and said that the same way that the world arrogant power is present near our marine borders, we, with the help of our sailors who follow the concept of the supreme jurisprudence, shall also establish a powerful presence near the marine borders of the United States," the story said. The reference to the "world arrogant power" was presumably intended to refer to the United States.
IRNA cited the force's website as saying that the announcement was made by Adm. Habibollah Sayari on the 31st anniversary of the Iran-Iraq war.
Iran's president goes on offensive
NY Times clown Nick Kristof: Ahmadinejad lacks charisma
U.S. Defense Department officials had no immediate reaction to Tuesday's announcement.

The Pentagon is a sitting Duck

What's it going to take, America? How many have to die in a jihadi attack for people to understand that it's the ideology, stupid? Has the media and the O-minstration blamed the Islamophobes yet?
Ashland man arrested for terror plot WHDH (hat tip Johana) ASHLAND, Mass -- A 26-year-old man from Massachusetts was arrested on terrorism charges.
Federal agents say he was plotting to bomb buildings in Washington, D.C. Two of the suspect’s apparent targets were the Capitol and the Pentagon.
Authorities say he was using a storage unit in Framingham to build his weapons.
The Department of Justice took Rezwan Ferdaus, a Northeastern University graduate into custody. They say he was planning to destroy the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol using a remote controlled aircraft filled with plastic explosives.
Authorities say he had rented a storage facility in Framingham under a false name where he planned to use the unit to build his attack plan and maintain all his equipment.
In recorded conversations with the government’s cooperating witness that began in January 2011, Ferdaus said he planned to attack the Pentagon using a small drone aircraft filled with explosives and guided by GPS equipment.
In April he allegedly expanded his attack to include the U.S. Capitol. In the affidavit, Ferdaus is quoted as looking for, “…A connection that would be able to gather, ah, some material where we can build some of the explosive enough to take out a target that’s like three football fields, say a radius of one or two blocks?”
He also made his goal clear to the cooperating witness saying, “Because that, that’s the target to eliminate and terrify all enemies of Allah. We have this project started…This is, this is what we have to do. This is the righteous way… [to] terrorize enemies of Allah.”
Authorities say Ferdaus was upset at the death of Osama Bin Laden in May. He was recorded as referring to the terrorist leader as “our boss.”
Ferdaus is also accused of trying to work with Al-Qaeda to carry out attacks on U.S. soldiers stationed overseas.
 Pamela Geller, Atlas Shrugs

Palestinian Authorities Paid Muslims to Riot that Murdered a Jewish Dad & Baby

IDF: Palestinian Authority Paid Muslims to Riot INN
The Palestinian Authority paid many of the Arabs who rioted after last week’s UN session, in violation of PA agreements not to incite.
The Palestinian Authority and international groups paid many of the Arabs who rioted after last week’s United Nations session where a motion was submitted for recognizing the PA as a country, the IDF reports.
The rock throwing and rioting led to the death of this father and his baby.
Asher
And the judeophobic MTA says this is not savage.
Israeli Father, Baby Killed After Palestinians Threw Rocks at Their Car, Causing it to Overturn Blaze
Israeli police said Sunday that 25-year-old Asher Palmer and his infant son Yonatan were killed in a terrorist attack after Palestinians threw rocks at their car, causing it to overturn on a highway. It happened Friday near the Israeli settlement Kiryat Arba. Authorities originally said the wreck was due to driver error, not stone throwing, prompting accusations of a police cover up so as not to “fan the flames” of a potential Palestinian protest.
Police re-labeled it a terror attack after further investigation and an autopsy on Asher Palmer’s body revealed injuries consistent with a rock hurling, including fractures to his skull.
Arutz Sheva reported:
Among the evidence that at first failed, for unknown reasons, to convince police that terrorists may have been involved: a hole in the front windshield of the car, a massive rock found in the front seat with human blood on it, a tear in fabric of the steeling wheel cover and dust indicating a blow from the rock, and damage to Asher Palmer’s face suggesting an impact unrelated to the crash.
Asher Palmer's car overturned, killing him and his infant son. (Media credit: Y Net News)

WPIX News: Pamela Geller Files Free Speech Lawsuit Against MTA

Honoring Americans Who Died

“Don’t they realize that this is a very sensitive thing, that Sean was murdered down here by Islamic terrorists? He was murdered because some Islamic terrorists felt that Sean was an infidel. … I think that the people proposing to build this are being very intolerant of American traditions, the American tradition of honoring her hero dead.”

Charles Wolfe

He is the husband of Katherine Wolfe, whose office was on the 97th floor of the north tower.

“In my opinion, a lot of people were manipulated. … This is an emotional thing for not just 9/11 family members, 9/11 is an emotional thing for a lot of people in this country… I would say that it’s highly likely that those people on the far right who are doing this knew there was an emotional hot button they could go to, to press.”

Lee Hanson

He lost his son, Peter, his daughter-in-law Sue and his granddaughter Christine on the second plane.

“If you go around the United States today, there are people that don’t know too much more about the issue except that they see it as a victory mosque. And I think it may be unfortunate… but the whole approach to it was so poor that I think it’s poisoned the idea. I don’t think there’ll ever be a mosque built there.”

PBS Ground Zero Mosque Mock 911 Victims

Rosaleen Tallon, brave voice and sister to hero, firefighter and 911 murder victim, Sean Tallon, had this to say about the PBS propaganda piece:
Nothing El-Gamal said throughout this whole documentary could erase how Mr. Hanson described that he can still sometimes feel his little granddaughter sitting into the crook of his elbow on his lap, although she was murdered ten years ago, along with his son and daughter-in-law on one of the hijacked planes.  No matter what El-Gamal said, those faces of the murdered that smiled out from those family pictures in the beginning, kept coming back into my mind.  I could not get the picture of my brother out of my mind as I watched El Gamal feeling sorry for himself. 

El-Gamal can turn on and off those fake tears.  But yesterday, September 27, 2011 was my brother's birthday and he would have turned 37.  Yesterday, my mom shed a tear for Sean and all the possibilities that died with him 10 years ago.  Her tears are real. 

It is still so painfully obvious that building a giant mosque and islamic cultural center at Ground Zero is like forcing a square peg into a round hole.    You may have the right to do it, but it is not the right thing to do.  That is why, Mr. El Gamal, it is all so hard for you.  It is just plain "not right".
She is the sister of firefighter Sean Tallon, who died on duty in the north tower.

“Don’t they realize that this is a very sensitive thing, that Sean was murdered down here by Islamic terrorists? He was murdered because some Islamic terrorists felt that Sean was an infidel. … I think that the people proposing to build this are being very intolerant of American traditions, the American tradition of honoring her hero dead.”

Happy New Year 1940

L'shana tova, may you & your family be inscribed and sealed in the Book of Life in this the Jewish new year, 5772.
As we gather to celebrate Rosh Hashana tonight, I want to wish all of my readers a sweet and happy new year. May G-d watch over and protect the Jewish homeland in these dark and dangerous days. My friend Roy sent me these inspiring words for the new year, hoping for "a new beginning that calls on Jews everywhere to rekindle our solidarity with Israel and all fellow Jews to be true to Isaiah's admonition, read this week in synagogues throughout the world: 'For Zion's sake, I will not hold my peace; and for Jerusalem's sake, I will not rest.'"

Jewish_new_year Jewish_new_year 

Michael Coren with Pamela Geller - side with the civilized man

Prager University: Is Israel an Apartheid State?

Prager University: Is Israel an Apartheid State?

International Coalition Resonsibility to Protect

The ICR to P will bring together NGOs from all regions of the world to strengthen normative consensus for RtoP, further the understanding of the norm, push for strengthened capacities to prevent and halt genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity and mobilize NGOs to push for action to save lives in RtoP country-specific situations.
If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, sounds like a duck and even poops like a duck, is it still a duck when it takes off it’s full-body mask and sticks a machine gun in your mouth, but instead of pulling the trigger, it puts you in chains ?
——————–
This is the work of a gentleman I don’t know, but have communicated with a few times.  Mr. Clausen is a true lover of freedom, Rights and the responsibilities that go along with it all, including the danger in which taking a stand places him.  His website is called “EuropeNews.dk”
My friends, if you don’t believe Veronica Estrada about The International Coalition For The Responsibility To Protect……. If Mr. Bushmills hasn’t spoken eloquently and forcefully enough on his own findings………… If my various rants about “it’s coming” haven’t hit home………… If you’re still of the mind that “it can’t happen here”…………..
Read……………..
http://europenews.dk/en/node/28957
The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, also known as EuroMed, has been pretty much under the radar for 15 years. When it caused some public discussion in 2007, it was renamed ”Union for the Mediterranean”, and quietly permitted to proceed. Not much was heard of it, but now EuropeNews has the scoop: It is being established now – and we have a window of merely 14 days to protest it.
The news is tucked away in this discreet ANSAmed news item:
http://www.ansamed.info/en/news/ME01.XAM15374.html
MED UNION: JORDANIAN MASADEH APPOINTED AS SECRETARY
Ahmad Khalaf Masadeh, Jordanian ambassador to Brussels, has today been appointed as secretary general of the Mediterranean Union.
==============
Veronica, Vassar…… Help.  I’m going to offer what little I can help to Mr. Clausen and Pam Geller, then start digging as well.
Between this and what I think is an obvious tie-in to ICR2P, my gut tells me we’re actually arriving into “people are gonna get disappeared” territory……. Yes, I’m serious.
Kenny Solomon
DC Works For Us
www.dcworksforus.com

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Thom Hartmann on the News - Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"GET HER OUT OF HERE!" Lawrence O'Donnell Kicks Orly Taitz Off His Show!

Lawrence O'Donnell on Police Brutality at Occupy Wall Street

Gutting Public Education

Corporate Media and Larry Summers Team Up to Gut Public Education: Beyond Education for Illiteracy, Vulgarity and a Culture of Cruelty
Henry A. Giroux, Truthout: "As the left slid into organizing around mostly single-issue movements since the 1980s, the right moved in a different direction, mobilizing a range of educational forces and wider cultural apparatus as a way of addressing broader ideas that appealed to a wider public and issues that resonated with their everyday lives. Tax reform, the role of government, the crisis of education, family values and the economy, to name a few issues, were wrenched out of their progressive legacy and inserted into a context defined by the values of the free market, an unbridled notion of freedom and individualism and a growing hatred for the social contract."

Egyptian Women and the Revolution

I have a piece in Newsweek magazine about Egyptian women and the revolution. I started working on this in March. Perhaps because I was focusing on the topic, I've been particularly aware of women's absence from the post-Mubarak decision-making process.
The morning of January 28 I was sitting in a room of activists, and quite a few of them were women. There were women in the street that day, and there were a lot of women in Tahrir.  But women have been largely missing, not just from the two most influential organizations of the post-Mubarak era -- the army and the Muslim Brotherhood -- but from opinion columns and the podiums of press conferences, from the courtrooms and of course from all the positions that have yet to open to them, such as being governors or university deans or heads of state institutions. We have one female minister, Fayza Abul Naga, and she is a Mubarak hold-over. (The one area where women are quite influential is the media, with female TV talk show presenters becoming quite well-known public personalities).

Occupy Wall Street protesters punished by NYPD

Occupy Wall Street Protests

Occupy Wall St S24 Police Riot

No joke circus in London

stating an intention to be a suicide bomber

They're accused of "stating an intention to be a suicide bomber" and planning to construct a homemade explosive device.
Two have been charged with making a martyrdom film and travelling to terror camps in Pakistan — where their training included how to make bombs, poison and weapons.
Mohammed Rizwan, 32, appeared before magistrates in London today charged with failing to disclose information about acts of terrorism between July 29 and September 19.
He was remanded in custody until later this month when he will appear before Westminster magistrates.
Bahader Ali, 28, was also accused of failing to disclose information and "arranging the availability of property for terrorist purposes".
Ali, who gave no indication of plea, was refused bail.
His brother, Ashik, 26, was also remanded in custody and will appear later this month with co-accused Irfan Nasser, 30, Irfan Khalid, 26, and Rahim Ahmed, 25.
They are accused of one count of "engaging in conduct in preparation for terrorist attacks".
Nasser, Khalid and Ali are accused of planning a bombing campaign, stating an intention to become a suicide bomber, collecting money for terrorism, making or helping to make a home-made bomb and recruiting people for terrorism.
Nasser and Khalid are also accused of travelling to Pakistan for terror training including bomb-making, weapons and poison-making as well as making a "martyrdom" film.
Ahmed is accused of helping others travel to Pakistan for terror training, collecting money for terrorism and investing and managing money for terrorist acts.

Monday, September 26, 2011

FOX News: Pamela Geller on the Sean Hannity Show - Israel, UN and War Ag...

2008 Wall Street meltdown (casino capitalism).

The new American century was swiftly throttled in three hubris-filled stages: 9/11 (blowback); the invasion of Iraq (preemptive war); and the 2008 Wall Street meltdown (casino capitalism).

PEACEFUL FEMALE PROTESTORS PENNED IN THE STREET AND MACED!- #OccupyWallS...

BHO Fires Up Voters

Gearing up for a 2012 fight, President Obama took some swings at the GOP this weekend. Republicans, he said at a Washington state fundraiser, would “cripple America.” In California, Obama swiped his potential challenger Rick Perry, labeling him a “governor whose state is on fire, denying climate change.” The Daily Beast’s Michael Tomasky on how the president is cranking up his base—and how his feisty rhetoric could help him win over swing voters, too.

NOT AGAIN
Congress was supposed to be off this week, but lawmakers remained in Washington as they scramble, once again, to avert a government shutdown. On Monday, the Senate is expected to vote on Majority Leader Harry Reid’s funding plan, which includes disaster-relief money without an offset spending cut—likely making it D.O.A. with House Republicans. The House GOP had passed a bill including emergency funding last week but paid for it by cutting energy programs popular with Democrats. Disaster aid could run out Tuesday, and the shutdown could begin as soon as this weekend.


Tribes of Europe Might Explode


The Greek tragedy: no money, no hope ... Despairing middle classes could be the biggest threat to Greece's future, writes Paul Mason in Athens ... Dmitris Andreou made the last sale out of his small estate agents business in June. His wife Mary, makes her living preparing high-school students for English exams. But her living has dried up. Their savings are exhausted, their disposable income has dropped by about 50 per cent in two years, and they are angry. – UK Telegraph
Dominant Social Theme: Once the Greeks – and the PIGS generally – get used to austerity, the Eurozone will rebound.
Free-Market Analysis: This story is interesting because it is written by a mainstream journalist and actually tells the truth about Greece – that Greece, or its citizens, are ready to explode. One can extrapolate from Greece to the rest of the EU, or at least its Southern half. Push "austerity" a little further, as a solution to the "sovereign debt" crisis and all Europe may begin to detonate.
It is not just the Southern PIGS which are reeling. It is Northern Europe, too. The Northerners, especially Germany, do not want to pay for Southern profligacy. And Southern Europeans are well aware the fault does not lie with them, especially, but with elite political and financial interests.
It was not the average Greek or Spaniard who borrowed the money that has put the South in debt. The analyses of the European situation make it sound as if each individual was guilty. Not true. The Anglosphere banks arranged the lines of credit that are throttling the PIGS now.

Dip Your Apple - Fountainheads Rosh Hashanah

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Bill Maher - Today's Republican Voter w/ Keith Olbermann

09-22-11 6 - "Justice" in Georgia, with Liliana Segura - Countdown with ...

Mubarak's trial

Field Marshall Tantawi (the senior army man in charge of the country) testified in Mubarak's trial this morning. We don't know what he said, because the court session are closed and there is a gag order on the press (how can what happened during the revolution be a state secret?).
I was in a cab listening to a state TV reporter excitedly (not) report on the proceedings, when my driver burst out: "They'll never be held to account!" He said his mother lives near Torah prison and from her balcony they can see the Mubarak sons and cronies being held there hang out in the courtyard. He says they have laptops, cell phones, play soccer, have visitors, get food deliveries.. I can't confirm his account of course, but there have been similar stories in the press.
"Pasha on the outside, pasha on the inside," he said. "It's Sharm El Sheikh in Torah." If only the were treated like regular prisoners, he said -- beaten, humiliated, made to go hungry and sleep on the floor -- then they'd confess and tell us where the money they stole is.

The Great Euro Swindle

The Telegraph has carried an article entitled "The Great Euro Swindle" by Peter Oborne and Frances Weaver who have written a book on the subject (Guilty Men) from which the article is excerpted. They ask a good question, which is why those who have backed the unraveling euro – especially Europe's and Britain's leaders – are not exposed to more criticism and professional and personal ramifications from what has occurred.
One might think, given the extent of the disaster and the chaos it is causing, that there would more of an outcry to examine who was really behind the thing. In fact, as the euro and perhaps the EU continue to crumble, there will be attempts made to hold people accountable. But I will state for the record that these attempts will not be complete. Somebody, or perhaps several, will "take the fall" for everyone else. Oborne and Weaver, despite their evident sincerity, are seemingly feeding into this meme.
Unfortunately, from what I can tell, as furious as they apparently are, they are not willing to extend the blame to those who truly need to be held accountable. Instead, they are focused on what might be termed the "enablers" – those who carried out EU and euro policies and backed them but were not responsible for the concept itself, or its realization.
This is an old game. The Anglosphere power elite – a group of impossibly wealthy families that control the world'scentral banks – is evidently and obviously responsible for much of what has gone wrong. But as the Euro project continues its decline, we will no doubt find blame is being laid elsewhere ... on highly placed functionaries. Of course it's important, nonetheless, and a contribution to how things work. So let's review them before returning to our main thesis.
The first example is the Financial Times.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Cool Men Don't Buy Sex Campaign

Cool Men Don't Buy Sex Campaign is a year long campaign in India. It's aimed at educating and engaging the public of India to stop the purchase of sex. We're working with groups across the country to get the 10,000 signatures needed to amend legislation. Join our campaign by signing our petition:
http://apneaap.org/cmdbs/sign-petition
As long as the demand for purchased sex flourishes, traffickers and buyers will always find a supply of vulnerable women and girls to exploit. Join us in calling for an end to the demand for sex trafficking.

Breaking news from Bahrain: Police Attack young women 23-9-2011

Statement by Anne Bayefsky at Durban II

Israel & UN Double-Standards: Durban III @ New York City, www.durbanwatc...

Two elections are taking place in the Gulf

Two elections are taking place in the Gulf — in Bahrain and in the United Arab Emirates — on Saturday. The political environments could not be more different, but the results of both elections are not expected to change much. First, let's look at the dynamics in Bahrain. Tomorrow, a second part of this post will look at the UAE.
In Bahrain the election was called to replace the 18 seats formerly held by the main Shiite opposition group, Al Wefaq, which resigned earlier this year protesting the government’s crackdown. Al Wefaq and five other opposition groups are boycotting the vote. Several candidates have already won unopposed. Al Wefaq said it was powerless against the government and since the group has walked out of parliament, the government has not conceded anything, they say. How could they return under such conditions?
“We were not able to help the people when the crackdown started,” according to Matar Ebrahim Matar, a former Al Wefaq MP, who himself was arrested, held and beaten in detention — an accusation the government denies. “The government doesn’t listen to anybody so even if we are inside (the parliament), the government are ignoring all those who are speaking about violations, people who are fired from their jobs, tortured inside the jail and the patients who cannot reach medical services,” he said. “The denial will not stop the issues.”
So much has happened in the Gulf kingdom since February when the unrest began. More than three dozen people are dead, roughly 5,000 were injured and 3,000 lost their jobs. As a percentage of the population (there are roughly 620,000 Bahrainis and 650,000 expatriates) the losses are enormous.
A “National Dialogue” was launched in the summer to discuss reforms without preconditions. Al Wefaq stopped participating in the talks saying the dialogue did not address the roots of the problem and was not credible.
Since then mass rallies are held every week by Al Wefaq. Other anti-government groups are also holding weekly events. Nightly clashes in the Shiite areas continue, with deaths occurring every few weeks. The population remains dissatisfied and no meaningful doors are open for dialogue. Calls for civil disobedience have begun as organizers asked anti-government demonstrators to use their cars to block roads and bring the capital to a standstill on Wednesday. This week, the government tried to show it was sympathetic and King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa issued a royal decree establishing a compensation fund for the victims of the violence.
There is no going back to the way things were. An opposition observer, who cannot be named for security reasons, told me:
If Al Wefaq enters into parliament the entire load of the pain will come on their shoulders. All the Shiite people… will blame them or say okay now you’re representatives you have to extract our rights, you have to do something for us, which they cannot. The system is tightly governed that you cannot even question the most junior minister — that is like an impossibility.”
Voter turnout is expected to be low with one analyst estimating 15 percent. In contrast to the 2010 election when Al Wefaq ran and turnout was high - in part because a media campaign against Al Wefaq backfired and the group won additional anti-government support. In 2010, “we were trying at that time to send a positive message that we are willing to take steps to contribute in whatever the government is doing,” Matar, the Al Wefaq MP, said. “But the government didn’t allow even very small changes in the constitution.”
Not everyone sees it that way. This is what Jamal Fakhro, the First Deputy Chairman of the Shura Council, argues:
The opposition they have their own understanding of negotiation of dialogue or discussions. They have been offered everything. They have been given their right to stand for the election. The voters have supported them, have given them their 18 seats out of the 40. And still they believe they are not very well represented… The opposition are saying ‘either you do it in accordance to whatever I want or I will start to work on the general public to bring upset to the community and unrest to Bahrain’… They are not able, unfortunately, to sit across a table and discuss and have a proper dialogue or place their thoughts at the parliament and fight for them.
The result of the election is known before voting begins, as the opposition is out. A more important date to watch will be at the end of October, when an independent commission, set up by the king, will issue its report on the events that unfolded in Bahrain. The king has said “the Commission is free to make any recommendations.”

Arabs Throw Rocks at 20 Month Old Baby

"TUNISIANS" ATTACKING LOCALS & POLICE/ISLAND IN FEAR(LAMPEDUSA,ITALY)

Pamela Geller on WPIX: MTA Bans Pro Israel Subway Ads, Approves Anti-Sem...

My circus poster outside the UN (photo)

EU Rehn: Will Not Allow Greek Default



The EU's Implacable Rigor … EU Rehn: Will Not Allow Greek Default, Euro-Zone Exit ... The European Union will support Greece, but the debt-stricken country needs to do more to implement the promises it has made, the EU commissioner for economic and monetary affairs said Thursday. "An uncontrolled default or exit of Greece from the euro zone would cause enormous economic and social damage, not only to Greece but to the European Union as a whole, and have serious spillovers to the world economy," Olli Rehn said according to the text of his speech at the Peterson Institute in Washington. "We will not let this happen." – Wall Street Journal

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Baltic Way that Moved the World:

Finally, Anna Zemblicka from Latvia remembers August 23, 1989, the day two million Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians joined hands to form a massive human chain. It was The Baltic Way that Moved the World:
The Baltic Way encouraged democratic movements throughout the Soviet Union and with it, international society payed attention to the Baltic region in a great extent. Within a year and a half, all three Baltic countries formally declared their independence. By September 1991, the world’s governments recognized their independence.
Historians and other experts claim that the Baltic Way “created a precedent that was and hopefully will be, followed by a number of countries all over the world – the triumph of humanity over totalitarianism in a peaceful way”.
The The SunFlower Post will publish more stories throughout the month. Check back at the website or follow the project on Twitter and Facebook to read what bloggers from other countries will add to the peace series.

the end of war: - Turkey

From Turkey, Neslihan Çiflik wonders about the end of war:
I haven’t been present in any period of war during my life. I’m watching death like watching a movie on TV. My consciousness can’t accept reality. Even I can’t put myself in their place. I can’t think that it could also happen to me.
Unfortunately, there is war with or without guns.
It’s embarrassing to sit safely at home and write a letter of peace.
You know why? Because it sounds terrible that a human is killing some other, more than when someone is killed somewhere, far away. I’m not dying with this dying person. I’m getting dirty with the killer and I’m carrying this disgrace in my skin, in my blood.
Maybe I’m collapsing someone’s safe house, stealing his or her breath and his or her smile in this world. And maybe stealing her children’s smile as well.
I couldn’t believe that I can do or may do all of these. It’s a terrible shame.
This can’t be our aim to be born. My existence can’t give any pain to another person.
According to me that war is unbelievable from these sides. People die of disease or disaster. But this is not a disease, this is not a disaster, this is not faith.
Why do I do this? Our old world needs peace. Human, nations, environment, animals and herbs, and states are tired.

Where does Peace Begin? Russia

Where Does Peace Begin? This is one of the eternal questions that Natalia Semicheva constantly asks herself. She is from Russia, a country that according to the Global Peace Index 2011 occupies 147th place among 153 peaceful states, this means a high level of violence and crime. She argues that the more aggressive you are, the more you start to understand peace:
Not in the UN resolutions, but in our families. Peace should come from your mother’s hug, from your husband’s kiss, from the first steps of your child. We should start focusing in our relatives and friends, respecting our parents, taking care of our children. Before loving humanity, we should first learn to love each other in our little family world. Only then we could share that inner peace with everybody that we meet in our life.

The Sunflower Post, China

The high-speed train was supposed to be a gift for the nation, yet officers were getting commands to fasten the project. One example is that a driver only spent 10 days learning – and normally it would take him about 3 or 4 months in training.
EVERYTHING is fast in China. Students hurry to find a job and get promotion, workers hurry to make more products, women hurry to find a husband and get married, officers hurry to make the GDP number shining and good for their promotion. We are moving towards a better society, for we think we are moving faster and developing.
Yes, developing is the key word, especially when an economy is emerging. That is the only focus today for the country.
“Please my China, slow down and wait for the people to follow up, do not focus too much on just hurrying up.” is a popular phrase, widely spread.
We have peace now, with no war or conflict in the country.
We have peace now, so that the State focuses on developing our economy.
But how about inner peace? Could the State somehow slow down a little bit, to catch up with what the citizens really need, as family values, as food security, as trust among the nation, as no corruption. Are people allowed to slow down a little bit, to find peace?
That could also be a question for individuals. I dare you slow down, to make a choice among all the good stuff you desire, and find what you really care for? To find your inner peace…

The Sunflower Post, Mexico

Calderon focused on the drug war problems and situation that has grown during his presidency, as well as the economical crisis that Mexico faces. He focused on insecurity, on the moment of confusion and sadness that people are living today. He focused on “a better tomorrow”. But … what about today?
I felt he did not gave importance on his actions for achieving peace, which is crucial at this moments of uncertainty. I believe his intentions are good – trying to defeat drug-dealing crimes, but we need to pay attention on the roots of the problem.
Educated children and values are crucial to achieve peace. When we have young people involved in the drug war this is because they did not have a proper education, they did not have enough opportunities to do something else and earn money in a different way. They are inside this cycle, one that will not let you get out easily.
Mexico, Andrea Arzaba

the state of Georgia executed Troy Davis Wednesday night

After a three-and-a-half hour delay, the state of Georgia executed Troy Davis Wednesday night, pronouncing him dead at 11:08 p.m. Davis had survived the day of his execution three times before when courts issued stays, but the U.S. Supreme Court declined to intervene this time, announcing its denial of a stay without explanation at about 10:20 p.m. Strapped to the gurney, Davis lifted his head and looked at Mark and William McPhail, the son and brother of the police officer Davis was convicted of killing in 1989. “I am sorry for your loss,” Davis said. “I did not personally kill your son, father and brother. I am innocent.” The Daily Beast’s Mansfield Frazier on the serious concerns about Davis’s guilt—and how to move forward with the death-penalty debate in America.
Daily Beast

'Routed' isn't my description: It's YNet's.

'Routed' isn't my description: It's YNet's.
The Israeli delegation to the UN General Assembly expressed satisfaction on Wednesday after the first day of the international gathering in New York.

"The Palestinians were routed and they are about to fold. Not everything is sealed but it is clear that they have received a significant blow from the American and French positions," they said.
The French proposed a one-year map for 'Palestinian statehood' - that would work out great with Obama's reelection schedule.

But the real miracle here is that the World is finally starting to awaken to the reality of what a 'Palestinian state' would engender. This is from the first link again.
According to sources in the delegation, the Americans and Europeans are beginning to understand the harsh reality of the present Middle East. Israel presented a vast amount of intelligence information pointing to al-Qaeda's penetration in Egypt and the growth of radical Islam in the Arab country.

Diplomatic officials stated that Israel warned that Sinai could turn into a second Afghanistan. "The images from the storming of the Egyptian embassy in Cairo and Mubarak's trial changed the Western perception of what is actually transpiring in the Middle East," they said.

In consultations between Jerusalem and Washington, it was determined that Obama would clarify to Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas the economic consequences of a unilateral declaration.

The US President will also demand of Abbas to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as soon as possible, and launch a direct dialogue.
Heh.posted by Carl in Jerusalem @ 6:53 AM

Party infighting is dooming America to a Great Depression.

Two fresh news items arrive to remind us again how extreme today's Republican Party is in both its policies and its tactics. If on this point I'm getting to sound like a broken record (when will we have to retire that metaphor?), sorry, but I'm not the one who cracked the vinyl. So I'll tell it and think it and speak it and breath it, as the song says, until that fabled hard rain falls and washes these reprobates out to sea.– Daily Beast, Michael Tomasky
Dominant Social Theme: Party infighting is dooming America to a Great Depression.
Free-Market Analysis: Michael Tomasky, a fairly partisan columnist for the Daily Beast, has written a column called "The Party of Predators" (see excerpt above) that supports the idea that America's economic difficulties are aggravated by a lack of cooperation between the Republicans and Democrats.
This is a kind of sub-dominant social theme, that the US's fiscal and monetary situation would be much better if only America was supported by the kind of wise, elder statesmen that the electorate used to send to Washington DC. In fact, such backward-looking reminiscences are specious and confusing.
Once upon a time, America produced 50 percent of the world's finished goods and bestrode the globe like a colossus. But that was after World War II, when almost no other significant industrial force confronted the US.