...But of these sophisms and elenchs of merchandise I skill not...
Milton, Areopagitica

Except he had found the
standing sea-rock that even this last
Temptation breaks on; quieter than death but lovelier; peace
that quiets the desire even of praising it.

Jeffers, Meditation On Saviors



Sally Denton and husband Roger Morris, authors of 'The Money and the Power: The Making of Las Vegas and Its Hold on America,' were some of the keynote speakers at this weekend's [October 2, 2001] Fifth Annual Great Basin Book Festival at the University of Nevada.
The authors intended to speak about their book, which ties Las Vegas to organized crime and gives unflattering accounts of the city's historical figures, but they focused more on possible ties the terrorists had to Las Vegas and American foreign policy.
After an introduction by Nevada Attorney General Frankie Sue Del Papa, Denton said that Mohamed Atta, suspected of piloting the first plane that struck the World Trade Center, was just the latest in a long line of others to have come to Las Vegas to engage in criminal activity.
She pointed to a Sept. 22 story in the Las Vegas Review-Journal that reported there was as many as seven people who were linked to the attacks in Las Vegas in the months before Sept. 11.
Denton speculated that there is more to the story about the suspected terrorists' Las Vegas visits than the widely reported patronage of the city's strip clubs, and suggested that they may have been engaged in money laundering and planning for their operation."


Middle East North Africa . Financial Network - MENAFN: "UPI- China's Sinopec Group has signed a $70 billion oil and natural gas agreement with Iran, the China Daily reported Sunday.
The huge agreement is China's biggest energy deal with the No. 2 producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the newspaper said."

I've been waiting 3 years for someone in the public eye to say something, anything at all, about young African-American men with Arabic names. The anti-Arabism, the viciousness and bigotry that infected common people in the US - by October 2001 I was wondering who would. No one ever did.
This is the first public voice, that I've seen or heard, to even refer to it. All those mothers with hope for change to come, all those fathers remembering Ali in '63. Kareem.
Large props to Jeff Millar and Bill Hinds, and the spirit of freedom and athletic pride they share with a lot of others, including the World Champion Boston Red Sox.

My Origin of My Species

There's a lot of energy backed-up around the idea of origin, of human origin, where we came from. Or around the topic, rather. My point here, if I get to it in time, will be that that's a diversion, that the real conflict is, as it's always been, about our goal, or our fate, what's ahead, where we're going.
It's a simple fact of biological living that if you control someone's life in the present you have a lot of influence on what their life is going to be like in the future.
"The child is father to the man." "As the twig is bent so grows the tree."
Some people learn that by controlling what's around them they can be more comfortable, more gratified, more secure. The more control you have over now, the more you'll have over tomorrow, barring unforeseen change.
Others have learned that adaptation and flexibility, while relinquishing immediate control, make it possible to change with those same unforeseen circumstances, which the world has in plenty. And which require, from a stance of control, complete world domination. If we aren't going to adapt to the weather we'll have to adapt the weather to ourselves, so to speak. Saying it that way makes the hubris of it absurd, but that's pretty much it.
We look at things the way we're trained to - we see an oak tree, and we see the acorn as the thing that makes the oak possible. But what we're really seeing is a thing with no clear boundaries in the past or future, made up of trees, and seeds. That is a thing that can be named, to distinguish it, the way we've named the acorn and the tree and the forest. We don't have a name for that thing because there was no need for a name for it before now, in the practical tongues the builders use to get their jobs done.
The acorn is a way for that thing to move through time, against harsh circumstance and uncertain conditions. It is as much what that thing is as the tree is, just not to us, now. To the people who once lived where I live now, it was more clear, because they ate acorns, relied on them; and because people who live close to the ground are like someone who's hungry - food is revered, not taken for granted, never wasted; and that regard, the cultural attitude toward something as essential as food, put acorns in as prominent a place as the carpenters of the Old World put trees. There's a reaction to that truth that makes its case against "romanticizing" what were primitive people living short brutish lives of etc. etc.
I'm talking about the way they lived, not the people themselves. Clearly even the most technologically-dependent among us came through the same fire as everyone else. But again, the subject isn't what was - it's what's going to be, and how that comes out of now, what is.
Seeds can last a long time in a state that's neither dead nor alive, only waiting, needing nothing. Acorns are how that thing that acorns and oak trees are a part of got itself through times of harsh weather and chaotic seasons. Millions of years of change and stability woven together, and the trees adapted, what we call the trees adapted.
This starts to seem almost silly to people who were trained to see sperm and ova as relatively unimportant "secretions" unless they took, unless they quickened and became a child. But the anonymous drones and the star athletes of genetic research are proving daily that that small bit is what we are, at least as certainly as this thing with its names and addresses is. And they're fashioning the tools of its control.
The great frustration for modern man is his inability to control the weather, especially as it cycles out into chaos. Virtually everything else has come under his thumb, starting with the large predators right down to the germ of life itself in the present day. In that light I don't think it's too outlandish to look for signs of control and the attempt to gain control in the seemingly intense conflict over the origin of the human species. And signs there are.
The illusion is set by the frame of the argument being rigidly stuck in the past, but even the unscientific can see that the two sides enable entirely different futures. Or do they?
Is it possible, despite their absolutely contradictory versions of the origin of humankind, that both the evolutionists and the creationists have virtually identical dreams of the future?
Man at the center of things. Even though the creationists deify man in the collective and the Darwinists denigrate him collectively - significant man, insignificant man . The position of mankind on earth, and one assumes in the universe itself, in that view, is one of centrality, as far as opportunity and permission to alter and force the conformity of whatever stands in our way. One because a loving God has granted us that permission, the other because a hostile, at best uncaring universe has nothing to say about it.
In that broad general sense the main proponents of the two sides of the conflict are in complete agreement. And both are united in their scorn for and dismissive treatment of people who have evolved ways of being that have been proven as viable as the adaptations of trees, but that don't include attitudes of control, and dominance-to-survive.
The real conflict is invisible and unengaged, while the two seeming combatants reinforce their points of agreement about the present and the future - by arguing about the past.
Man is the most important creature in the world; we have to control everything in order to survive; this earth is temporary and disposable. The only reverence the combatants have they have in common - for themselves, for the god they make of themselves.

Named after
There are two stations on the Barcelona Metro called, in english, "Valley of Hebron" and "the Penitents". Yesterday there was a collision between two trains in the underground tunnel between them.
Fortunately, and unlike the contemporary victims of the namesake Days, and the contemporary victims in the namesake Valley, no one was killed.



In 1902, when Cuba was still under military occupation by U.S. troops who had invaded ostensibly to bring freedom, the nation was forced to incorporate Washington's Platt Amendment into its constitution. The Platt Amendment gave the United States the right to lease a 45-square-mile area at Guantanamo Bay. The lease specifies that the area is "for use as coaling or naval stations only, and for no other purpose."

Use of the base as a prison began in November 1991. After the first overthrow of the elected government of President Jean Bertrand Aristide, this time under the first Bush Administration, Washington announced it would build a "tent shelter" at Guantanamo for thousands of Haitians fleeing the military dictatorship. The "shelter" was surrounded by barbed wire and guarded by U.S. troops.

When forced repatriation began in February 1992, the argument used by the George H.W. Bush administration presaged the 2004 argument before the Supreme Court by the George W. Bush administration: the detainees were not entitled to any U.S. rights because they were being held on territory under the sovereignty of Cuba.

In June 1993, when only HIV refugees along with their relatives remained, a federal judge ordered the camp closed, calling it "nothing more than an HIV prison camp," where, "surrounded by razor barbed wire" and "subjected to pre-dawn military sweeps," people lived under continual threat of abuse by "400 soldiers in full riot gear." However, thousands of Haitians were again detained at Guantanamo in 1994, leading to uprisings.

At the same time, Washington built a huge tent city surrounded by barbed wire to detain Cubans who were attempting to reach the United States. Miserable conditions led some Cuban detainees to attempt suicide. Their numerous uprisings were met by U.S. troops in riot gear with fixed bayonets. Some Cubans managed to escape back to unoccupied Cuba by scaling the barbed wire, climbing down a 40-foot cliff and swimming about a mile to Cuban territory. Children suffered from bronchial viruses, pneumonia, diarrhea, and fear.

On January 18, 1995, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled that detainees at Guantanamo could be forcibly repatriated because constitutional rights "bind the government only when the refugees are at or within the borders of the United States."

link KWSnet

GUANTANAMERA (Lyrics: Jose Marti, music adapted by Pete Seeger)

happy guy

Smiling Faces

Four Iraqis were killed and six injured in US air raids on the al-Askary neighbourhood, east of Falluja, on Friday as the town braced for a further US assault.
The US marines announced they were preparing for a "decisive" assault on Falluja and the city of Ramadi even as the country's interim prime minister, Iyad Allawi, issued another ultimatum to the town's residents.
In Ramadi, west of Baghdad, fierce clashes erupted between Iraqi fighters and US troops at the eastern entrance of the city. Medical sources in Ramadi hospital said two women were injured in the clashes.

Into Ramadi

Also on Friday, U.S. marines announced that they were preparing for a major assault to 'whack rebels' in the Iraqi cities of Fallujah and Ramadi.

"We are gearing up for a major operation," Brigadier General Denis Hajlik told reporters at a base near the rebel- held city of Fallujah. "If we do so, it will be decisive and we will whack them."

link Danny Yee


Cuban History and its Patriots

Jose Marti was born in Havana in 1853. At seventeen he was exiled to Spain for his opposition to colonial rule. There he published a pamphlet exposing the horrors of political imprisonment in Cuba, which he himself had experienced. Upon graduating from the University of Saragossa, he established himself in Mexico City, where he began his literary career. His objection to a regime installed by a military coup led him to depart for Guatemala, but government abuses forced him to abandon that country as well. In 1878 he returned to Cuba under a general amnesty, but he conspired against the Spanish authorities and again was banished. He fled exile in Spain and came to the United States. After a year in New York he left for Venezuela, where he hoped to settle, but yet another dictatorship forced him to depart. Marti went back to New York where he lived from 1881 to 1895. In that year, he left to join the war for Cuban independence which he had so painstakingly organized. There he died in one of its first skirmishes.

the alternative is a war on the world

There is a surreal quality about visiting the United States in the last days of the presidential campaign. If George W Bush wins, according to a scientist I met, who escaped Nazi-dominated Europe, America will surrender many of its democratic trappings and succumb to its totalitarian impulses. If John Kerry wins, according to most Democrat voters, the only mandate he will have is that he is not Bush.

Never have so many liberal hands been wrung over a candidate whose only memorable statements seek to out-Bush Bush. Take Iran. One of Kerry's national security advisers, Susan Rice, has accused Bush of 'standing on the sidelines while Iran's nuclear programme has been advanced'. There is not a shred of evidence that Iran is developing nuclear weapons, yet Kerry is joining in the same orchestrated frenzy that led to the invasion of Iraq. Having begun his campaign by promising another 40,000 troops for Iraq, he is said to have a 'secret plan to end the war' which foresees a withdrawal in four years. This is an echo of Richard Nixon, who in the 1968 presidential campaign promised a 'secret plan' to end the war in Vietnam.

Once in office, he accelerated the slaughter and the war dragged on for six and a half years. For Kerry, like Nixon, the message is that he is not a wimp. Nothing in his campaign or his career suggests he will not continue, even escalate, the 'war on terror', which is now sanctified as a crusade of Americanism like that against communism. No Democratic president has shirked such a task: John Kennedy on the cold war, Lyndon Johnson on Vietnam.

This presents great danger for all of us, but none of it is allowed to intrude upon the campaign or the media 'coverage'. In a supposedly free and open society, the degree of censorship by omission is staggering.The New York Times, the country's liberal standard-bearer, having recovered from a mild bout of contrition over its abject failure to challenge Bush's lies about Iraq, has been running tombstones of column inches about what-went-wrong in the 'liberation' of that country.

It blames mistakes: tactical oversights, faulty intelligence. Not a word suggests that the invasion was a colonial conquest, deliberate like any other, and that 60 years of international law make it 'the paramount war crime', to quote the Nuremberg judges. Not a word suggests that the American onslaught on the population of Iraq was and is systematically atrocious, of which the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib was merely a glimpse.

The coming atrocity in the city of Fallujah, in which British troops, against the wishes of the British people, are to be accessories, is a case in point. For American politicians and journalists - there are a few honourable exceptions - the US marines are preparing for another of their "battles". Their last attack on Fallujah, in April, provides a preview. Forty-ton battle tanks and helicopter gunships were used against slums. Aircraft dropped 500lb bombs: marine snipers killed old people, women and children; ambulances were shot at. The marines closed the only hospital in a city of 300,000 for more than two weeks, so they could use it as a military position.

When it was estimated they had slaughtered 600 people, there was no denial. This was more than all the victims of the suicide bombs the previous year. Neither did they deny that their barbarity was in revenge for the killing of four American mercenaries in the city; led by avowed cowboys, they are specialists in revenge. John Kerry said nothing; the media reported the atrocity as 'a military operation', against 'foreign militants' and 'insugents', never against civilians and Iraqis defending their homes and homeland.

The best asset of a controversial policy is for it to appear uncontroversial

As for the "bitterly divided" U.S. election, try this. Imperial policies beget a kind of domestic imperial politics, which is not about resolving differences via democratic debate, but is modelled on conquering versus conquered, rulers versus ruled, winners and losers. Things get tenser when the empire itself is challenged and, most of all, when it bogs down as it has in Iraq. If the imperial mentality makes people haughty, mean and unwilling to deal with contradiction, then a threatened imperialism will make them more so, because now they're scared and their basic sense of superiority and power is under stress. And so the current "season of mean" in the U.S. All the normal political nastiness gets augmented.

Many on the left are nursing a certain whimsy about John Kerry in office. "My guess is," wrote my friend Linda McQuaig, "he would behave less aggressively in the world than Bush." I respectfully scoff. My guess is, in the Kennedy or Clinton mode, he'd be as or more aggressive, as he has promised. But I also think the theopolitically blinkered Bush team is more likely to lead us all into nuclear catastrophe than the "reality-based" John Kerry. For me, global incineration is the tipping point. I'm hoping for a Kerry win.


Here's Forbes Magazine's "fourth annual assessment of the Top-Earning Dead Celebrities".
There are 20 places on the list, 14 of them occupied by musicians, 3 by authors, 2 by actors, 1 by a race-car driver. There isn't a direct numerical correspondence to cultural values, but there is some parallel there, a relatively accurate reflection of what we are and what we value.
What it says to me is that the significance of music and musicians in human life has been substantially obscured. Our sense of music's importance has been eroded until it's a common assumption that music is no more or less culturally valuable than water skis or candy. Something people like, but not something they need.
It's true in a laboratory sense that people don't need music to live - they don't need anything beyond food and water to live - but it isn't hard to make the case that life, especially for human beings, is more than personal survival.
Human life is a group project - music orchestrates group cohesion, it keeps us together. That's not trivial, or peripheral.
As I said before, every formal human experience except birth is held together by music. It's only been since the early 20th century that armies stopped marching into battle to drums and more. Music is central, integral, vital; yet we've let it become a commodity, because the line between the superfluous and the essential was too hard, or too hidden, to draw and defend. The idea that something so central to human experience could become a "thing" that could be owned privately and withheld from common experience for private gain, that it could be separated from what we are to the extent that we would have to pay for it constantly in order to have it at all, is a truly alien concept.

link KWSnet


none of the four devices - a cockpit voice recorder (CVR) and flight data recorder (FDR) from the two planes - were ever found in the wreckage

were never located

"were not found."

were never recovered

"extensively peer-reviewed, revised and edited"
The first scientific study of the human cost of the Iraq war suggests that at least 100,000 civilians have lost their lives since their country was invaded in March 2003.

More than half of those who died were women and children killed in air strikes, researchers say.

Previous estimates have put the Iraqi death toll at around 10,000 - ten times the 1,000 members of the British, American and multi-national forces who have died so far.
But the study, published in The Lancet, suggested that Iraqi casualties could be as much as 100 times the coalition losses. It was also savagely critical of the failure by coalition forces to count Iraqi casualties.
The figures provoked a furious response last night in Westminster. Clare Short, the former cabinet minister who resigned over the war, said: "It is really horrifying. When will Tony Blair stop saying it is all beneficial for the Iraqi people since Saddam Hussein has gone? How many more lives are to be taken? It is no wonder, given this tragic death toll, that the resistance to the occupation is growing."


Chaos, Murder And Mayhem

The US-led occupation forces presented themselves as champions of liberation, freedom and democracy. What they have achieved is chaos, collective punishment, assassinations, abuse and torture of prisoners, and destruction of the country's infrastructure.
The "sovereign" interim government has, like the Iraqi Governing Council before it, proved to be the fig leaf shielding the occupying forces from Iraqis' frustration and outrage.
Powerless, and with no credibility among Iraqi people, the interim government's failure is disastrous. In addition to the lack of security, there is not the slightest improvement in electricity supply, the availability of clean water, employment, or health and education services. Fighting between occupying troops and various Iraqi groups has become widespread in more than 12 cities.
Without the consent of the Iraqi people, Ayad Allawi and President Ghazi al-Yawer declared that it was the wish of the populace that the occupying troops remain. They also stood aside while F16s and helicopter gunships showered densely populated areas in Sadr city, Falluja, Samraa, Najaf, Kut, Kufa, Tel Afar and elsewhere. The resistance in Falluja is now so persistent that Iraq's director of national intelligence admitted: "We could take the city, but we would have to kill everyone in it." British troops are going to be deployed to achieve this.
In his last monthly press conference before the invasion of Iraq on February 18 2003, Tony Blair said that removing President Saddam will "save a lot of lives" as well as removing the chemical and biological weapons. "The people who will celebrate the most will be the people of Iraq," he continued.
We are not celebrating. Death is covering us like fine dust. Four-fifths of Iraqi people demand the immediate withdrawal of occupying forces from Iraq.
Margaret Hassan is one of them.

Some notes on things.
Reasoned discourse points to the gaps between what those in power are saying, and what they're doing. Which is good as far as it goes, but at some point it stops being an accusation and becomes the diary of a victim. Bound and gagged - watching the psychopath from across the room as he sharpens his knives.
Military law was quietly changed after 9/11; as of yet no terrorists have been prosecuted under the new laws; the US Supreme Court says non-nationals captured in Iraq aren't covered by the Geneva Conventions.
Which, ostensibly, we wrote, to insure that less moral nations would understand there were things that would not be allowed to take place. This adolescent work-around of moral codes comes right out of the Old Testament and its cultural landscape. Jots and tittles, each rule defined so tightly that anything not clearly stated as prohibited becomes permissible; when the truth is, the law is a prosthetic conscience, a mechanical aid to the handicapped, not an arbiter of behavior.
It's an arbiter of non-behavior, it's an attempt to make concrete the things we aren't supposed to do. But in order to be accurate, and fair, it has to itemize those things. Which means anything new, that was unknown when the laws were written, won't be covered.
Once that's placed in the hands of God, we're home free.
If it's a human task to write the laws, then it's an attempt - and we should honor that attempt, by thinking deeply about the spirit of the law, beyond its actual letter.
But again, if all our law flows from above, everything's covered, and whatever isn't covered is fine, we're good to go.
And again, if law comes up from out of the flux of human endeavor we have a responsibility to find the heart of its intent, as adults, as thinking moral actors, rather than lawyer against the vanished past, which can't defend itself and its creations against the onslaught of greed and viciousness the present has mounted in opposition to everything that gets in the way of its desire.
Someone needs to articulate the possibility that what's happening now has nothing to do with law, and everything to do with will. Democracy was a stepping stone to this, not a goal, and it's being abandoned - as the common people will be abandoned in turn, when they've served their purpose or are no longer useful.
It's childish to keep pretending Bush was mistaken about Iraq, and it's adolescent to keep thinking the invasion and occupation have been about oil. These ideas are not matched by events.
There's only been one clear advantage gained in the "war in Iraq" - aside from the individual graft and corrupt profits of the corporate entities Bush is so beholden to - and that's been the government of Israel's strategic safety in the larger Middle East.
That possibility is further confirmed by the cowardly posturing and bullying toward Syria and Iran both Israel and the US have recently been demonstrating. Just as you'd expect if it was the case that Israel's safety was the reason for the invasion to begin with.
In order to accomplish this, using the generated wealth of the American people, it was necessary to reduce the majority, or a functioning majority, of Americans to a state of childlike helplessness, and have them depend entirely on a few easily controlled news "vendors" for their information about what was being done in their names.
A combination of religious simplicity and seductive hedonism caught that majority squarely between the eyes, and took their money and diverted their attention, and most importantly their possibility, and ultimately their hope.
Once the people had been regressed to childish dependency they could no longer afford to question those they depend on to survive.
It's relatively complicated compared to the elementary-school narrative of Bush himself somehow stealing the election, or at its most complex his more immediate "advisors" or managers, and then invading Iraq because they were stupid, or greedy, or both. They are, they were then and they are now, but they're also scared, and weak.
There are more players on the board than are visible to us out here on the margins of things, and some of them aren't scared at all, players whose only real weakness is moral - they're cowards, slowly refining themselves into heroes, by removing every last scrap of evidence that refutes their claim to speciality.

photo: Pornchai Kittiwongsakul/AFP


The word puerile comes from the Latin word for boy - puer - and it means boyish, childish.
Infantilize means to make like an infant, to treat in such a way as to cause to become like an infant.
I want a word somewhere between the two that means to make someone like a child, to cause to become not so much childish, with its overtones of intention and silliness, but child-like, simpler than an adult, less knowing, less able. More dependent.
In the 90's there was a lot of talk of "dumbing-down", reducing things, especially information, to simple and easily understood terms, and it's a functionally accurate description of what had been taking place - but it has its own overtones of value and rank. The smart are superior to the dumb, or stupid.
What was being described wasn't dumb at all though, it was child-like, a reduction to the dependencies of childhood.
People who have intelligence, and the abilities and strengths of maturity, were and are being taught to relinquish them, to become like children, and especially to become dependent, for their view of the world and even their view of their own concerns, on a stronger and more knowing authority.
It isn't dumbness at all, it's an enforced reduction to the state of childhood, with the family and its elders replaced by something that's never clearly named or seen, that thing behind the television's smoke and mirrors, the voice of that adult speaking, off-stage, off-camera, that knows more than we do about everything.
The television is a person in the lives of most people that watch it, it has all the attributes of personality, including physical presence. And it's more grown up than any of us, in the sense that it has far more power and knowledge, and can move in the world in ways that we can't. Though it acts like a depraved adolescent at best.
That trend that was so noticable, the step-down to the level of a ten year old's discourse and interests, in a medium that could have been a platform for exponential growth in human consciousness, wasn't a targeting of the dim, it was a shaping, a sculpting of the public mind. For this, now. For this time.
Stupid adults have power even if they don't have intelligence, but children have no power even when they do have intelligence. That's what this is - not marketing strategy - control. Stupid people are as likely as intelligent people to resent being dependent, but dependence is vital to children, it's a fundamental part of what being a child is.

Google saves lives


to uncover what happened

Hundreds of mentally ill patients who were subjected to barbaric CIA-funded brainwashing experiments by a Scottish doctor could be entitled to compensation following a landmark court ruling.
Doctor Ewan Cameron, who became one of the world's leading psychiatrists, developed techniques used by Nazi scientists to wipe out the existing personalities of people in his care.
Cameron, who graduated from Glasgow University, was recruited by the CIA during the cold war while working at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.
He carried out mind-control experiments using drugs such as LSD on hundreds of patients, but only 77 of them were awarded compensation.
Now a landmark ruling by a Federal Court judge in Montreal will allow more than 250 former patients, whose claims were rejected, to seek compensation
Patients were woken from drug-induced stupors two or three times a day for multiple electric shocks. In a specially designed "sleep room" made famous by Anne Collins's book of the same name, Cameron placed a speaker under the patient's pillow and relayed negative messages for 16 hours a day.

Karen Goodwin/Times-Scotland 17.Oct.04

In The Sleep Room by Anne Collins was made into a miniseries, The Sleep Room, on Canadian TV.

The Sleep Room

Gripping survivor-centered accounts of medical atrocities committed by CIA-funded mind-control (MC) researchers during the Cold War are rarely found in traditional U.S. media. Neither are they the subject of emotionally powerful TV docu-dramas commonly produced for broadcast and cable television. In January 1998, the Canadian Broadcasting System (CBC) courageously filled this void, although the blackout on government MC history is near-total in the U.S.

The Sleep Room, a gut-wrenching four-hour miniseries, depicts the true story of Dr. Ewen Cameron's secret MKULTRA brainwashing experiments carried out in the late 50s and early 60s at Allan Memorial Institute in Montreal. Widespread publicity accompanying this major TV event has empowered many other Canadian survivors of nonconsensual brainwashing experiments in hospitals and prisons to come forward and seek justice in the courts.

Arlene Tyner/Probe

link cryptogon

The ones we see are the culls, or the failures, the damaged and abandoned. It's not too hard to imagine successes. Adaptive protocols that took, intelligence-boosted, reflex-optimized, and securely-domiciled, off at the edge of things; these examples for all their outraging heartbreak are failures - not as human beings but as laboratory rodents - and they contribute to a sense of failed enterprise around the whole package. The brainwash crew as frantic villains in a science-fiction plotline, doomed and secondary.
It's not too hard to imagine a few generations of successes now, each raising the next, convinced through all the technical means within reach of their rightness, their superior fitness, the importance and beauty of the program, and the obvious proof as they shine against the proles, the slobby cul-de-sacs of undirected growth, and unfocused training.
Teams, and grouped endeavors, the seers and the logicians, the telepaths and the athletes; wistful regret that we couldn't have started long ago, how much farther along we'd be, how much surer the goal would be. It's a common trope but it's mistaken, that the products of these kinds of total-immersion rebuilding are heartless and mechanical. If anything their hearts are also more focused, more directed, less compromised by the confusion and noise of ordinary being. Emotionally heroic, trembling like Dobermans under the praising hands of their elders.
You'll notice there was a fire, and the records are gone.
What we see is the testimony of the discarded unusables. What we don't see are the ones that worked, that passed all the tests.

Where do the voices in his ear piece come from?

Whatever works for our own momentary self-interest, we do, a practice which makes the moral relativism falsely-ascribed to liberals look deep by comparison. Likely, the near-absence of genuine morals now common in the commercial and political life of America is partly responsible for the resurgence of fundamentalism. Fundamentalism offers certainty where there is none and the sense of always being able to start fresh. The Puritan brand also is long associated with notions of those chosen and those not chosen, a satisfying private reflection for those who are less successful in clawing for the top.

How many Americans reflect on the stupid, needless death and destruction inflicted on Iraqis (families hiding in smashed apartments without clean water, electricity, or jobs) while driving their air-conditioned SUVs, listening to the stereo, on the way to a sale at the Crate and Barrel? Were they concerned with such things, the bloody, destructive invasion could not have happened, but, then, neither could there have been ten years of organized murder in Vietnam.

Returning to Pat's pick for president, my first thoughts on the Bush "bulge" controversy (see the wonderfully informative site, ) went to Shakespeare's hump-backed embodiment of evil, Richard III, but Shakespeare's character is fascinating, and of course the historical Richard, so far as we know, was a genuinely heroic figure. Bush is simply a dull man with a shrill voice. The next comparison that came to mind was a marionette, only an updated version with radio controls and servomotors instead of strings and hinges.

Whatever the best analogy, the fact that the American president wears a radio device of some kind during important meetings and national debates has been sufficiently established for people of a critical turn of mind. The revelation seems almost an over-the-top parody of what we already knew of Bush's capacities, an absurd editorial cartoon about an inadequate man walking through responsibilities he doesn't understand, leaving in his wake terrible damage to decent government and peace. Where do the voices in his ear piece come from? Lynne Cheney? The Boston Strangler? Franklin Graham? Jesus? The Wizard of Oz? All of the above?

America, you elected this plodding creature, and it appears you are about to do so again. Never mind the narrow focus on stolen votes in Florida, nasty stuff that it is. Stolen votes are an enduring part of the great chaotic noise you call national elections. Stolen votes in Texas got Lyndon Johnson's political career going, and stolen votes in Texas and Illinois put Kennedy into office. We usually do not hear much about stolen votes in America because the two parties are satisfied with the calculation that the damage inflicted is roughly equal.

Are stolen votes more contemptible than the absolutely corrupt practices of powerful politicians like Tom DeLay? Are stolen votes more contemptible than an election campaign in which the genuine issues of the day, matters of life and death, do not receive a sensible airing? Since those same great issues are ignored by most Americans between national elections, just when are they considered? The truth is that there is no national debate in America on almost anything of genuine importance. The most narrow self-interest continues relentlessly under all the superficial noise and cheap tricks that pass for politics, and, so long as that remains the case, America will continue to kill and maim and overthrow whenever it serves the needs of clawing for more and the heat of evangelical fervor.


U.S. forces launched new airstrikes on the Iraqi rebel-held town of Falluja today, killing five people, witnesses said.

According to hospital officials and witnesses, all the dead were civilians.

Witnesses said the U.S. warplanes fired missiles at the main road leading out of north Fallujah.
The U.S. army has stepped up its violence in the rebel stronghold city, by about 25 percent since the beginning of Ramadan, the Muslims holy month that began last Friday, with deadly air strikes that claimed the lives of several civilians, including women and children.

AlJazeera 24.Oct.04

A U.S. Marine warplane bombed suspected militants trying to rebuild a command post in the insurgent stronghold of Fallujah on Sunday, and witnesses said six people were killed.
The F-18 Hornet struck the post that was gutted in an earlier bombing run, causing "significant" explosions in a northern district of Fallujah, said Lt. Lyle Gilbert, a Marine spokesman.
"Every time we see them attempting to rebuild, we'll destroy it. It's simple," Gilbert said.

Witnesses said six people died in the airstrike, and at least one corpse was taken to the Fallujah General Hospital. Gilbert had no information on casualties.

ABCNews(US)/AP 24.Oct.04

Final Edition

WALLY SHAWN: "Well, I -- I think that, you know, it's an awful situation. I don't -- certainly things are not going to become -- I mean, Kerry will be like Clinton or maybe worse. He's -- people don't usually -- you know, they rarely surprise you in a good way; but I think that, yeah, it's important to tell the world that, you know, we didn't like this, the things that have happened under Bush. I think we have to make the statement -- that, you know, we don't want to go on that road anymore. So, you know, for me it's humiliating to vote for Kerry, because I don't respect him; but I would -- I will -- it's unpleasant, it's like killing a big rat that is running around your apartment. It must be done. But you're not proud of it. But you have to do it. So, we have to tell other people..."

Democracy Now! 21.Oct.04

"...the ability to foresee the future...."

Few people outside Uganda know that in the north the government is fighting a fanatical and murderous cult - the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) - whose fighting force is made up in large part of abducted children.
Up to 95 percent of the population in these areas have been forced from their homes by the war. Nearly two million Ugandans out of a population of 24.7 million now live in refugee camps for fear of being attacked and killed in their villages.
Children have told how they were forced by rebels at gunpoint to abduct and murder other children. A former commander of the rebel group told how he forced villagers to chop up, cook and eat their neighbours before he killed them too.
The LRA is led by a self-proclaimed prophet, Joseph Kony, who says he wants Uganda to live by the laws of the Ten Commandments. He and most of his fighters are from northern Uganda's Acholi tribe, as are most of their victims.
Kony says he is guided by spirits who tell him what to do and who to kill. The UN says he may have abducted more than 20 000 children, 90 percent of the LRA's fighters
Why has the rebellion gone on so long? Many Acholi believe that President Yoweri Museveni underestimated the rebels. Others claim he is not unhappy to have a continuing low-level insurgency, because it keeps the Acholi occupied, hence they are not able to meddle in politics.
The conflict is also tied to the crisis in Darfur, Sudan. Khartoum has supported the LRA for its own reasons as Uganda has, for years, been backing rebels in southern Sudan.

This is said, like everything else is said in the one-voice/one-people media, as though all rabbis strongly oppose leaving Gaza. But that is a lie.
There are rabbis opposed to Zionism, who see it as a Satanic deception; which it is, if anything can be said to be Satanic. And the lies are part of that.
The deception is the presenting of a unified army of holy warriors, battling to defend their people - but it isn't that at all. It's a bunch of desperate cowards who see clearly that their only chance to survive is by dominating everything around them. They have to, because they aren't fit any longer for co-existence, their delusions require them to be absolutely superior, because there isn't any other place for them now but extinction.
The idea of going back to being a marginal presence in the lives of other people, of not ruling the world - as they seem close to being able to do, at least for a short time - the idea of being humble before a God they did not create out of their own need for justification - that will exist whether they do or not - that's not possible now, for the zealots at the front of this drive toward Armeggeddon.
These are the men who put Bush in the White House. And it looks very much like they'll be the men who put Kerry in the White House. I'm waiting for him to tell us it isn't that way.
But in an interview in Rolling Stone that seemed to be about his main principles and views, he never mentioned Israel once.
Why not? Isn't Israel our one true ally? Isn't poor suffering Israel the reason we need to send more and more money and bombs and bullets and young American soldiers to the Middle East? Isn't the well-being of Israel now placed above the well-being of the US? Yes it is. But it can't be talked about.
Because allowing the American people to even glimpse the amount of their strength that's been bled off to the "Holy Land" would derail the gravy train.
It's Zionism for Dummies.


Current events:

North Korean defections increase in China

Delmart Vreeland warns of imminent nuke

PART 1: Follies of fiddling with the yuan

Consider currency, which pays a zero return. At the end of 2003, dollars held abroad was estimated to be about $320 billion, whereas only a trivial amount of foreign currency is held in the US. America's currency circulating abroad is about half the total US currency outstanding. That means that the US economy only makes up half of the dollar economy. The reason the US can do this is because of dollar hegemony, a phenomenon created by the dollar, a fiat currency no longer backed by specie value such as gold since the collapse of Bretton Woods in 1971, continuing to assume the status of a major reserve currency for international trade. Trade is now a game in which the US produces dollars by fiat, and the rest of the world produce goods and services fiat dollars can buy.

The dollar economy is in fact devouring not just non-dollar economies, but also the US economy. The dollar is like the rebellious computer HAL 9000 in Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Hal 9000 was programmed to believe that "this mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it", and proceeded to kill everyone who tried to disconnect it. Dollar hegemony kills all, pushing down wages everywhere with no exceptions made for nationality. As Pogo used to say: "[We have met] The enemy, [and] it is us."

The issue is not whether Asian central banks will continue to have confidence in the dollar, but why Asian central banks should see their mandate as supporting the continuous expansion of the dollar economy at the expense of their own non-dollar economies. Why should Asian economies send real wealth in the form of goods to the US for foreign paper instead of selling their goods in their own economy? Without dollar hegemony, Asian economies can finance their own economic development with sovereign credit in their own currencies and not be addicted to export for fiat dollars. As for Americans, is it a good deal to exchange your job for lower prices at Wal-Mart?

We know every tree and water hole and corner of this land - everything has a name.
We know this land as you know your children.
Botswana's president has said that if his government loses the case against the 'Bushmen', it will appeal until it wins. He even visited the Bushmen eviction sites personally to tell them they cannot return home. Some 200 Gana and Gwi Bushmen have nevertheless risked their lives and returned to their lands where they are now arrested if they attempt to hunt. Their courage and determination are inspiring and, thanks to the enormous worldwide show of support for their cause, undiminished by the government's threats and humiliations. We are all playing our part in this ground-breaking case.

However the court decides, it is vital that the best possible legal arguments are presented now. New points cannot be made later - this really is the only chance. Substantial funds are needed, and the Bushmen are relying on Survival to help them at this, the most important moment in their history. The Gana and Gwi Bushmen will simply not survive without their land, and many now think that the eviction is a deliberate attempt to finish with them altogether. Unlike the devastation of American Indians which we now read about in history books, this is happening today, under our own eyes. This gives us both the opportunity and the responsibility of preventing the Botswana government from repeating the tragedies of the past, when whole cultures were destroyed in the name of 'progress'.

In the same way that the ocean and the land are separate and distinct but no line between them can be drawn accurately - the line between evil and good can be made to disappear by close analysis, scientifically.
It gets even more simple when there are immediate benefits to evil practises. The monsters who inflict genetically-modified crops on the world mewl about feeding the hungry. And it's true, that food is what the hungry need, and as long as we keep the definition of what food is intentionally broad, and disallow the inclusion of its long-term effects, GM foods are, by definition, foods. Therefore anything that increases the immediate supply of edible things is humanitarian.
But a poisoned doughnut is still a doughnut, and if we don't allow the argument to include what happens later the doughnut is food, and giving a dozen poisoned doughnuts to a hungry family is, technically, feeding them.
Cloning and stem cell research are right out of that same Pandora's box.
There will be no line to cross. In a few years the surplus population will be rendered up as food source and the practicality of it will outweigh superstitious repugnance that the old-fashioned feel about eating their own species.
Does anyone believe these creatures when they talk about feeding the hungry?
Yet they keep saying it. The question goes unanswered, why they really want to do this, but it seems clear to me it has nothing to do with human welfare and everything to do with their own, whatever they are. They aren't human. We're living at the crux of a species-split, a fork in the road, and like the line between the ocean and the land, the line between the two paths is blurred and indistinct and impossible to point to accurately except from a great distance.
But it's there. It's here.
Stem cell research is not about healing the sick, it's about amassing the personal fortunes of the researchers, and something far more insidious, the attainment of physical immortality by creatures who were marginal and parasitic until now.
No doubt there are men and women involved in forcing desperate third world countries to utilize genetically modified crops and seeds who believe they're working for the greater good. But that doesn't make it true.
As noted widely this last week, the human footprint on the earth is unsustainable at its present rate of consumption. Do you really think the intelligence behind stem-cell research is devoted to preserving more and more lives? Is that what the human race needs most right now, more people, consuming more?
The energy component of the footprint, dominated by use of non-renewable fossil fuels such as oil, coal and gas, increased nearly 700 percent in the 40-year period surveyed, from 1961 to 2001.
Those figures, and the rabid demand for stem cell research, and for genetically-modified crops, and the implementation of near-omniscient surveillance technologies, all add up to one dark thing - and it's not the guiding hand of a benevolent deity hiding there behind the curtain, unless you're one of its servants.
The God of selfishness isn't in heaven.


The Case That Kerry Cracked
"After the CIA knew that BCCI was, as an institution, a fundamentally corrupt criminal enterprise, it continued to use both BCCI and First American, BCCI's secretly held U.S. subsidiary, for CIA operations."
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, John Kerry fought to expose an international criminal bank, BCCI - the Bank of Credit and Commerce International. The bank was run by a Pakistani, working with Persian Gulf managers who operated through a network of secret offshore centers to hide their operations from the world's bank examiners. They weren't, however, hidden from the CIA, which not only knew what the bank was doing, but used the bank to funnel cash through its Islamabad and other Pakistani branches to CIA client Osama bin Laden, part of the $2 billion Washington sent to the Afghani mujahideen. The operation gave bin Laden an education in black finance. CIA director William Casey himself met with BCCI founder Agha Hasan Abedi. The CIA also paid its own agents through the bank and used BCCI to fund black ops all over the world.

Kerry took on not only the Bush clan and its friends, but the CIA, and members of Congress on both sides of the aisle. This is not irrelevant history, but important to examine, because it reveals a lot about Kerry and how he might respond to terrorism or other global criminal enterprises. Kerry's record shows that he took on powerful political and bureaucratic interests, was a tenacious investigator, and savvy about international crime and money flows, which is crucial in the fight against terrorism.

Against the opposition of powerful Republicans and Democrats, and in light of a lack of cooperation from a very politicized Justice Department and stonewalling by the CIA, Kerry worked with investigators and ran Senate hearings that exposed the bank's shadowy multi-billion-dollar scams and precipitated its end.
BCCI's global connections also helped bring private profit to the Bushes. Former Senate investigator Jack Blum told me, "This whole collection of people were wrapped up in the Bush crowd in Texas." Prominent Saudis played a key role: Khalid Bin Mahfouz, head of National Commercial Bank in Saudi Arabia, and a major investor and BCCI board member; Kamal Adham, brother-in-law of the late Saudi King Faisal, former head of Saudi intelligence and a major shareholder and frontman for BCCI, and; Ghaith Rashad Pharaon, a BCCI shareholder and front man for the bank's illegal purchase of three U.S. banks.

Then there was James Bath, a Texas businessman, who owned Houston's Main Bank with Bin Mahfouz and Pharaon. When George W. Bush set up Arbusto Energy Inc. in 1979 and 1980, Bath provided some of the financing. As it turned out, Bush was not much of a businessman, and when Arbusto needed a bailout, political connections eventually got him a buyout by Harken Energy Corp., which paid him $600,000 in stock and a $120,000-a-year consultancy.

BCCI-connected friends were there again with money to help when Harken got into trouble. Arkansas investment banker Jackson Stephens in 1987 worked out Harken's debts by getting $25 million financing from Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS), a partner with BCCI in the Swiss Banque de Commerce et de Placements. As part of that deal, a board seat was given to Harken shareholder Sheikh Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, whose chief banker was BCCI shareholder Bin Mahfouz.

Were the Bushes putting their financial interests ahead of American security? Given the Bush links to BCCI, it's not surprising that the Bush administration tried to smother the investigation and prosecution of the bank.

link KWSnet


Two words in english that are almost irreducibly basic to our experience both have smaller and greater meanings that need qualifiers or context to make their usage plain. "Life" and "day".
"Day" is simpler and more technical, but they both have a poetic aptness that refutes what seems to be a confusion or vagueness, a lack of clarity in the language itself, as though we had run out of words and had to use these over.
Ask someone how long a day is and they'll say 24 hours, ask them what the opposite of night is and they'll say day. It's tipped toward the light, the language doesn't allow the split between them to carry through.
Life is what we have between our births and our deaths, and life is what all this is, all these birds and trees and cities full of people and the fish and the armadillo and the bugs in our intestines, the earliest protozoans and the children of the future whose lives haven't yet begun. All that is life.
So that can seem like a blurred sense, a sloppiness, or a poverty of naming, we had to make do with what we already had.
It's a sign, a pointing toward the larger picture. Our lives are inseparable from life. That's the poetry of it.
A word like "sacred" is hard to use now. It's intellectual property and it's owned by large corporations. What I wanted to address here is what I believe is sacred, and that's life. I believe life is sacred.
My life is sacred only because it's part of that larger life, not so much connected to it but within it. This is easily diminished and wide-open to ridicule, but that's only because the anti-life power that runs most of the systems in our lives now dominates our ways of thinking.
I check myself when I begin thinking like this, the arguments surface like missiles, arguments against the answer I hear when I ask myself what it is I hold to be sacred.
There's a rhetorical trick that's real common now, where anything that can't be firmly stated and precisely drawn is dismissed as unscientific. But the ocean gives us a rebuttal to that constantly. The line between the sea and the land should be simple to find and easy to draw. Nothing could be more exact. The sea - water; the land - sand and rock. But that line is never in the same place for even an instant. It's there, but it isn't there.
The insistence on the primacy of logic, of things being chopped up and analyzed, and only those things having importance, gives us this arrogant reduction, and leads to doubt in people who know there's truth in the sacred, that something somewhere is sacred, though they can't seem to find it without slipping into wishful thinking and childish fantasies.
I believe life is sacred and that consciousness and will give us an ability to move toward and away from the sacred, and I believe that just as the word life contains within it that movement of scale, what we see is contained within something greater, that what is sacred is ultimately beyond our capacity to know in the way we can know the distance to the sun or the age of a mountain.
The idea that what we live within is no more important than water or dirt is a part of that crippling illusion that says we're insignificant against the stars, because the stars themselves are insignificant, in that view. That's insane, as logic, but I don't think it's a result of faulty thinking, I think it's an intentional deception.
There's a very common reaction - it's the result of example and subtle training - that people have when viewing the images of the universe that are so plentiful now. How small we are, how insignificant it makes us feel. But that's not true.
There is an infinite space around us, yes, but there is an infinite space within us too. We trivialize the interior because it's ours and we've been trained to ignore the promptings toward the sacred that are natural to us, trained to see our lives as small and nearly worthless. They are and they aren't. Like the sea and the sand and the line between them, it is and it isn't.
We have bodies, we are bodies, we live by eating other life, and what we are continues itself by a steady rhythm of birth and death. There is a short-term gain to be had by interrupting that rhythm; for the ones who prosper from it there's a chance at total circumvention, physical immortality is just around the corner.
Yet at the same time we're being taught that we're insignificant, that our lives are essentially meaningless, we're taught to glorify our appetites, we're constantly reassured that our selfish hungers are all that matters. Even religion plays that tune, promising the reward of salvation, but it's the salvation of the self. How many believers would sacrifice their place in heaven for their children?
I believe that life is sacred, and I believe that my life is sacred because it's lived within that larger sacred life. There's a lot that I don't know about what's going on here, but I know that.
It's possible to refuse the sacred, to ignore it, to run from it, to cover it with lies; I know that, too.

msg 21.Oct.04

The energy component of the footprint, dominated by use of non-renewable fossil fuels such as oil, coal and gas, increased nearly 700 percent in the 40-year period surveyed, from 1961 to 2001.

The world has some 28 billion acres of productive land and ocean to meet the needs of 6.3 billion people-an average of 4.4 acres per person. At current rates of consumption, however, the global ecological footprint requires an average of 5.4 acres' productivity per person-roughly 20 percent more than what can be sustained today's levels.
"We are spending nature's capital much faster than it can be regenerated. Collectively, we are bequeathing to our children the most dangerous budget deficit of all, an ecological debt of growing proportions," said Richard Mott, WWF's Vice President for International Policy.

Apartheid in a world ruled by one super-power

It was a bullet for every Palestinian child, said one of the officers in that meeting, or at least this is what the Israeli daily Maariv revealed two years ago, when the horrible figures were first leaked. It didn't much change "public opinion", neither here nor in the West, neither two years ago nor 4 months ago when Malka finally opened his mouth. It read as if it had happened somewhere else, or a long time ago, or as if it was just one version, a voice in a polyphony, hiding behind the principle theme: we, the Israelis are right, and they are wrong.

Israeli political society--including the Zionist Left, Labour, Meretz and Peace Now, all currently disappearing because of this war--had been so deeply involved in construction of anti-Palestinian consent during the first months of the Intifada, that none of them -- neither their politicians, nor their intellectuals -- were able to acknowledge such a story and say: "Oops, we're sorry, we were misled."

And it is not only about Major General Malka's bullet figures, of course. It is also about the total dismissal of the Palestinian accusations during those months of autumn 2000: nobody--not even the pro-Palestinians in the West--believed them, when they tried to tell their story, that included the reality of the 1.3 million 5.56 bullets fired at them, when they tried to tell their version of how Israel made every possible effort to turn the unrest of Fall 2000 into a bloodbath, to push the various factions to use arms, to turn this into the final stage of unwriting Oslo. That was the goal of Ehud Barak and his men, General Shaul Mofaz (then Chief of Staff, now minister of defence) and General Moshe Ya'alon, the real mastermind behind the plan -- to "burn onto the Palestinian mind" (his own words) that they cannot beat us.


absent from the presidential campaign
Every once in a while there is good news in this troubled world, and the choice of Kenyan environmentalist Wangari Maathai as this year's Nobel Peace Prizewinner is one such moment. The timing could not be more apt. The choice of Maathai was announced near the end of a US presidential campaign that has resolutely ignored the greatest danger facing humanity, global climate change. Her selection thus stands as an implicit rebuke to the environmental backwardness of America's political and media classes. It also represents an explicit assertion that, as the Nobel committee put it, "Peace on Earth depends on our ability to secure our living environment."

The Bush Administration remains in denial about climate change even though its closest overseas ally, British Prime Minister Tony Blair, said in September that climate change is the single biggest long-term problem his nation faces. Blair's top scientific adviser, David King, has gone further, declaring that climate change is the biggest threat civilization has ever faced--bigger even than the global terrorism that dominates headlines and obsesses George W. Bush. King warned in July that there is now enough carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to melt all the ice on earth, which would put most of the world's biggest cities under water, starting with low-lying metropolises like New York, London and New Orleans. "I am sure that climate change is the biggest problem that civilization has had to face in 5,000 years," King said. Even Shell Oil chairman Ron Oxburgh admitted in June that he is "really very worried for the planet."
Climate change is to the twenty-first century what the nuclear arms race was to the twentieth: the overriding threat to humanity's continued existence on this planet. And it is already killing people.

Mark Hertsgaard/The Nation/Countercurrents 20.Oct.04


Typhoon Tokage lashed the Okinawa island chain with heavy rain and high winds yesterday, injuring at least six people as it headed north to threaten Japan's main islands with the second typhoon in less than two weeks.

Generating winds of up to 173kph, Tokage - "lizard" in Japanese - was expected to hit Kyushu, Japan's southernmost main island, today to become the record 10th typhoon to make landfall in Japan this year. provides free online hosting of public petitions for responsible public advocacy.


And, of course, so do we.

Iman al-Hams, 13 years old, killed on her way to school.
Without revealing their identities, soldiers from the Givati brigade platoon told Israeli television how Iman al-Hams had been shot on 5 October in the Tel Sultan neighbourhood of Rafah.
"We saw her from a distance of 70 metres. She was fired at ... from the outpost. She fled and was wounded," a soldier said.
While Iman was lying, wounded or dead, about 70m from the Israeli guard post, the platoon commander approached her and fired two bullets from close range at her head, the soldiers said. He then went back a second time, put his weapon on the automatic setting and - ignoring their objections on the walkie-talkie - emptied his entire magazine into her body.
"We couldn't believe what he had done. Our hearts ached for her. Just a 13-year-old girl," one soldier said. "How do you spray a girl from close range?"
Lawrence of Cyberia/BBC News 12.Oct.04/11.Oct.04


Dear Nigger Henry,
It has come to my attention that you are going to break Babe Ruth's record. I don't think that you are going to break this record established by the great babe Ruth if I can help it. Getting back to your blackness, I don't think that any coon should ever play baseball. Whites are far more superior than jungle bunnies. I will be going to the rest of your games and if you hit one more home run it will be your last. My gun is watching your every black move. This is no joke.

Dear Nigger,
You black animal, I hope you never live long enough to hit more home runs than the great Babe Ruth. Niggers are like animals and have a short life span. Martin Luther King was a troublemaker, and he had a short life span.

Dear Hank Aaron,
I hope you get it between the eyes.

Dear Hank Aaron,
I hate you!!!! Your such a little creep! I hate you and your family. I'D LIKE TO KILL YOU!! BANG BANG YOUR DEAD.
P.S. It mite happen.

...When I look back on that whole episode of Henry going after the Ruth record, that's the most amazing part of it to me. People had no idea what he was going through. Nowadays, a player will get one threat and he won't even go out on the field. Henry had them practically every day, and for a long time he didn't say a word about it. - Dick Cecil, former Braves V.P.

"I asked Carla to save the hate letters that she didn't have to turn over to the authorities. I didn't read most of them, but I wanted to have them as reminders. I kept feeling more and more strongly that I had to break the record not only for myself and for Jackie Robinson and for black people, but also to strike back at the vicious little people who wanted to keep me from doing it. All that hatred left a deep scar on me. I was a man doing something that God had given me the power to do, and I was living like an outcast in my own country. I had nowhere to go except home and to the ballpark, home and to the ballpark. I was a prisoner in my own apartment."

"It was in Philadelphia in May that I finally mentioned to some sportswriters about the hate mail. One of them made a note of it at the bottom of a baseball story, but then the story was picked up in Atlanta and New York and the whole thing broke open. From that point on, the mail turned. I guess people were stunned by what they read, because thousands and thousands of them started writing me positive letters. One of the sports-talk radio shows in New York conducted a campaign to get people to support me. It was especially nice to see kind words coming out of New York because that seemed to be where the greatest number of hate letters came from."

The Hank Aaron Story
Hank Aaron with Lonnie Wheeler


The World Social Forum is not an entity, but a process - a snowballing momentum that is bringing together forces which, though developing in the same direction, were without mutual contact and often completely unaware of each other. A global constellation is coming into being that is beginning to think along the same lines, to share its strategic concepts, to link common problems together, to forge the chains of a new solidarity. All this is now moving with astonishing speed. There has just been an Asian Social Forum in India, an area with which we hitherto had virtually no contact. In Brazil, the government’s agenda is set by all the problems identified at Porto Alegre. What will Lula do about the enormous debt that is crushing the country? He has said, of course, that Brazil will be meticulous in meeting its obligations. But will it actually be able to? I believe that a moment of truth is arriving in Argentina and Brazil, which could create the conditions for a radical, world-wide revision of the neoliberal order. If the President of Brazil were to say, 'we are no longer going to pauperize our citizens to pay foreign bond-holders', and Argentina and other Latin American countries followed him, what would happen? Wall Street could do very little about it, since as a leading banker has admitted privately, 'Brazil is too big to fail'. The banks would have little alternative but to 'save the furniture', and accept losses of 30 or 40 per cent rather than write off 100 per cent of their investments.

Issue 19, Jan. Feb. 2003
New Left Review

Other texts in this series are Naomi Klein, 'Reclaiming the Commons' (NLR 9), Subcomandante Marcos, 'The Punch Card and the Hourglass' (NLR 9), John Sellers, 'Raising a Ruckus' (NLR 10), Jose Bove, 'A Farmers' International?' (NLR 12), David Graeber, 'The New Anarchists' (NLR 13), Michael Hardt, 'Today's Bandung?' (NLR 14), Joao Pedro Stedile, 'Landless Battalions' (NLR 15), Walden Bello, 'Pacific Panopticon' (NLR 16), Emir Sader, 'Beyond Civil Society' (NLR 17), Tom Mertes, 'Grass-Roots Globalism' (NLR 17) and Immanuel Wallerstein, 'New Revolts Against the System' (NLR 18).

The cable pay-per-view company iN DEMAND has backed away from a plan to show a three-hour election eve special with filmmaker Michael Moore that included the first television showing of his documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11."

The company said Friday it would not air "The Michael Moore Pre-Election Special" due to "legitimate business and legal concerns." A spokesman would not elaborate.
It's an exquisite judgement, the pressure becoming so strong...If these guys go with Moore and Bush retakes the White House, they're doomed. But if they buckle in anticipation, as they have, they look like wusses, which they are. What's a self-aggrandizing coward to do? Advertising's like that some too I think. Only this is stripped-down, essential; back the wrong horse, and die.
In that the truth-teller's got it much easier. The valence is accessible, no need to predict anything, just say what you believe to be the case, and don't let them shut you up; when you're wrong, admit it and move on.

A large Humboldt squid caught offshore from Sitka is among numerous sightings of a species seen for the first time in waters of the Far North, and the first of the species recovered from British Columbia waters.

The 5-foot Dosidicus gigas, or jumbo flying squid, was shipped this week to California to be kept for research at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.

The squid was one of a number caught with a dip net by fisherman Alan Otness and his crew on Sept. 18 as they baited longline gear at night. They brought back some of the creatures for examination by experts.

Eric Hochberg, curator of the Santa Barbara museum, said the species is usually found off Mexico's Baja California peninsula, and farther south.

The farthest north the species has been reported until this year was off the Oregon coast in 1997, said James Cosgrove, manager of natural history at the Royal British Columbia Museum. Before that year, the farthest north it was seen was near San Francisco, he said.

Until this summer, there have been no other sightings in the north, Cosgrove said.

"It's unprecedented. It speaks of a fundamental change in the ocean along the coast."


Spanish Marines, leaving for Haiti, to help establish order and render humanitarian aid.
Illicit drugs:
major Caribbean trans-shipment point for cocaine en route to the US and Europe; substantial money-laundering activity; Colombian narcotics traffickers favor Haiti for illicit financial transactions; pervasive corruption

Among the key findings of the Global Amphibian Assessment are:
  • Nearly one-third (32%) of the world's amphibian species are threatened, representing 1,856 species. By comparison, just 12% of all bird species and 23% of all mammal species are threatened.
  • As many as 168 amphibian species may already be extinct. At least 34 amphibian species are known to be extinct, while at least another 113 species have not been found in recent years and are possibly extinct.
  • At least 43% of all species are declining in population, indicating that the number of threatened species can be expected to rise in the future. In contrast, fewer than one percent of species show population increases.
  • The largest numbers of threatened species occur in Latin American countries such as Colombia (208), Mexico (191), and Ecuador (163). The highest levels of threat, however, are in the Caribbean, where more than 80% of amphibians are threatened in the Dominican Republic, Cuba, and Jamaica, and a staggering 92% in Haiti.
  • Although habitat loss clearly poses the greatest threat to amphibians, a newly recognized fungal disease is seriously affecting an increasing number of species. Perhaps most disturbing, many species are declining for unknown reasons, complicating efforts to design and implement effective conservation strategies.
Global Amphibian Assessment

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