Archive | July 13th, 2013

The State-Sponsored Terrorism [of] the United States of America

NOVANEWS
Posted by J

The State-sponsored Terrorism [of] The United States of America
Post Categories: Afghanistan
William Blum / The 4th Media News | Monday, May 6, 2013, 12:08 Beijing
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This would be a more appropriate and truthful greeting for new immigrants especially those seeking a quickest path to citizenship via military "service" in the American Imperium using their language and other skills for the Neocon Project of the "New American Century" [of global domination]

This would be a more appropriate and truthful greeting for new immigrants especially those seeking a quickest path to citizenship via military “service” in the American Imperium using their language and other skills for the Neocon Project of the “New American Century” [of global domination]

Terrorism And The United States

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What is it that makes young men, reasonably well educated, in good health and nice looking, with long lives ahead of them, use powerful explosives to murder complete strangers because of political beliefs? I’m speaking about American military personnel of course, on the ground, in the air, or directing drones from an office in Nevada.

Do not the survivors of U.S. attacks in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan, Somalia, Libya and elsewhere, and their loved ones, ask such a question? The survivors and loved ones in Boston have their answer – America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

That’s what Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving Boston bomber has said in custody, and there’s no reason to doubt that he means it, nor the dozens of others in the past two decades who have carried out terrorist attacks against American targets and expressed anger toward U.S. foreign policy. [See William Blum, Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower, chapters 1 and 2, for cases up to about 2003; later similar cases are numerous; e.g., Glenn Greenwald, “They Hate US for our Occupations”, Salon, Oct. 12, 2010.]

 

Both Tsarnaev brothers had expressed such opinions before the attack as well. [Huffington Post, April 20, 2013; Washington Post, April 21.] The Marathon bombing took place just days after a deadly U.S. attack in Afghanistan killed 17 civilians, including 12 children, as but one example of countless similar horrors from recent years.

“Oh”, an American says, “but those are accidents. What terrorists do is on purpose. It’s cold-blooded murder.”

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But if the American military sends out a bombing mission on Monday which kills multiple innocent civilians, and then the military announces: “Sorry, that was an accident.” And then on Tuesday the American military sends out a bombing mission which kills multiple innocent civilians, and then the military announces: “Sorry, that was an accident.” And then on Wednesday the American military sends out a bombing mission which kills multiple innocent civilians, and the military then announces: “Sorry, that was an accident.” … Thursday … Friday … How long before the American military loses the right to say it was an accident?

Terrorism is essentially an act of propaganda, to draw attention to a cause. The 9/11 perpetrators attacked famous symbols of American military and economic power. Traditionally, perpetrators would phone in their message to a local media outlet beforehand, but today, in this highly-surveilled society, with cameras and electronic monitoring at a science-fiction level, that’s much more difficult to do without being detected; even finding a public payphone can be near impossible.

From what has been reported, the older brother, Tamerlan, regarded U.S. foreign policy also as being anti-Islam, as do many other Muslims. I think this misreads Washington’s intentions. The American Empire is not anti-Islam. It’s anti-only those who present serious barriers to the Empire’s plan for world domination.

The United States has had close relations with Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Qatar, amongst other Islamic states. And in recent years the U.S. has gone to great lengths to overthrow the leading secular states of the Mideast – Iraq, Libya and Syria.

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Moreover, it’s questionable that Washington is even against terrorism per se, but rather only those terrorists who are not allies of the empire. There has been, for example, a lengthy and infamous history of tolerance, and often outright support, for numerous anti-Castro terrorists, even when their terrorist acts were committed in the United States.

Hundreds of anti-Castro and other Latin American terrorists have been given haven in the U.S. over the years. The United States has also provided support to terrorists in Afghanistan, Nicaragua, Kosovo, Bosnia, Iran, Libya and Syria, including those with known connections to al-Qaeda, to further foreign policy goals more important than fighting terrorism.

Under one or more of the harsh anti-terrorist laws enacted in the United States in recent years, President Barack Obama could be charged with serious crimes for allowing the United States to fight on the same side as al-Qaeda-linked terrorists in Libya and Syria and for funding and supplying these groups. Others in the United States have been imprisoned for a lot less.

As a striking example of how Washington has put its imperialist agenda before anything else, we can consider the case of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, an Afghan warlord whose followers first gained attention in the 1980s by throwing acid in the faces of women who refused to wear the veil. This is how these horrible men spent their time when they were not screaming “Death to America.”

CIA and State Department officials called Hekmatyar “scary,” “vicious,” “a fascist,” “definite dictatorship material.” [See Tim Weiner, Blank Check: The Pentagon’s Black Budget (1990), p.149-50.]

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This did not prevent the United States government from showering the man with large amounts of aid to fight against the Soviet-supported government of Afghanistan. [See William Blum, Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II.] Hekmatyar is still a prominent warlord in Afghanistan.

A similar example is that of Luis Posada who masterminded the bombing of a Cuban airline in 1976, killing 73 civilians. He has lived a free man in Florida for many years.

USA Today reported a few months ago about a rebel fighter in Syria who told the newspaper in an interview: “The afterlife is the only thing that matters to me, and I can only reach it by waging jihad.” [USA Today, Dec. 3, 2012]

Tamerlan Tsarnaev may have chosen to have a shootout with the Boston police as an act of suicide; to die waging jihad, although questions remain about exactly how he died. In any event, I think it’s safe to say that the authorities wanted to capture the brothers alive to be able to question them.

It would be most interesting to be present the moment after a jihadist dies and discovers, with great shock, that there’s no afterlife. Of course, by definition, there would have to be an afterlife for him to discover that there’s no afterlife. On the other hand, a non-believer would likely be thrilled to find out that he was wrong.

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Let us hope that the distinguished statesmen, military officers, and corporate leaders who own and rule America find out in this life that to put an end to anti-American terrorism they’re going to have to learn to live without unending war against the world. There’s no other defense against a couple of fanatic young men with backpacks. Just calling them insane or evil doesn’t tell you enough; it may tell you nothing.

But this change in consciousness in the elite is going to be extremely difficult, as difficult as it appears to be for the parents of the two boys to accept their sons’ guilt.

Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, stated after the Boston attack: “The American global domination project is bound to generate all kinds of resistance in the post-colonial world. In some respects, the United States has been fortunate not to experience worse blowbacks. … We should be asking ourselves at this moment, ‘How many canaries will have to die before we awaken from our geopolitical fantasy of global domination?’” [See ForeignPolicyJournal.com, April 21, 2013.]

Officials in Canada and Britain as well as US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice have called for Falk to be fired. [The Telegraph (London), April 25, 2013; Politico.com, April 24]

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NSA BLACKMAILING OBAMA? AN INTERVIEW WITH NSA WHISTLEBLOWER RUSS TICE

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Postedby J

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NSA Blackmailing Obama? | Interview with Whistleblower Russ Tice

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Abby Martin talks to Russell Tice, former intelligence analyst and original NSA whistleblower, about how the recent NSA scandal is only scratches the surface of a massive surveillance apparatus, citing specific targets the he saw spying orders for including former senators Hilary Clinton and Barack Obama.

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Posted July 10, 2013

PLEASE SEE ALSO 3 NSA VETERANS SPEAK OUT ON WHISTLEBLOWER SAY WE TOLD YOU SO

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/06/16/snowden-whistleblower-nsa-officials-roundtable/2428809/

 

Tags: NSA Obama Posted July Russell Tice spying

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Previous NSA Leakers, Thomas Drake And Mark Klein, Speak Out In Defense Of Ed Snowden

As US politicians and pundits push each other aside to tar and feather Ed Snowden for revealing some basic facts about NSA surveillance that the politicians and pundits themselves refused to call out for its clear abuse of basic 4th Amendment principles, two of the most important previous leakers of details of NSA surveillance have spoken out in support of Snowden. Thomas Drake, the former NSA employee who blew the whistle on NSA surveillance abuse (and faced decades in jail on trumped up charges that fell apart in court), has pointed out that Snowden’s revelations confirm his own claims from before:

The NSA programs that Snowden has revealed are nothing new: they date back to the days and weeks after 9/11. I had direct exposure to similar programs, such as Stellar Wind, in 2001. In the first week of October, I had an extraordinary conversation with NSA’s lead attorney. When I pressed hard about the unconstitutionality of Stellar Wind, he said:

“The White House has approved the program; it’s all legal. NSA is the executive agent.”

It was made clear to me that the original intent of government was to gain access to all the information it could without regard for constitutional safeguards. “You don’t understand,” I was told. “We just need the data.

Drake also highlights how he did use the “official” whistleblower channels that many are saying Snowden should have used, and look what happened to him:

I differed as a whistleblower to Snowden only in this respect: in accordance with the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act, I took my concerns up within the chain of command, to the very highest levels at the NSA, and then to Congress and the Department of Defense. I understand why Snowden has taken his course of action, because he’s been following this for years: he’s seen what’s happened to other whistleblowers like me.

By following protocol, you get flagged – just for raising issues. You’re identified as someone they don’t like, someone not to be trusted. I was exposed early on because I was a material witness for two 9/11 congressional investigations. In closed testimony, I told them everything I knew – about Stellar Wind, billions of dollars in fraud, waste and abuse, and the critical intelligence, which the NSA had but did not disclose to other agencies, preventing vital action against known threats. If that intelligence had been shared, it may very well have prevented 9/11.

But as I found out later, none of the material evidence I disclosed went into the official record. It became a state secret even to give information of this kind to the 9/11 investigation.

The end result was that his whistleblowing didn’t do much, but he got arrested because he accidentally kept an almost entirely meaningless document about meeting participants in his home. And, when he was arrested, for just having the list of meeting attendees, he was smeared for causing “exceptionally grave damage to US national security.”

Separately, former AT&T technician, Mark Klein, who revealed that he helped install NSA equipment directly within AT&T’s network is speaking out about how Snowden, rather than the telcos, deserve retroactive immunity. The telcos broke the law and had to have Congress go back and retroactively make what they did — which clearly broke the law at the time — legal. Klein points out how his revelations were brushed off and ignored, while Snowden’s revelations confirm a lot of what he said:

“It was clear that the NSA was looking at everything,” Klein said. “It wasn’t limited to foreign communications.”

On Tuesday, Klein said that for a number of reasons, Snowden’s disclosures sparked more public outrage than his own revelations did more than seven years ago.

For one thing, Klein said, Snowden had direct access to a secret court order and details of the program, while Klein pieced together the government’s surveillance through internal AT&T documents and in discussions with colleagues who worked on the project.

“The government painted me as a nobody, a technician who was merely speculating,” said Klein, who made his disclosures after he accepted a buyout and retired from AT&T in 2004. “Now we have an actual copy of a FISA court order. There it is in black and white. It’s undisputable. They can’t deny that.”

Snowden’s revelations just add to a pile of existing evidence. Look at what Drake, Klein and other whistleblowers have said over the past decade, and recognize that Snowden is just confirming the things that have already been stated by previous whistleblowers, but which the pundits and politicians tried to brush off as not happening.

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Egypt’s unfinished revolution enters new stage

NOVANEWS

Mass protests lead to Morsi’s ouster: Which way forward?

People celebrate in Tahrir Square after a broadcast announcing the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi on July 3.

Once again, the Egyptian people have shown the world that the masses of people can alter the course of history. Once again, an Egyptian President has been forced to humble himself before the masses of people fed up with his rule. Tahrir Square is a worldwide beacon of people’s power.

The unfinished Egyptian revolution has moved into another stage with the removal of the Muslim Brotherhood government led by Mohammed Morsi. There is absolutely no denying that the tens of millions who have flooded into the streets since June 25 were the catalyzing force behind this change, showing tremendous dedication, resolve and confidence in the revolutionary process.

For now, the military has assumed power, acting as the arbiter of the class struggle by installing the head of the country’s top court as an interim president. The military has also suspended the constitution, promising elections after a short but undefined period. While much remains to be determined by the course of the struggle, there are a few issues that are central to this unfolding process.

Why now?

The initial mass uprising took the form of a democratic movement to bring down the decrepit, brutal, Western-backed capitalist regime personified by Hosni Mubarak that engendered huge levels of poverty, misery and unemployment while propping itself up through repressive measures such as false imprisonment and torture. The Mubarak government, in defiance of the Arab street, collaborated in a criminal fashion with the Israeli occupation, playing a key role in the isolation of the Gaza Strip.

The Muslim Brotherhood government headed by Mohamed Morsi, thoroughly capitalist in its outlook, has taken virtually no measures to remedy the terrible economic situation for the vast majority of people. The government became caught in a vise. To get large-scale international loans from the International Monetary Fund, Egypt is being pressed to eliminate the subsidies on food and fuel that millions depend on.

To resolve the issues of poverty, unemployment and a stagnant economy without loans from the IMF, the Brotherhood government would have had to take measures which would have undermined its support from Western governments and most likely Gulf countries, not to mention their own wealthy backers.

The Muslim Brotherhood presided over a downward spiral where concerns over poverty, crime and religious issues further opened up fissures between large sections of the population and the Morsi government.

Fearful of both the masses and its capitalist supporters, the Muslim Brotherhood presided over a downward spiral where concerns over poverty, crime and religious issues further opened up fissures between large sections of the population and the Morsi government. The Muslim Brotherhood government left in place almost the entire much-hated security apparatus of the Mubarak regime. Morsi recently joined the U.S./NATO-led campaign to overthrow the Syrian government.

These issues drove the Tamarod (Rebellion) movement, which has given voice to the concerns and demands of millions. Literally tens of millions have heeded its call to protest, coming out in even larger numbers than the original movement that brought down Mubarak.

What next?

The Egyptian revolution, like all revolutions, is going through a series of phases—and a critical but uncertain one looms ahead.

The Egyptian military is attempting to divert the revolutionary energy of the masses in a direction that would save the system, which ultimately could smother the revolutionary process. The military, deeply connected with the ruling strata of Egypt, aims to keep intact the basic structures established by the Egyptian ruling class since its turn towards the West in the 1970s. In close consultation with the U.S. government, the military is aiming to protect the security alliance with the United States and Israel, and to contain the demands of the movement within the bounds of some form of bourgeois constitutionalism. Washington, by stating it is not taking sides, is tacitly siding with the Egyptian military, trusting it to maintain the pillars of U.S.-Israeli-Egyptian cooperation.

The military has been very careful to present its maneuvers strictly as a response to the desires and aspirations of the Egyptian people. By meeting the demands of the Tamarod movement for the removal of Morsi, the military has for a time secured substantial support among revolutionary masses. The key question, however, is not representational. Whoever assumes the reins of power next will be expected to offer a way out of grinding poverty and unemployment, as well as measures dealing with other political grievances. If the demands of the movement cannot be met, the masses of people will once again be invited to take action.

As developments unfold, it remains to be seen whether the military will succeed in using the demonstrations to reinstate a Mubarak regime without the person of Mubarak, or whether the protest movement will use the military intervention to remove Morsi as a stepping stone in advancing the revolution toward realizing the social justice and independence aims of the revolution.

What is still lacking in Egypt is a coherent revolutionary voice. The Tamarod movement is made up of tens of thousands of youth from different ideological backgrounds, including socialists. The agendas of these various groupings often conflict with one another. With the increasingly urgent need for solutions to the vast social problems that have ignited the revolution, socialist ideas offer the clearest path to a resolution. Whether or not a revolutionary alternative can emerge at the head of the new movement is yet to be seen.

The implications of the current uprising in Egypt are extensive. The shockwaves of a second regime being forced from power has the ability to reignite the mass struggles of the Arab Spring. The ideological struggle within the Egyptian revolution will also go a long way toward determining the contours of the broader Arab struggle.

Internationally the Egyptian revolution, which rekindled hope around the world in the power of mass struggle, comes as millions have also gone into motion in Turkey and Brazil. Whether these events inspire similar protests worldwide is yet to be seen, but without any doubt the resistance to the policies of neo-liberal capitalism, several years after it fell into deep crisis, have shown that no matter the strength of the forces of reaction, there is an alternative: We can fight back!

What Egypt needs in order to solve the current social and economic crisis is a socialist government that represents the working classes of the country.

Victory to the Egyptian revolution!!!

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Forced landing of Morales’ plane angers Latin America

NOVANEWS

Many hold U.S. government responsible

Evo Morales returns after Moscow summit.

Anger has erupted throughout Latin America over the forced landing of Bolivian President Evo Morales’ plane on July 2, after four European countries refused him permission to fly over their territories, on their suspicion that Edward Snowden was on board the plane.

The actions of France, Spain, Portugal and Italy comes on the heels of President Obama’s threats to Latin America to not accept the ex-NSA employe who exposed the massive U.S. surveillance programs.

Flying westward to Bolivia after a Moscow summit of gas-exporting countries, Morales’ presidential plane had to fly over Europe.

One by one, the European countries refused Morales permission to fly over their territories, forcing his plane to loop back and land in Vienna, Austria. Then, during a 14-hour standoff in Vienna, Austrian authorities tried to search Morales’ plane to assure Edward Snowden was not on board.

Many are accusing the United States government as directly responsible for putting Morales’ life in danger in its hunt for Snowden.

Leaders of Latin American states are expressing outrage over the violation of Bolivia’s sovereign rights and Morales’ immunity as head of state.

Leaders of Latin American states are expressing outrage over the violation of Bolivia’s sovereign rights and Morales’ immunity as head of state.

On July 4, the 12-member Union of South American Nations—UNASUR—will hold an emergency meeting in Cochabamba, Bolivia, to decide on a response to the aggression. The meeting was requested by Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa.

From Venezuela to Ecuador, to Mexico to Peru, to Argentina and to Cuba, leaders characterized the European and United States action as an attack on all Latin America.

‘Imperial kidnapping’

With Morales in Austria, Bolivia’s Vice-president Alvaro García Linera denounced the “imperial kidnapping” of his president. After 14 hours, Morales’ plane and passengers were allowed to land and refuel in Canary Islands before returning to Bolivia.

Sacha Llorenty, Bolivia’s ambassador to the United Nations, has issued a formal complaint to the U.N., characterizing the Europeans’ actions as “flagrant aggression.”

He accused the United States of being directly responsible for putting Morales’ live in danger, saying, “We don’t suspect the United States is involved, we are certain that is the case.”

President Morales stated today that apologies by the European countries will not suffice.

“We have learned to defend the sovereignty and dignity of the Bolivian people. … What took place in these days is not casual, it is not a mistake. It is a policy to continue frightening Bolivia and Latin America. Our crime is being indigenous and anti-imperialist, that is why they oppose all of our politics.”

As the Latin American leaders of UNASUR arrive in Cochabamba, they are declaring that Latin America must respond energetically and prepare itself against future aggressions.

Upon landing in Cochabamba, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said, “All the efforts for the unity and dignity of our Latin America are well worth it, and today we feel more than ever the redemptive, rebellious and Bolivarian spirit of our supreme commander Hugo Chávez. In his name, we have come to tell President Evo Morales: Count on us. Who interferes with Bolivia interferes with Venezuela!”

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Extradition hypocrisy on the part of the U.S.:

NOVANEWS

Whistleblowers yes, terrorists no

Whistleblower Edward Snowden

Terrorist Luis Posada Carriles

Originally posted on Left I on the News.

Edward Snowden, who recently disclosed the massive nature of NSA spying on not only Americans but on every single person in the world who uses electronic communications of any kind, is currently a fugitive from “justice” in the United States. Although he is currently in a Russian airport, he has been offered political asylum by Venezuela, as well as by Nicaragua and Bolivia.

Although Snowden isn’t yet in Venezuela, the U.S. government has already requested his extradition from that country. The irony of this request abounds. For eight years now, since June 15, 2005, the U.S. has refused to extradite a notorious terrorist to Venezuela. Luis Posada Carriles is wanted in Venezuela on 73 counts of murder for masterminding the 1976 midair bombing of a Cubana airliner (the flight originated in Venezuela, and the bombing was planned there, which is why that country is involved). Posada was also responsible for a string of Cuban hotel bombings in 1997 which killed Italian tourist Fabio di Celmo, and was jailed for four years in Panama (2000-2004) for an attempt to bomb an auditorium in which Fidel Castro was speaking to university students. This is the man the U.S. Government continues to allow to walk the streets of Miami a free man, while they ask for the extradition of a man whose crime was to expose their own illegal actions.

The excuse for refusing Venezuela’s extradition request is the totally unsupported assertion that Posada might be subject to torture in Venezuela, rather ironic given the recent history of torture practiced by the U.S. Remarkably, the only “evidence” to the possibility of torture in Venezuela was the testimony of Joaquin Chaffardet – Posada’s lawyer, former boss in the Venezuelan secret police, former business partner at the time of the airline bombing, and someone who was indicted, though not convicted, for organizing the prison break which sprang Posada from a Venezuelan jail in the first place!

Posada entered the U.S. illegally in 2005, which could have been ground enough to deport him. More than 400,000 undocumented workers were deported by the Obama administration just last year, and more than a million since Obama took office, but Posada, a man who even the U.S. Department of Justice acknowledges is a terrorist, was not among them.

Having refused a valid extradition request from Venezuela, the U.S. is then obliged under the Montreal Convention to try Posada for the airplane bombing “without any exception whatsoever.” The U.S. has, needless to say, ignored that legal obligation as well.

Although it hasn’t been publicly disclosed whether the U.S. has also filed an extradition request with Bolivia, that too would be ironic, because the U.S. is also harboring a fugitive from Bolivian justice, its former President, Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada. In 2003, Bolivian troops attacked and murdered 59 civilians who were engaged in a peaceful protest. Not long after, Sánchez de Lozada resigned and escaped to the United States. On November 11, 2008, Bolivia formally served the US government with a request to extradite Sánchez de Lozada back to Bolivia for crimes against humanity and extrajudicial killings, but the U.S. has rejected that request, as it did in the case of Venezuela’s request for the extradition of Posada Carriles.

As Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro put it, “Who is the terrorist? A government like us, who seeks to serve the young Snowden, a figure of humanitarian asylum from persecution by the American Empire? Or the United States government that protects with political asylum Luis Posada Carriles, a confessed convicted murderer and terrorist, who is wanted by Venezuela for the bombing of the Cubana plane in 1976?”

 

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OBAMA’S ALL-OUT GLOBAL WAR AGAINST AN AMERICAN ASYLUM SEEKER

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Posted by J

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Obama’s All-out Global War against an American Asylum Seeker

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President Barack Obama has met his unlikely match in a former Army Special Forces recruit-turned CIA technician-turned National Security Agency contractor.

Obama has issued what amounts to an «all-points-bulletin» for Edward Snowden who, in May, left his job at NSA Hawaii as a contractor for Booz Allen Hamilton and departed Honolulu for Hong Kong with a treasure trove of classified documents pointing to NSA’s massive electronic surveillance of Americans without a warrant and billions of people around the world.

Obama, who fancies himself as a cool-under -fire seasoned politician from the rough and tumble south side of Chicago clearly did not like being upstaged by a young white privacy-minded intelligence specialist who grew up in North Carolina and the Maryland suburbs of Baltimore.

After all, Obama inherited from George W. Bush the most intrusive surveillance powers ever amassed in a president of the United States and he was not about to have an impudent young man with the Anglo name of Snowden embarrassing the first African-American president, moreover one with a Kenyan last name.

In the case of U.S. Army Private First Class Bradley Manning, charged with releasing classified information to WikiLeaks, including over 250,000 State Department cables, Obama personalized his war against whistleblowers by making the following pre-trial statement:

«We are a nation of laws. We don’t let individuals make decisions about how the law operates. He[Bradley Manning] broke the law!»

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Once again, as he has shown with ordering drone murders of U.S. citizens abroad, Obama has shown he has no problem being judge, jury, and sometimes, executioner.

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By personalizing his attempt to snatch Snowden, Obama made his quest political, not criminal. That alone makes Snowden a political refugee worthy of being granted asylum by any reasonable measure of international law.

 

Obama, who has never mastered the intricacies of diplomacy, began making global demands that Snowden be returned immediately to the United States to face what Obama’s supporters called «justice».

In the official request to officials of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region for Snowden to be extradited to the United States, the U.S. State Department was so hasty it provided a wrong middle name for Snowden, James instead of Joseph, and no passport number.

Hong Kong said it could not process an erroneous and incomplete extradition request from Washington. The Obama administration, acting like a Third World tin horn dictatorship, responded by threatening to cancel Hong Kong’s liberal mutual visa agreement with the United States and other unspecified sanctions.

The State Department immediately revoked Snowden’s passport but he managed to travel to Moscow on a safe conduct document issued by the Ecuadorian consul in London, Fidel Narvaez, which was a decision that earned a strong rebuke from Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa.

The corporate media then reported that Correa rejected Snowden’s asylum request in Ecuador when no such decision had been made. What Correa said was what many other countries said. Snowden’s asylum request in Ecuador could only be considered if he were physically present on Ecuadorian soil. Correa would not guarantee safe passage from Moscow to Ecuador.

When Snowden flew to Moscow with an obvious wink and a nod from China, the United States threatened the Chinese with retaliatory action, even though Snowden’s revelations blew a giant hole in Washington’s propaganda about America being constantly subjected to Chinese state-sponsored computer hacking.

In fact, Snowden’s revelations to the South China Morning Post provided evidence that NSA was targeting civilian networks and computers in China and Hong Kong, including those serving hospitals and universities. Hong Kong demanded an explanation from the United States. China was able to show Obama as a supreme hypocrite.

After Snowden arrived in Moscow, the interventionist neo-conservative U.S. ambassador in the Russian capital, Michael McFaul, began pressuring Russia to extradite Snowden to the United States despite the fact that there is no U.S-Russian extradition treaty. McFaul was not the only ambassador to go to war with a host government over Snowden.

Deputy Secretary of State William Burns, the man Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry assigned to bag Snowden and return him to the United States, began sending cables to U.S. diplomatic missions abroad that they were to stop at nothing to get Snowden.

When Iceland was warned not to grant Snowden asylum, the Icelandic Parliament tabled a bill that would have granted Snowden Icelandic citizenship. The bill was sponsored by six members from small minority parties — the Pirate Party, the Left-Green Movement, Bright Future, and the Social Democratic Alliance — but the Obama administration was able to wield enough influence with the center-right government to ensure the bill was dead-on-arrival.

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When Snowden booked but failed to board an Aeroflot flight to Havana from Moscow, Obama put his administration on red alert. Because Ecuador had given asylum at its embassy in London to WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange, Washington believed Snowden may have been planning an escape to Quito.

Vice President Joe Biden phoned Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa to pressure the country not to grant Snowden asylum. Ecuador, being threatened with America’s cancellation of a preferential trade agreement, abrogated it anyway, accusing Obama of blackmail, and offered the amount lost to Ecuador with the loss of the trade pact, $23 million, to fund human rights education for Americans.

When Bolivian President Evo Morales and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro traveled to Moscow to attend the 13-nation Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), Obama and the NSA again went on high alert in the event either one of the two leaders decided to spirit Snowden away from Russia in their presidential jets. From Moscow, Maduro said he would consider Snowden’s asylum request.

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NSA ordered «surge» surveillance of the communications of Maduro and Morales, especially Morales, who joked about giving asylum to the American whistleblower. In answer to a question about granting Snowden asylum, Morales responded, “Why not? .. His case has triggered international debate, and of course, Bolivia is ready to take in people who denounce things».

Wrongly believing that Morales had decided to fly Snowden from Moscow to La Paz aboard his Falcon presidential aircraft, the United States, through its ambassadors in Rome, Paris, Madrid, and Lisbon, convinced these nations to close their airspace to Morales’s plane, a clear violation of accepted norms of international law and one that placed the Bolivian leader and his staff and crew in personal jeopardy. Morales and his party were forced to land in Vienna where they spent 14 hours.

Spain’s Foreign Minister José Manuel García-Margallo reported that the Obama administration told the Spanish government that Snowden was on Morales’s plane, which was false.

That information was reportedly conveyed by the U.S. ambassador to Vienna, William Eacho, an Obama campaign fundraiser and investment banker from Bethesda, Maryland. Spain’s ambassador to Vienna, Alberto Carnero Fernandez, attempted to board Morales’s aircraft while on the ground in Vienna in order to search for Snowden.

The air piracy committed by the United States against Morales resulted in a firestorm in Latin America. Asylum requests by Snowden were granted by Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Bolivia. Uruguay’s First Lady, Senator Lucia Topolansky, also said Uruguay would grant asylum and several Brazilian lawmakers pressed President Dilma Rousseff to grant Snowden asylum. Latin American countries roundly condemned Morales’s forced landing in Vienna as the five European countries involved offered up nonsensical explanations for their actions.

Regional Latin American organizations condemned the Obama administration and the five European countries, all of which are NSA «Third Party» signal intelligence-gathering collaborators, offered up excuses for their actions but no valid reasons… Not surprisingly, Italy and France were among the countries that also rejected Snowden’s asylum request.

Other countries rejecting Snowden’s asylum bid after massive pressure was exerted by the Obama administration included India, Germany, Poland, Finland, and Brazil. When a rumor surfaced that Zimbabwe might offer Snowden asylum, the Obama team, traveling with the president in Africa, let it be known that crippling sanctions imposed on President Robert Mugabe’s government would be increased.

Snowden withdrew his asylum request to Russia after President Vladimir Putin said Snowden would have to first stop leaking classified information.

Obama has maintained a personal vendetta against all national security whistleblowers but in the case of Snowden, Obama has become a driven Captain Ahab in search of his prey. Obama will stop at nothing to capture Snowden as he showed with his actions against Morales’s plane, reported Pentagon contingency plans to force the Moscow-to-Havana Aeroflot plane to land in Miami had Snowden been aboard, and threats of trade sanctions against various countries considering granting Snowden asylum.

Obama’s post-pubescent looking Press Secretary Jay Carney arrogantly declared that Snowden «should not be allowed to proceed in any further international travel other than travel that would result in him returning to the United States».

Ironically, people around the world, regardless of ethnicity, began cheering for the quiet white guy from the Baltimore suburbs against the black bully from south Chicago. Obama’s personalization of his war against a single American citizen has not only made Snowden a political refugee but an American folk hero.

Wayne MADSEN | Strategic Culture Foundation

http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2013/07/11/obama-all-out-global-war-against-american-asylum-seeker.html

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Egypt: Staging a “Democratic” Military Coup

NOVANEWS
Global Research

 

During the 2011 Egyptian uprisings, the military was jeered for cracking down on protestors and for the infamous virginity tests they conducted on detained female protestors. In June 2012, when Mohamed Morsi won the presidential race with 51% of the votes, crowds gathered in Tahrir Square to celebrate his victory, chanting : God is great” and “down with military rule.“ Barely a year passed before the crowds were cheering the U.S.-backed military for ousting their first democratically elected president in a coup dubbed by various media outlets as a democratic coup. What transpired?

Mr. Morsi alienated both Egyptians and foreign states in his short term in office. No doubt many Egyptians were alarmed and opposed to what they perceived as his ‘power-grab’, as well as the new constitution which passed in a referendum with 64% of a measly 33% turnout; but inarguably, the economy was a huge factor in sending protestors to the streets. The lack of progress in dealing with the economy, the fuel shortages, and the IMF loan delay also contributed to the continuous unrest in Egypt .

It is worthwhile mentioning here that a significant percentage of Egypt ’s economy is run by the military. Robert Springborg, an expert on Egypt ’s military told The New York Times: “Protecting its businesses from scrutiny and accountability is a red line the [Egyptian] military will draw”. Also of note is the fact that long lines formed at gasoline stations in Cairo amid an apparent fuel shortage, disappeared quickly after the coup. This led to speculation that the fuel crisis had “been deliberately engineered to feed unrest and dissatisfaction with the Morsi government in the days before its overthrow.”

Gripped in social and economic crisis, it came as no surprise that on May 1st, a group opposed to Mr. Morsi which called itself “Rebel” organized a 1 million people march to be held on June 30th. The group also planned on delivering a signed petition to the Prosecutor General at the same time with the aim of collecting 15 million signatures by that date. “In one month, movement promoters travelled the length and breadth of the country, collecting signatures door to door, on buses, in restaurants and offices as well as on the internet.”They claimed that they had secured just over 7 million signatures, and four weeks later, on June 28th, the Washington Post reported that the group had secured 22 millions signatures. (Given the timeframe and the challenges, surely this number has a place in the Guinness Book of World Records – if only it could be verifiable).

This number cited by “Rebel” became an accepted reality and was promoted by media outlets without verification. As anti-protestors marched on Tahrir as planned, military tanks and personnel blocked the pro-Morsi crowd from the onset; enabling the media lens to capture the sea of anti-Morsi demonstrators and marginalizing his supporters. These actions together with the unverified 22 million signatures claim played an essential role in calling a military coup a “democratic” coup. Washington was off the hook and funds could to secure the Egyptian army’s cooperation and loyalty to Washington .

But one should ask why was it that Washington which has a long standing relationship with the Moslem Brotherhood[1] rejected Morsi?

There are many answers to this question – with the most basic being that he was not part of the plan. As early as 2007 speculation about Hosni Mubarak’s replacement appeared in the American mainstream media. Discussing his ailing health, in October 2007, Michael Stackman’s opinion piece in The New York Times addressed the importance of a Mubark’s replacement to be someone who would continue the same policies towards Israel and Washington .

With this in mind, in 2008, young, ‘civil society’ Egyptians met with former Secretary of State Condeleeza Rice who called the young Egyptian activists the “hope for the future of Egypt “. The “hope of Egypt ” also met the US National Security Advisor and prominent Congressional member. These meetings were organized by The Freedom House (see link here). The Freedom House, an outfit which calls itself “independent” but receives 80% of its funding from the US government, including the National Endowment for Democracy — a CIA front — claimed to provide advanced training on civic mobilization, strategic thinking, new media, advocacy and outreach“.

In 2010, Freedom House boasted of teaching new media tools to Egypt ‘s “hope”.

Freedom House had reason to boast. 2010 was a crucial year to decide and settle on Mubarak’s successor as time was of the essence given Mubarak’s health and terminal illness. In April 2010, the pro-Israeli Jerusalem Post ventured that former IAEA Chief, Egyptian-born Mohammad El baradei would “add excitement to Egyptian politics. He did. Mr. El-Baradei served on the Board of Trustees of the International Crisis Group funded by Carnegie, Soros, and Ford (Ford Foundation was a conduit for CIA funds during the Cold War – Saunders 2000[i]) where he rubbed shoulders with colleagues Shimon Peres, Saudi Arabia’s Prince Turki al-Faisal, Richard Armitage, Zbigniew Brzezinski, etc.

Morsi’s election not only interrupted Washington ’s efforts to replace Mubarak in spite of his close cooperation with Washington (specifically in cutting ties with Syria ). Morsi presented Washington with many challenges. Not only was he reported to have called “Jews descendants of pigs and apes, but his election into office was warmly welcomed not only by HAMAS, but also by the U.S.-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who called Morsi “the choice of the great people of Egypt” while one of his senior aides, Saeb Erekat, said the democratic vote for Morsi “meant the Palestinian cause was the Number One priority for all Egyptians. Washington was not in the business of making Palestinians jubilant, or contradicting Israel ’s demands. .

Regardless, Morsi dug in deeper. Soon after taking office, Morsi forced NGO’s out of Egypt, raising the ire of Freedom House (NGOs were referred to as force-multipliers by Colin Powell, and have been instrumental in executing US policies around the globe). Additionally, Morsi forced out powerful military figures in order to reclaim the military power the army had seized. As Juan Cole put it, ‘a coup against the generals’. Israel called the move “Instability in Egypt to threaten Israel ,” and “Muslim Brotherhood on our doorstep.” However, Morsi made the mistake of appointing Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi as military chief – a man with close ties to the U.S. and Saudi Arabia .

Perhaps his most serious offense was his opposition to a dam which both Israel and Saudi Arabia favored as they had plans to divert water from the Nile . In 2012, it was reported that Saudi Arabia had claimed a stake in the Nile . Israel ’s ambitions went much further back.

First initiated by Theodore Herzl in 1903, the diversion plan was dropped due to British and Egyptian opposition to it only to be picked up again in the 1970s. At that time, Israeli’s idea was to convince Egypt to divert Nile water to Israel . In 1978, President Anwar Sadat “declared in Haifa to the Israeli public that he would transfer Nile water to the Negev . Shortly afterward, in a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, Sadat promised that Nile water would go to Jerusalem . During Mubarak’s presidency, published reports indicated that Israeli experts were helping Ethiopia to plan 40 dams along the Blue Nile .”[ii]

On May 30, 2013, The Times of Israel reported that the construction on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (on the Blue Nile) had sparked a major diplomatic crisis with Egypt . The article also reported (citing Al-Arabiya) that Major General Mohammed Ali Bilal, the deputy chief of staff of the Egyptian Armed Forces, had said Egypt was not in a position to confront the project (countries). “The only solution lies in the US intervening to convince Ethiopia to alleviate the impact of the dam on Egypt .” No such solutions from the U.S.

On June 3rdMorsi met with his cabinet to discuss the dam and its implications. Cabinet members were surprised to learn that the meeting was aired live. During the meeting, a cabinet member said: “Imagine what 80 million of us would do to Israel and America if our water was turned off”. Morsi contended that “We have very serious measures to protect every drop of Nile water.” The day prior to Morsi’s ouster, on July 2ndFox News reported that work on the dam was “proceeding apace”, with plans to finish the project in 2017.

It seems the only “serious measure” undertaken was the ouster of Morsi. With him gone, the military engaged, and the poring in of Saudi money, the dam project will proceed unhindered; blood-diluted Nile water will flow to the enemies of the Egyptian in sink with a current of jubilation by the crowds who ‘can’t see the forest for the trees’.

Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich is an independent researcher with a focus on U.S. foreign policy and the influence of lobby groups.

Notes
During the early years of the Cold War, American spies in Cairo “engaged in an operation to show Soviet ungodliness” by circulating anti-Islamic literature and attributing it to the Soviets. When the nationalist Gamal Abdel Nasser refused to become America ’s man in Egypt , CIA looked for a “religious spellbinder” who could tip the scales of Arab opinion and “divert the growing stream of anti-American hostility.” The intent was to “groom a messiah who would start out in Egypt, and then spread his word to Africans and perhaps other Third World peoples” in order to “immunize them against false prophets,” namely Nasser[1]. Although no ‘messiah’ was groomed, the CIA did co-opt leaders of the Islamic revival movement known as the Ikhwan, or Muslim Brotherhood and “the seeds of a furtive relationship between the CIA and the Ikhwan were planted.” In the years ahead, the agency would become a de facto accomplice of the Muslim Brotherhood and its “terrorist” activities[1].
[i] Frances Stonor Saunders. The Cultural Cold War: the CIA and the World of Arts and Letters. New York : New Press 2000

[ii] “Will Nile water go to Israel ? North Sinai pipelines and the politics of scarcity”, Middle East Policy (Sep 1997): 113-124.

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Uncle, please, take this money

NOVANEWS

Posted: by editor

A tiny Syrian boy who has known mostly war and suffering in his short life, wants to pay humanitarian volunteers who have brought food to his family.

A tiny Syrian boy who has known mostly war and suffering in his short life, wants to pay humanitarian volunteers who have brought food to his family.

July 9, 2013 – Kafar Naha, Syria WRITTEN BY Asmae Siria Dachan, translated by Mary Rizzo

The moment of the distribution of food parcels in a context of war is always a moment of relief for everyone. Aid that arrives in areas that are continuously bombed and under siege, becomes vital for the civilian population. The families are ready to receive the donations, without ever giving up their own dignity and self-respect. No one has chosen to become displaced, no one has chosen to undergo a genocide. They are all victims and to rescue and assist them is an imperative for all of humanity.

For children it is a time of celebration: they get to see the vans with people who move from house to house and stop to make deliveries. Those young people, with their serene faces and their smiles, inspire confidence. They are the volunteers of two Italian-Syrian humanitarian associations Onsur, Global Campaign to Support the Syrian people and Ossmei, Syrian Organisation for emergency medical services in Italy. Among them is Abdullah Dachan, a student: he delivers a box to a man who is there with his son; the shy little one peeking from behind a wall. He was blonde, like angels in paintings, he must have been no more than three or four.

The tiny boy stretches out his hand that is clutching a coin and says, “Please ammo – (in Arabic-uncle) take this money.”

The volunteer stops in disbelief: how much dignity, how much fairness, how much innocent spontaneity in that little man, who would want to pay for what he has received. Abdullah asks the boy’s father if he can pick him up: he then hugs him, gives him a kiss, holding back the tears … tears of emotion and anger – why, why do these children have to suffer all this – he asks himself. “It is I who have to thank you, little friend. You gave me something beautiful, your smile and your courage,” are the words he would like to say to him.

In addition to the residents who are driven to exhaustion by the bombings, there are thousands of displaced people in that area. They have all lost their homes, their jobs, their freedom. Among them there are a few survivors of the massacre of Banyas. Civilians fleeing the horrors of a genocide that does not give signs of abating, while the world remains unmoved.

From the stories of the sixth mission in Syria Onsur-Ossmei

Original: http://diariodisiria.wordpress.com/2013/07/11/zio-ti-prego-prendi-questa-monetina/

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Zio-Nazi forces continue systematic attacks against Palestinian civilians and property in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)

NOVANEWS

 

  • IsraHell forces have continued to use excessive force against peaceful protesters in the West Bank.

–       4 protesters were wounded during peaceful protests in Ramallah and Qalqilia.

–       3 protesters were arrested during peaceful protests.

  • Israeli forces conducted 58 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank.

–       62 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children, were arrested.

  • Israel has continued to impose a total closure on the oPt and has isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world.

–       Israeli forces established dozens of checkpoints in the West Bank.

–       12 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were arrested at checkpoints in the West Bank.

  • Israeli forces have continued to support settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.

–       15 residential tents, 11 livestock tenets and an artesian well were demolished in the northern Jordan valley.

–       More demolition notices were issued in Ares “C.”

–       Israeli forces arrested 3 civilians and 2 international activists during the settler attacks in the south of Hebron.

–       The settlers continued their attacks against the Palestinians and their property.

Summary

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period 04 – 10 July 2013.

Shooting:

During the reporting period, Israeli forces wounded 4 Palestinian civilians during peaceful protests against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities in the West Bank.

In the West Bank, Israeli forces continued the systematic use of excessive force against peaceful protests organised by Palestinian, Israeli and international activists against the construction of the annexation wall and settlement activities in the West Bank.  As a result, 4 civilians were wounded during peaceful protests in Ramallah and Qalqilia on 05 July 2013. On 07 July 2013, a fourth civilian was wounded during a peaceful protest in Ramallah against attacks by settlers in Deir Qeddis and Shabtin villages, northwest of the Ramallah.

The full report is available online at:

http://www.pchrgaza.org/portal/en/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9664:weekly-report-on-israeli-human-rights-violations-in-the-occupied-palestinian-territory-04-10-july-2013&catid=84:weekly-2009&Itemid=183

 

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Radioactive Leak Reaching Pacific, Says Japan

NOVANEWS

Power station continuing to contaminate water and soil two years after disaster, nuclear watchdog says.

Image from Google Maps

Image from Google Maps.

Japan’s nuclear regulator says it believes radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima power station is leaking into the Pacific, and urged operators to act to prevent further contamination.

Shunichi Tanaka, head of the new Nuclear Regulation Authority, said on Wednesday that he believed contamination of the sea had been continuing since the March 2011 catastrophe.

“I think contamination of the sea is continuing to a greater or lesser extent,” Tanaka said.

“It was contaminated at the time of the accident, but I think it has been continuing for the last two years. Coming up with countermeasures against all possible scenarios is a top priority.”

Fukushima’s operator, Tepco, has acknowledged problems are mounting at the plant north of Tokyo, the site of the world’s worst atomic disaster since Chernobyl in 1986.

Tepco said it was checking Tanaka’s comments and could offer no immediate comment.

On Tuesday, the company said radiation levels in groundwater had soared, suggesting highly toxic materials from the power station were getting closer to the Pacific more than two years after three meltdowns triggered by a catastrophic earthquake and tsunami.

Observation between the damaged Reactor No 2 and sea showed levels of radioactive caesium-134 and ceasium-137 had soared over the weekend, the company said.

In the days after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, a plume of radiation from explosions fell over wide areas of the land and sea.

Toxic materials, such as caesium, were later found to have leaked through channels in the ground on the side of the station by the sea.

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