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Posts Tagged ‘Iraq’



In 2009, Manfred Nowak, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture, stated that there was already enough evidence to try former U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for war crimes. Nowak’s statement confirmed what human rights and legal organizations have been saying for several years, and spotlights one of the Bush administration’s most controversial decisions regarding the use of torture.

Nowak’s statement followed a bipartisan Senate Arms Services Committee investigation made public in December. In scathing and unequivocal terms, the investigation revealed that Rumsfeld and other high-ranking administration officials, including former National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, bore major responsibility for detainee abuse by American troops at Abu Ghraib in Iraq; Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; and other military detention centers.

The abuse was not the result of only a few soldiers acting on their own, but the consequence of interrogation policies approved by Rumsfeld and other top officials who “conveyed the message that physical pressures and degradation were appropriate treatment for detainees.”

The use of torture in Guantánamo, Afghanistan and Iraq has a long history. On Dec. 2, 2002, following a request by Guantanamo officials that additional techniques beyond those in the U.S. Army field manual be approved for use, Rumsfeld authorized new interrogation policies for Guantanamo, including placing prisoners in “stress positions,” hooding detainees for 20-hour interrogations, exploiting phobias to induce stress, sensory deprivation, and isolation.

These techniques were later used in Afghanistan and Iraq. Complaints of abuses at Guantanamo by FBI officials to the Defense Department in December 2002 were disregarded. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), in January of 2003 senior officers of the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) office repeatedly objected to interrogation techniques used at Guantanamo, but “Pentagon officials ‘didn’t think this was a big deal, so they just ignored the JAG.’”

During this period, Rumsfeld designated a “Working Group” to assess legal, policy and operational issues for detainee interrogation in the “war on terrorism.” In April 2003, the Working Group issued its final report recommending 35 interrogation techniques to Rumsfeld, who recommended 24 of the 35, including dietary and environmental manipulation, sleep interruption and isolation.

One month later, the Red Cross reported 200 cases of alleged detainee abuse of prisoners in U.S. custody in Iraq to the U.S. Central Command. Meanwhile, the FBI reiterated its objections to the Guantanamo base commander.

In August 2003, Rumsfeld sent the Guantanamo commander to Iraq to “GITMO-ize” Iraqi detention facilities, promoting wide-scale deployment of more aggressive interrogation techniques in Iraq.

In February 2004, Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba reported that “systematic” and “sadistic, blatant and wanton criminal abuses” were taking place at Abu Ghraib.

In May 2006, the U.N. Committee against Torture issued a strong and thorough critique of the U.S. record on torture. The U.N. assessment was confirmed by Maj. Gen. Taguba who in June 2008 stated, “After years of disclosures by government investigations, media accounts and reports from human rights organizations, there is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes,” and called for those responsible to be held to account.

In December 2006, the ACLU and Human Rights First argued before a federal court that Rumsfeld should be held accountable for the torture and abuse of detainees in U.S. military custody. Retired military officers and military legal experts filed a legal brief in support of the lawsuit. In March 2007, Chief Judge Thomas A. Hogan of the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed the case.

The Center for Constitutional Rights in New York, the International Federation for Human Rights, and the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights have filed three cases against Rumsfeld and others in Germany and France for the alleged torture of detainees in Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantanamo and at secret sites outside the U.S. They did so under universal jurisdiction laws that would let those countries indict U.S. officials for torture if the United States does not fulfill its obligation to try Rumsfeld.

Decades ago, Hannah Arendt coined the phrase “the banality of evil” to describe how “normal people”, given the circumstances, could commit atrocious crimes. I have just finished watching the documentary “The Unknown Known,” which draws its title from one of Mr. Rumsfeld’s most famous rhetorical pronouncements.

In the film, Morris interviews Rumsfeld at length, and allows him to give his version of the facts that led to the Iraq war and subsequent events. Looking at Rumsfeld, totally oblivious and uncaring about the devastation he and his accomplices unleashed in Iraq, I am tempted to call the process “the impunity of evil.”

Cesar Chelala, M.D. and Ph.D., is a co-winner of an Overseas Press Club of America award for an article on human rights.

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Obama defends U.S invasion of Iraq while criticizing Russia

26 Mar 2014 President Barack Obama defended the American invasion of Iraq Wednesday in a high-profile speech to address the Russian takeover of Crimea. Russian officials [and the *whole world,* except for corporate-run US media], Obama noted, have pointed to the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq as an example of “Western hypocrisy.” Obama struggled, however, in his attempt to defend the legality of the invasion. The war was unsanctioned by the United Nations, and many experts assert it violated any standard reading of international law. The war was unsanctioned by the United Nations, and many experts assert it violated any standard reading of international law.

“We did not grab its [Iraq's] resources for our own gain,” Obama argued. In fact, the U.S. forced Iraq to privatize its oil industry, which had previously been under the control of the state, and further required that it accept foreign ownership of the industry.

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‘This Monday marks the eleventh anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq—a solemn punctuation mark to the steadily increasing violence that has gripped that country over the past two years. Sectarian violence claimed more than 8,000 Iraqis in 2013 alone, and this year’s toll has already surpassed 2,000. Iraq today is a broken and failing state: the war that many would prefer to believe ended in 2011 continues unabated, with Iraqis continuing to suffer, as much as ever, the fallout from this country’s callous lies and avoidable mistakes. Despite Colin Powell’s sanctimonious “Pottery Barn rule,” John Feffer wrote on his Foreign Policy in Focus blog at TheNation.com last month, the United States has made no effort to “own up to our responsibility for breaking the country.”

To a regrettably unsurprising extent, the issue of The Nation that went to press just as American tanks crossed over the border from Kuwait accurately predicted what would happen in the wake of an invasion. Our lead editorial in that issue began:

The Bush Administration has launched a war against Iraq, a war that is unnecessary, unwise and illegal. By attacking a nation that has not attacked us and that does not pose an immediate threat to international peace and security, the Administration has violated the United Nations Charter and opened a new and shameful chapter in US history. Moreover, by abandoning a UN inspection and disarmament process that was working, it has chosen a path that is an affront not only to America’s most cherished values but to the world community. The UN did not fail; rather, Washington sought a UN imprimatur for a war it had already decided to wage and scorned it when the Administration couldn’t get its way.’

Read more: This Week in ‘Nation’ History: The Horrific Legacy of the Invasion of Iraq

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As the US and the European Union impose sanctions on 21 officials from Russia and Ukraine for helping the people of Crimea to make a democratic choice to become a part of the Russian Federation, one specific question arises – where were all the sanctions when the West was carrying out genuinely illegal wars and interventions that resulted in destruction and thousands of innocent civilians being killed?

Unlike Russia, which has not fired one single shot in Crimea, nor has been seen as an invader by the people of Crimea, the West, primarily the United States and NATO countries, have caused havoc and destruction all over the world with little or no repercussions. Below are just three examples which warrant toughest sanctions to be imposed on Western powers.

The Iraq War 

The Lancet journal in 2006 published an estimate of 654,965 excess Iraqi deaths related to the war of which 601,027 were caused by violence. In terms of financial costs, the non-partisan Congressional Research Service estimates that the US will have spent almost $802bn (£512.8bn) on funding the war by the end of fiscal year 2011, with $747.6bn (£478bn) already appropriated. The dire consequences of Western invasion continued way beyond 2003. Sectarian violence in the conflict began to grow from early 2005. But the destruction of an important Shia shrine in February 2006 saw attacks between Sunni and Shia militias increase dramatically. This caused many Iraqi families to abandon their homes and move to other areas within the country or to flee abroad. The International Organization for Migration, IOM, which monitors numbers of displaced families, estimates that in the four years 2006-2010, as many as 1.6 million Iraqis were internally displaced, representing 5.5% of the population.

 Libyan Bloody intervention 

The intervention in Libya was supposed to be about saving lives and protecting civilians from the murdered Colonel Gaddafi. Instead it quickly became a catastrophe. Firstly, it is important to note that NATO acted completely outside its mandate. Secondly, just as currently in Syria, the West supported vile and blood thirsty rebels who took it upon themselves to create massacre after massacre. Amnesty International has produced compendious evidence of mass abduction and detention, beating and routine torture, killings and atrocities by the rebel militias Britain, France and the US have backed. Throughout that time African migrants and black Libyans have been subject to a relentless racist campaign of mass detention, lynchings and atrocities on the usually unfounded basis that they have been loyalist mercenaries. What is now known, is that while the death toll in Libya when NATO intervened was perhaps around 1,000-2,000 (judging by UN estimates), eight months later it became more than ten times that figure. Estimates of the numbers of dead range from 10,000 up to 50,000. The National Transitional Council puts the losses at 30,000 dead and 50,000 wounded. Currently, Libya continues to be in a state of anarchy with frequent assassinations, complete lack of security and towns controlled by aggressive militia.

 US Drone Strikes 

The impact of President Barack Obama’s drone strikes has been devastating to many communities in Pakistan, Yemen and Afghanistan. In Pakistan alone, The Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ) reports that from June 2004 through mid-September 2012, available data indicate that drone strikes killed 2,562-3,325 people in Pakistan, of whom 474-881 were civilians, including 176 children. TBIJ reports that these strikes also injured an additional 1,228-1,362 individuals. Where media accounts do report civilian casualties, rarely is any information provided about the victims or the communities they leave behind. Furthermore, current US targeted killings and drone strike practices undermine respect for the rule of law and international legal protections and may set dangerous precedents. There is clear doubt on the legality of strikes on individuals or groups not linked to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and who do not pose imminent threats to the US. The US government’s failure to ensure basic transparency and accountability in its targeted killing policies, to provide necessary details about its targeted killing program, or adequately to set out the legal factors involved in decisions to strike hinders necessary democratic debate about a key aspect of US foreign and national security policy.

Typical double standards and hypocrisy 

The above three examples clearly illustrate that the West, and especially the United States, has engaged in actions which undoubtedly warrant severe sanctions and even trials in the International Criminal Court. However those involved, such as George Bush, Tony Blair and current British Prime Minister David Cameron have been left untouched. Meanwhile these leaders have been the first to condemn and criticise the actions of Russia that cannot be compared to the atrocities committed by the West. The hypocrisy and double standards are perhaps cliché terms regularly attributed to the West, nevertheless, it is crucial to point out once again the lack of moral ground that the West can stand on when condemning Russia. Until sanctions are imposed on the Western countries that have engaged in atrocious and illegal activities over the last decade, Western powers have no right to speak out against the current crisis in Ukraine.

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The De Tocqueville Memorandum

“America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America ceases to be great.”

Philosophers tell us that we can reason backwards from our behavior to our First Principles to determine what guides us.

In this memorandum I seek to prove that the behavior of the United States government in the modern era can best be described as being ruled by Pure Evil and that the governing class in America seeks wherever possible to do the greatest harm to the greatest number of people. And I further intend to prove that this harm is in this present generation focused as much on the American people as it is on foreign nationals. Though I do grant that people overseas have cause for complaint.

America was founded upon the belief in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Today life is not cherished, liberty is denied and happiness will soon be unattainable.

I will follow the popular trend and offer a list of ten reasons why I believe America is being ruled by men dedicated to the propagation of Evil.

1) America has used Depleted Uranium weapons in combat since 1991. DU weapons have been discovered in test firing ranges from Hawaii to Puerto Rico. Dick Cheney according to Leuren Moret used to get reports daily on DU air sample levels from Iraq. He ordered DU bombs to be dropped in or near towns like Fallujah if their radiation levels dropped too low.

The above photo is of a foreign baby born in Iraq after the occupation. The image below is from the son of an American who served in Iraq. This American child was likely damaged by the presence of DU in his father’s body. The US House and Senate since 1991 has done nothing to stop the use of DU despite the obvious dangers to Americans who serve in the military and their families or to people living near firing ranges.

2) The United States is funding Al Qaeda. In fact Al Qaeda or the base was never anything but a database or list of Arabs willing to work for America and Great Britain. Zbigniew Brzezinski used Al Qaeda to entice the Soviet Union into invading Afghanistan. That policy led to the deaths of more than 4 million Afghans. Mass murder is just one foundation of America’s foreign policy.

Currently, the US is funding Al Qaeda which is torturing and killing Syrians. American taxpayers are paying mercenaries to behead Christians and to gouge out their eyes. They are destroying Christian churches which were founded as far back as 50 A.D. Yet the threat of our Al Qaeda mercenaries is ostensibly why TSA has the right to grope the genitals of airline passengers. The real reason is to acclimate Americans to a future where the police have the right to sexually assault you and your children, to  torture you and  to kill you.

3) Whenever the American government needs to justify the violation of the Bill of Rights or the commission of an atrocity, mention is made of 911. BBC went on air 22 minutes before the collapse of WTC Tower 7 on 911 to announce that it had already fallen down. The Rothschild owned Reuters news agency had told BBC that WTC 7 had collapsed before it did. Tower 7 was not hit by an airplane. The BBC mentioned debris from Towers 1 and 2. But look at this brief video of the collapse. There is no visible debris damage. This building was obviously taken down by a controlled demolition. The video  below would have compelled a nation that had not been occupied by a foreign power to arrest everyone who allowed this atrocity to happen.

4) I mentioned America as being occupied by a foreign power. Some trace the occupation of America to 11-22-1963 and the assassination of President Kennedy. The Occupied media went on air that day and said that the President had been shot by a lone assassin firing from the Texas School Book Depository behind the motorcade. The best Marine Corps snipers from the Vietnam war tried at Quantico to re-create the assassination as dictated by the Warren Commission. Those Marine Corps snipers could not make the fatal shots even with superior weapons. Dan Rather went on CBS radio and described to the radio audience what he saw from the Zapruder film. He said clearly the President’s head was being forced forward by the impact of bullets from behind him. Life magazine took photos of the assassination in the order of 1-2-3 and published them on their cover in the order 3-2-1 so they could convince the people that there was no conspiracy and no coup.

If Mordecai Vanunu were allowed out of Israel, we could have a video of his declaration that Israeli Prime Minister David Ben Gurion order the assassination of JFK because the American President opposed Israel’s acquisition of nuclear weapons. The widespread nature of this conspiracy is easily proven by the following JFK Secret Service stand down video below.

5) Others trace the occupation of America to November 22, 1910 which was the date of the first meeting to draft the legislation that became the Federal Reserve Act. Under America’s banking system the commoners are charged interest on money the banks created out of nothing. This transfers wealth from small businesses, farmers and workers to the Bankers. Under fractional reserve banking every dollar in deposits allows the banker to loan out 10 ten dollars at interest. Please note the Banker is only paying interest on one dollar but is collecting on ten. This interest rate gouging leads to mountains of Unpayable Debts which in turn causes Depressions.

A Depression is a time in history when Unpayable Debts are cancelled. There are three ways to cancel debts. One is Hyperinflation as in the Weimar Republic. This leads to mass starvation and to war. The second is to foreclose on farms and home mortgages and to declare bankruptcy defaulting on debts. This led to the death by starvation of 3 million Americans during the 1930s and to WW II which killed 58 million human beings for no good reason.

There is a third way out of a Depression. The Babylonians canceled Unpayable Debts by law and recovered economically without suffering either mass starvation or war. But that method is unknown to anyone who attends American schools or listens to U.S. media. That is why I have concluded that America has both a Banker Occupied Government and Media.

6) After World War II, General Eisenhower had his troops set barbed wire up around open fields. He placed more than a million Germans into the camps and starved them to death with no protection against rain, snow and cold. Most of these men were soldiers but some were not. General Eisenhower was of Jewish descent.

7) At Yalta in March of 1945, Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin who were all of Jewish descent agreed to forcibly repatriate Soviet Gentiles back to Russia where they were to be treated as traitors. Millions of these people were forced laborers who had been taken prisoner by the Germans. Captured Jews were in the concentration camps with the Gentiles. Auschwitz turned Silesian coal into gasoline using a Russian formula patented in 1915. Dachau had a satellite camp inside a mountain that made V2 rockers used to bomb London. The Jewish concentration camp inmates were permitted to go to Israel where they were given weapons and embarked on a genocidal ethnic cleansing program of the Palestinians which has continued to this day.

I remember reading an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal decades ago in which an American veteran wrote about the FOIA documents he received in which the US admitted to turning over 4 1/2 million refugees to the Soviets. One was a Russian who had served in the resistance to Franco and later joined the American Army as a sergeant and fought in North Africa and Italy. He was turned over to the Russians in Austria. American soldiers witnessed mass hangings of refugees they had turned over to the Russians in Germany.

I think this sufficiently demonstrates the Evil Nature of America’s Banker Occupied government. But let us continue as we would like to see what Destiny they have planned for us.

8) Societies can be measured by their ability to protect children from harm. America’s Banker Occupied Government (BOG) has dedicated itself to harming our children to the point of birth defects and even death. The Monsanto corporation has been allowed to produce Genetically Modified Organisms for human consumption. Tests of lab animals have shown that by the third generation the mice are either dear or sterile runts with multiple birth defects or dead. The great harm done to test subjects by GMO did not manifest before 120 days when adult mice began exhibiting tumors relatively large in size to their tiny bodies.

The Banker Occupied Government of the United States (BOGUS) allowed Monsanto to cut off their animal tests of GMO food after 90 days so lawmakers and the administration could deny the poisonous nature of our food. Any society that is willing to allow an Occupying Power to exterminate its children is cowardly. It goes without saying that the Occupying Power is Evil.

9) In 2001 BOG paid $75 million to Epicyte corporation as part of a campaign to sterilize adults and young children. Epicyte  corporation of San Diego spliced a protein from infertile Mexican women into corn. This technology was sold to Monsanto and DuPont and could also have been spliced into wheat, soy, rice or any other GMO crop. These international corporations have run amuck and have even spliced the genes of a spider into salmon. They have said they will release this into the wild without any study as Monsanto’s lawyer said it would be safe. The President of Epicyte in 2001 was Matt Hein who was Jewish. The sole reasoning behind splicing the Epicyte gene into our food supply is to carry out Henry Kissinger’s National Security Memorandum 200 of 1975. Henry Kissinger is Jewish and a wanted War Criminal. He has been described as a child molester in the Italian press.

10) 100,000 people a year worldwide die from heroin overdoses. The average age of a first time heroin user in the United States is 14. American taxpayers at great expense invaded and occupied Afghanistan. They also funded Global Hawk drones which are pilot-less versions of the U2 spy plane. Newer versions have compartments which permits BOG’s operatives to fly up to 3,400 pounds (1,542 kilograms) at a time around the world. This has led to an increase in drug purity and overdose deaths. The CIA, which is a primary subsidiary of BOG, flies cocaine and heroin into the US which it distributes to drug gangs along with weapons. This has unleashed a wave of violent crime in the homeland. There are 1.4 million drug gang members in the US.

This distribution of illegal drugs to enrich the ruling class was a fundamental feature of His Majesty’s Jewish Government which fought two opium wars against China in the 19th century. America has also fought two opium wars. The first was Vietnam and the second was Afghanistan. The Bankers launder a trillion dollars a year in illegal drugs and weapons. They also launder $500 billion a year in bribes so the commoners can never get what they need from their politicians.

Any government that sells heroin and guns to children in hopes of unleashing a crime wave against its law abiding citizens in order to make money is by definition Evil.

I think I have proven my point about the Evil Nature of those men who run the government of the United States. I have written elsewhere of Wall Street’s plans to ignite a Race War as soon as this current Depression hits us with full force. Millions of Americans and perhaps half a billion people overseas will die from starvation. At that point, BOG will release a series of plagues to cull the herd of a few billion commoners.

Anyone whether they be a billionaire or a worker or a soldier who does the bidding of this government is insane and could be prosecuted for War Crimes if we survive the plans of the Evil Ones.

Emergency Essentials/BePrepared

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Coffee Bean Direct General Banner 3

Forgetting Fallujah

The Iraq War was back in the news again, with reports that Al-Qaeda-affiliated forces claimed control over the city of Fallujah. For many in the media, this was a time to recall a particularly important moment of the Iraq War. But their memory of Fallujah was extremely limited.

In the Washington Post (1/3/14), reporter Liz Sly explained that this was “one of the most crucial areas that US troops fought to pacify before withdrawing from Iraq two years ago.” She added:

Roughly a third of the 4,486 US troops killed in Iraq died in Anbar trying to defeat Al-Qaeda in Iraq, nearly 100 of them in the November 2004 battle for control of Fallujah, the site of America’s bloodiest confrontation since the Vietnam War.

Events Friday suggested the fight may have been in vain.

On NPR‘s All Things Considered (1/4/14), Arun Rath explained:

A little over nine years ago, American soldiers and Marines in Iraq endured the bloodiest combat since Vietnam to retake the city of Fallujah from Iraqi and foreign insurgents. It must be hard for the veterans of that battle to see the headlines today.

NBC‘s Richard Engel (Meet the Press, 1/4/14) told viewers that  “the gains that were achieved by US troops in Iraq, very hard-fought gains, have now been wiped out or are being wiped out. US troops fought in Fallujah; they invaded Fallujah twice to drive out Al-Qaeda extremists.” That left host David Gregory to say, “Critics already questioning whether some of our battles there–and the loss of life on the US side–whether that was in vain.”

So it’s clear that an awareness of the suffering and sacrifices of US forces in Fallujah is very much at the front of the corporate media’s memory. But mostly–if not entirely–forgotten is what was done to the people who lived in Fallujah.

There were two major offensives in 2004–a siege in April and an intense US-led assault on the city in November. Prior to both, there was an incident in 2003 where US forces fired on protesters, killing over a dozen.

The residents of Fallujah suffered terribly throughout. The April siege reportedly killed hundreds of civilians; as FAIR noted in real time (Action Alert, 11/16/04), outlets like the New York Times sought to downplay the death toll.  The intense US attacks in November included the use of cluster bombs and white phosphorous chemicals (FAIR Blog, 10/22/12). More than half of the homes in the city were reportedly destroyed; civilian deaths were at least 800, according to the  Red Cross.

As Mike Marqusee wrote in the Guardian (11/10/05):

The assault was preceded by eight weeks of aerial bombardment. US troops cut off the city’s water, power and food supplies, condemned as a violation of the Geneva convention by a UN special rapporteur, who accused occupying forces of “using hunger and deprivation of water as a weapon of war against the civilian population.” Two-thirds of the city’s 300,000 residents fled, many to squatters’ camps without basic facilities.

He added: “The collective punishment inflicted on Fallujah–with logistical and political support from Britain–was largely masked by the US and British media, which relied on reporters embedded with US troops.”

But more than a decade later, US media still see Fallujah primarily as a place where US forces suffered–and died–perhaps “in vain.” Then and now, the hundreds of Iraqis who died in Fallujah hardly register at all.

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US sends Hellfire missiles to Iraq

BAGHDAD — The U.S. has sent Hellfire air-to-ground missiles to Iraq’s air forces, which is using them in an ongoing campaign against the country’s branch of al-Qaida, officials in Washington and Baghdad said Thursday.

Two Iraqi intelligence officers and a military officer said that 75 Hellfires arrived on Dec. 19 and more will be shipped in the future.

They said the missiles are being used now by four Iraqi King Air propeller planes during a large-scale military operation in the western desert near the borders with Syria. An intelligence official said that the missiles were proven “successful” and were used to destroy four militant camps.

 

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The Official video for John Lennon ‘Merry Xmas (War Is Over)’

 

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A thought provoking 4 minutes on the true nature of war and fundamental question of why we fight, by the late Alan Watts.

WARNING: This video contains distressing images, viewer digression is advised.

Iraq War Civilian Death Statistics:
http://news.nationalgeographic.com.au…

Alan Watts was a British philosopher, writer, and speaker. He wrote more than 25 books and numerous articles on subjects such as personal identity, the true nature of reality, higher consciousness and the meaning of life.

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World Chaos Never Touches the Blissheads of ‘Happiness’

Lisa Guliani
Sott.net
Tue, 19 Nov 2013 18:47 CST
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Think about what has been sown with regard to our government’s illegal invasions, occupations and mass murder campaigns post-9/11. Take Iraq as just one example, if you will.

Please read the following excerpt from: How the U.S. poisoned Iraq

MSNBC reports: Between 2002 and 2005, U.S. forces shot off 6 billion bullets in Iraq (something like 300,000 for every person killed). They also dropped 2,000 to 4,000 tons of bombs on Iraqi cities, leaving behind a witch’s brew of contaminants and toxic metals, including the neurotoxins lead and mercury. Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, an Iranian-born toxicologist at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, is studying the health impact, and her early findings are worrying.

Last year, in a study published with Iraqi colleagues, she reported staggering increases in birth defects in the heavily bombarded cities of Basrah and Fallujah. The increases started in the early 90s, after the bombings of the first Gulf War, and continued right through 2011.

So that’s 6 billion bullets in a 3 year period, which equals 300,000 for every person – just in Iraq.

Ok, presuming you’ve read the above excerpt, please ask yourselves what you think Americans might reasonably expect to ‘reap’ from what has been sown through unthinking, unquestioning mass support of the psychopath warmongers in control of the U.S. government crime syndicate and their bullshit ‘reasons’ for murdering innocent people and facilitating Israel’s genocide campaign against the Palestinians over the years?

How about from ignoring all this stuff? What do we reap when we ignore what’s going on in the world out there?

What can Americans hope to ‘reap’ after billions of seeds of hate, death and destruction have been sown around this world?

Peace? Seriously?? Do you say ‘peace’? As in, ‘we can all just agree to get along now, because well, we’ve got the ‘evildoers’ choking on the barrel of a gun, or we shoved a drone up their asses and showed’ em who’s boss?’

Have you thought at all yet about the inevitable harvest upon us, the one that’s only just begun? Yes? No?

I know I annoy the hell out of people for reminding them of stuff they don’t want to think about, or look at, or remember, but…

I remind you all again: If you support these psychopaths in power in ANY way, if you can still find it in you to vote for ‘red’ or ‘blue’ psychopaths, or salute that goddamned wretched bloody flag after what it represents TODAY to people all around the world; OR if you ignore what’s happening beyond our borders when our government is FULLY responsible for atrocities, and instead choose to live in fruity-flavored ‘bliss’, concerned solely with your own personal peace of mind, contentment, and security; if you’re telling yourself ( and everyone else on your friend list) that you ‘choose to be happy’ while the world burns around you, pretending NOTHING is going on beyond your personal zen zone and your ‘book club’, sculpting on that stuck-on smile for the web cam, no matter what happens anywhere else to anyone else; if you announce on FB that you’re ‘changing this world by teaching ‘happiness’ ( some of you are doing that) and never utter one peep about those living under military occupation, or in poverty, the ones who struggle to find dinner, let alone ‘happiness’; if you block out all the bad stuff and focus only on superficial, new-agey flake & bake bullshit, and never once stand up and speak out against this evil in which the world bathes, day in and day out , because it pisses on your personal perky parade, – then, imo, you not only support the evil, you’re a ‘speshul’ sort of evil.

If you’re supporting or ignoring it, then…

You support mass murder, the Killing Machine, ongoing drone strikes that annhilate mostly civilians, you support every evil fucking act these psychos in power commit against every single innocent person, culture, and population. You ignore or support evil, you become evil yourself.

See how that works?

That means the evildoers are not just THEM, those nameless faceless shapeless formless figments that have barely made it through your blood-brain barrier, the stuff you refuse to think about or openly oppose, because it screws with your bliss to think about it. It means YOU are one of the evildoers, Blisshead & Patriot Parrot.

An Iraqi boy forever ‘liberated’ from the use of his arms by an American bomb.

‘Cuz, in my book, silence about crimes against humanity = complicity in crimes against humanity.

The Harvest is upon us, you know.

Better break out that cherry-flavored ‘bliss’ stick and ‘pray’ it’ll be enough insulation to keep your soul from chapping, ‘cuz the high wind’s blowin’.

Sometimes I wonder why people had to happen at all.

How come we don’t see the Blissheads in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Palestine, for example, or reaching out to those folks on the internet, teaching ‘happiness’ and sharing that ‘speshul formula for ‘happy’ with the ones who need it most – as opposed to their equally blissed-out buddies on FB, who are overdosing on it?

It must be a lot harder to reach out beyond the Bliss Zone, to do something that’s meaningful in the lives of others, not just profitable and lucrative for your own life.

So much simpler to just sit around blowing bliss up your buddies’ butts, never acknowledging the world lack or any of the rest of the chaotic mess taking place on this spinning space rock – that is, beyond the dimensions of a Blisshead’s pink plastic heart and stuck-on smile.

It would cost too goddamn much , upset that precariously balanced ‘bliss’ to care, wouldn’t it.

One of them says: “I choose to be happy. That’s how I change the world.”

Oh, is it now? The world must really, really appreciate Americans who choose to be ‘happy’. I reckon your bliss is working freakin’ miracles over there in Pakistan right about now.

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US government shipped bio/chem weapons? Absurd!

I know. History is boring. People hate it.

“What happened 25 years ago? Forget it. What’s going on with Miley Cyrus? Is she still twerking?”

Nevertheless, I’ll give it a try.

Keep two twerks in mind. In 1975, the US signed on to an international treaty banning the production, use, and stockpiling of biological weapons. Ditto for chemical weapons, in 1993. Another treaty.

Here’s a twerky quote from the Washington Post (9/4/13, “When the US looked the other way on chemical weapons”): “…The administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush authorized the sale to Iraq of numerous items…including poisonous chemicals and deadly biological viruses, such as anthrax and bubonic plague…”

And now, here’s a flurry of boggling twerks…

Twerk One: Between 1985 and 1989, a US 501C3 firm, American Type Culture Collection, sent Iraq up to 70 shipments of various biowar agents, including 21 strains of anthrax.

Twerk Two: Between 1984 and 1989, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) sent Iraq at least 80 different biowar agents, including botulinum toxoid, dengue virus, and West Nile antigen and antibody.

This information on the American Type Culture Collection and the CDC comes from a report, IRAQ’S BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS PROGRAM, prepared by the Center for Nonproliferation Studies. The report contains ample reference citations.

Twerk Three: Then we have a comprehensive article by William Blum in the April 1998 Progressive called ANTHRAX EXPORT. Blum cites a 1994 Senate report confirming that, in this 1985-1989 time period, US shipments of anthrax and other biowar agents to Iraq were licensed by…drum roll, cymbal crash…the US Dept. of Commerce.

Twerk Four: Blum quotes from the Senate report: “These biological materials were not attenuated or weakened and were capable of reproduction. It was later learned that these microorganisms exported by the United States were identical to those the United Nations inspectors found and removed from the Iraqi biological warfare program.” Boom.

Twerk Five: This 1994 Senate report also indicates that the US exported to Iraq the precursors for chemwar agents, actual PLANS for chemical and biowar production facilities, and chemical-warhead filling equipment. The exports continued until at least November 28, 1989.

Twerk Six: Blum lists a few other biowar agents the US shipped to Iraq. Histoplasma Capsulatum, Brucella Melitensis, Clostridium Perfringens, Clostridium tetani–as well as E. coli, various genetic materials, human and bacterial DNA.



Twerk Seven (the cover-up): Blum also points out that a 1994 Pentagon report dismissed any connection between all these biowar agents and Gulf War Illness. But the researcher who headed up that study, Joshua Lederberg, was actually a director of the US firm that had provided the most biowar material to Iraq in the 1980s: the American Type Culture Collection.

Twerk Eight (one hand washes the other): Newsday revealed that the CEO of the American Type Culture Collection was a member of the US Dept. of Commerce’s Technical Advisory Committee. See, the Dept. of Commerce had to license and approve all those exports of biowar agents carried out by the American Type Culture Collection. Get the picture?

Now, as to other US companies which dealt biowar or chemwar agents to Iraq–all such sales having been okayed by the US government–the names of these companies are contained in records of the 1992 Senate hearings, “United States export policy toward Iraq prior to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait”:

Twerk Nine (the names of US criminal companies): Mouse Master (Georgia), Sullaire Corp (Charlotte, North Carolina), Pure Aire (Charlotte, North Carolina), Posi Seal (Conn.), Union Carbide (Conn.), Evapco (Maryland), BDM Corp (Virginia), Spectra Physics (Calif.).

There are about a dozen more.

Twerk Ten (dept. of mind-boggling excuses): Hewlett Packard said that the recipient of its shipments, Saad 16, was some sort of school in Iraq. But in 1990, the Wall St. Journal stated that Saad 16 was a “heavily fortified, state-of-the-art [Iraqi] complex for aircraft construction, missile design, and, almost certainly, nuclear-weapons research.”

Twerk Eleven: There has been a considerable debate about whether Saddam hid some of his bio/chem weapons in Syria, to evade UN weapons inspectors. If he did, then is it possible the current situation in Syria has a few of its roots in the US? Is it possible some of Syria’s WMDs originally came from America?

One thing is certain. A US government investigation isn’t going look into that possibility.

Jon Rappoport

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A Psychopathic view of the value of human life

‘How much you want to shut up?’[Image: Afghan girl Taran Akbari screams in the aftermath of an explosion]

It seems pretty twisted to me that there are those out there who think people can be ‘compensated’ for the loss of loved ones. Look at the countries the U.S. government crime syndicate has attacked.

Even IF this poser government were to offer compensation and a ‘letter of apology’ to all the families of the people they’ve murdered via drones, for example, would that be sufficient? Is that what we call justice? Does that ‘compensate’ for the brutal, senseless, needless coldblooded, systematic taking of a life, of so many lives? Does it wash away the knowledge that children have been murdered? Does that render ‘absolution’? Does the wrongdoing somehow get purged from both the record and the memory of the survivors?

What constitutes ‘compensation’? Money? Money that, in many cases, is barely worth the paper it’s printed on? Seems to me if this is the best they can do, (and they’re not even doing that in any real way for most of these countries being attacked in the fake ‘war on terror’), then their ‘best’ will never be enough, not even remotely enough.

Not that they ever intend to ‘compensate’ other nations for trying to wipe out their people, or for stealing their lands and resources, or for assassinating their leaders – no, that I don’t buy for a second. How do you invade a country, mercilessly, unrelentingly attack them, and then come back later and expect good will?

What could you possibly even say? “Hey, we kicked your sorry, defenseless asses, we washed your streets with the blood of your people, but that’s blood under the bridge. We’re the ‘good guys’. We’ll rebuild and ‘peacekeep’ and you can call us ‘friend’. The world is a safer place because of ‘shock and awe’.” Yeah, RIGHT!

But to call for ‘compensation’ for the survivors of these horrific attacks, when no sincere remorse or admission of wrongdoing is being offered, when no accountability is being taken, when no back-room high level heads are rolling, when the perps are still free to continue killing with impunity, then what does any potential after-the-fact ‘compensation’ to the survivors really even mean? It’s not like anyone’s really ‘apologizing’ anyway. When it comes down to it, what it really is, is ‘blood-money’ aka an attempt at blackmail. ‘Here take this money and shut up’.

And frankly, it’s hard to imagine how I’d react if I were Afghani, Iraqi, Pakistani, Yemeni, Libyan, or Palestinian, etc.. after seeing my friends and family murdered, neighborhood and town decimated, economy obliterated, leader assassinated, government overthrown and seized, I guess I’m not a big enough person, because if all that happened to me, and then down the road, I got some bullshit insincere ‘apology’ or an offer of Monopoly money as ‘compensation’, somebody would be wearing some saliva on their face, to say the least. I suspect that kind of ‘grace’ I don’t possess lives in other humans, and I admire those people for being able to rise above their suffering and take that higher road.

But me, I’d probably be pissed.

‘Compensation’ means nothing. It’s an empty gesture arising from an empty word, too little, too late. We may tell ourselves it means something, but that’s a self-soothing lie.

Tell me,what does an offer of ‘compensation’ mean exactly to the people of Afghanistan or Iraq after all these years of post-9/11 ‘shock and awe’-death-and-destruction?

What the hell could it even mean as Afghanis and Iraqis gaze upon the rubble and ruins of their countries, and remember what life used to be like, before they became bulls-eye nations and icons of terror in the eyes of the world, before they lost the lives they once knew and the loved ones they once cherished?

How do you compensate a people for the irreversible damage and harm that’s been done to them, or put a measurement, a value, upon their suffering and what’s been ripped from them forever? What kind of arrogant heartless bastards would even ‘suggest’ the insult of ‘compensation’, when there is none?

‘Here’s a few shekels kid, go buy some Kleenex to wipe the blood from your face.’[Image: Palestinian girl Nesreen Hash'hash after being shot in the face by an Israeli soldier]

How do you ‘compensate’ a people a) when you’re not even sorry for what you’ve done, b) when you won’t even admit to wrongdoing and continue to ‘justify’ the wrongdoing, and c) when you continue to engage in the wrongdoing?

Compensation – and the gross lack of it – is nothing but a cruel joke. We see this joke played out here on the streets of America too, day in and day out. Funny thing about that is, nobody is laughing here in the States either – and the poo hasn’t even quite hit the big fan yet.

We see the cruel joke chronicled in our history, we see it playing out in our present, and seems to me, we’ll be seeing it unfold through the closing window of tomorrow, and however many of them are even left for us as a species, is anybody’s guess.

Psychopaths care nothing about ”compensation’.
They’re about control. ‘Let the dead bury the dead’.

There is nothing we could ever offer these people who have suffered through U.S./Nato/Israeli military attacks that would ever suffice, ever be enough, ever right the terrible wrongs that have been and continue to be committed. Nothing, ever.

And the thing about that, imo, is, we’re not even offering that very least of all things that might help us to still be able to make the claim that we care about human rights, or that we respect human life, or that our leaders and much of our society possess any characteristics or semblance of ‘humanity’ within them, assuming they ever did in the first place.

The attacked nations of the world do not stand alone in the bulls-eye. America has died too. Whatever it was that gave her the illusion of ‘life’ before all this ‘war-everywhere-all the time-till-the-end-of-time’ and these ‘kill-anything-that-moves’ macabre games began, seems to have disappeared. Somebody seems to have engaged the ‘kill-switch’ on this society.

‘America’ should be counted, yes, but no longer as a ‘world superpower’.
America has become yet another casualty of ‘war’, collateral damage, Maybe one day, if the comets don’t take the rest of us out first, ‘America’ will be found listed among the names of other forgotten, fallen empires, in a book of the dead, on a high dusty shelf in some psychopath’s library.

It’s surreal, but not surprising, that an illusion this big could burst, and so few would even hear the pop, let alone the last agonal breath of ‘Lady Liberty’.

I wonder who in this big wide wounded world would rush to resuscitate her, if it were even possible, let alone ‘compensate’ her.

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Iraq

Iraq (Photo credit: The U.S. Army)

New Study on Iraq Death Count 50 Times Higher Than Americans Think

Part of American Exceptionalism is never having to admit when your government kills hundreds of thousands of people.

A new study says the U.S. invasion and subsequent war in Iraq killed an estimated 460,800, higher than most of the estimates frequently cited in the mainstream media, but lower than the controversial 2006 Lancet study that estimated between 400,000 and 655,000 excess deaths.

The authors of the study, which was published in PLOS Medicine, detail a more rigorous methodology than has ever been employed for previous Iraq War mortality estimates.

But even this may be an undercount. John Tirman, Executive Director at the MIT Center for International Studies and author of The Deaths of Otherstold me in an email that the new study’s estimate of deaths of displaced people, approximately 56,000, is “likely to be more like 100,000 or even greater, but it’s almost impossible to say without more research—i.e., a survey among the displaced.”

Whatever the exact number, what’s certain is that it continues to grow. According to the International Crisis Group, the violence in Iraq is “as acute and explosive as ever.” And as Antiwar.com’s own Kelley Vlahos wrote recently, Iraqis are dying in “numbers not seen since the bloody days of 2008.”

Unfortunately, Americans dramatically under-estimate how many Iraqis died as a result of their former president’s war of choice.

“While even the most conservative estimates of mortality in Iraq,” Al Jazeera America reports, “have reached six figures, polling in the U.S. (PDF) and U.K. (PDF) have shown public perception to be that the civilian death toll from the war is in the neighborhood of 10,000.”

That is an embarrassment of enormous magnitude. But one is careful not to be surprised. Back in 2011, a University of Maryland poll found that 38 percent of Americans still believe the U.S. had “found clear evidence in Iraq that Saddam Hussein was working closely with the al-Qaeda terrorist organization.”

So not only do Americans refuse to accept the reality of why the U.S. attacked Iraq, but they resist the facts about the consequences of the war. The notion that we went to war on false pretenses and that it directly led to the deaths of about 500,000 people is too much to bear for flag-waving Americans.

If their ignorance weren’t so offensive, it might be excusable. The reality is that a group of people that the American electorate twice empowered at the voting booths made decisions to act criminally and killed hundreds of thousands of people needlessly by attacking and occupying a country that posed no threat to us.  They get away with this mass murder, in part, because of the mass ignorance of Americans.

A death count statistic can never truly depict the unimaginable suffering caused by the U.S. in Iraq. But the 10,000 civilians America believes were killed by the war is not an acceptable representation of the ~500,000 Iraqis that actually died and the millions that had their lives torn apart.

I shudder to think how many Americans know that more than 6,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed in 2013, two years after the U.S. withdrawal.

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