It is easy to be paranoid these days. Thanks for the internet, people can see deliberate censorship much easier. For example, the Chinese media managed to censor the building fire in Beijing! And the US media censors about 90% of the news from Palestine. Keeping secrets is power. And the entire basis of being a democracy means, having an open government that doesn’t keep secrets. During WWI, the US government was given permission to keep secrets and to run them to infinity. In WWII, this was expanded. During the Cold War, it ran totally out of control and half of our government is now secret. Even the recent release of ‘secret documents’ that were supposed to be no longer necessary to keep secret, still were heavily edited so much of it was kept secret. Now, Obama is defending Bush’s secret renditions and torture because he thinks the secrets behind this is so nasty, we can’t see them. Only he can see them. Impeach Obama! Arrest Bush and Cheney for war crimes and destroying the Constitution!
The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said the government should look into creating a “truth commission” to investigate the Bush administration’s Department of Justice.
Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., said that such a commission, which would answer to both Congress and the executive branch, could probe Bush administration policies on torture, interrogation and surveillance and “get to the bottom of what happened” during the eight years the Bush administration grappled with the legal war on terror.
Leahy called his proposal a “middle ground” between those critics of the Bush administration seeking to prosecute officials, and others wishing to concentrate on the future as opposed to investigating the past. “We need to be able to read the page before we turn it,” said Leahy.
How can we read any of these pages when they are blacked out? And as for prosecuting war criminals: we can’t say, ‘Oh well, they are retired! Let them get away with murder.’ Can we? And I want Bush and Cheney to be put under oath and even better, tortured in some Egyptian holding cell, they can tell us all about events leading up to 9/11 as well as things about the Iraq war. We are still prosecuting minor Nazis for WWII crimes! We can prosecute Bush and Cheney as well as Rumsfeld. And how about Chertoff, the dual citizen who is also treasonous.
The problem with treason is very simple: once it is legalized, it spreads like wildfire. AIPAC has repeatedly gotten entangled in treasonous acts. Even today, we are waiting in vain for the spy trial of two top AIPAC officers. It never makes the news [tribal coverups at work here] and it is being ignored by Congress [who is owned by AIPAC]. Like 9/11, this whole business just screams for investigation. Just like 9/11, Congress is unable to investigate it since it involves investigating their own complicity in crimes.
There could be an outside commission but if this is created by Presidents or Congress, it, too, will be complicit. The 9/11 investigation, for example, was to be headed by the biggest secret maker on earth, Henry Kissinger. Then, due to public revulsion, others who were nearly as bad, were chosen. They then did a cover-up. First of all, Bush and Cheney got to appear together and both got to be coached beforehand and no questions were popped during the short chat the 9/11 commission had with them.
Even the explosive news that Rice was given clear warnings about 9/11 didn’t change the political landscape. This was because everyone was complicit. Mind you, I will adhere to my own feelings that the main crimes were the enabling, assisting and allowing of the attacks. It was utterly unnecessary for deeper involvement than that to gain the political ends. And just allowing an attack is grounds for arrest for treason! What I care about is not the mechanics but the actions of the principal parties involved: Bush was happy when he learned ‘America is under attack.’ Rumsfeld did nothing but sat at his desk during the entire attack. And Cheney was in the Situation Room the whole time.
Anyway, out of this attack grew a hydra-headed monster that ate the last remains of our Constitution. True, we are sort of allowed bits of the 1st and 2nd amendments: we can still sort of talk about things and we can buy sort of buy guns. The government itches to control both, of course. In Europe, they do. You can’t even talk about history, much less, talk about present conditions, due to a whole web of prohibitions which leads to arrests of parliamentarian members, even! The Euro dictatorship is trying to kill democracy as much as possible. This is why all referendums fail there: no one likes it so the Euro dictatorship has to skip that part and after Ireland slapped down the Euro dictatorship, all has gone even more secretive there.
The Chinese are very secretive. They doctor images and videos so they can lie about things. They cannot be trusted at all. The recent fire in the Towering Inferno in Beijing was wiped out of the news, 1984-style. Millions of Chinese saw it happen and know about it. And it is censored. Information about Tiananmen Square is still censored. In the undergrowth, conspiracy theories flourish. Of course, this is natural. We have to be suspicious and have good reason to be suspicious. And the governments deal with this by forcing us to guess at things while governments KNOW things. Then, they can prove us wrong when necessary or kill us to shut us up, if we are right.
Back to the US: Operation Paperclip, the WWII plan to bring Nazi war criminals to the US to help us fight Stalin, is still secret. This impacted on my own life, of course. Due to my family being involved in it. Because of this, I swore, as a very young person, to fight government secrecy. 99% of our secrets are known to our ‘enemies’. The sole reason to keep these things secret is to keep them from the people of America. Just like China likes to keep many things secret from the Chinese but we get to see this information. Each system has secrets that are vital to keep from their own populace even if the entire planet knows it.
The War on Terror is whereby the US becomes an even bigger and more evil terrorist and goes about killing innocent men, women and children, nearly all of whom are the poorest people on earth. We launched an illegal ‘shock and awe’ terrorist attack on Iraq based on outright lies. These lies must be examined. The US news media that disseminated these lies should also be put on trial. In particular, the NYT and Washington Post should be examined and punished. The neo cons who were liars and criminals are still allowed free reign on the editorial pages of these papers.
Back to Obama: he has finally declared open war on the left and the libertarians who believe in the Constitution of the United States. He should be impeached. Of course, I want to dig up Reagan and try him for treason, too. Both Bushes and Clinton, also should be put on trial. They all ripped up our Constitution.
Two weeks ago, I interviewed the ACLU’s Ben Wizner, counsel to 5 individuals suing the subsidiary of Boeing (Jeppesen) which had arranged the Bush administration’s rendition program, under which those 5 plaintiffs had been abducted, sent to other countries and brutally tortured. Today the Obama administration was required to file with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals its position in this case — i.e., whether it would continue the Bush administration’s abusive reliance on the “state secrets” privilege to prevent courts from ruling on such matters, or whether they would adhere to Obama’s previous claims about his beliefs on “state secrets” by withdrawing that position and allowing these victims their day in court.
Yesterday, enthusiastic Obama supporter Andrew Sullivan wrote about this case: “Tomorrow in a federal court hearing in San Francisco, we’ll find out if the Obama administration intends to keep the evidence as secret as the Bush administration did.” As I wrote after interviewing Wizner two weeks ago: “This is the first real test of the authenticity of Obama’s commitment to reverse the abuses of executive power over the last eight years.” Today, the Obama administration failed that test —resoundingly and disgracefully:
I expected Obama to do this. He has to protect a lot of criminals. The entire system has been set up to go after Muslims and to weaken them, divide them and keep them embroiled in trying to rebuild after frequent wars on their lands. Obama has to enable this and to do that, he has to kill our Constitution. Israel has no Constitution and certainly, no Bill of Rights. In a previous article, SECRET BRITISH DISCUSSION OF IMF BAIL OUT IN 1976 « Culture of Life News, I dug up an old document in the English archives. It was secret. It was supposed to be talking about the value of the pound vis a vis the dollar and the DM but it veered into other waters, to discuss an attempt to give the British SUBJECTS [they are not citizens] a written ‘Bill of Rights’. The PM and the council were terrified of this possibility! They feared, it would prevent them from torturing people and censoring the news! They even discussed forcing the BBC to stop telling the British people important financial information about the relative value of the pound in currency markets!!!!
I think the most important part of our government is our Bill of Rights. And losing it means we are losing our government as well as our society. Obama has been told, if he lets out any secrets concerning the torture and kidnapping as well as assassinations, will destroy our government because it will expose a great number of people to being prosecuted for war crimes and crimes against the Constitution: i.e.—TREASON. The Presidents swear on the Bible for fun. But they swear in all seriousness to uphold the CONSTITUTION. And they haven’t. And won’t.
Last week, President Obama’s new Attorney-General, Eric H. Holder, assured senior Republican senators who were withholding their support for his nomination that he is not likely to prosecute CIA officers or political appointees who were involved in the Bush administration’s policies allowing torture and violations of the Geneva Conventions and U.S. federal law.After Holder gave that reassurance, Republican senators helped to confirm him for the highest law enforcement office in the land.Republican Senator Christopher “Kit” Bond of Missouri, the vice chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, opposed Holder’s nomination until, Bond says, Holder assured him privately that as Attorney-General, he will not prosecute former Bush officials who used or allowed torture while interrogating U.S. prisoners suspected of committing “terrorist” violence. Bond said that Holder “gave me assurances that he would not take those steps that would cause major disruptions in our intelligence system or cause political warfare. We don’t need that kind of political warfare. He gave me assurances he is looking forward.”Eric Holder denies that he promised not to prosecute American torturers. In a written response to a question from Arizona Senator Jon Kyl, Holder said: “Prosecutorial and investigative judgments must depend on the facts, and no one is above the law. But where it is clear that a government agent has acted in ‘reasonable and good-faith reliance on Justice Department legal opinions’ authoritatively permitting his conduct, I would find it difficult to justify commencing a full-blown criminal investigation, let alone a prosecution.”This slick response ignores the Nuremberg Principles, where no one is excused from commission of war crimes merely because they were following orders – even if they actually believed that John Yoo’s junk-logic legal opinions enabling torture were somehow “authoritative” (Obama’s incoming head lawyer of the Office of Legal Counsel, Dawn Johnsen, has called the Bush torture memos “egregious” and “dangerously flawed”). Eric Holder unmistakably signaled in his carefully-worded written response that there will be no torture prosecutions, apparently not even for the high Bush Administration figures who provided legal-sounding “authoritative” cover to torture, although they cannot duck direct criminal responsibility for unilaterally ignoring the War Crimes Act.
Yoo wasn’t arrested. He was given a life-time stipend to teach anti-constitutional law to budding young fascists.
Holder was also involved in Clinton’s decision to reduce the sentences of 16 members of the Boricua Popular Army, an organization that has been categorized by the FBI as a terrorist organization. The clemency request was initially opposed in 1996 by U.S. Pardons Attorney Margaret Love. When Holder was elevated to Deputy Attorney General in 1997, he was asked to reexamine the issue by three members of Congress. In July 1999, Holder recommended clemency to President Clinton with a report from then U.S. Pardons Attorney Roger Adams that neither supported nor opposed clemency. A month later, the clemency was granted by Clinton. According to The Hartford Courant, the clemency was unusual because it was opposed by the FBI, the federal prosecutor and the victims. According to the newspaper, it was also unusual because, before the commutations, the Boricua Popular Army members were not required to repudiate their actions, and they were not asked to provide any information concerning the whereabouts of Victor Manuel Gerena, a co-conspirator and one of the FBI Ten Most Wanted Fugitives, or the millions of dollars stolen by the group in a 1983 robbery of Wells Fargo in West Hartford, Connecticut.
Dawn Johnsen was a good choice for legal counsel but only if she sticks to her guns and is a legal counsel and not a front woman. In other words, she has to publicly resign and make a lot of noise, while doing it. If, because she wants power and glory, she doesn’t do this, she becomes part of the vast criminal conspiracy which is destroying our Constitution. People died for that Constitution! The mixed-up beliefs and the holes in the Constitution had to be fought over, physically, people died to change it and to expand our civil rights and the Bill of Rights. And now, we are losing all of this.
Both on the right and the left, people want illicit powers over us. We do not have a right to pollute but we have a right to privacy, for example. We don’t have a right to murder but we have the right to defend ourselves. We don’t have the right to steal but we have the right to possess. The War on Drugs as well as Prohibition both undercut civil rights and both are unconstitutional. If I want to grow grapes and ferment them, I have a right to do this. If I want to grow pot plants, the same thing is true: I can do this at home.
But I can’t because of the loss of my sovereign rights. My ancestors believed their homes were their castles. Obama supported the Bush/telecommunication giants spying on us. He legalized them by voting for it before he became President. Then, he expanded on this. It is OK to spy on me in my own home, via electronics. Making this legal is a very significant erosion of my Constitutional rights.
Alas, our Supreme Court, most of whom are there due to the GOP, hate the Constitution. They came up with this goofy system whereby they were supposed to figure out what my ancestors were ‘thinking’ rather than just looking at the obvious and quite plain words in the Bill of Rights. This really pisses me off. The right wing doctrinaire guys following this program merrily went about, erasing obvious civil rights. On the subject of torture and kidnapping and holding for years before trial, the Founding Fathers were so worried about this, they made it part of the Constitution, not even the Bill of Rights. It was of UTMOST importance to them.
The sad thing is, this protection was not extended to African slaves. This poison was in our veins from the very beginning and it part of why our system rots today. It is sad that a ‘black’ lawyer and a ‘black’ President are the ones expanding this destruction of what protects them from tyranny in the future.
According to most opinion polls, Lieberman’s party, Yisrael Beiteinu, or “Israel is our Home”, is projected to win 16-17 Knesset seats out of 120 making up the Israeli parliament. This would allow Yisrael Beiteinu to overtake the Labour Party, led by Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak, to become the third largest party in the Israeli political system, after the Likud and Kadima parties. Lieberman’s party will likely be a chief coalition partner in the next Israeli government.
Yisrael Beiteinu is not a party of marginal or pariah politicians. A few months ago, several high-profile politicians joined the party, including former Israeli Ambassador to the US Danny Ayalon and Uzi Landau, a former Israeli cabinet minister and prominent Likud figure for many years….
In 2002, Lieberman called on the Israeli government, under Ariel Sharon, to blanket-bomb Palestinian population centres in order to force Palestinians to flee to Jordan. The Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot quoted Lieberman as saying during a cabinet meeting that the Palestinians should be given an ultimatum: “At 8am we’ll bomb all the commercial centres… at noon we’ll bomb their gas stations… at 2pm we’ll bomb their banks… while keeping the bridges open.”
In 1998, Lieberman called for flooding Egypt by bombing the Aswan Dam. In 2001, as minister of national infrastructure, Lieberman proposed that the West Bank be divided into four cantons, with no central Palestinian government and no possibility for Palestinians to travel between the cantons. In 2003, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Lieberman called for thousands of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel to be drowned in the Dead Sea and offered to provide buses to take them there.
Further, Lieberman has proposed that a “loyalty test” be applied to those “Arabs” who desire to remain in Israel. Those committed to making Israel a state of all its citizens, including the Palestinian minority, would be stripped of their voting rights. In April 2002, Lieberman stated that there was “nothing undemocratic about transfer”.
In May 2004, Lieberman said that 90 per cent of Israel’s 1.2 million Palestinian citizens would “have to find a new Arab entity” in which to live beyond Israel’s borders. “They have no place here. They can take their bundles and get lost.”
Relentlessly, our favorite ally, our indispensable ally goes fascist. Years ago, I said, ‘As Israel goes fascist, the US will also go fascist.’ The US has a miniscule left. The Democrats twist arms there every election and then spend the Presidential finals, attacking the left. Daily Kos thought they came up with a solution: raise money! The DNC loved this and still attacks not only the left but even, the Daily Kos people. Who are treated as chumps.
The left has a very hard trying to believe in real freedom just like the far right can’t understand the need for social community support. So we will be stuck with no social systems and no freedoms. This is ridiculous. The worst of both possible worlds.
The US has go choose: we can take our medicine and restore old freedoms. We must repudiate loathsome allies. This included all the dictatorships we support. We have to have morals. And this means, ending the meddlesome and unconstitutional war on drugs. California has been told to release 55,000 prisoners. 90% of these are drug crimes. The war on drugs is bankrupting the states. We have to wait until our systems collapse before ending this illegal farce? About time, I say. The war on drugs is a failure. In Mexico, it is outright warfare, now.
The sole reason pot is expensive is because it is illegal. If it were legalized, the price will be so low, virtually no one will sell it. Only packagers might sell pre-rolled joints, for example. Then, like with cigarettes, we can tax it and gain revenue, not lose it via high prison costs! But then, when are our leaders sane? Never.
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