Saddam's Death, Page 2
aanval op holistisch eenheidsdenken
Babel, stad van Marduk (de rechtvaardige)
herbouwd door de Pan-Arabist Saddam Hussein
An ancient Semitic city in the Euphrates valley, which after 2250 B.C., as the capital of Babylonia, became a center of world commerce and of the arts and sciences, its life marked by luxury and magnificence. The city in which they built the Tower of Babel, its location coincides approximately with that of the modern city of Baghdad - now the center of a vast agricultural community. The Babylonians attached great importance to the motions of the planets, accurately fixed their orbits and worked out tables of the phases of the Moon, whereby eclipses could be correctly predicted. Their great astrological work, "The Illumination of Bel," was compiled within the period of 2100-1900 B.C.. Babylon is generally conceded to have been the cradle of astrology. It was overthrown in 539 A.D., by Xerxes, the Persian. (www.astrologyweekly.com/)
NOT FOR FREEEDOM
"Why did we go to war in Iraq? Because the president hated Saddam Hussein; because the Israeli lobby wanted us to; because the crazy neoconservatives had the insane idea that the Middle East could be democratized at the point of a gun; because oil companies and other corporations lusted for profit.
Missing is any threat to the safety and freedom of the United States, a threat no Iraqi ever made or ever had the capability of carrying out. So, if you don't want to say the kids are dying for nothing, you can say they are dying for Halliburton, for ExxonMobil, for the president's ego, for a cockamamie theory of a bunch of academics, for Israel, for money or for oil. What you cannot truthfully say is that they are dying for freedom." Charley Reese, Amerikaans journalist, 1-6-2007
"A human being is a part of a whole, called by us 'universe', a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest... a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty." Albert Einstein
Terugblik 2004: God & Hypocrisie
Dat principes in het Westen geen rol spelen bewijst de foto waarop de opportunist Jaap de Hoop-Scheffer (de meest holhoofdige politicus die het CDA ooit heeft voortgebracht) in de armen valt van een Iraakse minister van Buitenlandse Zaken die prieces hetzelfde opportunisme en dezelfde holhoofdigheid uitstraalt.
Ik mag ze niet: de 'nieuwe' leiders die wij op de troon zetten. Ik vind ze onsympathiek, vals en onbetrouwbaar. En dat komt vooral omdat ze tientallen jaren lang het theocratische denken verdedigd hebben: de aanbidding dus van een geldgeworden 'god', want theocraten worden altijd gesteund door geldmagnaten, hetgeen de reden is waarom de republikeinen in Amerika een theocratie minder gevaarlijk vinden dan een seculiere socialistische staat.
Nu ze de macht hebben zouden ze op zijn minst de wereld duidelijk kunnen maken dat ze eerlijke en rechtvaardige eenheidsdenkers zijn (aanhangers van een eerlijke en rechtvaardige Mahdi). Maar zelfs die eis is teveel gevraagd, want het eerlijke idee van samenwerking veronderstelt afstand nemen van verdelende, vrome hypocrisie (Khomeinisme) en dat is natuurlijk onmogelijk wanneer je in de armen valt van een man die je alleen maar eer bewijst wanneer je hem de vleesgeworden schijnheiligheid noemt...: de Nederlandse (uiterst vrome) CDA-politicus Jaap de Hoop-Scheffer dus...
Al-Jafaari & Saddam Hussein
De nieuwe regering van Irak wordt geleid door een man - Al-Jafaari - die in de jaren zeventig en tachtig als lid van de fundamentalistische AL-DAWAD-partij Khomeinist was: onze aartsvijand dus, want wij stonden als een man achter Saddam Hussein die een dam vormde tegen het gevaarlijke fundamentalisme van de door Al-Jafaari gesteunde fundamentalist Khomeini.
Nu we onze principes in het riool geworpen hebben is Al-Jafaari onze grote vriend en 'de dam tegen het gevaarlijke fundamentalisme van Saddam Hussein', en het spreekt dan ook vanzelf dat op een Stalinistische wijze de geschiedenis herschreven wordt om ons duidelijk te maken dat de rechtse fundamentalisten de goeden zijn en de linkse Saddammisten de slechten.
Kern van het leugenverhaal is dat Saddam Hussein de vijand van 'de sjiieten' was en dat hij alles deed om ze te onderdrukken, een vorm van bedrog die je als eerlijk mens behoort te bestrijden - hetgeen dus nooit zal gebeuren in een wereld waarin Jaap de Hoop-Scheffer ons elke dag opnieuw inprent dat alleen hij overleeft die vroom en schijnheilig is. (23-6-2005)
The Al-DAWAD-movement in Iraq had until the early 1980's been civil in nature. After the Revolution in Iran, it also adopted a militant strategy, which carried out acts of defiance and guerrilla actions against key government targets. Famously, there was an assassination attempt on Saddam Hussein in August 1979 and Tariq Aziz, deputy minister, April 1980. The government responded with increased repression and started to expel large numbers of Shi'ites - over 53,000 between 1980 and 1982 alone- into the Bakhtiar region of Iran. Al-Dawa members were persecuted and many voluntarily left Iraq. The Dawa leadership settled in Teheran.
Saddam Hussein also offered his usual carrot. Many Shi'ites were offered access to good government posts as well as the Party structure itself. By 1987 over 33% of the Ba'ath leadership was Shi'ite. The principal areas of Shi'ite revolt such as Najaf, Karbala and Saddam City (now Sadr City) were the object of renovations and infrastructural improvements in the form of greater access to running water, electricity and paved roads for their population... (newnations.com)
Het onvermogen Saddam Hussein met rust te laten bewijst dat de wraakzuchtige theocraten - juist omdat ze zwart-wit-denkers zijn - al het kwaad van de wereld in een zondebok willen projecteren. En dat is precies de mentaliteit die we in een globaliserende wereld niet kunnen gebruiken. Omdat Khomeinistisch zondebokdenken niks anders is dan terugkeren naar de hel van de grote wereldoorlogen, die niet het produkt waren van het holistische VN-denken, maar van het dualistische theocratische denken van de zionisten en de nationaal-socialisten, die in elkaar niets anders konden zien dan 'baarlijke duivels'.
"If Arafat were Alive…"
Uri Avnery - 27/01/07
"IF ARAFAT were alive…" one hears this phrase increasingly often in conversations with Palestinians, and also with Israelis and foreigners.
"If Arafat were alive, what's happening now in Gaza wouldn't be happening…" - "If Arafat were alive, we would have somebody to talk with…" - "If Arafat were alive, Islamic fundamentalism would not have won among the Palestinians and would have lost some force in the neighboring countries!"
In the meantime, the unanswered questions come up again: How did Yasser Arafat die? Was he murdered? If so, who murdered him?
On the way back from Arafat's funeral in 2004, I ran into Jamal Zahalka, a member of the Knesset. I asked him if he believed that Arafat was murdered. Zahalka, a doctor of pharmacology, answered "Yes!" without hesitation. That was my feeling, too. But a hunch is not proof. It is only a product of intuition, common sense and experience.
Recently we got a kind of confirmation. Just before he died, Uri Dan, who had been Ariel Sharon's loyal mouthpiece for almost 50 years, published a book in France. It includes a report of a conversation Sharon told him about, with President (George W.) Bush. Sharon asked for permission to kill Arafat and Bush gave it to him, with the proviso that it must be done undetectably. When Dan asked Sharon whether it had been carried out, Sharon answered: "It's better not to talk about that." Dan took this as confirmation....
Is there proof that Arafat was murdered by Israeli or other agents? No, there is none. This week I again ran into MK Zahalka, and both of us concluded that the suspicion is growing stronger, together with the conviction that Arafat's absence is felt now more than ever.
IF ARAFAT were alive, there would be a clear address for negotiations with the Palestinian people.
The claimed absence of such an address serves the Israeli government as the official pretext for its refusal to start peace negotiations. Every time Condoleezza Rice or another of Bush's parrots talks about the need to "restart the dialog" (don't mention "negotiations") for "the final status" or "the permanent settlement" (don't mention "peace"), that is the response of Tsipi Livni, Ehud Olmert & Co......
There is no chance of making peace with Mahmoud Abbas, nor would it have any value, without the full support of Hamas. But even a Fatah-Hamas partnership would not be broad enough to ensure a peaceful future for Israel. It would need the support of the whole Arab world.
There lies the immense importance of the "Arab Peace Initiative", the Arab League proposal that was adopted by the 2002 Beirut summit conference. Only a united Palestinian leadership, which enjoys the backing of the entire Arab world, can carry out such a revolutionary historic undertaking. Not only should we not object to it, but we should in fact demand it. (Gush Shalom, 27-1-2007)
Verenigen, in plaats van verdelen
Uri Avnery laat in het bovenstaande artikel zien dat de verdeel en heerspolitiek van Israel en Amerika - voortdurend moslims en Arabieren tegen elkaar opzetten - niet in dienst staat van wat ARAFAT 'de vrede van de dapperen' noemde. Arafat was een charismatisch leider die - in tegenstelling tot andere Arabische leiders - maar tot op bepaalde hoogte bereid was zich te laten opkopen. Zijn poging binnen een klimaat van opportunisme en handjeklap principes te verdedigen maakte hem populair. Abbas is omkoopbaar en werd daarom afgewezen, zoals ook de sji-itische leiders in Irak worden afgewezen vanuit de gedachte dat zij principeloze marionetten zijn, die rechtvaardigheidsgevoel hebben ingeruild voor geldhonger en verlangen naar principeloze macht.
Waaruit je de konklusie kunt afleiden dat gepoogd moet worden Arabieren en moslims te verenigen rond een vredesakkoord dat als eervol en rechtvaardig kan worden gezien - een opgave die niet gemakkelijk zal zijn in een wereld waarin recht nog altijd gekocht wordt met principeloze macht:
Wie niet omkoopbaar is vertegenwoordigt het absolute kwaad...
Why Killing Saddam Backfired on Bush
Dying Well - By DIANE CHRISTIAN
Dying well used to be a popular topic for discussion and a trope for art. Paintings of just men dying peacefully in bed and distraught debauched sinners mad at their final moment were exempla for everyone. Live well, die well, was the message. As you sow, so shall you reap. We'll read in your end image your whole story. Accordingly, Saddam Hussein's death disappointed many. He seemed composed and dignified, contemptuous of his angry taunting executioners. Not a satisfying picture for those who wanted to make him thoroughly monstrous, nor quite comforting either to those who think vengeance effects justice.
The US had tried to make him look bad when he was captured, showing gloved captors probing his wild hair and mouth. For those who understood the biblical myths undergirding the US invasion, this echoed the bestialized Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel, humbled by the almighty Hebrew god, a presage of how Babylon falls to Jerusalem in Revelation. But Saddam Hussein, once the grinning dealmaker with Donald Rumsfeld, managed his own image. The gun-brandisher, pseudo-Saladin gave way to the aggrieved lawyer and occasional preacher. At his end he reproached the taunting executioners that they failed to act like men. He looked better than the executers of 'justice,' who seemed brutal and bloodthirsty. Saddam rehabilitated his image many said bitterly. Which goes to show a certain volatility of human opinion. A few days later tapes of Saddam speaking of his calculated chemical poisoning surfaced, no doubt to shift the wind of opinion by reasserting the monster. Which goes to show not only what Krishna remarked-that no man is entirely good and no man is entirely evil-but that we're buffeted by sham morality plays and images night to morn.
Saddam was smart to refuse the hood. He faced his executioners and death. President Bush who sought and applauded Saddam's execution as justice said he didn't watch the whole thing, didn't want to. He did see the internet video he said but stopped watching before the last moments. Was he signaling sensitivity to the death moment, the ugliness of bulging eyes and twisted neck, or the specific brutality of real hanging? Or was it faintheartedness, or not wanting to see Saddam look human in death...
It is hard to make a man you kill look evil. He looks vulnerable. You look evil. Because you kill. And you don't wipe out 'bad' killing with 'good' killing, you echo it. Which the President and we choose not to see. (CounterPunch, 3-2-2007)
Diane Christian is SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor at University at Buffalo and author of the new book Blood Sacrifice. She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gilad Atzmon - Brave New World War
The United States hopes that the United Nations General Assembly will vote by the end of this week on a resolution that condemns "any denial of the Holocaust". (CNSNews.com)
"We respectfully urge your country to co-sponsor and support the Resolution on Holocaust Denial that is to be voted on in the General Assembly this Friday."
(from a letter to UN ambassadors, Glen S. Lewy, ADL National Chair and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director 23 January, 2007)
The draft resolution proposed by the US "condemns without any reservation any denial of the Holocaust," yet, it doesn't single out any specific country for criticism. It doesn’t take a genius to realise that it is Iran’s Ahmadinejad who the Americans are after. Clearly, the new American initiative at the UN, which is aiming at transforming the world into a ‘Holocaust Denial Free Zone’ has very little to do with genuine truth-seeking or an authentic interest in historical research. The Americans are there to furnish us all with the futureless nightmare of hard capitalism. They mistakenly believe that they can do so as long they restrict our vision of the past.
I am not a Holocaust scholar nor am I a historian. My primary interest is not the story of Auschwitz nor the destruction of European Jewry. But I am very interested in Holocaust politics, in the range of discourses that employ Auschwitz. I happen to ask, how come America, once the leader of the ‘free world’, finds itself engaged in ‘global thought policing’?
Within the framework of the new American Holocaust resolution, it is ‘us’ - the West, those who ‘know’ the ‘truth’ and ‘them’ – nations who aren’t counted in that hegemonic group, who fail to see it. Yet it is ‘us’ who make our past into a graveyard and it is ‘them’ who grasp that it is the dynamic past that shapes the future.
Without getting myself into the debate regarding the truth of the Holocaust, the ugly face of Holocaust-politics cannot be hidden anymore. The Holocaust is now officially becoming an ideological weapon against Islam and also against Arab resistance. It is there to establish a fake western collective identity based on blind conformity and total marginalisation of the other.
Regardless of what the truth of the Holocaust is and what its denial may entail, to seal the past is to give away the vision of a better future. The end of history is the end of the West. (PeacePalestine, 25-1-2007)
Douglas Feith and the Office of Special Plans
by Justin Raimondo
As Iraq slides into the abyss, and the domestic reverberations of the conflict shake American politics, the question of who lied us into war is being raised – and not just by Democrats. There is a growing suspicion that we didn't just get the intelligence wrong – and a growing clamor to retrace our steps back to the source of what seems like deliberate deception.
The inspector general at the Department of Defense has issued a report criticizing the intelligence disseminated to senior policymakers in the run-up to war:
"The Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy developed, produced, and then disseminated alternative intelligence assessments on the Iraq and al-Qaeda relationship, which included some conclusions that were inconsistent with the consensus of the Intelligence Community, to senior decision-makers...
As a result, the Office of the Undersecretary for Defense Policy did not provide 'the most accurate analysis of intelligence' to senior decision-makers."
The Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy was headed up by Douglas Feith, now teaching at Georgetown University: his resignation, you'll recall, was abrupt – just as it became apparent that Iraq was going to be a disaster, one of
the most strident hawks in the administration took to the tall grass of academia.
Much has been written about the Office of Special Plans, the secretive "alternative" intelligence-gathering-and-analysis unit set up by order of Paul Wolfowitz. Its purpose was to investigate state sponsorship of terrorism, and in the case of Iraq to look into the alleged relationship between the Ba'athists and al-Qaeda.
This was a classic "Team B" neocon operation, the original "Team B" being the Cold War-era assessment of the Soviets' supposed military superiority that turned out to be so infamously wrong. The same methods were used, with much more sophistication and attention to imaginative detail, in order to gin up a war with Iraq.
When they didn't get the answers about Iraq's supposed "links" to al-Qaeda that they wanted, the neocons in the vice president's office and the civilian leadership of the Pentagon did an end run around the CIA and the other major components of the intelligence community: they set up an "alternative" intelligence apparatus. They developed their own foreign sources, including Ahmed Chalabi and his fellow "heroes in error," then stovepiped the results up the White House, where our clueless president absorbed them with sponge-like alacrity.
An entire mythos was created that portrayed Iraq as the epicenter of evil in the world, and a number of completely fictional narratives were created by the OSP crowd, including the one about the famed meeting between Mohammed Atta and an Iraqi intelligence agent at the Prague airport...
The nuclear threat from Saddam Hussein was the main thrust of the administration's war propaganda, and certainly the one theme that resonated with the American public. We don't want to have to wait until we see a mushroom cloud before we act, said Condi Rice, even as Judy Miller was retailing Chalabi's tall tales of Iraqi WMD on the front page of the newspaper of record. The president's 2003 State of the Union address, during which he uttered those infamous "16 words" accusing Iraq of seeking uranium yellowcake in "an African nation," was another brick in this edifice of pure fiction. He was forced to retract this, a month later, after the International Atomic Energy Agency of the UN declared that the documents on which Bush's allegation was based were outright forgeries...
Feith's sudden resignation, that rather startling FBI raid on the Pentagon, and the news that an FBI probe into illegal activities in Feith's office was broader than expected – now that's an awful lot of smoke. There must be some fire. (Antiwar Website, 12-2-2007)
Terugblik 2003: Zionism and Legal Skepticism
By WILLIAM JAMES MARTIN
Writing in the Guardian of London on March 21, 2003, under the title, "Thank God for the Death of the UN", just as the American invasion of Iraq was getting underway, Richard Perle, member of the Pentagon's Defense Advisory Board, said of Saddam Hussein:
"... He will go quickly, but not alone: in a parting irony, he will take the UN down with him. Well, not the whole UN. The "good works" part will survive, the low-risk peacekeeping bureaucracies will remain, the chatterbox on the Hudson will continue to bleat. What will die is the fantasy of the UN as the foundation of a new world order. As we sift the debris, it will be important to preserve, the better to understand, the intellectual wreckage of the liberal conceit of safety through international law administered by international institutions."
Mr. Perle's contempt for Saddam Hussein seems matched by his contempt for the United Nations as well as for international law more generally.
The distain for international law is very clearly expressed in considerable detail in a 1996 document prepared for the incoming Natanyahu government of Israel of that year entitled, A Clean Break: a New Strategy for Securing the Realm", prepared by Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, David and Meyrav Wurmser, James Colbert, and Robert Loenberg in their capacity as members of The Institute for Advanced Strategy and Political Studies' "Study Group on a New Israeli Strategy Toward 2000" a Washington/Jerusalem based think tank providing policy analyses for the government of Israel.
This document advocates the scrapping of UN Resolutions 242 and 338 - the "land for peace" formula - in favor of one based on the "balance of power". (Uit: De Boogschutter en de Steenbok)
President of Russia
Speech at the Munich Conference on Security Policy
February 10, 2007
VLADIMIR PUTIN: The history of humanity has gone through unipolar periods and seen aspirations to world supremacy. And what hasn’t happened in world history? However, what is a unipolar world? However one might embellish this term, at the end of the day it refers to one type of situation, namely one centre of authority, one centre of force, one centre of decision-making.
It is world in which there is one master, one sovereign. And at the end of the day this is pernicious not only for all those within this system, but also for the sovereign itself because it destroys itself from within.
And this certainly has nothing in common with democracy. Because, as you know, democracy is the power of the majority in light of the interests and opinions of the minority.
Incidentally, Russia – we – are constantly being taught about democracy. But for some reason those who teach us do not want to learn themselves.
I consider that the unipolar model is not only unacceptable but also impossible in today’s world. And this is not only because if there was individual leadership in today’s – and precisely in today’s – world, then the military, political and economic resources would not suffice. What is even more important is that the model itself is flawed because at its basis there is and can be no moral foundations for modern civilisation.
Along with this, what is happening in today’s world – and we just started to discuss this – is a tentative to introduce precisely this concept into international affairs, the concept of a unipolar world.
And with which results?
Today we are witnessing an almost uncontained hyper use of force – military force – in international relations, force that is plunging the world into an abyss of permanent conflicts. As a result we do not have sufficient strength to find a comprehensive solution to any one of these conflicts. Finding a political settlement also becomes impossible.
We are seeing a greater and greater disdain for the basic principles of international law. And independent legal norms are, as a matter of fact, coming increasingly closer to one state’s legal system. One state and, of course, first and foremost the United States, has overstepped its national borders in every way.
I am convinced that the only mechanism that can make decisions about using military force as a last resort is the Charter of the United Nations...
When the UN will truly unite the forces of the international community and can really react to events in various countries, when we will leave behind this disdain for international law, then the situation will be able to change. Otherwise the situation will simply result in a dead end, and the number of serious mistakes will be multiplied. Along with this, it is necessary to make sure that international law have a universal character both in the conception and application of its norms....
Dear ladies and gentlemen, speaking at the Conference on Security Policy, it is impossible not to mention the activities of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). As is well-known, this organisation was created to examine all – I shall emphasise this – all aspects of security: military, political, economic, humanitarian and, especially, the relations between these spheres.
What do we see happening today? We see that this balance is clearly destroyed. People are trying to transform the OSCE into a vulgar instrument designed to promote the foreign policy interests of one or a group of countries. And this task is also being accomplished by the OSCE’s bureaucratic apparatus which is absolutely not connected with the state founders in any way. Decision-making procedures and the involvement of so-called non-governmental organisations are tailored for this task. These organisations are formally independent but they are purposefully financed and therefore under control.
According to the founding documents, in the humanitarian sphere the OSCE is designed to assist country members in observing international human rights norms at their request. This is an important task. We support this. But this does not mean interfering in the internal affairs of other countries, and especially not imposing a regime that determines how these states should live and develop.
It is obvious that such interference does not promote the development of democratic states at all. On the contrary, it makes them dependent and, as a consequence, politically and economically unstable.
We expect that the OSCE be guided by its primary tasks and build relations with sovereign states based on respect, trust and transparency...
Giants meet to counter US power
Jeremy Page in Delhi
India, China and Russia account for 40 per cent of the world’s population, a fifth of its economy and more than half of its nuclear warheads. Now they appear to be forming a partnership to challenge the US-dominated world order that has prevailed since the end of the Cold War.
Foreign ministers from the three emerging giants met in Delhi yesterday to discuss ways to build a more democratic “multipolar world”.
The foreign ministers, Pranab Mukherjee, Li Zhao Xing and Sergei Lavrov, emphasised that theirs was not an alliance against the United States. It was, “on the contrary, intended to promote international harmony and understanding”, a joint communiqué stated.
Mr Mukherjee said: “We agreed that cooperation rather than confrontation should govern approaches to regional and global affairs. We also agreed on the importance of the UN.” (Times Online, 15-2-2007)
"This is in response to a selected president of the United States who thinks he is above the law, above the Constitution and is governing our country as if he is a Dictator..." j-m, Los Angeles, California, USA
"The Bush/neocon administration has proven that 'power corrupts and, absolute power corrupts absolutely' Any alliance that acts as a counter balance to the strategy of this administration and US global strategy in general must be welcome, and, will lay down a marker that it cannot continue to act with impunity." Kevin Sullivan, London, London
US invites Iran and Syria to talks on Iraq
in reversal of Bush policy
· Initiative ends isolation of Tehran and Damascus
· Plan seen as attempt to limit criticism of war
Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington
Wednesday February 28, 2007 - The Guardian
The Bush administration gave up one of the central tenets of its Middle East strategy yesterday, reversing its much criticised effort to isolate Iran and Syria by inviting both states to negotiations on stabilising Iraq....
Ms Rice yesterday said representatives from Iran and Syria would be invited to a "neighbours meeting" to discuss efforts to stabilise Iraq. "I am pleased to announce that we are also supporting the Iraqis in a new diplomatic offensive: to build greater support, both within the region and beyond, for peace and prosperity in Iraq," she said....
In Baghdad, the Iraqi foreign minister, Hoshiar Zebari, said the meeting would include Iraq; its six neighbours; the five permanent members of the UN security council - the United States, Britain, Russia, China and France; members of the Arab League; and the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.
The prospect of US and Iranian diplomats sharing a negotiating table in Baghdad represents an apparent U-turn on Mr Bush's strategy towards the Middle East. It follows increasing criticism even from those foreign policy experts who support the Bush administration policies on Iraq, such as James Baker and Henry Kissinger, who had been calling on the administration to end its diplomatic isolation of Iran. (The Guardian Website)
Libby Trial Exposes Neocon Shadow Government
By Sydney Schanberg
Day by day, witnes by witness, exhibit by exhibit, Patrick Fitzgerald, the prosecutor in the trial of Dick Cheney’s man, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, is accomplishing what no one else in Washington has been able to: He has impeached the Presidency of George W. Bush.
Of course, it’s an unofficial impeachment, but it will also, through its documentation, be inerasable. The trial record—testimony, exhibits, the lot—will be there, in one place, for investigators, scholars, reporters and Congress to pore over. It goes far beyond the charges against Mr. Libby. It is, instead, a road map to the abuses of power that Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney and their shadow government of neoconservatives have committed as the neocons carried out what they had been planning for years: an invasion of Iraq—and other military excursions—for the purpose of expanding American dominion...
The trial and its record was always all about the unnecessary war—a war created by massive and deliberate lying about an imminent security threat that wasn’t there."
Eliot A. Cohen a Zionist and a professor at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University. Cohen is the Director of the Strategic Studies department at SAIS and has specialized in strategic studies, the Middle East, Persian Gulf, Iraq, arms control, and NATO. He is a member of the Project for the New American Century and was called "the most influential neoconservative in academe" by energy economist Ahmad Faruqui.
In 1990, Cohen began his position at SAIS. Following the 1991 Gulf War, he directed the U.S. Air Force's official four-volume survey, the Gulf War Air Power Survey, until 1993, for which he received the Air Force's Exemplary Civilian Service Award.
In 1993, Paul Wolfowitz, who would later become prominent as the Deputy Secretary of Defense in the run-up to the Iraq war, became Dean of SAIS. During his brief stint at the defense policy planning staff, Cohen had worked under Wolfowitz but this was the first time they were in extended contact. In 1997, Cohen became a founding member of the Project for the New American Century, which became known as a center for prominent neoconservatives.
In the run-up to the 2003 Invasion of Iraq, he was a member of Committee for the Liberation of Iraq, a group of prominent persons who pressed for an invasion.
Iraqis Wish to Put up Saddam's Statue
IslamOnline.net & News Agencies
BAGHDAD — Iraqis who once celebrated and even participated in pulling down Saddam Hussein's statue four years ago when US tanks rolled into Baghdad in a heart-breaking scene for many Arabs and Muslims are now lamenting the good old days under the late president.
"We were happy. At that time we thought everything would get better. In fact, the opposite has happened. There is this insecurity," Mona Mahmud, a 46-year-old mother of two, told Agence France Presse (AFP) Saturday, April 7.
"Today, when I look at the statue, I feel overwhelmed by sadness."
Saddam's statue was pulled down by US marines and some cheerful Iraqis on April 9, 2003, in a scene that symbolized the downfall of Baghdad and Iraq.
Saddam was captured ina swift raid by US forces near his hometown of Tikrit in December 2003.
The former Iraqi leader was hanged on December 30, 2006, after being convicted by an Iraqi court of carrying crimes against humanity for killing 148 Shiites in 1982 on accusation of trying to assassinate him. He was taunted by sectarian and racist slurs by his Shiite hangers.
Kadhim al-Jubouri, who personally took part in wrecking the statue at the central Baghdad square of Al-Fardous, had told the British daily Guardian in an interview last month, that he regretted what he did.
"I really regret bringing down the statue. The Americans are worse than the dictatorship. Every day is worse than the previous day."
The US forces replaced Saddam's statue by a sculpture representing "freedom" which Iraqis call it a misnomer.
"The sculpture of freedom has no meaning," said Nabil Ahmed. "It does not reflect reality. One lives here in constant insecurity. Freedom has no meaning without safety. The situation has gone from bad to worse."
"Today there is nobody around (the sculpture) except American soldiers who take photographs as they go by."
The UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has said that one in eight Iraqis had been forced from their homes because of the bloodshed, warning that the numbers are on the rise. (IslamOnLine, 7-4-2007)
Baghdad Burning: "we've finally decided to leave"
een linkse vrouw in Irak
Thursday, April 26, 2007
Kort na de Amerikaans-Engelse inval in Irak in maart 2003 maakte een jonge vrouw in Irak haar persoonlijke, aan het oorlogsgebeuren gewijde notities via een eigen weblog toegankelijk voor iedereen.
Hoewel ze fel gekant was tegen de bezetting van Irak door buitenlandse mogendheden (de keuze voor Iraanse ayatollah's stootte haar ook af), hoopte ze dat een proces van democratisering de vrijzinnige, naar eenheid strevende krachten in het land niet volledig uit zou schakelen. Haar in het onderstaande fragment toegelichte besluit Irak te verlaten is in weinig meer dan de trieste bevestiging van het falen van wat zich 'het vrije westen' noemt.
I remember Baghdad before the war- one could live anywhere. We didn't know what our neighbors were- we didn't care. No one asked about religion or sect. No one bothered with what was considered a trivial topic: are you Sunni or Shia? You only asked something like that if you were uncouth and backward. Our lives revolve around it now. Our existence depends on hiding it or highlighting it- depending on the group of masked men who stop you or raid your home in the middle of the night.
On a personal note, we've finally decided to leave. I guess I've known we would be leaving for a while now. We discussed it as a family dozens of times. At first, someone would suggest it tentatively because, it was just a preposterous idea- leaving ones home and extended family- leaving ones country- and to what? To where?
Since last summer, we had been discussing it more and more. It was only a matter of time before what began as a suggestion- a last case scenario- soon took on solidity and developed into a plan. For the last couple of months, it has only been a matter of logistics. Plane or car? Jordan or Syria? Will we all leave together as a family? Or will it be only my brother and I at first?
After Jordan or Syria- where then? Obviously, either of those countries is going to be a transit to something else. They are both overflowing with Iraqi refugees, and every single Iraqi living in either country is complaining of the fact that work is difficult to come by, and getting a residency is even more difficult. ...
So we've been busy. Busy trying to decide what part of our lives to leave behind. Which memories are dispensable? We, like many Iraqis, are not the classic refugees- the ones with only the clothes on their backs and no choice. We are choosing to leave because the other option is simply a continuation of what has been one long nightmare- stay and wait and try to survive. ...
It's difficult to decide which is more frightening- car bombs and militias, or having to leave everything you know and love, to some unspecified place for a future where nothing is certain...
Majority of Iraqi Lawmakers Now Reject Occupation
By Raed Jarrar and Joshua Holland, AlterNet
On Tuesday, without note in the U.S. media, more than half of the members of Iraq's parliament rejected the continuing occupation of their country. 144 lawmakers signed onto a legislative petition calling on the United States to set a timetable for withdrawal, according to Nassar Al-Rubaie, a spokesman for the Al Sadr movement, the nationalist Shia group that sponsored the petition.
It's a hugely significant development. Lawmakers demanding an end to the occupation now have the upper hand in the Iraqi legislature for the first time; previous attempts at a similar resolution fell just short of the 138 votes needed to pass (there are 275 members of the Iraqi parliament, but many have fled the country's civil conflict, and at times it's been difficult to arrive at a quorum)....
The continuing occupation of Iraq and the allocation of Iraq's resources -- especially its massive oil and natural gas deposits -- are the defining issues that now separate an increasingly restless bloc of nationalists in the Iraqi parliament from the administration of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, whose government is dominated by Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish separatists.
By "separatists," we mean groups who oppose a unified Iraq with a strong central government; key figures like Maliki of the Dawa party, Shia leader Abdul Aziz Al-Hakeem of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq ("SCIRI"), Vice President Tariq Al-Hashimi of the Sunni Islamic Party, President Jalal Talabani -- a Kurd -- and Masoud Barzani, president of the Kurdish Autonomous Region, favor partitioning Iraq into three autonomous regions with strong local governments and a weak central administration in Baghdad. (The partition plan is also favored by several congressional Democrats, notably Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware.)
Iraq's separatists also oppose setting a timetable for ending the U.S. occupation, preferring the addition of more American troops to secure their regime. They favor privatizing Iraq's oil and gas and decentralizing petroleum operations and revenue distribution.
But public opinion is squarely with Iraq's nationalists. According to a poll by the University of Maryland's Project on International Public Policy Attitudes, majorities of all three of Iraq's major ethno-sectarian groups support a unified Iraq with a strong central government. (Alternet, 9-5-2007)
Om te onthouden: Saddam Hussein was als Arabisch nationalist een eenheidsdenker. Zijn tegenstanders waren en zijn verdelers ('separatisten').