My One Question To Gordon Brown

Given this-

President George Bush first asked Tony Blair to support the removal of Saddam Hussein from power at a private White House dinner nine days after the terror attacks of 11 September, 2001.

Did George tell you the month the Iran attack begins? Because I really don’t want to go through that pantomime dog & pony show where the PM was furrowing his brow and pretending to make a-very-tough-decision when it was all set in stone some time ago.

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BNP Bomber Sentenced By A Friendly Court & Police

A FORMER BNP candidate who stockpiled chemicals and food because he feared the country was heading to civil war has been jailed for two-and-a-half years. But Robert Cottage, of Talbot Street, Colne, could be out of prison within six months due to the time he has spent on remand, police said.

But, boys and girls get what the judge says-

She added there was a low risk of him committing further offences.
“I am satisfied it was Cottage’s views on how he put it ‘the evils of uncontrolled immigration’ would lead to civil war which would be imminent and inevitable… I accept the intention was to hold these chemicals until the outbreak of civil unrest. That was a criminal and potentially dangerous act.”

And the Police-

“He has already spent a long time on remand, and that coupled with the early release scheme means he is likely to be out within six months. After that, he will be monitored closely by parole officers. He is a man of previous good character and his life has dramatically changed because of this investigation.”

“His marriage has broken up and he has lost his job so when he comes out of prison he has got to rebuild his life. His experience will perhaps have a sobering effect on the more radical elements of his views. We feel the sentence justifies the way in which the matter has been handled by the police and the prosecution authorities. He was a very eccentric man with very eccentric views that most people would not agree with, although it’s probably fair to say they were honestly-held views.”

Blairwatch also compare how this sentence compares to those given to Muslims with brown skin (can you guess who gets the heavier sentences, by 10 or 20 years at times), now maybe it’s just me but doesn’t the judge accepting his word seem a little odd and the coppers spiel is virtually a love letter. His far right racist views that lead to him arming himself were ‘honestly-held’ is that code language for -Ok by me, what d’you say white people, we have to stem the tide of immigrant filth somehow-  ‘eccentric views’, ‘of previous good character’, he was a BNP candidate,  a white supremacist political party with a history of violence. What The Fuck? Well it’s a clear signal on which side the law rests in Burnley, white & right wing, and the treatment of the case by the media and the sentence handed out to Muslims for lesser offences shows the rule is good for the UK too- White & Right is Okay. The tribe looks after its own. And Brown (oh the irony) wants to extend detention without charge to 56 days which is 8 weeks, almost 2 months, with no charge at all, just interrogation for a solid 8 weeks. While the security services go through your entire life, and if they don’t get a full confession or charge, they might get some embarrassing personal info or a criminal confession they will keep on file to ‘persuade’ you to be an informer. Don’t think that isn’t part of the reasoning for the 8 week proposal, to create intelligence assets in communities where they have none. And they need them to control people with relatives in countries we bomb or will soon be bombing under orders from Uncle Sam, they’re worried they might get a bit peeved, or better yet get them nicely set up on more terror charges to destroy their case for opposition to the Empire’s wars. If you’re against the ‘War on Terror’ ergo you must be a terrorist. Which is what is said politically already- opposition helps the enemy, demoralises the troops, shows we are weak and will be overrun by ‘islamofascists’. Govts. are never stronger than in a long war, when they can paint their leadership as of life or death importance and dissent as treason. But this isn’t WWII, we are the aggressors here and our enemy is self created (well by the Empire, but we are the monkey to that organ grinder), after decades of meddling to secure assets and influence. You can’t solve a problem without first accurately identifying it, but there is no political will to admit the problem (after all show me a humble and contrite elite and I’ll show you my moon surfing unicorn pony), because our tribe is always right and ‘they’ are the bad guys.

He Was Great In Casablanca

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I shall be watching Skammen/Shame this week in tribute.

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Extraordinary Rendition: Our Subservient Role

al-Rawi, 39, was only held after MI5 sent the CIA a telegram, stating he was an ‘Islamic extremist’ who had a timer for an improvised bomb in his luggage. In reality, before al-Rawi left London, police confirmed the device was a battery charger from Argos.

Well that’s me guilty, my Uniross 2 hr sprint charger damns me as a dangerous terrorist. Bisher al-Rawi’s case is ‘extraordinary’ he worked for MI5, they threw him to the CIA wolves while to this day lying that they didn’t-

The committee accepted MI5’s claim, given in secret testimony, that it had not wanted the Americans to arrest him, in November 2002, concluding the incident had damaged US-UK relations.

But al-Rawi alleged that the CIA told him they had been given the contents of his own MI5 file – information he had given his handlers freely when he was working as their source. He said an MI5 lawyer had given him ‘cast iron’ assurances that anything he told them would be treated in the strictest confidence and, if he ever got into trouble, MI5 would do everything in its power to help him.

Scumbag MP’s are going to play nice an accept their testimony? After all ACPO has said there were no flights while at the same time admitting they didn’t really do an investigation. But their dismissal of the charges of our govts. complicity was good enough to be released the same day to refute Marty’s report into rendition, handy that. Dick Marty’s report has since been revealed to have had input from CIA agents disgusted with the torture flights program, so where does that leave ACPO eejit Michael Todd (Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police & admirer of General Patton and ‘Stormin’ Norman Schwartzkopf -no really…, oh the shame) either he is an absolutely incompetent policeman or he is corrupt? Make your choice Mikey, hey I’ll be generous you can pick both if you really want.

There exists a cognitive dissonance in how the govt. relates to the torture kidnapings, publicly they feign ignorance and innocence, while in committees they discuss MI5’s role. Role in what? It never happened, how can we have a role in something we knew nothing about? But further up the trail is not only our wholesale involvement and covering up of the program is Blairs role in actively protecting it, almost no coverage was given of the Polish press reports that Blair put pressure on the Polish govt. to keep the black site ghost prison there secret. Not just okaying flights, not just turning a blind eye to the CIA’s kidnappings, not just in reality helping in the kidnappings, no Blair put the hard word on Polish politicians to keep quiet about the secret imperial gulag site.

So the public perception of the kidnap and torture program is what?…- maybe the govt. probably knew. The govt positon is dissonant, we know nothing, yet we talk in secret committees about our security services involvement. The actual truth is out govt absolutely cooperated, giving aid and comfort to the kidnap & torture program going so far as our PM pressuring other European governments to also cooperate fully. Ok so how long until this actually is revealed and becomes the truthful narrative, a decade? Never? Will any person answer any charges in relation to this in the UK? Will Blair, does parliament care that it was lied to? Do we care that a person can be kidnapped flown to a secret prison and tortured with our govts active cooperation? Do people care this the 21st century and yet we are behaving as if it were still the dark ages?

Perhaps this might come to more prominence with the release of the film ‘Extraordinary Rendition’ directed by Jim Threapleton (Kate Winslet’s ex- maybe the celebrity angle will cause some buzz, although I’m sure he hates being described as such) and starring Andy Serkis (LoTR, King Kong) & Omar Berdouni (United 93, The Hamburg Cell) and currently being accepted at prestigious film festivals across the world. Check out their blog here.

Extraordinary Rendition is an abomination and I hope very much that our film will contribute to the increasing debate on the subject. The arguments against Rendition are stark. For governments that cast themselves as the guardians of democracy and due process to be using such barbaric and criminal methods is a devastating reality for the 21st Century world.

This was put into sharp relief when we shot some of our closing sequence for the film amongst an actual protest outside the U.S Embassy, calling for the closure of Guantanamo. To hear from some of those individuals and families that have found themselves in direct contact with a War on Terror that continues to devastate innocent lives was extremely powerful. – Jim Threapleton

Most importantly will the kidnap & torture programs be stopped? Because right now, nothing, absolutely nothing stands in the way of you being disappeared by American secret services with our govts. approval. Maybe that’s what Brown means about the world owing the US a debt for fighting terrorism, he means the airfares.

CIA: Legacy Of Ashes- The Keystone Spooks

In 1969, the Central Intelligence Agency informed President Richard Nixon that the Soviets lacked the ability to launch a knockout nuclear first strike. Outraged that this undermined their plans for an antiballistic missile system, White House hawks ordered the agency to, in the words to then-CIA director Richard Helms, “trim the evidence.” The intel was buried and the ABM plans went forward. “[T]he agency was tailoring its work to fit the pattern of White House policy,” writes Tim Weiner, hinting that the now-infamous “slam dunk” case for invading Iraq wasn’t the first time the agency told the White House what it wanted to hear

I grew up under the gun, with the concept of the 4 minute warning, that at any time an alert would tells us we only had 4 minutes left to live…and it was all a con, a conservative con, a neo-con to enable their idiocy to continue unbound. Below are excerpts from a review of Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA by Tim Weiner (you can read the first chapter here) by ex CIA man Chalmers Johnson. The book is all documented sources, Wiener is an award winning reporter, this is not tin-foilism. The conclusion seems to be the CIA never did it’s job, rather it enjoyed acting beyond the law and helped cause millions of deaths, most remarkable is how they bungled much of what they did, once mistaking a ambassador petting her dog for a lesbian affair which they then hoped to blackmail her with, no really (h/t Rachel Maddow)-

Perhaps the most comical of all CIA clandestine activities — unfortunately all too typical of its covert operations over the last 60 years — was the spying it did in 1994 on the newly appointed American ambassador to Guatemala, Marilyn McAfee, who sought to promote policies of human rights and justice in that country. Loyal to the murderous Guatemalan intelligence service, the CIA had bugged her bedroom and picked up sounds that led their agents to conclude that the ambassador was having a lesbian love affair with her secretary, Carol Murphy. The CIA station chief “recorded her cooing endearments to Murphy.” The agency spread the word in Washington that the liberal ambassador was a lesbian without realizing that “Murphy” was also the name of her two-year-old black standard poodle. The bug in her bedroom had recorded her petting her dog. She was actually a married woman from a conservative family.

This covert hand interfering with our world makes me angry indeed, although the cost to us was not as severe as it was to many, the mass killings, political genocide, torture. What is remarkable is the imperial arrogance, that they know what is right for the world and how unimportant others lives are in their plans. The end of the empire cannot come too soon.

On the most important annual intelligence estimate throughout the Cold War—that of the Soviet order of battle—the CIA invariably overstated its size and menace. Then, to add insult to injury, under George H. W. Bush’s tenure as DCI (1976-77), the agency tore itself apart over ill-informed right-wing claims that it was actually underestimating Soviet military forces. The result was the appointment of “Team B” during the Ford presidency, led by Polish exiles and neoconservative fanatics. It was tasked to “correct” the work of the Office of National Estimates. “After the Cold War was over,” writes Weiner, “the agency put Team B’s findings to the test. Every one of them was wrong.”

The CIA’s incessant, almost always misguided, attempts to determine how other people should govern themselves; its secret support for fascists (e.g., Greece under George Papadopoulos), militarists (e.g., Chile under Gen. Augusto Pinochet), and murderers (e.g., the Congo under Joseph Mobutu); its uncritical support of death squads (El Salvador) and religious fanatics (Muslim fundamentalists in Afghanistan)…Nothing has done more to undercut the reputation of the United States than the CIA’s “clandestine” (only in terms of the American people) murders of the presidents of South Vietnam and the Congo, its ravishing of the governments of Iran, Indonesia (three times), South Korea (twice), all of the Indochinese states, virtually every government in Latin America, and Lebanon, Afghanistan, and Iraq. The deaths from these armed assaults run into the millions. After 9/11, President Bush asked “Why do they hate us?” From Iran (1953) to Iraq (2003), the better question would be, “Who does not?”

“The millions were delivered to Italian politicians and the priests of Catholic Action, a political arm of the Vatican. Suitcases filed with cash changed hands in the four-star Hassler Hotel. . . . Italy’s Christian Democrats won by a comfortable margin and formed a government that excluded communists. A long romance between the [Christian Democratic] party and the agency began. The CIA’s practice of purchasing elections and politicians with bags of cash was repeated in Italy — and in many other countries — for the next twenty-five years.” The CIA ultimately spent at least $65 million on Italy’s politicians — including “every Christian Democrat who ever won a national election in Italy.”

After Italy, the CIA moved on to Japan, paying to bring Nobusuke Kishi to power as Japan’s prime minister (in office 1957-1960), the country’s World War II minister of munitions. It ultimately used its financial muscle to entrench the (conservative) Liberal Democratic Party in power and to turn Japan into a single-party state, which it remains to this day. The cynicism with which the CIA continued to subsidize “democratic” elections in Western Europe, Latin America, and East Asia, starting in the late 1950s, led to disillusionment with the United States.

Attempting to influence the attitudes of students and intellectuals, the CIA sponsored literary magazines in Germany (Der Monat) and Britain (Encounter), promoted abstract expressionism in art as a radical alternative to the Soviet Union’s socialist realism, and secretly funded the publication and distribution of over two and a half million books and periodicals.

…during the debate over America’s invasion of Iraq after 2003, one of the constant laments was that the CIA did not have access to a single agent inside Saddam Hussein’s inner circle. That was not true. Ironically, the intelligence service of France — a country U.S. politicians publicly lambasted for its failure to support us — had cultivated Naji Sabri, Iraq’s foreign minister. Sabri told the French agency, and through it the American government, that Saddam Hussein did not have an active nuclear or biological weapons program, but the CIA ignored him.

Empire Trading Inc.- Saudi, India & Israel Edition

Congress will be asked by the Bush Administration to approve $20 billion in advanced weapons and planes for Saudi Arabia…The US hopes to have assuaged this by offering Israel an aid package totaling $30.4 billion over the next ten years.

In addition to promising an increase in American military aid to Israel, the Pentagon is seeking to ease Israel’s concerns over the proposed weapons sales to Saudi Arabia by asking the Saudis to accept restrictions on the range, size and location of the satellite-guided bombs, including a commitment not to store the weapons at air bases close to Israeli territory, the officials said. 

The officials said the plan to bolster the militaries of Persian Gulf countries is part of an American strategy to contain the growing power of Iran in the region and to demonstrate that, no matter what happens in Iraq, Washington remains committed to its longtime Arab allies. 

President Bush signed the United States-India Peaceful Atomic Energy Cooperation Promotion Act in December. “If the US-India agreement is really consistent with the letter and spirit of the Hyde Act, as the administration claims, why won’t they release the text?” Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA). “If they’re afraid of letting us read the document, then I can only surmise that it includes provisions they fear will raise the hackles of Congress,” he added. “They’re turning the Hyde Act into the hide-and-go-seek act, but no level of diplomatic double-speak will stop Congress from investigating why India is claiming such enormous concessions.” 

Critics of the US-India nuclear cooperation agreement warn that it promotes the proliferation of nuclear weapons because it allows India, which has refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, to gain nuclear fuel. Currently, all states except China, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, and the US must forswear nuclear weapons to access civilian nuclear technology. India, Pakistan, and Israel are the only three states that have refused to sign the treaty. North Korea withdrew from the treaty in 2005.

“The most recent agreement between Washington and New Delhi, negotiated last week, was deliberately written in a way that can be interpreted differently by the two sides,”…Contrasting statements seemed to bear our Kralev’s reporting. Burns argued that if India were to test a nuclear weapon again, the US could demand the return of nuclear fuel it had supplied to India’s civilian energy sector.

“If there is ever any reason for the United States to have to invoke the right of return, we could certainly do so,” he said. But according to India’s Economic Times, the country’s leaders claimed it was not bound by any restrictions regarding nuclear testing.

So India counters ‘Islamic’ Pakistan (and things are not working out there for their client dictator) and the deals makes the projected largest country by population a close imperial ally in case China gets uppity. Saudi dictators and their oil are kept sweet with of course Israel getting the huge payout because, well it’s America’s nuclear pal in the Arab world and overall the pressure on Iran is kept up. And thankfully capital that could feed, house and educate humans is spent on shiny stuff that goes bang! Phew.

BAA Trying To Criminalise Environmentalism

I noticed this at Bloggerheads then I caught the updated story at the Independent-

Heathrow airport’s owner BAA was isolated and assailed from all sides yesterday as it headed for a legal and physical showdown with protesters over an attempt to ban a mass demonstration against climate change that has enraged civil rights groups.

Within hours of its disclosure, politicians, lawyers and protesters condemned an injunction that would prevent five million members of the public from attending the Camp for Climate Action as “ludicrous,” ” absurd” and “unenforceable”.

The capital’s transport authority, Transport for London (TfL), was furious at the inclusion of the Piccadilly line in a list of places police could arrest protesters and demanded it be dropped from the action. Ken Livingstone, the Mayor of London, denounced BAA’s plans as a “serious infringement of civil liberties and an attack on the right to peaceful protest”. Britain’s biggest environmental organisation, the National Trust, described the court action as “over the top”, warning that it “smacked of absurdity”.

BAA insisted that it would not back down but said that it would amend or drop the injunction if the protesters gave undertakings about their intentions.

But the the Camp for Climate Action insisted that the week-long action from 14 August would take place regardless of the High Court case on Wednesday. Up to 5,000 people are expected to attend what could be the biggest protest against climate change in the UK.

Anyone deemed to be breaking or intending to break its terms could be arrested on the Piccadilly line of the London Underground, platforms six and seven of Paddington station, which serves the Heathrow Express, and sections of the M25 and M4 motorways, as well as the airport and its vicinity.

Unbelievable corporate fascism, but hopefully BAA will be stopped and the attention will help to make the connection in peoples minds that air travel is a luxury that is costing the earth. D’you think BAA have really thought this through?