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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Prince Nayef Received Award From UNWRA, WOOPTY DOO

I just came across this report on the Saudi Embassy site from Dec. 19 stating that UNWRA presented the Distinguished Donor Award to Prince Nayef of Saudi Arabia. The amount given on his orders to UNWRA by the Saudi Committee for the Relief of the Palestinian People according to this report was "since 2005 a total of 17.4 million. The donations for Gaza alone in 2009, 10 million" (is this 10 million in 2009 a part of the total of 17.4 mil since 2005? It seems so)

This is CHICKEN FEED to Prince Nayef on a personal level alone, not to mention tossing in all the rest of the royals. Remember his wife Maha Al-Sudairi? Six months ago the creditors caught up with her at her hotel in Paris, the George V of course. She owed 510,000 euros ($823,956) to luxury jewellers Chaumat and 70,000 euros ( $100,282) to a lingerie shop alone. The total she was said to have owed to creditors for God knows what was 13 MILLION euros ($18,623,800)

Gee, she did more shopping (surely over a shorter period of time-and she's just ONE royal) than the Saudi Committee for the Relief of the Palestinian People donated to UNWRA, in four years! Am I supposed to be impressed? NOT.

For the record, THIS report dated June 15, 2009 on the Saudi Embassy site gives a break down (as of that date) of total Saudi donations to Palestine. It's interesting indeed where the Saudis have prioritized and targeted their donations.

Note: this blogger just finds it disgusting donating this award to Prince Naif whose wife shops til she drops. Hope he felt proud receiving it. Also note, this was the first time this award was given by UNWRA.

From the UNWRA website:

UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions. The Agency’s core budget for 2010-2011 stands at $1.23 billion. In 2009, emergency appeals for the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon amounted to $827.4 million.


Princess Maja you should be absolutely ashamed of yourself, and so should all you other personal spending professionals in the royal family. Add in the non-royals too! Let's see any one of you walk in the shoes of a Palestinian in Gaza for even ONE day. You'd all be pooping your britches and whipping out your American Express Black Cards to get yourselves outta there.


Monday, December 28, 2009

What the Hell is going on in Yemen and what does it have to do with Iran?

Nothing in the Middle East comes easy, nor is full and accurate coverage of events there usually easy to come by.

Note: the following is not meant to give answers, but rather to raise questions, what the Hell is going on in Yemen and what does it have to do with Iran? As it turns out, there is a marked confluence of events that may very well be connected.

What is occurring now in Yemen is the latest in subterfuge vis a vis Middle East turmoil.

Looking back over the last few months, Yemen first came on the US news scene regarding the Fort Hood shooting. It was explained to the American public, that Dr. Hassan, the Muslim psychiatrist due to be deployed to Afghanistan who went berserk killing 13 military personnel, had been in email contact with a radical Muslim (American born) cleric in Yemen, Anwar Al-'Awlaki. Thus far, the American public has been told that the correspondence had been tracked by government authorities, but was deemed to fall within the purvue of Dr. Hassan's "research". CBS News however reports differently as to the nature of this email correspondence between Dr. Hassan and the imam. What we do know, is that for some reason these emails, whatever their nature, did not cause the authorities to call Dr. Hassan in for any sort of questioning. The result was tragedy. What *some* are insisting was not the action of a lone man gone berserk, but part of a larger terror attack on the US. This being said without any proof whatsoever being given to us by our government.

The next time for Yemen to appear on the US news radar concerned a cruise missile attack on "Al Qaeda" forces in Yemen ordered by Obama. (although Yemen insists their air force carried out the strikes) Referring to Glenn Greenwald's Dec. 21st article in Salon:

In addition to our occupation of Iraq, war escalation in Afghanistan, and secret bombings in Pakistan, President Obama late last week ordered cruise missile attacks on two locations in Yemen, which "U.S. officials" say were "suspected Al Qaeda hideouts." The main target of the attacks, Al Qaeda member Qasim al Rim, was not among those killed, but: "a local Yemeni official said on Sunday that 49 civilians, among them 23 children and 17 women, were killed in air strikes against Al-Qaeda, which he said were carried out 'indiscriminately'." Media reports across the Muslim world -- though, not of course, within the U.S. -- are highlighting the dead civilians from the U.S. strike (one account from an official Iranian outlet began: "U.S. Nobel Peace Prize laureate President Barack Obama has signed the order for a recent military strike on Yemen in which scores of civilians, including children, have been killed, a report says").

For many people, the mere assertion by anonymous U.S. Government officials that these attacks targeted "suspected al-Qaeda sites" will be sufficient to deem them justified. All credible reports confirm that there is indeed a not insignificant Al Qaeda presence in Southern Yemen, so that claim, at least, seems at least grounded in reality. Yet arguments about justification to the side for the moment, here we have yet another violent attack by the U.S. which -- even under the best-case scenario -- has killed more Muslim civilians than it did "Al Qaeda fighters," and failed to kill the main target of the attack. When it comes to undermining Al Qaeda -- both in Yemen and generally -- isn't it painfully obvious that the images of dead Muslim women and children which we constantly create -- and which we again just created in Yemen -- will fuel that movement better than anything else we can do?


Next item in the news regarding Yemen: the Yemeni air force WITH the aid of US and Saudi intelligence engaged in a bomb attack in which the Dec 24th headlines read, "Sources: Air Strike in Yemen May Have Killed Imam Who Inspired Fort Hood Shooter, Two Top Al Qaeda" This was indeed big news which inspired many in the media to call the entire incident a mini-911, "terrorist attack"(Fort Hood)--this time we got the bad guy. Only as it turns out, the bad guy, Imam Anwar Al-'Awlaki wasn't struck after all according to his family. He's still out there. (so is Osama Bin Laden)

Next, give Yemen only one day to appear in our news again with the apparent "terrorist plot" on board an airliner by a man who has "confessed" he was acting on Al Qaeda's orders. As it turns out, our government alreaddy *knew* about this 23 yr old's suspicious activities prior to this plane incident (just as they knew about Dr. Hassan's email correspondence with the radical imam in Yemen) Apparently after Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab's father, a well known Nigerian banker, visited the US embassy in Nigeria in November asking for help in finding his son because of his fears of him going radical, Umar had been placed in the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE) but did not make the cut to go on to be placed on the no-fly list. His visa to the US had not been revoked according to Ian Kelley, State Department Spokesman because...........

The secretary of state can unilaterally revoke a visa but usually does that for foreign policy and diplomatic, not national security, reasons, Kelley said.

"This has to be done in consultation with other agencies," Kelley said.


So much for that official statement. Al Qaeda has taken credit for the failed bomb attempt aboard the "jihadi express"(so called by the right wing). It just so happens the plot was *planned* by two former GITMO detainees. On another odd note, this news report states that the explosives on the suspect would have been extremely difficult to ignite.

Introduced after World War I, PETN is in the same chemical family as nitroglycerin and among the most powerful of explosives. It was the same explosive that Richard C. Reid tried to detonate in his shoes during an American Airlines flight in December 2001.

But one characteristic of PETN is that it does not easily detonate, and that apparently thwarted Mr. Abdulmutallab, officials said. Dropping it or setting it on fire will not typically detonate it, explosive experts said.

Usually, a shock wave from a blasting cap or an exploding wire detonator is needed to set off PETN. Mr. Abdulmutallab was reported to have used a syringe to try to inject a liquid into the explosive.

It sounds like he was trying to cause a chemical reaction that would initiate it, and that didn’t work out so well,” said Jimmie C. Oxley, an explosives expert and professor of chemistry at the University of Rhode Island

.

Boy that sure was a dud of a plan by Al Qaeda if you ask me.

Update: Wednesday Dec 30: The Statesman.com has a statement from Dutch Interior Minister Guusje Ter Horst on the explosive which would be plane blower upper Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab used:

Ter Horst said Abdulmutallab apparently assembled the explosive device, including 80 grams of PETN, in the aircraft toilet, then planned to detonate it with a syringe of chemicals. She said the explosives appeared to have been professionally prepared and had been given to Abdulmutallab, but did not elaborate.

"If you want to detonate it, you have to do that another way than he did. That is why we talk about amateurism," she said.


So I guess his bosses for the terrorist organization that took down the Twin Towers and piloted a plane into the Pentagon have fallen down on the job this time. Those "professionals" that prepared it left out the proper directions. Thank God. Kismet.


Moving on, which for a moment means looking slightly back. In this case to Obama's Nobel Prize acceptance speech in Oslo which noted that Yemen has become a new front on the war on terror. Yes, Yemen has indeed become a focus. Just this Sunday Senator Joe Lieberman went on FOX News calling for the United States to do all it can possibly do, pull out the stops when it comes to fighting the "war on terror" in Yemen.

So what else is going on in Yemen that the US media is NOT reporting widely if at all?

Little at all is being reported that the Saudi military has been engaging in ground and air attacks on Houthi rebels in Yemen, accusing them of being backed by Iran. Who are the Houthi rebels? They are Shiaa who have been fighting in opposition to the Yemeni government who the Houthi claim have been discriminating against them for years.

In June 2004, the Houthis, a group of rebels in the Sa'dah governorate of northwest Yemen, began taking up arms against the Yemeni national army. They claimed, and continue to claim, to be defending their own specific branch of Shia Islam -- Zaydism -- from a Yemeni regime they say is too dependent on its northern neighbor, Saudi Arabia, and its partner in the war on terrorism, the United States. Yemen's political and military leaders have labeled the Houthis a terrorist group supported by Iran. This smoldering civil war attracted little outside attention until last month, when, on November 5, Saudi Arabia sent its warplanes to bomb Houthi positions around the border, both on Saudi territory and inside Yemen. It was Saudi Arabia's first cross-border military intervention since the Gulf War in 1991. (Source)

Just how far has Saudi involvement gone in fighting the Houthis? From a Dec 23 AFP report:

Fighting between Saudi forces and the rebels kicked off on November 3, when the kingdom accused the rebels of killing a border guard and occupying two villages in its territory.

Saudi jets began bombing rebel positions the following day.

Prince Khaled said on Tuesday that the fighting has killed 73 Saudi soldiers, wounded 470 and left 26 missing.

So, as you are reading here are you beginning to see the implications of what is going on in Yemen? That as the US is ratcheting up it's involvement there, Saudi Arabia which has not been a nation to become involved militarily directly is now doing so in Yemen because they claim that there is a threat to their southern border by rebels backed by Iran? Do you understand that Saudi Arabia is flying US jets piloted by US trained pilots targeting Yemeni SHIAA rebels whom they claim are Iranian backed? Are you understanding that not only has Israel been rattling it's sabers against Iran for quite a while but many in our own government have been rattling their sabers at Iran also? Which is it? Al-Qaeda (the Saudi regimes arch enemy) or Iranian backed rebels who are the target of Saudi Arabia? Which is it, Al-Qaeda or Iranian backed rebels who are the target of the US? Is it both? Why hasn't OUR media reported what is going on there YET? Is this a conditioning process the American public is going through to prepare us for further deployment of our troops elsewhere in the Middle East or a strike on Iran?

NO strike on Iran by either Israel or the US can be undertaken without Saudi cooperation. Keep that in mind.

On a slightly different note, as 175,000 Yemenis have been forced from their homes due to the strife in their country, UNDispatch ominously opines:

This sudden escalation alarmed analysts in the United States and the European Union, as well as those in the Middle East. The conflict, they fear, could evolve into a proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia, which perceive themselves as the contemporary standard-bearers of the Shia and Sunni branches of Islam, respectively. Equally worrying is that the latest attack could further destabilize the already fragile Yemeni state, which is confronted by a series of crises and a structural inability to govern its territory and population. In recent years, Yemen has rightfully gained a reputation as a safe haven for violent groups linked to al Qaeda.

"Proxy war" or build up to what the hawks have long been calling for: just more reasons given to attack Iran which again could never occur without Saudi cooperation.

**********************************************************

TUESDAY DEC.29th UPDATE: If the following is true this situation on the Saudi-Yemeni border perpetrated by who the Saudis deem are IRANIAN backed rebels is a friggin POWDER KEG!!!

Houthis seize full control of Saudi border post

Houthi fighters in northern Yemen say they have seized control of a Saudi military post along the border between the two countries where Saudi and Yemeni forces are waging a campaign to uproot them.

According to a report released by Hezbollah's al-Manar television network, Houthis have seized "full control of the Al-Jamrah Saudi military post" as well as weapons, communication material, military vehicles and surveillance equipment.

The report added that the northern Yemen's Shia fighters overran the Saudi post on Monday and forced soldiers to flee. The post is said to be located in close proximity to al-Khoba in Saudi Arabia's southern province of Jizan. Read further>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

AGAIN a strike on Iran by either Israel or the United States CANNOT occur without Saudi cooperation. What kind of mood do you think the Saudis are in if an act of war-the seizing of their military post within their borders has been accomplished by the Houthis who are supposedly Iranian backed?

Their mood would certainly be worse than it was in July when the article "The Houthi Thorn" was published in Asharq Alawsat!

********************************************************************

I wondered how long it would take for someone high up in Israel to jump in. Here we go, Danny Ayalon, former ambassador to the US and current Israeli Deputy Interior Minister writes for Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.

Hamas is almost exclusively supported by Iranian funds, training, and equipment. The same is true of Hizbullah and other terror organizations through which Iran is seeking to undermine Sunni governments in the region. So to achieve better prospects for dialogue with Palestinians - without the threats of terror, extremism, and incitement - it is critically important to curb local Iranian influence. Indeed, today all the worst threats to the Middle East originate in Iran. Lebanon is a case in point. The most urgent threat to the Lebanese people comes not from Israel or the West, but from Hizbullah - an Iranian organ which represents Iranian interests, not Lebanese ones. Other countries in the region are similarly affected. Large terror rings operated by Hizbullah have been discovered in Egypt, Morocco, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia.

Yes, that is the problem Mr. Ayalon. Israeli policy has nothing to do whatsoever with the Palestinian issue, it is IRAN who is the Middle East boogy man. Hizbullah in your crosshairs again heh? Itching to make that strike on Iran you have been salivating over for eons now? Pleased as pie that Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam is using their military to plummet Shiaa Houthis in Yemen? Waiting for them to allow their airspace to be used by you?

Here's an interesting article in YNet, conveniently it leaves Saudi Arabian military involvement in Yemen out of the report. Toss in some hasbara concerning the plane plot as well which is totally contradicted by explosive experts.

The fears stem from the fact that the terror group was able to develop explosives capable of blowing up a plane out of common liquid materials that are difficult to detect.

Hello YNet-guess you missed the memo on that "professionally prepared" explosive that couldn't be detonated with LIQUID. Good to know though that the radio station funded by the US Congress reports AQ in Lebanon now too.

*****Angry Arab News December 9: Notice that Naharnet and NowHariri peddles and highlight daily Israeli propaganda stories. What could be one of those reports AAN is referring to? Secret Meeting in Yemen between Iran, Houthi, Hizbullah Officials.

Yes, it's all coming together in a neat package with the bow being tied.

Edit to add: September 16,2009 General James B. Smith was sworn in as the US ambassador to Saudi Arabia. His joint experience includes serving as the CSAF chair at the National War College and as vice director of operations for North American Air Defense Command (source). He was serving as International Business Development Executive for Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems when Obama appointed him to be ambassador to Saudi Arabia, to which Raytheon has been providing weapons and services since 1966 (source)






Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Obama Nobel Lecture draft leaked!

Just read, and weep, "Hope, change"-opiate words.

Obama Nobel Lecture draft leaked!


TOP SECRET: The speech Barack Obama won’t deliver
As dictated to Daniel Simpson

EMBARGOED UNTIL DECEMBER 10, 2009

(Check against delivery)

Your Majesties, Your Royal Highnesses, Excellencies, Distinguished members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, Dear Friends around the world, My fellow Americans.

I stand here today humbled, more than ever, by the task before us, grateful for the honour you’ve bestowed, and mindful of the sacrifices we must make to do it justice.

Twenty Americans before me have lent their names to this most eminent of prizes, among them three presidents, two sitting. Though challenged by the upheavals of fractious eras, their skill and vision hewed faithfully to the spirit of our forebears, who travelled across an ocean to seek sanctuary, and declared all who made their home there to have been created equal. Where possible, they worked to stem those tides in humankind that would drown us in the storms of violent conflict. And so we recall these efforts, and their fruits, praising Theodore Roosevelt for brokering peace, not chiding him for wielding his trademark stick to subjugate Cuba and the Philippines.

Others were inspired by a higher calling, rising above themselves to speak truths we shirk from hearing. Of these transformative figures, none was more righteous, more perspicacious, than Dr Martin Luther King, who accepted this award 45 years ago. I was surprised to be asked to follow him, and shared with you my doubts that I deserved to be doing so. But I’ve come here on the understanding that this ceremony is a call to action, a call for all nations to confront the challenges of the 21st century, and for America to lead.

Continue reading>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Where Did The Israeli Locksmith Scammer Send His $ To?

So who did Eli Barhanum who was arrested for his involvement in the Dependable Locksmith scam bust by the Feds send his money orders to? El Ad Group. And who is El-Ad Group? Read the Wiki HERE. It is a subsidiary of Delek Group, owned by Yitzak Tshuva.


Affidavit for Complaint of Eli Barhanun


BEST LINK FOR ALL INFORMATION WITH COURT LINK CASES AND MUCH MORE

Blackwater's Secret War in Pakistan: Jeremy Scahill

At a covert forward operating base run by the US Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) in the Pakistani port city of Karachi, members of an elite division of Blackwater are at the center of a secret program in which they plan targeted assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives, "snatch and grabs" of high-value targets and other sensitive action inside and outside Pakistan, an investigation by The Nation has found. The Blackwater operatives also assist in gathering intelligence and help direct a secret US military drone bombing campaign that runs parallel to the well-documented CIA predator strikes, according to a well-placed source within the US military intelligence apparatus.

Read further>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

SCAM Israeli Owned Locksmiths BUSTED!!!!!

Refresh your memories, I posted about this February 15, 2008

HERE is that post.

Now WATCH and READ

10 Connects Helps Bust National Locksmith Scam - WTSP-TV, Channel 10, Tampa Bay, FL (11/04/2009)
http://www.wtsp.com/video/default.aspx?aid=93212

"One of
Overland Park Locksmith Charged With Deceiving Customers - WDAF-TV, Channel 4, Kansas City, MO (11/04/2009)
http://www.fox4kc.com/news/wdaf-locksmith-customers-op-110409,0,10447.story

Dependable Locks workers charged in scam – St. Louis Business Journal, St. Louis, MO (11/04/2009)
http://stlouis.bizjournals.com/stlouis/stories/2009/11/02/daily45.html


Oh WOW, YNET has an article

US: 3 Israelis arrested for mail fraud



For ALOA's LONG list of articles on this go HERE

http://www.therolladailynews.com/state_news/x255178727/Locksmith-tech-among-those-facing-federal-charges


Eliyahu Barhanun, a.k.a. Eli Barhanun, a.k.a. Eli Barhanin, 29, Creve Coeur, MO, is charged in with a felony violation of structuring financial transactions to avoid federal reporting requirements, in violation of 31 U.S.C. § 5324; and conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341, 1343, and 1956, all in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371.

David Peer, 31; and Moshe Aharoni, 28, both of the Clearwater, Florida area, are each charged with conspiracy to recruit and employ aliens who are not authorized to work in the United States, in violation of 8 U.S.C. §§ 1324 and 1324a; mail and wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341 and 1343;and engaging in financial transactions to promote unlawful activity, in violation of 18 U.S.C
.

BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU GAVE DEPENDABLE LOCKSMITHS AN F

**********************************************
SO, let me walk you through this to show you how they work. Let's start HERE


israel blog news, online news edition, Newspaper from Israel, offers real-time breaking news, breaking News, opinions, analysis, funny news, commentary relating to events, Israel News United States of America News for Israeli Top News חדשות Israel, Middle East from Los Angeles New York Miami News United States of America
**************************************************

NOW, let's take some of the phone numbers they have there, let's start with this one and then Google it 877-364-5264. What do you come up with? Page after page of "locksmiths". "carpet cleaners", "water damage restoration", "moving companies", "roadside assistance". Go ahead, link to them, ALL the same 1-877 number, ALL different webpages that look official, right? OH MY GOD, you can even have your CHRISTMAS LIGHTS put up! Hey, what a deal!

I just called for Christmas lights. Ring.............................

Him: Hello

Me: Hi, I'm calling for Christmas lights, do you do that?

Him: UH HUH

Me: Well I'm wondering why you share a phone number with so many other companies

Him: What do you mean?

Me: Welllllllllllllllllll, I can get my carpet cleaned, my furniture moved, my locks fixed, roadside assistance, AND my Christmas lights put up, it's ONE STOP SHOPPING to call you! Why is that?

Him: Because they are all our companies.

Me: UH, and you are also from Israel doing business here ILLEGALLY and the Feds are closing in on you, MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!

OK now it is REALLY getting ridiculous! Take that link for the Christmas lights and go to the bottom and link to where it says Christmas lighting installation. It goes HERE I just dialed the phone number on that link and the guy answered, "Locksmith" I said, "I think I have the wrong number, aren't you a Christmas light company?" "No, we're a locksmith"!

These guys are REALLY confused!

AFFIDAVIT

BEST LINK FOR ALL INFORMATION: LOCKSMITH WIKI


Friday, November 20, 2009

Scam Israeli Owned Locksmiths in the US BUSTED!!!!!

Refresh your memories, I posted about this February 15, 2008

HERE is that post.

Now WATCH and READ

10 Connects Helps Bust National Locksmith Scam - WTSP-TV, Channel 10, Tampa Bay, FL (11/04/2009)
http://www.wtsp.com/video/default.aspx?aid=93212

"One of
Overland Park Locksmith Charged With Deceiving Customers - WDAF-TV, Channel 4, Kansas City, MO (11/04/2009)
http://www.fox4kc.com/news/wdaf-locksmith-customers-op-110409,0,10447.story

Dependable Locks workers charged in scam – St. Louis Business Journal, St. Louis, MO (11/04/2009)
http://stlouis.bizjournals.com/stlouis/stories/2009/11/02/daily45.html


Oh WOW, YNET has an article

US: 3 Israelis arrested for mail fraud



For ALOA's LONG list of articles on this go HERE

http://www.therolladailynews.com/state_news/x255178727/Locksmith-tech-among-those-facing-federal-charges


Eliyahu Barhanun, a.k.a. Eli Barhanun, a.k.a. Eli Barhanin, 29, Creve Coeur, MO, is charged in with a felony violation of structuring financial transactions to avoid federal reporting requirements, in violation of 31 U.S.C. § 5324; and conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341, 1343, and 1956, all in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371.

David Peer, 31; and Moshe Aharoni, 28, both of the Clearwater, Florida area, are each charged with conspiracy to recruit and employ aliens who are not authorized to work in the United States, in violation of 8 U.S.C. §§ 1324 and 1324a; mail and wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341 and 1343;and engaging in financial transactions to promote unlawful activity, in violation of 18 U.S.C
.

BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU GAVE DEPENDABLE LOCKSMITHS AN F

**********************************************
SO, let me walk you through this to show you how they work. Let's start HERE


israel blog news, online news edition, Newspaper from Israel, offers real-time breaking news, breaking News, opinions, analysis, funny news, commentary relating to events, Israel News United States of America News for Israeli Top News חדשות Israel, Middle East from Los Angeles New York Miami News United States of America
**************************************************

NOW, let's take some of the phone numbers they have there, let's start with this one and then Google it 877-364-5264. What do you come up with? Page after page of "locksmiths". "carpet cleaners", "water damage restoration", "moving companies", "roadside assistance". Go ahead, link to them, ALL the same 1-877 number, ALL different webpages that look official, right? OH MY GOD, you can even have your CHRISTMAS LIGHTS put up! Hey, what a deal!

I just called for Christmas lights. Ring.............................

Him: Hello

Me: Hi, I'm calling for Christmas lights, do you do that?

Him: UH HUH

Me: Well I'm wondering why you share a phone number with so many other companies

Him: What do you mean?

Me: Welllllllllllllllllll, I can get my carpet cleaned, my furniture moved, my locks fixed, roadside assistance, AND my Christmas lights put up, it's ONE STOP SHOPPING to call you! Why is that?

Him: Because they are all our companies.

Me: UH, and you are also from Israel doing business here ILLEGALLY and the Feds are closing in on you, MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!

OK now it is REALLY getting ridiculous! Take that link for the Christmas lights and go to the bottom and link to where it says Christmas lighting installation. It goes HERE I just dialed the phone number on that link and the guy answered, "Locksmith" I said, "I think I have the wrong number, aren't you a Christmas light company?" "No, we're a locksmith"!

These guys are REALLY confused!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

My Thoughts on the Fort Hood Massacre

It's been nine days. It has taken me that long to feel I could even begin to formulate my first clear thoughts on what took place at Fort Hood Novemember 11. We know now that fourteen died. Several are still hospitalized, some in critical condition. Some have been released. The assailant, Dr. Nidal Hasan, major, psychiatrist, U.S. army, Muslim, was shot four times and is currently hospitalized. His family has retained an attorney for him, retired Col. John Gilligan. He has been charged with fourteen counts of murder. The military prosecutor is seeking the death penalty. Currently
army officials have stated, " investigators believe that he acted without the knowledge or guidance of any terror groups." It is also known that Dr. Hasan had email communications with a radical imam in Yemen who had been at the same Virginia mosque where Dr. Hasan's mother's funeral service was held and two of the 9/11 hijackers attended. We have also been told that authorities knew of this communication but have stated that it was within the realm of Dr. Hasan's research.

We have also been told that Dr. Hasan gave a power-point presentation while attending a masters degree program in 2007 (HERE is the presentation) Slides #49 and 50, the most ominous, "Muslim soldiers should not serve in any capacity that renders them at risk to hurting/killing believers unjustly>>>will vary! Recommendation: Department of Defense should allow Muslim soldiers the option of being released as "consciencious objectors" to increase troop moral and decrease adverse events". The Washington Post has more to say HERE.

We also know that approximately 3500 declared Muslims are currently serving in the military, with estimates as high as 20,000 because the military does not demand an enlistee to state their religious affiliation. Although the Association of Patriotic Arab Americans is made up of Muslims and Christians, it was founded shortly after 911 by Jamal S. Baadani, a Muslim American. We know that the armed services depend heavily on Arabic speaking service men and women to aid in transalation and cultural awareness. The same holds true in Afghanistan, where Muslims are serving. We know that Muslims are serving honorably in both arenas. (This is a well known fact, why am I even writing this other than to remind anyone reading here who may be looking for the reason to cast doubt on all Muslims?)

Caveat, these are not my thoughts on Dr. Hasan's proclivity to commit a horrendous act because he is Muslim. Nothing could be further from the truth. My former husband from whom I am amicably divorced is Muslim, my eldest daughter is Muslim, many of my closest friends and loved ones are Muslim. I do not in any way shape or form believe that Islam had anything to do with Dr. Hasan's murderous rampage. I do however believe that he was an extremely conflicted man who was being forced to do something he simply was not willing to do, this however, let me make this most clear, does not in any way absolve him from what he chose to do. Read, "chose", because as human beings we are born with the power of choice in all we do. Life is not always so simple though. Often times outside influences bear upon our choices. In the case of Dr. Hasan's choice to open fire upon his fellow soldiers, I do believe there were circumstances, had they been different, Dr. Hasan's actions also could have been different.

My thoughts concerning this crystalized when Richard Silverstein posted a question,
"Could Army Have Offered Hasan a Way Out Short of Deployment". In his post he refers to a report from NPR that it is possible that Dr. Hasan made a call last year to the Center on Conscience and War. The caller had asked if there was a way out of the military as a Muslim who objected to fighting a war against Muslims. The NPR report states:



What McNeil said that day, however, no doubt would have offered little
encouragement to Hasan, who was charged Thursday with 13 counts of premeditated murder for allegedly gunning down a dozen fellow service members and a civilian last week at Fort Hood in Texas.

"An aversion to fighting a particular kind of war can't be grounds for
conscientious objector status," McNeil says. "The military regulation says it has to be a sincerely held belief about participation in any war."

And the burden is on the soldier to prove the genesis and sincerity of
those beliefs.

What about others who have sought consciencious objector release from the military? How easy has it been for them to pass the hurdle of the "burden of proof of the genesis and sincerity of those beliefs"? Have there been problems there as well?

The answer is yes. One such case is Agustin Aguayo who went AWOL for 24 days rather than be deployed to Iraq for another tour of duty, turned himself in, was flown back to Germany to be held at Manheim prison awaiting court martial, eventually was court martialed and denied his firmly held consciencious objectors plea, was sentenced to eight months in prison, then recieved a bad conduct discharge from the army which will stay with him for life. Read his petition HERE which was denied.

We know now that Dr. Hasan at the very least in 2007 was of the firmly held belief that Muslims should be granted consciencious objector's release from the military should they request this from his power point presentation. We also know that he very possibly called the Center on Conscience and War. We know from early reports after the Fort Hood shooting also that Dr. Hassan approached the imam at his mosque in Killeen asking him how he should counsel those who may have changed their minds about their commitment and willingness to deploy. In the conversation Dr. Hassan had with his imam the imam states that he told Dr. Hassan “There is something wrong with you”. Granted, the imam is stating Dr. Hassan seemed “disjointed” but was the question pertaining to how he should counsel those whose minds had changed a “wrong question” to ask? Absolutely not, because there are hundreds if not thousands of enlisted military grappling with this same question who have actually taken action themselves without going off the deep end and killing. But many of these men have sought support from the right sources, ie IVAW or Courage to Resist.

Read further what the NPR report states:



“But Hasan’s stated desire to have the military carve out a special
conscientious objector exemption for Muslims, and his pursuit of one for
himself, likely would have ended before it started.

Why? Because Hasan’s singular focus was on an aversion to fighting Muslims, experts say, and not a proven, deeply held abhorrence to all war — no matter the circumstances or the enemy.”

Now, with these narrow defintions which the military has put in place it is virtually impossible to get out of the military on CO status once you have enlisted, so it truly is a case of buyer beware. Having said that, the only course open to those wishing to get out of the military after enlistment due to whatever moral/consciencious/religious reason, just about the only options are fleeing (hundreds of resisters in Canada) or face court martial, imprisonment, dishonorable discharge. In the case of Dr. Hassan, what IF he had been pointed in the right direction where he could have had support? What IF he had been listened to and not told, nope, your CO thoughts won’t work, “there is something wrong with you”.

So, Dr. Hassan sought to carve out a space where Muslims in particular could receive a CO exemption in the case of fighting other Muslims. This was seen as something that couldn’t be done. I ask “why not?” If the person is stating their religious beliefs preclude them from deploying, doesn’t anyone think this should hold water whatever their beliefs are?

Liz Diamond writes a very interesting point in her commentary, "Which wolf do you choose to feed?",



One recurrent theme in the reporting of the Fort Hood shootings is that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan wanted out of a military that was fighting his co-religionists in Afghanistan and Iraq. If, in some upside-down world, the United States were ever to go to war with Israel, many of us would find it easier to understand if Jewish soldiers had difficulty fulfilling their duties, and would likely make some accommodation for those who conscientiously objected.

Interesting point Ms. Diamond. Very interesting point indeed.

Can anyone reading here possibly imagine Dr. Hasan hearing things said by his patients of what they had witnessed in Iraq and Afghanistan? Heck, he more than likely heard stories similar to those told by Winter Soldier. Session after session with patients suffering from PTSD. It is even possible that he had patients who commited suicide as we know the suicide rate for returning military. Can anyone possibly put themselves in his place, the stress he was under, having turned to people for counsel and reaching a dead end? Does this excuse his actions? Absolutely not. However, with the reports coming out of how troubled this man was for a long time, it is also clear that the path he was on was also shared by the military-no way out he thought. Forced to deploy.

My point is that no where thus far have we seen reports that he turned to the organizations who may have been able to support him-again-I am not suggesting that it would have worked-but fact is-thus far we haven’t seen that he did. Under military guidelines he would not have been able to avoid court martial had he refused to deploy, but he would have at least had the support he had been seeking and never received. That is if he had the COURAGE to resist. Death by cop while perpetrating the greatest damage against your percieved enemy, the US military, simply is not an option.



Dr, Hasan had a project-to carve out an exemption for Muslims who seek consciencious objector's status when asked to fight other Muslims. I personally find this honorable that he was seeking to help others who were in the same boat as himself. Again, read what Liz Diamond wrote in her commentary, "Which wolf do you choose to feed?"Unfortunately, no, that isn’t a strong enough word, there are now 14 people dead because the military has their “policies”. And, Dr. Hasan, cracked.

Fact is, the military once you are in makes it virtually impossible to get out. The military needs to RE-EXAMINE this policy, human beings are not robots who can be wiped clean of their own convictions in order to service a machine.

Again, please do not try to say I am making excuses for his actions, because I am NOT. This event I see as having far more nuance and factors which attributed to this disaster than what is being reported or commented on.

To close, Janis Whitlock writes in her article for Psychology Today titled, "Who is to blame when healer turns killer?"

Nidal Malik Hasan will stand trial and be punished. What remains to be
answered is whether we collectively question why there were no off-ramps for Nidal Malik Hasan before he hit his wall..... Nidal Malik Hasan is a man who lived and tragically expressed the contradictions inherent in the collective American psyche - contradictions brought to him over and over through his contact with a countless number of soldiers asked to use violence to create peace, asked to think of and treat as "other" a people Nidal Malik Hasan knew as "us."

Yes Mr. Silverstein, the army could have offered Dr. Hasan, a very troubled man, a way out.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Amampour Interview with Saeb Erekat

FYI: This is who is the chief negotiator for the Palestinians who the US government is working with, so in light of that, the following is what he said in an interview with Cristiane Amampour: (If anyone reading here has the link for a video I would appreciate if you left it in a comment--Thanks!)SOURCE

Nov 4, 2009 (Al-Bawaba via COMTEX) -- ZZFNV | Quote | Chart | News | PowerRating -- Amanpour's interview with Chief Palestinian Negotiator Saeb Erakat; Helene Pelosse, Director-General of the International Renewable Energy Agency; and Majid Jafar, Executive Director of Crescent Petroleum. See more of Amanpour. at HYPERLINK "https://atlwebaccess.turner.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.cnn.com/amanpour" o "https://atlwebaccess.turner.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.cnn.com/amanpour" t "_blank" www.cnn.com/amanpour. ***ANY USE OF THIS MATERIAL MUST CREDIT CNN'S 'AMANPOUR' Full Transcript CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, HOST OF CNN'S

AMANPOUR: Tonight, fading hopes for peace in the Middle East and the challenge of moving past petroleum. In our special program from the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi, we look at two vital signs shaping the future. Good evening. I'm Christiane Amanpour, and welcome to the program in Abu Dhabi, where we're helping to launch a new CNN center here and for a close-up look at the Middle East in flux. It's another week further away from achieving peace in the Middle East, but here in the Persian Gulf, it's another week closer to figuring out what to do when the oil runs out. We'll ask two people how to reduce the UAE's massive carbon footprint. But first, we turn to a man who spent two decades at the negotiating table. Saeb Erakat has been the chief Palestinian negotiator in talks with a succession of Israeli governments, and we welcome him back to this program. Things seem to be all in flux yet again. Prime Minister Netanyahu has said, "I urge the Palestinians to come to the negotiating table." Are you going to do that?

SAEB ERAKAT, CHIEF PALESTINIAN NEGOTIATOR: I urge him not to miss an opportunity. I urge Netanyahu to choose between settlements or peace. I hope that he chooses peace. He cannot condition us with 3,000 housing units...

AMANPOUR: Well, hold on a second. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that he's made, quote, "unprecedented concessions." What offer has he made on this settlement issue?

ERAKAT: Well, I think what we heard from Mr. Netanyahu is he wants to continue building 3,000 housing units, he wants to exclude Jerusalem where 59 percent of the construction takes place, and he wants to exclude public buildings and infrastructure. If this happens, it means, Christiane, that in 2010-2011, he will build more settlements that were built in 2008-2009. So I -- I think Madam Clinton should know these figures, because they're...

AMANPOUR: Did she bring this Netanyahu position to Abu Mazen, Mahmoud Abbas?

ERAKAT: No. She said that the United States considers settlements as illegitimate and the United States rejects and doesn't accept the annexation of East Jerusalem by Israel.

AMANPOUR: Except for the fact that, even though President Obama made a complete halt on freeze -- a complete freeze on settlement activity, a hallmark of his policy, they're now softening their tone on that, to the point that Hillary Clinton today has said what Prime Minister Netanyahu's done is unprecedented, and that means more settlements.

ERAKAT: Well, what I think we -- we all have choices, Christiane. Now it's 19 years later. We have accepted and recognized Israel on 78 percent of historic Palestine (ph) and accepted to have our state on the remaining 22 percent of the land. Now, it seems to me that Mr. Netanyahu wants to partition this 22 percent. If this is the case, this is a non-starter.

AMANPOUR
: I'm going to play you what Prime Minister Netanyahu said.
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: This is a new demand. It's a change of policy, of Palestinian policy. And it's -- it's -- it doesn't do much for peace. It doesn't work to advance negotiations. It actually is used as a pretext or at least as something, as an obstacle that prevents the re-establishment of negotiations. ERAKAT: That tells me something, that Mr. Netanyahu did not read the roadmap of the Americans, which he claims to have accepted, because in that roadmap, Israel has an obligation to stop settlement activities, including natural growth. So it's not a Palestinian demand, even. It's not a Palestinian precondition. Now the issues of Jerusalem, border, settlements, we're supposed to negotiate. Now he's dictating the outcome of these issues by settlements, by -- by fait accompli policies.


AMANPOUR: OK. Where does this go now? Is there any likelihood in the next few weeks, before Palestinian elections, of -- of -- of the Palestinian president sitting down with the Israeli prime minister, direct negotiations?

ERAKAT: I think -- I think we all have...

AMANPOUR: No, but is there any prospect of that happening?

ERAKAT: With this, the continuation of 3,000 housing units that Netanyahu intends to continue, and to exclude Jerusalem, I think this is going to be a non-starter.

AMANPOUR: A non-starter?

ERAKAT: And I think, further than that, 19 years later, I think President Abbas must ask himself the question, if the Israeli government insists in continuing with settlement activities and dictation and fait accompli policies, is the two states possible anymore? Because the land that I'm supposed to have my state on, the West Bank and Gaza and East Jerusalem, is being eaten up by settlements and wars. And maybe -- and maybe it's time to -- Mr. Netanyahu, he made the choice. He had the choice between peace and settlements, and he chose settlements. And Abu Mazen must make the choice.

AMANPOUR
: Between?

ERAKAT: Between continuing following in order his dream and our dreams and our ambitions to achieve a state and the fact on the ground that Israel is undermining the two-state solution. And maybe we should go to see other options. Maybe the one-state solution is the option now.

AMANPOUR: Well, as you know for Israel, that won't be -- that's also a non-starter, a one-state. But let me ask you about Abu Mazen, the president of the Palestinian Authority. He's basically floating the notion that he will not context the next round of elections. He's said that he doesn't want to see -- he might not seek the presidency, nor, indeed, run in the elections. Is that right?

ERAKAT
: Yes. And I don't blame him. To be honest with you, I don't -- I don't blame him at all. Not to...

AMANPOUR: Is this a ploy, or do you believe this will happen?

ERAKAT
: No, no. Abu Mazen -- Abu Mazen is one of the most decent persons you could encounter in your life. He's not one of us. He's not a bargainer. He's not asking (inaudible) now he had committed all his obligations. He stood all his life for the two-state solution. He had recognized Israel's right to exist in peace and security. And in return, what he sees is more settlements, more of his land being eaten up, more dictation. What he sees is an Israeli government that wants to condition Jerusalem and borders and settlements without negotiations and then blaming him, assigning blame that he doesn't want negotiations.

AMANPOUR: Let me ask you about, obviously, a major complicating issue in terms of what the Israelis say and, in fact, now what the Palestinians are saying. The Goldstone report, from what I gather, Abu Mazen was asked, pressured by various people, including the United States, not to move this along from the Human Rights Council and that he got a considerable amount of support from other Arab countries and other -- other -- other nations not to. And now everybody's saying, no, you're wrong, you should have brought it to the Security Council.

ERAKAT: Well, it was really a very special cast in Arab and regional and Israeli and American politics. Goldstone report was there. There were 57 nations discussing this thing. There were a Palestinian-Arab-Muslim proposal. There was an American proposal. Abu Mazen thought we did not have the votes, so it was the motion of postponing the issue...

AMANPOUR: To postpone bringing it to the Security Council.

ERAKAT
: Bringing it to the Security Council for three months or six months was brought up. Everybody agreed, and then everybody said we do not agree. So Abu Mazen was extremely under attack in the Arab world, in Palestinian circles, and he...

AMANPOUR
: But are you saying they had supported him?

ERAKAT: Well, nobody objected to the notion, and all those present in the Muslim bloc, the Arab bloc, the (inaudible) bloc, nobody objected to the notion of postponement when the Pakistani ambassador read the motion. But once the public opinion was an uprising against the postponement, everybody said, "It's Abu Mazen who did it, not us."

AMANPOUR
: So does he feel betrayed by his own fellow Arab leaders?

ERAKAT: He has this feeling, yes. Yes, he feels betrayed by Arabs, Israelis, some Palestinians, and to a certain extent by Americans.

AMANPOUR
: And to a certain extent by the Americans?

ERAKAT: Yes.

AMANPOUR
: In terms of the -- the -- I mean, I just want to ask you point blank. I heard you say this week something about a third intifada, and I want to know whether you really mean that and that this very, very crucial and difficult moment right now is going to be calmed down, or do you think that there will be violence erupting?

ERAKAT: I don't (inaudible) erupt. I don't want violence to erupt. I have spent my life in building a Palestinian peace camp, Christiane. This is not a job that I do. This is a life commitment. I don't want my son to be a suicide bomber. I don't want my son to be killed in conflict. I want peace. I want a two-state solution. What I said was, the Israeli provocations in East Jerusalem, you remember 2000? This is like pouring fuel to the fire, and we urge them to end it, because we don't want -- because, you know, desperation will lead to desperate acts. (Bill Clinton voiced this same opinion in Abu Dhabi today, read HERE)

AMANPOUR: Abu Mazen said that there was -- he was close to making an agreement with Prime Minister Olmert. Is that true?

ERAKAT
: That's true. We never came so close.

AMANPOUR
: And yet he didn't go forward.

ERAKAT: No, that's not what happened. What happened was, Olmert gave a map. Abu Mazen gave a map. And for the first time, we had a very close map. We're talking about the high 90s, in terms of percentages of the West Bank and the swaps of land. We agreed to go to Ashant (ph) and on January 3, 2009, to lock in this agreement with Secretary Rice at that time. What happened, Olmert decided to go to Gaza, attack Gaza, and then he had the scandal at home. But I think -- this is why what we're saying to Mr. Netanyahu today, why do you want to eat the apple (ph) from the start? Why do you want to reinvent the wheel? Why can't you have a public statement saying, "I will resume negotiations where we left them on December 2008"?

AMANPOUR: OK, now let me ask you right now, given the unlikely nature of direct negotiations, do you think there will be sort of a go-between activity, indirect negotiations between the Palestinians and -- and the Israelis, perhaps leaving settlements aside, talking about territory, maps?

ERAKAT: Well, look, I think, at the end of the day, the required decisions are not required from Americans or Europeans or Arabs. Decisions must be made by Palestinians and Israelis. What we want Mr. Netanyahu to stand up, to stand tall and tell his people, what they -- what they need to hear, we tell him there was an Israeli government and we came so close with it. Mr. Netanyahu, do you accept to resume negotiations where we left them in December 2008? Because we cannot go back to point blank zero.

AMANPOUR
: You say you came very close during the Bush administration.

ERAKAT
: Absolutely.
AMANPOUR: So who have been better negotiators or facilitators, the Bush administration or the Obama administration?

ERAKAT: Well, I -- I think Obama did not get his chance yet. It's really unfair to speak of President Obama and to jump to premature conclusions. President Obama has made it very clear that establishing a Palestinian state is a national American interest, and we want him to stay the course. We have no quarrel with Mr. Obama. We have a real quarrel with Mr. Netanyahu. Will you accept to resume negotiations on all core issues where we leave them in December 2008? Question, yes or no, Mr. Netanyahu?

AMANPOUR: So far he's saying no.

ERAKAT
: If he says no, then he can do (inaudible) stance saying that he wants to negotiate and, you know, he wants to discuss things and we're saying no. If this is what he wants to achieve, this will not save lives of Israelis and Palestinians.

AMANPOUR: On that note, Mr. Erakat, thank you very much, indeed. Next, the beginnings of an eco-city in the heart of the Persian Gulf. How the region is planning the transition from oil to renewable energies. Stay with us

Monday, November 2, 2009

No Justice for Maher Arar

I cannot write here, not the words that are sticking in my throat choking. This is a DARK omen. President Obama, what are you going to do? Nothing? Are you going to say nothing?

Free: Full Circuit Denies Claim Over Rendition

By Mark Fass

November 03, 2009

A Canadian engineer who claims he was sent by the United States to Syria to be tortured in 2002 cannot sue U.S. officials in federal court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit said yesterday in an in banc ruling.

The 7-4 majority held that the Canadian, Maher Arar, failed to state a claim under the Torture Victim Protection Act and that his remaining claims did not satisfy the test for "implied" constitutional causes of action under the 1971 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Federal Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388.

"Applying our understanding of Supreme Court precedent, we decline to create, on our own, a new cause of action against officers and employees of the federal government," Chief Judge Dennis G. Jacobs wrote in his 59-page majority opinion.

"Rather, we conclude that, when a case presents the intractable 'special factors' apparent here. . . it is for the Executive in the first instance to decide how to implement extraordinary rendition, and for the elected members of Congress—and not for us as judges—to decide whether an individual may seek compensation from government officers and employees directly, or from the government, for a constitutional violation."

In a statement yesterday, David Cole, the Georgetown University Law Center professor who argued Mr. Arar's appeal in cooperation with the Center for Constitutional Rights, said the ruling "effectively places executive officials above the law."

"This decision says that U.S. officials can intentionally send a man to be tortured abroad, bar him from any access to the courts while doing so, and then avoid any legal accountability thereafter," he said. "It effectively places executive officials above the law, even when accused of a conscious conspiracy to torture."

Read the full article>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

In contrast, from the Canadians:

Prime Minister releases letter of apology to Maher Arar and his family and announces completion of mediation process
26 January 2007
Ottawa, Ontario

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today released the letter of apology he has sent to Maher Arar and his family for any role Canadian officials may have played in what happened to Mr. Arar, Monia Mazigh and their family in 2002 and 2003.

“Although the events leading up to this terrible ordeal happened under the previous government, our Government will do everything in its power to ensure that the issues raised by Commissioner O’Connor are addressed,” said the Prime Minister. “I sincerely hope that these actions will help Mr. Arar and his family begin a new and hopeful chapter in their lives.”

Canada’s New Government has accepted all 23 recommendations made in Commissioner O’Connor’s first report, and has already begun acting upon them. The Government has sent letters to both the Syrian and the U.S. governments formally objecting to the treatment of Mr. Arar. Ministers Day and MacKay have also expressed Canada’s concerns on this important issue to their American counterparts. Finally, Canada has removed Mr. Arar from Canadian lookout lists, and requested that the United States amend its own records accordingly.

The Prime Minister also announced that Canada’s New Government has successfully completed the mediation process with Mr. Arar, fulfilling another one of Commissioner O’Connor’s recommendations. This settlement, mutually agreed upon by all parties, ensures that Mr. Arar and his family will obtain fair compensation, in the amount of $10.5 million, plus legal costs, for the ordeal they have suffered.

The text of the Prime Minister’s letter to Maher Arar is attached.

* * * *

Dear Mr. Arar:

On behalf of the Government of Canada, I wish to apologize to you, Monia Mazigh and your family for any role Canadian officials may have played in the terrible ordeal that all of you experienced in 2002 and 2003.

Although these events occurred under the last government, please rest assured that this government will do everything in its power to ensure that the issues raised by Commissioner O’Connor are addressed.

I trust that, having arrived at a negotiated settlement, we have ensured that fair compensation will be paid to you and your family. I sincerely hope that these words and actions will assist you and your family in your efforts to begin a new and hopeful chapter in your lives.

Yours sincerely,

Fault Lines - Maher Arar full interview

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Japanese Latin Americans Set to Gain Justice After Kidnapping by the US in WWII

So few Americans know of this. They know what happened to Japanese Americans on the mainland during WWII, that they were interred, but they are unaware of what our government did to Japanese Latin Americans. From the Campaign for Justice Website:

INTRODUCTION

What would you do if this happened to you? Former internees have mostly come to peace with what they went through, though the government has never openly admitted that it commited human rights violations. We say we never want this to happen again, but it is happening now to other people. Do we need to go through it ourselves before we can understand that this was a crime?

BACKGROUND

Wartime Abduction and Incarceration

From December 1941 to February 1948, the U.S. government orchestrated and financed the mass abduction, forcible deportation and internment of 2,264 men, women, and children of Japanese ancestry from 13 Latin American countries.

Stripped of their passports en route to the U.S. these Japanese Latin Americans (JLAs) were declared “illegal aliens”.

The U.S. planned to use them as hostages in exchange for Americans held by Japan. Over 800 JLAs were included in two prisoner of war exchanges between the U.S. and Japan.

The remaining JLAs were imprisoned without due process of law in U.S. Department of Justice internment camps until after the end of the war.

After the War

Most of the incarcerated JLAs were forced to leave the U.S. after their release from camp.

However, since many were initially barred from returning to their home countries, more than 900 JLAs were deported to war devastated Japan.

Over 350 JLAs remained in the U.S. and fought deportation in the courts. Eventually, about 100 were able to return to Latin America. It was not until 1952 that those who stayed were allowed to begin the process of becoming U.S. permanent residents. Many later became U.S. citizens.

Causes

Japanese Latin Americans were subjected to gross violations of civil and human rights by the U.S. government during WWII.

These violations were not justified by a security threat to Allied interests. Rather, it was the outcome of historical racism, anti-foreign prejudice, economic competition, and political opportunism.

The Civil Liberties Act excludes JLAs

The US Congress passed the Civil Liberties Act of 1988. This granted an apology and $20,000 compensation payments to US citizens and legal permanent residents of Japanese ancestry. It also established an education fund.

Most JLAs were excluded because the US government claimed they were “illegal aliens.”

Mochizuki settlement a questionable victory

In 1996, a class action lawsuit, Mochizuki v. USA, was filed on behalf of all Japanese Latin Americans who had been denied redress.

It resulted in a settlement agreement granting an apology and $5,000 compensation payments in exchange for termination of lawsuit.

A provision in the agreement allowed for pursuit of legislation for equitable redress in the US Congress.

While most Japanese Latin American internees accepted the Mochizuki settlement, some rejected the offer and continued litigation in the US courts. Four other lawsuits were filed and eventually dismissed.

Escalating to an international court

Unable to find justice in the US courts, a petition on behalf of the three Shibayama brothers and the Japanese Peruvian Oral History Project was filed with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR)in June 2003.

The petition seeks to hold the US government accountable for the ongoing failure to provide redress for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

After three years, the IACHR has determined that it has jurisdiction over this petition and is deliberating the facts of the case.

For more information on CFJ's role in the redress history, please see the What We Do section. Read further>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
********************
Now after all these years,


Japanese Latin American Commission Bill Passes House Judiciary Committee
LOS ANGELES, CA - Yesterday, a bipartisan majority of members of the House Judiciary Committee voted to favorably report the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Latin Americans of Japanese Descent Act (H.R. 42). Now that the legislation passed the full Committee, it is ready for passage in the House of Representatives.

"I commend chairman John Conyers and the members of the Judiciary Committee for recognizing the importance and timeliness of this legislation," said Christine Oh, Legislative Director of Campaign For Justice. "Yesterday's result is a testament to the fact that our national leaders and representatives are moving this country in the right direction. I urge the leadership of the House of Representatives to expedite the bill to floor vote while there are former internees still left to tell their stories."

If passed by House of Representatives and Senate and signed into law, the JLA Commission bill would establish a commission to investigate and determine the facts surrounding the wartime deportation, internment and relocation of Latin Americans of Japanese descent by the U.S. government and recommend any appropriate remedies based on its findings.

Former internees, their families, and members of the campaign are extremely grateful to our friends and supporters for their encouragement and partnership on this very timely and important bill. We ask that our supporters spread the word to their contacts to push for passage of the bill in the House of Representatives.

The House Judiciary Committee also favorably reported H.R. 1425, the "Wartime Treatment Act," which would establish two fact-finding commissions, one to study the internments and restrictions imposed by the U.S. government on certain European Americans and European Latin Americans during World War II, and the other to study government policies limiting the ability of Jewish refugees to come to the United States before and during the war.

For more information, please contact Christine Oh, CFJ Legislative Director, at (213) 500-9346 or info@campaignforjusticejla.org. Visit the CFJ website at www.campaignforjusticejla.org.

Japanese Latin American Redress - Richard Katsuda







CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HR 1425: Wartime Treatment Study Act can be read HERE

HR 42, Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Latin Americans of Japanese Descent Act can be read HERE

Break Dancing in Gaza

Featured in this week's Time magazine is the article, "Break Dancers in Gaza, Keeping it Real" Article can be read HERE

The Camp Breaker's website is HERE with several other video's which can be viewed.

Visit the Camp Breakerz youtube channel HERE

"We have one goal, one dream. To bring freedom to Palestine and happiness to our people through break dancing. The shows are dramatic art that tell stories and allow us to express our feelings about the situation here in Gaza, about the war and the rights of the Palestinian people.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

"Christians" Kill Child "Witches" Don't They?

In a disturbing article from the AP, a report is coming out of Nigeria that "Evangelical Christian" churches there are abusing and in some cases killing children who have been accused of witchcraft. Read that full article HERE.

Evidently the article states there is a California connection:

Nwanaokwo said he knew the pastor who accused him only as Pastor King. Mount Zion Lighthouse in Nigeria at first confirmed that a Pastor King worked for them, then denied that they knew any such person.

Bishop A.D. Ayakndue, the head of the church in Nigeria, said pastors were encouraged to pray about witchcraft, but not to abuse children.

"We pray over that problem (of witchcraft) very powerfully," he said. "But we can never hurt a child."

The Nigerian church is a branch of a Californian church by the same name. But the California church says it lost touch with its Nigerian offshoots several years ago.

"I had no idea," said church elder Carrie King by phone from Tracy, California. "I knew people believed in witchcraft over there but we believe in the power of prayer, not physically harming people."


However, when you go to the website for Mount Zion Full Gospel Church in Lagos, they state they are associated with The House of Prayer of All Nations USA.

I wouldn't want to point a finger at the wrong "House of Prayer for All Nations, USA"

If anyone reading here knows which one it is, could you leave the information here please.

Remember Bishop Thomas Murthee, the African Evangelical leader from Kenya who cast demons out of Sarah Palin? (Video HERE)

"Christian" whack jobs. Whether it be a "California" connection or any other state, there is a STRONG connection to what is going on in these witch hunts in Africa to what goes on in these "Evangelical" churches here.

Child witch victims in Nigeria





In The name Of Jesus: Child Witches (nightline)





http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlRG9gXriVI

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Day of The Awards of the Absurd, The Nobel Peace Prize Becomes Toilet Paper

http://morristsai.com/assets_c/2008/11/Obama-hope-thumb-250x373.jpg

Two of them, yes two are in the news today. Two awards announced that are so far into the realm of the absurd, the stuff science fiction is made of, that one must shudder at the realization, Orwell's "1984" has truly arrived, war has become peace.

The first news has circled the globe already, our president, Barak Obama, has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The nomination for this honor coming only days after he took office, prior to any accomplishments whatsoever. Hope inpregnated in the nomination itself. Hope.

What does that word even mean? One definition reads "something that is hoped for or desired" Yet another is slightly different "to look forward to with confidence or expectation"
The first definition goes to longing-coming from oppression in many cases. The second goes straight to expectation and confidence, in this case, Obama who ran on the slogan of "hope" was given the confidence by many who voted for him because they expected results for their longings to be fulfilled.

In the case of Palestine, if one were using this issue to influence your vote, there were two viable options this past presidential election, one of two men was going to win, either McCain or Obama. Ironically at the time, a poll was taken in Palestine where McCain came out on top slightly. I asked a dear Palestinian friend of mine at the time how this could possibly be the case. He told me that Palestinians have learned that they would rather have straight talk from a tough opponent than anything that is lofty and non-concrete. It took me a while for me to understand what he was telling me, but eventually I did. Placing hope in a politician due to lofty speeches is not at the end of the day going to guarantee anything. Improvement possibly could have been hoped for, relief from years of Israeli aggression propped up by America, never. As an American myself, I can only in utter shame and sadness agree. Would McCain have been doing anything better had he been elected? No. He wouldn't have put forth any effort like Obama has in my opinion, but the question begs to be answered, Obama has said many things and then back tracked. His settlement stance is one prime example, first he says no more settlements, then he backed away.

A defining moment in Obama's presidency has been his Cairo speech, the first American president to go straight to the Muslim world to address them. A much needed outreach after eight years of George Bush's Middle East policy which included the pre-emptive, illegal war on Iraq. Obama in his Cairo speech addressed the Palestinian/Israeli issue in the following excerpt:

The second major source of tension that we need to discuss is the situation between Israelis, Palestinians and the Arab world.

America's strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.

Around the world, the Jewish people were persecuted for centuries, and anti-Semitism in Europe culminated in an unprecedented Holocaust. Tomorrow, I will visit Buchenwald, which was part of a network of camps where Jews were enslaved, tortured, shot and gassed to death by the Third Reich. Six million Jews were killed -- more than the entire Jewish population of Israel today. Denying that fact is baseless, it is ignorant, and it is hateful. Threatening Israel with destruction -- or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews -- is deeply wrong, and only serves to evoke in the minds of Israelis this most painful of memories while preventing the peace that the people of this region deserve.

On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people -- Muslims and Christians -- have suffered in pursuit of a homeland. For more than 60 years they've endured the pain of dislocation. Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead. They endure the daily humiliations -- large and small -- that come with occupation. So let there be no doubt: The situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable. And America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own. (Applause.)

Oh how the speech was hailed. It's a moment in history! He took himself to the Muslim world in peace. You are going to have to show me though where his speech concerning Palestine was in any way significantly different than what George Bush said when he entered office. He also pledged efforts towards a two-state solution, albeit not as eloquently. 20-20 vision shows us that the Bush administration gave a blank slate to Israel-US efforts towards "peace" in Israel/Palestine were nil during Bush's tenure. One must remember though that at the time of the Cairo speech, Rahm Emmanuel and Dennis Ross had already been welcomed in by the Obama administration. Yes, Obama has sent George Mitchell who accomplished peace in Northern Ireland, yet on the other hand, through votes and pressure on Israel's puppet leader of the PA, Abu Mazen, voting on the Goldstone Report in the Human Rights Council was postponed until March. This is peace? This is "hope"? This is reaching out to the Muslim world?

"War is peace"-George Orwell. The 2009 Nobel Peace Prize goes to President Barak Obama.

News yet of another award of the absurd has also been announced. The Dali Lama, winner of the 1989 Nobel Peace Prize, has accepted an award presented to him in Congress-the first ever Tom Lantos "Human Rights Award". (view the C-Span video HERE)To have the term "human rights" in the same sentence with the name Tom Lantos goes beyond the pale of decency. Tom Lantos who passed away in February 2008 was on record as being Israel's staunchest hawk in Congress. The Fanonite wrote:

Lantos was also an enthusiastic supporter of Operation Defensive Shield, Sharon’s war of terror on the Palestinians. According to one analyst, “Lantos isn’t just a Democrat who voted for the Iraq war, he was one of its co-authors…Lantos has never met a war he didn’t like. His unblinking defense of Israeli policy gives him tunnel vision with the rest of the Middle East.” Already in 2006 he was gunning for war; he wrote an article “Now or Never to Prevent a Nuclear-Armed Iran.” Lantos was also a prominent supporter of the School of Americas, where Latin America’s military dictators and would-be torturers were trained. Lantos played a key role in building Democratic support for the Patriot Act. According to the Jeruslame Post, he represents Israel in countries with which it has no diplomatic relations.

In further absurdity, in January of this year, during the massive Israeli offense on Gaza for which the Goldstone Report has found war crimes were committed, the Dali Lama spoke before a conference wearing a keffiyeh around his neck as he urged Israelis and Palestinians to "work together" (view video HERE)

Today the Dali Lama accepted a "human rights" award from the foundation of a man who over a lifetime in Congress voted for torture (his support ot the SOA) and war. The keffiyeh he wore in January is missing. Chameleon.

Today in Sweden, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Barak Obama, whose administration has like all past administrations done what Israel has "hoped", no "had confidence in" and "expected" the US to do, cover their crimes. "Hope"-yes this was his slogan.

"War is peace".-George Orwell

Postscript: China has accused the US of meddling in their affairs with the presentation of the Tom Lantos "humanitarian award". Note, Obama, todays Nobel Peace Prize winner, has not yet met with the Dali Lama, 1989's Nobel Peace Prize Winner. He is postponing meeting with him until after he meets with China's president next month.

Article: "How did Barack Obama get a Nobel prize for peace whilst still at war?