Daily Archives: June 13, 2004

11 posts

Errors Are Seen in Early Attacks on Iraqi Leaders

[ Although the military and the Administration refuse to count the civilians and combatants they have killed, and although the rest of the world has known for a long time about the 10,000-plus civilians killed by Bush’s bombs and bullets, now there is some acknowledgement of this from within the U.S. government. From the article: [T]he failures were an early warning sign about the thinness of American intelligence on Iraq and on Mr. Hussein’s inner circle…. “It was all just guesswork on where they were,” said a senior military officer…. [T]he report by Human Rights Watch concluded, “attacks on leadership […]

Fla. voting machines have recount flaw

June 12, 2004 | Associated Press TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –Touchscreen voting machines in 11 counties have a software flaw that could make manual recounts impossible in November’s presidential election, state officials said. A spokeswoman for the secretary of state called the problems “minor technical hiccups” that can be resolved, but critics allege voting officials wrongly certified a voting system they knew had a bug. The electronic voting machines are a response to Florida’s 2000 presidential election fiasco, where thousands of punchcard ballots were improperly marked. But the new machines have brought concerns that errors could go unchecked without paper records of […]

Under “Anti-Terror” Bush, Airport Security Cut!

Bad time to reduce air security June 13, 2004 | Denver Post With the heavy summer travel season upon us, this is an odd time to reduce the number of security screeners at the nation’s airports. Yet, that is precisely what airports and travelers face this summer. The anti-terrorism agency created by Congress after Sept. 11, 2001, has cut its workforce of passenger and baggage screeners from 60,000 to 45,000.

The Pinochet Principle: Bush Defends Torture in the Name of National Security

by Brendan Lalor Below is an excerpt from an interview with Center for Constitutional Rights attorney and president, Michael Ratner. Ratner’s comments provide excellent context for interpreting both John Ashcroft’s refusal to turn over to Congress an addendum to a memo detailing torture techniques deemed acceptable to the Administration and the shocking Bush doctrine that as Commander in Chief his powers are unchecked by the Constitution. Without Ashcroft’s appeal to executive privilege, this opponent of transparent government’s refusal apparently puts him in contempt of Congress. Ashcroft’s obfuscation notwithstanding, this week’s leaked memos “outline how lawyers for the administration determined U.S. […]

Defense bill to top $1 trillion

[ Hopefully, some Democrats will at least grow enough backbone to oppose the insanely high level of proposed military spending. –BL ] Congress backs budget heavy on future weapons 12 June 2004 | ASSOCIATED PRESS by Dan Morgan WASHINGTON – As Congress moves ahead with a huge new defense bill, lawmakers are making only modest changes in the Pentagon’s plans to spend well over $1 trillion in the next decade on an arsenal of futuristic planes, ships and weapons with little direct connection to the Iraq war or the global war on terrorism. House and Senate versions of the 2005 defense […]

Putting Corporations on the Couch

[ Joel Bakan’s The Corporation (Free Press) offers “a trait-by-trait match between the standard actions of corporations and the diagnostic criteria of a psychopath.” –BL ] June 11, 2004 | Dragonfly Review by Ted Nace In 1838, when a man named John Sanford assaulted the wife and children of a man named Dred Scott, Scott sought help from the courts. But Scott was black and Sanford was white. Supreme Court Justice Roger B. Taney explained the difference with cold, pedantic clarity, writing that Scott and his family were “beings” rather than legal persons, since “they had no rights which the white […]

Retired Officials Say Bush Must Go

The 26 ex-diplomats and military leaders say his foreign policy has harmed national security; Several served under Republicans June 13, 2004 | Los Angeles Times by Ronald Brownstein WASHINGTON — A group of 26 former senior diplomats and military officials, several appointed to key positions by Republican Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, plans to issue a joint statement this week arguing that President George W. Bush has damaged America’s national security and should be defeated in November.

Egregious E-mail: The Secret Service comes calling after a St. Louisan pens a message wishing bin Laden would eliminate Bush

[ Been visited by the SS lately? From the article: [T]he agents told him they’d singled out his e-mail because he’d used the words “Bush” and “bin Laden” in the same sentence. It’s a fairly Orwellian explanation, hinting at a bevy of federal computers whose sole task is to scrutinize e-mail word placement. –BL ]June 9, 2004 | RiverFrontTimes.com [St. Louis] by MALCOLM GAY

Another White House 9/11 Lie Exposed: Saudis in Flight Two Days After 9/11

TIA now verifies flight of Saudis The government has long denied that two days after the 9/11 attacks, the three were allowed to fly. June 9, 2004 | St. Petersburg Times by JEAN HELLER TAMPA – Two days after the Sept. 11 attacks, with most of the nation’s air traffic still grounded, a small jet landed at Tampa International Airport, picked up three young Saudi men and left. The men, one of them thought to be a member of the Saudi royal family, were accompanied by a former FBI agent and a former Tampa police officer on the flight to […]

State Dept. Rewrites Report Praising War On Terror

10 June 2004 | DemocracyNow! The State Department has been forced to correct major portions of its annual report on global terrorism that was released two months ago after major mistakes were cited. The original report concluded that the number of terrorist attacks in the world in 2003 had dropped to its lowest level in 34 years. Now the report will be rewritten and it may show that 2003 had more attacks than any year in the last two decades. Rep. Henry A. Waxman of California accused the administration of manipulating terrorism data so it could claim victory in the […]

Cooking Up Excuses With the Pentagon: How to torture alleged terrorists and get away with it

June 10, 2004 | Slate by Phillip Carter Whether giving advice to corporate executives or senior government officials, lawyers often walk a fine line between counseling their clients on how to follow the law to avoid prosecution and how to break the law in such a way as to frustrate and impede prosecution. Good lawyers know they can usually make any advice seem like the former, through the judicious inclusion of a few caveats, hypotheticals, and assumptions. However, no amount of caveating can save the latest Defense Department memorandum on the legality of torture (first reported by the Wall Street […]