GI SPECIAL 3A72:
When I marched off to war in 1917, I remember a Civil War
veteran, over seventy years old, telling me, “Son, you are
all heroes now. But someday they’ll treat you like dogs.”
World War I Veteran
Photo and caption from the
I-R-A-Q ( I Remember Another Quagmire ) portfolio of
Mike Hastie, US Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71. (Contact
for more of this outstanding work. T)
All Out For
Ft. Bragg March 19:
Troops Home NOW!
Thursday, March 10, 2005 6:26 AM
Fayetteville is really popping.
night concert is blowing up.
on Saturday is amazing and we're hearing from folks all over
the country who are coming.
The Sunday organizer's
conference and meetings of Gold Star Families for Peace,
Iraq Veterans Against the War, and Military Families Speak
Out, are all falling in place.
In short, Fayetteville is
going to be something else!
Check out the website
www.ncpeacejustice.org for all the updates. Make sure you
check out the list of speakers at
is...we're just about out of money.
Unfortunately, there's much less access to organizing money
down here, and we're going about this about every way that
we can imagine right now, but there are still huge gaps to
Ultimately, with the numbers
that we're expecting, and the plan we are developing, we
believe that we can bring in probably a fair amount of cash
on the 19th, but we need the money to get us there. I'm
asking y'all to consider
a) personally signing on as a
co-sponsor (which I know you have)
b) getting your organizations
to sign on
c) passing the letter along to
folks you know, especially folks you know that have deep
d) sharing with us any
resources that you may know of.
think that I'm exaggerating when I say that this weekend is
going lead to dramatic shifts in the military
families/vets/GI movements, and Southern anti-war movement
Please be as creative as
possible on this one y'all, we need all the help we can get.
Military Families Speak Out
Bring Them Home Now!
Fayetteville Peace With
Getting $81 Billion For
Spare Some $ For Reaching Out To Troops
Against The War?
NC Peace &
writing to you to ask for your financial support for the
upcoming March and Rally to Bring the Troops Home Now in
Fayetteville, NC, home of Ft. Bragg, March 19.
event has grown far larger than we could have dreamed of
when we started planning in November.
military families and veterans central to the program and
planning, we are mobilizing thousands from around the
historic event demands significant financial investments
from the community to support the work of Iraq Veterans
Against the War, Military Families Speak Out, and the NC
Peace & Justice Coalition.
calls for $30,000, and we are half-way there!
funds for airfare for speakers like Camilo Mejia, an Iraq
Vet and Conscientious Objector, and Abdul Henderson, the
Marine reservist featured in Michael Moore's movie
Fahrenheit 9/11. We have to pay for a top-rate sound
system, permits, room rentals, and advertisements,
postcards, and literature to reach tens of thousands of
your donation to keep up with the costs. We are seeking
online or check donations of $50. If you fill in the
co-sponsor form at www.NCpeacejustice.org by Sunday March
13, we can include your name or your group in the March 19
Your financial support is
essential to supporting the work of a growing number of
veterans, reservists, soldiers and their families who are
speaking out against the war in Iraq.
Make out to “TSEC” (Twin
Streams Education Center, Peace 1st)
Mark checks "March 19"
Mail to: Wes Hare, 243
Flemington Rd, Chapel Hill, NC, 27517.
19 event falls on the second anniversary of the beginning of
the war. The program features dozens of military-related
speakers. A full program is online, with highlights
Dougherty, Co-Founder of Iraq Veterans Against the War,
Colorado: An eight-year veteran of the
Colorado National Guard, she served as an MP Sergeant in
Nazariah. "We formed it (IVAW) just to give returning Iraqi
veterans who are disillusioned and angry with the government
and with this war in Iraq, a way to come together and
organize a voice because we think it's powerful to have
returning veterans especially who have seen what it is like
over there, to speak against it."
Henderson, Marine reservist featured in Michael Moore's
Fahrenheit 9/11 Henderson stated he would
not return to Iraq if his reserve unit was called back to
duty, saying "I will not let anyone send me back over there
to kill other poor people; especially when they pose no
threat to me or my country. Mr. Henderson has also been
featured on radio shows Democracy Now and the Joe Madison
Show. In addition, he has appeared on the morning show Good
Morning America and CNN's show Inside Politics.
Sheehan, Co-Founder of Gold Star Families for Peace,
California: Her son Casey, a soldier, was
killed in Iraq on April 4, 2004. "Our family never agreed
with the war or it's reasons, but since Casey was killed, so
many of the reasons and rationalizations that Bush has given
have proven to be lies. My goal is to bring our troops home
to try and save another mother from going through what I am
March 19 Organizer, NC Peace &
From: Mike Hastie
To: GI Special
Sent: Saturday, March 12, 2005
To G.I. Special,
As a medic
in Vietnam, there were two back to back experiences that
remain vivid in my mind for the past 35 years.
firebase one day, I helped put a severely wounded American
soldier on a medevac helicopter. He was barely alive,
because he had been shot in the abdomen. We were trying
desperately to get him to an evacuation hospital, so he
could be operated on.
chopper lifted off, I saw something written on the front of
the helicopter just above the Red Cross: It simply said, "
WHY." That teenage soldier never made it to the operating
Two days later, I was awakened
in the middle of the night by another medic, and told that a
soldier had shot himself in his tent. When I got there, he
was lying under his bunk. When I turned him over, I realized
he had taken his M-16 and shot himself in the front of his
The whole back of his skull
was blown out, and I eventually had brain tissue and blood
all over myself.
nineteen, a heroin addict, and was getting ready to go home.
But, like so many heroin addicts I saw in Vietnam, he was
scared to go home with a full blown addiction, so he took
his own life.
By the time
I left Vietnam, I had experienced the rapid deterioration of
U.S. operations in Southeast Asia. In looking back, I never
once had a conversation with a fellow soldier about the
merits of being in Vietnam. By 1971, most of us knew that
the war was a big fucking lie!
Nothing made any sense
For so many of us, something
died in us over there. I have never felt like I came home.
In fact, when people say, "
Welcome Home," it means nothing to me.
Betrayal has always been the
unspeakable wound that no one wants to talk about.
For me, it almost became the
lethal injection that destroyed my life.
After I experienced that
suicide, I remember throwing my blood soaked fatigue jacked
into a 55 gallon oil drum.
it is 2005, and I am experiencing the same lies all over
again in Iraq.
hear any member of the Bush administration speak, I see
sending American soldiers into a one-way abyss. And, Iraqi
people are dying as fast as the U.S. government can kill
Cicero once wrote: " He who does not know history, is
destined to remain a child." All the silent people, where
do they all come from?
Photo and caption from the
I-R-A-Q ( I Remember Another Quagmire ) portfolio of
Mike Hastie, US Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71. (Contact
for more of this outstanding work. T)
have a friend or relative in the service? Forward this
E-MAIL along, or send us the address if you wish and
we’ll send it regularly.
Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the USA, this is
extra important for your service friend, too often cut
off from access to encouraging news of growing
resistance to the war, at home and inside the armed
Send requests to address up top.
Dog Tactic At Work
March 10, 2005 By Antonio
OUTSKIRTS OF BAQUBAH, Iraq —
The convoy of U.S. armored vehicles creeps down the rural
roads outside this central Iraqi city at nightfall, soldiers
peering through the windows to spot the preferred weapon of
insurgents — the roadside bomb.
soldiers know that as they study the heavily used routes for
anything that seems unnatural, they also are being watched
by insurgents hidden in dark desert.
Just the night before, gunmen
fired a grenade at a convoy in the same area, and two days
earlier they planted bombs along this road.
at night time, we know they’re watching us,”
said Spc. James Acker, 25, of Worcester, Mass. He is the
driver of the lead armored Humvee in a patrol of soldiers
from the 467th Engineering Battalion, 42nd Division, based
in Millington, Tenn.
“IED is still the weapon of
choice,” said Maj. Ed House of the 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry
House said he thinks the bombs
are planted by locals but are built by more organized
“This isn’t your regular Iraqi
building an IED in his garage,” he said.
region around Baqubah — a city of 300,000 people and an
insurgent hotbed — more than 1,400 IEDs have exploded or
been found since November 2003, according to U.S. military
Major roads are searched
several times a day. Acker’s team crawls along its assigned
roads at 20-25 mph.
One hour into a recent 50-mile
patrol, the sun dipped below the skyline, leaving a moonless
night sky. Night vision goggles are helpful but often
cannot locate attackers in the surrounding bumpy terrain,
full of shrubs, palm trees, burning roadside garbage and
Humvee’s headlights revealed a dark lump in the center of
the road — a dead, black dog, similar to the carcass in
which the group found their first bomb. It lay precisely in
the center of the road, suspicious enough to hush the three
soldiers. They called in “the Buffalo,” a 22-ton armored
mine-clearing vehicle in their convoy.
vehicle rumbled to the front to inspect, stopping local
traffic in both lanes.
Twenty minutes later the vehicle lowered its
large mechanical arm and harmlessly tossed the carcass
The lead Humvee then drove by
a dozen idling cars, with the gunner carefully monitoring
movement. Most of the Iraqis in the cars stared straight
ahead without any _expression.
As the convoy went down its
route, Iraqi drivers were forced onto the shoulder.
Acker suddenly hit the
brakes. “Tracer, right to left,” he said, alerting them to
gunfire off the left side of the road.
Night vision goggles were
thrown on and the soldier scanned for follow-up shots. After
several minutes, the shots were dismissed as celebratory
gunfire, a common occurrence in the country, and the convoy
Then a loud thump caused
everyone in the Humvee to tense up.
Acker’s boot had inadvertently
hit the side of the vehicle.
“Scare the hell out of you?”
“Yes,” said his gunner Jose
Santiago, a 26-year-old from Kerman, Calif.
Several people walked down the
side of the road, some waiting for taxis, others casually
walking home or elsewhere before the 11 p.m. curfew.
passed through four Iraqi Army checkpoints. Initially, all
were manned by several soldiers who waved the U.S. troops
through, but on the return trip two of the checkpoints only
had one Iraqi soldier visible each.
could be sleeping. You just don’t know, you can’t ever
tell,” said Sgt. Dallas Bryan, 50, of Pittsburgh, the senior
soldier in the patrol.
they’re around here,” he quickly added.
The danger to the Iraqi
soldiers is clear — about 12 hours later, some 20 insurgents
attacked a nearby Baqubah checkpoint and killed five
Just a few
miles from completing their three-hour patrol, Bryan
searched for the dog carcass that had been moved at the
beginning of the patrol.
I can’t believe it’s gone,” said Bryan. After a pause,
Santiago said the insurgents may have carried away the
carcass for use in a future attack.
maybe not. If tossing a dead dog or garbage in the middle
of the highway can bring a convoy or armored column to a
complete stop, waiting for the mine-clearing vehicle to come
up and do its thing, the resistance is smart enough to
figure out that tossing endless numbers of dead animals,
etc. on the highway totally fucks any hope of effective
movement, and in some ways is just as debilitating to
occupation forces as actual IEDs. Duh.]
Command: Troops Opened Fire On Stopped Vehicle With No
March 12, 2005 (AEDT)
US forces have admitted
responsibility for a Bulgarian soldier's "friendly fire"
death last week in Iraq, saying it was "unintentional" and
provoked by two nearby terrorist attacks, the Bulgarian
Defence Ministry said today.
[That’s how the reporter
opens the account. Sounds all nice and innocent, doesn’t
it. What bullshit. Check the last sentence.:]
The same day an Italian
intelligence agent, Nicola Calipari, was shot to death by US
troops at a roadblock in Baghdad as he was escorting an
Italian journalist to the airport after helping to free her
from insurgents who held her hostage for a month.
The journalist, Giuliana
Sgrena, and another Italian agent were wounded in the
The Multinational Forces
Command said the US attack on the Bulgarian unit was
"unintentional" but also admitted that
US forces "did not put
enough effort into identifying the objects on Tampa Road and
directly opened fire without the required warning shots."
to the investigation results "the Bulgarian patrol had acted
in complete compliance with the standard operational
procedures and the rules for application of force and did
not in any way threaten the security of the US communication
TRUTH? CHECK OUT THE NEW TRAVELING SOLDIER
the truth - about the occupation or the criminals
running the government in Washington - is the first
reason for Traveling Soldier. But we want to do more
than tell the truth; we want to report on the resistance
- whether it's in the streets of Baghdad, New York, or
inside the armed forces. Our goal is for Traveling
Soldier to become the thread that ties working-class
people inside the armed services together. We want this
newsletter to be a weapon to help you organize
resistance within the armed forces. If you like what
you've read, we hope that you'll join with us in
building a network of active duty organizers.
with Iraq War vets in the call to end the occupation and
bring our troops home now! (www.ivaw.net)
Begins Pulling Troops From Iraq
Ukraine - Ukraine withdrew 150 servicemen from Iraq on
Saturday, starting a phased pullout that officials say is to
be complete by October, the Defense Ministry said.
A company that was based near
As Suwayrah left the country is expected to return home by
March 15, the ministry said. Earlier this month, President
Viktor Yushchenko and top defense officials ordered a phased
pullout of Ukraine's 1,650-strong contingent from the U.S.
coalition in Iraq.
Finds A New Way To Kill U.S. Troops:
Provide Them With Modern Tourniquets;
Delay -- How Many Dead?
March 10, 2005 Associated
that modern tourniquets would save lives, lawmakers are
asking Pentagon and Army officials to investigate why the
simple device is not standard issue for U.S. troops in Iraq
— as military surgeons
and leaders have recommended for more than two years.
Two senators wrote to
Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld on Tuesday, asking
him to conduct a thorough and “high level” review of the
issue, and requesting a timetable for outfitting the roughly
150,000 soldiers and Marines in Iraq with modern
The defense subcommittee of
the Senate Appropriations Committee made a similar request
of top officials in the Army.
deeply concerned by reports that the Pentagon has failed to
identify and fulfill urgent requests for equipment essential
to saving lives of our troops in the field,”
Illinois Sen. Richard J. Durbin and Michigan Sen. Carl
Levin, both Democrats, wrote to Rumsfeld according to a
report Thursday in The (Baltimore) Sun.
type of delay is disturbing during times of peace, but
in the midst of the armed conflicts in Iraq and
Afghanistan, it is nothing short of appalling,” the
Military doctors say the simple medical devices could
significantly reduce deaths from extremity wounds — the
leading cause of preventable death in combat.
The calls for an investigation
followed a story Sunday in The Sun detailing how
efforts to supply soldiers
with the $20 medical devices have been delayed while
training manuals are written and the Army conducts tests to
determine the best pouch in which to put the tourniquets.
The U.S. Central Command,
which oversees combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan,
issued a directive Jan. 6 requiring every soldier in Iraq to
carry a modern tourniquet, but compliance was left up to
individual units. Many units have not acquired the devices.
tourniquets, typically a nylon and plastic version of the
simple cloth-and-stick device that armies have used to stop
bleeding from arm and leg wounds for centuries, already are
carried by Army Rangers, special operations troops, and
Marines. A committee of military doctors recommended in
February 2003 that every American soldier carry one.
Army Secretary Francis J.
Harvey, testifying before the appropriations subcommittee
Wednesday promised to provide a detailed report to the
Senate. Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker, the Army chief of staff,
assured the committee that none of the nation’s front-line
soldiers enter combat without everything they need, and
he said soldiers are trained to make improvised tourniquets
out of bandages. [Fine. If somebody pops this asshole,
toss him a few bandages so he can see how he likes bleeding
Officers Caught Stealing Iraq Aid Money
10 March 2005 Aljazeera.net
officers serving in Iraq are among a number of people who
have been arrested as part of an investigation into alleged
corruption on aid contracts, Polish
Defence Minister Jerzy Szmajdzinski said.
"The inquiry is progressing,"
he told the public radio station Jedynka on Thursday. "We
could have dealt rapidly with this matter in Iraq, but we
prefer to go all the way up the line."
According to the daily Zycie
Warszawy, military police have arrested five Polish officers
and two civilians.
officers include the head of a liaison group with civilian
authorities that is notably responsible for the distribution
of aid project contracts in areas of Iraq under Polish
military administration, the paper added.
those arrested are suspected to have pocketed bribes of
$250,000 to $500,000.
Pipeline Blown Up Near Samarra
Burning oil pipeline in
Thathar, 9 kilometers west of the city of Samarra, , after
it was damaged by an explosive device. (AFP/Dia Hamid)
the capital, insurgents blew up an oil pipeline near
Samarra, 60 miles north of Baghdad. The amount of damage
was not clear. [Looks pretty fucking clear from the photo.
It’s blown up, burning, and not very likely to be
12 March, 2005 AFP & irib.ir &
policemen were killed in Mosul.
policemen, including an officer, were killed by assailants
aboard a vehicle in the Al-Sukar neighbourhood on Mosul's
northern side, said Mohammed Fathi, a local police
He said the attack happened at
about 1:00 pm (1000 GMT), and a medic at a city hospital
said the men were hit in the head and abdomen.
truck driver, presumed Turkish, was killed Saturday in a
bomb attack on a convoy carrying supplies for the US
military near Baiji
A roadside bomb exploded at
about 8:00 am as a convoy passed through Makhool, close to
the northern oil refinery town of Baiji, 220 kilometres (136
miles) north of Baghdad, killing one of the drivers, said
police Lieutenant Colonel Hasan Salah.
Baiji a dawn mortar attack on an Iraqi army barracks wounded
one soldier and destroyed a vehicle, said Captain Hassan
In Ishaki, further south, a
mortar attack partially destroyed an abandoned building of a
joint Iraqi-US security task force.
Balad, which has seen a recent uptick in attacks on Iraqi
forces, soldiers clashed with insurgents for about two hours
starting at 8:00 pm (1700 GMT) Friday
after they were ambushed in the al-Nabai area, said
Lieutenant Hussein Abbas.
Three soldiers were wounded
and a car belonging to the attackers was destroyed and left
burning on the scene, he added.
soldiers were killed and three wounded during clashes with
insurgents on the road between Babil and Diwaniyah, south of
the capital, army Maj. Hassan Ali said.
gunmen in a car opened fire on a hotel housing foreigners.
DON’T LIKE THE RESISTANCE
Resistance Chopping Off 15 Heads Was A Lie
Mar 12, 2005 Associated Press
BAGHDAD, Iraq -
Iraqi authorities on Saturday disputed reports that 15
headless bodies were found south of Baghdad earlier in the
Government Communications Directorate's Media Relations
office said in an English-language announcement that
"official sources in the ministries of Defense, Interior and
Health deny the news that some of mass media reported
regarding finding 15 bodies beheaded in Latifiya."
Defense Ministry Capt. Sabah
Yassin and Capt. Fatiq Ayed, of the Iraqi Army's 50th
regiment that is responsible for the region where the bodies
were found, said that a patrol of the regiment found the
corpses March 8.
version of the Media Relations office statement said: "Capt.
Sabah Yassin has nothing to do with the Iraqi army," but
gave no further explanation.
the same, even as nothing changes. The ghosts of war are
chained to America's ankles, as it marches onward. I have a
poster from the days of Vietnam. I have kept it all these
years as a reminder of the politics behind war. It is a
photograph of Arlington Cemetery, neat orderly rows of white
headstones, on green grass, below a sunny sky.
caption reads: We are the unwilling, led by the unqualified,
to do the unnecessary, for the ungrateful."
John Corry, A Vietnam Veteran
who received the Purple Heart and Bronze Star with V device.
To Protect What You Love Is Different’
March 11, 2005
Reply to Ewa Jasiewicz, Pacifism
find that it’s people who haven’t witnessed the violence of
an occupation or even violence in their own specific context
who are the first to advocate pacifism"
Ewa's reports for a long time and admire her. I agree that
a lot of people who have never experienced violence are
pacifists. Normally the people who are the strongest
supporters of war, and violence, haven't experienced war
What one should look at is the
number of people who became pacifists because they
terrible violence and killing. A pacifist, like a follower
of Ghandi, says war and violence must be avoided at all
costs. They are tested when they face prison or death as a
result of their beliefs.
I know of an ordinary young
man, from the DRC, who was faced with this decision. After
experiencing violence, on a level few could imagine, he was
forcibly recruited. He was beaten unconscious because he
refused to kill civilians. He needed hospital treatment
after the beating and a nurse was moved to help him escape.
She knew the next time he refused he would be killed and he
was prepared for that to happen. He escaped to a country
that didn't recognize resistance, as legitimate, and was
incarcerated in a detention centre. That is typical of the
world we live in. Such people are very brave and deserve
respect - not persecution.
people who are true pacifists face another reality -
watching family, or friends, murdered - their county
destroyed. In this situation they may be forced to fight
because all other options have failed. They will
hope they can fight without being forced to kill and, after
the fighting, they will again advocate pacifism. I
personally cannot see this as being inconsistent. Fighting
to protect what you love is different to fighting under
orders to kill anyone you are told to kill.
ps - What a great letter from
David Zeiger in the same GI Special. I congratulate him.
What do you think?
Comments from service men and women, and veterans, are
especially welcome. Send to
firstname.lastname@example.org. Name, I.D., withheld on
request. Replies confidential.
Not To Be Silent
To: GI Special
Sent: March 10, 2005
of protest, of warning, of appeal is never more needed than
when the clamor of fife and drum, echoed by the press and
too often by the pulpit, is bidding all men fall in step and
obey in silence the tyrannous word of command.
than ever, it is the duty of the good citizen not to be
Charles Eliot Norton, True
Praises Bush Election Farce;
10 March, 2005 Ghali Hassan,
In a recent opinion piece,
Noam Chomsky writes, "In
Iraq, the January elections were successful and
praiseworthy. However, the main success is being
reported only marginally: The United States was compelled
to allow them to take place. That
is a real triumph, not of the bomb-throwers, but of
non-violent resistance by the people, secular as
well as Islamist, for whom Grand Ayatollah Al Sistani is a
symbol" (Khaleej Times Online, 4 March 2005
is either completely out of touch with reality in Iraq, or
simply ignorant of the legitimate rights of the Iraqi people
Firstly, the elections were a
'It was hard to describe the
vote as legitimate, when whole portions of the country can't
vote and doesn't vote', Democrat Senator John Kerry warned.
It is important
remembering that Mr. Chomsky encouraged Americans to vote
for John Kerry in the last US elections, which Mr. Chomsky
himself described as "undemocratic" and not "praiseworthy".
Secondly, to describe the Iraqi people resisting this
violent and illegal Occupation of their nation as simply
"bomb-throwers" is to ignore the gross atrocities
committed against the Iraqi people by US forces.
like saying that, the Iraqi Resistance is responsible for
all the violence and destruction in Iraq, and ignoring the
violence of the Occupation and the many criminal elements
working with the Occupation against the principle aim of the
violence is brought by the Occupation, not by the people
fighting to end it. Everywhere, violent resistance arises
from a violent foreign military occupation.
the darling of the left and right. He is an icon for many
people, and sometime provides useful information on US
Mr. Chomsky has every right to his views, but he does not
have the right to distort what the Iraqi people struggling
people have legitimate right to resist the Occupation. The
US and its allies will not leave Iraq; they have to be
forced to leave. Armed resistance to the occupation of Iraq
will continue until the foreign occupiers withdraw their
Anti-Occupation Sadr Supporters Killed In Mosque Attack;
Propagandist Working For AP Tries To Blame Resistance.
could possibly have an interest in killing off the partisans
of a “radical” anti-occupation cleric?]
, MOSUL, IRAQ Mar 12, 2005 AFP , MOSUL, IRAQ &
SINDBAD AHMED, The Associated Press
leaders called for calm yesterday amid fears of revenge
attacks one day after a suicide bomber killed 47 Iraqis and
wounded more than 80 in a packed Shiite funeral tent in
The bomber struck on Thursday as mourners gathered next to
the Sadreen mosque,
where a service was being held for Hisham al-Araji, the
Mosul representative for radical Shiite leader Moqtada Sadr.
Families of the victims from
Thursday’s bombing at a funeral in a Mosul mosque held
individual wakes and funeral services after agreeing with
community and religious leaders not to hold a joint funeral
relatives were motivated by “fear of another attack like
this one,” said Hamid Zain al-Ali, a member of the
Al-Sadr Movement of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr,
whose militants rose up
against U.S. troops repeatedly last year.
He said one mortar
round exploded Friday near the site of Thursday’s
the next sentence, check the way the occupation mouthpiece
from Associated Press tries to spin this, as if anybody is
stupid enough to believe this was a resistance attack.
Again, who would be interested in killing militant
anti-occupation Iraqis and trying to start trouble between
two wings of the resistance? Gee, get a rocket scientist
and we’ll figure it out.]
led by Sunni Arabs, a minority who dominated under Saddam
Hussein, are targeting Shiite funeral processions and
ceremonies in an apparent campaign to spark a sectarian
war.” [Danger: Occupation Presstitute At Work.]
Baghdad's Um al-Qura mosque, a Sunni Muslim cleric
criticized the attacks.
"We strongly denounce the
bombings and assassinations that killed innocent people,"
Sheik Mahmoud al-Sumaidei, a member of the influential
Association of Muslim Scholars, told worshippers.
"Both the occupation and the
Iraqi government shoulder the responsibility of this
blood." [Exactly right. Nobody else would have the
slightest interest in a mass murder of anti-occupation
Iraqis, now would they?]
OCCUPATION ISN’T LIBERATION
ALL THE TROOPS HOME NOW!
March 11, 2005 Arabic News.com
sans frontieres (RSF), Paris has called for the immediate
release of Iraqi journalist Majed Fadhil Zaboun, of the
independent daily "Al-Fourat." Zaboun has been held by US
military forces since he was arrested on the Syrian border,
on 28 February 2005, as he was returning from a conference
"This is not the first time
that US forces have arbitrarily detained a journalist in
Iraq," RSF said. "Even in an area of sensitive operations,
it is important that the armed forces continue to respect
the work of professional journalists.
The US authorities must
either explain why they have been holding this journalist
all this time, or free him at once."
Reached by telephone,
"Al-Fourat" editor Shaker Al-Jabbouri said he was "outraged"
by Zaboun's arrest. "Everyone knows Majed Fadhil Zaboun, he
is a respected writer and journalist," Al-Jabbouri said.
"This illegal arrest is a
flagrant violation of his rights. The Americans suspect
everyone and don't hesitate to imprison innocents. This is
not what I call democracy."
Zaboun, who is the cultural
editor for "Al-Fourat," went to Damascus on 22 February with
a delegation of Iraqi poets to cover a conference.
When they did not hear from
him several days after his scheduled return, his colleagues
became concerned and began to look for him. It was not
until 3 March, when they called the US embassy in Baghdad,
that they learned he had been arrested. Officials at the
embassy gave their assurances that they would "do everything
necessary" to get Zaboun released.
Arabic-language newspaper founded in 2003, "Al-Fourat"
specialises in political analysis for Iraq and the rest of
the Middle East. It has a circulation of 10,000 and is
distributed throughout the country.
Occupation Stooges Equipped With Useless Trash
[USA Today, March 9, 2005, Pg.
local occupation collaborators patrol in pickup trucks that
provide little protection against enemy fire and lack the
tool needed to properly sight their aging AK-47s.
POLITICIANS AT WORK
Pants On Fire
11-12, 2005 LAGAUCHE IS RIGHT
1989 invasion of Panama, the U.S. allowed the press to enter
Manuel Noriega’s office. He was portrayed as a sexual
pervert. In the office were pictures of young boys, a
picture of Hitler, red underpants and pornographic
magazines. The dirty bastard.
months later, the first Marine to enter Noriega’s office was
released from the Corps. He eventually talked to a reporter
and said that he was the absolute first to enter the office
after the U.S. kidnapped the former Panamanian president and
all that was inside were a desk, a telephone, a chair and a
back 16 years from Noriega’s demise. In 1973, Salvador
Allende, the president of Chile, was assassinated.
press was allowed to enter his office, they saw a pair of
red underpants, pictures of young boys, a picture of Hitler
and pornographic magazines.
The CIA did
not have the decency to change props.
They used the same for both
offices, thinking that 16 years was a long time and no one
would figure out the ruse.
A reporter who covered the
1973 event was also in Panama in 1989 and happened to see
both made-up scenarios.
Prosecutor In Kentucky Out Of Control
reason to Bring The Troops Home Now. We need some help
dealing with petty piss-pot local dictators and a loony
police state “mentality” right here in the USA.]
arrested for writing a short story
Feb. 27, 2005 WLEX-TV,
Rogers Clark High School junior arrested Tuesday for making
terrorist threats told LEX 18 News Thursday that the
"writings" that got him arrested are being taken out of
Winchester police say William
Poole, 18, was taken into custody Tuesday morning.
Investigators say they discovered materials at Poole's home
that outline possible acts of violence aimed at students,
teachers, and police.
LEX 18 that the whole incident is a big misunderstanding.
He claims that what his grandparents found in his journal
and turned into police was a short story he wrote for
story is based on fiction," said Poole, who faces a
second-degree felony terrorist threatening charge.
"It's a fake story. I made it up. I've been working on
one of my short stories, (and) the short story they
found was about zombies. Yes, it did say a high
school. It was about a high school over ran by
police say the nature of the story makes it a felony.
"Anytime you make any threat or possess matter involving a
school or function it's a felony in the state of Kentucky,"
said Winchester Police detective Steven Caudill.
Poole disputes that he was
"It didn't mention nobody who
lives in Clark County, didn't mention (George Rogers Clark
High School), didn't mention no principal or cops, nothing,"
said Poole. "Half the people at high school know me. They
know I'm not that stupid, that crazy."
Thursday, a judge raised Poole's bond from one to five
thousand dollars after prosecutors requested it, citing the
seriousness of the charge.
being held at the Clark County Detention Center.
Freaks From Bragg MI Murdered Prisoners:
Daniel K. McNeill, Liar, Covered Up The Murders
12 March 2005 By Douglas Jehl,
The New York Times
Two Afghan prisoners who
died in American custody in Afghanistan in December 2002
were chained to the ceiling, kicked and beaten by American
soldiers in sustained assaults that caused their deaths,
according to Army criminal investigative reports that have
not yet been made public.
One soldier, Pfc. Willie V.
Brand, was charged with manslaughter in a closed hearing
last month in Texas in connection with one of the deaths,
another Army document shows.
Private Brand, who
acknowledged striking a detainee named Dilawar 37 times, was
accused of having maimed and killed him over a five-day
period by "destroying his leg muscle tissue with repeated
unlawful knee strikes."
The attacks on Mr. Dilawar
were so severe that "even if he had survived, both legs
would have had to be amputated," the Army report said,
citing a medical examiner.
The reports, obtained by Human
Rights Watch, provide the first official account of events
that led to the deaths of the detainees, Mullah Habibullah
and Mr. Dilawar, at the Bagram Control Point, about 40 miles
north of Kabul. The deaths took place nearly a year before
the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
those implicated in the killings at Bagram were members
of Company A of the 519th Military Intelligence
Battalion, from Fort Bragg, N.C. The battalion went on
to Iraq, where some members established the
interrogation unit at Abu Ghraib and have been
implicated in some abuses there.
The reports, from the Army
Criminal Investigation Command, also make clear that the
abuse at Bagram went far beyond the two killings.
Among those recommended for
prosecution is an Army military interrogator from the 519th
Battalion who is said to have "placed his penis along the
face" of one Afghan detainee and later to have "simulated
anally sodomizing him (over his clothes)."
American military officials in
Afghanistan initially said the deaths of Mr. Habibullah, in
an isolation cell on Dec. 4, 2002, and Mr. Dilawar, in
another such cell six days later, were from natural causes.
Gen. Daniel K. McNeill, the American commander of allied
forces in Afghanistan at the time, denied then that
prisoners had been chained to the ceiling or that
conditions at Bagram endangered the lives of prisoners.
But among those mentioned in
the new reports is Capt. Carolyn A. Wood, the chief military
intelligence officer at Bagram.
conclude that Captain Wood lied to investigators by saying
that shackling prisoners in standing positions was intended
to protect interrogators from harm. In fact, the report
says, the technique was used to inflict pain and sleep
Wood, who commanded Company A in Afghanistan, later helped
to establish the interrogation and debriefing center at Abu
Ghraib. Two Defense Department reports
have said that a list of interrogation procedures she drew
up there, which went beyond those approved by Army
commanders, may have contributed to abuses at Abu Ghraib.
Mr. Habibullah, a brother of a
former Taliban commander, died of a pulmonary embolism
apparently caused by blood clots formed in his legs from the
beatings, according to the report of June 1, 2004. Mr.
Dilawar, who suffered from a heart condition, is described
in an Army report dated July 6, 2004, as having died from
"blunt force trauma to the lower extremities complicating
coronary artery disease."
By Joel Geier,
January-February 2005 International Socialist Review.
The second aspect that allowed
this [foreign money financing the U.S. deficit] to go on for
so many years was that the Clinton administration sustained
a government budget surplus that offset the stock market
bubble and accelerated the trade deficit. When Clinton left
office there was a $250 billion a year budget surplus.
administration took that money and gave it to the rich as
tax cuts. It was a disaster for the economy, but that never
stopped the greed of the rich, particularly if they can get
others to pay for the problems they create.
[Interviewer]: YOU SAID that the Bush administration wanted
to let the dollar fall so long as it didn’t turn into a
collapse. What do they hope to gain from that?
THEIR SOLUTION is to lower the
dollar—gradually so that it does not precipitate a crisis—to
make imports more expensive and to make exports to other
countries less expensive. By doing this, they hope to
increase exports and decrease imports, thereby bringing down
the trade imbalance. Over time that might work, according
to bourgeois economic theory, but so far it hasn’t. The
trade deficit has gotten worse, despite the decline of the
dollar in the last three years.
they have done this unilaterally. Just like they carried out
a unilateral foreign policy in Iraq, made a mess of it, and
then told the rest of the world they have a stake in
cleaning it up.
international cooperation they got with the Plaza Accords,
the U.S. this time is trying to drive the dollar lower, no
matter what the consequences are for the rest of the world.
It’s a kind of financial unilateralism.
lowering the dollar will help. They
invading Iraq would lower the price of oil. There are
unintended consequences of the policies of an arrogant
ruling class whose incompetent political representatives
act on the assumption that the world’s only superpower
can unilaterally impose whatever it wants on the world.
the likely problems, the “unintended consequences,” that
might result from this?
LET’S START with this country.
First, higher inflation.
of goods that are going to be imported are going to be a lot
higher. U.S. manufacturers will take advantage of higher
import prices to also raise their prices. If an import goes
up from $100 to $120, domestic manufacturers can raise their
price to $110, still be cheaper than their foreign
competitors but with an additional $10 of inflated profits.
Interest rates are going to go
up quite a bit, because of higher inflation, and in order to
attract continued foreign loans.
In essence, what is happening
is that the American government is defaulting on a part of
its debt. They will pay back the debt at its face value,
but in a devalued currency.
declaring bankruptcy but the world’s biggest debtor is
telling its creditors: “Well pay you 80 cents on the dollar,
or 60 cents on the dollar.”
with your credit card company.
The biggest losers, Japan,
which holds $720 billion and China with $400 billion of U.S.
debt, will take steep losses.
question is, why should foreigners invest in the U.S. when
their assets lose value? This will necessitate even higher
interest rates in order to continue to attract foreign
country; it means that the standard of living is going to be
the dollar crisis tell us about the relative strength of the
U.S. economy and its position as the world’s superpower?
people who think that U.S. imperialism is all-powerful, and
that the Bush administration is going to go from one victory
to the next, are mistaken.
devaluing the dollar because it sees no way out of its
current problems, and it’s gambling that its remedy won’t
produce an even worse crisis.
lowering of the dollar’s value is not going to increase U.S.
power. It is going to decrease it, either by a modest
amount, or by a more significant amount.
capital is now worth 50 percent of what it was three years
ago in Europe. If you’re an American capitalist who wants a
factory in Europe, you have to pay out 50 percent more. The
press may present this as a brilliant stroke by the
political representatives of the U.S. capitalist class, but
it is not a sign of strength.
see the article at
It Right: #1
11 March 2005 By Elizabeth
Becker, The New York Times
- The United States trade deficit hit $58.3 billion, its
second-highest level on record in January,
defying predictions that a
weakened dollar and lower oil prices would improve the
American trade picture.
Instead, American consumers
continued to buy foreign-made goods at a record pace,
including cars, electronics and business equipment, helping
to increase the trade deficit by 4.5 percent from $55.7
billion in December, the Commerce Department reported today.
It Right: #2:
Central Banks Dumping Dollars
Treasuries Purchases Update 3/11/05
March 11, 2005 By Bud Conrad
for International Settlements reported Tuesday (03/08) that
Asian central and commercial banks held only 67% of their
deposits in dollars as of September 2004, down from 81% in
the Q3 2001. The big change is India, which went from 68%
to 43%, while China went from 83% to 68%, albeit mostly
before Q3 2002.
The BIS had
earlier reported that Middle Eastern central banks had cut
dollar holdings from 75% to 61.5% of total foreign deposits
in the same period.
Central bankers are
questioning the wisdom of holding so many dollars, and could
shift to other currencies. But doing so could hurt their
holdings, because the shift itself would drive the dollar
down. Foreigners hold over 40% of all US government debt.
shifts are far from dollar friendly, and the rise in
rates is consistent with a need for higher returns to
cover currency depreciation expectations. The situation
is considered unsustainable by traditional economic
analysis – the US cannot simply go on buying more and
issuing paper dollars to foreigners in payment.
Cutting Reserves Held In Dollars
03.11.2005 Associated Press
the share of its foreign reserves held in U.S. dollar assets
last year, suggesting that the United States might no longer
be able to rely on Asia to finance growing deficits,
investment bank Lehman Brothers said in a report this week.
Even as the
reserves grew, the share of dollar assets held by China's
central bank fell to 76 percent, down from 82 percent in
2003, Lehman Brothers said.
"is slowly diversifying its FX (foreign-exchange) reserves
away from U.S. dollars," said the report, written by
London-based analyst Shruti Sood.
The results of research on
Chinese holdings suggests that the United States might no
longer be able to rely on Asian official financing for its
growing current account deficit, the report said.
Greenspan Rub Salt In Dollar Wound
Mar 12, 2005 Asia Times
The US dollar was struggling
near a two-month low against the euro on Friday as the
market braced for fresh trade data that were likely to show
a further widening of the trade gap.
As if this weren't trouble
enough for the besieged greenback, US Federal Reserve
chairman Alan Greenspan stirred up the market Thursday night
saying foreign investors would reduce their US asset
holdings at some point, while new findings came to light
that China is indeed doing so.
comments came close on the heels of Japanese Prime Minister
Junichiro Koizumi's startling remark on Thursday that Japan
needs to diversify its foreign-exchange reserves, reviving
fears of Asian central banks cutting their giant dollar
Any move by
Japan, which has the largest foreign-exchange reserve in the
world ($840 billion), to reduce its dollar holdings could be
disastrous for the greenback. The dollar
has already been dropping against the yen for four straight
weeks now. Koizumi's statement, though later qualified by
his finance minister, will only prolong the agony.
accounted for 63.8% of the world's currency reserves at the
end of 2003, down from 66.9% two years earlier, according to
International Monetary Fund (IMF) figures released last
April. A survey this January commissioned
by the Royal Bank of Scotland Plc and conducted by
London-based Central Banking Publications Ltd showed that
central banks across the world were boosting euro holdings.
Almost 70% of the 56
central banks surveyed said they had increased exposure to
a more recent finding, Asia Times Online reported on
Thursday (Dollar catching Asian flu) that Asian central
banks have been quietly switching their dollar holdings
to regional currencies for at least three years now.
reported on Friday that according to an estimate by Lehman
Brothers Holdings Inc, China's central bank has been cutting
the share of its currency reserves held in dollars and
replenishing them with euros. Some 76% of China's reserves
were in dollars last year, down from 82% in 2003, said
Lehman, the fifth-largest US securities firm.
To: GI Special
Sent: March 10, 2005
Subject: miss israel
ever seen this photo? Try to find the future Palestinian
(Will it be
a sliver of the blue portion, as soon as all Palestinians
learn to swim?)
surprisingly, Israel's most liberal newspaper, Ha'aretz,
uses the same map.
out what life is like under a murderous military occupation
by a foreign power, to:
www.rafahtoday.org The foreign army is Israeli; the
occupied nation is Palestine.]
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